Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Blog Tour: Under His Spell by Luv Lubker

Join The Coffee Pot Book Club on tour with…

Under His Spell

The Rival Courts

by Luv Lubker

July 3rd - July 7th, 2023

Publication Date: May 30th, 2023
Publisher: Historium Press
Pages: 384
Genre: Historical Fiction

A beautiful love story between the Princess Royal Victoria and Fritz Wilhelm, Frederick III of Prussia

A lonely young man attends the first World’s Fair – the Great Exhibition of 1851 – and meets a family who changes his life forever.

Follow the young Prince Fritz – later Friedrich III – of Prussia and his wife, Queen Victoria’s eldest daughter, Vicky, (parents of Kaiser Wilhelm II) through their courtship and the joys and struggles of their first four years of marriage.

Fritz and Vicky dream of a peaceful united Germany, but Fritz’s uncle Karl has his own dreams of power…

Discover often hinted at but unrevealed secrets of the Prussian Royal court…

Audiobook coming soon:
Ella McNish, Jamie Collette, Max Mustache, Christian Stark, Ju Thomas, Philip Zielinzki, Michael Garamoni

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Luv Lubker

Luv Lubker has lived in the Victorian era half her life, making friends with the Bronte sisters and the extended family of Queen Victoria. Now she knows them quite as well as her own family.

Born in a cattle trough in the Appalachian mountains, Luv lives in Texas - when she comes to the modern world.

When she isn't living in the Victorian era, she enjoys being with her family; making and eating delicious raw food, riding her bike (which she only learned to ride at 25 though she ridden a unicycle since she was 7), and watching animals - the passion of her childhood.

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Tour Schedule

July 3rd

July 4th

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Have a sneak peek between the covers of Lucretia Grindle's fabulous novel — The Devil's Glove #HistoricalFiction #BlogTour @cathiedunn

The Devil’s Glove

Salem Book One

by Lucretia Grindle

Publication Date: May 1st, 2023
Publisher: Casa Croce Press
Pages: 360
Genre: Literary Historical Fiction

Northern New England, summer, 1688.

Salem started here.

A suspicious death. A rumor of war. Whispers of witchcraft.

Perched on the brink of disaster, Resolve Hammond and her mother, Deliverance, struggle to survive in their isolated coastal village. They’re known as healers taught by the local tribes - and suspected of witchcraft by the local villagers.

Their precarious existence becomes even more chaotic when summoned to tend to a poisoned woman. As they uncover a web of dark secrets, rumors of war engulf the village, forcing the Hammonds to choose between loyalty to their native friends or the increasingly terrified settler community.

As Resolve is plagued by strange dreams, she questions everything she thought she knew - about her family, her closest friend, and even herself. If the truth comes to light, the repercussions will be felt far beyond the confines of this small settlement.

Based on meticulous research and inspired by the true story of the fear and suspicion that led to the Salem Witchcraft Trials, THE DEVIL’ S GLOVE is a tale of betrayal, loyalty, and the power of secrets. Will Resolve be able to uncover the truth before the town tears itself apart, or will she become the next victim of the village’s dark and mysterious past?

**** Early Reviewers are Enchanted with The Devil's Glove! ****

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "From its opening lines this historical novel from Grindle (Villa Triste) grips with its rare blend of a powerfully evoked past, resonant characters, smart suspense, and prose touched with shivery poetry: 'Nothing will lead you to guess what sweet familiars we were, thirty years ago in Massachusetts, where they called me Witch,... Powered by telling historical detail, vivid visions, and an urgent sense of empathy for its characters, The Devil’s Glove will dazzle readers who appreciate immersive, lyric historical fiction open to possibilities."
– BookLife Reviews, Editor's Pick

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "This was a read I could not put down. Now I want more on Resolve’s life. I want to read more! I hope there is more books to come!"
– NetGalley Reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Lucretia Grindle's writing is a wonder. After reading only a few paragraphs, I knew The Devil's Glove would be a novel I loved. Grindle's descriptive narration is entrancing - stirring yet delicate, never heavy-handed. Her dialogue and characterization are skillful and immersive. Lucretia Grindle is truly a master storyteller."
– NetGalley Reviewer

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Readers will be mesmerized by 1688 scenarios of Native American and village life, as well as the increasing belief in witches which, ultimately, led to the witch trials in Salem."
– NetGalley Reviewer 

That night, I dream it is dawn and I am standing on the tip of the point. Suddenly, the blackness is split by a burst of flame as a mighty angel’s wing plummets into the sea. The doors of heaven have opened, and the sky flares they cast their traitor out. Then they snap shut, leaving behind nothing but a single spark that grows into the sun. 

It rises fast, and its heat is mighty. I can feel it through the rock with its thin skin of soil. The ocean churns, and sets itself to boiling. All at once, a wind whips across the water. Throwing waves this way and that, it rushes ashore, bending the already bent sea oaks, setting their spindly arms waving.

I would like to leave. To run as fast and as far as I can from here. But a sinew laced into my heart is pulled so tight that I cannot move as one by one the stunted trees trees turn towards me. Their leaves rise and fall. They should clatter, but I cannot hear them any more than I can hear the wind. I cannot taste salt on my lips, or feel its sting, or even look away. 

The trees come closer and closer until I see that their twigs are fingers, and that they are holding something. A lock of my mother’s hair. I snatch at it even as I realize its smell is foul. And then it is no longer her hair. Instead, the putrid stink rises from smudges of ragged red and dark night blue. The trees wave their gifts in front of my face until I know them for what they are - a hundred bouquets of poison flowers. 

I wake panting. A sound is echoing in my head, a long, low, howl that might have been a wolf, but was probably me. I am sweating and the bed linen is soaked. Throwing it off, I see at once that my mother’s side of the mattress is empty. Light fingers the sill of the open window. No breeze blows. The room is so airless, and so hot that for an awful moment I think that somehow, in our distress at what we discovered last night, we forgot to bank and dowse the fire and the kitchen is burning. But when I get downstairs, the hearth is cold. I stand for a moment, then take the poker and jab through the pile of ashes, searching for the remains of the little wooden bowl. 

There is nothing there. And it crosses my mind that this, too, was a fever dream. That it was Judah who slept beside me last night, the hollow of her body that I felt in the mattress, and that my mother stayed here in the kitchen or went out to sit under the arbor as she sometimes does. That Judah slipped away at first light without waking me because she has work to do at The Ordinary, and my mother is out searching for mallow and burdock. That we never went to the point yesterday, or buried what was left of the little cat, Percy, or dipped our fingers in a wooden bowl and tasted the milky poison that killed Avis Hobbs. I have all but convinced myself that this is the case, when I step outside and see the big flat stone I placed on poor Percy’s grave. Around it, fringes of earth are still black and damp against the summer grass. 

Back inside, I dress quickly and start towards the birch grove. Beyond the columns of silvered trunks, the tide is high. I stop on the top of the bank. Below me, the strip of fine sand is almost swallowed. Even the end of the launching plank is floating. It does not surprise me that the canoe is gone, and I am sure that if I look hard enough I will see echoes of my mother’s paddle, the dips like liquid foot prints. I stand quite still for a moment. Then I turn up the track. 

I think I must know already what I am going to find. Part of me wants to hurry, part of me wants to drag my feet, as if not getting there will somehow make all of this, whatever this is, less real. I consider turning back. But I am pulled along, remembering the tug of the sinew, and how, as I lay in the brambles, it stretched between me and Abigail Hobbs, the beat of our hearts traveling along it as if from the same drum. 

The thought makes me momentarily dizzy again. The turn of the world, my mother said. Fate. We are all instruments. But I do not want this turn of the world. Nor this fate. Whatever it is. Still, I walk on. Passing the bramble scree, I shinny into the underbrush that will give way to my hidden clearing. The by now almost familiar silence has come down again, stilling everything, swaddling the world. The lap and stroke of the sea has stopped. The air does not move. I am hardly surprised when, as I step through the last screen of trees, the morning is ripped by the furious scream of a jay.

My hidden clearing is hidden no more. Its thin covering of sea grass is trampled, as if someone has run to and fro and around and around in a fury. Branches are snapped. Twigs are broken. Leaves lay crushed. And all of my memory holes are filled with stones. 

The Devil’s Glove is available to read on #KindleUnlimited.

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Lucretia Grindle

Lucretia Grindle grew up and went to school and university in England and the United States. After a brief career in journalism, she worked for The United States Equestrian Team organizing ‘kids and ponies,’ and for the Canadian Equestrian Team. For ten years, she produced and owned Three Day Event horses that competed at The World Games, The European Games and the Atlanta Olympics. In 1997, she packed a five mule train across 250 miles of what is now Grasslands National Park on the Saskatchewan/Montana border tracing the history of her mother’s family who descend from both the Sitting Bull Sioux and the first officers of the Canadian Mounties.

Returning to graduate school as a ‘mature student’, Lucretia completed an MA in Biography and Non-Fiction at The University of East Anglia where her work, FIREFLIES, won the Lorna Sage Prize. Specializing in the 19th century Canadian West, the Plains Tribes, and American Indigenous and Women’s History, she is currently finishing her PhD dissertation at The University of Maine. 

Lucretia is the author of the psychological thrillers, THE NIGHTSPINNERS, shortlisted for the Steel Dagger Award, and THE FACES of ANGELS, one of BBC FrontRow’s six best books of the year, shortlisted for the Edgar Award. Her historical fiction includes, THE VILLA TRISTE, a novel of the Italian Partisans in World War II, a finalist for the Gold Dagger Award, and THE LOST DAUGHTER, a fictionalized account of the Aldo Moro kidnapping. She has been fortunate enough to be awarded fellowships at The Hedgebrook Foundation, The Hawthornden Foundation, The Hambidge Foundation, The American Academy in Paris, and to be the Writer in Residence at The Wallace Stegner Foundation. A television drama based on her research and journey across Grasslands is currently in development. THE DEVIL’S GLOVE and the concluding books of THE SALEM TRILOGY are drawn from her research at The University of Maine where Lucretia is grateful to have been a fellow at the Canadian American Foundation. 

She and her husband, David Lutyens, live in Shropshire.

Connect with Lucretia and Casa Croce Press:

Monday, May 29, 2023

Have a sneak peek between the covers of Catherine Meyrick's fabulous novel — Cold Blows the Wind #HistoricalFiction #BlogTour @cameyrick1 @cathiedunn


Cold Blows the Wind

A story of love and resilience

by Catherine Meyrick

Publication Date: April 28th, 2022
Publisher: Courante Publishing
Pages: 425
Genre: Historical Fiction / Biographical Fiction / Women’s Fiction / Australian Fiction

Hobart Town 1878 – a vibrant town drawing people from every corner of the earth where, with confidence and a flair for storytelling, a person can be whoever he or she wants. Almost.

Ellen Thompson is young, vivacious and unmarried, with a six-month-old baby. Despite her fierce attachment to her family, boisterous and unashamed of their convict origins, Ellen dreams of marriage and disappearing into the ranks of the respectable. Then she meets Harry Woods.

Harry, newly arrived in Hobart Town from Western Australia, has come to help his aging father, ‘the Old Man of the Mountain’ who for more than twenty years has guided climbers on Mount Wellington. Harry sees in Ellen a chance to remake his life.

But, in Hobart Town, the past is never far away, never truly forgotten. When the past collides with Ellen’s dreams, she is forced to confront everything in life a woman fears most.

Based on a period in the lives of the author’s great-great-grandparents, Sarah Ellen Thompson and Henry Watkins Woods, Cold Blows the Wind is not a romance but it is a story of love – a mother’s love for her children, a woman’s love for her family and, those most troublesome loves of all, for the men in her life. It is a story of the enduring strength of the human spirit.

‘Harry, meet Bill and George Thompson.’ His father turned back to the two men. ‘My son, Harry Woods the younger.’

The elder man held out his hand. ‘Pleased to meet you, Harry the younger.’ He waved his hand towards the group of women. ‘And these are my lady and my daughters.’

Harry raised his hat to Mrs Thompson, a tiny woman shorter even than Grannie, who had joined the men. The three younger girls gave Harry a passing glance, more interested in the antics of the baby they had with them, a sturdy child of around six months, who was trying to stand on the youngest and pull her fringe. The baby fell back in her lap and began to cry. The woman Harry supposed was the child’s mother held out her arms and the youngest girl passed the baby to her. She seemed to be aware of Harry’s gaze and glanced across at him. She was pleasant looking, her face made for smiling. His stomach gave an unexpected lurch. He shook his head to clear it—she must be George Thompson’s wife.

Bill Thompson passed a flask around, Mrs Thompson and Grannie both making sure they got their share. Harry took a swig. He was hungry and would have preferred a cup of tea.

The young woman smiled at him. ‘Should you be having that on an empty stomach, Mr Woods?’ She stood, the child on her hip, and picked up a tin. ‘Here, have a sandwich.’ The scent of roses washed over him. He closed his eyes a moment. The memory of Eliza’s gentle violet perfume faded.

‘Thank you.’ He took a sandwich and sat on the bench by the door. At a loss for words, he bit into the sandwich: cheese and pickle. It disappeared in three bites—it had been a long time since breakfast.

‘Go on, have another.’ Mischief in her grey-blue eyes, she grinned as if she were flirting with him.

He glanced across at George who winked back. Harry’s eyes widened, unsure what was happening.

The baby started to wail. ‘Poor Billy is teething.’ The woman stuck her finger in the child’s mouth, rubbing his gums.

‘Don’t know much about babies,’ Harry said.

‘You have none yourself, Mr Woods?’

There had been no such blessing. ‘No, Mrs Thompson.’

‘No need to be formal. I’m Sarah Ellen but family call me Ellen, you can too.’

He wasn’t being drawn into this game. ‘Your husband might have something to say about that.’ He glanced at George again.

‘My husband? Oh, you mean George?’ Her laughter pealed around the clearing. ‘He’s my brother. No Billy’s father ran a mile when he heard Billy was on the way. Afraid Will, my other brother, would give him a right thumping. Bastard!’ She said the word under her breath.

Harry blinked. He had never heard a decent woman speak like that before. His pulse bounced surprisingly.

‘So where are you from, Mr Woods?’

Even when she wasn’t smiling, there was amusement in her eyes. Her skin was clear and unblemished, her lips perfect.

He realised he was sitting dumb, staring at her. Her chin had the slightest dimple.

‘I’m from Perth but born in Fremantle on the other side of the Swan River.’ He stopped. Why was he giving her his life story? ‘If I’m to call you Ellen, you should call me Harry.’ He smiled—he couldn’t stop himself.

‘Oh, I will.’ Her eyelashes fluttered lightly. ‘Are Mr and Mrs Woods from Perth too?’

‘My father was there from the start of settlement. Mrs Woods is his second wife, he met her here.’

The baby began grizzling again. Ellen looked down, rocking him in her arms. ‘My little darling needs a sleep.’

He watched her walk away towards her sisters—the straightness of her back, the tilt of her head, the sway of her hips.

Harry got up and helped himself to a cup of Grannie’s stewed tea and one of the scones set out on a plate. He had finished when a small party arrived wanting to be taken to the pinnacle.

As he moved off with them, Ellen gave Harry a dazzling smile. He grinned back, aware of his own ridiculousness—he suspected he was near old enough to be her father.

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Catherine Meyrick

Catherine Meyrick is an Australian writer of romantic historical fiction. She lives in Melbourne but grew up in Ballarat, a large regional city steeped in history. Until recently she worked as a customer service librarian at her local library. She has a Master of Arts in history and is also an obsessive genealogist. 

When she is not writing, reading and researching, Catherine enjoys gardening, the cinema and music of all sorts from early music and classical to folk and country & western. And, not least, taking photos of the family cat to post on Instagram.

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Thursday, May 25, 2023

Blog Tour: The King's Champion by Nancy Northcott

Join The Coffee Pot Book Club on tour with…

The King’s Champion

Boar King’s Honor Trilogy, Book #3

by Nancy Northcott

June 26th - July 7th, 2023

Publication Date: May 1st, 2023
Publisher: Falstaff Books
Pages: 378
Genre: Historical Fantasy with romantic elements

The Boar King’s Honor Trilogy:

A wizard’s misplaced trust

A king wrongly blamed

A bloodline cursed until they clear the king’s name.

Book 3: The King’s Champion

Caught up in the desperate evacuation of the British Expeditionary Force from France in the summer of 1940, photojournalist Kate Shaw witnesses death and destruction that trigger disturbing visions. She doesn’t believe in magic and tries to pass them off as survivor guilt or an overactive imagination, but the increasingly intense visions force her to accept that she is not only magically Gifted but a seer.

In Dover, she meets her distant cousin Sebastian Mainwaring, Earl of Hawkstowe and an officer in the British Army. He’s also a seer and is desperate to recruit her rare Gift for the war effort. The fall of France leaves Britain standing alone as the full weight of Nazi military might threatens. Kate’s untrained Gift flares out of control, forcing her to accept Sebastian’s help in conquering it as her ethics compel her to use her ability for the cause that is right.

As this fledgling wizard comes into her own, her visions warn of an impending German invasion, Operation Sealion, which British intelligence confirms. At the same time, desire to help Sebastian, who’s doomed by a family curse arising from a centuries-old murder, leads Kate to a shadowy afterworld between life and death and the trapped, fading souls who are the roots of her family’s story. From the bloody battlefields of France to the salons of London, Kate and Sebastian race against time to free his family’s cursed souls and to stop an invasion that could doom the Allied cause. 

The King’s Champion concludes Nancy’s Northcott’s exciting Boar King’s Honor Trilogy.

The Boar King’s Honor Trilogy:

The Herald of Day
The Steel Rose
The King’s Champion

Buy Links

The trilogy is available to read on #KindleUnlimited.

The Herald of Day

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The Steel Rose

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The King’s Champion

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The Boar King's Honor Trilogy Links:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon AU

Amazon CA

Nancy Northcott

Nancy Northcott’s childhood ambition was to grow up and become Wonder Woman. Around fourth grade, she realized it was too late to acquire Amazon genes, but she still loved comic books, science fiction, fantasy, history, and romance.
Nancy earned her undergraduate degree in history and particularly enjoyed a summer spent studying Tudor and Stuart England at the University of Oxford. She has given presentations on the Wars of the Roses and Richard III to university classes studying Shakespeare’s play about that king. In addition, she has taught college courses on science fiction, fantasy, and society.   

The Boar King’s Honor historical fantasy trilogy combines Nancy’s love of history and magic with her interest in Richard III. She also writes traditional romantic suspense, romantic spy adventures, and two other speculative fiction series, the Light Mage Wars paranormal romances and, with Jeanne Adams, the Outcast Station space mystery series.

Social Media Links:

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Tour Schedule

June 26th

June 27th

June 28th

June 29th

June 30th