Giveaway & Excerpt: The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness

Though I posted about The Book of Life (part of the A Discovery of Witches trilogy) before, I wanted to share an excerpt with you — and a chance to win a paperback copy! Read to the end of the post for contest details.

The paperback releases TODAY and I think you’ll love it. If you haven’t read the other books in the series, now is the perfect time to pick them up. The boxed set is available here.

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Excerpt from : Making Your Mind Up by Jill Mansell

An Excerpt from MAKING YOUR MIND UP by Jill Mansell

 

The lane that ran alongside the garden of Hestacombe House was narrow and banked high on both sides with poppies, cow parsley, and blackberry bushes. Turning left, Tyler Klein worked out, would lead you back up to the village of Hestacombe. Turning right took you down to the lake. As he took the right turn, Tyler heard the sound of running feet and giggling.

Rounding the first bend in the lane, he saw two small children twenty or thirty yards away, clambering over a stile. Dressed in shorts, T–shirts, and baseball caps, the one in front was carrying a rolled–up yellow-and-white-striped striped towel, while his companion clutched a haphazard bundle of clothes. Glancing up the lane and spotting Tyler, they giggled again and leaped down from the stile into the cornfield beyond. By the time he reached the stile they’d scurried out of sight, no doubt having taken some shortcut back to the village following their dip in the lake.

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Featured Title: Love by the Book by Melissa Pimentel

Love by the Book: A Novel

A conversation with Melissa Pimentel, author of LOVE BY THE BOOK

 

What type of research did you do for this book? Were there any guides or approaches you came across that didn’t make it into the final novel?

The novel sprung from my own experience of trying out different dating guides and blogging about the results—my “summer of scientific experiment,” as I like to call it—so I already had ag ood idea of how some of these guides worked and the results they produced.The rest was done by trawling through websites and archives for the best (or worst,depending on your point of view) dating guides throughout the ages. I thought it wasi mportant to get a snapshot of how social mores have evolved over the years, so I chose guides that were popular in their time—like The Technique of the Love Affair, which was the 1920s flapper’s courtship bible—to see how they’d fare today.There were a few books that didn’t make the cut because they were too similar to guides I’d already covered, or I just ran out of time! One in particular that I was sad to have missed wasa guide—written by former celebrity bodyguard Big Boom—called If You Want Closure in Your Relationship, Start with Your Legs. I mean, how can you not be intrigued by that title? But it tread on familiar ground, so I left it out. I’m still a little sad about missing that one.

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Giveaway: The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic

The Thinking Woman's Guide to Real Magic by Emily Croy Barker

 

Remember a few months ago when I reviewed The Thinking Woman’s Guide to Real Magic? Go check out the review, I’ll wait! Don’t you just want to read it? Not yet, okay well here’s a summary that put’s mine to shame:

Nora Fischer is a bluestocking-ish grad student with a stalled thesis, unsure future, and a broken heart. At a boring wedding reception, she finds herself in a beautiful garden near a tiny cemetery—and suddenly in a different, bizarre sort of world. Here she takes up with a group of glamorous new friends who throw incredible parties with the likes of Oscar Wilde. If things sometimes seem a little off-kilter, Nora’s having too good a time to notice, especially since her romance with the gorgeous Raclin is heating up.

 

When her head finally clears, Nora is shocked to find herself in a magical world where men rule with swords or spells and most women are illiterate chattel. Surviving here will take skills Nora never learned in graduate school. Her only real ally—and a reluctant one at that—is the magician Aruendiel, a grim, reclusive figure with a biting tongue and a murderous past. And it will take Nora becoming Aruendiel’s student—and learning magic herself—to survive. While waiting for a passage to her own world to open, Nora must weigh the chance to resume what she still considers her “real life” against the dangerous power of love and magic.

 

See, I told you you’d want to read it! In honor of its paperback release, I have the opportunity to giveaway a copy.  I Leave a comment below letting me know what your favorite witch in literature is (and don’t forget to leave your email). This giveaway is open to US residents.

End of Trilogies (The End of the Journey): The Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman

The Magician's Land by Lev Grossman

The Magician’s Land by Lev Grossman

Rating: 4/5

The Magician's Land (The Magicians, #3)

Finishing a series is difficult (just ask G.R.R. Martin!)

Many a great trilogy has fallen on its face in the final pages. Take Hunger Games, Divergent or the Matched Trilogy for instance. The world building is incredible….and then you get to the last book. Everything feels rushed and a little like the author is trying to force more story out of the world, instead of the world having a story to tell.

Fortunately, Grossman’s final Fillory novel doesn’t suffer from any of these issues. We find Quentin older and more mature, ready to face the imminent demise of Fillory. But since I don’t want to give anything away, here’s one of my favorite quotes from the novel:

“ ‘This is a feeling you had, Quentin,” she said. ‘Once, a very long time ago. A rare one. This is how you felt when you were eight years old, and you opened one of the Fillory books for the first time, and you felt awe and joy and hope and longing all in one. You felt them very strongly, Quentin. You dreamed of Fillory then, with a power and innocence that not many people ever experience.’”

 All of your favorite things from the previous books are there, from the magical animals, to the great banter, to the sly references to other novels. Grossman is so in touch with the process of reading and loving books. He built a world where characters love books as much as his readers do. Where everyone speaks in little jabs and references to other books. Where the way into a magical land is through the “Neitherlands” where there are endless libraries.

This book is perfect for lovers of fantasy books, for Potterheads, Nerdfighters, and those looking for a way to pass the time until the next GoT book. It’s also great for Holden Caulfield wannabe’s and those who grew up checking wardrobes for portals to Narnia.