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Archive for the ‘book spotlight’ Category

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One year ago, Sweta Srivastava Vikram’s most emotional poetry collection Saris and a Single Malt was on tour with Poetic Book Tours.

Chick with Books said of the collection, “Heartfelt, raw, honest and thought-provoking.”

Jorie Loves A Story said, “Vikram bleeds her emotions through words.”

Diary of an Eccentric said, “Saris and a Single Malt is a touching tribute to Vikram’s mother, a love song from a grieving daughter.”

This is a poetry collection that is raw and beautiful. And as part of the celebration, Vikram is offering 4 copies of the book to some lucky U.S. residents.

SARIS AND A SINGLE MALTAbout the book:

Saris and a Single Malt is a moving collection of poems written by a daughter for and about her mother. The book spans the time from when the poet receives a phone call in New York City that her mother is in a hospital in New Delhi, to the time she carries out her mother’s last rites. The poems chronicle the author’s physical and emotional journey as she flies to India, tries to fight the inevitable, and succumbs to the grief of living in a motherless world. Divided into three sections, (Flight, Fire, and Grief), this collection will move you, astound you, and make you hug your loved ones.

IMG_2240About the Poet:

Sweta Srivastava Vikram, featured by Asian Fusion as “one of the most influential Asians of our time,” is an award-winning author of 11 books, five-time Pushcart Prize nominee, mindfulness writing coach, and wellness columnist. Sweta’s work has appeared in The New York Times and other publications across nine countries on three continents. Louisiana Catch (Modern History Press, 2018) is her debut U.S. novel.

Born in India, Sweta spent her formative years between the Indian Himalayas, North Africa, and the United States collecting and sharing stories. A graduate of Columbia University, she also teaches the power of yoga, Ayurveda, and mindful living to female trauma survivors, writers and artists, creative types, busy women, entrepreneurs, and business professionals in her avatar as the CEO-Founder of NimmiLife. You can find her on: Twitter (@swetavikram), Instagram (@SwetaVikram), and Facebook.

Enter to win 1 signed copy and a $15 Amazon gift card or 1 of 3 other signed copies of Saris and a Single Malt.

Entrants must be U.S. residents.  Giveaway ends on Aug. 28, 2017, at 5 p.m. EST

Click to enter the Rafflecopter giveaway.

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Sweta Vikram and her father

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I am very excited to share the news that today marks the release of Traci Borum’s latest novel, Savoring the Seasons, which is the fourth book in her Chilton Crosse series. Congratulations, Traci!

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About Savoring the Seasons

Julia Bentley has just spent her fortieth birthday doing what she always does—baking treats for the customers in her Cotswold bakery and taking care of her elderly father. She doesn’t realize how stagnant her life has become until a younger man, Tristan Hannigan, arrives at the village and shows interest in her. As Julia grows closer to Tristan, he begins to season her mundane days and to challenge her insecurities about herself and how she views the world.

But the relationship is threatened when Julia’s doubts become too great, and the secret she’s afraid to reveal creates a wedge between them. Will Julia choose the easy route, slipping back into her daily routine and living without love? Or will she find the courage to follow her heart and accept the love she deserves?

Check out Savoring the Seasons on Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | iTunes | Kobo | Google Play

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About the Author

Traci Borum

Traci Borum is a writing teacher and native Texan. She also adores all things British. She even owns a British dog (Corgi) and is completely addicted to Masterpiece Theater—must be all those dreamy accents! Aside from having big dreams of getting a book published, it’s the little things that make her the happiest: deep talks with friends, a strong cup of hot chocolate, a hearty game of fetch with her Corgi, and puffy white Texas clouds always reminding her to “look up, slow down, enjoy your life.”

Connect with Traci via Facebook | Twitter | Website

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I really enjoyed the first three books in the Chilton Crosse series. While they are standalone, I recommend reading them in order so you can really get to know the villagers. And my JAFF reader friends may want to know that book 2, Finding the Rainbow, has a bit of an Emma connection!

Check out my reviews:

Painting the Moon (Chilton Crosse 1)

Finding the Rainbow (Chilton Crosse 2)

Seeking the Star (Chilton Crosse 3)

Those of you who would like to delve into the series are in luck, as the first installment is on sale on Amazon until June 29! Click the banner below to check it out, and stay tuned for my review of Savoring the Seasons!

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I’m thrilled to spotlight Jeannette Katzir’s new novel, Footprints in the Forest, on Diary of an Eccentric today. I’ll be reading it soon, but while you wait for my review, Jeannette is generously offering an ebook copy to the first 10 readers to comment on this post (more information below)! I’ve been eagerly anticipating this novel since reading Jeannette’s memoir, Broken Birds, which is about her experiences as the child of a Holocaust survivor.

Book Summary

favorite-attempt-2To an Eastern European holocaust survivor the time difference between 1940 Poland and 1948 Brooklyn New York is unquestionably 8 years, but time is insignificant to Chana. To her, angry voices outside her Brooklyn brownstone apartment door drag her back to Poland, where tall, shiny booted Nazi soldiers, with swastikas on their sleeves, storm into your home, dripping with hatred and entitlement.

On this day, those voices cause her to run to the kitchen, fling open the drawer and grab a sharp knife. She won’t go without a fight.

It’s 1940, and with little more than a few hours warning Chana leaves behind her mother and younger sister, slithers beneath a barbed wire fence and escapes the Baranavichy ghetto with her older brother. She has no idea where she’s going, or what will be asked of her, but she knows they are to join a band of forest dwelling partisans. There she learns how to shoot a gun, plant bombs and keep away from the lecherous fellow freedom fighters who now see her as a blossoming young woman. She also learns about death, perseverance and love.

There is a concurrent story line about Chana and her brother’s lives after the war. Poland doesn’t want their kind to return home, so they leave Eastern Europe and journey to New York, where they begin life anew. Chana is a budding artist, who paints what she remembers from her time in the forest. She is also a young woman, a young woman in search of her beshert or soul mate. But finding love means sacrifices and Chana feels she isn’t willing to sacrifice anything more.

Footprints in the Forest features dual storylines about the same person; one who is young, fighting to live and learning about love and life. The other is about a young woman and choices that life demands her to make.

Check out Footprints in the Forest on Goodreads | Amazon

About the Author

portraitI am the second child of five children born to two Holocaust survivors. Footprints in the Forest is my second book in this genre. My first book, Broken Birds, the Story of My Momila, received positive reviews, and was spotlighted by Jesse Kornbluth of Head Butler and The Huffington Post. “Broken Birds is self-published, and I’ve never read anything like it,” were just a few of his complimentary words. I live in Los Angeles and am currently in the process of writing a new book, one which is not about the Holocaust.

Giveaway

Jeannette is generously offering an ebook copy (pdf or mobi) to the first 10 readers to comment on this post. Please be sure to include your email address and which format you’d prefer in your comment, and I will make sure Jeannette receives your information. This giveaway will close after the 10 copies have been claimed.

Stay tuned for my review of Footprints in the Forest!

© 2016 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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darcy's maltese falconI’m delighted to announce the release of Barbara Silkstone’s latest Pride and Prejudice-inspired novel, Mister Darcy’s Maltese Falcon, which is the eighth book in her Mister Darcy comedic mystery series. I had the pleasure of editing this book, and I found myself laughing throughout. This was my first time reading the series, and I was able to follow the book because Barbara provides enough backstory, but I definitely want to go back and read them all in order!

Darcy and Lizzie, now happily married, are off on another Templar quest. With their first baby due in two months, Darcy insists that Lizzie remain in London while he adventures to Malta. Pregnancy will not hamper Lizzie; she is determined to stand by her husband. Lizzie inserts herself in the caper, accompanied by Boris, the Russian wolfhound, and other surprise stowaways. Oh no! Caroline and Wickham return to add to the chaos.

In this, the eighth book in the Mister Darcy comedic mysteries series, the Maltese Falcon holds the key to finding the Bogart Diamond, a priceless gem that was stolen from the ancient order of the Knights Templar. Darcy is tasked with recovering it. Fall in Love with Laughter!

If that’s not enough to entice you, maybe this sweet note Barbara received recently from an anonymous fan will:

I love your books and always look forward to the audio books. I buy the books then the audio. I do reread them and listen to them when I can’t read them. It keeps me going throughout the day.  My life has not been happy recently due to some deaths in my family. It’s getting better and it’s partially due to your books. Thank you.

There’s also an excerpt of Mister Darcy’s Maltese Falcon on Barbara’s website, Second Act Cafe.

Buy Mister Darcy’s Maltese Falcon:

Amazon U.S. | Amazon U.K. | iBooks | Nook | Kobo

Connect with Barbara Silkstone:

Second Act Cafe | Amazon Author Page | the Darcy Collection

© 2016 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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Open Road Media is celebrating the international ebook release of Fragments of Isabella: A Memoir of Auschwitz by Isabella Leitner (which I will be reviewing in the coming months) with an international ebook giveaway for my readers.

fragments of isabella coverThe deeply moving true account of a young Jewish woman’s imprisonment by the Nazis at the Auschwitz death camp.

On May 29, 1944, the day after Isabella Katz’s twenty-third birthday, she, her family, and all the Jews in the ghetto in Kisvárda, Hungary, were rounded up by Nazi storm troopers, packed into cattle cars, and deported to Auschwitz. There, Dr. Josef Mengele, the so-called Angel of Death, scrutinized the family and decided who would live—for a time—and who would die. Isabella and three of her sisters waged a daily battle to survive, giving one another strength, courage, and love, promising themselves that they would cheat the crematoriums and end each day alive.

Thirty years after she escaped from the Nazis, Isabella wrote this powerful and luminous memoir. Hailed by Publishers Weekly as “a celebration of the strength of the human spirit as it passes through fire,” Fragments of Isabella has become a classic of holocaust literature and human survival.

This ebook features rare images from the author’s estate.

FIND FRAGMENTS OF ISABELLA ON:

Amazon | Apple | Barnes & Noble | Google | Kobo | Goodreads

GIVEAWAY

Open Road Media is generously offering 5 ebook copies of Fragments of Isabella to my readers. This giveaway is open internationally and will close on Sunday, July 3. To enter, please leave a comment with your email address and let me know why you want to read the book. The winners will be chosen randomly and announced in the comments section of this post. Good luck, and as always, thanks for visiting!

© 2016 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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couple-who-fell-to-earthThese meditations, cosmic-toned, yet utterly visceral, demonstrate Michelle Bitting’s continuing growth and power as a poet of love, loss, the daily and deeply human experience, together with a maturing eye to understanding greater mythological tropes. Woven throughout her contemplation of the terrible beauty and struggle of family dynamics, corporeal desire, the injustices and revelations of life in the 21st century, thrums a vital connectivity to the mystic and mythological strains of the past, newfangled to the present in a way that ultimately sheds light on what it is to be alive and conscious of who we’re called to be.

To read Michelle’s poetry is to take a wild, passionate ride through the rubble of the quotidian, to be shocked by sensual discovery and awakened to a relentless curiosity for both the surreal and historical. These poems travel–an expansion in service of communion with the world, confrontation and acceptance of self.

Photo Credit: Alexis Rhone Fancher

Photo Credit: Alexis Rhone Fancher

About the poet:

Michelle Bitting’s first collection, Good Friday Kiss (C & R, 2008) won the DeNovo First Book Award. Her second collection, Notes To The Beloved (SPC, 2011) won the Sacramento Poetry Center Book Award and received a starred review from Kirkus. Poems have been published in the American Poetry Review, Prairie Schooner, Narrative, The L.A. Weekly, diode, Linebreak, and The Paris-American, and have been nominated for the Pushcart and Best of the Net prizes. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Pacific University and is currently a Ph.D candidate in Mythological Studies at Pacifica Graduate Institute. She grew up in Los Angeles near the ocean.

A video of Michelle Bitting reading “I Don’t Want a Funeral.” Please be advised that this poem contains adult content.

Find The Couple Who Fell to Earth:

Amazon * Goodreads

Visit Poetic Book Tours for more about The Couple Who Fell to Earth and to follow the blog tour.

© 2016 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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FRONT COVER The Seven Year Dress KINDLE(1) copyI am thrilled to announce the release of Paulette Mahurin’s latest novel, The Seven Year Dress. I became a fan of Mahurin’s in 2012 when I read The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap. I loved Mahurin’s strong characters and ability to set the scene, so I was excited to learn about The Seven Year Dress, which I will be reading and reviewing this summer.

In the meantime, I’d like to share with you a little about Paulette and her new release, and she is generously offering a giveaway to my readers.

BOOK BLURB

One of the darkest times in human history was the insane design and execution to rid the world of Jews and “undesirables.” At the hands of the powerful evil madman Adolf Hitler, families were ripped apart and millions were slaughtered. Persecution, torture, devastation, and enduring the unthinkable remained for those who lived. This is the story of one woman who lived to tell her story. This is a narrative of how a young beautiful teenager, Helen Stein, and her family were torn asunder, ultimately bringing her to Auschwitz. It was there she suffered heinous indignity at the hands of the SS. It was also there, in that death camp, she encountered compassion, selfless acts of kindness, and friendship. Written by the award winning, best selling author of His Name Was Ben, comes a story of the resilience of the human spirit that will leave you thinking about Helen Stein and The Seven Year Dress for years to come after the last page is shut.

“Mahurin skillfully intertwines fact into fiction in this story of death and survival, of hate and ultimately love. The brutality as Jews were isolated and persecuted; the horror of life in the concentration camps – all come into sharp focus rich with historical detail.” — Carol Bodensteiner author of Go Away Home

GIVEAWAY

Paulette is kindly offering one Kindle copy of The Seven Year Dress to my readers. To enter, please leave a comment with your email address telling me what intrigues you most about Paulette’s novels. This giveaway will close Wednesday, June 8. The winner will be chosen randomly and announced in the comments section of this post.

AUTHOR BIO

Paulette Mahurin lives with her husband Terry and two dogs, Max and Bella, in Ventura County, California. She grew up in West Los Angeles and attended UCLA, where she received a Master’s Degree in Science.

While in college, she won awards and was published for her short-story writing. One of these stories, Something Wonderful, was based on the couple presented in His Name Was Ben, which she expanded into a fictionalized novel in 2014. Her first novel, The Persecution of Mildred Dunlap, made it to Amazon bestseller lists and won awards, including best historical fiction of the year 2012 in Turning the Pages Magazine. Her third novel, To Live Out Loud, won international critical acclaim and made it to multiple sites as favorite read book of 2015.

Semi-retired, she continues to work part-time as a Nurse Practitioner in Ventura County. When she’s not writing, she does pro-bono consultation work with women with cancer, works in the Westminster Free Clinic as a volunteer provider, volunteers as a mediator in the Ventura County Courthouse for small claims cases, and involves herself, along with her husband, in dog rescue.

Profits from her books go to help rescue dogs from kill shelters.

You can learn more about Mahurin’s novels on her Amazon page.

© 2016 Anna Horner of Diary of an Eccentric. All Rights Reserved. Please do not reproduce or republish content without permission.

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