After her father kicked her off the family farm because she was pregnant, seventeen-year-old Libby Bateson swore she’d never go back. She and her daughter, Nicole, have scraped by in the city for the past eight years, but when Libby finds out Nicole is being bullied and under-performing at school, she decides it’s time to swallow her pride.
Going home isn’t easy. Libby finds the farmhouse neglected and filthy. Her father is a cantankerous hermit who won’t speak to her. Even Gibson Browning, the farmer next door whom she’d once had a crush on, is making her life complicated.
Gibson’s wife died two years ago and now he’s a single parent too—raising a daughter the same age as Nicole. The hard working, good looking Gibson is a loyal friend and a loving father. Libby knows she could easily fall for him—which would be a mistake.
Because Libby can’t stay in Chatsworth for long. Not without risking exposure of the secret that could ruin her daughter’s life. (secret baby, series romance, domestic life, family life)
About the Author
Stories fascinate C.J. Carmichael — they always have. When she was growing up, her relatives almost never saw her without a book in her hands. Even now that she's busy with her career, a husband, teenaged children, pets, writing groups, relatives, fitness and friends, she reads an awful lot. C.J. reads when she eats (a no-no, she admits), in the bath (leads to soggy pages), and always, always, always in airplanes (C.J.'s a nervous flier). She even reads while driving (thank goodness for books on tape).
Despite her love of fiction, when it came time to pick a direction for her studies in university, C.J. chose business. She ended up with a degree in commerce, which she followed with two years of articling and several more exams, in order to become a chartered accountant. She worked in this field for about six years, and while she enjoyed her job, she had a secret yearning for something else.
When C.J. had her first child, she finally had an opportunity to step back from what she was doing and re-assess what she wanted from life. She decided she wanted to be a hands-on mum. She also wanted to write books. And so C.J. tried.
She typed her first book on an electric typewriter, and sent it to Harlequin Enterprises with great expectations. She had so much to learn! The books she had enjoyed since her teen years seemed so structurally simple, but she soon realised that achieving this effect requires great skill and talent. Hoping she had the talent, C.J. worked on acquiring the skills and ten years later (yes, it really did take that long!) she sold her first book to the Harlequin Superromance line.
Writing about ordinary people, in extraordinary situations — that's the kind of story C.J. loves to read and it's the kind of story she writes, as well. Whether you're a mum with kids, a single career woman, divorced, retired, young, old (or any combination of the above!) she wants you to feel as if you are reading about something that could happen to you in your real life (or to your daughter, or mother, or best friend).
Though she has been thrilled to be nominated for RWA's Rita Award, the Romantic Times Career Achievement award and The Bookseller's Best award, her biggest rewards come when she receives an email or letter from a reader. She also enjoys getting together with other writers at the smaller RWA conferences. What a great way to travel and meet new people who share the same interests and passions as she does.
We only have one life to lead. C.J. will always be thankful that, because of stories, we can experience so much more!