• XX Chromosomes

Review of Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

 

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About Lies We Tell Ourselves

In 1959 Virginia, the lives of two girls on opposite sides of the battle for civil rights will be changed forever.

Sarah Dunbar is one of the first black students to attend the previously all-white Jefferson High School. An honors student at her old school, she is put into remedial classes, spit on and tormented daily.

Linda Hairston is the daughter of one of the town’s most vocal opponents of school integration. She has been taught all her life that the races should be kept separate but equal.

Forced to work together on a school project, Sarah and Linda must confront harsh truths about race, power and how they really feel about one another.

Boldly realistic and emotionally compelling, Lies We Tell Ourselves is a brave and stunning novel about finding truth amid the lies, and finding your voice even when others are determined to silence it.

My Review

“Other people will always try to decide things for you. They’ll try to tell you who you are. Remember, no matter what they say, you’re the one who really decides.”

Such an amazingly powerful book. I struggled with the amount of hate and anger spewing from the pages. The scenarios and characters felt incredibly real which magnified the reading experience making it even more painful and uncomfortable to read. The two different perspectives provide dimension and great interest both highly educational.

Sarah’s strength and determination left a lasting impression. I supported her from the beginning, hoping she’d overcome the hostility and cruelty. Dealing with segregation and the fact she is a lesbian, no doubt she’s dealing with a lot of heavy issues. Linda initially appears downright ignorant, one of the many haters until family issues are revealed, we understand her more and her personal challenges.

An emotional read leaving you tangled in an array of emotions, evoking. Great read for all with plenty to discuss. Impactful and halting.

About Robin Talley6469490

I live in Washington, D.C., with my wife, our baby daughter, an antisocial cat and a goofy hound dog. Whenever the baby’s sleeping, I’m probably busy writing young adult fiction about queer characters, reading books, and having in-depth conversations with friends and family about things like whether Jasmine’s character motivation was sufficiently established in Aladdin.

Published September 30th 2014 by Harlequin Teen

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Review of The Queen’s Exiles (Thornleigh #6) by Barbara Kyle

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About The Queen’s Exiles

1572. Europe is in turmoil. In the Netherlands the streets are red with the blood of those who dare to oppose the brutal Spanish occupation. A vengeful faction of exiled English Catholics is plotting to overthrow Queen Elizabeth and install her cousin Mary, Queen of Scots on the throne. But amid the unrest, one resourceful young woman has made a lucrative enterprise …

Scottish-born Fenella Doorn rules like a queen over a privateer’s haven on the Isle of Sark. Her success at salvaging crippled vessels affords her gold and security, and it is on one of these ships that she meets wealthy Baron—and privateer—Adam Thornleigh. Secretly drawn to him, Fenella can’t refuse when Adam enlists her to join him in war-torn Brussels to help find his traitorous wife, Frances—and the children she’s taken from him.

But Fenella’s own bold actions have put a price on her head. Now Adam and Fenella’s lives are in peril as they race across Europe in an attempt to rescue his young ones, defend the crown, and restore the peace that few can remember.

My Review

Fabulous action, suspense and romance. I thoroughly enjoyed this story so much I purchased all the books in the series. An enthralling glimpse into turbulent political and social times regarding England, Spain and Netherlands.

Fenella Doorn is fictional, although her strength and vulnerability is plausible. She’s a great example of mettle tested through difficult times, also the devices possessed to survive especially for a female.

Extremely well written, rich in details. The plot is engaging, I couldn’t put the book down. I have a new favorite author – Barbara Kyle. Historical fiction fans will want to make room on your shelf for this book along with the entire series.

About Barbara Kyle623139

I’ve enjoyed two fulfilling careers, first as an actor, now as an author.

After studying at the National Theater School of Canada in Montreal and the Professional Actor’s Training Program at the University of Washington, I played roles in dozens of film, television, and stage productions in Canada and the U.S.

High HopesSome highlights: I starred in the TV daytime drama High Hopes, played a continuing role in the TV series The Campbells, acted on stage with Margaret Hamilton at the Seattle Repertory Theater (she was the wicked witch in the beloved classic film The Wizard of Oz), worked with renowned director Jean Gascon in Moliere’s 17th-century play The Miser, and got laughs in Neil Simon’s Broadway-hit Chapter Two at the Bayview Playhouse in Toronto. I loved being an actor.

It felt like a natural extension of my acting to create characters for fiction. In 2008 Kensington Books published my first historical novel, The Queen’s Lady, which introduced Honor Larke, lady-in-waiting to Queen Catherine of Aragon, and ship captain/courtier Richard Thornleigh in the nerve-jangled court of Henry VIII. The intrigue and adventure of that period fueled the creation of six more books in the Thornleigh Saga. The series follows the Thornleigh family’s rise through three tumultuous Tudor reigns, during which they make hard choices about loyalty, duty, family and love. Book #7, The Traitors Daughter The Traitor’s Daughter, is the latest, released in May 2015.

Published May 27th 2014 by Kensington (first published January 1st 2014)

Review: The Forgotten Room by Karen White, Beatriz Williams, Lauren Willig

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About The Forgotten Room

The Forgotten Room, set in alternating time periods, is a sumptuous feast of a novel brought to vivid life by three brilliant storytellers.

1945: When the critically wounded Captain Cooper Ravenal is brought to a private hospital on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, young Dr. Kate Schuyler is drawn into a complex mystery that connects three generations of women in her family to a single extraordinary room in a Gilded Age mansion.

Who is the woman in Captain Ravenel’s portrait miniature who looks so much like Kate? And why is she wearing the ruby pendant handed down to Kate by her mother? In their pursuit of answers, they find themselves drawn into the turbulent stories of Gilded Age Olive Van Alen, driven from riches to rags, who hired out as a servant in the very house her father designed, and Jazz Age Lucy Young, who came from Brooklyn to Manhattan in pursuit of the father she had never known. But are Kate and Cooper ready for the secrets that will be revealed in the Forgotten Room?

My Review

Very well done, no doubt the level of talent and expertise of these three creative authors unmistakably blended to create quite a story of three women during differing times with ease.

Each women’s story was compelling. Their individual stories meticulously described, the mystery element was woven in wonderfully. The sketches of the women portray them as strong, independent, fearless heroines in their own right. A few surprises stealing your breath.

I enjoyed all three women and their affecting tales, I will say I was drawn to Olive’s story the most, very pleased when all the details and clues were knitted together forming a pleasant conclusion.

Well crafted, I appreciated the leisurely pace, there was a distinct intimacy formed with the characters as their stories were methodically revealed. A sweeping story of joys and sorrows, a quasi epic three generation romance story beautifully penned. Impressive anthology.

The Forgotten Room Authors

Karen Whitekarenwhite-white

After playing hooky one day in the seventh grade to read Gone With the Wind, Karen White knew she wanted to be a writer—or become Scarlett O’Hara. In spite of these aspirations, Karen pursued a degree in business and graduated cum laude with a BS in Management from Tulane University. Ten years later, after leaving the business world, she fulfilled her dream of becoming a writer and wrote her first book. In the Shadow of the Moon was published in August, 2000. Her books have since been nominated for numerous national contests including the SIBA (Southeastern Booksellers Alliance) Fiction Book of the Year, and has twice won the National Readers’ Choice Award.

Karen is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author and currently writes what she refers to as ‘grit lit’—Southern women’s fiction—and has also expanded her horizons into writing a mystery series set in Charleston, South Carolina. Her nineteenth novel, The Sound of Glass, was published in May 2015 by New American Library, a division of PenguinRandomHouse Publishing Group.

Karen hails from a long line of Southerners but spent most of her growing up years in London, England and is a graduate of the American School in London. When not writing, she spends her time reading, scrapbooking, playing piano, and avoiding cooking. She currently lives near Atlanta, Georgia with her husband and two children, and two spoiled Havanese dogs.

Beatriz-2Beatriz Williams

A graduate of Stanford University with an MBA from Columbia, Beatriz spent several years in New York and London hiding her early attempts at fiction, first on company laptops as a corporate and communications strategy consultant, and then as an at-home producer of small persons.

She now lives with her husband and four children near the Connecticut shore, where she divides her time between writing and laundry.

Lauren Williglauren_new

Lauren Willig is the New York Times bestselling author of fifteen works of historical fiction. Her books have been translated into over a dozen languages, awarded the RITA, Booksellers Best and Golden Leaf awards, and chosen for the American Library Association’s annual list of the best genre fiction. After graduating from Yale University, she embarked on a PhD in English History at Harvard before leaving academia to acquire a JD at Harvard Law while authoring her “Pink Carnation” series of Napoleonic-set novels. She lives in New York City, where she now writes full time.

Expected publication: January 19th 2016 by NAL

Review: The Poet’s Wife by Rebecca Stonehill

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About The Poet’s Wife

An unforgettable journey into the heart of one family torn apart by war.

Granada, 1920. Free-spirited Luisa and young poet Eduardo fall in love, cementing a bond that can never be broken.

Behind the jasmine filled courtyard, perched amongst houses like clouds on a hilltop, stands a beautiful villa; Carmen de las Estrellas. Beneath its walls live Eduardo and Luisa with their thriving family, but war is looming, casting its shadow over the household.

When Civil War finally breaks out, Luisa and Eduardo must fiercely protect those dear to them. Yet these are turbulent times, and as each of their children begin to make their way in the world, the solace of home cannot shield them from the horrors of war.

My Review

Stonehill does a fabulous job with educating the reader on the Spanish Civil War as the build up, the actual conflict and the aftermath is painfully depicted. Brilliantly detailed including the history, notable figureheads, political strife, brutalities, unimaginable poverty suffered by those surviving the discord.

The intimacy Stonehill created with the Luisa, Isabel and Paloma is compelling. Their fierceness to keep the family unit intact, strength to survive matched with hardships well sketched. The narrative never loses momentum as war approaches and the family faces imminent separation their fears and concern obvious. The anguish and conflict touches the peruser, you feel as if you’re by this family’s side as the story unfolds. A sweeping story of one family’s progression along with that of their country’s. The three generational perspectives gives the reader insight into the sentiment and times people faced.

I will say I connected with Luisa and Isabel more than Paloma. I felt Paloma’s presence wasn’t as strong, she felt more like an afterthought, a token insertion, not nearly as powerful and affecting as Luisa and Isabel. Paloma’s era was more liberal, less restrictive as that of her predecessors, however, all three women made an impact enduring challenging times.

Stonehill definitely impressed this reader, very well done enterprising success.

About Rebecca Stonehill8418573

Rebecca Stonehill, author of The Poet’s Wife and creative writing teacher.
I’m from London but currently live in Nairobi with my husband and three children where I teach creative writing to school children. Many years ago, I spent eighteen months living in Granada, completely falling in love with it and being inspired to write The Poet’s Wife. I have also had many short stories published, including in Vintage Script, What The Dickens magazine and Ariadne’s Thread.

The Poet’s Wife is my debut novel and I am currently working on my second book, set in Kenya.

 

Review: Vanessa and Her Sister by Priya Parmar

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It can break your heart to have a sister like Virginia Woolf.

The journal, diary entries with the postcards, letters et all provide an intimacy and authenticity to the narrative. I felt as if I was perusing a scrapbook, journal of sorts bonding with parties involved.

We are given hints to Virginia’s fragile mental health, as the story progresses we learn of the continued concern of her state of mind. Her meltdowns visited. Vanessa the thread holding the fabric of the family together, her shoulders bear the burden of responsibility, protectress, nurturer. Highs and lows palpable as we ride the wave of evolving family and friendships. I can’t image such a gifted group of people not embracing unconventionality and its agony and ecstasy. Would have loved being part of this esteemed group if only for an evening.

I was exhausted as I read of Vanessa, her ongoing concern of her sister, Virginia’s betrayal along with her marriage slipping it must have been trying. She puts herself last and its toll obvious. I found her frustrating and endearing. Virginia’s possessive attachment toward Vanessa specifically utterly suffocating. Vanessa placed in a precarious position of balancing Clive, Virginia and motherhood, the scales always unbalanced.

The plethora of characters took some getting used to, it was a challenge to familiarize myself with all involved. A few characters were dynamic, others trifling. Vanessa stole the show, with her vulnerability, smart and resilience. She carries herself with grace and poise under the most difficult of circumstances. Finally Vanessa realizes her self-importance and stops sidestepping her desires, I was relieved with this poignant revelation.

Ambitious and successful effort on Parmar’s part. I found the book utterly fascinating, raw and memorable.

About Priya Parmar3184722

I am a former dramaturg and freelance editor, educated at Mount Holyoke College, The University of Oxford and The University of Edinburgh. I am the author of one previous novel, Exit the Actress. My husband and I and our French bulldog Herbert, divide our time between Hawaii and London. Hello.

Review & Giveaway: We Never Asked for Wings by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

24041443Hardcover, 320 pages
Published August 18th 2015 by Ballantine Books (first published January 1st 2015)
ISBN13: 9780553392319

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Vanessa Diffenbaugh blends gorgeous prose with compelling themes of motherhood, undocumented immigration, and the American Dream in a powerful and prescient story about family.

Diffenbaugh manages to penetrate the core of humankind. Her characters flawed, however they scratch and claw to survive and succeed in life, success measured on their terms. Her masterful writing, emotional insight creates a compelling read.

Immigration is a hot topic these days, Diffenbaugh handled it with heart, grace, empathy and truth. I enjoyed the comparison between Letty and Carmen’s status, dissimilar and similar circumstances yet they share the same hopes and dreams for themselves along with their children.

The information on birds/feathers was fascinating, added to the intensity of Alex.

I would have preferred less romance and more family engagement. Alex and Yesenia’s relationship played a role in the plot and was appreciated but the adult romance wasn’t really necessary, more of a distraction feeling like filler, close to formulaic.

Fulfilling read, looking forward to Diffenbaugh’s next burning provoking novel.

Giveaway

Enter for a chance to win a copy of We Never Asked for Wings, please complete the giveaway form below. Open to US residents only. Ends 10/21/15
ENTRY-FORM

Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: In the Shade of the Almond Trees by Dominique Marny

In the Shade of the Almond TreesRelease date: September 29, 2015
at Open Road Media
280 pages
ISBN: 978-1480461178

Website | Goodreads

SYNOPSIS

In the aftermath of World War I, a family estate hangs in the balance.

For generations, the Barthélemy family tended to the olive trees of Restanques, a sprawling property in Cotignac whose olive oil and almonds were as incredible as the countryside that produced them. But all that changed when war came to France. Robert Barthélemy never returned from the trenches, and without him, the farm is beginning to die. His widow has lost the will to live, and only the fierce efforts of their daughter, Jeanne, have kept the creditors at bay.

Jeanne is spending an afternoon at home with the family’s grim financial statements when a handsome stranger appears on the front steps. His name is Jérôme Guillaumin and he is a brilliant botanist about to embark on a journey around the globe. From the moment they meet, Jeanne is struck by feelings she never thought possible: feelings that could save her life or destroy everything she has ever known.

READ EXCERPT Shade of the Almond Trees

A young woman attempting to piece her family together post WWI while simultaneously discovering love. A moving story of hope and determination while sacrificing your immediate gratification.

I couldn’t help but admire Jeanne. Really she’s the only member of the family possessing the love for the estate willing to enter blindly to save both property and family from ruin. Her independence, smarts, drive and desire forced her to resort to creativity along with exercising all avenues to sustain her family. She also dips her toes into the pool of love as she tastes its bitterness before she savors its sweetness. Her selflessness was inspiring.

The other characters stumble and fall to love equally, finally everyone finds a measure and understanding of the intricate machinations of true love.

Marny always manages to exploit her characters emotional strength, fragility and vulnerability yet they manage to overcome victoriously. Her lush descriptions of France be it untouched countryside or the bustling city captivates the reader without hesitation. I find her romances contain the perfect blend of mischance and serendipity, always a pleasure to read.

Buy the book

 ABOUT THE AUTHOR

In the Shade of the Almond Trees - Dominique Marny

Dominique Marny was raised in a family that loved art, literature, adventure, and travel. In addition to being a novelist, she is a playwright and screenwriter, and writes for various magazines.

Follow Open Road Integrated Media on Facebook | Twitter
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Visit the author’s website (in French) Follow her on Facebook

***

Global giveaway open internationally:
2 participants will each win a copy of this book.
Print/digital format for US residents
Digital for all other residents

Be sure to follow each participant on Twitter/Facebook,
for more chances to win

Enter here

Visit each blogger on the tour:
tweeting about the giveaway everyday
of the Tour will give you 5 extra entries each time!
[just follow the directions on the entry-form]

***

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TO READ OTHER REVIEWS AND EXCERPTS

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Guest Post: Tess Woods, author of Love at First Flight

Unshelfish extends a warm welcome to Tess Woods, author of Love at First Flight

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Guest Post
Tess Woods – 60 BLOG TOPICS FOR AUTHORS

What is it with writing blogs that turns authors into jibbering wrecks? We seem to have no issue writing a one hundred thousand word book, but ask us to write three hundred words for a blog post and our legs give way!

Blogging should be easy. There are no rules for blogging and as long as you’re not malicious or inappropriate (no racist rants!), you can pretty much write about anything. Blogs can be short or long and as personal as you like. You don’t just have to write about topics related to your book either, your readers will love getting to know more about you no matter what you write about.

I hope these blogging ideas help you out for your next book release and make things easier for when you get those dreaded emails from the sites promoting your new book containing those hateful eight words “can you please write us a guest blog?”

10 OBVIOUS BLOG TOPICS

Okeydokey, so let’s start with the no-brainer blog posts. Here are ten ideas to get you started on a blog tour that are so easy to write they could write themselves.

1. What inspired the story?

2. Your journey to publication.

3. How has your experience as a published author been so far?

4. Who would you like to see play the lead roles in the movie version of your book?

5. What was your writing process like and how long did it take to write this book?

6. When did you realise you wanted to be a writer and what made you take the leap to start writing?

7. Are you a plotter or a pantster – was this particular book plotted? Did the story change from how you originally planned it?

8. What tips from your own experience can you share with aspiring writers?

9. Share your best and worst reviews and discuss how much or how little good and bad reviews affect you.

10. What do you want readers to take away from your story?

50 NOT SO OBVIOUS BLOG TOPICS

Once you’ve exhausted the easy options, here’s another fifty ideas to keep you blogging and blogging…

1. List your favourite things and talk about why you love them – food, shows, colours, things to wear, things to do, songs etc.

2. What you would take and why if you were stranded on a deserted island?

3. Share your most memorable childhood experience.

4. What was the first grown up novel you ever read and how did it shape you?

5. Which authors have most influenced you and what are the books they’ve written that you love?

6. Write your fantasy dinner party guest list.

7. If you could bring back one person from history to hang out with you for a day who would it be?

8. If you had half an hour with God how would you spend that time?

9. How much is your personality reflected in your star sign?

10. Your wedding day – all the quirky details.

11. Your most memorable holiday and why it was so amazing.

12. The one place you are dying to visit and why.

13. How you juggle writing and work or writing and being a parent.

14. Real life experiences that influenced your fictional story.

15. A list of random/funny facts about you that you haven’t shared publicly before.

16. Alternative book titles you thought about and how you ended up choosing your title.

17. How you named your characters –what process did you use to choose names?

18. How have your family/friends/work mates reacted to your book. Does anybody think it’s about them??

19. Your most embarrassing experience ever.

20. Your most epic fashion fail (include photos)!

21. The best birthday/Christmas present you ever received.

22. Take photos of your writing space, discuss your writing routine and why you like to write there.

23. Take photos of your pets and say anything you like about them – everyone goes gaga at pet photos.

24. What did you do to celebrate finishing writing your book?

25. Your first kiss – who, what, when, where, how old were you, are you still in touch?

26. What do you find the hardest about writing?

27. Share things you know now that you wish you knew before you were published.

28. Describe a typical day in your life.

29. Where do you see yourself in ten years?

30. Write your main character into a famous movie scene.

31. Write an open letter to your thirteen-year-old self.

32. What is your favourite genre to read and why?

33. Do you have another great passion apart from writing? (e.g. are you also a passionate cook?) Write about your other passions.

34. What would you do with five million dollars if you won it?

35. How do you research for your books? Is research something you hate or enjoy?

36. List the five things you love the most about the city you live in.

37. What is the best advice you were ever given both as a writer and as a person?

38. What are the ingredients of a really good story? And what kind of stories turn you off?

39. What do you do when you get writer’s block?

40. If there was to be a movie made about your life, who would play you?

41. Share the back story of how your book cover came to be.

42. Share your favourite recipe or your main character’s favourite recipe.

43. Review five of your all-time favourite movies.

44. Share ten inspirational quotes and say what they mean to you.

45. Who have been the major role models in your life and why (this could range from family members to movie stars to political figures from history).

46. Write about all the different houses you’ve lived in and share the best/worst/funniest memory from each one.

47. If you had one chance to enter a time machine, which era would you go back to and why?

48. Write any step-by-step guide for aspiring authors – e.g. how to submit to publishers or how to market your book.

49. Choose five photos from different stages of your life and caption them with a little back story of each one.

50. Do what I just did and write a list about something – anything! People love lists. True story!

tess woodsAbout Tess Woods

Tess Woods is a health professional who lives in Perth, Australia with one husband, two children, one dog and one cat who rules over all of them. Love at First Flight is her first novel for HarperCollins. When she isn’t working or being a personal assistant to her kids, Tess enjoys reading and all kinds of grannyish pleasures like knitting, baking, drinking tea, watching Downton Abbey and tending to the veggie patch.

Find out more about Tess at her website and connect with her on Facebook and  Goodreads.

25058078About Love at First Flight

Looking back on it now, I can see it was instant. The second we locked eyes. Boom. Just like that. The me I had spent a lifetime perfecting began its disintegration from that moment. And despite the carnage it brought to all our lives, I still don’t regret it.

What would you risk to be with the love of your life? And what if your soul mate is the one who will destroy you?

Mel is living the dream. She’s a successful GP, married to a charming anaesthetist and raising a beautiful family in their plush home in Perth. But when she boards a flight to Melbourne, she meets Matt and her picture perfect Stepford life unravels as she falls in love for the first time ever.

What begins as a flirty conversation between strangers quickly develops into a hot and obsessive affair with disastrous consequences neither Mel nor Matt could have ever seen coming. Mel’s dream life turns into her worst nightmare.

Love at First Flight will take everything you believe about what true love is and spin it on its head.

Guest Post: Tess Woods, author of Love at First Flight

Unshelfish extends a warm welcome to Tess Woods, author of Love at First Flight

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Guest Post

Tess Woods – tips for bloggers for interviewing authors

 

Authors love bloggers. We really, really do! Bloggers give us much needed exposure by bringing our names and our books to the attention of all their followers. With every new book release, many of us authors promote it with a blog tour and it often involves author interviews. And that can mean lots and lots and LOTS of interviews! So what do we like to be asked and what gets us all fired up (not in a good way)? Here’s a list of Do’s and Don’ts some of my author mates from HarperCollins and I have come up with.

Do’s:

  • Give us a choice of questions to choose from so if we really don’t feel like answering something we don’t feel pressured to. Saying “choose any five or choose any ten questions” and providing roughly double the amount of questions you want answered will make us happy – we’ll choose the fifty percent of questions we like the most.
  • Ask us about the book we’re promoting, we want to shout about our new books from the rooftops and we don’t get sick of being asked to tell people about it.
  • Stalk us before you interview us. If you check out our websites and Facebook pages and read the “about the author” section in our books, you’ll discover lots of personal things about us and then your interview can include less generic questions. A great example is that a blogger found out I loved to knit so one of her questions was “what’s the nicest thing you’ve knitted?” and I was able to share a gorgeous photo of a knitted bunny I made for my daughter. The same blogger also asked “what was your most interesting flight experience?” (because my novel is called “Love at First Flight”) and that gave me the opportunity to share a hilarious real life story. Finding out about authors and tailoring your questions to suit us will give you an interview with an edge. If you stick to generic questions, we’ll just copy and paste our answers from the other interviews we’ve done and you won’t get “a scoop”.
  • Ask us about our journey to publication. Everyone’s journey is different and these stories are great inspiration for authors out there who need it. The “I did it so you can too” feel good story has great appeal!
  • Give us a couple of weeks to get back to you. Get in early with your interviews. Most of us have day jobs and lots of us are parents too so between that and our writing, there isn’t much time for interviews (as much as we need and love the exposure from them!) so please give us a bit of time to get our answers back to you.
  • Send us the link and the date that the interview will be live on your site and then remind us again once it is live because then we’ll promote it from our platforms and hopefully you’ll get lots more hits on your pages when our followers come to check out the interview!
  • Keep the interviews relatively short, ten questions should be about the limit.
  • Ask us about our favourite things. Questions like “name your favourite food, movie, holiday destination”. These questions give us something in common with our readers and make us more relatable as people. It also gives a little glimpse into our lives without being too confronting.
  • Ask us who we would cast in the movie versions of our books. We all dream of movie adaptations of our stories (those who say they have never thought of this are telling bigger lies than Pinocchio) and this is a fun question that will help readers instantly relate to our stories when they can picture the movie stars in the leading roles.
  • Ask about what we are working on now. Most authors promoting one book have already started or about to start working on a second project and we are grateful for the opportunity to promote our latest work.

Don’ts:

  • Ask us how much money we’ve made or how many copies we’ve sold. We really, really hate that question. It is something ALL authors hate being asked plus it’s just plain rude. You wouldn’t ask any other professional how much they earn and authors are no different.
  • Ask an eBook author if they would like a print deal because the answer was and always will be YES! Every single author dreams of holding their own book in their hands but it can sometimes be a very touchy subject so it’s best to avoid it.
  • Ask any author whether they prefer eBooks or print books because it puts us in an awkward position. If a print author reads all her books on a Kindle, her publisher will be none too pleased to hear her say so and the same goes with an eBook author saying how much she loves print books.
  • Ask a self-published author if they would like to be traditionally published. This is insults the hard work and professionalism of Indie authors. A way around this could be to ask for pros and cons about self-publishing which would give your readers a great insight without offending the author who has worked so hard to publish her book.
  • Ask authors to name their favourite author or their favourite book. We don’t want to name one and risk offending others. A better way to ask might be, “are there any authors or books that influenced or inspired you?” and leave the question open for several authors who inspired us to be named. Asking “who is your favourite author?” or “what is your favourite book?” can be almost impossible for us to answer.
  • Ask questions that are too personal. We may want to keep our private and public lives separate so asking about relationships and children in an obtrusive way isn’t a great idea.

I hope these tips help you to get the most out of interviewing authors and from all of us to all of you I’d like to say a huge THANK YOU to you wonderful people for helping us gain fans and sell books!

tess woodsAbout Tess Woods

Tess Woods is a health professional who lives in Perth, Australia with one husband, two children, one dog and one cat who rules over all of them. Love at First Flight is her first novel for HarperCollins. When she isn’t working or being a personal assistant to her kids, Tess enjoys reading and all kinds of grannyish pleasures like knitting, baking, drinking tea, watching Downton Abbey and tending to the veggie patch.

Find out more about Tess at her website and connect with her on Facebook and  Goodreads.

25058078About Love at First Flight

Looking back on it now, I can see it was instant. The second we locked eyes. Boom. Just like that. The me I had spent a lifetime perfecting began its disintegration from that moment. And despite the carnage it brought to all our lives, I still don’t regret it.

What would you risk to be with the love of your life? And what if your soul mate is the one who will destroy you?

Mel is living the dream. She’s a successful GP, married to a charming anaesthetist and raising a beautiful family in their plush home in Perth. But when she boards a flight to Melbourne, she meets Matt and her picture perfect Stepford life unravels as she falls in love for the first time ever.

What begins as a flirty conversation between strangers quickly develops into a hot and obsessive affair with disastrous consequences neither Mel nor Matt could have ever seen coming. Mel’s dream life turns into her worst nightmare.

Love at First Flight will take everything you believe about what true love is and spin it on its head.

Review: Trail of Broken Wings by Sejal Badani w/ Giveaway

Trail-of-Broken-Wings_300dpi-200x300

•Paperback: 378 Pages
•Publisher: Lake Union Publishing (May 1, 2015)

Trail of Broken Wings reveals the burden of shame and secrets, the toxicity of cruelty and aggression, and the exquisite, liberating power of speaking and owning truth.

I found myself lost in this book for a number of reasons, you will as well with all certainty.

A convoluted story of harbored dark secrets tucked away forever plaguing a family and each individual member. Healing is examined in an intricate and involved manner accompanied with high emotions and stress. Unearthing buried secrets takes its toll as we discover in this broken family. The ravages of abuse, its aftermath expertly depicted.

“What he did to you can never be undone. But don’t let it color your life. Don’t let his actions or his way of living become your truth.”

A disturbing story, incandescent, engrossing. A combination of strong characterization, a well crafted narrative complete with a somewhat jaw dropper ending causing an audible gasp makes for an enthralling painful read. As a survivor of abuse I was greatly affected by this story as well as its cast.

“Everyone must reach a point in their life when they stop running. When it is easier to stand still than to keep being chased, even if the person chasing you is only in your head.”

Trust, heavy questions, vague answers, strength, forgiveness, healing, will leave you lost in thought. A stirring memorable read.

“I wait for the pity, the disgust, all the things that come with someone knowing you are damaged. The acceptance that the scars that cover your body and soul have shriveled you to nothing but a fragment of what you once were.”

About Sejal BadaniSejal-Badani_120dpi-216x300

Sejal Badani is a former attorney. She currently lives on the West Coast with her family and their two dogs.

Giveaway

To enter to win a copy of Trail of Broken Wings please complete the giveaway form below. Open to US/CA residents only. Ends 5/28/15
ENTRY-FORM

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