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Most of the ladies attending the Harvard Annex hope to attain a quality education and advance the status of women–except Adela Mason. All she wants is marriage and a home of her own. After corresponding with Byron Calhoun, a Kansas farmer, for several months, she’s convinced he’s the man God has chosen for her. She accepts his invitation to visit the farm so he can “court her properly.”

Byron finds Adela as sweet and charming as her letters have indicated, but will she marry him when she finds out he’s in danger of losing the farm? Worse, how can he even convince sweet Adela to stay when his ex-fiance and mother are doing everything they can to run her off?

“I love reading about mail-order brides because that is how my mom and dad met. There is a great ending, but you must navigate problems to get there. Even my folks had a problem to solve before their marriage, so I could relate to the complexities of the mail order bride path to marriage. I wish more were written like this.”

“This is a wonderful story about love, jealousy, and caring deeply about someone. I could relate to the story. This story expresses how one feels when in love.”


While attending the Harvard Annex, Ramee Abbott gains acclaim as a dress designer and attracts the interest of a textile tycoon. She doesn’t recognize how despicable he is until he sells her designs as his own and gives her an ultimatum–marry him immediately or face social ruin. Trouble is, he knows too much about her. She has to leave town fast. After scanning the ads for mail-order brides, she chooses Josh Volker, a cowboy who’s purchased a ranch near Sacramento, California.

Although Josh has recently turned his life around and become a Christian, a bad reputation hounds him. No decent woman will marry him, and after years of drifting, he wants a wife to help him build his new ranch. He didn’t expect a prospective bride to show up so soon, certainly not one as pretty and talented as Ramee. Or as desperate. He suspects she has secrets of her own.

“Elaine Manders has crafted an enjoyable take of East meets West with plenty of obstacles to challenge the characters as they seek their happily ever after. This is a pleasant afternoon’s read for fans of horse operas and sweet romance.”

“Story was good even the second time around. I really enjoy the way that God is always a part of their life.”


Annex graduate, Prudie Walsh, has lost her home and family merchandising business. She answers a mail-order bride ad for one reason only–Erich Stafford’s dry-goods store.

Scarred by a cougar attack as a child, Erich has spent his entire adult life living as a hermit in the Wyoming mountains. After inheriting a dry-goods store in the nearby frontier town of Bent Fork, he leaves his mountain cabin and eagerly awaits his mail-order bride, a woman who will be the perfect helpmate in his new business. He soon realizes the beautiful, ambitious Prudie carries scars of her own. It will take a lot of patience and faith to turn their business arrangement into a real marriage.

“An interesting book with a good message of forgiveness also how to let love grow.”

“It is so great when you find an author that can keep you reading through a series and not leave you feeling like something is missing.”


Author Note: This series is about three women among the first female students admitted to Harvard College whose dreams are shattered for different reasons and travel west to become mail-order brides. This series serves as prequels to the long historical novel series, Intrigue Under Western Skies.