Saturday, April 9, 2016

The First Line of Lies and Other Acts of Love by Kristy Woodson Harvey + Giveaway (Open Internationally!)

Lies and Other Acts of Love
Kristy Woodson Harvey

Dear Carolina was praised as “Southern fiction at its best.” Now author Kristy Woodson Harvey presents a new novel about what it really means to tell the truth...

After sixty years of marriage and five daughters, Lynn “Lovey” White knows that all of us, from time to time, need to use our little white lies.

Her granddaughter, Annabelle, on the other hand, is as truthful as they come. She always does the right thing—that is, until she dumps her hedge fund manager fiancé and marries a musician she has known for three days. After all, her grandparents, who fell in love at first sight, have shared a lifetime of happiness, even through her grandfather’s declining health.

But when Annabelle’s world starts to collapse around her, she discovers that nothing about her picture-perfect family is as it seems. And Lovey has to decide whether one more lie will make or break the ones she loves.

The First Line of Lies and Other Acts of Love

First lines are a bit like first impressions. You can tell a lot about the book from that very first sentence, that very first moment. In some ways, it’s kind of like falling in love. It might have you at first glance. Or, maybe, the first line doesn’t immediately captivate you, but, as time goes on, you realize that, somewhere in there, it snuck up on you. And, without your even knowing, you have fallen in love. First lines are usually the last thing I write, ironically enough. Because, it isn’t until the end that I’m really even sure where the story begins.

For my new release Lies and Other Acts of Love, the first line came to me quickly and easily. It is written from the perspective of a grandmother and granddaughter, and, while Lies and Other Acts of Love is a story of family secrets, of love and marriage, loyalty and loss, in a lot of ways, it is simply a story about two women and the profound impact that they have on each other’s lives. And so, it seemed fitting to begin this book with a sneak peek into that relationship.

Annabelle, the granddaughter, narrates:
My grandmother, Lovey, says that there are two types of people in the world: the kind who flee to the shelters at the first threat of a hurricane, and the kind who wait it out, hovering over their possessions as if their fragile lives offer any protection against a natural mother that can take them out of the world as quickly as she brought them into it.
Annabelle continues on to say that she comes from a long line of the hovering kind. That first sentence tells readers so much that they need to know about this story, that they need to know to fully embrace these women, to understand their lives and their motives for doing things. Simply knowing that the women in this family, from Lovey, the grandmother, to Annabelle, the granddaughter, and the five sisters in between, don’t back down from a challenge, gives a lot of the framework for what’s to come.

Most of life is a balance between surrender and control, a coming to terms with what is out of our hands and what we can change. As this first line would suggest, in Lies and Other Acts of Love, both Annabelle and Lovey come face to face with some harsh realities.

For Lovey, learning that the man she had counted on for a lifetime, that she had stood beside in good times and bad, could be gone from her—in mind, anyway—in an instant, is something that she has to come to terms with, something she cannot fix or change. How she adapts in the face of adversity, however, is something that is completely in her power. Realizing that she cannot control her children or grandchildren and that they have to live through their own mistakes to learn is a hurdle that Lovey still struggles over daily. But the grace and dignity with which she handles each of these aspects of her life is one of her finest traits.

For Annabelle, learning that she alone is in charge of making the decisions for her future is paramount to her growth and development as a person. On the other hand, realizing that she cannot make other people change is something that she has to come to terms with, that she will likely continue to struggle with far into her future.

One of the joys of reading is the opportunity to learn, to delve into the deep muck with characters and learn from them, extract deeper meanings and digest every theme.

But then again, every now and then, it’s nice to know that, sometimes, everything we need to know can be found in that very first glance.


Books à la Mode is giving away three print copy sets of Kristy's first book, Dear Carolina, as well as Lies and Other Acts of Love—that's three winners total! Yay!!

To enter, all you have to do is answer Kristy's question in the comments below:
What is an act of love you completed for someone else?

Want to double your chances of winning? Share your act of love on one of your social media channels (Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, etc.) using the hashtag #actsoflove for a bonus giveaway entry! Just make sure to include the share link in your comment so I can credit you.
Recently I realized I rarely celebrate my two long-distance best friends' birthdays (with the exception of a quick and pathetic "Happy birthday!" text) so when I saw adorable cards that made me think of them while I was in New York recently, I picked them up and am planning on sending them the old-fashioned way as a surprise when the time comes!

Please make your comment MEANINGFUL. Comments solely consisting of stock responses or irrelevant fluff like "Thanks for the giveaway!" will not be considered for entry. Kristy and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the author—a huge thank you to the lovely Kristy Woodson Harvey!
Giveaway ends April 23rd at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open internationally—woohoo! That means anyone in the world can enter, provided you have a verifiable email and postal address.
Void where prohibited.
Winners have 48 hours to claim their prize once they are chosen, or else their winnings will be forfeited.
Although I do randomly select winners, I am in no way responsible for prizes, nor for shipping and handling.
As a reminder, you do not have to follow my blog to enter, though it is always very much appreciated ❤
Good luck!