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Proud Mary by Bette McNicholas

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  • Growing up in Arizona, Mary Fox endured parental desertion, abuse, poverty, and no understanding of what it means to love and be loved. At age 18, she changes her name to Carolina Palmer and hops a bus on the road to a new life in Columbia, South Carolina.
    Twelve years later, she is an educated successful woman living in Washington, D.C. All she lacks is the love and family life she craves. She sees all of this in Doctor Stede Foster, the man who rescues her from an embarrassing fall when she returns to Arizona to rediscover her roots.
    Not just a doctor, Stede rides the rodeo circuit. He invites Carolina to travel with him to Texas so she can follow clues to her father. The journey leads them both to love and new challenges. Will their feelings be strong enough for her to face her fears and find Mary Fox again?

    Page Count: 260
    Word Count: 66448
    978-1-5092-2459-3 Paperback
    978-1-5092-2460-9 Digital


    “Do you recognize this woman, Stede?”

    Perplexed, Stede Foster pushed back the brim of his black Stetson and knelt by the body, elbow resting on one knee as he balanced on the balls of his cowboy-booted feet. His Wranglers tugged at the belt loops, causing his hand-tooled leather belt to dip slightly in the back.

    “No. I’ve never seen her before,” he answered. “How did you happen to find her, Manny?”

    “After I finished putting the horses in the barn and made sure everything was ready for our trip tomorrow, I headed down the hill toward home, and saw her looking in the window of the trailer.”

    “You think she might be the owner?” Stede asked, carefully turning the woman over to examine her injuries.

    “Can’t rightly say. She took off running the minute she saw me, and before she made her way back to her car parked up on the shoulder of the highway, she slipped and fell down the incline, then I texted you.”

    “Well, whoever she is, she has a pretty bloody head wound. She’s unconscious but has a good pulse. Maybe there’s a small fracture in her ankle.”

    Stede lifted the lithe form in his arms, relieved she wasn’t conscious while he moved her. “Let’s get her inside and I’ll take a look at her injuries. Do me a favor, Manny, and run up to the house and ask Jenny to meet me in the examining room.”

    He didn’t want any more trouble from the woman in his arms than she’d already dumped on his plate and wanted a female witness for self-protection. Animals were easier to deal with; they didn’t have attorneys.


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Proud Mary

Proud Mary

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