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She hopes the experience will help her to discover what she wants in life. But in a town where single men outnumber women thirty to one, she’s more confused than ever. Thrilled to put her skills to use, she enters her crowd-pleasing deep-dished spiced apple dessert in a baking contest. Sparks fly as more than one suitor competes to win the opportunity to join her for dinner and dancing at the town’s first annual Thanksgifting Celebration. But is the winner the man of her dreams? Bets are on.
“Begin your letter with a description. Something along the lines of, ‘I am nineteen years old, with dark hair and eyes, and the cutest dimple in my chin you ever saw. I tend to be quiet unless I feel passionate about a topic, then as we say in Tennessee, ‘Katy, bar the door.’” Selah paused and raised an eyebrow. “See what I mean? As simple as your recipe for Apple Pandowdy.”
“Perhaps I should rework it as my own advertisement? Excellent cook and bookworm promises to keep you well-fed in exchange for a well-lit reading corner and comfortable chair.” Alice met her friend’s suggestion teasingly by clasping the hem of her worn calico skirt and spinning in a circle. “Write to me if you dream of evenings where we might read aloud to each other or alternately in companionable silence. Join me in devouring the pages of each story. Then, as the characters come to life, our lives will intertwine with theirs, and we will laugh and cry together as though they are our true friends.”
“Oh, for goodness sakes, Alice. There may be few single men in this area of Tennessee, but even I know men don’t cry over books. Think about how often the teenage boys start teasing the younger ones if their eyes even show a hint of moisture.” Selah looked heavenward. “Besides, you’ll never convince anyone to write back with a description like that.”
“Why not? Surely there are men who would enjoy the companionship of a good book. Perhaps that will be one of my requirements. I want to marry a man who will enjoy discussing the classics.” Alice inclined her chin toward the list of potential candidates and huffed. “Even though I know nothing about men, I’m smart enough to know if a book would accomplish the goal, they wouldn’t need to send for wives now, would they?”
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