Friday, September 22, 2017

Twilight Empress: A Novel of Imperial Rome by Faith L. Justice


Twilight Empress: A Novel of Imperial Rome by Faith L. Justice

Publication Date: May 12, 2017
Raggedy Moon Books
eBook & Print; 392 Pages

Series: The Theodosian Women, Book 1
Genre: Fiction/Historical/Action & Adventure


Twilight Empress tells the little-known story of a remarkable woman—Galla Placidia, sister to one of the last Roman Emperors. Roman princess, Gothic captive and queen—Placidia does the unthinkable—she rules the failing Western Roman Empire—a life of ambition, power and intrigue she doesn’t seek, but can’t refuse. Her actions shape the face of Western Europe for centuries.

A woman as well as an Empress, Placidia suffers love, loss, and betrayal. Can her strength, tenacity and ambition help her survive and triumph over scheming generals, rebellious children, and Attila the Hun? Or will the Dark Ages creep closer and bring down the Empire?

Amazon US | Amazon CAN | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble | iBooks | IndieBound | Kobo

About the Author

Faith L. Justice is a science geek and history junkie, which is reflected in her writing. Her short stories and poems have appeared in such publications as "The Copperfield Review", "Beyond Science Fiction and Fantasy", and the "Circles in the Hair" anthology. Faith has published in such venues as "Salon.com", "Writer’s Digest", "The Writer", and "Bygone Days". She’s an Associate Editor for "Space & Time Magazine", a frequent contributor to "Strange Horizons", and co-founded a writer’s workshop more years ago than she cares to admit.

To contact Faith, read her essays and interviews, or get a sneak preview of her historical novels, visit her website at www.faithljustice.com. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, September 11
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Tuesday, September 12
Feature at The Hungry Bookworm
Guest Post at Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Wednesday, September 13
Review at Book Drunkard

Thursday, September 14
Feature at The Reading Queen

Friday, September 15
Review & Excerpt at Clarissa Reads it All

Monday, September 18
Review at Creating Herstory

Tuesday, September 19
Review at The Muse in the Fog Reviews

Wednesday, September 20
Guest Post & Giveaway at The Muse in the Fog Reviews

Thursday, September 21
Feature at A Holland Reads

Friday, September 22
Review at Book Nerd

Monday, September 25
Review at So Many Books, So Little Time
Review & Excerpt at Locks, Hooks and Books

Tuesday, September 26
Feature at The True Book Addict

Wednesday, September 27
Review at Pursuing Stacie
Review & Giveaway at What Cathy Read Next

Friday, September 29
Review at Bookramblings
Feature at CelticLady's Reviews

Monday, October 2
Review at History From a Woman's Perspective

Tuesday, October 3
Review at Svetlana's Reads and Views

Wednesday, October 4
Interview & Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Thursday, October 5
Review at A Bookish Affair

Monday, September 18, 2017

ARC Review: Dirty Dancing at Devil's Leap by Julie Anne Long

Julie Anne Long is a hit or miss author with me, I read one of her contemporary books in the past and didn’t care for it.  I also read one of her historical, “It Started With a Scandal” which I absolutely loved and have read and re-read several times. If anyone is a historical fiction reader, “It Started With a Scandal” is a must read.  “Dirty Dancing at Devil’s Leap” has been on my e-reader for a few weeks now and it wasn’t until I read so many great reviews about it that I started to read it.

The story starts Avalon Harwood.  When the story begins she is at the top of her game.  Thanks to an ingenious idea she has joined Silicon Valley’s top programmers when she invents a virtual game that makes her not only a lot of money, but also very famous.  It is only when she is feeling at her best, at the top of her game, when she happens to walk in on her boyfriend and their intern in the middle of having sex.  Ava is furious, not only is her boyfriend-well hers, but he is also her business partner.  She packs up her bags and heads to her hometown- Hellcat Canyon.

When she returns to Hellcat Canyon Ava reminisces about her childhood and also her childhood love-  Maximilian “Mac” Coltrane.  Max comes from a very wealthy family and when he and Ava were growing up they were from very different backgrounds-him wealthy hers not.  Now because of turn in events, Ava is the wealthy one and Max is living a life very different from the one he grew up accustomed to.  When Max’s childhood home is put up on the market Ava wins it in an auction, she feels like she has finally been able to fulfill her childhood dreams and plans to turn the house around-it has decayed over the years- and sell it. Fortunately, or unfortunately, for Ava has very different plans and he wants to buy back his childhood home and get Ava off his property.  Both Ava and Max are worthy opponents and they have plenty of mischief up their sleeves. I’ll just say nudist and smelly fertilizer is involved.

Overall, this was a cute story but it felt very long and drawn out.  The secondary characters seemed more like fillers and I didn’t really gain too much interest in them. Max was a nice hero but there weren’t too many qualities about him that really made him memorable.  One of the reasons that Ava and him had a falling out was because when they were dating Ava heard Max say deeming things about Ava and her financial circumstances.  As he grew up and became more of himself and less of his father, Max was very sorry for the hurtful things he said and did not feel the same anymore.  He spent his adult years become more of himself. Even though I didn’t love this story I do plan to keep reading more books by Julie Ann Long.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

ARC Review: The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare

review posted on: http://ramblingsfromthischick.blogspot.com
and http://booknerdloleotodo.blogspot.com
I’ve had a galley of “The Duchess Deal” for several weeks and I cannot believe it took me until the publication date to get around to reading it! I’ve read Tessa Dare before and loved her books! “The Duchess Deal” had me laughing so hard I had to out the book down. There are so many funny and witty scenes I re-read them several times. I started highlighting witty dialogue and then gave up because more than half of the book would be highlighted! This is a true beauty and a beast love story with laughter, tenderness and very, very, sexy scenes!

First, the heroine. She is one of my all-time favorites! Emma Gladstone vicar’s daughter turned seamstress was everything anyone could hope for in a heroine. She is sweet, tender, tough, funny witty and resourceful! Life has knocked her down a few times and she fought her way up. With pricked fingers from her trade she marches up to the Duke of Ashbury and demands compensation for the gown she sewed for his ex-fiancĂ©e. Although the wedding never took place, Emma needs the money to pay for her rent. Emma refuses to be kicked out on the street and in the cold again. She went down that road once before and she won’t do it again.

Soon after his engagement is called off, Ash finds himself in need of a wife. It shouldn’t be so hard since he is extremely wealthy. But the brutal scars he received on the battlefield are deterrents to any lady of the ton. When Emma appears in his study wearing his ex-fiancee’s wedding dress Ash is sure that he has never seen anything like this before. First the dress is hideous and Ash tells Emma so and second he is in desperate need of a duchess. When Ash makes Emma an offer she cannot refuse-she refuses! She is certain that Ash is mentally unstable and gratefully takes her fee for the dress and leaves. But Ash is not ready to concede defeat yet and he finds Emma at the local dress shop where she works. Emma realizes that she is given an opportunity that she will never receive again. Her father has disowned her and her trade will only take her so far. She accepts but Ash has very specific rules for their union. Theirs is a union of convenience and there is to be no affection between them. Once Emma provides Ash with an heir her duties will have been completed and she can run off to a little house he owns in the country and live out the rest of her existence as she wishes. The plan seems simple enough if Emma and Ash don’t end up falling in love with one another. But both Emma and Ash carry a lot of hurt and anger from their past. They are both not use to feeling vulnerable since in the past it has ended up with both their hearts broken.

Needless to say this was such a fun story to read! It was so gratifying on so many levels. The witty quips back and forth and the amazing chemistry made Ash or “bumpkin” as Emma likes to call him, a great couple. I really enjoyed both of them as individual characters and as a couple. I ached for them and all the hurt that they carried and triumphed with them when they finally find love! This is definitely one of my all-time favorite stories!

**ARC provided by Publisher**

Friday, September 8, 2017

The Soldier's Return by Laura Libricz


The Soldier's Return by Laura Libricz

Publication Date: September 15, 2017
eBook & Paperback

Series: Heaven's Pond Trilogy, Book Two
Genre: Historical Fiction


The year is 1626. A senseless war rips through parts of Germany. Ongoing animosity between the Catholics and the Protestants has turned into an excuse to destroy much of the landscape situated between France, Italy and Denmark. But religion only plays a minor role in this lucrative business of war.

The young dutchman, Pieter van Diemen, returns to Amsterdam in chains after a period of imprisonment in the Spice Islands. He manages to escape but must leave Amsterdam in a hurry. Soldiers are in demand in Germany and he decides to travel with a regiment until he can desert. His hope of survival is to reach Sichardtshof, the farm in Franconia, Germany; the farm he left ten years ago. His desire to seek refuge with them lies in his fond memories of the maid Katarina and her master, the humanist patrician Herr Tucher. But ten years is a long time and the farm has changed. Franconia is not only torn by war but falling victim to a church-driven witch hunt. The Jesuit priest, Ralf, has his sights set on Sichardtshof as well. Ralf believes that ridding the area of evil will be his saving grace. Can Pieter, Katarina and Herr Tucher unite to fight against a senseless war out of control?

The Soldier’s Return is the second book in the Heaven’s Pond Trilogy and will be released on September 15, 2017.

Available on Amazon


About the Author

Laura Libricz was born and raised in Bethlehem PA and moved to Upstate New York when she was 22. After working a few years building Steinberger guitars, she received a scholarship to go to college. She tried to ‘do the right thing’ and study something useful, but spent all her time reading German literature.

She earned a BA in German at The College of New Paltz, NY in 1991 and moved to Germany, where she resides today. When she isn’t writing she can be found sifting through city archives, picking through castle ruins or aiding the steady flood of musical instruments into the world market.

Her first novel, The Master and the Maid, is the first book of the Heaven's Pond Trilogy. The Soldier’s Return and Ash and Rubble are the second and third books in the series.

For more information, please visit Laura Libricz's website and blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, September 4
A Book Geek
Mello & June, It's a Book Thang!

Tuesday, September 5
100 Pages a Day
The Reading Queen

Wednesday, September 6
Must Read Faster
Just One More Chapter

Thursday, September 7
The Writing Desk
The Maiden's Court
To Read, Or Not to Read

Friday, September 8
Book Nerd
CelticLady's Reviews

Saturday, September 9
Passages to the Past
Books, Dreams, Life

Sunday, September 10
I Heart Reading

Monday, September 11
A Literary Vacation
Myths, Legends, Books & Coffee Pots

Tuesday, September 12
Jo's Book Blog
WS Momma Readers Nook

Wednesday, September 13
Laura's Interests
Oh, For the Hook of a Book

Thursday, September 14
A Holland Reads
Svetlana's Reads and Views

Friday, September 15
T's Stuff
Pursuing Stacie

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

The Talented Ribkins by Ladee Hubbard



Ladee Hubbard, author of The Talented Ribkins, on tour August/September

Posted By  on June 7, 2017

About The Talented Ribkins

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Melville House (August 8, 2017)
Winner of the 2016 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award
At seventy-two, Johnny Ribkins shouldn’t have such problems: He’s got one week to come up with the money he stole from his mobster boss or it’s curtains for Johnny.
What may or may not be useful to Johnny as he flees is that he comes from an African-American family that has been gifted with rather super powers that are rather sad, but superpowers nonetheless. For example, Johnny’s father could see colors no one else could see. His brother could scale perfectly flat walls. His cousin belches fire. And Johnny himself can make precise maps of any space you name, whether he’s been there or not.
In the old days, the Ribkins family tried to apply their gifts to the civil rights effort, calling themselves The Justice Committee. But when their, eh, superpowers proved insufficient, the group fell apart. Out of frustration Johnny and his brother used their talents to stage a series of burglaries, each more daring than the last.
Fast forward a couple decades and Johnny’s on a race against the clock to dig up loot he’s stashed all over Florida. His brother is gone, but he has an unexpected sidekick: his brother’s daughter, Eloise, who has a special superpower of her own.
Inspired by W.E.B. Du Bois’s famous essay “The Talented Tenth” and fuelled by Ladee Hubbard’s marvelously original imagination, The Talented Ribkins is a big-hearted debut novel about race, class, politics, and the unique gifts that, while they may cause some problems from time to time, bind a family together.
“For sheer reading pleasure Ladee Hubbard’s original and wildly inventive novel is in a class by itself.” —Toni Morrison, Nobel Prize-winning author of The Bluest EyeBeloved, and Song of Solomon
“Crafty and wistful…Hubbard weaves this narrative with prodigious skill and compelling warmth. You anticipate a movie while wondering if any movie could do this fascinating family…well, justice. To describe this novel, as someone inevitably will, as Song of Solomon reimagined as a Marvel Comics franchise is to shortchange its cleverness and audacity.” —Kirkus, starred review
The Talented Ribkins is a charming and delightful debut novel with a profound heart, and Ladee Hubbard’s voice is a welcome original.” —Mary Gaitskill, author of Bad Behavior and Veronica
“What a pleasure it was to take a road trip with The Talented Ribkins, a simultaneously gifted and flawed family, sharp-witted but prone to making utterly human errors. Ladee Hubbard has given us a fresh and original debut novel.”  —Jami Attenberg, author of All Grown Up
“With The Talented Ribkins, Ladee Hubbard proves herself to be a rare talent who pops onto the scene fully formed as a writer of power and purpose. This is a heart-wrenching quest into the absurdity that is family. Like the best literary fantasies, The Talented Ribkins succeeds because the heart that beats at its center couldn’t be realer.” —Mat Johnson, author of Loving Day and Pym
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Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

About Ladee Hubbard

Laddee Hubbard is the winner of the 2016 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writer’s Award and the William Faulkner-William Wisdom Creative Writing Competition for the Short Story. She holds a BA from Princeton University, an MFA in Dramatic Writing from New York University, an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Wisconsin, and a PhD from the University of California, Los Angeles. She lives in New Orleans, Louisiana. The Talented Ribkins is her first novel.

Ladee Hubbard’s TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Tuesday, August 8th: Lovely Bookshelf
Wednesday, August 9th: Wildmoo Books
Friday, August 11th: 5 Minutes for Books
Monday, August 14th: Jenn’s Bookshelves
Wednesday, August 16th: Lit and Life
Friday, August 18th: Book Lover Book Reviews
Monday, August 21st: Books and Bindings
Wednesday, August 23rd: Too Fond
Friday, August 25th: Broken Teepee
Monday, August 28th: Reading Reality
Wednesday, August 30th: Must Read Faster
Thursday, August 31st: Kahakai Kitchen
Friday, September 1st: Bloggin’ ‘Bout Books
Tuesday, September 5th: All Roads Lead to the Kitchen
Wednesday, September 6th: Book Nerd
Thursday, September 7th: Read in Colour
Monday, September 11th: Suzy Approved
Wednesday, September 13th: Patricia’s Wisdom
Friday, September 15th: Thoughts on This ‘n That

Monday, September 4, 2017

Raven's Feast by Eric Schumacher

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