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August 10 , 2007

The Jewel Palace

A Novel


Miranda Gallagher hears someone downstairs as she waits for her husband, Seamus, on their wedding night. It’s not her husband, but an intruder. With all the gold-mad people crowding into Seattle on their way to the Yukon, Miranda meets the intruder with her late father’s gun. She is shocked when the man, who calls himself Russ Foster, tells her that her husband sold the house to Russ so he would have money to get to the Klondike. A search for her husband ends with a corpse, and Miranda discovers Russ, though he now owns her house, doesn’t intend to throw her out into the street. Instead, he asks her to be his business partner when he turns her home into The Jewel Palace, a gentlemen’s club. Not a brothel, but certainly not the respectable life Miranda had. But she has nowhere else to go. Russ, who is an excellent businessman, has seen that the best way to get rich is to supply the men going north and to help the men who hit a strike spend their money when they return to Seattle. Miranda tries not to fall in love with Russ, but she’s charmed by his kindness and sense of humor. Then the past intrudes, and everything they have done to make The Jewel Palace a success is threatened. Is their love strong enough to save them?
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