Land of My Dreams
by Norma Gail
GENRE: Christian romance
Alone and betrayed, American professor, Bonny Bryant longs for a haven of peace. She accepts a position at a small Christian college in Fort William, Scotland, craving escape from her painful past. The passionate love which develops when she meets fellow professor and sheep farmer, Kieran MacDonell, is something she never anticipated.
Kieran harbors a deep anger toward God in the face of his own devastating grief. When Bonny’s former fiancé reenters her life, Kieran’s loneliness draws him to a former student.
How will Bonny decide between her rivals? Can they set aside the past to make way for a future, or will it drive them apart?
Land of My Dreams, Christian Romance Novel, spans the distance between New Mexico’s high desert mountains and the misty Scottish Highlands with a timeless story of overwhelming grief, undying love, and compelling faith.
“Come see this.” Kieran and Bonny stood atop Grant Tower at Urquhart Castle, overlooking Loch Ness. For her, it was a place of poignant memories. He pointed to a rainbow arching from one side of the loch to the other as she moved into the crook of his arm. “Now, down there.”
She stood on tiptoe and looked to where he pointed, at the base of the tower.
“Step onto that ledge and I’ll steady you.”
The warmth of his hands around her waist contrasted with the chill wind. She shivered and leaned close enough to hear the stubble on his chin scratching against her raincoat. “The rainbow enters the water at the foot of the tower. Another fifty feet, and it would form a complete circle. Amazing.”
His arms tightened around her. “No more so than the woman in my arms.”
She kept silent. Did he feel it? What could be more romantic than a rainbow all their own?
“No one else sees it.”
His warm breath tickled her ear, and she leaned against him, wrapped in a sense of wonder and delight. No one even wrote things this perfect. “Just we two.”
Kieran bent over her, his lips touching hers, tentative and searching. She leaned into his arms, her heart leaping in her chest as she allowed her lips to reveal her readiness to move forward. The scent of him was becoming so familiar. The taste of him was even sweeter.
Norma was kind enough to share the Story Behind "Land of My Dreams."
When my husband and I took an anniversary trip to Scotland in 2006, I fell in love with Scotland, a fascinating country of rugged mountains, glacial formations, deep lochs, and magnificent beauty. The people are friendly and likeable, and the music, culture, and traditions are unique.
A broken foot sidelined me when we were building a new home, landing me in a wheelchair. Reading wasn’t quite interesting enough to stop the boredom of weeks spent sitting around unable to drive. It seemed like a good time to follow through on my dream of becoming a published novelist.
During the planning of our trip, I dreamed of a man in a kilt, standing on a misty mountain surrounded by sheep. I’m married to a Dutch immigrant, so I know something about marrying into a different culture. So what if an American woman went to another country and fell in love with a man who lived there? What would it be like to transplant your entire life?
Land of My Dreams begged to be told. The characters are a little older than in most romances. They have been hurt by life and grapple with their faith in God. Their mistakes are big and so are their dreams. My favorite quote is on the front cover: “Sometimes the greatest blessings come when we leave the familiar behind and take a step of faith.”
It was difficult living so far from the setting of the book. I created a screensaver of over 400 photos of the area, some from our trip, some from the internet, immersing myself in history, websites, books, and movies. Having an editor who lived there and has friends in Scotland provided the insight I needed in certain scenes.
The music of Scotland is also unique. The ancient bagpipe tunes tell tales of the history, land, and people. The fiddle music is the basis for the musical genre known in America as bluegrass. My playlist expanded to several hundred songs, ballads, folk music, and of course, bagpipes that drive my Dutch husband crazy. I prefer to write in silence unless a scene involves a particular song, but everywhere I went, Scottish music filled my car. It played in my head and sometimes an image from the music found its way into the story.
Kieran had to be a piper, and Bonny’s first introduction to him is hearing his piping coming from a cemetery near her house. When she asks a friend about it, the sad and romantic tale of his lost love takes hold of her heart before she meets him face to face. A trip to the famous Edinburgh Tattoo, a summer spectacle of pipe and drum bands at Edinburgh Castle, deepens the attraction even more. A tune called “The Rosebud of Allenvale” led to a scene where the two main characters, Bonny and Kieran, attend a charity ball in a Scottish castle. As the orchestra plays the tune, they dance and confess their love.
My favorite part is a scene set at Urquhart Castle on Loch Ness and involves a rainbow that formed almost a complete circle over the waters of the loch. A rainbow my husband and I saw as we stood alone atop the castle’s Grant Tower inspired it. What a perfect experience to spark a little romance?
I hope Bonny and Kieran will become friends of yours, as they have become mine and that you are as carried away by a Scottish accent and a kilt as I am!
Norma Gail is the author of the contemporary Christian romance, Land of My Dreams. A women’s Bible study leader for over 21 years, her devotionals and poetry have appeared at ChristianDevotions.us, the Stitches Thru Time blog, and in “The Secret Place.” She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Romance Writers of America, and the New Mexico Christian Novelists. Norma is a former RN who lives in the mountains of New Mexico with her husband of 40 years. They have two adult children.
Connect with Norma
Amazon Author page: http://www.amazon.com/Norma-Gail/e/B00ILHXBAK/
Book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQbZIoC_JSE
Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas Bookstore: http://store.lpcbooks.com/product/land-of-my-dreams/
Barnes & Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/land-of-my-dreams-norma-gail/1119606864?ean=9781941103173
Land of My Dreams will be $0.99 during the tour.
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