Wednesday, December 27, 2017

The Langsford Series Book Blast

1884 No Boundaries: A Story of Espionage, and International Intrigue by A.E. Wasserman

Publication Date: April 29, 2015
Archway Publishing
Hardcover, Paperback, and eBook; 382 Pages
Series: Langford Series, Book #1
Genre: Historical Fiction



Love, murder, sex, and terrorism swirl within a collapsed world economy.

No, it's not today. It's London, 1884.

Recently married Langsford, born of wealth and privilege, is bound by the restrictions of Victorian society. Dynamite has been invented, but the term "homosexuality" has not and men can be arrested for either.

Langsford accompanies his visiting friend, HEINRICH, eighteen, who innocently flirts with young ANNA at London's Leadenhall Market.

What should be the end of the story becomes the beginning, for Heinrich falls in love with her, never part of the plan. Instead it becomes the catalyst for everything that follows when he flees Germany to return to her. Events unfold that expose terrorists, espionage and international intrigue.

Langsford walks a fine line as he crosses boundaries he never imagined, rubbing elbows with spies, killers and would-be assassins to save his friend, stop an assassination, and prevent a war.

"Wassermanís writing is atmospherically rich. Very strongly recommended." - Historical Novel Society, London, critical review of 1884 No Boundaries

Amazon | Barnes & Noble


1886 Ties That Bind: A Story of Politics, Graft, and Greed by A.E. Wasserman

Publication Date: November 3, 2016
Archway Publishing
Hardcover, Paperback, and eBook; 320 Pages
Series: Langford Series, Book #2
Genre: Historical Fiction



It is 1886 as Englishman Lord Langsford travels by train to San Francisco. Newly widowed, Langsford is desperate to escape his grief, demons, and life in England. As Langsford completes the last leg of his transcontinental journey, his life unexpectedly changes once again when he crosses paths with Miss Sally Baxter, a beautiful rancher who packs a pistol in her purse.

Sally has made it her mission to find the men who robbed a train and killed her brother. Unfortunately, no one-not even the owners of the Southern Pacific Railroad-seem to care. Unable to resist her pleas, Langsford offers to help Sally and soon becomes entangled in a web of politics, corruption, and greed. As murder, threats, and attacks ensue that endanger both Sally and Langsford, influential men in both California and Washington, D.C. jockey for positions of power. Langsford, who finds himself oddly attracted to Sally, now must sort through criminals and politicians alike to discover the truth behind her brother's death and prevent his own murder.

"The author has woven a complex net of intrigue and background to the murder that makes the entire book so much more than just a mystery. As the title appropriately states, this deals with issues of politics, corruption and greed in a very accomplished way. One of the best books Iíve read in a long time. Highly recommended." - Christoph Fischer, UK Reviewer Discovering Diamonds

Amazon | Barnes and Noble

1885: Crossings by A.E. Wasserman

Publication Date: October 5, 2017
Archway Publishing
Hardcover, Paperback, and eBook; 142 Pages
Series: Langford Series, Book #3
Genre: Historical Fiction



Anna's hand holding the letter trembled as her vision rocked, going in and out of focus. She felt as though she was falling backward and at the same time rolling forward, expecting to land face first on the floor. She put her hand on the table to brace herself. She no longer heard the song birds in the buckeye tree outside the window, or the hoof beats on the cobblestones passing the front door, or any sound at all.

The world around her ceased to exist-only the paper with Henry's written words: his own account of what happened during the past year.

The entire time, she'd known he wasn't telling her everything-but this-she could never have imagined any of it. The hard fact was, Henry will never escape the truth.

"1885 Crossings gives us another opportunity to return to the world of Henry, Anna, and Langsford. A.E. Wasserman's writing is beautifully done-tense and uncomfortable. The ending gave me a chill." -Chuck Sambuchino, Bestselling Author

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About the Author

The daughter of a newspaperman, A.E. Wasserman grew up in a household filled with books and stories. At age 14, she wrote her first novella and never stopped writing.

She is the author of a new mystery/thrillers series, the first of which takes place in London: 1884 No Boundaries, A Story of Espionage and International Intrigue. The second in the Langsford Series, 1886 Ties That Bind, A Story of Politics, Graft and Greed, has just been released.

Her work, critically acclaimed as "richly atmospheric," is being noticed by readers and critics alike, and has garnered international attention, not only in the U.S., but Europe and the U.K. as well. She recently received top honors from Writerís Digest for her work.

After graduating from The Ohio State University, she lived in London, then San Francisco. Currently she resides in Southern California with her family and her muse, a Border Collie named Topper.

For more information, please Visit the author's web site at www.aewasserman.com. You can also connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

Giveaway

During the Book Blast we will be giving away a $25 Amazon Gift Card! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules
- Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on January 12th. 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.

  Langsford Series Blast

Monday, December 18, 2017

There is Always a Tomorrow Blog Tour Feature

There is Always a Tomorrow by Anna Belfrage

Publication Date: November 5, 2017
Timelight Press
eBook & Paperback; ISBN: 9781788039666
Series: Graham Saga, Book #9
Genre: Historical Fiction/Time-Slip



There is Always a Tomorrow is the ninth book in Anna Belfrage’s time slip series featuring time traveller Alexandra Lind and her seventeenth century husband, Matthew Graham.

It is 1692 and the Colony of Maryland is still adapting to the consequences of Coode’s Rebellion some years previously. Religious tolerance in the colony is now a thing of the past, but safe in their home, Alex and Matthew Graham have no reason to suspect they will become embroiled in the ongoing religious conflicts—until one of their sons betrays their friend Carlos Muñoz to the authorities.

Matthew Graham does not leave his friends to rot—not even if they’re papist priests—so soon enough most of the Graham family is involved in a rescue attempt, desperate to save Carlos from a sentence that may well kill him.

Meanwhile, in London little Rachel is going through hell. In a matter of months she loses everything, even her surname, as apparently her father is not Master Cooke but one Jacob Graham. Not that her paternity matters when her entire life implodes.

Will Alex and Matthew be able to help their unknown grandchild? More importantly, will Rachel want their help?

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | IndieBound


About the Author


Anna was raised abroad, on a pungent mix of Latin American culture, English history and Swedish traditions. As a result she’s multilingual and most of her reading is historical- both non-fiction and fiction. Possessed of a lively imagination, she has drawers full of potential stories, all of them set in the past. She was always going to be a writer – or a historian, preferably both. Ideally, Anna aspired to becoming a pioneer time traveller, but science has as yet not advanced to the point of making that possible. Instead she ended up with a degree in Business and Finance, with very little time to spare for her most favourite pursuit. Still, one does as one must, and in between juggling a challenging career Anna raised her four children on a potent combination of invented stories, historical debates and masses of good food and homemade cakes. They seem to thrive…

For years she combined a challenging career with four children and the odd snatched moment of writing. Nowadays Anna spends most of her spare time at her writing desk. The children are half grown, the house is at times eerily silent and she slips away into her imaginary world, with her imaginary characters. Every now and then the one and only man in her life pops his head in to ensure she’s still there.

Other than on her website, www.annabelfrage.com, Anna can mostly be found on her blog, http://annabelfrage.wordpress.com – unless, of course, she is submerged in writing her next novel. You can also connect with Anna on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, November 27
Review at A Holland Reads

Tuesday, November 28
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time
Excerpt at Locks, Hooks and Books

Wednesday, November 29
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Thursday, November 30
Feature at WS Momma Readers Nook
Excerpt at What Is That Book About
Excerpt at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Friday, December 1
Review at Just One More Chapter

Sunday, December 3
Feature at T's Stuff

Monday, December 4
Review at A Chick Who Reads

Tuesday, December 5
Excerpt at A Literary Vacation

Wednesday, December 6
Feature at The Lit Bitch

Thursday, December 7
Feature at A Bookaholic Swede

Friday, December 8
Review at A Bookish Affair

Monday, December 11
Feature at View From the Birdhouse
Feature at Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Tuesday, December 12
Review at Beth's Book Nook Blog

Wednesday, December 13
Feature at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Thursday, December 14
Feature at Passages to the Past

Friday, December 15
Review at Book Nerd

Monday, December 18
Feature at A Book Geek

Tuesday, December 19
Review at CelticLady's Reviews

Wednesday, December 20
Review at Jorie Loves a Story

Thursday, December 21
Review at Broken Teepee
Interview at Jorie Loves a Story


GIVEAWAY:

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away 2 eBooks & 2 paperback copies of There is Always a Tomorrow! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

- Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on December 21st. 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 system; 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.


 There is Always a Tomorrow

Friday, November 17, 2017

A Sea of Sorrow Blog Tour and Review

A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus

by David Blixt, Amalia Carosella, Libbie Hawker, Scott Oden, Vicky Alvear Shecter, and Russell Whitfield
Publication Date: October 17, 2017
Knight Media, LLC
eBook & Paperback; 524 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction



Odysseus, infamous trickster of Troy, vaunted hero of the Greeks, left behind a wake of chaos and despair during his decade long journey home to Ithaca. Lovers and enemies, witches and monsters--no one who tangled with Odysseus emerged unscathed. Some prayed for his return, others, for his destruction. These are their stories…

A beleaguered queen’s gambit for maintaining power unravels as a son plots vengeance.

A tormented siren battles a goddess’s curse and the forces of nature to survive.

An exiled sorceress defies a lustful captain and his greedy crew.

A blinded shepherd swears revenge on the pirate-king who mutilated him.

A beautiful empress binds a shipwrecked sailor to servitude, only to wonder who is serving whom.

A young suitor dreams of love while a returned king conceives a savage retribution.

Six authors bring to life the epic tale of The Odyssey seen through the eyes of its shattered victims—the monsters, witches, lovers, and warriors whose lives were upended by the antics of the “man of many faces.” You may never look upon this timeless epic—and its iconic ancient hero—in quite the same way again.

My Take:

I have read several takes on the Odysseus saga and I have to say that A Sea of Sorrow may actually be my favorite. I really enjoyed reading the tale from the very different perspectives of those characters that bear the actual burden of Odysseus' actions. I found each tale to be absolutely unique and I was pleasantly surprised that I could find some of these so-called "monsters" so sympathetic. I think it was a great idea for the focus of this version of the tale. Instead of Odysseus being the hero, he ends up as the guy who wrecks havoc and then twists the story to make himself sound better than he ever was. And isn't that what we do? Try to make ourselves out as the good guy? The wronged one?

Each of the stories has their own strong points and it is very difficult to pick a favorite. I really enjoyed each one for various reasons. I guess my favorites were all from the female perspective. Funny how that works out. Hekate's Daughter tells Circe's story and explains how and why she ended up on that island in the first place and how she became known as a witch. This tale really turns Odysseus' version on its head and I love that. 

The Siren's Song was probably one of the most heart-wrenching tales. The story of the sirens has always seemed sad, but with this telling it is a real tearjerker. This one tells the story of a family line of women and their created mythology and religious beliefs. Its a story of survival, family, love, tragedy and myth. Beautifully written, but really sad.

I found Calypso's Vow to be the turning point in the story. It turns the tables on Odysseus again, but it also gives the rest of the book and the whole saga its twist and brings it all back around so the reader can really see the point of the voyage that Odysseus makes. This one was also nicely written and made me rethink  my ideas about the saga.

Overall, I found A Sea of Sorrows to be a very good retelling of the Odysseus tale and I actually enjoyed it more than the original, of course. This was fun and made me rethink about some angles on the tale. I would happily recommend A Sea of Sorrows to anyone, but especially those who may be intimidated by the idea of reading The Odyssey. I also think those readers familiar with The Odyssey would really enjoy these new takes on the tale - I know I did. Highly recommended.


About the Authors


Amalia Carosella graduated from the University of North Dakota with a bachelors degree in Classical Studies and English. An avid reader and former bookseller, she writes about old heroes and older gods. She lives with her husband in upstate New York and dreams of the day she will own goats (and maybe even a horse, too). Amalia's novels include Tamer of Horses, Helen of Sparta, By Helen's Hand, and Daughter of a Thousand Years.
David Blixt's work is consistently described as "intricate," "taut," and "breathtaking." A writer of Historical Fiction, his novels span the early Roman Empire (the COLOSSUS series, his play EVE OF IDES) to early Renaissance Italy (the STAR-CROSS'D series) up through the Elizabethan era (his delightful espionage comedy HER MAJESTY'S WILL, starring Will Shakespeare and Kit Marlowe as inept spies). His novels combine a love of the theatre with a deep respect for the quirks and passions of history.

Living in Chicago with his wife and two children, he describes himself as "actor, author, father, husband. In reverse order."
Libbie Hawker writes historical and literary fiction featuring complex characters and rich details of time and place. Libbie's recent novels include Daughter of Sand and Stone, Mercer Girls, A Song of War, White Lotus and Persian Rose.

 She lives in the San Juan Islands of Washington State.

Russell Whitfield was born in Shepherds Bush in 1971. An only child, he was raised in Hounslow, West London, but has since escaped to Ham in Surrey.

 Gladiatrix was Russ's first novel, published in 2008 by Myrmidon Books. The sequel, Roma Victrix, continues the adventures Lysandra, the Spartan gladiatrix, and a third book, Imperatrix, sees Lysandra stepping out of the arena and onto the field of battle.

Scott Oden was born in Indiana, but has spent most of his life shuffling between his home in rural North Alabama, a Hobbit hole in Middle-earth, and some sketchy tavern in the Hyborian Age. He is an avid reader of fantasy and ancient history, a collector of swords, and a player of tabletop role-playing games. When not writing, he can be found walking his two dogs or doting over his lovely wife, Shannon.

Oden’s previous works include the historical fantasy, The Lion of Cairo, and two historical novels, Men of Bronze and Memnon. He is currently working on his next novel.

Vicky Alvear Shecter is the author of multiple books set in the ancient world, including the YA novels, CLEOPATRA'S MOON, based on the life of Cleopatra's only daughter, and CURSES AND SMOKE: A NOVEL OF POMPEII and the adult historical collaborations, A SONG OF WAR, A YEAR OF RAVENS, and A DAY OF FIRE. She has written a mid-grade series on mythology (ANUBIS SPEAKS, HADES SPEAKS, and THOR SPEAKS) as well as two award-winning biographies for kids. She a She is a docent at the Michael C. Carlos Museum of Antiquities at Emory University in Atlanta.

Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, October 17
Review at A Book Drunkard

Wednesday, October 18
Feature at A Holland Reads

Thursday, October 19
Feature at View From the Birdhouse

Friday, October 20
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Monday, October 23
Review at The Maiden's Court

Tuesday, October 24
Feature at The Reading Queen

Wednesday, October 25
Review at A Bookish Affair

Thursday, October 26
Review at What Cathy Read Next

Friday, October 27
Feature at So Many Books, So Little Time

Monday, October 30
Review at Creating Herstory

Tuesday, October 31
Review at Historical Fiction Reviews

Wednesday, November 1
Review at Back Porchervations

Thursday, November 2
Feature at The Writing Desk

Friday, November 3
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Monday, November 6
Review at Broken Teepee

Tuesday, November 7
Feature at A Literary Vacation

Wednesday, November 8
Feature at Passages to the Past

Friday, November 10
Review at Locks, Hooks and Books

Monday, November 13
Review at Unabridged Chick
Feature at CelticLady's Reviews

Tuesday, November 14
Review at Bookramblings
Feature at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Thursday, November 16
Feature at I Heart Reading

Friday, November 17
Review at A Book Geek
Review at The True Book Addict

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a paperback copy of A Sea of Sorrow: A Novel of Odysseus! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 17th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to residents 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. A Sea of Sorrow





Thursday, November 16, 2017

Sown in Tears & Where Do I Go - Book Blast

Sown in Tears by Beverly Magid

Publication Date: September 18, 2012
Paperback & eBook; 194 Pages
ISBN-13: 978-1478104575
Genre: Fiction/Historical/Jewish



Russia, 1905: The Jews are restricted to the area called thePale of the Settlement and the target of anti-semitism fomented by the government and exacerbated by the laws and the economy. After an attack on the village of Kortitz, Leah Peretz must find a way to survive and protect her young children. Her life is complicated by the unexpected attentions of the Russian officer, Captain Vaselik. Can she trust him? Should she join the burgeoning worker movement? Suddenly her path to self-discovery has become one of drama, revolution and courage.

"I read this story in ONE day. I could not put the book down!" - Impressions In Ink Book Blog

"Sown in Tearswill have you gripped from the first sentence. This exciting, fast-paced novel takes all the elements of romance, family love, friendship and loyalty and places them into the fascinating setting of a small Jewish settlement in Russia in 1905. Magid creates a wonderful atmosphere of stifling terror and poverty in the Jewish community and the courage and survival instincts of Leah or so expertly created that you are willing her on, even when her actions could have serious consequences for her family. This novel truly stands out in the ‘chick lit’ category as a brave and exciting choice of subject matter written with real heart and finesse." - BestChickLit.com

Available in Paperback and eBook on Amazon

Where Do I Go? by Beverly Magid

Publication Date: October 9, 2017
BeWrite Press
Paperback & eBook; 138 Pages
Genre: Fiction/Historical/Jewish



It's 1908 and Leah and her boys have immigrated to New York's Lower East Side to live with her brothers after surviving a pogrom in their Russian village. She is determined to find a home in America but the conditions are harsher than she expected. The garment sweat shops are brutal to work in and it's essential that her son Benny works after school to help with expenses. Unbeknownst to her he runs errands for the local bookie/gangster. Life isn't what Leah hoped for, but she's a fighter and not willing to accept the awful conditions at Wollowitz's Factory. She's on a journey to find her own voice, to find a place for herself and her sons, to find a little beauty and romance in her life.

Available in Paperback and eBook on Amazon

About the Author

Beverly Magid, before writing her novel, was a journalist and an entertainment and celebrity PR executive, who interviewed many luminaries, including John Lennon, Jim Croce and the Monty Python gang, and as a publicist represented clients in music, tv and film, ranging from Whoopi Goldberg, John Denver and Dolly Parton to Tom Skerritt, Martin Landau, Kathy Ireland and Jacqueline Bisset.

Beverly is a longtime west coast resident who still considers herself a New Yorker. Among the social issues she’s passionate about is literacy and she worked with KorehLA to mentor elementary children in reading. Also she has been an advocate for Jewish World Watch, an organization dedicated to working against genocide and to aid the victims of war atrocities. On a lighter side, she is also a volunteer at the Los Angeles Zoo, monitoring animal behavior for their Research Department.

She is a news and political junkie who supports environmental, animal and human rights issues. She believes most passionately that “We must remain vigilant to the those who would erode the rights of people around the world and work to defeat them.”

For more information, please visit Beverly Magid's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Book Blast Schedule

Monday, November 13
Passages to the Past

Tuesday, November 14
Creating Herstory

Wednesday, November 15
The Never-Ending Book
History From a Woman's Perspective

Thursday, November 16
A Book Geek

Friday, November 17
So Many Books, So Little Time

Monday, November 20
WS Momma Readers Nook

Tuesday, November 21
Locks, Hooks and Books

Wednesday, November 22
Adventures Thru Wonderland

Thursday, November 23
What Is That Book About

Monday, November 27
Let Them Read Books

Thursday, November 30
Pursuing Stacie

Giveaway

During the Book Blast we will be giving away a signed copy of SOWN IN TEARS! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 30th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to residents 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.

  Beverly Magid Book Blast

Thursday, November 9, 2017

The Rules of Magic - Quick review

The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman
Publication date: October 10, 2017
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Hardcover; 369 pages
Source: purchased at B&N

Description:

For the Owens family, love is a curse that began in 1620, when Maria Owens was charged with witchery for loving the wrong man.

Hundreds of years later, in New York City at the cusp of the sixties, when the whole world is about to change, Susanna Owens knows that her three children are dangerously unique. Difficult Franny, with skin as pale as milk and blood red hair, shy and beautiful Jet, who can read other people’s thoughts, and charismatic Vincent, who began looking for trouble on the day he could walk.

From the start Susanna sets down rules for her children: No walking in the moonlight, no red shoes, no wearing black, no cats, no crows, no candles, no books about magic. And most importantly, never, ever, fall in love. But when her children visit their Aunt Isabelle, in the small Massachusetts town where the Owens family has been blamed for everything that has ever gone wrong, they uncover family secrets and begin to understand the truth of who they are. Back in New York City each begins a risky journey as they try to escape the family curse.

The Owens children cannot escape love even if they try, just as they cannot escape the pains of the human heart. The two beautiful sisters will grow up to be the revered, and sometimes feared, aunts in Practical Magic, while Vincent, their beloved brother, will leave an unexpected legacy.



My Take:

Because I love Practical Magic so much, I couldn't wait to get my hands on The Rules of Magic. All the other books I was reading were put on hold so I could devote my time and attention to this book. While I didn't want it to end, I also couldn't put it down. Quite the dilemma.

I have always wanted to find out more about the amazing aunts from Practical Magic, and The Rules of Magic gave me everything I wanted. The reader is treated to more of the family history, the curse and the story of Franny and Jet growing up during the 1960's. The extra special treat was learning about their brother, Vincent. I loved every minute of this book and the way it wrapped everything up at the end was just wonderful. 

Rather than go into too much detail, I will just say: go read The Rules of Magic!


About the author:



Alice Hoffman is the author of more than thirty works of fiction, including The Rules of Magic, The Marriage of Opposites, Practical Magic, The Red Garden, the Oprah’s Book Club selection Here on Earth, The Museum of Extraordinary Things, and The Dovekeepers. She lives near Boston.

Monday, November 6, 2017

The Murderer’s Maid blog tour and review

The Murderer's Maid by Erika Mailman

Publication Date: October 30, 2017
Bonhomie Press
Hardcover; ISBN-13: 978-0997066449
Genre: Fiction/Historical/Mystery



Bram Stoker Award finalist Erika Mailman brings the true story of the brutal murder of Lizzie Borden's father and stepmother into new focus by adding a riveting contemporary narrative.

The Murderer's Maid interweaves the stories of two women: one, the servant of infamous Lizzie Borden, and the other a modern-day barista fleeing from an attempt on her life.

Trapped by servitude and afraid for her own safety, Irish maid Bridget finds herself an unwilling witness to the tensions in the volatile Borden household. As Lizzie seethes with resentment, Bridget tries to perform her duties and keep her mouth shut.

Unknowingly connected to the legendary crime of a century ago, Brooke, the illegitimate daughter of an immigrant maid, struggles to conceal her identity and stay a jump ahead of the men who want to kill her. When she unexpectedly falls in love with Anthony, a local attorney, she has to decide whether to stop running and begin her life anew.

With historical detail and taut, modern storytelling, Erika Mailman writes a captivating novel about identity, choices, freedom, and murder. She offers readers a fresh perspective on the notorious crime and explores the trials of immigrants seeking a better life while facing down fear and oppression, today and throughout history. Intelligent and detailed, The Murderer's Maid is a gripping read from beginning to bloody conclusion.

“A complex and riveting parallax view of domestic crimes, decades apart.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Erika Mailman writes a page turner of a thriller that will fascinate as well as terrify.” — Margaret Lane, New York Journal of Books

"Fascinating, mesmerizing, and so darkly atmospheric that you keep looking over your shoulder as you read." ―Diana Gabaldon, internationally-bestselling author of the Outlander series

"The Murderer’s Maid is a fascinating and deeply chilling tale. Erika Mailman weaves a story that is by turns poignant, compelling, and murderously suspenseful." ―Kathleen Kent, author of The Heretic’s Daughter

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Powell's


My Take:

When offered the opportunity to read and review The Murderer's Maid, I jumped at the chance. How could I not? A historical fiction novel dealing with the Lizzie Borden murders and a novel by Erika Mailman in one neat package? Of course I had to agree.

The Murderer's Maid is a little different from other novels that I have read dealing with the Borden murders. The novel is told from three different points of view and two different timelines. Bridget is the Irish maid that the Borden family hires and her story presents a unique and interesting view of the events. The reader also gets to read parts of the story from Lizzie's point of view, which is really necessary for certain parts of the story. The final viewpoint is from Brooke, who is a daughter of an immigrant housekeeper much like Bridget was. Her story line is current day and she has an unknown link to the Borden story.

I found the novel to be very entertaining as well as thought provoking. What initially seems to be another novel trying to figure out what happened in the Borden household and why, also presents a thoughtful look at the lives of recent immigrants who find themselves in precarious situations. The novel examines how dependent and vulnerable immigrants can be in their new country as well as the attitudes they encounter while trying to acclimate to their new home. 

Brooke's story presents a modern day look at the immigrant experience through her memories of her mother's experience. Brooke, is in a unique and dangerous situation because she has been on the run from a mysterious person who is trying to kill her. She takes work under the table and pretends to be an undocumented worker despite the fact that she was born in the U.S. - all in an attempt to stay one step ahead of her would-be murderer. There is a certain irony there since unknown to her, she has a family link to the Borden murder. Even though I would really like to discuss some of the fun aspects of Brooke's story, I will control myself since they would give too much away. Suffice to say, there is plenty to keep the reader's attention in just this timeline. 

I can't decide which timeline I enjoyed the most - my choice changes from day to day. I read The Murderer's Maid in about a day and stayed up late to finish it and it was completely worth it. I really enjoy the author's writing and I really loved the novel. I would wholeheartedly recommend The Murderer's Maid to any reader who enjoys true crime, historical fiction, thrillers and/or mysteries.





About the Author

Erika Mailman is the author of The Witch's Trinity, a San Francisco Chronicle Notable Book and Bram Stoker Award finalist, and Woman of Ill Fame, a Pushcart Press Editor's Book Award nominee. She's a Yaddo fellow and lives in Northern California with her family.

For more information, please visit Erika Mailman's website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.


Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, October 16
Review at Unabridged Chick
Feature at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, October 17
Interview at Unabridged Chick

Wednesday, October 18
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Thursday, October 19
Review & Excerpt at Books of All Kinds
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time

Friday, October 20
Spotlight at Bookfever
Review at Once Upon A Book

Monday, October 23
Review at Poppy Coburn
Review at A Bookish Affair

Tuesday, October 24
Guest Post at A Bookish Affair
Feature at A Literary Vacation

Wednesday, October 25
Review at Back Porchervations
Feature at Must Read Faster

Thursday, October 26
Review at Linda's Book Obsession

Friday, October 27
Review at What Cathy Read Next
Feature at The Reading Queen

Monday, October 30
Review at A Holland Reads

Tuesday, October 31
Review at The Maiden's Court

Wednesday, November 1
Review at Pursuing Stacie
Review at Books of a Shy Girl

Thursday, November 2
Review at Book Nerd

Friday, November 3
Review at T's Stuff
Review at Just One More Chapter

Monday, November 6
Review at A Book Geek
Review at CelticLady's Reviews

Tuesday, November 7
Review at Locks, Hooks and Books

Wednesday, November 8
Review at The True Book Addict


Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a hardcover copy of The Murderer's Maid! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules
– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 8th. 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.






Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Tides Between Book Blast

Good mornin' and Happy Monday, dear readers! Today I am super excited to be kicking off Elizabeth Jane Corbett's The Tides Between Book Blast! The Tides Between is a historical coming-of-age novel set in the steerage compartment of a nineteenth century emigrant vessel. It includes elements of magic and storytelling and will be released on October 20th from Odyssey Books.

The Tides Between by Elizabeth Jane Corbett

Publication Date: October 20, 2017
Odyssey Books
Paperback; 300 Pages
Genre: Fiction/Young Adult/Historical



She fancied herself part of a timeless chain without beginning or end, linked only by the silver strong words of its tellers.

In the year 1841, on the eve of her departure from London, Bride's mother demands she forget her dead father and prepare for a sensible, adult life in Port Phillip. Desperate to save her childhood, fifteen-year-old Bridie is determined to smuggle a notebook filled with her father's fairytales to the far side of the world.

When Rhys Bevan, a soft-voiced young storyteller and fellow traveller realises Bridie is hiding something, a magical friendship is born. But Rhys has his own secrets and the words written in Bridie’s notebook carry a dark double meaning.

As they inch towards their destination, Rhys's past returns to haunt him. Bridie grapples with the implications of her dad’s final message. The pair take refuge in fairytales, little expecting the trouble it will cause.

Pick up your copy from Odyssey Books


About the Author

When Elizabeth Jane Corbett isn’t writing, she works as a librarian, teaches Welsh at the Melbourne Celtic Club, writes reviews and articles for the Historical Novel Society and blogs at elizabethjanecorbett.com. In 2009, her short-story, Beyond the Blackout Curtain, won the Bristol Short Story Prize. Another, Silent Night, was short listed for the Allan Marshall Short Story Award. An early draft of her debut novel, The Tides Between, was shortlisted for a HarperCollins Varuna manuscript development award.

Elizabeth lives with her husband, Andrew, in a renovated timber cottage in Melbourne’s inner-north. She likes red shoes, dark chocolate, commuter cycling, and reading quirky, character driven novels set once-upon-a-time in lands far, far away.

For more information, please visit Elizabeth Jane Corbett's website. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

Book Blast Schedule

Monday, October 16
Passages to the Past

Tuesday, October 17
The Never-Ending Book

Wednesday, October 18
A Book Geek

Thursday, October 19
The Reading Queen

Friday, October 20
Pursuing Stacie
What Is That Book About

Sunday, October 22
Faery Tales Are Real

Monday, October 23
Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Tuesday, October 24
Creating Herstory

Wednesday, October 25
History From a Woman's Perspective

Thursday, October 26
Jenn's Book Vibes

Friday, October 27
WS Momma Readers Nook

Monday, October 30
I Heart Reading

Tuesday, October 31
Back Porchervations

Wednesday, November 1
T's Stuff

Friday, November 3
A Holland Reads

Monday, November 6
Broken Teepee

Tuesday, November 7
Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Thursday, November 9
CelticLady's Reviews
Locks, Hooks and Books
Carole Rae's Random Ramblings

Friday, November 10
What Cathy Read Next

Friday, September 22, 2017

The Trust

The Trust by Ronald H. Balson
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publication date: September 19, 2017
Hardcover; 368 pages






Book Description:
When his uncle dies, Liam Taggart reluctantly returns to his childhood home in Northern Ireland for the funeral―a home he left years ago after a bitter confrontation with his family, never to look back. But when he arrives, Liam learns that not only was his uncle shot to death, but that he’d anticipated his own murder: In an astonishing last will and testament, Uncle Fergus has left his entire estate to a secret trust, directing that no distributions be made to any person until the killer is found. Did Fergus know, but refuse to name, his killer? Was this a crime of revenge, a vendetta leftover from Northern Ireland’s bloody sectarian war? After all, the Taggarts were deeply involved in the IRA. Or is it possible that the killer is a family member seeking Fergus’s estate? Otherwise, why postpone distributions to the heirs? Most menacingly, does the killer now have his sights on other family members?

As his investigation draws Liam farther and farther into the past he has abandoned, he realizes he is forced to reopen doors long ago shut and locked. Now, accepting the appointment as sole trustee of the Fergus Taggart Trust, Liam realizes he has stepped into the center of a firestorm.


My Take:

I really had no idea what to expect from The Trust except that it takes place in Northern Ireland and involved The Troubles - always a fascinating, if sad topic. I was immediately drawn into the story and found Liam Taggart to be a likable and very interesting main character. For some reason I found the fact that he is a private investigator with CIA experience to be really appealing. He is a decent but complicated person.

For the first time in a long time, I wasn't able to predict where the story was going and that was such a pleasant surprise. I found the premise of the novel to be quite intriguing - Liam finds out his uncle has died and left him in charge of finding the killer of this same uncle. So many questions to answer- did his uncle know he was going to be killed? Did he know his killer? If so, why not name the killer? Why Liam, when other family members are closer and some don’t even want Liam there in the first place? The family drama and history is also a very interesting aspect to the novel -- there are so many half-told stories or things just kept secret that it makes for very interesting reading when things are revealed.

I really enjoyed The Trust from start to finish. I appreciated the history of The Troubles that was explained  within the novel so that I didn't have to Google or hunt for my Irish history books to remind myself of dates and details. I found the perspective of the Liam's family regarding the politics of the era to be very interesting. I think the way the novel explains their perspective really makes personal what may seem like dry history otherwise.

There are actually a couple of mysteries/murders for Liam to solve besides his uncle's murder. There were some events in his past when he was working for the CIA during the peace process that maybe weren't quite what he thought they were. There were definitely some questions about his family's actions during the time period that have a bearing on current day as well.

Rather than try to explain more about the intricate and wonderfully entertaining plot, I will just suggest very strongly that anyone who is interested in Ireland, Irish history, loves mysteries and/or thrillers, should definitely read The Trust. I haven't had this much fun reading a book in quite a long time. Balson had me guessing throughout the book and I loved every minute.





About the Author:
RONALD H. BALSON is a Chicago trial attorney, an educator, and writer. His practice has taken him to several international venues. He is also the author of Karolina's Twins, Saving Sophie, and the international bestseller Once We Were Brothers.




Website: http://ronaldbalson.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RonaldBalson
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ronbalson

Book available at:

Amazon 
B&N
Indiebound





Monday, September 4, 2017

The Soldier's Return Book Blast

The Soldier's Return by Laura Libricz

Publication Date: September 15, 2017
eBook & Paperback
Series: Heaven's Pond Trilogy, Book Two
Genre: Historical Fiction



The year is 1626. A senseless war rips through parts of Germany. Ongoing animosity between the Catholics and the Protestants has turned into an excuse to destroy much of the landscape situated between France, Italy and Denmark. But religion only plays a minor role in this lucrative business of war.

The young dutchman, Pieter van Diemen, returns to Amsterdam in chains after a period of imprisonment in the Spice Islands. He manages to escape but must leave Amsterdam in a hurry. Soldiers are in demand in Germany and he decides to travel with a regiment until he can desert. His hope of survival is to reach Sichardtshof, the farm in Franconia, Germany; the farm he left ten years ago. His desire to seek refuge with them lies in his fond memories of the maid Katarina and her master, the humanist patrician Herr Tucher. But ten years is a long time and the farm has changed. Franconia is not only torn by war but falling victim to a church-driven witch hunt. The Jesuit priest, Ralf, has his sights set on Sichardtshof as well. Ralf believes that ridding the area of evil will be his saving grace. Can Pieter, Katarina and Herr Tucher unite to fight against a senseless war out of control? ​

The Soldier’s Return is the second book in the Heaven’s Pond Trilogy and will be released on September 15, 2017.

Available on Amazon



About the Author

Laura Libricz was born and raised in Bethlehem PA and moved to Upstate New York when she was 22. After working a few years building Steinberger guitars, she received a scholarship to go to college. She tried to ‘do the right thing’ and study something useful, but spent all her time reading German literature.

She earned a BA in German at The College of New Paltz, NY in 1991 and moved to Germany, where she resides today. When she isn’t writing she can be found sifting through city archives, picking through castle ruins or aiding the steady flood of musical instruments into the world market.

Her first novel, The Master and the Maid, is the first book of the Heaven's Pond Trilogy. The Soldier’s Return and Ash and Rubble are the second and third books in the series.

For more information, please visit Laura Libricz's website and blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, September 4
A Book Geek
Mello & June, It's a Book Thang!

Tuesday, September 5
100 Pages a Day
The Reading Queen

Wednesday, September 6
Must Read Faster
Just One More Chapter

Thursday, September 7
The Writing Desk
The Maiden's Court
To Read, Or Not to Read

Friday, September 8
Book Nerd
CelticLady's Reviews

Saturday, September 9
Passages to the Past
Books, Dreams, Life

Sunday, September 10
I Heart Reading

Monday, September 11
A Literary Vacation
Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Tuesday, September 12
Jo's Book Blog
WS Momma Readers Nook

Wednesday, September 13
Laura's Interests
Oh, For the Hook of a Book

Thursday, September 14
A Holland Reads
Svetlana's Reads and Views

Friday, September 15
T's Stuff
Pursuing Stacie


The Canterbury Murders - Blog Tour and Review

  The Canterbury Murders by E.M. Powell Publication Date: November 12, 2020 Crosshaven Press Series: Stanton & Barling, #3 Genre: Hi...