Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Exclusive Sneak Peek: The Black Witch by Laurie Forest + Giveaway (US only)

The Black Witch (The Black Witch Chronicles #1)
Laurie Forest
from HarlequinTEEN // Harlequin

A new Black Witch will rise... her powers vast beyond imagining.

A Great Winged One will soon arise and cast his fearsome shadow upon the land. And just as Night slays Day, and Day slays Night, so also shall another Black Witch rise to meet him, her powers vast beyond imagining.

So foretells the greatest prophecy of the Gardnerian mages. Carnissa Gardner, the last prophesied Black Witch, drove back the enemy forces and saved her people during the Realm War. Now a new evil is on the horizon, and her granddaughter, Elloren, is believed to be Carnissa’s heir—but while she is the absolute image of her famous grandmother, Elloren is utterly devoid of power in a society that prizes magical ability above nearly all else.

When she is granted the opportunity to pursue her lifelong dream of becoming an apothecary, Elloren is eager to join her brothers at the prestigious Verpax University and finally embrace a destiny of her own, free from the shadow of her grandmother’s legacy. But she soon realizes that the university, which admits all manner of people—including the fire-wielding, winged Icarals, the sworn enemies of all Gardnerians—is an even more treacherous place for the granddaughter of the Black Witch.

Monday, August 6, 2018

Exclusive Sneak Peek: Rancher's Dream by B.J. Daniels + Giveaway (US/Can)

Rancher's Dream (The Montana Cahills #6)
B.J. Daniels
from HQN // Harlequin

A bride becomes a target in New York Times bestselling author B.J. Daniels’s latest can’t-miss suspense

Tragedy sent Deidre “Drey” Hunter running from rancher Hawk Cahill and into the arms of a sleek businessman who promised her a new life. But dreams of Manhattan days and cosmopolitan nights shatter when he brings her back to an ultramodern paradise in her hometown of Gilt Edge—and vanishes on their wedding night.

Taunted by seclusion and silence, Drey starts to doubt everything... including her sanity. Only Hawk, the stubborn cowboy from her school days, believes the threats are real and that someone is ready to kill. But is he willing to forgive the past if it means ending her nightmare?

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Interview with Meg Waite Clayton, Author of Beautiful Exiles + Giveaway (cont. US only)

Today I'd like to welcome Meg Waite Clayton to the blog to celebrate the exciting release of Beautiful Exiles from Lake Union, an Amazon imprint!

Welcome to Books à la Mode, Meg! Let's get this interview started.

Will you please share a brief introduction with us?

I’ve written for the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, The Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Runner’s World and public radio, often on the subject of the particular challenges women face.

I was born in Washington D.C., and have since lived in Kansas City, the Chicago area (norther suburbs), Los Angeles, Ann Arbor, Nashville, Baltimore, Nashville, and Palo Alto. I love to travel, so my books tend to be set in places I find fascinating: France (The Race for Paris), the English Lakes (The Wednesday Daughters), Ann Arbor and the Chesapeake (The Four Ms. Bradwells), Silicon Valley (The Wednesday Sisters), and the horse country of Maryland (The Language of Light).

It's amazing to get to feature you today! Readers, here's a bit about the book, which will hits shelves today:

From New York Times bestselling author Meg Waite Clayton comes a riveting novel based on one of the most volatile and intoxicating real-life love affairs of the twentieth century.

Key West, 1936. Headstrong, accomplished journalist Martha Gellhorn is confident with words but less so with men when she meets disheveled literary titan Ernest Hemingway in a dive bar. Their friendship—forged over writing, talk, and family dinners—flourishes into something undeniable in Madrid while they’re covering the Spanish Civil War.

Martha reveres him. The very married Hemingway is taken with Martha—her beauty, her ambition, and her fearless spirit. And as Hemingway tells her, the most powerful love stories are always set against the fury of war. The risks are so much greater. They’re made for each other.

With their romance unfolding as they travel the globe, Martha establishes herself as one of the world’s foremost war correspondents, and Hemingway begins the novel that will win him the Nobel Prize for Literature. Beautiful Exiles is a stirring story of lovers and rivals, of the breathless attraction to power and fame, and of one woman—ahead of her time—claiming her own identity from the wreckage of love.

While this novel is a work of fiction, you wrote about one of the household names in world literature, Ernest Hemingway, and narrated through the eyes of his third wife Martha Gellhorn, a lifelong journalist, war correspondent, and author. What was your motivation and inspiration for writing about Martha, and what do you want readers to take away from her story?

Like every other poor high school English student in this country, I slogged through The Old Man and the Sea long before I’d ever heard of The Trouble I’ve Seen or A Stricken Field. But I came to this story through Martha Gellhorn: I read about how she became one of the only journalists to go ashore in the early moments of the Normandy invasion, and I was hooked.

The Reader’s Digest condensed version of that story would go something like this: Denied an official opportunity to go across with the D-Day landing ships because she was female, Marty hid in the loo of the first hospital ship to cross the channel and went ashore with a stretcher crew to cover the landing in a brilliant article for Collier’s. As reward for her bravery, she was taken into custody, stripped of her press credential, and confined to a nurses’ training camp. But Marty, being Marty, hopped the fence and hitched a ride on a plane headed to Italy, where she continued do some of the best reporting to come out of the war even without her credential or any official support. Really, how can you not want to know more about how Marty became Marty?

So began an obsession for me. When I heard Caroline Moorehead’s Martha Gellhorn: A Life, was to be published in October of 2003, I dug around to find a prepublication copy, which has long been underlined and dog-eared and loved to bits. I read her books, her articles, her letters. I visited places she’d been and tried to imagine being her, tried to learn everything I could. I discovered, among other things, that that first version of the D-Day story was a bit of an exaggeration: she didn’t hop that fence—she rolled under it. I also discovered that she had been the lead correspondent for Collier’s until a man snagged the position from her—and that man was her husband, Ernest Hemingway.

For me, a novel is a long part of my life, all-consuming often for years. I can’t write a book “to order,” and don’t want to. As Marty writes in an August 1940 letter to Charles Scribner, in explanation for why she is turning down a contract to write a book for Scribner’s, “I could not do a book (a book, Charlie, think of the high pile of bare white paper that you have in front of you before there is even the beginning of a book), unless I believed awfully hard in it. Unless I wanted to do it so much that I could sweat through the dissatisfaction and weariness and failure and all the rest you have to sweat through.”

I’ve been mopping the sweat from this one for a long time. My hope for what began as one of those high piles of white paper is that it will introduce others to the truly extraordinary Martha Gellhorn.


Gellhorn came into her professional own during a time when women journalists weren’t given the support or respect they deserved. That great story about her literally skirting a fence to get out of the nurses’ compound where military officials had her staying since she was a female, not male, war reporter. How did Gellhorn’s early work, her grit and determination, impact the future of journalism and reporting for women in the field?

Marty was not the first woman to cover war; as early as 1848, Margaret Fuller was covering an uprising in Italy for the New York Tribune, and when Martha set off for France in 1930, determined to become a foreign correspondent, Sigrid Schultz was in her fifth year as the Chicago Tribune’s bureau chief in Berlin, where Dorothy Thompson would interview Hitler the following year.

But there is a bit of a pivot in the progress of women journalists that really comes in the days between D- Day in June of 1944 and the liberation of Paris later that summer. Before the liberation of Paris, women journalists were officially forbidden to cover the front. But starting with that moment Martha stows away in that hospital ship to cross the channel, women journalists begin to see that to cover the front they are going to have to go AWOL from support positions to get to the actual war, climb fences meant to contain them, and risk their lives. Despite being confronted with red tape and derision, denied accommodations provided to their male colleagues at press camps, pursued by military police, and even arrested and stripped of credentials, women like Martha—and others including Lee Carson, Helen Kirkpatrick, Iris Carpenter, Ruth Cowan, and Lee Miller—proved that women could report the war, and do a damned good job of it. They did such a good job that, beginning that fall, the powers that be began to accredit women journalists to the front—opening up the future for generations of women journalists.


On your website, you say: “If I had to pick a single word to describe what makes me a writer, it would be discipline.” You portray Hemingway to have a similar sense of discipline, as he sits down for hours or even days at a time to get his ideas punched into his typewriter. Gellhorn, on the other hand, seems less regimented, writing much more freely in the thick of war-torn Spain or France than she does at home in Cuba. How do you think their approaches to writing speaks to differences in their character? Do you feel you identify with one of them more than the other, based on the method in which you write?

There is a very funny passage in a February 24, 1940 letter from Ernest to his publisher, Charles Scribner, in which Hemingway explains to Charlie—who, having gotten wind of the fact that Hemingway counts his words every day, worries his best writer is going batty. Ernest writes, “Don’t worry about the words. I’ve been doing that since 1921. I always count them when I knock off and am drinking the first whiskey and soda. Guess I got in the habit writing dispatches.” And in another, a September 3, 1930 letter to his editor, Max Perkins, he writes, “I have to stick to one thing when I’m writing a book and keep that in my head and nothing else.”

I completely identify with him on this, although perhaps with a little less whiskey in the mix. Writing- habit-wise, I’m far more Hemingwayesque, right down to the word counting. When I am writing first draft, my rule is 2,000 words or 2:00. If I’ve written 2,000 words by 9 a.m., I can turn on the tellie and pull out the bon-bons. But actually, if I have 2,000 words by 9 a.m., Mac has to come haul me out of my chair for dinner, because that is a great writing day.

It did make me feel a little saner to read that Hemingway counted words, and weighed himself each morning, as I also do, although I would never display my weight on a wall. But hmmm… Perhaps it should leave me more worried about my sanity?

The novel’s title, Beautiful Exiles, can be interpreted in a lot of different ways. What sentiment were you hoping to capture in this title?

I have to say choosing a title for a book, at least for me, is more feel than logic, so take what follows here with that in mind. The working title for this book was Mookie & Bug—two of the nicknames Marty and Ernest called each other—but my agent felt that title suggested a young adult novel, which this is decidedly not. But retitling a finished manuscript is a bit like renaming a fully-grown child just as she is submitting her college applications. I love the new title, but one part of me will always think of this novel as Mookie & Bug.

Trying to parse it logically, I suppose Marty was a bit of an exile on her own, exiled by the expectations that came with being from a prominent St. Louis family, and by her complicated relationship with her father. But the word also felt right because Marty and Ernest together are essentially exiled by his fame. When they are first falling in love, he is already famous enough that in the U.S. they would be hounded by photographers. How can you possibly sort out a relationship in that glare? They go to Cuba for the privacy it affords them to sort out whether they even really want a relationship.

The thing about Ernest and Marty’s exile is that in many ways, for many years, it worked for them. They did have the privacy to sort out how they felt about each other outside the glare of the press, for the most part. And the place they created together—the Finca Vigía—is really beautiful. And then they were a beautiful couple, and beautiful writers. In the end and despite everything, I don’t think either of them ever loved anyone more. Their relationship was stormy, but I think their best work—for both of them—came out of their years together. So “beautiful”—I liked the double meaning: they are beautiful exiles, and their exile together allowed them to write beautifully, the kind of writing that they both wanted more than anything else.


A lovely and fitting title indeed! Where can you be found on the web?


It was a pleasure to be able to get to know you better today, Meg! Thank you again for dropping by, and best of luck with future endeavors!

Giveaway!

Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of Beautiful Exiles—woohoo! To enter, all you have to do is tell me:
Do you travel a lot? How has travel affected your life?
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. Meg and I really want to hear your thoughts! :)

I only really travel for leisure, and I wish I had time to do more of it. I envy those who get to travel for business, although I'm sure it does get exhausting! Traveling has definitely made me a cooler person, giving me exposure to new cultures and perspectives, as well as having entertaining stories to tell.

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the tour publicist—a huge thank you to the lovely folks over at Little Bird Publicity!
Giveaway ends August 15th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to continental US residents only—sorry, everyone else! Please check my sidebar for a 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!

Monday, July 30, 2018

Interview with Beth Harbison, Author of Every Time You Go Away + Giveaway (US only)

I'd like to welcome Beth Harbison to the blog today to celebrate the exciting release of Every Time You Go Away from St. Martin's Press, a MacMillan imprint!

Welcome to Books à la Mode, Beth! Let's get this interview started.

Will you please share a brief introduction with us?

Beth Harbison was born in the shadow of Washington, DC and grew up in the suburbs of that city. She began writing in 4th grade at St. Bartholomew's school, where she re-wrote the ending of Black Beauty, bringing all of the horses back to live in 64 handwritten pages. At that time it should have occurred to someone that she should be writing fiction or soap operas, but instead her first job was at Roy Rogers. 

After failing out of seventh grade, she was sent to a school for rotten kids in Potomac, Maryland, where she met some of her best friends and had experiences she has drawn on again and again in her work.

 Her publishing career began with cookbooks, then moved to Silhouette romance novels, before Jennifer Enderlin, of St. Martin's Press, plucked her out of obscurity and tapped her to write Shoe Addicts Anonymous, which put her on the New York Times bestseller list for the first time and has been optioned by Galgos Entertainment as a feature film starring Halle Berry. 

Today, Beth writes from her home in the DC suburbs, where she lives with her son, and her daughter, YA author Paige Harbison. 

She is still firmly against dead horses.

It's amazing to get to feature you today! Readers, here's a bit about the book, which hit shelves last week:

In New York Times bestselling author Beth Harbison's most emotional novel ever, a fractured family must come together at a beach house haunted by the past.

Willa has never fully recovered from the sudden death of her husband, Ben. She became an absent mother to her young son, Jamie, unable to comfort him while reeling from her own grief.

Now, years after Ben’s death, Willa finally decides to return to the beach house where he passed. It’s time to move on and put the Ocean City, Maryland house on the market.

When Willa arrives, the house is in worse shape than she could have imagined, and the memories of her time with Ben are overwhelming. They met at this house and she sees him around every corner. Literally. Ben’s ghost keeps reappearing, trying to start conversations with Willa. And she can’t help talking back.

To protect her sanity, Willa enlists Jamie, her best friend Kristin, and Kristin’s daughter Kelsey to join her for one last summer at the beach. As they explore their old haunts, buried feelings come to the surface, Jamie and Kelsey rekindle their childhood friendship, and Willa searches for the chance to finally say goodbye to her husband and to reconnect with her son.

Every Time You Go Away is a heartfelt, emotional story about healing a tragic loss, letting go, and coming together as a family.

As a huge fan of first lines, I’d love to hear the first line of Every Time You Go Away. Could you give us a brief commentary on it?

The first line is: “I can tell you exactly when I lost my will to live.”

Now that I think about it, that is a theme I really like to explore: not depression, per se, but the determination and path out of it. And so in this book, Willa lost her faith in ‘life being fair’ and her hope of ever finding happiness again when her husband died unexpectedly at 36. The book is about her finally coming to terms with that—with some help from the man himself—and moving forward before she has given up too much... too much time, too much life force, too many years.


Tell us about your road to publication, such as how you first queried, unexpected challenges, and things you picked up along the way.

It’s been a really long time now, but I began trying to write in earnest when Silhouette came out with a line called Silhouette Shadows. The PR for it cited many of the old gothic romances I had read and loved growing up; the very books that made me first think about becoming a writer. I wrote a ghost story called The House on Church Street. My opening won a Harlequin “Voices of Tomorrow... Today” contest, which was quite encouraging. Alas, that book did not get published but an editor liked my voice enough to encourage me to keep submitting, so I found myself trying to write a traditional series romance. For me, that was a challenge as I did not read them and thought I wasn’t interested in them. They turned out to be quite fun to write, though—they were like Hallmark romances, very fanciful and comforting.

Probably the most important thing I picked up along the way was to listen to editorial feedback, do what is suggested and RE-SUBMIT (assuming they’re open to it). It can be disheartening, but, as my sister said to me, “You haven’t failed unless you quit."


Are the characters from your book based off anyone you know in real life? If not/And, how much else of your actual life gets written into your fiction?  

Well, my husband did pass away unexpectedly, although at that point we had been separated for 10 months, but when I wrote about Willa’s memories of time and memories shared with her husband, and the horrible inability to ever truly reconcile things once someone has died, it was certainly based on feelings I’ve had myself. I guess I do that a lot in my books: any time a strong feeling is needed, I need to either be able to retrieve it or relate to it enough to really dive in and “feel” it when I’m writing.

I'm so sorry for your loss. The magic of writing is that you can continue your story through your fictional experiences on paper! Out of all the fantastic books out there, what makes Every Time You Go Away stand out from the rest?

Hopefully most books stand out from the rest, at least in some way. I’m not sure I’m objective enough to give much of an answer except for the bare facts: it’s about a literal ghost and how he helps his wife to move on.

Give aspiring writers a piece of advice you wish you had known before getting published.

It can be a long road with a lot of soul-crushing rejection along the way. I mean a LOT. I’d say to listen to editorial feedback, do your best to hear it and either follow instruction or - if you don’t like the suggestions—find a workaround. Try, try again. And don’t just give up and settle for a sub-par vanity publisher; work with a publisher who believes in you and supports your work.

Now give us your best personal advice—something you wish you had known when you were younger and would offer to your own kids.

Don’t stay in ANY relationship that makes you feel more bad than good. The most obvious example would be a romantic relationship but it doesn’t stop there: if you have a friend who cuts you down, whatever their personal motivations, avoid them. If you’re on Facebook or Twitter or whatever and someone on your list is constantly posting things that make you uncomfortable or argumentative, mute them. Life is too short to feel the constant strife and conflict that seems, more and more, to define modern life. Our bodies and minds can’t take it—we weren’t built to handle negativity on such a grand scale as life affords us today. Relax!

Where can you be found on the web?


It was a pleasure to be able to get to know you better today, Beth! Thank you again for dropping by, and best of luck with future endeavors!

Giveaway!


Books à la Mode is giving away one print copy of Every Time You Go Awaywoohoo! To enter, all you have to do is tell me in the comments below:
If you could change one thing about your appearance, what would it be?
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. Beth and I really want to hear your thoughts! :)

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the publisher—a huge thank you to the lovely folks over at St. Martin's Press!
Giveaway ends August 13th at 11.59 PM (your time).
Open to US residents only. Sorry, everyone else! Please check my sidebar on the right for a 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!

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

Exclusive Sneak Peek: Shattered Silence by Marta Perry + Giveaway (US/Can)

Shattered Silence (Echo Falls #3)
Marta Perry
from HQN // Harlequin

A woman on the run seeks sanctuary in a peaceful Pennsylvania Dutch community—and finds a protector in the most unlikely of men...

One moment Rachel Hartline is secure in her career and community. The next, she’s in the wrong place at the wrong time—watching her ex-husband commit a crime that puts her in unfathomable danger. Fear and hurt send her home to an Amish farm and the family she’s always trusted. But a private investigator is close behind—and he may be a threat to her in more ways than one...

Cold, calculating Clint Mordan isn’t convinced Rachel is as innocent in her ex-husband’s schemes as she claims, but when her ex’s enemies target Rachel, Clint is driven to keep her safe. Maybe the terror in her beautiful eyes and the target on her back aren’t an act. But as his feelings toward her deepen, Clint realizes he’s the only one who can keep Rachel alive in a game where only the killer knows the stakes.

Friday, July 13, 2018

A Place for Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza Giveaway (US only)

A Place for Us
Fatima Farheen Mirza
from SJP for Hogarth // Penguin Random House

The first novel from Sarah Jessica Parker’s new imprint, SJP for Hogarth, A Place for Us is a deeply moving and resonant story of love, identity and belonging

As an Indian wedding gathers a family back together, parents Rafiq and Layla must reckon with the choices their children have made.

There is Hadia: their headstrong, eldest daughter, whose marriage is a match of love and not tradition. Huda, the middle child, determined to follow in her sister’s footsteps. And lastly, their estranged son, Amar, who returns to the family fold for the first time in three years to take his place as brother of the bride.

What secrets and betrayals have caused this close-knit family to fracture? Can Amar find his way back to the people who know and love him best?

A Place for Us takes us back to the beginning of this family’s life: from the bonds that bring them together, to the differences that pull them apart. All the joy and struggle of family life is here, from Rafiq and Layla’s own arrival in America from India, to the years in which their children—each in their own way—tread between two cultures, seeking to find their place in the world, as well as a path home.

A Place for Us is a book for our times: an astonishingly tender-hearted novel of identity and belonging, and a resonant portrait of what it means to be an American family today. It announces Fatima Farheen Mirza as a major new literary talent.

About the Author


Fatima Farheen Mirza was born in 1991 and raised in California. She is a graduate of the Iowa Writers’ Workshop and a recipient of the Michener-Copernicus Fellowship.


A Place for Us is her debut novel.




Giveaway!

Books à la Mode is giving away a print copy of A Place for Us—yay!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me in the comments below:
What is your least favorite emotion?
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. Fatima and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

I hate being angry; whenever I feel deep rage, I feel like I have no control over myself. I like to avoid situations that make me angry, and a lot of it is just maintaining the mindset that most things that conjure those negative thoughts and emotions are usually trivial and not worth the stress. I would take sadness, boredom, disgust, etc. over anger any day.

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the tour publicist and publisher—a huge thank you to TLC Book Tours and SJP for Hogarth!
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!

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Echo Moon by Laura Spinella: Autographed Copy Giveaway (US only)

Echo Moon (Ghost Gifts #3)
Laura Spinella
from Montlake Romance // Amazon

A past life, a past war, and a past love. Peter St. John can’t foresee a future until he confronts his past sins.

When photojournalist Peter St. John returns home after a two-year absence, the life he’s been running from catches up. For years his mother’s presence, coupled with Pete’s own psychic gift, has triggered visits to 1917. There, he relives battles of the Great War, captures the heyday of Coney Island on canvas, and falls in love with an enchanting and enigmatic songstress named Esme. Present-day Pete still pines for Esme, and his love endures…but so does his vivid memory of killing her.

When he discovers family heirlooms that serve as proof of his crimes, Pete will have to finally confront his former life. He also meets a young woman—who is more than what she seems—with a curious connection to his family. As century-old secrets unravel, can Pete reconcile a murder from his past before it destroys his future?

About the Author


Laura Spinella is the author of the Ghost Gifts trilogy—including Echo Moon, Foretold, and the #1 Kindle bestseller Ghost Gifts—as well as the highly acclaimed Unstrung and the award-winning novel Beautiful Disaster. She is a two-time RITA finalist who consistently receives reader and industry praise for her multifaceted characters, emotional complexity, and intriguing story lines.

Spinella lives with her family near Boston, where she can always be found writing her next novel. She enjoys hearing from readers and chatting with book clubs.



Giveaway!

Books à la Mode is giving away a print copy of Echo Moon autographed by the author—yay!

To enter, all you have to do is tell me in the comments below:
Would you like to be famous? In what way?
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. Laura and I really want to hear from you guys! :)

I'd like to be recognized for my accomplishments (personal or professional) but I don't think fame in the traditional sense would work well with my lifestyle. It would be way too much daily pressure.

Don't forget the entry eligibility terms and conditions!
Sponsored wholly by the tour publicist and publisher—a huge thank you to TLC Book Tours and Montlake Romance!
Giveaway ends July 25th 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!

Monday, July 9, 2018

Exclusive Sneak Peek: Torn by Lauren Dane + Giveaway

Torn (Whiskey Sharp #3)
Lauren Dane
from HQN // Harlequin

Sometimes what you find isn’t what you were searching for

Beau Petty has been searching his whole life. Searching for a place that fills all the empty spaces in him. Searching for a way to tame the restlessness. Searching for answers to the secret he’s never stopped trying to solve. What he wasn’t searching for was a woman to claim all of him, but when Cora Silvera walks back into his life, he’s ready to search out all the ways he can make her his.

Cora has spent her life as the family nurturer, taking care of others. But now she’s ready to pass that job on to someone else. It’s time to make some changes and live for herself. It’s in that moment that her former teenage crush reappears and the draw and the heat of their instant connection is like nothing either of them has experienced. He craves being around her. She accepts him, dark corners and all.

Beau thinks Cora’s had enough drama in her life. He wants to protect her from the secrets of his past, even if it means holding back the last pieces of himself. But Cora is no pushover and she means to claim all those pieces.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

Exclusive Sneak Peek: The Summer List by Amy Mason Doan + Giveaway (US/Can)

The Summer List
Amy Mason Doan
from Graydon House // Harlequin

In the tradition of Judy Blume’s Summer Sisters, The Summer List is a tender yet tantalizing novel about two friends, the summer night they fell apart, and the scavenger hunt that reunites them decades later—until the clues expose a breathtaking secret that just might shatter them once and for all.

Laura and Casey were once inseparable: as they floated on their backs in the sunlit lake, as they dreamed about the future under starry skies, and as they teamed up for the wild scavenger hunts in their small California lakeside town. Until one summer night, when a shocking betrayal sent Laura running through the pines, down the dock, and into a new life, leaving Casey and a first love in her wake.

But the past is impossible to escape, and now, after seventeen years away, Laura is pulled home and into a reunion with Casey she can’t resist—one last scavenger hunt. With a twist: this time, the list of clues leads to the settings of their most cherished summer memories. From glistening Jade Cove to the vintage skating rink, each step they take becomes a bittersweet reminder of the friendship they once shared. But just as the game brings Laura and Casey back together, the clues unravel a stunning secret that threatens to tear them apart...

Mesmerizing and unforgettable, Amy Mason Doan’s The Summer List is about losing and recapturing the person who understands you best—and the unbreakable bonds of girlhood.

Thursday, May 24, 2018

How I Came to Write Saving Each Other by Stacy Mitchell + Giveaway (US only)

Saving Each Other
Stacy Mitchell
PR by the Book

Two hearts, two souls. Devastated by loss, united through destiny.

The rules: Communicate only through text messages and never reveal our real names or other personal details.

My name is Ean Montgomery. After the drunk driving accident that killed my wife, son, and unborn daughter, I was forced to see a grief counselor. In an unconventional move, she gave me a private cell phone and the first initial of the name of a woman who had been widowed by the same accident. I had no intention of ever texting her but with all hope and the will to live gone, I found myself quickly slipping down the rabbit hole. Desperate, lonely, and unbelievably sad, I reached out to her and she became my everything.

My name is Dani Adams. I was married to my college sweetheart, the love of my life. Together we were raising our four-year-old daughter and running a successful business. Then the accident happened and life as I knew it ended in the blink of an eye. I didn’t want to answer his text but I was barely hanging on by a thread and he was in tremendous pain, so I replied. And once again, my world was forever changed.

Over the course of a year, through texting alone, we bond. Friendship blossoms into something deeper. We were never supposed to meet, but fate had other plans, and in this world of loss and despair, something amazing began to grow… But can the passion we’ve found sustain itself with the deep, soul-twisting pain that never seems to fade?

Monday, May 21, 2018

Exclusive Sneak Peek: Herons Landing by JoAnn Ross + Giveaway (US/Can)

Herons Landing (Honeymoon Harbor #1)
JoAnn Ross
from HQN // Harlequin

There’s no place to fall in love like the place you left your heart

Welcome to Honeymoon Harbor, the brand-new, long-awaited series by beloved New York Times bestselling author JoAnn Ross, where unforgettable characters come face-to-face with the kind of love that grabs your heart and never lets go.

Working as a Las Vegas concierge, Brianna Mannion is an expert at making other people’s wishes come true. It’s satisfying work, but a visit home to scenic Honeymoon Harbor turns into a permanent stay when she’s reminded of everything she’s missing: the idyllic small-town charm; the old Victorian house she’d always coveted; and Seth Harper, her best friend’s widower and the neighborhood boy she once crushed on—hard. After years spent serving others, maybe Brianna’s finally ready to chase dreams of her own.

Since losing his wife, Seth has kept busy running the Harper family’s renovation business and flying way under the social radar. But when Brianna hires him to convert her aging dream home into a romantic B and B, working together presents a heart-stopping temptation Seth never saw coming. With guilt and grief his only companions for so long, he’ll have to step out of the past long enough to recognize the beautiful life Brianna and he could build together.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

The Storm by Arif Anwar Giveaway (US/Can)

The Storm
Arif Anwar
Atria Books // Simon & Schuster

From an immensely talented new voice in international fiction, a sweeping tour de force that seamlessly interweaves five love stories that, together, chronicle sixty years of Bangladeshi history.

Shahryar, a recent PhD graduate and father of nine-year-old Anna, must leave the US when his visa expires. In their last remaining weeks together, we learn Shahryar’s history, in a vil­lage on the Bay of Bengal, where a poor fisherman and his wife are preparing to face a storm of historic proportions. That story intersects with those of a Japanese pilot, a British doctor stationed in Burma during World War II, and a privileged couple in Calcutta who leaves everything behind to move to East Pakistan following the Partition of India. Inspired by the 1970 Bhola cyclone, in which half a million-people perished overnight, the structure of this riveting novel mimics the storm itself. Building to a series of revelatory and moving climaxes, it shows the many ways in which families love, betray, honor, and sacrifice for one another.

At once grounded in history and fantastically imaginative, The Storm explores the human­ity that connects us beyond the surface differences of race, religion, and nationality. It is an epic novel in the tradition of Khaled Hosseini’s The Kite Runner and Rohinton Mistry’s A Fine Balance, by a singularly gifted and perceptive new writer.