Two Sisters and the Christmas Groom
by Zina Abbott
Annie Flanagan happily moves to Jubilee Springs to work as a maid for Delly Nighy, the daughter of her former New York City employer. For one thing, very few know that her next younger sister, Kate, has signed up with the Colorado Bridal Agency and started writing to an Irish miner, Michael O’Hare, in the same town. Both Annie and her mother back in New York grow concerned when the second man the bridal agency puts Kate in contact with is a miner in Central City. He’s not Irish—and he’s not Catholic. What is worse, she seems to prefer him over Michael.
Kate Flanagan, working as a scullery maid to help support her family, desperately desires to escape the dead-end poverty allotted to Irish women living in the lower east side of Manhattan in New York. Anxious to find a husband out west, she signs up with the bridal agency suggested by her sister. After living with her alcoholic father, she is leery of choosing Irishman Michael O’Hare for a husband. As much as she wants to live near her sister, dare she take the chance Michael O’Hare will not turn out like her da?
Annie and Michael grow closer as they work together in order to persuade Kate to come to Jubilee Springs. She needs to come soon—before winter sets in and disrupts the railroad service that will bring her to the high mountain mining community. Kate agrees to travel to Jubilee Springs before Christmas, but several factors, including the train, threaten to derail this romance.
Michael knows what he promised. He knows what he wants. In the end, will he marry the bride who has captured his heart?
My name is Robyn Echols. Zina Abbott is the pen name I use for my American historical romance novels. I’m a member of Women Writing the West, Western Writers of America, and American Night Writers Association. I currently live with my husband in California’s central valley near the “Gateway to Yosemite.”
I love to read, quilt, work with digital images on my photo editing program, and work on my own family history.
I am a blogger. In addition to my own blog, I blog for several group blogs including the Sweet Americana Sweethearts blog, which I started and administer.
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Top Ten List:
Ten Fun Christmas Facts about Zina Abbott
1. My favorite Christmas carol is O Holy Night.
2. My favorite Christmas decoration is a nativity scene including angel, shepherd, and three wise men.
3. In second grade I made a lamb tree ornament out of a paper background, crayon eyes, nose, mouth, and hooves, and small cotton balls glued all over the body. This was before commercial cotton balls were sold. We used bulk cotton and rolled the small balls by hand. The paper and cotton are now yellowed with age, but I still have that ornament.
4. I prefer green over red.
5. As a child, each Christmas Eve my brother, sister, and I prepared a Christmas program we performed for our parents. We read the Luke 2 story of the birth of Christ, recited “’Twas the Night before Christmas,” maybe share some other short poems and stories, and we sang Christmas songs. We used our raised hearth as our stage. After, we had refreshments my mother had prepared and opened one Christmas gift each which she picked out for us—usually pajamas or slippers.
6. When I started getting too much “give me, give me—I want” from my teenage children, I switched to blue, gold, and silver and put more focus on the birth of Christ instead of the red and green Santa ho-ho part of the holiday. (Please don’t send me articles about how red, green and other things we associate with Santa Claus, et al, have religious symbolism. I’ve read them.) The one non-nativity decoration my children asked me to bring back was a Christmas tree, which I did.
7. I learned once my children became teenagers, the best gift in the world for them was gift cards. I took them shopping at the after-Christmas sales. The stuff they bought was always the right style, size, and color because they picked it out.
8. When I was about two or three, my father, a very talented wood craftsman, built a wooden clothes rack in the shape of a giraffe for me that Christmas. He painted it white with yellow spots, although I recall the body, which was a flat bench/shelf, was brown. The horns were clothes hooks. We called it Jo-Jo Giraffe. It probably was only about four to five feet high, but to me at the time, it was HUGE!
9. For many years, my favorite Christmas music album was The Messiah by Handel.
10. Before that, I was rather fond of a Christmas album performed by Elvis Presley.
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