Osborne, Margaret Ellen 1941-
OSBORNE, Margaret Ellen 1941-
(Maggie Osborne, Margaret St. George)
PERSONAL: Born June 10, 1941, in Hollywood, CA; daughter of William Edward and Lucille Prather; married George M. Osborne II (an insurance agent), April 29, 1972; children: (from previous marriage) Zane Carter. Education: Attended Fort Lewis Junior College. Religion: Protestant. Hobbies and other interests: Traveling, gardening, playing the organ, reading.
CAREER: United Airlines, Denver, CO, flight attendant, 1963-67; Welcome Service, Denver, owner and operator, 1970-72; State Farm Insurance, Denver, secretary, 1972-76; writer, 1977—.
MEMBER: Romance Writers of America (president, 1984-86), Novelist's Inc. (cofounder; national secretary, 1989-90), Colorado Authors League, Mensa.
AWARDS, HONORS: Named writer of the year, Rocky Mountain Writers Guild, 1980; Master of Letters, Rocky Mountain Writers Guild, 1984; Romantic Times finalist for best intrigue, 1990, for best historical romantic adventure, and for Reviewer's Choice Award, both 1991; Romantic Times Career Achievement Award, 1991; Silver Lining was voted one of the best books of 2000 by Romance Writers of America; RITA Award and Lifetime Achievement Award, both from the Romance Writers of America; several Awards of Excellence from the Colorado Romance Writers.
HISTORICAL NOVELS; UNDER NAME MAGGIE OSBORNE
Alexa, Signet (New York, NY), 1980.
Salem's Daughter, Signet (New York, NY), 1981.
Portrait in Passion, Signet (New York, NY), 1982.
Yankee Princess, Signet (New York, NY), 1983.
Rage to Love, Signet (New York, NY), 1984.
Chase the Heart, Morrow (New York, NY), 1987.
Lady Reluctant, St. Martin's (New York, NY), 1990.
Emerald Rain, St. Martin's (New York, NY), 1991.
The Best Man, Warner (New York, NY), 1998.
A Stranger's Wife, Warner (New York, NY), 1999.
Silver Lining, Ivy Books (New York, NY), 2000.
I Do, I Do, I Do, Ivy Books (New York, NY), 2000.
The Bride of Willow Creek, Ivy Books (New York, NY), 2001.
Prairie Moon, Ivy Books (New York, NY), 2002.
Shotgun Wedding, Ivy Books (New York, NY), 2003.
Also author of The Promise of Jenny Jones, The Wives of Bowie Stone, The Seduction of Samantha Kincaid, and Brides of Prairie Gold.
UNDER NAME MARGARET ST. GEORGE
Winter Magic, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1986.
Castles and Fairy Tales, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1986.
The Heart Club, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1987.
Where There's Smoke . . ., Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1987.
Heart's Desire, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1988.
Dear Santa, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1989.
Jigsaw, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1990.
American Pie, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1990.
Happy New Year, Darling, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1992.
Murder by the Book, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1992.
The Pirate and His Lady, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1992.
A Wish . . . and a Kiss, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1993.
Cache Poor, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1993.
An Accicental Princess, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1993.
Drop in Bride, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1993.
Love Bites, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1995.
To Love a Thief, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1996.
Family Secrets, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1996.
Renegade, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1996.
He Said/She Said, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1997.
For the Love of Beau, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1997.
Joe's Girl, Harlequin (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 1997.
Contributor to magazines, including McCall's and Guideposts.
ADAPTATIONS: Brides of Prairie Gold has been optioned for a television movie.
SIDELIGHTS: Margaret Ellen Osborne, writing under the name Maggie Osborne, writes historical romance novels set in the American West of the nineteenth century. According to Kristin Ramsdell in Library Journal, Osborne is "the reigning queen of this type of Western romance." Diana Tixier Herald explained in Booklist that Osborne is "known for her exquisitely rendered historical western settings and complex and fully dimensional characters."
Osborne's novels usually feature strong, independent women in the American frontier. In Silver Lining, for example, Louise Down nurses a group of Colorado miners through a bout with pox. In gratitude, they ask what they can give her in return for saving their lives. When she asks for a child, they draw lots to choose which man shall marry her and father a baby. Louise regrets the embarrassing marriage to miner Max McCord immediately—she wanted a child, not a husband—but decides to see things through. In a review posted at the All About Romance Web site, Blythe Barnhill calls Louise "a very special character, and watching her gain confidence and interact with Max's family is a real treat. Readers who have come to depend on Maggie Osborne for unusual characters and thoughtful conflicts will not be disappointed." Deborah Rysso, reviewing the novel for Booklist, called Silver Lining "funny and surprising, Osborne's romance is a pleasant journey to an old-fashioned world."
Osborne returned to Colorado's early days in The Bride of Willow Creek, the story of Angelina Bartoli. Angelina was married a decade before, but her father disapproved of the young girl's marriage and forbid her to go with her new husband, Sam Holland. Dejected, Sam headed west to pan for gold in Colorado. When Angelina finds him years later to ask for a divorce, she finds that he has had two children with another woman. One of the children has a clubfoot and Sam is saving money for an operation. A divorce is not possible. Angelina moves in with Sam and the children and, while sharing a house with him, the couple discover a new love. Ramsdell believed that "in typical fashion, Osborne reaches beyond the superficial to the true issues of trust, guilt, and self-worth that motivate these realistic characters, producing an emotionally involving story lightened by humor." Rachel Potter, reviewing The Bride of Willow Creek for the All About Romance Web site, found it to be "a well written, tender, gently funny story of restored love and second chances."
In Prairie Moon Della Ward has suffered guilt for ten years over the last letter she sent to her husband, Clarence, before he died in a Civil War battle. The letter was spiteful and full of harsh words. Now Della receives a visit from James Cameron, who served with Clarence during the war. Cameron gives Della her husband's final letter back to her, and tells her of the circumstances surrounding his death. He also has a secret he is unwilling to share with her. But as the two become emotionally close, he knows that he eventually must reveal everything to her. "With her classic flair and with great sensitivity," Ramsdell wrote, "Osborne has penned an intense story of two emotionally fragile people who find healing and hope in their love for each other." Harriet Klausner, in a review of Prairie Moon posted at the Best Reviews Web site, concluded: "This is another triumph for the magnificent Maggie."
Osborne once told CA: "I've been very fortunate. Unlike many writers I have no first novel tucked into a desk drawer somewhere. My first novel sold, thankfully, and I feel as if I've lived a Cinderella existence since, with autographs and speaking engagements. It's been unforgettable. I've had the pleasure of addressing writers' groups (beginners mostly) and one question continually arises: 'What would you advise the beginner?' I think the key is never to give up. Finer writers than I continue to go unpublished. This is a tough business with a great deal of rejection, but those who develop discipline and determination will eventually make it.
"My own most difficult problem is confidence. For reasons I can't even guess, the more success I have, the less confident I become. I want each published effort to reflect the best work I can do, but I'm never satisfied.
"I love writing. It frustrates me, maddens me, drives me wild, but I love it. I'm amazed when I receive a check for doing something I would do if I never received another penny. I get paid for daydreaming in print. What could be lovelier?"
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, September 15, 1998, Donna Seaman, review of The Best Man, p. 211; February 15, 1999, Catherine Sias, review of A Stranger's Wife, p. 1047; December 15, 1999, Deborah Rysso, review of Silver Lining, p. 761; September 15, 2000, Diana Tixier Herald, review of I Do, I Do, I Do, p. 223; September 15, 2001, Diana Tixier Herald, review of The Bride of Willow Creek, p. 209.
Library Journal, February 15, 2000, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Silver Lining, p. 149; November 15, 2001, Kristin Ramsdell, review of The Bride of Willow Creek, p. 56; November 15, 2002, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Prairie Moon, p. 59.
All About Romance Web site, http://www.likesbooks.com/ (December 10, 2002), Ellen D. Micheletti, review of I Do, I Do, I Do; Rachel Potter, review of The Bride of Willow Creek; Blythe Barnhill, review of Silver Lining; Laurie Shallah, review of A Wish . . . and a Kiss.
Best Reviews Web site, http://thebestreviews.com/ (October 1, 2002), Harriet Klausner, review of Prairie Moon.
Ivy Books Web site, http://ivyauthors.com/maggieosborne.html/ (December 10, 2002).
Romantic Times Book Club Web site, http://www.romantictimes.com/ (December 10, 2002).
Warner Books Web site, http://www.twbookmark.com/ (December 10, 2002).