Happy Release!

Wishing Susan Elia MacNeal a (belated) Happy Release Day for the sixth book in her fantastic Maggie Hope series!  If you haven’t read them, I highly suggest that you do. If, like me, you’re a fan of Agent Carter from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, then Maggie will really win a spot in your heart. In a world where there were rules and regulations on how to act, Maggie Hope is breaking down those barriers. Of course, as Prime Minister Winston Churchill said often in the first book, ‘there’s a war on!’ The Second World War really helped change things for women; they joined the work force, they joined the service, they did their part as opposed to being compliant little women and sitting about at home raising the children. It’s a strange thing to think that a war is what really helped women
break free of society’s expectations.

I mean, in particular, the Princess Elizabeth served in the war as a mechanic and driver intsft9 the Women’s Auxiliary Territorial Service. It would have been hard and viewed as highly unpatriotic for women not to do their part since the boys were putting their lives on the line. Knowing what we know now, the British Royals did not hide, nor flinch, remaining in London during the bombings and even went out and about to view the wreckage and to walk amongst the people. Today, the Princess is now the longest reigning monarch in British history and she is also the last remaining head of state to have served in WWII. Yes, that picture is of the nearly 91 year old monarch!

Getting back to Maggie, she’s a spy and a code-breaker and she has had to work damn hard to be where she is. Bright, beautiful and determined, Maggie makes for a splendid lead and the usual cast of characters that are with her only add to the story, making it shine as usual. Mrs. MacNeal has quite the talent in how she can draw you into Maggie’s world and make you feel like you are right in the thick of it with her. It’s a disappointment when you’re drawn away and have to go do ‘adulting’, as my friends and I joke. I always endeavor to rush back as soon as I possibly can. agent-carter-season-3-pic

Whilst I don’t yet have a copy, I will post a review as soon as I have devoured this. Also, I totally envision Hayley Atwell as Maggie. I know it’s typecasting but Hayley has that perfect look, the attitude and we know she can play a badass, code breaking, no sh*t-taking secret agent. I took the liberty of editing her hair to red much like Maggie’s infamously stubborn tresses. If you were going to cast an actress to play Maggie, who would you pick?

I’ve included links below, so please go show love to this wonderful series of novels and enjoy them!

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51fesnje8dlSynopsis: Spy and code-breaker extraordinaire Maggie Hope returns to war-weary London, where she is thrust into the dangerous hunt for a monster, as the New York Times bestselling mystery series for fans of Jacqueline Winspear, Charles Todd, and Anne Perry continues.
 
England, 1942. The Nazis’ relentless Blitz may have paused, but London’s nightly blackouts continue. Now, under the cover of darkness, a madman is brutally killing and mutilating young women in eerie and exact re-creations of Jack the Ripper’s crimes. What’s more, he’s targeting women who are reporting for duty to be Winston Churchill’s spies and saboteurs abroad. The officers at MI-5 quickly realize they need the help of special agent Maggie Hope to find the killer dubbed “the Blackout Beast.” A trap is set. But once the murderer has his sights on Maggie, not even Buckingham Palace can protect the resourceful spy from her fate.

Praise for the Maggie Hope series
 
“You’ll be [Maggie Hope’s] loyal subject, ready to follow her wherever she goes.”O: The Oprah Magazine

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Again, congratulations! I can’t wait for book 7, The Paris Spy!
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Get A Copy!

  • Amazon
  • Books-A-Million
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  • About the author:517286  New York Times-bestselling author Susan Elia MacNeal is the author of the Maggie Hope Mystery series from Bantam/Random House. She is the winner of the Barry Award, and her books have been nominated for the Edgar, Macavity, and Dilys Awards.

    The first novel in the series is Mr. Churchill’s Secretary. It won the Barry Award and was nominated for the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award for Best First Novel and the Mystery Readers International’s Macavity Award for Best First Mystery Novel. It was also nominated for the Independent Mystery Booksellers Association’s 2013 Dilys Award for “the mystery title of the year that booksellers have most enjoyed hand-selling,” Mr. Churchill’s Secretary was also declared one of Suspense Magazine’s Best Debut of 2012, Deadly Pleasures’s Best Paperback Original of 2012, and chosen as one of Target’s “Emerging Authors” series.

    The sequel, Princess Elizabeth’s Spy, was a New York Times bestseller and chosen by Oprah.com as “Mystery of the Week” and one of “7 Compulsively Readable Mysteries (for the Crazy-Smart Reader),” as well as Tagret’s “Emerging Authors” series. It was nominated for the Macavity Award’s Sue Feder Historical Memorial Award.

    His Majesty’s Hope made the New York Times- and USA Today-bestseller lists and was chosen as one of Target’s Emerging Author Series.

    Books #4, The Prime Minister’s Secret Agent, will be published in spring of 2014.

    Susan graduated cum laude from Wellesley College, with departmental honors in English Literature and credits from cross-registered classes at MIT. She attended the Radcliffe Publishing Course at Harvard University.

    Her first job was as an intern at Random House for then-publisher Harold Evans, before moving her way up the editorial ladder at Viking/Penguin and McGraw-Hill, then becoming an associate editor at Dance Magazine.

    Her writing has been published in The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post, Fodor’s, Time Out New York, Time Out London, Publishers Weekly, Dance Magazine, and various publications of New York City Ballet. She’s also the author of two non-fiction books and a professional editor.

I’m Back!!

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What is up, everyone? 😀 The Quirky Lady is back and ready to review! It’s been a long while, I know. It’s going to take a lot of hard work to get back where I was, seeing as I have lost all of my followers. The unfortunate deletions did a number on me here and I lost my inspiration and inclination. Thus, I took a long break. I am hoping to get back to business though, I hope you’ll all join me once again. I am also opening up to more genres than historical fiction, so please feel free to reach out to me!  (Erotica is the same–not accepting.)

Since the last time I was here, I am now in a new decade! I observed my 30th birthday and as usual, I went to my favorite store…

 

And I just went on Wednesday too! My Uncle came up to visit and brought me to the store. SO thrilled. You can imagine who isn’t too thrilled. My poor bookshelf. I have no room on it as it is, so I’m being forced to be creative until I can get a new one or a bigger one. It’s kind of fun to experiment, however, to see how I can fit them all in. I almost view it as being a form of Tetris. (Which is my favorite game!)

What do you guys do when your bookshelf is getting too full? Do you buy another shelf? Donate some old ones to make room for new? Or do you look on Pintereste for some new interesting solutions. I’ve been eyeballing ‘invisible’ shelves but I’m not quite sure if that’d work in my room. I’m going to figure something out because earlier this year I donated a  lot of books to the local DAWN center, where domestic violence victims stay. I would have given them to Goodwill but I thought this was a far more pleasant thing. I also donated to my local library. 🙂

What have you guys been reading? I’m always up for new suggestions and I’d love to hear what you’re all reading. Please stay tuned as I get set up again, finding new subscribers, new friends, old friends and so forth. As I said, I’m also looking for new books to review. I’ve found myself enjoying YA fiction, but I do ponder, am I too old for it? Or is it silly to wonder such a thing if I’m enjoying what I’m reading? This is my struggle, ya’ll. Haha.

I’m going to keep it short, but stay tuned to this space!

Take care! xx

Clarissa Writes A Note!

I am so happy to say that I have my new glasses–both pairs! As such I will be catching up on everything that I owe. I owe several reviews and again, my deepest apologies. I am always striving to be ready to go, to be on time and deliver what I have promised. Most of you have been amazingly supportive during this time and from the bottom of my heart, I thank you.

While I was not seriously injured, I have been struggling to get my head on straight. I find my attention span to be worse than usual and I have been suffering from bouts of depression. It comes with being bipolar, ups and downs, but I have been down a lot lately. As such, I have withdrawn myself from several tour companies and am remaining with the three on the sidebar there. Firstly, to slow my pace and secondly, because they’ve worked with me.

I promise to post everything I owe as soon as possible and again, many, many thanks for your patience, good wishes and so forth.

Happy Holidays! ❤

Publication Date: January 22, 2014
Campanile Press
Formats: eBook, Hardcover, Audiobook
Genre: Historical Fiction/Mystery/Medieval

A tragic loss. A desperate journey. A mother seeks the truth.

In December of 1377, four children were burned to death in a house fire. Villagers traveled hundreds of miles across England to demand justice for their children’s deaths.

Sinful Folk is the story of this terrible mid-winter journey as seen by Mear, a former nun who has lived for a decade disguised as a mute man, raising her son quietly in this isolated village. For years, she has concealed herself and all her history. But on this journey, she will find the strength to redeem the promise of her past. Mear begins her journey in terror and heartache, and ends in triumph and transcendence.

The remarkable new novel by Ned Hayes, illustrated by New York Times bestselling author/illustrator Nikki McClure, Sinful Folk illuminates the medieval era with profound insight and compassion.

Buy the Book

Amazon (Kindle)
Amazon (Hardcover)
Audible.com
Barnes & Noble (Nook)
Barnes & Noble (Hardcover)
Books-a-Million
iBooks
IndieBound

Booknote Interview with Ned Hayes

About the Author03_Ned Hayes Credit Linda Marus 2012

Ned Hayes is the author of the Amazon best-selling historical novel SINFUL FOLK. He is also the author of Coeur d’Alene Waters, a noir mystery set in the Pacific Northwest. He is now at work on a new novel, Garden of Earthly Delights, also set in the Middle Ages.

Ned Hayes is a candidate for an MFA from the Rainier Writer’s Workshop, and holds graduate degrees in English and Theology from Western Washington University and Seattle University.

Born in China, he grew up bi-lingually, speaking both Mandarin and English. He now lives in Olympia, Washington with his wife and two children.

For more information please visit www.sinfulfolk.com and www.nednote.com. You can also find him on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Booklikes, YouTube, Google+, and Goodreads.


My Review: I read a lot of historical fiction, obviously. I have my favorite genres and time-periods, I have many favorite historical figures who I like seeing fictionalized. It adds a human element to them that one doesn’t always get from biographies or historical non-fiction. When I’m reading a ‘histfic’ book, I suppose you might be saying that I have a type. I wanted to branch away from that and when the opportunity pops up, I go for it. Insert ‘Sinful Folk’. It’s based in the 14th century (1377) and begins straight away with a fire that kills 5 of the town’s boys. (Why? How?) Angry, confused and generally unsure of what to do, the men (and Mear) decide to take the King’s road (which, they need a lord’s permission to do and don’t have). It’s a harsh road to travel down as it’s winter and none of them particularly trust one another. Their supplies are sparse as well. Each has a secret and bandits follow after them at each twist and turn.

The author has a tremendous gift in that his descriptions are very thought inspiring and his description of the mob-like mentality of the townspeople is actually quite terrifying. They are very quick to point their fingers at someone as being a witch or a Jew; most of who have converted to Christianity in order to stay alive. It seems a strange thing to be afraid of, but such a mentality is frightening when you think about it. If you offend one person…they could accuse you and you’d be killed.

Mear is a fantastic lead character and I love how we learned about her and her backstory. Seeing her agony at the loss of her son, my heart broke for her. I could imagine the wails she let out and truly, I was saddened. I enjoyed seeing the moments where she fluctuated between being masculine and feminine. I can’t imagine living amongst an unfamiliar town as a mute and posing as a man. I would like to see her again in another book. I would gladly read it as I will anything else this author puts out. Absolutely brilliant. I enjoyed the detail and the historical accuracy and use of language, which was fairly accurate for the time. It reminded me immensely of Chaucer.

 

I think you’ll greatly enjoy this!

My Rating: 4auqZQi

Tomorrow is the last day of the tour, please follow this link: Library Educated!

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Time to play catch up!

If you’re like me, you’ve got an e-reader (and bookshelf) with books you just haven’t gotten around to reading yet. It feels like your TBR pile is massive and unending, right? Well, as you can see…there’s an upcoming challenge to help you solve this problem. 


My Goals!


  • I’m going to aim to lessen my TBR list by 25. I have a lot of books there. 
  • I will visit other participants pages. 🙂 
  • I will write two replies a week.

This is my first COYER, I’m very excited to be taking part! There’s still time for you guys to sign up too and on December 20th, we begin the challenge. You want to join in? Click the pic! Everything you need to know is right there. 🙂 Let me know if you sign up! xxx

 

 

Spotlight: We'll Always Have Paris.

We'll always have Paris coverWe’ll Always Have Paris: A Mother/Daughter Memoir

Release date: April 8, 2014
at Sourcebooks

400 pages

ISBN: 978-1402288630

Website | Goodreads

 

SYNOPSIS

How her daughter and her passport taught Jennifer to live like there’s no tomorrow.

Jennifer Coburn has always been terrified of dying young. So she decides to save up and drop everything to travel with her daughter, Katie, on a whirlwind European adventure before it’s too late. Even though her husband can’t join them, even though she’s nervous about the journey, and even though she’s perfectly healthy, Jennifer is determined to jam her daughter’s mental photo album with memories—just in case.

From the cafés of Paris to the top of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, Jennifer and Katie take on Europe one city at a time, united by their desire to see the world and spend precious time together. In this heartwarming generational love story, Jennifer reveals how their adventures helped vanquish her fear of dying…for the sake of living. [provided by the author]

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WATCH THE TRAILER

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jennifer CoburnJennifer Coburn is a USA Today best selling author of six novels and contributor to four literary anthologies. Over the past two decades,
Coburn has received numerous awards from the Press Club and Society for Professional Journalists for articles that appeared in Mothering, Big Apple Baby, The Miami Herald, The San Diego Union-Tribune and dozens of national and regional publications. She has also written for Salon.com, Creators News Syndicate and The Huffington Post. Coburn lives in San Diego with her husband, William, and their daughter, Katie. We’ll Always Have Paris is her first memoir.

Visit her website.

Follow Jennifer Coburn on Twitter | Facebook

Buy the book | on Amazon | on Barnes & Noble

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CLICK ON THE BANNER
TO READ OTHER REVIEWS, GUEST-POST, EXCERPT, INTERVIEW

We'll always have Paris banner*

You can enter the giveaway here
or on the book blogs participating in this tour.
Be sure to follow each participant on Twitter,
they are listed in the entry form below
.

Entry-Form

Visit each blogger on the tour:
tweeting about the giveaway everyday of the Tour
will give you 5 extra entries each time!
[just follow the directions on the entry-form]

5 copies:
print for US residents only.

 

Please drop by December 1st for my review!!