The Divining Wand

Discovering authors beyond their pages…

31 Hours by Masha Hamilton

September 29, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Book Presentations, Books

Masha Hamilton’s latest novel, 31 Hours, celebrates its official release date today, even though it’s been in bookstores since September 8th. Early praise has been sensational and you can read these critical raves on the author’s website Reviews page. However the following words say it all:
“Gorgeous and complex…a very tense narrative, vividly imagined and eerily plausible.”__Publishers Weekly

This is an author of three other novels — including The Camel Bookmobile which inspired two world literacy programs: the Camel Book Drive, founded by Masha in 2007 to supply a camel-borne library in northeastern Kenya, and the Afghan Women’s Writing Project, begun just this year “to foster creative and intellectual exchange between Afghan women writers and American women authors and teachers.”

To learn more about this former foreign correspondent, please read her Bio. For now, she has turned her attention to the telling of a fictional race against time to stop a mass killer in the New York subway system. Masha Hamilton’s 31 Hours works by also making this a story about a mother’s intuition that there is something seriously wrong with her sensitive son.

Of course this is a story about which one can tell very little or the suspense will suffer. Fortunately, though, there is a choice for how much you wish to know. Listen to an AudioCast with Masha Hamilton on 31 Hours, view the The Book Trailer for 31 Hours and/or read an Excerpt.

While the above options have been provided by the author, The Divining Wand has discovered the August 28, 2009 blog post, 31 Amazing Hours, by yesterday’s featured author Jessica Barksdale Inclan. And, with her permission, Jessica’s post follows:

31 Amazing Hours

When I dream of my oldest son, off in his anarchical life, it’s never a happy dream. Not any more. I dream that he is living in a house surrounded by water. I dream that his foot is so infected I can barely recognize his flesh, the flesh that I am so familiar with. I dream that he is in an airplane heading up and then, no, heading toward ground, fast.

I wake up in a sweat, so sad, so afraid. I weep, sad from the innermost part of me. My core is weeping. I am sad because I don’t know where he is going him. I cannot follow him. When I see him, he seems fine, but I don’t know the mysteries of his heart. I was gifted once with that knowledge, but he has been on his own path for so long, that I can only watch him walk away from me, calling out to him from a growing distance.

And the above is why I’m having a hard time reading Masha Hamilton’s novel 31 Hours. It is a wonderful novel, and that’s the problem. She has created such a true, riveting story about a mother and a son, a mother connected so strongly to her son and then that connection is snapped like a twig. How did it happen? The mother doesn’t know. She has no idea at all. This fully present mother is clueless.

I know the answers because I’ve been too scared to read the novel straight through. I read Carol’s POV, and then I flip to the back of the book, desperate for the answers to the story that I can get–unlike in life, where I have to wait to live through it. What will Jonas do? I have to know. Maybe it will be bearable then. Maybe I will survive the novel and survive my own life with my son.

I’m only on page 30, but I know what happens on page 229. This is how I can read this amazing story. This is the only way, and I move toward page 229 the hard way now, one page at a time.


31 Hours is available for purchase online and at bookstores everywhere.

[Note: Jessica Barksdale Inclan’s Giveaway of three sets of her trilogy, including The Beautiful Being, remains open and your Comment/entry can be posted here until Wednesday evening at 7:00 p.m. EDT.]

Literary Visuals

September 15, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Book Trailers

If a picture is worth a thousand words, how many pages would a Book Trailer be? Today is all about our author’s videos, so settle back and enjoy!

Meg Waite Clayton’s The Wednesday Sisters is available in trade paperback. A national bestseller, this novel was a Target Bookmarked Club Pick for the Summer and a Borders Book Club Pick. Watch The Wednesday Sisters Book Trailer now.

31 Hours by Masha Hamilton uses the New York City subway as one of its characters. View the subway Photo Gallery and then catch the Book Trailer.

Due to be released on Tuesday, January 29th, The Beautiful Being by Jessica Barksdale Inclan offers a paranormal romance. Interested? Here’s The Beautiful Being Book Trailer.

With a sneak peek into January, Debutante Maria Garcia-Kalb invites you to view the promo video for 101 Ways to Torture Your Husband.

And Founder Deb Eileen Cook’s second YA novel, Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood will also be released in January 2010. First, however, there is the Getting Revenge on Lauren Wood Book Trailer.

Authors in the Media

September 10, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: News

[Note: The Divining Wand congratulates Patti — winner of the Crazy Beautiful Book Giveaway. If you’ll contact me, Patti, with your mailing address, your copy will be sengt on its way. Enjoy!]

Our authors have been out and about in the media recently, let’s discover where some have appeared:

Kristy Kiernan (Catching Genius, Matters of Faith and Between Friends coming April 6, 2010) goes in search for the modern day Fountain of Youth in her article, Saving Face, for Gulf Shore Life Magazine – The Magazine of Naples and Ft. Meyers.

Kristina Riggle (Real Life & Liars) appeared on Take Five Book Club — a local TV show — to discuss her novel.

Masha Hamilton (The Camel Bookmobile) is featured on Author Buzz this week. Read the open letter that Masha writes to the reader about her just released novel, 31 Hours. The “official” release date for this book is at the end of September when a full presentation will appear here. However please don’t wait in checking this out on your own and even entering The Contest for a chance to win a free hardcover copy of 31 Hours

And though this news item was published last year, on August 19, 2008, — when Liz Smith still wrote for The New York Post –, read Saved by the ‘L’. That’s the first buzz about Therese Walsh’s debut novel, The Last Will of Moira Leahy, originally entitled UNBOUNDED. Much more about “Moira” will appear here within the next month.

You Could Be a Winner

July 27, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: Contests

With one week left before debuts and new releases start filling the bookstores – and these pages –, why not try to win a free book or a gift card? Below are four contests currently underway and, since three of them end on different days of this week, visit now and play your luck.

As anticipated in last Thursday’s post, Allison Winn Scotch is holding a “What If?” contest, giving away a total of 5 copies of the trade paperback edition of her NYT bestseller Time of My Life. Entries will be accepted until the end of the day tomorrow and winners will be announced Wednesday. The details can be found on the post, And Now It’s Free Books, at Ask Allison. Even if you don’t wish to enter, reading the heartfelt comments are worth your time.

Lara Zielin, YA debut novelist of Six Writers, Six Weeks contest this Thursday. Simply comment on that day’s post and you could be the recipient of a $10 Dunkin’ Donuts gift card.

This Friday, July 31st is the deadline for the GoodReads giveaway of three copies of Wendy Tokunagas’s debut novel, Midory by Moonlight. Please visit Wendy’s blog where you’ll be directed to signing-up for the contest.

Finally Masha Hanmilton offers a Contest to win a free hardcover copy of her forthcoming novel, 31 Hours. But for this, you must:

“Email a paragraph or story (500 words max) about when your intuition has been right about your child.

“The top ten stories—selected by Masha and guest judges—will get a free hardcover book and have their stories featured on this site.”

The deadline is September 30th with winners to be announced on October 16, 2009.

Enjoy and much good fortune to all!

Sharing Good News

July 14, 2009 By: larramiefg Category: News

According to the PBS Book Review: “Alibi Junior High”,
Greg Logsted has a winner.

Carleen Brice (Children of the Waters) will host a
discussion about faith and mysticism in fiction on Litchat (via Twitter). Please join in this Friday, July 17th between 4 – 5 p.m. EDT.

Masha Hamilton’s 31 Hours, a deeply human thriller, is now slated to be published on September 8, 2009. The author has a most thoughtful Contest to win a copy of the book. The deadline: September 30, 2009…giving you more than 31 hours.

Therese Walsh and her debut novel, The Last Will of Moira Leahy, now have a film agent, Sarah Self with Gersh Agency.

And the book continues to receive the most beautiful reviews:

“A hauntingly beautiful story about grief, the language of twins, and the healing power of a bond that is stronger than death. The characters of Moira and Maeve will linger long after you finish this amazing first novel.”__Brunonia Barry , New York Times and internationally bestselling author of The Lace Reader

“The Last Will of Moira Leahy is haunting, exotic and romantic—the way Gothic tales are romantic, wrapped in luscious, dark atmosphere. It’s a magical debut and I can’t wait for more from Therese Walsh. She’s one to watch.”__Sarah Addison Allen, New York Times bestselling author of Garden Spells

And debut novelist Lara Zielin’s Donut Days will be released on August 6, 2009. To celebrate, the about-to-be author is running a contest every week until publication date. For details of ths week’s contest, please visit Lara’s Blog.

Remember, what’s good news for authors is almost always better for their readers!

[Note: I was unable to preview this post and double check the links. Apologies if any are “broken,” but my 7 1/2 year old PC is gasping for breath at the moment. That’s why The Divining Wand will only feature two posts this week as I will be offline becoming an imac owner! Hope to see you all back here next Monday.]