Showing posts with label book tour. Show all posts
Showing posts with label book tour. Show all posts

Friday, September 21, 2018

"The Last Weekend of the Summer" by Peter Murphy

REVIEW and GIVEAWAY
The Last Weekend of the Summer
by Peter Murphy

The Last Weekend of the Summer by Peter Murphy

The Last Weekend of the Summer by Peter Murphy is currently on tour with Providence Book Promotions. The tour stops here today for my review, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


Description
They have been coming to their grandmother Gloria’s lake cottage since they were babies. Now Johnnie and Buddy have families of their own and C.C. has a life full of adult drama and adventure. And this trip – the only stated purpose of which is to bring the family together for the last weekend of the summer – seems full of portent. Gloria has been hinting that there’s more on the agenda than grilling and swimming, and when the three siblings learn that their estranged father will also be in attendance, it becomes clear that this weekend will have implications that last far beyond the final days of the season.
A touching, incisive view into the dynamics of a family on the verge of change and filled with characters both distinctive and utterly relatable, The Last Weekend of the Summer is a rich, lyrical reading experience that will resonate in your heart.

Excerpt
As the truck slithered to a halt on the gravel road, Susie and Joey took off. It was one of their cottage rituals, running to Gloria who stood waving from the veranda. For the last few years, Joey had let Susie win but had always made it look like he was running as fast as he could. Johnnie and Carol sat back and watched. They always gave the kids a few moments with Gloria before they joined them.
“So, what’s really going on?” Carol asked without looking over at him.
“What do you mean?”
“There’s a little dark cloud hovering over your head.”
“Damn. I was hoping you wouldn’t notice it.”
“Come on, out with it.”
“Dad’s coming too. He’s coming sometime Saturday morning.”
“Does your mother know?”
“I don’t think so. Gloria wanted to break the news to everyone at the same time.”
“Oh dear, so Buddy doesn’t know yet?”
“No, and there’s more.”
There always was with his family, but Carol didn’t say that. Instead, she just sat for a moment taking it all in. And when he was finished, she squeezed his hand and leaned across to kiss his cheek. “I’m so sorry to hear that. Are you going to be okay?”
“Don’t worry about me; I’ll be fine. And we’re all going to have a great time, no matter what.” He smiled and winked at her. “Ready?”
“Showtime,” she smiled back, and she got out and walked towards the veranda. She knew what he was doing; he was getting himself ready for another weekend of enabling his sisters and his mother. She wished he wouldn’t, but there was no point in saying that. Instead, she’d be as loving and supportive as he needed her to be. It was how they dealt with life—along with having a laugh at themselves. “And stop checking out my ass,” she called over her shoulder as she went.
“Better yours than someone else’s,” Gloria laughed as she slowly descended the stairs from the veranda and kissed Carol’s cheek. She still had the most remarkable hearing. “That was something my Harry always used to say.”
“Really, Gloria, I wouldn’t have thought stuff like that would have been a problem for you guys.”
“He was blind, Carol, but he was still a man.”
Carol pretended to look shocked, but Gloria carried on as if she didn’t notice. “But you have nothing to worry about. Johnnie’s still madly in love with you, isn’t he, dear?” Gloria had a twinkle in her eye.
“Of course he is. And I’m still crazy about him—just don’t tell him.”
“I hope so, dear, because I put you two in the east room. I know it’s your favorite.”
“Thanks,” Carol took the old, brittle woman into her arms. “And are you okay, Gloria?”
“Of course I am. Why would you ask such a thing?” But she stayed in Carol’s arms for a little while longer.
“What are you two plotting?” Johnnie asked as he struggled up with their bags. “And don’t worry about me—I’ll just lug everybody’s stuff by myself.”
“And, well, you should,” Gloria reached up and kissed him, and hugged him as tight as her frail old arms would allow. “Your poor wife and children are here for a rest, so don’t be selfish and go around spoiling everything.
“So,” Gloria asked after Carol had gone to settle the kids into the new rooms over the boathouse. “Have you talked with your father?” She waited at the bottom step for Johnnie to take her by the elbow. She could have made it on her own, but she knew he liked to behave like a gentleman.
“Yes, and I hope he knows what he’s doing. It might be asking a bit too much.”
“Not of you, dear, surely?”
“No, I’m okay with it all, and I really want this to work out—for everyone. I was a bit torn up when I first heard, but it’s settled in now and, well, you know . . .”
“Yes, Johnnie, I do.” She smiled up at him and reached up to stroke his cheek. It always reminded her of Harry’s—at least his good side. “Being family means having to go through things like this, and we will all get to play our parts. Hopefully C.C.’s new love interest will provide enough distraction for your mother.”
She paused when they got to the top step and looked up at him for a moment as if she was about to say something else but changed her mind.
“What is it, Gloria? What other secrets are you keeping from me?”
“Far too many for what little time we have left. Now let’s go inside. I have some nice cold beer in the fridge. You might need some fortification before your mother gets here.”
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“Great story, love the ending, a surprise! Love that this book covers all age groups and their realistic daily problems.” ~ Jbarr5
“This is a well written story about a dysfunctional family with many secrets. […] There are many issues in this novel that a reading group could discuss and questions are included for that purpose. The story is plotted well and there is much for readers to think about at the end. Murphy's writing style is good.” ~ Joan N.
“Full of emotions, various personalities, it includes all age-groups making this a realistic family story. An ode to Summer, well-written read.” ~ SOMDReigel
“A story of hurt, anger, love and reconciliation among those we know best - Family. Well done!” ~ Laurie
“This wonderfully written book takes us on a journey of family drama, family love and family loss. Peter Murphys characters are well developed, diverse and engaging. The Last Weekend of the Summer is a great summer beach read.” ~ Donna M. Clerico

My Review
I received this book in return for an honest review.


By Lynda Dickson
On this last weekend of summer, matriarch Gloria brings her whole family together, even a surprise guest. She says, “Perhaps it is a little selfish of me, but I wanted you all here with me this weekend. I wanted my entire family to be together once more, while there is still time.” Of course, they all think she must be dying, but the truth is even harder to take. It will be a difficult weekend because “when they were all together - it was like they stopped being who they really were and all became characters in some drawn-out soap opera.” Long-held resentments will surface, relationships will be tested, and old family secrets will be revealed.
The story is told in the third person point-of-view of every family member, bar the two youngest boys. It’s hard to keep up with whose head you’re in, and even the author must have had trouble keeping up because sometimes two points-of-view are included in the same section. The dialogue is often lacking in contractions, making it stilted and unnatural and pulling the reader out of the story. Nevertheless, the author explores a rich tapestry of relationships in this family where everyone initially appears unlikable but ends up revealing their redeeming features. This is just the kind of family drama I’ve been missing and craving.
The story is followed by “Reading Group Questions” and “A Conversation with the Author”.
Warnings: coarse language, drug use, sexual references, LGBTQ themes, suicide references.

Some of My Favorite Lines
“… when you sit back and take it all in, life is neutral. It’s up to us to look at it from whatever side we like.”
“Mary and Gloria were sitting at opposite ends of the table, as silent as bookends, each deep within their own thoughts.”
“You have the very rare gift of being able to compliment and insult at the same time.”
“You have always been a pain in the ass, and that alone makes you one of us.”
“… it is so easy to rationalize our own mistakes and just as easy to make too big a deal of the mistakes of others.”
“… that sounds far too much like self-pity. It may seem warm and comforting at first, but I have found that it is not unlike peeing in your pants. It is, ultimately, embarrassing.”
“If there is a lesson we can offer, then it should be that when you are in doubt, stop and think about how your mother or I might deal with it and do the opposite.”
“A mother’s role is really very simple. You just have to make everyone happy all the time.”
“… all families are just petri dishes for growing all kind of craziness. Yours is just that bit extra special crazy.”

About the Author
Peter Murphy
Peter Murphy was born in Killarney where he spent his first three years before his family had to move to Dublin. Growing up in the verdant braes of Templeogue, Peter was schooled by the De La Salle brothers in Churchtown where he played rugby for “The Wine and Gold.” He also played football (soccer) in secret! After that, he graduated and studied the Humanities in Grogan’s under the guidance of Scot’s corner and the bar staff, Paddy, Tommy, and Sean. Murphy financed his education by working summers on the building sites of London. He also tramped the roads of Europe playing music and living without a care in the world.
But his move to Canada changed all of that. He only came over for a while and ended up living there for more than thirty years. He took a day job and played music in the bars at night until the demands of family life intervened. Having raised his children and packed them off to university, Murphy answered the long-ignored internal voice and began to write. He has published five novels so far and has begun work on a new one. Nowadays, he lives in beautiful Lisbon with his wife Eduarda and their well-read dog, Baxter.

Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win one of five ebook copies of Lagan Love by Peter Murphy.

Lagan Love by Peter Murphy

Links

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

"Love Spell" by Mia Kerick

GUEST POST and GIVEAWAY
Love Spell
by Mia Kerick

Love Spell by Mia Kerick

Love Spell by Mia Kerick is currently on tour with YA Bound Book Tours. The tour stops here today for a guest post by the author, an excerpt, and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


For more books by this author, please check out my blog post on The Weekend Bucket List and my blog post on My Crunchy Life.


Description
Chance César is fabulously gay, but his gender identity - or, as he phrases it, “being stuck in the gray area between girl and boy” - remains confusing. Nonetheless, he struts his stuff on the catwalk in black patent leather pumps and a snug-in-all-the-right (wrong)-places orange tuxedo as the winner of this year’s Miss (ter) Harvest Moon Festival. He rules supreme at the local Beans and Greens Farm’s annual fall celebration, serenaded by the enthusiastic catcalls of his BFF, Emily Benson.
Although he refuses to visually fade into the background of his rural New Hampshire town, Chance is socially invisible - except when being tormented by familiar bullies. But sparks fly when Chance, Pumpkin Pageant Queen, meets Jasper (Jazz) Donahue, winner of the Pumpkin Carving King contest. Chance wants to be noticed and admired and romantically embraced by Jazz, in all of his neon-orange-haired glory.
And so, at a sleepover, Chance and Emily conduct intense, late-night research, and find an online article: “Ten Scientifically Proven Ways to Make a Man Fall in Love With You.” Along with a bonus love spell thrown in for good measure, it becomes the basis of their strategy to capture Jazz’s heart.
But will this “no-fail” plan work? Can Chance and Jazz fall under the fickle spell of love?


Excerpt
“This carousel pumpkin,” nodding at the elegant pumpkin in front of us, I admit the truth before thinking it through, “…may be the best one here.”
This is when Jazz smiles broadly, and I decide his smile is the most honest smile I’ve ever seen. “I carved this pumpkin, Chance. I made it for my little sister.”
I gasp, as I hadn’t expected burly Jazzy to be the Michelangelo of pumpkin carving. “Well, your sister is a very lucky girl.” I smile at him, although I’m confident he’s the guy who is going to take the title of Beans and Greens Pumpkin Carving King away from me.
He grins again, and I fight the urge to pinch his adorbs cheek. I find it a difficult urge to battle. But I admit I have lost nothing this evening. Tonight is a win-win for Chance César. Cuz I met Jazz.
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“If you enjoy YA, overly dramatic, sarcastic and sassy, gender-confused and charming … or the quiet and shy, simple boy … Give this one a chance.” ~ Jenny Is My Name
“Chance's willingness to accept his faults and grow into the man that Jazz needed was incredible. The book reminded the reader to always be yourself and never give up hope that things will work out in the end.” ~ Teresa
“Chance is a funny and adorable character who I wish was my best friend in high school. Jazz is cute and sweet and the type of guy I'd totally fall for. Together they are great.” ~ Kathryn M
“This was amazing. It had so many complex and intriguing things going on for these characters. It made me smile. And made me sad. It was all around an amazing story and I loved it so much.” ~ Starwarslover


Guest Post by the Author

The language used in Love Spell is colorful. Which puts it mildly.
Chance calls his BFF Emily the Ms. Merriam-Webster of Improvised Language. In other words, well, she makes up words. After she creates words she uses them constantly and expects Chance to do the same. And he does. Believe me, he does!
And so, for today’s vocabulary lesson, let us focus on three of Emily’s finest words:
Let’s start with POOPATUDE. You know when you’re just not your cheerful self - you’re feeling mean and pissed-off, and maybe slightly sarcastic. Well, that’s because you’re displaying classic poopatude, a nasty attitude.
In a sentence: I’ve had enough of your poopatude, dude - do I have to tickle you to get you to smile? (I even added a rhyme for you.)
Next, let’s look at FRET-LIBERATO. Chance makes a guess at this new Emily-word when she introduces it to him, and he gets close but isn’t right on the nose. Fret-liberato is simply a creative term for relieved.
You’d like to hear it used in a sentence?
I can’t explain to you my fret-liberato when Mrs. Mansfield decided against giving us the pop quiz … I was so not prepared for it!
And finally, STUPI-BOGGLED. Chance finds himself feeling this way quite regularly. Stupi-boggled is a combination word - stupified combined with mind-boggled.
Kate was stupi-boggled to learn that her BFF was her Secret Santa - she’d never expected it!
Thanks for paying such close attention to today’s vocabulary lesson. I hope you’ll check out my re-release of this funny, crazy, sentimental story, Love Spell. You will laugh. You probably won’t cry, but there is remote chance of it. And you’ll be stupi-boggled by the lengths to which Chance goes to capture the heart of the boy of his dreams.


About the Author
Mia Kerick
Mia Kerick is the mother of four exceptional children - a daughter in law school, another a professional dancer, a third studying at Mia’s alma mater, Boston College, and her lone son off to Syracuse. She writes LGBTQ romance when not editing National Honor Society essays, offering opinions on college and law school applications, helping to create dance bios, and reviewing English papers. Her husband of twenty-four years has been told by many that he has the patience of Job, but don’t ask Mia about this, as it is a sensitive subject.
Mia focuses her stories on emotional growth in turbulent relationships. As she has a great affinity for the tortured hero, there is, at minimum, one in each book. As a teen, Mia filled spiral-bound notebooks with tales of said tortured heroes (most of whom happened to strongly resemble lead vocalists of 1980s big-hair bands) and stuffed them under her mattress for safekeeping. She is thankful to her wonderful publishers for providing alternate places to stash her stories.
Her books have won a Best YA Lesbian Rainbow Award, a Reader Views’ Book by Book Publicity Literary Award, the Jack Eadon Award for Best Book in Contemporary Drama, an Indie Fab Award, and a Royal Dragonfly First Place Award for Cultural Diversity, a Story Monsters Purple Dragonfly First Place Award for YA Fiction, among others.
Mia is a Progressive, a little bit too obsessed by politics, and cheers for each and every victory in the name of human rights. Her only major regret: never having taken typing or computer class in school, destining her to a life consumed with two-fingered pecking and constant prayer to the Gods of Technology.


Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $10 Amazon gift card.

Links


Friday, September 14, 2018

"Eight Goodbyes" by Christine Brae

EXCERPT and GIVEAWAY
Eight Goodbyes
by Christine Brae

Eight Goodbyes by Christine Brae

Eight Goodbyes by Christine Brae is currently on tour with Xpresso Book Tours. The tour stops here today for an excerpt and a giveaway. Please be sure to visit the other tour stops as well.


Description
One universe, nine planets, 204 countries, 809 islands and 7 seas, and I had the privilege of meeting you.” – Unknown
When Tessa Talman meets Simon Fremont for the first time, not only is she attracted to him, she’s intrigued by how different their lives are. He’s a dedicated scientist, practical, pragmatic, and grounded—while she’s a head-in-the-clouds romance author. As their relationship grows, they agree to meet in places around the world, while continuing to live on opposite sides of the globe.
Though their feelings for each other deepen, their priorities remain the same. Simon is in a hurry to be financially sound and settle down, but Tessa is enjoying her freedom and newfound success. Neither is willing to give in, but as each goodbye gets harder, Tessa begins to wonder whether fame is the path to happiness, or if she has everything she needs in Simon.
Just as Tessa finds the courage to go after her own happily ever after, the unthinkable happens, separating them in ways they never imagined.
To move forward, she must let go of the past, and determine once and for all if love is truly more powerful than the pain of goodbye.

Book Video


Excerpt
“Who knows you’re here?” she asked.
“You mean, specifically here? In Hong Kong?”
She nodded.
“No one. My family and friends think I’m traveling for work.”
“Ah. So if anything happened to you, how do they know where to look?” she asked, her chin resting on the palm of her hand.
“Well, when they find my phone and the one thousand pictures of you, they’ll know,” he said.
She laughed. Rather uncomfortably. This is what having an affair feels like. It’s you and him and no one else.
“Adrian doesn’t know I’m here.” This time he leaned forward, closer to her. “Does Riley know you’re here?”
“She has to. Even if I don’t tell her directly, Jake knows. He’s very protective that way. Needs to know where I go, who I’m with.”
“You seem so attached, the two of you.”
“He’s the only constant in my life.”
He stayed silent. She hadn’t intended to offend him with that comment. But then she decided that it was too soon to even think of his role in her life.
That was the real crux of the matter, and she wanted to keep it top of mind.
What about you, your parents? Do you see them often while you’re home?”
He laughed. “As a matter of fact, I have dinner with them every Sunday. They don’t live far from my old apartment. I’m moving to Chelsea when I get back which is a little further away, but I know my mum will find every excuse to come and visit. I’ll be too close to the shopping area for her to resist. She likes to get out sometimes. Leave the farm.”
“We’re lucky we have family we can count on,” she said.
“But none of them know we’re together,” he said, his tone lowered, quiet.
“Why does anyone need to know? Who cares?” she asked in defiance. She observed the way he picked up another dumpling with his chopsticks and shoved the whole thing in his mouth. “Okay, let me rephrase that,” she said. “In time, they’ll know.”
He smiled. “Better.”
He looked at his watch. She could tell that he wanted to change the subject. And she didn’t have to try. A round of applause filled the room. Tessa and Simon turned to see a man on one knee with his arms in the air, proposing to a very embarrassed woman.
“At a dimsum restaurant?” Simon smirked.
“Hey! You’ll never know! Maybe this is a special place for them,” Tessa said.
“Must be,” he answered, pulling his wallet out at the same time. He motioned for the dimsum man to bring the check over.
The man counted the different colored plates, each with a code for the food they ordered, wrote with lightning speed on a pad of paper, tore it off unevenly and handed it to Simon.
As he examined the bill, Simon said, “I forgot that your Twitter profile says ‘hopeless romantic.’”
“Love makes the world go ‘round!” she said in response, pausing to follow up with an afterthought. “At least in Romance books!”
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]


Praise for the Book
“A heart-wrenching tale of two people destined to be together. Simon and Tessa are fantastically portrayed as star-crossed lovers whose lives are worlds apart. Even those who are not fans of romance will enjoy the relationships, scenery, and beautiful prose of this book. Five stars!” ~ Kristi Elizabeth, San Francisco Book Review
Eight Goodbyes by Christine Brae is a beautiful story of a woman's quest to open her heart and let love in. It made me want to travel and fall in love all over again.” ~ Willow Aster, Bestselling Author
“I wish I could bottle up the feelings this novel gave me to revisit constantly. Though this is a seemingly simple story about two lovers making their own rules for their relationship, it dives even further by conveying important messages about life and love.” ~ 5171 Miles Book Blog
“Her magical penmanship has given this standalone a real-life feel and undoubtedly while you're reading, all the emotions will seduce you. Embrace them and every single moment of this love story. You won't ever regret it.” ~ Kindle Friends Forever
“My emotions flowed freely as I read this beautiful and descriptive tale. From tears free falling to my heart soaring, I was taken on a journey of two souls chasing each other to the four corners of the world.” ~ For The Love Of Reading
“Christine Brae created a story that goes straight to your heart, digs in and does a little twist. I’ll be looking for more of her books in the future.” ~ Scherry at The Novel Lady


About the Author
Christine Brae
Christine Brae is a full-time career woman who thought she could write a book about her life (The Light in the Wound) and then run away as far as possible from it. She never imagined that her words would touch the hearts of so many women with the same story to tell. Her second book, His Wounded Light was released in December 2013. Christine’s third book, Insipid, is a standalone released in June 2014 and her fourth book, In This Life, released in January 2016.
When not listening to the voices in her head or spending late nights at the office, Christine can be seen shopping for shoes and purses, running a half marathon or spending time with her husband and three children in Chicago.
Christine is represented by Italia Gandolfo of Gandolfo Helin Literary Management.

Giveaway
Enter the tour-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $20 Amazon gift card.


Links