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The Divining Wand’s Summer TBR List

June 21, 2012 By: larramiefg Category: News

Dear Authors/Readers/Friends —

The summer solstice occurred in the Northern Hemisphere yesterday evening so welcome to the first full day of summer and the beginning of my vacation!

Last June this literary Fairy Godmother felt The Divining Wand had featured “the very best of the best for everyone’s enjoyment,” however the books appearing here — during the first six months of 2012 — have been even better! Please look through the archives and choose to read something that’s already been published. Honestly you’ll enjoy all of them. I did and wish I could go back and read them again for the first time!

Since that’s not possible I followed my heart, hunches, and curiosity to put together a personal summer TBR list — rather eclectic and promising:

First To-Be-Read:

~ Haole Wood {Kindle Edition] by Dee DeTarsio

~ Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

~ The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty

~ Can I Get an Amen? by Sarah Healy

~ Flat-Out-Love [Kindle Edition] by Jessica Park

~ Mission to Paris by Alan Furst

~ The Innocents by Francesca Segal

~ Wife 22 by Melanie Gideon

Looking Forward To:

~ The Divorce Girl by Caryn Mirriam-Goldberg (July)

~ The Care and Handling of Roses with Thorns by Margaret Dilloway I(August)

~ Hemingway’s Girl by Erika Robuck (Advanced Reader Copy)

Curious About:

~ In the Kingdom of Men by Kim Barnes

~ An Uncommon Education by Elizabeth Percer

~ Trapeze by Simon Mawer

~ I Never Promised You a Goodie Bag by Jennifer Gilbert

~ Swimming to Elba by Silvia Avallone

Please stay tuned for updates. If you follow me on Twitter and/or are a friend on Facebook, I’ll be sure to comment on these titles.

Wishing you a relaxing, healthy summer complete with the best in reading….enjoy!

As ever —
Larramie

The Divining Wand’s Summer TBR List

June 28, 2011 By: larramiefg Category: News

Dear Authors/Readers/Friends —

What a spectacular year it’s been here at The Divining Wand. From authors revealed, guests posts, responses to writing/literary questions, and the presentations/reviews, this Fairy Godmother — with great pride and joy — believes she has introduced the very best of the best for everyone’s enjoyment.

But what about this summer? After asking the authors for their summer TBR lists, I decided it might be worthwhile to share my personal list too.

Catching Up On:

~The Inner Circle by Brad Meltzer

~Twenty-Somewhere [Kindle Edition] by Kristan Hoffman (Yes our most loyal commenter Kristan!)

~Here, Home, Hope by Kaira Rouda

Looking Forward To:

~Centuries of June by Keith Donohue

~Maine by J. Courtney Sullivan

~Silver Girl by Elin Hilderbrand

~Game of Secrets by Dawn Tripp

~The Autobiography of Mrs. Tom Thumb by Melanie Benjamin

~Before Ever After by Samantha Sotto

~Girls in White Dresses by Jennifer Close

~The Winters in Bloom by Lisa Tucker (e-galley)

First To-Be-Read:

The entire Harry Potter series. It’s time for this Fairy Godmother to meet the Boy Wizard!

Since the list grows daily, you might be wondering where I’ll ever find the time? Well, after almost five years of blogging, I’m granting myself a summer vacation. Imagining two months free of posts and deadlines is impossible, I don’t remember what that feels like but will savor every bit of reclaiming the experience.

If you follow me on Twitter and/or are a friend on Facebook, I plan on being there as well as making personal blog tours.. So, if you see me, please at least wave.

Happy summer to you and thank you all!

As ever —
Larramie

Current and Coming Attractions

September 16, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: Advance News, Book Trailers, News

Although The Divining Wand authors have been busy writing, publishing, and keeping TBR books piled high, it’s only natural to wonder what’s next for our favorite writers. And what follows is a tasty sampling to whet your reading appetite.

* * * * *

As of today, Thursday, September 16, 2010, Eileen Cook (Unpredictable, What Would Emma Do? YA, Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood YA, releasing in paperback September 21, 2010, The Education of Hailey Kendrick YA coming January 4, 2011, and Fourth Grade Fairy ages 9 – 11 coming April 19, 2011) celebrates the paperback release of Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood with the first video in a series of six.

As Eileen explains:

“The idea behind the videos is that the snotty Lauren Wood has her own video blog where she offers popularity tips. You can probably imagine what great advice Lauren has! I am going to have videos come out every couple days until all six are up. Please visit Lauren’s new website and click on the You Tube icon.

And now for the future:

~Robin Antalek (The Summer We Fell Apart):

“I’m currently working on a book set on a private island off the west coast of Florida about a woman who has experienced the premature death of her mother and sets out to find the family she never knew while her mother was alive. Tentative title: The Blooms of Ella Island.”

~Stacey Ballis (The Spinster Sisters, Room for Improvement, the rest in Bibliography, and Good Enough to Eat):

“Working on a new book that is a real departure for me, much more mainstream fiction. It is a questing story of a young woman who may or may not be dying, and how it explodes her quiet life.”

~Melanie Benjamin (Alice I Have Been):

“I’ll be appearing at the Southern Festival of Books in Nashville, TN, October 8-10. The paperback release of ALICE I HAVE BEEN is December 28th and I’ll be touring for that in January, dates & locations TBA. I’ve been blogging for the Huffington Post, and just joined a new group blog called the Girlfriends’ Book Club. My next historical fiction will be released by Random House in August of 2011; I’ll be announcing the title of the book very shortly!”

~Meg Waite Clayton’s The Wednesday Sisters, The Four Ms. Bradwells coming March 22, 2011):

“The Four Ms. Bradwells, coming March 22 from Ballantine. And my first novel, The Language of Light, will be reissued in paperback in the summer.”

The flap copy:

Meg Waite Clayton’s national bestseller The Wednesday Sisters was a word-of-mouth sensation and book club favorite. Now the beloved author is back with a page-turning novel that explores the secrets we keep, even from those closest to us, and celebrates the enduring power of friendship.

Mia, Laney, Betts, and Ginger, best friends since law school, have reunited for a long weekend as Betts awaits Senate confirmation of her appointment to the Supreme Court. Nicknamed “the Ms. Bradwells” during their first class at the University of Michigan Law School in 1979—when only three women had ever served full Senate terms and none had been appointed to the Court—the four have supported one another through life’s challenges: marriages and divorces, births and deaths, career setbacks and triumphs large and small. Betts was, and still is, the Funny One. Ginger, the Rebel. Laney, the Good Girl. And Mia, the Savant.

But when the Senate hearings uncover a deeply buried skeleton in the friends’ collective closet, the Ms. Bradwells retreat to a summer house on the Chesapeake Bay, where they find themselves reliving a much darker period in their past—one that stirs up secrets they’ve kept for, and from, one another, and could change their lives forever.

Once again, Meg Waite Clayton writes inspiringly about the complex circumstances facing women and the heartfelt friendships that hold them together. Insightful and affecting, The Four Ms. Bradwells is also a captivating tale of how far people will go to protect the ones they love.

~Meredith Cole (Posed for Murder, Dead in the Water):

“I’ve just finished up the third Lydia McKenzie mystery, tentatively called “‘An Artful Death.'” Lydia is hired by a real estate company to help catch illegal tenants. She finds an elderly Russian woman murdered in her apartment and suspects that the landlord got impatient. In the midst of her investigation, her parents arrive with another mystery to solve.”

~Tanya Egan Gibson (How to Buy a Love of Reading):

“I’m working on a novel set in an underwater-themed amusement park. The main character is an eighteen-year-old former competitive figure skater whose now skates in the park’s ice show wearing a full-body jellyfish costume. One of the most fun parts of writing this so far is brainstorming ideas for amusement park rides! (My five-year-old daughter has been helping me.)”

~Kristy Kiernan (Between Friends, Matters of Faith, and Catching Genius):

“I’m working on my new novel, A THOUSAND CRANES.”

~Allie Larkin (Stay):

“I’m working on a piece for an anthology of dog-related essays that Wade Rouse is editing called I’M NOT THE BIGGEST BITCH IN THIS RELATIONSHIP. Published in 2011, proceeds will benefit The Humane Society and other animal causes.”

~Kate Ledger (Remedies):

“I’ve begun a new novel. If it were a pregnancy, I’m in that hesitant phase of the first trimester, and I’m not ready to discuss too much. I can tell this: The next novel also centers on family relationships and has medical themes because that’s what I’m interested in. Having finished a book, I feel I have a good sense of the arc of a novel, the overall shape it will take. I also know how long and hard the process is. My hope is that this gestation will be briefer than the last.”

~ Shana Mahaffey (Sounds Like Crazy):

“I am working on my second novel right now. I can tell you that the book is about a woman who has to correct a mistake she doesn’t know she made and guiding her through this process is her best friends dead brother.”

~Leah Stewart (Husband and Wife, The Myth of You and Me, Body of a Girl):

“I’m working on a book about adult siblings. It started out being about location and identity (I was going to call it ELSEWHERE) but it’s gotten further and further away from that theme to become about all the complex emotions of siblinghood. Which, alas, probably means I have to think of a new title.”

~Wendy Tokunaga (Midori By Moonlight, Love in Translation):

“I’m working on a non-fiction book called “‘Marriage in Translation: Interviews with Foreign Wives of Japanese Husbands,'” which takes an intimate and sometimes surprising look at the rewards and challenges of cross-cultural relationships. I’m also teaching an online class this Fall through Stanford University Extension called “‘Writing Novels About Women’s Lives.”‘

* * * * *

Announcement: The winner of Leah Stewart’s Husband and Wife is Shannon. Congratulations!

Please email diviningwand (at) gmail (dot) com with your mailing address and your book will be sent out promptly.

And thank you all for entering. If my wand was truly magical, there would be a book for everyone.

Welcoming New Authors, Introducing 2011 Debs

August 26, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: Advance News, News

With Labor Day only a weekend away, it’s a time for change and new beginnings. During the summer TDW welcomed new authors to the site and, once again, I’m proud to announce the addition of the following four writers soon be seen on these pages:

~Melissa Senate (The Mosts YA, The Secret of Joy, the rest in Bibliography, and The Love Goddess’ Cooking School coming October 26, 2010)

~Stacey Ballis (The Spinster Sisters, Room for Improvement, the rest in Bibliography, and Good Enough to Eat coming September 7, 2010)

~Karen McQuestion (A Scattered Life is the first self-published Kindle book to be optioned for film. Now, in response to reader enthusiasm, the novel has been published in paperback by AmazonEncore, Amazon’s new publishing division.)

~Richard Hine (Russell Wiley Is Out to Lunch coming October 12, 2010)

Also in a state of change is The Debutante Ball with their 2011 Season beginning this Monday, August 30, 2010. In a recent post, “bowing out” Debutante Alicia Bessette (Simply from Scratch that People magazine described as “tasty” in the Great Reads section of 8/14 issue) offered a brief glimpse of the five new Debs:

“Fans of the Debutante Ball are in for a phenomenal treat this upcoming year. Here’s a sneak peek at the awesome books penned by our five new dancin’ queens:

Eleanor Brown is the author of The Weird Sisters, the story of three adult sisters who return home to the small college town where they grew up, partly because their mother is ill, but mostly because their lives are collapsing and they don’t know where to go next.

Elise Allen is the author of a novel for young adults, Populazzi, a coming-of-age comedy of errors about a girl’s quest to become popular.

Kim Stagliano’s memoir, All I Can Handle, takes the reader from her wedding day to the present, chronicling what it was like to have one, then two, then three girls with autism while she and her husband weathered job losses and financial woes.

Sarah Jio’s novel, The Waters of March, takes place in two time periods (present and 1943), and was inspired by her childhood on and near Bainbridge Island, Washington. It’s the story of a disillusioned, divorced writer who discovers a diary that sends her on a journey of healing and discovery.

The first of Tawna Fenske’s three romantic comedies, Making Waves, concerns a revenge-fueled diamond heist in the Caribbean, with a crew more suited to the boardroom than the poop deck, and a quirky blond stowaway who’s got a few big secrets.”

Please join them and take a whirl around the ballroom floor, remember pearls and gloves are not required!

* * * * *

Announcement: The winners of Kate Ledger’s “signed” copies of Remedies are Jennifer Sharp and Mary Quackenbush. Congratulations!

Please email diviningwand (at) gmail (dot) com with your mailing address and Kate will send out your book as soon as possible.

Author News and New Authors

July 29, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: Advance News, News

Welcome to The Divining Wand’s last post of July and, while not dismissing summertime in August, there is a feeling of fall around here! That’s correct, fresh and new ideas have either recently launched or will soon, beginning with the multi-talented Katie Alender (Bad Girls Don’t Die YA).

On Tuesday, July 27, 2010, Katie and fellow YA writers took “getting to know authors beyond their pages” to a vlog level. Here’s a portion of the Press Release for AuthorMix:

“AUTHORMIX” WEB VIDEO SERIES TAKES THE TEEN READER-AUTHOR CONNECTION TO A NEW LEVEL
A new web-based video series aims to give teen readers a “fly on the wall” look at their favorite authors.

Los Angeles, CA — July 27, 2010 — In an effort to reach out to their web-savvy readers, many authors now turn to video, releasing video blogs (“vlogs”), book trailers, and even virtual book tours (as recently mentioned in the New York Times: A new web video series takes this one step further by bringing together a group of authors in a roundtable format, letting readers eavesdrop on conversations about life, love, high school, writing, and publication. AUTHORMIX is like listening in on the green room at a book festival–personal, honest, and unrehearsed.

“The whole thing started because I would read blogs or tweets about authors who got together for one reason or another,” says creator/host, author Katie Alender. “And what I really wanted to know was–what do they talk about when they’re just hanging out?”

In an effort to find out, she came up with the idea for an off-the-cuff style video series that would give authors a chance to chat in a relaxed environment.

Participating authors are Melissa de la Cruz (New York Times best-selling author of The Au Pairs and Blue Bloods series of novels for young adults); Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl (New York Times best-selling authors of Beautiful Creatures, also one of Amazon.com’s Ten Best Books of 2009); Cecil Castellucci (author of Beige, Boyproof, Queen of Cool, and The Plain Janes series for DC Comics); and Katie Alender (author of the Bad Girls Don’t Die series).

[For more information, please visit the site and follow AuthorMix on Twitter. Congratulations, Katie!]

As for this site’s news, regular visitors may have noticed that TDW recently has featured three “new” authors:

~ Claire Cook (Seven Year Switch, Must Love Dogs, Life’s A Beach, and the rest in Bibliography)

~ Keetha DePriest Mosley [formerly Reed] (Culinary Kudzu: Recollections & Recipes from Growing Up Southern, More Culinary Kudzu: Recollections & Recipes from Growing Up Southern)

~ Julie Buxbaum (After You, The Opposite of Love)

And, now, I proudly announce the following authors have also joined our community and will be appearing on these pages soon:

~ Kate Ledger (Remedies)

~ TanyaEgan Gibson (How to Buy a Love of Reading)

~ Leah Stewart (Husband and Wife, The Myth of You and Me, Body of a Girl)

~ Beth Hoffman (Saving CeeCee Honeycutt releasing in Trade Paperback October 26, 2010)

~ Katharine Davis (A Slender Thread, East Hope, Capturing Paris)

Also expect more guest author posts and (hopefully) a weekly Q&A with readers asking questions of the featured author. Indeed fall is in the air….

* * * * *

Announcement: The winner of Claire Cook’s Seven Year Switch is Amy Chase. Congratulations.

Please email diviningwand (at) gmail (dot) com with your mailing address and your book will be sent out promptly.

News From and About Our Authors

April 19, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: Advance News, News

This rare Monday, without a book to present/review, is a perfect time to catch up on our authors and their recent (or upcoming) releases.

Congratulations to Therese Walsh (The Last Will of Moira Leahy)

Although this debut novel crossed over many genres, The Last Will of Moira Leahy has become a RITA finalist in RWA’s Best First Book category, 2010. While yours truly described it as an “adult fairy tale,” if Romance Writers wish to embrace “Moira” as romantic, so much the better. And, if you have yet to read this novel, please treat yourself now!

Sarah Pekkanen (The Opposite of Me) was featured on April 7, 2010 in the USA TODAY’S New Voices: Sarah Pekkanen, ‘The Opposite of Me’ by Carol Manning.

And now Sarah is thrilled to announce she has a new, two-book deal with editor Greer Hendricks at Atria Books/Washington Square Press, an imprint of Simon&Schuster.

Her second book — with the current working title FROM THE HEART — is the story of 32-year-old Julia Dunhill, who wakes up one morning to discover her husband has changed into a completely different person because of an extraordinary experience. Julia, who also sees pieces of her life in the world’s great operas, has three weeks to decide if she should stay with her husband – or leave him. Publication dates are Spring 2011 for the second novel and Spring 2012 for the third.

Holly LeCraw (The Swimming Pool) and her debut novel are everywhere, including these sightings:

The Swimming Pool in PEOPLE.

Entertainment Weekly: The Swimming Pool is “difficult to put down.”

“A stunning debut!” The Swimming Pool is This Week’s Hot Reads at The Daily Beast.

And The Swimming Pool is featured in Marie Claire and Elle Canada – on newsstands now!

Alicia Bessette (Simply from Scratch coming August 5, 2010)

Alicia’s new Facebook Fan Page is up and running. She hopes you’ll become a fan! Alicia also cordially invites you to sign up for her email newsletter here to receive news related to Simply From Scratch.

Amy MacKinnon (Tethered) offers the following glowing endorsement for Alicia’s debut novel: “Readers will fall for the characters of this New England town who try to rescue the worn-through heart of one of their own. Told with equal parts warmth, hope, and humor, SIMPLY FROM SCRATCH is destined to be passed among friends who’ve shared in each other’s grief, and honored it with love and compassion. It’s a triumph of the heart.”

Allison Winn Scotch (The Department of Lost and Found, Time of My Life and The One That I Want coming June 1, 2010) is thrilled that The One That I Want has been chosen
by both Redbook and Cosmo as a summer read and will be in the July issues.

And then there are the literary reviews:

“[A]n aching, honest look into the death and rebirth of relationships….a wise, absorbing narrative.”-Publishers Weekly

“Scotch specializes in heroines at a crossroads, questioning their life choices and preparing to embark on journeys of self-discovery. . . . [She] creates eminently relatable characters, with a particularly excellent understanding of the way sisters interact, and has the ability to craft scenes of real emotional weight.” –Booklist

“Well-told, fast-paced, and packs a satisfying emotional punch.” –Library Journal

Before embarking on her book tour, Kristy Kiernan (Catching Genius, Matters of Faith and Between Friends) posted this Comment on Facebook:

“Just got this from a reader who finished BETWEEN FRIENDS: ‘”I am not proud to say this, but I am not currently an organ donor. I plan to change that after reading this story.”‘ Uhh, does it GET better that that?!”

Ah, the power of words…

Good News about and from Our Authors

February 25, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: News

The Diving Wand loves sharing good news about its authors and this post offers quite a collection.

For Wendy Tokunaga (Midori By Moonlight, Love in Translation) BookPage Reviews’ Friendship and family in a foreign land is a Web exclusive by Sheri Bodoh.

Katie Alender (Bad Girls Don’t Die YA) was thrilled and flattered by this terrific book trailer for Bad Girls Don’t Die made by a reader/fan. Do watch.

Melanie Benjamin watches her foreign rights sales soar for (Alice I Have Been), along with requests for essays, interviews, and op-ed pieces on “Alice.” With the movie of “Alice in Wonderland” coming out next Friday, Melanie is enjoying perfect timing.

Also to be noted: The Audio Book of Alice I Have Been was Audiofile Magazine’s hot pick for the week of February 10th.

Randy Susan Meyers and The Murderer’s Daughters is traveling the world too with the book now to be published in Turkey, Israel, France, Germany, Britain, Australia, Ireland, Scotland, Taiwan, Poland, Portugal, and Holland.

Would you like to hear Randy? Listen to her Author Magazine Interview

And the “hip and current” Daily Candy has chosen The Murderer’s Daughters as one of the Best New Winter Books.

Meredith Cole has received a 2009 Agatha nomination for Best First Novel, Posed for Murder. The Awards will be presented on May 1st with Meredith’s second novel, Dead in the Water, in bookstores May 11th!

Carleen Brice (Orange Mint and Honey, Children of the Waters) is overjoyed and thanks one and all because, according to BlackVoices Entertainment Newswire, “Sins of the Mother” was “the second highest rated program in key woman demographics in the network’s 12-year history — bested only by the 2009 ‘Natalie Holloway’ movie.”

And Alicia Bessette offers her literary website, her debut novel’s cover, and the opportunity to Pre-order Simply from Scratch coming August 5, 2010.

Congratulations and well done, everyone!

News from and about Our Authors

February 03, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: News

It’s time to take a look at authors making news beyond their pages…

Melanie Benjamin is very proud that Alice I Have Been was reviewed on NPR’s “Fresh Air.” You can read and listen to that review here. Bravva, Melanie!

Think of Mia King (Good Things, Sweet Life, Table Manners) and what comes to mind? Novels, Hawaii and FOOD?!

It’s true that recently, when not writing, Mia’s been spending more and more time in her actual and virtual kitchen. You can join her online at the Friendship Bread Kitchen on Facebook where she has gorgeous images, recipes and tips relating to Amish Friendship Bread. She even has a contest going on right now — once the page hits 500 fans, she’s giving away a beautiful Emile Henry ceramic loaf pan from William-Sonoma! As of this writing, Mia’s fans number 493, so hurry…

Also expect a major announcement from this author in the next month or two.

On Monday, February 1st, Allison Winn Scotch (The Department of Lost and Found, Time of My Life and The One That I Want coming June 1, 2010) announced Contest Time!. She’s giving away at least two galleys of The One That I Want (coming June 1, 2010) and all you need do is tell her: Where would you like to see yourself five years from now?

Allison shares her five years in the future: “Hmmm, I think I’d like to be living in California (I’ve had enough of NYC and we’re considering a move), still writing a book or so a year, add another dog (not child!) to our family, having more time to relax and focus on ME once my kids are a bit older. I think my five-year goal was probably a bit more lofty five years ago – now, in my 30s, I feel like I’ve been able to take the reins of my life and steer it more or less where I want it to go, but then again, who knows what the future brings (well, Tilly does!), so we’ll just see what happens from here. :)”

The deadline is tomorrow night with the winner announced on Friday. Since Monday’s post is weighed down with comments, visit Go Big or Go Home and share.

Meredith Cole (Posed for Murder, Dead in the Water coming May 11, 2010) invites you to check out a sneak peek of Dead in the Water which is featured this month on “From the Masters.”

***********

Book Giveaway: The Divining Wand is giving away two copies of Shana Mahaffey’s Sounds Like Crazy in a random drawing of comments left on this post. Everyone — readers and writers alike — is welcome to participate before the deadline of tonight at 7:00 pm EST. The winners will be announced here in tomorrow’s post.

AND

To celebrate “Sins of the Mother” –based on Carleen’s debut novel, Orange Mint and Honey, which premieres on The Lifetime Movie Network Sunday, February 21st at 8:00 p.m. EST — The Divining Wand will give away both Orange Mint and Honey and Carleen’s latest book, Children of the Waters, as a duo. Anyone leaving a comment on this post will be entered in the random drawing. The deadline is this evening at 7:00 p.m. EST with the winner to also be announced in tomorrow’s post.

Words from and about Our Authors

January 19, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: News

There’s news that you need to know, can use, and look forward to, regarding the following Authors:

Alert! If you haven’t heard yet, Carleen Brice (Orange Mint and Honey, Children of the Waters) has announced, “The universe heard your cries of not wanting to miss the Super Bowl. ‘”Sins of the Mother”‘ will now air on Sunday, February 21st.”

Remember that’s on the LIFETIME MOVIE NETWORK!

*****

January Magazine, December 31, 2009, listed Best Books of Fiction: 2009 and among the chosen was The Last Will of Moira Leahy by Therese Walsh. Here’s the review:

“One of the really delicious things about Therese Walsh’s debut novel is that it pushes through to new ground. And even while you are swept away in Walsh’s carefully crafted and constructed story of magic and acceptance and loss, you are aware that you’ve never traveled this way before. I hadn’t realized how rare that feeling could be in fiction until I read The Last Will of Moira Leahy. Are there conventions in fiction? A path you must take in order for people to say: this is this sort of book, shelve it over here. If so, Walsh has forged ahead with no regard for these whatsoever. The result is an intelligent, thoughtful, moving — and again — magical, book. Moira was the less bold of a set of twins. Less daring, less spirited, less of the world. When she died in their 16th year, Moira’s twin, Maeve, must come to terms both with the part she played in her sister’s death and with her own path through the world, alone. In adulthood, now a professor of languages, Maeve comes across an antique dagger that reminds her of her childhood. The dagger will open a new chapter in Maeve’s life and lead her to a place of acceptance and understanding. None of that brief description does justice to Walsh’s wonderful creation. It is difficult — impossible — to capture that magic in these few words. Nor is it possible to compare it to anything else: Walsh has found her way here alone. The Last Will of Moira Leahy is a wonderful book. Well crafted, beautifully told. A star is born.” — Linda L. Richards

[As many know I believe in this book…for good reasons.]

*****

Jenny Gardiner (Sleeping with Ward Cleaver) offers a funny video, Graycie Goes Hollywood (the upgraded version), starring the bird of her upcoming memoir —Winging It: Twenty Years of Caring for a Vengeful Bird Determined to Kill Me coming March 16, 2010). Be sure to take a look.

*****

Alicia Bessette (Simply from Scratch coming in August 2010) has earned coveted praise from Marisa de los Santos (bestselling author of Love Walked In and Belong to Me: “This story of a young widow edging warily back into the world is full of vivid characters and grace. Imbued with hope but blessedly lacking in sentimentality, it is a fresh, stirring take on the devastation of grief and the holiness of friendship.”

*****

And Melanie Benjamin (Alice I Have Been) was featured in the Sunday, January 17, 2010 article, Glen Ellyn writer rescues Alice from Wonderland by Julia Keller.

Book Giveaway: The Divining Wand is giving away a copy of The Murderer’s Daughters to anyone who leaves a comment on this post and is selected in a random drawing. The deadline is Wednesday, January 20, 2010 at 7:00 p.m. EST. with the winner to be announced here in Thursday’s post.

Support Women’s Fiction and We All Win

January 12, 2010 By: larramiefg Category: Contests, Movies, News

[Since The Divining Wand’s purpose is to help readers get to know authors beyond their pages, Carleen Brice is today’s guest blogger with exciting news to share. Please welcome Carleen.]

It was a dream come true when Lifetime Movie Network (LMN) optioned my debut novel, Orange Mint and Honey. A dream made even bigger when they actually made the movie! I understand that something like only 5% of books that get optioned ever become movies.

There’s only one tiny little hitch. They changed the title. The movie is called “Sins of the Mother” and it will air Sunday, February 7th. It stars Jill Scott (“No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency”) and Nicole Beharie (“American Violet”) in a story about how a recovering alcoholic and her daughter work through their difficult past.

I was lucky enough to visit the set during one of the biggest scenes in the movie. (I was even an extra!) They do a fantastic job!

To help call awareness to the book on which the movie is based, I’m holding a contest.

Get your book club members and friends together for a watch party. Send me a jpeg of your party (that I can post online) and you’ll have a chance to win a gift basket filled with:
Autographed women’s fiction titles from me and some of my writer friends (including Connie Briscoe, Donna Hill, Therese Fowler, Bettye Griffin, Lynne Griffin, Marisa de los Santos, and others!)
Jill Scott CD
I heart black author coffee mug
I heart book club buttons (for everyone in your book club)
Orange, mint & honey treats and other goodies

I am so honored and grateful that so many authors agreed to participate and help me out. Even if you choose not to enter this contest, please do check out the works of the contributing writers. There are some great books here!

“Sins of the Mother” airs against the Super Bowl. I know lots of women watch football, especially the Super Bowl. But I’m hoping that this year maybe you’ll skip the Super Bowl and tune in to LMN. The higher the ratings for this movie, the higher the chances are you’ll see more of the work from women writers you enjoy.
Note: Please make sure you have LMN, not just Lifetime. LMN is a separate channel from the Lifetime channel.

Please visit my website or the “Sins of the Mother” based on Orange Mint and Honey Facebook event page for more details. Or if you’re on Goodreads, you can go here.

*****

Book Giveaway: For a chance to win a copy of Melanie Benjamin’s Alice I Have Been, please leave a comment on this post by 7:00 p.m. EST Wednesday, January 13, 2010. The winner — chosen from a random drawing — will be announced here in Thursday’s post.