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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Sarah's Secret : A Western Tale of Betrayal and Forgiveness by Beverly Scott Blog Tour with Personal Review :)

Sarah's Secret: A Western Tale of Betrayal and Forgiveness by Beverly Scott

Publication Date: January 31, 2017 eBook & Paperback; 306 Pages Word Project Press Genre: Fiction/Historical/Western     Follow the paths of Sarah and Will (or Sam) as they tell their stories of trust, secrets, and betrayal on the frontier in the old West. Their pioneer spirit helped to fuel the expansion into the Western territories of the United States. The two are historically on their separate journeys, yet they remain intimately connected. Through the fictionalized Western frontier tale of Sam and Sarah, the author, Beverly Scott, was inspired to reveal rumored secrets from her family history. In 1878, Will is on the run after killing a man in a barroom gunfight. He escapes the Texas Rangers by joining a cattle drive as a cook headed to Dodge City. He struggles with the dilemma of saving his life or attempting to return to his pregnant wife and five children. Just when he thinks he might be able to return home, he is confronted by a bounty hunter who captures him and plans to return him to Fort Worth, Texas to be hanged. Although Will changes his name to Sam, he remains an irresponsible, lonely and untrustworthy man on the dodge from the law who abandons the women he loves. He ultimately seeks redemption and marries Sarah. In 1911, Sarah, a pioneer woman and widow with five children struggles to find the inner strength to overcome betrayal, loneliness, fears, and self-doubt. Her husband, Sam, thirty years her senior, died with a mysterious and defiant declaration, “I won’t answer!”. Despite poverty and a crippling illness, she draws on her pioneer spirit to hold her family together and return to Nebraska to be near her parents and siblings. When Sarah returns to Nebraska she receives staggering news which complicates her efforts to support her children. She is shocked, angry and emotionally devastated. Since she is attempting to establish herself in the community as a teacher, she believes she must keep her secret even from her own family. Will Sarah find forgiveness in her heart and the resolve to accept her new life alone?

Praise for Sarah's Secret

“In the flash of one moment, the trajectory of a man’s life and of those who loved and depended on him changes forever. The developing plot draws the reader in as we wait to see how this one action reaches into and impacts the lives of future generations. Set against the backdrop of a post-Civil War nation, when thousands headed west to escape their past, disappear into the horizon, and remake themselves, this biography is a rich study of pioneer ethos and the risks faced every day. The women touched by this man, who kept his secrets close, are heroines of courage, steadfastness and goodness. Beverly Scott is an author who has a way of painting word pictures that make you feel like you are a part of the story as it unfolds towards the discovery of his devastating secrets.” -Patricia and Craig Neal, co-founders, Heartland Inc. “Using the plain spoken language of the women and men who scratched out life on the hard scrabble plains in the early days of this young country Bev Scott crafts a sharp picture of the violence and the love that shaped the middle of this nation. Every river crossing, each spring planting reveals the conflicts inside the characters and their struggle to survive in contested territories.” -Jewell Gomez, Author, The Gilda Stories

Amazon | IndieBound

***My Personal Review***

I love anything that is set in the wild west or the plains, and this book definitely had that.  The stories of the settlers and their journeys has always fascinated me.  Their struggles and hardships were huge but they never gave up.  And that's what I love about this book - Sarah loses her husband Sam and has to decide what to do with 5 children and how she will raise them.  So they begin a journey across the country to find a better life.  But Sam had a secret and uttered something about it to Sarah on his deathbed, something she has yet to figure out.  Sarah is lucky she has a few older boys who are able to take charge of a lot of things and help protect the family on their journey - but they are still just boys and she knows that she needs to make sure they have what they need to succeed in this wild world.  And without a father figure that is difficult, but even more so when you are facing not only starvation but thieves, wild animals, desperation and other threats.

Okay so enough about all that - as I read this book it completely captivated me. I felt totally immersed in the life and times of Sarah Martin, and throughout the entire book all I could do was wonder what the secret was that her late husband Sam had been keeping from her.  How would it affect her and their children?  And was it something that was SO bad that she would not be able to forgive him?  If you read a lot of literature set in that time period they were very religious, so being able to forgive was something that they were supposed to do. But I still had to wonder if it was bad enough that it would ruin her life.  I won't give away the plot but I honestly loved this book - and of course when I did find out what the secret was I was astonished.  Of course the book began with Sam being sick so we really didn't get to know much about him or his background - something we come to find out in the later chapters of the book.  As it all comes together, Sarah's immense inner and outer strength shines through and she watches her children grow up and continues to do everything she can to take care of them. 


In all honesty I have to give this book 5 stars out of 5 - it was amazing and one of the best historical fiction books set in the West that I have read.  I highly recommend it for anyone from young adult and up because there is no bad language in the book at all that I noticed.  I am definitely going to look for more from Beverly Scott after reading this :)  FIVE STAR READ!


***I received a complimentary book in order to read and review***

About the Author

Bev specialized in serving executives and managers as a leadership coach and organizational consultant for over thirty-five years. She taught organization psychology and founded The 3rd Act, a program whose mission supports positive aging. As she grew into her own third act, she started a genealogical journey to uncover the details of her grandparents’ lives. She concluded that the story needed to be told as fiction using the known facts as her framework. “Sarah’s Secret: A Western Tale of Betrayal and Forgiveness,” Bev’s debut novel, is the culmination of her long-held desire tell the family story and confirm the whispered story about her grandfather. Bev previously focused on publishing non-fiction work, including the second edition of “Consulting on the Inside,” which she co-authored with Kim Barnes, published in 2011. She has written numerous professional articles and contributed to “70 Things to Do When You Turn 70,” edited by Ronnie Sellers and Mark Chimsky. Bev blogs on several sites, including her own, “The Writing Life” on www.bevscott.com. Bev enjoys traveling, visiting with friends, reading and spending time with her grandsons. She lives with her spouse in San Francisco. You can connect with Bev on Facebook, Pinterest, Amazon, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 14 Kick Off at Passages to the Past Tuesday, August 15 Guest Post at History From a Woman's Perspective Excerpt at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots Wednesday, August 16 Review at Pursuing Stacie Thursday, August 17 Review at WS Momma Readers Nook Friday, August 18 Excerpt at What Is That Book About Interview at Dianne Ascroft's Blog Monday, August 21 Feature at So Many Books, So Little Time Tuesday, August 22 Review at A Holland Reads Thursday, August 24 Review & Interview at T's Stuff Review & Interview at Books and Benches Monday, August 28 Feature at A Literary Vacation Tuesday, August 29 Review at Book Nerd Feature at Mello & June, It's a Book Thang! Wednesday, August 30 Review at Linda's Book Obsession Friday, September 1 Review at Creating Herstory Monday, September 4 Review at Svetlana's Reads and Views

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a paperback copy of Sarah's Secret! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below. Giveaway Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on September 4th. 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. Sarah's Secret by Beverly Scott



The Rules of Persuasion by Amity Hope Blog Tour with Excerpt and Giveaway :)



The Rules of Persuasion by Amity Hope
Publication Date: August 14, 2017
Publisher: Entangled Teen Crush


1) Take things slow (her rule)
2) Make it believable (his rule)
After tragedy hit her family, Meg Matthews officially crossed the line from “good girl” to “bad girl.” Motorcycle? Check. Graffiti? Check. The only thing Meg hadn’t planned on was blackmail. Too bad now a certain infuriating boy holds Meg’s future in his hands…
When Luke Prescott—star pitcher and town golden boy—catches Meg vandalizing the school, she’s given two choices: face the consequences or enter into a fake relationship with him to get his parents and his ex off his back.
But as Meg and Luke grow closer, they both realize they’ve been keeping secrets from each other. Their fake relationship might be doomed from the start—if they can’t learn to open up to the one person they never thought they’d trust.

Disclaimer: This Entangled Teen Crush book contains late-night graffiti sessions, flirty baseball lessons, and a never-ending list of relationship rules just made to be broken.

Link to Goodreads:

Purchase Links:


***EXCERPT***


I flipped the notebook shut and wrangled it into my backpack. “I guess we’re done here.”
“Finally.” Her smile evaporated again. “I guess I’ll see you later.” She slid out of the booth, not waiting for a good-bye.
I yanked a few bills out of my wallet and tossed them on the table to cover the malts with plenty left for a tip. Grabbing my backpack, I darted out of the restaurant.
I didn’t need girls to be falling at my feet. But I wasn’t used to them acting as if I wasn’t worth their time. Meg’s indifference rattled me. As I watched her head to her Rebel—as if she couldn’t get away from me fast enough—I felt the urge to rattle her right back.
“Meg!”
She twisted around slowly.
I sauntered up to her until there were only inches between us. To her credit, she didn’t back down.
“I thought we were done,” she said. Was it my imagination, or did she sound slightly breathless?
“Not quite.”
She cleared her throat and took a step back. I reached for her hands, tangling my fingers around hers as I reeled her back in. “We forgot to seal the deal.”
“Seal the deal?”
“Seal it with a kiss.” I shrugged. “You’re going to have to kiss me eventually. Personally, I’d rather have our first time be without an audience. Wouldn’t you?”
She winced, clearly knowing that I was right.
“I guess it would be best to get the awkwardness out of the way,” she grumbled.
I decided not to focus on the fact that she sounded less than thrilled. Instead, I took it as a good sign that she didn’t elbow me in the gut and storm away.
I moved in slowly, not convinced she wouldn’t bolt. Her eyes fluttered closed. Her hands slid up my arms, clutching at my biceps. When her lips met mine I swear something ignited between us. My hands gripped her waist and as the kiss lingered, the tension melted away.

She had acted so cold toward me, the last thing I expected was for the kiss to be so hot.


AUTHOR INFO:


Amity lives in beautiful northern Minnesota with her two sons, two cats and their Rottweiler. She has
a degree in elementary education and worked in that field for ten years before deciding to chase her dream. Her debut novel, Twisted, was listed by Amazon as a Top 100 Kids & Teens Kindle Book of 2012. If she's not writing, or spending time with her boys, she's most likely reading.







Giveaway Details:
  • $20 Amazon Gift Card (INT)


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Traitor's Knot by Cryssa Bazos Blog Tour with Personal Review :)

Traitor's Knot by Cryssa Bazos

Publication Date: May 9, 2017 Endeavor Press eBook; 394 Pages Genre: Fiction/Historical/Romance

       

England 1650: Civil War has given way to an uneasy peace in the year since Parliament executed King Charles I. Royalist officer James Hart refuses to accept the tyranny of the new government, and to raise funds for the restoration of the king’s son, he takes to the road as a highwayman. Elizabeth Seton has long been shunned for being a traitor’s daughter. In the midst of the new order, she risks her life by sheltering fugitives from Parliament in a garrison town. But her attempts to rebuild her life are threatened, first by her own sense of injustice, then by falling in love with the dashing Hart. The lovers’ loyalty is tested through war, defeat and separation. James must fight his way back to the woman he loves, while Elizabeth will do anything to save him, even if it means sacrificing herself. Traitor’s Knot is a sweeping tale of love and conflicted loyalties set against the turmoil of the English Civil War.


“A hugely satisfying read that will appeal to historical fiction fans who demand authenticity, and who enjoy a combination of suspense, action, and a very believable love story.” - Elizabeth St. John, author of The Lady of the Tower
“A thrilling historical adventure expertly told.” - Carol McGrath, author of The Handfasted Wife

Traitor's Knot is available in eBook & Paperback at Amazon

***PERSONAL REVIEW***

I am a huge fan of historical fiction books and this one definitely captivated me.  I love the setting which is during the mid 1600's in England.  Elizabeth Seton is an amazingly strong and well-written character - she boldly stands up to a highwayman who could kill her, and yet she also abides by the "rules" of her times regarding ladies.  I love that she was once part of a very important family until her father became a traitor and everyone shunned her.  You can feel how she is feeling about her life and I think that is what makes her a great character - she is relatable.  Interesting and full of life, she immediately captures the attention of Ostler James and he presses for a courtship but she keeps him at bay for a while.  I love the way their story is told, how they are ripped apart and have to find their way back together.  All of the characters are richly designed and even if we don't get to see a lot of them in the book they somehow stick with us - like the highwayman.  I love how James and Elizabeth are both very stubborn and fall in love in spite of that.  But she is quite the firecracker and would definitely be too much for some men to handle (I believe at one point Isabel uses the word "insolent"), especially during that time period.  And of course I like the fact that Elizabeth is strong and proud of her ties to her father even after being thrown away for his actions that had nothing to do with her.  She overcomes and goes on and I like strong female leads who can show us that no matter what occurs, we can always keep going and not let it ruin you.  

Overall I loved this book and I loved the complexity of each character, seeing their backgrounds helped me understand who they were.  A true love story with some serious struggles along the way to get back together.

With historical novels I find they are much more interesting when the author uses phrases and words from that specific time period, and this book had that.  "A pox on your family" meaning curse your family was probably my favorite from this book.  When you read a historical fiction book you should be transported back to the time and place in every way, and this book did that for me - I was amused and saddened and finally ... well I won't give away the ending!  But if you love historical fiction and an English setting then this is a great book to read!  And of course this will be a series so I can't wait to read the other books.  

**********************

About the Author

Cryssa Bazos is a historical fiction writer and 17th Century enthusiast, with a particular interest in the English Civil War (ECW). She blogs about English history and storytelling at her blog, the 17th Century Enthusiast, and is an editor of the English Historical Fiction Authors blog site. Cryssa's debut novel, Traitor’s Knot, a romantic tale of adventure set during the English Civil War. Traitor’s Knot is the first in a series of adventures spanning from the ECW to the Restoration and is now available from Endeavour Press. For more information visit Cryssa's website. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, August 1 Kick Off at Passages to the Past Wednesday, August 2 Review at Romantic Historical Reviews Thursday, August 3 Review & Excerpt at Locks, Hooks and Books Monday, August 7 Interview at Aurora B's Book Blog Thursday, August 10 Review & Excerpt at Books of All Kinds Friday, August 11 Review at WS Momma Readers Nook Tuesday, August 15 Review at A Chick Who Reads Interview at T's Stuff Friday, August 18 Interview at Let Them Read Books

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a signed paperback copy of Traitor's Knot! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below. Giveaway Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on August 18th. You must be 18 or older to enter. – Giveaway is open to residents in the US & Canada 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.



Thursday, August 3, 2017

Raven's Feast by Eric Schumacher Blog Tour with Giveaway :)

Raven's Feast by Eric Schumacher

Publication Date: May 1, 2017 Creativia eBook & Paperback
Series: Hakon's Saga, Book 2
Genre: Fiction/Historical

    

Raven’s Feast is the sequel to God’s Hammer, the true story of Hakon Haraldsson and his quest to win and keep the High Seat of Viking Age Norway. It is 935 A.D. and Hakon Haraldsson has just wrested the High Seat of the North from his ruthless brother, Erik Bloodaxe. Now, he must fight to keep it. The land-hungry Danes are pressing from the south to test Hakon before he can solidify his rule. In the east, the Uplanders are making their own plans to seize the throne. It does not help that Hakon is committed to his dream of Christianizing his people - a dream his countrymen do not share and will fight to resist. As his enemies move in and his realm begins to crumble, Hakon and his band of oath-sworn warriors must make a stand in Raven’s Feast, the riveting sequel to God’s Hammer.
“At its core, Raven’s Feast is more than a story about a young king holding firm to the power he has won in Viking Norway,” said Eric Schumacher, author of Raven’s Feast. “It is the story of a young man holding true to one’s self and convictions in the face of extreme challenges -- something to which, I hope, many people can relate.”

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

Praise for God's Hammer (Hakon's Saga, Book 1)

"Eric Schumacher has created the most evocative tale in his stunning novel — God's Hammer. This book completely drew me in. The research that has gone into God's Hammer has to be commended, and it is incredibly rich in historical detail. It was as if I was looking through a window into the past as I read the pages of this remarkable story. Hakon's portrayal is both realistic and believable. Schumacher has obviously researched the life of Hakon in great detail, and this certainly came through in the writing. Schumacher brought Hakon back to life. Well Done!" - Mary Yarde, the author of The Du Lac Chronicles "Author Eric Schumacher put together a rousing story of warfare, religious strife and tested friendships." - Mercedes Rochelle, author of Godwine Kingmaker and The Sons of Godwine

About the Author

Eric Schumacher was born in Los Angeles in 1968 and currently resides in Santa Barbara, CA with his wife, two children and dog. He is the author of two historical fiction novels, God’s Hammer and its sequel, Raven’s Feast. Both tell the story of the first Christian king of Viking Norway, Hakon Haraldsson, and his struggles to gain and hold the High Seat of his realm. More information on Eric and his Hakon Sagas can be found on his website. You can also connect with Eric on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and AuthorsDB.


Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, August 1 Review at Pursuing Stacie Thursday, August 3 Guest Post at The Writing Desk Friday, August 4 Spotlight at WS Momma Readers Nook Monday, August 7 Interview at I Heart Reading Wednesday, August 9 Feature at A Book Geek Sunday, August 13 Review at Must Read Faster (God's Hammer) Wednesday, August 23 Review at Must Read Faster (Raven's Feast) Thursday, August 31 Guest Post at Jathan & Heather Monday, September 4 Review at Book Nerd Thursday, September 14 Interview at Dianne Ascroft's Blog Sunday, September 17 Review at Svetlana's Reads and Views Wednesday, September 20 Feature at CelticLady's Reviews Monday, September 25 Review at Mary's Bookcase Review at The True Book Addict

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a signed paperback copy of Raven's Feast! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below. Giveaway Rules – Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on September 25th. 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.

Raven's Feast