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Showing posts from April, 2015

Weekend reads and not doing much...

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I'm still slowly working my way through Elizabeth Berg's The Dream Lover. It hasn't quite grabbed me, although full disclosure, my brain feels quite cotton-y and stuffed. I thought I was suffering from allergies but I now think I've got a spring cold, and it's a doozy. That, combined with a work retreat and the start of a 10-week writing class, and I feel like I've no time and very little focus.

Since I'd done virtually no work on my novel since having a baby, my wife encouraged me to sign up for a ten-week "novel in progress" class at Grub Street, a local writing center. Excitingly, the instructor is historical novelist Tim Weed, which is such a treat. Although I had been feeling very blue about my novel and thinking I should just quit, I've left each class (two so far) feeling like my writing has great potential and that I might be able to develop my skill as a novelist. As I have the second half of my sabbatical coming up this summer, I'…

Book Spotlight: Scent of Triumph

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Out now, Scent of Triumph, a historical novel set during World War II. Learn more and check out book reviews at France Book Tours -- and be sure to check out the international giveaway below.

Scent of Triumph: A Novel of Perfume And Passion
Jan Moran
St. Martin’s Press, 384 pages
Goodreads
When French perfumer Danielle Bretancourt steps aboard a luxury ocean liner, leaving her son behind in Poland with his grandmother, she has no idea that her life is about to change forever. The year is 1939, and the declaration of war on the European continent soon threatens her beloved family, scattered across many countries. Traveling through London and Paris into occupied Poland, Danielle searches desperately for her the remains of her family, relying on the strength and support of Jonathan Newell-Grey, a young captain. Finally, she is forced to gather the fragments of her impoverished family and flee to America. There she vows to begin life anew, in 1940s Los Angeles.

There, through determination…

Mademoiselle Chanel by C.W. Gortner

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Title:Mademoiselle Chanel
Author: C.W. Gortner

Genre: Fiction (Historical / 20th Century / France / Paris / Historical Figure Fictionalized / Fashion / Love Affairs / World War II)
Publisher/Publication Date: William Morrow (3/17/2015)
Source:France Book Tours

Rating: Looooooooooooooooved -- a fav of 2015.
Did I finish?: Yes.
One-sentence summary: Famed fashion designer Coco Chanel tells her story, from her childhood as a seamstress in a convent to her rise as one the world's trend setters, as well as her fall from grace after World War Two.
Reading Challenges:Historical Fiction

Do I like the cover?: Eh -- I'm not, but this black and white design is a nod to Chanel's iconic style.

I'm reminded of...: Melanie Benjamin, Margaret George

First line: The herd gathers below.

Buy, Borrow, or Avoid?: Buy!!

Why did I get this book?: Gortner's work is stand out and I wanted to see his take on this legendary, controversial figure.

Review: The luxurious Chanel brand is iconic -- the perfume…