Friday, April 28, 2017

#BlogTourHost #MMBBR THE SHADOW SISTER: Book Three by @lucindariley @AtriaBooks


“Riley’s engaging and mesmerizing story of self-discovery and love, while making the complex tale of the Seven Sisterssufficiently clear, can be perfectly read as a stand-alone… This book will appeal to readers of Edwardian novels and Jane Austen-style fiction. Fans of the series will undoubtedly be pleased with this latest installment in the ‘Seven Sisters’ saga.”
Library Journal (Starred Reviw)

The frame story structure serves this installment well—the past and present narratives are equally engaging... Another pleasant jaunt down a genealogical rabbit hole.”
Kirkus Reviews

“I’ve loved the Seven Sisters series from the start and this is my favourite so far. Riley’s trademark lavish detail, glamorous settings and wonderful characters are all present in this treat of a novel. The perfect curl-up-in-an-armchair read.”
– Daily Mail (UK)

The Shadow Sister really is Lucinda’s best yet. The scope of this series is breathtaking and each book is more captivating than thelast.”
– Iona Grey, author of Letters to the Lost

“Wonderful! Absolutely impossible to put down! The Seven Sisters books just keep getting better and better.”
– Tracy Rees, author of Amy Snow

“A deliciously twisting plot with clues cleverly paced along the way. I could hardly wait to solve the mystery of Star's origins. Thoroughly addictive storytelling with a moving, emotional heart.”
– Dinah Jefferies, author of The Tea Planter’s Wife

The Seven Sisters series is proving to be a remarkable reading phenomenon.”
– Lancashire Post (UK)

This is my first book by Riley and it was a delight.  It was very well plotted and I felt that I had a great reading experience even though I did not read the other books in the series.  Riley really was able to capture setting, characters and plot and blend them together beautifully.  I think this is a perfect read for a spring read and one that will make the rainy days fly by!  

Star D’Apli├Ęse is at a crossroads in her life after the sudden death of her beloved father—the elusive billionaire, affectionately called Pa Salt by his six daughters, all adopted from across the four corners of the world. He has left each of them a clue to her true heritage, and Star nervously decides to follow hers, which leads her to an antiquarian bookshop in London, and the start of a whole new world.

A hundred years earlier, headstrong and independent Flora MacNichol vows she will never marry. She is happy and secure in her home in England’s picturesque Lake District—just a stone’s throw away from the residence of her childhood idol, Beatrix Potter—when machinations lead her to London, and the home of one of Edwardian society’s most notorious society hostesses, Alice Keppel. Flora is torn between passionate love and her duty to her family, but finds herself a pawn in a larger game. That is, until a meeting with a mysterious gentleman unveils the answers that Flora has been searching for her whole life...

The Seven Sisters series has been optioned to be adapted for television by Raffaella de Laurentiis’s company Raffaella Productions. Daughter of legendary filmmaker Dino de Laurentiis, Raffaella has worked as a producer and studio executive in film and television for decades, including well-known projects like Conan the Barbarian and Conan the Destroyer starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, The Forbidden Kingdom starring Jackie Chan, Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, and Dragonheart and its sequels.

Lucinda Riley
Photo credit Boris Breuer
Lucinda Riley is the #1 internationally bestselling author of sixteen novels, including The Seven Sisters and The Storm Sister. Her books have sold more than eight million copies in thirty four languages. Lucinda lives with her husband and four children on theNorth Norfolk coast in England and West Cork, Ireland. Visit her online at and facebook

Twitter: @lucindariley


THE SHADOW SISTER: Book Three by Lucinda Riley
Atria Hardcover | ISBN: 9781476759944| On sale: April 18, 2017 | 512 pages | $26.00
eBook: Atria | ISBN: 9781476759951| On sale: April 18, 2017 | 512 pages | $13.99

Thursday, April 27, 2017

MMBBR #ReviewRoundup #STEM #TantanPublishing

Hands work for us in all sorts of ways—washing, picking things up, playing, pointing and much, much more. Explore the functions of your incredible hands as you use them to turn the pages of this book and learn about the many things they can do! Informational spreads are illustrated with vignettes both practical and lively, giving kids an opportunity for some serious hands-on fun.


Hands are amazing things and can do amazing things!  This book is interactive and educational and fun for kids of all ages.  We don't always think about the miraculous things that our hands do on a daily basis, but this book allows us to take a closer look at the grabbing, pressing, scratching, measuring, playing, creating and many other ways our hands allow us to engage with out environment!  This book will allow kids to really explore and have fun with their hands.  With text and drawing this book is sure to engage all readers.

When fifteen mice living in a warehouse receive a threatening letter from the Farmer’s cat, they gather together to decide how to protect themselves. The mice brainstorm for solutions and vote on different ideas to create a plan that will prevent the cat from attacking them. Through intricate, quirky illustrations, readers will learn how to sort items and create bar graphs to organize ideas. Activities and questions will engage readers as they measure quantities, create bar graphs and evaluate the information within this exciting story.


This book is such a cleaver way to teach math concepts.  I love how the story helps guide the reader through the problem while teaching brainstorming, creating bar graphs, measure quantities and learning to evaluate and sort!  The pictures are fun and zany and it is so fun watching the mice figure out how to work together and protect themselves.  The text boxes help the reader further their understanding of the concepts and decision making that happens in the story.  They also act as a guide to create dialogue with the reader as to their thoughts regarding how the story unfolds.  It is a great educational book with fun illustrations and a problem that is fun to follow along with.  A must for the classroom!!!

The Queen of Bread tries to teach her three daughters how to cook her famous dish. But the three princesses are busy with other things, and they don’t want to learn how to bake bread. When the Queen of Bread falls ill, the princesses don’t know what to do! Can they learn to bake bread to save the kingdom and heal their mother? Readers will learn the importance of measuring in this whimsical story. Activities and questions will engage readers as they measure quantities and evaluate the information within the story.


Kids don't always take the time to focus on what is considered  to be not so fun.  Many of these things are very important and necessary.  Doing things the easy way is not always the best or most efficient way to deal with things.  These princesses learn that it is important to measure and be mindful when baking the bread to save their mother.  The story is a great way to teach measuring as a math concept.  The text boxes help the reader further their understanding of the concepts in the story.  They also act as a guide to create dialogue with the reader as to their thoughts regarding how the story unfolds.  The questions and activities also add to the interactive and engaging book.  This is a great educational book with fun illustrations and a problem instantly engages.  A must for the classroom!!!

A young girl realizes how important electricity is in her life when she discovers how many electrical items she uses every day. Through vivid illustrations and easy-to-understand text, readers will learn how electricity travels from the power plant to the electric appliances in their homes. Readers will learn how to conserve electricity to prevent blackouts and save energy.


Electricity is all around you.  It is important to learn all the ways that electricity is used on a daily basis in order to make good decisions when it comes to conserving it.  With the lively illustrations and text that is large and relatively simple this book will be a great addition when teaching the concept of electricity and conservation at home or in school.

It’s the Zhongqiu Festival in Korea, and Shao Ming is given the responsibility of bringing her mother’s favorite wok to her uncle’s house for a feast that night. Along the way, Shao Ming stops to watch the festive dragon dance—and soon realizes that she has lost the wok! How will she find it again? Engaging, lively text introduces older readers to the wonderful and varied cuisines of China—including Szechuan, Shanghai, Guangdong, and Beijing—and includes a hands-on activity for making Shrimp Dim Sum.


Step right into Chinese culture and indulge in all the cuisine.  Shao Ming gets caught up in all the sights and sounds around her and loses his mother's wok on the way to her uncle's house.  You get to step inside all the majestic sites in China.  With the additional informational text boxes in the book you get to expand your understanding beyond that included in the story, which was both interesting and fun!  The illustrations are colorful and you can really get lost in their beauty.  I think new or beginning readers will be transported while looking at the pictures while the parent or teacher reads the beautiful story.  There is also a recipe for making Shrimp Dim Sum, which allows you to bring the story alive in your kitchen.

Juan lives in Mexico, where his family owns a taco restaurant. When Juan goes to the Cinco de Mayo festival, he meets a tourist family that speaks another language. Juan takes the tourists to his family’s restaurant and spends the day with them. Readers will learn about Mexican culture and cuisine as Juan shows the tourists the best attractions and offers them the tastiest food.  


Step right into Mexico's culture and indulge in all the cuisine.  This book is a great story that allows the reader to see how people, who don't speak the same language, can share and experience great attractions and great food together.   It is a beautiful story about food, culture and kindness with strangers who become friends.  With the additional informational text boxes in the book you get to expand your understanding beyond that included in the story, which was both interesting and fun!  Plus, the added text in the back was a delight!  The illustrations are colorful and you can really get lost in their beauty.  I think new or beginning readers will be transported while looking at the pictures while the parent or teacher reads the beautiful story.


Tuesday, April 25, 2017

#MMBBR #Showcase #Q&A The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence @AlyssInWnderlnd @StMartinsPress

The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence: A Story of Botticelli by [Palombo, Alyssa]

Publishers Weekly acclaims that The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence is “strikingly feminist…a compelling narrative that is difficult to putdown.” 

About the Book 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.

Q. What inspires your writing?
I draw inspiration from many sources – history, of course, being the main one; historical people and places and time periods that interest me. As an artist myself, I’m also fascinated by the artistic process in all mediums, and that has of course been a theme in my first two novels. I’m also greatly inspired by the wonderful women in my life, who always compel me to continue creating real, vibrant, and resilient women on the page, and to depict the inner life of women as accurately as I can, even when I’m writing across time periods. Lastly, music is always a great source of inspiration for me: it can help get my brain working and even occasionally inspire scenes and help me resolve plot points as I listen to and interpret lyrics in different ways.

Q. What is your favorite thing about being a writer?
Honestly, I most love writing stories! Writing is truly my favorite thing in the world to do, and I love being able to escape into another world, another time and place – even if the things going on there aren’t always particularly pleasant! It’s the closest I’ll ever come to being able to visit another era, or to live another life, if only briefly.

Q. What is the toughest part of being a writer?
Writing is also hard work, at some times more than others. Pushing through those moments when the words aren’t flowing and the work is difficult and you’re doubting yourself is probably the toughest part. 

Q. If you could not be writer, what would you do/be?
It’s tough to imagine, because if I wasn’t a writer I’m not sure who I’d be! But I think I would have focused on my love of music instead and tried seriously for a career as a performer.

Q. What would the story of your life be entitled?
“The Girl Who Was Crushed by Her Books” – because I have so many that that is how I will no doubt die someday.

Q. What is your favorite book of all time?
The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory – it’s the book that really inspired me to write historical fiction as a teenager. The era comes completely to life, and the characters are so real and vivid that I feel like I know them, like they’re old friends. And I love how (as she does in many of her books) she resurrected a little known heroine (in this case Mary Boleyn) who managed to survive the cutthroat Tudor court and make her own way.

Q. Which character from ANY book are you most like?
This is a tough one! Maybe Alessandra Cecchi from The Birth of Venus by Sarah Dunant. She is passionate about pursuing her dreams and doesn’t let anything stop her, and I like to think I have similar focus and determination. She also loves to learn and doesn’t want her world to slip from the Rena

Alyssa PalomboAbout the Author
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.

Connect with Alyssa Palombo

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Monday, April 24, 2017

#MMBBR #Review Slightly South of Simple @kristywharvey @GalleryBooks ‏@SimonSchuster

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Kristy Woodson Harvey

Kristy Woodson Harvey is the author of Dear Carolina (Berkley/Penguin Random House, 2015)Lies and Other Acts of Love (Berkley/Penguin Random House, 2016) and the Peachtree Bluff Series, beginning with Slightly South of Simple(Gallery/Simon & Schuster, 2017). Dear Carolina was long-listed for the Pat Conroy Southern Book Prize, has been optioned for film and has appeared on numerous “must-read” lists. Lies and Other Acts of Love was a Romantic Timestop pick, a Southern Booksellers Okra Pick and was chosen to be a part of the 2017 Trio display, an integration of story, art and song, which will spend the year traveling the country.
She blogs with her mom daily on Design Chic, the inaugural member of Traditional Home’s design blogger hall of fame, about how creating a beautiful home can be the catalyst for creating a beautiful life and loves connecting with readers at
Harvey is a Phi Beta Kappa, summa cum laude graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s school of journalism and holds a master’s in English from East Carolina University, with a concentration in multicultural and transnational literature. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications and websites, including Southern Living,Domino, Houzz and Our State. She has been seen featured in Readers’ DigestThe Huffington PostUSA Today’s Happy Every AfterNorth Carolina BookwatchPopSugarGlitter Guide and The Sits Girls. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and five-year-old son where she is working on her next novel.
Twitter:  @kristywharvey 
Facebook page:
From the next “major voice in Southern fiction” (New York Times

bestselling author Elin Hilderbrand) comes the first in an all-new series
chronicling the journeys of three sisters and their mother—and a secret
from their past that has the potential to tear them apart and reshape
their very definition of what it means to be a family.

Caroline Murphy swore she’d never set foot back in the small Southern town

of Peachtree Bluff; she was a New York girl born and bred and the worst
day of her life was when, in the wake of her father’s death, her mother
selfishly forced her to move—during her senior year of high school, no
less—back to that hick-infested rat trap where she'd spent her childhood
summers. But now that her marriage to a New York high society heir has
fallen apart in a very public, very embarrassing fashion, a pregnant
Caroline decides to escape the gossipmongers with her nine-year-old
daughter and head home to her mother, Ansley.

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Ansley has always put her three daughters first, especially when she found

out that her late husband, despite what he had always promised, left her
with next to nothing. Now the proud owner of a charming waterfront design
business and finally standing on her own two feet, Ansley welcomes
Caroline and her brood back with open arms. But when her second daughter
Sloane, whose military husband is overseas, and youngest daughter and
successful actress Emerson join the fray, Ansley begins to feel like the
piece of herself she had finally found might be slipping from her grasp.
Even more discomfiting, when someone from her past reappears in Ansley's
life, the secret she’s harbored from her daughters their entire lives
might finally be forced into the open.

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Exploring the powerful bonds between sisters and mothers and daughters,

this engaging novel is filled with Southern charm, emotional drama, and
plenty of heart.

Harvey keeps getting better with every book that she writes.  I have adored each and every one of her stories to date and Slightly South of Simple blew me away.  I am so excited that Slightly South of Simple is part of a new series.  There is something very comforting about the settings Harvey chooses and worlds that Harvey creates because she does so with heart.  I love the characters and found myself really wrapped up in the story because it was multi-layered.  There was depth of story and richness in dialogue that helped flesh out the characters and builds upon the mounting secrets and drama.  This book is about moms, daughters, sisters and families in various ways.  I just adored this book and I cannot wait to see where this new series takes us.

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