The Captive Queen by Danny Saunders – Spotlight & Giveaway (US/Canada&more)

September 9th, 2014

Please join me today as I spotlight and give away a copy of Danny Saunders book The Captive Queen which is touring with Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours.  Enjoy…

 

captive

Publication Date: April 24, 2014
CreateSpace Independent Publishing
Formats: eBook, Paperback
Genre: Historical Fiction

 

Political schemes, religious partisanship and unbridled love shake the Royal Court of Scotland at the end of the Stuart dynasty.

Witness to sordid murders, spy for Her Majesty among the Protestants of the infamous preacher John Knox, forced to give up her one true love, thrown out onto the streets then ruthlessly attacked by a drunkard, Charlotte Gray will do everything in her power to remain the sovereign’s lady-in-waiting.

As for the Queen of Scots, she faces turmoil of a completely different kind: prisoner in a castle under the command of her cousin, Queen Elizabeth I of England, Mary Stuart learns that she is the victim of a vast conspiracy and that her English counterpart has ordered her imminent execution.

Despite their hardships, Mary and Charlotte will keep their dignity throughout the storm. The two women will finally find serenity, one in the arms of a man and the other in the arms of God.

Interwoven with historical facts of the era, the thrilling The Captive Queen saga is worthy of the greatest royal intrigues that still fascinate us several centuries later.

 

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Buy the Book

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Amazon AUS
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About the Author

dannyDanny Saunders is a true European history enthusiast. He has always been keenly interested in royalty. Danny holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and also pursued communication studies at the university level. He has worked as a journalist for various written and electronic media. Of Scottish descent, Danny takes genuine pride in his British roots. The Captive Queen: A Novel of Mary Stuart is his first historical novel.

To find out more about the author Danny Saunders, you can visit his website at www.dannysaunders.com. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

 

Wathc the Book Trailer

 

GIVEAWAY – OPEN TO US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and Ireland
1 paperback copy of The Captive Queen
*CLICK HERE* and fill out the form to enter
Draw Date September 27/14
Good luck!
(comments are welcome but do not count as an entry)
 

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The House We Grew Up In by Lisa Jewell (Audiobook)

September 8th, 2014

houseThe House We Grew Up In by Lisa Jewell is one of the She Reads Books of Fall that are being announced today and what a great start! I loved each and every page of this book. I listened to the audiobook which is narrated by Karina Fernandez and she does such a beautiful job of bringing this novel and its characters alive. I haven’t listened to her before but I wouldn’t hesitate to again. The House We Grew Up In is an emotional and beautifully told story that I’m sure will stay with me for a long time.

The Bird family is your run of the mill family living in a Cotswold village. There’s Meg who is sensible and straightforward and Beth who goes with the flow and idolizes her sister. Then there are the twin boys Rory and Ryhs. Rory is the outgoing and more popular twin whole Ryhs is more of a loner and withdrawn. Dad is the kind of guy who just wants everyone to be happy but it’s really mom Lorelei who shines in this family. She is the heart of everything with her sweet nature and free spirit. She’s the kind of mom who takes joy in birthday parties, Easter, Christmas and just about anything that gives her a reason to celebrate.

In the meantime though she’s busy collecting things. Mementos she calls them and slowly they are filling up each and every spare spot in the home. Then in one split second it all changes. Tragedy strikes the family and it isn’t long before their seemingly perfect family becomes unhinged.

As the years pass they find the children grown and Lorelei has managed to become the village’s worst hoarder. Her husband has left and her children and grandchildren aren’t even able to visit due to the hoard. Consequently Lorelei has lived her days as a very lonely woman and yet still she refuses to part with any of her things. The Bird family can’t escape tragedy and the latest one brings the family back home. Back home to confront their mother’s hoard and even more to face and accept how the events of the past changed them all.

This was such a good story and one that stirs so many emotions. It deals with a family tragedy that has repercussions for years to come. While Lorelei liked to collect things maybe her illness might not have been so severe without the tragic incident hanging over her and this is the case with so many hoarders. Their desire to collect leaves them broke, lonely, and alienated from family. The characters in this book make many mistakes but eventually learn that forgiveness is the only way to move on.

I really connected with the Bird family. I felt joy for their happy moments and sorrow for the sad ones. You can’t ask for much more from a really good story that ultimately touches your heart in many ways. Highly recommended for lovers of women’s fiction!

 

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Author Links: Facebook, Twitter
Buy at: Amazon, Amazon Canada, B&N

 

Source:  Digital review copy provided by the publisher however audiobook from my personal library.  No compensation was received for this review and all thoughts and opinions are that of the blog owner.

The Agincourt Bride by Joanna Hickson

September 5th, 2014

agincourtThe Agincourt Bride by Joanna Hickson highlights the many reasons I love historical fiction. I was swept away to another time and place and into the life of Catherine de Valois who was the daughter of Charles IV, King of France, and Isabeau of Bavaria, the Queen of France. This novel is rich in historical detail and begins in the early 1400′s at the start of Catherine’s life up until she marries King Henry V, hence becoming the Queen of England. I listened to the audio which is narrated by Catherine Harvey who does an amazing job. I listened every chance I got and in truth breezed through the almost seventeen hours of this audio in no time and loved every minute.

The story is told from the viewpoint of Mette who after losing her own child became nurse to Catherine. At first Mette doesn’t warm to Catherine but it isn’t long before the child has her whole heart and Mette will do anything for her. As unlikely as one would think the royal children were treated horribly by their governess which continued until finally Queen Isabeau showed up and decided that finally her children would be of some use to her in forming alliances. It is then that Catherine finally meets her father who was already considered mad and of course unfit to rule at all. As the story evolves we follow Catherine as she is used to pull in King Henry V yet at the same time suffers at the hands of the Duke of Burgundy and her mother. Ultimately though she is married to King Henry V and that is where this story ends. Lucky enough for us readers there is a sequel in The Tudor Bride coming soon!

Putting court intrigue and politics aside what I loved most about this novel other than the historical aspect was the way it was told through Mette. As a reader I appreciated the details of court life, the look into a royal household, and even into the everyday life of the common folk like Mette. Being told this way the reader is able to form a connection with Catherine because she seems so real and vulnerable in the circumstances. As always the treatment of women in these times horrifies me. They had no say over anything and being royal really gave no benefit as they were used as pawns and subjected to giving in to whatever was wanted for them. The author very vividly portrays the brutality of the time period and along with her descriptiveness on the overall happenings of the time I felt as though I had taken a step back in time.

I really enjoyed The Agincourt Bride and can’t wait to get my hands on The Tudor Bride. Highly recommended for lovers of historical fiction!

 

Other tour stops with TLC Book Tours
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Author Links: Twitter, Facebook
Buy at: Amazon, Amazon Canada, B&N, IndieBound

 

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Source: Audiobook from my personal library.  No compensation was received and all thoughts and opinions are that of the blog owner.

Cover Reveal & Giveaway for Nancy Bilyeau’s THE TAPESTRY

September 3rd, 2014

I’m really excited to share with you today the cover reveal for Nancy Bilyeau’s newest novel The Tapestry which is coming in March 2015!  Isn’t it just gorgeous – I love it!  It is Book 3 in the Joanna Stafford series and if you haven’t yet experienced the first two books – The Crown and The Chalice – then I urge you to indulge yourself.  These books are what historical fiction is all about and I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy of The Tapestry myself.  I’m going to tell you about the book and the author and be sure to enter the giveaway at the end of the post for a chance to win a copy for yourself.

 

tapestry

Publication Date: March 24, 2015
Touchstone Publishing
Formats: eBook, Hardcover
Pages: 390

Genre: Historical Mystery
Series: Joanna Stafford, Book Three

 

In THE CROWN, Sister Joanna Stafford searched for a Dark Ages relic that could save her priory from Cromwell’s advancing army of destruction. In THE CHALICE, Joanna was drawn into an international conspiracy against Henry VIII himself as she struggled to learn the truth behind a prophecy of his destruction.

Now, in THE TAPESTRY, Joanna Stafford finally chooses her own destiny.

After her Dominican priory in Dartford closed forever—collateral damage in tyrannical King Henry VIII’s quest to overthrow the Catholic Church—Joanna resolves to live a quiet and honorable life weaving tapestries, shunning dangerous quests and conspiracies. Until she is summoned to Whitehall Palace, where her tapestry weaving has drawn the King’s attention.

Joanna is uncomfortable serving the King, and fears for her life in a court bursting with hidden agendas and a casual disregard for the virtues she holds dear. Her suspicions are confirmed when an assassin attempts to kill her moments after arriving at Whitehall.

Struggling to stay ahead of her most formidable enemy yet, an unknown one, she becomes entangled in dangerous court politics. Her dear friend Catherine Howard is rumored to be the King’s mistress. Joanna is determined to protect young, beautiful, naïve Catherine from becoming the King’s next wife and, possibly, victim.

Set in a world of royal banquets and feasts, tournament jousts, ship voyages, and Tower Hill executions, this thrilling tale finds Joanna in her most dangerous situation yet, as she attempts to decide the life she wants to live: nun or wife, spy or subject, rebel or courtier. Joanna Stafford must finally choose.

 

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Pre-Order the Book

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About the Author

nancybNancy Bilyeau has worked on the staffs of InStyle, Rolling Stone, Entertainment Weekly, and Ladies Home Journal. She is currently the executive editor of DuJour magazine. Her screenplays have placed in several prominent industry competitions. Two scripts reached the semi-finalist round of the Nicholl Fellowships of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences. Her screenplay “Zenobia” placed with the American Zoetrope competition, and “Loving Marys” reached the finalist stage of Scriptapalooza. A native of the Midwest, she earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan. THE CROWN, her first novel, was published in 2012; the sequel, THE CHALICE, followed in 2013. THE TAPESTRY will be released in March 2015.

Nancy lives in New York City with her husband and two children. Stay in touch with her on Twitter at @tudorscribe. For more information please visit Nancy Bilyeau’s website.

 

GIVEAWAY – OPEN TO US & CANADIAN RESIDENTS

1 paperback copy of The Tapestry by Nancy Bilyeau

*CLICK HERE* and fill out the form to enter

Draw Date September 20/14

Good luck!

(comments are welcomed but do not count as an entry)

 

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