Welcome Best Selling Western Author Caroline Clemmons

I'm switching gears a little today from Vampires and the paranormal to western romance. I love to feature authors from a myriad of genres; it keeps life interesting. 
Today allow me to welcome Caroline Clemmons, a best selling Western Author, and spotlight one of her wonderful books,  BLUE BONNET BRIDE

Caroline Clemmons is an Amazon bestselling author of historical and contemporary western romances whose books have garnered numerous awards. Her most recent novel, BLUEBONNET BRIDE, is a poignant tale of tender redemption. A frequent speaker at conferences and seminars, she has taught workshops on characterization, point of view, and layering a novel.
Caroline and her husband live in the heart of Texas cowboy country with their menagerie of rescued pets. When she’s not indulging her passion for writing, Caroline enjoys reading, travel, antiquing, genealogy, painting, and getting together with friends

Here's what Caroline had to say.....
Do you wonder why authors choose a particular location for their books? As a Texan, I enjoy setting my books and novellas in my state. Texas is a big state, though, with diverse landscapes. How do I choose?
First, I write about locales I enjoy visiting. That’s what happened several years ago when my husband and I learned of the open house at an historic ranch about forty miles from our home. We visited the Belding-Gibson Ranch in Palo Pinto County. Part of this ranch was taken in by the formation of Possum Kingdom Lake, known locally as PK. The occasion of the open house was to announce the release of Barbara Belding Gibson’s book about the ranch, PAINTED POLE: The Beldings and Their Ranches in Palo Pinto County – Pioneer Days to Computer Age by Sunbelt Eakin Press.

I had used this lake for a modern story, OUT OF THE BLUE, featuring a heroine who travels from the past to help a modern police detective solve several murders. This was my first visit to this ranch. The Belding-Gibson Ranch started in 1859 with a 12' by 12' cedar log cabin. Fortunately, the Gibsons who own what remains of the ranch have preserved the cabin, the smokehouse, and as much of the original homestead as possible. The ranch is beautiful with huge live oaks dotting the pastures and offering shade for cattle.
The area was inhabited by cedar cutters and hunters in 1854—and Comanche and Kiowa. People from Colorado might laugh at the Palo Pinto Mountains and say they look like big hills. Geographically, they are genuine mountains covered in live oak, scrub oak, cedar, and other native trees such as elm, hackberry, and cottonwood. The scrub oaks turn lovely colors in the fall, which is why the Native Americans named them palo pinto, or painted stick/pole/post (depending on your interpretation).
No, they’re not as pretty as Vermont’s fall colors, but give us a break. They are beautiful in their own rite. Cedars and live oaks retain their dark green foliage among the fall hues of the scrub oaks. My favorite time to drive through this area is spring when trees and grass are green and wildflowers abound.
The three Stone brothers have settled in the Palo Pinto Mountains to raise cattle. In book one, BRAZOS BRIDE, they face a drought and a heroine someone wants dead. Book two is HIGH STAKES BRIDE and is the story of Zach Stone and Alice Price. By book three, the first two brothers have married and only Joel Stone, eldest, is single. He’s sheriff of the fictional town of Radford Springs, and an excellent lawman. While his brothers each have ranches of thousands of acres, Joel’s smaller ranch is managed by a foreman. I love setting a series of books in this locale, and I’m sure it will pop up again with spin off characters from the Men of Stone Mountain series. In fact, I’m writing one now about a substitute mail-order bride whose intended is not sure he wants to swap his fiancĂ©.

BLUEBONNET BRIDE is Joel’s story, and he finally meets the woman for him. Too bad she isn’t receptive to his attention. Joel is not a man to give up easily, but he doesn’t know the terrible secret Rosalyn hides....  Thanks to Deborah for having me today. Thank you, readers, for stopping by.

Lucy did as he asked. He thought he could shinny down the rope so he wrapped his legs and hands around it. He would have been all right if Mrs. Dumas hadn’t chosen that moment to come outside. She shaded her eyes with her hand, but the sunlight hit her hair and turned it molten golden red.

He stared at her and lost his concentration. His legs drooped and his fingers tired of supporting him. He dropped to the ground in a tumble. The fall knocked the breath from his lungs and he lay there amid twigs and leaves. He blinked and tried to focus through watery eyes.
Mrs. Dumas knelt beside him. “Oh my word. Sheriff Stone, are you all right? Is anything broken?”
He sat up and conked his head on the swing seat. He rubbed the spot and grinned. “Not my most glorious moment, but I’ll survive.” He stood, wincing at the pain in his back where he’d hit the broken limb.
“Please let me help you inside. Lucy, get his coat and hat.”
Going anywhere with her sounded good. She took his arm and led him into the kitchen. He didn’t feel at all guilty throwing a limp into his walk.
“Sit at the table and tell me where you’re injured.”
“I’m fine, ma’am. Just need to sit a while and clear my head.” He remembered this kitchen from when the Brown family lived here. Already she’d begun changing the appearance by moving furniture around. The table was much nicer where diners could look at the back yard while eating.
She pumped water into a glass and set it in front of him. “What were you thinking? You could have broken your neck.”
“I realize that now. At the time, it seemed an easy enough task.” He downed the water then smiled at Lucy. “I had a good helper.”
Lucy giggled. “Giant sheriffs can fall after all.”
“Apparently so. The swing’s strong enough for you, though.”
“Mommy, may I go swing now?”
“Just be careful of that broken limb until we can clear it away.”
“I’d better do that.” He started to rise.
She pushed him back onto his seat. “You sit right there until I’m sure you’re all right. Does your head hurt? How’s your vision? Do you see double?” She tilted his head so their gazes met.
“My vision is fine, ma’am, and I sure am glad. You have the prettiest eyes I’ve ever seen.”
She jerked her hand back so fast you’d think she’d been burned. He savored the warmth where her fingers had touched his jaw.
“Humph. Apparently there’s nothing wrong with you, sheriff.” She fisted her hands on her hips. “At least no damage from your fall.”
“I’ll just move that branch out of Lucy’s way and then get back to my business.” He stood and bent to grab his coat from where Lucy had dropped it.
She grabbed his arm. “Wait. There’s blood seeping through your clothes. Sit down and take off your shirt.”
He froze and considered following her request before sanity gained a toehold. “Nothing I’d like better, Mrs. Dumas, than having you tend my cuts and scrapes. Seeing as how you’re a widow on your own, I reckon I’d better get on to Doc Ross’s and let him see if there’s a problem. This is a small town, and I sure would hate if anything I did caused gossip to smirch your good name.”
Her expression softened. “Thank you, sheriff. I appreciate that more than I can say. I’m pleased you’re truly a gentleman.”
Joel pulled on his coat and left. He kicked himself all the way to the doctor’s office.


  1. Of course, my favorite place in your blog was Possum Kingdom. I can just imagine the great pilgrimage of North Carolina Possums making their way to Possum Kingdom in Texas believing it to be their promised land.
    I like that you write about places you know. The true descriptions of places help build a realistic story. As an Easterner, it takes a great deal of effort for me to write westerns. It calls for major research and my one memory of Wyoming when I visited way back when.
    Lovely blog, Caroline.

    1. Sarah, thanks so much for your reply for Caroline. We both appreciate it! Please stop by again!

    2. Sarah, thanks for your comment. Isn't Possum Kingdom a funny name? Goes back to when fur trappers came to the area in the 1800's.

  2. Caroline--I'd love to visit that ranch. Maybe I can someday.
    It seems paranormal or time travel for westerns is a growing genre for readers. If my brain worked that way, I'd try to write one. Nope, can't do it.
    The cover for Bluebonnet Bride is one of my very favorites of all your covers. Well done...aren't you lucky to live with a cover artist!

    1. Hello Celia. Caroline and I are both happy that you stopped by and commented for Awesome Author on my blog. Hope you'll stop by for more wonderful author spotlights and interviews!

    2. Celia, when you're in the area, give me a shout and I'll show you where the ranch is. Maybe the Gibsons will let us tour it. Thanks for stopping by.

  3. When writer is enthralled with the area where they set their books it makes for a better read for the reader. I enjoyed the first "Stone" book but haven't had the time to get to the next one. Which is on my TBR list.

    I chuckled at the comment about the Palo Pinto Mountains not being mountains to people from states that have looming mountains. I was pooh-poohing the Steens Mountains that are south of our ranch in Eastern Oregon. Telling my husband as we traveling a slowly inclining road to get to the top that I couldn't believe that this "hill" was called a mountain. After all, I grew up in NE Oregon the home of mountains dubbed "Little Switzerland" for their majestic peaks and craggy canyons. Then we hit the top and looked down the east side of the mountain. It was a sheer drop off for miles! Then I was impressed. LOL

    Fun post!

    1. Hi Paty! Thanks bunches for your wonderful post for Caroline. You brightened the blog! Come back often!

    2. Thanks for coming by, Paty. Yes, there are places like that for the Palo Pinto Mountains. One is on Hwy 4 and reminds me of the New Mexico mountains.

  4. Caroline, I always enjoy your descriptions of the setting where your characters live out their exciting stories. Nice to know those settings are real.

    1. Lyn, Only the town is fictitious. I laugh because Radford Springs sounds like a real place and Possum Kingdom doesn't, but the opposite is true.

  5. This sounds like a great series, Caroline! Your books are always so exciting and your descriptions put me right into the scene. I, too, like to write about historic places I've visited. Gives a sense of realism to the setting.

    Best of luck with your new series!

    1. Susan, your descriptions are realistic, so I appreciate your kind words. Thanks for stopping by.

  6. Caroline, I enjoyed your post today. Being a sister Texan, I know the areas you write about. Your descriptions ring true and are part of the reason your stories pop. I love Bluebonnet Bride!

    Deborah, you have a beautiful site. I will return often.

  7. I grew up in an historic city (Chas, S.C.)but I am totally fascinated by the state of Texas and just how much history is here with the different settlers, the struggles they endured to survive,and how they lived. This truly has a bit of history of a different type in every section of the state. Your books place the reader in a setting that is vivid and accurate.

  8. I love Caroline's writing. That cover is so pretty. Great excerpt.
    Sue B