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Love on the Line (Women at Work Book 1) by Kirsten Fullmer ~ Genre: Women’s Fiction, Romance
In this epic and unique love story set in the wild mountains of West Virginia, a young woman and her unlikely friends find their way through multiple job hazards and terrible working conditions to achieve the unexpected.
Andrea never thought she’d live in a camp trailer or work outdoors in inhospitable climates; but eager to leave the stress and tedium of grad-school behind, she sets off with her estranged grandpa, Buck, to build a pipeline through the rugged mountains of West Virginia. She’s determined to understand the man and the family divide that drove him away. Once the job starts, she forms an unlikely friendship with Nick, the rough and tumble foreman of the bending crew. Most of the guys aren’t willing to accept her, and Rooster, the handsome, cocky, tie-in foreman, is determined that she’s a ridiculous distraction.
But building a pipeline is fraught with danger, fatigue, and confrontation as egos collide. Caught up in the all-male social microcosm, Andrea can’t help but understand the pecking order, and she’s at the bottom. Being a woman makes it even more unlikely she’ll be accepted. Buck proves to be a taskmaster, but a kindhearted teddy-bear of a man under a gruff exterior, and Andrea comes to love him, opening herself up to the pain of his past.
Rooster and Andrea are drawn to each other, yet they know an on-the-job romance will only cause problems. Rooster is tormented by his own past, and determined to prove himself to Buck, a pipeline ledged. Messing with the old man’s granddaughter is a line Rooster refuses to cross. But as Andrea shows herself to be a hard worker and a valuable member of the crew, she earns Rooster’s respect and he can’t keep his distance. It seems the couple can’t go back, they can’t move forward, and they can’t let go. Both will have to make sacrifices and take a chance on ruining their credibility in order to be together.
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Kirsten is a writer with a love of art and design. She worked in the engineering field, taught college, and consulted free lance. Due to health problems, she retired in 2012 to travel with her husband. They live and work full time in a 40′ travel trailer with their little dog Bingo. Besides writing romance novels, she enjoys selling art on Etsy and spoiling their three grandchildren.
As a writer, Kirsten’s goal is to create strong female characters who face challenging, painful, and sometimes comical situations. She believes that the best way to deal with struggle, is through friendship and women helping women. She knows good stories are based on interesting and relatable characters.
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My latest book, Love on the Line, is the story of Andy, a woman who chooses to work building a pipeline in the rugged mountains of West Virginia. Why did I write about this? I wrote it partly because I was inspired by the experiences of my own daughter who entertained me with many of her personal experiences as a pipeliner. But I also wrote it because I too chose to work in a male dominated field back in the day. Some of the struggles of women in these fields are upsetting, but many are inspiring and funny, thus perfect material for the kind of books I love to write. Just because not many women choose to do it, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be done, right?
More than any time in recorded history, women are choosing to work in male dominated fields. Every day you come across a woman truck driver, firefighter, or pharmacist. And even though it’s become commonplace, many fields stick with their traditional titles such as policeman, draftsman, and even garbage man. Given this plus the infamous glass ceiling, why would a woman choose to spend their entire career fighting an uphill battle? There are a million reasons, but overwhelmingly, the answer I find is “because I want to” or “because the job appealed to me,” or “My dad and grandpa did it, why shouldn’t I?”
When was the idea planted for women to take the jobs they wanted, even if they were traditionally considered only suitable for men? Some would say with Eve, but both folklore and history are filled with women who not only worked at the jobs they pleased, they ruled societies: Joan of Ark and Cleopatra, to name a few. In Victorian times, women who wrote were forced to use a male pen name or work without recognition. But the women of my grandmother’s generation were forced to work at jobs considered appropriate only for men during world war II. They worked everywhere from factories to the fields. Sadly, after a taste of the liberation a paycheck affords a person, these women were expected to quietly step back into the kitchen once the men came home.
My mother’s generation, were blessed with not only their mother’s experiences, but all manner of modern conveniences which allowed them to clean and cook and generally care for their families in a fraction of the time it took their mothers. Many of these women took it upon themselves to “have it all” and step out into the working world, and not just as nurses and schoolteachers. Their bravery gave the women of my generation the encouragement and conviction that we too could plan a career. However, we quickly learned that we couldn’t be super mom and have a demanding and time consuming career without a shift in attitude, and this shift had to come from the men. The change had to happen not just because of the aforesaid glass ceiling on the job, but because we needed help at home.
Do I think only women who work have value, and somehow women who don’t work away from home are lesser somehow? Of course not! In my lifetime I have been a stay at home mom, a sick in bed mom, a full time student mom, an employed full time mom, and a retired mom. All of those words we put on women are pointless when you realize that we are in this together, and we should be supportive and understanding, no matter what roll you chose.
So, take a moment this summer to grab a copy of Love on the Line. Then curl up in a corner with a cup of coffee and prepare yourself for a heartwarming story filled with feminine strength, challenge, bravery, friendship, and romance.