I love to talk with fans about Colorado Promise!
This story is so close to my heart, and I’ll explain why.
When thinking hard what story to tell to launch the first full-length novel of the series, I had foremost in my mind the heart of the story.
Believe it or not, I’d come up with the first three titles—Colorado Promise, Colorado Hope, and Colorado Dream—long before I had any characters or plot in mind.
That may seem strange, but I knew I wanted my themes to be at the heart of all my books. Theme is what separates a good book from a great book, and as a reader, I love novels that have rich themes that get me thinking.
With each novel I wrote, my theme informed the plot. And that challenged me to draw out each theme in a big, wide way.
So how would promise be at the heart of this novel?
In so many ways!
Emma promised herself she would pursue her love for drawing and botany. She promised she would never marry someone she didn’t love.
Lucas embraced all that Colorado promised to him, but when his wife and baby died, those promises were broken, and the promise of love reaching his heart again was an impossible dream.
The rough, rugged land itself held a promise—to those who embraced it, it provided sustenance and a worthwhile life. But more than that—it promised a deep and abiding meaning and purpose in life.
There’s something else at the heart of Colorado Promise.When Emma is reunited with Randall, her close childhood friend, and learns he’s living in Greeley too, it only makes sense she should marry him. He’s sweet and considerate, and he respects her dreams and aspirations. Yet . . . she just doesn’t love him in the way she knows she should.
Which begs the question: Is it right to long for more, to expect more? Emma longs for love, but more than that. She yearns for someone whose heart resonates with hers.
Or as Sarah Banks, the Cheyenne medicine woman tells her: “When two people are meant for each other, their hearts will sing together. The sky will embrace them, and the stars will shine ever brighter.”
Randall is a man any woman would love and cherish. But he just isn’t for Emma. Despite so many doubts and her parents’ disapproval, she can’t stay away from Lucas. He seems to be able to look deep into her soul and mirror back the truths she needs to know.
When Emma is amazed at how Lucas can live so comfortably in such a wild and frightening place as the Colorado desert, he explains.
“The folks that come out here, out west—they’re all running from something. Just like I was.” He suddenly turned to her and snagged her with his intense gaze. “They think they’ll find something out here that will heal them, that will make them forget the pain of the past. But the open range doesn’t do that for you. The wide open land only mirrors back to you what you’re afraid to see, what’s inside yourself. The trick is to run to something. To accept what you’re shown, and embrace it no matter how wild, how uncomfortable. Only then can you finally find peace. Find your place in this big, wide world.”
Emma desperately wants to find her place in the world, and as she sees how Lucas and Sarah and others live in harmony with the land, she realizes this is exactly the place—and the man—she could come to love.
The heart of Colorado Promise beats hard. I hope you’ll immerse yourself in the world of Emma and Lucas. And share your thoughts with me! Let me know how you like the story. I believe it will bring tears to your eyes—not just once but many times—and will move you in a powerful way.
There are many dangers to be faced by both hero and heroine, and many obstacles that keep the two from their destined love. But, as we know, true love will prevail, despite all odds.
Enjoy the journey—and I hope you don’t bite off all your nails!