Tag Archives: Backcountry Brides Collection

The Hero of Shenandoah Hearts

Jacob Owens, the hero of Shenandoah Hearts, is a prosperous merchant, owning and running a Philadelphia shop. He’s had the wonderful ladysmith, Madga Sehler, working with his family for years. But the Sehler family is relocating to the Shenandoah region of what is today Virginia. This backcountry area was dangerous. Beautiful but dangerous. Far from Jacob’s home. And did I mention dangerous?

In romance, we always have the “why?” and the “why not?”. I’m a big proponent of understanding the characters’ backstories. So what do we have in Jacob’s present day and in his backstory that would lead him to abandon his livelihood in Philadelphia? Jacob’s parents lived in Philadelphia and brought him up there. But wait – his grandparents had lived in the backcountry. And every visit to Philly brought tales of the glorious beauty of the Blue Ridge mountains. So his grandparents had lived there in the early 1700s my oh my – and what adventurers they had to have been. Jacob’s eldest brother is, in fact (and fiction!), living in western Virginia where he is developing a forge and iron working business in which Jacob will have a partnership.

But … Jacob’s next eldest brother is in the military. He has been sent to the western area of Virginia in the Shenandoah Valley, to guard against encroaching French interests. And he tells Jacob this is an area brewing with trouble. These two brothers are particularly close. And Jacob’s brother has planted the notion that if ever Jacob should wish to journey to their grandparents’ former “backyards” that he’d be welcome in the militia. Or as a supplier to the forts, which was badly needed.

What’s a man to do? When Magda leaves with her family, apparently accepting an offer of marriage from the older wagonmaster, many a man might decide – she’s made up her mind. But a wise customer shares her advice. And Jacob seeks God’s direction in his life.

Want to know what happens?  Leave a comment for a chance to win a copy of The Backcountry Brides collection! Also, don’t forget to enter our Rafflecopter giveaway, which runs through May!

Carrie Fancett Pagels, Ph.D., is the award-winning author of fifteen Christian historical romances, including ECPA bestsellers. Twenty-five years as a psychologist didn’t “cure” her overactive imagination! A self-professed “history geek,” she resides with her family in the Historic Triangle of Virginia but grew up as a “Yooper,” in Michigan’s beautiful Upper Peninsula. Carrie loves to read, bake, bead, and travel – but not all at the same time! You can connect with her at

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The Hero of Love’s Undoing

My story, Love’s Undoing, begins in what would one day become central Minnesota on the banks of the Upper Mississippi River in 1792 at a Scottish fur post. Abi is the daughter of a Scottish fur trader and an Indian mother. Henry is the second son of an English earl and has come to Montreal to make his way in the world. Early in the story, he arrives at the fur post to deliver an important message to Abi’s father, and then he must go back to Montreal with the reply. What he doesn’t plan is to take Abi with him. She longs to get away from the confines and expectations of the fur post and see what the world has to offer.

Henry was a great character to create. He has a sense of humor that kind of took me by surprise as I wrote the story. He doesn’t take himself too seriously, which compliments Abi, who is a bit too serious for her own good. Henry thinks he knows what he wants, but when he meets Abi and experiences life in the backcountry, he begins to imagine a different kind of future for himself. Henry must fight his own expectations, that of his employer (Abi’s uncle), and the only society he’s ever known. When Abi is mistreated by his employer and society, he begins to realize he doesn’t belong there, after all. Henry is handsome, strong, and confident. He loves life and helps Abi see the best in herself. He’s my favorite kind of hero.


Gabrielle Meyer lives in central Minnesota on the banks of the Upper Mississippi River with her husband and four children. As an employee of the Minnesota Historical Society, she fell in love with the rich history of her state and enjoys writing fictional stories inspired by real people, places, and events. You can learn more about her and her upcoming releases by visiting her website or her Facebook page

Gabrielle Meyer

Seven Brides for Seven Texas Rangers (March 2018 from Barbour Publishers)

The Backcountry Brides Collection (May 2018 from Barbour Publishers)

Victorian Christmas Brides Collection (September 2018 from Barbour Publishers)


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Heart of Nantahala’s Hero – The Man with a Plan

Joseph Gregory is the hero in my novella, Heart of Nantahala, one of the stories in the Backcountry Brides Collection. He is a natural born leader. At age ten and eight, Joseph left the family farm and traveled from one lumber mill to the next, learning the business and acquiring valuable skills until he had enough funds to buy his own land at twenty-four. Joseph purchased a considerable tract and built a lumber mill in Salem, North Carolina near the Moravian village. By age twenty-seven, Joseph was a successful business owner and needed to expand–and fast.

It is 1757, and the colony is thriving with new immigrants arriving each day. Demand for timber keeps growing as the need for more homes and businesses are high in demand. When Joseph hears that the owner of Nantahala Lumber Mill perished in a logging accident and his unmarried sister may sell the property, Joseph knows it could be the answer to his expansion plans. Building another mill from scratch would take time, but buying a mill already set up and staffed would enable him to turn a profit much faster.

He sends two of his men to negotiate the purchase of the mill, but each time they return without success. That’s when Joseph decides to travel to Nantahala and meet the middle-aged spinster who continues to be an unforeseen obstacle to his plans. What he finds is a young and vibrant woman full of intelligence. Miss Mabel Walker has natural grace and beauty.

Without the protection of her deceased brother and parents, Miss Walker and her younger sister are at risk of sabotage and deceit. Men of all ages, near and close enough to travel, are lining up and proposing marriage in hopes of obtaining her brother’s land and company. Joseph doesn’t want to become one of them. Instead, he makes her another offer to purchase her land and company, but this time, he leaves out the nine acres that include her home and ups the price, hoping it will be too good for her to resist.

In the meantime, he witnesses the danger she is in when someone tries to hurt her, and the animosity her employees have because they dislike working for a woman. As her struggles grow, so does her determination to remain independent and carry on the legacy her brother built. Joseph finds his admiration for her deepening, and he is unable to resist helping her, even if it means ditching his own expansion plans. As fortune would have it, everything turns in Jacob’s favor, but not in the way he would like.

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The Hero of A Heart so Tender

A Heart so Tender is part of The Backcountry Brides Collection which released on May 1st.

Lieutenant Archibald Waters, of the 60th Regiment of Foot, ‘the Royal Americans’, does not want to be at Fort Niagara. Even more so when the great Sir William Johnson, Indian Agent for the Crown, and respected for his bravery in battle during the French and Indian War, invites hundreds, if not thousands, of warriors to the very corner of the frontier along the Niagara River. Arch has little desire for friendship with the Seneca warriors that killed his best friend at the Massacre at Devil’s Hole.

The only thing that has kept him from succumbing to hatred is seeing what it has done to his commanding officer.

When Sir William arrives one hot July day, Arch has one more reason to resent him. Stepping out of a carriage is a lovely English lass who, without knowing it, has caught every eye. When Arch is assigned to see to her safety and that of her adopted Iroquois brother, he must set aside his frustrations, and eventually, his assumptions about her. Protecting her is second nature but as more warriors arrive by the day, accepting her affection for the Iroquois people is much more difficult.

Especially when he has to face those responsible for his friend’s death

I hope you’ll get the opportunity to read A Heart So Tender set in 1764 Fort Niagara and find yourself immersed in my hero’s journey of renewal, and a story built on the importance of friendship during an unprecedented true historical event. Oh, and bring an umbrella for a side trip to the mighty Falls.



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A Hero to Match the Heroine of Across Three Autumns

When you have a heroine patterned after a tall, red-haired, crack shot, Revolutionary War legend who earned the name “War Woman” from the local Indians, the need for a strong hero passes as an understatement. Jenny White had given up on love because she considered herself not attractive and feminine enough. She needed a man who would rightly recognize her strengths as attributes for a frontier help meet. She needed Caylan McIntosh.

For whatever reasons embedded in my brain from watching historical movies, I found the notion of a Scottish scout as the male protagonist in Across Three Autumns quite romantic. But I had to make sure Scottish people had settled in Georgia before the Revolution, and one might serve in such a capacity. My research led me to New Inverness.

Realizing the need to settle the Spanish-threatened coast below Savannah with soldiers possessing legendary fierceness in battle, the founder of the Georgia colony, General James Oglethorpe, recruited married Scottish Highlanders seventeen to forty-five years of age. On January 19, 1736, one hundred and seventy-seven men, mostly MacKays and MacIntoshes, arrived aboard Prince of Wales.

Fort Darien Marker

Between their arrival and the American Revolution, the task appointed them was anything but small: fend off French from the west, Spanish to the south, and marauding Indians from Florida. The men retained traditional Highland dress. Women of the New Inverness settlement—which became the town of Darien—were trained in the Manual of Arms for muskets and were capable of serving the fort cannon when the men were away.

This fascinating heritage birthed a hero not only independent enough to seek his own land away from the coast and scout for Elijah Clark’s militia, but who could appreciate a woman who wielded a Brown Bess as well as he could. And one stubborn enough to suffer repeated rebuffing by a lass a’feared of rejection! After winning Jenny’s heart, Caylan helps lead her and her younger sisters on a harrowing journey out of Georgia’s “Hornet’s Nest.” He longs to make Jenny his backcountry bride, if only the secret he’s keeping from her doesn’t extinguish her love.


Denise Weimer holds a journalism degree with a minor in history from Asbury University. A former magazine writer, she is a substantive editor for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas as well as the author of The Georgia Gold Series, The Restoration Trilogy and a number of romantic novellas. Represented by Hartline Literary Agency, Denise is a wife and swim mom of two daughters who always pauses for old houses, coffee, and chocolate!

Denise Weimer’s story, Across Three Autumns, is including in The Backcountry Brides collection from Barbour Publishing. Look for it in bookstores and on Amazon.


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The Hero of Her Redcoat – Henry Bedlow

After I picked Fort Michilimackinac for my story’s setting, I decided my hero should be a British soldier. But what kind of British soldier would be a good hero for my story, since the British lost the battle? I decided on a reluctant soldier, one who had been forced into the army. Henry Bedlow is a bookish London-raised man who finds himself at the edge of civilization in 1763. He’s woefully unprepared for life at the fort – or much of anything else. But he can read and speak French. Those two assets will lead him to a life he never expected.

To celebrate the release of The Backcountry Brides Collection, including my story, Her Redcoat, I’m giving away one of my signature shawls. Today the area around Fort Michilimackinac is known for its beautiful lilacs. One subscriber to my newsletter will win Northern Lilacs, my handspun, handknit wool shawl on May 31, 2018. Subscribe today to be entered!

Pegg Thomas lives on a hobby farm in Northern Michigan with Michael, her husband of *mumble* years. A life-long history geek, she writes “History with a Touch of Humor.” When not working or writing, Pegg can be found in her barn, her garden, her kitchen, or sitting at her spinning wheel creating yarn to turn into her signature wool shawls.

Stitches Thru Time


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The Hero of The Counterfeit Tory

I like a hero who’s solid and honorable but—not too perfect. Guys who definitely talk and act like guys, not some version of what we women sometimes wish they were. I’m not sure how successfully I accomplish that, but … 🙂

After five long years of war, Jedidiah (“Jed”) Wheeler is not just older but more world-weary, and swings between cynicism and anger over the various injustices he sees. Though he played the role of instigator to his cousin Sam in my previous novella The Highwayman, his devil-may-care attitude has grown somewhat of an edge. When asked to take on what amounts to a suicide mission, he does so fully expecting to lose his life, and caring little about that.

And then he meets Lizzy. He’s sharp-eyed enough to recognize the signs of neglect, and he suspects abuse and all his protective instincts rise up on her behalf. So much for cool detachment on this mission! And suddenly his own life counts for more than he expected. He isn’t entirely happy about that, but he also knows that if he doesn’t stay alive to be there for Lizzy, no one else may be.

He also finds Lizzy beautiful, where others seem not to. He sees a depth in her eyes that grabs him by the heart. And more than anything he finds he wants to be the one that makes her believe she’s lovely, that she has worth.

Oh, and he’s on the tallish side, with sturdy shoulders and a square, mostly ordinary face that escapes plainness by the humor that his sparkling blue eyes betray. Longish, straight blond hair is caught back in a plain colonial-style tail, and he dresses in otherwise nondescript shirt, breeches, waistcoat, and hunting frock (moccasins instead of shoes) … but Lizzy notes that his cocked hat is a little “fancy.”

So much for not being too perfect, huh? 😉

Backcountry Brides:
And the prequel, The Highwayman, is now available as a standalone:

BIO: After more than two decades in the South, Shannon McNear now makes her home on the windy northern plains with her husband, four of their eight children, two German Shepherds, four cats, several chickens, and a noisy flock of guinea fowl. She serves in worship and youth ministry, and has been writing novel-length fiction since age 15. Her first novella, Defending Truth, from A Pioneer Christmas Collection, was a 2014 RITA® nominee. When not sewing, researching, or leaking story from her fingertips, she enjoys being outdoors, basking in the beauty of the Dakota prairies.
Colonial Quills


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