Norah Bloomfield is feeling a bit unneeded these days. Her father is recovering from his heart attack, and her sisters, Valerie and Stephanie, are busy planning their weddings. But then a cantankerous Texan named Rowdy Cassidy crashes his small plane in Orchard Valley. The same Rowdy Cassidy who'd been Valerie's boss...and who'd demanded she marry him. Now he's Norah's patient, and in all her nursing experience she's never encountered a more difficult man. Or a more irresistible one! Except...is he still in love with her sister?
When Norah's friend Sherry Waterman leaves Orchard Valley, Oregon, for Pepper, Texas, she's definitely not in the mood for Lone Star Lovin'. But if anyone can change her mind, it's Cody Bailman--a hardworking, good-looking rancher. Not only that, Cody has a twelve-year-old daughter who thinks Sherry's "just perfect for Dad"!
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July 31, 2010
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Excerpt from Orchard Valley Brides by Debbie Macomber
From the Book...
This cowboy was too young to die!
Norah Bloomfield stared down at the unconscious face of the man in Orchard Valley Hospital's emergency room. He was suffering from shock, internal injuries and a compound fracture of the right fibula. Yet he was probably the luckiest man she'd ever known. He'd survived.
The team of doctors worked vigorously over him, doing everything possible to keep him alive. Although she was busy performing her own role in this drama, Norah was curious. It wasn't every day a man literally fell out of the sky into their backyard. Whoever he was, he'd been involved in a plane accident. From what she heard when they'd rushed him in, he'd made a gallant effort to land the single-engine Cessna in a wheatfield, but the plane's wingtip had caught the ground, catapulting it into a series of cartwheels. That he'd managed to crawl out of the wreckage was a miracle all its own.
She tightened the blood-pressure cuff around his arm and called out the latest reading. Dr. Adamson, the surgeon in attendance, briskly instructed her to administer a shot.
Their patient was young, in his early thirties. And handsome in a rugged sort of way. Dark hair, chiseled jaw, stubborn as a mule from the looks of him. His clothes, at least what was left of them, told her he was probably a cowboy. She suspected he rode in the rodeo circuit--successfully, too, if he was flying his own plane.
She glanced down at his left hand. He wasn't wearing a wedding ring and that eased her mind somewhat. Norah hated the thought of a young wife pacing the floor, anxiously waiting his arrival home. Of course, that didn't mean he wasn't married. A lot of men didn't wear wedding rings, particularly if they worked with their hands. Too dangerous.
His leg was badly broken, and once he was stabilized, he'd be sent into surgery. She didn't have a lot of experience with compound fractures, but her guess was that he'd need to be in traction for the next few weeks. A break as complex as this would take months, possibly years, to heal properly.
Norah wasn't scheduled to work tonight, but had been called in unexpectedly. She should've been home, had planned to be home, preparing for her oldest sister Valerie's wedding. Half of Orchard Valley would be in attendance--it was widely considered the event of the year. And five weeks after that, her second sister, Steffie, would be marrying Charles Tomaselli, in a much less formal ceremony.
There was definitely something in the air this summer, Norah mused, with both her sisters planning to get married.
Love was what floated in the air, but it had apparently evaded Norah. There wasn't a single man in Orchard Valley who stirred her heart. Not one.
She was thrilled for her sisters, but at the same time she couldn't help feeling a bit envious. If any of the three could be described as "the marrying type," it was Norah. She was by far the most domestic and traditional. Ever since she was a teenager, Norah had assumed she'd be the first of the three sisters to marry, although she was the youngest. Valerie had hardly dated even in college, and Steffie was so impulsive and unpredictable that she'd never stood still long enough to get serious about anyone. Or so it had seemed....
Now both her sisters were marrying. And this had all happened within two short months. Only weeks ago Norah would have been shocked had anyone told her Valerie would become a wife. Her oldest sister was the dedicated career woman, working her way up the corporate ladder with CHIPS, a Texas-based computer software corporation. At any rate, that was what Valerie had been doing--until she flew home when their father suffered a heart attack. Before...