Genre: Historical Fiction

An #INSPY Book Spotlight with Notes + Extract | featuring “Set the Stars Alight” by Amanda Dykes

Posted Monday, 5 October, 2020 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

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Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I positively LOVE reading INSPY Lit and when I find an author has combined two of my favourite styles of story “Contemporary and Historical” in a lovely time shift, I dearly sit up and take notice! This particular novel I discovered a bit ahead of the blog tour being announced which is why I jumped at the chance to be on the tour itself – as I was sorting out which new books were being released by this publisher as I wanted (at the time) to see if I could get ahead of the pub dates and potentially seek out the stories via my local libraries (either in print or audiobook). I had good intentions but as the course of the year went the way it had for all of us, I admit, I lost track of which stories were releasing and when they might reach my libraries.

Ahead of my tour stop today, I happily found out the audiobook is available through my regional library via their audiobook catalogue on CloudLibrary!! Eek. I was overly excited finding this out as I am listening to more audiobooks lately as with all the migraines I’ve been plagued with from May-August and with September being a wickedly horrid month all the way round (from my parents health emergencies to my excessive migraines) you could say reading all the way round for me has been a bit more adverse than usual! Audiobooks and larger print books are easier for me to enjoy whilst I’m re-transitioning back into reading after a long nightmeric run of migraines and having this lovely so easily available was a bit of random joy for me recently!

I wasn’t able to get too far into the story but as I have it checked out, I’m hopeful I can finish it this October as you’ll soon find out why I enjoyed the hour I listened too! I love finding new authors and it is a delight of mine to be featuring some INSPY authors via this blog tour company as INSPY has long since been a cosy comforting branch of literature for me. I’ve been a hybrid reader (ie. mainstream and INSPY) since I was quite young and I oft turn to INSPY whenever I want to tuck offline into a story I know  will find a positive lift of joy to be reading! Most recently, I related my immense joy in listening to ‘Hadley Beckett’s Next Dish’ whilst ‘Magnolia Storms’ was one of my top favourites during a recent INSPY readathon this past August. You will find a healthy gathering of INSPY stories in my Story Vault as well!

Today, I am wicked thankful I can bring you a short extract from “Set the Stars Alight” as I love helping my fellow readers and book bloggers find stories they might love as much as I do! I look forward to conversing with you about this story in the comments! Especially if you think this might be a wicked good fit for you as a reader, too! I’d be keen to know what attracts you into time shift narratives (or time slip!) as much as why you love dual perspective novels which combine both modern settings with the historical.

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An #INSPY Book Spotlight with Notes + Extract | featuring “Set the Stars Alight” by Amanda DykesSet the Stars Alight
by Amanda Dykes
Source: Borrowed from local library's CloudLibrary

Lucy Clairmont's family treasured the magic of the past, and her childhood fascination with stories of the high seas led her to become a marine archaeologist. But when tragedy strikes, it's Dashel, an American forensic astronomer, and his knowledge of the stars that may help her unearth the truth behind the puzzle she's discovered in her family home.

Two hundred years earlier, the seeds of love are sown between a boy and a girl who spend their days playing in a secret sea cave, while the privileged young son of the estate looks on, wishing to join. As the children grow and war leads to unthinkable heartbreak, a story of love, betrayal, sacrifice, and redemption unfolds, held secret by the passage of time.

As Lucy and Dash journey to a mysterious old estate on the East Sussex coast, their search leads them to a community of souls and a long-hidden tale that may hold the answers--and the healing--they so desperately seek.

Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Time Slip and/or Time Shift


Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9780764232671

ASIN: B0857HL9MJ

Published by Bethany House Publishers

on 30th June, 2020

Format: Audiobook | Digital

Length: 12 hours and 36 minutes (unabridged)

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Published by: Bethany House Publishers (@bethany_house)

an imprint of Baker Publishing Group

Available Formats: Hardcover, Trade Paperback, Audiobook and Ebook

Converse via: #TimeShift, #HistFic, #INSPY or #ChristianFiction
as well as #SetTheStarsAlight & #BHPFiction

About Amanda Dykes

Amanda Dykes (Photo Credit: © Michael Pettrey)

Amanda Dykes is a drinker of tea, dweller of redemption, and spinner of hope-filled tales who spends most days chasing wonder and words with her family. She's a former English teacher and the author of Set the Stars Alight and Whose Waves These Are, an INSPY award winner and a Booklist 2019 Top Ten Romance debut, as well as three novellas.

Photo Credit: © Michael Pettrey

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Posted Monday, 5 October, 2020 by jorielov in Astronomy, Audiobook, Audiobook Excerpt, Blog Tour Host, Book Spotlight, Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Love Books Tours, Space Science

A #CrimeFicFridays Book Spotlight | feat. the Historical Suspense novels by Karen Odden with a light of joy on “A Trace of Deceit”

Posted Friday, 2 October, 2020 by jorielov , , , , , , , 1 Comment

#CrimeFicFridays banner created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By:

I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours whereupon I am thankful to have been able to host such a diverse breadth of stories, authors and wonderful guest features since I became a hostess! HFVBTs is one of the very first touring companies I started working with as a 1st Year Book Blogger – uniting my love and passion with Historical Fiction and the lovely sub-genres inside which I love devouring. Whether I am reading selections from Indie Authors & publishers to Major Trade and either from mainstream or INSPY markets – I am finding myself happily residing in the Historical past each year I am a blogger.

What I have been thankful for all these years since 2013 is the beautiful blessing of discovering new areas of Historical History to explore through realistically compelling Historical narratives which put me on the front-lines of where History and human interest stories interconnect. It has also allowed me to dive deeper into the historic past and root out new decades, centuries and millenniums to explore. For this and the stories themselves which are part of the memories I cherish most as a book blogger I am grateful to be a part of the #HFVBTBlogTours blogger team.

Thankfully as I had to take a hiatus from Scribd, my regional library uses CloudLibrary for part of their audiobooks and I was able to listen to “A Lady in the Smoke” and “A Dangerous Duet” via their audiobook catalogue. I was not obligated to share my opinions and thoughts on behalf of the audiobooks and choose to share them for my own edification as well as continuing to share my readerly life on Jorie Loves A Story.

I received a complimentary copy of “A Trace of Deceit” direct from the publisher William Morrow in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I  was expecting to be celebrating the fact I had listened to the first two novels in this series whilst I had read the third! And, yet, that isn’t quite how my hours with this series unfolded – courtesy of a towering stack of my chronic migraines & a slew of medical emergencies affecting my parents throughout the Summer  & most especially during September – hence why I am one of the champions of October and Autumn’s fierce grip which is happily starting us out right into a new Season!

Rather than admitting I lost the hours I needed to proper dive into this series, I took it up as a bit of a challenge the night before this was meant to go ‘live’ as they say! I happily found the audiobooks were available to borrow via CloudLibrary, whilst I had music queued and ready on Spotify for when I settled into the print edition of A Trace of Deceit. I was thankful for the bookmark the author mailed to me – it was one of those lovely chunky ones which has a lot of girth and height? I *love!* being surprised with bookmarks and this one was enscribed which was especially kind and sweet to receive. Therefore, as I started to become acquainted with the Victorian Mysteries I was surprised by what I was finding inside them and how each narrator approached the stories differently.

I felt it best to present my reactions as I was listening and reading the stories themselves (per my usual) and let each of you decide if this is a series you can chase after yourself and/or if something I’ve shared or said might help you decide if another series might be a better fit for you too. This is one reason why I love being a book blogger as we each help the other find the stories we might not otherwise have ‘met’.

This #CrimeFicFridays I am showcasing my introduction into the Victorian Mysteries by Karen Odden. Each forthcoming #CrimeFicFriday might be a similar showcase and spotlight and/or it could feature a full review of a Crime Fiction novel I’ve recently read whilst I might also host an author and showcase their story and/or series, too. It is a feature which constantly is in flux and whenever I feel creatively inspired to share a portion of my pursuit of finding Crime Fiction novelists and narrators I love discovering – you’ll see this feature presenting itself with new posts!

Lest I mention I’ve renamed this feature from [#CrimeFicFriday] to [#CrimeFicFridays] as for whichever reason the latter comes more readily to my mind than the former? Same showcases, same featured selections but with a new twist of a name and a fancy new banner! I felt it only fitting that I debut the banner for this featured showcase alongside the debut of my #2PagePreview banner, as well! Both are full features here on Jorie Loves A Story but they needed their own identity, too.

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A #CrimeFicFridays Book Spotlight | feat. the Historical Suspense novels by Karen Odden with a light of joy on “A Trace of Deceit”A Trace of Deceit
by Karen Odden
Source: Author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

From the author of A Dangerous Duet comes the next book in her Victorian mystery series, this time following a daring female painter and the Scotland Yard detective who is investigating her brother’s suspicious death.

A young painter digs beneath the veneer of Victorian London’s art world to learn the truth behind her brother’s murder…

Edwin is dead. That’s what Inspector Matthew Hallam of Scotland Yard tells Annabel Rowe when she discovers him searching her brother’s flat for clues. While the news is shocking, Annabel can’t say it’s wholly unexpected, given Edwin’s past as a dissolute risk-taker and art forger, although he swore he’d reformed. After years spent blaming his reckless behavior for their parents’ deaths, Annabel is now faced with the question of who murdered him—because Edwin’s death was both violent and deliberate. A valuable French painting he’d been restoring for an auction house is missing from his studio: find the painting, find the murderer. But the owner of the artwork claims it was destroyed in a warehouse fire years ago.

As a painter at the prestigious Slade School of Art and as Edwin’s closest relative, Annabel makes the case that she is crucial to Matthew’s investigation. But in their search for the painting, Matthew and Annabel trace a path of deceit and viciousness that reaches far beyond the elegant rooms of the auction house, into an underworld of politics, corruption, and secrets someone will kill to keep.

Genres: Feminist Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical Thriller Suspense


Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9780062796622

Published by William Morrow

on 17th December, 2019

Pages: 416

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The Victorian Mysteries by Karen Odden:

A Lady in the Smoke (book one)

A Dangerous Duet (book two)

A Trace of Deceit (book three)

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Published By: William Morrow (@WmMorrowBks),
an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers (@HarperCollins)

Available Formats: P.S. Edition Trade Paperback and Ebook

Converse via: #HistoricalMystery or #HistoricalMysteries
+ #VictorianMysteries and #HFVBTBlogTours

About Karen Odden

Karen Odden

Karen Odden received her Ph.D. in English literature from New York University and taught at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. She has contributed essays and chapters to books and journals, including Studies in the Novel, the Journal of Victorian Culture, and Victorian Crime, Madness, and Sensation; she has written introductions for Barnes and Noble editions of books by Dickens and Trollope; and she edited for the academic journal Victorian Literature and Culture.

She freely admits she might be more at home in nineteenth-century London than today, especially when she tries to do anything complicated on her iPhone. Her first novel, A Lady in the Smoke, was a USA Today bestseller and won the New Mexico-Arizona 2016 Book Award for e-Book Fiction. Her second novel, A Dangerous Duet, about a young pianist who stumbles on a notorious crime ring while playing in a Soho music hall in 1870s London, won the New Mexico-Arizona 2019 Book Award for Best Historical Fiction. A Trace of Deceit is her third novel. She resides in Arizona with her family and a ridiculously cute beagle named Rosy.

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Posted Friday, 2 October, 2020 by jorielov in #25PagePreview, #CrimeFicFridays, Blog Tour Host, Book Spotlight, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

Book Spotlight | “Flirtation and Folly” (A Season in London, Book One) by Elizabeth Rasche

Posted Tuesday, 29 September, 2020 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

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Hallo, Hallo dear hearts!

I must admit, I read quite a heap of stories set during and round the ‘London Season’ as it is when all the key players of the aristocracy come to towne to see about their chances at the marriage market as it is generally referenced and known as for those who participate. There is always wicked good folly about the London Season – from the conspiring girls’ who are trying to increase their chances of a winning match (or the acts of their Mums!) to the men who are duly regarded as the best of the best in regards to whose still single and available whilst at the same time – you generally have the ‘others’ who have been out for more than one season and have become disillusioned with the whole gambit of chance altogether.

The keen appreciation I have for Historical Romances set during the London Season is inspired by each new writer I discover who has taken her pen to craft a story set round such a well-known rite of passage for certain girls of a certain age who are members of the ton. Even Jane Austen herself was coy about the season and she dappled in highlighting what the dances & engagements were like in the country outside of London proper whilst giving all of us a chance to see how cheeky some of these engagements were and how others were mindlessly consumed by the artful approach they took to securing a winning match themselves.

Other writes approach it with humour, others with drama and some with suspense – wherein you never know whose going to survive the Season and at what costs to them or their families, friends or even their potential suitors! I never tire of reading stories like these because each young woman who goes to the Season itself has a different back-story, a different reason for seeking a gentleman to marry whilst at the same time, the best stories I feel also tuck close to the men – to their own reasons for wanting to seek out marriage and the type of women they are interested in finding themselves.

A few times I felt the writers focused too much on the rogues and the scandalous way some preferred to seek out the Season whereas my favourite stories are the ones where you have this winsome romance erupting out of unexpected hours of the Season, wherein both chaperones and the girls’ themselves are a bit swept into the folds of the courtship whilst trying to decipher if the bloke in question is both honourable and available!

Thus, I am happy to welcome a new author on my radar to Jorie Loves A Story – whose written such a romance set during one of my favourite periods of the historic past which delves into relationships, friendships, alliances and the curious folly of chasing after singletons as they find their way in the world!

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Book Spotlight | “Flirtation and Folly” (A Season in London, Book One) by Elizabeth RascheFliration and Folly
Subtitle: A Season in London : Book One
by Elizabeth Rasche

Marianne Mowbrey is a responsible country rector’s daughter who longs for the novelty and excitement she reads about in novels. When her crusty Aunt Harriet agrees to give her a Season in London, Marianne vows to dazzle the world, win a husband, and never go home again. But the Londoners who determine social success are inclined to pass over plain Marianne in favor of her beautiful, reckless younger sister.

In a world of ambition, fashion, flattery, and deceit, how can Marianne stay true to her real self—when she is not even sure what that real self is?

Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Romance


Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 978-1951033583

Published by Quills and Quartos Publishing

on 4th September, 2020

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Published by: Quills and Quartos Publishing (@QuillsQuartos)

This is first Historical Fiction novel by the author!

The paperback released ahead of the ebook – which drops on 9th November!

Available Formats: Paperback and Ebook

Converse via: #HistoricalRomance or #HistRom as well as #Regency or #RegencyRomance
+ #FlirationAndFolly, #ElizabethRasche and #HFVBTBlogTours

About Elizabeth Rasche

Elizabeth Rasche

After acquiring a doctorate in philosophy from the University of Arkansas, Elizabeth Rasche taught philosophy in the U.S. and co-taught English in Japan. Now she and her husband live in northwest Arkansas, the ‘garden of America.’ (At least, she has only ever heard Arkansas called so.) She dreams of visiting Surrey (if only to look for Mrs. Elton’s Maple Grove), Bath, and of course, London. When she has a Jane Austen novel in one hand, a cup of tea in the other, and a cat on her lap, her day is pretty much perfect.

Elizabeth Rasche is the author of The Birthday Parties of Dragons and her poetry has appeared in Scifaikuest. Flirtation & Folly is her first historical fiction novel.

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Posted Tuesday, 29 September, 2020 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host, Book Spotlight, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

#HistoricalMondays Book Review | “The Brief and True Report of Temperance Flowerdew” by Denise Heinze

Posted Monday, 28 September, 2020 by jorielov , , 0 Comments

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In [2019] I launched a new weekly featured concentration of book reviews on Jorie Loves A Story which celebrates my love and passion for the historical past! For those of whom are regular readers and visitors to my blog, you’ll denote a dedicated passion for reading Historical Fiction (and all the lovely segues of thematic therein) – I am a time traveller of the historical past every chance I get to disappear into a new era and/or century of exploration. There isn’t a time period I haven’t enjoyed ruminating over since [2013] and there are a heap of lovely timescapes I’ve yet to encounter.

This feature was inspired by the stories I’ve read, the stories I’ve yet to experience and the beauty of feeling interconnected to History through the representation of the past through the narratives being writ by today’s Historical Fiction authors. It is to those authors I owe a debt of gratitude for enlightening my bookish mind and my readerly heart with realistic characters, illuminating portals of living history and a purposeful intent on giving each of us a strong representation of ‘life’ which should never become dismissed, forgotten or erased.

I began this feature with the sequel to a beloved historical novel I first read in [2013] – it was one of the first ARCs I received and it was the first year I was a book blogger though it was through a connection outside my life as a blogger. I celebrated K.B. Laugheed’s literature to kick-off this feature and hopefully will inspire my followers to take this new weekly journey with me into the stories which are beckoning to read their narrative depths and find the words in which to express the thoughts I experienced as I read.

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Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours whereupon I am thankful to have been able to host such a diverse breadth of stories, authors and wonderful guest features since I became a hostess! HFVBTs is one of the very first touring companies I started working with as a 1st Year Book Blogger – uniting my love and passion with Historical Fiction and the lovely sub-genres inside which I love devouring. It has been a wicked fantastical journey into the heart of the historic past, wherein I’ve been blessed truly by discovering new timescapes, new living realities of the persons who once lived (ie. Biographical Historical Fiction) inasmuch as itched my healthy appetite for Cosy Historical Mysteries! If there is a #HistRom out there it is generally a beloved favourite and I love soaking into a wicked wonderful work of Historical Fiction where you feel the beauty of the historic world, the depth of the characters and the joyfulness in which the historical novelists brought everything to light in such a lovingly diverse palette of portraiture of the eras we become time travellers through their stories.

I received a complimentary copy of “The Brief and True Report of Temperance Flowerdew” direct from the publisher Blackstone Publishing in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

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Why I was inspired to read about Temperance Flowerdew:

I happen to love settling into a story about a historical person I have never heard of previously and getting to spend a bit of time getting acquainted with their life’s story. It is through these stories of Historical Fiction – in particular Women’s Historical Fiction and/or Feminist Historical Fiction (which parlay themselves together at times) which give us the most hope of learning of the historical past as it crossects with women who had a key part in both history and the lessons of the past. This is one of the reasons I love hosting for HFVBTs as it allows History to become opened in a myriad of new ways through the different portals of entrance each writer takes to tell their story.

With Temperance Flowerdew, I was hopeful I could walk beside her and understand her role in History and re-see a part of Jamestown I hadn’t known previously. However, as you will soon find out – this wasn’t a story I was able to finish reading as due to how it was written and how visually explicit it became showing the violence in the story itself, I found myself withdrawing from the text itself and simply had to put the book down. I did walk away knowing that Temperance and others like her held within her a strength of courage all women can relate too and celebrate but in regards to knowing more about her life and her trials in this particular exploration of her life, I had to step aside for other readers to find out those details for themselves.

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Notation on the Cover Art: I found it most fitting to find Temperance on the cover showcasing where she is in History by giving us a firm clue about her surroundings at Jamestown – how she herself came by ship and how the most important bit of this part of her life are the letters which are seen almost as a watermark rippling through the background of the cover art itself. It is one of the more creative covers I’ve seen in awhile and I loved the effect of it after you’ve read the story.

#HistoricalMondays Book Review | “The Brief and True Report of Temperance Flowerdew” by Denise HeinzeThe Brief and True Report of Temperance Flowerdew
by Denise Heinze
Source: Author via Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours

Determined to set the historical record straight, and clear her conscience, Temperance Flowerdew — the wife of Virginia’s first two governors — puts quill to paper, recounting the hardships that nearly brought the Jamestown colony to its knees, and the extraordinary sacrifice of her servant girl, Lily.

When she steps aboard the Falcon in 1609, Temperance Flowerdew was not only setting sail from England to the distant shores of America, she was embarking upon a future of opportunity. She didn’t yet know how she would make her mark, but in this new place she could do or be whatever she wanted.

Willing as she is to brave this new world, Temperance is utterly ill-equipped to survive the wilderness; all she knows is how to live inside the pages of adventure and philosophy books. Loyally at her side, Lily helps Temperance weather pioneer life. A young woman running from lifelong accusations of witchcraft, Lily finds friendship with Temperance and an acceptance of her psychic gifts. Together, they forge paths within the community: Temperance attempts to advise the makeshift government, while Lily experiences the blossoming of first love.

But as the harsh winter approaches, Lily intuitively senses a darkness creep over the colony and the veneer of civilized life threatens to fall away — negotiations with the Indians grow increasingly hostile and provisions become scarce. Lily struggles to keep food on the table by foraging in the woods and being resourceful. Famine could mean the end of days. It’s up to Lily to save them both, but what sacrifice will be enough to survive?

A transporting and evocative story, The Brief and True Report of Temperance Flowerdew is a fiercely hopeful novel — a portrait of two intrepid women who choose to live out their dreams of a future more free than the past.

Genres: Epistolary | Letters & Correspondences, Feminist Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction, Historical Women's Fiction


Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

ISBN: 9781982598648

Published by Blackstone Publishing

on 29th September, 2020

Format: Hardcover Edition

Pages: 176

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Formats Available: Hardcover, Audiobook and Ebook

About Denise Heinze

Denise Heinze

Denise Heinze, a former literature professor and a PhD graduate of Duke University, writes fiction, nonfiction, and poetry. She is the author of the novel Sally St. Johns and her work has appeared in Now and Then, Thought and Action, Reunions, Wow! Women on Writing, THEMA literary journal, and Gemini Magazine; her story The Grid, was a quarter-finalist for the Ghost Story Supernatural Fiction Award. The Brief and True Report of Temperance Flowerdew is her second novel and was a finalist for the University of New Orleans Press Publishing Lab Prize. A descendant of Louisa May Alcott, she lives in North Carolina.

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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Posted Monday, 28 September, 2020 by jorielov in #HistoricalMondays, 17th Century, Biographical Fiction & Non-Fiction, Blog Tour Host, Content Note, Epistolary Novel | Non-Fiction, Fly in the Ointment, Historical Fiction, Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours, Temperance Flowerdew, Virginia, Women's Fiction