Above painting: Louis Jean Francois - Mars and Venus an Allegory of Peace
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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Featured Author: Callie Hutton


            An Angel in the Mail, set in 1861, unites newly penniless society belle Angel Hardwick and Nathan Hale, father of five, who is desperate for a wife to straighten his life out.  Nate’s looking for someone who loves children and can easily take over the cooking, cleaning and laundry.  Instead, he is getting Angel, whose culinary knowledge consists of weekly meetings with Cook to decide the family’s menu.
Angel is a strong-minded young woman, resigned to her fate, and determined to make the best of her situation.  But will her new husband allow for mistakes?  Or will he send her packing when she burns meals and misplaces children?
Nate just wants a peaceful, well run household, without the distraction of an attractive wife.  However, his beautiful wife with a very distractible body is not giving him peace.  Somebody lied, because despite what he was told by the Bride Agency, this beauty knows nothing about running a home, but she sure sets him on fire at night.
Nate and Angel have to come to a working arrangement, overcoming problems between them. But will they be able to find a happily ever after with someone desperately working behind the scenes to destroy their relationship?


A small wooden table in the corner drew her.  She placed the glass on the table and eased her sore and tired body onto the chair. One leg shorter than the other three, the chair rocked as she settled. A woman the size of the counterman came through a curtain separating the area from whatever was in the back. With a brisk nod in Angel’s direction, she headed her way.

“Y’all one of them new whores Dolly’s expectin’? She asked me to look out for ya.” She jerked her thumb in the counterman’s direction. “Jedediah’ll git you out there as soon as the stage pulls out. Dolly’s sure needin’ the help. She cain’t never take a break herself.”

Angel sat in silence, her eyes wide and mouth slack as the woman continued. “Ya’ll gonna have to git rid of them black clothes, though. Dolly’ll fix ya up nice and fancy.”

Tears sprang to her eyes and she gasped, vigorously shaking her head. “No, ma’am, I am not one of the new wh-whores.” She stumbled on the word, and backed the rickety chair against the wall.

“Well, gosh darn. Thadda be a pity.” The woman shifted a wad of tobacco from one cheek to the other, expelling a stream of juice right next to Angel’s shoe. Her gaze roamed over her. “A looker like you’d make a lot of money for yerself. Men around here are dying for some new faces.”  Then she thought for a minute and grinned. “And new bodies, too.”  She threw her head back in laughter, spaces from missing teeth exposed.

“Jedediah, git yoreself back to work.”  The woman shouted in the counterman’s direction as she returned to the back area.

Angel got up from the table and quickly headed for the door. I’d rather sit in the blazing sun.  What have I gotten myself into?


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