ASIN : B08XDZCJ4Q Publisher : Mike Bond Books (May 4, 2021) Publication date : May 4, 2021 Language : English
A decade that transformed America
The Sixties shook America to its foundation – the assassination of an idealistic young president, a tragic and unpopular war, a battle for civil rights, a cosmic clash of riots and burning cities, and an explosion of sex, drugs and rock’n roll.
For four young people, the Sixties is a decade of promise and freedom. For orphaned Troy, it’s the joy of living with his new family and exploring the world of flight and outer space. For Tara, the girl he loves, the power of song as she evolves into a rock’n roll star. For his new brother, Mick, a football hero and rebel, a time to question everything, including the fast-growing war in Vietnam. And for Daisy, the girl Mick loves, a chance to fight for equality, join the Peace Corps, and expand her study of the human mind.
America is the first of Mike Bond’s seven-volume historical novel series, capturing the victories and heartbreaks of the last 70 years and of our nation’s most profound upheavals since the Civil War – a time that defined the end of the 20th Century and where we are today.
Through the wild, joyous, heartbroken and visionary lives of four young people and many others, the Sixties come alive again, as do its questions: what is life? What is freedom? What was lost, what was won?
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Praise for America
“Master of the existential thriller” —BBC
“One of the 21st Century’s most exciting authors … spellbinding readers with a writing style that pits hard-boiled, force of nature-like characters against politically adept, staccato-paced plots.” —Washington Times
“One of America’s best thriller writers.” —Culture Buzz
“A master of the storytelling craft.” —Midwest Book Review
“Bond never loses the reader’s attention … working that fatalistic margin where life and death are one and the existential reality leaves one caring only to survive.” —Sunday Oregonian
“One of the best thriller writers, in the same league as Gerald Seymour and Frederick Forsyth.” —NetGalley
“Mike Bond is not only an acclaimed novelist… His intellect and creativity dance together on the pages, braiding fiction into deeper truths about ourselves, our nature, our government, our history and our future.” —Where Truth Meets Fiction
“Bond touches on the vast and eerie depths that lie under the thin crust of civilization and the base instinct within man to survive.” —Nottingham Observer (UK)
“Mike Bond’s books are a national treasure.” —Art Zuckerman, WVOX
“Bond uses his gift for fiction to teach us hard truths about religion, human nature, and warfare.” —Masterful Book Reviews
“A highly distinctive writer.” —Liverpool Daily Post (UK)
You know, I really love books set in this time period. It was just such an interesting and compelling time period that I love seeing snippets of stories based off of. And the history in America was extremely rich and compelling. And this is really one of those reads that it feels like you’re catching a real glimpse into someones life.
Now, what I mean by that is that this isn’t one of those books that’s going to have action and adventure and drama around every single corner. It’s really a story about these individuals and the life they lived in this time period. And I actually really appreciated that because it’s kind of a nice break from all of the overly dramatic stories that are out there. Sometimes you just want to take a stroll through a story versus a high speed chase, you know?
Anyways, I really love getting a chance to read another book set in this time period and just getting a further glimpse into the history surrounding it. And I really enjoyed this one!
About the Author
Photo Content from Mike Bond
Bestselling novelist MIKE BOND has worked in many dangerous and war-torn regions of the world. His critically acclaimed novels portray the innate hunger of the human heart for good, the intense joys of love, the terror and fury of battle, the sinister conspiracies of dictators, corporations and politicians, and the beauty of the vanishing natural world.
Lilac Girls introduced readers to Caroline Ferriday, an American philanthropist who helped young girls released from Ravensbruck concentration camp. Now, in Sunflower Sisters, Kelly tells the story of her ancestor Georgeanna Woolsey, a Union nurse who joins the war effort during the Civil War, and how her calling leads her to cross paths with Jemma, a young enslaved girl who is sold off and conscripted into the army, and Ann-May Wilson, a southern plantation mistress whose husband enlists.
Georgeanne “Georgey” Woolsey isn’t meant for the world of lavish parties and demure attitudes of women of her stature. So when the war ignites the nation, Georgey follows her passion for nursing during a time when doctors considered women a bother on the battlefront. In proving them wrong, she and her sister Eliza venture from New York to Washington, D.C., to Gettysburg and witness the unparalleled horrors of slavery as they become involved in the war effort.
In the South, Jemma is enslaved on the Peeler Plantation in Maryland, where she lives with her mother and father. Her sister, Patience, is enslaved on the plantation next door and both live in fear of LeBaron, an abusive overseer who tracks their every move. When Jemma is sold by the cruel plantation mistress Anne-May at the same time the Union army comes through, she sees a chance to finally escape–but only by abandoning the family she loves.
Anne-May is left behind to run Peeler Planation when her husband joins the Union Army and her cherished brother enlists with the Confederates. In charge of the household, she uses the opportunity to follow her own ambitions and is drawn into a secret Southern network of spies, finally exposing herself to the fate she deserves.
Inspired by true accounts, Sunflower Sisters provides a vivid, detailed look at the Civil War experience, from the barbaric and inhumane plantations, to a war-torn New York City to the horrors of the battlefield. It’s a sweeping story of women caught in a country on the brink of collapse, in a society grappling with nationalism and unthinkable racial cruelty, a story still so relevant today.
From Southern spies to nurses on the northern battlefields, Sunflower Sisters weaves an exquisite tapestry of women determined to defy the molds the world has for them. The journeys of Jemma and the Woolsey sisters will have readers celebrating those who came before us, who fought for what they knew was right, and became timeless women ahead of their times.”—Lisa Wingate, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Before We Were Yours and The Book of Lost Friends
“Sunflower Sisters marks the third installment of Martha Hall Kelly’s tales of the formidable Woolsey Women, with this chapter unfolding across the plantations, battlefields, and parlor rooms of one of history’s most dramatic moments. The Civil War roils as a sweeping backdrop and an era of both heartbreaking and inspiring humanity. Kelly’s vivid prose, stunning historical research, and heartfelt, compelling characters make this a gripping, page-turning read.”—Allison Pataki, New York Times bestselling author of The Queen’s Fortune
To say I was excited for this book was a little bit of an understatement. I mean, I literally started reading it as soon as it came in the mail. There’s just something about this story that pulls you right in and forces you to become invested in the characters and their lives.
This book is just so beautifully written and I really love how all of the stories come together. And it’s such a timely story that is done artfully. There wasn’t a single main character that I wasn’t invested in and I really just enjoyed the setting. I don’t want to get into too much of the plot though because I want you to be able to just fall into it and let the story unfold around you.
Also, although this is technically the third book in this series feel free to read them out of order! While the books follow the same family they are set in separate time frames so you can run out to the bookstore and get Sunflower Sisters right now!
About the Author
Martha is a native New Englander who lives in Litchfield County Connecticut. She worked as an advertising copywriter for many years, and raised three wonderful children who are now mostly out of the nest. Her debut novel Lilac Girls, about Connecticut socialite Caroline Ferriday who championed a group of Ravensbruck Concentration Camp survivors known as The Rabbits who survived WWII Nazi experiments, was her first novel and an instant New York Times bestseller. The prequel to Lilac Girls, Lost Roses, was also an instant NYTimes bestseller. It features Caroline’s mother Eliza Ferriday and her fight to save a group of Russian women, former aristocrats who lost everything in the Russian Revolution. The Lost Roses paperback published March 3rd, 2020 and the third book in the series, a Civil War novel about Caroline’s great grandmother’s family, arrives spring 2021.
Queenie’s Place by Toni Morgan Publication Date: December 6, 2018 Adelaide Books Publishers Paperback & eBook; 302 pages Genre: Historical Fiction
Queenie’s Place, set in rural North Carolina in the early seventies, is the story of an unusual sisterhood between a thirty-something white woman from California and a fifty-something black woman from the south. From the moment Doreen Donavan sees the ìWelcome to Klan Countryî sign outside Goldsboro, North Carolina is one culture shock after another. She thinks the women she meets on the military base, where she and her family now live, are the dullest, stuffiest, most stuck-up women sheís ever run across, and frankly, they donít think much of her either. Sheís hot, miserable, and bored. Then one day, BAM, her car tire goes flat, right in front of a roadhouse outside the town of Richland, near where MCB Camp Puller is located. Inside, Queenie is holding forth at the piano. The place is jumping. Besides the music, thereís dancing and the best barbecue in North Carolina. Doreenís husband, Tom arrives and must practically peel her out of the place. Queenie doesnít expect to see Doreen again, but Doreen comes back and their unlikely friendship begins. Without warning, Queenieís place is closed, the women accused of prostitution and bootlegging. A born crusader (she cut her teeth demonstrating against the Vietnam Waróyes, even with her husband over there), Doreen quickly dons her armor and saddles up. Things donít go quite as planned.
This book features such a beautiful combination of powerful women and friendship. You know, sometimes you’ve just got to read a book that makes you feel empowered and this was the perfect book for that. And given the times it just has such an important message to spread. Plus the writing just draws you in anyways.
I feel like the content in this book is, sadly, still so prevalent today. The book has a heavy focus on racism and segregation and I just find it such an important topic to discuss and have open conversations about. Plus the story just draws you in and makes you become so invested in the characters. It’s not often that I find myself so invested in the main characters, but I couldn’t help but get drawn into the two mcs lives and friendship.
This book just has so much going for it that all successfully comes together into one amazing story. There is a complexity to the story as the characters evolve through not only their interactions with one another but also the decisions they make. There is a strength in this book that really just hooks you.
About the Author
A longtime military spouse, TONI MORGAN has lived in many parts of the US and also for nearly four years in rural Japan. There she had the good fortune to work part-time in a Japanese pottery factory. That rich experience led to the first in her WWII trilogy ECHOES FROM A FALLING BRIDGE, which gives a unique view of life in rural Japan during the war. Second in the trilogy is HARVEST THE WIND, partially set in a Japanese internment camp in Idaho’s Magic Valley. The third in the series is LOTUS BLOSSOM UNFURLING, which continues the saga after the war ends. She also wrote PATRIMONY, and TWO-HEARTED CROSSING, companion books set in Montreal Quebec Canada during the Quebec Separatist Movement and 20 years later, in northern Idaho. Her novel QUEENIE’S PLACE is a 2019 National Book Award in Literature nominee. Her short stories have appeared in various literary magazines and journals, and her short story “Tin Soldier” was included in MOORING AGAINST THE TIDE, a creative fiction and poetry textbook published by Prentice Hall. Her most recent release is BETWEEN LOVE AND HATE, a collection of short stories, including Pushcart Prize nominee “The House on East Orange Street” and the aforementioned “Tin Soldier.”
The Earl’s Lady Geologist by Alissa Baxter Publication Date: February 28, 2021 Vinspire Publishing Series: Linfield Ladies Series, Book One Genre: Regency Romance
Cassandra Linfield is a lady fossil collector who declares she will never marry as no man will ever take her studies seriously. When circumstances force her to travel to Town for the Season, Cassy infiltrates the hallowed portals of the Geological Society from which she has been banned. She is horrified when she comes face to face with her nemesis, the infuriating Earl of Rothbury.
Lord Rothbury is a gentleman-geologist with a turbulent romantic past. After a youthful disappointment he vows never to fall in love again, and makes the decision, instead, to seek out a convenient wife when he returns to England from his geological travels abroad.
Brought together by their close family ties, Cassy and Rothbury collaborate on a geological paper and discover a powerful attraction. Marriage, however, is the one subject they cannot agree upon. But when Cassyís life is threatened, the two realise that love matters more than their objections.
ìA gentle Regency romance, full of sweetness and intelligence. Alissa Baxterís writing is period perfect.î -Mimi Matthews, USA Today bestselling author of The Matrimonial Advertisement
ìThe Earlís Lady Geologist by Alissa Baxter deftly weaves together the charm of a traditional Regency romance, fascinating information on scientific society of the time, with a quiet subtext about the challenges faced by women interested in pursuing science. This first book in a new series is wonderfully satisfying on many levels!î -Mary Jo Putney, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author
ìWhile immersing the reader in the mores and life of the Regency era, Alissa Baxter manages to write strong, independent heroines whom modern-day women will cheer and root for. Plus the addition of little details that wrap around the plot and the characters make reading her books all the more special because you never know when you might land on a little Easter egg morsel in the beautiful and engaging prose. Historicals with heart and engaging characters that read realóthatís what you get in Ms. Baxter’s books.î -Zee Monodee, USA Today bestselling author
ìA truly traditional Regency romance, with lots of witty banter, very reminiscent of Georgette Heyer. Recommended for anyone who likes a completely clean traditional Regency, with strongly authentic writing, historical accuracy and a satisfying romance. Baxterís writing is excellent, and her dialogue, manners and settings are true to the era. A spirited heroine, a brooding hero, lots of sparkling banter and an authentic Regency settingówith added fossils! Great fun. From Lyme Regis to the drawing rooms of London, Alissa Baxter takes the reader back to the time of Jane Austen.î Mary Kingswood, author of traditional Regency romances
There were so many things about this book that made me go: Yes, this is a me book. And I have to say that it lived up to my own internal hype! I really loved this book and it was honestly the best thing for me with how stressed I have been lately. You know, it’s just one of those books you can curl up with and enjoy all of the regency drama and romance.
You know, I’m already a sucker for a good regency romance but I’m even more of a sucker for a regency romance with a stubborn and willful woman and a stiff and curt man. And boy oh boy did I hit the jackpot with these two MCs. And phew, when the sparks started going off they flew. Plus it was just such a fun journey to take with these two and see as their characters grew and progressed.
So yeah, this was a really amazing read and one that I really hope a lot of people pick up. it has so much to offer, has those endearing regency qualities, and is overall an amazing read. Plus it’s not terribly long so it’s a pretty quick read!
About the Author
Alissa Baxter was born in a small town in South Africa, and grew up with her nose in a book on a poultry and cattle farm. At the age of eleven she discovered her motherís collection of Georgette Heyer novels. The first Heyer novel she ever read was Sylvester and she was hooked on Georgette Heyer after that. She read and reread her novels, and fell totally in love with the Regency period and Heyerís grey-eyed heroes! After school and university, where she majored in Political Science and French, she published her first Regency novel, The Dashing Debutante.
Alissa travelled overseas and worked as a flight attendant in Dubai before she moved to England, where she did an odd assortment of jobs while researching her second novel, Lord Fenmoreís Wager, which she wrote when she moved back to South Africa. Alissaís third Regency novel, A Marchioness Below Stairs, is the sequel to Lord Fenmoreís Wager.
Alissa has lived in Durban and Cape Town but she eventually settled in Johannesburg where she lives with her husband and two sons. Alissa is also the author of two chick-lit novels, Send and Receive and The Blog Affair, which have been re-released as The Truth About Series: The Truth about Clicking Send and Receive and The Truth About Cats and Bees.
The Sky Worshipers by F.M. Deemyad Publication Date: March 2, 2021 History Through Fiction LLC Hardcover, Paperback, & eBook Genre: Historical Fiction
In the year 1398 A.D., Lady Goharshad and her husband, King Shahrokh, come across an ancient manuscript in the ruins of Karakorum, the Mongol capital. The manuscript chronicles the era of Mongol invasions with entries by three princesses from China, Persia, and Poland who are captured and brought to the Mongol court.
After being stolen from her family at the Tangut Emperor’s coronation, Princess Chaka, the Emperor’s youngest daughter is left with no choice but to marry Genghis Khan. Thus, the Tangut join Genghis as allies. She is the first to secretly chronicle the historical events of her time, and in doing so she has the help of an African eunuch by the name of Baako who brings her news from the war front.
Princess Reyhan is the witty granddaughter of the last Seljuk King in Persia. She is kidnapped by Ogodei, Genghis’s son and heir, who falls in love with her. The romance does not last long, however, since a Mongol beauty wins Ogodei’s heart, and Reyhan is sidelined. Reyhan continues the tradition of recording the events in secret, turning her entries into tales.
During the Mongol invasion of Poland and Hungary, Princess Krisztina, niece to Henry the Pious, is taken as a prisoner of war by the Mongols. Reyhan learns about Krisztina’s predicament through Baako and asks Hulagu, Genghis’s grandson, to help free her. Krisztina has a difficult time adjusting to life in Mongolia, and at one point she attempts to run away but is unsuccessful. When the child she is bearing is stillborn, the Mongol court shuns her. She is able to return to her homeland in old age but comes back to Karakorum and writes her final entry in the journal.
Through beautiful language and powerful storytelling, this fact-based historical novel lays bare the once far-reaching and uncompromising Mongol empire. It shows readers the hidden perspectives of the captive, conquered, and voiceless. It brings to light the tremendous but forgotten influence of Genghis Khan and his progeny, while asking readers to reconsider the destruction and suffering of the past on which the future is built.
“The author’s in-depth research is evident throughout The Sky Worshippers. For readers who enjoy a lush blend of historical fact and fiction, this novel details the smells, sights, sounds of a pivotal era in time, uniquely told through the eyes of three captive princesses.”†- Gina Wilkinson author of When the Apricots Bloom
“F.M. Deemyad immerses the reader into the 13th Century world of Genghis Khan. It’s an unforgettable story of survival and strong women as we experience life through the eyes of the conquered-and the conquerors. In The Sky Worshipers, history comes vividly alive.”†- John DeDakis, Novelist, Writing Coach, and former Senior Copy Editor for CNN’s “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer”, http://www.JohnDeDakis.com
“In this stunning saga, F. M. Deemyad takes us on a thrilling journey as Genghis Khan and his sons sweep across Asia and Europe, worshiping the sky while they conquer one nation after another and capture women to enslave and marry. The women’s stories, rich with architectural, historical and cultural detail, hold an important message for all of us who have inherited privileges as the result of our ancestor’s atrocities. A great read and a phenomenal debut!”†- Raima Larter, Author of Fearless and Belle o’ the Waters
“The Sky Worshipers by F.M. Deemyad draws us into Genghis Khan’s conquests through the eyes of three women ripped from their homes and thrust into royal service. This lyrical novel is a vivid imagining of hearts and minds of women who left their marks on history, despite history’s failure to acknowledge their contributions. It allows us to connect with timeless striving for a world of compassion, equal opportunity, and celebration of diversity. A beautiful novel.”†- Lisa L. Leibow, J.D., Co-Founder, Board President, Chief Operating Officer, The Scheherazade Project
“An illuminating telling of Mongol conquest and the people who lived-and died-making decisions that shaped half the world. The broad strokes of time are revealed through the perspectives of single bristles of the brush. Cleverly imagined and carefully rendered, The Sky Worshipers is an engaging, personal look at one of history’s momentous eras.”†- Zach Powers, author of First Cosmic Velocity
This was such an interesting and historical driven story. I’ve always found myself easily lured into stories that chronicle this time in history and this one was no different. And even without the history the story on its own is amazing and beautifully told.
You know, I’m always a sucker for a good female driven historical fiction. And The Sky Worshippers takes it a step further and covers a time that is rarely talked about in books (well, at least from a woman’s perspective). And the story in itself is just really amazing and engaging. There is a wide time period covered, but you don’t feel as if anything is lacking. The storytelling is beautiful and you really get drawn into the story. Well, not only the story but also the time period as the things you learned in history come to life.
I really enjoyed this one and hope to see more from Deemyad in the future. This was a beautifully written historical fiction and I found myself not wanting to put it down. Plus, like I said, it was a wonderfully woman centric story in a time period where women were easily forgotten.
About the Author
F.M. Deemyad was born in Kermanshah, Iran. She grew up in the capital, Tehran, attending bilingual schools run by Christian and Jewish minorities. Her father, born and raised in India, had come to Iran when he was in his late twenties. Being the son of a linguist who had taught English Literature in India for a number of years, he exposed the author in her preschool years to the English language, and she learned to love classic literature under her fatherís instructions. She received her Masterís degree in Writing from Johns Hopkins University in 2016. She currently resides with her husband in Maryland.
The much-anticipated sequel to IN SIGHT OF THE MOUNTAIN!
After Anna Gallagher’s first climb on Mt. Rainier, she faces a new challenge—enduring the ridicule and threats that come with breaking tradition. In 1890, being a young female mountaineer makes polite society uncomfortable, even angry. But despite the threats and inherent risk, she still has plans for another climb, even if it jeopardizes her family bookstore, and puts her in more danger than she ever imagined.
Emily Watson has always been close with the Gallagher family. As a young girl she dreamed of a wealthy husband, a fine house, and a future in Seattle society and now she finally has it. Her desires couldn’t be more different than Anna’s, but she’s confronted with her own invisible mountain to climb when she’s suddenly poverty-stricken. She must decide what matters most, and whether true love is worth waiting for.
IN LIGHT OF THE SUMMIT is a captivating story of ambition, heartbreak, and redemption. It’s a tale of two childhood friends navigating womanhood in the late 19th century, with as much grace as they can muster, while still figuring out how to be true to themselves.
“Turn of the century social conventions come in conflict with a determined young woman’s desire to climb Mt. Ranier in Washington State. Anna must make a choice, to be true to herself or “know one’s place” and conform to avoid conflict within her family and society at large. Author, Jamie McGillen, explores this and other social injustices historically imposed on women, many that still resonate a century and a half later – mountains yet to climb.” — San Francisco Book Review
“In Light of the Summit by Jamie McGillen is a charming sequel to her first novel, In Sight of the Mountain. McGillen’s love for her home state and Mt. Rainier shines through her writing. Her description is vivid and beautiful. Readers will be inspired to climb the mountain themselves. She brings Mt. Rainier and the Pacific Northwest climate to life. Anna is a strong and determined female character, and her husband Ben is always supportive. Their love is believable and sweet. This book is filled with adventure and romance and danger. The mystery is well-plotted, with several great twists. If you are looking for a good, clean novel to curl up in front of a cozy fire with, you can’t go wrong with this one.” — Heather Stockard, Readers’ Favorite (5 Star Review)
You know, I really enjoy books like this. They’re soothing to read yet feature such powerhouse and inspiring women. It’s just a really nice combination that draws you wholly into the story. Plus the backdrop to this series is amazing and beautiful.
There were so many elements to this book that wove together so perfectly into one story, but I don’t want to get too much into the plot because the events are a direct follow up to the first book in the series. But the characters and setting have such amazing backgrounds and backdrops that you’ll find yourself flipping as fast as you can through this book.
The last nice, but also sad, thing about this book is that it isn’t terribly long. So if you’re like me you’ll be able to stay up late and devour this one in one go. But don’t worry, the book isn’t so short that it makes you feel as if the story got lost along the way.
About the Author
Jamie McGillen lives in the shadow of Mount Rainier, and no matter how many times she moves away, it draws her home. Everything about large evergreen trees delights her, except how poky they are, and the sap. Her poems and essays have been published in numerous literary journals, and she teaches English Composition at Highline College.
In 1897, a fiery British aristocrat and an inept US spy search for a stolen invisibility serum that could spark a global war.
Miss Constance Haltwhistle is the last in a line of blue-blooded rogue inventors. Selling exotic firearms under her alias, the ‘Brass Queen,’ has kept her baronial estate’s coffers full. But when US spy, Trusdale, saves her from assassins, she’s pulled into a search for a scientist with an invisibility serum. As royal foes create an invisible army to start a global war, Constance and Trusdale must learn to trust each other. If they don’t, the world they know will literally disappear before their eyes.
What’s more fun than a period piece? A gaslight fantasy is! I just have always had a soft spot for books like these that bend multiple genres into one. And it’s even better when the book has me giggling throughout reading it, like The Brass Queen did.
I mean, there’s just so many elements to this plot that point to an amazing story. And with excellent writing/storytelling on top of that I easily saw why so many people fell in love with this one. Because I did too. I loved the characters, the setting, and the twisty plot. And I mean, you just gotta read it and fall in love with it just as much as I did.
I left this review a little open ended because I think the story is just so much… fresher without knowing too much about the plot. The synopsis gives you just enough to know what you’re getting into and then the book itself gives you just so much more and so much development. So crack this one open and fall into this world!
About the Author
Elizabeth Chatsworth is a British author and actor based in Connecticut. She loves to write of rogues, rebels, and renegades across time and space.
Elizabeth is a Writers Of The Future winner, a Golden Heart® finalist, a Pitch Wars alumna, and a member of the SFWA. She is the author of THE BRASS QUEEN (January 2021), an award-winning fantasy set in an alternate Victorian age.
When she’s not writing, Elizabeth works at the Westport Library and is also a voiceover actor. There’s a rumor she possesses the world’s best scone recipe.
A Man of Honor, or Horatio’s Confessions by J.A. Nelson Publication Date: December 9, 2019 Quill Point Press Paperback, eBook & AudioBook; 414 pages Genre: Historical/Thriller/Mystery
Winner of two silver medals Best First Book, Fiction Best Cover, Fiction Awarded by the IBPA (2020)
2020 Notable Indie, Top 100 – Best Indie Book Awards, Shelf Unbound
Finalist, Literary Fiction 14th Annual National Indie Excellence Awards (2020)
A Man of Honor tells the fictional tale of how one man’s oath gave birth to the legend of Hamlet.
How far would you go to keep a deathbed promise?
Surrounded by the bodies of slain monarchs, a dying prince extracts a promise from his friend, Horatio: “Tell my story.”
Rival kings of warring nations strive to lay claim to the throne, now vacant, but what will happen to the people who live there, at Helsingør’s Krogen Castle? How will Horatio preserve his honor and the prince’s legacy while surviving this murderous kingdom and the men who would rule it?
Despite the odds and threats against him, Horatio persists, weaving the story of his dear friend into the fabric of one of their oldest and most revered medieval texts.
But when a nefarious Spaniard thwarts his plans, Horatio must once again risk everything to fulfill his oath.
With the help of some unexpected allies in the form of Margrete, a courageous lady-in-waiting, and Lanier, a disgraced French nobleman, Horatio undertakes this perilous quest that will lead him on a journey none of them could have ever predicted, to a place none of them ever thought they would see.
And after their hard-fought journey will it all be for naught?
“Like a train, A MAN OF HONOR’s narrative builds speed and takes off into an often gripping adventure of love,war, and discovery. Author J.A. Nelson’s novel follows in the tradition of historical fiction. Nelson creates a beautiful but terrifying sixteenth century where numerous factions struggle for power and influence. The main characters are loyal but fallible, and the reader identifies with their struggle to keep moving forward–to finish what they’ve started…. Nelson has developed a timeless story…. A MAN OF HONOR may be set in a distant time and place, but Horatio’s search for the truth about his late friend, Hamlet, is an internal journey of discovery to which many readers will relate.” – IndieReader Reviews
“With its literary flourishes and exciting scenes, A Man of Honor addresses ethical questions in fascinating ways….Setting and moods…capture the flavor of Nordic sagas…. A literary novel featuring taut action and strong characters who address questions about the nature of integrity.” – Clarion Reviews
“The story of Hamlet survives, truthfully told…. Horatio is the perfect character to carry on Hamlet’s story…. An intriguing twist…. Among the pages of an adventure is a story of one man’s commitment to his sense of honor and duty, as well as the importance and worth of legends.” – The US Review
Phew! LATE review tonight! Ever have one of those days that feel like they’ll never end? Well that was today. On the plus side we have officially finished redoing all of the flooring in my house! But anyways, back to the book! It’s been a hot minute since I read a historical fiction, so I was really excited to get back to them with this book!
You know, it’s also been a hot minute since I’ve read a Shakespeare retelling/continuation/inspired story, so this was a double win for me. And I mean who doesn’t like to dive into the minds of those surrounding Hamlet? And this book did an excellent job of taking these much beloved/known characters and giving them a fresh breath of life.
This book was a challenge on it’s own given the subject matter. But everything was so successfully done that it all pulled together to create a wonderful story. The characters, plot, and superb writing all came together to create something entirely new based off of a story that we all know.
About the Author
J. A. Nelson’s passion for exploring connections between history, literature, and evidence in written texts has shaped her life—from a BA (Occidental College) and MA (The George Washington University) in cultural studies to a two-decade career at the National Archives of the United States, working with historical documentary treasures and helping people access unique stories in those records. Ms. Nelson is a native of Culver City, CA, a Los Angeles suburb. She lives with her husband in Northern Virginia. A Man of Honor, or Horatio’s Confessions is her debut novel.
The Canterbury Murders by E.M. Powell Publication Date: November 12, 2020 Crosshaven Press Series: Stanton & Barling, #3 Genre: Historical Fiction/Mystery
A fire-ravaged cathedral. An ungodly murder.
Easter, 1177. Canterbury Cathedral, home to the tomb of martyr Saint Thomas Becket, bears the wounds of a terrible fire. Benedict, prior of the great church, leads its rebuilding. But horror interrupts the work. One of the stonemasons is found viciously murdered, the dead manís face disfigured by a shocking wound.
When Kingís clerk Aelred Barling and his assistant, Hugo Stanton, arrive on pilgrimage to the tomb, the prior orders them to investigate the unholy crime.
But the killer soon claims another victimñand another. As turmoil embroils the congregation, the pair of sleuths face urgent pressure to find a connection between the killings.
With panic on the rise, can Barling and Stanton catch the culprit before evil prevails againóand stop it before it comes for them?
THE CANTERBURY MURDERS is the third book in E.M. Powellís Stanton and Barling medieval murder mystery series. Combining intricate plots, shocking twists and a winningñif unlikelyñpair of investigators, this series is perfect for fans of Ellis Petersí Brother Cadfael or C. J. Sansomís Shardlake.
You know, there’s just something about mysteries that draw you into the story. I don’t know what it is about them but they’ve been a favorite genre of mine for as long as I can remember. And it’s a genre that is just timeless. And what I really loved about this particular mystery is that it is set in the past and brings back in an engaging and fun way.
The one thing that this book did really well with was not feeling like a dry history lesson. You know those books that feel like they more they’re telling you every little detail about the time period instead of actually sharing a story with you? Yeah, this isn’t one of those. You are transported back to the times but you get to live it through the characters and their shenanigans.
And even with this solid story telling I still felt as if I learned a lot. I really enjoyed this read and it was such an interesting take on the classic mystery genre. Plus I do love a book that teaches me without my knowing.
About the Author
E.M. Powellís historical thriller and medieval mystery Fifth Knight and Stanton & Barling novels have been #1 Amazon and Bild bestsellers.
The third Stanton & Barling mystery, THE CANTERBURY MURDERS, will be released in November 2020.
Born and raised in the Republic of Ireland into the family of Michael Collins (the legendary revolutionary and founder of the Irish Free State), she lives in northwest England with her husband, daughter and a Facebook-friendly dog.
E.M. Powell is represented by Josh Getzler at HG Literary.
Crawdads meets the Crawleys…Threaded through with a meticulously researched, well-crafted mystery, this is historical fiction at its best.” —Fiona Davis, nationally bestselling author of The Lions of Fifth Avenue
From the bestselling author of A Tangled Mercy comes an enthralling novel of secrets, a tumultuous war of ideas, and murder as classes collide in the shadow of Biltmore House.
Biltmore House, a palatial mansion being built by the Vanderbilts, American “royalty,” is in its final stages of construction in North Carolina. The country’s grandest example of privilege, it symbolizes the aspirations of its owner and the dreams of a girl, just as driven, who lives in its shadow.
Kerry MacGregor’s future is derailed when, after two years in college in New York City, family obligations call her home to the beautiful Appalachians. She is determined to distance herself from the opulence she sees rising in the Blue Ridge Mountains, however close its reach. Her family’s land is among the last pieces required to complete the Biltmore Estate. But something more powerful than an ambitious Vanderbilt heir could change Kerry’s fate as, one by one, more outsiders descend on the changing landscape—a fugitive from Sicily, a reporter chasing a groundbreaking story, a debutante tainted by scandal, and a conservationist prepared to put anyone at risk to stoke the resentment of the locals.
As Kerry finds herself caught in a war between wealth and poverty, innocence and corruption, she must navigate not only her own pride and desperation to survive but also the temptations of fortune and the men who control it.
“Elegantly written and expertly crafted, Under a Gilded Moon soars as high as any piece of literature can reach. You’re transported to a time and place in history that begs [to be] read late into the night.” —Robert Dugoni, international bestselling author of The Extraordinary Life of Sam Hell and the Tracy Crosswhite series
“I was swept away by this dazzling, masterfully written tale of the clash of classes and cultures around the Biltmore in North Carolina. Joy Jordan-Lake brings the past alive with impeccable details, raw emotion, and parallels to our present world. A triumph.” —Emily Carpenter, bestselling author of Burying the Honeysuckle Girls
“This is historical fiction at its finest. With pitch-perfect dialogue and details so rich and so right, Joy Jordan-Lake sets us squarely—lock, stock, and barrel—in 1895 Asheville, NC, in not just one but two distinctive worlds. The grand Vanderbilts and their luxurious Biltmore fascinated me, and the mountain people with their human struggles pulled at my heart.” —Bren McClain, author of One Good Mama Bone, winner of the 2017 Willie Morris Award for Southern Fiction and the 2019 Patricia Winn Award for Southern Literature
“Crawdads meets the Crawleys in Jordan-Lake’s latest, where she offers up a powerful location in the Biltmore House of Asheville, North Carolina. Pitting rugged locals against Gilded Age interlopers and threaded throughout with a meticulously researched, well-crafted mystery, this is historical fiction at its best.” —Fiona Davis, national bestselling author of The Lions of Fifth Avenue
Can we just take a moment to appreciate this beautiful book? And not only does it have a beautiful cover, but it also has a wonderful story that takes you back in time to such an interesting time period. One where I admittedly could learn a bit more about.
The Biltmore Estate is one of those places where I feel like everyone but me has visited, but I was able to visit it through this story. And honestly, what better way to travel is there in 2020 than by book? I’m a really big fan of the setting and as I’ve mentioned many times I love when I can learn from a story. And Jordan-Lake did an amazing job at interweaving this story with facts from the period, location, and history.
But, what I loved most about this one is all of the drama. I’m such a sucker for some good drama and these characters had it imbued in their essence. They were all so different yet they were also all woven together. This was just such a gorgeous book as a whole and the writing really takes you on a journey itself.
About the Author
Joy Jordan-Lake is the author of eight books, including A Tangled Mercy, a #1 Amazon bestseller and also an Editors’ Choice recipient from the Historical Novel Society; Blue Hole Back Home, which won the Christy Award for First Novel; and the children’s book A Crazy-Much Love. Raised in the foothills of the Appalachians, she spent several summers in and around Asheville, North Carolina, where the Biltmore Estate is located. She continues to love the Blue Ridge Mountains and drags friends and family there with her whenever possible. Jordan-Lake holds two master’s degrees and a PhD in English and has taught literature and writing at several universities. Now living outside Nashville, she and her husband have two daughters, a son, and a ferocious ten-pound rescue pup.