Tag: The Road Back

Book Review | “Evie Undercover” by Liz Harris #ChocLitSaturdays

Posted Saturday, 19 March, 2016 by jorielov , , , , , , , 0 Comments

ChocLitSaturdays Banner Created by Jorie in Canva.

Acquired Book By:

I am a ChocLit reviewer who receives books of my choice in exchange for honest reviews! I received a complimentary copy of “Evie Undercover” from ChocLit in exchange for an honest review! I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. 

On my connection to Ms Harris:

I have been hosting #ChocLitSaturday chats on a regular basis for the past two years. Eleven in the morning of a Saturday, has become a favourite hour for me to exchange conversation and joy with everyone who shows up to participate in a chat centered around ChocLit novels and the Romance branch of literature in general.

Similar to my previous thoughts I shared about Ms. Courtenay, I have come to appreciate chatting with Ms. Harris, either through #ChocLitSaturdays chats or privately. She is most giving of her time and I have appreciated the opportunity to know the writer behind the stories I enjoy reading! She always shares her happy spirit in the chats too, and her insights into why she enjoys writing the books that speak to her the most.

I am disclosing this, to assure you that I can formulate an honest opinion, even though I have interacted with Harris through our respective love & passion of reading inside the twitterverse whilst I host #ChocLitSaturday the chat as well as privately; I treat each book as a ‘new experience’, whether I personally know the author OR whether I am reading a book by them for the first time. Similarly this applies to all future novels I read by an author I appreciate reading due to the compelling story-lines and characters they continuously bring to their novels and/or novellas.

An appreciator for the fiction Ms Harris writes:

The Road Back by Liz HarrisA Bargain Struck by Liz Harris

Historicals: The Road Back (review) | A Bargain Struck (review)

Contemporaries: Evie Undercover

Novellas: The Art of Deception and A Western Heart

I entered into the worlds of Ms Harris via her historicals A Bargain Struck and The Road Back wherein I travelled through time to two distinctively unique chapters of the historical past. I learnt about A Western Heart when I hosted a special guest feature revealling a bit more about it’s story and of course, I loved the back-story attached to The Road Back (via another Guest Post of hers). As I was mentioning during #ChocLitSaturday the chatty extension of #ChocLitSaturdays, I love soaking inside the collective works of authors I know I want to continue reading – not only if they exchange genres but if they tackle different kinds of stories than the breadth of which you were originally introduced too.

Ms Harris definitely falls into this category for me, as I appreciate the curious pursuit of crafting stories which have something to say that is outside the boxes of their genre designations. By appearances, you think you will know outright how a story of Harris’s might go along but until you’ve read her novels, your in for an unexpected surprise because she crafts them in a way that re-defines the genres they occupy. I appreciate this for several reasons – one it never leaves any genre exploration of hers left to stagnation and secondly, it gives me an edge of constantly moving in and out of my comfort zones. I like writers who challenge me – either by their choices of how they tell their stories or the topics they explore within them.

If a writer can fuse their inspiration across genre divides and still have a way of capturing your curious nature to consume those works of fiction, you’ve been doubly blessed! For me, Harris is a prime example of how writers love to explore different components of their literary wanderings whilst keeping their readers happily refreshed by the choices they are making on behalf of their characters. I’m not only a reader who dances through genre, but like Harris, I too, wander in and out of genres as a writer. It’s keenly wicked to watch another author find her wings and confidence growing between both the Historical and Contemporary worlds whilst inhabiting both novella and novels in length.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Notation on Cover Art: There was a change of cover-art for “Evie Undercover” as the original version can be seen via my ChocLit Next Reads List on Riffle. What is noted between the two, is the second cover is a bit more revealling of Evie’s personality – she’s an independent woman whose trying to make her way in the world as a journalist but she’s still in transition of learning how far she’s willing to go to get the story she’s commissioned to write. In the original cover, you see the faux Evie the one who was willing to hide behind a more conservative persona in order to hook her mark into thinking she was uninteresting and solely focused on her presumed task as his secretary. I think both covers are aptly suited to the novel and each speak to the story’s lead character in different ways.

Book Review | “Evie Undercover” by Liz Harris #ChocLitSaturdaysEvie Undercover
by Liz Harris
Illustrator/Cover Designer: Berni Stevens
Source: Direct from Publisher

When libel lawyer Tom Hadleigh acquires a perfect holiday home, a 14th century house that needs restoring, there’s a slight problem. The house is located in the beautiful Umbria countryside and Tom can’t speak a word of Italian.

Enter Evie Shaw, masquerading as an agency temp but in reality the newest reporter for gossip magazine Pure Dirt. Unbeknown to Tom, Italian speaking Evie has been sent by her manipulative editor to write an exposé on him. And the stakes are high – Evie’s job rests on her success.

Places to find the book:

ISBN: 9781781892404

Also by this author: A Bargain Struck, Guest Post (A Western Heart) by Liz Harris, Guest Post (The Road Back) by Liz Harris, The Road Back, Book Spotlight w/ Notes (The Lost Girl), Guest Post (The Lost Girl) by Liz Harris, The Art of Deception, The Lost Girl

Genres: Contemporary (Modern) Fiction (post 1945), Contemporary Romance, Romance Fiction, Romantic Suspense


Published by ChocLitUK

on 2nd September, 2015

Format: Paperback Edition

Pages: 244

Published by: ChocLitUK (@ChocLitUK)

Formats Available: Paperback, Audiobook and E-book

Converse via: #ChocLit

Read More

Divider

Posted Saturday, 19 March, 2016 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 21st Century, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bookish Discussions, Britian, British Literature, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Contemporary Romance, England, Fly in the Ointment, Green Publishing, Indie Author, Investigative Reporter | Journalist, Life Shift, Modern British Author, Modern British Literature, Modern Day, Romance Fiction, Romantic Comedy, Vulgarity in Literature

+Book Review+ The Road Back by Liz Harris #ChocLitSaturdays

Posted Saturday, 5 July, 2014 by jorielov , , , 5 Comments

Parajunkee Designs

The Road Back by Liz HarrisThe Road Back by Liz Harris

Author Connections: Personal Site | Blog

Facebook | Twitter | Converse via: #ChocLit

Illustrated By: Berni Stevens

 @circleoflebanon | Writer | Illustrator

Genre(s): Fiction | Romance | Time Shift

Forbidden Love | Drama | Historical

Published by: ChocLitUK, 6 September, 2012

Available Formats: Paperback, E-Book & Audiobook

Page Count: 314

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Acquired Book By:

I am a ChocLit reviewer who receives books of my choice in exchange for honest reviews! I received a complimentary copy of “The Road Back” from ChocLit via IPM (International Publisher’s Marketing) in exchange for an honest review! I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. 

On my Connection to Ms. Harris & my inspiration to read this novel:

When I began reading this novel, I was already hosting #ChocLitSaturdays chats on a regular basis. Eleven in the morning of a Saturday, has become a favourite hour for me to exchange conversation and joy with everyone who shows up to participate in a chat centered around ChocLit novels and the Romance branch of literature in general. Ms. Harris and I had exchanged a few conversations ahead of the chats beginning, and during one of those lovely moments she had mentioned to me about how she met Mr. Dexter (the writer behind Inspector Morse). I had an inkling I would appreciate reading this novel ahead of her mentioning that story to me, but afterwards, I knew I wanted to read this sooner rather than later! The fact that this story centers around an adoption story solidified my interest, as I will be adopting in the future myself.

Similar to my previous thoughts I shared about Ms. Courtenay, I have come to appreciate chatting with Ms. Harris, either through #ChocLitSaturdays chats or privately. She is most giving of her time and I have appreciated the opportunity to know the writer behind the stories I enjoy reading! She always shares her happy spirit in the chats too, and her insights into why she enjoys writing the books that speak to her the most.

I am disclosing this, to assure you that I can formulate an honest opinion, even though I have interacted with Harris through our respective love & passion of reading inside the twitterverse whilst I host #ChocLitSaturdays the chat as well as privately; I treat each book as a ‘new experience’, whether I personally know the author OR whether I am reading a book by them for the first time.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Book Synopsis: 

When Patricia accompanies her father, Major George Carstairs, on a trip to Ladakh, north of the Himalayas, in the early 1960s, she sees it as a chance to finally win his love. What she could never have foreseen is meeting Kalden – a local man destined by circumstances beyond his control to be a monk, but fated to be the love of her life.

Despite her father’s fury, the lovers are determined to be together, but can their forbidden love survive?

A wonderful story about a passion that crosses cultures, a love that endures for a lifetime, and the hope that can only come from revisiting the past.

Author Biography:Liz Harris

Liz was born in London and now lives in South Oxfordshire with her husband. After graduating from university with a Law degree, she moved to California where she led a varied life, trying her hand at everything from cocktail waitressing on Sunset Strip to working as secretary to the CEO of a large Japanese trading company, not to mention a stint as ‘resident starlet’ at MGM. On returning to England, Liz completed a degree in English and taught for a number of years before developing her writing career.

Liz’s debut novel, The Road Back, won a 2012 Book of the Year Award from Coffee Time Romance in the USA and her second novel A Bargain Struck was highly praised by the Daily Mail in the UK.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comGeographically Specific: Ladakh (north of the Himalaya Mountains):

Ms. Harris has a way of capturing the scenery and the depth of locale in such a beautiful scale of visual fortitude! As I was reading the passages expressing the angst and anguish of Patricia’s life in London, England and then, juxtapositioned that life against the life of Kalden in Ladakh, and the imagery is quite startling! She gives the reader such a window into their everyday worlds as if to breathe in a piece of that scenery for the very first time and know that you’ve gone to the location rather than merely ‘visiting’ the locale off the printed page. For Ladakh, she even used local words which would make sense from the character’s point of view to be authentic and true to his identity, as much as writing in the everyday elements I have always appreciated which are stitched into the fabric of the background.

I love how through Kalden’s eyes we are seeing the lush beauty of the glaciers within the Himalayan mountains, as much as we see the stark isolating quiet of being present in a place that has more silence than sound. She gives you the essence of being in Kalden’s shoes, and for that I am celebrating ‘going somewhere’ quite different and alluring from what I have previously read. I love Eastern Religions and Spirituality, and having this story set in a mystical place as a backdrop to the enveloping story was a very special treat.

My Review of The Road Back:

Grabbing you in the heart with her opening bits of narrative to explain the journey Amy is about to embark on to seek out her birth parents now that her adoptive parents have passed on is gripping to say the least! The fact that I am reading this novel as a Prospective Adoptive Mum, of whom is planning to adopt children out of foster care in the future puts the story firmly in the forefront of my mind and heart. I have always had a strong empathic heart for children who either do not know their birth families if removed from their homes as infants or young toddlers, or children who know of their birth families but have been removed as school-aged children. The connective ties of family stitched together become fragmented memories and a heartache of ambiguous loss for the ones who never knew them at all. My heart went out to Amy as she’s on the brink of breaching back into her past, uncovering the secreted mysteries of her birth mother, and wondering if she is brave enough to handle what she discovers.

Patricia is the elder sister of a special needs brother, who was physically affected by the siege of war; her childhood is altered the day her father chooses him over her in his affection. For a young child to realise how a father can choose which child to adore, dot, and love more than the other, has ramifications as the child grows. I felt for her in the sequences where not even her mother was strong enough to stand against her father when he was in the wrong. And, how disconcerting it was to watch as he did not realise how he was affecting his daughter.

Kalden’s entrance into the story is heart-wretching as his position in his family is that of the fourth son, a designation that has him sentenced towards being a monk rather than a husband and father. In his culture, a fourth son cannot inherit land at least not in his family, where the land is divided by three and unable to be partitioned off into fourths. For such a young lad to enter the story, the weight of his heart bleds out of his scenes, giving us a heartfelt grasp of his reality despite the youth of his eight years.

The beautiful irony is that both Patricia and Kalden’s upbringings were a bit similar to each other, in that neither of their families elected to place their needs first or in any measure of importance. They were each self-reliant at a young age, and they each treasured their family’s affection but knew that for whichever reason, they were not the children in the family of whom theirs would consider had worth. Their lifepaths were already on a route towards convergence long before their encounter in Ladakh. Two souls from two very different worlds, and yet on the heart level, their spirits were entwined by the circumstances of their lives.

Tragedy affects people in different ways, and the unique twist in the story for me was in realising that out of the grief for her brother, Patricia turnt her full attention to her father rather than drawing closer to her Mum. Whereas Kalden’s world was tethered and tied to a missionary family whose only hope in life was to bring education to his village; yet the prejudice his village gave them in return shattered his hopes for a familial connection. Each of them were searching for something outside the tangible and outside the scope of what they fully understood. Life is lived forward and understood only in the hours in which we truly take a pause to resolve the angst of our souls.

An emotionally gutting story about two entwined soul mates who are magnetically connected to each other despite distance and circumstances attempting to separate them. My heart was full, my head was wrenched with a desire to know the ending, but it is not an ending you want to rush. You have to go through each step of the narrative, allowing their story (Patricia & Kalden) to absorb into you and become a part of you. Theirs is a love story that lifts up your own soul as you read the passages, and gives new meaning of hope through the transcendence of love set against the greatest odds two people could ever want to survive. This started out as an adopted daughter seeking her birth parents, but in the end, it is about a romance between two people who were forbidden from being together and found solace in their union.

Time Shift rather than Time Slip:

I appreciated the flow of the story being encapsulated inside of a ‘time shift’ rather than a ‘time slip’ sequencing, as it gave a strong sense of each character’s reality as the story was told. The start of the novel itself was with a proposition of unearthing information about Amy’s birth parents, yet it is where her journey takes her to find her birth mother & birth father that has such a confluence of drama and heart;  you will find that you do not want to put the book down! The pacing is set to its own rhythm as each chapter unfolds a new piece of either Patricia or Kalden’s lives, taking us one step closer to understanding who they were as adults. The novel is also broken into two distinctive parts, where the latter of the two is the summation of the whole.

A Note of Appreciation on behalf of the writing style of Ms. Harris:

This is the second novel I have read on behalf of Ms. Harris, and it is her début novel! I am thankful that I have had the honour to read two of her novels now, as her writing style within the heart of the narrative is fully conjoined, as she is a writer who puts her heart into her pen. She writes her heart out, and I will always appreciate that style, as it mirrors my own. I even appreciate the fact that she can move and shift through locations, time sequences, and elements of distinction between where her characters and story are set alive. She has the ability to become a chameleon as she writes one story to the next. This is a quality that is appreciated because she gives us such an intense view of her worlds and characters, with a pulse on who they are and how they lived that each story becomes an experience your willingly thankful to have had afterwards.Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

This book review is courtesy of ChocLitUK,

ChocLitUK Reviewer

Previously I have happily hosted Ms. Harris three times on Jorie Loves A Story:

a book review of A Bargain Struck,

an Author Guest Post on behalf of writing Western Fiction,

and an Author Guest Post on behalf of The Road Back.

check out my upcoming bookish events and mark your calendars!

#ChocLitSaturdays | a feature exclusive to Jorie Loves A Story

*NEWSFLASH* : Each Saturday henceforth onward from here in July shall feature a new ChocLit book review! For the updated schedule, please visit my Bookish Events page! The next novel I will be reading & sharing my thoughts on will be “Flight to Coorah Creek” by Janet Gover!

For those who are unware of #ChocLitSaturdays, the chat, we meet regular @ 11am EST / 4pm London! I created the chat to encourage new readers to discover not only the ChocLit novels I am showcasing & reading through my blog feature of the same name, but to help draw a close knit group of Romance booklovers, writers, and appreciators together for an hour of solid friendship and wicked sweet conversation!

All are welcome to attend! Tweet me or leave a comment in this thread for further details!

{SOURCES: Author photograph, Author Biography, Book Synopsis, and Book Cover were provided by ChocLitUK and were used by permission. Book Review badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. Jorie Loves A Story badge created by Ravven with edits by Jorie in FotoFlexer. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

Divider

Posted Saturday, 5 July, 2014 by jorielov in 20th Century, Adoption, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Equality In Literature, Family Life, Father-Daughter Relationships, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Indie Author, Modern British Literature, Monastery, Monk, Mother-Son Relationships, Passionate Researcher, Psychological Abuse, Religious Orders, Romance Fiction, Time Shift, Writing Style & Voice

#ChocLitSaturdays Author Guest Post featuring Liz Harris on the catalyst of inspiration behind “The Road Back”.

Posted Saturday, 7 June, 2014 by jorielov , , , 2 Comments

Guest Post by ParajunkeeLiz Harris

Proposed Topic: What is the catalyst of inspiration for your story The Road Back? As this topic was first inspired by a suggestion of Ms. Courtenay last week during #ChocLitSaturdays (the chat!), in which I felt she had a great idea to talk about the catalyst which inspires the creation of stories and perhaps even, the catalyst inside the stories themselves.

Although I am working on extra features to include with forthcoming book reviews for ChocLit novels being featured lateron this month (esp on behalf of Christina Courtenay & Sarah Tranter), I was quite happily surprised by how this particular Guest Post was knitted together rather spontaneously and on the spur of inspiration which spun out of a #ChocLitSaturdays chat! The chats which are hosted to compliment my #ChocLitSaturdays blog features, as a way to expand the dialogue past what is posted on my blog, by taking the book discussion online and allowing more readers to participate in the bookish delight therein, I am finding that the chat itself is both uplifting and inspiring to those who attend either weekly or each chance they are available to participate! This is one instance of seeing how the joy of the chat is allowing us to engage directly with each other in a conversation which endears itself to expanding our conversations not only inside the stories themselves but into the heart of what inspires the stories to be written in the first place! For the Hostess of the chat, I could not be happier to see how the chat is transforming our lives by giving us the breadth of what is discussed and shared each week!

Let us take a moment to see how an unexpected photo album with snapshots of India, led to where The Road Back took Ms. Harris as she created its central heart of the story!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

The Road Back by Liz Harris
Book Synopsis: When Patricia accompanies her father, Major George Carstairs, on a trip to Ladakh, north of the Himalayas, in the early 1960s, she sees it as a chance to finally win his love. What she could never have foreseen is meeting Kalden – a local man destined by circumstances beyond his control to be a monk, but fated to be the love of her life. Despite her father’s fury, the lovers are determined to be together, but can their forbidden love survive? A wonderful story about a passion that crosses cultures, a love that endures for a lifetime, and the hope that can only come from revisiting the past.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

}: The catalyst Liz Harris

found as inspiration for creating “The Road Back”! :{

It’s an easy thing to tell you the catalyst for The Road Back – it was the album compiled by my late uncle after his visit to Ladakh in the 1940s. While stationed with the army in North India, he’d managed to get one of the few authorised passes to visit Ladakh, an Indian province north of the Himalayas, and on his return to England, he’d assembled his photos and notes into an album, and given it to his daughter, my cousin.

Photo Credit: Harris Famiy Ablum provided by Liz Harris
Photo Credit: Harris Famiy Ablum provided by Liz Harris

But to wind the clock back a little …

I’d been writing for several years, hoping all the time that I would one day be published. Always in the back of my mind was the advice I’d been given by several agents; namely, it’s not enough for an unpublished author to write well – there must be something original about their story.

Have you ever tried to come up with something original? If you haven’t, take it from me – it’s the hardest thing to do. In the end, you just have to give up the mental torture of looking for something that’s not been done before, and get on with writing the best book you can, hoping that it will ultimately grip the agents and editors who read it. I’d written one paragraph of a new novel, and the telephone rang.

At the other end of the line was my cousin, who now lives in Australia. She wanted my help with finding a home for the album compiled by my uncle after his trip to Ladakh. That was the first time I’d ever heard of Ladakh and I had to look it up in an atlas to find out where it was.

Happily, I was able to help her with the album and it’s now in London, in the British Library. I had the album for two weeks before handing it over to the Library, and I read it from cover to cover, and fell in love with Ladakh. I knew that I had to set a novel there, both for the natural attractions of the province and also because just as I hadn’t heard of it, lot of other people wouldn’t either, which meant it would be original.

From the very start, I knew that my heroine, Patricia, was born in the 1950s and brought up in Belsize Park, a part of London I know well. I saw her as a lonely child, living with parents who’d been torn apart by grief over a tragedy that had happened to the family in the past. She’d been sitting in my head for some time, waiting for a moment to come out. This was her moment.

But I didn’t yet know my hero, Kalden. All I knew was that he was born and brought up in a Ladakhi village in the Buddhist part of the province. While I waited to ‘see’ him clearly, I carried on researching Ladakh . And then one day, I read how the lack of rain had influenced the roles played by the different members of the family, and I felt a powerful surge of excitement. I knew I had my story!

Liz Harris

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comAuthor Connections:

 Personal Site | Blog | Facebook | Twitter

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

First of all, I want to thank Ms. Harris for composing an extra Guest Feature on the fly inspiration of the next #ChocLitSaturdays topic of discussion! I appreciated her willingness to add an anchor for not only the book discussion that was going to take place for this week’s gathering, but as a way to bridge the discussion back inside the book itself! The main reason I wanted to request The Road Back originally stemmed from a conversation we had shared on Twitter through DMs. When she had told me of how her path had crossed with Mr. Dexter and how he had reacted to her first ChocLit novel, I knew I wanted to read the book that granted all the others to come forward afterwards! Sometimes the enthusiasm of another reader can ignite an inspiration for someone else to pick up a novel and find delight inside reading it themselves. The story of how writers support and encourage each other where Ms. Harris lives and works as a writer was part of the curiosity for me, as I have not yet found that same level of acceptance in my own life and wanderings as a writer. I find the most support and sense of community online (especially since I went on Twitter!), but to find a way to knit together with writers in real life is one of my fervent hopes and goals as a writer who loves to read an eclectic variety of literature!

Family albums always delighted me as a child, as they were windows of insight into the past – conversation starters which would not only inspire the ability to keep the living histories alive and well in my family, but they were little portals of insight into a different time of living. I loved gaining the knowledge of how life looked as it was lived in the past, as much as aligning the photographs up against the stories which were happily told and hungrily consumed by a girl who always ‘loved stories’ such as I! I loved finding out that the album page shown in today’s Guest Post by Ms. Harris stems from her Uncle’s trip to India! Talk about a country I always was fascinated with and intrigued to learn more about — I even appreciate their style of story-telling in motion pictures, where it combines the dreamstate sequences with the emotional heightening of dialogue and drama. The fact they combine musicals into nearly all of their Bollywood films is another plus in my book! There is a strong draw as well towards India, as I have held a deep appreciation for Buddhism since my early twenties when I first started researching the collective works of His Holiness the Dalia Lama and of Thich Nhat Hanh.

To have learnt that a photo album about a place not yet known could be the catalyst of discovery towards tapping into characters whose story could only be told if the keystone piece of their ‘place’ of locale could be brought to the surface truly clicked inside for me! I felt the same way as I was discovering where to ‘set’ my multi-generational saga in 2008 (the Nano novel). I, too, agree that the hardest part in writing is the originality of our stories to resonate with an audience. That is singularly the most daunting prospect of a writer, and yet, I agree with Ms. Harris on the level that we each have to follow our instincts and our hearts. We have to go where we are led to go with our stories and with our characters, even if by some serendipitous hope the story we pen may or may not be entirely original against the previous ones already in print; perhaps there is a kernel of uniqueness inside what we pen that merits the publication of its tale. We have to strive to always remain true to ourselves whilst we honour the characters as they alight in our hearts.

This was such a beautiful testament of the path a writer takes to create their story and how the creating of stories is oft-times hinged on the moment a catalytic impulse takes us somewhere wholly new and different!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

This Author Guest Post is courtesy of ChocLitUK,

ChocLitUK Reviewercheck out my upcoming bookish event and mark your calendars!

Previously I reviewed “The Maid of Milan” by Beverley Eikli

& coming up next is “The Road Back” by Liz Harris.

This Guest Feature has an accompanying chat today | Join us!?

#ChocLitSaturdays Twitter Chat & Blog Feature of Jorie Loves A Story
#ChocLitSaturdays Twitter Chat & Blog Feature of Jorie Loves A Story

((update on Friday)) : The chat will be featuring a Guest Co-Host as I fell ill two days ahead of #ChocLitSaturdays which put a stop on my readings and preparations for not only “The Road Back” review but for my review of “Mrs. Poe” which was meant to go live on Friday. Therefore, I have chosen Bairbre (one of the Special Guest Contributors of JLAS) to step into my shoes and take the reins of the chat! I am hoping to make an appearance, but I am going to yield the tweeting bits to Bairbre. This will be her first tweet chat, but she is used to the platform of IMs, so I do not foresee any problems. I was offline on Thursday & most of Friday, to where cancelling was not something I felt I should do. Teas and heaps of rest are helping my recovery, but I did not want to disappoint anyone for #ChocLitSaturdays.

Especially as I will be taking a hiatus next Saturday, the 14th where there will not be a chat at all, as I will be celebrating my birthday! :) The next #ChocLitSaturdays chat will be on the 21st of June!! I am planning to post my review for “The Road Back” by early next week, as I finish reading the story alongside Mrs. Poe; in case anyone was wondering about either book review. I am going to wrap myself inside “Flight to Coorah Creek” & “The Silent Touch of Shadows” as well, as I wanted to read Romances ahead of my birthday. As I physically gain my strength back, I cannot think of a better way to pass the hours than curled into story full of strong characters, a dash of intrigue, and a bit of romance! Can you!?

Similar to blog tours where I feature book reviews, as I choose to highlight an author via a Guest Post, Q&A, Interview, etc., I do not receive compensation for featuring supplemental content on my blog. I provide the questions for interviews and topics for the guest posts; wherein I receive the responses back from publicists and authors directly. 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.

{SOURCES: Author photograph, Book Covers for “The Road Back”, as well as the cowboy picture were provided by Liz Harris and were used by permission. The Book Synopsis for “The Road Back” and the ChocLit Reviewer badge provided by ChocLitUK and used with permission. Guest Post badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. #ChocLitSaturdays Twitter Chat Badge created by Jorie in PicMonkey. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

Divider

Posted Saturday, 7 June, 2014 by jorielov in Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Bookish Discussions, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, India, Indie Author, Reader Submitted Guest Post (Topic) for Author, Romance Fiction

#ChocLitSaturdays Author Guest Post featuring Liz Harris on how Wyoming stole her romantic heart!

Posted Saturday, 31 May, 2014 by jorielov , , , , , , 3 Comments

Guest Post by ParajunkeeLiz Harris

Proposed Topic: You have a certain flair for writing Western Romance set on American shores, specifically within the heart of Wyoming! What is it about our Western state nestled into the Rockies which draws you back time and again to  stir our emotions and set a Romance afire in this particular location?

One of my earlier ChocLitUK novels to have consumed and readily enjoyed was A Bargain Struck by Liz Harris! I had selected it to read initially as it has been a bit too long since I’ve dipped back into my Western roots and read a novel set in the Old West about a couple living on the frontier! I have always been drawn into stories about the Old West, especially sagas of those who forged West from the East during the height of the pioneer days, as much as soaking into a novel about a working ranch with a heap of cowboys wrangling cattle or horses alike! I love the freshness of the air and the adventure of the spirit of the West woven into the backdrop of the stories! The West is not like any other place in the United States, as it is one of those unique locales where you can draw in a deep breath and feel as though you have stepped into a new place entirely!

I’ve lived off the recollection and memories of my Mum, and my grandparents for most of my life as they were the ones in the family who were able to spend the most time exploring that part of the country! The lushness of the wild bits of the forest against the untame portions of the rock outcroppings of the Rockies themselves always left a sense of wonder inside me! Of course, being a girl who was a budding horsewoman in her younger years did stoke and stir the appeal as well! Once you’ve gained the pleasure of being in the saddle, astride a horse and appreciate the connection between the rider and the mount, there is no going back! Dreaming about riding on the open ranges is enough to ache for a ride similar to those seen in the film Flicka. I still get a hitching of excitement inside me when I find new writers who write about the West in a way that is tangible, real, honest, and a strong representation of where it is set. When I read A Bargain Struck I knew I had found a Romance writer who was writing after my own heart’s tug and pull to go there one day in person!

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

A Western Heart by Liz Harris

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

}: How Liz Harris

found a passion for Wyoming! :{

Photo Credit: Liz Harris, taken whilst on a research trip to Wyoming
Photo Credit: Liz Harris,
taken whilst on a research trip to Wyoming

YES, IT’S BACK TO WYOMING AGAIN. I JUST CAN’T KEEP AWAY!

“A WESTERN HEART”

A Choc Lit Lite novella, published as an e-book in May 2014

First of all, many thanks for inviting me to be a guest on #ChocLitSaturdays, Jorie. I’m very much looking forward to meeting you and others this Saturday afternoon, 31st May.

There seems to be a common theme in some of my books: A Bargain Struck is set in Wyoming 1887, A Western Heart in Wyoming 1880, and Golden Tiger, the novel I’m writing at present, in Wyoming in the 1870s and early 1880s.

Why am I so fascinated by Wyoming, you might wonder.

Is it because they were streaks ahead of the rest of the US in the rights they gave to women and I appreciate this?

For example, women were given the right to vote in 1869, making Wyoming Territory the first in the US to do so. Women served on juries in Wyoming from 1870, and in the same year, a female court bailiff was appointed, and also the first female justice of the peace in the US. In 1924, Wyoming became the first state to elect a female governor. Owing to its civil-rights history, the nickname of Wyoming is ‘The Equality State’, and the official state motto is ‘Equal Rights’. Is that the reason, you might ask.

No, that isn’t why I’ve set several novels in Wyoming.

I’ve done so because I’ve always loved the history of the American West and because I had such a fabulous time when I visited Wyoming in 2012. Wyoming is the heart of an historical period that’s so romantic, so exciting, so inspiring.

As a child I used to dream that I was a pioneer who’d travelled west in a covered wagon and was living on a homestead, surrounded by horses and a host of other animals. When I grew up, the dream slightly changed: I was still in the American West and I’d arrived on a wagon, but I was riding into a glorious sunset, a tanned, handsome cowboy at my side.

A Bargain Struck by Liz HarrisThe American West was an inevitable choice of background when I decided to write a historical romantic novel, and A Bargain Struck was born.  Connor (yes, tanned and handsome) is looking for a wife to help on his homestead, look after his young daughter Bridget and provide him with an heir, whereas Ellen is just looking for somewhere to call home after a tragedy in her life.

When Ellen arrives, it’s clear she hasn’t been entirely honest with Connor, but for reasons of his own, he goes ahead with what is a business agreement – one that was pretty commonplace at that time – and marries her. I set A Bargain Struck in the Savery area, 100 miles south of the railroad, in the shadow of the beautiful Sierra Madre mountains. For A Western Heart, I wrote about two ranches north of the Overland Trail. My story is about the rivalry of two sisters, and finding one’s heart’s desire.

Rose McKinley, the daughter of a successful ranch owner, and Will Hyde, the heir to a neighbouring ranch, (yes, tanned and handsome again), have grown up like brother and sister. It’s understood by their family and friends that one day they’ll marry and unite their two ranches. Rose is certain that nothing will stop that from happening. But then a handsome stranger rides in.

As for Golden Tiger … No, it’s too soon to talk about that yet.

I look forward to talking some more on Saturday, both generally and about my books and those written by others, and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to say hello beforehand. Thank you, Jorie.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.comAuthor Connections:

 Personal Site | Blog | Facebook | Twitter

Converse via: #ABargainStruck, #AWesternHeart, & #ChocLit

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

The pleasure is all mine, Ms. Harris! I have been wanting to host you on my blog ever since I read A Bargain Struck, which pre-dates when I complimented my blog feature of #ChocLitSaturdays with the happy chatterment of the twitterverse chat hosted through Twubs! Saturdays have become a fond day for me, and I appreciate that you not only took the time to explain why Wyoming draws you into its embrace in literary pursuits, but that you will be with us as we converse about the topic as well lateron this morning!

Of all the tidbits of information my Mum and grandparents shared with me about the West and about Wyoming specifically, I do not recollect they knew about it being rich in Civil Rights nor on the forefront of Women’s Rights! Two causes that I advocate for myself, and am happy to have found a state that I find inspiring from the point of view of being in awe of its natural beauty, has such a wonderful legacy to impart in other ways! I loved how your dream as a child shifted perspectives as you grew older, but how you kept a bit of who you were then in the dream you have now! We apparently grew up with similar dreams, as I was always darting off into a Western saga of some sort, including reading a healthy amount of horse dramas which included The Black Stallion series, The Saddle Club, and the Throroughbred series. I did not even realise it was called ‘Cowboy Fiction’ for the romance novels set in and around life on the larger ranches which involved the horsemen I loved to read about so much as I grew older.

As far as living on the frontier itself or near the prairies, I have to thank Little House on the Prairie both the book series and the television series for making me question whether or not I could handle life in the 1800s frontier! There were aspects of it that I still appreciate now such as the self-sufficiency of raising your own fruit and veg to curating the love of old world arts and crafts! I especially would be keen to learn how to can and preserve properly as well!

You have me most curious now about reading A Western Heart, but alas, I will have to await either this novella to be placed inside of a collection in a print copy or tucked into a future release of yours as a ‘bonus’ extra surprise! As I know sometimes e-novellas can be printed into forthcoming releases by authors I enjoy reading! Ooh! Is it me, or was I the only one hoping for a kernel of insight into Golden Tiger? The name alone eludes to so many different avenues of where you could take the story, I am properly intrigued without knowing which direction to ponder! Alas! It will simply be my ‘next Liz Harris read’ to eagerly await and happily celebrate once it’s released! OR at the very least within the nearing of publication and can be spoken about outside of its whispering origins!

How wicked then, that we each have such a deep appreciation for Western Romance!?

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

This Author Guest Post is courtesy of ChocLitUK,

ChocLitUK Reviewercheck out my upcoming bookish event and mark your calendars!

Previously I reviewed “A Bargain Struck

& coming up next is “The Road Back” by Liz Harris.

This Guest Feature has an accompanying chat today | Join us!?

#ChocLitSaturdays Twitter Chat & Blog Feature of Jorie Loves A Story
#ChocLitSaturdays Twitter Chat & Blog Feature of Jorie Loves A Story

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

And, here is a bit of news I found whilst preparing this Guest Feature today, as a wicked round of Congratulations is long since overdue on my behalf:

{SOURCES: Author photograph, Book Covers for “A Western Heart” & “A Bargain Struck”, as well as the cowboy picture were provided by Liz Harris and were used by permission. Guest Post badge provided by Parajunkee to give book bloggers definition on their blogs. #ChocLitSaturdays Twitter Chat Badge created by Jorie in PicMonkey. Post dividers by Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets embedded from codes provided by Twitter.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2014.

Divider

Posted Saturday, 31 May, 2014 by jorielov in 19th Century, American Old West, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book Spotlight of E-Book (ahead of POD/print edition), Bookish Discussions, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, Indie Author, Reader Submitted Guest Post (Topic) for Author, Romance Fiction

Page 1 of 212