About the Book
Far Away Bird by Douglas A. Burton
Publication Date: February 6, 2020
Silent Music Press LLC
Paperback; 394 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Cover art illustration by George Frei
Inspired by true events, Far Away Bird delves into the complex mind of Byzantine Empress Theodora. This intimate account deftly follows her rise from actress-prostitute in Constantinople’s red-light district to the throne of the Byzantine Empire.
Her salacious past has left historians blushing and uncomfortable. Tales of her shamelessness have survived for centuries, and yet her accomplishments as an empress are unparalleled. Theodora goes on to influence sweeping reforms that result in some of the first ever Western laws granting women freedom and protection. More than a millennium before the women’s rights movement, Theodora, alone, took on the world’s greatest superpower and succeeded. Far Away Bird goes where history classrooms fear to tread in hopes that Theodora can finally take her seat among the greatest women in history.
Theodora seems impossible–yet her transcendence teaches us that society can’t tell us who we are deep down. Before there was a legendary empress, there was a conflicted young woman from the lower classes.
And her name was Theodora.
Grand Prize Winner 2019 Manuscript Contest for historical fiction-Writers’ League of Texas
Bronze Medal for Best Debut Novel in historical fiction-The Coffee Pot Book Club
Gold Medal Book of the Year historical fiction- The Coffee Pot Book Club
Steamy steamy! Is it safe for me to say that Theodora was perhaps one of the first feminists ever? For those of you who know me, I love reading about a strong and powerful woman. So, when I saw this book I jumped at the chance to read it! This was one of those books that I (blasphemously) flipped around and read completely out of order. This is a really bad habit I have acquired while reading books that really interest me. I have an insatiable need to know what comes next, so I don’t hold back and read ahead to find out what comes next, and then I go back to where I am and continue reading, until I decide to skip even further ahead. It’s bad, but it also shows when I’m really enjoying a book!
Now, I have to admit that I was a bit nervous seeing this story written by a male. Especially this story, given the content. My brain immediately flashed to all of those examples of male writers writing about female characters. You know, like these. But Theodora was handled with grace in this story and my worries were swiftly swept under the rug.
Far Away Bird takes place in the beginning of Theodora’s life, the time where historians haven’t learnt much about. I really appreciated this sort of “origins story,” as it paints a clear picture as to why Theodora made all of the changes she did while empress. The majority of this story is difficult as Theodora spent most of her time as a dancer/actress (which, during this time also meant that she would be forced to perform in the bed). And I have to be blunt: her childhood was ripped from her at a very young age. So, as good as this book is, it can also be a difficult read to watch a child lose all hope and become lost. But, as we know from history and through reading this, not all was lost and rebuilding yourself after just surviving for so long is a part of the journey.
About the AuthorDouglas Alan Burton is a speaker, author, and expert storyteller whose work depicts heroic figures and their deeper connection to the human experience. Doug blogs about heroes, heroines, and villains in pop culture with some unexpected and refreshing perspective. He grew up in what he describes as “the heroic boyhood culture of late Generation X” that has gone mainstream around the world. He also shares strategies with fellow writers for writing compelling heroic characters in fiction.
Douglas recently began outlining a breakthrough storytelling model that reveals a fascinating “heroine-centric” model for story structure he calls The Heroine’s Labyrinth. He believes a powerful new archetype is emerging for women in fiction. His forthcoming novel, Far Away Bird, which centers on the early life of Byzantine Empress Theodora, won the 2019 Manuscript Content for Historical Fiction from the Writers’ League of Texas and will be published in February of 2020.
Tour ScheduleMonday, January 27
Review at Passages to the Past
Tuesday, January 28
Guest Post at Let Them Read Books
Wednesday, January 29
Review at @ya.its.lit
Thursday, January 30
Review at Books and Zebras
Review at Tales from the Book Dragon
Friday, January 31
Interview at Jathan & Heather
Monday, February 3
Review at Gwendalyn’s Books
Tuesday, February 4
Feature at I’m All About Books
Wednesday, February 5
Review at Historical Graffiti
Thursday, February 6
Review at A Chick Who Reads
Friday, February 7
Review at 100 Pages a Day
Sunday, February 9
Review at Reading is My Remedy
Monday, February 10
Review at History + Fiction + Adirondack Spirit
Tuesday, February 11
Review at Historical Fiction with Spirit
Wednesday, February 12
Review at @bookishbellee
Thursday, February 13
Feature at Just One More Chapter
Friday, February 14
Review at Broken Teepee
GiveawayDuring the Blog Tour, we are giving away two copies of Far Away Bird by Douglas Burton! To enter, please use the Gleam form below.
– Giveaway ends at 11:59 pm EST on February 14th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Paperback giveaway is to the US only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspicion of fraud will be decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– The winner has 48 hours to claim prize or a new winner is chosen.
Far Away Bird https://widget.gleamjs.io/e.js
*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review*