Sunday, 27 July 2014

Free Book Draw (August 2014): 'The Echoes of Love' by Hanna Fielding

This free monthly book draw is specifically for the followers of my blog! To enter my book draw each month, you just have to be a GFC Follower of this blog. To enter this free book draw just click on the Free Book Draw tab at the top of 'The Secret Writer' web page.

The only criteria for this draw is that you have to be a 'GFC Follower' of my blog. One extra entry can also be gained by each entrant by also leaving a comment to this post. Only one entry and comment from each GFC Follower will be allowed. 

 After the closing date for a draw (the last day of each month), the winning number for the free featured book will be chosen using the 'Rafflecopter' random draw feature. These monthly book draws are open to my 'GFC Followers' Internationally!







This month I have one copy of 'The Echoes of Love' by the author Hanna Fielding to give away in this draw! Midas PR has very kindly provided me with the copy of this amazing book for the draw. 

Recently 'The Echoes of Love'competed with titles by authors from over 33 different countries to win the Gold Medal in the 'Romance Category' at the 18th Independent Publisher Book Awards held in New York!

Book Synopsis
Set in Venice, The Echoes of Love is a beautiful, poignant story of lost love and betrayal, unleashed passion and learning to love again, whatever the price. Venetia Aston-Montague has escaped to Italy s most captivating city to work in her godmother s architectural practice, hoping to put a lost love behind her. Paolo Barone, a charismatic entrepreneur who bears the scars of a tragic past, is endeavouring to build a new life for himself. Venice on a misty carnival night brings these two people together. When Venetia finds herself assigned to Paolo s magnificent country home, love blossoms in the beautiful hills of Tuscany and the wild Sardinian Maquis. But if they are to be together, they must first confront their past and dark forces in the shadows determined to come between them. Daring to love again after so many years, can Venetia overcome her own demons? Or will Paolo's carefully guarded, devastating secret tear them apart forever?




Good Luck Everyone!

'Illusions of Fate' by Kiersten White


Release date: 9th October 2014
Published by: Harper Teen
ISBN No: 978 0062135896


Dive into a world of enchantment and romance in this lush fantasy, which Stephanie Perkins, international bestselling author of Anna and the French Kiss, called "an absolute delight—a magical, sparkling, dangerous world with witty repartee and a romance that will light your heart on fire." Fans of Libba Bray and Cassandra Clare will fall in love with this captivating stand-alone novel from Kiersten White, New York Times bestselling author of the Paranormalcy trilogy.

Jessamin has been an outcast since she moved from her island home of Melei to the dreary country of Albion. Everything changes when she meets the gorgeous, enigmatic Finn, who introduces her to the secret world of Albion's nobility, a world that has everything Jessamin doesn't—power, money, status . . . and magic. But Finn has secrets of his own, and the vicious Lord Downpike will do anything to possess them. Unless Jessamin, armed only with her wits, can stop him.



Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

Saturday, 26 July 2014

'Bloodlines: Silver Shadows' by Richelle Mead


Release date: 29th July 2014
Published by: Puffin
ISBN No: 978 0141350189


Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets - and human lives.
In The Fiery Heart, Sydney risked everything to follow her gut, walking a dangerous line to keep her feelings hidden from the Alchemists.

Now, in the aftermath of an event that ripped their world apart, Sydney and Adrian struggle to pick up the pieces and find their way back to each other. But first, they have to survive.
For Sydney, trapped and surrounded by adversaries, life becomes a daily struggle to hold on to her identity and the memories of those she loves. Meanwhile, Adrian clings to hope in the face of those who tell him Sydney is a lost cause, but the battle proves daunting as old demons and new temptations begin to seize hold of him...

Their worst fears now a chilling reality; Sydney and Adrian face their darkest hour.



Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'The Land Girls' by Annie Wilkinson


Release date: 25th September 2014
Published by: Simon and Schuster Ltd
ISBN No: 978 1471115394


Hull, 1943. Seventeen-year-old Muriel Dearlove has weathered the Blitz unscathed, earning her keep in Miss Chapman's grocery shop. But with her sweetheart Bill away fighting and and her friends conscripted into the WRENs and WAAF, life has become tedious. Then a friend returns from a stint in the Land Army, rosy cheeked and healthier than ever thanks to the outdoor work she has been doing on Northumberland's farms. She also comes with tales of dances with the troops stationed nearby and high jinks with her fellow Land Girls. Desperate for the chance to broaden her horizons, Muriel signs up. But getting back to the land is not all about making hay in the sunshine. The reality is long days of back-breaking work with little thanks from the hard-nosed warden Mrs Hubbard. Meanwhile the relationship between the Land Girls and the locals has reached crisis point. Then Muriel meets Ernst, a German prisoner of war, and has a choice to make. In fraternizing with the enemy she breaks the law, but to never see Ernst again would break her heart.



Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'Her Last Whisper' by Karen Robards


Release date: 26th August 2014
Published by: Ballantine Books 
ISBN No: 978 0804178266


Madness and murder invaded Dr. Charlotte Stone’s life when she was just a girl—and made her a woman determined to save others from the horror she survived. An expert in the psychology of serial killers, she’s faced down more than her share of human monsters. But Charlie can also communicate with the spirits of those who die violently, an extrasensory skill that has helped the FBI bring lethal predators to justice. Now, after narrowly escaping death a second time, Charlie’s ready to step away from the edge . . . before her luck runs out.
 
Too bad Charlie is too dedicated for her own good—and too devoted to federal agent Tony Bartoli to say no when he asks her to ride shotgun on yet another risky mission. Of course, she already has her hands full with Michael Garland: the handsome, roguish ghost with whom she’s hopelessly in love—a spirit who depends on Charlie to keep him from slipping forever into the dark side of the afterlife. But in the mortal world, beautiful single women are vanishing from Las Vegas hotels at night. All signs indicate that a psychopath is on the prowl in Sin City, and Bartoli’s FBI colleague Lena Kaminsky has reason to fear that her missing sister may be just the killer’s type.
 
In a town full of fast players and few rules, flushing out a smooth-talking stalker like the Cinderella Killer might be a loser’s game. But for Charlie, the only way to cage her quarry is to plunge back into the homicidal hell she vowed to leave behind—and may not leave alive.




Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'Son of No One' by Sherrilyn Kenyon


Release date: 2nd September 2014
Published by: Piatkus
ISBN No: 978 0349400679


It's not easy being life's own personal joke, but Josette Landry has made an unstable peace with the beast. Down on her luck, Josette takes a job with a local paranormal group as a photographer and camerawoman. Yeah, they're even crazier than she is. But when something truly evil is released into the world, they are forced to call in reinforcements.

From the moment Josette meets Cadegan, she knows something about him isn't quite right. Mysterious and armed with lethal sarcasm, he seems a lot older than his age.

Centuries ago, Cadegan was viciously betrayed into an immortal prison by the only person he'd ever trusted. Forced against his will to do good, he hates everything in life. All he wants is a way out. But for the damned there is only eternal suffering. And yet there is something about Josette that intrigues him. Something he can't seem to fight and the last time he felt this way about a woman, it cost him everything.

He knows he has to stay away from her, but the unleashed demon is hellbent on consuming her soul. If one more innocent is taken, he will be sent back to an unimaginable prison that makes his current hell look like paradise. But how can he keep her safe when his being with her is the greatest threat of all?



Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'Thin Air' by Ann Cleeves


Release date: 11th September 2014
Published by: Macmillan
ISBN No: 978 0230760196


A group of old university friends leave the bright lights of London and travel to Unst, Shetland's most northerly island, to celebrate the marriage of one of their friends to a Shetlander. But late on the night of the wedding party, one of them, Eleanor, disappears - apparently into thin air. It's mid-summer, a time of light nights and unexpected mists. The following day, Eleanor's friend Polly receives an email. It appears to be a suicide note, saying she'll never be found alive. And then Eleanor's body is discovered, lying in a small loch close to the cliff edge.

Detectives Jimmy Perez and Willow Reeves are dispatched to Unst to investigate. Before she went missing, Eleanor claimed to have seen the ghost of a local child who drowned in the 1920s. Her interest in the ghost had seemed unhealthy - obsessive, even - to her friends: an indication of a troubled mind. But Jimmy and Willow are convinced that there is more to Eleanor's death than they first thought.

Is there a secret that lies behind the myth? One so shocking that someone would kill - many years later - to protect?




Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'Joan of Arc' by Helen Castor


Release date: 2nd October 2014
Published by: Faber and Faber
ISBN No: 978 0571284627


Acclaimed historian Helen Castor brings us afresh a gripping life of Joan of Arc. Instead of the icon, she gives us a living, breathing young woman; a roaring girl fighting the English, and taking sides in a bloody civil war that was tearing fifteenth century France apart.

Here is a portrait of a 19-year-old peasant who hears voices from God; a teenager transformed into a warrior leading an army to victory, in an age that believed women should not fight. And it is also the story behind the myth we all know, a myth which began to take hold at her trial: that of the Maid of Orleans, the saviour of France, a young woman burned at the stake as a heretic, a woman who five hundred years later would be declared a saint.

Joan and her world are brought vividly to life in this refreshing new take on the medieval world. Helen Castor brings us to the heart of the action, to a woman and a country in turmoil, a world where no-one - not Joan herself, nor the people around her, princes, bishops, soldiers or peasants - knew what would happen next.



Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'The Woman Who Would Be King: Hatshepsut's Rise to Power in Ancient Egypt' by Kara Cooney


Release date: 14th October 2014
Published by: Crown Publishing Group
ISBN No: 978 0307956767


Hatshepsut—the daughter of a general who usurped Egypt's throne and a mother with ties to the previous dynasty—was born into a privileged position in the royal household, and she was expected to bear the sons who would legitimize the reign of her father’s family. Her failure to produce a male heir was ultimately the twist of fate that paved the way for her improbable rule as a cross-dressing king.  At just over twenty, Hatshepsut ascended to the rank of pharaoh in an elaborate coronation ceremony that set the tone for her spectacular reign as co-regent with Thutmose III, the infant king whose mother Hatshepsut out-maneuvered for a seat on the throne. Hatshepsut was a master strategist, cloaking her political power plays in the veil of piety and sexual reinvention. Just as women today face obstacles from a society that equates authority with masculinity, Hatshepsut shrewdly operated the levers of power to emerge as Egypt's second female pharaoh.


Hatshepsut successfully negotiated a path from the royal nursery to the very pinnacle of authority, and her reign saw one of Ancient Egypt’s most prolific building periods. Scholars have long speculated as to why her monuments were destroyed within a few decades of her death, all but erasing evidence of her unprecedented rule. Constructing a rich narrative history using the artifacts that remain, noted Egyptologist Kara Cooney offers a remarkable interpretation of how Hatshepsut rapidly but methodically consolidated power—and why she fell from public favor just as quickly. The Woman Who Would Be King traces the unconventional life of an almost-forgotten pharaoh and explores our complicated reactions to women in power.




Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'It Started With Paris' by Cathy Kelly


Release date: 9th October 2014
Published by: Orion
ISBN No: 978 1409153597


It all started with Paris. At the top of the Eiffel Tower, a young man proposes to his girlfriend, cheered on by delighted tourists. In that second, everything changes, not just for the happy couple, but for the family and friends awaiting their return in Bridgeport, Ireland...

Leila's been nursing a badly broken heart since her love-rat husband just upped and left her one morning, but she's determined to put on a brave face for the bride.

Vonnie, a widow and exceptional cake-maker, is just daring to let love back into her life, although someone seems determined to stop it.

And Grace, a divorced head teacher, finds the impending wedding of her son means that she's spending more time with her ex-husband. After all those years apart, is it possible she's made a mistake?

With her warmth and insight, Cathy Kelly weaves a delightful tale spinning out from a once-in-a-lifetime moment, drawing together a terrific cast of characters who feel like old friends.



Copyright: Amazon Synopsis

'Faces of the Dead' by Suzanne Weyn


Release date: 26th August 2014
Published by: Scholastic Press
ISBN No: 978 0545425315


When Marie-Therese, daughter of Marie Antoinette, slips into the streets of Paris at the height of the French Revolution, she finds a world much darker than what she's ever known. When Marie-Therese Charlotte of France learns of the powerful rebellion sweeping her country, the sheltered princess is determined to see the revolution for herself. Switching places with a chambermaid, the princess sneaks out of the safety of the royal palace and into the heart of a city in strife. Soon the princess is brushing shoulders with revolutionaries and activists. One boy in particular, Henri, befriends her and has her questioning the only life she's known. When the princess returns to the palace one night to find an angry mob storming its walls, she's forced into hiding in Paris. Henri brings her to the workshop of one Mademoiselle Grosholtz, whose wax figures seem to bring the famous back from the dead, and who looks at Marie-Therese as if she can see all of her secrets. There, the princess quickly discovers there's much more to the outside world - and to the mysterious woman's wax figures - than meets the eye.




Copyright: The Book Depository Synopsis

'Listen to the Moon' by Michael Morpurgo


Release date: 25th September 2014
Published by: Harper Collins Children's Books
ISBN No: 978 0007339631



May, 1915
Alfie and his fisherman father find a girl on an uninhabited island in the Scillies – injured, thirsty, lost… and with absolutely no memory of who she is, or how she came to be there. She can say only one word: Lucy.

Where has she come from? Is she a mermaid, the victim of a German U-boat, or even – as some islanders suggest – a German spy…?

Only one thing is for sure: she loves music and moonlight, and it is when she listens to the gramophone that the glimmers of the girl she once was begin to appear.

WW1 is raging, suspicion and fear are growing, and Alfie and Lucy are ever more under threat. But as we begin to see the story of Merry, a girl boarding a great ship for a perilous journey across the ocean, another melody enters the great symphony – and the music begins to resolve…



Copyright: Amazon Synopsis