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Gold's Bride

Wife for sale!

When Jeremiah Gold buys the beautiful Garnet from her sot of a husband, he intends only to save her from degradation. Married by a convict parson, Jeremiah takes his bride to his remote selection, only to find Garnet fighting him at every turn. Fury soon turns to love and desire, but will either of them realize before it's too late?

***

The time is 1830, the place the colony of New South Wales. Lively Garnet Perry has been sent from England to marry Edward Landis. Edward proves both elderly and impotent, and his terrible old mother engineers a situation that sees Garnet offered illegally for sale. Her new owner is settler Jeremiah Gold, who has come to Sydney Town in search of a hard-working wife, and who persuades a convict parson to marry them.

Jeremiah's supposition that Garnet is experienced leads to a disastrous wedding night and Garnet's infamous powderflash temper erupts. Determined to tame his wife, Jeremiah sets her to work helping clear land for his new farming venture.

Garnet escapes back to Sydney Town, but finds herself in even deeper trouble. Her ignominious return to Jeremiah sets the scene for a series of confrontations, but eventually, Garnet comes to love her stubborn husband. She would do anything to take back the bitter words between them, but now it seems too late. Can a marriage bought at auction ever be worth the price?

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Sally Odgers

Sally Odgers was born in Latrobe, Tasmania, in the 1950s. Sally Odgers wrote her first novel in three exercise books with a failing ballpoint pen. Was it any good? Who knows! No one (including Sally) has ever been able to understand her writing. That's why she taught herself to type on a grand piano of a typewriter when she was eleven. It's also why she can't touch-type. As soon as she got a bit of speed on the keys, she abandoned the Pitman's manual and started writing her second book. Two more followed, and when she was fifteen, a friendly editor suggested she might try a collection of short stories. That book was published in 1977.

Since then, only one year, 1982, has passed without at least one book from Sally. Along the way, she found time to marry Darrel Odgers and produce two children. Apart from tutoring in writing and running a small mss assessment business, Sally enjoys collecting china dogs, music, sf and fantasy movies and walking the dogs. Her novel "Candle Iron" (HarperCollins) won the Aurealis Award in 2002.

Reviews

Recommended Read! Ms. Odgers paints the life of a settler in vivid color, and with careful attention to detail. The plot is nicely done and is fast-paced, with plenty of action. This has to be one of the best books Iíve read this year. If you like historical novels, I highly recommend this book!

Jean -- Fallen Angels Review
Excerpt

From where she perched, Garnet could not hear the sounds of blows or the heavy panting of the men, but she could see the staggering steps and the reeling back and forth. Her nails bit into her palms as she watched the crazy scene, but before she could formulate any plan to help her husband, even if she had been in range, the fight ceased abruptly. The man had pulled out a pistol and was holding it at Jeremiah's head.

Garnet's breath came in panting gasps, but she could do nothing. She crouched like a frightened animal and stared, terrified in case any incautious sound or movement might make the gunman fire. The suddenly one of the circling riders uttered a yell and rode straight at the pair. The horse reared aside at the last moment and fell on its side, the rider was thrown clear and rolled into the melee, knocking Jeremiah and the other man off their feet. As all three struggled up again, Jeremiah made a lunge for the door of his house. There was a confused few moments while the two others regained their balance and converged on the door, the loose horse plunging off to add to the general confusion.

There was a sudden puff of smoke and the thin snap of a pistol from within the house, and Garnet knew Jeremiah was firing at the invaders. If she could only reach the store-room, she could snatch up an axe and ... and the men would fell her with their pistols long before she was close enough to do them any harm. She wrung her hands impotently as more shots were exchanged. She had no idea how much ammunition Jeremiah had to hand. Most of it, she thought, was in the lean-to.

Some sort of parley seemed to be going on, for she could hear voices now, raised in speech instead of uncouth yells. She was not close enough to make out the words, but the tone of one voice was chillingly familiar. The hair seemed to rise along the back of her neck, but she had no chance of recognising the man until a lucky shot from Jeremiah struck his cabbage tree hat and sent it bowling away. The lower part of his face was obscured by some kind of muffler, but as he recoiled from the shot his face turned upward and she saw the livid patch of a scar across his cheek and eye.

Harbord.

Garnet's skin crawled. Harbord was a murderer, now turned bushranger, and whether it was blind chance or not, his presence could mean nothing good for Gold's Kingdom.