Excerpt & Giveaway: The Bareknuckle Groom by Holly Bush

The Bareknuckle Groom by Holly Bush

Publication Date: March 9, 2021
Holly Bush Books

Series: The Thompsons of Locust Street, Book #2
Genre: Historical Romance

Meet the Thompsons of Locust Street, an unconventional family taking Philadelphia high society by storm…

1869 Bareknuckle champion, James Thompson, is confident his future continues with beautiful women and victories in the boxing ring. Men admire his skills, power, and quick fists, and are more than willing to bet their hard-earned coins on his name. Women admire his handsome face, his undaunted confidence, and his powerful body. Nothing will change his successfully plotted course, until…

Lucinda Vermeal arrives on the Philadelphia social scene when her father moves them to the city in the hopes that his only daughter will find a suitable partner. After all, her husband will be intimately involved with Vermeal Industries whose business interests and political connections touch France, England and all of the United States. Lucinda’s pale statuesque beauty attracts the finest of Philadelphia’s young men, but her cool and reserved attitude keep them at arm’s length. Until she meets a man willing to challenge her at every turn. Will James Thompson expose Lucinda's passionate nature like no other man ever could?


“You are looking particularly lovely, Lucinda,” Aunt Louisa said when she came into her dressing room as Giselle was putting the final touches on her hair.

“You look very nice too, Aunt.”

“Your father wants to see us before we leave.”

Lucinda looked in the mirror as Giselle dabbed rose water on her neck and wrists. “I’m sure he wants to tell us how lovely we look. Thank you, Giselle. That will be all.”

The door closed softly as the maid departed. “He is in a mood, dear. Let us go and hear his tirade and then enjoy ourselves to the fullest at the Pendergasts’ ball.”

Lucinda would have opened the library door without knocking, but knowing that any casual behavior only irritated her father, she would take any advantage, even if it were to wait until Laurent opened the door for her. She was quite certain what her father was going to say. There was no need to anger him further.

“Good evening, Papa. Aunt Louisa said you wished to speak to us before we left?”

Henri Vermeal stood at their entrance to the room and trained his eyes on his daughter. He waited until the door had closed behind the two women. “I trust that you will conduct yourself in a manner befitting your family’s place in society. And your aunt will make sure that all the proprieties are observed. I do not want to hear of you making a spectacle of yourself with that . . . that street ruffian. Am I understood?”

“Of course, Papa. I understand everything you have said,” she replied. She walked to his chair and stood on her toes to kiss his cheek. “I will see you tomorrow. Sleep well.”

The two women climbed into the Vermeal carriage and were seated side by side for the short ride to Nathan and Isadora Pendergast’s home.

“I don’t know what game you are playing, child, but your father is not a fool.”

“I don’t have any idea what you’re talking about, Aunt.” Lucinda turned to look out the window as the streetlights were beginning to shine.

But she did know what her aunt meant. She understood everything her father had said, but that did not necessarily mean she would abide by it. She intended to have a conversation with James Thompson. If he attended. If she did not lose her nerve. She would tell him exactly what she thought of him and his comments about her. Her stomach rolled over with the thought of confronting him. But she chided herself. She was not the daughter of Henri Vermeal for nothing. She would put that man, that street fighter, in his place.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble

About the Author

“Love always has something to say. Sometimes it shouts from the highest hill, and sometimes it whispers so softly one must listen closely to hear. Do not turn away. It is a rare and precious commodity. Treasure it.” The Gentrys of Paradise

Holly Bush's historical romances are set during the turbulent and transformative years of the late 1800’s. The first two books in her newest series, The Gentrys of Paradise, released in the spring of 2017 and began with the novella Into the Evermore where readers meet Virginia horse breeders, Eleanor and Beauregard Gentry. The following books feature their children, Adam, Matthew, and Olivia. For the Brave is Matthew’s story and is the first full length book of the series. Olivia's book, For This Moment, released in the spring of 2018. The final book, For Her Honor, is now available.

The Crawford Family Series following the fortunes of the three Boston born Crawford sisters and includes Train Station Bride, Contract to Wed, Her Safe Harbor, and companion novella, The Maid’s Quarters. Cross the Ocean and Charming the Duke are both British set Victorian romances. Fan favorites stand-alone historical romance novels include Romancing Olive and Reconstructing Jackson. Holly's books are described as ‘emotional, with heartfelt, sexy romance.’

She also writes General Fiction under the name of Hollis Bush.

Holly makes her home with her husband, one happy Labrador Retriever and a clever Jack Russell rescued from the pound, and two difficult cats in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Connect with Holly at www.hollybushbooks.com, on Twitter @hollybushbooks, on Instagram, and on Facebook at Holly Bush. Follow Holly on her Amazon author page to receive new release updates and on BookBub to check out her reviews and get sale information.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, April 19
Review at Probably at the Library
Review at American Historical Novels

Tuesday, April 20
Review at Gwendalyn's Books

Wednesday, April 21
Excerpt at American Historical Novels
Excerpt at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Thursday, April 22
Review at Novels Alive
Review at Bookish Rantings

Monday, April 26
Review + Excerpt at Elodie’s Reading Corner

Tuesday, April 27
Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, April 28
Review at Unabridged Chick

Friday, April 30
Excerpt at Coffee and Ink
Review at The Enchanted Shelf


Enter to win a $50 Amazon Gift Card!

The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on April 30th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Bareknuckle Groom Tour

Book Blast: Sigurd's Swords by Eric Schumacher

Happy Monday, dear readers! Today on the blog I am featuring an upcoming release from Eric Schumacher! Sigurd's Swords is the second book in his Olaf's Saga series and will be released on June 28th. Below is the link to pre-order. Pre-orders are so fun...like a gift to your future self for being so awesome :)

Time to get our Viking on!

Sigurd’s Swords by Eric Schumacher

Publication Date: June 28, 2021
Bodn Books

Series: Olaf’s Saga, Book 2
Genre: Historical Fiction

From best-selling historical fiction novelist, Eric Schumacher, comes the second volume in Olaf’s Saga: the adrenaline-charged story of Olaf Tryggvason and his adventures in the kingdom of the Rus.

AD 968. It has been ten summers since the noble sons of the North, Olaf and Torgil, were driven from their homeland by the treachery of the Norse king, Harald Eriksson. Having then escaped the horrors of slavery in Estland, they now fight among the Rus in the company of Olaf’s uncle, Sigurd.

It will be some of the bloodiest years in Rus history. The Grand Prince, Sviatoslav, is hungry for land, riches, and power, but his unending campaigns are leaving the corpses of thousands in their wakes. From the siege of Konugard to the battlefields of ancient Bulgaria, Olaf and Torgil struggle to stay alive in Sigurd’s Swords, the heart-pounding sequel to Forged by Iron.

Pre-Order on Amazon

About the Author

Eric Schumacher (1968 - ) is an American historical novelist who currently resides in Santa Barbara, California, with his wife and two children. He was born and raised in Los Angeles and attended college at the University of San Diego.

At a very early age, Schumacher discovered his love for writing and medieval European history, as well as authors like J.R.R. Tolkien and C.S. Lewis. Those discoveries continue to fuel his imagination and influence the stories he tells. His first novel, God's Hammer, was published in 2005.

To date, Schumacher has published three novels, collectively known as Hakon’s Saga, and one novella. More information about him and his books can be found on his website. You can also connect with Schumacher on TwitterFacebookGoodreads, and AuthorsDB.

Book Blast Schedule

Monday, April 26
Passages to the Past

Tuesday, April 27
Jessica Belmont

Wednesday, April 28
Reading is My Remedy

Thursday, April 29
Books, Cooks, Looks

Friday, April 30
Jorie Loves A Story

Monday, May 3
Coffee and Ink

Excerpt & Giveaway: Cotillion Brigade by Glen Craney

The Cotillion Brigade: A Novel of the Civil War and the Most Famous Female Militia in American History by Glen Craney

Publication Date: March 15, 2021
Brigid’s Fire Press
Paperback & eBook; 399 pages

Georgia burns.
Sherman’s Yankees are closing in.
Will the women of LaGrange run or fight?

Based on the true story of the celebrated Nancy Hart Rifles, The Cotillion Brigade is a sweeping epic of the Civil War’s ravages on family and love, the resilient bonds of sisterhood amid devastation, and the miracle of reconciliation between bitter enemies.

“Gone With The Wind meets A League Of Their Own.”

1856. Sixteen-year-old Nannie Colquitt Hill makes her debut in the antebellum society of the Chattahoochee River plantations. A thousand miles to the north, a Wisconsin farm boy, Hugh LaGrange, joins an Abolitionist crusade to ban slavery in Bleeding Kansas.

Five years later, secession and total war against the homefronts of Dixie hurl them toward a confrontation unrivaled in American history.

Nannie defies the traditions of Southern gentility by forming a women’s militia and drilling it four long years to prepare for battle. With their men dead, wounded, or retreating with the Confederate armies, only Captain Nannie and her Fighting Nancies stand between their beloved homes and the Yankee torches.

Hardened into a slashing Union cavalry colonel, Hugh duels Rebel generals Joseph Wheeler and Nathan Bedford Forrest across Tennessee and Alabama. As the war churns to a bloody climax, he is ordered to drive a burning stake deep into the heart of the Confederacy.

Yet one Georgia town—which by mocking coincidence bears Hugh’s last name—stands defiant in his path.

Read the remarkable story of the Southern women who formed America’s most famous female militia and the Union officer whose life they changed forever.

Amazon | B&N | Kobo | iBooks


LaGrange, Georgia
July 1861

Gus hobbled up the porch steps of his sister Caroline’s house carrying several newspapers. He limped inside and dropped the pile on the parlor table used by the LaGrange women to sew uniforms. Unrolling the most recent edition of the Atlanta Intelligencer, he displayed its gaudy headlines:

The Lincolnites Attempt To Cross At Bull Run!
They Are Three Times Repulsed With Heavy Loss!
Fighting Lasts Four Hours!

Nancy bounded to her feet and sent the needles and thimbles scattering. “The rumors are true! Read us the details.”

Gus stored his cane on the umbrella rack and plopped into his favorite high-backed chair, set near the porch window to take advantage of the river breeze. The women gathered around, some scooting their chairs closer, others sitting on the floor. He cleared his voice as if an actor preparing a scene.

“Get on with it,” said Nancy.

Gus retaliated by taking his time removing his reading spectacles from his pocket, opening and closing the case, and polishing the lenses with his kerchief. “I pay for the subscriptions to these publications. You’d think that might entitle me to a lemonade.”

Caroline threw up her hands. “Leila, would you please be a dear and bring the pitcher from the cellarette to pour my helpless ward here a libation?”

Gus waved Leila to the task. “Oh, and whippersnapper, if a dash of spirits were by accident to fall into the glass to smooth the elocution ...”

Leila huffed. “Why am I always the one sent on errands?”

“You’re the youngest,” said Nancy. “It’s the price you pay to sit at our feet and imbibe our wisdom. Do you think the students of Socrates and the solons of Athens complained of having to wash their tunics?”

Leila stormed off, grumbling something about harpies.

Gus rustled open the Intelligencer and creased the front page to frame the most important stories above the fold. He read aloud: “‘General P.T. Beauregard of the Confederate forces met the Northern aggressors today and won a glorious victory.’”

“Praise God,” said Pack Beall.

Mary clasped Pack’s hand. “And praise President Davis for his wise choice of our gallant commanders.”

Leila returned with the lemonade and threatened to drop the glass into Gus’s lap before he stole it from her. He smelled its aroma and sighed, disappointed. Shrugging, he sipped to lubricate his tongue and read on. “‘At dawn, the enemy approached in large force at Bull Run and attempted to cross. The scene of the battle was three miles northwest of Manassas Junction.’”

“Where is Manassas Junction?” Nancy asked.

“A few miles south of Washington capital,” said Gus. “In Virginia.”

“I hope Lincoln suffers nightmares from it,” said Leila. “Maybe now he’ll sulk back to the frontier and leave us alone.”

Gus became so entranced while silently reading the written account of the battle that he forgot the women.

“Gus!” Nancy admonished. “This is not your nap time.”

Roused, Gus jerked and adjusted his spectacles. “Most remarkable. Says here the battle was going against us when one of our generals, Thomas Jackson, held his position. They’ve given him a nickname. Stonewall. Washington residents rode out in their carriages to watch the action as if attending a carnival. Our forces sent the Northern frolickers retreating in mayhem with the Federal army across a lone stone bridge.”

“How many casualties?” asked Mary.

The women shared worried glances and clasped hands.

Gus scanned the newsprint to find the tally. “Estimates for the enemy are three thousand killed and wounded. Our losses were half that number.”

Impatient, Nancy leapt up to hover over Gus’s shoulder. “Was the Fourth Georgia engaged?”

“There is no mention of the regiment. The wags at the tavern say our boys left Augusta too late. The War Department assigned them to an encampment near Norfolk.”

The women slumped with relief and pressed their palms together in prayerful gratitude for their brave men being spared the carnage—except Nancy, who felt a mix of emotions. She was grateful Brown was unharmed, but she feared he would stew for the rest of his days over missing the field of glory.

Mary dared to speak what all were hoping. “The war is over, then.”

Gus seemed less confident of that prediction. “A defeat so close to Lincoln’s office. I’m sure he can smell the gunpowder, but who knows what that conniving Illinois demagogue will do next?”

About the Author

A graduate of Indiana University School of Law and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, Glen Craney practiced trial law before joining the Washington, D.C. press corps to write about national politics and the Iran-contra trial for Congressional Quarterly magazine. In 1996, the Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences awarded him the Nicholl Fellowship prize for best new screenwriting. His debut historical novel, The Fire and the Light, was named Best New Fiction by the National Indie Excellence Awards. He is a three-time Finalist/Honorable Mention winner of Foreword Magazine’s Book-of-the-Year and a Chaucer Award winner for Historical Fiction. His books have taken readers to Occitania during the Albigensian Crusade, the Scotland of Robert Bruce, Portugal during the Age of Discovery, the trenches of France during World War I, the battlefields of the Civil War, and the American Hoovervilles of the Great Depression. He lives in Malibu, California, and has served as president of the Southern California Chapter of the Historical Novel Society.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, April 19
Feature at Cover Lover Book Review

Tuesday, April 20
Review at Hoover Book Reviews

Wednesday, April 21
Feature at Books, Ramblings, and Tea

Thursday, April 22
Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Friday, April 23
Feature at Reading is My Remedy

Monday, April 26
Guest Post at Pamela Stephen

Wednesday, April 28
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Thursday, April 29
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Friday, April 30
Feature at Bookworlder

Monday, May 3
Review & Excerpt at Robin Loves Reading

Tuesday, May 4
Interview at Books & Benches

Wednesday, May 5
Review at Novels Alive

Thursday, May 6
Review at Two Bookish Babes

Friday, May 7
Feature at View from the Birdhouse

Saturday, May 8
Feature at I'm Into Books

Monday, May 10
Review at Girl Who Reads
Review at A Darn Good Read

Friday, May 14
Review at The Enchanted Shelf
Interview at American Historical Novels


We have ten eBooks of The Cotillion Brigade by Glen Craney up for grabs!

The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on May 14th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Cotillion Brigade

Review & Giveaway: Into the Heartland by Jack Casey

Into the Heartland by Jack Casey

Publication Date: March 8, 2021
Diamonds Big As Radishes, LLC
Paperback & eBook; 404 pages

Genre: Historical Fiction

A forbidden love.
An impossible dream.
And a daring venture to open America...

The year is 1810. For decades men have dreamed of reaching west of the Hudson - of unlocking the untold riches in America’s heartland. Yet, these visionaries lacked the necessary skill, willpower, and political might.

Enter: DeWitt Clinton, mayor of New York City.

Ignoring naysayers and cynics, Clinton vows to construct an audacious waterway through the wilderness to Lake Erie. For this he needs support from the highest echelons of New York society. And there is only one woman with the talent and connections for the job.

Eleanora Van Rensselaer, an aristocratic widow, rules a vast Hudson Valley estate, but her wealth and power will vanish if a dark secret is revealed. Clinton enlists her charm and intelligence to battle his formidable opponent Martin Van Buren. When Eleanora encounters Daniel Hedges, a dashing ship captain with frontier ingenuity, she knows he is the key to this massive project. Eleanora’s social savvy and Hedges’ skills make them an ideal team - if they can fight the powerful feelings growing between them.

But as America plunges into the war of 1812, they could lose all that they have built.

From America’s stunning naval victory on Lake Erie to the British invasion of Washington, D.C., Daniel and Eleanora persevere through tragedy and deep personal loss. Despite Van Buren’s plot to sabotage Clinton and expose Eleanora’s secret, Daniel and Eleanora won't stop until they make their colossal dream a reality.

And somewhere along the way, they might just find a love that will change them, and America, forever.




There is nothing better than spending the weekend with a great book! I was lucky enough to spend mine with Jack Casey's Into the Heartland, a sweeping tale about the construction of the Erie Canal, which transformed the transportation of goods and ushered in a new era of ingenuity and prosperity.

Into the Heartland focuses mainly on Eleanora, a wealthy and influential widower who is fascinated with the project and wants to help, and Daniel, a ship captain that was hired as the lead surveyor for the Canal. Their instant attraction must be kept in check as Daniel is married yet Eleanora can't fight her feelings for him for very long.

The romance takes a back seat however to the political machinations that take place as Dewitt Clinton, the mayor of NYC, fights to get approval for his Canal project, which he hopes will broaden his political standing. You will recognize a lot of names while reading this book, such as writer Washington Irving, Martin Van Buren, James and Dolley Madison, and others.

It's clear that the author did extensive research and it was fascinating to learn about this pivotal time in American history and how the Erie Canal came to be.

I truly enjoyed Casey's writing and I look forward to reading more from him. Highly recommended!

About the Author

JACK CASEY is an attorney who has handled civil, criminal and constitutional matters for thirty years in his solo practice. In HAMILTON’S CHOICE, Casey dramatizes the last three years of Alexander Hamilton’s life, and plausibly explains why he went to his first and fatal duel. Casey’s newest release, INTO THE HEARTLAND, is a sweeping saga of adversity and triumph around the building of the Erie Canal (1810–1825). His other published historical novels are LILY OF THE MOHAWKS and THE TRIAL OF BAT SHEA.

Casey graduated with honors from Yale University and Albany Law School, and has studied literature at Edinburgh and Cambridge Universities. He lives in Troy, NY and Raleigh, NC with his wife and editor, Victoria.

Website | Facebook | Goodreads

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, April 19
Review at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, April 20
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Thursday, April 22
Excerpt at Coffee and Ink

Friday, April 23
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Saturday, April 24
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Sunday, April 25
Review at The Enchanted Shelf

Wednesday, April 28
Review at Novels Alive

Thursday, April 29
Excerpt at Donna's Book Blog

Friday, April 30
Review at Rajiv's Reviews

Monday, May 3
Review at Jorie Loves A Story

Wednesday, May 5
Review at Sheila Myers Author


Enter to win a paperback copy of Into the Heartland by Jack Casey!

The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on May 5th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

Into the Heartland

Release Day Blast: Betting on a Duke's Heart by Royaline Sing

It's relaese day for Royaline Sing's Betting on a Duke's Heart! You can read all about the new release below and links to where you can pick up a copy!

Betting on a Duke's Heart by Royaline Sing

Publication Date: April 19, 2021
Entangled Publishing: Amara

Genre: Historical Romance

Aetius White, the Duke of Saxton, couldn't save his father, but he'll be damned if he won't save the man’s dream. He'll acquire a Triple Crown–winning horse at any cost, even marriage. Luckily, the lovely lady in mind loves challenges as much as he. Certainly he can win her heart without losing his own…

Hell will freeze over before Miss Dina Campbell agrees to marry a horse-mad man who wants her dowry of a prize stallion, no matter what her father wants. The duke may be handsome, but he’ll have to prove he is a suitable match for her before she’ll even consider the offer. And there’s no way this love-averse man will ever succeed with the wager that she has planned…

"Royaline Sing delivers a traditional historical romance plot in a unique manner with a decidedly nontraditional heroine - hitting familiar notes with an infectious zeal that is all her own." - Elizabeth Everett, author of A Lady's Formula For Love

Amazon | Barnes and Noble

About the Author

As my first fiction work, I've a notebook length movie script, featuring my favorite stars. I was probably ten. It hasn't seen the light of the day (And it won't).

But story telling lingered. Though I have a software engineering job, the creative world teased from afar. So one day, I finally put the pen to the paper (or my fingers to the keyboard?) and started writing.

Now, I write through the noise of my lovely two kids, a very supportive (but sweetly clueless) husband and a bank job where numbers rule.

Born and brought up in India, I'm a huge fan of Bollywood romantic movies and the music. I also like all things Marvel! I love to travel and so many destinations are on my bucket list. (hint: some pictures here give the clues!)

I am currently writing Historical Romances, with heroines setting their own norms and coming to toes with heroes worth loving.

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Release Day Blast Hosts

Books, Ramblings, and Tea
Passages to the Past
Probably at the Library
Jorie Loves A Story
Gwendalyn's Books
Booking With Janelle
Two Bookish Babes
A Girl Reads Books
Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals
Elodie’s Reading Corner
What Is That Book About
Reading is My Remedy
Donna's Book Blog
The Enchanted Shelf
Pursuing Stacie

Release Day Blast: The Virgin and the Viscount by Robyn DeHart

It's release day for The Virgin and the Viscount by Robyn DeHart! Just check out that stunning cover! I can't wait to pick this one up!

The Virgin and the Viscount by Robyn DeHart

Publication Date: April 12, 2012
Entangled Publishing/Scandalous

Series: Lords of Vice, Book Four
Genre: Historical Romance

As a Lady of Virtue, Matilda Brooks swears to reform the most despicable man of her acquaintance, her brother-in-law, Sullivan Chase, Viscount Glenbrook. Well he may not be the most despicable, but he is certainly arrogant, flirtatious, and entirely too charming. To make matters worse, he has the irritating tendency to poke fun of her and rile her emotions as no other man does. However, when she confronts him, he laughs off her concern about his slothful ways.

But when a carriage accident forces Sullivan to play knight to Tilly's damsel, his unexpected act of chivalry ends up costing them both their freedom. Her compromised reputation and his honorable declaration forces them into a marriage neither of them wants. Which is most inconvenient, given that she has sworn to despise him forever.

Amazon | B&N | Google Play | Kobo

About the Author

A life-long lover of stories and adventure, it was either become a stuntwoman for the movies or live out those adventures from the safety of her PJ's and computer. Award-winning author, Robyn DeHart chose the latter and couldn't be happier for doing so. Known for her unique plotlines and authentic characters, Robyn is a favorite among readers and reviewers. Publishers' Weekly claims her writing to be "comical and sexy" while the Chicago Tribune dubs her "wonderfully entertaining." Robyn is an award-winning author as well as being a four-time RT Bookclub Reviewers' Choice award nominee, and a three-time RomCon Reader's Crown nominee.

Look for Robyn's new series about the seven deadly sins coming in 2017. When not writing, you can find Robyn hanging out with her family, husband (The Professor) a university professor of Political Science and their two ridiculously beautiful and smart daughters. They live in the hill country of Texas where it's hot eight months of the year, but those big blue skies make it worth it.

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Release Day Blast Hosts

The Lit Bitch
Coffee and Ink
Pursuing Stacie
Jessica Belmont
100 Pages a Day
Books & Benches
Donna's Book Blog
Passages to the Past
Gwendalyn's Books
Two Bookish Babes
Books, Cooks, Looks
Reading is My Remedy
Books, Ramblings, and Tea
Historical Fiction with Spirit
Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals

Interview & Giveaway: The Test of Gold by Renee Yancy

Happy Saturday, dear readers! Today on the blog I am very excited to be hosting an interview with Renee Yancy who is currently touring the blogosphere for The Test of Gold!

I hope you enjoy getting to know Renee! We also have a giveaway going on so be sure to enter.

Hello Renee, and welcome to Passages to the Past! Thanks so much for stopping by today to talk about The Test of Gold!

To begin, can you please tell us a little about yourself and your writing?

Like many authors, I started out as a voracious reader. My parents had to force me to go outside during summer vacation because I’d rather sit inside and read. Once I discovered historical fiction, I was hooked for life.

What inspired you to write The Test of Gold?

I read about the true story of Consuelo Vanderbilt, an original “dollar princess,” whose mother forced her to marry the Duke of Marlborough at the age of eighteen.

What research did you undertake when writing The Test of Gold?

I read many books about the Gilded Age, researched Charles Worth of Paris ballgown designs, and studied Gilded Age menus for a start.

What would you like readers to take away from reading The Test of Gold?

That, as you’re growing up, it’s important to follow your heart and not be dissuaded by other people to become something you’re not.

What was your favorite scene to write?

I think the wedding scene may have been my favorite scene.
What was the most difficult scene to write?

I actually didn’t have any in this story. But there was definitely a difficult scene in the next book, More Precious Than Gold.

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

Sometime around 2004, I read St. Patrick’s Confession, in which he mentions that he had the privilege of baptizing a beautiful Irish princess. That was my inspiration for my first book, set in ancient Ireland, A Secret Hope.

What does your daily writing routine look like?

Since I’m still working as an RN and have three grandchildren, I have to write in fits and bursts!

What has been your greatest challenge as a writer? Have you been able to overcome it?

Always wondering if my writing is any good!

Who are your writing inspirations?

Diana Gabaldon, Thomas Clavell, Anya Seton, Francine Rivers, Larry McMurtry

What was the first historical novel you read?

The first historical novel that impacted my life was Katherine, by Anya Seaton. I still reread it every so often.

What is the last historical novel you read?

I’m currently reading All Things Left Wild, by James Wade. I love me a good Western!

What is something people may not know about you?

I wanted to be a nun all through grade school until I discovered boys in high school.

What appeals to you most about your chosen genre?

I love living vicariously through my characters and going down the rabbit hole of research.

What historical time period do you gravitate towards the most with your personal reading?

I love ancient history, medieval history and the Tudor/Plantagenet eras.

What do you like to do when you aren't writing?

Read! And collect pottery and glass.
Lastly, what are you working on next?

I’m working on the 3rd book in this trilogy, Threads of Gold.

The Test of Gold by Renee Yancy

Publication Date: March 15, 2021
Vinspire Publishing
Paperback & eBook; 350 pages

Series: Hearts of Gold, Book One
Genre: Historical Romance

Heiress Evangeline "Lindy" Lindenmayer has been groomed since childhood to marry into the British aristocracy as her mother's ultimate ambition is a royal title for the family name. But literature fascinates Lindy far more than ballgowns, and she spends all her free time in the library, the only room in the Fifth Avenue mansion where she can safely indulge her passion for reading and find refuge from the prying eyes of her mother.

Jack Winthrop is studying for the ministry at Union Theological Seminary and has been invited to use the Lindemayer's library for his studies. His sole experience of upper-class young women has occurred at his uncle's church, where he has found these young debutantes universally featherbrained. When he meets Lindy, he is pleasantly surprised to discover she has wide-ranging interests and is highly intelligent. Although cautioned by his uncle to stay away from her, he finds Lindy a kindred spirit and over animated discussions of books and life, they fall in love.

But to reach happily ever after, Lindy will need to challenge her mother's long-laid plans, and weathering the approaching storm will take more backbone than she even knew she had.

Amazon (Kindle) | Amazon (Paperback) | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

About the Author

Renee Yancy is a long time history and archaeology nut who has been living vicariously through historical fiction since she was a young girl. Now she writes the kind of books she loves to read—stories filled with historical and archaeological detail on every aspect of living in a different time period, interwoven with strong characters and a tale full of pathos and conflict. She wants to take you on a journey into the past so fascinating that you can’t put the story down.

When she’s not writing, Renee Facetimes with her twin grandbabies, and lives in Kentucky with her husband and two mutts. She enjoys reading, antiquing, and collecting pottery.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, April 5
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Tuesday, April 6
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Wednesday, April 7
Feature at Reading is My Remedy

Thursday, April 8
Review at Reading Is My SuperPower

Friday, April 9
Review at Novels Alive
Feature at View from the Birdhouse

Saturday, April 10
Interview at Passages to the Past

Sunday, April 11
Feature at The Lit Bitch

Monday, April 12
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Tuesday, April 13
Review & Excerpt at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, April 14
Feature at Coffee and Ink
Review at The Enchanted Shelf


Enter to win an eBook of The Test of Gold by Renee Yancy! Two eBooks are up for grabs!

The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on April 14th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Test of Gold

Book Blast & Giveaway: Fiery Girls by Heather Wardell

Hello dear readers! Today on the blog I am very excited to host the Book Blast for Fiery Girls, the new book from Heather Wardell! I've long been fascinated by the awful Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire tragedy which killed 146 facotry workers, mostly women, in 1911.

You can read all about the new release and enter to win a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

Fiery Girls by Heather Wardell

Publication Date: March 25, 2021
Heather Wardell

Genre: Historical Fiction

Two young immigrant women. One historic strike. And the fire that changed America.

In 1909, shy sixteen-year-old Rosie Lehrer is sent to New York City to earn money for her family's emigration from Russia. She will, but she also longs to make her mark on the world before her parents arrive and marry her to a suitable Jewish man. Could she somehow become one of the passionate and articulate "fiery girls" of her garment workers' union?

Maria Cirrito, spoiled and confident, lands at Ellis Island a few weeks later. She's supposed to spend four years earning American wages then return home to Italy with her new-found wealth to make her family's lives better. But the boy she loves has promised, with only a little coaxing, to follow her to America and marry her. So she plans to stay forever. With him.

Rosie and Maria meet and become friends during the "Uprising of the 20,000" garment workers' strike, and they're working together at the Triangle Waist Company on March 25, 1911 when a discarded cigarette sets the factory ablaze. 146 people die that day, and even those who survive will be changed forever.

Carefully researched and full of historic detail, "Fiery Girls" is a novel of hope: for a better life, for turning tragedy into progress, and for becoming who you're meant to be.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | IndieBound

About the Author

Heather is a natural 1200 wpm speed reader and the author of twenty-one self-published novels. She came to writing after careers as a software developer and elementary school computer teacher and can't imagine ever leaving it. In her spare time, she reads, swims, walks, lifts weights, crochets, changes her hair colour, and plays drums and clarinet. Generally not all at once.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Pinterest | Goodreads

Book Blast Schedule

Monday, March 15
Novels Alive

Tuesday, March 16
Bookish Rantings

Wednesday, March 17
Crystal's Library

Thursday, March 18
With A Book In Our Hands

Friday, March 19
Just One More Chapter
The Whispering Bookworm

Monday, March 22
I'm Into Books

Tuesday, March 23
CelticLady's Reviews

Wednesday, March 24
Coffee and Ink

Thursday, March 25
What Is That Book About

Friday, March 26
View from the Birdhouse

Monday, March 29
Chicks, Rogues and Scandals

Tuesday, March 30
A Chick Who Reads

Wednesday, March 31
Reading is My Remedy

Thursday, April 1

Friday, April 2
Pursuing Stacie

Monday, April 5
Books, Cooks, Looks

Tuesday, April 6
Passages to the Past

Wednesday, April 7
The Book Junkie Reads

Friday, April 9
Rachelle Loves Books


During the Blog Tour, we are giving away a $20 Amazon Gift Card!

The giveaway is open to the US only and ends on April 9th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

Fiery Girls

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