Tuesday, 22 November 2011

'Book Evangelism' by Guest Author Grace Elliott and e-book giveaway!

Recently, I discovered a book that I can’t stop talking about.
I tell everyone who will listen, and a few who don’t want to. I told my boss, the senior partner, the nurses, my teenage sons, people at church, strangers at a dinner party and pretty much anyone who would stand still long enough to say hello to.

So what is this amazing book? (Read on to find out!)
I hadn’t expected to like this book. I only bought a copy because everyone on line was chatting about it and then found it on special offer for Kindle and downloaded it. It was August, I was on holiday and in a chilled out mood and so fancied a change from my usual genre. I started reading one evening…and stayed up way too late because I simply had to know what happened next and couldn’t put it down.

Ok, so I’ll wont drag the suspense out any longer - the book in question is 'The Hunger Games' by Suzanne Collins. It’s a YA book, but with very adult themes such as the nature of government and where does entertainment finish and cruelty begin, you could be mistaken for not realising. But the thing that had me hooked was the characters and how the human spirit triumphed over terrible odds…and I love it.

It must be twenty years since I last read a book that made me feel so evangelical in my enthusiasm for it, and that was “The Autobiography of Henry VIII” by Margaret George. This fascinating book opened up a new world for me that previously, thanks to the O level history course, I had thought dull and stuffy.  It was through reading Ms George’s work, and learning truth is sometimes stranger than fiction, that I discovered a latent passion for history. It was this love that eventually led me to start writing historical romance. I love the escapism of history and romance of the past and I hope this is reflected in my books. Whilst I’m a very long way from being a Suzanne Collins or Margaret George, I hope my books provide a page-turning escape from the pressures of real life.

What was the last book you read that you couldn’t stop telling people about?

Leave a comment for a chance to win an e- Book copy of “Eulogy’s Secret.” We have one copy to be won here at The Secret Writer. You do have to be a GFC follower of this site in order to be able to leave a comment here. This e-book draw will close at 23.59 hrs on Tuesday 29th November 2011. Good luck everyone!

To whet your appetite for the prize, in this excerpt we join Jack Huntley as he tries to overcome his obsession for Eulogy Foster:

But before he left, there was one last thing he must do and the ache in his chest intensified. After taking a deep breath Huntley turned to face the portrait, leaning against the tallboy. Even though he had prepared himself, it still robbed him of breath, his dark eyes grew darker and a small vein pulsed at his temple. He could stare at the painting for hours, trying to armor his emotions, but each time it was the same eyes that pierced his soul, and with no more weapon than a stare, made him her prisoner.

He, or rather Chaucer, had come across the picture by chance. A few weeks earlier, to his amazement, rumors circulated in artistic circles that Tristan Farrell was painting again. Out of idle curiosity Huntley had dispatched his man to Red Lyon Square to investigate, only to have Chaucer return bright eyed and burbling on about a stunning portrait of a brown-eyed woman. It amused Huntley to instruct Chaucer to buy the painting, for an anonymous client of course, as an investment in the resurgence of a once great talent. But the moment Huntley saw the piece he knew he could not bear to part with it.

So here he stood, like a priest before an altar. Goosebumps raised on his arms as he gazed at the pale-skinned beauty with softly parted lips and enormous brown eyes, warm and alluring, staring out of the canvas as if taken by surprise. The swirling background of chocolate browns served to heighten the woman’s natural beauty. The piece was unfinished and yet utter perfection. Only an artist of great foresight would stop when he had, capturing the moment when a great artist discovers his muse. Huntley’s instincts had been correct. The model was Eulogy Foster, and the painting as divine as the woman it depicted.

Of course Chaucer was right; it made sound business sense to sign Farrell up to The Gallery before news of his work reached the ton. If the gallery manager was perplexed by the owner’s sudden indecision, he knew better than to mention it. As if it was fate intervening, there soon appeared a hastily scribbled note from Farrell, offering The Gallery first refusal of his future work. Huntley laughed aloud as he read. Even when fighting infatuation, he wasn’t such a fool as to decline an opportunity to make money. 

Eulogy’s Secret - a story of greed prejudice and a stolen identity.

In the four weeks since her guardians’ death, Eulogy Foster has lost everything. Penniless and alone she seeks the help of her estranged brother, Lord Lucien Devlin. But Devlin throws Eulogy onto the streets and the mercy of a passing stranger, Jack Huntley. As Eulogy seeks the truth behind her birth, she is drawn into the world of art and artists, where her morals are challenged and all is deception.
Jack Huntley: bitter, cynical and betrayed in love. He believes women are devious, scheming, untrustworthy creatures - and when he rescues a naïve Miss from being raped, his life is about to change forever. As his attraction to Eulogy grows, caught in a deadlock with both denying their true feelings, events take a sinister turn as someone seeks to silence Eulogy….forever.



Amazon US

Amazon UK.


  1. The excerpt is certainly intriguing....
    Last book...probably GABRIEL'S INFERNO. Something about it. After that it would be THE POT THIEF mysteries that I recently discovered. There are so many great reads out there & such limited time!

  2. BTW, I loved Margaret George's book too! It was amazing. Have you ever read Coleen McCullough's First Man in Rome series? Particular favorite of mine. I'm partial to that historical period, all history really but especially then.

  3. What a beautiful cover. Your book sounds wonderful. I had to smile when I read your post, as I helped Margaret George promote Elizabeth I this year. I loved that book.

    As for a book I can't stop talking about, it's A Christmas Journey Home by Kathi Macias. She's also one of my clients. This book is a modern nativity story that tackles the tough issue of immigration.

    Thanks for the chance to win.


  4. Firstly, a big thank you to Calum for hosting me - it's much appreciated.
    Ivy - In theory I should love "The first man in Rome"but I totally failed to get into it. Perhaps I should give it a try...and thanks for the recommendations.
    Cheryl - wow! Fancy having contact with Ms George - I am in awe! If you havent read her earlier books you are in for a treat.
    Grace x

  5. I agree. I have raved about the Hunger Games series since the first book. The last series I loved so much was Scott Westerfield's Uglies series. Strong young protagonists who have their eyes opened about their worlds and do something to try to change things. I think I'm a sucker for books where the protagonist try (and succeed) changing the rules of the game.

  6. Sounds like a great book. Please include me in your giveaway.


Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.