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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Spotlight on Margaret Brownley and A Lady Like Sarah


MARGARET BROWNLEY - Thrills, mystery, suspense, romance: Margaret penned it all. Nothing wrong with this—except Margaret happened to be writing for the church newsletter. After making the church picnic read like a Grisham novel, her former pastor took her aside and said, "Maybe God's calling you to write fiction."

So that’s what Margaret did. She now has more than 20 novels to her credit. In addition, she's written many Christian articles and a non-fiction book. Still, it took a long time before Margaret tried her hand at writing inspirational fiction which led to her Rocky Creek series.

"I love writing about characters at different stages of faith," she says of the new direction her writing career has taken, "and I'm here to stay."

Happily married to her real life hero, Margaret and her husband live in Southern California.

A Lady Like Sarah
by Margaret Brownley
Published by Thomas Nelson


When Preacher Justin Wells promises an injured lawman to help him take his prisoner to Texas, Justin has no idea the trouble that lies ahead. The slightly-built prisoner turns out to be a Sarah Prescott—sister of the notorious Prescott brothers--and she’s determined to miss the hanging party waiting for her in Texas.

But escaping proves to be tougher than she thought. The poor man doesn’t own a gun and hasn’t the foggiest idea how to survive the wilderness. How can she leave him alone with the injured marshal?

Nothing is more sacred to Justin than a promise made to a dying man. But can he really bring himself to turn the blue-eyed beauty over to the hangmen? She’s tough as leather, but there’s something about her that is pure and good.

When she rides into a trap, he blames himself. Now, she faces the gallows and nothing short of a miracle will save her.

He can’t bear to lose her, but how can a simple preacher fight an entire town? And how can either one of them know that miracles come in many guises—including love?

Margaret's book trailer:

Readers, buy your copy of A Lady Like Sarah today!


1. This is your debut inspirational novel after 20 novels for the secular market. Congratulations! What gave you the inspiration for this story?

You never know when inspiration is going to hit. It’s different for every book. It can be something someone says or an item in the newspaper. Years ago I read an article in the National Enquirer about an Avon lady in the Amazon. She sold cosmetics to the natives who preferred buying their war paint than making it. From that article sprang my book Touch of Lace.

A Lady Like Sarah was inspired by Pearl Hart who robbed a stagecoach to pay her mother’s medical bills (Health care was highway robbery even in the 1800s). Her story got me thinking about how far we would go to protect or save a loved one.
My next book A Suitor for Jenny (September 2010) was inspired by an organization that really existed: The Society for the Protection and Preservation of Male Independence. What fun the heroine has breaking through that society!

2. How much of your own experiences influenced your characters? What aspects became traits that were theirs and theirs alone?

My experiences are, as one might expect, very different than what my characters experienced in 1879. However, human emotions haven’t changed and that’s the heart of my story. As for traits, Sarah and I are both survivors. The trait that is most hers is that she acts before she thinks. I try to think before I act and sometimes I even succeed.

3. If your hero/heroine were an ice cream flavor, what would he/she be and why?

Sarah would be Rocky Road. It’s got hard nuts and soft marshallow. She’s a tough gal—had to be, it was the only way she could survive. But the hero sees a softness in her that others don’t see. Justin would be Napoleon. He doesn’t know what God expects of him just as Napoleon ice cream doesn’t know what flavor it’s meant to be.

4. Are there any themes in Wild West Christmas that you hope the reader sees? Are there any themes that weren't overt but developed as the story progressed?

I hope that one of the themes that readers see is that it’s still possible today as it was more than a hundred years ago for goodness to triumph against all odds. An overt theme that developed during the writing of the book was that God always sends the right people in our lives when we most need them.

5. What were your most difficult parts to write? Your favorite?

One of the things I feel is missing from many inspirational romances is sexual tension. I don’t want to read what happened beneath the covers or behind the bedroom door, but I do want to see and feel their growing attraction and love for each other. Sarah and Justin were alone together for most of the story. The hardest part was to show their growing desire for one another without crossing the line. Though he was a preacher, God made him all man and he was greatly tempted. My favorite part was writing Sarah’s dialogue. She kept waking me up at night to tell me her odd though humorous take on life and I’d have to jump out of bed to jot it down. I loved every moment I spent with her.

6. When is your next book coming out and what is the story?

The 2nd book in my Rocky Creek series is A Suitor For Jenny. The book is scheduled for publication September 2010. A little preview:

When seeking a husband, it is best to go where the odds are in your favor. That would be Rainbow Creek, Texas, with the highest number of eligible bachelors per capita of any other town in the west due to the and fulfill the promise made to her dying father.

Soon after arriving, she posts a sign that reads:

Wanted: Husbands
Must be clean, well-mannered and generous
Interested parties are to meet at the hotel
10 a.m. to 4.p.m.
Must provide proof of financial security

Her plan hits a snag when the enthusiastic applicants, including the handsome marshal, RICK ARMSTRONG, fail to meet her stringent requirements. Rejecting her sisters' poor choices for mates and riding herd on her own growing feelings for the marshal, Jenny doggedly continues the search. But she is about to learn that a man's faith is more important than his bank account and choosing a husband is a job best left to the heart.

Thank you all!

* * * * *

Thank you, Margaret, for being in the spotlight with us.

Readers, leave a comment for your chance to win a FREE autographed copy of A Lady Like Sarah.

Make sure you also leave your email address (name at domainname You won't be entered in the drawing without it. If you wish to comment but don't want to be entered, say so when you post.

And if you want to make certain you don't miss anything, check the box that says 'email follow-up comments to:' when you leave a comment and they'll be sent to the email address associated with your blogging account. That way you'll be notified of any comments and will know when the winners are announced each time.

This week, the contest is open to US/Canada residents only.


Renee (BlacknGoldGirlsBookSpot) said...

Both books sound terrific I can't wait to read them both! I've already had a recommendation from one of my friends, of one of her older secular releases! I'm really looking forward to reading her Christian releases though since that's my favorite genre! Merry Christmas!

XOXO~ Renee

Lori (sugarandgrits) said...

Merry Christmas, ladies!

Margaret is a new author for me, and I'm excited to read her Rocky Creek series. They sounds like my kinda books. :)

Thank you for the chance to win!

~ Lori

Linda said...

Thrills, mystery, suspense, romance---My type of book! Please enter me. Thank you.
desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

Merry said...

A Lady Like Sarah sounds like a fun story, please include me! Thanks.


Carole said...

This book is already on my wish list and I'm looking forward to the whole series. Thank you for the chance to win A Lady Like Sarah.

cjarvis [at] bellsouth [dot] net

Margaret Brownley said...

Thank you for stopping by.

Merry Christmas!

Giveaway Lady said...

Please enter me:) Thanks!!


Casey said...

Please don't enter me, I already own this book. :) Tiffany, I have presented you with an award, you can pick it up here at my site:

God Bless :)

Rosalie Patience said...

Please enter me in the drawing. It sounds great! ~Abby

abster dot rose at yahoo dot com

Cherie J said...

Would love to read this. Please enter me in the drawing.

adge said...

This definitely looks like a good book, and the second book looks great too. Please include me in the giveaway. Thanks. gasweetheart211[at]netscape[dot]net

Anonymous said...

I would really enjoy reading this one....please enter me. Thanks!

JoAnn said...

Interesting interview. Sounds like another good book I'd like to read. JoAnn


Michelle said...

Thank you for entering me!

scraphappy71 at sbcglobal dot net

Margaret Brownley said...

Hi Everyone,

I hope you all had a wonderful and blessed Christmas. I'm enjoying a quiet restful week because come January 4th I have to get serious about writing book 3 in my Rocky Creek series.
Serious, I say!

Glynis Peters said...

Thank you for introducing me to this author. I asked a few friends here in Cyprus, but none have heard of her or own her books. I will add her to my list for the New Year.
I love how she started writing.

Happy Scribbling in 2010 :)

Sylvia M. said...

I've never read anything by this author and this book sounds interesting! I'd like to be entered into the drawing.


Margaret Brownley said...

Hi everyone,
I just wanted to pop in and wish everyone a Happy New Year and a blessed 2010.

Anonymous said...

would love to read this book...thanks for the opportunity.


Karin said...

Sounds like a winner!

Happy New Year!

karin56381 (at)

Carolynn said...

I love books with this kind of story line...thanks for the chance to win!
carolynnwald [at]hotmail [dot]com

Rosalie Patience said...

It sounds great! Please enter me in the drawing. ~Abby

abster dot rose at yahoo dot com