Beth's Book-Nook Blog

Reviews of What I've Been Reading….

BENEATH A SCARLET SKY by Mark Sullivan

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A Note From the Publisher

So – now I think: “this reminds me of a Mark Sullivan novel!”
I think this novel would appeal to many, and I particularly liked the afterword where Sullivan follows up on Pino and the other characters in how they lived the rest of their lives.
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THE PARIS SPY by Susan Elia MacNeal

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If you know me, you know I LOVE the Maggie Hope books! I always thought of them as cozy mysteries, but really that does not do them justice. I always learn something from reading them and they are serious, but not gory. They remind me of something I’d watch on PBS or the BBC — thoughtful and historically accurate, but entertaining. This latest is no exception. The war (WWII) is progressing, and Maggie is still hard at work for the Allies. Planning for the D-Day Invasion is the storyline behind this novel, and Maggie is trying to get top secret information through to those who need it. As always Susan Elia MacNeal has done her research and presents loads of historically accurate details to make her story come alive. I do love the strong character of Maggie, and I never get tired of reading these books!
Thank you for my review e-copy!
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HFVBTour for BLOOD MOON by Ruth Hull Chatlien with Giveaway!

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I haven’t done many book tours this summer as my tbr pile was huge and I was catching up, but I couldn’t say no to this novel – based on a true story of a woman held by Native Americans in Minnesota during the 1860’s. I enjoyed this story and found it so interesting. I particularly liked how Chatlien portrays the mixed feelings Sarah has and is faced with when she returns to her community. Her relationship with her husband is complex as is her relationship with her “captors” – whom she never feels are captors, but are her protectors. This was one of those books that I could not put down!

Here’s the scoop on it:

Blood Moon: A Captive’s Tale by Ruth Hull Chatlien

Publication Date: June 14, 2017
Amika Press
Paperback & eBook; 424 Pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

READ AN EXCERPT.

Southern Minnesota, August 1862. Smoke fills the horizon and blood soaks the prairie as the Sioux fight to drive white settlers from their ancestral homeland. Sarah Wakefield and her young son and baby daughter are fleeing for their lives when two warriors capture them. One is Hapa, who intends to murder them. The other is Chaska, an old acquaintance who promises to protect the family. Chaska shelters them in his mother’s tepee, but with emotions running so high among both Indians and whites, the danger only intensifies. As she struggles to protect herself and those she loves, Sarah is forced to choose between doing what others expect of her and following her own deep beliefs.

“Chatlien’s mastery of the historical period—especially the life and culture of the Sioux—is notable and creates a fictional atmosphere of authenticity. A subtle dramatization of the conflict between white settlers and Native Americans in the 19th century.” – Kirkus Reviews

“Richly detailed, Blood Moon is an intrepid tale of bravery and adventure in America’s western frontiers. Perfect for fans of immersive historical fiction.” – Stephanie Thornton, author of The Tiger Queens and The Conqueror’s Wife

“An engrossing tale of struggle and justice-of friendship, mercy, and a rare, moving love. Ruth Hull Chatlien writes with great sensitivity and vivid yet subtle prose. Blood Moon is a must-read for fans of western novels, as well as women’s historical fiction.” -Libbie Hawker, author of Tidewater

Amazon | Amika Press | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

About the Author

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Ruth Hull Chatlien has been a writer and editor of educational materials for nearly thirty years, specializing in U.S. and world history. She is the author of Modern American Indian Leaders for middle-grade readers. Her award-winning first novel, The Ambitious Madame Bonaparte, portrays the tumultuous life of Elizabeth “Betsy” Patterson Bonaparte. Her latest novel, Blood Moon: A Captive’s Tale, is now available for pre-order.

She lives in northeastern Illinois with her husband, Michael, and a very pampered dog named Smokey. When she’s not writing, she can usually be found gardening, knitting, drawing, painting, or watching football.

For more information please visit Ruth’s website. You can also connect with her on FacebookTwitter, and Goodreads. Sign up for Ruth’s newsletter here.

Blog Tour Schedule

02_Blood Moon

Monday, August 7
Review at A Bookish Affair

Tuesday, August 8
Excerpt at Let Them Read Books

Wednesday, August 9
Interview at The Book Junkie Reads

Monday, August 14
Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book!

Tuesday, August 15
Spotlight at A Literary Vacation

Wednesday, August 16
Spotlight at Cafinated Reads

Thursday, August 17
Review at Beth’s Book Nook Blog

Monday, August 21
Review at Must Read Faster

Friday, August 25
Review at Svetlana’s Reads and Views

Monday, August 28
Review at Book Nerd

Tuesday, August 29
Spotlight at CelticLady’s Reviews

Thursday, August 31
Review at Jorie Loves a Story

Friday, September 1
Review at Broken Teepee
Interview & Excerpt at Jorie Loves a Story

Thursday, September 7
Review at Locks, Hooks, and Books

Friday, September 8
Spotlight at Passages to the Past

Giveaway

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away 5 copies of Blood Moon: A Captive’s Tale and two $25 Amazon Gift Cards! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on September 8th. 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.

 

DIRECT LINK: https://gleam.io/y5vPi/bloodmoon

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One for Sorrow by Mary Downing Hahn

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I found this title online and was happy to receive it through Net Galley for my iPad.

It is billed as a children’s book, but I think the content more appropriate for YA or adults. (similar to the conversations about WOLF HOLLOW — is that really a children’s book? I say not).

In this novel, young Annie is the new girl at school and she snubs an unpopular but clingy and unkind girl, who then contracts influenza and haunts Annie. Lots to think and talk about with this one in regards to how we treat others, and/or in the historical context of WWI.

Here’s the overview:

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Again — it’s not just for children! I enjoyed it and read it straight through in a sitting.
Thank you for my review copy!
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THE ALICE NETWORK by Kate Quinn

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I had heard some chatter about this novel when it first came out earlier this summer, so I was excited to score a copy through Edelweiss. This was a compelling story about female Resistance members and spies in both WWI and WWII (which you rarely get in a novel!).

Here’s the overview via Amazon:

1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She’s also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie’s parents banish her to Europe to have her “little problem” taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she’s recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she’s trained by the mesmerizing Lili, code name Alice, the “queen of spies,” who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy’s nose.

Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. That is until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn’t heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the truth . . . no matter where it leads.

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Oh my goodness — how I loved these characters, Charlie and Eve! Such strong women who could truly fight for a cause. I love it when the main characters are just so perfectly imperfect. You love them because they seem so real.

This was a solid story — at times sad, at times I laughed.

Highly recommended for fans of historical fiction!

Thank you for my review copy!!

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DEVOTION by Meg Kerr

A few months ago, Prism Publishers in Canada sent me a pdf of Meg Kerr’s new novel DEVOTION, a continuation of Pride and Prejudice. Thank you!!

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Here’s the overview:

After answering in her first novel Experience some burning questions that Pride & Prejudice fans have always asked — just how happy ever after were Elizabeth and Darcy following their wedding? And what became of the other Bennet sisters?— in her companion novel Devotion Meg continues  the story of the Darcy family, with particular attention to Darcy’s younger sister, Georgiana.

Devotion follows the now 20-year-old Georgiana Darcy. While her brother sets out without her knowledge to secure her a husband, Georgiana, upon receipt of a long-delayed letter, embarks on a secret journey—leading to a chance meeting with a charming yet wicked young man with nefarious intentions.

The story is full of intrigue, romance and humour, it also brings to the forefront stories of some other characters first introduced in Jane Austen’s beloved Pride & Prejudice, including Caroline Bingley and Pen Harrington, and seamlessly introduces new characters while maintaining the integrity of Austen’s beloved classic tale.

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I have to be honest, now, and say that normally I detest these types of novels as authors rarely “get it right” (remember – I spend my spare time cavorting around the home of the Alcott’s and I consider Louisa May a kindred spirit. No one has captured LMA’s storytelling skills to date.).

I have to say that I loved this story! I loved the writing and was amazed by how well Ms. Kerr captured the nuances of 19th century style. I enjoyed the storyline and I think that others who love Austen will, too.

FROM JULY 15-JULY 19, 2017 YOU CAN GET DEVOTION FREE FOR YOUR KINDLE VIA AMAZON! Woot!

Here’s a bit about her (I want her to visit Boston so I can show her Orchard House and we can talk about the 1800’s. I will wear my hoop skirt!):

What do you do when you live in the twenty-first century but a piece of your heart lies in the nineteenth? If you are author Meg Kerr you let your head and hand follow your heart. With her love of country life—dogs and horses, long walks in the woods and fields, dining with family and neighbours and dancing with friends, reading and writing and the best conversation—and her familiarity with eighteenth and nineteenth century history and literature, Meg has a natural gift to inhabit, explore and reimagine the world that Jane Austen both dwelt in and created, and to draw readers there with her.

Her forthcoming book, Devotion, will be available in the summer of 2017.

 Here are a few videos of Meg talking about her novel – check them out!

https://www.dropbox.com/s/472d9xav1c9qprc/DEVOTION_3TheOthers.mp4?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/l8uxexsw4qsz6pz/DEVOTION_2MrDarcy.mp4?dl=0

 

 

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THE WITCHFINDER’S SISTER by Beth Underdown

So — I recently found this novel on Net Galley and since I love historical fiction and things like Salem, I thought it would be a great read.

This book totally haunted me and I was horrified to find out it was based on many real events. It was very well done and well-written but also very disturbing. The characters are well developed and more than once I was thankful that I did not live in those times!

Here’s the overview via Net Galley (I loved the gorgeous cover!):

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Thank you for my review copy!
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The Woman on the Orient Express by Lindsay Jayne Ashford

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I had heard about this book, so I was excited when I saw it come up on sale for kindle recently. I bought it and read it on my recent vacation. I’m a huge Christie fan, and I knew about her time “missing” when she was dealing with her marriage issues and stress. This book takes it the next step to create the situation of Agatha taking the Orient Express in order to recuperate from her divorce and to not think about her husband’s upcoming marriage. She meets two women – both with something to hide, and the three become friends, sharing some adventures and excitement along the way.

Here’s the overview via Amazon:

Hoping to make a clean break from a fractured marriage, Agatha Christie boards the Orient Express in disguise. But unlike her famous detective Hercule Poirot, she can’t neatly unravel the mysteries she encounters on this fateful journey.

Agatha isn’t the only passenger on board with secrets. Her cabinmate Katharine Keeling’s first marriage ended in tragedy, propelling her toward a second relationship mired in deceit. Nancy Nelson—newly married but carrying another man’s child—is desperate to conceal the pregnancy and teeters on the brink of utter despair. Each woman hides her past from the others, ferociously guarding her secrets. But as the train bound for the Middle East speeds down the track, the parallel courses of their lives shift to intersect—with lasting repercussions.

Filled with evocative imagery, suspense, and emotional complexity, The Woman on the Orient Express explores the bonds of sisterhood forged by shared pain and the power of secrets.

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I loved this novel! It did an excellent job in portraying Ms. Christie and the pain and struggle that comes with a major life change. There was a bit of a mystery, along with a range of emotions. It was an excellent read and I highly recommend it to lovers of historical fiction (and Agatha Christie!).

 

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Litfuse Publicity Tour for THE CAPTAIN’S DAUGHTER by Jennifer Delamere

I’m happy to take part in the Litfuse tour for this lovely book by Jennifer Delamere: THE CAPTAIN’S DAUGHTER. I would classify it as a Victorian/Christian Romance. It is the story of an orphan (now young woman) who makes her way in London, in part by becoming part of a Gilbert and Sullivan stage show. As a theater buff, I really enjoyed that aspect of the book! Overall, the word “gentle” comes to mind when I read this story- it’s a clean read and a happy ending.

I received an e-copy to review – thank you! And thank you for making me part of the tour.

Book info

About the book:
Warm-hearted Victorian romance brings 1880s London to life.
 
When a series of circumstances beyond her control leave Rosalyn Bernay alone and penniless in London, she chances upon a job backstage at a theater that is presenting the most popular show in London. A talented musician and singer, she feels immediately at home and soon becomes enthralled with the idea of pursuing a career on the stage.
A hand injury during a skirmish in India has forced Nate Moran out of the army until he recovers. Filling his time at a stable of horses for hire in London, he has also spent the past two months working nights as a stagehand, filling in for his injured brother. Although he’s glad he can help his family through a tough time, he is counting the days until he can rejoin his regiment. London holds bitter memories for him that he is anxious to escape. But then he meets the beautiful woman who has found a new lease on life in the very place Nate can’t wait to leave behind.

About the author:
 
Jennifer Delamere’s debut Victorian romance, “An Heiress at Heart,” was a 2013 RITA award finalist in the inspirational category. Her follow-up novel, “A Lady Most Lovely,” received a starred review from “Publishers Weekly” and the Maggie Award for Excellence from Georgia Romance Writers. Jennifer earned a BA in English from McGill University in Montreal, where she became fluent in French and developed an abiding passion for winter sports. She’s been an editor of nonfiction and educational materials for nearly two decades, and lives in North Carolina with her husband.
 
Find out more about Jennifer at jenniferdelamere.com.
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 Blog Tour Schedule
Landing page:

Tour Schedule:
6/20
Amy | A Nest in the Rocks
Debra | 3 Partners in Shopping, Nana, Mommy, & Sissy, Too !
Heidi | Heidi Reads…
Jalynn | A Simple Life, really?!
Kayleigh | Neverending Stories
Rachel | Smiling Book Reviews
Stacey | Books,Dreams,Life
Vik Tory | Manuscript Tunes

6/21
Carrie | Reading Is My SuperPower
Megan | Pursuing Intentional Living
Mimi | Woven by Words
Sally | Proverbial Reads

6/22
Annie | Just Commonly
Colleen | ColleenRichman.com
Erin | For Him and My Family
Keri | My Table of Three
Lena Nelson | A Christian Writer’s World

6/23
Chantal | This Chattanooga Mommy Saves
Gayle | BOOKS REVEIWS ETC
Hallie | Book by Book
Leah | As We Walk Along the Road
Michelle | I Hope You Dance

6/24
Marissa | The Review Stew

6/25
Becky | Christian Chick’s Thoughts
Carole | The Power of Words
Deana | Texas Book-aholic
Lisa | A Rup Life
Sarah | Running Through The Storms

6/26
Billy | Ramblings of a Coffee Addicted Writer
Kelly | Leafy Not Beefy
Lindsey | Books for Christian Girls
Tressa | Wishful Endings
Katie | Fiction Aficionado

6/27
Charity | Giveaway Lady
Kristie | Moments
Mackenzie | Spreading His Grace
Pamela | Daysong Reflections
Stacie | Pursuing Stacie
Carla | Working Mommy Journal

6/28
Kathleen | Reviews From The Heart
Lisa | Seeking with All yur Heart
Loraine | Loraine D. Nunley, Author
Madelyn | Literary Cafe
Maureen | Maureen’s Musings
Rachel | Bookworm Mama
Renee | Little Homeschool on the Prairie

6/29
Sydney | Singing Librarian Books

6/30
Alex | Inspiration Clothesline
Amanda | Inklings and notions
Amy | Pause for Tales
Andi | Radiant Light
Erin | ReviewsByErin
Stephanie | Have A Wonderful Day

7/1
Amanda | The Talbert Report
Elisha | Rainy Day Reviews
Julie | More Of Him
Renee | Black ‘n’ Gold Girl’s Book Spot
Vera | Chat With Vera
Veronica | Veronica’s ‘Views
Beth | Beth’s Book-Nook Blog

7/2
Barbara | I’m Hooked on Books
Erica | Live.Love.Read.
Katie | Too Read or Not Too Read

7/3
Andrea | Writing to Inspire
Becky | Living Outside the Lines
Molly | Cafinated Reads

7/4
Beth | For The Love of Books
Carolina | Cisneros Cafe
Nancy | sunny island breezes

7/5
Ashley | What’s She Reading?
Sherry | My Reading Journeys

7/6
Paphapin | Feeling in Red
Bree | Bibliophile Reviews
Charity | aTransParentMom
Heather | Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen
Mindy | A Room Wihtout Books is Empty

7/7
Bethany | The Perfect beginning
Dela | Pastries and Novel Thoughts
Tarah | Literary Time Out
Trish | View from the Birdhouse
Faye | Labor Not in Vain

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THE LIFE SHE WAS GIVEN by Ellen Marie Wiseman

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Another book I “wished” for on Net Galley – and was lucky enough to receive! – was THE LIFE SHE WAS GIVEN by Ellen Marie Wiseman. I had been hearing good things about this story of a girl who joins the circus. This was a really memorable read, interesting yet disturbing, and eventually I felt haunted by the ending. But – it was soooo good! If you like historical fiction, and can handle the disturbing child neglect/abuse, then you should check out this novel!

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Some readers may find the alternating points of view confusing, but each story was moving along a tangent where you know they would eventually converge.
If I had one issue, it’s that I like a happy ending that is neat and tidy.
This one still haunts me…
Thank you for my review copy!
You can find this book on Amazon where I am an Associate. It publishes in late July:

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