Saturday, March 25, 2017

Book Spotlight Giveaway! Cooking for Picasso by Camille Aubray


I have sooooo many books! The Book Spotlight Giveaway feature that I post every Saturday is a way for me to clear my shelves and to share some of the many books I have. This feature is a way for my to cull my collection and to give someone else the opportunity to enjoy these treasures.

****************************

Thanks for stopping by to check out my latest giveaway! This week's giveaway is a book that I somehow ended up with two copies. I haven't read it yet but it is on my TBR list. It sounds intriguing. 

Good luck and be sure to stop back next week!

28007916

Cooking for Picasso

Cooking for Picasso by Camille Aubray
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published August 9th 2016 by Ballantine Books

For readers of Paula McLain, Nancy Horan, and Melanie Benjamin, this captivating novel is inspired by a little-known interlude in the artist’s life.

The French Riviera, spring 1936: It’s off-season in the lovely seaside village of Juan-les-Pins, where seventeen-year-old Ondine cooks with her mother in the kitchen of their family-owned Café Paradis. A mysterious new patron who’s slipped out of Paris and is traveling under a different name has made an unusual request—to have his lunch served to him at the nearby villa he’s secretly rented, where he wishes to remain incognito.

Pablo Picasso is at a momentous crossroads in his personal and professional life—and for him, art and women are always entwined. The spirited Ondine, chafing under her family’s authority and nursing a broken heart, is just beginning to discover her own talents and appetites. Her encounter with Picasso will continue to affect her life for many decades onward, as the great artist and the talented young chef each pursue their own passions and destiny.

New York, present day: Céline, a Hollywood makeup artist who’s come home for the holidays, learns from her mother, Julie, that Grandmother Ondine once cooked for Picasso. Prompted by her mother’s enigmatic stories and the hint of more family secrets yet to be uncovered, Céline carries out Julie’s wishes and embarks on a voyage to the very town where Ondine and Picasso first met. In the lush, heady atmosphere of the Côte d’Azur, and with the help of several eccentric fellow guests attending a rigorous cooking class at her hotel, Céline discovers truths about art, culture, cuisine, and love that enable her to embrace her own future.

Featuring an array of both fictional characters and the French Riviera’s most famous historical residents, set against the breathtaking scenery of the South of France, Cooking for Picasso is a touching, delectable, and wise story, illuminating the powers of trust, money, art, and creativity in the choices that men and women make, as they seek a path toward love, success, and joie de vivre.


About the author



Camille Aubray is an Edward Albee Foundation Fellowship winner. A writer-in-residence at the Karolyi Foundation in the South of France, she was a finalist for the Pushcart Press Editors’ Book Award and the Eugene O’Neill National Playwrights Conference.

She studied writing with her mentor Margaret Atwood at the Humber College School of Creative Writing Workshop in Toronto. Aubray has been a staff writer for the daytime dramas "One Life to Live" and "Capitol", has taught writing at New York University, and has written and produced for ABC News, PBS, and A&E.

The author divides her time between Connecticut and the South of France. Visit her at her website: camilleaubray.com

Connect with Camille



a Rafflecopter giveaway

***************************

Be sure to check the sidebar for all of my current giveaways!

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Wish Me Home by Kay Bratt ~ My Thoughts and a Giveaway!

33397749

Wish Me Home

Wish Me Home by Kay Bratt
Print and e-book, 300 pages
Published: March 21st 2017 by Lake Union Publishing

In her first work of contemporary women’s fiction, bestselling author Kay Bratt draws on her own life experiences to create a raw, yet inescapably warm, novel about friendship and a wary heart’s unexpected capacity to love.

A hungry, stray dog is the last thing Cara Butter needs. Stranded in Georgia with only her backpack and a few dwindling dollars, she already has too much baggage. Like her twin sister, Hana, who has broken Cara’s heart one too many times. After a lifetime of family troubles, and bouncing from one foster home to another, Cara decides to leave it all behind and strike out alone—on foot.

Cara sets off to Florida to see the home of her literary hero, Ernest Hemingway, accompanied only by Hemi, the stray dog who proves to be the perfect travel companion. But the harrowing trip takes unexpected turns as strangers become friends who make her question everything, and Cara finds that as the journey unfolds, so does her life—in ways she could never imagine.

 

(I love to note the first lines of the books I'm reading. First lines can really grab a reader's attention and I love seeing where the author takes the reader after their first lines.)

First line—"Don't turn around and look again, she told herself. Think of something else. Do not show any acknowledgement and it will go away. Don't let the sight of it limping make you crumble."

Wish Me Home is such a beautiful story, showing the power of love and kindness. Cara and Hemi, short for Hemingway, hit it off in a big way when they happen to stumble upon each other out on the road. They are both in desperate need of a good friend and the connection that they have from the very beginning is so heartwarming.

One of the first things I wondered throughout the story was why is Cara homeless and alone? Where is her twin sister and what happened to make her leave home so fast, leaving her sister and everything else behind? As Cara travels along the road, trying to escape her life, she decides to head for Ernest Hemingway's home in Key West. She has the companionship of the stray dog and lots of good people along the way who help her out more than she thinks she deserves. 

Not to say that she didn't run into some bad people too, people who caused her to lose almost everything she owns. For the most part though, she receives kindness and wisdom from so many good people. People came into her life just when she needed them and offered her comfort and solace. Along the journey, Cara and Hemi learn so much about themselves and those around them as they both start to heal and move forward with their lives. 

This is a story that really touched my heart and if you have ever loved a dog, you will understand the connection and love that Cara and Hemi have for each other. It really was amazing to witness that connection, that strong bond. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and loved experiencing the adventures, and the ups and downs, right along with Cara. I loved the wonderful characters she came across and missed them as much as she did when they parted. I look forward to reading more of Kay Bratt's work in the future. 

I received copy of this book from Lake Union Publishing and NetGalley and am voluntarily reviewing it.

About the author


Kay Bratt is the author of eleven full-length novels and two children’s books. Her writing became her solace and support while she navigated a tumultuous childhood, followed by a decade of abuse as an adult. After working her way through the hard years, Kay came out a survivor and a pursuer of peace—and finally found the courage to share her stories. A wise man once told her to “write what you know,” which resulted in Kay’s pet project and her bestselling series, The Tales of the Scavenger’s Daughters

Connect with Kay

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Newsletter


a Rafflecopter giveaway

***********************

Be sure to check the sidebar for all of my current giveaways!

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Release Day! Playing House by Laura Chapman

Happy Release Day!


Playing House

Playing House by Laura Chapman
Print and e-book, 354 pages
Published: March 21st 2017 by CreateSpace

She's a work in progress . . .

Bailey Meredith has had it. As an assistant at a prestigious interior design firm, she’s tired of making coffee and filing invoices. She’ll do just about anything to get out from under the paperwork and into the field for real experience. Then she sees an ad for a job that seems too good to be true.

He's a fixer upper . . .

Wilder Aldrich knew she would be perfect for the crew the moment he saw her. His hit home improvement show only hired the best, and Bailey had potential written all over her. It isn’t just her imaginative creativity and unmatched work ethic that grabs his attention. There’s just something about her.

With chemistry on screen, it’s only a matter of time before sparks fly behind the scenes as well. But with Bailey’s jaded views on romance and a big secret that could destroy Wilder and everyone he cares about are either of them willing to risk it all for love?

Purchase Playing House


https://books2read.com/playinghouse

 

Congratulations, Laura Chapman, on the release today of your wonderful novel, Playing House

I loved Playing House (read my thoughts here) and I have loved watching the growth of this author over the years. This is one you will not want to miss. 

About the author


Laura Chapman is the author of First & Goal, Going for Two, Three & Out, The Marrying Type, and Playing House. A native Nebraskan, she loves football, Netflix marathons, and her cats, Jane and Bingley. She loves talking to readers.

Connect with Laura


***********************

Be sure to check the sidebar for all of my current giveaways!

Release Day! Wish Me Home by Kay Bratt

Happy Release Day!

33397749

Wish Me Home

Wish Me Home by Kay Bratt
Print and e-book, 300 pages
Published: March 21st 2017 by Lake Union Publishing

In her first work of contemporary women’s fiction, bestselling author Kay Bratt draws on her own life experiences to create a raw, yet inescapably warm, novel about friendship and a wary heart’s unexpected capacity to love.

A hungry, stray dog is the last thing Cara Butter needs. Stranded in Georgia with only her backpack and a few dwindling dollars, she already has too much baggage. Like her twin sister, Hana, who has broken Cara’s heart one too many times. After a lifetime of family troubles, and bouncing from one foster home to another, Cara decides to leave it all behind and strike out alone—on foot.

Cara sets off to Florida to see the home of her literary hero, Ernest Hemingway, accompanied only by Hemi, the stray dog who proves to be the perfect travel companion. But the harrowing trip takes unexpected turns as strangers become friends who make her question everything, and Cara finds that as the journey unfolds, so does her life—in ways she could never imagine.

 

Congratulation, Kay Bratt, on the release today of your wonderful book, Wish Me Home.

About the author


Kay Bratt is the author of eleven full-length novels and two children’s books. Her writing became her solace and support while she navigated a tumultuous childhood, followed by a decade of abuse as an adult. After working her way through the hard years, Kay came out a survivor and a pursuer of peace—and finally found the courage to share her stories. A wise man once told her to “write what you know,” which resulted in Kay’s pet project and her bestselling series, The Tales of the Scavenger’s Daughters

Connect with Kay
***********************

Be sure to check the sidebar for all of my current giveaways!

Release Day! The Hope Chest by Viola Shipman

Happy Release Day!

32325946

The Hope Chest

The Hope Chest: A Novel by Viola Shipman
Print and e-book, 320 pages
Published: March 21st 2017 by Thomas Dunne Books

Viola Shipman's The Hope Chest is a deeply emotional novel about three people who have seemingly lost all hope until one woman’s heirloom hope chest is rediscovered in the attic, along with its contents and secrets.

Mattie is a fiercely independent woman battling ALS; Don, her deeply devoted husband is facing a future without his one true love; and Rose, their struggling caregiver, is a young, single mother who feels trapped in her life. With each item that is discovered—including a beloved doll, family dishes, an embroidered apron, and an antique Christmas ornament—the hope chest connects Mattie, Don and Rose to each other and not only helps them find hope again in the face of overwhelming life challenges but also brings new meaning to family.

 

Congratulation, Viola Shipman, on the release today of your wonderful book, The Hope Chest.

I loved The Hope Chest (read my thoughts here) and the previous book by this author, The Charm Bracelet (read my thoughts here). Both of these are such beautiful stories and ones that touched my heart. 

About the author

Viola Shipman

Viola Shipman is a pen name for Wade Rouse, a popular, award-winning memoirist. Rouse chose his grandmother’s name to honor the woman whose charm bracelet and family stories inspired him to write his debut novel, which is a tribute to all of our elders. Rouse lives in Michigan and writes regularly for People and Coastal Living, among other places, and is a contributor to All Things Considered.  To date, The Charm Bracelet has been translated into nine languages. He is at work on his second “heirloom novel,” which will be published in 2017.

For more about the author, 

Connect with Viola
***********************

Be sure to check the sidebar for all of my current giveaways!

Monday, March 20, 2017

The Widow of Wall Street by Randy Susan Meyers ~ My Thoughts

30753736

The Widow of Wall Street

The Widow of Wall Street by Randy Susan Meyers
Print and e-book, 352 pages
Expected publication: April 11th 2017 by Atria Books

What’s real in a marriage built on sand and how do you abandon a man you’ve loved since the age of fifteen?

Phoebe sees the fire in Jake Pierce’s belly from the moment they meet as teenagers in Brooklyn. Eventually he creates a financial dynasty and she trusts him without hesitation—unaware his hunger for success hides a dark talent for deception.

When Phoebe learns—along with the rest of the world—that her husband’s triumphs are the result of an elaborate Ponzi scheme her world unravels. Lies underpin her life and marriage. As Jake’s crime is uncovered, the world obsesses about Phoebe. Did she know her life was fabricated by fraud? Did she partner with her husband in hustling billions from pensioners, charities, and CEOs? Was she his accomplice in stealing from their family and neighbors?

Debate rages as to whether love and loyalty blinded her to his crimes or if she chose to live in denial. While Jake is trapped in the web of his own deceit, Phoebe is faced with an unbearable choice. Her children refuse to see her if she remains at their father’s side, but abandoning Jake, a man she’s known since childhood, feels cruel and impossible.

From Brooklyn to Greenwich to Manhattan, from penthouse to prison, with tragic consequences rippling well beyond Wall Street, The Widow of Wall Street exposes a woman struggling to redefine her life and marriage as everything she thought she knew crumbles around her.

 

My thoughts about The Widow of Wall Street ~~

(I love to note the first lines of the books I'm reading. First lines can really grab a reader's attention and I love seeing where the author takes the reader after their first lines.)

First line—"Phoebe never hated her husband more than when she visited him in prison."

I have been a fan of Randy Susan Meyers ever since I read her debut novel, The Murderer's Daughters. She takes on social issues and makes them come to life with the stories she writes and the characters she creates.

The Widow of Wall Street is a deep love story, a love between two fifteen years olds who know they are meant to be together. Jake's ambition to not end up like his parents and to offer his wife and children so much more than he had, leads him astray as he finds himself working outside the law.

Phoebe stands by her man and trusts that he is an honest, law-abiding, and gentle man. As she learns more and more about this man she has known almost her whole life, she learns more about herself and discovers the strong woman that she has always been.

The Widow of Wall Street is another great story from a wonderful author. I really have loved all of her previous books and this is another one I can add to that list. Thanks for another great read, Randy!

I received copy of this book from NetGally and am voluntarily reviewing it.

About the author

Randy Susan Meyers

I was born in Brooklyn, New York, where I quickly moved from playing with dolls to incessantly reading, spending most of my time at the Kensington Branch Library. Early on I developed a penchant for books rooted in social issues, my early favorites being Karen and The Family Nobody Wanted. Shortly after, I moved onto Jubilee and The Diary of Anne Frank.

My dreams of justice simmered at the fantastically broadminded Camp Mikan, where I went from camper to counselor, culminating in a high point when (with the help of my strongly Brooklyn-accented singing voice), I landed the role of Adelaide in the staff production of Guys and Dolls.

Soon after my brief stage career, I was ready to change the world, starting with my protests at Tilden High and City College of New York until I left to pursue the dream in Berkeley, California, where I supported myself by selling candy, nuts, and ice cream in Bartons of San Francisco. Then, world weary at too tender an age, I returned to New York, married, and traded demonstrations for diapers.

While raising two daughters, I tended bar, co-authored a nonfiction book on parenting, ran a summer camp, and (in my all-time favorite job, other than writing) helped resurrect and run a community center.

Once my girls left for college, I threw myself deeper into social service and education by working with batterers and victims of domestic violence. I’m certain my novels are imbued with all the above, as well as my journey from obsessing over bad boys to loving a good man.

Many things can save your life—children who warm your heart, the love of a good man, a circle of wonderful friends, and a great sister. After a tumultuous start in life, I’m lucky enough to now have all these things. I live in Boston with my husband, where I live by these words:

“Be regular and orderly in your life, so that you may be violent and original in your work.”
—GUSTAVE FLAUBERT

Connect with Randy
***********************

Be sure to check the sidebar for all of my current giveaways!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...