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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Book Tour ELEOS

Hello Bookish Friends,

Today Is My Stop On This Wonderful Book Tour!

Eleos by D.R. Bell

Publication Date: October 23, 2018
eBook & Paperback; 460 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction

#Eleos #DRBell #HFVBTBlogTours

The discovery of a valise of old letters written to his Armenian grandfather from an Auschwitz survivor starts Avi Arutiyan on an odyssey to uncover the mystery surrounding his grandfather’s unsolved death. From the killing fields of Anatolia to the trial of Adolf Eichmann, Avi’s quest opens a door into intersecting paths and dark secrets of three families, stretching back to 1915.

How do these things happen time and again: the Holocaust was preceded by the Armenian Genocide, and followed by the killing fields of Cambodia, Rwanda, and Bosnia. Who were the people behind them? Eleos is a story of saviors and murderers, of bystanders and of those that don’t fall into an easy-to-classify category. Hopefully the book can serve as a reminder to protect our own humanity, because ultimately the battlefield is inside all of us.

“Bell masterfully combines his mystery story with an unflinching look at the 20th century’s bleakest tragedies. A beautiful . . . challengingly complex tale of the ramifications of history.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Eleos offers no easy answers, no pat approaches. Perhaps this is the novel’s greatest challenge to its readers, as well as its finest attribute. D. R. Bell crafts a set of circumstances that involve the protagonist in a sifting of blame, historical examination, and family attitudes, drawing in readers with a scenario that at first seems relatively black and white; then immersing them in decisions and outcomes that are satisfyingly complex. … Holocausts can happen again, but as long as stories such as Eleos capture the progression of events with an eye to explaining how logic and action led to disaster, future generations at least have a road map to avoid the pitfalls that lead in these directions.” — Diane Donovan, Donovan’s Literary Services; Editor, California Bookwatch

Available on Amazon

Every book is a journey, not only for the reader but also for the writer. The original premise for what became Eleos was called “The Journey”: a story of a German soldier saving a Jewish boyduring the war and the two of them trying to make their way to safety. It was a tale of redemption – and who doesn’t like stories of redemption, especially with a happy end? But as I was sketching the plot, other themes intruded. There was a personal angle: my late Armenian grandmother-in-law was the only member of her family to survive the slaughter of 1915 and I had felt for many years that there was a connection between the Armenian Genocide and the Holocaust. This lead to a bigger question: how do people turn against others in a genocidal rage? Because throughout history the horror repeats time and again. My conclusion was that we choose to forget something important: we know the facts of “what” happened, we don’t remember “how” it happened. 

We view the past events through the opposing poles of heroes vs. pathological evildoers and create happy endings where most of the intended victims survive. Even The Diary of Anne Frank ends on a positive note. But the truth is much, much worse than that. These were not simple conflicts of good vs. evil. Most of the perpetrators and enablers of genocides were not sadists or psychopaths but regular people like you and me. They had killed – or stood by – not out of visceral hatred but because of blind obedience to authority, false patriotism, career prospects, etc.The slide into genocide was rarely sudden but was preceded by a long period of gradual dehumanization of “the other.” The worst atrocities were committed under the guise of doing good, in the name of ideology, religion, or national status. 

That’s why remembering the “how” is important: so we can recognize the patterns in the present.At any point in time history is existential: we, human beings, are presented with a particular context, and we must choose amongst the possibilities within it. Without passing a judgment on those who lived during such terrible times, we can  we must – learn from the choices they had made. 

Because Eleos tries to address many difficult topics within its structure, it’s designed kaleidoscopically, shifting the narrative between different characters with their viewpoints and objectives. The main characters have their faults and troubling secrets, forced to make ugly compromises in order to survive. I readily admit that the story is complex and challenging for the reader and not recommended for someone who prefers a linear plot and more agreeable characters. I have considered simplifying the story but decided against it: I felt that I couldn’t do it without losing something important along the way. 

 

About the Author

I didn’t plan to become a writer. A few years ago, a friend’s death prompted me to ask what would be the one thing I regret not doing. I’ve always been an avid reader but have not had the courage to write. And I made a New Year resolution to write a book. That’s how The Great Game came about. I try to write about serious topics but wrap them into an action-filled story. While all my books are entirely fictional, each of them carries a Commentary how the fiction is rooted in facts and realities of current events.

The first three books – The Metronome, The Great Game, and The Outer Circle – form a trilogy, where the lives the seemingly unconnected characters intersect against the backdrop of a turbulent power game between United States, China, and Russia. Unfortunately, some of the events described there are now happening in real life.

Marshland is a detective story set in modern Los Angeles, focused on the impact that internet and social media can have on our lives and their potential for unscrupulous abuse by those in power.

The latest project, Eleos, is a historic fiction set primarily during the time of the Eichmann’s trial. In a way, it’s a personal investigation into how events like the Holocaust and the Armenian Genocide become possible.

Website | Facebook | Goodreads

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, July 15
Review at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, July 16
Review at Just a Girl and Her Books

Wednesday, July 17
Guest Post at Gwendalyn_Books_

Thursday, July 18
Review at my.boys.mom

Friday, July 19
Review at Cennin’s Book Review

Monday, July 22
Feature at Comet Readings

Tuesday, July 23
Excerpt at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Wednesday, July 24
Review at RW Bookclub Goodreads

Giveaway

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

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on July 24th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to the US 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.

Eleos
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#Eleos #DRBell #HFVBTBlogTours

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Blog Tour and Review ⚜️ Eternally Artemisia

⚜️Author: Melissa Muldoon

⚜️Publisher: MATTA Press

⚜️⚜️⚜️Author: Melissa Muldoon⚜️⚜️Publisher: MATTA Press⚜️⚜️⚜️

Book Details:

  • Book Title: Eternally Artemisia : Some loves, like some women, are timeless by Melissa Muldoon
  • Category: Adult Fiction (18+), 312 pages
  • Genre: Fiction General, Fiction Women
  • Publisher: Matta Press
  • Release date: March 2019
  • Tour dates: June 3 to 28, 2019
  • Content Rating: PG-13 + M (The themes of the book deal with rape and overcoming sexual abuse. It is a book about female empowerment and how with the right tools, and support women may rise above past tragedies to build a better future for themselves.)

They say some loves travel through time and are fated to meet over and over again. For Maddie, an art therapist, who wrestles with the “peculiar feeling” she has lived previous lives and is being called to Italy by voices that have left imprints on her soul, this idea is intriguing. Despite her best efforts, however, proof of this has always eluded her. That is, until one illuminating summer in Italy when Maddie’s previous existences start to bleed through into her current reality. When she is introduced to the Crociani family—a noble clan with ties to the seventeenth-century Medici court that boasts of ancestors with colorful pasts—she finally meets the loves of her life. One is a romantic love, and another is a special kind of passion that only women share, strong amongst those who have suffered greatly yet have triumphed despite it.

As Maddie’s relationship develops with Artemisia Gentileschi—an artist who in a time when it was unheard of to denounce a man for the crime of rape, did just that—Maddie discovers a kindred spirit and a role model, and just what women are capable of when united together.

In a journey that arcs back to biblical days and moves forward in time, Maddie encounters artists, dukes, designers, and movie stars as well as baser and ignoble men. With Artemisia never far from her side, she proves that when we dare to take control of our lives and find the “thing” we are most passionate about, we are limitless and can touch the stars.

Praise for Eternally Artemisia:

“A true Renaissance woman, Melissa Muldoon weaves her passions for art and Italy into a stirring saga that sweeps across centuries. As her time-traveling heroine Maddie reconnects with kindred souls, we meet Artemisia Gentileschi, the 17th-century artist who overcame rape and ignominy to gain respect and acclaim. Historic figures such as Galileo and Mussolini also come to life in this intricately plotted novel, but the women who defy all constraints to take control of their destinies are the ones who prove to be eternally fascinating.” — Dianne Hales

What a lovely story! Melissa weaves the lives of 4 women across time, all with some connection to Artemisia Gentileschi, a 16th century Italy painter. They represent the feminine strength that arises from life challenges, each with their unique intelligence. Underlying their stories is the idea that love transcends all, even time, love is timeless. As with her other books, Melissa fills the story out with interesting facts and references to the Italian life, culture and it’s history, her attention to detail is immaculate . I loved all of the many connections in this story that tied it all together, very cleverly done. Wonderful read, I would highly recommend it. – Lize, Amazon Reviewer

Melissa Muldoon does a phenomenal job blending fiction, romance, art history, and the Italian language into this gem. For fans of historical fiction, romance, and time travel, I strongly recommend this novel. –Exemplary Editing, Amazon Review

To read reviews, please visit Melissa Muldoon’s page on Italy Book Tours

In the pages of this book, you will learn the story of Artemisia Gentileschi, one of the first famous female artists to paint in the tradition of Caravaggio. I’ve always been fascinated and inspired by Artemisia and have wanted to tell her story. But Artemisia is just a part of the equation—the novel takes readers back to biblical days and forward in time again exploring the idea that some lives are intertwined and are destined to meet over and over again.

You can purchase this book and all of her books

Prizes:
1st Prize: Win a 3-book set (Dreaming Sophia,
Waking Isabella, and Eternally Artemisia) by Melissa Muldoon; 2nd and 3rd prizes: Win a paperback copy of Eternally Artemisia (open to USA & Canada / 3 winners total)

Ends July 5, 2019

Thank you to iRead Book Tours and Melissa Muldoon for providing me a free personalized and autographed copy of Eternally Artemisia in exchange for my completely honest and unbiased review.

Eternally Artemisia is Melissa Muldoon third book.

In the beginning we see through the narrative eyes of the painter, Atremesia.Right from the start the author grabs your interest with imagination details of trials the pious young widow from a Jewish city beheads the general of an Assyrian army sent to destroy the city.

It then moves forward to present day, with Maddie a 40 year old art therapist who has decided to live her dream of relocating from New York City to Italy. Melissa Muldoon, weaves multiple layered time lines to create an engaging historical rich book. The authors ability to weave her descriptive voice and historical magical realism to create an intriguing novel. Wonderful character development engaging narrative and dialogue.

Ms Muldoon, captures the strength struggles of women in multiple eras, to create a passionate and beautiful written novel. The book was a nonstop read for me and what I really enjoyed was the female bonds the author creates through extraordinary folding parallel timeframes.

Four courageous women across multiple times controlling their own destinies.

 

Melissa Muldoon is the author of three novels set in Italy: “Dreaming Sophia,” “Waking Isabella,” and “Eternally Artemisia.” All three books tell the stories of American women and their journeys of self-discovery to find love, uncover hidden truths, and follow their destinies to shape a better future in Italy.

Melissa is also the author of the Studentessa Matta website, where she promotes the study of Italian language and culture through her dual-language blog written in Italian and English (studentessamatta.com). Studentessa Matta means the “crazy linguist” and has grown to include a podcast, Tutti Matti per l’Italiano and the Studentessa Matta YouTube channel, Facebook page and Instagram feed. Melissa also created Matta Italian Language Immersion Programs, which she co-leads with Italian schools in Italy to learn Italian in Italy. Through her website, she also offers the opportunities to live and study in Italy through Homestay programs. Melissa has a B.A. in fine arts, art history and European history from Knox College, a liberal arts college in Galesburg, Illinois, as well as a master’s degree in art history from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana.

She has also studied painting and art history in Florence. She is an artist, designer, and illustrated the cover art for all three of her books. Melissa is also the managing director of Matta Press. As a student, Melissa lived in Florence with an Italian family. She studied art history and painting and took beginner Italian classes. When she returned home, she threw away her Italian dictionary, assuming she’d never need it again, but after launching a successful design career and starting a family, she realized something was missing in her life. That “thing” was the connection she had made with Italy and the friends who live there. Living in Florence was indeed a life-changing event. Wanting to reconnect with Italy, she decided to start learning the language again from scratch. As if indeed possessed by an Italian muse, she bought a new Italian dictionary and began her journey to fluency—a path that has led her back to Italy many times and enriched her life in countless ways. Now, many dictionaries and grammar books later, she dedicates her time to promoting Italian language studies, further travels in Italy, and sharing her stories and insights about Italy with others. Melissa designed and illustrated the cover art for Eternally Artemisia, Waking Isabella, and Dreaming Sophia.

She also curates the Dreaming Sophia Art History blog site and Pinterest site: The Art of Loving Italy, where you will find companion pictures for all three books. Visit MelissaMuldoon.com for more information about immersion trips to learn the language with Melissa in Italy, as well as the Studentessa Matta blog for practice and tips to learn the Italian language.

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Book Tour and Review The Severed Knot

Hello Bookish Friends,

Today I have teamed up the author, Cryssa Bazos And Historical Fiction Book Tours, to bring you

Severed Knot
@CryssaBazos

#TraitorsKnot @HFVBT

Severed Knot
By Cryssa Bazos
Publisher: W. M. Jackson Publishing
Publication Date: June 16, 2019

Barbados 1652. In the aftermath of the English Civil War, the vanquished are uprooted and scattered to the ends of the earth.

Barbados 1652. In the aftermath of the English Civil War, the vanquished are uprooted and scattered to the ends of the earth.
When marauding English soldiers descend on Mairead O’Coneill’s family farm, she is sold into slavery. After surviving a harrowing voyage, the young Irish woman is auctioned off to a Barbados sugar plantation where she is thrust into a hostile world of depravation and heartbreak. Though stripped of her freedom, Mairead refuses to surrender her dignity.
Scottish prisoner of war Iain Johnstone has descended into hell. Under a blazing sun thousands of miles from home, he endures forced indentured labour in the unforgiving cane fields. As Iain plots his escape to save his men, his loyalties are tested by his yearning for Mairead and his desire to protect her.
With their future stolen, Mairead and Iain discover passion and freedom in each other’s arms. Until one fateful night, a dramatic chain of events turns them into fugitives.
Together they fight to survive; together they are determined to escape.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ #5Star

Severed Knot is Cryssa Bazos follow up to her award winning debut novel, In this emotional charged book set in 1652. We meet the two main protagonist, Iain and Mairean. Iain is a Scottish soldier captured while fighting for the Royalist cause in the Battle of Worcesterin 1651. As a consequence to his royalist loyalty he ends up being shipped out with his band of soldiers as indentured servant to the island of Barbados.

Mairean is a young woman who is kidnapped by marauding English soldiers who descend on Mairead O’Coneill’s family farm. She finds herself on board a slavers ship bound for Barbados, there she meets Iain. They are eventually sold at auction to the same sugarcane plantation.

I was fully immersed in this character driven drama, with well developed characters, who came to life right off the page.The Author sets this historical romance to the backdrop of the lush and hostile Barbados. In Ms Brazo’s tragic historical fiction, Mairead and Iain romance interweaves between survival and the dark cruelty of servitude within plantation life. The strength of the novel lies in the authors ability capture the human heart and soul. With both futures stolen, Iain and Mairean, find passion and freedom in each other’s arms. Both have vowed to gain there freedom and return to there homeland at all costs.

The Authors realistic storyline catapults you into a world authentic details about sugar manufacture. Her portrayal and descriptive content draws you into the harsh reality of the horrors and violent struggles of plantation life.

Severed Knot, is a stunning achievement of heartache, survival and death.

Cryssa Bazos’s sets the bar in realistic historical fiction. Her ability to precisely set the character conflict with romance, for a powerful and unforgettable, riveting novel.

The novels premise and the writing definitely intrigued me and kept me entertained. The pace was brisk and the dialogue is fluid and engaging. Her true to life candid theme of enforced labor is gut wrenching and gruesome at times.

I thoroughly enjoyed the tension of this storyline and it had me hooked right from the very first chapter. Ms Bazos’s meticulous research pulled me in from page one and kept me fully captivated and intrigued until the very end. Knowing the caliber of her writing, I knew I would be in for an intense and gripping read, which is exactly what this was. The authors execution is impeccable and each scene is richly atmospheric.

Severed Knot, is a stunning achievement of heartache, survival and death.

Once again the author delivers a captivating and nonstop historical fiction, with intriguing plot twist with believable characters that keeps you vested all the way through until a satisfying end.

I am definitely looking forward to reading more books by this author!

Thanks to the author and to the publisher for sending me this early Arc,

in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Click the icons to add to your Goodreads and you can purchase on Amazon

Sunlight sparkled on the water. A slight breeze rippled the otherwise still water. Another splash. At first, Mairead didn’t see anything, then someone surfaced. A man, skimming across the pond, arms and legs slicing through the water. Even before he turned, she knew who it was. Johnstone.

Mairead knew she should back away and leave before he caught her watching—he’d be insufferable otherwise. That, or bark her head off as any self-respecting ogre. And yet something pinned her to the spot.

He dove into the water, his body curving with a flash of his naked buttocks.

Mairead’s eyes widened, and she edged closer. When he split the surface of the lake, he caused a spray of water drops to splatter. He stood facing her direction, eyes closed. Raising his hands to his head, he slicked back his dark blond hair.

Mairead didn’t dare move. She watched how the muscles in his arms flexed. Her eyes travelled across his broad chest with its light mat of hair. A trail of darkish hair ran down from chest to stomach until it disappeared below the pond’s surface. Mairead craned her head to peer into the pond, but the water was murky and brownish-green.

Johnstone dove under again. Mairead sat back on her heels and nibbled her fingertip, considering her options. She really should leave. A smile played at the corner of her mouth as she made herself more comfortable.

Johnstone surfaced and began to paddle lazily in the water. His head was tipped backwards, his face presented to the sun. His skin had become tanned and gleamed against the lapping water.

Mairead watched, captivated. He seemed at one with the water. She didn’t know too many who could swim, and none so well. Her own brothers had enjoyed a quick barrelling leap into the river back home, splashing like mad puppies and thrashing in the water. They had taught her to float, but swimming across the water as this Scotsman was now doing, with strong, purposeful strokes, was an art, and one she admired greatly. So she told herself.

After a few moments, prudence whispered that she had stayed long enough. Mairead rose from her crouch, careful not to rustle a leaf, but just as she moved Johnstone finished his swim and headed back to the bank. Mairead dropped to the ground again so he wouldn’t notice her.

Johnstone slowly waded out of the water, all glorious and dripping. Mairead’s breath locked in her throat. She took in that expanse of chest, the tapered waist then . . . Blessed Mother of Jesus.

She made a slight choking sound, and Johnstone stopped to look around.

“Who’s there?” he called out in her direction.

Mairead’s face flooded. He would never let her live this down. She had to get away from here without him seeing her.

No time for discretion.

Mairead darted for the trail. She risked a glance over her shoulder to catch a glimpse of Johnstone yanking on his breeches. And that was her downfall. Literally. A root hooked her foot, and she crashed to the ground with a cry. Then she heard him thrashing through the brush behind her. Mairead scrambled to her feet and managed to take a few more strides before he caught up with her, grabbing a fistful of her petticoat in his hand.

Mairead twisted around and found herself face-to-face with Iain Locharbaidh Johnstone. It was one thing to gawk at the man from a distance but to be this close to his still-wet chest squeezed the breath from her lungs. She averted her eyes, not sure where she could safely look, and her gaze landed on his unlaced breeches. More wet skin. Heat flooded her cheeks.

“Oh!”

Johnstone released her and swore under his breath while he laced up his breeches. “What were you doing, woman?”

“Nothing! I . . . I came down for a wash.”

“Do you always hide in the shrubs when taking a wash?” His eyes narrowed, causing her to squirm. “Here’s a tip, lass, the water works far better. Not sure what they do in Ireland, but that’s how it’s done in Scotland.”

“I was not hiding in the shrubs.” Mairead hid her crossed fingers in the folds of her petticoat and searched lamely for an adequate rebuttal. “I had only reached the shrubs when you starting crashing around like a mad man. And don’t you dare disparage my homeland with your poor attempt of humour.”

“How long were you watching me?”

Mairead felt her face blaze. “I was not watching you, to be sure. Have you not heard a thing I’ve said?”

He folded his arms across his chest and quirked his brow. “Building a nest in the shrubs, then, like a wee mouse?”

“Stop calling me a mouse,” Mairead said, now with true outrage. Small and insignificant—was she always to be thought this way? No one ever compared Ciara to a mouse. Not even Bronagh—a shrew, perhaps, but never a mouse.

The corners of his mouth lifted slightly. “Aye, you were watching.”

She knew it—she knew he’d be insufferable! “I didn’t know who was in the pond and the moment . . . the moment I discovered who it was . . . For certain, it could have been anyone . . . even . . . even Masterton the Younger.”

Johnstone quirked a brow, amusement playing across his features. Mairead’s gaze latched on to his deepening smile, and she only now noticed the firmness of his jaw and how the droplets of water clung to his blond whiskers.

Mairead tore her eyes away and forced herself to meet his eyes. “What? What do you find so amusing?”

“Not sure where to start.” Was that laughter in his voice?

Mairead’s inner voice sat her down and delivered a stern lecture. Concede the field, Mairead. Retreat now. No shame in admitting defeat. And yet she dashed the voice of reason and found herself saying, “Make an effort. Explain it to me.”

“You thought you were ogling Masterton?”

Mairead’s jaw dropped. “I never said—”

Johnstone’s teeth flashed in a smile. “He’ll be flattered, lass, but

I’d steer clear of his wife, were I you. She’ll not think twice to chase you off the croft with a broom.”

“I never said I was ogling him!”

“Oh aye? But you were ogling someone?”

Mairead sucked in her breath. “You. Are. An. Impossible. Man!”

She finally did what her good sense had urged her to do earlier. She whirled around and fled the field.

Connect with Cryssa through her Website (cryssabazos.com), Facebook, Twitter (@CryssaBazos) and Instagram

Cryssa Bazos is an award-winning historical fiction author and 17th-century enthusiast with a particular interest in the English Civil War. Her debut novel, Traitor’s Knot, is the Medallist winner of the 2017 New Apple Award (historical fiction), a finalist for the 2018 EPIC eBook Awards (historical romance) and the RNA Joan Hessayon Award. Her second novel, Severed Knot, was longlisted for the Historical Novel Society 2018 New Novel Award.

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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

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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