December 21, 2008

To Rescue or Not to Rescue...that is the question.

By Teri Wilson, Author of Do You Hear What I Hear?, Hoofbeats & Heartstrings Book One.

Finally the astonished prince came to an inner chamber, where was the fairest sight his eyes had ever beheld. A young girl of wonderful beauty lay asleep on an embroidered bed, and she looked as if she had only just closed her eyes. Trembling, the prince approached and knelt beside her. Some say he kissed her, but as nobody saw it, and she never told, we cannot be quite sure of the fact. However, as the end of the enchantment had come, the princess awakened at once, and looking at him with eyes of the tenderest regard, said drowsily, “Is it you, my prince? I have waited for you very long.”

The Sleeping Beauty in the Wood from “The Fairy Book” by Miss Mullock


I’ll be the first to admit it. This scene, in all its various versions, makes me swoon. I even have the song Someday My Prince Will Come on my I Pod. (Give me break, okay. I bought the CD while I was at Disneyworld in a fit of Disney-esque nostalgia.)

I know it’s old fashioned – this antiquated notion of the Prince coming along to rescue the Princess. Nowadays there is a strong trend toward the modern romantic heroine. Many readers prefer a heroine who can kick some butt and take names. She doesn’t need rescuing. In fact, sometimes she does the rescuing herself. Remember the positively adorable movie Enchanted, starring Amy Adams and Patrick “McDreamy” Dempsey? At the beginning, Amy’s character is rescued by the handsome (albeit animated) Prince. Near the end, she rescues Patrick Dempsey from the evil queen herself. And that’s all in the same story.

Anyone who has read my own blog knows that I’m a big fan of Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight series. Recently, I was urging one of my writer friends to read the first book, Twilight. My friend said she didn’t want to read it because she’d heard the lead female character was wimpy. While I have reason to argue with this statement (After all, she hangs around with a bunch of vampires. How wimpy can she be?), I also wondered what was so wrong about a heroine who needed to be rescued. I’m not talking about real life. I’m strictly referring to romance novels. We all love these books because they’re about our fantasies, the most perfect, happy endings we can imagine. Sometimes it’s okay to want to be rescued, or awakened, by the handsome Prince. Or vampire, or cowboy, whatever you prefer.

In my new Hoofbeats & Heartstrings series from The Wild Rose Press, I really explore the theme of rescue from all angles. All the books take place on a horse rescue farm and all the lead characters are involved in rescuing unwanted animals in one way or another. The best part is, as the hero and heroine come together, their unique talents and abilities mesh collectively in such a way that they can accomplish more than they ever thought possible. Their love makes them stronger, both as a couple and as individuals. True love rescues them both, and a whole slew of horses and dogs too!

And now, back to Sleeping Beauty for a moment. It wasn’t until I started working on this blog that I realized I have two Sleeping Beauty moments of my own in my two most recent books. Honestly, I had no idea. It was strictly a subconscious writer thing. I guess you can take the girl out of the fairy tale, but you just can’t take the fairy tale out of the girl. You’ve got to take a peek at these two very short excerpts. I think you’ll be both surprised and amused.

From Love, Lilies & the Unbroken Straw, Hoofbeats & Heartstrings Book Two (releasing in March from The Wild Rose Press):

Declan gathered the daisy chains and draped them on his arm while he looked down at Christabel’s serene form on the sleeping bags. If they were married, or even engaged, he would have bent down and wakened her with a kiss. Felt her body rouse to life beneath him.

Maybe someday. His heart stirred with hope. Maybe someday soon.

Pretty traditional as far as the Sleeping Beauty theme goes. Right? Now, check out the next one.

From Cup of Joe (manuscript still in progress, nearly complete!):

Goldie supposed she really should wake him. That was her intention when she leaned toward him. But as the distance between them closed, her heart beat faster and more furious. She was honestly stunned that he couldn’t hear it, that it didn’t wake him with a start.

When she was close enough to whisper in his ear, she said simply, “Joe.”

He didn’t move. A lock of his chocolate hair rippled under her breath, but he remained perfectly still. Sitting this close to him, Goldie noticed for the first time the impossible length of his dark eyelashes. With her gaze, she traced his strong jaw line and the gentle curve of his bottom lip and had the sudden urge to wake him, not with a whisper, but with a kiss.

Ha! Sleeping Beauty in reverse. How do you like that?

Okay, I can’t leave you without a little morsel from Do You Hear What I Hear? This book is the first in the Hoofbeats & Heartstrings series and is out now. And you can win a free download of the book here! All you need to do is leave a comment on this blog entry and you’ll be entered in the drawing to win. Good luck and happy reading!

Now get a glimpse at Chet and his feelings for Simone. He doesn’t want to rescue her, but to take refuge in their love. This is a hero who really gets it.

From Do You Hear What I Hear?, Hoofbeats & Heartstrings Book One (available now from The Wild Rose Press and Fictionwise, print release in February 2009):

Chet’s temples throbbed. It had been a long night. They had decided to drive straight back to San Antonio instead of stopping for the night. The horses needed to be settled into a safe environment as quickly as possible. Plus, if they arrived under the cover of darkness, he and Ted could wipe away all evidence of where they had been. Someday they might tell Elizabeth and Simone about their rescue mission, but not now. Or anytime soon. The memory of the grisly slaughterhouse was too fresh in their minds and both men were eager to put it to rest. Besides, as Ted had mentioned more than once, Elizabeth would have thrown a fit. Mexico. Bribes. Carrying wads of cash. They weren’t the ingredients for safe travel.

Although weary to the bone, once Chet was back on the farm he was keenly aware of Simone’s presence on the family land. His gaze traveled to his little cottage, dark, quiet and unassuming. To anyone else it looked the same as it always did. But he knew she was inside, her head resting on his pillow. Her long legs tangled in his sheets. What he wouldn’t give to step right out of the truck, strip the bloody, grimy clothes off his back and crawl into bed next to her. Take comfort in her warmth, rest his head on her breast and forget all about the places he had been.

“Bro, what are you waiting for?”

Ted’s voice drug him away from his fantasy and he found himself back in the truck instead of in bed wrapped around Simone.

He cleared his throat, dry and scratchy from a night without sleep. “Let’s get to it.”

Thanks Anna, for having me here today. It was a blast.

To learn more about me, or the Hoofbeats & Heartstrings series, come visit me at

Blessings, Teri

Teri Wilson ~ Romancing the pet lover's soul


LadyVampire2u said...

Sounds like an awesome series and I loved the excerpts!

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Teri,
Lovely excerpts. Yes, I like the fairy tales where the prince rescues his princess too. There is something spell binding about a heroic man saving his damsal in distress.


Debby said...

Hi Yeri, I enjoyed reading your post and the excerpts. There is something wonderful about a man rescuing his sweetie.

MaryF said...

You know, I hadn't realized that I do use a lot of rescue themes in my books. Sometimes she rescues him, sometimes he rescues her. Great blog!

lindaswift said...

Enjoyed your excerpts, Teri. And fairy tale themes are always good or they wouldn't have lasted for centuries. Who wouldn't like to be rescued by a handsome prince?
Happy Holidays,

linda swift said...

Enjoyed your excerpts, Teri. And the fairy tale themes are always good or they wouldn't have lasted for centuries. Who wouldn't love to be rescued by a handsome prince? (sigh)
Happy Holidays,

Linda Swift said...

Enjoyed your excerpts, Teri. And the fairy tale theme is always good or else it wouldn't have lasted for centuries. Who wouldn't want to be rescued by a handsome prince? (sigh)
Happy Holidays,

Linda Swift said...

Enjoyed your excerpts, Teri. And the fairy tale theme is always good or it wouldn't have lasted for centuries. Who wouldn't like to be rescued by a handsome prince? (sigh)
Happy Holidays,

Helen Hardt said...

I agree with Linda. You can't go wrong with a Fairy Tale. They're classic love stories, classic happy endings, and classic good reads. Great post, Teri!


Ann_Campbell said...

Terri, I love the theme for the series. I volunter with LOPE TX and understand some of the situations these rescue animals come from. What you are doing is wonderful and I can't wait to get my hands on the whole series and add it to my keep forever pile!

Beth Trissel said...

Great topic/series, Teri. I grew up reading and loving fairy tales.

liana laverentz said...

I still believe in fairy tales :)

Cate Masters said...

Great post, Teri! I love fairy tales, too. For me, the most romantic idea is the hero and heroine rescuing each other, in a metaphorical sense. Happy holidays!

Mary Ricksen said...

I'd still like to be rescued! What a great post and good luck with your book sales!
I wouldn't mind the beautiful white horse that comes with the prince either!
I too am an animal lover and this sounds like my kinda book.

Debra St. John said...

My books always seem to have some type of "rescue". The handsome hero rushing in to save the heroine is very romantic.

Susan Macatee said...

Great excerpts!
I also have many rescue scenes running through my stories. Sometimes it's the hero rescuing the heroine, then in the next scene, she's rescuing him. I'm am equal opportunity romance writer, I guess. LOL.

Nannette said...

"Sleeping Beauty" was my favorite childhood book. Memorized it at age 4. Have a huge framed movie poster from the Disney version plus tons of other stuff. With the stresses of everyday life, rescue by a handsome prince sounds pretty good some days! Hope I win the book!!

Miss Slick One said...

Anna & Teri, have a great Christmas! :)

Phyllis in SC

J K Maze said...

Interesting. I like the idea of rescue, whether it be by the hero or the heroine. In my current WIP I have the heroine rescue the hero. I have no idea how this came about. It just did.

Joan Maze

ddurance said...

Interesting post.

Happy Holidays!


Teri Wilson, Romancing the pet lover's soul said...

Congratulations Helen Hardt! You are the winner of the free e-book version of Do You Hear What I Hear?, Hoofbeats & Heartstrings Book One.

Please shoot me an email at and I will get your ebook to you.

Thanks everyone for commenting.

Christmas blessings to all,

Do You Hear What I Hear?, Hoofbeats & Heartstrings Book One

Reviewer Top Pick – Night Owl Romance
Reviewer Top Pick – ParaNormal Romance
Recommended Read – CK2S Kwips & Kritiques

Available now from The Wild Rose Press and Fictionwise