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Lord of the High Lonesome (North Dakota)
Every novel in this collection is your passport to a romantic tour of the United States through time-honored favorites by Americaís First Lady of romance fiction. Each of the fifty novels is set in a different state, researched by Janet and her husband, Bill. For the Daileys it was an odyssey of discovery. For you, itís the journey of a lifetime. Your tour of desire begins with this story set in North Dakota. ìWhy doesnít he leave us alone?î Kit and her grandfather managed the Flying Eagle Ranch. For years theyíd been doing it without interference from its long line of mostly absentee owners. Now the newest heir, Baron Reese Talbot, had come to look over his inheritance. He had some different ideas-and they went beyond the running of the ranch! He wanted to teach Kit how to be a woman. But she wouldnít let him ruin her the way the old baron had ruined her mother. Kit was ready to fight!
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October 01, 2001
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Excerpt from Lord of the High Lonesome (North Dakota) by Janet Dailey
WINTER-GRAY CLOUDS darkened the afternoon sky, the temperature chilling, a cold wind whistling. Kit Bonner waded through a fresh snowdrift the wind had piled on the path to the door. On the stoop, she paused to stomp the snow from her boots, her brown eyes scanning the bleak Dakota landscape beyond the living snow fence of trees.
The cold turned her breath into a puffy white vapor and reddened her cheeks and the tip of her nose. Her lips seemed frozen, incapable of movement without splitting. A creeping numbness was spreading through her limbs despite the long, thermal underwear beneath her denims and the fleece-lined parka.
Yet Kit didn't hurry into the promised warmth of the house perched on the slope of a hill. Her attention was on the threatening darkness of the sky, her mind wondering how severe this winter storm would be and how well the cattle on the range would weather it.
A horse whinnied up by the barns, swinging her gaze in its direction. A shaggy-coated bay had its head over the corral fence, its ears pricked toward the outer barn door. Lew Simpson, one of the ranch hands, had just closed the door and was walking away, his Stetsoned head bent down, his body leaning into the wind. His destination was the old bunkhouse where friendly, welcoming smoke curled from its chimney.
Unconsciously Kit's gaze continued its arc until it was stopped by the imposing structure of the main ranch house. For as long as Kit could remember it had been referred to as the Big House. Front atop the hill it commanded a sweeping view of the ranch buildings and the rugged North Dakota landscape. No smoke came front its chimneys nor any light from its windows. It stood empty, its doors and windows locked and shuttered.