Romance in Blake’s Folly by J. Arlene Culiner
All About Charming Alice, Desert Rose, The Lady Piano Player
I’ve always been fascinated by ghost towns, no matter where they are. I’ve poked around American ghost towns in Nevada and California; I’ve spent considerable time in a Canadian ghost town in Ontario; I once came upon a ghost community in Hungary — it consisted of a ruined manor house, serf’s cottages, and outbuildings, all of it covered over with thick vines. These places are certainly spooky: the only noise you hear is the wind rustling in the trees, the cracking of old boards, strange scratchings. I admit that I’m not entirely comfortable when I’m alone in ghost towns, but I do enjoy the solitude they afford. I also like to imagine the sort of people who once lived in there — sometimes I can see the old clothes they left behind, the abandoned furniture, plates, and cutlery.
Seeing how much I love being in ghostly towns, it is no wonder that my romance books, All About Charming Alice, Desert Rose, and my novella, The Lady Piano Player (part of the Hot Summer Nights anthology) are all set in the semi-ghost town of Blake’s Folly, a few hours drive outside Reno. Back in the 1890s, Blake’s Folly was a boomtown with three silver mines, many saloons, and bawdy houses, as well as a fine hotel. But after the silver ran out in 1910, the town emptied.
My heroes, heroines, and secondary characters are just the sort of people you’d find living in an out-of-the-way has-been community: they are eccentric, sharp-witted, suspicious, funny, and endearing. My stories have no threat, no danger, and they all end happily, even though there are times when it seems impossible that the lovers will finally resolve their problems and let themselves fall deeply in love. So if a wonderful warm romance with intelligent, feisty heroines, and utterly delicious heroes, is what you want to curl up with, do come to Blake’s Folly and enjoy!