Category: Musical Fiction | Non-Fiction

+Book Review+ Tempesta’s Dream: A story of Love, Friendship, & Opera by Vincent B. “Chip” LoCoco

Posted Monday, 21 July, 2014 by jorielov , , , , 2 Comments

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Tempesta’s Dream: A Story of Love, Friendship, & Opera by Vincent B. “Chip” LoCoco

Tempesta's Dream Virtual Blog Tour with HFVBT

Published By: Cefalutana Press,26 September, 2013
Official Author Websites: Site | @VincentBLoCoco| Blog
Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook Page Count: 264

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Acquired Book By: I was selected to be a tour stop on the “Tempesta’s Dream” virtual book tour through HFVBT: Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours. I received a complimentary copy of the book direct from the author Vincent B. “Chip” LoCoco, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Tempesta's Dream by Vincent B. LoCoco Book Synopsis:

Tempesta’s Dream is the story of an aspiring opera singer coming of age in Milan; a tender and moving love story; a testament to the bonds of friendship; and, at its core, a tribute to the beauty, majesty and miracle of opera.

Giovanni Tempesta always dreamed of becoming an opera tenor and one day singing from the stage of the La Scala Opera House in his hometown of Milan, Italy. But with no real training, his dream has little chance for fulfillment . . . One day, he meets and immediately falls in love with Isabella Monterone, a dark-haired beauty, whose father, a very rich and powerful Milanese Judge, refuses to allow his daughter to date a penniless musician . . . At the lowest part of his life, Giovanni comes upon the Casa di Riposo, a rest home for musicians established by the great opera composer, Giuseppe Verdi . . . It is at the Casa Verdi that Giovanni meets Alfredo del Monte, a blind, retired opera singer with a secretive past who gradually becomes his mentor . . . Could Alfredo be the one person who could assist Giovanni in finding the break he needs? Or is Giovanni destined to be on the cusp of reaching his life long dream, only to find failure? . . . Tempesta’s Dream, at its core, is an Italian opera love story. The author tells the story simply and swiftly with an ending that is both an emotional and poignant moment of both “amicizia e amore” (friendship and love.)

Author Biography:

Vincent B. "Chip" LoCoco

Chip LoCoco was born and raised in New Orleans. He is an attorney, with an emphasis on estate planning. A lifelong lover of music, Chip’s passion for opera dates back many years now. He has seen operas all over the world at some of the greatest opera houses. Chip has been asked to give talks on opera as well as the Sicilian-American culture of New Orleans.

Chip’s second novel, Bellafortuna, has been named a Short List Finalist in the William Faulkner Writing Competition. A date for publication has not been set yet for his second novel.

Chip is married to his wife of 15 years, Wendy. They have two children, Matthew and Ellie and a beagle, named Scout. They reside in their beloved city of New Orleans, where if you try to find them on a Sunday in the Fall, they will be somewhere rooting on their Saints.

 

On the Revelations within the Author’s Note:

The author and I share a mutual thread of heritage and passion for music — as I was raised in a very artistic minded home, where art, culture, and music flourished. My grandparents had a particular interest in Japanese art and music, whereas my parents introduced me to Native American culture, religion, and art, as much as a definitive zest for classical music and compositions. On this level, my favourite ‘music’ as a child were actual motion picture soundtracks, specifically not the ‘pop’ track versions, the ‘scores’, by such conductors as John Williams. The 1812 overture was an especially keen favourite but that goes to the root of my patriotic birthright. I listened to a heap of ‘singles’ on vinyl editions, which gave me the propensity as an adult to seek out traditional record shoppes and restore my fever of excitement over collecting not only ‘new’ limited releases but the older classics from the early 20th Century straight through to classical opera.

Attending symphonies and orchestra performances is what lent my ear to listening to opera – in the traditional sense, the modern band versions, and of course rock opera from the theatrical stage! I love how music can evoke such an emotional connection and stir our souls into an elevated experience of heart, mind, and spirit. Music reaches us on a different level than vocalised speech, as it speaks directly to who we are past our humanity. Reading about the author’s own past growing up in a creative and spirited environment which celebrated the arts, most specifically the focus on music in its most classical forms, gave me a renewed belief that there are others out there who lived a similar life to my own. I had to nod in agreement with him about how there are differences between our childhoods and this modern world we are living in which tends to eradicate the traditional arts, cultural experiences, and musical traditions that have sustained the world for millennia. Yet I have started to seen a renewed interest in not only re-attributing the old world arts and crafts, but to give a new appreciation for the classical arts as a whole. This positive step forward renews my own heart and soul on the matter, as life without music (or any of the classical arts & crafts) is a life without a creative lifeblood cast onto the wings of our spirits.

I appreciated hearing about the conversations and visitations he had with Mrs. Cellini as it gave a personal glimpse into his writing life that not every writer shares with his readership. I like hearing snippets of where research takes writers on their discovery and journey as they research their novels. This gave an added dimension to the spirit he wove into the text and for that he had my appreciation!

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • Go Indie
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Posted Monday, 21 July, 2014 by jorielov in 20th Century, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Trailer, Composer, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Fly in the Ointment, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, Indie Author, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Italy, Life in Another Country, Life Shift, Lyrical Quotations, Mental Health, Musical Fiction | Non-Fiction, New Orleans, Opera History, Opera Singers, Star-Crossed Lovers

#ArmChairBEA (2014) : Jorie’s attending her *first!* #bookblogger extension of the Book Expo America! Thus, this is her Introduction!

Posted Monday, 26 May, 2014 by jorielov 26 Comments

ArmChairBEA 2014
Design Credit: by Amber of Shelf Notes

Jorie’s first #ArmChairBEA,

can you sense the excitement!?

As this wicked sweet badge will imply, I am not merely participating! in my very first #ArmchairBEA, but I am an officially a member of the C H E E R L E A D E R team (#4! Captain: Shannon @ The Most Happy Reader) as a C H E E R R E A D E R! Perfect fit, if you ask me! As I was inspired to create the hashtag “#bookcheerleader after conversing with Tif ahead of the event itself! Since then, I was inspired to create a new ‘twitterverse’ identity via creating my own badge via Canva off the inspiring collective which makes up #StoryDam! (one of the weekly Twitter chats I like to duck-in on! all of them are threaded through the List I curate on Twitter except my own #ChocLitSaturdays – the tag is in my Profile & the archived chats are alighting on my blog!) Leading into the event, I happily celebrated my parents 40th Anniversary, which was filled with surprises on both sides, as I was the one who knew that each of my parents was conspiring to surprise the other in a way that they did not want the other to discover! Laughs. It was a pure blast for me, except a bit tricky at times as they would each come to me to check on something within mere seconds or minutes of the other leaving! I was tickled to peaches seeing how the end result turnt out to be one of the best Anniversaries! Not a bad way to begin the #ArmChairBEA than in a sea of lovely joy! Likewise, the ‘Monday’ this wicked event kicks-off is Memorial Day stateside, which means right after I post this lovely Intro Note I’m off for hot dogs & ice cream! Not a bad way to start the week, eh!? I wonder how everyone else is starting Monday!?

When I return I will be blogging up a storm, digging into my duties as a #CheerReader, as well as donning my cape of bubbliness as I gather the routes through the book blogosphere and alight on each of the lovely bloggers who are adding their links to the linky! I cannot wait to start meeting everyone and getting settled into spreading the joy of blogging whilst we celebrate the book during #ArmChairBEA! I can only imagine how wicked lovely it will be for those who can attend the BEA in person this year! I am most esteemed to find all the lovely bookish souls I’ve interacted with or crossed paths with since I started my blog are also taking an active role this year:

 An Introduction : of Jorie

Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging? Where in the world are you blogging from?

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.

You can read more about on under “My Bookish Life”. I am a Creative Dyslexic Writer who created Jorie Loves A Story on 31.March.2013 (blogoversary!), launched to the public on 6.August.2013 (blog birthday!), and sync’d to Twitter on 13.November.2013! As I curate Jorie Loves A Story as a labour of love, I elected to become active on two fronts: the book blogosphere (carrying on the joy I had found prior to creating my book blog!) AND the twitterverse! For this reason, I am exclusively only active in these social media portals! I do not cross-post my reviews either, as I feel that the main reason I wanted to create my blog was to have a place to write a heap of breadth and depth about the books I am choosing to read & share with my readership. I am not a traditional book reviewer in that sense! For more information on what I am hinting at please read: Jorie Loves A Story : an Introduction.

I am blogging from America, in the Southeast corner of the United States. I am a Southern Book Blogger who longs to relocate where blissful Wintry snow greets you after Autumn and Summer’s wrath does not include fierce tornadoes and hurricanes! I’d like to breathe in the joy of grey overcast skies which linger far longer than the ones I have now, and where being outside is a blissful treat year round rather than a ‘blink of an eye’ hiatus between Summer & Summer!

A great re-cap of my first thirty days as a book blogger was written with the idea of it being a monthly feature! I was not able to keep that promise to myself, but I am in the process of resuming where I left off, as I love looking back on what I have accomplished as much as seeing how everything came together!

Describe your blog in just one sentence. Then, list your social details — Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. — so we can connect more online.

My blog is comprehensive, joyful, and full of heart with honest in-depth reviews which I hope resonate my observations as I read each book.

The best way to stay in touch with me is to click-over to my About.Me page* (linked to my Twitter profile & top of my blog’s sidebar), as I curate the links which allow you to stay in touch with me, on top of the latest posts for Jorie Loves A Story, as well as knowing how to find me on Twitter.

(*) a few years later I developed a landing page: Jorie Loves Bookish Blogs to replace my ‘About Me’ page.

What was your favorite book read last year? What’s your favorite book so far this year?

I will simplify this to what was the ‘best book’ I’ve read within the last few days!? As I have the tendency to appreciate a heap of books I read per year, and I am never able to quite narrow down the books to a list of 10, much less narrow it down to a selection of one! Therefore, over the past week I was introduced to two wickedly dynamic story-telling styles: the first was a genre-bender where you were placed inside the world of ‘comic-fantasy’ where superheroes of the age I adore were jettisoned into a sweet new (epic level!) fantasy! Giving us “Awesome Jones“! The author stopped by to give the impression of how her genre-bender was writ as well! I will be sharing an antidote of an experience whilst I was out and about towne when I broached the subject to my parents and had an unexpected conversation with a fellow superhero appreciator! Likewise, on the complete opposite spectrum of literature in the historical fiction branch, I soaked so vividly into the time of Hatshepsut I nearly had trouble re-adjusting back into our time continuum! And, as you will find this is the precise reason I am passionate about reading and book blogging! I love discovering authors and their stories which take us to whole new worlds of realistic thought and observation! Awesome Jones gave me a reason to vie for a cape and Hatshepsut (Daughter of the Gods) instilled an awareness of how she inspired Cleopatra & Elizabeth I to know they could rule as women! And, to me that is why we all should read! We read to give us an understanding of what we can only imagine, and endear us towards empathy for everything that deserves a deeper scope of thought! We give our hearts to the page, and the inked spilt words give us the joy of transporting to different timescapes and realities as we drink through the words left behind by their writers! There is such a beautiful circle between the writer who creates the story and the reader who consumes the words and carries the characters off the page!

What is your favorite blogging resource?

First and foremost, I cannot empathsis enough how much I love! being a WordPress blogger! As far as blogging on WP.com NOT through WP.org / self-hosted blog platforms! I have looked into self-hosting and realised that WP.com will happily be able to take care of my needs a book blogger for a very long time yet to come! I love the ease of maintaining my blog and the few bits of ‘extra help’ I would like to give a shout-out of gratitude to the following:

  • Ravven – is the lovely artistic soul who created my blog’s identity through the creation of my blog’s badge & banner!
  • Squeesome Designs – created the lovely badges which bespeak of coffee, libraries, & reading! As well as the “green banners” in my sidebar!
  • Parajunkee Designs – created the blog headers per post, such as “Book Review”, “Author Interview”, etc. As well as post lovelies like those on this post!
  • Fun Stuff for Your Blog by Pure Imaginationcreated the blog dividers which I simply adore!
  • Grab My Button – offers a way to place code on your blog for people to save your blog’s badge!
  • PicMonkey – my preference for creating collages & other badges when I am not using Canva! Originally I used FotoFlexer.
  • FeedPress – I used to pay a small fee for FeedBlitz, then gave it up. I just recently found FeedPress & love it more!
  • Book Blogging (Database)  – for networking with book bloggers!
  • Lianne @ Caffeinated Life & Hannah @ Once Upon a Time were mentors to me as a newbie blogger!

What book would you love to see as a movie?

Again, this is always a tricky question for me to answer but I think I will go with a Magical Realism choice and say, “The Golem and the Jinni“!!

The best bit to know about Jorie, is that she is a girl who loves to converse about the books she reads & discovers,… she truly does live up to these badges! And, you can follow her journeys inside her Story Vault!

Parajunkee DesignsParajunkee Designs

Music via #iheartradio (Chicago! 93.9FM) whilst Jorie composed this #ArmChairBEA post:

  • “Raging Fire” by Philip Phillips
  • “Dreams” by the Cranberries
  • “Happy” by Pharrell Williams
  • “Set Fire to the Rain” by Adele
  • “50 Ways to Say Goodbye” by Train
  • “Story of my Life” by One Direction
  • “Home” by Daughtry
  • “Livin’ La Vida Loca” by Ricky Martin
  • “Just Give Me A Reason”by Pink, feat. Nate Ruess
  • “Best Day of my Life” by American Authors
  • “Home” by Philip Phillips
  • “All of Me” by John Legend
  • “Wake Me Up” by Avicii
  • “Don’t Speak” by No Doubt

The very best part of #ArmChairBEA for me this year is to be cheering on the book bloggers & the readers who celebrate the joy of reading as much as I do with each book they pick up and consume! This is a convention for those who are bookish & geeky and proud of it! This is a way for us to get to know each other and champion the writers who give us such a hearty story to dissolve into throughout the year! Let us route our way through the book blogosphere and light up the twitterverse letting everyone know that even if we are not in person at the Book Expo America — they have our full support & attention!

{SOURCES: Blog News & “I Blog Books” badges provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. ArmChairBEA badge provided by ArmChairBEA for participants to help promote the virtual convention for BEA (Book Expo America).}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

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Posted Monday, 26 May, 2014 by jorielov in #ArmChairBEA, Action & Adventure Fiction, After the Canon, Anthology Collection of Stories, Banned Books, Biographical Fiction & Non-Fiction, Blogosphere Events & Happenings, Blogs I Regularly Read, Bookish Discussions, Children's Literature, Classical Literature, Crime Fiction, Debut Novel, Fantasy Fiction, French Literature, Gothic Literature, Historical Fiction, Indie Author, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Jorie Loves A Story, Juvenile Fiction, Legal Drama, LGBTTQPlus Fiction | Non-Fiction, Literary Fiction, Literary Journals, Medical Fiction, Military Fiction, Modern British Literature, Musical Fiction | Non-Fiction, Native American Fiction, Nautical Fiction, Non-Fiction, Philosophy, Poetry, Realistic Fiction, Romance Fiction, Science, Science Fiction, Self-Published Author, Speculative Fiction, Twitterland & Twitterverse Event, Western Fiction, Women's Fiction, Young Adult Fiction

+Blog Book Tour+ Night in Shanghai by Nicole Mones | Stepping back in time & visiting the Chinese #JazzAge!

Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by jorielov , , 2 Comments

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Night in Shanghai by Nicole Mones

Night in Shanghai Tour via HFVBT

Published By: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, (@HMHCo4 March, 2014
Official Author Websites: Nicole Mones website
Available Formats: Hardback, Audiobook, & E-Book
Page Count: 288

Converse on Twitter:
#NightInShanghaiTour & #NightInShanghai OR #NicoleMones

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Acquired Book By: I was selected to be a tour stop on the “Night in Shanghai” virtual book tour through Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours. I received a complimentary copy of the book direct from the publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Inspired to Read:

I’ve been swept into the Jazz Age since January of 2013 when I first read Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald. Having read the biographical fiction of Zelda, I started to understand the undercurrent of the era. There was a lot about that time in our history and in Europe’s history that I was not clued in on. Bits and pieces which surprised me, especially about the salons for writers & creatives, which apparently were not as free as they appeared to have been! I felt the hot scorn that Zelda felt and the inaccurate self-worth she struggled to regain control of whilst her husband took the spotlight even off of her own writings. Through that book, and the motion picture of “The Great Gatsby”, I became attached to the 1920s & 1930s even a bit more than I had been whilst I watched the BBC drama “The House of Elliott!” To the extent, that I sought out Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries which is a bang-on brilliant BBC/Aussie drama set in Melbourne around the same era of time!

I read the description of this novel, then moved over to the author’s website & played the book trailer. Somewhere between the description and the trailer I made my choice to read this novel! It’s sweeping in its depth and what I love uncovering through historical fiction are little nuggets of the unknown moments against the larger backdrop of historical events!!

Night in Shanghai by Nicole Mones}: Book Synopsis :{

In 1936, classical pianist Thomas Greene is recruited to Shanghai to lead a jazz orchestra of fellow African-American expats. From being flat broke in segregated Baltimore to living in a mansion with servants of his own, he becomes the toast of a city obsessed with music, money, pleasure and power, even as it ignores the rising winds of war.

Song Yuhua is refined, educated, and bonded since age eighteen to Shanghai’s most powerful crime boss in payment for her father’s gambling debts. Outwardly submissive, she burns with rage and risks her life spying on her master for the Communist Party.

Only when Shanghai is shattered by the Japanese invasion do Song and Thomas find their way to each other. Though their union is forbidden, neither can back down from it in the turbulent years of occupation and resistance that follow. Torn between music and survival, freedom and commitment, love and world war, they are borne on an irresistible riff of melody and improvisation to Night in Shanghai’s final, impossible choice.

In this impressively researched novel, Nicole Mones not only tells the forgotten story of black musicians in the Chinese Jazz age, but also weaves in a stunning true tale of Holocaust heroism little-known in the West.

 

Nicole MonesAuthor Biography:

A newly launched textile business took Nicole Mones to China for the first time in 1977, after the end of the Cultural Revolution. As an individual she traded textiles with China for eighteen years before she turned to writing about that country. Her novels Night in Shanghai, The Last Chinese Chef, Lost in Translation and A Cup of Light are in print in more than twenty-two languages and have received multiple juried prizes, including the Kafka Prize (year’s best work of fiction by any American woman) and Kiriyama Prize (finalist; for the work of fiction which best enhances understanding of any Pacific Rim Culture).

Mones’ nonfiction writing on China has also appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Gourmet, the Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Post. She is a member of the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations.

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Chinese Jazz Singer Jasmine Chen

– “Give Me A Kiss” via Jasmine Chen

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A passion for Jazz: I came to appreciate jazz and the blues from a young age, as I grew up in a home full of classical music and a deep passion for the living arts. I was free to decide for myself where my inclinations would take me musically, or even if I wanted to simply appreciate listening to music verse learning how to play an instrument or develop my vocality of voice. As a child I could not grasp which instrument would whet long-term interest to learn, therefore I became an appreciator of music. Symphony and orchestrations were the main focus as I loved attending live events at performing art centers in my hometown. Jazz came into my life a bit of a whispering on the musical winds, as like its counter-companion of the blues, the original inertia of interest was sparked by the stories of the origins rather than of attending concerts.

I was always drawn into those elements of the historical past which brought forward the ruminations of music, to evoke out a harmony of song, ballard or chord which drove into the human emotional well of giving back a living moment through a musical presentation. I vividly remember walking down Bourbon Street in New Orleans in the early 1990s, at a moment in my life where I could not enter the Jazz clubs but I could partake of their sounds emitting out onto the streets — giving everyone the freedom to listen as ears finely tuned to their music could always embrace the sounds! Another memory is hinged to the latter 1990s where I heard a vocal artist from Washington, DC create distinctive evocations with her voice. She sung Jazz in a way that felt like an experience rather than a performance! She was one artist I had hoped I could have travelled to see again live as I only had the one chance to be in an audience of her artistry. Thankfully, a short conversation afterwards has never left my memory.

Bluegrass by comparison is another thread of music I tend to gravitate towards for the same reasons I am attached to Billie Holiday, Etta James, Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, B.B. King, Dinah Washington, Lena Horne, and countless more artists as there is a strong desire to curate human emotion into sound; and as such turn the sound into a living testament of life through story, vocals, and instrumentation. My dream is to collect albums on vinyl record and listen to the greatest voices throughout history belting out one memorable performance after another whilst sipping fresh brewed tea.

My Review of Night in Shanghai:

May I simply say, that any publisher who wraps their hardback in the loveliest shade of lavender such as Night in Shanghai has already warmed me to the experience of what lies within its covers!  The cover-art is equally eye-catching as you want to know about the symbolism of the lanterns as much as your quite curious about where the stairs are leading you. Her inclusion of Chinese expressions, as well as their iconic alphabet lends the reader to emerge into the story as though part of our spirits are hinged directly to Shanghai during the setting of which is about to unfold before us. Little cues like these help us take a step out of where we are reading the book and directly connect into the reality of the story. The essence of jazz has to be in your veins to settle into the background of the story as I felt it heightens your ability to pick up on the subtleties and in evoking a strong thumb of presence on how Shanghai was changing in the face of war.

Night in Shanghai paints a light of appreciation how difficult it was for the musicians to make a living whilst finding their race to be in opposition of receiving a fair wage if they staid in America. Never one to understand the prejudicial limits placed on others, this is one thread of the story that I felt was given honour by presenting the facts which led to the choice of switching countries on behalf of the musicians who chose to live in Shanghai rather than attempting to nick out a living for half of what they were worth. The first half reads like a memoir of a bloke who is attempting to absolve his soul at the end of his life by representing his journey towards self-redemption and self-acceptance of his art. Yet, the story is actually on behalf of his lover re-telling the tale than the artist himself of whom we are given a front row and center look into the ambiance of his life as it started to root in Shanghai’s Jazz scene of the mid-1930s. A progression of musical revolution which had begun in the Roaring Twenties, as musical scouts were frequently travelling throughout America to recruit the men back to China.

The most compelling part for me is watching Thomas Greene sort out his bearings in a city as flavourful and colourful in all matters of decadence as Shanghai, whilst being greeted by the notions of how close on the edge of war he truly was by seeing shades of it bleed into his daily wanderings. A musician at heart and of soul, compelled to work tirelessly on his craft as he was not blessed with the ear yet the grace of reading the music by sheet; his was a journey towards achieving his dreams as much as arriving at a place of self-acceptance. His race was muted compared to others and in having his skin not representative of his origins gave him flexibility to perform but it confused him on how he choose to identify himself. I would think this would bear weight on a person’s mind as you are neither of one race or another, as you’re a hybrid of two. Add to the churning tides a high sense of political despondency and it is a miracle any of the American musicians could find their footing!

The intriguing bit for me was seeing how Shanghai echoed of Chicago in how the city was controlled by organised crime families, except they are known as triads instead. Clearly there is more to history than meets the eye, and like many cities of the age Shanghai was not immune to the darker shades of living. The entire underworld was fresh to the eyes of Thomas Greene who affirmed his surname by being ‘green’ in the ways of the world. The essence of neighbourhoods of distinctive origins from the boroughs of New York City and Chicago were also bloomed in full in Shanghai. Each district had its own rules and were segregated from each other.

I loved seeing how the fusion of the West and East in music organically started to percolate in the early 20th century, as one musician was influenced by another. The music became the lifeblood language which broke the barriers of race and ethnicity, and in many ways sharpened the ability to put a pulse on what was happening around the city. There was such a decorum of unease yet the blinded sort where everyone would refute the obvious and elect instead to carry-on as though nothing major was happening. Music became the one avenue of honest representation and in so doing, gave a generational lineage that is still thriving today. Music gives a voice to the emotions which are too hard to put into words alone.

Thomas and Song were intricately bonded to each other through a synchronicity of passion which became an electrified explosion of notes and chords arching out of his fingers as he played the piano the only tunes which could solidify their connection. In the music, they lived with a freedom neither of them had in life. The passion of two souls caught up in a world of war, desolation, and tragic pain. The title of the novel is a hidden symbolism of their love and of the hope they each had for what it signified as a whole.

Gratitude for authors like Mones:

Who take the extra leap of faith to chase after a story which has nestled into their conscience and find a way to draw the story out for the readers who are in full appreciation of their efforts! To give us a piece of known history during an era of a war and conflict that has been written about from various angles and uncover a breadth of enlightenment not yet realised to the Western world is extraordinary! How kind of her to pursue her intuition and nettle out the story of how lives were changed during one of the most brutally savage moments in history’s ink blotter! And, to give us all a pure sense of how ordinary men can be called to accomplish such wonderful acts of kindness in the shadows of intense personal danger.

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Nicole Mones – Night in Shanghai via Connie Martinson

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comWatch the Night in Shanghai Book Trailer via NicoleMones.com

Read an Excerpt of the Novel:

{including the quotation by Langston Hughes!}

Night in Shanghai by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comPreviously, I hosted an Author Guest Post about the creation of “Night in Shanghai”!

Blog Book Tour Stop, courtesy of Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

Virtual Road Map of “Night in Shanghai” Blog Tour can be visited here:

Night in Shanghai Tour via HFVBT

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comCheck out

Bookish Events badge created by Jorie in Canva

to see what I will be hosting next for

Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours - HFVBTand mark your calendars!

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Shanghai Memories – Golden Songs from the 1930s & 1940s via BaBanChineseMusic

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comPlease take note of the Related Articles as they were hand selected due to being of cross-reference importance in relation to this book review. This applies to each post on my blog where you see Related Articles underneath the post. Be sure to take a moment to acknowledge the further readings which are offered.

{SOURCES: Night in Shanghai Book Cover, synopsis, tour badge, author photograph and HFVBT badge were provided by Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours and were used by permission. Blog Tour badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. The book discussion video by Connie Martinson, Shanghai Memories music video as well as the excerpt by Houghton Miffton Harcourt via Scribd had either URL share links or coding which made it possible to embed this media portal to this post, and I thank them for the opportunity to share more about this novel and the author who penned it. Buy links on Scribd excerpt are not affiliated with Jorie Loves A Story. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Bookish Events badge created by Jorie in Canva.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

Related Articles:

Shanghai Jazz – (shjazz.com)

Remaking all that Jazz from Shanghai’s Lost Era – (npr.org/blogs/codeswitch) There are videos and audio clips included in the article to give an introduction to the music which I found tranquil & lovely! I encourage everyone to click-over and discover the music!

The Shanghai Restoration Project – (shanghairestorationproject.com) I found this project through researching the Chinese Jazz era as this has a decidedly unique sound to the music.

Survivors of Chinese Jazz Age Play Anew – (npr.org/templates/story) More audio clips of music from the Chinese Jazz Age.

‘Night in Shanghai’ Dances on the Eve of Destruction – (npr.org) A beautiful Interview with Ms. Mones about the novel.

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Posted Wednesday, 23 April, 2014 by jorielov in 20th Century, African-American History, Aftermath of World War II, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Trailer, China, Chinese Literature, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Equality In Literature, Geographically Specific, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, History, Jazz Musicians, Musical Fiction | Non-Fiction, Shanghai, the Roaring Twenties, The World Wars