Book Spotlight | Featuring notes by Jorie and an extract from “A Mother’s Secret” by Minna Howard

Posted Friday, 13 March, 2020 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Books in the Spotlight banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I am wicked delighted to be featuring a lovely #newtomeauthor today – as I recently had the chance to select quite a few Head of Zeus and Aria Fiction novelists to be spotlighting throughout the Spring months this year – wherein I was rather delighted finding so many keenly interesting stories to start seeking out to read! These are stories which dance between Romance & Women’s Fiction – from Contemporary to Historical settings. Being an avid reader of these genres I couldn’t miss the chance to bring the JOY of discovering these lovely authors to my readers of Jorie Loves A Story!

It is my intention to start requesting these novels via my local library if they are not available in audio formats via Scribd. At the moment my library is experiencing an unprecedented sabbatical on requests which put me in a bit of a pickle as I’m an active patron whose constantly requesting purchases every month – which is why I’m simply saving my queue lists and will turn them in once the services resume. For now at least – I can champion the discoveries and the joy of finding the stories whilst hosting the blog tours!

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Why I wanted to host a spotlight & extract for “A Mother’s Secret”:

As the founder and host of @SatBookChat – I am constantly seeking to find new stories featuring strong women in the centre of Romance & Women’s Fiction. I read an equal amount of Contemporary and Historical stories within these genres of interest whilst encompassing all the lovely sub-niches of their literary styles as well. This New Year 2020 I am also seeking out Feminist Lit which celebrates the kind of stories I am enjoying to discover as well. All of which I try to champion and showcase in the chats I host on Saturdays – wherein writers, readers, book reviewers, book bloggers and the rest of the bookish community on Twitter get to engage with one another. Thereby as a regular reader of these stories I was delighted to find a #newtomeauthor to start seeking out to read!

I love finding unconventional family plots in Contemporary Women’s Fiction – where you alight in a person’s life whose believed their life to have had this set trajectory and path to follow and then *something!* gives them a bit of a right turn and *everything!* just switches out from under their feet from that moment forward. When I first read the plot of “A Mother’s Secret” this felt like the kind of novel where you are going to be at odds with yourself about whom you’re going to rally behind and where your own opinions will settle as you read through the storyline.

Stories about identity and parental origins are some of the trickier ones to read and I would imagine to write because you want to see a believable case for the plot to organically fall together in the narrative. Whilst at the same time – there is drama there – threading behind the revelations of the unknowns and a pot boiler of emotions, too. How will the ‘other side’ of the reveal react to the announcement and what will that mean for the everyday life and world of all the characters!?

This is what was going through my mind as I contemplated the story and it is why I am truly itching to read “A Mother’s Secret” to see how Ms Howard pulled the threads of her story together and had us volleying between two different perspectives: Verity’s and Saskia’s!

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Did I grab your eye and attention?

Sound like the kind of bookish read you’ve been needing?

Be sure to brew your favourite cuppa and enjoy this extract from the novel.

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Book Spotlight | Featuring notes by Jorie and an extract from “A Mother’s Secret” by Minna HowardA Mother's Secret
by Minna Howard

Verity seems to have it all. A beautiful home, two grown-up sons and a husband who has always been her rock. But one day, the doorbell rings. And it changes Verity's life forever.

Saskia has nowhere else to go. Before she died, her mother left her with her father's name and nothing else. The only way for Saskia to take care of herself – and her unborn baby – is to find the father she never knew. And the family that didn't know she existed.

This family secret means the end of everything they've ever known. But could it also be the chance for a new beginning?

Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Women's Fiction

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing


Published by Aria Fiction

on 5th March, 2020

Published By: Aria Fiction (@Aria_Fiction)
a Digital First imprint of Head of Zeus (@HoZ_Books)

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Available Formats: This is a Digital First Release

Converse via: #AMothersSecret, #Contemporary #WomensFictionFun Stuff for Your Blog via

Enjoy this Extract from “A Mother’s Secret”

Before Verity could absorb this information, her mobile went, the jaunty tone of the ring cutting into the room, making both women jump. She glanced at it; it was Jen, one of her oldest friends. They’d met, clinging to their mothers’ jean-clad legs, on the opening day of nursery school.

‘Excuse me a moment.’ Verity got up and left the room before she answered it. Jen didn’t give her a moment to speak.

‘I’m nearby, just been to the dentist, and thought I’d pop in if you’re home. Can’t feel my mouth but could do with a coffee.’

‘Oh, yes, do… I…’

‘What’s happened? Oh, the boys have gone, haven’t they, and so has Nathan and you’re alone.’ Jen sounded sympathetic.

‘No… well, yes, but there’s someone here,’ she replied while making for the kitchen, not wanting Saskia to overhear her. ‘She says she’s Nathan’s daughter,’ she whispered. ‘She even calls herself Walton.’

‘What? She can’t be! He… well… I know he wanted a daughter after Marius but when Toby turned up, he was fine about it,’ Jen exclaimed. ‘I can’t believe any nonsense like that from Nathan. I’m running now, will be with you in five. It must be a scam, take care.’ The mobile went dead, and Verity went back into the living room to warn Saskia that her friend was arriving.

‘That’s Jen, a friend of mine. She’s just been to the dentist on the King’s Road and wanted to drop in.’ Verity now felt awkward and almost sorry for this young woman, knowing how forthright Jen could be. She wished she’d said that Saskia had just lost her mother and she needed sympathetic handling.

The bell went long and shrill making both women jump. ‘That’s her now, she always thinks I’m deaf or something,’ Verity said apologetically.

Saskia seemed to be struggling to hold herself together and Verity felt a pang of pity for her, but before she could offer any words of comfort the bell went again. Verity ran to open the door.

Jen marched in, her mouth slightly skewed from her stint at the dentist. She squeezed her arm before making for the living room. ‘Right, let’s sort this out,’ she said bossily.

Verity pulled her back, saying quietly, ‘Look it’s not what you think. It happened before I even met him.’

Jen, used to her own husband’s farfetched stories after he’d been spotted sneaking around with various young women, strode past her into the living room like a battleship about to take on the enemy fleet. She was determined to show up this girl and her story in an instant. She stopped suddenly and Verity almost bumped into her.

‘God, you do have a look of him… but why have you turned up now? What do you want from him?’ Jen flung at her and Saskia burst into tears.

‘It’s all right, Saskia, Jen doesn’t know the whole story. Look, let’s have a coffee and take this slowly,’ Verity said, still feeling shocked herself. She held on to Jen’s arm as if afraid she might become violent.

‘Okay, sorry.’ Jen rubbed her mouth. ‘I’ve been to the dentist and I’m all frozen and cross. I’d love a coffee to thaw me out. But we must get to the bottom of this.’ Then she noticed that Saskia was pregnant.

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I personally *loved!* how Jen wants to rush into Verity’s hour of need and just fix this situation to rights and get on with life! Of course life doesn’t quite work that way – there are brewing complications even when there are moments of calm – where you are not expecting the unknown child of your husband to seek out the father she never knew she had and start a conversation with his wife who was completely in the dark about her birth! Mind, that brought to question – did the father know? Was this a product of a fling long off and removed from mind or a one night stand he didn’t even remember having? You had to question – what was the father’s reaction going to be and how would he account for his actions!?

Then, on the flipside – as Jen settles her wrath which must’ve been at a boiling bridge of explosion – you start to see the fuller truth of the matter – Saskia is withchild and in of itself is a complication which might explain exactly why she was seeking out her father – not just being on the fringe of mumhood but to find out the medical bits she might need to know ahead of her own child’s arrival. Medical history is something all children should have throughout their lifetime but when a child is expected it is even more important to hedge complications and/or other issues which might arise in the long term.

One thing is for certain – its not the kind of story you can put down and return back to the next day! I suspect I’ll have to read this in one sitting and hope in the end – everyone can live with the revelations and the emotional upheavals because after all at the heart of it – is a lost child and an unbourne babe.

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About Minna Howard

Minna Howard

Minna has had an exciting career in fashion journalism and now writes full time, whilst enjoying time with her grandsons and working as an occasional film and TV extra. She lives in London.

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I look forward to reading your thoughts & commentary! Especially if you read the book or were thinking you might be inclined to read it. Are you a reader of Contemporary Women’s Fiction? Is Ms Howard on your bookshelf already or an author you’re considering to add to your TBR? Which novels of Women’s Fiction do you appreciate and which ones do you think I should consider? Either for Contemporary and/or Historical storylines!?
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Bookish conversations are always welcome on Jorie Loves A Story.

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Follow this Blog Tour:

A Mothers Secret blog tour banner provided by Head of Zeus.A Mothers Secret blog tour banner provided by Head of Zeus.

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NOTE: Similar to blog tours wherein I feature book reviews, book spotlights (with or without extracts), book announcements (or Cover Reveals) – I may elect to feature an author, editor, narrator, publisher or other creative person connected to the book, audiobook, Indie film project or otherwise creative publishing medium being featured wherein the supplemental content on my blog is never compensated monetarily nor am I ever obligated to feature this kind of content. I provide (98.5%) of all questions and guest topics regularly featured on Jorie Loves A Story. I receive direct responses back to those enquiries by publicists, literary agents, authors, blog tour companies, etc of whom I am working with to bring these supplemental features and showcases to my blog. I am naturally curious about the ‘behind-the-scenes’ of stories and the writers who pen them: I have a heap of joy bringing this content to my readers. Whenever there is a conflict of connection I do disclose those connections per post and disclose the connection as it applies.

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{SOURCES: Book cover for “A Mother’s Secret”, book synopsis, author photograph of Minna Howard, author biography and the blog tour banners were all provided by Head of Zeus and used with permission. Post dividers and My Thoughts badge by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets were embedded due to codes provided by Twitter. Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: Conversations with the Bookish banner and the Comment Box Banner.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2020.

I’m a social reader | I tweet my reading life

About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

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Posted Friday, 13 March, 2020 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host, Book | Novel Extract, Book Spotlight of E-Book (ahead of POD/print edition), Head of Zeus, Women's Fiction

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