The Snow Collectors #BookReview

Hello Bookish Friends,
Did you survive the Holidays? Today I have a book review of
The Snow Collectors by Tina May Hall

THE SNOW COLLECTORS BY TINA MAY HALL

  • *Pub date 2/12/20.
    *Paperback:
     224 pages. *Publisher: Dzanc Books (February 12, 2020)
  • #DZANCBooks #tinamayhall #TheSnowCollectors

    Haunted by the loss of her parents and twin sister at sea, Henna cloisters herself in a Northeastern village where the snow never stops. When she discovers the body of a young woman at the edge of the forest, she’s plunged into the mystery of a centuries-old letter regarding one of the most famous stories of Arctic exploration—the Franklin expedition, which disappeared into the ice in 1845.

    At the center of the mystery is Franklin’s wife, the indomitable Lady Jane. Henna’s investigation draws her into a gothic landscape of locked towers, dream-like nights of snow and ice, and

    crumbling mansion rife with hidden passageways and carrion birds. But it soon becomes clear that someone is watching her—someone who is determined to prevent the truth from coming out.

    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. 

    THE SNOW COLLECTORS 
    By Tina May Hall

     A captivating contemporary murder mystery

    A gripping novel of snowy dreamlike, A year and seven months after the loss of her parents and twin sister at sea, Henna, a freelance encyclopedia writer who specializes in entries having to do with water, moves to an unnamed village where her constant companions are the oppressive snow and her sister’s basset hound. 

    Lush imagery, with a stellar gothic mystery that sucks into its atmospheric storyline. 
    The Snow Collectors, engages the reader with a creative twisty, darkish ghost of a Victorian exploration against the eerie beauty of a world on the fringes of environmental collapse. An eerie labyrinth of poetic prose, that I found impossible to put down. Tina May Hall’s exquisite writing, of a cold case murder, along with a ghosts of a nineteenth-century expedition, interwoven with environmental collapse, is completely original. This is one of those books that stays with you long after you finish reading it.

    Tina May Hall’s stories have appeared or are forthcoming in 3rd bed, the minnesota review, Quarterly West, Black Warrior Review, Water-Stone Review, Fairy Tale Review, and other journals. Her novella in prose poems, All the Day’s Sad Stories, was published by Caketrain Press in the spring of 2009.

    She teaches at Hamilton College and lives in the snowy Northeast with her husband and son in a house with a ghost in the radiator. Some days, she spends with her ear pressed to the wall. Some days, she snowshoes with her son to the wolf-ring in the woods where they drink hot chocolate and howl until the crows chase them home.

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    Blog Tour and Giveaway

    Hello Bookish Friends,

    Today is the first stop on this very anticipated Book Tour and Giveaway!

    #TheSorcerersWhore #SamanthaGrosser #HFVBTBlogTours

    The Sorcerer’s Whore
    by Samantha Grosser

    Publication Date: July 16, 2019
    eBook: 330 Pages

    Series: Pages of Darkness, #2
    Genre: Historical Fiction/Historical Fantasy

     

    A cursed child, a dangerous path, and a price to pay…

    Six-fingered Mary Sparrow dreams of escape from the brothel that is the only world she knows. But when a mysterious old man drives her friend to madness, she begins to fear for her life.

    Toby Chyrche also hopes for a better future, away from the confines of the tailor’s shop where it seems his fate is set in stone. So when a chance meeting with an old man at the brothel offers him a different path, he is only too eager to accept. Then the discovery of an ancient book of magic throws a new and shocking light onto the past – his mother had a brother, and that brother was a witch.

    As the old man’s shadow over Bankside lengthens, Mary is drawn into the growing web of darkness. Unable to escape its reach, she turns to Toby for help. But Toby has daemons of his own to face. Will possession of the book be enough to protect them from the old man’s power? And what price will they have to pay for victory?

    For the Sorcerer’s Whore, nothing is as it seems …

    Amazon US | Amazon UK | iBooks | Kobo | Nook

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

    England 1632 

    25 years have passed since the first fateful production of Macbeth, and the forces of evil are about to be reawoken.

    The Sorcerer’s Whore, is Samantha Grossers second book in the Pages of Darkness Series. A wickedly delightful, gripping and immersive tale that totally absorbed me into its hauntingly dark characters.

    The setting takes place 25 years after Shakespeare’s Witch. The book reintroduces some of the characters from the first installment, and introduces us to some new characters as well.

    Six-fingered Mary Sparrow dreams of escaping from her line of work in Bankside, London. In her lot in life there is no room for real love. She is confused and torn by unsettling emotions she has for a new handsome client. Living in the stews of Cardinal Cap is the only world she knows, it’s a place of distractions and debauchery. Survival is the main priority, and Mary must keep her wits about her.

    Dark plans from a mysterious older gentleman may have her questioning her safety and fearing for life.

    Toby Chyrche, also hopes and dreams for a better future, after the death of his father, dark shocking secrets come to light.

    A chance meeting with an older gentleman at a brothel offers Toby a different journey in life. One he is only too eager to accept, which takes him down a dark pathway. Nothing is what it seems, a discovery of an old book of magic which once was lost, and now found, along with past revelations sets events in motion in this well layered novel.

    In this dramatic sweeping plot, I was immediately drawn in and I devoured every single page of this wickedly entertaining book. Once I started reading I was hooked and engaged in this creative storyline. It wasn’t an easy task to pull away from the book.

    This intense and riveting novel, has well developed characters and an enjoyable storyline. The authors writing had me hooked from the very first chapter.

    Grossers, intricately plots a character driven romance that fights poignancy through the complex conflicts of fate. Dark seductive magic drives the story forward with several interesting twists that make the ending all the more anticipated and satisfying. I was immediately pulled into the story, totally intrigued by the premise, and fully absorbed in this suspenseful page-turner.

    What really stood out for me was how the author included the religious strife that was coming to head and political drama it caused in the area around Bankside London with Puritan belief system. It caused a climactic change in the area that once allowed prostitution and the creativeness the theater brought with it. Puritan beliefs that stifled and frighten the population to the living conditions and strict code of conduct that restricted woman into believing that sexuality was only for procreation for children and anything else was considered evil and that of satan and sinful. The Authors creative and atmospheric details that captures the turbulent times of 1632

    A Seductive, and wickedly alluring gritty tale that was such an irresistible read.

    I am looking forward to the next installment in this memorizing dark a provocative and alluring series.

    About the Author

    Historical fiction author Samantha Grosser originally hails from England, but now lives on the sunny Northern Beaches of Sydney with her husband, son and a very small dog called Livvy.

    Combining a lifelong love of history with a compulsion to write that dates from childhood, Samantha is now bringing her passion for telling compelling stories to the world.

    Samantha has an Honours Degree in English Literature and taught English for many years in Asia and Australia. She is the author of wartime dramas Another Time and Place and The Officer’s Affair, and The King James Men, set during the turbulent early years of 17th Century.

    Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | BookBub | Pinterest | Instagram

    Blog Tour Schedule

    Monday, August 12
    Review at Gwendalyn’s Books

    Wednesday, August 14
    Review at Passages to the Past

    Sunday, August 18
    Feature at Diana_bibliophile

    Monday, August 19
    Review at Pencils & Pages

    Tuesday, August 20
    Review at Chicks, Rogues and Scandals

    Thursday, August 22
    Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

    Giveaway

    During the Blog Tour, we are giving away one eBook and one paperback copy of The Sorcerer’s Whore! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

    Giveaway Rules

    – Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on August 22nd. You must be 18 or older to enter.
    – Giveaway is open to the US & UK only.
    – Only one entry per household.
    – All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
    – The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

    Sorcerer’s Whore

    -A little Historical facts-

    The name Cardinal’s Hat (or Cap),

    for a house on the site of the present No. 49, Bankside, and for the narrow alley which runs down beside it,

    Photo taken from the, British History Online is a digital library of key printed primary and secondary sources for the history of Britain and Ireland, with a primary focus on the period between 1300 and 1800. We aim to support the learning, teaching and research of our users from around the world.

    BHO was founded by the Institute of Historical Research and the History of Parliament Trust in 2003.

    Photo from British History Online

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    No Stone Unturned

    Book Tour And Guest Post

    Hello Lovelies,

    Hello my lovely friends! Today I have the huge pleasure to partnered with the Incredible author Pam Lecky and HFVBT

    So grab yourself you favorite Cuppa coffee or tea and let me introduce you to our Heroine the very precocious Mrs Lucy Lawrence…

    *Don’t forget to enter for a chance to win one of two copies of the book*

    #NoStoneUnturned #PamLecky #HFVBTBlogTours @pamlecky @hfvbt #Giveaway

    Publication Date: June 28, 2019
    Paper BookPages: 286

    Series: The Lucy Lawrence Mysteries, Book 1
    Genre: Historical Mystery

    No Stone Unturned

    By Pam Lecky

    Synopsis

    A suspicious death, stolen gems, and an unclaimed reward: who will be the victor in a deadly game of cat and mouse?

    London October 1886: Trapped in a troubled marriage, Lucy Lawrence is ripe for an adventure. But when she meets the enigmatic Phineas Stone, over the body of her husband in the mortuary, her world begins to fall apart.

    When her late husband’s secrets spill from the grave, and her life is threatened by the leader of London’s most notorious gang, Lucy must find the strength to rise to the challenge. But who can she trust and how is she to stay out of the murderous clutches of London’s most dangerous criminal?

    Available on Amazon

    #NoStoneUnturned #PamLecky #HFVBTBlogTours

    My Review

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

    No Stone Unturned is the first book in my new series, The Lucy Lawrence Mysteries, perfectly set in Victorian London, and the wilds of Yorkshire in the north of England. The story surrounds a suspicious death of Lucy Lawrence’s husband, which has been made to look like an unfortunate accident, some stolen sapphires belonging to a Kashmiri maharajah, Lucy becomes embroiled by association of her late husband to some ruthless underworld people and their criminal activities. Can she outsmart a London crime lord. She is left almost homeless without much of allowance left to live on by her late husband. Will she be able to put her trust in the dashing Mr Phineas Stone.

    Lucy, has been estranged from her family and society when she eloped with a dashing man. Finding herself suddenly widowed and the circumstances surrounding the death of her late husband Charlie. Strong willed she struggles with social class and gender restrictions of the Victorian age, where strict rules applied to woman.

    This a thrilling book that keeps you on the edge of your seat with unexpected twist. This intriguing mystery of cat and mouse will keep you fully your invested in its heart stopping adventures chases. The authors ability to recreate Victorian England is absolutely astonishing. Descriptive scenes with detailed imagery that you are completely immersed as you are dragged right along with our heroine Lucy Lawerence as she discover clues in this tension filled storyline.

    A brilliantly executed plot that with each scene richly atmospheric that will transport to Victorian period of England with a creative blend of Dorothy L Sayers and PD James styles. I absolutely loved this book and its strong reliance on female friendship.

    Lucy and her maid Mary relationship was so enjoyable that it was by far my favorite in book. Mary’s character development as the book progress was superb. All the sub characters were fascinating as was her friend Judith, and lovable uncle Giles.

    Pam Lackey new book is a perfect page turner, with all the classical elements that make for an exquisite historical thrill ride of a mystery.

    I am new fan of Pam Lackey and I am looking forward to the next installment in this series titled, Footprints in the Sand, and is set in Egypt

    Guest Post

    Death by Coffin!
    For any lover of the Victorian era, London’s most famous cemeteries hold endless fascination. My favourites are Highgate and Kensal Green with their eerie Gothic and Neo-classical architecture. The Victorian obsession with death, the after-life and spiritualism sparked the trend for highly decorated tombs and crypts. Heartbreaking inscriptions, lichen-encrusted headstones and mournful statuary lend a melancholy air to these places. It’s no wonder they feature so much in Gothic fiction. As I researched my latest novel, No Stone Unturned, I delved a little deeper into the history.
    Both cemeteries were built in response to London’s population explosion in the early part of the 19th century which had resulted in graveyards being crammed in between shops and houses with little control over the number of corpses being interred. The smell these sites generated was described as terrible.
    With public health at risk, Parliament passed a statute for seven new private cemeteries to be opened in the countryside around the city boundary. These included Highgate and Kensal Green.
    Highgate Cemetery
    Dan Bridge
    Highgate is probably the most famous of all the Gothic cemeteries. In May 1839, it was dedicated to St James by the Lord Bishop of London. Of the seventeen acres, fifteen were consecrated for members of the Church of England and the remaining two acres were set aside for ‘Dissenters’ (everyone else). Elizabeth Jackson, aged thirty-six, was the first ever burial in Highgate in May 1839.
    London’s wealthy invested heavily in the cemetery due to its amazing views over London (highest point 375 feet above sea level) and its unique architecture and landscaping.
    Kensal Green Cemetery
    Photo Credit: Kraft_Stoff
    “For there is good news yet to hear and fine things to be seen; Before we go to Paradise by way of Kensal Green.” G.K. Chesterton’s poem The Rolling English Road.
    Kensal Green was opened by the Bishop of London on 24th January 1833 and was the first commercial cemetery in London. The first burial was the same month.
    A competition for the design of the cemetery was held and the winning entry was for a Gothic style, however, the Chairman of the General Cemetery Company had other ideas. The final design was Neo-classical. As in Highgate, the burial grounds were divided up between the Church of England and the Dissenters. 
    Illustrated Police News
    An Unfortunate Death!
    A pallbearer by the name of Henry Taylor met a tragic end in Kensal Green. While carrying a coffin, he missed his footing and stumbled. His fellow pallbearers let go of the coffin which fell on poor Henry, killing him instantly.
    Here is the description from The Illustrated Police News, November 1872:
    “KILLED BY COFFIN. Dr. Lancaster held an inquest Saturday evening at the University College Hospital, London, on the body Henry Taylor, aged 60. The evidence of E. J. Heading, undertaker’s foreman, and others showed that on the 19th inst. deceased, with others, was engaged at a funeral at Kensal-Green Cemetery. The Church service having been finished, the coffin and mourners proceeded in coaches towards the place of burial. The day being damp, the foreman directed the coaches with the mourners to proceed to the grave by the foot-way, and the hearse across the grass towards a grave-digger, who was motioning the nearest way. The coffin was moved from the hearse and being carried down a path only three feet six wide, by six bearers, when orders were given to turn, so that the coffin, which was what is known in the trade as a four pound leaden one, should head first. While the men were changing, it is supposed that deceased caught his foot against a side stone and stumbled; the other bearers, to save themselves, let the coffin go, and it fell with great force on to deceased, fracturing his jaws and ribs. The greatest confusion was created among the mourners who witnessed the accident, and the widow of the person about to be buried nearly went into hysterics. Further assistance having been procured the burial service was proceeded with, while deceased was conveyed to a surgery, and ultimately to the above mentioned hospital, where he expired on the 24th inst. The jury recommended that straps should be placed round coffins, which would tend to prevent such accidents. Verdict—accidental death. “
    Sadly, although Henry lost his life in Kensal Green, it appears he was not buried there.
    ♦♦♦
    In No Stone Unturned, my heroine Lucy Lawrence buries her husband Charlie in Kensal Green. A mysterious mourner at the graveside soon turns her life upside-down as Charlie’s dirty secrets spill from the grave …
    No Stone Unturned is the first book in the Lucy Lawrence Mystery Series.

    A suspicious death, stolen gems and an unclaimed reward; who will be the victor in a deadly game of cat and mouse?

    London October 1886: Trapped in a troubled marriage, Lucy Lawrence is ripe for an adventure. But when she meets the enigmatic Phineas Stone, over the body of her husband in the mortuary, her world begins to fall apart.

    When her late husband’s secrets spill from the grave and her life is threatened by the leader of London’s most notorious gang, Lucy must find the strength to rise to the challenge. But who can she trust and how is she to stay out of the murderous clutches of London’s most dangerous criminal?

    Amazon Buy Link

     

    About the Author

    Pam is an Irish writer of historical fiction with a particular love of the late Victorian era and early 20th century. She is fascinated by all things 19th century, from food and clothes to architecture and social history. She is patiently awaiting the invention of time travel, but in the meantime, indulges her love of the past by writing about it.

    Her debut novel, The Bowes Inheritance, was awarded the BRAG Medallion in 2017. It was shortlisted for the Carousel Aware Prize 2016; made ‘Editor’s Choice’ by the Historical Novel Society; long-listed for the Historical Novel Society 2016 Indie Award; and chosen as a Discovered Diamond in February 2017.

    In April 2018, Pam published an anthology of some previously published short reads, along with some new work. Her collection of short stories is entitled, Past Imperfect, and features stories set in such diverse settings as WW1 Dublin, the sinking of the Lusitania and a lonely haunted lighthouse.

    Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

    Blog Tour Schedule

    Monday, August 5
    Review & Interview at Passages to the Past

    Tuesday, August 6
    Review at Books In Their Natural Habitat

    Wednesday, August 7
    Excerpt at Words and Peace
    Guest Post at Short Books and Scribes

    Thursday, August 8
    Review & Guest Post at Gwendalyn_Books_

    Friday, August 9
    Review at Bibliophile Reviews

    Sunday, August 11
    Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

    Monday, August 12
    Feature at Coffee and Ink
    Review at Locks, Hooks and Books
    Review & Interview at Jorie Loves a Story

    Giveaway

    During the Blog Tour, we are giving away two copies of No Stone Unturned by Pam Lecky! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.

    Giveaway Rules

    – Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on August 12th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
    – Giveaway is open internationally.
    – Only one entry per household.
    – All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
    – The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.

    No Stone Unturned

    Featured Book Reviewer

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    Welcome To Collateral Damage Take over Tour

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    Purchase by clicking on the Amazon button

    #taylorsimonds #collateraldammage #superheroes #fantasyreads #yareads #theparliamenthousepress #TPHTours

    Debuting at a 1# Spot Is No Small Feet

    @taylor_on_tour @theparliamentpress

    •Publisher: The Parliament House

    •Author: Taylor Simonds

    •Book Title: Collateral Damage

    Power. Courage. Invincibility. The marks of a true hero.

    Meg Sawyer has none of these things.

    Meg has never stopped a moving bus with her bare hands, been bitten by a radioactive
    insect, or done anything moderately resembling saving the world. She doesn’t have to. She’s a background citizen, a nobody, one of the swarms of faceless civilians of Lunar City–where genetically enhanced superhumans straight out of the comics have thwarted
    evil for years.

    For as long as the Supers have existed, Meg has had one goal: to not become a
    casualty in their near-daily battles for justice. And for the last seventeen years, she’s managed to do just that. Sure, her minimum-wage job at the local coffee shop isn’t great, she can’t even leave her apartment without loading herself up with protective
    gear, and her car was just hijacked to throw at a supervillain (again), but she’s not dead yet.

    But when Meg accidentally finds one of the city’s perfect, invincible protectors
    murdered under extremely suspicious circumstances, her whole “innocent bystander” strategy falls apart. After being coerced by his determined girlfriend into a mission to help prevent the deaths of the remaining Supers, Meg finds herself forced into the foreground
    of a story she never wanted to be part of—one that challenges everything she thought she knew about both her city and herself.

    Collateral Damage Chapter 1

    Arnold is dead.

    It’s not my fault. Let’s get that clear. These kinds of things usually aren’t, but that doesn’t change the unavoidable fact that he’s super, super dead.

    I wish I could say Arnold’s dead-ness is unexpected, but the truth is, I’m impressed he even survived this long.

    My last car only made it six months.

    To be fair, he’s not technically dead yet, but he’s definitely going to be in a few minutes. Maybe it’s fatalistic to write this off as an inevitability, but I’ve lived in Lunar City long enough to know when it’s someone’s—or something’s, in this case—final day.

    In this case, it’s the police scanner duct-taped to my dashboard that sets off the feeling of impending doom—but even before it starts blaring, I can already tell something’s wrong. The desperate hope that maybe the hordes of people running hysterically down the street toward my car are participating in some kind of 5K only lasts a few moments before, with a pavement-rattling eruption, the tidal wave of dark smoke starts rolling in behind them. This, as you’d imagine, shuts my original theory down pretty quickly.

    As if the stampeding herd isn’t enough of an indicator, the police scanner suddenly lets out a static-laced crackle that quickly gives way to a garbled, warped version of the authoritative shouting I’ve come to expect from it. I prod the finicky device until the muffled noise turns into something that sounds like “two casualties,” “East Seventh Avenue,” and “SuperVariants have engaged,” and that’s enough for me.

    “Absolutely not,” I mutter, yanking the steering wheel to the left and dodging across the traffic down a side road. “Not today.”

    This turns out to be one of my worse ideas, because the side road is already occupied by one of the Supers.

    SuperVariant Three, if we’re being specific.

    I would accuse the Lunar City Police Department of misinformation (East Seventh, right? Did the scanner not just say he was on East Seventh?), but I’m not really supposed to have a scanner, so there’s no one to complain to.

    My tires screech as I hit the brakes, just feet away from the standstill traffic blocking the road, the owners having abandoned their cars in favor of running. And there, about six cars ahead of me, boots firmly planted on the hood like it’s some kind of pedestal, is SuperVariant Three. The morning sun glistens off the gray leather supersuit he’s wearing like it’s a second skin, his famously perfect blue-black hair positioned in its trademark coil over his forehead.

    “Everybody out of the streets!” he’s ordering, a gloved hand cupped around his chiseled jaw. “Get to someplace safe! You need to—”

    A piercing scream grabs both of our attention. It’s impossible to tell who it came from, but it’s clearly someone out of the cluster on the sidewalk—one of the dozen or so heads gaping upward in terror at a massive billboard groaning on its hinges, a light breeze away from crashing down to the street below.

    “Oh, no,” I whisper, and then Three and I both move at the same time.

    I’m not worried about the people underneath the billboard. I’m worried about me. Because I’ve seen Three in action before, and I know his MO.

    In the few seconds that it takes me to lunge for my backpack—an unwieldy black monstrosity jangling with a color-coded assortment of safety gear all firmly labeled please return to Meg Sawyer—and smash a thumb into the release on my seatbelt, the billboard has wrenched free with a fantastic howl. I can see Three flying toward it in a gray blur.

    Get out of the way, get out of the way, get out of the way—

    I tumble out of the car and lunge for the sidewalk just as Three reaches the falling metal. There’s a weird moment of optimism where I wonder if maybe today, he’ll be different; maybe today, he’ll just catch it and gently put it down on the ground like a normal, rational human. No show of power, no flashy stunts.

    But then he raises his fist and decks the absolute hell out of it.

    I have just enough time to snatch the closest thing I can grab off my backpack—which turns out to be a safety helmet, thank god, and not something completely useless for the situation, like a Band-Aid or hand sanitizer—and jam it on my head before the billboard’s trajectory is walloped away from the paralyzed citizens and toward the small army of abandoned cars lining the road.

    I’ll give Three this: the guy’s got a future career in bowling if he ever wants it.

    There’s something weirdly satisfying about watching the ripple of cars get smashed to pieces. It’s like when you line up a chain of dominos and push one over. The not-satisfying thing is the knowledge that the billboard on its own would never have been able to cause this much damage, but I guess you can turn anything into a missile if you super-punch it hard enough.

    The rippling of the first few cars is the only thing I see, however, because that’s when I dive behind the closest tree, cover my organs with my backpack, and clamp my eyes and mouth shut against the impending cloud of dust and debris. The last thing I need today is to get impaled by flying shrapnel.

    The next few moments are underscored by a soundtrack I know very well—the sound of metal screeching as it wrenches apart, glass shattering, steel pounding into the sidewalk. When the noise gets replaced by silence, followed by the clamor of breathless, relieved sobs of gratitude that can only mean the people on the other side of the street have suddenly realized they’re not dead, I know it’s safe enough to open my eyes and peer around the corner.

    As expected, SuperVariant Three is not looking in horror at the destruction he’s just caused to eight different vehicles (including my poor, useless Arnold, which is now a blackened, charred mess with a sliced-off roof and an eruption of smoke pouring out of the engine). No, he’s floating above the awestruck crowd, beaming down at them. I can’t make out any of what they’re all saying to him—probably something along the lines of “I love you” or “sign my face” or “let me name my children after you”—but his proud, confident voice carries.

    “Not a problem,” he’s saying. “Just doing my duty.”

    My mouth falls open. Not a problem? I have a problem. I have several problems. I’m about to step off the sidewalk to march over and tell him so, but then there’s a near-intangible blur of orange light accompanied by a gust of wind that rips past me so quickly, my helmet clatters to the ground and my choppy red hair blows over my eyes. “Watch it!” I yell, shaking my bangs back into place.

    “Hey, Three!” The blur zig-zags through the maze of destroyed cars and slams to a stop near Three and his fawning fans, coming into focus as a tall figure with a sleek wave of black hair, coated in a dull orange neoprene bodysuit. SuperVariant Four. Take a guess what his thing is.

    “Quit flirting; One needs backup.” Four stands still long enough to get the words out before he readjusts his opaque goggles and runs up the side of a building, disappearing in another orange flash over the top.

    “I do not!” an unseen voice screams in outrage, and then, oh, what a surprise, another Super. A deep purple blotch in the distance that I recognize immediately as SuperVariant One, asymmetrical cape trailing behind her, rockets out from over the building Four has just disappeared behind. I vaguely wonder where SuperVariant Two is in all this. If I had invisibility powers, I probably wouldn’t show up to these shenanigans at all. No one would even know

    SuperVariant One executes a sharp swivel in midair that makes her thick, dark braid snap like a whip, and yells, “I can handle this!” She makes a claw shape with her hands, reaches toward the ground, and scoops upward. In response, a car parked at the end of the street rises languidly into the air. She uncurls her right hand into a flat palm and presses it forward, sending the car catapulting over her head and toward some unseen enemy

    “Oh, no,” I moan, and instinctively try to shield Arnold behind my body, even though he’s pretty much a lost cause as a vehicle at this point. “It never works!” I yell up at her. “Throw something else!”

    She doesn’t even look my way. Before I can say anything else, her left hand is thrown out in that claw shape again, and Arnold is hurtling through the air to join the other car. The thing that’s been antagonizing the Supers has come into view from behind the building, and I can see the polished gleam of an eight-story-tall robot, with some human operating it from inside its transparent head. A robot. Not for the first time, I feel myself filled with irritation rather than terror at the threat of the day. I mean, come on, guys. How did someone build a giant robot in this city without anyone noticing? If someone’s getting eight hundred tons of metal delivered to their house, that needs to be a red flag.

    The robot doesn’t even turn its head as its right arm swings up and blocks my car with the earsplitting clang of metal on metal, sending it careening back toward the pavement in a shower of sparks.

    I shield my head with my arm as my car crashes and rolls, coming to a smoking stop a few yards away from me, then look back up dejectedly. The Supers are already gone, leading the robot farther down the street.

    “You’re fine, right Arnold?” I yell at my car.

    It erupts into flames.

    Okay. I’ll just walk to work.

    I reach around for the metal rod clipped magnetically to the side of my backpack and press a button. It instantly lengthens and expands into a titanium umbrella, riddled with minor dents and scratches. A bowling ball-size crater dips into the left side, giving the whole umbrella an uneven, sagging look. A burn mark from who knows what (I want to say maybe lasers) is just below that. It’s been through a lot, but it still works, I think. I mean, I’m not dead yet.

    I raise it above my head and start walking.

    Tour wide giveaway On Instagram •

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    Prize:

    • US ONLY: Paperback copy of Collateral Damage

    • INTERNATIONAL: Collateral Damage E-Book!

      To enter:
      – Must be following

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      – Go to @theparliamentpress and click on the link in their bio to enter.

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    1. Q: Tell us about your writing process and the way you brainstorm story ideas.

    A: I don’t know if two books is enough to supply a scientifically justifiable pattern, but pretending it is, here’s the process:

        1) A book premise and ending drop themselves into my head fully formed. I know who my characters are and where they’re going and I have no idea how they’re going to get there.

        2) I pants. I write without an outline. It is bad. “The first draft is telling the story to yourself!” I scream at myself as I write many, many bad words that I know I will delete later.

        3) Somewhere around the 40,000-word mark, I realize that I have made a crucial error in developing one of my lead characters. That personality isn’t right at all. I have to fix it. Wait, I need to change the opening scene to match the characterization I actually want them to have. Wait, none of these characters are right. This worldbuilding is so half-baked. This would make a much better inciting incident. What am I doing?

        4) I move all 40,000 words to a file labeled “WIP Dumping Grounds” and start over from scratch.

        5) I do this three more times until I have 40,000 words I don’t hate and then I finish the book, still screaming

    2. Q: When you develop characters do you already know who they are before you begin writing or do you let them develop as you go?

    A: I have to know who my characters are before I start writing, or the story will never get written—I’m the world’s worst pantser, so all I ever know going into a book is who my book is about and where they’re trying to get to. For COLLATERAL DAMAGE I had a set of references for each character to use as a template for if I got stuck (Meg was Mia Thermopolis x Veronica Sawyer x Darcy Lewis x Haruhi Fujioka, for example, mixed with a few friends I know in real life). I feel like if I can understand my characters on as many levels as possible—what they want, what they fear, what they’re trying to accomplish, who or what raised them, how they connect to others, how they talk and move—they’ll become as familiar to me as real people. And if I let them act like real people, they’ll naturally make choices that create the plot

    3. Q: Where is your favorite place to write?

    A: DISNEY WORLD RESORTS. I’m so lucky that I live so close to them. I work from home as an editor most of the time and if I had to stay in my bedroom all day I’d go crazy, so my favorite thing to do is go work at one of the themed hotels. It makes me feel like I’m on vacation, and it’s so easy to be inspired when every aspect of the Disney brand relies so heavily on thematic storytelling. My top three spots are Beach Club, which makes me feel like I’m on a cruise ship, Wilderness Lodge, which makes me feel like I’m on a writing retreat in the woods, and the Grand Floridian, which is just fancy.

    4. Q: Do you hide any secrets in your books that only a few people will find

    A: Yes! COLLATERAL DAMAGE is a play on the superhero genre, which I’m a huge fan of, so there are Easter eggs and references all over the place. No real names or exact details are used, of course, but they’re clear enough for a potential fellow nerd to be like “Wait, this feels like Spider-Man. That’s a Flash joke. That thing covered in gemstones they just walked past in the vault is totally the Infinity Gauntlet.” Stuff like that.

    5. Q: Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?

    A: I prefer each book to stand on its own! One of my favorite concepts is “leave the reader wanting more, not needing more.” I’m an advocate for letting books work on their own as a self-contained unit; I don’t like it when a story ends with all of its ends still loose. I shouldn’t have to buy another book to know how the first book’s conflict wraps up! I think of it as a TV series—you know how each season typically has a central theme, antagonist, character arc, collection of new characters, etc.? By the end of the season, almost everything that has been presented should have reached a conclusion—but then the last episode will hit you with a tease that there’s more to come, like the camera shift to the looming Upside-Down after the school dance scene at the end of Stranger Things. I prefer books in a series to work in the same way—when a reader picks up a book, they’re being invited on a journey, and it’s unfair to the reader to cut that journey short. Without giving anything away from the end of COLLATERAL DAMAGE, there is definitely room for a sequel eventually because it’s superheroes, but I don’t think anyone would feel confused or infuriated if this was the only book in this world that ever got written. I like to put bows on things!

    #taylorsimonds #collateraldammage #superheroes #fantasyreads #yareads #theparliamenthousepress #TPHTours

    #bookstagram #bookish #bookworm #booknerd #read #reading #alwaysreading #coverlove #tbr #ireadya #bookishgiveaway #marvel

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    Book Tour★Something Like Gravity

    Today I Partnered With FFBC

    To Bring You

    Something Like Gravity

    By Amber Smith

    @mtmctours

    @Amber Smith

    Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books

    Release Date: June 18th 2019

    Genre: Contemporary, LGBT, Young Adult, Romance

    https://open.spotify.com/track/0Y8uABAzh2Kh8LhmAqsnfs?si=QzYcOFAVRvOmmn_23MESRA

    ⭐️Don’t forget to click on the above picture to enjoy this song picked by the Author

    Synopsis

    For fans of Love, Simon and Eleanor and Park, a romantic and sweet novel

    about a transgender boy who falls in love for the first time—and how first love

    changes us all—from New York Times bestselling author Amber Smith.

    Chris and Maia aren’t off to a great start.

    A near-fatal car accident first brings them together, and their next encounters don’t

    fare much better. Chris’s good intentions backfire. Maia’s temper gets the best of

    her.

    But they’re neighbors, at least for the summer, and despite their best efforts, they

    just can’t seem to stay away from each other.

    The path forward isn’t easy. Chris has come out as transgender, but he’s still

    processing a frightening assault he survived the year before. Maia is grieving the

    loss of her older sister and trying to find her place in the world without her. Falling

    in love was the last thing on either of their minds.

    But would it be so bad if it happened anyway?

    BOOK LINKS

    Goodreads:

    Amber Smith is the New York Times bestselling author of the young adult novels

    The Way I Used to Be, The Last to Let Go, and Something Like Gravity. An

    advocate for increased awareness of gendered violence, as well as LGBTQ

    equality, she writes in the hope that her books can help to foster change and spark

    dialogue surrounding these issues. She grew up in Buffalo, New York, and now

    lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her partner and their ever-growing family

    of rescued dogs and cats. You can find her online at AmberSmithAuthor.com.

    Website:http://ambersmithauthor.com/

    Goodreads:https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9857002.Amber_Smith

    Twitter:

    Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ambersmithauthor/

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

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    Book Tour and Review ~The Storytellers Secret~

    Hello Bookish Friends,

    Today is my stop on, The Storyteller‘s Book Tour

    I want thank you, iRead Book Tours and Sejal Badani for gifting me a free copy of this book, 

    Make sure you Enter the Giveaway at the end of this post!

     @iReadBookTours @sejal_badani
    #TheStorytellersSecret

    Book Details:

    Book Title: The Storyteller’s Secret by Sejal Badani
    Category: Adult Fiction, 399 pages
    Genre: Literary
    Publisher: Lake Union
    Release date: September 2018
    Tour dates: June 3 to July 12, 2019
    Content Rating: PG-13 (There are some non-explicit sex scenes)

    Book Description:

    An Amazon Charts, USA Today, and Washington Post bestseller!

    From the bestselling author of Trail of Broken Wings comes an epic story of the unrelenting force of love, the power of healing, and the invincible desire to dream.

    Nothing prepares Jaya, a New York journalist, for the heartbreak of her third miscarriage and the slow unraveling of her marriage in its wake. Desperate to assuage her deep anguish, she decides to go to India to uncover answers to her family’s past. Intoxicated by the sights, smells, and sounds she experiences, Jaya becomes an eager student of the culture. But it is Ravi—her grandmother’s former servant and trusted confidant—who reveals the resilience, struggles, secret love, and tragic fall of Jaya’s pioneering grandmother during the British occupation.

    Through her courageous grandmother’s arrestingly romantic and heart-wrenching story, Jaya discovers the legacy bequeathed to her and a strength that, until now, she never knew was possible.

    To read reviews, please visit Sejal Badani’s page on iRead Book Tours.

    The Storyteller’s Secret

    Author: Sejal Badani

    Publisher: Lake Union

    Pages: 390

    “home is not a place or a lifestyle, but the state of your heart and all the people who take their place in it.

    In the present time of 2000, Jaya a heartbroken and devastated New York journalist, must come to terms of the collapse of her marriage. Still dealing with a third miscarriage and the information that unlikely possibility that she may never be able to carry child.

    Sejal Badani, delivers a well-paced and beautifully written story here with interesting, compelling, and believable characters that I found quite compassionate to read about. The story was told in alternating perspectives. In the story we really got a different understanding and look into the of the social injustice to women in India’s culture and the injustice towards the people of India during the British occupation.

    A multi layered historical fiction story, that covers several generations of an Indian family, starting with a young woman tracing her heritage back to her family’s homeland. This captures and draws you in. The author has created a riveting real life to fiction novel.

    I especially enjoyed how the story unfolds and the emotions explored in the book, such as grief and love. The multilayered storyline weaves together perfectly. The Authors achievement in bringing India’s culture to life was beautiful written.

    I was fully immersed in this character driven drama. I devoured this one as fast as I could and was completely drawn into the lives of these characters.  I turned those pages as fast as I could and then slowly took in all the depth and layers to the characters.

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


    A former attorney, Sejal Badani left the law to pursue writing full time.

    She is a USA Today, Washington Post & Amazon Charts bestselling author, Goodreads Fiction Award Finalist and ABC/DISNEY Writing Fellowship Finalist.

    Connect with the author: Website ~ Twitter ~ Facebook ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram

    Prizes:
    Win 1 of 3 paperback copies of The Storyteller’s
    Secret, another winner will receive a $25 Amazon gift card (4 winners / open internationally)

    Ends July 20, 2019

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    Blog Tour For ~ What We Do For Love ❤️

    Hello there Bookish People and Welcome,

    to the What We Do For Love Blast Tour

    I am happy to be hosting a stop on the blog tour for WHAT WE DO FOR LOVE by Anne Pfeffer! I have an excerpt with you today check it out and enter to win the giveaway below

    What We Do For Love
    Anne Pfeffer
    Publication date: May 21st 2019
    Genres: Adult, Contemporary

    Goodreads

    Amazon

    Don’t forget to enter the Giveaway

    • $20 Amazon gift card
    • Tour-wide giveaway (INTL)
    • ends June 20th:

    Giveaway link:

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    If Lorelai Gilmore of Gilmore Girls was dropped into a thriller, it might resemble this appealing novel.” –Kirkus Reviews

    What We Do For Love won the Chick Lit category and made finalist for Best Cover Design/Fiction in the 2019 Next Generation Indie Book Awards!

    Thirty-eight year old Nicole Adams has given up on finding love. Instead, the single mother focuses on the things she cherishes most—her sixteen-year old son Justin, her friends, and her art.

    When she convinces a prominent Los Angeles museum to feature a piece of her work, a large-scale installation, she thinks her life has finally turned a corner.

    Then Justin brings a girl, Daniela, home to live with them. Daniela’s angry parents have thrown her out of the house, because she’s pregnant with Justin’s child. Shattered, Nicole takes Daniela in and, in so doing, is drawn into the inner circle of Daniela’s family—a frightening world of deceit and violence.

    Nicole struggles to keep life going as normal. Forced to deal with people she doesn’t trust or like, fearful for the future of both her son and the grandchild they’re expecting, Nicole wonders if she can do what she tells Justin to do: always have faith in yourself and do the right thing.

    What We Do for Love won the Chick Lit category of the 2019 Next Generation Indie Book Awards, and finalist for Best Cover Design/Fiction!

    Funny how one’s life can make a U-turn.

    My life made two. In a single day.

    I started that day as a mere potter—yes, a person who hand-makes vases and dinner plates for a living—wearing borrowed clothes and driving to the most important interview of my life. A few hours later came U-turn number one: the board of directors of CCMLA, the Contemporary Crafts Museum of Los Angeles, offered me a place in their upcoming show!

    In an instant, I had become an artist. I pondered this fact wonderingly as I drove home that afternoon. I was to provide them with a brand-new, never-before-seen mural in ceramics, an installation piece. My wall would be located at the entrance to the exhibit, the first thing you saw as you walked in. This was my chance, an incredible opportunity.

    I was an artist!

    It didn’t bother me that desperation clearly underlay the board’s decision. All the better when I saved the day with a great contribution to their show!

    I hoped.

    Flushed with success, I revved my ancient Toyota, Bernice, up to twenty-two miles per hour. We practically skipped over the potholes as we barreled our way up the Trail of Terror. This was the name my son Justin had given the rutted, one-lane road that wound its way up the side of Laurel Canyon to our house.

    Of course, I was a fill-in, hired at the last minute. I’d gotten this job when Miriam Fletcher, a customer of mine who happened to be on the museum board, moaned to me that an artist had dropped out of a show scheduled to open in six weeks. “We’re in such a pickle! We don’t know what to do!” Though her crepey neck revealed a senior citizen, Miriam otherwise projected youth, running long acrylic nails through her cropped, bleached and spiked hair, her copper earrings swinging.

    My cue to pipe up. “I’m sure I could help you!”

    Miriam trained her eyes upon me. She had recently ordered customized hand-made pieces from me to give to her granddaughters—a miniature tea set for the youngest and a statuette of a mermaid for her older sister.

    “You do such beautiful ceramics work, Nicole!”

    “What you’ve seen is my commercial work, which I do through my business Clayworks. I create as an artist under my own name.” That is, I hoped to create as an artist under my own name, if I could ever get the proper start.

    And now I had. I could hardly wait to tell my son the news. After sixteen years of single motherhood and hard work, struggling to support myself and Justin, I couldn’t blow this chance. And yet, I’d never done anything like this before.

    A twelve-by-nine foot mural. In just six weeks.

    You can do this, I told myself. I had to. Letting the museum—and myself—down was unthinkable.

    I could practically hear the snap-crackle-pop of my nerves.

    I pulled into what we called the car park, an open space situated beside the house at the top of the Trail of Terror, big enough to park a half dozen cars. Justin’s Ford Focus wasn’t there.

    When he got home from school, which should be any minute, we would raise a toast, our champagne glasses filled with sparkling apple cider.

    The day was unseasonably hot, and I was boiling in Bernice, her air conditioner long dead. Thank heavens my hair had stayed up all day in the deliberately loose knot that I’d coaxed it into this morning, with pretty little bits of hair hanging down around my face. A chignon, according to the YouTube tutorial. One more degree of humidity and my whole head would have coiled itself into a giant Brillo pad right there before the entire board of directors.

    And thank goodness I’d been able to borrow my sister’s striking red-and-orange color-blocked linen dress, which had given me just the boost of artist/business woman confidence that I’d needed. Now though, its linen skirt was hopelessly creased and hiking up around my hips. I bounded out of the car and proceeded along the circuitous route that we all used to enter the house, going through the rickety side gate, and past what was technically our front door, which no one ever opened. Instead, I followed the path that ran along the side of the house toward the yard and pool, giving a glance to my irises and roses, which grew under our bedroom windows.

    The white, yellow, and purple irises stood tall and elegant, but it was the roses I really loved—the fluttery, home-grown variety that came in every color of the sunrise. I would have to harvest some for tonight’s dinner table.

    As I reached the yard, I stepped from the cool shade of the side path into direct, hot sunshine. The sliver of Los Angeles ahead of me that appeared on clear days like this one, the perfume of herbs and blooming plants, the swimming pool that shimmered invitingly—except for my college years, this had been home all my life. Along with my sister Caroline, I’d inherited the small, dilapidated house on its magnificent parcel of land in the Hollywood Hills. At today’s prices, neither of us could have ever afforded to buy it.

    Entering the house as always through the French doors off the living room, I waltzed into my bedroom. It was the beginning of a new era. Soon there would be no more making pottery on consignment! No more sets of dinnerware for twelve!

    I shouldn’t get ahead of myself. Of course, I would continue to operate Clayworks. Those dinner sets paid the bills after all. Still though, there was now a chance I could taper off the business over time, if I could sell some of my more creative pieces. Imagine me, finally, at age thirty-eight, beginning to show in museums and galleries!

    I changed into my regular daywear—a sleeveless cotton blouse, long flowy skirt in the coolest feather-light cotton, and Teva sandals.

    My old friend Mike Sawyer would be over to eat with me and Justin, as he did most weeks, once or twice. Maybe I’d give them both my wonderful news at the same time.

    No, I couldn’t wait that long to spill the news. I knew I would tell Justin the minute he walked in.

    Hearing the muffled noise of a door opening, I sprinted to the kitchen, where my son, home at last, would for sure want to hear all about it.

    I stopped short when I saw that Justin was not alone.

    Author Bio:

    Hi! I grew up in the desert around Phoenix, Arizona, where I had a bay quarter horse named Dolly. If I wasn’t riding, I was holed up somewhere reading Laura Ingalls Wilder or the Oz books or, later on, Jane Eyre and The Grapes of Wrath. Horses eventually faded as an interest, but I ended up with a lifelong love of books and reading.

    After college and eight years of living in cold places like Chicago and New York, I escaped back to the land of sunshine. I now live in California, one mile from the Pacific Ocean, with my dachshund Taco. I have worked in banking and as a pro bono attorney, doing adoptions and guardianships for abandoned children.

    As a writer, I’d always been interested in children’s books, since they had meant so much to me as a kid. I’ve found I especially like writing books about teens and twenty-somethings, an age where you make so many decisions about who you are and how you want to spend your life.

    I love hearing from readers, so please write to me any time at my website http://www.annepfeffer.com.

    Website / Goodreads / Facebook / Twitter

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    Book Tour and Cover Reveal

    Good Morning Bookish Friends and Welcome to the Cover Reveal Of A Midnight Clear.

    💀Six stories of not-so-merry Yuletide whimsy from the authors of Black Spot Books.
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    COVER REVEAL FOR A MIDNIGHT CLEAR
    JUNE 10, 2019

    Publisher: Black Spot Books
    Release Date: November 15, 2019

    Six stories of not-so-merry Yuletide whimsy from the authors of Black Spot Books.
    http://www.jeanbooknerd.com/2019/05/trailer-cover-reveal-midnight-clear.html
    A woman so cold she hardens to ice on a winter’s eve. Risen from his grave before his time, a winter god alters the balance between seasons. A wolf’s holiday season is interrupted by a strange curse. From a murder at the Stanley Hotel to demons of Christmas past, present, and future, and a mad elf and Santa’s Candy Court, the authors of Black Spot Books share their love for winter holidays in this collection of dark winter tales, destined to chill your bones and warm your heart for the Yuletide season.

    You can purchase A Midnight Clear at the following Retailers:

     

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    EXCLUSIVE GIVEAWAY

    http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/e849f7751635/

    FANTASTIC NEWS BOOK NERDS!! First 100 PRE-ORDERS  directly from >>>BLACK SPOT BOOKS<<< will received a Signed Bookplate from ALL the authors! Starting NOW! Click Link Above!

    All Photo Content from Black Spot Books

    Sam Hooker writes darkly humorous fantasy novels about thing like tyrannical despots and the masked scoundrels who tickle them without mercy. He knows all the best swear words, though he refuses to repeat them because he doesn’t want to attract goblins.


    Alcy Leyva is a Bronx-born writer, teacher, and pizza enthusiast. He graduated from Hunter College with a B.A. in English (Creative Writing) and an MFA in Fiction from The New School. He has been published in Popmatters, The Rumpus, Entropy Mag, and Quiet Lunch Magazine.


    Laura Morrison lives in the Metro Detroit area. She has a B.S. in applied ecology and environmental science from Michigan Technological University. Before she was a writer and stay-at-home mom, she battled invasive species and researched turtles.
    INSTAGRAM | TWITTER | WEBSITE | GOODREADS

    Cassondra Windwalker is a poet and novelist writing full time from the coast of the Kenai Peninsula in Alaska. She is supported by a tolerant husband, three wandering offspring, a useless dog, and a zombie cat. Her hobbies include hiking, photography, and having other people’s demons over for tea. FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | TWITTER | GOODREADS
    Dalena Storm has lived in India, Japan, Germany, and on both coasts of the United States. She currently resides in a converted general store in the woods of Western Massachusetts with a rare Burmese temple cat, a purring black fluff-beast, a professor of magic, and an infant with an astonishing ability to resist sleep.
    INSTAGRAM | TWITTER | WEBSITE | GOODREADS
    Seven Jane is an author of dark fantasy and speculative fiction. Seven is a member of The Author’s Guild and Women’s Fiction Writing Association. She also writes a column for The Women’s Fiction Association and is a contributor to The Nerd Daily.
    FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM | TWITTER | WEBSITE | GOODREADS*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail Box*
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    Blog Tour and Review

    Hello Bookish Friends, Today is my Stop on this Month long Mega Tour

    Welcome to the month-long mega tour for Charlie Laidlaw’s newest book, The Space Between Time, due for release on June 20th! There will be fantastic bloggers participating, who will be posting interviews, excerpts, reviews, and other exclusive content!

    Additionally, there are loads of goodies being given away, so be sure to enter at the bottom!

    Book Cover

    The Space Between Time

    Expected Publication Date: June 20th, 2019

    Genre: Contemporary Fiction/ Dark Comedy

    There are more stars in the universe than there are grains of sand on Earth…

    Emma Maria Rossini appears to be the luckiest girl in the world. She’s the daughter of a beautiful and loving mother, and her father is one of the most famous film actors of his generation. She’s also the granddaughter of a rather eccentric and obscure Italian astrophysicist.

    But as her seemingly charmed life begins to unravel, and Emma experiences love and tragedy, she ultimately finds solace in her once-derided grandfather’s Theorem on the universe.

    The Space Between Time is humorous and poignant and offers the metaphor that we are all connected, even to those we have loved and not quite lost.

    Add to Goodreads

    Timescale for a Closed Universe

    It wasn’t an afternoon that I like to remember, and not just because of my shrieking tantrum. Once I’d calmed down, Mum told me I’d been very silly, because it was all make-believe on a cinema screen. I reminded her that she’d cried when Bambi’s mum died, and that was a film and a cartoon. Mum said that it wasn’t the same thing at all. But I wasn’t being silly because I wasn’t old enough to know the difference between pretence and reality.

    Dad had looked pretty dead on the screen. The blood on his chest had looked pretty real. If it had been a different dead person, I would have been OK. Children don’t really know where make-believe ends and the real world begins and, partly because of who I am, it’s remained pretty hazy ever since. I also don’t like to remember that film because it was the moment when I realised that our lives were about to change, and I didn’t know if that would be a good thing.

    Sounds strange, yes? Here’s something stranger: I am a child of the sea, I sometimes think, and have done ever since we first moved to live beside it. I feel subject to its vagaries and tempers, with its foaming margins framed against a towering sky. I am familiar with its unchanging mood swings. That’s how I like things; I find the familiar comforting. I find change threatening.

    I am the daughter of someone who, not long after that ghastly cinema outing, became one of the most famous actors of his generation and, importantly for me, the granddaughter of a rather brilliant but obscure physics professor. But despite their overachievements, I have inherited no aptitude for mathematics and my father positively hated the idea of his only offspring following in his thespian footsteps. He knew how cruel and badly paid the profession could be. But I still look up to my grandfather, and think of his ludicrous moustache with affection.

    Gramps once told me that there are more stars in the universe than grains of sand on Earth. Just think of all those sandpits, beaches and deserts! That’s an awful lot of stars. He then told me, his only grandchild, that I was his shining star, which was a nice thing to say and why I remember him talking about sand and stars. On clear nights, with stars twinkling, I often think about him.

    I still believe in my grandfather, and admire his stoic acceptance in the face of professional disdain, because I believe in the unique power of ideas, right or wrong, and that it’s our thoughts that shape our existence. We are who we believe ourselves to be.

    I gave up believing in my father long ago, because speaking other people’s words and ideas seemed like a lame excuse for a job, even if he was paid millions, and met the Queen on several occasions. She must have liked him because she awarded him an OBE for services to film, theatre and charity. Charity! Who the hell told the Queen that?

    I stopped believing in him one Christmas Day, a long time ago, when he simply didn’t turn up. It wasn’t his presents that I missed, or even his presence, but the warm, fuzzy feeling of being important to him. During that day of absence and loss I concluded that his wife and daughter couldn’t much matter to him, otherwise he’d have made a bigger effort to get home. That Christmas Day, my father was simply somewhere else, probably in a bar, immaculately dressed, his hair slicked back, the object of male envy and the centre of every woman’s attention for miles around.

    In that respect, Dad was more tomcat than father, except that by then his territory, his fame, stretched around the globe. I know this: by then he had a Golden Globe to prove it. He gushed pheromones from every pore, squirting attraction in every direction, and even women with a poor sense of smell could sniff him out.

    I feel mostly Scottish, but am a little bit Italian. It explains my name, Emma Maria Rossini; my dark complexion, black hair, the slightly long nose, and thin and lanky body. Obese I am not, and will never be, however much pasta I eat, and I eat lots. It also explains my temper, according to some people, although I don’t agree with them, and my brown cow’s eyes, as an almost-boyfriend once described them, thinking he was paying me a compliment, before realising that he had just become an ex-almost-boyfriend.

    But mostly I am a child of the sea. That’s what happens if you live for long enough by its margins: it becomes a part of you; its mood echoing your mood, until you know what it’s thinking, and it knows everything about you. That’s what it feels like when I contemplate its tensile strength and infinite capacity for change. On calm flat days in North Berwick, with small dinghies marooned on the glassy water, and loud children squealing in its shallows, it can make me anxious and cranky.

    The sea, on those days, seems soulless and tired, bereft of spirit. But on wilder days, the beach deserted, or with only a hardy dog-walker venturing across the sand, with large waves thundering in, broaching and breaking, then greedily sucking back pebbles into the foam, I feel energised: this is what the sea enjoys, a roaring irresponsibility, and I share in its pleasure. We are all children of the sea, I sometimes think, or we should be – even those who have never seen an ocean or tasted its saltiness; I can stand for hours and contemplate its far horizons, lost within myself, sharing its passion. In the Firth of Forth is the ebb and flow of my past and my existence, wrapped tight against the west wind. It is what I am, placid and calm, or loud and brash.

    Purchase Here!

    ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

    This book was received as an ARC, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own

    Charles Laidlaw, delivers a compelling, intriguing, thought-provoking, and well-written read here that totally captivated and immersed me into the storyline. Emma Maria Rossini is the main protagonist of the story. Immediately you were drawn into Emma’s narrative, and the world she is in. Laidlaw has masterly created an engaging and and thoughts provoking book.

    The book is an exploration of many emotionally resonant themes of anxiety, depression and suicide. Laidlaw also skillful captivates the Reader with comedic timing and dialogue. Over all what really grabbed my attention was how the author’s execution of Emma character development, from a young girl to a woman. Emma perceptions of her childhood and her parents. Through Emma’s eyes we see her world unravel, and we become full invested with her hardships and struggles. Laidlaw writing style continually makes the characters jump of the pages.

    I really enjoyed the concept of having every chapter began with an equation, the solution of which is the chapter number and the chapter title is mostly related to a theorem. Eg.; The last chapter is called The Chandrasekhar Limit and there is an equation too, the solution of which is the chapter number.

    I definitely will be recommending this book to my family and friends

    “He was our star, we circled in uneasy orbit. Mum was a moon; I sometimes felt like a small piece of space junk.”

    EMMA

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    I was born in Paisley, central Scotland, which wasn’t my fault. That week, Eddie Calvert with Norrie Paramor and his Orchestra were Top of the Pops, with Oh, Mein Papa, as sung by a young German woman remembering her once-famous clown father. That gives a clue to my age, not my musical taste.

    I was brought up in the west of Scotland and graduated from the University of Edinburgh. I still have the scroll, but it’s in Latin, so it could say anything.

    I then worked briefly as a street actor, baby photographer, puppeteer and restaurant dogsbody before becoming a journalist. I started in Glasgow and ended up in London, covering news, features and politics. I interviewed motorbike ace Barry Sheene, Noel Edmonds threatened me with legal action and, because of a bureaucratic muddle, I was ordered out of Greece.

    I then took a year to travel round the world, visiting 19 countries. Highlights included being threatened by a man with a gun in Dubai, being given an armed bodyguard by the PLO in Beirut (not the same person with a gun), and visiting Robert Louis Stevenson’s grave in Samoa. What I did for the rest of the year I can’t quite remember

    Surprisingly, I was approached by a government agency to work in intelligence, which just shows how shoddy government recruitment was back then. However, it turned out to be very boring and I don’t like vodka martini.

    Craving excitement and adventure, I ended up as a PR consultant, which is the fate of all journalists who haven’t won a Pulitzer Prize, and I’ve still to listen to Oh, Mein Papa.

    I am married with two grown-up children and live in central Scotland. And that’s about it.

    Charlie Laidlaw | Facebook | Twitter

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    I have 2 signed copies of The Space Between Time to giveaway, 3 fun coffee mugs featuring all 3 of Charlie Laidlaw’s books, and 3 digital copies of the book in the winner’s format of choice! Amazing right? Click the link below to enter!

    *Open Internationally – Giveaway closes June 30th

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    Reads & Reels (Review) http://www.readsandreels.com

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    Wrong Side of Forty (Review) http://wrongsideoffortyuk.wordpress.com

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    The Bookworm Drinketh (Review) http://thebookwormdrinketh.wordpress.com/

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    Blog Tour TAKEOVER

    I have teamed up with The Parliament House Press for the Takeover Tour and Release Day of, Wandering in Wonderland the first book in series! @pomme106

    Book Title: Wandering in Wonderland

    Author: Aislinn Honeycutt

    Publisher: The Parliament House

    ~Click here to purchase a copy!~

    https://amzn.to/2wrEmLy

    @pomme106

    @theparliamentpress

    There is also a GIVEAWAY for a chance to win

    Head over to my Bookstagram to enter!

    @gwendalyn_books_

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    Lewis Carroll didn’t get it right?” 

    “No, my dear. I don’t think anyone truly will.” 

     

    Far away and down a rabbit hole sits the magical world known as Wonderland. A safe haven for the souls who lived less than ideal lives in the waking world get to experience peace in their afterlife. Jessica is the newest member of this enchanted land, but after eating a cookie that took away her memories of who she was, she doubts herself at every turn. 

     

    Jessica participates in The Looking Glass Ceremony to find her new role in the afterlife, but fate has different plans. As the Queen of Hearts takes Jessica under her royal wing, plots of regicide bubble up from the depths of Wonderland. With the help of new and eccentric friends, Jessica might be able to stop the treasonous threats and bring true peace to Wonderland. But only if she heeds the cryptic words of the Caterpillar. 

     

    Familiar faces take on new roles in this fantasy retelling with a dark and romantic LGBT twist This isn’t the Wonderland you’ve experienced before, and you definitely don’t want to be late for it.

    “I know you cannot forget what Wonderland is, but the days will grow harsh, and it never hurts to have a reminder.
       Wonderland, as I see it, is different than most picture it to be. It’s not as dark, or haunted, or frightening as the movies make it seem. Wonderland is calm and quiet. If I were to give it a color palette, I would mark it down as pastel. Have you ever seen chalk paint? It looks dusty and old, yet somehow lovely and calming. That’s what Wonderland is like.

    There are mountains to climb. Some with flowers and some with snow, and there are fields and forests to dance through. When I say it’s quiet, I mean there is nothing but silence. The feeling you get when you’re cold, and on the verge of crying, and there is nothing more you want to do than scream until your head falls on your pillow is the sound of Wonderland.

    But, the forests, oh the forests… They are everything you’d want to ask for. You cannot get lost unless you want to, and unlike most forests, you can walk barefoot if you please. The floor is covered in the softest moss, still cool with morning dew, and it protects your feet from harm. The air is warm and humid, making it the perfect weather for dancing. It you’re lost and wish to cry, there are places to hide away. Fairy ponds and cool lakes are scattered among the trees with fresh berries lining the shores. The water never stings your eyes, and you can dive for as long as you want, and the surface will only be an arm’s length away should you need air.

    Deep within the trees, you’ll find long abandoned buildings ranging from Victorians to cottages. Some are down to their foundations with ivy and other greens taking over their structures. Trees grow from their hearts, and the ceilings reach down to the floorboards. Others are still in living order with soft beds ready for your weary heads.

    You are alone for as long as you want in the forests, and at the lakes, and in the forgotten homes, but if you ever need companionship, the town is never far. Smiling faces and warm arms to fall into at every corner. There are cobblestones, wooden, and brick buildings along both sides of the streets. Alleys and alcoves, churches and spires, bookstores, bakeries, pubs, haberdasheries, dress shops, hat shops, tea shops, and anything else you could ever want line the streets. It you wander through the alleys long enough, you will find a hidden park tucked away in the corner along the brick wall guarding the townspeople from nothing for nothing can hurt you in Wonderland.

    The park is simple with a tall tree for climbing or shade, the greenest and softest grass for picnics or late night rendezvous to stare at the stars, and benches for lovers to sit on. There is a long table sitting off to the left side of the park with many chairs of varying styles and sizes, usually sitting unattended. Attached to the tree and the buildings before the park is a string of lit paper lanterns. They have never flickered in all the history of Wonderland.

    The rest of the world has more ruins for exploring, with castles made from pearl and crystal. Some have moonstone and opal, and others are made from cold stones without a glow. There are crashing oceans full of beasts thought to be mythical or extinct. There are places deep in the southern woods darker than the northern woods, yet not as dark as the ones in films.

    In those woods, there are faeries, fauns, fawns, mermaids, pixies, and whispers where the cold sets in, and one can sleep to forget themselves and their troubles.

    The faeries and pixies soothe your mind with dance and song while the mermaids invite you to swim and play in their icy cold waters while they caress your body.

    But, they cannot hurt you.

    Nothing can hurt you in Wonderland.

    Wonderland is where you go to heal, forget, and feel at home again. This is what my Wonderland is. It changes for every soul who goes there, but it shall always be for you.”

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

    Honeycutt has created a riveting , and gripping tale, that totally sucked me in from the start. She transforms Wonderland into a type of heaven, and rather than follow Alice, we follow Jessica Smith while she works to uncover the secrets of the Looking Glass. Once I started reading this one it was hard not to get totally wrapped in this Alice In Wonderland Retelling. The author writes a deliciously fun, and a compelling all consuming page-turner. The author catapults you into a raw and darkish world with deceit and political deception. In this memorable, highly original read familiar faces take on new roles in this fantasy retelling with a dark and romantic LGBT twist

    What I enjoyed was the how the author created a storyline where exploration and acceptance is everywhere. Great world building and character development. The novels premise and the writing definitely intrigued me and kept me entertained. The authors development of its supporting characters are definitely worth noting with interesting.

    The book cover is creative and fitting for the storyline .

    I can highly recommend this book and I will be waiting anxiously for the next book in this series!

    The book cover is creative and fitting for the storyline .

    I can highly recommend this book and I will be waiting anxiously for the next book in this series!

    Aislinn Honeycutt was born and raised in Northern California. Throughout their early teens to young adulthood, Aislinn could often be found writing and creating characters. During college, they found themself more attracted to theater arts than any other study and was proud to be apart of several plays and film projects produced by their peers. Their love for writing came from creating deeper backgrounds for characters they played on the stage and from the constant encouragements from strangers on the Internet.
    In 2015 they discovered their love for working with exotic animals in zoos and went back to school to earn certificates towards Zoo and Aquarium Sciences through the Animal Behavior Institute. When not writing or working, Aislinn can often be found playing video games and making digital art

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    Blog Tour and Book Review

    Welcome to my stop on

    The Crossing At Cypress Creek Blog and IG Tour

    Make sure you head over to

    my Instagram to

    enter this Giveaway

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    The Crossing at Cypress Creek

    by Pam Hillman

     @pamhillmanauthor @tyndalehouse @justreadtours

    Sailing and soldiering around the world has taken Caleb O’Shea far from his native Ireland, so he never imagined that a promise to see a fellow crewman safely home would practically land him on his brother’s doorstep. After spending years away from his family, Caleb isn’t certain what kind of reception he will receive when he steps foot in Natchez, Mississippi. The one thing he knows for sure is that he won’t stay long.

    Since her sister was kidnapped by river pirates six months ago, Alanah Adams has taken special care to avoid drawing attention to herself. Those living in the rough-and-tumble settlement of Cypress Creek might even think she’s addled. But when she stumbles into Caleb and his friends in Natchez, she appears to be the picture-perfect lady.

    Caleb only catches glimpses of the mysterious and beautiful Alanah before she disappears. But a chance encounter with her at his brother’s logging camp near Cypress Creek leaves him uncomfortable at the thought of the young woman traversing the dangerous area alone. At a crossroads in his life, Caleb must decide whether he wants to give up the worldly adventures he’s been seeking for one closer to home.

    The Crossing At Cypress Creek is the third novel in Pam Hillman’s Natchez Trace series. Although it can be read as a stand-alone novel, I recommend reading the other installments.

    The Crossing at Cypress Creek is an exciting story from 1791 Natchez, Mississippi. This is the third and final book in the Natchez Trace series, by the he author Pam Hillman. The Author has created an engaging historical, suspenseful romantic read.

    I loved the premise of the novel, and the characters come to life seen through the eyes an adventurous Caleb and a heartwarming heroine, Alanah. In Hillman’s portrayal of the Natchez area you are presented the hardships of life during that time period. The characters are well developed and I am looking forward to reading the other books in this series about the The O’Shea brothers. The author delivers an exciting tale including river pirates, a kidnapping, and a daring rescue to a spiritual tale with just enough romance. Hillman writes with compassion and I could feel the tenderness, generosity and grace she has given her characters. What I really enjoyed was the heart of underlying moral concept of the storyline,

    I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading historical

    Have a wonderful day !

    CBA Bestselling author Pam Hillman writes Historical Christian fiction set in the 18th and 19th centuries.

    Born east of the Mississippi and a hundred years too late, Pam still boasts of wrangling calves, milking cows and putting up hay, first as a child, and later with her own personal hero, Iran, on their family farm in Mississippi.

    A voracious reader as a child, Pam especially enjoyed stories involving the great Westward expansion, and television shows such as Bonanza, Little House on the Prairie, and Gunsmoke. The western writer, Louis L’Amour, kept Pam mesmerized with his tales of cowboys and Indians, mountain men and outlaws, prim schoolteachers, hot dry deserts, and boom towns.

    Pam’s life in the country and her love of the old west bring authenticity to her work and depth to her characters, something that has been recognized many times in the industry through writer’s awards.

    Her work has placed in dozens of writer’s contests, including being a four-time Romance Writers of America Golden Heart finalist with Claiming Mariah, her second novel, winning the Award for Best Inspirational. Other awards include the Inspirational Readers Choice Award, International Digital Award, and the EPIC eBook Award.

    Pam lives in Mississippi with her husband and family.

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    Book Review

    Good Morning Bookish Friends, Today I am reviewing The Adventure of the Peculiar Protocols by Nicholas Meyers

    @MinataurBooks @NicholasMyers @Gwendalyn_books_

    http://Instagram.com/gwendalyn_books_

    • The Adventure of the Peculiar Protocols

    • Author Nicholas Meyers

    • Print Length: 256 pages

    • Publisher: Minotaur Books

    • Publication Date: October 15, 2019

    • Sold by: Macmillan

    Reading Nicholas Meyer’s very first Sherlock Holmes adventure, The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, made me decide to become a writer.

    Reading his latest simply made me a delighted and satisfied reader.” ―Michael Chabon

    “Once again the game is afoot! Brilliantly rendered and ever-faithful to the Sherlockian Canon, Holmes, Watson and the world they inhabit come to vivid life in this story that is as entertaining, informative and enthralling as it is important and unexpectedly relevant to our modern world. This novel is tour de force that is not to be missed!” ―John Lescroart, New York Times bestselling author

    “The discovery of unpublished work by John H. Watson is always a cause for joy, and this case is essential―not just for its globe-trotting adventure…but also for its timely resonance.” ―Glen David Gold, bestselling author of Carter Beats the Devil

    “Nicholas Meyer’s new novel brings some welcome new dimention to the characters of both Holmes and Watson, as well as delivering a suspenseful narrative enhanced by remarkable period detail. More importantly, the book’s main themes, painfully relevant to our current age, make it a surprisingly vital and urgent read.” ―Dennis Palumbo, author of Daniel Rinaldi series and screenwriter of My Favorite Year

    “What a splendid book, what grand fun…A corking good read and a cracking good adventure that performs the delicious miracle of bringing back to life the greatest detective of them all.” ―Chicago Tribune on The Seven Per-Cent Solution

    “A gem…delightful reading for everyone.” ―Wall Street Journal on The Seven-Per-Cent S

    With the international bestseller The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, Nicholas Meyer brought to light a previously unpublished case of Sherlock Holmes, as recorded by Dr. John H. Watson. Now Meyer returns with a shocking discovery—an unknown case drawn from a recently unearthed Watson journal.

    January 1905: Holmes and Watson are summoned by Holmes’ brother Mycroft to undertake a clandestine investigation. An agent of the British Secret Service has been found floating in the Thames, carrying a manuscript smuggled into England at the cost of her life. The pages purport to be the minutes of a meeting of a secret group intent on nothing less than taking over the world.

    Based on real events, the adventure takes the famed duo—in the company of a bewitching woman—aboard the Orient Express from Paris into the heart of Tsarist Russia, where Holmes and Watson attempt to trace the origins of this explosive document. On their heels are desperate men of unknown allegiance, determined to prevent them from achieving their task. And what they uncover is a conspiracy so vast as to challenge Sherlock Holmes as never before.

    This book was received as an ARC from Minotaur, in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own

    NICHOLAS MEYER’S, much awaited follow up to the Seven-Percent-Solution.

    Holmes and Watson reunite to eradicate the greatest lie ever told, in this thrilling and surprising new tale. The author takes the famed duo and an intriguing woman, aboard the Orient Express from Paris into the heart of Tsarist Russia. where Holmes and Watson attempt to trace the origins of this explosive. In this engaging faced historical adventure the duo must uncover a conspiracy that challenges them as never before. The Author creates a tension-filled, thrilling read! The book is gripping, captivating, thought-provoking, with fabulous characters and a great storyline that I was immediately drawn into and devoured quickly.

    The story was so darn entertaining and absolutely un-put-down-able!!!! 

    Happy Reading ** ✨*✨•.¸✨.•*✨

    NICHOLAS MEYER is the author three previous Sherlock Holmes novels, including The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, which was on the New York Times bestseller list for a year. He’s a screen-writer and film director, responsible for The Day After, Time After Time, as well as Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, and Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country among many others. A native of New York City, he lives in Santa Monica, California.

    Nicholas Meyer (born December 24, 1945) is an American writer and director, known for his best-selling novel The Seven-Per-Cent Solution, and for directing the films Time After Time, two of the Star Trek feature film series, the 1983 television movie The Day After, and the 1999 HBO original movie Vendetta

    Meyer was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for the film The Seven-Per-Cent Solution (1976), where he adapted his own novel into a screenplay. He has also been nominated for a Satellite Award, three Emmy Awards, and has won four Saturn Awards. He appeared as himself during the 2017 On Cinema spinoff series The Trial, during which he testified about Star Trek and San Francisco.

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    Book Tour Blitz Shadow’s Way

    Good Morning Bookish Friends,

    Today I have the pleasure of taking part in this

    Book Blitz.

     photo Shadows Wa_zpsbmgcdxip.jpg

    Gothic
    Fiction

    Date
    Published:
    July 2018

    Publisher:
    Positive Imaging

     photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png

    Prepare
    to be spellbound. Barbara Frances’ long-awaited third novel, “Shadow’s Way,”
    takes you to the coastal, deep South, where the past and the present mingle in
    a gothic tale of insanity, murder, and sexual intrigue.You’ll meet the
    beautiful Elaine Chauvier, former actress and proprietor of Shadow’s Way, her
    family’s antebellum home; the esteemed Archbishop Andre Figurant and his fallen
    identical twin, Bastien; newly arrived Ophelia and Rudy, here to explore their
    Chauvier roots and their ties to Shadow’s Way; and the mysterious Madame
    Claudine. Under a veneer of piety and graciousness, i.e., the questions: What
    is good? What is evil? What is reality?

     photo Shadows Way Author Barbara Frances_zpsqikhazop.jpg

    Barbara
    Frances has plenty of stories and a life spent acquiring them. Growing up
    Catholic on a small Texas farm, her childhood ambition was to become a nun. In
    ninth grade she entered a boarding school in Our Lady of the Lake Convent as an
    aspirant, the first of several steps before taking vows. On graduation,
    however, she passed up the nun’s habit for a college degree in English and
    Theatre Arts. Her professors were aghast when she declined a PhD program in
    order to become a stewardess, but Barbara never looked back. “In the Sixties, a
    stewardess was a glamorous occupation.” Her career highlights include dating a
    very gentlemanly Chuck Berry and “opening the bar” for a planeload of underage
    privates on their way to Vietnam. Marriage, children, school teaching and
    divorce distracted her from storytelling, but one summer she and a friend
    coauthored a screenplay. “I never had such fun! I come from a family of
    storytellers. Relatives would come over and after dinner everyone would tell
    tales. Sometimes they were even true.” The next summer Barbara wrote a
    screenplay solo. Contest recognition, an agent and three optioned scripts
    followed but, weary of fickle producers and endless rewrites, she turned to
    novels. Shadow’s Way is her third book. Her first, Lottie’s Adventure, is aimed
    at young readers. Her second, Like I Used To Dance, is a family saga set in
    1950’s rural Texas. Barbara’s fans can be thankful she passed up convent life
    for one of stories and storytelling. She and her husband Bill live in Austin,
    Texas.
    Contact
    Links
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