Otto's Offer by Zina Abbott
Book 3 in the Lockets & Lace series
I'm excited to announce the release of Otto's Offer, the third book in the Lockets & Lace series sponsored by some authors of this blog.
The following is the book description:
In 1868, Otto Atwell has a 160 acre homestead near Abilene, Kansas and a limp as a result of a Cheyenne musket ball hitting his lower back while he marched with the 16th Kansas Cavalry on the Powder River Expedition in 1865. What he doesn’t have is a wife. Then again, what woman would want to marry a cripple?
Libby Jones comes to Junction City as a mail order bride. Not only does the man who sent for her reject her, he tries to sell her to the local brothel to recoup his fee. Otto offers to marry her, but she rejects him in favor of a job with his relatives.
Will Otto’s offer still stand when trouble from Libby’s past catches up with her?
Excerpt from Otto's Offer:
Otto, as was his habit since his injury, let the others go first. He had learned through experience that the best way to prevent being tripped or shoved off-balance was to avoid being in the way of those who were in a hurry. He waited just outside the door until Mary exited on the arm of her husband.
Otto noticed several people dressed as if they had come from the train kept their focus on the hotel. Others made a beeline for the café. Because of the coming of the railroad, Junction City was growing, just like Abilene. He remembered when Abilene had been no more than a stage waystation along the Smoky Hill Trail. It now was gradually growing into a sizable city, especially with talk that it might become the next big rail stop for drovers bringing up herds of longhorns from Texas.
The two older Atwells and Shorty, who were ahead of Otto and the Palmers, crossed in front of the hotel. Single file, they walked behind a young woman with a small valise at her feet.
She stood on the boardwalk about a foot from its outward edge. Her hands clasped in front of her, she stared ahead.
Otto prepared to walk behind her but jerked to a stop when the hotel clerk stepped out and stood next to her.
“Miss—or madam—may I help you? Will you be needing a room for the night?”
“No, thank you. I’m waiting for someone.”
As Otto passed the pair, out of the corner of his eye, he noticed her turn to face the clerk. The clerk then jerked his head back with a flicker of a frown crossing his face. As Otto looked at her profile, he saw what the clerk had seen. The woman was dressed well enough, although her clothes were not of the latest style. She appeared reasonably clean, considering she had come in on the train, and train travel was known to cover passengers with dust and cinders. She moved with an air of grace he found appealing. However, the cream-colored veil attached to her wide-brimmed straw hat that draped across the top half of her face did not hide her facial features.
The woman continued. “I’m to marry a Mr. Uriah Chambers. Do you know him, or where I can find him?”
The clerk’s expression changed to a decided scowl as he pointed to the building across the street and two businesses down while he spat out his response. “Probably over at the saloon. That’s where he spends most of his time.” With one last disparaging head-to-toe look at the woman, the clerk rushed back into the hotel lobby.
Unable to ignore the scene, Otto stopped walking and now watched her. A quiver coursing through her arms gave the only indication that the clerk’s words had any effect on her. With a blank expression on her face, she turned towards the building to which the clerk had pointed.
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Launch Celebration event.
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Otto's Offer is available on Amazon. Through the evening of January 24th, it is still offered at its pre-order sale price of $.99.