Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Exclusive Sneak Peek: All the Time in the World by Caroline Angell + Giveaway (US only)

All the Time in the World
Caroline Angell

An unforgettable debut about a young woman's choice between the future she's always imagined and the people she's come to love.

Charlotte, a gifted and superbly trained young musician, has been blindsided by a shocking betrayal in her promising career when she takes a babysitting job with the McLeans, a glamorous Upper East Side Manhattan family. At first, the nanny gig is just a way of tiding herself over until she has licked her wounds and figured out her next move as a composer in New York. But, as it turns out, Charlotte is naturally good with children and becomes as deeply fond of the two little boys as they are of her. When an unthinkable tragedy leaves the McLeans bereft, Charlotte is not the only one who realizes that she's the key to holding little George and Matty's world together. Suddenly, in addition to life's usual puzzles, such as sorting out which suitor is her best match, she finds herself with an impossible choice between her life-long dreams and the torn-apart family she's come to love. By turns hilarious, sexy, and wise, Caroline Angell's remarkable and generous debut is the story of a young woman's discovery of the things that matter most.

The day she died was not beautiful. There have been a few world disasters in my lifetime, generation—defining events, and the ones I remember most clearly were marked with the hideous irony of a perfect blue sky. But the day Gretchen McLean died was miserable and drizzly, with periods of that nasty, keening wind that blows your raincoat hood straight back from your head and whips the garbage on Lexington Avenue into your face. It was appropriate, almost righteous. Towers fall, and the sun should not warm your skin; buses explode, and the breeze should not trace gentle ripples across the reservoir. But on the day that Gretchen died, even the weather seemed to understand its role. Because on the day that the mother of two little boys dies without warning, the wind should absolutely howl.

February, two years before

“Come on in,” Gretchen says, smiling, as she holds the door open. She is blonde, and she looks like a catalogue model. “Matthew isn’t feeling very well today, so he’s been on the couch for a while. George doesn’t walk yet, but he’s a really fast crawler, so watch your step!”

Gretchen and her husband, Scotty, found me on an Internet babysitting service. I’m not sure what it was I wrote that caught their attention, but if I had to guess, I’d say it was probably the lines about my musical background. I’d decided to leave out the part about my master’s in composition in order to make myself sound less educated and therefore within a reasonable price range, or so I told myself. I suppose it’s also possible that I wanted to make babysitting sound less like a job that I was hoping to fill in the gap with while I figured out how to use that master’s in composition to take the next steps in my career. Whatever the reason, the sentence had boiled down to something like “Coming from a family with strong creative values, I frequently use music and singing to engage the children.” I’m glad that Gretchen and Scotty decided to overlook the questionable grammatical structure—creative values? Like maybe my family takes liberties with traditional values? Or perhaps my family made up their own values, creatively?—and instead chose to pay attention to how I might teach their children the “Itsy Bitsy Spider.”

“It’s awesome to meet you guys,” I say. “Do you mind if I wash my hands really quick? I’ve been on the bus.”

As I wash my hands with the orange-creamsicle-scented foaming soap, I repeat their names to myself. George, Matthew. I’m relieved not to have to summon an earnest inquiry as to which of her family members she named little Fieldston after.

“Your apartment is lovely,” I say, once I’ve found my way back to the foyer, and it’s the understatement of the millennium. Her apartment is unbelievable. I can’t see to the end of it on any one side.

“Thank you,” she says, leading me to the kitchen table. The kids are visible through the archway to the living room. “It’s an old building, so it has its quirks, but we really love it here.”

Copyright @ 2016 by Caroline Angell. Excerpted from All the Time in the World by Caroline Angell.


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of All the Time in the World—yay!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me in the comments below:
What is something you've never done, but would do, knowing you had all the time in the world?
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. Caroline and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

I would work on honing a hobby-level activity into a career or even try to become an "expert" at it, such as cooking or soccer. It would be amazing to be a professional chef or soccer player. I love these things individually but never had the time to invest serious commitment to them, so I'd definitely work on improving these areas if I had all the time in the world!

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the publicist—a huge thank you to the lovely folks at FSB Books!
Giveaway ends July 27th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US readers only—sorry, everyone else! Please check my sidebar for the list of currently running giveaways that are open worldwide. There are plenty to choose from!
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!