Stephanie Knight’s life wasn’t easy. Even brought up in Hyacinth, discipline had not been a part of her family growing up. After her mother’s death, she made many mistakes and after the worst, ended up almost homeless. Thanks to her best friend’s father, she had a safe place to live while she tried to get her life together. Fear of people’s reactions kept her away from Hyacinth, but when her best friends found her again, she could no longer deny her desire to truly live.Christopher Triton moved to town and turned her life upside down. With the support of her friends, Steph slowly got her self-esteem back. When Christopher declared his intention to court her, she couldn’t imagine anything more wonderful. But things were never smooth sailing for Stephanie. Thankfully, with a strong man at her side, she was able to weather the tough spots. His discipline allowed her to let go of all past guilt and grasp onto her positive future. His love helped her feel as though she could do anything. Which meant the world when her strange past came to call.
About the series “In Hyacinth” by Bree Cariad:
Hyacinth, Washington is all about old-fashioned values. In Hyacinth words like trust, honor, and kindness aren’t just buzzwords. Hyacinth is a community built on tradition and trust, where men are the head of the home and women are encouraged to follow their lead.
Each story in the series is of a young woman (18-20) and her struggle to figure out who she is in this little town while at the same time going through Hyacinth’s old-fashioned courting system. On their way to meet, get to know, and finally marry their princes, these heroines grow in ways they and their town never expected.
Stephanie couldn’t stop the smile that spread across her lips. Cami wanted her to design her wedding dress. While it terrified her, it was also exciting. She hadn’t done that in far too long. It was such a pleasure to think about that she lost herself in the daydream of it as she doodled on a spare napkin. Townsfolk came into the café and left and she barely noticed, so engrossed in the design taking shape on the thin piece of paper.
Picking up her coffee, Stephanie looked up into a pair of deep green eyes. Sitting at the table next to hers was a man with shaggy brown hair, a strong, square jaw, and a very nice smile. His smile spread as she kept looking at him and turning pink as she realized what she was doing, she looked back down at her coffee. Staring at a guy was childish and something she had no right to do anyway. It wasn’t like she had a happily ever after in her future. Sighing softly as her joy from spending time with Cami evaporated at the thought, she tried to go back to sketching on the napkin. It was something she had done all her life and as a seamstress it came in handy. Now that she had agreed to design and make Cami’s wedding dress, she would be doing it a lot.
“Excuse me.” Even without looking up, Stephanie knew it was the green-eyed man. Slowly she raised her head and once again looked into his eyes. “I don’t think I’ve seen you here before. But then I’ve only lived here for two months. Name’s Christopher Triton.”
She gulped on a suddenly dry mouth. There was a time when she would have flirted back shamelessly, but not anymore.
“Shy?” he said quietly. “That’s okay. I’m just beginning to know the ins and outs of Hyacinth. I’m sure my aunt and uncle can fill me in.” His tone was teasing but her throat closed up and panic struck her chest.
“Excuse me,” she gasped, grasping her stuff and running out of the café. Even once she was outside, she kept running, all the way to the bus stop, thrilled the bus got there just as she did. Once she made it to her seat, she curled up by the window, trying to get her breathing under control. It took the entire twenty-five minute ride for her heart to stop beating so quickly. The bus stopped just outside Hins Creek and the twenty-minute walk home helped her calm even more. It was just a guy trying to get to know her. What’s so bad about that? Any normal girl would have flirted a little and then left leaving him wanting more. She had run away like the scared rabbit she was.
“I need to get out more,” she whispered as she unlocked her door and walked inside, expecting the serenity it usually gave her. Instead, the room felt hollow, as though it was missing everything she had put behind her. Life, happiness, and love.
Going into the bathroom, she looked at herself in the mirror. Her hair was pulled up in a bun as she hadn’t really taken care of it in months and it was a pain. Pulling out the pins, it cascaded over her shoulders and down her back in limp strands. Pulling her blouse and jeans off, she looked at her body. Whereas she used to be tall and rather statuesque, she had lost weight and now appeared underfed. There was a time she had been pretty and guys had gone out of their way to get her to notice them. In truth, that was only fourteen months ago. As she looked into her light brown eyes, she wondered if that girl still existed. For the first time in a long time, she wanted her back.
Bree enjoys good books with great characters. While she may be an adult, her favorite memories are from her teenage years reading inspirational romance with girls just like her and strong heroes. That’s one of the reasons she’s written In Hyacinth, a series of Courting Romances.
Courting Romance – where contemporary romance meets traditional values.