Saturday, June 27, 2015

WeatherScribe has moved, permanently

My new blog is co-hosted with my author web site: H L Wegley's Blog Stop by to see my new novels, news about my writing, and the writing of other selected authors, often with book giveaways.

H L Wegley

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Pure Genius Series #4, Triple Threat, Releases November 14

Don't miss the giveaways on release day, November 14

In Triple Threat, a high-action, romantic suspense story, an all-grown-up Katie Brandt, now 20, closes out the Pure Genius Series by using her doctoral research to ferret out participants in a planned, 3-pronged terror attack on the US, an attack that dwarfs 9-11. Katie, who has been engaging terrorists on their cyber turf, earns the name Crazy Kate, by proposing that 23-year-old, doctoral candidate Joshua West help her engage the conspirators on real turf in order to gain incriminating evidence.
Katie Brandt & Joshua West
Katie, armed with a 180 IQ, a slender, 5' 9" athletic body, and her great-granddad's Karate, makes a formidable opponent, one who already has 2 notches on her gun. When Josh joins her, the story erupts in a war of deadly weapons and wits. But Katie and Josh must also fight each other in a war of words spawned by their opposing worldviews, a war Katie must win before she can pursue a relationship with Josh. Whenever she mentions her faith, an argument breaks out. Over the course of the book, Josh forces Katie to answer nearly every major objection to her faith. Let's have a bit of fun. In the excerpt below, Josh takes exception to Katie calling British Columbia's beautiful Howe Sound part of "creation." Katie's approach to Josh's challenge is brilliant in that she goes for the heart of the underlying issue, the nature of truth.

Katie Brandt on Truth:
By the time they rounded the turn above Horseshoe Bay, the morning sun had topped the mountains and lit the water in Howe Sound. The view from the road, high on the side of the mountain, took her breath away.
Katie swept her hand across the panorama in front of them. “Look at this view. The Northwest is one of the most beautiful places in all of creation.”
“Yeah. It’s beautiful, but creation? You sure about that, Kate?”
Though this might send their honeymoon south, she had to respond to his remark. “We all subscribe to some worldview. Which one do you follow?”
“Well, I don’t follow my parents’ philosophy.”
“Following your parents isn’t always a bad thing.”
“If they’re like mine it is. Pure materialists. Not in the philosophical sense. They’re just…consumers. Buying toys and luxuries until…”
“Yes. Until…”
“So you follow Jesus and God because your parents want you to?”
Katie looked into Josh’s eyes. “I chose to follow Jesus because that’s where I found the truth.”
“The truth? You’re too bright to fall for a bunch of legends and myths, Kate. Doesn’t it bother you? Leave you with a mountain of doubts? The truth is, at best, empirically derived from scientific evidence, and at worst, it’s—”
“First, let’s get something straight. My faith isn’t blind. It’s rooted in evidence. There’s ample evidence to provide intellectually satisfying answers to any question you can ask, even the existential questions, the cries of the human heart.” Katie paused as she realized the implication of her words. “The only surprising thing to me is that truth isn’t found in a set of logical propositions, or a philosophy, or by using science, which happens to be based upon the same thing as philosophy, metaphysical presuppositions. And truth isn’t found in any religion.”
“What? You don’t even think your religion has the truth…or at least part of it?”
“Truth, Josh, is found in a person, Jesus. He’s not a religion. I’m related to Him as His spiritual child, His follower, and His friend. He said He was the truth and every other thing He said rings true. Check Him out. Test Him. But remember, with Jesus you get a relationship with a real person, not a religion.”
“Maybe that’s just your truth. If it works for you, that’s great.”
“Truth doesn’t work that way. It’s absolute. True for all people, in all places, at all times. Try telling yourself that all truth is relative, Josh. See where that takes you.”
“All truth is relative. That’s…uh, self-contradictory.” A deep frown grew on his brow.
“See what I mean?” She nodded her head at him. “The nature of truth is fairly simple to discover if you just make the attempt.”
“I think we need to change the subject. For the sake of the honeymoon.”
You mean for the sake of Joshua West.
After her diatribe on truth, Josh went silent for nearly an hour. The snowcapped mountain on the right was Whistler peak. The village was only three or four miles ahead.
They had to function as a team and play the role of honeymooners. Josh needed to start talking to her or they should call off the honeymoon and drive home.
“Josh?” She spoke softly.
“I’m sorry, Kate. I…I wasn’t avoiding you. Just…thinking.”
“In Whistler you’ll probably have to hold my hand. Maybe even put your arms around me. You won’t be very convincing if you’re mad at me.”
Josh’s huge right hand closed around her left hand. “I’m not mad at you. See?”
“So…you’re ready to do this?”
He nodded.
“What time is it?”
“Don’t you have a watch, Kate?”
“Yes. But someone captured my watch hand and won’t give it back to me.”
“Yeah. Someone did. Maybe someone wants to keep it. I’ll look at your watch for you.” He lifted her hand. “It’s 8:20.”
“8:20! That’s thirty-five minutes faster than the computer said it would take. You’ve got a lead foot, Joshua West.”
“And you’ve got a nice hand, Kate Brandt.”
“We’re supposed to be pretending.”
“Thought I was doing a pretty good job of that.”
“But you’re not pretending.”
“I was doing such a good job I even fooled you.”

“Yeah, sure.” Their intense discussion was behind them. But the subject would come up again. She would see that it did. “There’s the entrance to the village. Time to get serious. The person here is dangerous. We can’t afford mistakes.” She opened her map of Whistler.

Triple Threat is available in softcover and most eBook formats. The Kindle version is on sale for $2.99 at Amazon from now to release day, November 14.

An adventure that spans the Pacific Northwest from the shores of the Olympic Peninsula to the mountains of Whistler BC. Stay tuned for more photos of the Whistler setting for Triple Threat.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Release Day Giveaway, Moon over Maalaea Bay, Plus a Maui Slideshow

Moon over Maalaea Bay, my Maui thriller with romance, officially released Friday, June 13, under a full moon. Good thing I'm not superstitious.
The book has drawn a lot of interest and gotten a lot of early, 5-star reviews. I am giving away a signed copy of the printed version. To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment on the blog, including an email address so I can contact the winner. The winner will be announced on Wednesday, June 18.
In the weeks leading up to this release, I've posted several hi-res photos that I've taken in Maui over the past several years. These drew so many comments that I assembled a Maui slide show, featuring the beauty of this island paradise and some locations from the setting of the book. I think you'll enjoy it, especially if you watch it in full screen mode and listen through good speakers, or earphones/buds. You'll see some spectacular shots of my favorite place in all creation -- well, so far it's my favorite. Watch and enjoy:

Maui Slide Show

Be sure to watch in full-screen mode!

Please let me know what you think about the slides how. Leave a comment. If enough people enjoy it, maybe we'll continue with some more pictures that are "dying on the vine' on my hard drive.

Moon over Maalaea Bay

Moon over Maalaea Bay is Book 3 in the Pure Genius Series
Here's the blurb for the story:
In an instant the Maui honeymoon of Lee's dreams morphs to a nightmare when Jennifer disappears on their wedding night. Were the abductors the trafficking ring Jennifer crippled or does an even a more sinister organization want her for other purposes.
With the clock ticking toward Jennifer's impending sale, Lee, accompanied by their fifteen-year-old foster daughter, Katie, and Jennifer's grandfather, begins his own search of the island. As the search by Lee and the authorities intensifies, he fears beautiful Katie might end up in the crosshairs of the traffickers.
Can Lee save both his bride and his future daughter? What if he has to make a choice? If Jennifer is sold, could she kill herself to avoid a life filled with degradation and horror? If she did, would God forgive her?

Read the 1st chapter:
In light of recent events, she should be dead. Jennifer Akihara should no longer exist.

And now she doesn’t.

The thought brought a smile to her lips.

Nearly nine hours ago, in another world three thousand miles away, Jennifer Akihara became Mrs. Lee Brandt. “Jennifer Brandt,” she whispered. It sounded right. It was right. And the dangers that nearly prevented her from taking Lee’s name were gone, either locked away in a federal prison or dead.

Spending her wedding night with Lee in a tropical paradise would be the perfect start to their life as man and wife. But the perfect start had been delayed.

In the fading twilight, under a purple sky, Jennifer glanced up at Lee’s brilliant, blue eyes as he walked beside her in his cargo shorts and muscle shirt, looking—she hated cliches, but there was simply no other word for him—hot. Tonight, on this island, extremely hot. And the warm, humid trade winds, which caressed her skin and ruffled Lee’s hair, cooled nothing.

Lee seemed unusually quiet. Maybe he was disappointed about their room not being ready.

She moved close to him, gently brushing against his side with each step as they strolled through the menagerie of colorful Kihei shops. The fragrance of pineapple, mango, and coconut mingled with those cloves and cinnamon near the kiosks selling soaps, candles, and lotions.

She looked up at him, wondering what was on his mind. It was time to probe. “If someone hadn’t broken into our room just before we arrived, right now we would be—”

“We’d be watching the moon over Maalaea Bay out that big window. I know.”

“If someone hadn’t insisted on that room, maybe we could’ve gotten another room, and we could be—”

“I know, sweetheart. But when you see the sunset from our room tomorrow evening, you’ll understand. That room is special. We can eat dinner here at the shops, and by 7:30 our room door will be fixed and the electronics that were stolen will all be replaced, just like the manager promised. And…we get a free night for our inconvenience.”

“Inconvenience? That’s hardly the word for what I feel.” She met his gaze with love and longing in her eyes.

Thoughts of being alone with him filled her mind. She touched her face. Like Lee, it was hot.

He smiled at her. ”You should see your cheeks, Jenn.”

Her hand jerked back to her face.

“Didn’t you overdo the blush a little?” He looked down at her and grinned.

His grin told her he was back from wherever his mind had wondered, and he knew exactly what she was thinking. Lee was an expert at reading her mind, and he loved to tease her, especially when the teasing turned her permanently tan cheeks a rosy red.

“In this climate a woman doesn’t need makeup to—” Her cell phone filled the tropical night with the spirited sounds of “The Texas Aggie War Hymn.”

“Lee!” She stared into his laughing eyes, vacillating between jabbing him in the ribs and kissing his smiling lips. “I can’t believe you talked me into loading that ring tone on my phone.”

“Too bad I only get to hear it when the caller ID’s blocked. Bet it’s Peterson. Calls from his FBI phone are always blocked. Aren’t you going to answer it?”

“Only this call. Then I’m turning this insidious little device, with your alma mater’s fight song on it, off.” She stopped, flipped her cell open, and raised it to her ear. “This is Jennifer Aki—I mean Jennifer Brandt…No, we’re fine. Don’t concern yourself, and please stop calling.” Her voice rose, but the heat of her anger quickly dropped in temperature to an icy chill.

She snapped the phone shut and stood staring across the shops into the dark parking lot beyond. Who was he? Was she being stalked again? No. It couldn’t—

“What was that about? We’re on our honeymoon. It’s our wedding night. Peterson wouldn’t actually—”

“It wasn’t Peterson.” She shivered. The warm, Maui evening had grown cold. The trade winds became an arctic blast. She put her arms around Lee and pressed her cheek into his chest. The two phone calls and the incident with the room were upsetting. “It was the same man who called while we were at SeaTac. Still asking questions. Still claiming to be Peterson’s assistant, but—”

“But Peterson hasn’t had an assistant since Bastian washed out of the bureau.”

She looked up at him.

He studied her face, and his winning smile returned. “Don’t let it upset you, sweetheart. You’re still a celebrity in Seattle, especially after rescuing Katie and the other girls from the traffickers. The media can’t get enough of you. They’re probably trying to spy on you during our honeymoon. You’ve got paparazzi problems.” He scanned her slowly, systematically. “I can’t say that I blame them, especially when you hit the beach in your swimsuit tomorrow.” He slipped his arms around her. “We’ll keep a low profile on the island. I won’t let them bother us.”

After hearing his voice, his reassuring words, and now feeling his arms around her, Jennifer’s chill warmed to a more comfortable temperature. “You’re probably right.” She pressed the power button on her cell. It played its farewell tune as she dropped it into her shorts pocket. “Well, they can’t call anymore.” She sighed and clasped her hands behind Lee’s neck, letting the love in his eyes pull her to a place she wanted to remain forever. “Now where were we?”

He pulled her close.

She didn’t resist. There was no reason to resist. Not now. Not ever again. As she had vowed a few hours ago, from this day forward she was his completely. When their lips met, the night grew warm again. But Lee’s kiss was several degrees hotter than warm, promising much, much more.

“Where we were, was on our way to dinner. Then back to our room.”

“What time is it?”

“It’s almost 7:00.”

She cupped his cheek with her hand. “I’ve got a proposition for you, Mr. Brandt. Our room is almost ready, so let’s skip dinner, get a couple of iced lattes, and drink them on the way back to our room. We only stood on the balcony for a few minutes, but I know that right now, waves are splashing just underneath the bedroom window. Look.” She pointed into the western sky. “The moon’s nearly full over Maalaea Bay. It’ll be shining in through the big window and—”

He pressed a finger against her lips. “Shhh. It’s a deal. You can be very persuasive when you want to be. Maybe you should’ve gone to law school instead of taking the research position with NSA.” He gave her his coy smile. “Then again, making a proposal like that in a courtroom could get you disbarred.”

She sought a witty reply, but her eyes caught a familiar image shining golden yellow inside the glass counter behind Lee. “Look. Gold whales tails. I lost mine the night of my master’s ceremony.” She refocused her gaze on Lee’s eyes. “You could really ingratiate yourself with your bride by replacing it for her on her wedding night.”

He rested his strong hands on her bare shoulders. At his touch, the night grew even warmer.

She stepped closer, pressing her cheek into his chest and listening to the rhythm of his heartbeat, her soul’s favorite music.

“How grateful would Mrs. Brandt be?” He kissed her forehead.

She looked up and met his gaze. “More grateful than she’s ever been. But first you need to walk to the espresso stand by the street and buy her an iced latte while she picks out a necklace.”

“OK. Find your necklace.” Lee’s index finger traced a circle around her neck, then traced a path up to her chin, continuing until it touched the tip of her nose. “I’ll be right back with our coffee.” He strode away towards the espresso stand.

Jennifer’s gaze returned to the jewelry counter where she searched for a whale-tail necklace like the one she had lost more than a year ago. Her search was soon forgotten when she became lost in anticipation of their time alone together and warm thoughts of her love for the man who had saved her life so many times in so many ways—the man who had introduced her to the one true God Who had saved her soul for eternity.


Lee walked down a long aisle between shops. Nearly halfway to the street, he stopped and turned to look at Jennifer.

Her hands rested lightly on the glass counter and her brown, almond-shaped eyes roved over the array of jewelry behind the glass. The trade winds blew gently through the shopping area animating the gentle waves in her dark hair, while the permanent tan from her Japanese-Hawaiian heritage created a stunning contrast to her white shorts and red tank top.

In his thirty years on the planet, Lee had never seen anyone as beautiful as Jennifer, a beauty that went deep, all the way to her heart.

Nine months ago he had given up searching for someone to spend his life with. He’d given up on his job. He had just given up, a man simply going through the motions of living. Then God used his mentor Howie and a terrorist conspiracy to bring them together. When God did things, He did them right.

Was it a match made in heaven? Yes. But due to the terrorists, it had started out in…well, the other place. Since that day, his life hadn’t been the same. How could it be? He had fallen in love with a twenty-six-year-old Miss Universe who had an IQ rivaling Einstein’s?

You fool. It’s your wedding night. Stop gawking at her from forty feet away. Get the coffee, buy the necklace, and take her home. The moon isn’t going to hang over Maalaea Bay forever.

He took one more longing look, mustered the strength to pull his gaze away from Jennifer’s shapely form, and hurried towards the espresso stand.

Unlike the nearly deserted back row of shops where Jennifer waited for him, the sidewalk along South Kihei Road was filled with tourists enjoying the warm evening. The aroma of freshly ground Kona coffee could almost create a caffeine buzz simply by inhaling it.

Lee ordered two iced lattes. While he waited, he looked westward, above the gently swaying palm trees lining the beach. The moon was full, a bright silver disk in the western sky. Unlike the light pollution of Seattle, the lights of Kihei did little to dim the twinkling stars sprinkled generously across a field of dark-purple.

By the time the barista handed him the two icy drinks, he felt an ache deep inside. Lee smiled, realizing he already missed Jennifer. This was the longest time they’d been apart since they left for SeaTac Airport after their wedding ceremony. What would it be like if they ever had to endure a long separation?

He hurried down the aisle between the shops towards the back row where Jennifer hopefully had found her necklace.

Lee didn’t see her as he approached the jewelry shop. She must have moved to the opposite counter.

A brightly clad Hawaiian lady now stood behind the counter, straightening her wares on the shelf above.

Good. They could purchase the necklace and then—he stopped. Jennifer wasn’t at the opposite counter. Apprehension began incubating in his heart. He stepped to the display counter and tried to shut off the incubator. “Excuse me, ma’am. Did my wife find a necklace here?”

“Your wife? Since I returned from my break I haven’t seen anyone.” She shrugged and shook her head.
His apprehension now transcended incubation. “She was just here. About five foot two, long, dark hair, very beautiful.”

The lady gave a frown. “No, I haven’t seen—”

A commotion three shops away interrupted their conversation. A wide-eyed woman scurried towards the street, clutching her cell phone.

When he didn’t see Jennifer there, he turned his attention back to the shopkeeper. “If she returns, tell her to wait for me. I’ll be back in a minute.”

“Check the ladies’ room. When women disappear, nine times out of ten that’s where they are.”

“Thanks. I’ll keep that in mind.” He turned to search another row of shops, realizing his heart had shifted into a higher gear.

Lee wove back and forth through several adjacent rows, then looked down several perpendicular rows of shops. A nagging worry again tried to intrude. He squelched it.

He would check the ladies’ room next. Until I’ve done that, I’m not going to worry.

He noticed a sign directing shoppers to the restrooms. He followed it.

A middle-aged lady with a pleasant smile approached.

He pulled out his wallet. “Excuse me, ma’am.”


“I seem to have misplaced my wife. While you’re inside, would you mind checking to see if she’s there? Her name is Jennifer.” He slipped their engagement picture from his wallet and held it out for her to see. “Here’s her picture.”

The woman’s eyes immediately focused on his ring, then her gaze went to the picture. A wise woman. “Sure, I’ll see if—my, she’s a real beauty. I’ll let you know when I leave, or I’ll send Jennifer out to you.”

“Thanks, ma’am.”

As the lady entered the building, the wail of a distant siren grew louder. It was joined by several other sirens. The knot forming in his stomach tightened. When the sirens converged on the side of the shops bordering South Kihei Road, he felt a strong urge to run towards the flashing red and blue lights. But he needed to wait for the lady. He might be worried about nothing.

What’s taking her so long?

The door opened, and the lady walked towards him, now frowning. “Your wife isn’t in there, and no one inside remembers seeing her.”

“Ma’am, are you absolutely sure?”

“Yes. I’m sorry, but she’s not there.”


A sinking sensation sent his stomach into a nauseating freefall. His rising panic drummed in his chest. Lee whirled towards the flashing lights along the street and trotted in that direction.

Three police cars had parked hurriedly in disarray near the curb. A small crowd of people gathered near them. The buzz of their conversation was too far away to understand any of it.

While Lee jogged towards the street, he passed an open-air sports bar, where a large, flat-screen TV flashed a bright red message. People crowded around it, excitement mixed with concern on their faces.

Lee stopped when he saw the two large words, “Amber Alert.” Another message scrolled across the screen. He maneuvered between two taller men to read it. “Teenage girl abducted from Kihei shops at 7:00 PM. Description Asian, five foot one to five foot three, sixteen or seventeen years old, last seen wearing a red tank top and white shorts.”

It was Jennifer’s description on the screen. Being petite, she could have easily been mistaken for a younger person. He glanced at his watch. 7:15 PM. She had disappeared at 7:00 PM. With his heart pounding out the tempo of terror, Lee sprinted towards the ominous lights of the police cars.

Author web (being rebuilt) – here is the interim web site:
Pelican Book Group: H. L. Wegley books
Facebook author page:

Please leave a comment along with a contact e-mail address if you wish to enter the giveaway. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Moon over Maalaea Bay, Maui Thriller, 1st Editorial Review, 5 Stars

With the release of my Maui romantic thriller approaching, June 13, reviews are just starting to come in. Here is the first editorial review, rating the story 5 Stars:

Reviewed By Mamta Madhavan for Readers’ Favorite

Lee Brandt sees his dreams crashing and turning into a nightmare on his wedding night in Maui in Moon over Maalaea Bay by H.L. Wegley. Jennifer Akihara is kidnapped on her wedding night in Maui by an international trafficking group and they have plans to take revenge on her by selling her into slavery. Jennifer had earlier stopped their trafficking plans which makes them want to ruin her by using her for other purposes. Lee, along with his foster daughter Katie and Jennifer's father, begins the search for Jennifer with the help of the Maui police and the federal government. The twist happens when Katie is also taken by the traffickers. Will Lee succeed in saving both Jennifer and Katie? Will Jennifer be able to survive if she is sold?

This is a compelling story of mystery and suspense and relationships that will keep readers riveted. Shifting the focus from the sweet romance of Lee and Jennifer and then switching over to the nightmare of Jennifer being kidnapped has been done effortlessly by the author without it sounding forced. The action and drama in the theme with its innumerable twists and turns help in keeping up the pace of the story. All the characters are well defined and Maui as the backdrop of the story gives it an exotic vibe. The interrogation scenes in the story add the much needed punch to the plot and the romance and suspense make it a bittersweet read. I found the story compelling. There are a lot of things happening simultaneously which the author has woven together well.

In an instant the Maui honeymoon of Lee's dreams morphs to a nightmare when Jennifer disappears on their wedding night. Were the abductors the trafficking ring Jennifer crippled or does an even a more sinister organization want her for other purposes.
With the clock ticking toward Jennifer's impending sale, Lee, accompanied by their fifteen-year-old foster daughter, Katie, and Jennifer's grandfather, begins his own search of the island. As the search by Lee and the authorities intensifies, he fears beautiful Katie might end up in the crosshairs of the traffickers.
Can Lee save both his bride and his future daughter? What if he has to make a choice? If Jennifer is sold, could she kill herself to avoid a life filled with degradation and horror? If she did, would God forgive her?

Releasing June 13, 2014 from Harbourlight Books, Pelican Book Group 

Friday, April 4, 2014

The Weather Scribe Interviews Cynthia Hickey, Introducing Her New Release, An Unconventional Lady

Introducing author Cynthia Hickey

Multi-published and Best-Selling author Cynthia Hickey had three cozy mysteries and two novellas published through Barbour Publishing. Her first mystery, Fudge-Laced Felonies, won first place in the inspirational category of the Great Expectations contest in 2007. Her third cozy, Chocolate-Covered Crime, received a four-star review from Romantic Times. All three cozies have been re-released as ebooks through the MacGregor Literary Agency, along with a new cozy series, all of which stay in the top 50 of Amazon’s ebooks for their genre. She has several historical romances releasing in 2013 and 2014 through Harlequin’s Heartsong Presents. She is active on FB, twitter, and Goodreads. She lives in Arizona with her husband, one of their seven children, two dogs and two cats. She has five grandchildren who keep her busy and tell everyone they know that “Nana is a writer”. 


Cynthia, when did you discover your love for the written word?
My mother said that, not having a Kindergarten close enough for me to attend as a child, that she taught me to read. I took to it easily and have always read above my level. Once I discovered the many worlds between the pages of a book, I was hooked.

You've published more than 40 novels. When did you begin your writing career?
I’ve made up stories for as long as I can remember, but it isn’t until a few years ago that I actually began to take the writing process seriously. My first novel, Fudge-Laced Felonies, was released through Barbour in 2007.

Tell us something that people may not know about you?
I’ve been on television twice. Once on the backdrop of a weather report filmed on Petit Jean Mountain in Arkansas and another time when a documentary was being filmed at the Pickle Plant where I worked.

Do you have a secret desire that may not ever come true?
I’ve always thought it would be a blast to be in a movie. Not a walk on character, but an actual main character. An insane person would be fun.

Do you have a favorite book?
The one book I own that has stood the test of time is Gone With the Wind and Little Women. I still love them.

How about a favorite author?
I’d have to say that in today’s market, I love Diana Gabaldon. Her Outlander characters are so rich, I feel as if I know them.

Do you have a favorite among the books that you’ve written?
No, I can’t say that I do. I guess Fudge would be it if I had to pick, it being my first and all.

Any suggestions for pre-pubbed authors?
Never, ever, give up. If you’re meant to be an author, you need to write as much as you need to breathe

New Release

An Unconventional Lady released April 1 from Heartsong Presents:


But her strict mother keeps her close to home, working as a Harvey Girl waitress. Until Dallas Baker shows up in town and takes the job Annie really wants—leading tours through the Grand Canyon. Annie's frustrated, but finds it impossible to ignore the handsome outdoorsman.

With her split skirts and modern hairdo, Annie challenges Dallas's old-fashioned notions of what makes a lady. To his surprise, he finds her delightful, until he learns she has no interest in settling down. Dallas is ready to win her heart, but is Annie willing to fall in love?

Read an Excerpt here:
Annie Rollins adjusted her new skirt and smiled at her reflection. How liberating! After making sure her hair stayed secure in its new style, back-combed so it stood inches higher than normal, she felt like a modern woman, even stuck in the backwoods of northern Arizona. With one final glance and pat at her pompadour, Annie sashayed from the room.

"What are you wearing?" Her mother's reaction did not disappoint.

"It's a split skirt, Mother." Annie twirled. "Do you like it? It offers so much freedom of movement."

Her mother planted her fists on her thin hips. "I do not, and what did you do to your hair? It's sky-high. Heaven have mercy."

"It's called a transformation. It's the newest style." Annie brushed past her and glided down the stairs. She might as well get the day started, and one of her jobs was to register guests at the B and B's front desk. 

Her mother's heels tapped behind her. "Why do you feel the need to be highfalutin way out here?"

"There's nothing wrong with being modern. We're in the twentieth century." Lord, give me strength. Mother complained more often than not, ever since Papa's death two years ago. It was time to start living again.

"You look ridiculous and out of place in Williams." Mother unlocked the cabinet where she kept the registry book. She lifted the leather volume and plopped it on the counter. "People will laugh."

"Let them." Annie let the cover fall open and ran her finger down the page. "Only two guests registered?" 

"Hopefully, there will be more. These two reservations came in by telegram."

Annie leaned her elbows on the counter. "I have an idea."

Her mother rolled her eyes. "Not another one. You and your harebrained schemes."

"We need to entice people to stay here. Offer them extra services." Annie raised her eyebrows, choosing to ignore her mother's attitude. "Have you thought any about my suggestion of offering guided tours of the canyon? I mentioned the idea to you weeks ago. I could be the guide. You know I would love it." 

"Absolutely not." Mother shook her head. "That is definitely not a ladylike occupation."

"Sometimes I don't want to act like a lady." Annie lifted her chin. "Ladies don't have a lot of fun."

Mother's hand fluttered to her chest. "What am I going to do with you?"

"Let me be who I am." Annie sighed. Maybe a change of subject was in order. "The new restaurant opens today. Should we eat dinner there?"

"What's wrong with my food?"

"Nothing. It was only a suggestion." It seemed Annie couldn't get anything right in her mother's eyes. Maybe she shouldn't try. Mother hadn't been happy when they'd moved from Boston to northern Arizona, but since Papa's death she seemed to want everyone around her to feel unhappy, too. "No more suggestions."

Mother took a deep breath. "Starting tomorrow, I will be running the boardinghouse alone."

Annie fixed a stare on her. "What do you mean?" Please say she wasn't being sent to a school for ladies. That would be a fate worse than death.

Mother pulled a sheet of paper from her apron pocket. "Tomorrow morning you will report to the El Tovar. I got you a job as a Harvey Girl."

"What? Why? What about helping you?" It wasn't as bad as boarding school, but almost. "What about the women's ministry at church?" What about interviewing for the job herself? "You have Sundays off."

Mother slapped the application on the counter. "They've also agreed to allow you to sleep here rather than in the girls' dormitory. I promised them you were a comely girl with high moral standards and that I was more than sufficient as a chaperone during your off hours."

No doubt there. "So you aren't even going to consider my idea of guided tours?" Annie's shoulders slumped. Why couldn't Mother commend her, just once, for having a creative mind?

"I didn't say I wouldn't consider it, but that is a man's job." Mother wiped her hands on her apron. "Time for work." She turned and unlocked the front door. Business as usual.

Annie blinked against the tears stinging her eyes. Nineteen years old, and she still wasn't in control of her own life. Didn't God give His children the desires of their hearts? Hers was to work outside in His creation, not in a stuffy restaurant. "I need some air." Annie bolted from behind the counter and dashed outside.

"Annette Rollins." Her mother's screech followed. "Ladies do not run!" Annie pinched the bridge of her nose between her forefinger and thumb, and then lifted her gaze to the new restaurant. Her prison. The two-story El Tovar Hotel, built from local limestone and pine, overshadowed the dwellings around it. It was only a matter of time before the Rollins Boardinghouse would be out of business in favor of something grander. That was the main reason Annie presented new ideas to her mother for drawing in business. She didn't want to see her mother thrust out of her livelihood. If only she would listen!

Annie turned and surveyed the rim of the Grand Canyon, barely visible behind the hotel. Her heart yearned to explore the canyon floor, but even she knew it wasn't wise to go alone. Taking a group with her seemed the most sensible way.

She headed toward her favorite view. One of God's wonders for sure, and the real draw to the town of Williams, regardless of what the railroad people said. It might be the trains that brought the crowds, but it was the canyon that made them return. Annie stopped at the edge and flung her arms wide, taking in the azure sky and the pinks and mauves of the plunging canyon walls. The Colorado River wound like a ribbon along the floor far below. A bald eagle soared under her, bobbing and dancing on the wind's current. What would that feel like-the freedom to soar?

Although the boardinghouse demanded plenty of hard work, it was home. It was all Annie knew. Now, she was being thrust into strange surroundings. Though her mother hadn't spelled it out, Annie was sure this new job was supposed to teach her feminine ways. She'd seen the waitresses flitting around town and going in and out of the hotel in their black-and-white uniforms. They looked fetching, but such a life wasn't for Annie. She wanted so much more.

Letting the tears fall, she lifted her desire to heaven. God would take care of the details. If she could step back and let Him.

Dallas Baker slung his saddlebags from the back of his horse to his shoulder, handed the reins to an older man waiting to take them, and then climbed the stairs to Rollins Boardinghouse. The newspaper advertisement in Dallas, Texas, his hometown and namesake, had come as the answer to a prayer. He didn't hate the rancher's way of life, but wanted something different. Somewhere he didn't have to work under his two older brothers. Love them he did, but not as bosses.

Stamping the mud from his boots, he pushed open the front door and stepped inside. The entryway made a person feel at home, with its hand-braided rugs and polished counter. His footsteps thudded on a scarred but polished wood floor, announcing his arrival. Why some folks preferred fancy hotels over a place that felt like home was beyond him.

An attractive middle-aged woman entered from a room on his right. "Welcome. I am the owner, Mrs. Rollins. Do you have a reservation?"

"No. I'm Dallas Baker, ma'am, your trail guide." He grinned.

"Our what?" A high-pitched voice of protest sounded behind him. Dallas turned to see the prettiest gal he'd seen in a long time. Blond hair high on her head, flashing green eyes and wearing a brown…what?

"I'm the new canyon guide for the Rollins Boardinghouse," he told her.

Miss Attitude marched past him and stood in front of the proprietor. "Mother, how could you? This is my dream." She pounded one fist on her chest. "Mine. And you went behind my back-"

"I'll just step into the parlor."

Neither woman glanced his way as he ducked out of sight. Nothing made Dallas skedaddle faster than an upset woman, and he'd managed to step between two of them. And what was the younger one wearing? It looked like a skirt, but was split like pants and was wide. Real wide. His mother would never be caught dead in that getup, and she was active on the ranch. He set his bags on the floor and tried not to listen to the argument in the next room, wanting to be anywhere but where he was at the moment. Maybe he should go back outside. But that would take him past them again.

He sighed and lowered himself onto a flowered sofa. "You took my idea and went behind my back and hired a man." The younger woman's voice rose. "Have you absolutely no confidence in my abilities?" 

"Annette, I will not be spoken to in this way. It's a fine idea, but not one suited for a woman. You need to learn your place in the world."

Dallas nodded. A true sentiment, indeed.

"And my place is dressed as a fancy crow at El Tovar?"

"If that's what it takes to teach you how to be a lady, then yes." Mrs. Rollins's words were clipped and cold.

Dallas had run across a few Harvey Girls on his travels. The term crow did not suit the women at all. They were refined and mannerly, making a man's travels easier with their femininity and smiles. But then he'd been told by more than a few women that he possessed backward ideas about a woman's role in today...

Do you have questions for Cynthia, an author who has published numerous titles ranging from cozy mysteries to historical romances?


Visit her website at
Her Amazon Author Page
Or social media sites:

Monday, March 17, 2014

Early Reviews for On the Pineapple Express Are Not Disappointing

 Pelican Book GroupWhat are readers saying about Book 2 in the Pure Genius Series, On the Pineapple Express?

"Fast-paced, exciting, scary, violent when necessary, and always Christian, this is a great book with twin messages, of faith and fact, for teens and adults of all ages."

"H.L. Wegley has woven together an action filled story with purpose. I really appreciate how he calls attention to the awful reality of human trafficking and the need to take action."

"Non-stop action and tension keep you turning the pages in a fast-paced race against disaster. The close point of view puts you in their (main characters’) heads and lets you feel the tension."

"'God’s better than bullets,' says one of the characters in H. L. Wegley’s Christian suspense novel, On the Pineapple Express. But this is no tale of simple thrills and deus ex machina. The God of this novel is very real. The primary characters are believable, authentic Christians, with real problems and concerns."

"The author combines real issues and real faith into pure, thrilling fiction with expert ease. The novel never feels preachy. The situations never feel contrived. And the characters never feel false, even when contemplating the beginnings of new faith."

Book Info, Reviews, Author & Character Interviews:
Book Trailer
Heroine interview, Jennifer Akihara 
H. L. Wegley Q&A About the Book
Author Interview with H. L. Wegley

Buy the Book:
Pelican Book Group: On the Pineapple Express
Amazon:  On the Pineapple Express

Friday, February 28, 2014

Release Day Enter Book Giveaways, Author & Character Interviews & More

Finally, February 28, 2014 has arrived and On the Pineapple Express, an inspirational thriller written 3 1/2 years ago, is fully released in all formats, digital and printed. Want to win a free, signed copy? There are several  giveaways running today through March 3. See the links below.

On release day only, the publisher, Pelican Book Group, is offering the ebook at $3, half price. Click here and scroll down to see the offer.

There are interviews with the author, the heroine, further information about, and excerpts from, the book in the smorgasboard of links listed below. 

Leave a comment on this blog and you'll also be entered into a giveaway of e-books for both books 1&2 in
the Pure Genius Series

Hide and Seek and On the Pineapple Express.

Win a free copy of On the Pineapple Express at any one of these 4 blogs hosting giveaways:
Barn Door Book Loft
Inner Source (Fay Lamb)
Kimberly's Musings
The Weather Scribe - leave a comment at the bottom of this post by March 3 and a contact email address (in case you win)

Book Info, Reviews, Author & Character Interviews:
Book Trailer
Early Amazon Book Reviews
Heroine interview, Jennifer Akihara
H. L. Wegley Q&A About the Book
Author Interview with H. L. Wegley
Devotional (based on the Story) about Faith Fear & Foolishness

Buy the Book:

Pelican Book Group: On the Pineapple Express (ebooks ½ price on release day)
Amazon: On the Pineapple Express

Stay tuned for more books in this series. Book 3, Moon over Maalaea Bay, a thriller with some romance, set entirely in Maui, releases June 13. Book 4, Triple Threat, also a thriller with romance, should release late fall of 2014.