Tuesday, August 25, 2015

E.E. Burke's BEST OF THE WEST with award-winning author Jacquie Rogers

Secret lives, hidden dreams, and forbidden sex in the Old West—what’s a woman of nobility to do when a handsome rancher tears through her world like an Owyhee dust devil?

A British Aristocrat – Or is she? Lady Pearl Montford has performed in theatres all over the West for crowds of all sizes, but what would the world say if her secret was found out—thanks to an unsavory suitor from her past who wants either her—or $10,000.

A Frustrated Rancher – Rugged Josh McKinnon has a ranch to build, but is wrangled into playing opposite the snooty Brit in Shakespeare's ‘Much Ado about Nothing.’ Only thing is—how can he focus on his ranch when all he can think about is the way Pearl sits a horse?

Much Ado About ... Love?
With meddling family members and townsfolk playing Cupid, and horse rustlers causing a ruckus, Pearl and Josh have a heck of a time keeping their minds on the play and their hands off each other. When the curtain falls, will Pearl and Josh find love in the wild Idaho countryside? 

"Meet a zany cast of characters in Jacquie Rogers' rollicking tale of trick riders, Shakespeare, and hidden identities." ~Nancy Radke, Author of the Traherns series.

Here's an excerpt: 
Set up: Silver City citizens are all atwitter over the famous British actress, Lady Pearl Montford, who’s coming to town to perform Beatrice in Much Ado About Nothing.  Josh McKinnon is recovering from a gunshot wound, and is regretting that he’d let his sister talk him into the role of Benedick—especially now that he knows who’s playing the leading lady.  Josh has just come from the saloon and is in his mother’s bookstore, helping out.  Like the rest of the townsfolk, she’s excited about Lady Montford and hopes to have an opportunity to meet the noblewoman.
Characters mentioned: Lady Pearl Montford, Josh McKinnon, Esther (Josh’s mother), Vivvie (his sister), Kade (his brother), Doc (Vivvie’s husband), Iris (Kade’s wife).

     Another thing about the gimp list that irked Josh—Vivvie, his sister, had roped him into taking the role while he was under the influence of laudanum.  He’d played Benedick in high school, she’d argued, and he still knew the lines.  Kade’s wife, Iris, who was also Vivvie’s best friend, was in on the conspiracy, and he strongly suspected Doc was, too.  Josh fetched the broom from the storeroom. 
When he returned, Esther said, “Did you read the newspaper?”
     Josh grunted.  Yes, he’d read it.  The whole blasted front page was filled with Lady Pearl Montford this and Lady Pearl Montford that.  The whole bloomin’ town, including his ma, was a’twitter.  He couldn’t understand what the big to-do was about, and didn’t look forward to dealing with her bigheaded ways.  If she thought for one minute he’d worship her just for breathing, she had another think coming.
      “Lady Pearl Montford came in on the stage today, as planned.” 
      “I saw all those people in front of the hotel making damn fools of themselves over a piece of fluff.” 
     “Language!  You better not curse around our honored guest.”  Esther sniffed.  “She’s staying at the Idaho Hotel.  We saw her for a brief moment—very beautiful.  It’ll be so wonderful to see you and Vivvie on stage with her!  I hope she stops by the bookstore.”
     “You and every other merchant in town.”  Everywhere he went, people yammered on and on about the famous actress.  Vivvie and Iris were ecstatic they’d been so lucky to book her.  For the past two weeks, he couldn’t even have a drink at the Silver Slipper without someone yammering on about the British beauty who would grace their stage.  And he’d met with no small amount of ribbing from just about everyone for his role as her leading man.
     “She’s a famous actress, and she’s come to Silver City all the way from England!”
     “She came from Denver.”
     “Her last performance, yes, but she lives in London.”
     Josh turned his back to sweep the side aisle.  As he did, a lady entered, but he was in a hurry and set to his chore.
     “I’ll have the latest issue of Myra’s Journal of Dress and Fashion, if you please,” she said with a clipped English accent. 
     Hmph.  The star of the show.  Josh kept sweeping with his back turned, not one whit interested in the actress’s arrogance, although he wouldn’t have minded getting a better look.  He wasn’t about to give her the satisfaction, though.
     “I’m sorry, Lady Montford,” Esther said, “but this store is only recently opened and we don’t have all our stock in yet.  I’m afraid we don’t have a copy.”
     “Oh.  Very well, it’s to be expected.” 
     Josh ached to inform her that if she wanted to be catered to, she should’ve stayed in London where she belonged.
     “Could you have your boy take a message for me?”
     Boy?  He stood at over six feet, had operated a mine for nearly two years, and had shot it out with bullion robbers.  Boy?
     “Why, of course.”
     “Report to Mr. Joshua McKinnon.  Inform him that there will be no private rehearsals and that I’ll be dining alone in my room.”  In a lower voice, she said, “You know how men in these rustic villages assume they can take advantage.”
     She hurried out, and Josh caught a glimpse of her.  It didn’t take long to notice that Lady Pearl Montford was every bit as dazzling as advertised, and even more shapely.  A couple of handfuls shapely, in fact.  He turned to his mother, whose mouth was agape. 
     “The nerve of that woman!”  Esther slammed a book onto the counter.  “Talking about my son like that.”
     Josh chuckled as he leaned on his broom.  “Sounds like a dare.”

Meet Jacquie

Jacquie Rogers grew up on a dairy farm outside of Homedale, Idaho, in Owyhee County.  She has fond memories of riding horseback all over the hills where her western historical romance series, Hearts of Owyhee, is set.  Those hills held exciting adventures both real and imagined.  She currently lives in suburbia with her IT Guy (also has a license to sleep with him), daughter, and four grandsons.  Their home is ruled by The Cat Annie, a feral rescue, who enjoys tromping on the keyboard in the midst of action or love scenes. 
Besides the Hearts of Owyhee series, Jacquie also writes a traditional western series, Muleskinners.  Under the house name of Ford Fargo, she writes collaborative westerns with Western Fictioneers.  She also writes fantasy romance and whatever else tickles her fancy.
Jacquie is a member of Romance Writers of America and Western Fictioneers.  Her books have garnered several awards, the including the LASR Book of the Month for Mail-Order Tangle, a duet with Caroline Clemmons.  In the Hearts of Owyhee series, Much Ado About Marshals won the RttA Award for Best Western Historical Romance, and Much Ado About Mustangs won the Laramie Award for Romance/Comedy. 
You’re welcome to subscribe to her newsletter, the Pickle Barrel Gazette, and join her Facebook group, Jacquie Rogers’ Pickle Barrel Bar & Books. 


E.E.: How did you come up with the idea for Much Ado About Mustangs?
Jacquie: In the third Hearts of Owyhee book, Much Ado About Miners, the heroine was involved in theater, and one of the peripheral characters was obsessed with Shakespeare.  Shakespeare was extremely popular in the Old West, especially in the north where there wasn’t a whole lot to do in the winter except to try to stay warm, and read.  They read a lot.  It was called Rocky Mountain University.  (That term is still used today but now refers to survival skills.)  A while later, I read a blog article about British nobility in the Old West, and I watched some trick riding on YouTube when I was looking for something else.  Turns out, most of the tricks we see today came from the Cossacks.  Somehow that all got scrambled together and the final product was Much Ado About Mustangs.  I think it’s a somewhat magical process so can’t be totally explained.

E.E.: If a movie was made of Much Ado About Mustangs, who would be your dream cast?
Jacquie: Josh McKinnon would be played by Liam Helmsworth! (Wait a minute while I get some ice cubes.)  For Lady Pearl Montford, I’d pick Rachel McAdams.  Phineas Stratford, who was also in the third book, would be played by Gabby Hays, and Stephen Lang would be perfect for Old Man Linstad.

E.E.: What was the first thing you did when you finished Much Ado About Mustangs?
Jacquie: I messaged my critique partner and told her she had to buy me a margarita when we met in Deadwood.  Then I messaged my editor and told her it was coming.  When my IT Guy got home from work, I made him take me out to a seafood and wine dinner, even though it was a weekday—talk about wild and crazy.  And when we got back, I cleaned the bathroom, then started plotting another story while I folded a week’s worth of laundry.

E.E.: What’s your favorite kind of story to get lost in?
Jacquie: An ideal story for me is an adventure that’s funny, takes me out of my world (might be why I love historicals and fantasies so much), and lets me journey right along with the protagonist(s).  I love genre blends and one of my favorites is western historical fantasy romance.  I also love to read adventure stories with a drool-worthy hero and a kick-ass female protagonist who’s realistic, even if she has magic.  There needs to be a seed of universal truth there.  And of course I absolutely require a happy ending.

E.E.: What are the next five books on your ‘to be read’ pile?
Jacquie:  I’m currently reading The Gunsmith: Trouble in Tombstone by J. R. Roberts (Robert J. Randisi).  He has published 404 books in that series which just blows me away.  In line are: Stone Mountain, Texas – Winter Bride by Caroline Clemmons (I love all her books), Into the Land of Shadows by Kristy McCaffery, The Traherns: The Toughest Man in the Territory by Nancy Radke, Tame a Wild Heart by Cynthia Woolf, and Last Chance Canyon by James Reasoner.  Actually, there are over 500 unread books on my Kindle so that list might change.

E.E.: Is there a blooper in your story? 
Jacquie: Not that I know of, but there’s a blooper in the series.  In the second book, Mrs. Gardner’s first name is Betty.  In the third book, it’s Hazel.  And yes, it’s published that way.  I’m going to fix that (her name is supposed to be Hazel) and upload a new file, but first I have two novels and a short story to write before September 30.  Not one reader has mentioned it, so that’s a relief.  Um, I bet they will now!

Hearts of Owyhee series
Much Ado About Madams http://amzn.com/B00RUJXEPM
Much Ado About Marshals http://amzn.com/B00RW84YRS
Much Ado About Miners http://amzn.com/B00RWUFB3C
Much Ado About Mavericks http://amzn.com/B00S05Q6ZK
Much Ado About Mustangs http://amzn.com/B00YLPUX8O

Here's where you can find out more about Jacquie and her books:
Pickle Barrel Gazette: http://eepurl.com/qhA_1

Jacquie Rogers, Author: http://jacquierogers.blogspot.com

Today, Jacquie will be giving away an eBook copy of Much Ado About Madams to one lucky commenter. Just enter the raffle and answer our question:

What is your "favorite" type of story to get lost in? What's at the top of your TBR list?

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. I love fantasy romance & historical romance best

    1. Linda, you have exquisite taste. :) I really like fantasy western romance and would write more of it but it's a hard sell.

  2. Hi, Jacquie and welcome to GLIAS! Oh my all the M titles is fabulous. Much success with the series.

    1. Thanks, Vicki! Thanks. the M's started off by accident because I had Madams and Marshals. They're all set in Owyhee County where I grew up. Glad you stopped by!

  3. Good morning, Jacquie! So pleased to host you here on GLIAS. This series looks fabulous. Loved how came up with the Shakespearean theme! Great idea. What's the next project on your plate?

    1. Good evening! (Did that sound like Alfred Hitchcock?) I'm working on a Christmas story for Prairie Rose Publications and also a new series that's top secret. Oh, and the third Muleskinners and in 2016, the sixth Hearts of Owyhee book. I just made myself tired.

  4. almost anything well-written with an HEA

    1. Yep, that HEA is tops on my list, too, even if it's not a romance novel. I just don't want to invest emotions on a downer.

  5. I love the many genres within Romance... always enjoy the journeys the characters take to get to their HEAs. So many places to see and characters to meet .

    1. I know--Romance is soooo diverse! You can find anything from zombies to sweet. Most Louis L'Amour books are western romances.

  6. Well Jacquie, I like all your books, and have most of them, so don't enter me in the drawing. That said, this was a fun interview and you deserved the dinner and drinks. Best on the next set of stories you're writing. Doris McCraw/Angela Raines

    1. Ah, you're a sweetheart, Doris. A little ornery, maybe, but a sweetheart nonetheless.

  7. Jacquie, I just wanted to drop in and give you my best wishes for a very successful release of Much Ado About Mustangs. I have enjoyed the Much Ado series so far. I know this new release will be as wonderful as all the previous ones. All the best to you.

    1. Sarah, I'm so happy you like them. I'm in love with your Wildings, too. ☺

  8. Glad to have you on the blog, Jacquie !

  9. I don't want my name entered either. I have all of Jacquie's books on my kindle. I love the Much A Do series, but especially like Mustangs! I think that is my favorite so far. Great story full of excitement, laughter and romance

  10. This sounds like so much fun!

  11. Jacquie, as I've said before, I love all your Ado series books so much that I always have a big grin on my face when I finish and eagerly look forward to reading this one. It's sure to be another great romp. So nice to visit you here on this blog and thanks so much for a great the whole series.