South of the Buttonwood Tree Book Tour + Review & Giveaway

Hello Wonderful Friends, 

Today I have A Book Review And Giveaway!

@booksbyheather @jeanbooknerd @forgereads @gwendalynbooks.wordpress.com  @torbooks #jbnstorytellerbox #jeanbooknerdtours 

Forge Books
Tor/Forge
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher:
Forge Books (July 21, 2020)
Language: English
On Sale: 07/21/2020
ISBN: 9781250198563



Praise for Heather Webber’s MIDNIGHT AT THE BLACKBIRD CAFE “Full of family secrets, undeniable charm and that particular touch of magic so often found in the South, MIDNIGHT AT THE BLACKBIRD CAFE is a heartfelt and redemptive tale of a daughter looking to move forward in the place her mother couldn’t wait to leave behind. Heather Webber creates a town as dynamic and real as her characters—and a story so compelling that it will stay on readers’ minds long after the final page. I savored every word.” —Kristy Woodson Harvey, national bestselling author of Slightly South of Simple“Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe is an enchanting gem of a novel, brimming with charming characters, heartwarming connections, old secrets, and a southern setting that makes you want to move there. As refreshing as a glass of blackberry tea, this is truly magical realism at its best!” —Karen White, New York Times bestselling author“Family, fate, and magic intertwine in this endearing Southern tale of long-held secrets, homemade pie, and building one’s future from the remains of the past. A tantalizing, delicious delight, through and through. Heather Webber writes with so much detail and imagination that I’ll be craving some Blackbird Cafe pie—and the comfort that comes with it—for a long time to come.” —Kristin Harmel, international bestselling author of The Room on Rue Amélie and The Sweetness of Forgetting
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Blue Bishop has a knack for finding lost things. While growing up in charming small-town Buttonwood, Alabama, she’s happened across lost wallets, jewelry, pets, her wandering neighbor, and sometimes, trouble. No one is more surprised than Blue, however, when she comes across an abandoned newborn baby in the woods, just south of a very special buttonwood tree.Sarah Grace Landreneau Fulton is at a crossroads. She has always tried so hard to do the right thing, but her own mother would disown her if she ever learned half of Sarah Grace’s secrets.The unexpected discovery of the newborn baby girl will alter Blue’s and Sarah Grace’s lives forever. Both women must fight for what they truly want in life and for who they love. In doing so, they uncover long-held secrets that reveal exactly who they really are–and what they’re willing to sacrifice in the name of family.You can purchase South of the Buttonwood Tree at the following
Retailers
:       
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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

A picturesque southern town, with a little bit of Magic Webber has created a cozy small town with all the dynamics that go with it.

This southern charm book, is a delight to read with all gossip, lies, and family dramas.

‘It was the kind of day in Buttonwood, Alabama, where trouble slipped into town with the breeze, jarring awake sleepy springtime leaves on the massive oaks and sky-high hickories. It scraped parched dirt, sending dust skittering along the trail like it was running for cover. It whistled its warning, plain as day to anyone who cared to listen.’

At the center is a delightful folklore, surrounding a tree, The Buttonwood Tree. If you don’t pay attention and follow its advise, you will suffer the consequences.

Buttonwood Alabama, has a long memory, and for those carrying the Bishop name they know it all to well. Blue Bishop has struggled under the weight of her family’s surname. A successful children’s author and illustrator, with a series of books about a bunny that have made her famous. Her family’s scandalous behavior, has left its mark on the the residents of Buttonwood, Alabama.

Blue and her sister, Persy are the only two left in the Bishop family.  Blue is kindhearted and goes out of her way for others, even when she was little her behavior set her apart from her infamous family.

Blue has a knack for finding things, and sometimes even people. The wind calls to her and she listens and follows it to things or people who are lost.

“As surely as the wind pushed me along, it also held me back, keeping me tethered to Buttonwood like a small bird in a big, pretty cage. Until I found the lost thing with no name, I was free to roam—but only within the confines of my ornate prison.”

Blue Bishop —-

Sarah Grace Landreneau Fulton has spent her life trying to ‘Do better and Be better’. A saying that has been driven into her by her domineering southern mother. Putting her family and it’s status above her own wants a desires. This path has led her into a series of mistakes, along with an unhappy marriage.

Sarah Grace also is gifted with something magical Also she is a house whisperer.

Blue has unexpected discovery of a mysterious baby this set off a series of events that is the center of Webber’s novel. When secrets are revealed they will shake both Sarah Grace and Blues lives forever.

This was a fast paced read, easy to fall into this quaint charming town and it’s lively inhabitants. I stayed up late to finish reading it. Once I started reading this book, there was no way I could put it down. I loved the way author meticulously blended magical realism into a heartwarming story,  about family and friendship.

If you haven’t read any of Heather Webber books what are you waiting for?

 

—A Little Historical Tidbit—

Buttonwood is a name given to the American sycamore tree, because its fine wood was often used for making buttons.


Have a wonderful day!

 

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Photo Content from Heather Webber HEATHER
WEBBER is the national bestselling author of more than thirty novels–including Midnight at the Blackbird Cafe, the Lucy Valentine novels, and the Nina Quinn Mysteries–and has been twice nominated for an Agatha Award. She loves to spend time with her family, read, drink too much coffee and tea, birdwatch, crochet, watch cooking competition and home improvement shows, crochet, and bake. Heather lives in southwestern Ohio and is hard at work on her next book.        
WEEK ONE
JULY 20th MONDAY JeanBookNerd INTERVIEW
JULY 21st TUESDAY Movies, Shows, & Books EXCERPT
JULY 22nd WEDNESDAY TTC Books and More INTERVIEW 
JULY 22nd WEDNESDAY J Long Books REVIEW
JULY 23rd THURSDAY Reading Adventures of a Book Dragon EXCERPT
JULY 23rd THURSDAY Day Leitao INTERVIEW
JULY 24th FRIDAY Nay’s Pink Bookshelf REVIEW
 
WEEK TWO
JULY 27th MONDAY Ya It’s Lit REVIEW
JULY 28th TUESDAY BookHounds REVIEW & INTERVIEW
JULY 29th WEDNESDAY Two Points of Interest REVIEW
JULY 30th THURSDAY Captivated Reading REVIEW
JULY 30th THURSDAY Gwendalyn’s Books REVIEW 
JULY 31st FRIDAY J.R.’s Book Reviews REVIEW 
JULY 31st FRIDAY My Fictional Oasis REVIEW

 

–Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter

–  5 Winners will receive a Copy of SOUTH OF THE

*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*

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A WICKED MAGIC

Hello Everyone

Happy Book Birthday

@sashalwrites @razorbillbooks

 

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A WICKED MAGIC

In her debut Laurens weaves an intricate, suspense-filled tale mingling everyday teen angst with otherworldly sorcery…the shifting narrative tantalizes teen readers with the possibility of magic.  – Kirkus

Laurens blends the extraordinary and the everyday into her swiftly paced plot and creates characters readers care about as they navigate the challenges of adolescence and independence on the cusp of adulthood. – School Library Journal

When Dan and Liss stumbled on a way to transform themselves into witches, they never imagined they’d need magic to stay best friends forever.

But when a spell goes wrong and a demon snatches away Johnny, Liss’s boyfriend, in the middle of the night, the girls’ friendship vanishes, too.

Now, months since his disappearance—and since Dan and Liss last spoke—Liss barges back into Dan’s life with shocking news: she’s found a way to talk to Johnny, and she’s going to bring him home. But the path to rescuing Johnny is rockier than they’d expected, and neither of them might be strong enough to confront what they’re searching for.

Too bad they don’t know that Alexa, Dan’s new friend, is harboring magical secrets of her own.

Set in the atmospheric wilds of California’s northern coast, Sasha Laurens’s eerie debut novel is about the complications of friendship, taking back power, and how to embrace the darkness that lurks within us all.

 

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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

Content/Trigger Warnings: self harm/ anxiety / depression / drug use / brief mention of a underage relationship

Sasha Lauren debut book is set in the atmosphere wilds of a sleepy foggy California northern coast. Liss and Dan are besties, in their sophomore year of high school. Waiting for something magical to happen. They come across a antique magical book.

When a magical spell appears within the book, to make them witches. They think nothing of it, and cast it. From that moment their lives change, and not all it is good. They unintentionally summon something dark, and with it comes disastrous complications. Ultimately it shatters their once bond of friendship and drives a wedge between the two.

Fast forward, Liss has been trying, without any success to right the wrong. Seeking to bring back her boyfriend, Johnny Su, who went missing during the spell that both Liss and Dan cast. Liss has a breakthrough and finally makes contact with Johnny, and tries to draw Dan back into magic. Dan has moved con and has a new best friend, Alexa. Alexa is grappling with her own magical awakening.

This captivating tale is about the complications of friendship, and ultimately taking back power. The author has written memorable character driven novel with complex female friendships along with tongue-in-cheek narration. A urban fantasy that uses magical realism as a vehicle for what the storyline is really about. Creative and written in such away that had me flipping the pages as fast as I could.

 

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SASHA LAURENS ..was raised in San Francisco and Northern California, where she learned to drive on Highway 1’s switchback turns and got accustomed to the best weather in the world. She started taking writing classes at 826 Valencia in high school, and would have minored in Creative Writing at Columbia University, if the minor hadn’t been eliminated. Instead, Sasha studied Russian Literature, and graduated summa cum laude.

Upon graduation she moved to St. Petersburg, Russia, and attempted to write a literary novel, unsurprisingly about Americans living in St. Petersburg, Russia. Returning to New York City, she earned an M.A. in Russian Regional Studies from Columbia University while working at the university. Since 2014, she been pursuing her PhD in political science at the University Michigan, and currently resides in Ann Arbor.

Writing and political science take up almost all of her time, but when she gets a break she loves boxing, watching bad reality tv, and traveling.

John Keats The Poet

Hello Today I Decided to take down one of my beautiful antique books to share with you. I have been avid collector of Antique and vintage books for various reasons since childhood.

Today I am featuring The Poet Mr Joh Keats and His love for Miss Fanny Brawne. So grab yourself a cuppa and join me 
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John Keats

 Portrait of English Romantic poet John Keats 1795-1821, by English painter William Hilton National Portrait Gallery, London

Today I want to share with you some my ramblings, in particular I have a a question for you. Have you ever read any of the classics. I know most of us have had to read some sort of classical lit for school or such.
My question really is have picked up on your own and read a piece of classical literature, from a novel or a a delightful book of poetry.

My Mother was an avid reader, so I was introduced early on to classical literature along with, and I kid you not Fantasy and Science Fiction.
You would be surprised how easy it is to transition from one to the other.

So this post is particularly about John Keats, and his poetry, along with his love interest. Which I found to have influenced his writing. Maybe not so much is rattled him into putting forth more of effort to write.

His poetry is really fantastic,  in its way of imagery, and I am all about forgetting about what’s going on in the world today. I want to be transported into a book or poem.. something that allows me Escape.

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Despite his death at the age of 25, Keats is one of the greatest English poets and a key figure in the Romantic movement.

He has become the epitome of the young, beautiful, doomed poet.

John Keats was born on 31 October 1795 in London. His father worked at a livery stable, but died in 1804. His mother remarried, but died of tuberculosis in 1810.

Keats was educated at a school in Enfield. When he left at 16, he was apprenticed to a surgeon. He wrote his first poems in 1814. In 1816, he abandoned medicine to concentrate on poetry. His first volume of poetry was published the following year.

In 1818, Keats nursed his brother Tom through the final stages of tuberculosis, the disease that had killed their mother. Tom died in December and Keats moved to his friend Charles Brown’s house in Hampstead. There he met and fell deeply in love with a neighbour, the 18-year old Fanny Brawne.

This was the beginning of Keats’ most creative period. He wrote, among others, ‘The Eve of St Agnes’, ‘La Belle Dame Sans Merci’, ‘Ode to a Nightingale’ and ‘To Autumn’. The group of five odes, which include ‘Ode to a Nightingale’, are ranked among the greatest short poems in the English language.

From September 1819, Keats produced little more poetry. His financial difficulties were now severe. He became engaged to Fanny Brawne, but with no money there was little prospect of them marrying.

Early in 1820, Keats began to display symptoms of tuberculosis. His second volume of poetry was published in July, but he was by now very ill. In September, Keats and his friend Joseph Severn left for the warmer weather of Italy, in the hope that this would improve Keats’ health. When they reached Rome, Keats was confined to bed. Severn nursed him devotedly, but Keats died in Rome on 23 February 1821. He was buried in the Protestant Cemetery in Rome.

John Keats’s Style Poems

 

Keats’s diction is highly connotative.

His writing style is characterized by sensual imageryand contains many poetic devices such as alliteration, personification, assonance, metaphors, and consonance.

All of these devices work together to create rhythm and music in his poems. His most popular poems include:

 Ode on Melancholy,
 Ode on a Grecian Urn
Ode to Autumn
Ode to a Nightingale
La Belle Dame Sans Mercy
Imitation of Spenser
Hyperion,” 
and “Isabella.

Among his sonnets, the most popular are 

“Bright Stars! Would I were steadfast as Thou Art,” “When I have Fears that I may Cease to be,” “Endymion,” “The Eve of St. Agnes,” and “Lamia.”

More About Him

 

Keats did not harness dramatic and narrative power necessary to present individual characters. Instead, he was gifted with lyrical power to present characters with expressive moods. Often, these moods were of pensiveness, romantic sadness, or indolence, as well as ecstatic delight, which can be observed in his great odes.

To Autumn” (1819)

This poem’s first line is one of the most iconic of all time.
Arguably, no other poet has managed to create such a beautiful depiction of the season so deftly, or with such a kaleidoscopic wealth of images.

Keats is able to convey the synaesthesia of three months in just three stanzas.

The naturalistic, almost pastoral language is reminiscent of Hardy in places, though achieves as much with a fraction of the words.

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of spring? Ay, Where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

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Bright Star by John Keats Poetry Analysis

Bright Star by John Keats Poetry Analysis – Quillsliteracy

This essay is a close reading analysis of the poem

“The Bright Star”.

It is a love sonnet and is believed that it was written for his love and fiance’ Fanny Brawny. Keats writes the poem in iambic pentameter. The poem revolves around Keats love for stars and about nature’s beauty. The whole poem is written with a rhyming scheme except the last two lines possibly to attract the reader’s attention to it.

By starting the poem with “Bright Star! “                                           


Keats introduces the poem with strong imagery and symbolism that rejects a clear and precise picture of the bright star. By adding an exclamation to the line, he stresses the importance of the star and to exhibit the excitement he is feeling. He wishes that he could be as steadfast and consistent as the bright star. In the second line, he writes about the lonely star that is isolated from the rest of the world. Even though he admires the star and wishes to be like it, he doesn’t want to follow this quality of the star.

The third line – expresses that the star is always awake and shining and that is yet another characteristic he doesn’t wish to imitate. In line our, Keats writes about a “sleepless Eremite” which is another word for hermit. Comparing eremite to the “moving waters” captures beautiful imagery. This is the first time Keats uses religion in the poem. However, he does use it a few times throughout the poem. The poet uses the poetic device simile in the fifth line by comparing the moving waters to “Priestley task”.

This contributes to the fact that John Keats loves and admires the beauty of nature (“moving waters”) as he is comparing it with a religious symbol (“Priestley task”). The religiousness was being compared to the star, and now it is being compared to the moving waters. It shows a separation between the sky and the Earth. With the imagery of “Eremite” and “Priestley tasks” of moving waters, Keats wishes to express that the stars and the nature of water bodies are always twinkling and flowing, basically being immortal, which he cannot accomplish.

In line six- Keats uses the word “ablution” which also symbolizes religion. Ablution is a word for religious washing or cleansing and Keats ties it with the sea. All the lines so far in the poem express the profound admiration that Keats has for the skies and the Earth, since he compares them with elisions values. Keats brings back the stars and its gazing once again in line seven. He uses enjambment to create a pause from the stars and waters to transform into other earthly bodies.

Keats starts this new stanza by expressing his admiration for mountains and moors and the beautiful snow that accumulates on top of its peak. He tries to create imagery of a winter and lonely place. Winter has a connotation of seclusion and desolation. One can also find alliteration in mountains and moors, trying to stress his adoration for them. Keats repeats what he expresses n the beginning of the poem again in line eight saying that he wants to be steadfast and “unchangeable” like the star, but not lonely.

This repetition enforces the passion he for the star. He writes about him lying on his lover’s breast and seeking comfort. He mentions “ripening” breast to express that even if the breast is aging, the comfy it produces does not lessen. This can be compared to the star, which also has its comfort and beauty no matter it’s age. Keats ends the poem by saying, “so live ever- or else swoon to death”. He expresses that he would be happy to live with his love and swoon to death or live forever like the star.

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The gravestone of poet John Keats, (1795-1821), stands in Rome’s ‘Non Catholic Cemetery’ on March 26, 2013 in Rome, Italy

 

Watercolour of Fanny Brawne, 1833.

 

Keats & Fanny

THE LOVE affair between John Keats and Fanny Brawne was shortlived but burned intensely bright.

They met in 1819 when they were neighbours in Hampstead but were separated for ever when Keats departed for Italy in September 1820 hoping the warmer weather there might alleviate the symptoms of his tuberculosis.

He died in Rome in February 1821, aged just 25.

The poems he wrote during that time (including his best known works Ode To A Grecian Urn, Ode On Melancholy and Ode To A Nightingale) are among some of the best loved in the English language but the passionate letters he and Fanny exchanged give us a unique insight into their love affair.

When they met, Fanny was just 18 and Keats described her as “autiful, elegant, graceful, silly, fashionable and strange”. He considered her passion for clothes to indicate someone a little too vain and flirtatious to be taken seriously but soon grew to see it as an expression of her bold and irrepressible nature, calling her his “minxtress”.

In March 1820 he wrote her a letter saying: “You are always new… the last movement always the gracefullest.”

In the early 19th century it was not considered desirable for women to be too clever or too educated. Fanny shared what Bright Star’s director Jane Campion calls the “passive waiting fate of any young woman of her time”. Yet she was obviously bright and if poetry was Keats’s way of expressing himself and making sense of the world around him, so fashion was Fanny’s.

It was obviously a passion that she developed at a young age since a collection survives of fashion plates clipped from such magazines as Petit Courrier des Dames (a French publication, the early 19th-century equivalent of Vogue), which she starting making at the age of 12. Fanny continued to amass these illustrations until just two years before her death in 1865.

When Keats first encounters his neighbour in Campion’s film she  is wearing a white dress with a vibrant red cardigan and an attention-seeking feathered hat.

The dress itself is copied from one in Fanny’s collection. White dresses were de rigueur for young women at the time but it was only just becoming acceptable to pair them with colours: a white skirt with a coloured “body” was considered daring.

Janet Patterson, costume designer for Bright Star took inspiration from Fanny’s books  of fashion plates. Some of the costumes are on show at Keats House, the museum that now occupies the semi-detached Hampstead house in which the poet used to live. It was owned by his friend Charles Brown who let a room to Keats with the Brawne family occupying the other side.

Katherine Pearce of Keats House says:

“It was just after the Battle of Waterloo so the French look was very fashionable and military detailing on clothes for women was also something that was popular”.

Katherine Pearce, “I don’t so much see Fanny as his muse more someone who shook him up. Before he met her he had been writing about his surroundings and theoretical  ideas of truth and beauty but  the depth of his feelings for her frightened him and he was forced to confront things in a very personal way.”

Fanny did eventually marry  and have children but she always wore the engagement ring Keats had given her. a garnet set in  gold scrollwork, it undoubtedly  set off her many elegant outfits.

The Keats House is open Friday to Sunday.
Visit keatshouse.cityoflondon.gov.uk

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Location: Fanny Brawne’s Room, Keats House, Hampstead

Description: This is the engagement ring given to Fanny Brawne by the poet John Keats in 1819, probably in sometime in the Autumn of that year. (1) The ring was probably made in the late eighteenth century, and the stone is almandine – a type of garnet – set in a gold openwork scrolled shouldered hoop.

Now on to the movie Bright Star, which I finally watched.I have to say it’s really breathtaking in the cinematography, along with Keats poems and love letters to Fanny Brawne. It’s actually swoon worthy.

I think it’s by far one of the most romantic period pieces I have come across in historical cinematography.

Maybe it’s the lighting or the nature, or maybe it’s the dress. The acting, Not sure.. but I love it

Bright Star is a 2009 British-French-Australian biographical fiction romantic drama film based on the last three years of the life of poet John Keats and his romantic relationship with Fanny Brawne. It stars Ben Whishaw …

 
Music by: Mark Bradshaw
Directed by: Jane Campion
Written by: Jane Campion
Produced by: Jan Chapman; Caroline Hewitt

 

Have

Cover Reveal

Hello Everyone

Today I Have A Wonderful Cover Reveal

Rome Reframed

by Amy Bearce

Release Date: February 2, 2021

Lucas Duran has been on the trip of a lifetime—six months traveling through Europe with his parents and two younger brothers. That is, the trip of a lifetime for someone else. Lucas wants nothing more than to be home in Austin, Texas,with his friends, and it shows in his schoolwork that he’s been emailing to his teachers. He can’t wait to get out of Rome, the last stop on their trip.

When his teachers give him an ultimatum—either turn in a phenomenal last project or you’ll fail the eighth grade—Lucas is going to have to decide whether to give up or to give in to the mystery of Rome. And after a cryptic palm reader hands him a weird-looking coin to throw in the Trevi Fountain, Lucas finds himself transported to ancient Rome at each new tourist destination. As his hops back through time become more personal, it seems the magic of Rome is determined to help Lucas gain more than an A+ project, too.  Can he fix his future before his time in the past is over?

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Cover Reveal

Today we are celebrating the exciting double cover reveal in the EMPIRE HIGH Series by Ivy Smoak! It includes the next two titles in the series, EMPIRE HIGH ELITE (releasing October 15) and EMPIRE HIGH BETRAYAL (releasing January 14). They are both new adult, contemporary romance titles. Join Ivy’s Group for access to bonus content from the book and visit Ivy on her facebook page for an exclusive cover reveal giveaway.

 

 

Join Ivy’s Facebook Group for Details.

Empire High Elite by Ivy Smoak

A Contemporary Romance | Coming October 15

Add it to Goodreads

Book Blurb:

Welcome to the world of the elite.

My mom fell in love with a monster. I know he’s dangerous. And I know my mom never wanted him in my life. I don’t want him in mine either. But I’m being forced to live with him.

I’m stuck in his haunting apartment in a world where I don’t belong. A world full of beautiful people with ugly souls. A world filled with secrets.

And the one person that I thought I could rely on was Matt. But he says my new family is a disease. Does that make me toxic too? Is that why Matt wants to keep me his dirty little secret?

I should have known that all the secrets would come crashing down soon. I just never expected more to break than Matthew freaking Caldwell breaking my heart.

 

Empire High Betrayal by Ivy Smoak

A Contemporary Romance | Coming January 14

Add it to Goodreads

————————

GRAB THE FIRST BOOK IN THE SERIES

Read EMPIRE HIGH UNTOUCHABLES (Kindle Unlimited)

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Amazon CA | Amazon AU

 

BY INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLING AUTHOR IVY SMOAK

★★★★★ “My favorite book this year!!”
★★★★★ “Gahh! My heart. I adored this book.”
★★★★★ “IT WAS AMAZING.”
★★★★★ “Oh my, plot twist! I did NOT see that one coming!”
★★★★★ “It’s literally IMPOSSIBLE to put down.”
★★★★★ “Buckle in for this emotional roller coaster!”

 

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AUTHOR INFORMATION:

Ivy Smoak is the international bestselling author of The Hunted series.

When she’s not writing, you can find her binge watching too many TV shows, taking long walks, playing outside, and generally refusing to act like an adult.

She lives with her husband in Delaware.

 

FIND IVY SMOAK:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Bookbub | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon

 

The Rose and the Whip

Hello Lovelies

Today is my stop on the Book Tour of,

The Rose and the Whip by Jae Hodges, which is being hosted by HFBT!

#TheRoseandtheWhip #JaeHodges #HFVBTBlogTours

@HodgesJae @hfvbt @somethingtosay.me @hfvbt

The Rose and the Whip
by Jae Hodges

Publication Date: March 25, 2020
WordCrafts Press
Hardcover, Paperback, & eBook; 252 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

 

 

Lidia Wardell walked naked through the Newbury meeting house. She was prosecuted, and publicly whipped for this crime.

This event is common historical knowledge. The Rose and the Whip is set in the Massachusetts Bay Colony in May 1663, but tells the entire story of systematic persecution of dissenters, by dissenters. Lidia relates the story of her life, and the series of events that culminated in her decision to take this action in protest of the Puritan community leaders’ treatment of Quakers. As she is charged, sentenced, and tied to the whipping post, then subsequently thrashed with twenty or thirty lashes, she critically examines each of these events and reflects on how they served to transform her and her perspectives on truth and faith.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo | IndieBound

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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

 

All that is documented of Lidia Wardell’s existence is her one act of defiance in May of 1663.  Lidia Wardell walked into her town meeting house naked. For this bold act of defiance,  Lidia punishment was handed down, stripped down to her waist and publicly whipped with a cat -o-nine-tail.

 

Jae Hodges debut book is an intimate look into the trials, and struggles of life in Puritan New England. The Rose and the Whip, is heart wrenching, imagined historical fiction based on actual facts surrounding the persecution of dissenters. We see through the eyes of our heroine Lidia Wardell, in her courageous defiant protest against the ill treatment towards her fellow Quakers.

 

The narration flows as Lidia is receiving the punishment that she has been sentenced and tied to the whipping post, then subsequently thrashed with twenty or thirty lashes. As the lash bares down she starts to recall the series of events of her life leading up to this very moment. I really enjoyed the clever way the book is constructed. The authors execution is impeccable, and holds your attention.

The characters are easy to relate to and jump off the page. The storyline follows as more harsh and cruel punishment is levied onto the people in Lidia life and the people that are nonconformist within the community.

 

Eventually they escape with money they receive from selling everything and moving away. Lidia along with her husband Eliakim, and their little family make to a safe haven in New Jersey. There their family is blessed and it grows.

This one compelling book that will hit you so hard. Rich atmospheric details along with easy to read narration.

Jae Hodges has marked her place with this historical fiction debut …The Rose and The Whip.

 

 

—-A little Historical Note—
Religious persecution by the very hands of the early Puritans is not stressed enough in our history. But is was definitely taking place in colonies. It’s easy to see how they switched it up, and condemned people who were nonconformist to their strict way thinking.

The Religious Society of Friends began as a movement in England in the mid-17th century in Lancashire. Members are informally known as Quakers, as they were said “to tremble in the way of the Lord. The Friends moment “Quakers” were quite gentile people, who choose to pray and conduct themselves differently than the Puritan beliefs. For this they we’re ostracize, punished, and condemned to death.

As many as a third of all early nineteenth century feminists and antislavery activists were Quakers.

 

About the Author

Everyone has a history and a story. Jae uses the most alluring stories from the chronicles of her own ancestry and others around her to create timeless tales of everyday people making history. On her quest to capture the essence of walking in their footsteps, she travels and uses her pencil and camera lens to imagine them in their own surroundings.

Jae lives on the Tennessee River in Alabama with her husband and companion pooch.

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Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, July 27
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks

Wednesday, July 29
Review at Passages to the Past

Thursday, July 30
Interview at Passages to the Past

Saturday, August 1
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Wednesday, August 5
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books

Friday, August 7
Feature at I’m All About Books

Wednesday, August 12
Review at Books and Zebras

Thursday, August 13
Review at Older & Smarter

Friday, August 14
Guest Post at Chicks, Rogues and Scandals

Monday, August 17
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Thursday, August 20
Review at Nurse Bookie

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a copy of The Rose and the Whip by Jae Hodges! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on August 20th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
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– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

Rose and the Whip

”The First To Lie” by Hank Phillippi Ryan

Happy pub day

to The First To Lie!
Thank you 
to @getredpr @forgereads and @hankpryan for this advanced copy!⁣


𝐓𝐢𝐭𝐥𝐞: 𝑻𝒉𝒆 𝑭𝒊𝒓𝒔𝒕 𝑻𝒐 𝑳𝒊𝒆⁣

𝐀𝐮𝐭𝐡𝐨𝐫: 𝑯𝒂𝒏𝒌 𝑷𝒉𝒊𝒍𝒍𝒊𝒑𝒊 𝑹𝒚𝒂𝒏⁣

𝐆𝐞𝐧𝐫𝐞: 𝑻𝒉𝒓𝒊𝒍𝒍𝒆𝒓⁣

𝐑𝐞𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐬𝐞:  𝑨𝒖𝒈𝒖𝒔𝒕 4,2020

We all have our reasons for being who we are―but what if being someone else could get you what you want?

After a devastating betrayal, a young woman sets off on an obsessive path to justice, no matter what dark family secrets are revealed. What she doesn’t know―she isn’t the only one plotting revenge.

An affluent daughter of privilege. A glamorous manipulative wannabe. A determined reporter, in too deep. A grieving widow who has to choose her new reality. Who will be the first to lie? And when the stakes are life and death, do a few lies really matter?

Bestselling and award-winning author and investigative reporter Hank Phillippi Ryan delivers another twisty, thrilling cat and mouse novel of suspense that will have you guessing, and second-guessing, and then gasping with surprise.

Hank Phillippi Ryan is at the top of her game. THE FIRST TO LIE is a masterfully twisty tale full of all my favorite things: interesting women, family secrets, and well-plotted revenge. Start reading early, because you will tear through the pages of this breathless, keep-you-up-all-night thriller.”—Jennifer Hillier, award-winning author of JAR OF HEARTS and LITTLE SECRETS

 “The First to Lie is a twisty, winding road of deception and secrets that starts with a bang and ends with an explosion. Put this one on your list because Hank Phillippi Ryan is at the top of her game.”—Samantha Downing, USA Today bestselling author of My Lovely Wife and He Started It

 ”With flawless pacing and impeccable character development, Hank Phillippi Ryan delivers yet another powerful, relevant story of deceit, betrayal, and the extent to which someone will go to right the wrongs they have suffered. The First to Lie is a magnificent, intricately plotted thriller that will have you questioning everyone’s motives until the stunning ending.”—Samantha M. Bailey, bestselling author of Woman on the Edge

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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

A complex riveting tale of betrayal, deceit, revenge.

A complex steam rolling betrayal of deceit, revenge and lies. This is one wild ride of a thrilling storyline. It involves a ruthless Big Pharma company of Pharminex, that uses unethical business practices. They are being investigated because of pushing a so called “miracle drug, Monifan. Its being used to treat infertility, with astonishing results. Not all have a positive out come

The First to Lie by Hank Phillippi Ryan had me second guessing everything.

A cat and mouse game of suspense and drama. This is one of those reads that is cleverly executed, and you need to pay attention. The narration flows seamlessly between the multiple POV’s, It was easy to follow even when the storyline shifts timeframes. The well developed fleshed out characters will keep you on your toes. Some are down right sketchy. The twist keep coming, and that is what makes this book a spectacular and one you definitely won’t forget. I was completely immersed in this book and seriously enjoyed reading it all the way up to the Shocking ending.

Ellie Berensen is a reporter trying to break a story about Pharminex, a drug company that pushes off-label use Monifan.

Pharminex does not disclose information about the dire consequences that this drug can cause. leaving a wake of heartbreak and destruction in its aftermath.

What Ellie doesn’t seem to understand, is that she is not the only one trying to bring this incriminating evidence to light

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Hank Phillippi Ryan is the bestselling author of eleven award winning novels of suspense. National reviews have called her a “master at crafting suspenseful mysteries” and “a superb and gifted storyteller.”

Her upcoming domestic suspense thriller THE MURDER LIST is a Most Anticipated Book of Summer 2019 from Criminal Element. AJ Finn calls it “a fireworks display of a novel–explosive, exciting and likely to leave you gasping.” BA Paris says: “A cracker of a read!”

Her first psychological standalone, TRUST ME, is an *AGATHA AWARD* nominee. It was named a Best Book of 2018 from REAL SIMPLE Magazine, BookBub, PopSugar, Bustle, CrimeReads and The New York Post. Mary Kubica says: “Dazzling!” and Lisa Gardner says “Mesmerizing!” The Booklist STARRED review says “..it’s a knockout. First-rate psychological suspense.” 

Her thriller SAY NO MORE is a Library Journal BEST OF 2016. And a nominee for the AGATHA AWARD, the DAPHNE award, and the MARY HIGGINS CLARK AWARD! Associated Press calls it “stellar” and Publishers Weekly calls it “thrilling” “unflinching” and “gratifying.”

Her 2015 book, WHAT YOU SEE, is a Library Journal BEST of 2015, an ANTHONY and AGATHA Award nominee, and a Top Pick!, dubbed “exceptional suspense.” It received a starred review from Library Journal which says: “Readers will find themselves racing to the finish!” 

Her 2014 book, TRUTH BE TOLD, won the AGATHA Award for best mystery, and is a Library Journal Best of 2014. It received starred reviews from Booklist and Library Journal, which says, “Drop everything and binge read!” 

THE WRONG GIRL won the Agatha Award and the Daphne Award, and is a seven-week Boston Globe bestseller and Anthony Award nominee. 

THE OTHER WOMAN won the coveted Mary Higgins Clark Award, and was listed as a Best Book of 2012 by the Kansas City Star, the Sacramento Bee, Suspense Magazine, and The Boston Globe, won the prestigious Mary Higgins Clark Award, and was the only novel nominated for the Agatha, Anthony, Macavity, Shamus and Daphne awards for Best Novel of 2012.

Her first four mysteries, beginning with the Agatha Award-winning PRIME TIME, feature Charlotte McNally, a Boston television reporter. FACE TIME was a BookSense Notable Book, and AIR TIME and DRIVE TIME were both Anthony and Agatha Award nominees for best novel of 2009 and 2010. They are now available in all new editions.

Hank is also an award-winning investigative reporter at Boston’s WHDH-TV. In addition to 36 EMMYs and 14 Edward R. Murrow awards, Hank’s won dozens of other honors for her ground-breaking journalism. 

Her work has resulted in new laws, people sent to prison, homes removed from foreclosure, and millions of dollars in refunds and restitution for victims and consumers. She’s been a radio reporter, a legislative aide in the United States Senate and an editorial assistant at Rolling Stone Magazine, working with Hunter S. Thompson, Richard Avedon and Richard Goodwin.

Hank is a founding teacher at Mystery Writers of America University and served as 2013 president of national Sisters in Crime. She blogs at Jungle Red Writers and Career Authors.

Learn more about Hank at www.HankPhillippiRyan.com

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The Last of The Moon Girls

Happy Book Birthday To Barbara Davis on Her Newest Release

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DACDB1C0-849D-4554-9257-58908286478EA novel of secrets, memory, family, and forgiveness by the bestselling author of When Never Comes.

Lizzy Moon never wanted Moon Girl Farm. Eight years ago, she left the land that nine generations of gifted healers had tended, determined to distance herself from the whispers about her family’s strange legacy. But when her beloved grandmother Althea dies, Lizzy must return and face the tragedy still hanging over the farm’s withered lavender fields: the unsolved murders of two young girls, and the cruel accusations that followed Althea to her grave.

Lizzy wants nothing more than to sell the farm and return to her life in New York, until she discovers a journal Althea left for her—a Book of Remembrances meant to help Lizzy embrace her own special gifts. When she reconnects with Andrew Greyson, one of the few in town who believed in Althea’s innocence, she resolves to clear her grandmother’s name.

But to do so, she’ll have to decide if she can accept her legacy and whether to follow in the footsteps of all the Moon women who came before her.

Praise for The Last of the Moon Girls

“The Last of the Moon Girls is an enchanting tale of letting go and finding forgiveness. A five-star must read.”- Bee Lee Crosby, bestselling author of Emily Gone

“Woven through the compelling mystery and suspense that keep the pages of The Last of the Moon Girls turning is a story of a powerful family legacy and the discovery of the best kind of magic—that of embracing our own gifts and finding our place in the world. A glorious, shimmering read that resonated in my soul long after I finished reading.”- Kerry Anne King, bestselling author of Everything You Are

“The Last of the Moon Girls is reminiscent of two of my all-time favorites, Sarah Addison Allen’s Garden Spells Alice Hoffman’s Practical Magic, because it’s witchy, full of plant magic, and painfully human.”- Kristen Fields, bestselling author of Lily in the Light

“The Last of the Moon Girls is a fantastic blend of mystery and magic, with the perfect dash of romance… a story of family and forgiveness and what it truly means to come home. From the first page to the last, I was riveted by the fascinating, heartbreaking story of the many generations of Moon girls – and, like all the best novels, I was sad when I turned the last page.”- Jane Healey, bestselling author of The Beantown Girls

“Davis uses a fine brush to draw complex, colorful characters, including a fiercely independent protagonist whose greatest obstacle is her own self-limiting beliefs. Stepped in equal parts magical realism and beguiling mystery, The Last of the Moon Girls is a captivating story that will leave you under its luminous spell long after you turn the last page.”- Eldonna Edwards, award winning author of This I Know and Clover Blue

A novel of secrets, memory, family, and forgiveness by the bestselling author of When Never Comes.

Goodreads

Praise for The Last of the Moon Girls

“The Last of the Moon Girls is an enchanting tale of letting go and finding forgiveness. A five-star must read.”- Bee Lee Crosby, bestselling author of Emily Gone

“Woven through the compelling mystery and suspense that keep the pages of The Last of the Moon Girls turning is a story of a powerful family legacy and the discovery of the best kind of magic—that of embracing our own gifts and finding our place in the world. A glorious, shimmering read that resonated in my soul long after I finished reading.”- Kerry Anne King, bestselling author of Everything You Are

“The Last of the Moon Girls is reminiscent of two of my all-time favorites, Sarah Addison Allen’s Garden Spells Alice Hoffman’s Practical Magic, because it’s witchy, full of plant magic, and painfully human.”- Kristen Fields, bestselling author of Lily in the Light

“The Last of the Moon Girls is a fantastic blend of mystery and magic, with the perfect dash of romance… a story of family and forgiveness and what it truly means to come home. From the first page to the last, I was riveted by the fascinating, heartbreaking story of the many generations of Moon girls – and, like all the best novels, I was sad when I turned the last page.”- Jane Healey, bestselling author of The Beantown Girls

“Davis uses a fine brush to draw complex, colorful characters, including a fiercely independent protagonist whose greatest obstacle is her own self-limiting beliefs. Stepped in equal parts magical realism and beguiling mystery, The Last of the Moon Girls is a captivating story that will leave you under its luminous spell long after you turn the last page.”- Eldonna Edwards, award winning author of This I Know and Clover Blue

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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication.

A treasure of a book, of a delightful farm and a family’s legacy of customs, that expands generations of woman healers.

Lizzy Moon, “Elizabeth” has turned her back on everything her grandmother had lived, taught and believed in. Living far away from Salem Creek is where the family’s Moon Girl Farm is located. Lizzy left Moon Girl Farm nearly a decade ago to create a normal life in New York City. She stripped away signs of the the young girl who’d run barefoot through her grandmother’s herbal and flower fields.

When an unexpected letter along with a journal arrives, with it comes news of her of her grandmothers Althea, recent death.

“There are no goodbyes, my Lizzy, only turnings of a circle. Until then..”

Faced with returning to her ancestral farm, and with her past rising up before her. She would have to definitely go there to box up the rest of the remaining journals, that belonged to every other family Moon girls.

Arriving she finds the farm in ruin and the lush lavender fields in decline.

Along with the terrible deaths of the Gilman girls, eight years ago, their deaths still overshadowed the small town. A town that had always cast a suspicious light on any Moons, Althea was still held to blame for that horrific crime.

While going through some of the passages in her grandmothers journals some key information comes to light. Lizzy seeks out to clear her grandmothers name. There is one childhood friend and neighbor, Andrew who hasn’t forgotten about Lizzy.

He offers to help Lizzy gather clues to the mystery of events of the girls deaths.

But the the murder doesn’t want the evidence to turn away from Althea, who was blamed without evidence all the way up to her death.

Rich in subtle magic, The Last Of The Moon Girls will captivate and the mystery will keep you flipping those pages long past bedtime.The writing was excellent,the pace was perfect and the plot flowed seamlessly.

The book is about grace while Lizzy will explore her own redemption and forgiveness. She will ultimately have to take the next step and decide to accept her legacy and whether to follow in the footsteps of all the Moon women who came before her.

There is also a budding romance that adds something special for the reader. It was depicted wonderfully. The mystery is written perfectly and I enjoyed how everything came together in the end.

I absolutely loved the herb lore and the magical realism that is woven into the storyline. The book captivated me and left me feeling better for having read it.

 

𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙇𝙖𝙨𝙩 𝙊𝙛 𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙈𝙤𝙤𝙣 𝙂𝙞𝙧𝙡𝙨

𝙗𝙮 𝘽𝙖𝙧𝙗𝙖𝙧𝙖 𝘿𝙖𝙫𝙞𝙨

Author of The Secrets She Carried, The Wishing Tide, Summer at Hideaway Key, Love, Alice. (Penguin/Berkley) When Never Comes (Lake Union) Coming in June 2020, The Last of the Moon Girls (Lake Union)

Things That Should Stay Buried Trailer Reveal

Hello Witchy Friends Today I have a wonderful 

Things That Should Stay Buried Trailer Reveal with Casey L. Bond.

@authorcaseybond #ThingsThatShouldStayBuried adyambersreviews.com

Title: Things That Should Stay Buried
Author: Casey L. Bond
Genre: YA Epic Fantasy/Mythologya
Editor: Stacy Sanford/ The Girl with the Red Pen
Cover & Trailer Designer: Melissa Stevens/ The Illustrated Author Design Services

Publication Date: August 28th, 2020

Hosted by: Lady Amber’s PR

 

 

Blurb: 
Some destinies are written in the stars. Others must be bought with blood…

The Zodia are real. Clawing their way from a long-forgotten tomb, they emerge, ravenous to claim everyone born under their star signs. Plotting to resurrect kingdoms no human knew existed, they are driven by a hunger for vengeance against the one who buried them: Aries.

Larken is a natural born sprinter, but even she can’t outrun the darkness closing in. A shelter-in-place order has been issued, causing widespread panic. Some brush the alarm off as a drill, until people begin to disappear… vanishing without a trace. Left with only one option, Larken’s brother does what he must to save her life… and calls forth Aries.

Considered a traitor by his own kind, only Aries has the power to stand against the Zodia. But he can’t do it alone. Mystically bonded to Larken, the pair must band together for the fight to come if either hope to make it out alive. Neither anticipated the passion that would ignite between them. Yet, in a world suddenly thrust into chaos, it may be the key to their survival.

The Zodia are out for blood with their attentions inexplicably focused on Larken. When long buried truths finally come to light, will their love be their salvation or their curse?

“A mesmerizing and haunting twist on a familiar tale you don’t want to miss. “ – Cameo Renae, USA Today bestselling author of the Hidden Wings Series

“Casey L. Bond reaches for the stars to bring us Things That Should Stay Buried. The Zodia are beautiful, dangerous and to die for.”- New York Times Bestselling Author Chanda Hahn


Casey Bond lives in West Virginia with her husband and their two beautiful daughters. She likes goats and yoga, but hasn’t tried goat yoga because the family goat is so big he might break her back. Seriously, he’s the size of a pony. Her favorite books are the ones that contain magical worlds and flawed characters she would want to hang out with. Most days of the week, she writes young adult fantasy books, letting her imaginary friends spill onto the blank page.

Casey is the award-winning author of When Wishes Bleed, the Frenzy series, and fairy tale retellings such as Riches to Rags, Savage Beauty, Unlocked and Brutal Curse. Learn more about her work at http://www.authorcaseybond.com.

The Woman Before Wallis ~ Review

Hello Everyone

Today I have a wonderful Book Review

The Woman Before WallisA Novel of Windsors, Vanderbilts, and Royal Scandal

by Bryn Turnbull

Harlequin Publishing

Publication Date: July 21, 2020

Publisher: MIRA Books

@MIRA @harlequinbooks @brynturnbullwrites #TheWomanBeforeWallis

Buy Links: 

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Powell’s

 

“Brimming with scandal and an equal amount of heart…a sweeping yet intimate look at the lives of some of history’s most notorious figures from Vanderbilts to the Prince of Wales… A must-read.”—Chanel Cleeton, New York Times bestselling author of When We Left Cuba and Next Year in Havana

“Bryn Turnbull takes a story we think we know and turns it on its head, with captivating results… A beautifully written, meticulously researched and altogether memorable debut.”—Jennifer Robson, USA TODAY bestselling author of The Gown

For fans of The Paris Wife and The Crown, this stunning novel tells the true story of the American divorcée who captured Prince Edward’s heart before he abdicated his throne for Wallis Simpson.

In the summer of 1926, when Thelma Morgan marries Viscount Duke Furness after a whirlwind romance, she’s immersed in a gilded world of extraordinary wealth and privilege. For Thelma, the daughter of an American diplomat, her new life as a member of the British aristocracy is like a fairy tale—even more so when her husband introduces her to Edward, Prince of Wales.

In a twist of fate, her marriage to Duke leads her to fall headlong into a love affair with Edward. But happiness is fleeting, and their love is threatened when Thelma’s sister, Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt, becomes embroiled in a scandal with far-reaching implications. As Thelma sails to New York to support Gloria, she leaves Edward in the hands of her trusted friend Wallis, never imagining the consequences that will follow.

Bryn Turnbull takes readers from the raucous glamour of the Paris Ritz and the French Riviera to the quiet, private corners of St. James’s Palace in this sweeping story of love, loyalty and betrayal.

Social Links:

Author Website

Twitter: @BrynTurnbull

Instagram: @brynturnbullwrites

Facebook: @brynturnbullwrites

Goodreads

Author Bio: 

Bryn Turnbull is a writer of historical fiction with a penchant for fountain pens and antique furniture. Equipped with a Master of Letters in Creative Writing from the University of St. Andrews, a Master of Professional Communication from Ryerson University, and a Bachelor’s degree in English Literature from McGill University, Bryn focuses on finding the stories of women found within the cracks of the historical record. When she’s not writing, Bryn can be found exploring new coffee shops, spending time with her family in cottage country, or traveling. She lives in Toronto, and can generally be found with a book in hand.

This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

This novel is the fictionalised story of the American divorcée who captured Prince Edward’s heart before he abdicated his throne for Wallis Simpson.

Bryn Turnbull, debut book, The Woman Before Wallis is a must read for historical fiction fans everywhere.

A whirlwind drama soaked with historical glamour, as the lives of some of the memorable decadent people known.

Thelma Morgan mesmerizing life comes to illustrious details through the pages of Bryn Turnbull superb narration. The glamorous and decadent lives of Vanderbilt woman are wonderfully depicted, in this fast-paced moving storyline. Easy to follow, this is one read that will hold your attention from start to finish. Spectacular fleshed out characters and lots drama.

Step back in time before the notorious Wallis Simpson, For anyone who may not know, Wallis married David, the heir to the British throne who abdicated, paving the way for Elizabeth to be the current monarch.

Who is Thelma you might ask? Thelma Furness, Viscountess Furness was a mistress of King Edward VIII while he was still the Prince of Wales; she preceded Wallis Simpson in his affections. She was also the maternal aunt of the author, fashion designer and socialite Gloria Vanderbilt.

Gloria Vanderbilt is the mother of Anderson Cooper.

Let me say this book was an incredible read for me, since I have read everything there is on all the Vanderbilt Woman.

Cover Review The Skald’s Black Verse by Jordan Loyal Short

Hello Bookish Friends,

Today is the Big Cover Reveal, of The Skalds Black Verse by Jordan Loyal Short

#theskaldsblackverse #jordanloyalshort #readindie #storytellersontour

 


 

The Skalds Black Verse by Jordan Loyal Short

Series: The Dreadbound Ode (#1)

Published: Re-Release Available August 6, 2020

Genre: Epic Grimdark Fantasy

Age Group: Adult

  

Book Blurb

 When a soldiers murder sparks rebellion in the tiny village of Skolja, Brohrs past marks him as the prime suspect. Haunted by his brothers ghost, and drawn into a web of dark pacts and tangled loyalties, Brohr must choose between the path of vengeance set before him, and a chance to forge his own fate.

From the shadows, an all but extinct race of alien demigods have begun the end game of their millennia-spanning war, and one has chosen Brohr for his closing gambit.
But Brohrs grandfather harbors a dark secret that will change everything.

Above it all, a dread portent looms in the sky, spelling the death of Brohrs world. With doom spiraling toward them, Brohr must lead an unlikely rebellion, unearth disturbing family secrets, and tame the raging ghost that haunts him. Can Brohr lead his people out of darkness, or will he succumb to his own terrifying bloodlust, and destroy the very people he has sworn to save?

Jordan Loyal Short is a debut author of epic fantasy. His first novel, The Skalds Black Verse, is a dark and beautiful story about families, cultures, and beliefs at war with themselves. The protagonist, Brohr, must navigate the tangled loyalties and unforgiving biases of a planet conquered by invaders from another world. Using black magic, and the bizarre bond he shares with his stillborn brothers spirit, Brohr unravels the truth about himself and an eon spanning war that has reached its end game. Jordan has worked in a variety of industries, as a waiter, bartender, copywriter and more. He lives in Washington state with his wife where he is currently daydreaming about the end of the world.

 

 

Author Links

 

Website: http://www.jordanloyalshort.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Jordanloyalshor

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jordanloyalshort

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18602359.Jordan_Loyal_Short

Magic Lessons, Alice Hoffman

 

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Release Date: October 6, 2020
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Pre Order This Book :buff.ly/36ToyBb

Buy the Book: AmazonBarnes & NobleBookshopIndieBoundBooks-A-MillionHudson BooksellersPowell’sSimon & SchusterTarget


In an unforgettable novel that traces a centuries-old curse to its source, beloved author Alice Hoffman unveils the story of Maria Owens, accused of witchcraft in Salem, and matriarch of a line of the amazing Owens women and men featured in Practical Magic and The Rules of Magic.

*This is a spoiler free review*

This is a tale of redemption and ultimately of love.

Maria Owens is a woman whose legend has been well known to those of us who loved “Practical Magic” and “The Rules of Magic.”

Always love someone who will love you back.

This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

Where does the story of the Owens bloodline begin? With Maria Owens, in the 1600s, when she’s abandoned in a snowy field in rural England as a baby. Under the care of Hannah Owens, Maria learns about the “Unnamed Arts.” Hannah recognizes that Maria has a gift and she teaches the girl all she knows. It is here that she learns her first important lesson: Always love someone who will love you back.

Taken under the care Hannah Owens little Maria shows very early her gifts. Hannah teaches her all that she knows. At the age of ten Maria’s birth mother Rebecca reclaims her.

From England we follow Maria as she travels to Salem, Massachusetts. Here is where Maria in desperation and sorrow she unleashes a curse that holds fast with venom and knows no bounds. Magic Lessons is a stunning tale about love life and heartbreak.

I loved all the enjoyable enchantments and remedies that Hoffman blends within book.

Alice Hoffman’s masterful storytelling, is phenomenal in Magical Lessons.

Exquisitely written, that showcases her ability to continuous delivery exceptional tales.

I feel honored to be able to read and review this book before it’s release date.


Where does the story of the Owens bloodline begin? With Maria Owens, in the 1600s, when she’s abandoned in a snowy field in rural England as a baby. Under the care of Hannah Owens, Maria learns about the “Unnamed Arts”. Hannah recognizes that Maria has a gift and she teaches the girl all she knows. It is here that she learns her first important lesson. Always love someone who will love you back.


When Maria is abandoned by the man who has declared his love for her, she follows him to Salem, Massachusetts. Here she invokes the curse that will haunt her family. And it is here that she learns the rules of magic and the lesson that she will carry with her for the rest of her life. Love is the only thing that matters.

Magic Lessons is a celebration of life and love and a showcase of Alice Hoffman’s masterful storytelling 

 

 

 

 

This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

*This is a spoiler free review*

This is a tale of redemption and ultimately of love.

Maria Owens is a woman whose legend has been well known to those of us who loved “Practical Magic” and “The Rules of Magic.”

Always love someone who will love you back.

This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

Where does the story of the Owens bloodline begin? With Maria Owens, in the 1600s, when she’s abandoned in a snowy field in rural England as a baby. Under the care of Hannah Owens, Maria learns about the “Unnamed Arts.” Hannah recognizes that Maria has a gift and she teaches the girl all she knows. It is here that she learns her first important lesson: Always love someone who will love you back.

Taken under the care Hannah Owens little Maria shows very early her gifts. Hannah teaches her all that she knows. At the age of ten Maria’s birth mother Rebecca reclaims her.

From England we follow Maria as she travels to Salem, Massachusetts. Here is where Maria in desperation and sorrow she unleashes a curse that holds fast with venom and knows no bounds. Magic Lessons is a stunning tale about love life and heartbreak.

I loved all the enjoyable enchantments and remedies that Hoffman blends within book.

Alice Hoffman’s masterful storytelling, is phenomenal in Magical Lessons.

Exquisitely written, that showcases her ability to continuous delivery exceptional tales.

I feel honored to be able to read and review this book before it’s release date.

 

Tipsy Chocolate Cake with Raspberry Sauce 
This recipe is from Faerie Magazine Issue #40, August 2017

For a 9-inch springform pan For the Cake: 1½ cup almonds 1 cup sugar8 oz. dark chocolate, coarsely chopped 2 sticks butter 5 large eggs ¼ cup of rum 

For the sauce: 

2½ cups raspberries (fresh or frozen) 

½ cup sugar 

2 tbsp. lemon juice 

Preheat the oven to 400° F. Butter the springform pan and lightly dust with flour. 

Toast almonds in a pan for 3 or 4 minutes, tossing them a couple of times to make sure they brown evenly on each side. Remove from heat and set aside. 

Place chocolate and butter in the top of a double-broiler over simmering water and allow them to melt. Stir until smooth, then let cool off completely. 

Coarsely grind the almonds together with the sugar. Separate yolks from egg whites, place them in a large bowl, and beat until light and fluffy. Add the sugar-almond mixture, the melted chocolate with butter, and the rum, and work with the mixer until batter is smooth. 

In a separate bowl, beat egg whites until soft peaks form, then gently fold them into the rest of the batter. 

Pour it into the prepared pan and bake at 400° F for 10 minutes. Lower the temperature to 340° F and bake for another 40 minutes. Let the cake cool off completely before removing it from the pan. 

In the meantime, make the raspberry sauce. Place raspberries, sugar, and lemon juice in a small nonstick pan and cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, stirring from time to time until sugar is dissolved. Put the mixture in a blender and puree until smooth. If desired, strain the sauce through a fine sieve to remove the seeds. 

Dust the cake with powdered sugar and decorate it with fresh raspberries. Serve each slice with 1 to 2 tablespoons of raspberry sauce on the side.

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An interview with Alice Hoffman, Library Jornal

 

Q. Why did you decide to return to the world of Practical Magic? Did you always plan to further explore the origin of the Owens family?

A: My readers sent me back to the world of Practical Magic. I had so many letters and messages asking for more, and after writing The Rules of Magic, which takes place in the 60s and 70s, I decided to go all the way back, to the original Owens ancestor, Maria Owens. I’m always interested in how the past influences the present, who the “ghosts in the nursery” are, who has influenced us, even if we never knew them.

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Q. There are a few characters in the novel who are real historical figures. One of these characters is John Hathorne, who plays a pivotal role in the story, and was one of the leading judges in the Salem Witch Trials. Why did you decide for Maria to have such a significant relationship with a real person? Was Maria in any way inspired by real women during the Salem Witch trials?

A: When I wrote Practical Magic I didn’t intend to continue to write about the family, but when I did I had to pay attention to the fact that the original novel contained a family history, one I had to keep true to in Magic Lessons. In Practical Magic, Maria becomes involved with John Hathorne, who was a judge during the Salem Witch trials, a rather evil one who never apologized for his actions, and who was also the great-great grandfather of Nathaniel Hawthorne, the author, who may have added the w to his name to distance himself from his family. That a judge who sent witches to their deaths would become romantically involved with a witch seemed a fascinating set-up. In many ways the situation reminded me of the themes in The Scarlet Letter, Hawthorne’s classic novel.

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Q. One of the recurring themes in all three of your novels set in the Practical Magic universe is heartbreak. In the beginning of the novel, Maria Owens, swears she will never fall in love, but fails to keep this promise to herself, despite her incredible fortitude in all other aspects of her life. Why do you think this is?

A: These novels are an exploration of the nature of love. The Owens family is cursed in love, but the curse is not so far from what anyone who loves may suffer, including loss, grief and betrayal. Heartbreak is a part of being human, and that’s what the characters in these novels learn.

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Q. The witchcraft in Magic Lessons is so specific and feels so established. Did you do any research about the kind of magic that was practiced during this time? If so, did that inspire the magic in this novel?

A: Yes, I do a huge amount of research and have a magic library of reference books. I think the magic in my fiction was inspired by the books I read as a child, especially fairytales. I use mythic magic, ancient magic, and also green magic, the healing magic practiced by women all over the world.

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Q. In the novel, Maria’s familiar is a crow she calls Cadin. Typically, crows are associated with death and bad luck, but Cadin is loyal and kind and Maria’s best friend. Why did you choose a crow as Maria’s familiar?

A: Although crows are considered unlucky in some cultures, they’re lucky in others, and there is a good deal of folklore (and fact) about their uncanny intelligence. They’re often thought of as a connection to prophecy and to female warriors. Apollo was the god of prophecy and associated with crows. A connection with birds is often viewed as having magical aspects, and augury is divination by observing the behavior of birds. Many of the Owens women have a connection to birds, and Cadin is Maria’s faithful familiar until the end of his life.

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Q. One of the most interesting aspects of the novel is the backstory of Abraham and Samuel Dias. The father and son are Jewish pirates who had been forced to flee Spain during the Spanish Inquisition. Did you learn about this during your research for the novel? Or did you know about this history prior to writing and it was always your intention to include it?

A: I wrote about the Inquisition in my novel, Incantation, and about the fate of Jews from Spain and Portugal forced to flee their countries for the new world in The Marriage of Opposites, and so I knew there had been Jewish pirates, as well as navigators and explorers. There were times when no country was safe for Jews, and the sea was the only home they could claim. All the same, Samuel Dias was something of a surprise to me, and I’m so glad Maria found him.

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Q. Some of the most important relationships in this novel are the ones between daughters and mothers. Both Maria and her daughter Faith have relationships with their birth mothers and an “adopted” mother, albeit their experiences are completely different. What do you think these relationships say about the nature of motherhood?

A: I’m always interested in relationships between mothers and daughters – it’s such an intense, important relationship. I do think many of us find women in our lives who are not our biological mothers, but who become important mentors and teachers who serve in much the same role, friends who become family.

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Q. At one-point, regarding men in power, Maria thinks, “They always want to burn a woman who defies the rules. They want to turn lies into the truth.” Do you think this is still true today? Do you think there is any relevancy of the Salem Witch Trials in 2020?

A: Unfortunately, I do believe that it is still difficult to be a woman who defies rules, who is powerful or successful. There is a reason why little girls still want to dress up as witches, and why women are still interested in the role of the witch, the only mythic female figure who has power, who doesn’t need to be rescued, who has knowledge and a connection to the earth. The witch trials were a way to gain control of an entire society by terrorizing and punishing women, and that is still happening today, in many cultures. What I love about the Owens women is that they are always there for other women—they keep the porch light turned on so that women in need know they have place to go for help during hard times.

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Q. The primary rule of magic in the novel is, “Do as you will, but harm no one. What you give will be returned threefold.” Do you think that this rule applies to all of us? Do you think, in some way, what we put out into the world is returned to us?

A: These are the traditional rules of magic throughout time and throughout the world. I think they are important words to live by, and of course I added a third rule. Fall in love whenever you can.

.

Q. In addition to the first rule, there are so many “lessons” to be learned in this novel, about magic, about love, and about life. Is there one lesson that you want readers to remember most?

A: Know that love is the only answer.

 

Magic Lessons will be published in hardcover on October 6th.

 

 

For more information on Alice Hoffman, please visit her on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and at alicehoffman.com.

Alice Hoffman is the author of more than thirty works of fiction, including The World That We KnewThe Rules of MagicThe Marriage of OppositesPractical Magic, The Red Garden, the Oprah’s Book Club selection Here on EarthThe Museum of Extraordinary Things, and The Dovekeepers. Her most recent novel is The World That We Knew. Her new novel Magic Lessons: The Prequel to Practical Magic will be published this fall. She lives near Boston

 

Full Biography

Alice Hoffman was born in New York City on March 16, 1952 and grew up on Long Island. After graduating from high school in 1969, she attended Adelphi University, from which she received a BA, and then received a Mirrellees Fellowship to the Stanford University Creative Writing Center, which she attended in 1973 and 74, receiving an MA in creative writing.  She currently lives in Boston.

Hoffman’s first novel, Property Of, was written at the age of twenty-one, while she was studying at Stanford, and published shortly thereafter by Farrar Straus and Giroux. She credits her mentor, professor and writer Albert J. Guerard, and his wife, the writer Maclin Bocock Guerard, for helping her to publish her first short story in the magazine Fiction. Editor Ted Solotaroff then contacted her to ask if she had a novel, at which point she quickly began to write what was to become Property Of, a section of which was published in Mr. Solotaroff’s magazine, American Review.

Since that remarkable beginning, Alice Hoffman has become one of our most distinguished novelists. She has published over thirty novels, three books of short fiction, and eight books for children and young adults. Her novel, Here on Earth, an Oprah Book Club choice, was a modern reworking of some of the themes of Emily Bronte’s masterpiece Wuthering HeightsPractical Magic was made into a Warner film starring Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman. Her novel, At Risk, which concerns a family dealing with AIDS, can be found on the reading lists of many universities, colleges and secondary schools. Hoffman’s advance from Local Girls, a collection of inter-related fictions about love and loss on Long Island, was donated to help create the Hoffman Breast Center at Mt. Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, MA. Hoffman has written a number of novels for young adults, including AquamarineGreen Angel, and Green Witch. In 2007 Little Brown published the teen novel Incantation, a story about hidden Jews during the Spanish Inquisition, which Publishers Weekly chose as one of the best books of the year.

Hoffman’s work has been published in more than twenty translations and more than one hundred foreign editions. Her novels have received mention as notable books of the year by The New York TimesEntertainment WeeklyThe Los Angeles TimesLibrary Journal, and People Magazine. She has also worked as a screenwriter and is the author of the original screenplay “Independence Day,” a film starring Kathleen Quinlan and Diane Wiest. Her teen novel Aquamarine was made into a film starring Emma Roberts. Her short fiction and non-fiction have appeared in The New York TimesThe Boston Globe Magazine, Kenyon ReviewThe Los Angeles Times, Architectural DigestHarvard ReviewPloughshares and other magazines.

Toni Morrison calls The Dovekeepers  “… a major contribution to twenty-first century literature.” The story of the survivors of Masada is considered by many to be Hoffman’s masterpiece. The New York Times bestselling novel was adapted for television in a 2015 miniseries starring Rachel Brosnahan and Cote de Pablo.

Her most recent novels have received many accolades, and are New York Times bestsellers. They include The Museum of Extraordinary Things, The Marriage of Opposites, and Faithful. Her novel, The Rules of Magic, is the prequel to her cult-classic Practical Magic. It was selected as a LibraryReads and IndieNext List Pick for October 2017 and is one of the Most Anticipated Books on iTunes. Reese Witherspoon picked it as her October 2017 Book Club read, remarking that the “story is full of magic, love, family, heartbreak and redemption.” Set in New York City at the cusp of the sixties, The Rules of Magic is a timeless story that reminds us that the only remedy for being human is to be true to yourself. Her new novel, The World That We Knew, is an exploration of humanity set in France during the Holocaust. Magic Lessons, the third book in the Practical Magic series will be published in the fall of 2020. 

THE STORY OF EVIL – A HERO’S DOWNFALL 

Hello Fantasy Friends
Today Is My Stop On
THE STORY OF EVIL – A HERO’S DOWNFALL
Blog Tour + Review & Giveaway @Sot_tours

#storytellersontour #aherosdownfall #thestoryofevil #tonyjohnson @mightytony

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THE STORY OF EVIL – A HERO’S DOWNFALL BY TONY JOHNSON

GENRE: Epic Fantasy

PAGE COUNT: 483

AGE GROUP: Adult

RELEASE: March 4, 2020

During an entertaining jousting tournament, a mysterious villain attacks the capital with his army. Because of this disastrous event, Stephen Brightflame, a nineteen-year-old who aspires to become a knight, embarks on a quest to save the kingdom from further destruction. He joins up with a convicted felon, an arrogant warrior, and a Halfling woman, but quickly learns their pasts are just as dark and disturbing as his own.

Experience the first book in an epic fantasy trilogy that’s been called, “fascinating and captivating” featuring “well-rounded, enjoyable characters, intense action scenes, and riveting twists” (The US Review of Books and Self-Publishing Review).

 

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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

In the classical fantasy style world building, the author Tony Johnson has written a solid epic fantasy. Faced paced action filled, along with magical atmospheric world building to satisfy any fantasy reader.

The Story of Evil A Hero’s Downfall ” by Tony Johnson @mightytonyj is the first book in this fantastical epic adventure trilogy.

The book catapults you right into the riveting world of Element. Our three young heroes witness a devastating orchestrated attack during a jousting tournament in Celestial. Along with catastrophic losses of man and beast, King Zoran of Celestial is also slain. Stephen Brightflame is a heroic champion jouster from the tournaments, along with his half brother the elf Ty and Kari Quinn an archer who is the daughter of a warrior.

The traitorous son of the dead king, King Zoran, Prince Silvanus steps in and does the unthinkable by handing over the over the fallen city to the Hooded Phantom and his treacherous dragon Nightstrike. The betrayal of the prince earns himself the name “ “Shadow Prince”.

The young night Stephen Brightflame takes a stance against Prince Silvanus, he is earned a death sentence. Freed with the help of his friends they bond together and set about a treacherous journey to warn all of the upcoming attacks by creatures of the dark Lord Zebulon.

A stunningly satisfying book, I cannot quite say just how impossibly good this is, from the first page I was completely immersed, I flew through the pages at lighting speed. It is an addictive, dramatic and gripping fantasy tale. Filled with fleshed out memorable characters, that I enjoyed following. Great dialogue within wonderful banter. The author descriptive narration of the emotions the main protagonist felt, was truly remarkable and incredible. The sub characters are notable and diverse array of fantastic creatures really adds to the enjoyment of this compelling read.

I am excited to read the next installment in this epic fantasy series by this wonderful author.

 

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Enter a chance to win one of three physical copies

There will be a total of 3 winners !

Limited to the US only!

Giving will run from:

Sunday June 19th, at 12am EDT — To Sunday July 26, 11:59 EDT

Enter

 

Tony Johnson is the author of the epic fantasy series, The Story of Evil. He is an avid reader who enjoys fantasy, classic novels, Shakespeare, and Christian literature. He is also a fan of movies, television, videogames, and Tennessee Titans football. He graduated with a Bachelors in English Literature from SUNY Brockport with a certification to teach 7th-12th grade English and Special Education. Tony lives in Batavia, NY and is currently finishing up his Masters Degree and working on the final book in the Story of Evil trilogy.

tony-johnson


                     JULY 19TH–THE WELCOMING

The Year Of The Witching

Hello Witchy Babes,

Today I am sharing an exceptional Book

#theyearofthewitching #alexishenderson

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The Year of the Witching

By: Alexis Henderson

Published: July 21, 2020

Genre: Dark Fantasy/Occult Fiction

            Immanuelle had always felt a strange affinity for the Darkwood, a kind of stirring whenever she neared it. It was almost as though the forbidden wood sang a song that only she could hear, as though it was daring her to come closer.

In her debut work, Alexis Henderson delivers an immersive and thrilling ride with a young, diverse heroine you can’t help but root for. We invite you to get lost in the Darkwood with us. And while the oppressive, puritanical society might be no less dark than the current world outside, the journey of Immanuelle Moore will inspire you to find the power within yourself to make your voice heard and bring light where you can.

Buzzfeed – “17 Summer Must-Reads For Fantasy Lovers

Goodreads – “The Hot Books of Summer

Publishers Weekly STARRED Review – “Bewitching… Riveting…An exciting new voice in dark fantasy.”

Booklist STARRED Review – “Horror meets fantasy in this witchy storythat will appeal to readers of The Handmaid’s Tale.”

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The Year Of The Witching Is The Debut Novel by Alexis Henderson @lexish

𝚃𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎𝚜 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚖𝚘𝚛𝚋𝚒𝚍𝚕𝚢 𝚏𝚊𝚜𝚌𝚒𝚗𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊𝚋𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚟𝚒𝚕𝚕𝚊𝚒𝚗𝚜 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚜𝚎𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚖𝚜𝚎𝚕𝚟𝚎𝚜 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚘𝚎𝚜 𝚘𝚛𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚘𝚎𝚜𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚍𝚘 𝚎𝚟𝚒𝚕𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚜 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚗𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚐𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚐𝚘𝚘𝚍.”

𝙰𝚕𝚎𝚡𝚒𝚜 𝙷𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚛𝚜𝚘𝚗

Thank you @berkleypub for gifting me The Year of the Witching!

𝙱𝚕𝚘𝚘𝚍, 𝙱𝚕𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝, 𝙳𝚊𝚛𝚔𝚗𝚎𝚜𝚜, 𝚂𝚕𝚊𝚞𝚐𝚑𝚝𝚎𝚛.

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A young woman living in a rigid, puritanical society discovers dark powers within herself, with terrifying and far-reaching consequences, in this stunning, feminist fantasy debut.

In the lands of Bethel, where the Prophet’s word is law, Immanuelle Moore’s very existence is blasphemy. Her mother’s union with an outsider of a different race cast her once-proud family into disgrace, so Immanuelle does her best to worship the Father, follow Holy Protocol, and lead a life of submission, devotion, and absolute conformity, like all the other women in the settlement.

But a mishap lures her into the forbidden Darkwood surrounding Bethel, where the first prophet once chased and killed four powerful witches. Their spirits are still lurking there, and they bestow a gift on Immanuelle: the journal of her dead mother, who Immanuelle is shocked to learn once sought sanctuary in the wood.

Fascinated by the secrets in the diary, Immanuelle finds herself struggling to understand how her mother could have consorted with the witches. But when she begins to learn grim truths about the Church and its history, she realizes the true threat to Bethel is its own darkness. And she starts to understand that if Bethel is to change, it must begin with her.

 

 

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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.
All included quotes have been taken from an ARC and may not match the finished publication.

 

Alexis Henderson debut novel has solidified herself as a new voice in dark fantasy

A Hauntingly tale, The Year of the Witching is the tale of curses, witches, a dark forbidden woods.

Blood, Blight, Darkness, Slaughter.

𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙔𝙚𝙖𝙧 𝙤𝙛 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙒𝙞𝙩𝙘𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙜

Alexis Henderson debut novel has solidified herself as a new voice in dark fantasy.

A Hauntingly tale, The Year of the Witching is the tale of curses, witches, a dark forbidden woods.

The Year Of The Witching by Alexis Henderson is a tension filled book that is deliciously terrifying. Along with captivating lyrical prose, you will be completely immersed within its horror drenched pages.

Alexis Henderson blends elements of both the supernatural and horror, to give us one incredible witchy books ever. This absorbing and highly compulsive read here that was so captivating that you will have the biggest book hang over ever. The authors gift of imaginative unsettling world building, along with the magic system really makes this a spine-tingling tale.

The characters are well developed and completely fleshed out. The protagonist  Immanuelle Moore battles demons within the malevolent woods and her patriarchal church-based social society government. Taking place in a rigid and unrelenting town where the Prophet’s word is law and punishment is common.

I was hooked in the first chapter in this nonstop read, the storyline is perfectly executed, Henderson does an exceptional job sinking you into this stunning darkish atmospheric book. Taking place in a rigid and unrelenting town where the Prophet’s word is law and punishment is unrelenting.

The citizens of puritanical town of Bethel are forbidden to enter the Darkwood, when a series of events Immanuelle is lured in by accident, hidden truths are long time coming, as they resurface and a forgotten curse awakens.

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Themes explored are feminism, theology, and race woven in such a way that their depiction is masterly done.

The Year of the Witching! releases tomorrow and if you like dark ominous gothic reads, you won’t want let this to pass you by

Blood, Blight, Darkness,

 


“She was born breech, in the deep of night. The midwife, Martha, had to seize her by the ankles and drag her form the womb. She slipped out easy, dropped limp into Martha’s arms, and lay still as stone.

Her name, she demanded, eyes sharp with moonlight. Give me her name.

Immanuelle, she finally bit it out like a curse. She will be called Immanuelle.”

 

Immanuelle had always felt a strange affinity for the Darkwood, a kind of stirring whenever she neared it. It was almost as though the forbidden wood sang a song that only she could hear, as though it was daring her to come closer.”

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Alexis Henderson is a speculative fiction writer with a penchant for dark fantasy, witchcraft, and cosmic horror. She grew up in one of America’s most haunted cities, Savannah, Georgia, which instilled in her a life-long love of ghost stories. When she doesn’t have her nose buried in a book, you can find her painting or watching horror movies with her feline familiar. Currently, Alexis resides in the sun-soaked marshland of Charleston, South Carolina.

Her debut novel THE YEAR OF THE WITCHING will be published by Penguin Random House (US) and Penguin Books (UK) in summer 2020 with a sequel to come in 2021.

 

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|𝙹𝚊𝚗 𝙰𝚞𝚜𝚝𝚎𝚗 𝙹𝚞𝚕𝚢 | 𝙼𝚘𝚘𝚍𝚢 𝙼𝚘𝚗𝚍𝚊𝚢

How are you coping,  In these troubling times ?

I am reading ..


𝙉𝙤𝙧𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙣𝙜𝙚𝙧
𝘼𝙗𝙗𝙚𝙮
 𝙅𝙖𝙣𝙚 𝘼𝙪𝙨𝙩𝙚𝙣

Jane Austen’s first novel—published posthumously in 1818—tells the story of Catherine Morland and her dangerously sweet nature, innocence, and sometime self-delusion. Though Austen’s fallible heroine is repeatedly drawn into scrapes while vacationing at Bath and during her subsequent visit to Northanger Abbey, Catherine eventually triumphs, blossoming into a discerning woman who learns truths about love, life, and the heady power of literature. The satirical novel pokes fun at the gothic novel while earnestly emphasizing caution to the female sex.

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This book was received from the Author, and Publisher, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

#JaneAustenJuly @janeausten

Northanger Abbey has an interesting history. It was sold to a publisher in 1803 for £10, but never published. By 1817 four more novels had been published anonymously, and were popular, the fact of their anonymity being used advantageousl by her brother, who bought the book back; it is unlikely the publisher would have done so, were the facts known. It was subsequently revised by Austen and given the working title Catherine.

It was published after her death in 1817, whence her brother renamed it Northanger Abbey.

 

Austen’s lovely writing flows perfectly and in a way it captivates and taunts the reader, while at times, speaking directly to the reader.

“But when a young lady is to be a heroine, the perverseness of forty surrounding families cannot prevent her. Something must and will happen to throw a hero in her way.”

The book follows our lovely heroine, Catherine Morland and her adventures.

Her mother was so preoccupied with the being pregnant and the day to day care of Catherine younger siblings, that Catherine experience around young men was completely lacking. Her adventurous start from her home in Fullerton to Bath and then to a Gothic Abbey in Gloucestershire. As the plot line Catherine growth is noted, she comes to understand the people and world around her and people are not at all what seem to be. The important thing in life, and finding true love and ultimately finding happiness. Catherine is very innocently naïve, an avid reader of novels, who has a devastating, vivid imagination.

So wrapped up in her books, without realistically thinking she comes to the conclusion that another sub character in book, has come to a disastrous end, maybe even murdered. And she decides to take things into her own hands and investigates the matter herself.

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“Catherine’s blood ran cold with the horrid suggestions which naturally sprang from these words. Could it be possible? – Could Henry’s father? – And yet how many were the examples to justify even the blackest suspicions!”
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Austen does a fabulous job of satirizing the gothic genre. It’s quite enjoyable and effective. Austen makes several memorable mentions to one well known gothic novel at that time, The Mysteries of Udolpho.

The Mysteries of Udolpho is a Gothic novel by Ann Radcliffe, published in 1794. It was one of the most popular novels of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. It was then and continues to be widely regarded as a key text in the development of the Gothic genre. This ok  is available to everyone through Gutenberg EBook. I must say, that if you are into gothic fiction, like I am, than this a stunning must read.

 

During this timeframe The Regency Eras society’s did consider money as the necessity for true happiness in marriage. This always met with the critical hand of Austen. And her critical social commentary on the matter is always satirical and humorous to read.

The suspense builds as storyline unfolds Austen’s legendary style of prose is beautifully executed. To give away further plot would be to lessen the pleasure for readers, I do think everyone should read Austen, at some point in their life.

 

This is the very first book that I read of Miss Austen’s fine writing. Given to me by my mother, who guided me through all the beloved classics.