The Victorian Era in America-1837-1901
By Celia Yeary
After the Civil War to the turn of the century, wealth increased all across America. By 1870, an enormous building boom increased the number of millionaires to one hundred. With the advent of new money, the call for more of everything reigned among the wealthy.
|A RESTORED VICTORIAN HOME|
From New York to the West coast, a woman of means threw her heart and soul into creating a home befitting her status. This meant building a home that was as festooned as a Christmas tree—inside and out.
|A VICTORIAN PARLOR|
She stuffed every room with spindly, feminine furniture, until it overflowed with excess. She decorated with abandon, creating grossly decorated rooms, filled with every knickknack and gimcrack imaginable. A person might feel stifled and claustrophobic in the room.
The ladies, young and old, dressed in the fashions of the day. The outfits were as ornate as the homes in which they lived. Pronounced bustles, unnecessary and odd-looking, was part of every well-to-do lady’s dress. One dress might contain as many as twenty yards of silk and satin, and rows and rows of lace and fringe and ruffles decorated the necklines, hems, and bustles.
In my first release, All My Hopes and Dreams, a Western Historical set in the Victorian era, 1880 Texas, Miss Cynthia Harrington lives in a big, white fancy house in Nacogdoches, Texas with her banker father.
As she says in the novel, “Nacogdoches is not exactly the social and fashion center of Texas.” However, she strives to be the best-dressed young lady of the small East Texas town. With her loveliness and poise, she manages to attract the attention of visiting horse-buyer, Ricardo Romero.
Of course, they marry, and she soon learns that the Romero ranch on the far Western edge of the Texas Frontier most certainly differs in all ways from her usual lifestyle—and that includes dress. By the third day, she finds herself wearing boots, split skirt, blouse, and gaucho hat.
Read about their adventures and how they fall in love...
ALL MY HOPES AND DREAMSTo escape an arranged marriage, beautiful, proper Cynthia Harrington from East Texas impulsively marries Ricardo Romero, a striking, sensual Spaniard who ranches on the far western edge of the Texas frontier. Innocently, she steps into a hotbed of anger, rivalry, and strong wills. As she struggles to gain a foothold in the hostile household and foreign ranch community, she finds that her biggest challenge is to make her husband love her.
Ricardo creates his own problems by marrying an outsider, angering his mother, father, and his jealous ex-lady friend. Then, the Texas Rangers arrive looking for a killer, and Cynthia saves Ricardo’s mother in a confrontation with the wanted man. Ricardo realizes that his delicate bride has more grit and spunk than he thought, and his greatest trial becomes a race to pursue his own wife and persuade her to stay with him.
“A ranch? I know nothing of ranching or the West. I would like to live in a city. But you live…”
“Not far from
,” Ricardo hastened to say. “But
it is far enough away that we only go twice a year for a holiday.” San Antonio
Cynthia lowered her head and looked at her hands. “I don’t know. That seems far out of my realm of expertise. I’m not certain I could do that.”
“Answer this, Cynthia. Would you rather live here until your father finds another husband for you, or would you rather make your own decision? I’m giving you a choice.”
At that moment, they heard heavy, hurried footsteps on the porch. Both knew it was the master of the house. Just as he opened the door, stepped in, and turned toward the parlor, Ricardo gathered Cynthia into his arms. He turned her just so, placed his sculptured lips on her soft, feminine ones, and kissed her with all the passion he could muster. For good measure, he moved one hand to one breast. Instead of fighting, she responded as though she hadn’t heard her father.
“Cynthia Louise Harrington! What the devil are you up to?”
Ricardo and Cynthia pulled back, but they did not jerk apart. Instead, they gazed into each other’s eyes and parted slowly. Without caring if the man was in the room or not, Ricardo placed his palm on her cheek, and kissed her on the other, ever so sweetly and gently. Before he let her go, he whispered, “Will you marry me?”
She nodded and whispered in return, “Yes, I will marry you.”
My First Published Book
Now, $2.99, reduced by The Wild Rose Press
because it is now six years old.
Happy Birthday, All My Hopes and Dreams!
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Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas