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Maggie’s Way by @LBradleyAuthor is a Book Series Starter pick #womensfiction #romantic #giveaway
Title: Maggie’s Way (Montana Bound Series, Book 1)
Author: Linda Bradley
Genre: Women’s Fiction (with romantic elements)
Middle-aged, Maggie Abernathy just wants to recuperate from cancer during the solitude of summer vacation after a tiresome year of teaching second grade. Maggie’s plans are foiled when precocious seven-year-old Chloe McIntyre moves in next door with her dad, John. Maggie’s life changes in a way she could never imagine when the pesky new neighbors steal her heart. With Maggie’s grown son away, her ex-husband in the shadows, her meddling mother’s unannounced visits, and Chloe McIntyre on her heels, somehow Maggie’s empty house becomes home again.
Time burrowed its way into the tiny cracks of my existence, wedging into the nooks and crannies like sand between my toes on a hot summer day at the beach. Taunted by the past, I knew I would have married Beckett Littleton anyway. Being middle-aged brought unexpected changes, but in my book, middle-aged didn’t mean middle of the road even if I did feel like a confused squirrel darting across four lanes of oncoming traffic.
A lock of strawberry-blond hair grazed my cheek as I sighed with exasperation. I twirled and slid my wedding band over my bony knuckle to finger the metal as if it could turn back time, back to the day when I gazed into Beckett’s eyes, when we vowed to stay by each other’s side, for better, for worse, for richer or poorer.
I snickered at the thought of irreconcilable differences. My ring clanked against the tempered glass tabletop next to my chaise lounge. It was time to give up the charade. We hadn’t been together for months. I quit counting the days since my diagnosis of breast cancer.
Ribbons of sunlight washed over the backyard. Glad for summer, I relished the school break and time alone to heal, even if I had been instructed to stay in the shade per doctor’s orders. Gentle breezes tickled my nose with the scent of fresh-clipped grass. My mind wandered, mulling over our division, to relive Beckett’s truth. Why didn’t I see it? How? When? Maybe this was Beckett’s weird, midlife crisis. If not, it was surely the beginning of my own.
Supported by the pillow on my patio chaise lounge, the cool fabric against my neck in the midday Michigan heat brought relief. I breathed deeply, contemplating the future.
Time morphed my life even if I didn’t drag my feet. Ticking hands beat steady, keeping a calm pace even on hectic days. My grandmother’s grandfather clock reminded me of this on sleepless nights now that I slept alone. Time pushed me forward like that impatient person behind me in grocery store checkout, their cart nipping at my heels. I didn’t have the energy for forward. I opened my eyes, took my wedding ring from the table, thought about putting it back on, but then decided not to.
Purple petunias cascaded over the edges of oversized clay pots lining my patio. Hanging baskets of red geraniums reminded me of last spring when Beckett and I spent hours landscaping after purchasing an abundance of flowers at Eastern Market, so many, the hatch to my Equinox barely shut. Thankful for the privacy fence that hides me, I am captivated by the little garden of tomatoes, parsley, beans, and strawberries. The tall fence keeps out cats that hunt in the vacant yard next door along with nosy neighbors.
When the Murphy family lost their home a year ago, I thanked God for our two incomes. Worry scraped the bottom of my stomach now that I was living on a teacher’s salary in an upscale neighborhood, thanks to Beckett. He assured me I wouldn’t lose the house, but without him or Bradley it didn’t seem much like home anymore.
The gate to the privacy fence creaked.
Sitting up, I glanced around to see who was there. The quick movement tugged at my left breast. “Hello?” I wasn’t expecting anyone today. Rays of sun peeked out from behind the clouds and I shaded my eyes trying to recognize the visitor. “Who’s there?”
“Can you play? Anybody here that can play?” a youthful voice rang out.
I leaned closer to see the girl’s face. She was short and resembled one of the students from my classroom. My eye twitched. “Excuse me?”
“Hi! I’m Chloe McIntyre. I live next door. Do you live here, lady?”
Chloe shoved her hands into her pockets. She squinted to see me better. The corner of my mouth twitched at the sight of her tussled pixie haircut and freckled face. “Yes, I do.” Perplexed, I twiddled my thumbs. Again, I’d missed something. When was there a SOLD sign in front of the Murphy house? I didn’t see anyone move in, but then again, I’d been so self-centered lately, I probably would have missed a parade of elephants parading down the street.
“Nice to meet you, Chloe. My name is Maggie Littleton,” I heard myself say and decided I should go back to my maiden name, Abernathy. “Maggie Abernathy,” I mumbled, liking the way it sounded.
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What makes your featured book a must-read?
Maggie’s Way tells the story of a strong female protagonist who believes she can navigate tough times alone. Maggie Abernathy and the cast of misfits she attracts will steal your heart.
"Maggie's Way is a heart-warming tale of love and loss, fear and friendship. With charming characters and a moving plot, Linda Bradley's debut gently reminds us that it's never too late for second chances." —Lori Nelson Spielman, International Best Seller, Author of The Love List and Sweet Forgiveness
"I laughed, I cried, I ate chocolate. What a great book and if you haven't read Junie B. Jones to your kids: do so!" —Ed Burke, Goodreads Review
Enter to win a $40 Amazon gift card:
Open Internationally. You must have a valid Amazon US or Amazon Canada account to win.
Runs January 10 – January 18, 2023.
Winner will be drawn on January 19, 2023.
Linda’s inspiration comes from her favorite authors and life itself. Her stories integrate humor found in everyday situations, family drama, and forever love. Her distinct voice creates memorable journeys with heart-warming emotion.
Linda has been a finalist in the Booksellers Best Contest and Romance Reviews Readers' Choice Award. She lives in Michigan and loves dogs, horses, art, and stories with hope and heart.
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