Friday, 25 March 2011

Author Spotlight week - Excerpt from West of Heaven

Hi all - enjoy this excerpt from Barbara Scott's upcoming novel, "West of Heaven." The novel will be released on 15 APR. Leave a comment and Barbara will chose 2 lucky posters to win either a PDF of "West of Heaven" or "Listen With Your Heart." (poster's choice) Also, comment on one of Barbara's other posts this week and your name will also go in the hat for the drawing to win her novels. Winners will be announced here - on this post on Monday, 28 MON. Please leave an email in your comment so it will be easier to get ahold of you.

Read. Enjoy. Leave a comment.

Tom brought up a hardy mousey brown horse that should suit her. He had a sleekness to him and a wise look. He stood solid while Jean Luc saddled him. Marcella came up to take his reins, stroking the horse's nose and talking to him in soft reassuring tones.

"Does this one have a name, Tom?" Marcella asked.

"Redemption they called him."

"Redemption." From her mouth, the name whispered through the morning air like a word of endearment. The critter ate it up like sugar lumps.

"You got a way with horses." Jean Luc pulled the cinches tight. "Sweet-talking might be all you need to keep you seated. Maybe he won't buck at all. He ain't puttin' up a fight now, but, just in case, try to sit back and catch his rhythm and ride with it."

"Until I land in the dirt with the best of them." She whispered something else to the horse as Jean Luc came around to give her a leg up.

"Have a good ride." He stepped back to clear the way.

Marcella steered Redemption toward the center of the corral, taking an easy pace, showing a confidence that let the horse know he was in good hands. He responded with a cooperation that thrilled Jean Luc. They walked the boundary of the corral without a bump or a bother. A mumble of appreciation rippled through the townsfolk who'd been attracted by the unusual Sunday morning goings-on.

When she looked up, Jean Luc signaled his encouragement by snatching off his hat and waving it in the air. Ezra and Tom nodded enthusiastically. She urged Redemption into a post trot, raising herself in her stirrups so she was half-sitting and half standing, her body bobbing up and down in perfect rhythm to the horse's gait. On this go round she beamed at Polly's barely contained excitement and at Glory with her hands on her hips, no doubt puzzling out why she hadn't drawn Marcella's horse instead of the one she'd chosen.

In truth, Jean Luc suspected it was Tom's horse sense that had reserved this mount for her. Not too shy to show off, Marcella directed Redemption into some quick turns and stops before taking him one more time around. She brought him to a smooth stop in front of Jean Luc and dismounted.

Tilting back her hat, Marcella took off her bandana and used it to dab at the sweat on her brow. "I don't know, Jean Luc, do you really think I had to change clothes for that ride?"

Jean Luc rubbed his chin. "Well, how else do you think that horse knew you meant business? Now, ready for some breakfast? Or should we start right in on ropin' and tyin'?"


  1. Great beginning - a grabber. I confess that I've never ridden a horse. Afraid it's too late now - bad back and stuff, but I enjoy reading about horses and get a vicarious adventure. Best of luck with your book.

  2. Congrats to winners June Belfie and Jennifer Jakes! You've won copies of Barbara's stories. We'll be getting with you shortly.