#Timekeeper is one of my favorite listens of 2017! Read more and enter to #win

Author: Tara Sim

Narrator: Gary Furlong

Length: 8h 50m

Publisher: Forever Young Audiobooks

Genre: YA Fantasy

Release date: Feb. 14, 2017

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Two o’clock was missing.

In an alternate Victorian world controlled by clock towers, a damaged clock can fracture time—and a destroyed one can stop it completely.

It’s a truth that seventeen-year-old clock mechanic Danny Hart knows all too well; his father has been trapped in a Stopped town east of London for three years. Though Danny is a prodigy who can repair not only clockwork, but the very fabric of time, his fixation with staging a rescue is quickly becoming a concern to his superiors.

And so they assign him to Enfield, a town where the tower seems to be forever plagued with problems. Danny’s new apprentice both annoys and intrigues him, and though the boy is eager to work, he maintains a secretive distance. Danny soon discovers why: he is the tower’s clock spirit, a mythical being that oversees Enfield’s time. Though the boys are drawn together by their loneliness, Danny knows falling in love with a clock spirit is forbidden, and means risking everything he’s fought to achieve.

But when a series of bombings at nearby towers threaten to Stop more cities, Danny must race to prevent Enfield from becoming the next target or he’ll not only lose his father, but the boy he loves, forever.

Buy on Audible/Amazon

Tara Sim is the author of Timekeeper (Sky Pony Press) and can typically be found wandering the wilds of the Bay Area, California. When she’s not chasing cats or lurking in bookstores, she writes books about magic, clocks, and explosives. Follow her on Twitter at @EachStarAWorld, and check out her website at tarasim.com.

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Gary Furlong grew up in Wexford, Ireland. Throughout his life he has worn many a hat: He has worked as a teacher in Niigata, Japan; a puppeteer in Prague; an improv artist in Memphis, Tennessee; and as a singer and actor all over Ireland. He started narrating audiobooks in late 2015 and hasn’t looked back.

Gary made his acting debut in the musical Godspell as a student. Since then he has pursued acting both on the amateur and professional circuits. Notable roles include Tom Collins in Bare Cheek’s production of Rent in 2010.

Over the course of his five years in Japan, he was an actor, director, and audio producer. It was during this time that he discovered his interest in audiobooks and voice-over.

He now works full-time as an audiobook narrator and voice actor from his home in Ireland.

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Timekeeper, wow, now I have to share my thoughts in a way that makes some kind of sense.  Honesltly, I have nothing but good things to say about this book.  I enjoyed it so much I’ll absolutely be finding a print copy to add to my personal collection, but I will most likely listen again as well.  The narrator really infused the performance with emotion without going over the top, and distinguished each character as necessary.
To be completely honest, I am often let down by books that are sold as “inclusive” as I find them to be stereotypical at best, offensive at worst.  SO when a great book comes along that lives up to this claim, I want everyone to read it! Timekeeper definitely fits the bill.  You don’t feel the characters are caricatures, but real people with depth and a range of reactions and thoughts.  It was so refreshing and the narrator just made it all come to life so beautifully.
Highly recommend you listen to this book if you’re looking for something outside the realm of everyday fare.

 

 I think the topic of gender roles is always going to be a bit dubious, especially when you only think of gender as a binary. There’s a lot to be said for trans rep, genderqueer/genderfluid rep, and nonbinary rep, which often gets swept under the rug when it comes to talking about “female characters” or “male characters.”
        “Female characters” have gone through the ringer. There’s a debate whether or not to use the term “strong female character,” as if this is a distinction from all those other female characters, the ones who maybe don’t know how to wield a sword or are afraid to speak up or are unable to break away from a toxic relationship. While it’s great that more creators are including “strong female characters,” we need to be aware that strength does not always equal literal strength. It doesn’t always mean Wonder Woman. It should also include the shy ones, the softspoken ones, the uncertain ones. It should also not ignore “feminine” qualities; a girl can be a deadly assassin and still love wearing frilly dresses. A girl can be a makeup artist and be a black belt in jiu jitsu.
        When it comes to YA, we see a certain type of heroine often: a girl who comes from a humble background suddenly realizes she has a special power, and is often brought to a castle or the equivalent of one to begin her new life. I’m not dismissing these at all—there are quite a few YA books I love with this premise, such as Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo. But I’m still always looking for a different narrative, stories that show girls of all kinds. Sabaa Tahir’s An Ember in the Ashes is a great example: we see two very different girls, Laia and Helene, brought up in opposing lifestyles—one is a slave, the other taught how to keep slaves in check—but both have become strong and determined in their own ways.
        I also think that “male” protagonists in YA are considered to have to be a certain way. That is, they can’t be too much of anything; they have to be evenly proportioned in their emotions without being overly sentimental. I think this can be damaging, considering how toxic masculinity is the source of a lot of issues in today’s society and gender politics. For example, in the early stages of writing Timekeeper, there was a reader who told me that Danny shouldn’t bite his lip because it was a “feminine” thing to do.
        I think a lot of creators—not just authors, but scriptwriters, game writers, etc.—have grown to believe that giving their “female” or “male” characters traits of the opposite sex is edgy, or new, or cool. It’s different. But this is still playing into gender stereotypes, and as I said above, continuing the belief that gender is a binary. They think in terms of either/or.
        But gender is not a binary, and YA protagonists should show the full spectrum. Let your “male” characters bite their lips. Let your “female” characters be strong in whatever way makes them feel strong. Make space for trans, nonbinary, and genderqueer protagonists.
        In short: I think there should be less focus on how a character should be and more on how a character is.

Timekeeper Giveaway #1
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Timekeeper Giveaway #2
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Mar. 19: The Book Keeper’s Secrets (Review, Spotlight, Audio Excerpt & Interview)
Tales of the Ravenous Reader (Spotlight, Audio Excerpt, Guest Post & Giveaway)

Mar. 20: Reading for the Stars and Moon (Spotlight, Audio Excerpt, & Giveaway)
Next Page Please (Review & Giveaway)

Mar. 21: Candid Ceillie (Review & Interview)
Gota Love Books (Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 22: BookstacksAmber (Review)

Mar. 23: Book Crushin (Review, Spotlight, Audio Excerpt, & Giveaway)
Lilly’s Book World (Review)

Mar. 24: The Desert Bibliophile (Review, Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)
BookstacksAmber (Interview)

Mar. 25: Chapter Break (Review, Spotlight, Audio Excerpt, Interview & Giveaway)

Mar. 26: Dab of Darkness (Review)
Blogger Nicole (Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 27: The Madhouse (Review & Giveaway)

Mar. 28: Rolo Polo Book Blog (Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)

Mar. 29: Mama Reads (Review & Guest Post)

Mar. 30: Novel Ink (Review)

Mar. 31: Glorious Panic (Review & Giveaway)

Apr. 1: The Broke Book Bank (Review)
A New Look On Books (Spotlight, Audio Excerpt, Guest Post & Giveaway)

Apr. 2: Jories Loves A Story (Review & Interview)

Apr. 3: The Hermit Librarian (Review)
Up Til Dawn (Spotlight & Audio Excerpt)

Apr. 4: Here’s to Happy Endings (Review)
My World In Words and Pages (Review & Giveaway)

Apr. 5: Hall Ways (Review & Giveaway)
terriluvsbooks (Review & Interview)

Apr. 6: A Book and A Latte (Review)

Apr. 7: Desert Rose Reviews (Review & Giveaway)
Bound 4 Escape (Review & Giveaway)
Holed Up In A Book (Review & Giveaway)

Apr. 8: Zach’s YA Reviews (Review)
The Autumn Bookshelf (Spotlight, Audio Excerpt & Guest Post)
The Queen Reads (Review)

 

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Myths of Mish is finally here! Read our review and enter to win!

Myths of Mish (Fairytale Galaxy Chronicles #2)
by Katie Hamstead

Genre: YA Space Opera/Scifi/Fantasy
Release Date: March 28th 2017
Curiosity Quills Press

Summary from Goodreads:

Hansel and Gretel Herrscher survived the witch in the woods, but the experience has made Hansel paranoid for the past ten years. He sees dark magic at every turn. When Gretel has a marriage arranged to a much older man, and Hansel discovers he’s about to be sent halfway across the galaxy, he knows something sinister is afoot.
Wilhelmine Nordon has plenty of experience with Hansel’s quirkier side. So when she catches him and Gretel running away in the middle of the night, she follows to keep them from getting killed. The siblings have never left the capital of Mish on their own, so they need a babysitter. Except when she’s discovered, Hansel gives her his usual cold shoulder, and Gretel secretly begs her to take them back.
The problem is, Hansel’s paranoia turns out to be well founded, and they’re all being hunted.
Grab it on AMAZON and get book 1 below:

Princess of Tyrone (Fairytale Galaxy Chronicles #1) on Goodreads
Mama Says:

You can read my thoughts on Princess of Tyrone here, but let’s just say I was a bit of a fan.  Although this second installment didn’t immediately woo me as with the first, I did find that I grew to love the characters just as much as the story progressed.  I absolutely adored Minna and the author’s sneaky use of multiple fairy tales, not just the obvious, was really quite clever.
If you like retellings that aren’t so close to the original tale that they are a bore, you should check out the Fairy Tale Galaxy Chronicles.  It’s not just another Cinder, I promise!


Born and raised in Australia, Katie’s early years of day dreaming in the “bush”, and having her father tell her wild bedtime stories, inspired her passion for writing.
After graduating High School, she became a foreign exchange student where she met a young man who several years later she married. Now she lives in Arizona with her husband, daughter and their dog.
She has a diploma in travel and tourism which helps inspire her writing.
When her debut novel, Kiya: Hope of the Pharaoh, climbed into bestselling status, she believed she was onto something, and now has a slew of novels now available, and is published through Curiosity Quills Press, Soul Mate Publishing, and REUTS Publishing.
Katie loves to out sing her friends and family, play sports, and be a good wife and mother. She now works as an Acquisitions Editor to help support her family. She loves to write, and takes the few spare moments in her day to work on her novels.

Author Links:

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Blog Tour Organized by:

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#DiggingintheStars Blitz with teasers and a #giveaway

Digging in the Stars
Katherine Blakeney
Published by: Blaze Publishing
Publication date: March 28th 2017
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult

A lost ancient civilization and the tomb of a legendary king lie buried beneath centuries of ash on the volcanic planet Thror, but that’s not the only reason sixteen-year-old Carter has tricked her Archaeology of Outer Space class into coming here. Her best friend Conrad has just disappeared on a trip to Thror, leaving behind little more than a broken vintage camera. The strange and disturbing photographs she manages to extract make her suspect Conrad’s disappearance is somehow connected to the hidden tomb of the last king of Thror.

Unfortunately, the ludicrously over-friendly ‘Furry Giants’ who have taken over the planet’s barren surface would rather offer her cheap souvenirs than answers, and the local officials insist they have no record of Conrad’s existence. Inspired by fear for Conrad’s life and the chance to make the greatest archaeological discovery of the century, Carter and her friends follow Conrad’s footsteps deep into the mountains of Thror’s forbidden Black Zone and launch an illicit excavation.

Coded messages, stunning ancient ruins, and clues left by Conrad himself begin to surface as the young archaeologists fall victim to an alarming series of accidents staged by the increasingly hostile Furry Giants. Piecing together a history of dictatorship, terrorism and disguise, Carter glimpses the horrors beyond Thror’s flamboyant façade and startling revelations about the friend she thought she knew. The masks of Thror hide devastating secrets, and the golden tomb buried deep in the frozen core may claim the lives of everyone she loves.

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TEASERS:

 

    “It is all like they speak in tales of old,” he said, as radiant as though he’d just been dropped into a pirate’s cavern overflowing with jewels and pieces of eight. “All scents of Thror born in this place, personal essences, poisons for military darts, new smells and perfumes invented every day . . .” Judging by his dreamy tone, they might as well stay trapped there forever as far as he was concerned. The young perfumer’s heart was thoroughly seduced.

    Carter turned away with an aggravated sigh. It was no use. She tried a few more dives herself, but the water teemed with the residue of waning scents and made her eyes ache. The platform at the center was completely solid.

 

* * *

 

    The long black coat draping off his hunched shoulders seemed like a pair of folded wings, and his skeletal fingers darted back and forth like pale talons as he spoke. Suddenly, the dark hair floating about his face looked like ruffled feathers, and his impossibly pale eyes glowed eerily in the light of the projector. At that moment, he was no longer a sick teenage boy; he was a huge, ferocious bird of prey, a creature of the night. He was as powerful and mesmerizing as the magnificent, winged figure of Mephisto on the screen, enveloping a miniature town with his black wings as he exhaled contagion and death.

Author Bio:

I am an author and independent filmmaker/stop motion animator with a BFA in Stop Motion Animation from the School of Visual Arts in New York and a PhD in Film Studies from the University of Edinburgh (Scotland, UK). My thesis focuses on silent film adaptations of late nineteenth and early twentieth century Gothic novels, with a special emphasis on psychological and aesthetic representations of the Monster figure. My debut novel, a YA Sci-Fi adventure called Digging in the Stars, is forthcoming with Blaze Publishing on March 28, 2017.

Raised by an Egyptologist mother, I grew up among museums and excavation sites, where I developed an unhealthy fascination with ancient art and mythology. I divide my time between bringing 12”-tall people to life in my studio in Edinburgh, excavating ancient tombs in the Egyptian desert, and researching Gothic literary monsters in silent film. I have worked for more than 10 years as photographer and videographer for the South Asasif Conservation Project, an archaeological expedition in Egypt and I have published numerous articles on film and archaeology.

I write, direct, design, and animate short films and commissioned projects in my studio in Edinburgh, Scotland and have been employed as an animator, screenwriter, modelmaker and art director for studios in Edinburgh, South Korea and Qatar. I have produced commissioned projects for IdeasTap in London, the Arts Trust Scotland and the British Library. My shorts have won competitions and screened at various international festivals including the Edinburgh Fringe. In 2015, my short film The Burglar With the Yellow Hand was nominated for an Arts and Humanities Research Council (UK) Research in Film Award.

You can find out more about all aspects of my work on my website, http://yorwickcastle.com
My new blog http://KatherineBlakeneyStardigger.blogspot.com is all about Digging in the Stars and my references and inspirations as a writer.

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#Marked blitz with Teaser Shots and #giveaway

Marked
D. Laine
(Apocalypse Assassins Trilogy #1)
Publication date: March 28th 2017
Genres: New Adult, Paranormal, Post-Apocalyptic

For trained assassin Dylan Romero, business is good. As the agency’s top warriors, he and partner Jake Walker are the last two people evil wants to see on the other side of a gun.

When a mission takes them to the college town of Bozeman, Montana, they discover that there is more than just another mark in another town to keep them there. With a heavy concentration of vessels doing their demon masters’ dirty work and flesh-craving monsters lurking around every corner, the secluded Midwest town is set to become the first battleground of the apocalypse.

The last thing Dylan needs is a distraction. With the fate of the world at stake, the life of one girl shouldn’t matter – until the day she changes everything.

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EXCERPT:

Seconds later, the bartender set two matching drinks on the counter in front of the guy from the parking lot.

He wordlessly slid one of the glasses toward me. My eyes darted to his in surprise, and he shrugged. “You look thirsty.”

I picked up the glass with a grateful smile, and helped myself to a sip of the cool liquid. Jack and Coke—exactly what I wanted. He was observant. “Thank you.”

As he nodded, his eyes moved over my shoulder, in the general vicinity of Vivian. A small grin tugged at the corner of his lips. He glanced up at me briefly before giving undivided attention to his drink. “How’s your boyfriend?”

“Who? You mean the guy from earlier?”

“Well, I’m not talking about him.” His head nodded across the bar, where David was doing his best to catch the waitress’s attention. “That poor fucker doesn’t stand a chance, does he?”

“David is my friend,” I responded defensively. “And Kyle isn’t my boyfriend. You’re wrong on both counts.”

His eyes snapped to mine, then slowly lowered. Heat followed his gaze as it swept across my lips before settling on my neck. I was forced to sweep the hair off my shoulders in an attempt to cool off. It didn’t help.

He squinted at my neck like he considered devouring me right then and there. With the hot ball of lava tumbling through me, and ultimately settling in my core, I considered letting him. One look. That was all it took.

No guy had ever . . .

Oh, God. Vivian was totally right.

His mouth curved like he had read my thoughts. Then his hand shot out to mine as he stated, “Dylan.”

I accepted his hand with a smile. “Thea.”

His head angled closer to mine. “Thea?” When I nodded, he leaned back with a smirk. “Are you a librarian, or something?”

“What?” I demanded, suddenly on edge.

“Hot librarian,” he corrected with a lazy shrug, as if that somehow made his comment less insulting. At my unamused glare, he used his hand to cover the smile spreading across his face, and muttered, “I’m sorry. I don’t think I’ve ever met a Thea before. It’s, uh . . .”

“A librarian’s name, apparently,” I finished for him sourly.

He chuckled. “I like it, alright? I do. In fact, you’ve given me a new standard to associate with the name Thea. Next time I hear it, I won’t imagine a ninety-year-old librarian. I’ll picture you instead.”

He somehow made me like the sound of him thinking about me, despite the example he used. Some small, gullible part of me liked it. The rest of me reared back with revulsion.

“Need to picture me to get you through the night, huh?” I quipped.

His lips pursed as he considered my question. Then a broad grin turned his lips up. “Never really gone for a good girl before. Unless it’s an act . . .” His eyes swept down the length of me with obvious interest, and I folded my arms over my chest to interrupt his uncensored gaze. When he finally made it back to my eyes, he hooked an inquisitive brow.

“It’s not an act,” I stated firmly, “and I don’t play games.”

He shook his head at the counter, and muttered, “I didn’t think so.”

“Not like it would matter anyway.” My eyes lowered to his lap in mock consideration, then to the drink in front of him. “You’ve had so many of those, I doubt you could even play your part at this point.”

Dylan’s head rolled back as a deep laugh rumbled through him. I refused to acknowledge how sexy it sounded.

“First of all . . .” He lifted a finger in the air. “I’m always up to playing my part. Got it?” I kept my arms folded, my face unreadable, as he lifted another finger. “Secondly . . . I find it interesting that you know how much I’ve had to drink tonight.”

My arms slowly uncrossed under his amused and knowing gaze. His eyebrows shot up in silent inquiry, and when I offered no explanation, his grin broadened.

“I thought so.” With a flirty wink, he turned in his seat to face the bar.

 

Author Bio:

I write relationships. Whether contemporary or fantasy, they are always real and never easy.

When I’m not writing, you can usually find me with my nose in my Kindle – reading romance of course – or running around after my three little boys, or catching up on an episode of Supernatural or This Is Us.

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#GetUndertheCovers with Danielle Rose for #BloodRose There’s no wrath like that of a witch scorned. Preorder links inside!

 








Blood Rose (Blood Series #1)

by Danielle Rose

Genre: Urban fantasy, New Adult, Paranormal Romance
Release date: June 21, 2017

Publisher: OfTomes Publishing

#BloodRose
Published by OfTomes Publishing, the Blood Books trilogy follows the harrowing  journey of Avah Taylor, a mortal witch in the midst of a centuries-old war against the immortal vampire species. Avah’s intense journey is fueled by blood, jealousy, betrayal, murder and revenge.



Book Synopsis

There’s no wrath like that of a witch scorned.

As one of the only spirit users in her coven, Avah has been chosen to wield The Power, the ultimate weapon against the immortal vampire species witches have been at war with for centuries. 

But on the night of her birth rite, Avah’s coven is attacked. Forced to seek refuge among the very beings she’s sworn to kill, Avah vows revenge on those who took her former life from her.

As Avah slowly transitions into a life of blood and war, she realizes everything she’s been told is a lie.
Pre-order Links





Danielle’s Bio

Danielle Rose holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing from the University of Southern Maine. Currently residing in the Midwest, where she spends her days dreaming of warmer temperatures, when she’s not writing, she enjoys pretending she lives in California, spending an embarrassing amount of time at Hobby Lobby, and binge-watching Netflix. Visit Danielle on the Web: www.Danielle-Rose.com.
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Bookbub: www.bookbub.com/authors/danielle-rose




 

Cinderella isn’t dressed in yellow this time. Read more about #TheBlackLily by @juliette_cross and her #FaveVampire #Myths

Cinderella like you’ve never seen before…

With the threat of the vampire monarchy becoming stronger every day, the Black Lily must take drastic measures. As the leader of the underground resistance, Arabelle concocts the perfect idea to gain the attention of the Glass Tower. Her plan? Attend the vampire prince’s blood ball and kill him. Fortunately for Prince Marius, her assassination goes awry, and Arabelle flees, leaving behind only her dagger.

Marius is desperate to find the woman whose kiss turned into attempted murder, hunting for the mysterious assassin he can’t push out of his mind. But what he uncovers could change the course of his life forever…

Buy Links: Amazon | B&N | iBooks | Kobo | Goodreads | Entangled Publishing

Thanks to author Juliette Cross for stopping by to discuss vampire myths today!

 

From sensual to monstrous to kickass to sparkly, there are endless adaptations of the almighty vampire. And they are all alluring. But why do we love them so much? My favorite myths of the vampire are what makes him so attractive: immortality, predatory strength, and sensual beauty.

It isn’t simply his immortality that I find appealing, but what comes with long life. A being who has lived for centuries naturally develops keen intelligence that can only come with years of experience in this world. I am always attracted to the intelligent hero who can outwit his foe and tantalize his heroine with unmatched cunning.

In addition to his immortal abilities of the mind, vampires are gifted with heightened senses to help him track his prey, giving him unmatched strength against mere mortals. Whether he is hunting a known enemy or the woman he desires, he will always get what he wants.

His sensual beauty is another magnetism. While he might be an experienced vampire hundreds of years old, he remains youthful in appearance—a deception that holds mystery and power. In essence, he is the perfect predator able to use his many immortal gifts to seduce, dominate, and control the will of others. What heroine doesn’t want an unbeatable, beautiful hero at her side? Even if he is a monster. 😉

Mama says:
Honestly, I would have thought this was a Beauty and the Beast retelling if I didn’t know it was Cinderella from the description.  But I think that’s more my unfamiliarity with the original tale of our dear young orphan maid than it is the author’s.  There’s some wonderfully vivid imagery and world building within these pages, and you still definitely get that creepy vibe, before we even get into the whole vampire thing.
I admit I’m a sucker for paranormal romance, no pun intended.  But I’m still picky, and this one wasn’t just fun, it was a great read! Lots of tension, great pacing, and a mysterious quality that kept me reading all add up to this being a winner in my book.

Recommended for mature readers only.**

Add it on Goodreads.

Juliette lives in lush, moss-laden Louisiana where she lives with her husband, four kids, and black lab, Kona.

Multi-published author of paranormal and urban fantasy romance, she loves reading and writing brooding characters, mysterious settings, persevering heroines, and dark, sexy heroes.

From the moment she read JANE EYRE as a teenager, she fell in love with the Gothic romance. Even then, she not only longed to read more novels set in Gothic worlds, she wanted to create her own.

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With lulling prose and landscapes straight from the painting inspiring the tale, #APieceoftheWorld is one woman’s story that’s been waiting to be told. #womensfic #literaryfic #historicalfic #review #arc #tlctours

About A Piece of the World

• Hardcover: 320 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow (February 21, 2017)

“Graceful, moving and powerful.” –Michael Chabon, New York Times bestselling author of Moonglow

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the smash bestseller Orphan Train, a stunning and atmospheric novel of friendship, passion, and art, inspired by Andrew Wyeth’s mysterious and iconic painting Christina’s World.

“Later he told me that he’d been afraid to show me the painting. He thought I wouldn’t like the way he portrayed me: dragging myself across the field, fingers clutching dirt, my legs twisted behind. The arid moonscape of wheatgrass and timothy. That dilapidated house in the distance, looming up like a secret that won’t stay hidden.”

To Christina Olson, the entire world was her family’s remote farm in the small coastal town of Cushing, Maine. Born in the home her family had lived in for generations, and increasingly incapacitated by illness, Christina seemed destined for a small life. Instead, for more than twenty years, she was host and inspiration for the artist Andrew Wyeth, and became the subject of one of the best known American paintings of the twentieth century.

As she did in her beloved smash bestseller Orphan Train, Christina Baker Kline interweaves fact and fiction in a powerful novel that illuminates a little-known part of America’s history. Bringing into focus the flesh-and-blood woman behind the portrait, she vividly imagines the life of a woman with a complicated relationship to her family and her past, and a special bond with one of our greatest modern artists.

Told in evocative and lucid prose, A Piece of the World is a story about the burdens and blessings of family history, and how artist and muse can come together to forge a new and timeless legacy.

This edition includes a four-color reproduction of Andrew Wyeth’s Christina’s World.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Mama Says:

“I am beginning to wonder if I will stay in this house forever, creeping up and down the stairs like the woman in the story.”

Uh, yeah.  Can you say chilling?  That’s basically the way the entire book goes- one frightening moment, followed by some introspection and a few tender moments. I really enjoyed the fact that the author didn’t give us another girl with an oyster egg earring, if you know what I mean.
While this isn’t the psych-thriller some people might expect, I appreciated the author’s lingering hand and attention to the most minute details. Though I admit to almost falling asleep a couple of times due to the lulling quality of the prose.  I don’t think it amounts to a bad quality so much as it goes to show that this is for those who enjoy a nice, quiet evening in, rather than a rush to the finish line.
There are times when the books seems to be alluding to some great secret, or building to some climax that never really happens, however, upon reflection, I think this is a great mirror to Christina’s own life, always on the brink of thinking she might have more hope than really exists, and more happiness than is easily achievable.
While I didn’t fall head over heels for this novel, I think it was a lack of connection to the setting more than anything.  I greatly enjoyed reading this and am now even more interested in reading previous titles by this same author.  If you enjoy historical fiction, biographical fiction, or literary fiction with female mcs, this will certainly be a book for you to sit down and enjoy!

3.5 stars and my sincere thanks to William Morrow and TLC Books for the review opportunity!

About the Author:

Photo by Jerry Bauer

Christina Baker Kline is the author of five novels. She lives outside of New York City and on the coast of Maine.

Find out more about Kline at her website, connect with her on Facebook, and follow her on Twitter.

Check out #TheBoneWitch blog tour with #authorfacts and #giveaway #ffbc @rinchupeco

The Bone Witch (#1) by Rin Chupeco
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Release Date: March 7, 2017
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal

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Synopsis:

The beast raged; it punctured the air with its spite. But the girl was fiercer. 

Tea is different from the other witches in her family. Her gift for necromancy makes her a bone witch, who are feared and ostracized in the kingdom. For theirs is a powerful, elemental magic that can reach beyond the boundaries of the living—and of the human.

Great power comes at a price, forcing Tea to leave her homeland to train under the guidance of an older, wiser bone witch. There, Tea puts all of her energy into becoming an asha, learning to control her elemental magic and those beasts who will submit by no other force. And Tea must be strong—stronger than she even believes possible. Because war is brewing in the eight kingdoms, war that will threaten the sovereignty of her homeland…and threaten the very survival of those she loves.

  1. I accidentally dove off the shallow end of a swimming pool when I was a kid. As you can probably imagine, that was not a very good day for me. I didn’t get any permanent damage from that mishap, but both my hands can now fold themselves lengthwise, which means I actually know the sound of one hand clapping. It should be noted that I persisted in jumping off diving boards and have not learned anything from this lesson at all.
  1. I collected troll dolls as a kid, and I still don’t remember why. I found my collection not too long ago in storage and showed my husband. Needless to say, he was horrified.
  1. I never officially had a cat growing up, but I wanted to. The problem was my family, all adamantly pro-dog, who also had dogs that were very firmly anti-cat. When I was fourteen, I found a kitten and took her in without anyone knowing. This worked well for about two days until I realized that this wasn’t going to work – it was summer vacation, and this was going to pose a problem once school started. We had a nice garden though, and I wound up sheltering the kitten there, safely away from our dog’s territory. The cat eventually became a neighborhood roamer, returning to sleep and be fed. My mom eventually found out when my best friend (the only person I told) called to ask if I wanted to adopt another dog and, forgetting my mother was present, wanted to know if the cat would be fine with it. Thanks, Steph.
  1. The house I grew up in was supposedly haunted by my grandfather’s ghost. There were always sounds of someone walking up the stairs in his heavy tread, and strange things happened during death anniversaries, according to visitors: plates rising up and slamming back down without anyone touching them, faint foggy images of him in mirrors, etc. I think my love of ghost stories first began from being told these anecdotes – despite the decidedly alarming activities, the ghostly presences were benevolent, and I never once felt that I wasn’t safe there.
  1. I wanted to be a dinosaur when I was three years old. I knew all the dinosaur names, with the archeopteryx being my favorite animal (it was a velociraptor that looked like a phoenix, how can I not love it). I read Jurassic Park when I was nine, even though I didn’t understand half of what was going on. Still my favorite movie.
  1. Another ghost story: I used to work for a company in a rather old building. I was the first one at the office one day, and was checking my email when another girl came in, passing my cubicle without saying a word. That was puzzling, as she was usually friendly. Five minutes later, she looked in, turned pale, and said “Where was the girl? The one in black that was reading over your shoulder?”

I had a reputation of other people seeing “ghostly” things around me, though I never saw anything out of the ordinary myself, and was never bothered / haunted by them.

  1. I was walking home from work one day when a bus a couple of blocks away literally exploded. I’d stopped to buy ice cream beforehand – if I hadn’t, I could have been in the thick of that mess. That’s why my policy ever since then has always been to buy ice cream whenever that possibility is presented to you. (It was widely believed that the Filipino version of ISIS, called al-Qaeda, was responsible for the explosion. Strangely enough, people here don’t blame or call for the deportation of Muslims, since we know full well that the majority of Muslims aren’t terrorists. It’s a policy I feel that America should maybe one day aspire to.)
  1. I never had a Barbie doll. My childhood was all about Ninja Turtles, G.I. Joe, X-Men, and Ghostbusters. I would frequently move my action figures into my sister’s dollhouse and declare a hostile takeover, much to her annoyance. My favorites: Leonardo, Egon, Storm, and Shipwreck.
  1. I cannot NOT sing Toto’s “Africa” whenever I hear it. I can’t. That song is my trigger scent.
  1. People ask me about my ethnicity a lot. My maternal great-grandfather came to the Philippines from China. My maternal great-grandma has some mix of Malay/Thai/Chinese blood. My paternal grandfather escaped the cultural revolution in China (he might have been related to minor Manchu royalty there, from what I gather), and my grandmother is a Spanish-Chinese mestiza. There’s a chance I might be descended from Genghis Khan on my father’s side (this could explain my general hairiness). And even after all that, most people tend to mistake me as either Japanese or Korean.

 

   

Rin Chupeco wrote obscure manuals for complicated computer programs, talked people out of their money at event shows, and did many other terrible things. She now writes about ghosts and fairy tales but is still sometimes mistaken for a revenant. She wrote The Girl from the Well, its sequel, The Suffering, and The Bone Witch, the first book of a new YA Fantasy trilogy. Find her at rinchupeco.com.




  • Open Internationally
  • Please read our Rules and Guidelines in the Rafflecop-ter
  • (1) winner will win a crochet Tea doll and Signed Hardback copy of The Bone Witch
  • (2) winners will win a Bottlecap Necklace and a crochet Tea doll each

 

 

Happy release week to #MississippiBlood the immersive and gripping conclusion of the #NatchezBurning trilogy by @gregiles #review #giveaway #exclusive

About Mississippi Blood

• Hardcover: 704 pages
• Publisher: William Morrow (March 21, 2017)

#1 New York Times Bestselling Author

The endgame is at hand for Penn Cage, his family, and the enemies bent on destroying them in this revelatory volume in the epic trilogy set in modern-day Natchez, Mississippi—Greg Iles’s epic tale of love and honor, hatred and revenge that explores how the sins of the past continue to haunt the present.

Shattered by grief and dreaming of vengeance, Penn Cage sees his family and his world collapsing around him. The woman he loves is gone, his principles have been irrevocably compromised, and his father, once a paragon of the community that Penn leads as mayor, is about to be tried for the murder of a former lover. Most terrifying of all, Dr. Cage seems bent on self-destruction. Despite Penn’s experience as a prosecutor in major murder trials, his father has frozen him out of the trial preparations–preferring to risk dying in prison to revealing the truth of the crime to his son.

During forty years practicing medicine, Tom Cage made himself the most respected and beloved physician in Natchez, Mississippi. But this revered Southern figure has secrets known only to himself and a handful of others. Among them, Tom has a second son, the product of an 1960s affair with his devoted African American nurse, Viola Turner. It is Viola who has been murdered, and her bitter son–Penn’s half-brother–who sets in motion the murder case against his father. The resulting investigation exhumes dangerous ghosts from Mississippi’s violent past. In some way that Penn cannot fathom, Viola Turner was a nexus point between his father and the Double Eagles, a savage splinter cell of the KKK. More troubling still, the long-buried secrets shared by Dr. Cage and the former Klansmen may hold the key to the most devastating assassinations of the 1960s. The surviving Double Eagles will stop at nothing to keep their past crimes buried, and with the help of some of the most influential men in the state, they seek to ensure that Dr. Cage either takes the fall for them, or takes his secrets to an early grave.

Tom Cage’s murder trial sets a terrible clock in motion, and unless Penn can pierce the veil of the past and exonerate his father, his family will be destroyed. Unable to trust anyone around him–not even his own mother–Penn joins forces with Serenity Butler, a famous young black author who has come to Natchez to write about his father’s case. Together, Penn and Serenity–a former soldier–battle to crack the Double Eagles and discover the secret history of the Cage family and the South itself, a desperate move that risks the only thing they have left to gamble: their lives.

Mississippi Blood is the enthralling conclusion to a breathtaking trilogy seven years in the making–one that has kept readers on the edge of their seats. With piercing insight, narrative prowess, and a masterful ability to blend history and imagination, New York Times bestselling author Greg Iles illuminates the brutal history of the American South in a highly atmospheric and suspenseful novel that delivers the shocking resolution his fans have eagerly awaited.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Mama Says:

This took on a very Gaimanesque quality, becoming a story about an author writing this story in this third installment.  While there are a number of Penn Cage novels, this is a trilogy which begins with Natchez Burning, so if you haven’t read the first book, skip down to the author info and look for a surprise.
As with the first two books, I completely forgot how long I had been reading every time I picked it up, and was sad when I had to put it down.  Alas, I had to sleep and eat and take care of my daughter.  Otherwise I totally would have stayed up for two days straight reading it non-stop.  It was, if possible, even more gripping and urgent for being the final novel in this particular part of Cage’s story.
We were also treated to more of Iles’ luminous prose and lush imagery, taking us deep into the South of the past and all its darkness then casting us into the light of modern day, showing us just how closely intertwined the two could be.
If you aren’t normally a fan of mysteries and suspenseful novels, I urge you to give these books a chance as they are more literary than most, and have such an intriguing and important story to tell.

4.5 stars and my sincere thanks to William Morrow and TLC Book tours for the review opportunity!

About Greg Iles

Greg Iles spent most of his youth in Natchez, Mississippi. His first novel, Spandau Phoenix, was the first of thirteen New York Times bestsellers, and his new trilogy continues the story of Penn Cage, protagonist of The Quiet Game, Turning Angel, and #1 New York Times bestseller The Devil’s Punchbowl. Iles’s novels have been made into films and published in more than thirty-five countries. He lives in Natchez with his wife and has two children.

Find out more about Greg at his website, follow him on Twitter, and connect with him on Facebook.

To enter to win a copy of book 1, Natchez Burning, you have a few options:
First, comment below and let me know your favorite mysteries.
Second, follow me and the author on Twitter.
Third, follow the blog, of course!

Finally, I’ll be hosting another chance on my Instagram feed!

Good luck! Open to US and CA only, ends Mar 31st.

#TheMostDangerousThing about this post might be the giveaway if you’re not fast enough to enter! #guestpost and #quickiereview inside.

ABOUT THE BOOK:

The Most Dangerous Thing

by Leanne Lieberman

Publisher: Orca Book Publishers

Release Date: March 7th 2017

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary

 

 photo B6096376-6C81-4465-8935-CE890C777EB9-1855-000001A1E900B890_zps5affbed6.jpg

Synopsis:

Sixteen-year-old Sydney hates to talk (or even think) about sex. She’s also fighting a secret battle against depression, and she’s sure she’ll never have a boyfriend. When her classmate Paul starts texting and sending her nature photos, she is caught off guard by his interest. Always uncomfortable with any talk about sex, Sydney is shocked when her extroverted sister, Abby, announces that she is going to put on The Vagina Monologues at school. Despite her discomfort, Sydney starts to reexamine her relationship with her body, and with Paul. But her depression worsens, and with the help of her friends, her family, a therapist and some medication, she grapples with what she calls the most dangerous thing about sex: female desire.

Mama says:  Add this to your list of mental health must reads for teens! If you’re looking for a book that approaches the topic with sensitivity and insight, The Most Dangerous Thing will fit the bill!

Thanks to author Leanne Lieberman for stopping by the blog today!

I am excited to be a guest on Mama Reads Blog and to write about my new novel, The Most Dangerous Thing.

My book is about a teenage girl named Sydney who suffers from anxiety and depression. I wanted to write about these topics because mental health issues have become so pervasive around me. While talking with friends recently, I realized that depression was affecting almost all of us, either our own mental health, or those of our spouses, children or close friends. As an elementary and middle-school teacher, I also see students with mental health issues on a regular basis. Since I teach the health curriculum, I have the opportunity to address those issues for my grade 7 and 8 students. We talk about strategies to deal with anxiety and panic attacks, how to cope if you feel depressed, and suicide prevention. I try and give my students tools so that if they are struggling, they’ll have some resources to help them.

I tell my students to seek help from an adult they can trust, or to use the technology they have to find resources to help them. However, I also know that sometimes a good story, one students can relate to, might give them the support they need. Reading about a character struggling with mental illness might help them cope, or even better, provide a model for reaching out for help.

In my book, my MC Sydney spends a lot of time trying to convince herself that her depression isn’t that bad, that it’s not that disabling, and that if she just keeps trying to ignore how she feels, she’ll come through the other side on her own. This isn’t the case. Eventually Syd realizes that she really does need help from her doctor, her friends and her family. Fiction should be fun and entertaining, but it can also be meaningful, compassionate and even healing.

In Canada the Bell Let’s Talk initiative to break has been hugely influential in raising funds and breaking the stigma about mental health. I hope that The Most Dangerous Thing can contribute to this conversation.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Leanne Lieberman is the author of five YA books including Gravity (a Sydney Taylor Notable Book), and Lauren Yanofsky Hates The Holocaust. Her latest YA book is The Most Dangerous Thing, about a girl who coping with depression and anxiety. Leanne also writes adult fiction and is working on a novel entitled Unsettled. Leanne is a graduate of The University of Windsor’s MA in Creative Writing. Originally from Vancouver BC, Leanne now lives in Kingston ON with her husband and two sons.

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