Thursday, February 25, 2016

Banished (Forbidden #2) Book Blast and Giveaway

02_Banished
ABookGeek is happy to participate in the book blast for Banished.


Banished (Forbidden #2) by Kimberley Griffiths Little

Publication Date: February 2, 2016
Publisher: HarperCollins
Hardcover & Ebook; 416 Pages
Series: Forbidden, Book #2
Genre: YA/Historical/Romance

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She thought she’d lost everything . . .

After spending months traveling the harsh, unforgiving Mesopotamian desert, Jayden reunites with a broken, injured Kadesh. Although everyone was convinced the violent and unpredictable Horeb, Jayden’s betrothed, killed the handsome prince, Jayden knew in her heart that her love was alive and safe. But their reunion is short-lived, as they learn Horeb is on their trail and determined to take back the girl he has claimed. Soon, the two star-crossed lovers are on the run toward Sariba, Kadesh’s homeland, where, as heir to the Kingdom, he plans to make Jayden his princess.

 But the trek to Sariba is fraught with heartache and danger. After narrowly escaping being stoned to death for a crime she didn’t commit, and learning that her sister has disappeared, Jayden’s only solace is her love for Kadesh. But even he is keeping secrets from her . . . secrets that will change everything.

This gorgeous and enchanting sequel to Forbidden, is full of love, danger, and heated passion that will leave readers breathless.

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository


About the Author

Kimberley Griffiths Little was born in San Francisco, but now lives in New Mexico with her husband and their three sons.

For such award-winning middle grade novels as When the Butterflies Came, The Last Snake Runner, The Healing Spell, and Circle of Secrets, her writing has been praised as "fast-paced and dramatic," with "characters painted in memorable detail" and "beautifully realized settings."

Kimberley adores anything old and musty with a secret story to tell and makes way too many cookies while writing.

She's stayed in the haunted tower room at Borthwick Castle in Scotland; sailed on the Seine in Paris; ridden a camel in Petra, Jordan; shopped the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul; and spent the night in an old Communist hotel in Bulgaria.

Awards: Southwest Book Award, Whitney Award for Best Youth Novel, Bank Street College Best Books of 2011 & 2014, Crystal Kite Finalist, and New Mexico Book Award Finalist.

For more information please visit Kimberly's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Goodreads. Sign Up for Kimberly's Newsletter.

Book Blast Schedule

Tuesday, February 2
Passages to the Past

Wednesday, February 3
The Lit Bitch
Let Them Read Books

Thursday, February 4
I'm Shelf-ish

Friday, February 5
Broken Teepee

Monday, February 8
A Chick Who Reads

Wednesday, February 10
Anastacia Reads

Friday, February 12
A Leisure Moment

Monday, February 15
I Heart Reading

Tuesday, February 16
A Dream within a Dream

Wednesday, February 17
What Is That Book About

Thursday, February 18
Bittersweet Enchantment

Friday, February 19
Curling up by the Fire

Monday, February 22
The Life & Times of a Book Addict

Tuesday, February 23
A Literary Vacation

Thursday, February 25
A Book Geek

 Wednesday, March 2
The Never-Ending Book

GIVEAWAY

To win a $25 Amazon Gift Card & Signed Copies of Forbidden and Banished please enter the giveaway via the GLEAM form below. Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on March 2nd. 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. Banished Book Blast 04_Banished_Book Blast Banner_FINAL

Friday, February 19, 2016

The Gilded Cage Cover Reveal

02_The Gilded Cage

The Gilded Cage by Judy Alter

Publication: April 2016 
eBook & Paperback 
Genre: Historical Fiction

 Born to a society and a life of privilege, Bertha Honoré married Potter Palmer, a wealthy entrepreneur who called her Cissy. Neither dreamed the direction the other’s life would take. He built the Palmer House Hotel, still famed today, and become one of the major robber barons of the city, giving generously to causes of which he approved. She put philanthropy into deeds, going into shanty neighborhoods, inviting factory girls to her home, working at Jane Addams’ settlement Hull House, supporting women’s causes.

It was a time of tremendous change and conflict in Chicago as the city struggled to put its swamp-water beginnings behind it and become a leading urban center. A time of the Great Fire of 1871, the Haymarket Riots, and the triumph of the Columbian Exposition. Potter and Cissy handled these events in diverse ways. Fascinating characters people these pages along with Potter and Cissy—Carter Harrison, frequent mayor of the city; Harry Collins, determined to be a loser; Henry Honoré, torn between loyalties to the South and North; Daniel Burnham, architect of the new Chicago—and many others.

The Gilded Cage is a fictional exploration of the lives of these people and of the Gilded Age in Chicago history.


"The Gilded Cage is a wonderful recreation of early Chicago and the people who made it what it is. Central character Cissy Palmer is a three-dimensional, real, vibrant person. The Gilded Cage is fiction, but firmly based on fact—the Chicago Fire, the prisoners from the War Between the States interred in Chicago, the newcomer Potter Palmer, the explosive growth of wealth in a prairie town, deep poverty adjacent to great riches—the American experience laid bare. You don’t have to be a Chicagoan to love this book." -Barbara D’Amato, author of Other Eyes

About the Author

03_Judy AlterJudy Alter is the award winning author of fiction for adults and young adults. Other historical fiction includes Libbie, the story of Elizabeth Bacon (Mrs. George Armstrong) Custer; Jessie, the story of Jessie Benton Frémont and her explorer / miner / entrepreneur / soldier / politician husband; Cherokee Rose, a novel loosely based on the life of the first cowgirl roper to ride in Wild West shows; and Sundance, Butch and Me, the adventures of Etta Place and the Hole in the Wall Gang.

For more information visit Judy Alter's website. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Goodreads.

Cover Reveal Schedule

Monday, February 15
Passages to the Past

Tuesday, February 16
The Never-Ending Book

Wednesday, February 17
The Reading Queen

Thursday, February 18
Book Nerd

Friday, February 19
A Book Geek

Saturday, February 20
With Her Nose Stuck In A Book

Monday, February 22
The Maiden's Court
To Read, Or Not to Read

Tuesday, February 23
Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Wednesday, February 24
100 Pages a Day

Thursday, February 25
Reading Is My SuperPower

Monday, February 29
A Holland Reads

Wednesday, March 2
CelticLady's Reviews
A Literary Vacation

Thursday, March 3
She is Too Fond of Books

Friday, March 4
I Heart Reading


Thursday, February 18, 2016

War and Me Book Blast and Giveaway

02_War and MeWar and Me by M.A. Wood

Publication Date: September 26, 2013
eBook; 200 Pages
ASIN: B00FGJLG08
 Genre: Young Adult/Historical Fiction/Romance

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 Flying model airplanes isn’t cool, not for fifteen-year-old girls in the 1940’s. No one understands Julianna’s love of flying model airplanes but her dad. When he leaves to fly bomber planes in Europe forcing Julianna to deal with her mother’s growing depression alone, she feels abandoned until she meets Ben, the new boy in town. But when he signs up for the war, too, she has to consider whether letting her first love drift away would be far easier than waiting for the next casualties.

Amazon US | Amazon UK

About the Author

03_M.A. WoodMarcy Blesy is the author of several middle grade, young adult, and new adult novels and short stories. Her picture book, Am I Like My Daddy?, helps children who experienced the loss of a parent when they were much younger. She has also been published in two Chicken Soup for the Soul books as well as various newspapers and magazines. By day she runs an elementary school library and enjoys spending time with her husband and two boys.

Marcy is a believer in love and enjoys nothing more than making her readers feel a book more than simply reading it. She likes to connect with her readers via twitter (@marcyblesy), email (mablesy(at)yahoo.com), or her blog(www.marcyblesy.com).

Book Blast Schedule

Monday, February 15
A Chick Who Reads
Passages to the Past

Tuesday, February 16
A Holland Reads
CelticLady's Reviews

Wednesday, February 17
Beth's Book Nook Blog
The Never-Ending Book

Thursday, February 18
A Book Geek
What Is That Book About

Friday, February 19
So Many Books, So Little Time

Monday, February 22
#redhead.with.book
Queen of All She Reads

Tuesday, February 23
Let Them Read Books

Wednesday, February 24
The Reading Queen

Thursday, February 25
Boom Baby Reviews

Friday, February 26
Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Giveaway

To win a $10 Amazon Gift Card please enter the giveaway via the GLEAM form below.

Rules
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on February 26th. 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.

War and Me 03_War and Me_Book Blast Banner_FINAL

Monday, February 15, 2016

The Vatican Princess Book Blast and Giveaway

02_The Vatican PrincessThe Vatican Princess: A Novel of Lucrezia Borgia by C.W. Gortner

Publication Date: February 9, 2016 Ballantine Books Hardcover, Ebook, Audiobook 400 Pages Genre: Historical Fiction

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Infamy is no accident. It is a poison in our blood. It is the price of being a Borgia.

Glamorous and predatory, the Borgias fascinated and terrorized 15th-century Renaissance Italy. Lucrezia Borgia, beloved daughter of the pope, was at the center of the dynasty’s ambitions. Slandered as a heartless seductress who lured men to their doom, was she in fact the villainess of legend, or was she trapped in a familial web, forced to choose between loyalty and survival?

With the ascension of the Spaniard Rodrigo Borgia as Pope Alexander VI, the new pope’s illegitimate children—his rival sons, Cesare and Juan, and beautiful young daughter Lucrezia—assume an exalted position in the papal court. Privileged and adored, Lucrezia yearns to escape her childhood and play a part in her family’s fortunes. But Rome is seductive and dangerous: Alliances shift at a moment’s notice as Italy’s ruling dynasties strive to keep rivals at bay. As Lucrezia’s father faces challenges from all sides, he’s obliged to marry her off to a powerful adversary. But when she discovers the brutal truth behind her alliance, Lucrezia is plunged into a perilous gambit that will require all her wits, cunning, and guile. Escaping her marriage offers the chance of happiness with a passionate prince of Naples, yet as scandalous accusations of murder and incest build against her, menacing those she loves, Lucrezia must risk everything to overcome the lethal fate imposed upon her by her Borgia blood.

Beautifully wrought, rich with fascinating historical detail, The Vatican Princess is the first novel to describe Lucrezia’s coming-of-age in her own voice—a dramatic, vivid tale set in an era of savagery and unparalleled splendor, where enemies and allies can be one and the same, and where loyalty to family can ultimately be a curse.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | INDIEBOUND


Praise

"Assiduously researched and expertly crafted . . . . This unholy plunge into Rome's darkest dynasty is wholly engrossing." - Allison Pataki, New York Times bestselling author

"A spider web of Renaissance intrigue with a legendary cast . . . Impressive research, a lush background, and deft characterization make for a fascinating read." - Margaret George, New York Times bestselling author

"Elegantly written and deeply researched . . . Renaissance Italy is vividly brought to life. I’m captivated by this knowledgeable author’s take on the controversial Borgias." - Alison Weir, NYT bestselling author

About the Author

03_CW GortnerC.W. GORTNER holds an MFA in Writing with an emphasis in Renaissance Studies from the New College of California, as well as an AA from the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in San Francisco.

After an eleven year-long career in fashion, during which he worked as a vintage retail buyer, freelance publicist, and fashion show coordinator, C.W. devoted the next twelve years to the public health sector. In 2012, he became a full-time writer following the international success of his novels.

In his extensive travels to research his books, he has danced a galliard at Hampton Court, learned about organic gardening at Chenoceaux, and spent a chilly night in a ruined Spanish castle. His books have garnered widespread acclaim and been translated into twenty-one languages to date, with over 400,000 copies sold. A sought-after public speaker. C.W. has given keynote addresses at writer conferences in the US and abroad. He is also a dedicated advocate for animal rights, in particular companion animal rescue to reduce shelter overcrowding.

Half-Spanish by birth and raised in southern Spain, C.W. now lives in Northern California with his partner and two very spoiled rescue cats.

For more information visit C.W. Gortner’s website and blog. You can also find him on Facebook, Twittter, Goodreads, Pinterest, and YouTube. Sign up for C.W. Gortner’s Newsletter for updates.

Book Blast Schedule

Tuesday, February 9
Unshelfish
Drey's Library
The Maiden's Court
CelticLady's Reviews

Wednesday, February 10
The Lit Bitch
The Never-Ending Book
A Dream within a Dream
What Is That Book About

Thursday, February 11
Laura's Interests
The Reader's Hollow
Flashlight Commentary

Friday, February 12
Let Them Read Books
To Read, Or Not to Read

Saturday, February 13
So Many Books, So Little Time
Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Sunday, February 14
100 Pages a Day
With Her Nose Stuck In A Book

Monday, February 15
A Book Geek
A Bookish Affair
Puddletown Reviews

Tuesday, February 16
Just One More Chapter
Historical Fiction Obsession
Teddy Rose Book Reviews Plus More

Wednesday, February 17
Impressions In Ink
A Literary Vacation
The Country Bookworm

Thursday, February 18
The True Book Addict
Ageless Pages Reviews

Friday, February 19
Passages to the Past
Kristin Un-Ravelle'd
Book Lovers Paradise

Saturday, February 20
Beth's Book Nook Blog
One Book Shy of a Full Shelf

Sunday, February 21
Carpe Librum (Seize The Book)
Seize the Words: Books in Review

Monday, February 22
Broken Teepee
Book Drunkard
The Reading Queen

Tuesday, February 23
Teatime and Books
View from the Birdhouse
Historical Fiction Connection

Giveaway

To win a Borgia-Inspired Velvet Bag & Beaded Bracelet from C.W. Gortner please enter the giveaway via the GLEAM form below. Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on February 23rd. 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. The Vatican Princess Book Blast
04_The Vatican Princess_Blog Tour Banner_FINAL

Friday, February 12, 2016

Girl Through Glass Blog Tour and Review

Girl Through Glass cover

Girl Through Glass by Sari Wilson
Publisher: Harper (January 26, 2016)
Hardcover: 304 pages
Source: Publisher via TLC Book Tours for an honest review

Description:

An enthralling literary debut that tells the story of a young girlís coming-of-age in the cutthroat world of New York City balletóa story of obsession and perfection, trust and betrayal, beauty and lost innocence. 

In the roiling summer of 1977, eleven-year-old Mira is an aspiring ballerina in the romantic, highly competitive world of New York City ballet. Enduring the mess of her parentsí divorce, she finds escape in danceóthe rigorous hours of practice, the exquisite beauty, the precision of movement, the obsessive perfectionism. Ballet offers her control, power, and the promise of glory. It also introduces her to forty-seven-year-old Maurice DuPont, a reclusive, charismatic balletomane who becomes her friend and mentor.

Over the course of three years, Mira is accepted into the prestigious School of American Ballet, run by the legendary George Balanchine, and eventually becomes one of ìMr. Bís girlsîóa dancer of rare talent chosen for greatness. As she ascends in the ballet world, her relationship with Maurice intensifies, touching dark places within herself and sparking unexpected desires that will upend both their lives.

In the present day, Kate, a professor of dance at a midwestern college, embarks on a risky affair with a student that threatens to obliterate her career and capsize the new life she has painstakingly created for her reinvented self. When she receives a letter from a man sheís long thought dead, Kate is hurled back into the dramas of a past she thought she had left behind.

Moving between the past and the present, Girl Through Glass illuminates the costs of ambition, perfection, secrets, and the desire for beauty, and reveals how the sacrifices we make for an ideal can destroy - or save - us.

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Purchase Links

My Take:

My daughters danced for several years and I have always had a love for ballet, so when I was presented with the opportunity to read and review Girl Through Glass, I was happy to do so. First, we have dispel any ideas that this book has any light, pink, fluffy ideas about the ballet world. Girl Through Glass, while beautifully written, presents an all too real and gritty view of the extremely competitive world of ballet.

There are two timelines in the novel -- the late 1970's ballet obsessed New York City where Mira is a young bunhead with ambition and talent - and present day where Kate is a troubled professor teaching dance history and making some serious professional and personal mistakes.

I was immediately drawn into both timelines. It is hard for me to decide which timeline I was more drawn to. Mira is a sympathetic, vulnerable character in need of some maternal guidance, which won't really be provided by her mother who is perpetually in search of herself. Mira inhabits the New York where Balanchine and Baryshnikov reign in headlines and hearts.   And Kate, the lonely woman who is pretty obviously broken somehow. And yet, I was drawn into Kate's search for someone or something in her past and knowing that it would explain why she is behaving as she is. I was also attracted to the scholarly aspect of dance history. 

I think it is supposed to be clear that Mira and Kate's stories must relate in some way. I had no problem figuring out  where the story was going, but I was so interested in their lives and the worlds they inhabit, that I was happy to follow on both their paths.

I found Girl Through Glass to be a beautifully written novel dealing with the darker aspects of life and ballet. While there are some truly awful things that happen, I thought the author did a great job of detailing the events sympathetically. From the descriptions of Mira rehearsing and performing to Kate's lecture on the Balanchine myth,  I was captivated by Girl Through Glass from start to finish. I can happily recommend Girl Through Glass to any reader who enjoys beautiful, thoughtful novels, New York City in the 1970's and of course, especially those who love ballet. 


Sari Wilson AP Photo credit Elena Seibert

About Sari Wilson

Sari Wilson trained as a dancer with the Harkness Ballet in New York and was on scholarship at Eliot Feldís New Ballet School. She was a Wallace Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, a fellow of the Provincetown Fine Arts Center, and her fiction has appeared in Agni, the Oxford American, Slice, and Third Coast. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, the cartoonist Josh Neufeld.

Find out more about Sari at her website, and connect with her on†Twitter.




Sari’s Tour Stops
Tuesday, January 26th: Bibliotica
Friday, January 29th: Broken Teepee
Tuesday, February 2nd: Raven Haired Girl
Thursday, February 4th: Book Journey
Tuesday, February 9th: Sara’s Organized Chaos
Tuesday, February 9th: Stephany Writes
Wednesday, February 10th: 5 Minutes For Books
Thursday, February 11th: Thoughts on This ‘n That
Friday, February 12th: A Book Geek
Monday, February 15th: Lavish Bookshelf
Tuesday, February 16th: Kritters Ramblings
Wednesday, February 17th: Jenn’s Bookshelves
Thursday, February 18th: A Bookish Way of LIfe
Monday, February 22nd: View from the Birdhouse
Tuesday, February 23rd: Books on the Table
Wednesday, February 24th: Dreams, Etc.
Tuesday, March 1st: Bibliophiliac





Thursday, February 11, 2016

The Secrets of Lizzie Borden Blog Tour and Review

02_The Secrets of Lizzie Borden
The Secrets of Lizzie Borden by Brandy Purdy
Publication Date: January 26, 2016 
Publisher:Kensington Books
 eBook & Print; 384 Pages 
 Genre: Historical Fiction
Source: Publisher via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours for an honest review

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In her enthralling, richly imagined new novel, Brandy Purdy, author of The Ripper’s Wife, creates a compelling portrait of the real, complex woman behind an unthinkable crime.

Lizzie Borden should be one of the most fortunate young women in Fall River, Massachusetts. Her wealthy father could easily afford to provide his daughters with fashionable clothes, travel, and a rich, cultured life. Instead, haunted by the ghost of childhood poverty, he forces Lizzie and her sister, Emma, to live frugally, denying them the simplest modern conveniences. Suitors and socializing are discouraged, as her father views all gentleman callers as fortune hunters.

Lonely and deeply unhappy, Lizzie stifles her frustration, dreaming of the freedom that will come with her eventual inheritance. But soon, even that chance of future independence seems about to be ripped away. And on a stifling August day in 1892, Lizzie’s long-simmering anger finally explodes…

Vividly written and thought-provoking, The Secrets of Lizzie Borden explores the fascinating events behind a crime that continues to grip the public imagination—a story of how thwarted desires and desperate rage could turn a dutiful daughter into a notorious killer.

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE | BOOK DEPOSITORY | KOBO


My Take:

I think pretty much everyone in the United States, if not the world, is at least somewhat familiar with the Lizzie Borden story - the horrific murder of her parents and her trial and the fact that she wasn't convicted of the crime. It was and is a pretty sensational story. So, it isn't hard to figure out why this story is still so compelling. So, of course, I was happy to read Brandy Purdy's The Secrets of Lizzie Borden. After reading The Ripper's Wife by Purdy, I was pretty certain that she would make the story even more compelling and give a fascinating look into the life of Lizzie Borden. I was not disappointed.

I found Purdy's portrayal of Lizzie Borden to be thought-provoking and riveting. I think that Purdy has a real knack for making difficult characters understandable to the reader. I found Lizzie to be self-centered and snobbish  -- but I could completely understand her anger about her family situation. I thought that Purdy did a nice job of detailing the female rage that Lizzie felt about the constricted life forced on her by her father's miserly ways and societies ideas about proper behavior for women.

Despite understanding her bitterness, I had a difficult time really sympathizing with her because she was so unsympathetic towards those around her. She and her sister are cruel and petty towards their step-mother for no other reason than greed and resentment. Their preoccupation with their father's money, while somewhat understandable because of how he forced them to live, was definitely a sign of their own selfish and petty feelings. Lizzie felt herself to be better than other young women and felt she was due so much more than she had. 

Due to the method of murder, it seems that they were probably committed by someone close to them and in a rage -- and Lizzie fits that bill precisely. The trial was interesting and I found the reasons for her being found innocent to be fascinating and probably pretty accurate. The aftermath of the trial and Lizzie's life as a wealthy woman on her own was quite interesting.  

There were times during the story when I almost felt sorry for her because she was so desperate for love  - but she just kept making the same types of mistakes over and over again. Her one experience of a normal, loving relationship is thwarted by her family, of course. Her next bid for love - of a sort- and defiance of her father and society seems to have led directly to the murders and then she ends up in an equally abusive relationship later.  Lizzie leaves so much devastation around her that is hard to see past it. 

As usual, Brandy Purdy is able to bring to life the time, place and characters in such a way that I was thoroughly drawn into the story from the first page.  Lizzie's life was quite difficult and she had a pretty mean and petty family, but she was not a likable person/character. I could understand and empathize for her, but that is a close as I could come to liking her. I think that her life was sad and unfulfilled - some might say it was what she deserved.  I think it demonstrated how she managed to turn her freedom into a type of prison sentence in the end. I would recommend The Secrets of Lizzie Borden to anyone who is as fascinated with the case as I have been and anyone interested in historical fiction of the period.  


About the Author

Brandy Purdy (Emily Purdy in the UK) is the author of the historical novels THE CONFESSION OF PIERS GAVESTON, THE BOLEYN WIFE (THE TUDOR WIFE), THE TUDOR THRONE (MARY & ELIZABETH), THE QUEEN'S PLEASURE (A COURT AFFAIR), THE QUEEN'S RIVALS (THE FALLEN QUEEN), THE BOLEYN BRIDE, and THE RIPPER'S WIFE. An ardent book lover since early childhood, she first became interested in history at the age of nine or ten years old when she read a book of ghost stories which contained a chapter about Anne Boleyn haunting the Tower of London.

Visit her website at www.brandypurdy.com, you can also follow her on Facebook as Brandy Purdy aka Emily Purdy.

Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, January 26
Review at Julz Reads
Review at Unshelfish

Wednesday, January 27
Review at Time 2 Read
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Thursday, January 28
Review at One Book Shy of a Full Shelf

Friday, January 29
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Interview at One Book Shy of a Full Shelf

Monday, February 1
Review at A Bookish Affair

Tuesday, February 2
Review at With Her Nose Stuck in a Book

Wednesday, February 3
Review at Broken Teepee

Thursday, February 4
Review at Book Lovers Paradise

Friday, February 5
Review at The True Book Addict

Monday, February 08
Review at Brooke Blogs

Tuesday, February 09
Review at Ageless Pages Reviews
Interview at Brooke Blogs

Wednesday, February 10
Review at A Literary Vacation

Thursday, February 11
Review A Book Geek

Friday, February 12
Review at History From a Women's Perspective

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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The Truth Spotlight and Giveaway

The Truth
By Jeffry W. Johnston
February 2, 2016; Tradepaper, ISBN 9781492623205

Title: The Truth
Author: Jeffry W. Johnston
Release Date: February 2, 2016
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire

Praise for The Truth

"Such a fast-paced read!  What really happened that night? The truth will leave you gasping.” - April Henry, New York Times bestselling author of Girl, Stolen and The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die

Summary:

“I tied you up because I need you to listen,” Derek says. “Focus.”

“Please…  W-what do you want from me?”

“The truth,” he says.  “About what happened the night my brother died.” He reaches for my left hand. “If I think you’re lying…” With his other hand, he flourishes a pair of flower cutters. Curved. Sharp.

And he smiles.

When Chris wakes up in a dark basement tied to a chair, he knows that he’s trapped—and why. Eight nights ago a burglar broke into Chris’ home. Eight nights ago Chris did what he had to do to protect his family. And eight nights ago a 13-year-old runaway bled to death on his kitchen floor.

Now Derek wants the truth about what happened that night. He wants proof his little brother didn’t deserve to die. For every lie Chris tells, he will lose a finger. But telling the truth is far more dangerous…

A riveting, edge-of-your-seat thriller from Edgar Award-nominated author Jeffry W. Johnston that explores the gray area between what is right and what we’ll do to protect the people we love.


Buy Links:

Barnes&Noble- http://ow.ly/Wf7Iw
BooksAMillion- http://ow.ly/Wf7MH
IndieBound- http://ow.ly/Wf7Zf

About the Author:


Jeffry W. Johnston has published about thirty-five short stories and more than two hundred articles. His first young adult novel, Fragments, was an Edgar Award nominee for Best Young Adult Mystery and a Quick Pick for Reluctant Readers selection by YALSA.  He lives in the Philadelphia area with his wife and their teenage son.  Visit him at jeffrywjohnston.com

Social Networking Links:


Excerpt from The Truth:
I wake up to find I cant move, my arms and legs duct-taped tight to a wooden chair.  Duct tape is also wrapped around my chest and the chair’s hard, unyielding back. 
The only thing not bound is my head, but I can only turn it left and right.  I can’t look behind me because of the chair’s high back.
Christ, what is this!
            My head hurts.  I feel nauseous, dizzy.  Can’t focus.  What happened?  How did I get here?  My memory’s a blur. 
            “Hey!” I shout.  “Hey!  Anybody here?”
            I wait a few seconds.  Nothing.
            I see unfinished walls, but I could be in a room anywhere.  The only furniture I can see is a metal folding chair leaning against the wall opposite.
            Wait a minute!  What about Devon!  The last thing I remember was calling on my cell phone to make sure he got to the field OK.  What time is it?  Is he in the middle of his game, wondering where I am?  Is Mom there, wondering the same thing?
I can tell my cell is not in my pocket, not that I’d be able to reach it anyway. Where is it?  How long have I been out?  A couple hours?  A whole day?  Is it still … what, Saturday?  Are people looking for me?  The police?
            “Hey!” I shout again.  “Heeeyyyy!”  I try harder to break free.  “Is somebody here?  Can somebody help me?  Please!  Please…!”
            Who could have done this to me?  Why?
            “Help!  Help me!  Heeelllp…
            This isn’t working.  I need to calm down and try to think.  Come on; breathe.  That’s it.  Again.  OK, now another breath.  My heart is starting to slow a bit.  That’s good.  Maybe closing my eyes will help.
            Two more deep breaths.  Okay.  Now, think.
I remember dialing my cell.  But before that. I had knocked on Rita’s front door.  We were going to go to Devon’s game together.  I was waiting for her to open the door.  Wait, the door did start to open.  Then … nothing.  Or … something.  Something made me pass out.  Something with a sweet smell.  Held against my face.  Making me gag.  Feel sick.  I couldn’t push it away.  Something very strong was holding it in place. 
Not some thing.  Some one.
            I hear movement.  Behind me.  A door opening.  I try to look back; can’t.
The door closes.  A quiet click.
            Then footsteps.  Steady, determined. 
            I recognize the guy who appears in front of me.  Derek Brannick. Only a year older than me, which makes him seventeen, but with the broken front teeth and scar on his throat he looks much older.
            He’s holding something in his hand, which he slips into his pants pocket before I can see it.  Then he picks up the metal chair from against the wall and opens it before straddling it and leaning over the back, facing me.  He lowers his head.  Does nothing for a couple minutes.  My heart slams against my chest.  I wait.  So scared I can’t think straight.
Finally, he raises his head and looks at me.  His eyes… It’s as if there’s no light in them.  Nothing.  Dead eyes.
            “You want some water?”  His voice is raspy.  He stands and moves out of my field of vision.  I hear a faucet turning on and off.  Then he’s back with a paper cup.  “Tilt your head back,” he says.  I do the best I can.  Some of the water runs down my chin but enough makes it into my mouth.  The water’s lukewarm, but I welcome it.
            “Feel better?  Can you talk?  ’Cause you’re gonna need to be able to talk. ” He crumples the cup and throws it on the floor.
            “Yes,” I croak.  “Th … thank you.”  My voice is trembling.  I can’t help it.
            Derek nods, lets out another long breath as if he has the weight of the world on his shoulders, and sit back down in his chair, pulling it closer to me.
“I’m … I’m sorry,” I try.  “I’m really—”
“Shh,” he says sharply, pointing a finger at me.  “I told you before, Chris… I’m not looking for that.”
“I should have showed up at the—”
“Shhh!”
He begins to cough.  It sounds painful.  He starts to talk again, then stops. Maybe it’s painful to talk too.  The way his voice is all rough and raspy, it wouldn’t surprise me.
Derek tries again.  “I tied you up because I need you to listen,” he says. “Focus.  Think you can do that?”
“Please…  Wh … what do you want from me?”
“The truth,” he says.  “That’s all.”
            He reaches for my left hand.  Tied the way I am, I can’t resist.  “I don’t want to hurt you if I don’t have to,” Derek says.  “But you need to know that I’m serious.  If I think you’re lying…” With his other hand, he pulls out what he had shoved into his pants pocket and shows it to me.
A pair of flower cutters.  Curved.  Sharp.
Slowly, even gently, he opens them and slides the little finger of my left hand in between the razor edges.
“One finger for each lie,” he says again, “Do you understand?”
            Oh God!  Oh Jesus!  All at once, I’m sweating, my eyes stinging.
            “Do you understand?” he asks again, voice unchanging, low key.
            “Yes,” I croak.  My eyes remain riveted to the cutters, expecting them to move, to squeeze.
            “Chris.  Look at me.”
            I look up into those dead eyes.
            “I meant what I said.”  He stops to cough again; continues.  “I need to understand everything.  This,” he says, indicating the cutters lightly caressing my finger, “will help you to tell the truth.  That’s all I want.  Don’t tell me what you think I want to hear.  There’s no right or wrong answer.  There’s only the truth.  Do you understand?”
            But I can’t tell him the truth.  Not the whole truth.
My eyes dart back to the cutters. 
Abruptly, he squeezes them.  “Do you understand?”
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