We always had horses when I was a child growing up on a farm. My father bred horses for polo and purchased a thoroughbred stallion for this purpose. The horse’s official name was Grey Cavalier and as the name suggests, he was a blue/grey. My father used to take us to the thoroughbred yearling sales, and we’d sit there quiet as anything, frightened to move in case we purchased a horse during the auction by mistake.
The breeding and pedigrees of the thoroughbreds fascinated me, and I used to study the sale catalogues and the family trees of each yearling. All thoroughbreds originate from three stallions, which were brought into England and bred with larger British mares. The stallions were the Byerly Turk, the Godolphin Arabian and the Darley Barb, and all thoroughbred horses have one of these three stallions in their pedigree.
Later on, when I started going out with my husband, he and his father were part owners of a race horse called Paul’s Gold. As a result I attended the races quite often and cheered on Paul’s Gold. She won lots of races and was eventually sold as a broodmare.
Fast forward a few years—well, quite a few, actually—and I was in the planning stages of a sci-fi/paranormal romance. I wanted an Earth heroine and an alien hero, but I struggled to find a way for them to meet. I didn’t want your basic kidnapping, so I needed to decide on a reason for the hero to capture and kidnap the heroine. Suddenly, inspiration struck. I decided to make my heroine a jockey and my hero in need of someone to train his hell-horse for a special race called the Dowry Derby.
Of course, my alien horses are very different from Earth horses, and Camryn, my heroine, has a big challenge in store for her if she wants to train a hell-horse ready for the race. The aliens have promised to return her home, but only if she helps them win the race.
Here’s the blurb for Captured & Seduced:
A shapeshifter and a wizard slugging it out, an alien world and a hell-horse…
Jockey Camryn O’Sullivan is an alcoholic on a downward spiral after the death of her husband. When aliens kidnap her, she’s both terrified and reluctantly fascinated by Ryman Coppersmith. She’s positive the weird attraction to her abductor is an anomaly. Something to ignore. She’ll train the aliens’ horse and they’ll return her home. Simple. There’s no need for sex or a stubborn male kitty-cat to replace the precious memories of her husband.
Murder. Betrayal. Banishment.
Feline shapeshifter Ry has experienced treachery of the worst kind. When his foster brother—the man who betrayed him—proposes a wager on a hell-horse race, the lure to clear his name is irresistible.
Camryn’s arrival triggers a jump in his already overactive sex drive. It’s a struggle to keep his hands off his beautiful captive. Something in his mysterious feline background compels him to chase her and the passion firing between them soars out of control. Ry doesn’t understand the mechanics of their attraction but knows he can’t afford to lose Camryn…despite his promise to return her home.
To learn more or read an excerpt visit the book page for Captured & Seduced.
Have you been to the races before? Did you want to have a pony when you were growing up? And did you read books about ponies? (I sure did!)
That book was so much fun to read. I never wanted a horse when I was little. I wanted mice and when I lived with my grandma she let me get a couple of mice. I’ve never been to the races either.
Thanks, Mary. We had the Melbourne Cup take place today – a big horse race down this end of the world. For the first time ever, a female jockey rode the winning horse, which was really neat.