Aphrodite’s Choice Blog Tour!

02_Aphrodite's ChoiceAphrodite’s Choice
by Christy English

Publication Date: May 20, 2016
eBook; ASIN: B01FZQ80F0

Series: The Goddess Diaries #1
Genre: Fantasy/Mythology/Paranormal/Romance

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Aphrodite, Goddess of Love, still walks the modern world. No longer thronged by worshipers, Aphrodite heals the bodies and souls of the men she touches, one man, one night, at a time. But not everyone thinks of her as a long-dead myth. Someone is stalking her. The men who have hunted her kind as witches for centuries have passed their hatred on to their sons.

As she flees her enemies and tries to warn her sisters of the danger facing them once again, Aphrodite is followed by one of the members of the Brotherhood, a man who has been given the task of killing her, and any of her sisters who cross his path. But it does not take her long to discover that Steven Wharton is not a murderer, and his soul is one she has known before.

In this paranormal romance, a goddess’s past is brought to life, from the Greek city of Corinth to the shores of the island of Cyprus, at the court of Versailles to the burning city of Persepolis. But it is not until she meets Steve that Aphrodite falls in love for the first time. As she faces an ancient enemy, Aphrodite discovers that the love she feels, not the love she gives, is the root of her soul. And that love might even be the path to her freedom…

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Review

4 blog stars

A novel that takes its reader beyond modern times to ancient worlds and long forgotten gods and goddesses, Aphrodite’s Choice was a beautiful read, with memorable characters and a riveting plot. I found the concept interesting, and was left with a sense of almost bitter contentment to think the old religions had been so forgotten. I loved the romance aspect, as well as the descriptions and time jumps. Four solid stars.

I was given a free copy by Historical Fiction Virtual Tours in exchange for an honest review.

About the Author

Ever since Christy English picked up a fake sword in stage combat class at the age of fourteen, she has lived vicariously through the sword-wielding women of her imagination. Sometimes an actor, always a storyteller, Christy works happily with Sourcebooks Casablanca to bring the knife-throwing women of her novels to life. A banker by day and a writer by night, she loves to eat chocolate, drink too many soft drinks, and walk the mountain trails of her home in western North Carolina.

Please visit her at http://www.ChristyEnglish.com. You can also find Christy on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Pinterest.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 29
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!
Spotlight at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, August 30
Review at Luxury Reading

Wednesday, August 31
Review & Excerpt at The Silver Dagger Scriptorium
Guest Post at Let Them Read Books

Thursday, September 1
Review at 100 Pages a Day
Review & Guest Post at Historical Fiction Obsession

Friday, September 2
Review at Just One More Chapter
Interview at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!

Monday, September 5
Review at Broken Teepee
Review at WTF Are You Reading?
Review at History From a Woman’s Perspective

Tuesday, September 6
Review at A Bookish Affair

Wednesday, September 7
Review at Ageless Pages Reviews
Interview at A Bookish Affair
Excerpt at Buried Under Romance

Thursday, September 8
Review at CelticLady’s Reviews
Excerpt at A Literary Vacation

Friday, September 9
Review at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Giveaway

To win an eBook of Aphrodite’s Choice by Christy English, please enter via the Gleam form below. 5 eBooks are up for grabs!

Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on September 9th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open Internationally.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

Aphrodite’s Choice

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To Win a Viscount Book Tour (+excerpt)!

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Title: To Win a Viscount (Daughters of Amhurst #2)

Author: Frances Fowlkes

Genre: Historical Romance

England, 1820. To gain a certain marquess’s notice, Lady Albina Beauchamp aims to win the derby. What she hadn’t planned for is the price handsome Mr. Edmund White asks in payment to train her to race: each lesson for a kiss.

A first place finish isn’t the only thing worth racing for

Lady Albina Beauchamp is in love with the Marquess of Satterfield. Unfortunately, his only interest is in horses, and doesn’t know she exists. But when the marquess confesses he will bestow his undying admiration on the jockey racing the winning horse at Emberton Derby, Albina sets out to win his affections by training to race.

Mr. Edmund White is a master groomsmen for the Earl of Amhurst in line for a viscountcy, should he abandon his passion for horses and become a respectable sheep owner. But horses are his love–until he meets Lady Albina and her silly notions of racing. When she affirms she will enter the derby with or without his assistance, Edmund not only instructs his student in racing, but seduction as well.

For Albina, a first place finish isn’t the only thing at stake. She must decide whether to take her place in society…or follow her heart and love a groom.

Excerpts

Excerpt #1

The enchanting, but very puzzling Lady Albina stared at him. “Do you intend to walk the two miles out to the bluff or will you saddle a horse and ride, Mr. White?”

He pulled his gaze away from her buckskin-encased thighs and shook himself out of his reverie. “Ride, yes,” he said, still in a daze.

Her cheeks flushed pink. “Then please saddle your selection. I don’t have much time.”

Neither did he. Edmund had horses to groom, train, and run. Evaluating the riding technique of a bored lady had not been on his morning agenda. Which was why he made his way back into the barn and saddled the spirited bay mare the earl had only recently acquired. He had to run the horse anyway. Why not kill two birds with one stone?

Edmund adjusted the leather bridle and gripped the thick lead, guiding the steed into the morning sun.

Lady Albina’s face brightened at his approach. “Shall we make a wager, Mr. White? Your mare against mine? The first one to the bluff wins?”

“And what would the prize be, my lady?” He could think of more than one thing he’d very much like to win, like a long, slow kiss on her set of full, pink lips.

“Your full recommendation to the earl about my racng capability, when I arrive on the bluff a minute before you.”

“And when I pass your mare and end up the victor?” he asked. “What shall I win?”

She nibbled on her lip, drawing the supple flesh between her teeth and making his position on the horse a very uncomfortable one. “I named my terms. It seems only fair you should do the same.”

Naïve, then. She was definitely naïve. And he had no qualms exploiting the fact. “A kiss. On my lips. From yours.”

Her eyes widened, her porcelain skin flushing scarlet. He could almost hear her inner voice willing her to object his bold request, but she squeaked out a definite affirmation. “Done. On the count of three, we race to the bluff.”

His blood warmed, and nothing, he was certain, but God himself could prevent him from claiming his prize.

She brought her mare alongside his, a hint of uncertainty passing over her delicate features. “I expect nothing less than honest sportsmanship.”

“And I expect nothing less than a good race, my lady.” He settled into the stirrups and gave her his best rakish smile. “One…two…”

His words were drowned out by the clomping of hooves and Lady Albina’s high-pitched laughter.

Excerpt #2

“I am not the one claiming the prize, Mr. White. Should you wish to…kiss me, you must…press your lips against mine.” Good heavens, she’d never been so mortified. All this talk about kissing took the very romance out of the notion. But then, this kiss was not a romantic intimacy. It was a business transaction. A payment for her incompetency.

“Your lips. On mine. That was the agreed-upon arrangement.” He crossed his arms in front of his chest and lifted his chin.

“I do not see how it makes any difference,” she said with a huff. “A kiss is a kiss. It does not matter who initiates the act so long as it is given.”

“I am afraid I must disagree. Whoever initiates the act sets the tone for the event, thereby altering the effects.”

Albina rolled her eyes. “It is but a pressing of one’s lips to another’s. And that, only for a moment. I sincerely doubt one person’s initiation of the event is different from anyone else’s.”

“Would you care to test your theory?”

She leveled a glare in his direction. “How so?”

“You kiss me,” he said, his voice low. “And we assess the results. Then I kiss you and we compare the experience.”

She narrowed her eyes. “You wish to kiss me twice?”

“No, I wish to kiss you once, for I claim ownership of the kiss when I initiate the act. Likewise, you would kiss me once when you settle your accounts and do as you have already agreed by settling your lips against mine. I should think it a small price to pay for the sake of an argument, really. And, as you said, it is but a pressing of one’s lips to another. For but a moment.”

Albina rolled her lips inward and took a deep breath. One kiss had slipped into two. And under the guise of settling an argument she had unknowingly started. But a kiss was no more than what she claimed. A simple act. Nothing more than a settling of accounts.

She let out the breath she had been holding and nodded. “If my compliance allows for my continual access and use of the earl’s Thoroughbreds, I agree.”

Excerpt #3

“My lady.” Mr. White’s exasperated voice called from behind her. “I only seek to help you.”

Albina turned around, her chin lifted, her plaited hair licking past her arm. “Then do so, Mr. White. Tell me how to correct my form without insulting me. Unless you cannot. In which case, I shall seek out assistance elsewhere.”

He ran up to her and took hold of her hand, pulling her into his chest. Her hat fell to the ground as she crumpled against him, her right hand gripping his arm to steady herself. A thick, hard, and solid arm.

Heavens.

He lowered his head, his mouth mere inches from hers. “Your head should be flush with the horse’s.” His words were breathy and low, spoken in a rich tenor she could hardly hear over the hammering of her heart.

“My head,” she whispered. Her thoughts were no longer on her form, but the pair of lips hovering over hers.

“Place it alongside the mare’s, low and even, as though you see and hear as one.”

“See and hear as one,” she repeated, her voice far throatier than it ought to be.

“And your legs,” he continued, “should be tight against her sides.” His hands fell to her outer thighs. With a slight push, he clamped her legs around his. “Like this.”

God in heaven. She couldn’t think. At least not of anything beyond the pair of hands resting on her thighs. She gave a slight nod and licked her lips.

He inhaled, an audible, sharp intake of breath. His hands should not have been anywhere on her person. No gentleman would hold her thus, with such bold possession. But Mr. White was not a gentleman. He was a groom.

And she was, for the first time, glad for it. A heady rush of excitement coursed through her.

“Is that all?” she whispered. “My head and legs?”

Slow and sensual, his lips curled. “Your bottom.” His hands slipped to her backside and cupped her supple flesh through the thin leather of her breeches. “It needs to be held high in the air.”

“M-m-my, my bottom,” she stuttered, lapsing into a mode of speech most often associated with her sister, Henrietta. “Must b-b-be higher,” she ended on a gasp.

Her breath caught, his fingers burning on her bottom as though they were on fire. No man had ever dared, never imagined to place his hands upon her…certainly not the marquess, who, as a titled peer, would respect the rules of decorum and treat her as a lady. As he ought.

Yet…she could not deny the surge of pleasure rushing through her at Mr. White’s forwardness. His blatant disregard for propriety was intoxicating. A shot of rebellion that echoed her own. Her rule-breaking, however, was limited to assuming the appearance of the opposite sex. A simple portrayal. A minor deception, though it was quickly becoming more. She had allowed him to kiss her yesterday. Today…today she was allowing him a firm grasp of her bottom. And what’s more, enjoying every second of it.

 

Author Bio

After viewing her all-time favorite love story, “Anne of Green Gables”, at the impressionable age of ten, Frances Fowlkes has been obsessed with affable boy-next door heroes, red-heads, and romance stories with lots of “highfaluting mumbo jumbo” written within their pages. It only seems natural then that she married the boy who used to pull on her curls in her high school English class, had not one, but THREE red-headed boys, and penned multiple love stories with bits of flowery prose.

When not writing, Frances loves spending time with her family, fangirling, and planning her next vacation.

Frances Fowlkes, originally a northern mid-westerner, now lives in the southeast with her ardent hero of a husband, three playful and rambunctious boys, and one spoiled standard poodle.

A self-professed Anglophile and summa cum laude graduate of LeTourneau University, Frances Fowlkes combines her passion for happily-ever-afters with her interests in both American and English histories.

Links

Social Media:

https://www.facebook.com/francesfowlkes.author/

http://www.francesfowlkes.com/

https://twitter.com/francesfowlkes

http://www.amazon.com/Frances-Fowlkes/e/B00JOPV2T0

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8145738.Frances_Fowlkes

Buy the Book

Entangled Publishing: http://www.entangledpublishing.com/to-win-a-viscount/

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Win-Viscount-Daughters-Amhurst-ebook/dp/B01HW6Z3FQ/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1468510827&sr=1-1&keywords=to+win+a+viscount

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/to-win-a-viscount-frances-fowlkes/1124060999

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/be/book/to-win-a-viscount/id1130767737?mt=11&ign-mpt=uo%3D4

Kobo: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/to-win-a-viscount

Amazon.co.uk: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Win-Viscount-Daughters-Amhurst-ebook/dp/B01HW6Z3FQ?ie=UTF8&camp=211189&creative=9325&link_code=ur2&tag=entangpublis-20

Amazon.ca: https://www.amazon.ca/Win-Viscount-Daughters-Amhurst-ebook/dp/B01HW6Z3FQ?ie=UTF8&camp=211189&creative=9325&link_code=ur2&tag=entangpublis-20

Giveaway

Win a $25 Amazon Gift Card during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Link: https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/MWNiNTU0OTUyMGNlZDFiOGJmOTc5ZmExZmRmZDJmOjg1Mw==/

towinviscounttour

A Thousand Salt Kisses Blog Tour!

A Thousand Salt Kisses
by Josie Demuth

Publication Date: April 2016
Wise Ink Press

Series: Salt Kisses, Book One

Genre: Young Adult/Fantasy/Romance/Mer-Stories

Add to GR ButtonBeautiful Crystal White is the new girl on the remote Starfish Island. During a party on the mainland, she goes for a midnight swim with other party goers where she meets the handsome, intriguing Llyr amongst the waves.

As she heads back to shore she realizes that he is not behind her and that nobody at the party remembers him. Crystal can’t seem to shake Llyr from her mind and returns to the beach in the hope of meeting him again. When she finally does, she realizes there may be more truth to the ramblings of the island folk than she thought.

To add more drama to her life, Crystal’s mother and her father are at war over a local power station that is devastating local marine life.

Over a sizzling roller coaster summer, it becomes apparent that all these events are not entirely unrelated and Crystal finds herself both caught up in a deep mystical romance and at the centre of an exploding environmental scandal…

About the Author

03_Josie DemuthJosie is a 31 year-old writer from London. Her Salt Kisses books became popular on Wattpad, and are now also serialised on Radish Fiction. A Thousand Salt Kisses is her third book.

For more information please visit http://www.saltkissesbooks.com/ and https://josiedemuthwriting.wordpress.com/. You can follow author Josie Demuth on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Wattpad.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, June 6
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Thursday, June 9
Excerpt at Brooke Blogs

Friday, June 10
Review at Bibliotica

Monday, June 13
Interview at I Heart Reading

Tuesday, June 14
Spotlight at To Read, Or Not to Read

Wednesday, June 15
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!

Friday, June 17
Spotlight at AC Reads

Monday, June 20
Excerpt at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Tuesday, June 21
Spotlight at Fiction Conviction Book Blog

Friday, June 24
Spotlight at A Leisure Moment

Monday, June 27
Spotlight at It’s a Mad Mad World

Monday, July 4
Review at A Book Drunkard

Tuesday, July 5
Spotlight at CelticLady’s Reviews

Friday, July 8
Blog Tour Wrap Up at Book Junkie Promotions

Giveaway

To enter the giveaway for a signed copy of A THOUSAND SALT KISSES, please see the GLEAM entry form below. Three copies are up for grabs!

Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on July 8th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to US residents only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

CLICK HERE TO ENTER GIVEAWAY!

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Learning to Breathe Blog Tour!

MarisaOldhamLTBebokLearning to Breathe by Marisa Oldham

Blurb:

Like the ocean, life is a beautiful force. One that can tear you limb from limb or lavish you in perfect moments.

Michelle Hathaway has it all: a view of the Eiffel Tower from her loft in Paris, a successful career as a fashion photographer, ownership in an up-and- coming art gallery, and jet-setting days filled with excitement. But, even with all that luxury, her life feels aimless.

Over the years, Michelle drifted on the tide of a long distance, on-again off-again relationship with Micah Roberts, a hot bass player in a popular rock band. When he finally asks her to move to Los Angeles to be with him, she risks everything, taking the leap into a new life.

Drowning in the wake of her decisions, she struggles just to breathe as destiny threatens to take everything. As unexpected events devastate her, will Michelle surface from the depths of despair?

From Bestselling Author of The Falling Series, Marisa Oldham, comes an emotionally heart-stopping novel about love, heartache, and learning to breathe when it feels as though the air is kicked from you.

Purchase Link:

#OneClick for only .99 cents! http://amzn.com/B01EQJFN7A

Review:
five star blog

I had the privilege to read this book prior to release. Lately, I had been in a bit of a slump when it came to contemporary romance novels. However, Learning to Breathe is so far removed from anything I could have expected. I laughed, I cried, and I loved right alongside Michelle. The heart and soul that went into this novel were unlike anything I have experienced before. I don’t want to give much away because you need to experience each part of Michelle’s journey for yourself. I highly recommend this book.

★✩★ WHAT READERS ARE SAYING ABOUT LTB ★✩★

“I have never cried so much while reading a book. This story touched me in a very deep and emotional way.” – Jackie, Fire and Ice Book Reviews

“This is a must read book. The characters in Learning to Breathe are so real. You will feel like you are in the story. You will feel the connection with the characters. You will feel the emotions. YOU WILL FEEL.” – Kelly M, ARC Reader

“I have never read a book that felt it was as much mine as it was the authors. This book has pieces that will parallel your life, and probably affect you in a way no other book has…or ever will.” – Devine Warnes, ARC Reader

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Juliana Blog Tour!

02_JulianaJuliana (Volume I, 1941-1944)
by Vanda

Publication Date: February 14, 2016
Booktrope Editions
eBook & Paperback; 375 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction/Contemporary Woman/LGBT

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JULIANA is the story of dreams, the dreams of two women who randomly, inevitably cross paths, of stage stardom and soulful songs amid the deceptions required in a prewar 1941 New York City, where love was presumed to be straight, and destiny was supposed to be written in the stars.

It’s 1941 and Alice “Al” Huffman comes from the potato fields of Long Island with her beau, her best girlfriend and her girlfriend’s beau to make it on the Broadway stage only to find she has no talent. On the kids’ first day in New York City, they meet Maxwell P. Hartwell III, a failed nightclub owner and Broadway producer, who, according to Al, looks a little like Clark Gable. He invites them to a nightclub where Al hears Juliana, the glamorous, perpetually-on-the-brink-of stardom singer, for the first time. Al is instantly drawn to her and seeks her out. Juliana is a sexual risk-taker who easily reels in the mesmerized Al.

Al is increasingly pulled into a secret gay underworld of men who wear dresses and women who smoke cigars, while her childhood friends continue in their “normal” lives. Al glides easily between the two worlds until these worlds begin to collide.

Cameo appearances are made by Walter Liverace, Ethel Merman, Tallulah Bankhead and others.

Amazon (Kindle) | Amazon (Paperback) | Barnes & Noble

Review

five star blog

Julianna: Volume 1 (1941-1944) was a unique look at an often undiscussed subject of the era. The research put into this short novel is incredible and admirable. Vanda has taken the time to really explore the topic from the perspective of her main character, Al. An excellent novel, I look forward to reading the rest of the series.

Praise

“… captures the fear, excitement, and eroticism of a young lesbian’s awakening in the the 1940s.” — Kirkus Reviews

“Vanda creates a historical novel about a time period in which we know very little about queerness—WWII… Vanda’s narratives, prowess of timely language and setting and character development lend a poignant message: to be queer was to be anti-American.— July Westhale, Lambda Literary Review

“Juliana is the opening act in a series of stories that will cover, discover and recover LGBT history…. Vanda’s clean-shave style in Juliana amplifies the creative ways in which lesbians and gays in the 1940s compartmentalized their identities like meals at an automat…..I can’t wait for the next edition of yestergays’ news to come out” — Alison Fradkin, Curve Magazine

“Spell-binding, entrancing. A gay underworld with the sights and sounds of a lost New York.” — Lisa E. Davis, author of Under the Mink

About the Author03_Vanda

Vanda’s novel, Juliana (Vol. 1, 1941-1944) to be released in February by Booktrope Editions is about LGBT life in 1940s New York City. This novel is the first of a series of novels about the same characters living through successive decades of LGBT history.

As a playwright Vanda has received numerous honors, among them an Edward Albee Fellowship. Her play, Vile Affections, published by Original Works was a finalist for a National Lambda Award. Her play, Patient HM, which later became The Forgetting Curve, won the Pride Stage and Screen’s Women’s Playwriting Award and another play, Why’d Ya Make Me Wear This, Joe, won Celebration Theater’s (where Naked Boys Singing originated) Best New LGBT Play. Vile Affections played at the New York International Fringe Festival to sell-out audiences and was published by Original Works in 2008. The Forgetting Curve was produced in Boston in September 2014 and the producer has plans to bring it to New York.

Vanda’s non-fiction story, “Jack,” was published in Prairie Schooner in Summer 2011 and another non-fiction piece, “Roger: Lost Between Philosophies,” which appears Pentimento was selected by New Millennium Writings for Honorable Mention from a submission pool of 1,300. Other short prose pieces have been or will be published in Sinister Wisdom, The Outrider Review and The Grub Street On-Line Journal.

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, May 2
Kick Off & Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, May 4
Spotlight & Excerpt at I Heart Reading

Monday, May 9
Review at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Tuesday, May 10
Review at Book Nerd

Thursday, May 12
Review at With Her Nose Stuck In A Book

Friday, May 13
Review at CelticLady’s Reviews

Monday, May 16
Interview at Flashlight Commentary

Tuesday, May 31
Blog Tour Wrap Up at Passages to the Past

Giveaway

To enter to win a paperback copy of Gioconda by Lucille Turner please enter the giveaway via the GLEAM form below. Two copies are up for grabs!

Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on May 13th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open INTERNATIONALLY.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

Juliana

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The Sorceress and the Skull Blog Tour!

02_TSATSThe Sorceress and the Skull
by Donald Michael Platt

Publishing Date: February 5, 2016
Penmore Press
eBook & Paperback; 254 Pages

Genre: Historical/Horror/Occult

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Nostradamus, Occult, Suspense, Metaphysical, Visionary

A Gothic Horror Novella from Award Winning Author Donald Michael Platt

San Francisco 1946: A Confrontation of Sorcerers and Seers. For the first time in almost 400 years, Michele born in 1932, a direct descendant of Nostradamus, will have all his gifts of precognition and even greater powers, but they will not be fully manifested until after she enters puberty. More than one secret society has been obsessed with finding and controlling Michele, to learn from her where Nostradamus’ unpublished prophecies have been sequestered. Hidden since birth, protected by aliases, an aunt, and a gargoyle, Michele at age 13 has become a fugitive, fleeing across Europe and Canada before finally arriving in San Francisco. Around Michele deadly forces are closing in, but a new ally, Le Crâne, the Skull, has also appeared, coming to the aid of the young seer. Who will hold claim to Michele’s powers and at what price to her? And who will succeed in acquiring the hidden secrets of Nostradamus?

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

About the Author03_Donald Michael Platt Author

Donald Michael Platt is an award wining author of five published novels: “Rocamora,”an International Book Awards Finalist, and its sequel “House of Rocamora” set in 17th century Spain and Amsterdam during their Golden Ages. “Close to the Sun,” a WWII novel about USAAF and Luftwaffe fighter aces has garnered three Indie Book Award Finalist Awards. The Historical Novel Society named his novel “Bodo the Apostate” an Editor’s Choice title, calling it “a masterfully-controlled narrative” of the Carolingian Empire. “A Gathering of Vultures,” a contemporary horror novel set in Florianópolis, Brazil, was also selected as an Indie Book Award Finalist in Horror.

Donald and his wife Ellen currently reside in Winter Haven Florida along with his cat, Bodo, a loquacious tyrant.

For more information visit Donald Michael Platt’s website. You can also connect with him on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, April 25
Review at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Wednesday, April 27
Review at Book Nerd

Thursday, April 28
Review at The Old Shelter

Friday, April 29
Spotlight at Passages to the Past

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The Shadow Ally Blog Tour!

02_The Shadow Ally

The Shadow Ally (The Yankee Years Book 1)
by Dianne Ascroft

Publication Date: December 4, 2015
eBook; 76 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
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The Shadow Ally is a Short Read – approximately 2 hours or more – in The Yankee Years series.

America is not yet at war, but the country is preparing for it. And it is essential that this remain secret.

June 1941: Ruth Corey is puzzled by the attractive, enigmatic Italian-American civilian contractor, Frank Long, who is staying at her family’s hotel in Irvinestown, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland. Serious and reserved, he is nothing like the friendly, outgoing British and Canadian servicemen she knows. Nor, she discovers, does he even use his real surname.

War is a time of alliances and secrets. The biggest secret in the county is the construction of an American flying boat base outside Irvinestown. Since their country is not at war, the American contractors must conceal the building project. America’s neutrality will be destroyed if Germany discovers its existence.

Ambitious local reporter, and Ruth’s almost fiancé, Harry Coalter is consumed with curiosity about the new American airbase. But why? When Ruth finds a letter Harry has written about the flying boat base she fears he is pursuing a path that will land him in serious trouble. She enlists Frank’s help to stop Harry from making a terrible mistake.

Can Ruth safeguard a military secret that will have a profound impact on the course of the war and protect her beau?

A tale for fans of Annie Murray, Ellie Dean and Margaret Dickinson.

The Yankee Years series: During the Second World War Northern Ireland hosted American, British and Canadian troops. County Fermanagh welcomed Air Force squadrons hunting U-boats and defending shipping convoys in the Atlantic Ocean and Army battalions training and preparing for deployment to Europe’s Western Front. After the Allied troops arrived, life would never be the same again. The Yankee Years novels and Short Reads weave thrilling and romantic tales of the people and the era.

Available on Amazon

Review

 three and a half stars

Taking place during the early years of World War II, The Shadow Ally is a short novella about early American preparations for entering the war, based in Northern Ireland. Ruth works at her parents’ hotel and she begins to get suspicious of her beau, Harry. She reports her concerns to Frank, a visiting American contractor working on a project in the area. Will her suspicions be validated?

What lead me to my rating was the unfortunate lack of development in the characters, and the rushed feel to the novella. I am fond of short stories/novellas, but this one left me feeling slightly unsatisfied. I wish the author had expanded the topic out, leading to more intrigue and tension between Harry and Frank, giving the reader more insight to the history of the time. Why did the Americans choose Northern Ireland? How were their actions relevant to the war effort, if they weren’t meant to be involved at this stage? This novella had the potential to stronger than it was. The author has the talent for historical writing though, and despite Ruth’s overly naive character, I did enjoy this quick read.

About the Author

03_Dianne AscroftDianne Ascroft is a Canadian writer living in Britain. Since moving to Britain in 1990 she has lived in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

She writes both fiction and non-fiction and her fiction often has Irish connections. Her articles and short stories have been printed in Canadian and Irish magazines and regional newspapers including the Toronto Star, Ireland’s Own, Senior Times, Celtic Connection and Irish Connections Canada.

She is co-editor and a regular contributor to The Fermanagh Miscellany, the Fermanagh Authors’ Association’s yearly anthology and she also contributes material to other local history and writers’ anthologies.

Dianne is a member of the Alliance of Independent Authors, Historical Novel Society, Writers Abroad, Fermanagh Authors’ Association and Fermanagh Writers.

Dianne started life in a quiet residential neighbourhood in the buzzing city of Toronto and has progressively moved to smaller places through the years. She now lives on a small farm in Northern Ireland with her husband and an assortment of strong willed animals. If she ever decides to write her autobiography the working title will be ‘Downsizing’.

For more information please visit Dianne’s website. You can also find her on her Blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, April 18
Review at Lampshade Reader

Wednesday, April 20
Review at Room With Books
Review at Singing Librarian Books

Friday, April 22
Review at Diana’s Book Reviews
Review at Queen of All She Reads

Monday, April 25
Review at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

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Galerie Blog Tour!

02_Galerie

Galerie by Steven Greenberg

Publication Date: October 26, 2015
Evolved Publishing
Genre: Historical Fiction/Thriller/Literary
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WINNER: Pinnacle Book Achievement Award, Fall 2015 — Best Books in Fiction.

Every family has secrets, but some are far darker, reach deeper, and touch a rawer nerve than others.

For Vanesa Neuman, the past is a closed book. The daughter of Holocaust survivors, her childhood in the cramped intimacy of south Tel Aviv is shadowed by her parents’ unspoken wartime experiences. But when her father passes away, the closed book falls literally open. Vanesa decides to unravel the mystery of the diary she has received, and strange symbol in it, at all costs.

Set against the backdrop of the Jewish Museum of Prague during the Nazi occupation – Adolf Eichmann’s “Museum of an Extinct Race” – Galerie is fast-paced historical fiction in the tradition of Tatiana De Rosnay’s Sarah’s Key. From Jerusalem’s Yad V’Shem Holocaust research center, to the backstreets of Prague, and into the former “paradise ghetto” of Theresienstadt – Vanesa’s journey of understanding will reveal a darker family past than she ever imagined and a secret kept alive for over half a century.

PERFECT FOR BOOK CLUBS: A book club guide is included at the end of the story.

Available for Kindle for only $2.99!

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Praise

“…dark and gritty…the story and writing lift it up to the point of being nearly sublime. Buy this book and say goodbye to your family for the weekend, because you will not want to put it down once you get started.” ~ Eric W. Swett

“Galerie is a gripping read, rich with intrigue from beginning to end. As much a thriller as a Holocaust novel…” ~ BookWormNZ

“Imagine Stephen King wrote Schindler’s List…Galerie manages to break away from the accepted treatment of Europe’s darkest hour and explore the horror from an unexpected point of view.” ~ Nikki

“…uncomfortable in moments, but so provocative that it is impossible to put down.” ~ Sydology

Review
five star blog

I am a staunch reader of Holocaust historical fiction and non-fiction. I loved reading, no, devouring, Galerie. Despite initially getting off to a slow start, I was soon swept away in Vanesa’s determined mission to discover a dark secret in her family’s past. The novel takes us between past and present (1992) as Vanesa unfolds the mystery before the reader’s eyes. I’m reminding of Those Who Save Us by Jenna Blum in the way Greenberg intertwines the stories into one. The ending was certainly a surprise, but I won’t spoil it! Vanesa’s determination was certainly inspiring, and I will look for other novels by this author.

03_Steven GreenbergAbout the Author

Steven Greenberg is a professional writer, as well as a full-time cook, cleaner, chauffeur, and work-at-home Dad for three amazing young children, and the lucky husband of a loving and very supportive wife. Born in Texas and raised in Fort Wayne, Indiana, Steven emigrated to Israel only months before the first Gulf War, following graduation from Indiana University in 1990. In 1996, he was drafted into the Israel Defense Forces, where he served for 12 years as a Reserves Combat Medic. Since 2002, Steven has worked as an independent marketing writer, copywriter and consultant.

You can find more information at Steven Greenberg’s website. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, April 5
Review at Library Educated

Wednesday, April 6
Review & Giveaway at Man of la Book
Interview at Library Educated

Thursday, April 7
Review at With Her Nose Stuck in a Book
Review & Giveaway at The Maiden’s Court

Friday, April 8
Review & Giveaway at Singing Librarian Books

Monday, April 11
Guest Post & Giveaway at Teddy Rose Book Reviews

Tuesday, April 12
Review at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Wednesday, April 13
Review at Flashlight Commentary

Thursday, April 14
Review at Bookramblings
Interview at Flashlight Commentary

Friday, April 15
Review at Book Nerd

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Forgetting Tabitha Blog Tour

02_Forgetting TabithaForgetting Tabitha
by Julie Dewey

Publication Date: December 29, 2015
Holland Press
eBook & Paperback; 280p

Genre: Historical Fiction

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Raised on a farm, Tabitha Salt, the daughter of Irish immigrants, leads a bucolic and sheltered existence. When tragedy strikes the family, Tabitha and her mother are forced to move to the notorious Five Points District in New York City, known for its brothels, gangs, gambling halls, corrupt politicians and thieves.

As they struggle to survive in their new living conditions, tragedy strikes again. Young Tabitha resorts to life alone on the streets of New York, dreaming of a happier future.

The Sisters of Charity are taking orphans off the streets with promises of a new life. Children are to forget their pasts, their religious beliefs, families and names. They offer Tabitha a choice: stay in Five Points or board the orphan train and go West in search of a new life.

The harrowing journey and the decision to leave everything behind launches Tabitha on a path from which she can never return.

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Review

3 blog stars
Upon beginning my read of this book, I really got into the story of Tabitha, later renamed Mary by the orphan train organizer, Sister Agnes. I do know a fair bit of the history at this time, and I found the first part really kept to the historical details. I felt sad for Tabitha when she lost her mother to an infection, as disease was so rampant in the industrialized areas during and after the Civil War.

As the novel went on, I found myself becoming less connected to Tabitha, as the perspective of the novel shifted to the other characters, and some parts even seemed far-fetched or historically inaccurate, such as the portion on suggesting Gert receive hypnotherapy, which was widely shunned as charlatanism in America at the time, and mostly practiced in Britain and France. I do understand this is historical fiction, but things like this stick out to me as not consistent with the history of the time. There are some graphic scenes, almost too graphic, so I would not recommend this novel to anyone under the age of 18.

I personally feel the author could have done well sticking to the story of Tabitha, seeing the world through her eyes as she traveled west. I feel some of the other characters were introduced to give the story conflict that may have not been needed. It would have been interesting to have a historical note at the end as well, talking about the goal of the orphan trains, and how the children were often not forgotten by biological parents, who later tracked them down. Overall though, this was an entertaining, quick read, with an insight to a program that lasted until the 1930s, the precursor to the welfare system we know now.

About the Author03_Julie Dewey

Julie Dewey is a novelist who resides with her family in Central New York. Her daughter is a singer/songwriter, and her son is a boxer. Her husband is an all-around hard working, fantastic guy with gorgeous blue eyes that had her falling for him the moment they met.

In addition to researching and writing she is an avid reader. She is also passionate about jewelry design and gemstones. She loves anything creative, whether it be knitting, stamping, scrapping, decoupaging, working with metal, or decorating.

Visit her at www.juliedewey.com to get your reading guide for this book and to read an excerpt from One Thousand Porches, her second novel. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Thursday, March 10
Review at Eclectic Ramblings of Author Heather Osborne

Monday, March 14
Review at A Chick Who Reads

Thursday, March 17
Review at CelticLady’s Reviews

Sunday, March 20
Review at With Her Nose Stuck in a Book

Monday, March 21
Review at The Baking Bookworm

Tuesday, March 29
Review at Beth’s Book Nook

Thursday, March 31
Review at Impressions in Ink

Wednesday, April 13
Spotlight at Passages to the Past

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