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My Quarantine Reads.

This Quarantine life, am I right? I find reading about other time periods is somewhat of a balm to me, making me forget the stressful time we’re living in here. History always repeats itself, so if one looks in the past, there are moments we can learn from. Thus, historical fiction will always remain at the top of my list. I also just love reading them. Some of these have been released already, some are forthcoming–all are titles I can’t wait to get my grubby little hands on, lol!

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Spanning nearly a century, from 1930s Siberia to contemporary Brighton Beach, a page-turning, epic family saga centering on three generations of women in one Russian Jewish family―each striving to break free of fate and history, each yearning for love and personal fulfillment―and how the consequences of their choices ripple through time.

Odessa, 1931. Marrying the handsome, wealthy Edward Gordon, Daria―born Dvora Kaganovitch―has fulfilled her mother’s dreams. But a woman’s plans are no match for the crushing power of Stalin’s repressive Soviet state. To survive, Daria is forced to rely on the kindness of a man who takes pride in his own coarseness.

Odessa, 1970. Brilliant young Natasha Crystal is determined to study mathematics. But the Soviets do not allow Jewish students―even those as brilliant as Natasha―to attend an institute as prestigious as Odessa University. With her hopes for the future dashed, Natasha must find a new purpose―one that leads her into the path of a dangerous young man.

Brighton Beach, 2019. Zoe Venakovsky, known to her family as Zoya, has worked hard to leave the suffocating streets and small minds of Brighton Beach behind her―only to find that what she’s tried to outrun might just hold her true happiness.

Moving from a Siberian gulag to the underground world of Soviet refuseniks to oceanside Brooklyn, The Nesting Dolls is a heartbreaking yet ultimately redemptive story of circumstance, choice, and consequence―and three dynamic unforgettable women, all who will face hardships that force them to compromise their dreams as they fight to fulfill their destinies.

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Catherine House is a school of higher learning like no other. Hidden deep in the woods of rural Pennsylvania, this crucible of reformist liberal arts study with its experimental curriculum, wildly selective admissions policy, and formidable endowment, has produced some of the world’s best minds: prize-winning authors, artists, inventors, Supreme Court justices, presidents. For those lucky few selected, tuition, room, and board are free. But acceptance comes with a price. Students are required to give the House three years—summers included—completely removed from the outside world. Family, friends, television, music, even their clothing must be left behind. In return, the school promises a future of sublime power and prestige, and that its graduates can become anything or anyone they desire.

Among this year’s incoming class is Ines Murillo, who expects to trade blurry nights of parties, cruel friends, and dangerous men for rigorous intellectual discipline—only to discover an environment of sanctioned revelry. Even the school’s enigmatic director, Viktória, encourages the students to explore, to expand their minds, to find themselves within the formidable iron gates of Catherine. For Ines, it is the closest thing to a home she’s ever had. But the House’s strange protocols soon make this refuge, with its worn velvet and weathered leather, feel increasingly like a gilded prison. And when tragedy strikes, Ines begins to suspect that the school—in all its shabby splendor, hallowed history, advanced theories, and controlled decadence—might be hiding a dangerous agenda within the secretive, tightly knit group of students selected to study its most promising and mysterious curriculum.

Combining the haunting sophistication and dusky, atmospheric style of Sarah Waters with the unsettling isolation of Kazuo Ishiguro’s Never Let Me Go, Catherine House is a devious, deliciously steamy, and suspenseful page-turner with shocking twists and sharp edges that is sure to leave readers breathless.

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A striking historical novel about an ordinary young British woman sent to uncover a network of spies and war criminals in post-war Germany that will appeal to fans of The Huntress and Transcription.

World War II has just ended, and Britain has established the Control Commission for Germany, which oversees their zone of occupation. The Control Commission hires British civilians to work in Germany, rebuild the shattered nation, and prosecute war crimes. Somewhat aimless, bored with her job as a provincial schoolteacher, and unwilling to live with her overbearing mother any longer, thirtysomething Edith Graham applies for a job with the Commission—but she is also recruited by her cousin, Leo, who is in the Secret Service. To them, Edith is perfect spy material…single, ordinary-looking, with a college degree in German. Cousin Leo went to Oxford with one of their most hunted war criminals, Count Kurt von Stavenow, who Edith remembers all too well from before the war. He wants her to find him.

Intrigued by the challenge, Edith heads to Germany armed with a convincing cover story: she’s an unassuming Education Officer sent to help resurrect German schools. To send information back to her Secret Service handlers in London, Edith has crafted the perfect alter ego, cookbook author Stella Snelling, who writes a popular magazine cookery column. She embeds crucial intelligence within the recipes she collects. But occupied Germany is awash with other spies, collaborators, and opportunists, and as she’s pulled into their world, Edith soon discovers that no one is what they seem to be. The closer she gets to uncovering von Stavenow’s whereabouts–and the network of German civilians who still support him–the greater the danger.

With a unique, compelling premise, Miss Graham’s Cold War Cookbook is a beautifully crafted and gripping novel about daring, betrayal, and female friendship.

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Is he a hero or a traitor? Based on astonishing true events set in the darkest days of World War II in Budapest, this is an enthralling story of heroism, vengeance, passion, and betrayal. It is also the story of three women linked by a secret that threatens to destroy their lives. For readers of The Tattooist of AuschwitzAll That I Am and Schindler’s Ark (List).

An act of heroism, the taint of collaboration, a doomed love affair, and an Australian woman who travels across the world to discover the truth…

It is 1944 in Budapest and the Germans have invaded. Jewish journalist Miklos Nagy risks his life and confronts the dreaded Adolf Eichmann in an attempt to save thousands of Hungarian Jews from the death camps. But no one could have foreseen the consequences…

It is 2005 in Sydney, and Annika Barnett sets out on a journey that takes her to Budapest and Tel Aviv to discover the truth about the mysterious man who rescued her grandmother in 1944.

By the time her odyssey is over, history has been turned on its head, past and present collide, and the secret that has poisoned the lives of three generations is finally revealed in a shocking climax that holds the key to their redemption.

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Acclaimed author Elise Hooper explores the gripping, real-life history of female athletes, members of the first integrated women’s Olympic team, and their journeys to the 1936 summer games in Berlin, Nazi Germany. Perfect for readers who love untold stories of amazing women, such as The Only Woman in the Room, Hidden Figures, and The Lost Girls of Paris.

In the 1928 Olympics, Chicago’s Betty Robinson competes as a member of the first-ever women’s delegation in track and field. Destined for further glory, she returns home feted as America’s Golden Girl until a nearly-fatal airplane crash threatens to end everything.

Outside of Boston, Louise Stokes, one of the few black girls in her town, sees competing as an opportunity to overcome the limitations placed on her. Eager to prove that she has what it takes to be a champion, she risks everything to join the Olympic team.

From Missouri, Helen Stephens, awkward, tomboyish, and poor, is considered an outcast by her schoolmates, but she dreams of escaping the hardships of her farm life through athletic success. Her aspirations appear impossible until a chance encounter changes her life.

These three athletes will join with others to defy society’s expectations of what women can achieve. As tensions bring the United States and Europe closer and closer to the brink of war, Betty, Louise, and Helen must fight for the chance to compete as the fastest women in the world amidst the pomp and pageantry of the Nazi-sponsored 1936 Olympics in Berlin.

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The New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker returns to her most famous heroine, Mary Todd Lincoln, in this compelling story of love, loss, and sisterhood rich with history and suspense.

In May 1875, Elizabeth Todd Edwards reels from news that her younger sister Mary, former First Lady and widow of President Abraham Lincoln, has attempted suicide.

Mary’s shocking act followed legal proceedings arranged by her eldest and only surviving son that declared her legally insane. Although they have long been estranged, Elizabeth knows Mary’s tenuous mental health has deteriorated through decades of trauma and loss. Yet is her suicide attempt truly the impulse of a deranged mind, or the desperate act of a sane woman terrified to be committed to an asylum? And—if her sisters can put past grievances aside—is their love powerful enough to save her?

Maternal Elizabeth, peacemaker Frances, envious Ann, and much adored Emilie had always turned to one another in times of joy and heartache, first as children, and later as young wives and mothers. But when Civil War erupted, the conflict that divided a nation shattered their family. The Todd sisters’ fates were bound to their husbands’ choices as some joined the Lincoln administration, others the Confederate Army.

Now, though discord and tragedy have strained their bonds, Elizabeth knows they must come together as sisters to help Mary in her most desperate hour.

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For fans of The Nightingale and All the Light We Cannot See, a spellbinding story of an impossible love set against the backdrop of the Nazi regime.

She must choose between loyalty to her country or a love that could be her destruction…

As the dutiful daughter of a high-ranking Nazi officer, Hetty Heinrich is keen to play her part in the glorious new Thousand Year Reich. But she never imagines that all she believes and knows about her world will come into stark conflict when she encounters Walter, a Jewish friend from the past, who stirs dangerous feelings in her. Confused and conflicted, Hetty doesn’t know whom she can trust and where she can turn to, especially when she discovers that someone has been watching her.

Realizing she is taking a huge risk—but unable to resist the intense attraction she has for Walter—she embarks on a secret love affair with him. Together, they dream about when the war will be over and plan for their future. But as the rising tide of anti-Semitism threatens to engulf them, Hetty and Walter will be forced to take extreme measures.

Will the steady march of dark forces destroy Hetty’s universe—or can love ultimately triumph…?

Propulsive, deeply affecting, and inspired by the author’s family history, Daughter of the Reich is a mesmerizing page-turner filled with vivid characters and a meticulously researched portrait of Nazi Germany. In this riveting story of passion, courage, and morality, Louise Fein introduces a bold young woman determined to tread the treacherous path of survival and freedom, showing readers the strength in the power of love and reminding us that the past must never be forgotten.

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For readers of The Alice Network and The Lost Girls of Paris, an immersive, heart-pounding debut about a German heiress on the run in post-World War II Germany.

Clara Falkenberg, once Germany’s most eligible and lauded heiress, earned the nickname “the Iron Fräulein” during World War II for her role operating her family’s ironworks empire. It’s been nearly two years since the war ended and she’s left with nothing but a false identification card and a series of burning questions about her family’s past. With nowhere else to run to, she decides to return home and take refuge with her dear friend, Elisa.

Narrowly escaping a near-disastrous interrogation by a British officer who’s hell-bent on arresting her for war crimes, she arrives home to discover the city in ruins, and Elisa missing. As Clara begins tracking down Elisa, she encounters Jakob, a charismatic young man working on the black market, who, for his own reasons, is also searching for Elisa. Clara and Jakob soon discover how they might help each other—if only they can stay ahead of the officer determined to make Clara answer for her actions during the war.

Propulsive, meticulously researched, and action-fueled, The German Heiress is a mesmerizing page-turner that questions the meaning of justice and morality, deftly shining the spotlight on the often-overlooked perspective of Germans who were caught in the crossfire of the Nazi regime and had nowhere to turn.

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If you love Jennifer Robson or The Crown you will love New York Times bestselling author Karen Harper’s novel about Elizabeth, The Queen Mother.

1939. As the wife of King George VI and the mother of the future queen, Elizabeth—“the queen mother”—shows a warm, smiling face to the world. But it’s no surprise that Hitler himself calls her the “Most Dangerous Woman in Europe.” For behind that soft voice and kindly demeanor is a will of steel.

Two years earlier, George was thrust onto the throne when his brother Edward abdicated, determined to marry his divorced, American mistress Mrs. Simpson. Vowing to do whatever it takes to make her husband’s reign a success, Elizabeth endears herself to the British people, and prevents the former king and his brazen bride from ever again setting foot in Buckingham Palace.

Elizabeth holds many powerful cards, she’s also hiding damaging secrets about her past and her provenance that could prove to be her undoing.

In this riveting novel of royal secrets and intrigue, Karen Harper lifts the veil on one of the world’s most fascinating families, and how its “secret weapon” of a matriarch maneuvered her way through one of the most dangerous chapters of the century.

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WWW Wednesday!

It’s 8.11 pm here, I made it! I was going to post my Top Ten Tuesday yesterday but I honestly forgot until after midnight. So next week I’ll have two or maybe I’ll post something tomorrow. Anyway, here I am! I actually made it! Go me! I would have posted earlier but I needed to reorganize my bookshelves and I had a doctor’s appointment. (I’m good, guys! Just a touch of anemia again. Bah.)

I am currently reading two books at once! I used to be able to do it no issue but now? I sometimes find that my worlds will blend. Fortunately, that hasn’t happened. First, I am reading ‘Mirror, Mirror’ by Gregory Maguire. Its a retelling of Snow White but it features Cesare and Lucrezia Borgia. I love the Borgias; I think they’re so fascinating. Mr. Maguire is the genius behind Wicked and this is actually the first book by him that I”ve read, though I do have Wicked.

My second read is The Silence of the Girls by Pat Barker, which tells The Iliad as seen through the eyes of Briseis, who was taken as Achilles’s slave after the sack of Lyrnessus. (You have no idea how hard it was to remember the name of that, lol.) It’s a very fascinating story thus far; I have only read the first four chapters, but I am very intrigued and look forward to reading more.

I’ve finished reading quite a few things lately; I’ve just posted their reviews in the last few days. I am Mrs. Jesse James, Daughter of a Daughter of a Queen. I have another review being posted tomorrow. Stay tuned! 😉  I just finished Three Dark Reigns too! I almost forgot to mention that. I am such a fangirl now. I bought the next in the series and the novellas, which were put together in one book. I need to get the newest one that was just released. (They didn’t have it yet! lol.)

I am planning to read…

I received both of them in the mail today and I’m just kind of fangirling as I do, haha. It actually made me glad I”m posting this late because I get to include my excitement over these. I also plan a reread of Dracul, which I can finally flail about to all of you. I have good things in store, I hope you’ll stick with me! ❤

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Top Ten Tuesday!

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I thought this would be a fun theme this week. I am sorry for my relative silence as of late; I’ve been distracted and trying to sort my head out. I hope this helps me somewhat and as always, I hope you guys like what I’ve written. Let me know your picks below!

1. Harry Potter. It should have been obvious that this would be my first choice. And yes, I consider them all as one. I would really be heartbroken if anything happened to them.

2. Beauty and the Beast related books. BatB is my favorite movie. It has been since I was five. I have the original story and a few other books that are retellings. Lost In A Book in particular, I really loved that one.

3. Little Women. I just upgraded to a hardcover this year. My paperback was falling apart completely and I decided to upgrade. It’s a well loved story and whistle I could replace it, I don’t want to.

4. Gone With The Wind. I need to upgrade to a hardcover, this one is falling apart too. It’s a book that got me through some trying times, some boring times, etc. Its another favorite.

5. Miss Peregrine’s boxed set. It’s a delightful series, different from my usual reads. It’s, well, peculiar. And I would be sad to lose them. (Especially since they’re hardcover and I got them on sale! Hardcovers are expensive, OK? Lol)

6. The Diary of Anne Frank. We had to read it in school and well, I still have my copy. It’s a bit beat up but I don’t honestly mind, given that it’s a story I think everyone should read.

7. The Great Gatsby. I read it for a Lit class I took. One of few college courses I took and I just got lost in the tale. Simply put? I love the story, old sport!

8. My autographed editions. I don’t have many but I would beside myself if I lost any.

9. Game of Thrones. Still waiting for the next season and the next book…may as well reread the series until one or the other comes out.

10. Stalking Jack the Ripper series. I think these are the books that made me realize, “hey, YA has come a long way!” and I am grateful for that because I was missing out.

Of course, if this was a natural disaster that happened in the blink of an eye, I would regretfully leave them behind because ultimately, they are replaceable. Whatever I like to think. It would be first and foremost

to get to safety with my parents and my dog, Tess. There’s a pic of her, my wee Beastie. (She’s the Queen in My House, don’t let me fool you, lol.)

Anywho! Enjoy your Tuesday and I hope this gets me out of my slump! If you have any book tags…help me out? Lol, be good! xx

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Happy Release Day to M.J Rose!

 

NYT bestselling author, M. J. Rose crafts a dazzling Jazz Age jewel–a novel of ambition, betrayal, and passion with TIFFANY BLUES. TIFFANY BLUES is now available! Check out the excerpt below, and pick up your copy of TIFFANY BLUES today!

 

TIFFANY BLUES Synopsis:

New York, 1924. Twenty‑four‑year‑old Jenny Bell is one of a dozen burgeoning artists invited to Louis Comfort Tiffany’s prestigious artists’ colony. Gifted and determined, Jenny vows to avoid distractions and romantic entanglements and take full advantage of the many wonders to be found at Laurelton Hall.

But Jenny’s past has followed her to Long Island. Images of her beloved mother, her hard-hearted stepfather, waterfalls, and murder, and the dank hallways of Canada’s notorious Andrew Mercer Reformatory for Women overwhelm Jenny’s thoughts, even as she is inextricably drawn to Oliver, Tiffany’s charismatic grandson.

As the summer shimmers on, and the competition between the artists grows fierce as they vie for a spot at Tiffany’s New York gallery, a series of suspicious and disturbing occurrences suggest someone knows enough about Jenny’s childhood trauma to expose her.

Supported by her closest friend Minx Deering, a seemingly carefree socialite yet dedicated sculptor, and Oliver, Jenny pushes her demons aside. Between stolen kisses and stolen jewels, the champagne flows and the jazz plays on until one moonless night when Jenny’s past and present are thrown together in a desperate moment, that will threaten her promising future, her love, her friendships, and her very life.

 

Grab your copy of TIFFANY BLUES here!

Amazon | Kindle | iBooks | B&N | Nook | Google Play

Kobo | Book Depository | IndieBound

 

 

EXCERPT:

March 13, 1957

Laurelton Hall, Laurel Hollow

Oyster Bay, New York

Once the present turns to past, all we have left are memories. Yes, sometimes we can stand where we stood, see our ghost selves, and relive moments of our life. See the shadow of the man we loved. Of the friend we cherished. Of the mentor who made all the difference. Our memories turn specific. The terrier that played by the shoreline, joyously running in the sand. We can remember the smell of the roses. Look at the azure water and see the glimmer of the sun on the opposite shore and hear a fleeting few bars of jazz still lingering in the air.

If you were the only girl in the world… Staring into the remains of what is left, I see ghosts of the gardens and woods, the gazebo, terraces, rooms ablaze with stained glass—everywhere we walked and talked and kissed and cried. With my eyes closed, I see it all in my mind, but when I open them, all of it is gone, up in flames.

Mr. Tiffany once told me that there is beauty even in broken things. Looking back, there is no question I would not be the artist I am if not for that lesson. But would he be able to salvage any beauty out of this destruction?

No, I never dreamed I’d come back to Laurelton Hall. The Xanadu where I came of age as both a woman and a painter. Where I found my heart’s desire and my palette’s power. Where depravity bloomed alongside beds and fields of flowers, where creativity and evil flowed with the water in the many fountains. Where the sun shone on the tranquil sea and the pool’s treacherous rock crystals reflected rainbows onto the stone patio. Where the glorious light streaming from Mr. Tiffany’s majestic stained glass illuminated the very deep darkness that had permeated my soul and lifted me out of despair. And where I found the love that sustained me and remained in my heart even after Oliver and I parted.

Standing here, smelling the acrid stench, looking at the felled trees with their charcoal bark, the carbon-coated stones and bent metal frames that once held the master’s windows, at the smoky, melting mess that was one of the greatest mansions on Long Island’s Gold Coast, I know I never will see it again, not how it was that magical and awful summer of 1924.

The fire is still hot in spots, and a tree branch snaps. My reverie is broken. Leaves rustle. Rubble falls. Glass crushes. Twigs crack. Then comes a whisper.

Jenny.

But it can’t be. The wind howling through a hollow tree trunk is playing a trick. Fooling me into thinking I am hearing his sapphire voice, its deep velvet tone.

As I listen to the repeated whisper—Jenny—I raise my hand to wipe at my tears and tell myself that it is the smoldering ash making my eyes water. The charms on my bracelet jingle as I lower my arm. And again the whisper… and again my name—Jenny.

 

“A lush, romantic historical mystery…a heroine to root for.” –Kristin Hannah, NYT bestselling author of The Nightingale

 

 

 

Add it to your Goodreads Now!

 

“[M.J. Rose] transports the reader into the past better than a time machine could accomplish” (The Associated Press).

 

 

About M. J. Rose

New York Times Bestseller, M.J. Rose grew up in New York City mostly in the labyrinthine galleries of the Metropolitan Museum, the dark tunnels and lush gardens of Central Park and reading her mother’s favorite books before she was allowed. She believes mystery and magic are all around us but we are too often too busy to notice… books that exaggerate mystery and magic draw attention to it and remind us to look for it and revel in it.

Her most recent novel TIFFANY BLUES (Atria/S&S) was chosen as an Indie Next Pick and takes place during the Jazz age at Louis Comfort Tiffany’s Long Island mansion/ art colony.

Rose’s work has appeared in many magazines including Oprah Magazine and she has been featured in the New York Times, Newsweek, WSJ, Time, USA Today and on the Today Show, and NPR radio. Rose graduated from Syracuse University, spent the ’80s in advertising, has a commercial in the Museum of Modern Art in NYC and since 2005 has run the first marketing company for authors – Authorbuzz.com

The television series PAST LIFE, was based on Rose’s novels in the Reincarnationist series. She is one of the founding board members of International Thriller Writers.

Website | Facebook

 

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Clarissa Explains It All: Blogging.

Cue the cheesy theme music.

I’ve officially sold out. I swore I’d never write a post like this, where I would use the name of that show.

My gym teacher in 7th grade and assistant principal in high school, Ms. Mulroy, still calls me that. She’s the only one I really don’t complain about because she’s awesome and she was my teacher, so I’m not going to be rude, haha. Anyway, this is going out to the new bloggers and some of us who need reminding.

I saw a few posts where several of you were being really hard on yourselves about how your pictures weren’t so great or your posts suck or…blah blah.

Stop. Stop! Seriously. Cut it out. [Have another 90’s reference! ;)]

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Let’s talk posts. There are no wrong, world ending ways to do things. You have to do them in your unique style. That’s what is going to draw people in. Be yourself. Be unique. Even if we are all doing similar memes, your unique style is what keeps people reading. Use your creativity. What would keep you coming back? Think about that and apply it to your blog. Make it something that you’d want to read.

Don’t be afraid to be honest. Say how you feel about something. If you didn’t like ‘x’ about a book, say so. But say why. Constructive criticism is a good thing. If you love it? Say so. Flail. Use pictures, use gifs, whatever! Get your point out in a comfortable, fun manner. Don’t be rude to be rude.

For your photos, if you want to edit them and you don’t have PhotoShop, Photofiltre and GIMP are free alternatives. Time and patience are great teachers. You will make mistakes. It’s OK though. Nobody is perfect. We have all been there. I’m still learning!

Often if I don’t know how to do something in PS, I look on DeviantArt because firstly, they have free resources that can help you to make things pop. And secondly, some have posted out thorough tutorials. Help is out there. I also recommend looking at other blogs to see what people have. It might strike your creative muse and hatch an idea.

Pixlr, PicMonkey, and Lunapic are three sites for quick, easy fixes. I love Pixlr. It’s my go to. I even have the app on my phone.

Don’t be afraid to laugh at your mistakes. Been there, done that. Some mistakes are funny! Don’t react like I did the first time, which wasn’t too amusing. I admit, I cried, when I saw that I had made a huge error. But now, you laugh at yourself, you fix it, you move on. Don’t let it effect you to the point that you quit or think you’re not good good enough. No one is perfect. Don’t add that pressure to yourself.

I don’t think I can add more to this than just remember to have a lot of fun. The moment this becomes a chore, go on a break. Come back if you want to. You just have to have a lot of fun because that’s what this is about.

 

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Book of the Month!

It’s my favorite day of the month (after payday)! I get to pick out my Book of the Month selection! This month I went with two; I’d have gone with three, but I didn’t have enough. However, I wanted to share what I picked and I wanted to know who here is a member or not and what you picked!

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My first choice, the Air You Breathe, has been on my radar for a while. I’ve been excited to read it and when I saw the opportunity, I grabbed it. This is the synopsis:

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Skinny, nine-year-old orphaned Dores is working in the kitchen of a sugar plantation in 1930s Brazil when in walks a girl who changes everything. Graça, the spoiled daughter of a wealthy sugar baron, is clever, well fed, pretty, and thrillingly ill-behaved. Born to wildly different worlds, Dores and Graça quickly bond over shared mischief, and then, on a deeper level, over music.

One has a voice like a songbird; the other feels melodies in her soul and composes lyrics to match. Music will become their shared passion, the source of their partnership and their rivalry, and for each, the only way out of the life to which each was born. But only one of the two is destined to be a star. Their intimate, volatile bond will determine each of their fortunes—and haunt their memories.

Traveling from Brazil’s inland sugar plantations to the rowdy streets of Lapa in Rio de Janeiro, from Los Angeles during the Golden Age of Hollywood back to the irresistible drumbeat of home, The Air You Breathe unfurls a moving portrait of a lifelong friendship—its unparalleled rewards and lasting losses—and considers what we owe to the relationships that shape our lives.

Pre-Order!

AMAZON

BARNES & NOBLE

BAM

INDIEBOUND

IBOOKS

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If Diane Guerrero looks familiar, you  may have seen her on Orange Is The New Black and/or Jane The Virgin. She’s an actress definitely on the rise and an activist. GIven the state of things, I thought her story would be a good read. She was fourteen and at school when her family was arrested and deported, leaving her alone in the USA whilst they were back in Colombia.

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Diane Guerrero, the television actress from the megahit Orange is the New Black and Jane the Virgin, was just fourteen years old on the day her parents were detained and deported while she was at school. Born in the U.S., Guerrero was able to remain in the country and continue her education, depending on the kindness of family friends who took her in and helped her build a life and a successful acting career for herself, without the support system of her family.

In the Country We Love is a moving, heartbreaking story of one woman’s extraordinary resilience in the face of the nightmarish struggles of undocumented residents in this country. There are over 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the US, many of whom have citizen children, whose lives here are just as precarious, and whose stories haven’t been told. Written with bestselling author Michelle Burford, this memoir is a tale of personal triumph that also casts a much-needed light on the fears that haunt the daily existence of families likes the author’s and on a system that fails them over and over.

BUY THE BOOK!
Buy In The Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero at Amazon Buy In The Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero at Barnes & Noble Buy In The Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero at indiebound Buy the ebook edition of In The Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero at the Apple iBookstore Buy the Kobo Reader edition of In The Country We Love: My Family Divided by Diane Guerrero

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I don’t know if it’s available in all countries, but if it is, I highly recommend you joining. The choices curated monthly are choice picks, really fantastic and beautiful reads. They offer five, you can choose three. They also have books from prior months too.

I am shamellesly plugging my referral link here too. If you join through there, you get a free book…and I do too. But if you click that logo there, it’ll direct you to the site.

Happy Reading!!

 

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July’s Mailbox.

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I thought I’d do a little July mailbox post. I didn’t get loads of books this month but that’s quite alright, I don’t mind it. I did get some good ones that I am chuffed to share with you. Harper Collins, as ever, has been very generous and I am thankful. I have met many lovely people who work for Harper and enjoy corresponding with them. So let’s begin here.

I didn’t think I would get any of them but you’ll imagine how delighted I was to get them.

These two are out of my usual wheelhouse but seemed very very interesting. It’s hard to step away from the genre I love but I have to admit, Rush definitely looks like an amazing read. I’ll have a spotlight up later so you guys can tell me what you think.

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This one I am absolutely over the moon. I’m going to be part of the blog tour for it, so I’ll have a review and all of that fantastic stuff for you soon. It tells us about Cathy Williams, who was born a slave but ran off and disguised herself as a man so she could serve in the Union Army. It’s a true story and well, I am here for it!

Now this one, I am seriously overly excited about (I totally flailed, you guys know me!) because I was literally just telling you about this upcoming release. Stephanie is a wonderful writer but also a beyond amazing person. The postcard features Sagamore Hill, where the Roosevelt family lived.

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Top Ten Tuesday!

ttt-big2It’s Top Ten Tuesday!

I can’t believe it’s Tuesday again–and the last one of July. I swear, the year is just flying by. Next thing I know, it’ll be my birthday, then Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, then hello 2019! Whew. I always joke that my birthday kicks off the holiday season. (Yes, I know it doesn’t!) Honestly though. The older I get, the faster time goes. Or at least, that’s how I feel.

I decided to pick ten of my favorite book covers this week and I put them in a pretty collage. You can click on each image to enlarge them and get a better view. This is a relatively short post, I know, but I think the covers speak for themselves, y’know? They’re simple but they’re quite beautiful. To pick my favorite amongst them would be exceedingly difficult. Thus, I picked these ten.

What are your favorites? Let me know down below!

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Mystery Blogger Award!

captureI won an award today! I am so flattered and I owe thanks to the amazing Andrea at Andrea’s Nirvana today for this one. 🙂 I am always honored when one of my fellow bloggers thinks enough of me to send me one. It’s sometimes a lonely thing, blogging. But then when people like or comment on your posts, it feels worth it. And the days you get an award, you can’t help but feel pretty special. I had a rough day yesterday, with WordPress trying to delete me. (Apparently, I had violated the terms of service, though I have no idea how? But fortunately, they reinstated me.) So thank you a million times, Andrea, you really made my day!

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  • Put the award logo/image on your blog
  • List the rules.
  • Thank whoever nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Mention the creator of the award (Okoto Enigma @ Okoto Enigma’s Blog)
  • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself and answer the questions given by the person who tagged you
  • Nominate 10 – 20 people
  • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog
  • Ask your nominees any 5 questions of your choice; with one weird or funny question (specify)
  • Share a link to your best post(s)

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My best and most popular post seems to be my ‘Why I Hate Fifty Shades‘ one! It’s kind of amusing to me but I am definitely not complaining. I like the dialogue it created. I liked knowing I wasn’t alone in how I felt. Granted, I”m sure people disagreed, but none felt the need to troll and bash me, so I’ll take that as a win any day of the week.

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Andrea asked me five questions…

  1. Favorite magic system? 

    I was going to say Floo Powder, but I think Apparating would be rather handy. Unless you get spliced…

  2. Favorite post to write?
    I swear, you’re going to laugh, but my favorite post was my Why I Hate Fifty Shades. I felt much better once I got it out of my system and that there were other people who felt the same.
    Other posts that are my favorites are my interview with C. W. Gortner, my features in books I’m SUPER excited for. It’s like picking a child, stop making me choose! Lol.
  3. Last song you listened to?

    This one!  It’s a Linkin Park remix and it’s so damn good.

  4. Weirdest dream you ever had?

    I became Pope. That was pretty weird. But definitely interesting!

  5. Did it ever happen that you made up a memory? Or that you feel like a memory is made up?

    I swear my parents make up stuff about me, haha. But honestly, knowing myself as I do, I can’t say that they’re made up, they’re true. I was a bit of a character as a kid and I still am now.

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  1. I don’t plan on ever having children. I love them, but they’re not for me. I can barely take care of myself! I find it so weird when people remind me that ‘the clock is ticking!’ Um, no, it’s not. The clock was never started for that.
  2. I collect postcards! I love them. I would love more, so if any of you would like to exchange postcards, I’m totally down to send you one from here. 🙂
  3. My left eye is bigger than my right eye. There. That’s a thing you know now.

 

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1. Here’s my ‘funny’ question. If you had to pick a song from a Disney movie to describe your life, which would you pick and why?

2. My weird question. Team Edward or Team Jacob?! lmao. No, who is your book crush and why?

3. What is the worst book you have ever read?

4. What is the ugliest book cover you’ve ever seen?

5. Do you like to listen to music when you read?

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Sara @ The Bibliophagist
Siobhan @ I  Am A Book Drunkard
Jen @  The Bibliofile Book Reviews
Kiersten Once Upon A Spine
Ashley @ Book Tales
Kristyn (The Bibliophile Empress)
Becky @ Velvet Spade Reads
Justine @ Bookish Wisps
Erik McManus | Breakeven Books
Brianna @ Brianna the Bookworm

Uncategorized

Another Woman’s Husband: A Spotlight.

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  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
  • Publish Date: August 21, 2018

As the world mourns the loss of Diana, Princess of Wales, one young woman uncovers a forgotten story of passion, betrayal, and a scandal surrounding the British crown in this unforgettable novel by the bestselling author of The Secret Wife.

Two women who challenged the Crown.

Divided by time. Bound by a secret…

1911: When fifteen-year-old Mary Kirk meets Wallis Warfield at summer camp, she’s immediately captivated by her fearless, brazen, and self-assured personality. And Wallis has a way with the boys who are drawn to her like moths to a flame. Though Mary’s family isn’t crazy about her new best friend, she steadfastly stands by her side—even years later when they’re adults and rumors swirl about Wallis and her reckless behavior with none other than the Prince of Wales. But when Mary’s loyalty to Wallis comes into question, their friendship will be put to the ultimate test.

1997: After a romantic proposal in Paris, Rachel and her fiancé Alex are in a cab when suddenly the car ahead crashes. They’re stunned to learn Princess Diana is in the car. By the wreckage, Alex finds a heart pendant with an engraved letter “J” and Roman numerals XVII and gives it to Rachel to hold. Haunted by the crash and Diana’s subsequent death, Rachel is intrigued when she discovers that Di had visited the last home of Wallis, the Duchess of Windsor, only hours before the accident. Eventually, the revelation of a long-forgotten link to Wallis Simpson leads Rachel to the truth behind a scandal that shook the world…

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AMAZON || BOOKS-A-MILLION || INDIE BOUND || BARNES & NOBLE

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Gill Paul is an author of historical fiction, specialising in recent history. Her new novel, The Secret Wife, is about the romance between cavalry officer Dmitri Malama and Grand Duchess Tatiana, the second daughter of Russia’s last tsar, who first met in 1914. It’s also about a young woman in 2016 deciding whether to forgive her husband after an infidelity.

Gill’s other novels include Women and Children First, about a young steward who works on the Titanic; The Affair, set in Rome in 1961–62 as Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton fall in love while making Cleopatra; and No Place for a Lady, about two Victorian sisters who travel out to the Crimean War of 1854–56 and face challenges beyond anything they could have imagined.

Gill also writes historical non-fiction, including A History of Medicine in 50 Objects (to be published 1st October 2016) and a series of Love Stories, each containing fourteen tales of real-life couples: how they met, why they fell for each other, and what happened in the end. Published around the world, this series includes Royal Love Stories, World War I Love Stories and Titanic Love Stories.

Gill was born in Scotland and grew up there, apart from an eventful year at school in West Virginia when she was ten. She studied Medicine at Glasgow University, then English Literature and History (she was a student for a long time), before moving to London to work in publishing. She started her own company producing books for publishers, along the way editing such luminaries as Griff Rhys Jones, John Suchet, John Julius Norwich, Ray Mears and Eartha Kitt. She also writes on health, nutrition and relationships.

Gill swims year-round in an open-air pond – “It’s good for you so long as it doesn’t kill you”– and is a devotee of Pilates. She also particularly enjoys travelling on what she calls “research trips” and attempting to match-make for friends.