Title: Gone for a Soldier
Author: Marsha Ward
Rulon Owen loves two things more than life---his country and Mary Hilbrands.
When Virginia secedes from the Union, Rulon enlists, and finds himself
fighting foes both in battle and in his own camp. He struggles to stay
alive against all odds, with a knife-wielding tent-mate and a Union
army that seems impossible to defeat. It will take every ounce of
vigilance he has to survive and, with a little luck, he might make it
home to his wife and the son he's never seen.
Forced to live with her parents for the duration, Mary faces a battle
for independence. With a mother whispering that her husband won't come
home to her and a son who needs her to be both father and mother, Mary
has to dig deep for strength to overcome her overwhelming loneliness
and the unknown future ahead.
Separated by war and circumstance, Rulon and Mary discover that not
all enemies wear the Union blue.
Rulon awoke to the touch of a pinching hand over his mouth and the prick of a knife to his throat
under one ear.
"Get outta yore cot, sissy boy. We're packin' up to move outta here."
Rulon scarcely breathed. The knife's tip moved fractionally. Then it lifted a bit, but still made
contact with his skin as it traced a line across his neck toward his other ear. Lovell hadn't been
joking about the danger of this man.
"Von! Leave the man be!" Lovell's voice barked. "Put that hog-sticker away and prepare to strike
The man named Von growled an obscenity and removed the knife. "He's not our kind. Look at
that damned feather," he said, but backed away, left the tent, and made his noises outside.
"Whew!" Lovell expelled a gusty sigh. "I couldn't be sure he would obey me," he said,
approaching to eye Rulon's neck.
By this time, Rulon had arisen and was dressing in haste.
"He didn't leave you any permanent damage," his new friend observed. "The sooner we can put
him on a patrol against the Yankees, the sooner he'll be able to do what he loves best."
"What's that?" asked Rulon, dreading the answer as he struggled to recover his dignity.
MEET THE AUTHOR
Marsha Ward was born in the sleepy little town of Phoenix, Arizona, in the southwestern United States; and grew up with chickens, citrus trees, and lots of room to roam. She became a storyteller at an early age, regaling her neighborhood friends with her fanciful tales during after-school snacks. Her love of the 19th Century Western era was reinforced by visits to her cousins on their ranch, and listening to her father's stories of homesteading in Old Mexico and in the southern part of Arizona.
Over the years, Marsha became an award-winning poet, writer and editor, with over 900 pieces of published work, including her acclaimed novel series featuring the Owen family. She is the founder of American Night Writers Association, and a member of Western Writers of America and Women Writing the West. A workshop presenter and writing teacher, Marsha makes her home in a tiny forest hamlet in Arizona. When she is not writing, she loves to spoil her grandchildren, travel, give talks, meet readers, and sign books. Visit her at either her website or one of her blogs!