Spooky Girl Reads, in conjunction with The Killion Group, is proud to present the blog tour for The Courtship of Utopia Miner by Linda Gilman. Read on for exclusive content, a guest post from Linda Gilman, and a giveaway!
About The Courtship of Utopia Miner
Title: The Courtship of Utopia Miner
Author: Linda Gilman
Series: Gold Rush
Genre: Historical Romance
Release Date: November 9th 2015
Publisher: Indie Published
Print Length: 289 pages
Format: Paperback and Digital
Print ISBN: 9781517538941
Digital ISBN: 1517538947
Utopia Miner is tired of hunting gold and caring for her three adopted fathers. Living in a Rocky Mountain mining camp is holding up her dream of becoming a saloon girl. If only she could learn the essential skills of singing, dancing and kissing, she’d be on her way to a glamorous life. When Utopia discovers she’s the prize in her three fathers’ marrying scheme, she sees benefits in going along with the courting contest. She now has a kissing teacher. And wow, what a teacher. One starter kiss from Lance and her body’s sweating in places it never had before.
Lancelot Jones wants to turn in his life-risking marshal’s badge for a much safer job as a reporter, but the newspaper wants articles as proof of his qualifications. When his editor sends him to a mining camp to get the scoop on a courtship contest, Lance discovers the privilege of covering the story hinges upon chaperoning the bride-to-be. He soon finds himself ensconced in Utopia’s innocent charms and demanding saloon girl lessons. In short order, chaperoning the bride-to-be becomes risky business.
“When you hear me ringing, that’s the signal the next man can cut in for a turn to dance with the Miss Utopia. You’ll each be allowed two dancing cut-ins. Any one breaking the cut-in rule will be tied to a tree wearing nothing but long johns. That fella will stay tied to a tree until morning. Is that clear?”
Lance couldn’t quite hear what Sadie was saying for he was standing near where the musicians were tuning their instruments. He needed to hurry. If the music started he’d have an even harder time getting near Utopia.
The fastest way to the girls from where he presently stood would be to go around the rear of the wagon to the other side. That’s the direction he headed.
“We will go by your suitor numbers,” Sadie stated, “starting with the next gent to court.”
“That’d be me. I’m next,” Travin shouted.
“All right then. Get me and the lady down from here and let’s get this dance started.”
Travin placed his hands at Utopia’s waist and swung her down off the stage. The fiddles struck up a lively tune of Old Suzanna.
Lance finally had circled around to the other side of the stage, but to his dismay, the first notes were struck and that Travin fellow spun the laughing Utopia off in a fast two-step hopping stride. New plan needed.
Figuring the fastest way to reach his objective would be to dance his way through the crowd, he looked around for the closest person to use as a partner. It happened to be Miss Lil, who was dancing with the lad, Mickey Crosby. Lance poked the youngster on his shoulder. “Sorry kid. I have to cut-in.”
“Hey.” Mickey scowled. “I didn’t hear the cow bell.”
More interested in keeping sight of where Utopia had floated off to, Lance went up on his tip-toes, scanning for a glimpse of her auburn hair or that lavender dress. Damnation. Where is she? “Look kid. Go find yourself a new dance partner.”
“Did you hear the cow bell?” Mickey asked a nearby dancer. “That fella says the cow bell rang. Did you hear the bell?”
The lad received several negative nods.
“Look here, mister. No one heard the bell. It’s still my turn.”
“Kid, I don’t have time for your sniveling. I just need Lil for a minute. Stay here and I’ll bring her right back to you.” Lance lifted Lil’s petite frame off the ground and carried her off in a fluid spinning motion, flowing along with the dancing crowd, all the while scanning the bobbing heads for Utopia.
Lil held on tight to her feathers. “In case you don’t know–this is a dance not a foot race. I can say one thing for your way of dancing. At least my sore feet get some rest.”
“I’m not really dancing Miss Lil. I’m trying to catch up to Utopia.”
“So–she’s charmed you, too? Has she?”
“Me? No. I’m her guardian.”
Available now: Amazon
About the Author
Linda Gilman is known for writing humorous western romance novels. Her stories are centered on independent, strong-willed women, and courageous heroes who always protect the innocent without violating their personal code of conduct. It’s the cowboy west readers are so enamored with and a twist of zany plot. From first page to last, her books are loaded with pain-in-your-side laughable moments.
She has a deep love of the American gold rush era and often uses this as an excuse to do book research and travel to ghost towns in the western states.
Born into a city girl life, her parents raised her in St. Louis County. However, Linda has always felt her country girl roots calling her to move west young woman. She currently lives in rural Missouri with her hubby and the oldest of her three sons.
Guest Post from Linda Gilman
Barn Storming: My Wayward Hobby
BARNS! BARNS! BARNS!
What is it about barns that fascinates me to the point of distraction? I’ll tell you.
When I think about barns and see barns, particularly barns that are near to falling down from weather and lack of upkeep, I think about that structure’s past.
When our country was young and just starting to spread to the west, besides a log or sod house, the next property improvement was a barn. Barns were as much a necessity on a ranch or farm as a source of water for pioneer families.
Barns sheltered animals, equipment, hay, and grain for the animals. In addition, there was another aspect to these
buildings not related to toil or survival. They were sometimes a place for a social gathering. A place to have a barn dance.
Moreover, this is where my historical romance writing can let my imagination fly. I think of these barn dances and can envision a young couple sneaking off to the hayloft to have a first kiss – kissing like the kind that occurs in my debut historical romance, The Courtship of Utopia Miner.
During my barnstorming photo ops, I’ve come across a couple barns in rural Troy, Missouri that are century barns. The owners have kept the family farms for over one hundred years. They’ve restored their barns and preserved not only their family legacy but have kept a past of long ago days from perishing.
I’ve included a few of my barn pictures with this post, but if you’d like to see more, feel free to peruse my Barn Blog!
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