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Cover Reveal with Heather Webb!

The Next Ship Home: A Novel of Ellis Island by Heather Webb

Publication Date: February 8, 2022
Sourcebooks Landmark
Genre: Historical Fiction

Ellis Island, 1902: Two women band together to hold America to its promise: “Give me your tired, your poor … your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…” A young Italian woman arrives on the shores of America, her sights set on a better life. That same day, a young American woman reports to her first day of work at the immigration center. But Ellis Island isn’t a refuge for Francesca or Alma, not when ships depart every day with those who are refused entry to the country and when corruption ripples through every corridor. While Francesca resorts to desperate measures to ensure she will make it off the island, Alma fights for her dreams of becoming a translator, even as women are denied the chance. As the two women face the misdeeds of a system known to manipulate and abuse immigrants searching for new hope in America, they form an unlikely friendship―and share a terrible secret―altering their fates and the lives of the immigrants who come after them. Inspired by true events and for fans of Kristina McMorris and Hazel Gaynor, The Next Ship Home holds up a mirror to our own times, deftly questioning America’s history of prejudice and exclusion while also reminding us of our citizens’ singular determination. This is a novel of the dark secrets of Ellis Island, when entry to “the land of the free” promised a better life but often delivered something drastically different, and when immigrant strength and female friendship found ways to triumph even on the darkest days.

Pre-order now!

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Add to your reading list!

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About the Author

Heather Webb is the USA Today Bestselling and award-winning author of historical fiction. In 2017, LAST CHRISTMAS IN PARIS won the Women’s Fiction Writers Association award, and in 2019, MEET ME IN MONACO was shortlisted for both the RNA award in the UK and also the Digital Book World Fiction prize. Up and coming, Heather’s new solo novel called THE NEXT SHIP HOME: A NOVEL OF ELLIS ISLAND is about unlikely friends that confront a corrupt system altering their fates and the lives of the immigrants who come after them, and it releases in Feb 2022. Also, look for her third collaboration with her beloved writing partner, Hazel Gaynor, THREE WORDS FOR GOODBYE, releasing this July! (2021) When not writing, Heather flexes her foodie skills, geeks out on pop culture and history, or looks for excuses to head to the other side of the world. For more information, please visit Heather’s website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Goodreads.

Cover Reveal Hosts

A Baker’s Perspective
A Girl Who Reads
Always With a Book
Book World Reviews
Books & Benches
Books, Ramblings, and Tea
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CelticLady’s Reviews
Clarissa Reads it All
Coffee and Ink
Crystal’s Library
Donna’s Book Blog
Girls Just Reading
girl-who-reads
Just One More Chapter
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Passages to the Past
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Reading is My Remedy
Reading the Past
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With A Book In Our Hands

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Wolf: A Review.

Wolf: A Novel
by Herbert J. Stern & Alan A. Winter

Publication Date: February 11, 2020
Skyhorse
Hardcover & eBook; 552 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

 

 

In the Great Tradition of Herman Wouk, Author of Winds of War and War and Remembrance, Wolf is a Thoroughly Researched and Illustrated Historical Novel about a Man who is Not Yet a Monster . . . but Will Soon Become the Ultimate One: Adolf Hitler.

Perhaps no man on Earth is more controversial, more hated, or more studied than Adolf Hitler. His exploits and every move are well-documented, from the time he first became chancellor and then-dictator of Germany to starting World War II to the systematic killing of millions of Jews. But how did he achieve power, and what was the makeup of the mind of a man who would deliberately inflict unimaginable horrors on millions of people?

Meet Friedrich Richard, an amnesiac soldier who, in 1918, encounters Hitler in the mental ward at Pasewalk Hospital. Hitler, then a corporal, diagnosed as a psychopath and helpless, suffering from hysterical blindness, introduces himself as Wolf to Friedrich and becomes dependent upon Friedrich for assistance, forming an unbreakable bond between the two men.

Follow Friedich—our protagonist—who interacts with real people, places, and events, through the fifteen-year friendship that witnesses Hitler turn from a quiet painter into a megalomaniacal dictator. Using brand-new historical research to construct a realistic portrait of the evolving Hitler, Wolf will satisfy, by turns, history buffs and fiction fans alike. And as this complex story is masterfully presented, it answers the question of how a nondescript man became the world’s greatest monster.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

Praise

“Adolf Hitler anointed himself with the name, Wolf, then plotted and connived with remorseless determination to become Der Fuhrer, Dictator, Savior of the Fatherland. As in ancient Greek drama, we know the ending to the story. The riddle is how we get there….A Hitler we did not know existed emerges page by page, all his bits and pieces, certain of his role as Savior of Germany, evil, driven, shrewd, an unrepentant, serial seducer of teenage girls, surrounded by toadies as ruthless as himself but not nearly so smart—his rise and words an unnerving parallel as we witness the continued erosion of democracy today in our own sweet land. Put this book on the shelf with Ludlum, Michener, and Clavell. Wolf deserves to be in their company.” —Stephen Foreman, author of Toehold, Watching Gideon, and Journey, and screenwriter of The Jazz Singer, Hostage, and America the Beautiful

“Based on extensive research, the extraordinary novel Wolf, by Herbert J. Stern and Alan A. Winter, lifts the curtain so that the reader can observe through the eyes of a fictional character how a seemingly unremarkable corporal who was denied a promotion for lack of ‘leadership ability’ became dictator of Germany. The result is a gripping page-turner, a masterful historical novel.” —The Jewish Voice

“Wolf offers a front row seat to the Nazi Party’s early years, expertly using the fictional protagonist Friedrich Richard to take the reader on a fifteen-year journey from the end of the First World War to Adolf Hitler’s seizure of absolute power in Germany. The reader experiences the gradual death of democracy in Weimar Germany like a slow-motion train wreck, equally fascinated and horrified. We all know how Hitler’s Thousand Year Reich ended, but Wolf shows us how the nightmare began. A compelling, thoroughly researched, and important work. Wolf is an impressive achievement. Exhaustively researched and richly detailed, it draws on new historical research to paint a fascinating portrait of Adolph Hitler that is more human and recognizable than most depictions—and thus even more chilling and sobering.” —Alex DeMille, co-author of The Deserter with bestselling author Nelson DeMille

“Wolf will incite intense discussion in historical circles and book clubs alike. It is a poignant, persuasive, and ultimately terrifying story of how one man came to bend the path of history through oppression and genocide by taking one step at a time.” —Amy Wilhelm, senior writer, Book Club Babble

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I first heard about this book when Amy, our tour organizer mentioned it was up for review. As I’ve still been somewhat of a slump, I was looking for something that would really engage my mind and keep me reading. A unique sounding novel, Wolf sounded promising. Well. I was not anticipating this. This is truly a stunning piece of literature. It’s riviting, fascinating and it draws you in. If you’re like me, you may try to see a human side to ‘Wolf.’

I know that sounds insane, so allow me a moment to explain, you always see Hitler as how he was as a dictator, at his full amount of power. But my mind always wonders, what led him to where he was? What was he like? Did something happen to get him there?

In Wolf, we see him and it is equal parts terrifying and interesting because as a reader, we know what he becomes. We know what lay ahead and it literally feels like a roller coaster that is heading off the rails–you’re not getting off. You’re far too involved and invested. It’s a truly astonishing.  The research gone  into this work is to be praised. I don’t think there’s anything about this that they didn’t research. I am always a sucker for good research.  It felt so real, so visceral. 

I learned so much and I also learned, there is no sense in trying to humanize him. I absolutely enjoyed this book and its unique view. It certainly opened up my eyes.

 

About the Authors

Herbert J. Stern, formerly US attorney for the District of New Jersey, who prosecuted the mayors of Newark, Jersey City and Atlantic City, and served as judge of the US District Court for the District of New Jersey, is a trial lawyer. He also served as judge of the United States Court for Berlin. There he presided over a hijacking trial in the occupied American Sector of West Berlin. His book about the case, Judgment in Berlin, won the 1974 Freedom Foundation Award and became a film starring Martin Sheen and Sean Penn. He also wrote Diary of a DA: The True Story of the Prosecutor Who Took on the Mob, Fought Corruption, and Won, as well as the multi-volume legal work Trying Cases to Win.

Alan A. Winter is the author of four novels, including Island Bluffs, Snowflakes in the Sahara, Someone Else’s Son, and Savior’s Day, which Kirkus selected as a Best Book of 2013. Winter graduated from Rutgers University with a degree in history and has professional degrees from both New York University and Columbia, where he was an associate professor for many years. He edited an award-winning journal and has published more than twenty professional articles. Alan studied creative writing at Columbia’s Graduate School of General Studies. His screenplay, Polly, received honorable mention in the Austin Film Festival, and became the basis for Island Bluffs.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, February 3
Review at Books and Zebras

Tuesday, February 4
Review at YA, It’s Lit

Wednesday, February 5
Excerpt at Donna’s Book Blog

Friday, February 7
Review at Tales from the Book Dragon

Saturday, February 8
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Monday, February 10
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Review & Excerpt at Clarissa Reads It All

Tuesday, February 11
Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, February 12
Feature at The Caffeinated Bibliophile

Thursday, February 13
Review at Impressions In Ink

Friday, February 14
Feature at CelticLady’s Reviews

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a paperback copy of Wolf! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on February 14th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is to the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

Wolf

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Spotlight: A Conspiracy of Wolves

A Conspiracy of Wolves
by Candace Robb

Publication Date: August 1, 2019
Severn House/Crème de la Crime
Hardcover & eBook; 256 Pages

Series: Owen Archer, Book 11
Genre: Historical Mystery

 

 

When a prominent citizen is murdered, former Captain of the Guard Owen Archer is persuaded out of retirement to investigate in this gripping medieval mystery.

1374. When a member of one of York’s most prominent families is found dead in the woods, his throat torn out, rumours spread like wildfire that wolves are running loose throughout the city. Persuaded to investigate by the victim’s father, Owen Archer is convinced that a human killer is responsible. But before he can gather sufficient evidence to prove his case, a second body is discovered, stabbed to death. Is there a connection? What secrets are contained within the victim’s household? And what does apprentice healer Alisoun know that she’s not telling?

Teaming up with Geoffrey Chaucer, who is in York on a secret mission on behalf of Prince Edward, Owen’s enquiries will draw him headlong into a deadly conspiracy.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

About the Author

I’m Candace Robb, a writer/historian engaged in creating fiction about the late middle ages with a large cast of characters with whom I enjoy spending my days. Two series, the Owen Archer mysteries and the Kate Clifford mysteries, are set in late medieval York. The Margaret Kerr trilogy is set in early 14th century Scotland, at the beginning of the Wars of Independence. Two standalone novels (published under pseudonym Emma Campion) expand on the lives of two women in the court of King Edward III who have fascinated me ever since I first encountered them in history and fiction.

I am a dreamer. Writing, gardening, walking, dancing, reading, being with friends—there’s always a dreaming element.

Website | Facebook | Twitter  | BookBub

Blog Tour Schedule

Thursday, August 1
Review at Book Frolic
Excerpt at Books In Their Natural Habitat

Friday, August 2
Review at A Book Geek

Saturday, August 3
Feature at The Writing Desk

Monday, August 5
Feature at Book Addict Rambles

Tuesday, August 6
Excerpt at Broken Teepee
Review at Chicks, Rogues and Scandals

Wednesday, August 7
Interview at Bookish Rantings

Thursday, August 8
Guest Post at Reading the Past
Review at Hoover Book Reviews

Friday, August 9
Feature at I’m All About Books
Excerpt at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Saturday, August 10
Feature at Clarissa Reads it All

Sunday, August 11
Excerpt at A Darn Good Read

Monday, August 12
Excerpt at Just One More Chapter
Review & Interview at Gwendalyn’s Books

Tuesday, August 13
Review at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, August 14
Guest Post at Words and Peace
Excerpt at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Thursday, August 15
Review at Coffee and Ink
Review at Book Reviews from Canada

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a Hardcover copy of A Conspiracy of Wolves by Candace Robb! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on August 15th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

Conspiracy of Wolves

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Happy Release Day: The Lost History of Dreams!!

Today is the publication day for Kris Waldherr’s THE LOST HISTORY OF DREAMS! In this captivating debut novel in the gothic tradition of Wuthering Heights and The Thirteenth Tale, a post-mortem photographer unearths dark secrets of the past that may hold the key to his future.


When famed Byronesque poet Hugh de Bonne is discovered dead in his bath one morning in 1850, the task of burying his body falls to his estranged cousin, historian turned postmortem photographer Robert Highstead. De Bonne’s will instructs that he should be buried in an unusual chapel, a stained glass folly set on the Shropshire moors, built to house the remains of his beloved wife and muse, Ada. It has since been locked to all outsiders—especially the rabid, cultlike fans of de Bonne’s final book, The Lost History of Dreams. Only Ada’s grief-stricken niece, Isabelle, holds the key—but she refuses to open the glass chapel unless Robert agrees to her bargain: Before he can lay Hugh to rest, Robert must record the real story behind her aunt’s ill-fated marriage over the course of five nights.

Sweeping and darkly atmospheric, THE LOST HISTORY OF DREAMS is a Gothic mystery about love and loss that blurs the line between past and present, truth and fiction, and ultimately, life and death. And remember, all love stories are ghost stories in disguise.

Now available at LostHistoryBook.com.

Read the first three chapters: Download EPUB | Download PDF | Read online

The Lost History of Dreams by Kris Waldherr

Publication Date: April 9, 2019
Atria Books
Hardcover & eBook; 320 Pages

Genre: Historical/Gothic/Mystery

A post-mortem photographer unearths dark secrets of the past that may hold the key to his future, in this captivating debut novel in the gothic tradition of Wuthering Heights and The Thirteenth Tale.

All love stories are ghost stories in disguise.

When famed Byronesque poet Hugh de Bonne is discovered dead of a heart attack in his bath one morning, his cousin Robert Highstead, a historian turned post-mortem photographer, is charged with a simple task: transport Hugh’s remains for burial in a chapel. This chapel, a stained glass folly set on the moors of Shropshire, was built by de Bonne sixteen years earlier to house the remains of his beloved wife and muse, Ada. Since then, the chapel has been locked and abandoned, a pilgrimage site for the rabid fans of de Bonne’s last book, The Lost History of Dreams.

However, Ada’s grief-stricken niece refuses to open the glass chapel for Robert unless he agrees to her bargain: before he can lay Hugh to rest, Robert must record Isabelle’s story of Ada and Hugh’s ill-fated marriage over the course of five nights.

As the mystery of Ada and Hugh’s relationship unfolds, so does the secret behind Robert’s own marriage—including that of his fragile wife, Sida, who has not been the same since the tragic accident three years ago, and the origins of his own morbid profession that has him seeing things he shouldn’t—things from beyond the grave.

Kris Waldherr effortlessly spins a sweeping and atmospheric gothic mystery about love and loss that blurs the line between the past and the present, truth and fiction, and ultimately, life and death.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Books-a-Million | IndieBound

Praise for The Lost History of Dreams

“Scheherazade-like … haunting… Waldherr writes that ‘love stories are ghost stories in disguise.’ This one, happily, succeeds as both.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“An unexpected delight that grows steadily more compelling as its pages fly by.” —Booklist

“A sensual, twisting gothic tale that embraces Victorian superstition much in the tradition of A.S. Byatt’s Possession, Diane Setterfield’s The Thirteenth Tale and Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights.”—BookPage

“Eerily atmospheric and gorgeously written, The Lost History of Dreams is a Gothic fairy-tale to savor.” – Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of THE ALICE NETWORK and THE HUNTRESS

“The Lost History of Dreams is a dark, shimmering gem of a novel, glittering with love lost, secrets kept, and long-buried truths revealed. Wonder, memory, death and passion haunt every page of Kris Waldherr’s powerhouse Gothic debut.” – Greer Macallister, bestselling author of THE MAGICIAN’S LIE and WOMAN 99

“Brooding, romantic, and thoughtful, The Lost History of Dreams is a rare bird in that it shines throughout with wit. I loved every page of it.” – Erika Swyler, bestselling author of THE BOOK OF SPECULATION and LIGHT FROM OTHER STARS

“With luminous prose, stunning poetry and a fascinating cast of characters, Waldherr weaves a wonderfully atmospheric tale. Not to be missed!” – Hazel Gaynor, New York Times bestselling author of THE GIRL WHO CAME HOME and THE LIGHTHOUSE KEEPER’S DAUGHTER

“A riveting, addictive read. Sarah Waters fans will be entranced. – Mary Sharratt, author of ECSTASY and DAUGHTERS OF THE WITCHING HILL

“A novel of haunting mystery and passion reminiscent of Wuthering Heights and Byatt’s Possession.” – Crystal King, author of FEAST OF SORROW and THE CHEF’S SECRET

“An atmospheric tale of lost love, family secrets, and an inquiry into how our own histories define us, I relished every poetic page.” – Heather Webb, international bestselling author of LAST CHRISTMAS IN PARIS and THE PHANTOM’S APPRENTICE

“With beautiful prose and poetry, Waldherr weaves a darkly seductive Gothic tale of love, art, death, and obsession. You’ll want to keep reading this one late into the night.” – Alyssa Palombo, author of THE SPELLBOOK OF KATRINA VAN TASSEL

“A sumptuous feast for all the senses.” – Clarissa Harwood, author of IMPOSSIBLE SAINTS and BEAR NO MALICE

About the Author

Kris Waldherr is an award-winning author, illustrator, and designer. She is a member of the Historical Novel Society, and her fiction has been awarded with fellowships by the Virginia Center of the Creative Arts and a reading grant by Poets & Writers.

Kris Waldherr works and lives in Brooklyn in a Victorian-era house with her husband, the anthropologist-curator Thomas Ross Miller, and their young daughter.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | BookBub

Release Day Blast Hosts

100 Pages a Day
A Book Geek
A Chick Who Reads
Book Addict Rambles
Book Frolic
CelticLady’s Reviews
Chicks, Rogues and Scandals
Clarissa Reads it All
Coffee and Ink
Comet Readings
For the Sake of Good Taste
Historical Fiction with Spirit
Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots
Passages to the Past
The Book Junkie Reads
To Read, Or Not to Read

 

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A Light Of Her Own: A Review.

A Light of Her Own
by Carrie Callaghan

Publication Date: November 13, 2018
Amberjack Publishing
Hardcover; 320 Pages

Genre: Fiction/Historical/Biographical

 

 

In Holland 1633, a woman’s ambition has no place.

Judith is a painter, dodging the law and whispers of murder to become the first woman admitted to the prestigious Haarlem artist’s guild. Maria is a Catholic in a country where the faith is banned, hoping to absolve her sins by recovering a lost saint’s relic.

Both women’s destinies will be shaped by their ambitions, running counter to the city’s most powerful men, whose own plans spell disaster. A vivid portrait of a remarkable artist, A Light of Her Own is a richly-woven story of grit against the backdrop of Rembrandt and an uncompromising religion.

1

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

4Did you guys know that I am something of an art lover? It’s true. I absolutely adore art; I like many different artists and different styles, so when I have an opportunity to read a book featuring an artist that I like, I definitely try to take the chance. When I read that Judith Leyster was a featured character in this one, I jumped on this blog tour in a hot minute.

“Judith leaned against the small window ledge and looked inside. The frigid twilight air seeped past her cloak into her many layers of tunics and her well-worn bodice, and the painted ledge below her numb fingertips had dulled to the gray of a low sky. Behind the glass, the inn’s golden light beckoned, and though it was not yet suppertime, already drinkers dressed in shades of brown sat at small tables. Her teeth chattered with cold and nerves.” 

Thus, we meet her, waiting outside of a tavern for someone to sell a painting for her and to give her the coins. As she is not a Master, she is not allowed to sell her own work. Joining the Guild is damn near impossible, though eventually, she becomes one of two women to do so. Her talent is undeniable, particularly to Frans de Grebber, to whom she had been apprenticed to since she was thirteen. She is twenty-three at our meeting her. Dejected and disappointed, she makes her way back to him and her room that she shares with Maria, a fellow artist, and Frans’ daughter.

I absolutely adored this novel. I felt like Ms. Callaghan used words as a brush, painting the world for us and making it a vivid painting. I was delighted to be drawn back into the seventeenth century. She doesn’t hide anything, the grit, the hustle, and bustle, the patriarchy–everything was very male-dominated back then. Yet, despite all of the odds against her, Judith’s determination shines through. It is not a spoiler if you know the history that she achieves the goal of joining the Guild and becomes a Master herself. Only one woman previous to herself had attained such a goal.

Maria’s story is good, but I think it was wasted here; her heart wasn’t into art as much as it was into devotion to God. She was a devout Catholic in the very Protestant Netherlands. (Thus, she had to hide it.) I enjoyed it, but the spark wasn’t as bright as when Judith’s story was being told. I’d have rather just continued with Judith. There were moments where I felt that Maria was being childish and did not act her age. Whilst I know that life was cruel to her and she was trying to make up for something, I just found her sort of forgettable. Perhaps that is the curse of having such a vibrant, lively character in Judith? Whatever it was, I didn’t feel that much of a connection to Maria.

I love when someone takes history and writes a story from it, bringing it even more to life. So often stories are simply left to history, where they disappear and are footnotes. Judith shouldn’t be left to be forgotten. Hers is a story that everyone, especially those who love art should hear; they should learn about determination and how never to give up. I look forward to reading whatever Ms. Callaghan writes next.

3

Carrie Callaghan is a writer living in Maryland with her spouse, two young children, and two ridiculous cats. Her short fiction has appeared in Weave Magazine, The MacGuffin, Silk Road, Floodwall, and elsewhere. Carrie is also an editor and contributor with the Washington Independent Review of Books. She has a Master’s of Arts in International Affairs from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

For more information, please visit Carrie Callaghan’s website and blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, November 12
Feature at Naomi Finley’s Blog
Review at A Bookaholic Swede

Tuesday, November 13
Review at A Bookish Affair

Wednesday, November 14
Interview at A Bookish Affair

Thursday, November 15
Review at Broken Teepee

Friday, November 16
Review at View from the Birdhouse

Sunday, November 18
Review at Carole’s Ramblings

Monday, November 19
Review at Just One More Chapter
Feature at What Is That Book About

Tuesday, November 20
Review at A Chick Who Reads

Wednesday, November 21
Review at Clarissa Reads it All

Friday, November 23
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Monday, November 26
Review at History From a Woman’s Perspective

Tuesday, November 27
Review at What Cathy Read Next

Wednesday, November 28
Review at Pass Me That Book

Thursday, November 29
Interview at Passages to the Past

Friday, November 30
Review at Donna’s Book Blog

Monday, December 3
Review & Interview at Reading the Past

Tuesday, December 4
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Wednesday, December 5
Review at I’m Shelf-ish

Thursday, December 6
Interview at Let Them Read Books

Friday, December 7
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away 2 signed hardcovers of A Light of Her Own! To enter, please see the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on December 7th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to US residents only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

A Light of Her Own

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Spotlight: The Highlander Who Protected Me.

The Highlander Who Protected Me
by Vanessa Kelly

Publication Date: October 30, 2018
Kensington Books
Paperback & eBook; 352 Pages

Series: Clan Kendrick, #1
Genre: Historical Romance/Scottish

 

 

READ AN EXCERPT.

Bestselling author Vanessa Kelly returns with an enthralling new series about the men of the Kendrick clan—and the women who claim their hearts…

Lady Ainsley Matthews, heiress and darling of the ton, was expected to make a magnificent match. Instead she’s hiding on a remote Scottish estate, terrified that her vicious former fiancé will use her pregnancy to force her into marriage. One man can help her—Royal Kendrick, son of a distinguished Highland clan. Though a mistake drove them apart long ago, Royal is the only person Ainsley trusts to protect her baby—even if that means agreeing to never see either of them again . . .

Scarred in body and soul by war, Royal suddenly has a purpose—caring for an innocent babe and thereby helping the woman he can’t stop loving. But when Ainsley ultimately returns to Scotland, determined to be a real mother to her child in spite of the risk, there’s only one solution: marriage. And only one likely outcome: surrendering to the desire that’s simmered between them for so long, no matter how dangerous it may be…

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository | iBooks | Google Play | IndieBound | Kobo

About the Author

Vanessa Kelly is the award-winning and USA Today bestselling author of The Improper Princesses series, The Renegade Royals Series and The Stanton Family series, in addition to other historical romances. Named by Booklist as one of the “New Stars of Historical Romance,” she is a Maggie Medallion winner and is well known for developing vibrant Regency settings, appealing characters, and witty storylines that captivate readers.

When she’s not dreaming up plots for her next Regency historical novel, Vanessa is writing USA Today Bestselling contemporary romance with her husband under the pen name of V.K. Sykes.

You can find Vanessa at vanessakellyauthor.com or at vksykes.com. For all of Vanessa’s latest news and contests–and to receive a free story–please sign up for her newsletter on her website.

Clan Kendrick Facebook Group | Facebook Author Page | Pinterest | Twitter | Goodreads

Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, October 30
Feature at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, October 31
Review at Bibliophile Reviews

Thursday, November 1
Excerpt at What Is That Book About

Friday, November 2
Feature at Donna’s Book Blog
Excerpt at Clarissa Reads it All
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Monday, November 5
Review at Let Them Read Books

Tuesday, November 6
Feature at The Lit Bitch
Feature at CelticLady’s Reviews

Wednesday, November 7
Feature at Maiden of the Pages

Thursday, November 8
Review at A Bookish Affair

Friday, November 9
Excerpt at Bookfever
Interview at Passages to the Past

Monday, November 12
Feature at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Tuesday, November 13
Review at Pass Me That Book

Wednesday, November 14
Feature at The Book Review
Review at The Reading Woman

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a print copy of either Three Weeks with a Princess or The Highlander’s Princess Bride, plus a magnet, signed cover flats and a free digital download of the anthology, The Dukes of Vauxhall! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 14th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

The Highlander Who Protected Me

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Book Blast: A Different Kind Of Fire.

A Different Kind of Fire
by Suanne Schafer

Publication Date: November 1, 2018
Waldorf Publishing
Paperback & AudioBook

Genre: Historical Fiction

 

 

Ruby Schmidt has the talent, the drive, even the guts to enroll in art school, leaving behind her childhood home and the beau she always expected to marry. Her life at the Academy seems heavenly at first, but she soon learns that societal norms in the East are as restrictive as those back home in West Texas. Rebelling against the insipid imagery woman are expected to produce, Ruby embraces bohemian life. Her burgeoning sexuality drives her into a life-long love affair with another woman and into the arms of an Italian baron. With the Panic of 1893, the nation spirals into a depression, and Ruby’s career takes a similar downward trajectory. After thinking she could have it all, Ruby, now pregnant and broke, returns to Texas rather than join the queues at the neighborhood soup kitchen. She discovers her life back home is as challenging as that in Philadelphia.

A Different Kind of Fire depicts one woman’s battle to balance husband, family, career, and ambition. Torn between her childhood sweetheart, her forbidden passion for another woman, the nobleman she had to marry, and becoming a renowned painter, Ruby’s choices mold her in ways she could never have foreseen.

Amazon | Audible | Barnes & Noble | BookBub | Waldorf Publishing

Praise

“Writer Suanne Schafer spins a unique tale of a turn of the 19th century Texas heroine and her way of artistic expression. Her paintings shock her contemporaries and the love she’s drawn to shocks herself. A Different Kind of Fire depicts the journey of a determined woman to meet life on her own terms.” –Pamela Morsi, USAToday Bestselling Author of 26 books including The Cotton Queen and Bitsy’s Bait & BBQ

“If you love historical novels about women who throw off the shackles of feminine convention, then this book is for you. In spare but sensuous prose reminiscent of Cormac McCarthy and E. Annie Proulx, Schafer brings Ruby Schmidt to life–a woman who doesn’t belong in the late nineteenth century but gradually finds her place in the twentieth. You can’t help but root for Ruby as she grows from Texas farm girl, to a freethinker and lover of men and women in Philadelphia, and finally into a consummate artist. This is a powerful and deeply satisfying read.” –Helena Echlin, co-author of Sparked and author of Gone

“An exceptional first novel. Schafer has woven a cohesive tale from disparate elements–a stark life in the rugged countryside of 1890s Texas vs the gentility of an arts academy in the East; a traditional marriage and motherhood vs a secret and haunting sexuality. Unequivocally recommended!” –Michael R. Hardesty, Author of Amazon Best Seller, The Grace of the Ginkgo

“With rare artistry, Schafer paints a life both creative and cursed in A Different Kind of Fire.–Willa Blair, Award-winning Amazon and Barnes & Noble #1 bestselling author of His Highland Love, Highland Troth, Highland Seer, and ten other books

“The saga of a young woman determined to follow her dream, whatever obstacles cross her path.” –MJ Fredrick, author of A Texas Kind of Love, Smitten in a Small Town, and twenty-five other books, a two-time Epic Awards winner and a four-time RWA Golden Heart finalist

Suanne Schafer’s A Different Kind of Fire is a powerful story of a Gilded Age artist who brooks convention both in her art and her love. Read this book: It has both the depth of emotion of a modernist novel and the epic scope of a historical saga.–Alicia Rasley, author of The Year She Fell, an Amazon bestseller

“I absolutely LOVED A Different Kind of Fire. Suanne Schafer is a passionate writer with a gift to transport the reader back to the 1800’s. With her book in one hand and my iPad in the other, I learned so much about artists and their work. Ms. Schafer’s words are so visual, I actually watched the story play out with every riveting page I turned. Fantastic character development. There was no stone left unturned. “A Different Kind of Fire” gets a standing ovation and five stars from me. Five stars.” –Tracy Stopler, Award-winning author of The Ropes That Bind

“I was amazed by Suanne Schafer’s poetic and laconic turns of phrase. She has the gift of being simultaneously ornate and succinct, which is no easy task.” –Joshua Mohr, Author Sirens, All This Life, Fight Song, Damascus, Termite Parade, Somethings That Meant the World to Me

“Told in a rich, sensual, style, A Different Kind of Fire is a book about reconciling the irreconcilable. It is a book about boundaries: the dilemmas they place upon those would dare rise above them. The book is also a study in contrasts rather than a polemical treatise. Is Ruby a heroine or a victim?–a free spirit or a narcissist? These questions are ultimately left to the reader to decide.” –James Hanna, Author of The Siege, Call Me Pomeroy, and A Second, Less Head and Other Rogue Stories.

“Suanne Schafer’s A Different Kind of Fire tackles the sensitive subject of bisexuality in 19th century America with grace, compassion, and empathy through fully developed characters in a story readers will cherish long after the book ends.” –C.S. Fuqua, author of Walking after Midnight ~ Collected Stories

“An evocative and compelling story of a Texas-bred ranch girl-to-woman straddling the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, and her conflicting and sometimes illicit desires for her art, her lovers and the freedoms some women were just beginning to glimpse. Ferberesque in scope, A Different Kind of Fire harbors the twists and turns of a thriller and the braided threads of explosive affairs that cannot possibly coexist. Schafer’s marvelous book exudes undiminished spirit in the face of terrible loss.” –Guinotte Wise, author of Night Train, Cold Beer, winner of H. Palmer Hall Award

“Insightful, loving, and endearing, A Different Kind of Fire, will draw you in and keep you spellbound. Suanne Schafer weaves Ruby Schmidt’s journey from love in rural Texas to art school in sophisticated 1890s Philadelphia. Ruby’s struggles and triumphs over 100 years ago ring true to the challenges still faced by 21st century women.” –Kristine Mietzner, Founder, The Women Veterans Writing Workshop of California

About the Author

Suanne Schafer, born in West Texas at the height of the Cold War, finds it ironic that grade school drills for tornadoes and nuclear war were the same: hide beneath your desk and kiss your rear-end goodbye. Now a retired family-practice physician whose only child has fledged the nest, her pioneer ancestors and world travels fuel her imagination. She originally planned to write romances, but either as a consequence of a series of failed relationships or a genetic distrust of happily ever-after, her heroines are strong women who battle tough environments and intersect with men who might—or might not—love them.

Suanne completed the Stanford University Creative Writing Certificate program. Her short works have been featured in print and on-line magazines and anthologies. Her debut women’s fiction novel, A Different Kind of Fire, explores the life of Ruby Schmidt, a nineteenth century artist who escapes—and returns—to West Texas. Suanne’s next book explores the heartbreak and healing of an American physician caught up in the 1994 Rwandan genocide.

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Book Blast Schedule

Monday, October 29
Book Nerd
Creating Herstory
A Chick Who Reads
Passages to the Past
The Reading Woman

Tuesday, October 30
Jathan & Heather
CelticLady’s Reviews
The Book Junkie Reads
Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Historical Fiction with Spirit
So Many Books, So Little Time

Wednesday, October 31
A Book Geek
Umut Reviews
100 Pages a Day
Just One More Chapter
What Is That Book About

Thursday, November 1
Tea Book Blanket
Amy’s Booket List
Donna’s Book Blog
Clarissa Reads it All
What Cathy Read Next

Friday, November 2
The Writing Desk
Puddletown Reviews
Hoover Book Reviews
Locks, Hooks and Books

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away A Fiery Bookish Prize Pack, including a literary scarf, beaded velvet bookmark, a copy of A DIFFERENT KIND OF FIRE & $10 Amazon Gift Card! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 2nd. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to readers in the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen

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Uncategorized

Anna Belfrage: Guest Post.

Some things get to me. One of those things is the label “clean” which is used to refer to books that lack any sexual content. Why? Because per definition, the antonym to clean is dirty, ergo all books that do have sexual content are soiled and tawdry. I also find it interesting that there is a perceived need to label books as “clean” – sex-free – but should such novels contain violence, even brutal death, that’s okay. Readers, apparently, are more disturbed by explicit depictions of love-making than they are of murders. Isn’t that strange?

My books have sex in them – my protagonists are consenting adults in loving relationships, and in my experience such relationships tend to include sex. It’s a bit sad if they don’t. Do I perceive my books as dirty? Absolutely not. In my latest release, my leading couple would not have survived all that life throws in their way had they not had each other, and yes, they take great comfort and pleasure in each other.

Personally, I am not a major fan of these so called “clean reads”. He kissed her passionately, took her by the hand and led her to the waiting bed. “Tonight you shall be mine” he said. Turn the page and they’re having breakfast – a classic dot, dot, dot moment. Me, I feel short-changed. Someone slammed the bedroom door in my face just as things got interesting.

I do, however, fully respect that some people don’t want more detail than this. My gripe is with the label as such. I also find it somewhat amusing when “clean” is suddenly equated with “Christian”. What, so Christian people don’t have sex? Poor them… (Plus, I must hasten to add, I have several lovely Christian people among my friends who would never presume to judge – or are all that thrilled by the idea of “clean” books.)

Personally, I don’t think God objects to people having sex. I’m thinking there’s a lot of stuff out there that He finds far less palatable – such as all the violence perpetrated in His name.

“Wait, wait”, some people will say, “the clean label is really useful to ensure teenagers don’t read too much of the really hot and steamy stuff.” I’m not sure how to break this to all those concerned parents, but teenagers generally read what they want to read anyway – or watch explicit videos on youtube, or discover things for themselves when all those hormones brewing in their bodies take over. IMO, teenagers don’t need to be protected from sex. They need to be taught to set a high value on their bodies and on intimacy, so as to ensure they never do anything they don’t want to do.

I recently read a book in which there was a lot of violence. People died left, right and centre, and some of these killing machines wore crucifixes and prayed before dispatching some more baddies to hell. It was a good, complex read, and there was even some lovemaking – albeit more of the dot dot dot kind. This book could, potentially, be labelled as borderline “clean” – despite all that death. Makes my head spin. I for one would prefer to have my teenage daughter reading Diana Gabaldon’s fantastic if explicit sex scenes to having her read about people having their heads shot off. But that may just be me.

I fully appreciate that some people DON’T want to read about sex. At all. Just as I don’t want to read about zombies. At all. But can we please change the label to something that, per definition, isn’t derogatory to all the other books? How about “non-explicit”? Or why not “dot dot dot”? And as for me, I will continue devouring books in which love – all aspects of love – are depicted. Dirty? Not at all – in fact, it’s very, very beautiful!

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Anna has recently released a Romantic Suspense novel, A Torch in His Heart. Nope, thisanna-belfrage-2015 is definitely not a “clean” read, but then, as Anna would tell you, what can you expect when she’s writing about an epic love story spanning three millennia?

When she isn’t writing contemporary suspense with a time travelling twist, Anna is usually visiting her favourite historical periods, namely the 17th century and the 14th century. And yes, she is quite convinced people made love back then as well! Find out more about Anna on http://www.annabelfrage.com. Or pop by her Amazon page and browse through her books, http://Author.to/ABG

 

 

Uncategorized

A Torch in his Heart: A Spotlight.

A Torch in His Heart by Anna Belfrage

Publication Date: August 31, 2018
Timelight Press
eBook & Paperback 514 Pages
Series: The Wanderer, Book One

Genre: Romance/Erotica/Paranormal

In the long-lost ancient past, two men fought over the girl with eyes like the Bosporus under a summer sky. It ended badly. She died. They died.

Since then, they have all tumbled through time, reborn over and over again. Now they are all here, in the same place, the same time and what began so long ago must finally come to an end.

Ask Helle Madsen what she thinks about reincarnation and she’ll laugh in your face. Besides, Helle has other stuff to handle, what with her new, exciting job in London and her drop-dead but seriously sinister boss, Sam Woolf. And then one day Jason Morris walks into her life and despite never having clapped eyes on him before, she recognises him immediately. Very weird. Even weirder is the fact that Sam and Jason clearly hate each other’s guts. Helle’s life is about to become extremely complicated and far too exciting.

Available on Amazon

About the Author

Had Anna been allowed to choose, she’d have become a time-traveller. As this was impossible, she became a financial professional with three absorbing interests: history and writing.

Anna has authored the acclaimed time travelling series The Graham Saga, set in 17th century Scotland and Maryland, as well as the equally acclaimed medieval series The King’s Greatest Enemy which is set in 14th century England. (Medieval knight was also high on Anna’s list of potential professions. Yet another disappointment…)

With Jason and Helle, Anna has stepped out of her historical comfort zone and has loved doing so.

Find out more about Anna by visiting her website, www.annabelfrage.com, You can also connect with Anna on Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, and Goodreads.

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away one eBook and one paperback copy of A Torch in His Heart! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 16th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to residents INTERNATIONALLY.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

A Torch in His Heart

 

Uncategorized

Lady of A Thousand Treasures: A Review.

Lady of a Thousand Treasures

by Sandra Byrd

Publication Date: October 9, 2018

Tyndale House Publishers

Hardcover, Paperback, & eBook; 480 Pages

Series: The Victorian Ladies Series, #1

Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance

Miss Eleanor Sheffield is a talented evaluator of antiquities, trained to know the difference between a genuine artifact and a fraud. But with her father’s passing and her uncle’s decline into dementia, the family business is at risk. In the Victorian era, unmarried Eleanor cannot run Sheffield Brothers alone.

The death of a longtime client, Baron Lydney, offers an unexpected complication when Eleanor is appointed the temporary trustee of the baron’s legendary collection. She must choose whether to donate the priceless treasures to a museum or allow them to pass to the baron’s only living son, Harry—the man who broke Eleanor’s heart.

Eleanor distrusts the baron’s motives and her own ability to be unbiased regarding Harry’s future. Harry claims to still love her and Eleanor yearns to believe him, but his mysterious comments and actions fuel her doubts. When she learns an Italian beauty accompanied him on his return to England, her lingering hope for a future with Harry dims.

With the threat of debtor’s prison closing in, Eleanor knows that donating the baron’s collection would win her favor among potential clients, saving Sheffield Brothers. But the more time she spends with Harry, the more her faith in him grows. Might Harry be worthy of his inheritance, and her heart, after all? As pressures mount and time runs out, Eleanor must decide whom she can trust—who in her life is false or true, brass or gold—and what is meant to be treasured.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

Praise for Lady of a Thousand Treasures

“Sandra Byrd’s amazing cast of characters and Victorian settings pull the reader right into the story. I became happily lost in this compelling, lovely book.” -Karen Harper, NYT bestselling author of The Royal Nanny

“Lady of a Thousand Treasures delivers mystery, romance, and suspense in a well-researched Victorian setting.” -Julie Klassen, bestselling author

“I’m always swept away by a Sandra Byrd novel, and Lady of a Thousand Treasures will be long remembered as one of Sandra’s best.” -Jane Kirkpatrick, NYT bestselling author of All She Left Behind

“Sandra Byrd is the rare writer whose evocative, prose grabs hold and doesn’t let go. The Victorian Ladies Series is off to a stunning start!” -Laura Frantz, author of The Lacemaker

“With stunning characters and impeccable research, Sandra Byrd has woven together an exquisite treasure hunt with an ending that will leave you breathless.” -Melanie Dobson, award-winning author of Catching the Wind

“Sandra Byrd’s writing is an absolute piece of art! If I had to sum up this story all in one word, it would be satisfying.” -Michelle Griep, award-winning author of the Once Upon a Dickens Christmas series

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Sandra Byrd is one of those authors that when I hear is releasing a book, I get excited. I am seldom disappointed by her work–and by seldom, I mean, never thus far. She has written several books that presently have a home on my shelves. I am delighted to say this is one of them.

Without rehashing the plot again, I can honestly say that this is one of those books that draws you in from page one and does not let go of it until you’re done. Even then, you may find yourself going back and thinking about it, as I did. I think that is a mark of a good read, when the story sticks with you for a time after you’ve finished.

As you guys know, I love research. I love when an author has done it and clearly done it so well that it blends in seamlessly to the story making a delectable read. I’m all for it. The Victorian age is a time that requires that attention to detail because of the rules of society, the way people spoke and dressed, and lived. It enhances the experience when reading. Historical fiction and all of its sub-genres require that to make it interesting, else it reads flatly.

I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed the whole story and the pacing. I haven’t got a single complaint about that. I also loved all of the characters, finding them believable and vibrant. I love when they feel like old friends, if that makes sense. All in all, this makes for a sumptuous experience and I read this in a day. I could have taken my time but you get quite invested right away.

A very good read and I look forward to the next in the series!

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About the Author

Bestselling author Sandra Byrd has published more than fifty books over her editing and writing career. Her traditionally published books include titles by Tyndale House Publishers, Howard Books, a division of Simon and Schuster, WaterBrook Press, a Penguin Random House imprint, and Bethany House. She’s also an independent author.

Sandra’s series of historically sound Gothic romances launched with the best-selling Mist of Midnight, which earned a coveted Editor’s Choice award from the Historical Novel Society. The second book, Bride of a Distant Isle, has been selected by Romantic Times as a Top Pick. The third in the series, A Lady in Disguise, published in 2017 and was named by the American Library Association’s Booklist as one of the Top Ten Inspirational Fiction books of the year.

Her contemporary adult fiction debut, Let Them Eat Cake, which was a Christy Award finalist, as was her first historical novel, To Die For: A Novel of Anne Boleyn. To Die For was also named a Library Journal Best Books Pick for 2011, and The Secret Keeper: A Novel of Kateryn Parr was named a Library Journal Best Books Pick for 2012.

Please visit www.sandrabyrd.com to learn more or to invite Sandra to your book club via Skype. You can also connect with Sandra on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, October 9

Review at Pursuing Stacie

Wednesday, October 10

Review at Faery Tales Are Real

Thursday, October 11

Review at A Bookish Affair

Feature at Naomi Finley’s Blog

Friday, October 12

Review at Donna’s Book Blog

Monday, October 15

Feature at The Lit Bitch

Review at Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Tuesday, October 16

Feature at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Wednesday, October 17

Review at Among the Reads

Review at Ageless Pages Reviews

Thursday, October 18

Review at A Darn Good Read

Friday, October 19

Review at Jorie Loves a Story

Monday, October 22

Review at History From a Woman’s Perspective

Tuesday, October 23

Review at Locks, Hooks and Books

Wednesday, October 24

Review at Library of Clean Reads

Thursday, October 25

Feature at Let Them Read Books

Friday, October 26

Interview at Among the Reads

Monday, October 29

Review at Maiden of the Pages

Tuesday, October 30

Review at A Chick Who Reads

Thursday, November 1

Review at Bibliophile Reviews

Review at CelticLady’s Reviews

Friday, November 2

Feature at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, November 6

Feature at Hisdoryan

Wednesday, November 7

Review at The Book Mind

Review at LadyJ’s Bookish Nook

Friday, November 9

Interview at Jorie Loves a Story

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away 5 copies of Lady of a Thousand Treasures by Sandra Byrd! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 9th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

– Giveaway is open to US & Canada residents only.

– Only one entry per household.

– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.

– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

Lady of a Thousand Treasures Giveaway!!