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Searching for Lady Luck by Patricia Kiyono is a Springtime Books pick #historicalromance #giveaway
Title: Searching for Lady Luck
Author: Patricia Kiyono
Genre: Sweet historical romance
Only seven years have passed since Rose Sheffield was a carefree college student, though it seems like a lifetime ago. Her father’s position at a major bank provided her with luxuries she took for granted. Now she works at menial jobs to support herself and her mother, and they live in what used to be their vacation home in Wildwood, New Jersey. Rose’s days are pure drudgery, until she meets Charlie. As luck would have it, she just happens to have the perfect place to display his artwork. Before the Great Stock market crash of 1929, Charlie Brannigan was hailed as an up-and-coming artist in Manhattan. But now he’s back at his family home in Wildwood, delivering newspapers in the mornings and selling his paintings on the Boardwalk in the afternoons. He needs some luck in his life, and it seems every time a pretty lady named Rose appears, good things happen.
A wind gust blew one of his smaller paintings off its perch and onto the boardwalk. He scrambled after it, but a young woman bent and picked it up before he could reach it. She studied the scene he’d painted on the tiny canvas — a mother robin, tending her eggs in her nest.
“Good morning, ma’am. That’s one of my best miniatures. If you like it, I’d be happy to give you a bargain on it.”
The woman looked up from the painting and met his gaze. He blinked, wanting to make sure he wasn’t imagining the lovely face. Smoky gray eyes, wide and welcoming, in a heart-shaped face, made her look much younger than her clothing and severe hairstyle suggested.
“This is very lovely, but I’m sure I can’t afford it,” she replied.
“Oh, I’m sure you can,” he hedged. He really didn’t want her to go away. He named a price about a third of what he would normally charge for it.
Her eyes grew wide. “How can you afford to sell these at that price? You’d have to pay for more canvases and paints, and make a profit.”
“I make my own canvases. And I have lots of paint. And… if you like it, I’d like you to have it.”
She smiled then, and Charlie thought he’d never seen such brightness. The glow from her face warmed him and he stopped shivering for a moment.
“You’re so kind. But really, I can’t buy this just now. Sometime, when things are better for our family…”
“Of course. This will probably still be here. And if it isn’t, I’ll paint you one just like it.”
She laughed, and the warmth spread to his toes. He’d known beautiful women before. Ladies dripping with pearls and diamonds, heiresses and foreign royalty, but none had ever affected him like this.
“I’ll remember that promise. But for now, I’ll put this back on your shelf, along with your other lovely paintings. She gently touched the two on either side — similar paintings with different birds. “These three would make a wonderful grouping, in a dressing room, or waiting room.” She turned her sunny smile toward him. “I’m sure you’ll sell them soon. I heard business is picking up on the boardwalk.”
He reached in his pocket and pulled out a calling card. It was an older one, from his days in New York, but with his parents’ address added in ink. “Here is my card. I look forward to see you again, Miss…”
“Sheffield. Rose Sheffield.” She looked down at his card, then back up again. “It was good to meet you, Mr. Brannigan.” She turned then and walked away.
He watched her as she made her way down the boardwalk. Rose Sheffield. A lovely name for a lovely woman. She didn’t stroll like the wealthy ladies who vacationed on the island, but instead she strode, each step determined and full of purpose. Her back was ramrod straight, unlike many of the local women who seemed to carry the weight of the world on their backs. This woman radiated hope and light and—
“Excuse me, sir, but how much would you charge for a set of these miniatures?”
Charlie tore his gaze away from the lovely lady and greeted his would-be customer. His smile slipped a bit when he saw she held the same picture his muse had held earlier, as well as the coordinating watercolors she had touched. Somehow it didn’t seem right to let the pictures go to someone else, so the price he quoted was four times what he had given before. But the woman simply nodded, set the pictures down, and reached for her purse.
Charlie tried to hide his amazement when the woman pulled out a wad of cash, the likes of which he hadn’t seen since his heyday in Manhattan. The woman counted off the bills and handed the sum he had named to him. “These will be perfect for my dressing room,” she gushed. “I’m so glad I stopped to look at your work.”
“Er, thank you, ma’am,” Charlie replied. He pulled out another calling card. “Please tell your friends about my work. Would you like me to wrap these for you?”
“Oh, no, I’m going home right now, so they’ll be fine in my shopping bag. But thank you for offering. Good day.” And she trotted off.
Once again, Charlie stared as a woman walked away from him. The woman had chosen the exact same paintings the earlier lady had touched. Was it magic? Or a stroke of luck?
Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub):
Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/searching-for-lady-luck-patricia-kiyono/1119369544
Apple Books: https://tools.applemediaservices.com/book/1487556687
What makes your featured book a must-read?
Searching for Lady Luck takes place during The Great Depression in the USA, a time period not often represented in historical romance. It’s a short, sweet novella featuring a strong woman whose vision benefits not only herself, but an entire community. It’s a story of perseverance, survival, and triumph.
Enter to win a $10 Amazon gift card:
Open Internationally. You must have a valid Amazon US or Amazon Canada account to win.
Runs March 21 – March 27, 2023.
Winner will be drawn on March 28, 2023.
During her first career, Patricia Kiyono taught elementary school music, computer classes, elementary classrooms, and junior high social studies. She now teaches music education at the university level.
She lives in southwest Michigan, USA, not far from her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Current interests, aside from writing, include sewing, crocheting, scrapbooking, and making music. A love of travel and an interest in faraway people inspires her to create stories about different cultures.
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