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Tag: "giveaway"

Giveaway: One Plus One by Jojo Moyes

[ 11 ] March 26, 2015

one plus one book coverI have 1 copy of One Plus One by Jojo Moyes to give away!

Open to US residents only

Check out Jojo’s online book club kit full of recipes, cocktails and even a playlist!

About the book

Jojo Moyes’ New York Times bestselling novel One Plus One is now available in paperback. Like her breakout smash hit Me Before You, One Plus One is a heartwarming tale of family dysfunction and devotion, the power of love, and second chances, told with Moyes’s trademark sensitivity and humor.

Suppose your life sucks—a lot. Your husband has done a vanishing act, your teenage stepson is being bullied, and your math whiz daughter has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you can’t afford to pay for. If you’re Jess Thomas, you do what you always do—make it work.

Jess and her family (including their giant, smelly dog Norman) begin their doomed-from-the-start adventure stranded on the side of the road next to a dilapidated Rolls Royce—sans license, sans insurance—having just been pulled over by the police for a missing headlight. And the unexpected knight in shining armor who rescues them? Geeky Ed, the obnoxious tech millionaire whose vacation home Jess happens to clean. With big problems of his own, Ed, in perhaps his first ever unselfish act, offers to drive Jess and her dysfunctional brood to the Maths Olympiad and a prize that could turn everything around for Jess’s family.

This unlikely cast of characters is easy to fall for: Nicky, Jess’s stepson, wears mascara, doesn’t fit in at school, but is fiercely protective of Tanzie, Jess’s precocious math prodigy daughter; Jess and Ed are the kind of opposites you love to watch attract; and pungent Norman, the immovable mascot of the back seat, is the best guard dog you’ll ever find drooling on your shoulder.

One Plus One is Jojo Moyes at her astounding best. You’ll laugh, you’ll weep, and when you turn the last page, you’ll want to start all over again.

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Tapestry by Nancy Bilyeau

[ 4 ] March 25, 2015

the tapestry book coverPlease join Nancy Bilyeau, author of The Tapestry, as she tours the blogosphere with TLC Book Tours!

Enter to win one of three signed hardcover copies of The Tapestry by completing the giveaway form below.

Reviewed by Colleen Turner

I think it’s important to first note that The Tapestry is the third book in author Nancy Bilyeau’s Joanna Stafford series. Having not previously read the first two books in the series before tackling The Tapestry, I would definitely advise others interested in the book to start at the beginning of the series. While it’s not completely necessary to do so, there is obviously a lot of backstory and history between the characters that, even with the author doing a very good job of trying to catch up new readers like me, just can’t be fully appreciated or understood when starting at book three. This somewhat diminishes the impact of the shocking turns of events that happen within the pages, which there are quite a few of. This being said, The Tapestry is still a very exciting and immersive dip into the dangerous world of the Tudor court.

When the novel begins our heroine Joanna Stafford is living a peaceful life in the country, weaving tapestries and living as devout a life as she can since Henry VIII dissolved the monasteries and ended her life as a novice in the Dominican church. This peace is shattered, however, when she receives a summons to come to court for a possible tapestry commission. As much as she doesn’t want to go, how can she refuse the King? Especially when she needs to prove she can support herself financially in order for her cousin, the head of the Stafford family, to allow her to raise her deceased cousin’s son, Arthur. With dread in her heart, she heads back to the court she hoped to never return to again.

Her trepidation is well founded when someone attacks her as soon as she steps into Whitehall Palace. Unable to leave court without the King’s permission and needing to know who is behind the attack, especially when so many powerful men seem to despise her – most notably Thomas Cromwell, Eustace Chapuys and the Duke of Norfolk – Joanna attempts to quietly find out who wishes her dead. With the help of Thomas Culpepper, gentleman of the King’s privy chamber, and later Constable Geoffrey Scovill, Joanna will use the skills she learned in her training as a spy for the Bishop of Winchester to unravel this mystery and keep herself and those she cares about safe from harm.

This being the Tudor court, Joanna also finds herself in the middle of other mysteries and dreadful occurrences. Her dear friend, Catherine Howard, is being pushed into the King’s bed by her uncle, the Duke of Norfolk, a power play that has proven fatal in the past. The man she almost married, Edmund, has disappeared somewhere in Germany and, desperate to find him, she goes on a mission to do so with the help of Constable Scovill, another man she has complicated feelings for. And on top of all this, Joanna finds herself amongst men she cares for who have elicited the help of those that practice dark magic in the hopes of freeing the King from the clutches of Thomas Cromwell, the man many see as responsible for the downfall of the Catholic Church in England. With all of this swirling around her, only an intelligent and resourceful woman like Joanna can hope to come out of it all with her head still on her shoulders and her feet firmly on the ground.

Anyone who enjoys reading novels set in the Tudor court will already be familiar with some of the more widespread issues being discussed – the religious upheavals, the constant shifts in allegiances between the King and his favored courtiers, the horrifying fates of Henry VIII’s wives – as well as the well-known characters populating the pages. Even without knowing Joanna’s backstory or her previous interactions with the other characters, anyone familiar with the court will already know the fates of some of the characters and will enjoy seeing them unfold from Joanna’s unique perspective. I would not recommend anyone unfamiliar with the Tudors to tackle The Tapestry without first reading the previous books in the series as there are a lot of characters and situations going on and, without knowing the actual history, it’s easy to get lost within the tangled web.

Having finished The Tapestry I’m very intrigued to go back and read the first two books in the series to see how we get to the actions in this book and to prepare for any future books in the series. This series seems a very well written and worthwhile addition to the wonderful world that is Tudor fiction.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Colleen lives in Tampa, Florida with her husband, son, and their dogs Oliver and Cleopatra. When not working or taking care of her family she has her nose stuck in a book (and, let’s face it, often when she is working or taking care of her family as well). Nothing excites her more than discovering a new author to obsess over or a hidden jewel of a book to worship. You can find more of her reviews on her blog.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Touchstone. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.

The Tapestry

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Giveaway: The Longest Ride Movie Prize Pack

[ 49 ] March 24, 2015

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To celebrate the release of The Longest Ride (in theaters April 10th), I have some prizes to give away! Check out the movie’s official website to learn more.

One lucky reader will receive a $25 Visa gift card to see the film in theaters, a tote bag & copy of the book (movie tie-in cover)! Open to US residents only

 

Based on the bestselling novel by master storyteller Nicholas Sparks, The Longest Ride centers on the star-crossed love affair between Luke, a former champion bull rider looking to make a comeback, and Sophia, a college student who is about to embark upon her dream job in New York City’s art world. As conflicting paths and ideals test their relationship, Sophia and Luke make an unexpected connection with Ira, whose memories of his own decades-long romance with his beloved wife deeply inspire the young couple. Spanning generations and two intertwining love stories, The Longest Ride explores the challenges and infinite rewards of enduring love.

Starring: Britt Robertson, Scott Eastwood, Jack Huston, Oona Chaplin, and Alan Alda. Directed by: George Tillman, Jr.

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Blog Tour & Giveaway: The Dead Key by D.M. Pulley

[ 15 ] March 18, 2015

the dead key book coverPlease join D.M. Pulley, author of The Dead Key, as she tours the blogosphere with TLC Book Tours!

Enter to win a copy of the book below – open to US and Canada

Reviewed by Jenna Arthur

The Dead Key by D.M. Pulley is a book full of mystery and intrigue. Set in two different time periods, the story begins in the late 1990’s and  follows a young civil engineer as she is sent on a special assignment to the First Bank of Cleveland. Ecstatic to be taken seriously and retreat from her boring cubicle life, Iris Latch jumps on the chance to advance her career and knowledge by taking on the large task of assessing the possibility that this old, decaying structure can be restored. Little does she know that the bank has a lot more history and is much more than it seems…

A renovation feasibility study turns into a curiosity and starts to unweave the tangled web of the past so long buried, a past when this foreboding business mysteriously fired all of its employees and closed. As Iris explores she starts to find things left behind, the most interesting, a key. This key is more than just a key–it is an instrument that opens many doors to mysteries, theft, and murder. With Iris delving more into its past, we are transported in between her world and the 1970s, where we find Miss Beatrice Baker, a young girl pretending to be something that she’s not, and more experienced than she is ready to be.

A naive girl, Beatrice jumps at the chance when she is presented with the opportunity to be more and make more of herself as a secretary at the First Bank of Cleveland. But as Beatrice finds out, the bank is a far darker and twisted place than it seems. It houses secrets, secrets that could be deadly. What unites these two curious women? The key. The key that unlocks the story.

For me, D.M. Pulley’s book didn’t pull me right in and I really had to commit to keep reading. Although filled with wondrous sentence structure and descriptions, the first quarter of the story was too slow for the type of book the description had made it out to be. But once invested and into the final three quarters of the book, there are more wonderful descriptions of architecture, more plots twists, and an interweaving of time periods and stories that all wind up being delightful. If you can hang on past the slow climb, The Dead Key is definitely worth a Saturday read.

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Jenna lives in the bustling city of Pittsburgh, PA with her wife, her chihuahua Penny, her retriever Ella and her two beautiful cats. Along with her passion for reading and the literary world, she is also an artist, writer, environmental activist, creative coordinator and aspiring culinary genius. She believes there is nothing better to her then a good book, and lives one cover to the next.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Thomas & Mercer. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.

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Interview & Giveaway: Irene Even, author of A Life of the Twentieth Century

[ 3 ] March 12, 2015

irene even headshotPlease welcome Irene Even, author of A Life of the Twentieth Century, as she tours the blogosphere with iRead Book Tours!

Enter to win an eCopy below – open internationally

Interview with Irene

Why did you decide to write A Life of the Twentieth Century as a fictionalized autobiography i​n​stead of a memoir?

Irene: The reason I have chosen​ to write A Life of the ​Twentieth Century as a fictionalized autobiography instead of as a memoir is because the minute I started to write my book, I realized that I could not possibly write this book in the first person, since I have never been able to talk about my life experiences. And so it happened that when I ​wrote​ it in the third person​,​ the story of my life became just a story​.​

What or who inspired you to put down your experiences during World War II on paper after all these years?

Irene: This story was waiting to be written, but my life was so very busy​ with my teaching​​ career​. Once all that was done​,​ I was free to write the story of my life​.​

Living through the horrors of World War II-especially as a child- had to be traumatic. Do you recall anything positive or uplifting from those years?

Irene: Some​ ​thing​s​ still bring a smile to my face as I think back on the most dangerous days while I lived with a false I.D in Budapest as a Christian. I was with a small Zionist group of young people and we were going everywhere freely; of course under the threat of instant execution, if caught. That didn’t stop us from going to the Gellert Hotel to swim, which was the Gestapo’s favorite hangout. Our Meetings were held on the Shwab Hegy​,​ again the headquarters of the Gestapo.

I am fascinated by kibbutzim and actually had a chance to visit a kibbutz when I was traveling through Israel. In your opinion, what are ​the ​pros and cons of such a collective community?

Irene: I have dear memories from the days of my stay in the kibbutz. That was the first place where I experienced ​freed​o​m​ and belonging, but that was then. The kibbutz had an important role to play in the creation of the state of Israel, it was the place where the immigrants from so many different countries have learned the love of the land, where they learned to work endlessly for the good of the community. But I think that times have changed, Israel has matured and the kibbutz has lost some of its importance.

What do you hope readers will take away from your book?

Irene: This would be difficult to answer; I think it depends on the individual reader, but I know that my book has an appeal to so many different readers and everyone would have to choose what they are looking for, and hopefully find it.

About the book

life of the twentieth century book coverA Life of the Twentieth Century is the story of Aya, who lived through the loss of her parents before the age of 3. At the age of twelve she was sent to a boarding school in Budapest, that closed after one year, because the Nazi army marched into the city.

Aya was left totally alone to face the Nazi occupation, and to experience all the horrors of the war. She faced many life threatening situations, such as prison, bombardment or even the possibility of being executed on the spot, without really comprehending the gravity of it all.

The end of the war was supposed to mean liberation, the return of hope and freedom for most people, however it didn’t happen for Aya, who was part of a youth group on her way to Palestine. The destination of this youth group was to reach Italy and the Jewish Brigade. They crossed the Alps on foot from Austria to reach Italy.

As they reached their destination Aya met a soldier from the Jewish Brigade, who was supposed to be her Hero, her Saviour, but turned out to be the devil incarnate. From day one, this soldier of the Jewish brigade took control of Aya’s life when she was only 15 years old.

After divorce, destitute and once again alone, she had no direction and almost no hope, when from deep inside her a small voice said; go back to school. It took all her courage to apply to university, where she was accepted and after 5 year was granted a B.A. and a Diploma of Teaching. She spent the rest of her life teaching, and as she contemplated her life she said to herself that if she had had all the choices in the world, she would have chosen teaching.

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Giveaway: Les Miserables by Victor Hugo

[ 13 ] March 9, 2015

les miserables book coverI have 1 copy of Penguin Classics Graphic Deluxe Edition of Les Miserables to give away!

Open to US residents only

About the book

The Graphic Deluxe Edition of Les Miserables is a new translation of the Victor Hugo classic by Christine Donougher. This is the first new Penguin Classics translation in 40 years, and this edition has a gorgeous cover by beloved illustrator Jillian Tamaki (you might know her work from the New York Times Book Review, where she illustrates the “By the Book” column, or This One Summer, her Caldecott Award-winning graphic novel).

The Times Literary Supplement called Donougher’s translation, “a magnificent achievement. It reads easily, sometimes racily, and Hugo’s narrative power is never let down…[an] almost flawless translation, which brings the full flavour of one of the greatest novels of the nineteenth century to new readers in the twenty-first.” Penguin’s accessible edition invites fans of the award-winning screen and stage adaptations to discover, or rediscover, the compelling novel that started it all.

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