Book Alert: The Turncoat Letters by Kelly Lyman

Publication Date: November 19, 2019
Blue Tulip Publishing
eBook & Paperback; 357 Pages
Series: Rebels of the Revolution, Book #2
Genre: Historical Romance

From Kelly Lyman, comes a duet filled with intrigue, suspense and heat. The adventures bring to life the time of the American Revolution.

The truth always comes out in the end. If you have the courage to discover it.

From the moment Nora Bishop meet Alex Foster, her life was turned upside down. Though their marriage was brought on by necessity, they have found a common ground of honesty, respect, and friendship. She has grown to depend on and love him. And he her.

But both Alex and Nora have their part to play in the war, and those parts could tear their new marriage apart.

Secretly, they meet when they can, but as Nora gets deeper undercover by pretending to be a single woman and a loyalist, Alex is faced with watching other men, specifically the dashing Captain Budley, give his new bride unwanted attention.

Nora must play her part as a single woman. Alex must play his part as a simple acquaintance without showing his jealousy or they’ll both be caught and hung for treason. With their marriage made by necessity and being slowly built on trust, will they survive or will their relationship turn out to be as false as the role Nora plays for the British?

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

About the Author

Kelly Lyman is a dreamer, a planner, and a doer. Her favorite mantra is: “Go after a dream that is destined to fail without divine intervention.” She writes adult historical romance and YA paranormal/fantasy. She has a degree in education from West Chester University and taught 5th grade before deciding to stay home full time. She loves, loves, loves history and can usually be found daydreaming about people who lived centuries ago…that is, when she’s not taking care of her four kids. Traveling to Scotland, England, and Ireland are on her bucket list. Skydiving is not. She’s mildly obsessed with mint chocolate chip ice cream, peanut butter M&MS, drinking coffee (cream only), and thinks chips and salsa is a perfectly acceptable dinner option. Her favorite color is green and if she could, she would sit on the beach and read all day long.

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | GOODREADS

Book Blast Schedule

Monday, November 25
Lost_in_a_book_reviewer

Tuesday, November 26
Rose is Reading

Wednesday, November 27
Liberty’s Literary Loves

Friday, November 29
The Lit Bitch
Carole’s Ramblings
What Is That Book About

Saturday, November 30
Reading is My Remedy

Sunday, December 1
Passages to the Past

Monday, December 2
@ya.its.lit

Tuesday, December 3
Jessica Belmont

Thursday, December 5
Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals
Books In Their Natural Habitat

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away eBooks of The Petticoat Letters and The Turncoat Letters to one winner! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on December 5th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback 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 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.

Direct Link: https://gleam.io/competitions/lC4YO-the-turncoat-letters

Book Review: The Vine Witch by Luanne G. Smith

About The Vine Witch

Courtesy of Goodreads:

A young witch emerges from a curse to find her world upended in this gripping fantasy of betrayal, vengeance, and self-discovery set in turn-of-the-century France.

For centuries, the vineyards at Château Renard have depended on the talent of their vine witches, whose spells help create the world-renowned wine of the Chanceaux Valley. Then the skill of divining harvests fell into ruin when sorcière Elena Boureanu was blindsided by a curse. Now, after breaking the spell that confined her to the shallows of a marshland and weakened her magic, Elena is struggling to return to her former life. And the vineyard she was destined to inherit is now in the possession of a handsome stranger.

Vigneron Jean-Paul Martel naively favors science over superstition, and he certainly doesn’t endorse the locals’ belief in witches. But Elena knows a hex when she sees one, and the vineyard is covered in them. To stay on and help the vines recover, she’ll have to hide her true identity, along with her plans for revenge against whoever stole seven winters of her life. And she won’t rest until she can defy the evil powers that are still a threat to herself, Jean-Paul, and the ancient vine-witch legacy in the rolling hills of the Chanceaux Valley.

AMAZONBARNES & NOBLE

My Review

What a delightful read! The Vine Witch puts a unique spin on what magical books typically are. While you still get a dose of the good vs evil trope, I appreciated that the book was not limited to magic against manipulating humans. Instead, magic is primarily used in cultivating wine! I’m sure you’re thinking of your favorite wine right now and it’s different tones. You never know, maybe it had a little help!

The love story was also a lovely subtle touch that contributed to how the story itself bloomed. Wine and romance definitely go hand in hand!

I also really enjoyed the pacing and changes in scenery throughout the book. The prison portion is actually my favorite! Some really entertaining characters in there. Plus the characters have completely normal reactions to discovering magic exists, or that harm has been done to someone. It brought a realness to the story.

If you like a bit of wine, romance and witchery, you definitely want to add The Vine Witch to your TBR list!

Thank you so much to Wunderkind PR for the opportunity to read and share this lovely book! I have voluntarily read the book and the opinions expressed are my own.

Blog Tour: In Sight of the Mountain by Jamie McGillen

Publication Date: September 4, 2019
The Evergreen Bookshelf
eBook & Paperback; 356 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

~ Inspired by the trailblazing women of the 19th Century who dared to summit Mount Rainier ~

In the devastating aftermath of the 1889 Great Seattle Fire, nineteen-year-old Anna Gallagher faces considerable pressure to marry well and soon.

She has two serious suitors: a well-meaning but condescending doctor, and an evasive fisherman who challenges her mind. But Anna has no intention of giving up her freedom to keep house; she has a dream to reach the summit of Mount Rainier.

Despite her family’s disapproval and her own self-doubt, she secretly trains, raises money for supplies, and buys a train ticket to the base of the mountain. If she succeeds in reaching its icy peak, she could pioneer the way for women mountaineers; but it’s a tall task and there’s much at risk—including the heart of a man who just might love her as an equal.

On the journey, Anna will face glaciers, avalanches, and frozen temperatures, all without knowing if she even has a family or a future to return to.

In Sight of the Mountain is a charming coming-of-age story, but it also casts the reader’s gaze upon issues of colonialism, class, and women’s far-too-narrow options.

AMAZON | BARNES AND NOBLE | INDIEBOUND

Praise

“Focusing on themes of the liberation of women, the American class system and effects of colonialism, this intelligent and heart-warming novel introduces us to Anna Gallagher at the tender age of nineteen… In an epic and gripping work of historical fiction with modern sensibilities, author Jamie McGillen gives you everything you could possibly hope for in this inspiring and dramatic tale… Overall, In Sight of the Mountain is the perfect historical read for fans of pioneering heroes and tales of triumph over discrimination.” –K.C. Finn, Reader’s Favorite (5 Star Review)

“As a resident of the Pacific Northwest, I found it entertaining to try to picture Seattle as a frontier town and see Mount Rainier without its modern trappings. The story begins with the 1889 Seattle fire (a true event) and I was immediately hooked… In all, In Sight of the Mountain is a really great read–compelling, educational, containing complex characters and a well-crafted plot. Recommended for all readers YA and up who enjoy historical fiction. I’d give it more than 5 stars if I could.” –Donna Gielow McFarland, Reader’s Favorite (5 Star Review)

About the Author

Jamie McGillen lives in the shadow of Mount Rainier, and no matter how many times she moves away, it draws her home. Everything about large evergreen trees delights her, except how poky they are, and the sap. Her poems and essays have been published in numerous literary journals, and she teaches English Composition at Highline College. When she’s not teaching or cutting strawberries for her starving children, she enjoys writing rhyming poetry, but it’s simply not as popular as it used to be. You can find out more about her at www.jamiemcgillen.com. You can also find her on FacebookTwitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, November 18
Review at The Green Mockingbird

Tuesday, November 19
Feature at Bookish Rantings

Friday, November 22
Feature at What Is That Book About

Monday, November 25
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Tuesday, November 26
Feature at The Book Junkie Reads
Interview at Let Them Read Books

Wednesday, November 27
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Feature at Books In Their Natural Habitat

Friday, November 29
Guest Post at Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Monday, December 2
Interview at Passages to the Past

Thursday, December 5
Feature at View from the Birdhouse

Friday, December 6
Review at Passages to the Past

Giveaway

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

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on December 6th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback 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.

Direct Link: https://gleam.io/competitions/BRs16-in-sight-of-the-mountain

Blog Tour: Day Zero by Kelly Devos

ISBN: 978-1335008480
Publication Date: 11/12/19
Publisher: Inkyard Press

About Day Zero

Don’t miss the exhilarating new novel from the author of Fat Girl on a Plane, featuring a fierce, bold heroine who will fight for her family and do whatever it takes to survive. Fans of Susan Beth Pfeffer’s Life As We Knew It series and Rick Yancey’s The 5th Wave series will cheer for this fast-paced, near-future thrill ride.

If you’re going through hell…keep going.

Seventeen-year-old coder Jinx Marshall grew up spending weekends drilling with her paranoid dad for a doomsday she’s sure will never come. She’s an expert on self-heating meal rations, Krav Maga and extracting water from a barrel cactus. Now that her parents are divorced, she’s ready to relax. Her big plans include making it to level 99 in her favorite MMORPG and spending the weekend with her new hunky stepbrother, Toby.

But all that disaster training comes in handy when an explosion traps her in a burning building. Stuck leading her headstrong stepsister, MacKenna, and her precocious little brother, Charles, to safety, Jinx gets them out alive only to discover the explosion is part of a pattern of violence erupting all
over the country. Even worse, Jinx’s dad stands accused of triggering the chaos.

In a desperate attempt to evade paramilitary forces and vigilantes, Jinx and her siblings find Toby and make a break for Mexico. With seemingly the whole world working against them, they’ve got to get along and search for the truth about the attacks—and about each other. But if they can survive,
will there be anything left worth surviving for?

Read an Excerpt

Dr. Doomsday’s Guide to Ultimate Survival

Rule One: Always be prepared.

I exhale in relief when MacKenna pulls the car into the Halliwell’s Market parking lot. Because of the Sugar Sales Permit waiting list, old stores like these are the only places that carry Extra Jolt soda. I have to buy it myself, because Mom won’t keep any in the house.

She thinks too much caffeine rots your brain or something. Halliwell’s is a squat brown building that sits across the street from the mall and is next door to the town’s only skyscraper.

The First Federal Building was supposed to be the first piece of a suburban business district designed to rival the hip boroughs of New York. The mayor announced the construction of a movie theater, an apartment complex and an indoor aquarium. But the New Depression hit, and the other buildings never materialized.

The First Federal Building alone soars toward the clouds, an ugly glass rectangle visible from every neighborhood, surrounded by the old town shops that have been there forever. Most of the stores are empty.

We park in front of the market.

Our car nestles in the long shadow of the giant bank building.

Charles gets out and stands on the sidewalk in front of the car.

MacKenna opens her door. She hesitates again. “Listen, I know you might not want to hear this or believe it. But my book report wasn’t about hurting you or getting revenge. I’m trying to get you to see what’s really happening here. That Carver’s election is the start of something bad. We could use you at the rally. You’re one of the few people who understands Dr. Doomsday’s work. You could explain what he did. How he helped Carver cheat to win.”

“I’ve been planning this raid for months,” I say. My stomach churns, sending uncomfortable flutters through my insides. I don’t know what it would mean to talk about my father’s work. What I really want to do is pretend it doesn’t exist. Pretend the world is normal and whole.

I reassure myself with the reminder that there’s no way MacKenna is going to the rally either.

Out of the corner of my eye, I see Charles give us a small wave. Before MacKenna can say anything else, I get out and grab my backpack.

Inside Halliwell’s, I pick up a blue basket from the stack near the door. The small market is busy and full of other people shopping after school or work. The smell of pine cleaner hits me as we pass the checkout stations. They are super serious about germs and always cleaning between customers.

I leave MacKenna and Charles at the Click N’Grow rack near the door to check out the seed packets that my brother collects. Dad got Charles hooked on this computerized gardening that uses an e-tablet and a series of tiny indoor lights to create the ideal indoor planter box. Each week, they release a new set of exclusive seeds. Their genetic modifications are controversial.

All the soda is in large coolers that line one of the walls of the market. They keep the strange stuff in the corner. Expensive root beers. Ramune imported from Japan. And! Extra! Jolt! I put a few bottles of strawberry in my basket. I snag some grape too. For a second, I consider buying a couple of bottles of doughnut flavor. But that sounds like too much, even for me. The chips are in the next aisle. I load up on cheese puffs and spicy nacho crisps.

MacKenna and Charles are still at the rack near the door, and I try to squeeze by them without attracting any notice. I usually don’t buy unhealthy snacks when I’m with my brother. I smuggle them in my backpack and have a special hiding space in my desk.

My brother has type 1 diabetes, and he’s supposed to check his blood sugar after meals. He can have starchy or sugary snacks only when his glucose level is good or on special occasions.

MacKenna grimaces at a packet of seeds in her hands. “I still don’t like this one. It’s pretty. But still. It’s…carnivorous.”

I have to hand it to her. She really does have a look. She’s pale and white, like me, but she manages to seem like she’s doing it on purpose and not because she’s some kind of vampire- movie reject. Her glossy black hair always rests in perfect waves, and if the journalism thing doesn’t work out, she could definitely have a career in fashion design.

Charles smiles at her. “It’s a new kind of pitcher plant. Like the Cobra Lily.” He points to the picture on the front of the seed packet. “Look at the blue flowers. That’s new.”

 “It eats other plants,” MacKenna says.

“You eat plants.”

“But I don’t eat people,” MacKenna says. “There’s got to be some kind of natural law that says you shouldn’t eat your own kind.”

Charles giggles.

So far so good. Until.

My brother trots up behind me and dumps a few packs of seeds in my basket. His gaze lands on my selection of soda and chips. “Can I get some snacks too?”

Crap.

 I freeze. “What’s your number?”

Charles pretends he can’t hear me. That’s not a good sign.

“Charles, what’s your number?”

He still doesn’t look at me. “I forgot my monitor today.”

“Well, I have mine.” I kneel down and dig around for the spare glucometer I keep in the front pocket of my backpack. By the time I get it out, MacKenna has already pulled Charles out of his blazer and rolled up the sleeve of his blue dress shirt. I wave the device over the small white sensor disk attached to my brother’s upper arm.

After a few seconds, the glucometer beeps and a number displays on the screen.

221

Crap. Crap. Crap.

“Charles! What did you eat today?”

My brother’s face turns red. “They were having breakfast-for-lunch day at school. Everyone else was having pancakes. Why can’t I have pancakes?”

I sigh. Something about his puckered up little face keeps me from reminding him that if he eats too much sugar he could die. “You know what Mom said. If you eat something you’re not supposed to, you have to get a pass and go to the nurse for your meds.”

My brother’s shoulders slump. “I couldn’t go to the nurse. Hummingbirds were visiting the Chuparosa and…”

Charles is on the verge of tears and frowns even more deeply at the sight of my basket full of junk food.

“Look,” I say. “There are plenty of healthy snacks we can eat. I’ll put this stuff back.”

“That’s right,” MacKenna says, giving Charles’s hand a squeeze. “We can get some popcorn. Yogurt. Um, I saw some really delicious-looking fresh pears back there.”

“And they have the cheese cubes you like,” I add.

We go around the store replacing the cheese puffs and soda with healthy stuff. I hesitate when I have to put back the Extra Jolt, but I really don’t want to make my brother feel bad because I can drink sugary stuff and he can’t.

We pay for the healthy snacks and the seed packets.

 I grab the bags and move toward the market’s sliding doors.

I end up ahead of them, waiting outside by the car and facing the store. The shopping center behind Halliwell’s is mostly empty. The shoe store went out of business last year. Strauss Stationers, where everyone used to buy their fancy wedding invitations, closed two years before that. The fish ’n’ chips drive-through is doing okay and has a little crowd in front of the take-out window. Way off in the distance, Saba’s is still open, because in Arizona, cowboy boots and hats aren’t considered optional.

I watch MacKenna and Charles step out of the double doors and into the parking lot. Two little dimples appear on MacKenna’s cheeks when she smiles. Charles has a looseness to his walk. His arms dangle.

There’s a low rumble, like thunder from a storm that couldn’t possibly exist on this perfectly sunny day.

Something’s wrong

In the reflection of the market’s high, shiny windows, I see something happening in the bank building next door. Some kind of fire burning in the lower levels. A pain builds in my chest and I force air into my lungs. My vision blurs at the edges. It’s panic, and there isn’t much time before it overtakes me.

The muscles in my legs tense and I take off at a sprint, grabbing MacKenna and Charles as I pass. I haul them along with me twenty feet or so into the store. We clear the door and run past a man and a woman frozen at the sight of what’s going on across the street.

I desperately want to look back.

But I don’t.

A scream.

A low, loud boom.

My ears ring.

The lights in the store go off.

I’ve got MacKenna by the strap of her maxidress and Charles by the neck. We feel our way in the dim light. The three of us crouch and huddle together behind a cash counter. A few feet in front of us, the cashier who checked us out two minutes ago is sitting on the floor hugging her knees.

We’re going to die.

Charles’s mouth is wide-open. His lips move. He pulls at the sleeve of my T-shirt.

I can’t hear anything.

It takes everything I’ve got to force myself to move.

Slowly

Slowly

Leaning forward. Pressing my face into the plywood of the store counter, I peek around the corner using one eye to see out the glass door. My eyelashes brush against the rough wood, and I grip the edge to steady myself. I take in the smell of wood glue with each breath.

Hail falls in the parking lot. I realize it’s glass.

My stomach twists into a hard knot.

It’s raining glass.

That’s the last thing I see before a wave of dust rolls over the building.

Leaving us in darkness.

Excerpted from Day Zero by Kelly deVos, Copyright © 2019 by Kelly deVos. Published by Inkyard Press.

About the Author

Photo courtesy of
Inkyard Press

KELLY DEVOS is from Gilbert, Arizona, where she lives with her high school sweetheart husband, amazing teen daughter and superhero dog, Cocoa. She holds a B.A. in Creative Writing from Arizona State University. When not reading or writing, Kelly can typically be found with a mocha in hand, bingeing the latest TV shows and adding to her ever-growing sticker collection. Her debut novel, Fat Girl on a Plane, named one of the “50 Best Summer Reads of All Time” by Reader’s Digest magazine, is available now from HarperCollins.

Kelly’s work has been featured in the New York Times as well as on Salon, Vulture and Bustle.

Purchase Links

Harlequin Indiebound Amazon Barnes & Noble
Books-A-Million Target Google iBooks Kobo

Blog Tour, Excerpt & Giveaway – Child of Love & Water

Publication Date: October 19, 2018
The White Rabbit Publishing
eBook; 291 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction

About Child of Love & Water

The year is 1722. A child is born on the isolated island of Ospo off the Georgia coast. In the midst of General Oglethorpe’s vision for this new land, and the emerging townships of Frederica and Savannah, four lives entwine together on this island like the woven fronds in a sea-grass basket – the orphaned Irish girl born free of hate or prejudice, a war-ravaged British soldier seeking forgiveness and absolution, a runaway Gullah slave girl desperate for a word of kindness on the wind, and a Creek Indian warrior searching for answers about this intrusion onto his homeland. What they learn from this wild innocent girl, and from each other, will change their lives forever.

A new birth, a new country, and the elements – Water, Wind, Fire, and Earth – entwine to teach one thing: Love conquers all. Love sees beyond borders. There is no ignorance in love.

Available on Amazon

Read an Excerpt

Saint Helena’s Island, South Carolina, 1802. Ruha speaks:

“Ize gwine tell you a story while I weave dis basket. This be my hundredth basket and my hundredth story, so you listen quick wit both oonuh ears, and watch close to my fingers as dey move in and out.”

              Ruha’s granddaughter moved closer, her eager amber eyes glowing golden in the firelight as she tilted her head upward to listen.

              “Gran’maamy, is you gonna tell me about the ghost you saw in Savannah?”

              Ruha clicked her tongue against the roof of her mouth and smiled. “Ooooweee, lawdy, chil’, you sho nuf gwine run dat story in de ground. Naw, naw, Murra, Ize gwine tell you ’bout whar oonuh name come frum. ‘Tis time you knew your hist’ry, chil’. You is old ’nuff. I learnt mine from my Gran’mammy when I turnt twelve, and learnt how to weave my story into a basket; so here, take up dem palm fronds and dem sweet grass in oonuh hands. Listen deep and watch close…”

              Ruha’s aged and wrinkled fingers tied a knot with the sweet grass and palm fronds, and she sewed them together in a circle. She stopped for a moment and touched her fingertips to her granddaughter’s chin. “Oonuh is a spesha gurl, for oonuh wuz named afta de fixuh on Ospo.”

              Murra wrinkled her nose. “Gran’mammy, I don’t understand you. You know I can’t speak Gullah.”

              Ruha shook her head and took up the weaving again. “Ize know you ain’t been learnt in Gullah, but make no difference. Ize lost much of the old talk, but there is nuthin’ lost dat can’t be found if’n you listen and learn wit your ha’art.”

              Murra shrugged her shoulders. “I suppose.”

              Ruha reared back and creased her brow. “Look here, chil’, I ain’t gwine spend my time and my words if’n you ain’t got no mind to listen.”

              Murra’s eyes widened. “No, Gran’mammy, I want to listen. I’m sorry, I do want to know about my history.”

              Ruha sighed. “Dat’s betta. Now, lookuh wut happen…. de strands got out of rhythm. ‘Member dis… de story and de strands must weave together. Dey are one and dey linked, like all de t’ings in your life.” She leaned over and check the girl’s knot, nodded and smiled. “Dat’s good start, now keep gwine ’round. See here, dis sum’ting Ize not learnt till I wuz much older dan oonuh… ’bout weaving and linking all t’ings together. But when oonuh learns it, ’twill stay wit ya always and keep oonuh bound to de past and de future.”

              Murra smiled and tried to keep up with Ruha’s steady rhythm. “How old were you when you learned, Gran’mammy?”

              Ruha paused for a moment and scanned the clouds above them, as if trying to recollect the memories in her mind. “Well, if’n Ize ‘memberin’ right, I t’ink I was ’bout sixteen when the tur’ble harricane swept through de village. My Gran’mammy sat me next to her for a solid week and taught me de weavin’. She hummed and sang a story ’bout our life in de shadow of de Bintamani. But, to tell your story, Murra, dis will be a basket of different grasses, for I will tell oonuh of three people who changed your Gran’mammy’s life. If’n not for dem, I might not have had your mama, and oonuh would not be sittin’ here wit me.”

Murra wrinkled her nose again. “But I thought you said you were going to tell me of the…” she paused “…the fixuh… Gran’mammy, what is a fixuh?”

About the Author

D. K. Marley is a historical fiction writer specializing in Shakespearean themes. Her grandmother, an English Literature teacher, gave her a volume of Shakespeare’s plays when she was eleven, inspiring DK to delve further into the rich Elizabethan language. Eleven years ago she began the research leading to the publication of her first novel “Blood and Ink,” an epic tale of lost dreams, spurned love, jealousy and deception in Tudor England as the two men, William Shakespeare and Kit Marlowe, fight for one name and the famous works now known as the Shakespeare Folio. She is an avid Shakespearean / Marlowan, a member of the Marlowe Society, the Shakespeare Fellowship and a signer of the Declaration of Intent for the Shakespeare Authorship Debate. She has traveled to England three times for intensive research and debate workshops, and is a graduate of the intense training workshop “The Writer’s Retreat Workshop” founded by Gary Provost and hosted by Jason Sitzes. She lives in Georgia with her husband and a Scottish Terriers named Maggie and Buster.

For more information, please visit D.K. Marley’s website. You can also find her on FacebookTwitterPinterest, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, November 12
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books

Wednesday, November 13
Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Thursday, November 14
Review at Books and Zebras

Saturday, November 16
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Tuesday, November 19
Excerpt at Books In Their Natural Habitat

Thursday, November 21
Review at @ya.its.lit

Friday, November 22
Review at Nursebookie

Sunday, November 24
Review at A Darn Good Read

Tuesday, November 26
Excerpt at The Book Junkie Reads

Thursday, November 28
Review at Coffee and Ink

Friday, November 29
Review at Al-Alhambra
Interview at Jathan & Heather

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a copy of Child of Love and Water by D.K.Marley! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on November 29th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is open internationally.
– 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.

ENTER HEREhttps://gleam.io/competitions/L0wnl-child-of-love-and-water-tour

Distant Signs Blog Tour & Giveaway

Publication Date: November 7, 2019
Neem Tree Press
Hardcover; 240 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance/Saga

About Distant Signs

Distant Signs is an intimate portrait of two families spanning three generations amidst turbulent political change, behind and beyond the Berlin Wall. In 1960s East Germany, Margret, a professor’s daughter from the city, meets and marries Hans, from a small village in Thuringia. The couple struggle to contend with their different backgrounds, and the emotional scars they bear from childhood in the aftermath of war. As East German history gradually unravels, with collision of the personal and political, their two families’ hidden truths are quietly revealed. An exquisitely written novel with strongly etched characters that stay with you long after the book is finished and an authentic portrayal of family life behind the iron curtain based on personal experience of the author who is East German and was 16 years old at the fall of the Berlin Wall. Why do families repeat destructive patterns of behaviour across generations? Should the personal take precedence over the political? Can we rise above our histories and political identities to forge a new understanding of the past and to welcome change?

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

My Review

It has taken me several days after finishing Distant Signs to write the review. The main reason? I was not prepared for how much this book would stir my soul.

Distant Signs explores the family dynamic and how peoples’ past and inner struggles impacts those closest to them. By the end of the book, you find yourself thinking back about how profound it was, how each of these generations and their experiences make them who they are. Perception is everything; the children who don’t like or think poorly of their parents might have a completely different opinion if only they had shared experiences or understood what had happened. It’s really heartbreaking if you think about it. There’s so much misunderstanding and it molds or breaks the families.

My only struggle with this book is that because there are three generations involved, it took me a while to get up to speed on who was who. By the end though, all the stories began to lock in place with one another and it was really powerful.

Overall, a really soul-wrenching book that I’ve awarded four stars to. I guarantee you will find yourself thinking about your own grandparents and parents differently after you read this.

Thank you so much to Anne Richter and HFVBT for the opportunity to be a part of this blog tour! I have voluntarily read and reviewed this book and the opinions expressed are my own.

About the Author

Anne Richter was born in 1973 in Jena, in the former German Democratic Republic. Her degree in Romance languages and English included study periods in England, Italy and France. In 2011, Anne was nominated for the Ingeborg Bachmann Prize, a highly regarded German-language literary award. Her debut novel, Distant Signs, was published in Germany in 2013. Anne is currently writing her second novel.

Douglas Irving is Scottish. He studied German and Spanish at Aberdeen University. In 2014 he completed a Masters in Translation at Glasgow University. His first translation, Crossing: A Love Story by Anna Seghers was published in 2016 in the US to positive reviews. His translation of Anna Seghers’ last work published in her lifetime, Three Women from Haiti, is set to follow.

Blog Tour Schedule

Thursday, November 7
Review at Broken Teepee
Review at Comet Readings

Friday, November 8
Review at A Book Geek

Sunday, November 10
Excerpt at A Darn Good Read

Tuesday, November 12
Review at Books In Their Natural Habitat

Wednesday, November 13
Excerpt at To Read, Or Not to Read

Thursday, November 14
Feature at Lost_in_a_book_reviewer

Friday, November 15
Review at Red Headed Book Lady

Monday, November 18
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books

Tuesday, November 19
Review at Locks, Hooks and Books

Wednesday, November 20
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Thursday, November 21
Review at Peaceful Pastime

Friday, November 22
Feature at What Is That Book About

Saturday, November 23
Review at Impressions In Ink

Monday, November 25
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time

Tuesday, November 26
Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, November 27
Feature at Just One More Chapter

Friday, November 29
Feature at Coffee and Ink

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a copy of A Distant Signs by Anne Richter! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on November 29th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is open internationally.
– 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.

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Direct Link: https://gleam.io/competitions/j4uyi-distant-signs

Review: Girls of Storm and Shadow by Natasha Ngan

About Girls of Storm and Shadow

Girls of Storm and Shadow is the sequel to Girls of Paper and Fire and was released on 11/5. From the Publisher:

In this mesmerizing sequel to the New York Times bestselling Girls of Paper and Fire, Lei and Wren have escaped their oppressive lives in the Hidden Palace, but soon learn that freedom comes with a terrible cost.

Lei, the naive country girl who became a royal courtesan, is now known as the Moonchosen, the commoner who managed to do what no one else could. But slaying the cruel Demon King wasn’t the end of the plan—it’s just the beginning. Now Lei and her warrior love Wren must travel the kingdom to gain support from the far-flung rebel clans. The journey is made even more treacherous thanks to a heavy bounty on Lei’s head, as well as insidious doubts that threaten to tear Lei and Wren apart from within.

Meanwhile, an evil plot to eliminate the rebel uprising is taking shape, fueled by dark magic and vengeance. Will Lei succeed in her quest to overthrow the monarchy and protect her love for Wren, or will she fall victim to the sinister magic that seeks to destroy her?”

My Thoughts

I have so many thoughts after reading this book that it’s hard to know where to begin. Plus the cover *swoons*. The biggest three things I want to highlight are the story, the characters and the handling of sensitive topics.

So let’s talk the story. This book picks up not that long after with Girls of Paper and Fire lets off. While there is some level of predictability, I didn’t feel like it detracted from the book at all. It’s clear that there is a divide and war is imminent; action must be taken. Lei, Wren and several other favorites are perfect for the mission of gathering support to undermine what the king had built and waste no time it setting off. The pacing of this book is wonderful and there are frequently bursts of fight scenes and some lovers quarrels.

When it comes to the characters, I love that Lei shows some personal growth throughout the story. I want to root for her so bad; she has so much potential but her naivety still blinds her at times. There are other characters who you start to see hints of their true selves with. Several of them are struggling with being open about their sexual preference for example and the book allows you to follow their journey beyond just the main story line. It’s inspiring and uplifting. I also love the brother-sister banter. It lightens the book where it needs reprieves.

This book does contain some topics that readers may be sensitive to. One such topic is survivors post-traumatic event. I personally have not come across many books that so openly show the characters having flashbacks, the moments that trigger them causing them to completely freeze or blank out. There is open dialogue about having been a victim and the mental struggles now. While it may be difficult for some readers, I feel like shedding a light on something very relateable for many is important; we need to continue to have these books and conversations to de-stigmatize victims and show that the type of behavior that puts people in these situations is just not acceptable.

Overall, I absolutely loved this book. It’s fast-paced with plenty of battles, both physical and mental, and uncovers the layers of post-traumatic life. I’m rating this five stars and I must say that book 3 cannot come fast enough!

Have you read this book? Added it to your TBR? I’d love to hear your thoughts below!

Thank you to Netgalley and Jimmy Patterson for the opportunity to read and review this book. I have voluntarily read the book and the opinions expressed are my own.