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Most Beautiful Woman in Florence by Alyssa PalomboMost Beautiful Woman in Florence by Alyssa Palombo

Thanks to Staci Burt of  St. Martin’s Press, I am giving away one print copy of Most Beautiful Woman in Florence by Alyssa Palombo.

Description of Most Beautiful Woman in Florence by Alyssa Palombo

A girl as beautiful as Simonetta Cattaneo never wants for marriage proposals in 15th Century Italy, but she jumps at the chance to marry Marco Vespucci. Marco is young, handsome and well-educated. Not to mention he is one of the powerful Medici family’s favored circle.

Even before her marriage with Marco is set, Simonetta is swept up into Lorenzo and Giuliano de’ Medici’s glittering circle of politicians, poets, artists, and philosophers. The men of Florence—most notably the rakish Giuliano de’ Medici—become enthralled with her beauty. That she is educated and an ardent reader of poetry makes her more desirable and fashionable still. But it is her acquaintance with a young painter, Sandro Botticelli, which strikes her heart most. Botticelli immediately invites Simonetta, newly proclaimed the most beautiful woman in Florence, to pose for him. As Simonetta learns to navigate her marriage, her place in Florentine society, and the politics of beauty and desire, she and Botticelli develop a passionate intimacy, one that leads to her immortalization in his masterpiece, The Birth of Venus.

Alyssa Palombo’s The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence vividly captures the dangerous allure of the artist and muse bond with candor and unforgettable passion.

Praise for Most Beautiful Woman in Florence by Alyssa Palombo

“In the tradition of Tracy Chevalier’s Girl with a Pearl Earring, Palombo has married fine art with romantic historical fiction in this lush and sensual interpretation of Medici Florence, artist Sandro Botticelli, and the muse that inspired them all.” – Booklist

“Strikingly feminist…a compelling narrative that is difficult to put down.” – Publisher’s Weekly

“This captivating, beautifully written novel may be more fiction than fact, but readers will be entranced and will feel they are an integral part of the unfolding story. Palombo joins the ranks of Tracey Chevalier, Rosalind Laker and those who perfectly merge history and reality.” – Romantic Times

About Alyssa Palombo

Most Beautiful Woman in Florence by Alyssa Palombo

Credit: Elizabeth Snyder Photography, LLC

ALYSSA PALOMBO is also the author of The Violinist of Venice. She has published short fiction pieces in Black Lantern Magazine and The Great Lakes Review. She is a recent graduate of Canisius College with degrees in English and creative writing, respectively.  A passionate music lover, she is a classically trained musician as well as a big fan of heavy metal. The Violinist of Venice is her first novel. She lives in Buffalo, New York.

Website: https://alyssapalombo.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/alyssinwnderlnd

Giveaway of Most Beautiful Woman in Florence by Alyssa Palombo

This giveaway is open to Canada and the U.S. only and ends on May 13, 2017 midnight pacific time.  Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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Blue Hour by Vicki RighettiniBlue Hour by Vicki Righettini


Publisher: Mill City Press (Nov 17, 2015)
Category: Historical Fiction, Romance, Pioneer Woman, Strong Female Character, Western
Tour date Mar/Apr, 2017
ISBN: 978-1634138291
Available in Print & ebook, 560 pages

The Blue Hour

Description of Blue Hour by Vicki Righettini


IN THIS EPIC TALE of love, loss, and redemption, the year is 1861, a time when women are expected to be married by a certain age. At 26, spinster Emily Wainwright has no reason to believe her sheltered life will ever change—until the charming Samuel Todd unexpectedly crosses her path.

Samuel yearns to homestead and start a family in Oregon, but he first needs to find a wife. Blinded by Samuel’s good looks, and grasping at her final chance to have a husband and children, Emily accepts his marriage proposal. However, Samuel is not the man she thought he was, and her marriage becomes a cold, cruel prison, offering her no solace amidst the hardships of farm life.

When Samuel dies and a second chance at love and happiness arrives in the form of farmhand Cole Walker, Emily must overcome her bitter past—or risk losing Cole and the life she has always dreamed of having.  


My Thoughts Blue Hour by Vicki Righettini


It is 1861 and 26 year old spinster, Emily Wainwright knows that she has no chance of finding a man now.  When she was younger, she was engaged to the love of her life but he dis in a accident.  She is still heartbroken.  However, Samuel Todd just showed up at her doorstep and asked her to go on a carriage ride with her.  

Things move quickly between them and he gives her a proposition.  They can get married and cross the Oregon trail to get land and become homesteaders.  Emily reads about the Oregon trail and her adventurous spirit is awakened. She accepts.  

It takes months of preparation and learning a new way of living.  The journey tests everyone’s mental and physical endurance.  When the trip begins, Emily walks and Samuel drives the team of oxen, as is the custom.  It sounds like Emily gets the sort end of the stick but the hard surface of the bench that Samuel sits all day is painful.  Emily gets blisters but her feet toughen up over time. The two seen to be getting along fine but all of a sudden Samuel shows his true colors.

Once they arrive, they find the perfect spot and get to work.  However Samuel becomes more and more aggressive with Emily and also leaves for months at a time. Samuel then gets consumption and dies.  With the help of her neighbors, Emily keeps the homestead going. She also starts making money selling her herbal remedies.  However, her farmhand, Andrew, her neighbor’s son, decides to leave to fight for the Union in the Civil war.  Before he leaves he arranges for a new farmhand to take over, Cole Walker.

Will Emily find love and learn to trust again?

‘The Blue Hour’ is part adventure and part romance. Vicki Righetini captures the time and place in history with skill and poetic prose.  I have read other books that take place on the Orgon trail but none as detailed and exciting as this one.  I wish this was a series because I didn’t want this book to end.  I am sure the story and characters will stay with me for the rest of my life.  ‘The Blue Hour’ is a must read for historical fiction readers!

5/5

I received the ebook version for my honest review.

About Vicki RighettiniBlue Hour by Vicki Righettini


Vicki Righettini is an award-winning, nationally produced playwright, and her recently-published historical novel, The Blue Hour, was a badge winner and Pitch Perfect Pick at Underground Books. Originally from Los Angeles, Vicki lived in Oregon for over twenty years, where she developed an abiding love of the land and the Oregon way of life. Before turning to full-time writing, she worked for forty years as a singer/actress and performing arts instructor. Her blog, Between a Book and a Hard Place, focuses on the ups and downs of the creative process (http://www.vickirighettini.com). Vicki lives in San Diego with her software-developer, Jeopardy!-champion husband, and the world’s shyest cat.

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2h2UZGy
Twitter: https://twitter.com/VRighettini

Buy Blue Hour by Vicki Righettini


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Blue Hour by Vicki Righettini

My Last Lament by James William BrownMy Last Lament by James William Brown

Thanks Loren Jaggers of Berkley Publishing Group, I am giving away one print copy of My Last Lament by James William Brown.

Description of My Last Lament by James William Brown

A poignant and evocative novel of one Greek woman’s story of her own and her nation’s epic struggle in the aftermath of World War II.

Aliki is one of the last of her kind, a lamenter who mourns and celebrates the passing of life. She is part of an evolving Greece, one moving steadily away from its rural traditions. To capture the fading folk art of lamenting, an American researcher asks Aliki to record her laments, but in response, Aliki sings her own story…

It begins in a village in northeast Greece, where Aliki witnesses the occupying Nazi soldiers execute her father for stealing squash. Taken in by her friend Takis’s mother, Aliki is joined by a Jewish refugee and her son, Stelios. When the village is torched and its people massacred, Aliki, Takis and Stelios are able to escape just as the war is ending.

Fleeing across the chaotic landscape of a post-war Greece, the three become a makeshift family. They are bound by friendship and grief, but torn apart by betrayal, madness and heartbreak.

Through Aliki’s powerful voice, an unforgettable one that blends light and dark with wry humor, My Last Lament delivers a fitting eulogy to a way of life and provides a vivid portrait of a timeless Greek woman, whose story of love and loss is an eternal one.

Praise for My Last Lament by James William Brown

“This is an astonishing novel, an imaginative feat of epic proportions. I was gripped from the first line. These characters! This story! Here is war and joy and terror and love and death and humor all mixed up, just as in life. I loved MY LAST LAMENT so much I kept shoving it in people’s faces, saying, ‘This book! You have to read this book!’”—Anna Solomon, author of ‘Leaving Lucy Pear and The Little Bride’

“If you loved All the Light We Cannot See, you will devour this novel; a heart-rending World War II story you’ve never heard and won’t soon forget.”—Susan Meissner, author of ‘Secrets of a Charmed Life’ and ‘A Bridge Across the Ocean’

“A Greek epic in its own right, MY LAST LAMENT is the story of a nation trying to live up to its past while struggling to come to terms with its present, and of the indomitable people surviving that struggle. Aliki is a vivid and fully-realized heroine, both fragile and formidable, and her story is one that will keep readers quickly turning the pages even as they linger over Brown’s lovely language. MY LAST LAMENT is a book I will never forget.”—Alyssa Palombo, author of ‘The Violinist of Venice’ and ‘The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence’

About James William Brown

James William Brown, author of the critically acclaimed Blood Dance, is a former Wallace Stegner Fellow in Fiction at Stanford and has also been a writing fellow at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown.

The recipient of two fellowships from National Endowment for the Arts, he has also directed the editorial departments of textbook publishers in New York, Boston, and Athens, Greece.

Giveaway of My Last Lament by James William Brown

This giveaway is open to the U.S. only and ends on April 28, 2017 midnight pacific time.  Entries are accepted via Rafflecopter only.

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