Review & Giveaway: The Whirlpools of Time


The Whirlpools of Time by Anna Belfrage

Publication Date: June 11, 2021
Timelight Press

Series: The Locket, Book One
Genre: Historical Romance/Scottish/Time Travel


He hoped for a wife. He found a companion through time and beyond.

It is 1715 and for Duncan Melville something fundamental is missing from his life. Despite a flourishing legal practice and several close friends, he is lonely, even more so after the recent death of his father. He needs a wife—a companion through life, someone to hold and be held by. What he wasn’t expecting was to be torn away from everything he knew and find said woman in 2016…

Erin Barnes has a lot of stuff going on in her life. She doesn’t need the additional twist of a stranger in weird outdated clothes, but when he risks his life to save hers, she feels obligated to return the favour. Besides, whoever Duncan may be, she can’t exactly deny the immediate attraction.

The complications in Erin’s life explode. Events are set in motion and to Erin’s horror she and Duncan are thrown back to 1715. Not only does Erin have to cope with a different and intimidating world, soon enough she and Duncan are embroiled in a dangerous quest for Duncan’s uncle, a quest that may very well cost them their lives as they travel through a Scotland poised on the brink of rebellion.

Will they find Duncan’s uncle in time? And is the door to the future permanently closed, or will Erin find a way back?

Amazon


Review

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Author Anna Belfrage has knocked it out of the park again!

I was instantly sucked into The Whirlpools of Time from the start, especially excited to see Duncan again, who was in her Graham saga series, which is fabulous as well.

Duncan is returning from a visit to his family following the death of this father. He's a bit estranged from his family, especially his mother, through no fault of his own. Despite having a good career he feels restless and would like a wife and a family like his brothers.

It's a stormy night and when he reaches a crossroad on the path, lightning crashes down and when he awakens he finds himself in the year 2016. When Erin comes upon him she has no idea why he is dressed so strangely and in the middle of the road. She's on the run after trying to expose a local family that stole a family heirloom. Duncan saves her from them and she decides to help him in return.

There's mystery, adventure, danger, and of course, romance....this is Anna Belfrage we're talking about here! I just adore the way Anna writes, especially the romance/love/sexiness aspects. The connection between Erin and Duncan was unmistakable!

I cannot wait for the next book in the series! You should definitely pick this one up and I would also recommend checking out the Graham saga!

About the Author


Had Anna been allowed to choose, she’d have become a time-traveller. As this was impossible, she became a financial professional with two absorbing interests: history and writing. Anna has authored the acclaimed time travelling series The Graham Saga, set in 17th century Scotland and Maryland, as well as the equally acclaimed medieval series The King’s Greatest Enemy which is set in 14th century England.

More recently, Anna has published The Wanderer, a fast-paced contemporary romantic suspense trilogy with paranormal and time-slip ingredients. While she loved stepping out of her comfort zone (and will likely do so again ) she is delighted to be back in medieval times in her September 2020 release, His Castilian Hawk. Set against the complications of Edward I’s invasion of Wales, His Castilian Hawk is a story of loyalty, integrity—and love.

Find out more about Anna on her website or on her Amazon page. You can also follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 23
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Tuesday, August 24
Review at Pursuing Stacie
Review + Excerpt at Books & Benches

Thursday, August 26
Review at Reader_ceygo

Friday, August 27
Review at Novels Alive

Monday, August 30
Review at With A Book In Our Hands

Wednesday, September 1
Review at The Book Review Crew

Friday, September 3
Excerpt at Historical Fiction with Spirit

Monday, September 6
Review at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals

Wednesday, September 8
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Friday, September 10
Review at Rajiv's Reviews

Monday, September 13
Guest Post at Hoover Book Reviews

Wednesday, September 15
Review at Books, Writings, and More

Friday, September 17
Excerpt at Reading is My Remedy

Monday, September 20
Review at Amy's Booket List

Tuesday, September 21
Review at Anna’s Book Blog

Wednesday, September 22
Excerpt at The Cozy Book Blog

Friday, September 24
Review at Passages to the Past

Monday, September 27
Excerpt at Cross My Heart Writing & Reviews
Wednesday, September 29
Review at Coffee and Ink

Giveaway

Enter to win a copy of The Whirlpools of Time by Anna Belfrage! Two copies are up for grabs!

The giveaway is open internationally and ends on September 29th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

Whirlpools of Time



Review & Giveaway: The Artist Colony by Joanna FitzPatrick


The Artist Colony by Joanna FitzPatrick

Publication Date: September 7, 2021
She Writes Press
Paperback & eBook; 328 pages

Genre: Historical Fiction


Paris, July, 1924…

Sarah, a young Modernist painter, receives a cable from California. Her estranged older sister, Ada Belle, has died under suspicious circumstances. When she arrives two weeks later at San Francisco's Union Station, Sarah is confronted by a newspaper headline: "Inquest Verdict: Artist Commits Suicide."

Sarah remembers the last haunting words Ada Belle said to her: "Ars longa, vita brevis: Art is long, life is short.” But Ada Belle’s work is selling, and her upcoming exhibition of portraitures would bring her even wider recognition. Why would she kill herself? Sarah’s quest to find the truth of what happened to Ada Belle leads her to join the bucolic artist colony to look for clues. As she delves into her sister's underworld, tensions surface. The darker things get, the closer she comes to terrible danger. How far will a killer go before he kills again?

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Praise

“. . . delivers an escape to gorgeous Carmel and an engaging mystery.” — Kirkus Reviews

“The Artist Colony is bold, creative, and unexpected – all the things nice ladies weren’t supposed to be in the 1920’s when they escaped to Carmel-By-The-Sea to make art without criticism. Joanna FitzPatrick, a descendant of one of those feisty female pioneers, has honored her family legacy and entertained her fans yet again with a fast-paced whodunnit that is equal parts loving tribute and killer thriller.” — Meredith May, author of The Honey Bus and Loving Edie

“The Artist Colony” is a sumptuous ride through the Carmel-by-the-Sea, circa 1920, as Sarah Cunningham, newly arrived from Paris, attempts to uncover the truth about her sister’s mysterious death. Atmospheric and delicious, FitzPatrick delivers a thrilling page-turner woven with artistic flourish. This exquisite novel does not disappoint! Highly recommended!" — Michelle Cox, author of the Henrietta and Inspector Howard series

“It’s 1924 and a young woman journeys to Carmel, California, to learn more about her sister’s sudden death. She soon learns that the bohemian arts colony is anything but idyllic, as she’s confronted by flagrant racism and intimations of murder. Fitzpatrick has written a vivid historical novel with an absorbing mystery at the center of it, and I was riveted.” — Elizabeth McKenzie, author of The Portable Veblen

“The dramatic landscapes of Carmel, beautifully depicted by FitzPatrick, are central to the plot, whose blow-by-blow story keeps us gripped to the final revelation of Ada’s murderer . . . a must-read novel for anyone who loves historical fiction, art, detective stories, and the West Coast.” — Maggie Humm, author of Talland House

“. . . readers who enjoy an exciting narrative with unexpected twists will find this a diverting and illuminating read.” — Historical Novels Review

Review

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Beautiful writing and a beautiful setting combine to make The Artist Colony by Joanna FitzPatrick an enticing and engrossing read.

Sarah is an artist living in Paris when she receives word that her estranged sister, Ada, has died by suicide in Carmel-by-the-Sea. She leaves immediately for California to see where her sister passed. When she arrives she meets with the local inn owner who knew her sister and who tells Sarah that she doesn't believe that it was suicide, but murder. Taken by surprise, Sarah isn't sure what to believe so she decides to do some investigating herself, along with Rosie the innkeeper, and her pup, Albert.

I truly enjoyed my time with The Artist Colony! Murder mystery, art, missing portraits, strange happenings, colorful locals, and a gorgeous location...it has it all! You should definitely pick this one up! I know I'm glad that I did!


About the Author

 

Joanna FitzPatrick was born and raised in Hollywood. She started her writing habit by applying her orange fountain pen and a wild imagination to screenplays, which led her early on to produce the film White Lilacs and Pink Champagne. At Sarah Lawrence College, she wrote her MFA thesis Sha La La: Live for Today about her life as a rock ’n’ roll star’s wife. Her more recent work includes two novels, Katherine Mansfield and The Drummer’s Widow. The Artist Colony is her third book. Presently, FitzPatrick divides her time between a mountaintop cottage in Northern California and a small hameau in Southern France where she begins all her book projects.

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | TWITTER | INSTAGRAM | GOODREADS

Blog Tour Schedule

Wednesday, September 1
Guest Post at Novels Alive
Review at Gwendalyn's Books

Thursday, September 2
Review at Pursuing Stacie

Friday, September 3
Review at SJ Through the Looking Glass

Tuesday, September 7
Interview at Books & Benches

Wednesday, September 8
Review at Booking With Janelle

Thursday, September 9
Review at Novels Alive
Interview at Books, Ramblings, and Tea

Saturday, September 11
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Monday, September 13
Review at Jorie Loves A Story

Wednesday, September 15
Review at Passages to the Past

Friday, September 17
Review at Nat Reads

Monday, September 20
Feature at What Is That Book About

Thursday, September 23
Review at Coffee and Ink

Friday, September 24
Guest Post at Coffee and Ink
Review at The Enchanted Shelf

Giveaway

Enter to win a paperback copy of The Artist Colony by Joanna FitzPatrick! We have 2 copies up for grabs!

The giveaway is open to US addresses only and ends on September 24th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Artist Colony

Interview & Giveaway: The Spirited Mrs. Pringle by Jillianne Hamilton

Happy Bookish Tuesday, dear readers! I am so excited to share with you my interview with Author Jillianne Hamilton. Her newest release, The Spirited Mrs. Pringle, is on blog tour and I had the chance to ask her some questions!

The book is SO much fun! I loved every single page! You can check out my review here. I hope you enjoy the interview!


Hello Jillianne and welcome to Passages to the Past! Thanks so much for stopping by today to talk about The Spirited Mrs. Pringle!

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

My path to being a historical fiction author hasn’t exactly been a straight line. My first novel, Molly Miranda: Thief for Hire, was published in 2015 and nominated for the 2016 Prince Edward Island Book Award. It’s an action/comedy trilogy that was a lot of fun to write. I wanted to try something different after that. I’ve had a general history blog, The Lazy Historian, since 2015 and published The Lazy Historian’s Guide to the Wives of Henry VIII in 2018. It combines my love of Tudor history with a light and witty look at what was generally a crap time in history for women— particularly these ones. It was around that time that I started getting into historical fiction and came up with the idea for The Spirited Mrs. Pringle. My next project is already in the works—the first novel in a historical romance series.

What inspired you to write The Spirited Mrs. Pringle?

I met Cora Pringle, my main character, in a really roundabout way. I found a Facebook group where users wrote penpal letters to one another using characters they made up based in the Jane Austen universe. I found it interesting and started a similar group for any period in history. The group didn’t really get much traction but I ended up creating the character of Cora for that purpose. I can’t remember how I came up with her but I’ve always had a fascination with women who make professions out of unwholesome activities. (Example: my first three novels were about a professional thief.) The more I looked into spiritualism, the more I knew I had to write this story.

What research did you undertake when writing The Spirited Mrs. Pringle?

Probably far too much! Several books about spiritualists and mediums in the 19th century, an academic book about the overlap between the early suffrage movement and spiritualism, a Nellie Bly biography and many books on life in Victorian England.

What would you like readers to take away from reading The Spirited Mrs. Pringle?

Everything can be looked at from multiple angles, including motivation for doing something. And sometimes two people who seem very different from one another are actually more similar than they themselves might realize.

What was your favorite scene to write?

Any scene where Cora or her companions are performing on stage was super fun to write. Late Victorian audiences were wowed by anything relating to my mysticism and magic and anything deemed “exotic” so Cora’s spiritualism act would have been well received. Most of these performances would be considered so over-the-top by today’s standards. With that being said, I researched“cold reading” techniques used by modern mediums for Cora to use on her audiences. It’s funny because these methods still work on “sophisticated” modern audiences. I don’t want to give too much away but there’s also a scene with some rodents that was also really fun to write. Silliness is always the best stuff to write. 

What was the most difficult scene to write? 

There’s a scene where one of my favorite characters gets into some trouble. He’s such a sweetheart. Putting him into those situations made me feel guilty.

When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

Like a lot of writers, I knew very early on that I would be a writer. Probably around age five. I was one of those precocious little twerps who wrote a book and did the pictures on looseleaf and then stapled it together. I started writing my first historical fiction story in junior high, set during the Tudor era. Obviously, it was hot garbage.

What does your daily writing routine look like?

Well, it’s not every day for a start. Hahaha I’m trying to get better about that though. Tracking the days I write and the days I don’t helps. Usually, in the evening, I get comfy on the sofa or on my bed with a lap desk and my iPad (equipped with a Logitech ComboTouch keyboard case—I love that thing). I have a bottle of water and I usually put on some instrumental music, sometimes from the era I’m writing in, sometimes not. I usually have Scrivener, Notion, Chrome and Goodnotes open on my iPad as I’m working. (I made a TikTok about it if you want to share that: https://www.tiktok.com/@jilliannewrites/video/ 6961567118689094918)

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

Finding the time! Or, making the time, rather. I know a lot of writers who have day jobs have this same complaint but there are lots of people who manage to do both. It took me too long to learn this but when I finally did, it helped a lot: you don’t need 3+ hours to dedicate to writing. You can still get a lot of words written if you have only an hour.

Who are your writing inspirations?

I like to include humour in my novels. Louise Rennison was an incredible YA author and her Georgia Nicolson series made me want to be a writer. As for historical fiction authors specifically, I am continually blown away by Deanna Raybourn, Kate Quinn, Jennifer Ryan and Mandy Robotham. I admire them so much.

What was the first historical novel you read?

I’m pretty sure it was Elizabeth I: Red Rose of the House of Tudor (Royal Diaries) by Kathryn Lasky. Scholastic put out a bunch of those middle-grade books; fictional diaries written by actual queens and princesses.and my friend loaned me the Elizabeth one and I became instantly obsessed with Tudor history. Two others that I read around the same time were Mary, Bloody Mary by Carolyn Meyer and Catherine, Called Birdy by Karen Cushman. I’m positive these books were the gateway drug for many historical fiction readers today.

What is the last historical novel you read?

A Rogue of One’s Own (A League of Extraordinary Women) by Evie Dunmore. I love this series so much. 

If you could read one book again for the first time ever, what would you choose? 

Ooh! That’s a tough one! Probably Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Reid Jenkins or The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows.

What are three things people may not know about you?

1. I almost always listen to fiction audiobooks and read non-fiction books. (And just for the record, your brain reacts the same if you’re listening to audiobooks and reading them, so, yes, listening to audiobooks is reading.) 

2. If I get an audiobook or an ebook and really love it, I will usually end up getting a hardcover or a paperback version just to keep on my shelf. 

3. I adored Anne of Green Gables as a kid—still do. I would visit Prince Edward Island every summer with my cousins and grandparents and ended up moving to Charlottetown for college. After I met my own Gilbert Blythe, I made sure to mention Anne of Green Gables in our thank-you at the wedding reception.

What appeals to you most about your chosen genre?

I think it’s probably because it’s an incredibly flexible genre combined with one of my most favorite things—history! There are so many different things a write can create or a write can experience within the genre because of its flexibility; you can have romance, you can have adventures, you can have friendships and family drama, you can have betrayal, you can have mysteries, etc. Writing and reading historical fiction is the closest thing we have to time travel right now—and this version is probably much safer anyway.

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

I’ve been reading a ton of WWII novels lately but I also read novels based during the Regency, Victorian era (obviously), 20th century. I would say I am more attracted to the setting of a novel (western Europe) and tone of a novel, moreso than the period it’s set in.

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

Reading, crafting, painting, watching documentaries and costume dramas, playing video games, and walking my dog.

Lastly, what are you working on next?

I’m currently working on a historical romance series featuring linked standalone novels, all taking place in the first half of the 20th century. It’s my first traditional romance novel and I’m having a lot of fun with it.


The Spirited Mrs. Pringle by Jillianne Hamilton

Publication Date: June 30, 2021
Tomfoolery Press

Genre: Historical Fiction


LONDON, 1888.

Upon the death of her husband, self-involved social climber Cora Pringle assumes her recent dalliance with a wealthy gentleman will be her second chance at a happily ever after. That is until her paramour turns out to be a penniless imposter. Despite his betrayal, Cora can’t quite let go of the tug the handsome playwright has on her heart.

Desperate for an income, Cora becomes a séance-performing spiritualist and gets a taste for celebrity—and it’s so delicious. So what if she can’t actually communicate with the dead? Her eager patrons don’t need to know that.

Amelia Baxter, an ambitious journalist and suffragist, is discouraged when her editor refuses to let her cover the horrific Jack the Ripper murders. Instead, Amelia pours her frustrations into bringing Cora’s deceptive and manipulative act to an end, even if it means risking her family’s reputation.

“Like the most memorable of its vividly drawn characters, The Spirited Mrs. Pringle is clever, lively, and unabashedly entertaining. Perhaps most enjoyable of all is the seemingly endless series of surprises. A string of sometimes astonishing pleasures to the last page.” - Award-Winning Author Leo McKay Jr.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo


About the Author


Jillianne Hamilton is the author of three novels and one non-fiction book. Her debut novel, Molly Miranda: Thief for Hire (2015), was shortlisted for the 2016 Prince Edward Island Book Award. The Molly Miranda sequels were published in 2016 and 2017.

Her lighthearted look at the 16th century, The Lazy Historian’s Guide to the Wives of Henry VIII, was published in 2018.

Jillianne has been published in Macleans, the Truro Daily News, the Sackville Tribune-Post, and Career Options Magazine. She also blogs about history at The Lazy Historian. Jill graduated from Journalism at Holland College in Prince Edward Island in 2010.

She lives in Charlottetown on Canada’s beautiful east coast.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads


Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 30
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Tuesday, August 31
Review at Booking With Janelle

Wednesday, September 1
Review at Novels Alive

Thursday, September 2
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks

Friday, September 3
Review at Gwendalyn's Books

Monday, September 6
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Tuesday, September 7
Guest Post at Books & Benches
Review at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Wednesday, September 8
Feature at I'm All About Books

Thursday, September 9
Review at Rajiv's Reviews

Friday, September 10
Review at Passages to the Past

Monday, September 13
Review at A Darn Good Read

Tuesday, September 14
Interview at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, September 15
Review at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals

Friday, September 17
Review at Coffee and Ink
Review at The Lotus Readers

Monday, September 20
Review at Bonnie Reads and Writes

Giveaway

Enter to win a paperback copy of The Spirited Mrs. Pringle by Jillianne Hamilton!

The giveaway is open to US addresses only and ends on September 20th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Spirited Mrs. Pringle

Review & Giveaway: The Spirited Mrs. Pringle by Jillianne Hamilton


The Spirited Mrs. Pringle by Jillianne Hamilton

Publication Date: June 30, 2021
Tomfoolery Press

Genre: Historical Fiction


LONDON, 1888.

Upon the death of her husband, self-involved social climber Cora Pringle assumes her recent dalliance with a wealthy gentleman will be her second chance at a happily ever after. That is until her paramour turns out to be a penniless imposter. Despite his betrayal, Cora can’t quite let go of the tug the handsome playwright has on her heart.

Desperate for an income, Cora becomes a séance-performing spiritualist and gets a taste for celebrity—and it’s so delicious. So what if she can’t actually communicate with the dead? Her eager patrons don’t need to know that.

Amelia Baxter, an ambitious journalist and suffragist, is discouraged when her editor refuses to let her cover the horrific Jack the Ripper murders. Instead, Amelia pours her frustrations into bringing Cora’s deceptive and manipulative act to an end, even if it means risking her family’s reputation.

“Like the most memorable of its vividly drawn characters, The Spirited Mrs. Pringle is clever, lively, and unabashedly entertaining. Perhaps most enjoyable of all is the seemingly endless series of surprises. A string of sometimes astonishing pleasures to the last page.” - Award-Winning Author Leo McKay Jr.

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Kobo


Review

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Oh how I loved, loved, loved The Spirited Mrs. Pringle! Loved it so much that I inhaled it in two sittings...well, it would have been one sitting but you know, life and all.

Author Jillianne Hamilton has written a wonderfully charming historical that features two women, Cora (Mrs. Pringle) and Amelia. Cora is in a loveless marriage when she meets and falls for another man (Everett), though he turns out to be not what she thought. When her husband passes unexpectedly, she learns just how dire her circumstances are. He's left her with no home and no money. She is without family and her friends can't help, so she has no choice but to reach out to Everett who has offered her a place to stay. Cora needs money so she decides to try her hand at being a spiritualist. She's done this act at parties before but only as a joke.

Amelia is newlywed and has ambition to become a reporter and writer. She soon learns about the famous Mrs. Pringle and decides to check her out. When she sees that Mrs. Pringle can't really talk to the dead she exposes her.

I don't want to give too much away, but trust me it's an extremely fun read. There were twists and turns and a slow-burn romance that will leave you swooning! My word, how I adored Everett! There is also a lot of witty and clever dialogue that I loved.

I will definitely be picking up Jillianne's previous books as I greatly enjoyed this one. If you like Mimi Matthews, Harper St. George, or Diane Biller I strongly recommend you check Jillianne out!


About the Author


Jillianne Hamilton is the author of three novels and one non-fiction book. Her debut novel, Molly Miranda: Thief for Hire (2015), was shortlisted for the 2016 Prince Edward Island Book Award. The Molly Miranda sequels were published in 2016 and 2017.

Her lighthearted look at the 16th century, The Lazy Historian’s Guide to the Wives of Henry VIII, was published in 2018.

Jillianne has been published in Macleans, the Truro Daily News, the Sackville Tribune-Post, and Career Options Magazine. She also blogs about history at The Lazy Historian. Jill graduated from Journalism at Holland College in Prince Edward Island in 2010.

She lives in Charlottetown on Canada’s beautiful east coast.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads


Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, August 30
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Tuesday, August 31
Review at Booking With Janelle

Wednesday, September 1
Review at Novels Alive

Thursday, September 2
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks

Friday, September 3
Review at Gwendalyn's Books

Monday, September 6
Review at Reading is My Remedy

Tuesday, September 7
Guest Post at Books & Benches
Review at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers

Wednesday, September 8
Feature at I'm All About Books

Thursday, September 9
Review at Rajiv's Reviews

Friday, September 10
Review at Passages to the Past

Monday, September 13
Review at A Darn Good Read

Tuesday, September 14
Interview at Passages to the Past

Wednesday, September 15
Review at Chicks, Rogues, and Scandals

Friday, September 17
Review at Coffee and Ink
Review at The Lotus Readers

Monday, September 20
Review at Bonnie Reads and Writes

Giveaway

Enter to win a paperback copy of The Spirited Mrs. Pringle by Jillianne Hamilton!

The giveaway is open to US addresses only and ends on September 20th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Spirited Mrs. Pringle

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