About Nancy Radke

A USA Today bestselling author, Nancy Radke grew up on a wheat and cattle ranch in SE Washinton State. She attended a one-room country school through the eighth grade. She learned to ride bareback at age 3 (Really! It was a common practice.) and when she got off or fell off, she would pull her horse's nose to the ground, get on behind its ears, and the horse would lift its head so she could scoot down onto its back. Nancy spent most of her childhood exploring the Blue Mountain trails that bordered the ranchlands. She and a friend once took a trail that turned out to be a two day trip. They always rode with matches and pocket knives, so made camp and returned the next day. These long rides worried her parents, but provided plenty of time to make up stories. Her first novel was set in the Blues, and is entitled APPALOOSA BLUES. TURNAGAIN LOVE was the first one published. It rated a four star review from Affaire de Coeur. Scribes World said "Turnagain Love has some fascinating twists and turns, unexpected complications, and charming scenes." It is light and humorous. Nancy currently has over 30 books written, both modern and western. All her stories are sweet and wholesome.  View website

The Legacy of Grand Coulee Dam by Nancy Radke #mgtab

Aerial view of Grand Coulee Dam, Washington. Columbia Basin Project, WA.

People don’t usually think of dams in this way, but they are a renewable solar energy resource. Read on to find out why we can make this claim.

I was watching a saleswoman showing off electric cars on TV, when a fellow asked her where the electricity came from.  She replied that you just plug the cord into the socket. So he asked her where that electricity came from, and she said, “the house,” and eventually, “the city.” 

She had a hard time getting back to the origins of electricity, which is created by a generator that is turned by some form of energy.  Yes, it takes energy to make electricity. There are large plants that burn coal, which can produce enough electricity for several cities. Small amounts of electricity can also be produced by wind power and solar power. 

The undisputed champion electricity makers are dams. Huge dams, like Hoover Dam and Grand Coulee Dam, produce hydroelectric power for entire states. Hoover produces about half the amount of electricity as Grand Coulee. The excess electricity from Grand Coulee Dam is even sold to California. The giant turbines move so slowly that the fish can swim right down through them, although they do need the fish ladders when they go upstream. The smaller turbine blades are 23 feet across.

The Columbia River is a constantly renewable solar energy resource (solar= water in ocean is heated by sun, water rises, sun makes the wind to move the clouds, water falls as rain, runs to river and continues in a circle).

I am especially interested in Grand Coulee Dam, since my father-in-law worked on it as an engineer. His wife kept a large scrapbook—which I have—of their progress. They invented tools and machinery when they needed something not yet made. The army made sure he finished there before he shipped out to help fight WW2, first under MacArthur in Australia, then under Patton, doing special work for both those generals. 

Grand Coulee Dam not only produces a huge amount of electricity (10,180,000 kilowatts), but it irrigates Eastern Washington and controls flooding. There are many more dams on the Columbia and Snake Rivers, but none quite as grand as the Grand Coulee. 

One of my books, Height of Danger, concerns an engineer building a dam in Central America. The dam will bring prosperity to the country, so the workers can’t figure out why someone is sabotaging the project. The head engineer’s daughter is kidnapped and they demand he abandon the project. This suspense-thriller is free and part of a new Authors’ Billboard set, Fabulous Freebies.

Book is part of the Fabulous Freebies set.

Moose Roast (Roast Beef) by Nancy Radke #mgtab

When we were married in 1959, my husband and I lived with his folks in Anchorage, Alaska. My mother-in-law belonged to the Anchorage Woman’s Club and they put out a recipe book that I still use. Many of the women were military. These ladies came from all over the world, so the book contains recipes from Spain and Japan as well as the lower 48 (Alaska term meaning the states).

I don’t make the Spiced Moose Tongue, Jellied Moose Nose, the Stuffed Ptarmigan Breasts, or the Caribou Shish Kabobs, but I do use many other moose recipes since moose meat is similar to bison. It tastes like rich beef meat and has more vitamins in it than regular beef. Like many Alaskans, I prefer moose to beef.

The amounts in this recipe are for a very large piece of meat. You might want to halve the amounts if your roast is average. I have used this recipe with beef heart and it turns out great. Also, you might want to adapt this for an Instant Pot.

1 1/2 T. vinegar
3 T. shortening
1 T. cinnamon
1 T. ginger
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 T. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 c. water
3 c. apple juice
1 can condensed tomato soup
1 c. chopped onion
1 tsp. chopped garlic (optional)

Melt the shortening in the bottom of a Dutch oven and brown the meat. Blend the vinegar, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Mix these with the water and apple juice; juice from cooked dried apples is excellent. Pour over the meat. Then spoon the concentrated tomato soup, the onion, and garlic atop the moose hump. Cover and cook in enough heat to keep the pot simmering for four hours or until the meat is tender. Thicken the gravy with flour and then give a yell, before some nose-twitching stranger wanders into your house and eats it all himself.
— Recipe by Mrs. Clayton A. Schule

One of the ladies was Peggy Loft who ran the Airport Cafe. Her recipes give quantities to serve 100 people, such as 10 loaves of bread and 200 rolls, 4 gallons of ice cream, and 3 pounds of cheese. For tamale pie, you need 15 pounds of ground beef and 20 eggs, along with the other ingredients.

My story in the New Year’s Short collection is Changing Horses, about a rancher (Glen, from Zsuzsa’s Christmas Wish) who is pursuing a lady vet. She loves someone else, and Glen has to put a brake on his feelings and search for someone who puts him first. Right now Changing Horses is only available in the New Year’s Shorts collection.

Get your New Year’s Shorts collection now at Amazon.

Hey Dude! Dude Ranches are Fun! by Nancy Radke #mgtab

Have you ever gone to a dude ranch as a guest or a worker? In my book just released, called Sunbeams & Shadows, the heroine takes a job as a cook at a guest ranch in the Cascade Mountain area of Washington State. Besides cooking, the ad insisted she be able to ride since she will have to provide meals once a week during an overnight stay on the trail.

This is a “second chance at love” romance. When Jean arrives she finds that Hal, a young man she knew in college, runs the ranch. She had hoped to marry him, but when he unexpectedly left during finals week, she had waited, and when no word came from Hal, she married a man she had known from high school. Bill had been pressuring her for several years to marry him and run a restaurant together. The place they ran in California for three years was just becoming well known when she lost her husband. Two years later she ends up at Hal’s ranch.

Jean has excellent cooking skills as well as being a skilled rider, so quickly fits in. Hal doesn’t want her to stay, but they are desperate for a cook as the guests are due next week. Then a woman comes in with the guests who met Hal last year and intends to marry him. She wants the horse Jean is riding and the man Jean loves. With plenty of horses, dogs, cowboys, and ranch guests, this novella is sure to make you want to try the dude ranch experience for yourself. Plan to include one in your family vacation spots next summer.

Be sure to stop by the Authors’ Billboard monthly contest to see if you can win a $25 Amazon gift card. https://authorsbillboard.com

Love at First Sight by Nancy Radke, USA Today bestselling author #mgtab

Is there truly such a thing as love at first sight? In many of my books I have the couple falling in love in around a week—or less. It makes the reader wonder if this could actually happen in real life. I say, “Yes,” because I know of couples who have.

My father-in-law saw his future wife for the first time as she passed by him in a canoe with one other young woman. He told his friend standing beside him, “That’s the girl I’m going to marry.” He did and they stayed married all their life, into their 90s. Ditto his son, my brother-in-law, who saw his future wife for the first time across the room at a college event and told my husband, “I’m marrying her.” Neither even knew the girls’ names.

My husband and I met in college, where he was in a fraternity contest to meet new girls. He had to at least take them out to coffee to count for the contest, and he was winning. He took me out, quit the contest, and asked me to marry him. When I met him, I told my roommates, “He’s the one.” Our marriage lasted 51 years until he died of cancer.

Another life-long marriage happened after a writer friend of mine met her husband at a wedding. They were married after 4 days because he had to go overseas (World War 2) and they wanted to marry before he left.

Not all “love at first sight” marriages hold together but the phenomenon exists. How many couples do you know of who fell in love at first sight, married quickly, and their marriage endured?

In many of my Christmas novellas, I have the couple finding instant attraction, mainly because of the short word count. Here are two that I think you’ll enjoy. Christmas on Cougar Mountain is free.

I made this book free because I felt it addressed an issue that many parents face: that of a child that can’t seem to learn. The story is a simple romance, but the underlying problem is a child who seems disobedient. The person who helps his father understand him is a young woman trained in helping children like him. Because my grandchildren needed this training, I wanted to tell others about it while also writing a story. The dog steals the story, as my animal characters usually do.

Another story with a dog in it. This one’s name is Brat, for he obeys when he wants to and gets into trouble the rest of the time. He loves digging out people hiding in the snow, making him an ideal avalanche puppy. After rescuing a ski patrol leader, Brat decides the handsome man is an ideal mate for his owner and proceeds to make life difficult for them while he gets them together. https://getbook.at/avalanchepuppy