Saturday, February 16, 2019

Elkhorn In The Moonlight by @Constance Bretes #RomanceGems

Before I moved to Alabama last Spring, I lived in a tiny little town called Basin, in Montana. The population was about 250 people. I made some really nice friends there, and a few of my friends became my readers who enjoyed reading my romance books. They asked me if I’d consider writing a romance centered around a small town in Montana, like Basin.

Basin sits in a valley at 5,700 feet surrounded by mountains. Off to the north of Basin sits Boulder, Montana, and Elkhorn Mountains. Basin is also known as a miner’s town. At one point, there were three mines in operation, searching for gold and silver, and the town grew to over a thousand residents. When the mines dried up, it reduced the population, and left some empty buildings in its wake. Some of those empty buildings were at one time, considered brothels. The only things now operating in Basin, is a pizza place, a restaurant and bar, a post office, two radon mines and a grade school.

Rail Tunnel in Basin, Montana
In addition to all this, there is a railroad tunnel that went through Basin. The rail track actually at one point, came from Helena and traveled down to Butte. The rail tracks are long gone, but the tunnel remains. Not too far from Basin, is a ghost town called Comet. The pictures attached are the Comet mine, and the old tunnel that is in Basin.

Gold Mine in Comet, Montana
The story, Elkhorn In The Moonlight, was generated from this information. I changed the name of the town to Mason, and I added one more business to the town, a small motel, which I situated at the same location of what is now currently called Earth Angel Radon Mine. A few of the characters represented are some of the residents that lives there, including my husband and I, but all the names are different. The restaurant and bar, along with the pizza place, the post office and the school are in the story, as well as the three mines. Everything was renamed so to not put anyone on the spot or violate anyone’s privacy.

While I loved it in Basin, I had a serious problem with breathing and ended in the hospital in Helena, three times with hypoxia, and bronchitis. A few doctors felt that I had COPD and Asthma. The hospital, St. Peter’s, is in Helena, and also plays a part in my story. I received excellent one-on-one care there.

My favorite place to hang out was the Silver Saddle Bar and Restaurant, with the owner there. At the time of the writing of this book, Mr. Hale was still alive, but had since past away and it is now run by Gail, his wife. The bar and restaurant was a great place to hang out and meet your neighbors. They included us in their lives right from the get-go, and was always offering information, suggestions, or directions.

This book, Elkhorn In The Moonlight, is dedicated to my friends at Basin, Montana. Without them, the story would have never been written.

Elkhorn In The Moonlight

The search for stolen Sacred Arrows leads to much more.

Marcus Blackhawk is on a mission to locate the Sacred Arrows that were stolen from the Cheyenne Nation. When he learns that someone has seen the arrows he leaves immediately to track the person down and get more information.

Nicole Lancaster ekes out a living in a small town by helping her brother run a motel and working part-time in a restaurant. Her mundane life suddenly becomes more exciting when Marcus arrives in town asking about some arrows that she came upon years ago while hiking in the Elkhorn Mountains. The gorgeous man makes her heart beat fast, but she knows he’d never be interested in a Plain Jane like herself.

When Marcus offers Nicole a large sum of cash to lead him to the cave where she saw the arrows, she takes him up on the offer. After a three-day hiking trip through the mountains they locate the cave, but then the unthinkable happens, and they find themselves trapped inside. As they wait, hopeful they’ll be rescued, they give into the passion that’s been simmering between them.

Will help arrive in time to save them? And if so, can their night of passion ever be anything more? Marcus has no interest in an actual relationship, and Nicole wants the whole nine yards.


  1. This one sounds lovely, Connie. And how nice to dedicate to your friends.

  2. Your friends must be excited about your book. I love small towns and yours is so different from mine. Reminds me of the setting in When Calls the Heart at a later time. Thanks for posting.

  3. I lived in a small town in Manitoba for a few years. Not quite as small as Basin but much smaller than I'm used to. I love the feel of a tight-knit community which is what you've captured here.

  4. So great to have fantastic memories and times as your inspiration.

  5. This book sounds interesting. I put it on my
    TBR list.

  6. I set my Montana McKenna books by finding a dude ranch on the Internet. In 2016 we vacationed at a real dude ranch in Montana, and we got altitude sickness. I can relate to your problems. Today I'm working on another Montana series. I don't have the luxury of having actually lived there. I am putting your book on my TBR list. Thanks for sharing!

  7. I've always lived in big cities and wondered what it's like to live in such a small community. What a great idea to write around your town.

  8. I love that you have incorporated your experiences etc into your writing here.


  9. Connie, I couldn't find your book on Amazon. Is it not for sale yet? I enjoyed your post and loved the photographs. I wrote a story many years ago set in Montana. It was based on my experience of being in South Dakota in a blizzard. Saw enough snow to last me a lifetime.

  10. I'm such a fearful person, I'd never gather the courage to visit this town!
    But it's a perfect location for a book plot!

    I couldn't find the book on Amazon either.

    My contact info: adissidente [at] gmail [dot] com

  11. What a great post. I love the information you gave. I hope toread thisone.
    debby236 at hotmail dot com

  12. I'm sorry everyone, I forgot to mention the release date. It is February 25. Thanks everyone for your kind comments.

  13. I love stories about small towns and the people in them. And I am always intrigued by ghost towns and the history behind them. I love learning about who used to live there. Your story sounds great!

  14. I loved reading the "story of your story"!


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