Book Excerpt: Ridgeline, Book One of the Long Journey Home Series by Pamela Foster

Do you enjoy historical fiction? Here's an excerpt of a book about a circuit rider (preacher) with a tormented soul and the innocent who loves him despite his many flaws.

Ridgeline - a historical novel by Pamela Foster

Book Excerpt: Rigeline

               On the ridgeline, Jeremiah shifted in the saddle and breathed deep the smell of wood smoke floating up from the chimney of the cabin below, drank in the sight of Maggie, his woman, leaning in the open door of the cabin from which he had ridden away seven months earlier. He indulged his vanity and fed his hope by believing this woman had stood right there through all the long days he'd been gone serving the Lord, through every star-filled night while he curled, dog-like, around an open fire and watched the stars turn in the sky and imagined her just like this, watching the horizon for his return, patient even as he tarried.

      As if, in his absence, she'd not gone about her daily life, tended her ragged garden, tolerated the touch of her brutish husband as he ran a rough hand up and over the birthmark that stained the inside of her left thigh, the reddish mark the near exact size and shape of a mouse, the curlicue of the tail disappearing into her dark warmth. As if, in place of what had become of her life, through all these days and nights, the woman had simply waited, her longing quietly drawing him to her as a ripe moon calls the rising tide.

      The bay tossed her head, a quiver running from withers to nose. Jeremiah gathered the reins and spoke low, his words a silvery fog that hung in the motionless air for a moment before floating wraith-like to join a cloud of cooling sweat rising from the horse. Winter-robbed of all but palest gold, dawn's fingers crept over the eastern rise and glinted cold light from the woman's hand—a deep, lethal-blue flash the preacher knew all too well as the gemlike color of a tiny, killing bottle, no bigger surely than the seed of sin born in David's heart when first he looked upon Bathsheba.

      The snarling voice of the woman's husband split the morning air, destroyed all hope. The sound floated up the hill ominous as the first notes of a bugle on a misty morn with men lined on either side of some godforsaken hill or blood-thirsty meadowland. Jeremiah spurred his horse down into the hollow even as Maggie raised the blue bottle to her mouth, her head thrown back, her tender, white throat exposed as she swallowed his dreams drop by drop, condemned him to hell for all eternity.

      "Nooooo!" His plea pierced the heavens.

Read my book review of Ridgeline here.

Get the book

Buy Ridgeline on Amazon

BUy from the publisher, Pen-L Publishing.


Book Review of Historical Fiction Novel Ridgeline by Pamela Foster

Welcome back to another Write On Purpose book review.  Each time, I review a well-written book, highlighting what makes it good from the reader’s perspective and what writing skills and techniques make it an irresistible read. Thus, each review serves both writers and readers. I was on hiatus for a while because I traveled to Leader Dogs for the Blind in Michigan to train with my new guide dog. We have been home for a short while, and I'm back to writing

This week, I'm sharing Ridgeline, a historical fiction novel by an excellent writer, Pamela Foster.

I've reviewed another of her books,


Ridgeline - a historical novel by Pamela Foster

Book Description

Book One of The Long Journey Home Series

by Pamela Foster

      Jeremiah Jones set off to war, a boy full of pride and ignorance, seeking glory and to prove his manhood. That boy never returned. Wounded to the depths of his soul, Jeremiah clung to sanity only by holding tight to the memory of Maggie, the girl he'd loved since the first time he saw her in his father's church. But Maggie had married another.

      His soul seeking peace, but his warrior's heart wanting only battle, Jeremiah's mind is caught in the middle, between heaven and hell. Though he rides the saddle-preacher circuit, bringing the word of the Lord to all who'll listen, inside rages the killing beast that war birthed within him. The only ones he can count on are two ghosts; the first two men – but not the last – who tried to stand against him. Tried, and failed.

      Cold company indeed, for that long journey home.

Was this a worthy read?

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Book Review of The Perfect Victim by Pamela Foster: NaNoWriMo Day 25

People read books to get caught up in a character or a story.

Cover of The Perfect Victim by Pamela FosterThe Perfect Victim by Pamela Foster begins with a birthday surprise that turns out to be much more than Mary or her friend could possibly imagine.

The Perfect Victim is a real-world horror story of love gone wrong. It is a compelling but frightening story that just might make you lose some sleep.

Before I delve more deeply into the review, here is some more about the book.

Here is the synopsis of the book:

When friend Anne "buys" the new deputy for loan officer Mary Brock at the local charity auction, neither she nor Mary know what has been brought into their lives.

At a little over six feet, slim, with wavy blond hair, Billy Joe Wilkins is enough to make most women dream of snuggling on the beach, the ocean's waves crashing rhythmically.

Mary discovers — to her delirious delight — that Billy's lovemaking more than fulfills the promise of the dream. But when his demands begin to include Mary's complete domination, physically and emotionally, it all begins to seem more like a nightmare she can't escape.

But Mary is trapped by her own feelings, reeling between what she knows she should do and what Billy says she must do. She becomes obsessed with escape.

And what about her son? What about Michael? He's being caught in the middle of her emotional tug-of-war. Will he become a victim too?

Can Mary find the courage to take control of the situation?

Praise for The Perfect Victim

"Foster has the gift of painting a scene so remarkably vivid that it's as though the reader has stepped through Alice's looking glass and can see, feel, smell and even taste the world she's created. She offers up characters who are just as vividly present as they reveal their hearts and souls with no reservations. She has one of the most unique writing voices." ~ Lori Ericson, author of A Lovely County

You can read my 5-star review on Amazon

Ronda's Review of The Perfect Victim

.I've read most of Pamela Foster's books. She is one of my favorite writers, and extremely versatile.

The Perfect Victim is a book she wrote a number of years ago then set aside. Returning to it after successfully publishing several books, she said she made improvements and it is now in print.

Deep into character - AKA Deep point of view

Getting into a character's mind so the reader feels involved is important. There are various "levels" of narration. The least engaged is where you as the reader feel the character is telling you a story, as in you're listening to the telling.

As the author goes deeper, the reader experience likewise becomes more rich and engaged. These days, the deeper the better.

Deep point of view means being so deeply inside the mind of the character telling the story that there's no filter between his/her thoughts and perception of the story's action.

Here is an  example of deep POV from Foster in The Perfect Victim. These are Mary's perceptions from  from when the new boyfriend Billy wants to buy her son an expensive pair of shoes.

Black angerbubbles up from my gut. Pain in my molars reminds me to unclench my jaws  How dare he put me in this position?

There's no separation between character and reader, no distinction between thoughts and reaction.


This story has an immediacy most books don't. A big reason for this is that Foster wrote it entirely in present tense.

Here is the opening:

A brew of perfume arises from pulse-points hot with anticipation , the air heady with the estrogen-rich excitement of a girl's night out.

Let me tell you,, while writing in present tense amps up the immediacy and urgency of a tale, this is  not easy to sustain over time. One slip into past tense and the spell is broken.


Foster is a whiz at conveying emotion in her books. Here's just one example. It takes place with best friend Ann  wants to warn Mary about her new boyfriend:

I nod, concentrate on breathing, keep my mouth shut so the fear doesn't fly out into the room.


I'm not kidding when I call this book "real world horror." The situations that come up for single mom Mary as she enters a new relationship are frightening.

The story is likely to trigger fear or panic if you've ever had issues with a control freak or alcoholic.

Billy keeps inserting himself into Mary's life and she's torn between sexual desire and fear because of his control.

Adult content alert

This is a sexually explicit book with a few F bombs and some other coarse language. I mention this so you're not surprised. .


Emotionally charged, frightening at times, t his is ultimately a tale of empowerment at great personal cost.

About Pamela Foster

Pamela FosterPamela Foster grew up in the redwoods of northern California where her family has raised all manner of mischief for eight generations. She's lived on the banks of the Mauna Loa on the Big Island of Hawaii, on the edge of the Mexican Caribbean, in the prickly-sticklies of the Arizona high desert, and on the tropical coast of Panama. She now lives in the Ozark Mountains of Arkansas with her husband and his retired PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress Disorder) service dog.

When she's not writing-or teaching writing workshops-Foster volunteers her time to raise public awareness of PTSD and its effects, speaking at Veteran's Centers and civic groups and facilitating the Northwest Arkansas chapter of INTERACT, a support group for families of veterans.

How to order The Perfect victim

You can order from Pen-L Publishing or buy on Amazon.

NaNoWriMo Day 25 Update

This is an intense writing day for me, and I am loving every minute of writing They All Died Smiling. I blew past the 45,000 word mark a while ago. I should make the 50,000 word goal by Thursday, the 27th.


 Enjoy this chilling book and as always, follow your BLISS,

Ronda Del Boccio

#1 best selling author and speaker

FInd my books on Amazon