Showing posts with label book blast. Show all posts
Showing posts with label book blast. Show all posts

Thursday, April 26, 2018

"The Staircase of Fire" by Ben Woodard

The Staircase of Fire
(A Shakertown Adventure Book 3)
by Ben Woodard

The Staircase of Fire, the third book in the Shakertown Adventure series by Ben Woodard, is due for release on 25 May but is currently available for pre-order at the special price of $2.99 (save $1.00). Also available: A Stairway to Danger (read my blog post) and Steps Into Darkness (read my blog post).

This book blast and giveaway is brought to you by BeachBoundBooks.

A quiet town in Kentucky explodes from a racial incident and fourteen-year-old Tom Wallace is in the thick of it. His past haunts him and now he’s witness to a horrific event leaving him devastated and afraid.
Tom and his cousin, Will, search for lost Shaker gold he believes can help him escape his town and memories. But leaving has consequences. He will lose his friends and his new love.
On a fiery staircase Tom finally realizes that he must face his inner demons and his terrifying nightmares. To do so he must take a stand that could change his life … or end it.
Author Ben Woodard relies on firsthand experience and family history to tell this moving story of personal tragedy and racial hatred set in the rolling countryside of Kentucky in 1923.

Chapter 1
Rose stood up.
"They could kill you," whispered Tom.
"Tom, sometimes a person has to stand for what they believe, and this is one of them. Go on home."
The County Clerk's door opened and Rose and James moved toward it. A crowd followed.
Tom's eyes pleaded with James. His friend ignored him.
"Rose," said Tom. "Don't do this. It's not that important. Your vote won't change anything."
"You don't understand," she said softly. "You can't understand. The Nineteenth Amendment says I have the right to vote. I intend to use it."
"But you know an amendment passed a couple of years ago won't change anything. Mercer County will never allow you to register, much less vote. Few Negroes ever have — especially women."
Rose moved closer to the door and eyes, dozens of eyes, followed her.
"She wants to register," an elderly man yelled.
Tom tensed as the crowd pressed toward them.
A stench of hate filled the stale, tobacco-laden air and constricted Tom's throat. Doors slammed, feet pounded on steps and curses echoed through the tight courthouse space.
The news had sped like a bullet through the small town and an angry crowd of white people filled the tiny courthouse room, spilling into the hallways and out the door.
Tom unconsciously eased away from his friends. He stopped himself. They needed to get out of here. He leaned closer to Rose, "We have to leave, now."
"Go home, Tom," James spat out the words.
Tom flinched. This wasn't the James he knew. The gentle and quiet farm hand Tom worked with on a daily basis.
James stared straight ahead, the muscles in his face like granite, his eyes hard. Showing only confidence and determination.
Rose and James edged toward the Clerk's office and the crowd surrounded and jammed against them.
Tom stood horrified. As he tried to push his way back to his two friends, a rawboned farmer in overalls stopped him.
"Are you with those two?" he asked.
"I'm trying to get them out."
"I seen you with them. You need to leave. We'll take care of them."
Another man spoke up, "I've seen him before. He knows those Negroes."
"Yeah," said the first. "Isn't he the one from Nicholasville who —"
Tom moved with the crowd into the Clerks office. He had to escape before they figured out who he was, and what he did.
Sweat formed on his upper lip as he glanced in every direction desperately trying to find a way out of the courthouse.
The two men were now in the door and continued to point at him as Rose reached the counter. She said above the din, "I want a voter registration form."
The room went quiet. Deathly quiet.
Then, a woman to Rose's left screamed, "Damn Negroes."
Beside Rose stood an older woman in a simple cotton dress with a bonnet covering her mousy-gray hair. Her face was contorted with rage. The rest of the crowd joined her in shrieking at the small, brown woman.
A glob of spit and tobacco juice smacked into the back of Rose's starched calico dress and the screaming woman yanked out Rose's yellow hair ribbon. James spread his arms around his mother and took the brunt of the slaps and pushes.
The women behind the counter stood confused.
The County Clerk came out of his office and held up his hands for quiet. He glared at Rose.
"What do you want?" he said.
"I want to register to vote."
The crowd growled again and the Clerk quieted them.
"We don't allow your kind to vote," he said.
Rose only smiled. "What kind?" she asked.
The two men came closer to Tom and others now pointed in his direction. They must have figured out who he was and they might turn on him next.
Tom remembered a stairway to the basement that led to a rear exit. He wormed his way toward it finding the stairway door closed, but unlocked.
Tom jerked it open.
His body tightened.
The sounds faded as memories and fears came charging back at the sight of wooden steps vanishing into the shadows.
Sweat stung his eyes and salted his lips. Tom's hands trembled. He wiped his face on a sleeve.
He couldn't go down. He wouldn't.
But the men still watched. Tom was trapped.
The bedlam of the room returned and he heard the Clerk scream at Rose and James telling them to get out.
He had to help them, but fear glued him in place.
Tom jerked as Sheriff Smith pushed his way into the room bellowing for the mob to get away from Rose. Two grim-faced deputies armed with shotguns flanked the lawman. They elbowed their way to Rose and James and the Sheriff whispered to Rose. She shook her head. He spoke to her a few more minutes and she finally nodded.
The three lawmen surrounded Tom's friends and led them through the crowd. Screams and curses followed.
Tom snuck through the throng and barreled down the front courthouse steps. The Sheriff and deputies escorted Rose and James to their wagon
Tom stared as their rig bounced down the dusty road toward Shakertown. His stomach rolled. He should have done something.
Anything. Except freeze in fear.
The reeling in his gut got worse and he staggered toward the clump of trees where he'd tied his horse.
Tom untied the reins and slipped into the saddle. He was sure, or at least tried to convince himself, that the Sheriff would protect Rose and James.
He spun the horse around and headed for Shakertown.
As he rode, the fear for Rose and his fear of the staircase still gripped him. Was every set of stairs he saw going to terrify him? Cause the memories to come crawling back?
And no matter where he was in Mercer County, someone might recognize him.
He released the reins, the horse knew the way home, and dropped his head on the animal's neck. Trying not to throw up. And then the sweats started, soaking his body.
The usual. Caused by a memory from that morning at Grandfather's house. Still there after four years.
He needed to get himself under control before he saw Will or Helen. His best friends. But he couldn't tell them, or anyone, what happened that Sunday morning. The memory hurt too much.
But he had to talk to them about Rose and James. His friends would understand.
And right now, Tom needed a friend.

Praise for the Book
The Staircase of Fire succeeds in offering dramatic action, mystery, social insights, and a story line that evolves from pure adventure to something deeper…” ~ D. Donovan, Senior Reviewer, Midwest Book Review
The Staircase of Fire is a riveting and intense tale ...” ~ The Children's Book Review
“Tom grows a lot in this book and I really enjoyed reading his journey. It seems like almost every white character is racist in some way (which is historically accurate) and it was refreshing to see Tom learn to break out of the narrow-minded thinking that he had and which surrounds him.” ~ Eustacia Tan
“An inspiring adventure where the reader discovers that strength of character, the belief in what is right, and facing your demons, is the only answer to true inner peace – Highly recommended.” ~ Susan Keefe

About the Author
Ben Woodard
Ben Woodard is a (mostly) retired amateur adventurer who has traveled across Tibet, climbed to 18,000 feet on Mt. Everest, and solo backpacked wilderness areas. Now his adventures come in the form of imagining stories, writing and telling them to kids and teens. He works with teachers, schools and literacy organizations spreading the word that books are vital - and fun.

Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.


Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Love in Bloom featuring Becky Monson

Speak Now
by Becky Monson

Speak Now by Becky Monson

Throughout the month of April, we have been featuring fabulous authors who write clean romance. Today we feature our last author, Becky Monson with Speak Now, yours for just $0.99 to 27 April.

This book blast and giveaway is brought to you by I Am A Reader.

If there’s one thing that Bridgette Reynolds has learned recently, it’s that the perfect shoes, the perfect hair, and the perfect dress do not make for the perfect proposal. In fact, sometimes they make for the not-so-perfect breakup.
Now, Bridgette must do everything in her power to win Adam back. She knows they are meant to be. And nothing will stand in her way - not her friends, not her grandmother, not even the fact that Adam is now engaged to Serene after a whirlwind romance.
Focused on her plan to win Adam back, Bridgette isn’t expecting Ian - her college best friend, her love, her big regret - to come back into her life. They sink back into their comfortable friendship as if no time has passed at all, making Bridgette start to question her feelings for Adam. But Ian has a few secrets of his own ... secrets that could shatter their friendship once and for all.
Bridgette has to make some major decisions - should she speak now? Or forever hold her peace?

After some channel surfing, and a vain attempt to catch up with The Young and the Restless (I couldn’t watch the Ian and Heather and Jessica drama—a bit too close to home), I decide to drag myself upstairs to Margie’s place where Gram and the girls are playing bridge. I need something to get my mind off everything. I doubt it will work, but it’s worth a try.
“Is Gram here?” I ask Margie when she answers the door.
“Sure is,” she says, opening the door wide. She ushers me in with a sweep of her hand.
I walk into Margie’s apartment, which is set up a lot like Gram’s. And just as old-fashioned as well. But, like Gram’s place, it has a homey feel to it. I will say that there are doilies. Lots of doilies.
“Look who’s here, ladies,” Margie says as we walk into the living room.
Gram and two other ladies, Evelyn and Barbara, all turn to see who it is. Once they see me they all start talking in unison. Saying hello and asking me question after question. I try to field each query, but they keep talking over each other.
“Well, Bridgette, what brings you here?” Gram asks, after the chatter has settled. She looks slightly concerned. She wasn’t expecting me. Likewise, I was not expecting to come up here, but here I am.
“I thought I would come and see what you ladies are doing.” I knew they were playing cards, so that was kind of a dumb comment. “And also to check up on Gram,” I say, pointing to the wine glass sitting to her left. That was not something I was expecting to find, but I’m glad I did.
She looks down at the glass and then back up at me, a sheepish just-been-caught look on her face.
“Oh, that’s mine,” Evelyn declares, and I roll my eyes. Evelyn isn’t even sitting next to Gram.
“Gram, you’ve got to be kidding. Does she drink every time she’s playing cards with you?” I ask, looking around the room.
“Not all the time,” Barbara pipes in. “Just . . . most of the time.”
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]

Praise for the Book
“Can I give this book a 10? It was so fantastic!” ~ Taking Time For Mommy
Speak Now grabbed me from the beginning! This is the perfect escape/beach read – light and fun, amusing with some tearful moments.” ~ Reviewing in Chaos
“Chick-Lit at its most enjoyable.” ~ Life With Katie
“By the end of the book I felt like Bridgette was a real life friend of mine and I was actually sad when the book ended.” ~ Divine Books Blog
“Ms. Monson creates a quintessential work of Chick Lit that left me wondering about all my ‘what-if's’.” ~ Author Cecilia Kennedy
“What an adorable story this is - full of likeable characters, interesting plot twists, and written with such a refreshingly funny sense of humor.” ~ Beth

About the Author
Becky Monson
By day, Becky Monson is a mother of three young children, and a wife. By night, she escapes with reading books and writing. In her debut novel, Becky uses humor and true-life experiences to bring her characters to life. She loves all things chick-lit (movies, books, etc), and wishes she had a British accent. She has recently given up Diet Coke for the fiftieth time and is hopeful time will last … but it probably won’t.

Also by the author:

Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.


Monday, April 23, 2018

Love in Bloom featuring Brooke St. James

Summer of ‘65
(Bishop Family Book 1)
by Brooke St. James

Summer of ‘65 (Bishop Family Book 1) by Brooke St. James

Throughout the month of April, we will be featuring 10 fabulous authors who write clean romance. Today we feature Brooke St. James with Summer of ‘65, the first book in the Bishop Family series, which will be FREE on 23 and 24 April.

This book blast and giveaway is brought to you by I Am A Reader.

Ivy Lewis went home to Memphis in the summer of 1965 unaware of the adventure that awaited her. She was content to go through the motions of her predictable routines back home while safeguarding a few little secrets about her life in Nashville. In her mind, the two worlds weren’t meant to intersect.
Then Michael Bishop entered the picture. He had just moved to Memphis from Detroit in hopes of expanding his motorcycle company. He appeared to be nothing more than an outlaw and a menace to the community. Any type of relationship between them was sure to be met with resistance from Ivy’s family and friends.
But Michael Bishop was too great of a temptation for Ivy.
The summer of 1965 would be one of first impressions, first dances, and forbidden love.

I glanced at Alice who gave me a wide-eyed smile. I heard the noise of shifting gravel, and I looked up to find that Michael was getting off of his motorcycle.
“Ivy Lewis,” he said, closing the distance between us.
“Michael Bishop,” I returned.
“You came back to look for a hairpin,” he said as more of a statement than a question.
The other waiters came closer to help me look, which caused their shadows to block the light. “I think it was over here,” Alice said, redirecting them. She had, thank goodness, caught on to the fact that I might want to say a couple of words to Michael and was helping me out.
“I really liked that song,” he said.
He must have known I wasn’t really there to look for a hairpin, because he didn’t even bother looking down.
“When can I hear you play again?”
[Want more? Click below to read a longer excerpt.]

Praise for the Book
“Just like her other books, you get everything a good book provides. It has a beautiful love story, nostalgia and a bit of mystery without repeating things over and over. Love it and will read it again I’m sure.” ~ Deb R
“I’m always anxious to see what Brooke writes and this book didn’t disappoint. Michael and Ivy experienced typical 1965 prejudices and problems but the fun and flirty dialogue is still there. Motorcycles and the preacher’s kid, misunderstood music and parental expectations … this story had it all. Can’t wait for the next generation!” ~ Barbara
“What an amazing new book by an incredible author! The story was sincere and well-paced with adorable dialogue, poignant moments and surprises along the way. I can’t get enough of these charming and realistic main characters and eagerly await the next book in this series.” ~ C. Marshall
“Wow! This was my first time reading this author. What a sweet romance and the beginning of a family of characters that I already love. I highly recommend this captivating story.” ~ T Cramer
“Love this series, couldn't put them down once I got started. Good wholesome family with a Christian romance tied to each one of the books in the series.” ~ LSanders

About the Author
Brooke St. James
Brooke St. James is an author of contemporary romance novels with Christian and inspirational themes and happy endings. She was born and raised in south Louisiana but has had the opportunity to travel and live throughout the U.S. An avid reader, writer, audio book addict, and fan of all things artistic, Brooke constantly has her hands in some creative activity. She’s currently back home in Louisiana enjoying life with her husband, children, and two lazy dogs.

Also by the author:

Enter the blast-wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon gift card or PayPal cash.