Thursday, 15 August 2019

Check out AnneMarie Brear's fabulous new book — Beneath a Stormy Sky #Victorian #HistoricalRomance @annemariebrear



Beneath a Stormy Sky

By AnneMarie Brear

 

Surviving a shipwreck was the least of her problems.

Louisa Reynolds loses her brother when their ship goes down in a storm off the west coast of Australia. Stranded and alone on a deserted beach she is rescued by a young aboriginal girl, who keeps her alive, and teaches her the ways of the native people.

When eventually Louisa stumbles into the nearest town of Albany, she must gather her strength to start again. Befriended by two men, old gentleman George and the dashing Connor, she finds that life is worth living. The unexpected friendship with both Connor and George gives her new joy. She’s invited to stay at George’s sheep station. However, as a single woman in the company of men, she is soon the talk of gossips.

Her feelings for Connor intensify, but when she learns more about him, she is shattered by a revelation and it is gentle George who she suddenly marries.

Only, settling into station life comes with its own problems when Louisa realises that George has money problems and is close to losing everything.  Confronted by a devastating fire and a gang of bushrangers, Louisa feels as though her world is spinning out of control.

Can she save the station, and how long can she deny the love she feels for Connor?

Excerpt

‘Hold on to me!’ David shouted above the roar of the wind and rain. The storm was much worse than she had realised. The small window in her cabin had given her a glimpse, but the wildness and ferocity was real and frightening. The weak moonlight which disappeared behind scudding clouds made the scene before her even more terrifying.

She grasped David’s belt, the deck slippery and unstable beneath her feet. The ship’s timbers groaned in protest as it was lifted high on the swell and then plunged back down again. Something cracked above their heads and David pulled her down to her knees as a spar broke free and the wind hurled it like a weapon onto the decks.

A woman screamed as a wave gathered in height, its white froth looked menacing. It rose above them like a living demon and smashed onto the ship. It ripped a woman out of her husband’s arms and into the wild black sea. Sailors worked fast, trying to launch the boat, but the rigging snagged. When a huge wave tipped the ship sideways, the rigging snapped like a cracked whip, releasing the shore boat over the side. The force took three sailors with it, crashing into the sea. Shouts and yells were drowned out by the boom of the wind.

David pushed her behind a stack of cargo and held onto the ropes securing it. ‘The shore boat is gone.’

‘Is there another one?’ She wiped water from her face, peering at him in the dimness.

‘I don’t think so.’ Rain plastered his hair to his scalp.

She fought back a gulp of fear, concentrating on David’s face. As she went to speak the ship tilted alarmingly sending everyone skidding to the left.

Louisa screamed as she slid along the deck and smashed against the rail.

David grabbed her, the ocean rising up just a few feet from where they lay. ‘We are listing badly. That cargo is straining its ropes. We’ve got to get off the ship. It’s going down.’

Expecting the ship to right itself, Louisa’s eyes grew wide with panic as it stayed on its side and water rushed down into the decks below.

‘Come on!’ he yelled in her ear, scrambling along the rail. ‘Hurry!’

The noise of the ship breaking apart seemed incredible, unbelievable. People screamed, the wind roared, the waves crashed on them and timbers squealed in protest. Lanterns had gone out, pitching them all in darkness.

David threw an empty crate over the rail. ‘We are going to jump in and swim to the crate. It will keep us afloat.’

Nodding, she held fast to his wet coat.

He stared into her eyes and in the murky light she gulped at his serious expression. ‘You go first and swim as fast as you can to the crate. Don’t stop, just get to the crate. Understand?’

‘Yes.’

‘I’ll be right behind you. Now go.’

Terrified, she looked at the angry black ocean wreaking havoc on the ship and passengers. The wind whipped her wet hair into her eyes as she climbed over the railing. Waves rose up to meet her and she shrieked as her foot slipped.

‘Go Louisa!’

‘I can’t do it!’ she called back to him. She’d never been so frightened in her life.

He grabbed her arms to steady her. ‘Look at me. Do you trust me to keep you safe?’

‘Yes.’

‘Jump. Now.’

Pick up your copy of
Beneath a Stormy Sky


AnneMarie Brear

AnneMarie was born a small town in N.S.W. Australia, to English parents from Yorkshire. She is the youngest of five children. Her love of reading fiction started at an early age with Enid Blyton’s novels, before moving on into more adult stories such as Catherine Cookson’s novels as a teenager. Living in England, during the 1980s she discovered a love of history by visiting the many and varied places of historical interest.

The road to publication was long and winding with a few false starts, but she finally became published in 2006. Since that time, many novels and several short stories have been published. She writes historical novels set in Yorkshire and/or Australia in the eras covering from Victorian to WWII. Her books are available in ebook and paperback from bookstores, especially online bookstores such as Amazon. 


AnneMarie enjoys reading and gardening. Spending time visiting old country house estates and castles helps her find ideas for her books. She’s interested in genealogy and researched her family trees. She loves chocolate (who doesn't?) and enjoys travelling, cooking and surfing the web (research purposes, obviously, not wasting time on Facebook!)

Connect with AnneMarie: WebsiteTwitterFacebook.



1 comment:

See you on your next coffee break!
Take Care,
Mary Anne xxx