It is my pleasure to introduce you to Darlene Franklin, multi-published author of historical romance, and the writer of Priceless Pearl, one of the stories in The Homestead Brides Collection!
Homesteading and Oklahoma go hand in hand, with a total of five land runs making the dream possible to thousands of land-hungry Americans.
But my story in the Homestead Brides collection started from a different point. Before Oklahoma was even a state, the Oklahoma Territorial Legislature adopted the mistletoe as their official floral emblem in 1893.
Mistletoe berries resemble pearls, so my mind jumped to a story that somehow combined mistletoe and pearls. Rick Eady comes from a poor Texas farming family, illiterate, but wise in building a life on the prairie.
America Barton’s family lost their modest fortune in the 1893 financial crisis and risk a new start in Oklahoma. Without Rick’s help, they wouldn’t survive.
They both live in soddies. America trades book learning for Rick’s help in basic survival skills. When the Bartons have to sell her grandmother’s pearl ring to raise money, Rick wants to buy it back for her—but he has no money either.
How can the Bartons survive with their limited knowledge and funds? Can Rick convince America of his worth, in spite of his lack of schooling?
To see Oklahoma today, only about 120 years later, you would never guess at those hard beginnings.
Darlene Franklin’s greatest claim to fame is that she writes full-time from a nursing home. She lives in Oklahoma, near her son and his family, and continues her interests in playing the piano and singing, books, good fellowship, and reality TV in addition to writing. She is an active member of Oklahoma City Christian Fiction Writers, American Christian Fiction Writers, and the Christian Authors Network. She has written over thirty books and has written more than 250 devotionals. Her historical fiction ranges from the Revolutionary War to World War II, from Texas to Vermont. You can find Darlene online elsewhere at