Tag Archives: #historicalfiction

Home and Away: A WWII Christmas Story by Dean Hughes

Home and Away (1) Blog Tour Schedule

Home and AwayHome and Away: A World War II Christmas Story by Dean Hughes

Norma Hayes has always tried to make Christmas special for her family, but this year it is going to be difficult. Money is tight, and wartime rationing is taking its toll as well. Harder still, her oldest son, Glen, is on the front lines of the battle in Europe.

Glen Hayes wants nothing more than to be home for Christmas. He holds a sprig of lavender in his pocket. The scent reminds him of his mother. The memory of home may be the only thing that is keeping him alive and sane during the horrors of war.

Dennis Hayes is sixteen and longs to see his older brother again. He also longs to have a relationship with his father, but most important, Dennis is determined to buy something special for his mother this Christmas–the one gift he feels certain she deserves.

So many families have had their hopes dashed in World War II. Will the Hayes family make it through?

Amazon * Deseret Book

Praise for Home and Away
”It’s 1944 and teenager Dennis Hayes longs to join his older brother Glen, who is fighting in Europe..When his family receives word that Glen has been wounded, Dennis realizes that going to war is not so glamorous. Christmas isn’t the same without Glen, but the Hayes family members hope and pray that they’ll be reunited soon. Hughes’s faith-filled, old-fashioned story feels like it could have been written during the period in which it takes place.” –Library Journal

”Home and Away is far and away the best story I have read this year. Awesome and moving.” –bestselling author, Obert Skye

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Author Dean Hughes
Dean Hughes is a bestselling and prolific writer who published his hundredth book in 2014. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Weber State College and master’s degree and PhD from the University of Washington. He has attended post-doctoral seminars at Stanford and Yale Universities and taught English at Central Missouri State University and Brigham Young University.

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$25 Blog Tour giveawayBlog Tour Giveaway

$25 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 11/30/15

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

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The Cranky Ladies of History Blog Hop

FableCroft

Cranky Ladies of History

Blog Tour

 

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Late in 2013, Australian writer and editor Liz Barr blogged about Tsaritsa Sophia Alekseyevna of Russia, dubbing her one of history’s great “cranky ladies”. Being the editor I am, I immediately thought of several fantastic writers I would love to see write short stories about history’s cranky ladies, those women who bucked the trends of their time and took on cultural norms to challenge society’s rules and ideas about how women should behave. Within just a few days, I had the project idea fully formed, had brought historian, editor and multi award-winning writer Tansy Rayner Roberts on board as co-editor, and we had begun the process of soliciting authors to submit. The speed at which projects can come into being is perhaps one of the biggest advantages a boutique press like FableCroft Publishing has, and we use it well!

fab weeks, the feedback and response from readers and writers everywhere proved so positive that Tansy and I started looking at ways we could take the project to the full heights it deserves, and we conceived the idea of crowdfunding for the anthology, in order to be able to pay our authors, artists and designer the pro-rates they really deserve.

We have been so fortunate to have an astonishing selection of authors express interest in writing for us, from all over the world.

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Isn’t that just an awesome group of people?! We are so delighted to have multi-award winning author Jane Yolen confirmed for the anthology, and stories already in hand from some authors. While we have established and award-winning novelists and short story writers keen to be part of the book, we are also dedicated to supporting emerging writers, and are very excited to see what all our writers bring to the Cranky Ladies table (of contents).

Which Cranky Ladies might they be?

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Part of the brief for writers was that we were aiming for a diverse range of cultures, historical periods and reasons for historical notoriety, and we think we’re doing okay on that front – it was great fun reading the story pitches for the anthology and discovering wonderful women from history we wanted to know more about!

If you would like to support the the Cranky Ladies of History Pozible campaign, you can do so here – thank you!

http://pozible.com.au/crankyladies

Tour Stops

Cranky Ladies of History: the crowd-funding campaign

Tansy: Prelude to a crowd-funding

FableCroft: Kicking off the Tour – the Night Witches

Tansy: Cranky Ladies of History are GO

The History Girls: Cranky Ladies of History

Faith Mudge: Let’s Have A Rousing Discussion About Truth, Dragons and Historically Authentic Sexism

Sue Bursztynski: Margaret Bulkley, Dr Barry

Lee Battersby: Charlotte Corday

Joyce Chng: Leizu

Laura Lam: The Lioness of Brittany, Jeanne de Clisson

Lyn Battersby: Watch out! A cranky lady resides here

Ann Martin via FableCroft: Lottie Lyell (Australian film frontier-woman!)

Tansy Rayner Roberts via Champagne and Socks: History, fiction and cranky ladies

Tansy Rayner Roberts: Cranky Ladies, Horrible Histories & Mary Seacole

Joan Lennon via History Girls: Mary Anning in my mind

Dianne Touchell: Let’s talk about sex baby (Josephine Butler)

Kaia Landelius: Queen Margareta of Sweden

Benjamin T Smith: Joan of Arc

Narrelle M Harris: Euphemia Allen and “Chopsticks”

Tansy Rayner Roberts via SF Signal: Let’s talk about Cranky Ladies

Sylvia Kelso: Lilian Cooper, MD, FRACS: Writing a Cranky Lady in History, One

Elanor Matton-Johnson: Lady Jane Grey

Alex Pierce: The Pankhurst Women

Bess Lyre via FableCroft: Khadija

Juliet Marillier via FableCroft: Hildegard of Bingen

Liz Barr: Janet Kincaid

Kaia Landelius: Queen Kristina of Sweden

ABC News Online: Cranky Ladies article!

Gillian Polack via FableCroft: Helen Leonard

Narrelle M Harris: Lola Montez and the arts of beauty

Pamela Freeman: Lores Bonney

Tehani Wessely: Australian Children’s Authors of History

Mary-Louise Jensen via The History Girls: Aphra Behn

Katherine Roberts via The History Girls: Time and Boudica’s Daughters

Elizabeth Fremantle via The History Girls: Katherine Parr – Character, Courage and Commitment

Nicky Strickland: Boudicca

Alex Pierce & Tehani Wessely: Galactic Chat

Penny Dolan: The Book of Bossy Girls

Theresa Breslin via The History Girls: Cranky Old Lady

Celia Rees via The History Girls: Fight for the Right – Emily Davison and the Internet

NM Harris: Julie d’Aubigny aka La Maupin

Tansy Rayner Roberts via The History Girls: Sulpicia

LM Myles: 10 great military leaders, probably cranky ones

Tehani via Stephanie Burgis: Henry Handel Richardson

Bess Lyre via FableCroft: Tarenorerer

SF Signal included us in their crowdfunding roundup!

Kaaron Warren via Gillian Polack: Dr Emma Constance Stone

Aidan Doyle: Sei Shonagan

Jason Nahrung via Gillian Polack: Emilie Louise Flöge

Alex Isle via Gillian Polack: Mary Read (and Anne Bonney)

Jason Franks via Gillian Polack: Celia Franca

RJ Barker via Gillian Polack: Margaret of Anjou

Carrie Vaughn via Gillian Polack: Lilia Litviak and Ekaterina Budanova

Elizabeth Chadwick via The History Girls: Empress Matilda, having the right to be cranky

Marianne de Pierres via FableCroft: Jean d’Orléans

Becky Ferreira via Motherboard: Émilie du Châtelet (how cool is it how many cranky ladies posts out there, even when they aren’t written just for us?!)

Kc Sprayberry: Pony Dreams


Pony Dreams Event Banner Copy

Title: Pony Dreams     Author: Kc Sprayberry

Publisher: Fire and Ice, an imprint of Mélange – http://www.fireandiceya.com/

Cover Artist: Stephanie Flint  https://www.facebook.com/sbibbphoto

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 ABOUT THE BOOK: 

Abigail Weston’s starry-eyed dream is to become the first female Pony Express rider. Ma, Pa, and six overprotective brothers won’t even let her near the corral to train mustangs for the mail venture, so she gives up her dream to sneak out and talk to the ponies, teaching them to accept her weight on their backs.

Then her life changes and all her dreams are dust. Or are they?

Buy Links:

 Geotargeted Amazon Link: http://bookgoodies.com/a/B00HTQNE7Y

Book Links: 

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20457013-pony-dreams?ac=1

Trailer:  http://youtu.be/-euw91_O4kc

Excerpt:

Late May, 1860 near Carson City, Nevada

If anyone had asked me to describe fifteen, I’d tell them it was near an impossible age. Everyone expected me to act like a lady and wear dresses all the time. I had to pin up my hair instead of letting it swing in the breeze in two long braids. Ladies didn’t run around without a care in the world, nor could they allow the sun to tan their skin.

Being a lady stinks.

What I wanted deep in my heart was to wear pants and train horses from sunup to sunset. No one in my family listened whenever I begged them to let me help with training the horses, so a lady I was. They told me to get about my chores. To stay out of trouble, I did those awful, everyday, jobs but with hate in my heart. That was all I, Abigail Grace Weston, faced—never-ending, boring housework day in and day out.

I would never get a break from this boredom, as a lady in the nineteenth century never had a chance to think for herself, nor did she really run her home. A man always took care of a lady. This was one of the strictest rules I learned at an early age. No one ever let me forget it, no matter what dreams I had, like the forbidden desire to one day becoming a Pony Express rider.

Kc Sprayberry

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 

KC Sprayberry started writing young, first as a diarist, and later through an interest in English and creative writing. Her first experience with publication came when she placed third in The Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge contest while in the Air Force, but her dedication to writing came after she had her youngest child, now in his senior year of high school.

Her family lives in Northwest Georgia where she spends her days creating stories about life in the south, and far beyond. More than a dozen of her short stories have appeared in several magazines. Five anthologies feature other short stories. She has four books that are Amazon best sellers: Softly Say Goodbye, Who Am I?, and Mama’s Advice. Her other novels available are: Take Chances, The Ghost Catcher, Family Curse … Times Two, Secret From The Flames, Where U @, The Wrong One, and Grace.

AUTHOR Links:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/KC-Sprayberry/331150236901202

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/kcsowriter

Blog: http://outofcontrolcharacters.blogspot.com/

Website: www.kcsprayberry.com

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5011219.K_C_Sprayberry

JacketFlap: http://www.jacketflap.com/profile.asp?member=kathispray

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B005DI1YOU

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+KcSprayberry/posts

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/kcsprayberry/boards/

Authorgraph: http://www.authorgraph.com/authors/kcsowriter

AUTHORSdB: http://www.authorsdb.com/authors-directory/5230-k-c-sprayberry

Manic Readers: http://www.manicreaders.com/KCSprayberry/

Aubrey’s Ageless Romance Café: The Other Boleyn Girl

Aubrey’s Ageless Romance Café

by Aubrey Wynne

In this literary world, a handful of stories will stand the test of time. A modern classic novel holds the attention of every generation with a thoughtful plot, complex characters and a scene or two that lingers long after the final page.

These books will never be traded in at the paperback store or sold for a quarter at a garage sale. An ageless romance is passed on to your sister, then to her daughter who loans it to a friend. By the time it makes it back to your shelf, the pages are yellowed, earmarked and appreciated. And every so often, when you need to be reminded of the remarkable power of love, you dust off that old friend and peruse its pages again. These are the stories I want to share with you in Aubrey’s cafe.

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The Other Boleyn Girl

By Philppa Gregory

Published:     Publisher:  Touchstone    POV: First person

Setting: England: Tudor Court 1521-1536

 Are there any Tudor fans out there? Prepare for a heavenly read of historical fiction. The Other Boleyn Girl, the first book I read by Philippa Gregory, consumed my time and thoughts until the last page. It revolves around the older sister of Anne Boleyn. The twist in perspective grabs the reader immediately. The little known life of Mary Boleyn brings a unique and fascinating picture of the Tudor Court and Henry VIII.

Mary catches Henry’s eye at the tender age of fourteen. Henry Tudor was not always the fat, unpleasant king presented in the numerous portraits of dusty history files. Once a handsome king, he caused flutters in the hearts of women young and old. The athletic monarch played tennis, hunted and jousted. He was competitive, fit and loved women and adventure. In today’s world, I would compare him to Prince Harry.

So the dazzled Boleyn falls in love with the ruler of England. Yes, she has a slight moral qualm over betraying her Queen. But Katherine of Aragon does not see Mary as a threat. She accepts her husband’s weaknesses and looks the other way. Mary’s husband, William Carey, is not so forgiving. But what can he do? He accepts the bribe offered, and for the most part, keeps his mouth shut. Even when Mary becomes pregnant with a child that is most likely not his.

Enter: little sister Anne just returned from her stay at the French court. The younger Boleyn is sophisticated, witty and flirtatious. An immediate enmity grows between the sisters. In the back of Mary’s mind echoes the warning Anne gave as she left for France. “Anyone can attract a man. The trick is to keep him.”

I do not need to list the details. Readers who enjoy this genre already know the basic facts and timelines. What I found fascinating was the attitudes and inner thoughts spun by Gregory. The research is flawless; her interpretation captivated me. She did not choose one of the many opinions explored throughout the centuries. Instead, she combined several. And in my creative mind, it made perfect sense.

The rivalry between the sisters rang true: they fought, even hated each other at times then worked through their problems as families often do. Mary’s affection and loyalty for her sister falters but never dies. Anne is relentless in her quest to win the king’s heart. She plays the game well and wins for seven long years. Mary tries to move on and even leaves court. Yet each time, Anne relentlessly pulls her back into the plotting and intrigue. Mary even throws herself on the King’s mercy at one point to save her sister’s life. Yet in the end, nothing can save Queen Anne. She burns too many bridges, refuses to hold her tongue and allows paranoia to take control of her life.

I am a history geek like most historical romance writers.  The stories created in my head to fill in the gaps in history provide countless hours of diversion during long trips or boring conferences. Yet nothing prepared me for this novel. Philippa brought the Tudor court to life in a way I had never before experienced.

The conversations rang in my head after I closed the cover. Images popped into my mind’s eye throughout the day and I could not wait to get home and read more. When the movie came out, I jumped for joy. Sadly, it did not do justice to the book.

This is the first novel I have given five mugs. I am not a harsh reviewer but to give a work a perfect score means there was no piece of it I would change. The complex characters, excellent pacing and riveting plot mesmerizes the reader. I did not skim a paragraph of this novel. I did not edit in my head while I read it. I just sat back in the glow of Gregory’s words and enjoyed darn good story.

5 mugs copy

About The Author

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Born in Kenya in 1954, Philippa Gregory moved to England with her family and was educated in Bristol and at the National Council for the Training of Journalists course in Cardiff. She worked as a senior reporter on the Portsmouth News, and as a journalist and producer for BBC radio.

Philippa obtained a BA degree in history at the University of Sussex in Brighton and a PhD at Edinburgh University in 18th-century literature. Her first novel, Wideacre, was written as she completed her PhD and became an instant world wide bestseller. On its publication, she became a full-time writer, and now lives with her family on a small farm in the North of England.

Her knowledge of gothic 18th century novels led to Philippa writing Wideacre, which was followed by a haunting sequel, The Favoured Child, and the delightful happy ending of the trilogy: Meridon. This novel was listed in Feminist Book Fortnight and for the Romantic Novel of the Year at the same time – one of the many instances of Philippa’s work appealing to very different readers.

The trilogy was followed by The Wise Woman, a dazzling, disturbing novel of dark powers and desires set against the rich tapestry of the Reformation, and by Fallen Skies, an evocative realistic story set after the First World War. Her novel A Respectable Trade took her back to the 18th century where her knowledge of the slave trade and her home town of Bristol produced a haunting novel of slave trading and its terrible human cost. This is the only modern novel to explore the tragedies of slavery in England itself, and features a group of kidnapped African people trying to find their freedom in the elegant houses of 18th century Clifton. Gregory adapted her book for a highly acclaimed BBC television production which won the prize for drama from the Commission for Racial Equality and was shortlisted for a BAFTA for the screenplay.

Next came two of Gregory’s best-loved novels, Earthly Joys and Virgin Earth, based on the true-life story of father and son John Tradescant working in the upheaval of the English Civil War. In these works Gregory pioneered the genre which has become her own: fictional biography, the true story of a real person brought to life with painstaking research and passionate verve.

The flowering of this new style was undoubtedly The Other Boleyn Girl, a runaway best-seller which stormed the US market and then went worldwide telling the story of the little-known sister to Anne Boleyn. Now published in 26 countries with more than a million copies in print in the US alone, this is becoming a classic historical novel, winning the Parker Pen Novel of the Year award 2002, and the Romantic Times fictional biography award. The Other Boleyn Girl was adapted for the BBC as a single television drama and a film is now in production starring Scarlett Johansson as Mary Boleyn, Natalie Portman as Anne Boleyn and Eric Bana as Henry VIII.

A regular contributor to newspapers and magazines, with short stories, features and reviews, Philippa is also a frequent broadcaster and a regular contestant on Round Britain Quiz for BBC Radio 4 and the Tudor expert for Channel 4’s Time Team.

She lives in the North of England with her husband and two children and in addition to interests that include riding, walking, skiing and gardening (an interest born from research into the Tradescant family for her novel, Virgin Earth), she also runs a small charity building wells in school gardens in The Gambia. Fifty-six wells have been built by UK donors to date.

Connect with Philppa Gregory at www.philippagregory.com

Note: Book cover, author photo and bio were taken from Amazon.com. Both cover and photo are linked to the original source. Click and enjoy.