I am big fan of Emma Cane's Valentine Valley series, so I jumped on the chance to have her guest post today :)She has two new releases, The Cowboy of Valentine Valley and A Promise at Bluebell Hill. I can't wait for the inside scoop on Valentine Valley. I would love to visit this place and have brunch with the widows! And now here's Emma....
Blog: Five Things You Didn’t Know About Valentine Valley
Valentine Valley—that’s the name of the small town where I’ve set four books and two novellas. In February and March, two of those books will come out back to back. The first is already out, THE COWBOY OF VALENTINE VALLEY, about cowboy artist Josh clashing with reformed Hollywood bad girl Whitney. And in March, there’s A PROMISE AT BLUEBELL HILL, where flower shop owner Monica has to keep a secret from Secret Service agent Travis.
But maybe you’re new to my books—or maybe you just want more details. So here are some things you didn’t know about Valentine Valley, Colorado.
1. The name: I wanted my new town to be known as the Love Boat in dry dock, a phrase coined for me by good friend author MJ Compton. People come here to marry, to propose, to renew their vows, to find or resurrect love. And at some point—I wish I could remember when—the name Valentine just popped into the conversation. Perfect! But Valentine…what? Valentine Ridge, Valentine Summit, Valentine…oh, there were so many. But Valentine Valley just rolled off the tongue. Everyone wants the postal stamp “Valentine Valley” on their wedding invitations—you see what I mean?
2. The setting: Valentine Valley is actually set directly where my son lives, just outside Aspen Colorado. I definitely wanted a small-town, ranching community, but the sight of those gorgeous mountains was just so inspirational. Why not set it in a place I visit regularly and can research? Why not set it where my son can be my Number One research assistant? Perfect! We’ve had some great conversations about life in the Roaring Fork Valley, the area that stretches from Glenwood Springs to Aspen. We talk mountain life, snowboarding, even restaurants (the setting for my upcoming November book, SLEIGH BELLS ON MAIN STREET).
3. The history of the area: The mountains of Colorado were pretty wild places in the nineteenth century. Towns in this area, including Aspen, were founded as mining camps during the Silver Boom days of the 1880s, so that’s the history I gave Valentine Valley. The silver miners came down from their mines higher up in the Elk Mountains to spend their money in places like Valentine. The ranches started to feed all those hungry miners. Once mining died down, towns up there almost faded away until the ski resorts came into being after World War II, when a member of the Tenth Mountain Division, who’d trained in the area, knew it would be a great place to ski.
4. The history of my characters: Last summer I wrote my first “historical” as Emma Cane—set in the 1980s. ;) A lot of readers mentioned the parents of the Thalberg kids (two sons and a daughter, who are the heroes and heroine of three books). Sandy, their mom, was married once before, and her husband left her and their four-year-old when she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. She always seemed so brave to me, and I wanted to tell her story. It worked out perfectly for the anthology ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS A COWBOY (December 2013). I was able to show how Sandy met Doug Thalberg in an abandoned cabin during a snowstorm.
5. The characters: I also write historical romances as Gayle Callen. I’m used to writing in trilogies, keeping track of characters across three books. But by creating Valentine Valley, I committed to do a lot of characters across a series of books. I’ve really enjoyed weaving in the “what happens after” stories of past main characters. It’s been a challenge—because I always want you the reader not to feel like you’ve missed too much if you haven’t read a previous book. I don’t want you to feel like I’m trying to crowd too many characters into the book. Yet I also want my long-time readers to know the stories keep going on. Wedding celebrations, birth announcements—I get to write about it all.
So those are the hidden details of Valentine Valley. What attracts you to reading books set in small towns?
Want more Valentine Valley? Here are the details for the latest two releases!
Ever since a heated late-night-kiss-that absolutely should not have happened- cowboy Josh Thalberk makes former Hollywood bad girl Whitney Winslow's pulse beat faster. But when she decides t use his gorgeous leather work in her upscale lingerie shop, Leather & Lace, she's determined to keep their relationship strictly professional... even if she wants so much more.
Josh has never met a challenge he isn't up for. Which is probably why he allowed Whitney to persuade him to take a sexy publicity photo that went viral- and now has every woman in America knocking down his door... every woman except the one he can't get out of his head.
But how to convince a reformed bad girl that some rules are worth breaking...
A Promise at Bluebell Hill
From the moment secret service agent Travis Beaumont strides into the town and the door of Monica Shaw's flower shop, she feels a sizzle of attraction. After years of putting everyone elses needs first, Monica is ready to grab hold of life. If she can just persuade the ultimate protector to let his walls down for once...
The President's son is getting married in Valentine Valley, and Travis should be avoiding all distractions... not fantasizing about a forthright, sexy-as-hell florist. Especially when she's keeping secrets that could jeopardize his assignment. But just this once, Travis is tempted to put down the rulebook and follow his heart- right to Monica's door.
Roses are red, violets are blue, and in Valentine Valley, love will always find you!
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