Friday, April 8, 2011

TEXAS TRUE--The Cameron Sisters: Book II

Location, location, location. When I write novels set in Texas, whether they are Western Historical or Contemporary, I use a mix of real locations with a few I created. Even with the invented places, I set them in areas that are quite real.
 TEXAS TRUE allows the youngest Cameron sister, True Lee, to tell her story. She had graduated from an Eastern boarding school and moved in with her older sister, Jo King. Jo had her turn in a story (Texas Promise), so she had ridden off into the sunset with her man and left True alone in Austin.
Austin, Texas, 1900, the state capital, located on the Colorado River and Interstate Highway 35 in Central Texas, situated on the eastern edge of the Hill Country and the Edwards Plateau. The photo is actually a few years later than the time of this story, but you can get an idea of how Congress Avenue looked, with the state capitol on a rise at the end of the long street. The dress shop which Jo owns—and True now runs alone—is on this street in the novel.
 The Driskill Hotel, a posh establishment then and even today, is used in the story. When True meets Sam Deleon, he wants to impress her, so he takes her to dinner in the dining room there—a very expensive affair. The hotel's 60 rooms included 12 corner rooms with attached baths, an almost unheard-of feature in any hotel of the region at that time.
After True marries Sam, she finds herself alone once again when he returns to the oilfield.
(The old ones weren't quite this nice!)
She asks her friend, Adam Carter, to help her move out of Austin to the oilfield camp where wives and children live—a couple of miles from the oil wells. The camp consists of two facing rows of platform tents. This photo gives us a vague idea of such a tent. True learns the word "hardship" for the first time in her life. But during the hot summer she lives there, she grows up, into a determined young wife.

Later in the story, Sam finally takes over the family ranch in South Texas. The ranch home is a huge hacienda (estate) and casa (home.)
There, the story plays out. What happens at the ranch? Why does Sam need to reclaim his inheritance from his younger brother? What part does True play in the process? How and why did Sam deceive her in the beginning? Does Sam make atonement for his sins? Is True generous and loving enough to give their marriage a chance?
At a Governor's Ball in Austin, Texas, True Lee Cameron meets suave Sam Deleon. Before the night is out, she transforms from the coddled and protected younger sister to a woman in love. Reality crashes down when she accidentally learns he has deceived her. Daring to disobey him, she follows Sam to the oilfields and determines to live wherever he does. Has she made a mistake? Will she give up and return home where she can make her own rules?
When Sam Deleon meets the gorgeous young woman his mother has chosen for him, he fears falling in love, because he knows nothing about love. In order to carry out his mother’s plan, he marries True and moves her to his mother's home, intending to visit enough to set the plan in motion. When True fails to obey him, he faces the possibility of losing her, thereby losing his inheritance and the family property.
Sam and True attempt a reconciliation and compromise. Together, they now face a nemesis, someone who determines to thwart every action they take, endangering not only their lives, but also those whom they love.

Celia Yeary-Romance...and a little bit 'o Texas


  1. Celia--I love to look at old pictures. Now I will be able to cituate your story when I read it.

  2. Celia, thank you for these photos to "flesh out" the story of Texas True. And although I'd never seen a picture of a tent like True lived in at the oil fiend site, I had envisioned it from your words in the book even before I saw the photo here. So your description along brought it alive for me. This is a wonderful book and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves a book with romoance, suspense, action, and larger-than-life memorable characters. Well done. Linda

  3. Oh, dear, I should NEVER post before noon. I meant to say "oil field" not fiend. But Sam was acting like a fiend at this time so maybe a Freudian slip? And that's "description alone" not along. Sorry.

  4. Celia, can't wait to read True Lee's story. Thanks for the great photos, too.

  5. Celia, this story looks wonderful, of course! I can't wait to read it. What fantastic pictures you found, too! Love the tent picture, and the one of the street--well, I am a sucker for old pictures, so I loved them all.

  6. Celia, I love the photos! They really set the scene for me in my mind. I'm looking forward to reading Texas True. I really enjoyed Texas Promise. Thanks for setting the stage for us.


  7. MONA--I hope I did a good job, as you commonly do. Sometimes I read a book and picture the places, and learn later I was dead wrong.
    Honestly, I never know if it's a good idea to post real photos or note....but I'm addicted to adding photos to my blog. Thanks for coming by--Celia

  8. LINDA--OH, thank you for reading Texas True. I can't wait til you finish it to five me your opinion. It counts a lot, you know, what you think of my writing.
    The typos--ignore them. Celia

  9. CAROLINE--I know your love old photos, too. Glad you like these,,,and if you do read it, I hope you like it. Thanks so much for visiting. Celia

  10. CHERYL--yes, I knew you loved old photos, too. I can't seem to get enough of them. My dh sent a set of Depression era B&W to my computer so I could study them. My lands, every photos brings out an intense reaction.
    I know some people did not suffer the Depression like most did, and I wonder about them...who were they, and how did they escape poverty? Thanks for stopping by! Celia

  11. STEPH--thank you for the vote of confidence. You don't know how much it mean to have you read my books. You're very generous that way, and a good reviewer. And I certainly know you also love old photos--You always use them in such a good way. Celia

  12. Fantastic old photos. It brings your story to life actually seeing the settings. That is what I love about living where my historicals are set. It almost makes the setting a character in your story.

    Love your excerpt. Sounds like quite an interesting story. :)

  13. Love the photos, Celia and True Lee's story sounds wonderful!

  14. Celia,

    I truly enjoyed the old pictures and the genuine flavor of Texas your books elicit. I'm thrilled about Texas True and the complex plot you've woven. Looking forward to reading it!


  15. Paisley--thank you. I know you appreciate our past and the photos that record it. That's what I love about writing historicals--it's a time we didn't experience, but it shaped our nation and our citizens. Thanks! Celia

  16. MARIN--thank you. I hope readers like it. I've always thought True's story was really the best of all my Texas stories. I could be wrong...we'll see. Celia

  17. MAGGIE--it is a complex plot, probably he most complicated I've ever written next to a contemporary called Heart of a Hero. These two had a lot of parts to it. Thanks for commenting! Celia

  18. Celia, I really enjoyed your post -- the pictures and learning about Book II of The Cameron Sisters. Looking forward to reading Texas True. :)

  19. This is such a cool post! I love Texas history. Thanks for sharing!

  20. Celia, wishing your every success. Loved your blog. I'm a sucker for history, especially Old West history. And, that tent setup is fascinating.

    One way some escaped the poverty of the Depression is by using gold and silver as their currency, and by setting up their own local economies.

    Thank you for sharing this blog!

  21. ASHLEY--thank you so much for the compliment. I am a visual person...I love photos that tell a story. Celia

  22. MJ--and I loved your "cool" comment! I think we all love old photos..if we don't, there's something wrong! They tell such a story. Thanks...Celia

  23. Savanna--thanks. That tent was actually one from a "resort" campground. I've seen photos of the old ones, and imagine how dirty and hot they really were!
    About those who escaped the severe poverty--I never knew that about the silver and gold. I think gold dealers are trying to profit from that right now. Celia

  24. Celia, they are many disreputable nasties out there scooping up folk's gold because of these times. However, if you have the ability to purchase say 'junk silver' and gold bullion coins that will remain a viable currency most likely. But, you have to deal with a reputable and fair company. And, no, I'm not in that being-able-to-purchase boat. Although, I would definitely go for the junk silver ~ dimes pre 1965, for example. Unfortunately, the dollar is doomed to extinction in the long run.


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