PARIS NEVER LEAVES YOU by Ellen Feldman – Spotlight & Giveaway


PARIS NEVER LEAVES YOU (StMartinGriffin) by Ellen Feldman is a story that’ll have you flipping pages which you won’t forget for a while.

Living through World War II working in a Paris bookstore with her young daughter, Vivi, and fighting for her life, Charlotte is no victim, she is a survivor. But can she survive the next chapter of her life?

Alternating between wartime Paris and 1950s New York publishing, Ellen Feldman’s Paris Never Leaves You is an extraordinary story of resilience, love, and impossible choices, exploring how survival never comes without a cost.

The war is over, but the past is never past.


Ellen Feldman, a 2009 Guggenheim fellow, is the author of Terrible VirtueThe UnwittingNext to LoveScottsboro (shortlisted for the Orange Prize), The Boy Who Loved Anne Frank (translated into nine languages), and Lucy. Her last novel, Terrible Virtue, was optioned by Black Bicycle for a feature film.

Ellen has lectured extensively around the country and in Germany and England, and enjoys talking to book groups in person, on the phone, or via the web.

She grew up in northern New Jersey and attended Bryn Mawr College, from which she holds a B.A. and an M.A. in modern history. After further graduate studies at Columbia University, she worked for a New York publishing house.

Ellen lives in New York City and East Hampton, New York, with her husband and a terrier named Charlie.

Thanks to St. Martin’s Griffin we have one copy to giveaway. Just tell us what you love about Paris. If you’ve been there, share a story about your trip. We’ll announce a winner soon. Good luck.

GIVEAWAY: USA only please.


BUZZ BOOKS, Great Reads Fall/Winter 2020

Last week, Publisher’s Lunch introduced some bloggers, reviewers and editors to their BUZZ BOOKS Fall/Winter 2020 catalog. We got some of the inside scoop on the books making the most buzz this fall and some facts about the authors.

SET MY HEART TO FIVE, Simon Stephenson, Hanover Square Press, Pub. date: September 1st

SET MY HEART TO FIVE by Simon Stephenson has been called one of those “just trust me books.” If you’re not into bots and sci-fi you have to give this novel a little wiggle room to get to the heart of the story and it’ll be worth it. It’s 2054: A human like bot named Jared’s emotional awakening leads him on an emotional quest for connection, belonging and possibly true love. But what makes him stand apart from humans is that he’s unable to have feelings. “So I tell the human being that they can think of me as a microwave with feet.” Jared has experiences that “bamboozle” him. SET MY HEART TO FIVE is a heartfelt story about what it is like to be human.

Author, Simon Stephenson is quick to share he was chosen as one of the 44 most eligible bachelors in Scotland. Given that it is a very small country and there were only a total of 45 bachelors, this was not a compliment but in fact a well-crafted insult.

MEMORIAL by Bryan Washington, Riverhead Books, Pub. date: October 6th.

Benson and Michael are two young guys who live in Houston. Michael is a Japanese/American chef and Benson is black care teacher.
They’ve been living together for a few years, but now question their relationship.
“The thing about a moving train, is that, sometimes, you can catch it. … If you fall, you’re dead. If you’re too slow, you’re dead. But if you get a running start, it’s not entirely gone.”
Michael’s father is sick in Japan so he travels to see him while his mother travels to Houston where she ends up being an unlikely roommate with Benson.
Both men will change in ways that make them stronger together, fracture everything they know.
MEMORIAL is a funny story about family in all its strange forms.

Author, Bryan Washington regularly writes for THE NEW YORKER. He’s written about an obsession with soondubu Jiagae, bread pudding and the comfort of queer baking.
WE KEEP THE DEAD CLOSE by Becky Cooper, Grand Central Publishing, Pub. date: Nov 10th.

WE KEEP THE DEAD CLOSE is a true crime narrative of the January 7, 1969 unsolved murder of Jane Britton at the prestigious institution Harvard. Author Cooper’s “haunted by the very things that made her love Harvard. It’s seduction, limitless also made it a very convincing villain.” The book questions whether Harvard covered up the murder or allowed the murderer stay on its faculty. Becky’s work and research on this book motivated investigators to take a look at this coldcase 50 years later.

Author, Becky Cooper told editor, David Remick she was leaving THE NEW YORKER to go on a dig in the middle of summer, he said, “Is that how much you hate me?”
BEFORE THE RUINS by Victoria Gosling, Henry Holt, Pub date: May 6, 2021

Four people on the verge of adulthood. One fateful night at an old manor. The search for a necklace stolen 50 years ago. Deception – betrayal. One of the four goes missing. Is the game bigger than the secrets?

Author, Victoria Gossling says in her early 20s, she was arrested in Tibet for Hitch-hiking in a forbidden area while doing her best Ernest Heminway impression.

THE PUSH, Ashley Audrain, Pamela Dorman Books, Pub. date: Jan 5, 2021

A tense psychological page turning drama making and breaking a family. A woman whose motherhood is nothing she expected and everything she feared.

“I don’t want this to happen to anyone,” she whispers to nobody. I was exhausted . You were standing two feet away drinking the water the nurse had bought for me, I couldn’t keep it down.”

“You don’t want what to happen?

“The baby?”

“You mean the birth?”

“No, I mean the baby.”

She tried very hard to be the woman she was expected to be. A good wife. A good mother. Everything seemed like it would be just fine.

Only it wasn’t.

WE RUN WITH THE TIDES, Vendala Vida, ECCO, Pub. date: Feb. 9, 2021

WE RUN WITH THE TIDES is a story of a place, the very wealthy area of Sea Cliff in San Francisco and a group of people on the brink of transformation.
“And most importantly because we are 13 and attend an all-girls school, we know where all the boys are.”
Pre-tech boom San Francisco finds its mirrors in the changing lives of teenage girls at the center of this story of lost innocense – the pain of too much freedom and the struggle to find ones authentic self.
The four of us Maria Fabiola, Faith , Julia and I own the streets of Sea Cliff, but it’s Maria Fabiola and I who know the beaches best.

Vendala is co-founder of BELIEVER, a literary and arts review published by McSweeney’s, and co-edited it for 15 years.

You have plenty of time to pre-order your copies of these books. Early sales help authors in their standings. So look up your favorite local independent book store and place an order. Happy reading!

#SetMyHeartonFive @SimonStephenson #HanoverSquarePress

#Memorial @BryanWashington #RiverheadBooks

#WeKeepTheDeadClose @Becky Cooper #GrandCentralPublishing

#BeforeTheRuins @VictoriaGosgling #HenryHolt

#ThePush @AshleyAudrain @PamelaDromanBooks

#WeRunTheTides @VendalaVideo #Ecco

#PublishersLunch #PublishersWeekly @MichaelCader

QUEEN of THE OWLS by Barbara Linn Probst – REVIEW & GIVEAWAY


“There’s something unexplored about woman that only a woman can explore.”

QUEEN of THE OWLS, page 146

This summer there’s a book that is quietly getting so much buzz, readers can’t ignore it. Barbara Linn Probst’s debut, QUEEN OF THE OWLS (SheWritesPress) is being heralded as a must read by to and Parade Magazine. QUEEN of THE OWLS challenges every woman to explore and find her authentic self.

Elizabeth is a professor studying the Hawaii paintings of Georgia O’Keeffe.  Her time on the Islands transforms O’Keeffe’s life through her body, not just her eyes or painting. Elizabeth’s examination of O’Keeffe’s life as a painter during that time takes a hold of her resulting in Elizabeth making some very un-Elizabeth choices. These actions have consequences including her family relationships and profession. In the end, Elizabeth comes out a stronger woman.

I was initially excited to read this novel, because  I love O’Keeffe’s paintings. I wasn’t aware of her Hawaii paintings and what they represented. But QUEEN of THE OWLS is so much more than a story about Georgia O’Keeffe’s paintings.  It had me questioning how I feel I’m seen as a woman in the world and even by my family. The book felt like a call to action. It dared me to be honest with myself and question what it means to be a woman. Georgia O’Keeffe wrote, “You get whatever accomplishment you’re willing to declare.” That’s strength.

I look forward to what Barbara writes next.

Barbara’s words:


I’ve embraced many sides of life. I’ve been a teacher, therapist, qualitative researcher, educational advocate, “serious amateur” pianist, and full-time mom. I’ve run a not-for-profit organization, mentored PhD students, counseled families, done webinars and radio interviews on how to nurture out-of-the-box children, and much more!

I’ve had many homes. I’ve lived in a cabin in the California redwoods, a firehouse, a converted sauna in the heart of Greenwich Village—and lots of places in-between. I now live on a historic dirt road in New York’s Hudson Valley.

I’ve looked and listened. I’ve traveled from Iceland to Israel, Scotland to Spain. I’ve spent time in Italy, Egypt, Costa Rica, Turkey, France, and along the backpacking trails of the U.S. and Canada.

I’ve spoken up. I’ve given talks to dozens of parent groups, professional organizations, and academic conferences all over the country. Here are some of my presentations.

Through all of it, I’ve never stopped writing.

Thanks to Barbara we have one copy to giveaway. Just tell us what you love about yourself. We’ll announce a winner soon. Good luck.

GIVEAWAY: USA please only

** BEACH READ by Emily Henry **

beach read

What could be more perfect than a beach read called BEACH READ (Penguin)? And just in time for beach season. The best part is it’s a delightful rom-com that readers will be quickly flipping through pages. Emily Henry’s novel focuses on an author with writer’s block and her best-selling frenemy.

“I did what any reasonable adult woman would do when confronted with her college rival turned next door neighbor. I dove behind the nearest bookshelf.”

BEACH READ is cute, sweet and will make you smile. Pop it into your beach bag and you’re ready to go.


Emily Henry studied creative writing at Hope College and the New York Center for Art and Media Studies. She is a full-time writer and proofreader. Her first book, The Love That Split the World, was published in 2016.

Pick up your copy of BEACH READ at your favorite local independent bookstore. Happy reading!

RULES FOR MOVING by Nancy Star – Spotlight & Giveaway


From bestselling author Nancy Star comes a deeply moving novel about the truths we hide from others and the lies we tell ourselves. RULES FOR MOVING (LakeUnionPress) is a quirky, mysterious and transformative novel.

To the outside world, beloved advice columnist Lane Meckler has all the answers. What no one knows is that she also has a secret: her life is a disaster, and it’s just gotten worse. Her husband, whom she was planning to leave, has died in a freak accident. Her six-year-old son, Henry, has stopped speaking to everyone but her. Lane’s solution? Move. Growing up, that was what her family did best.

But when she and Henry pack up and leave, Lane realizes that their next home is no better, and she finally begins to ask herself some hard questions. What made her family move so often? Why has she always felt like an outsider? How can she get Henry to speak?

On a journey to help her son find his voice, Lane discovers that somewhere along the way she lost her own. If she wants to help him, she’ll need to find the courage to face the past and to speak the truth she’s been hiding from for years.

I really enjoyed RULES FOR MOVING. I found the characters well-developed and fun! The story line has an important message for everyone reading the book. “Wherever you go, there you are.”


Born and raised in Queens, New York, Star produced her first book-length story while attending Francis Lewis High School. The story was written on a roll of paper towels and given as a gift to her best friend. When her friend confessed the treasured scroll had inexplicably disappeared, Star vowed all future books would be published in a more enduring form.

Star was always writing something, but her first career was in the movie business. An executive at the Samuel Goldwyn Company, Star was charged with scouting New York and London for both original material, books, plays and stories to be developed into films and independent films ready for release. Prior to her stint at Goldwyn, she was Story Editor at The Ladd Company where she worked with long-admired playwrights and novelists and on films that include some of her all-time favorites: Blade Runner, Chariots of Fire, Body Heat and the Right Stuff.

Nancy Star’s work has been translated into four languages, optioned for television, and chosen as Literary Guild and Mystery guild featured selections. Her writing has appeared in the Washington Post, New York Times, Publishers Weekly, Family Circle and Diversion Magazine. Star is a member of the Author’s Guild, Women’s Media Group and Mystery Writers of America. As a film executive she was a member of The Groucho Club in London and would not mind one bit if they decided to invite her back!

Thanks to Kathleen Carter Communications we have one copy to giveaway. Just tell us if you’ve had to move around a lot and what it’s like. We’ll announce a winner soon. Good luck.

GIVEAWAY: USA only please

THE LAUNDRESS by Barbara Sapienza – Spotlight & Giveaway


In Barbara Sapienza’s new novel, THE LAUNDRESS (SheWritesPress), twenty-six-year-old Lavinia Lavinia is burdened by her unknown heritage—but her uncle Sal, who raised her in San Francisco, has always kept silent, refusing to reveal the devastating secret of her origin. And now, following the death of his wife, he’s left for Italy.

In the wake of her uncle’s departure, Lavinia has quit school. Now she works as a personal laundress to a diverse cast of San Francisco residents—people with stories as complicated as her own. As time progresses, through the sacred ritual of washing clothes—and with the help of a friend and her nurturing, flamenco dancing mother—Lavinia begins to recover memories of her past. Gradually, her gifts of receptivity multiply, and she communes with nature, finding messages from birds and the leaves of her garden’s fig tree. And when she recovers Raggedy, a beloved doll that accompanied her from Naples when she was four years old, she experiences a tangible connection to her own mother.

Even as Lavinia makes these discoveries, she is busy building new relationships—discovering healing dance with her lover, a barista in a North Beach coffee shop; learning to understand Time and forgiveness with an elderly client; and even getting to know her father, a man who has never been a part of her life. Poetic and poignant, The Laundress is a coming-of-age story for anyone who’s ever sought to understand where they came from in order to figure out who they’re meant to become.


Barbara Sapienza is a retired clinical psychologist who practiced in San Francisco. At sixty-six she enrolled in the graduate program in Creative Writing at SFSU. She writes, paints, dances, practices taiji and meditation, and volunteers in a school program in Marin City. She lives in Sausalito with her husband and enjoys her granddaughters, Milla and Isa.


Thanks to SheWritesPress and GetRed PR we have one copy to giveaway. Tell us what book you can’t wait to read this summer. We’ll announce a winner soon. Good luck.

GIVEAWAY: USA only please

#TheLaundress #SheWritesPress

THE LIAR and OTHER STORIES by Alison Ragsdale – Spotlight & e-Giveaway


In Alison Ragdale’s collection of short stories, THE LIAR & OTHER STORIES, an accomplished liar finally faces the truth about herself. A self-conscious lawyer who must quell her secret crush on her best friend’s fiancé. A stray dog that heals the hurt of his rescuers. A food critic who makes a startling discovery while reviewing a stylish bistro. A young widow who finds hope in the discarded wedding veil that floats out of a truck, and lands at her feet.

With these, and other tales of love, regret and hope, The Liar and other stories will make you laugh, cry, and marvel at the strength of the human spirit.



A proud Scots lass, I was born in Edinburgh and the connection to my homeland has never left me. Consequently, my novels are set in the stunning Highlands and islands of Scotland.

I’ve had what could be termed a varied career. I trained as a professional ballet dancer and worked in the field of dance for many years. When an injury called a halt to that, I eventually became a marketing executive. After two decades in that world, I started my own health-services business but it took too great a toll on me so my husband encouraged me to focus on writing, as I’d always dreamed of doing.

I took the leap of faith in 2014 and dived into my first full-length novel TUESDAY’S SOCKS. It was a scary feeling, putting my ‘baby’ out there, but I was delighted when readers fell for my sweet protagonist, Jeffrey Mere. TUESDAY’S SOCKS soon became an Amazon bestseller. My second novel, THE FATHER-DAUGHTER CLUB, came out at the end of 2014. I was thrilled when it too made it to an Amazon best seller list, receiving a wonderful review from Kirkus Reviews, and going on to win the 2016, IPPY Bronze medal for Best Regional Fiction – Europe.

My third Amazon best selling novel, FINDING HEATHER, was released in October 2016 and my fourth, A LIFE UNEXPECTED, won a 2018 IPPY Bronze medal in the Popular Fiction category, then become an Amazon best seller too.

THE ART OF REMEMBERING, released in July, 2019 debuted as a best seller. It has since been included in BookBub’s Best Book Club Book list for July and August, 2019, was honored as a finalist in the 2019 American Fiction Awards – Literary category, and was nominated for the Goodreads Readers Choice Award, 2019.

While I didn’t set out to be an author, it has always been a dream of mine and now, thanks to my incredibly supportive husband and the forces of the universe, that has become a reality.

I hope you enjoy reading my books as much as I loved writing them.

Thanks to Kate Rock Book Tours we have one copy to giveaway. Just tell us what book you’re reading now and why you are enjoying it … or not. We’ll announce a winner soon. Good luck.

GIVEAWAY: USA only please.