July 2013

Win a Dean Mayes Prize Pack!

In celebration of summer reading, we’re offering giveaway copies of both Dean Mayes’ books: Gifts of the Peramangk and The Hambledown Dream. We’re offering paperback copies to US residents only and ebook copies if you’re international.

You can enter the giveaway here:

Dean Mayes has established himself as an author of great passion and literary style since releasing his first novel “The Hambledown Dream” in 2010. When not writing, Dean practices Intensive Care Nursing in Pediatrics. He lives in Adelaide, Australia with his partner Emily and his children Xavier and Lucy.

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The Hambledown Dream

Australian Denny Banister had it all; a successful career, a passion for the guitar, and Sonya – the love of his life. Tragically, Denny is struck down with inoperable cancer. Andy DeVries has almost nothing; alienated from his family, moving through a dangerous Chicago underworld dealing in drugs, battling addiction while keeping a wavering hold on the only thing that matters to him: a place at a prestigious conservatory for classical guitar in Chicago. As Andy recovers from a near fatal overdose, he is plagued by dreams – memories of a love he has never felt, and a life he’s never lived. Driven by the need for redemption and by the love for a woman he’s never met, he begins a quest to find her, knowing her only by the memories of a stranger and the dreams of a place called Hambledown…

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Gifts of the Peramangk

In 1950s Australia, during the height of the divisive White Australia Policy, Virginia, a young Aboriginal girl is taken from her home and put to work on an isolated and harsh outback station. Her only solace: the violin, taught to her secretly by the kind-hearted wife of the abusive station owner. However, Virginia’s prodigious musical gift cannot save her from years of hardship and racism.

Decades later, her eight year old granddaughter Ruby, plays the violin with the passion Virginia once possessed. Amidst poverty, domestic violence and social dysfunction, Ruby escapes her circumstance through her practice with her grandmother’s frail, guiding hand. Ruby’s zeal attracts the attention of an enigmatic music professor and with his help, she embarks on an incredible journey of musical discovery that will culminate in a rare opportunity. But with two cultural worlds colliding, her gift and her ambition will be threatened by deeply ingrained distrust, family jealousies and tragic secrets that will define her very identity.

Sabrina Zollo: Woman of Wonder

9781926760797We are very proud of all our authors, but lately it seems like they’ve been getting some meaningful recognition from their peer groups and/or readers. Ellen L. Ekstrom was a finalist in a recent award; Molly Ringle’s new book has been reviewed scores of times and it’s only a week old; and Sabrina Zollo has just been named a Woman of Wonder.

We hope you’ve got a few minutes to read through her journey and leave a supportive comment or two.

Congratulations Sabrina, this recognition is well-deserved!

Sabrina ZolloSabrina Zollo is a marketing maven by day and a published author all other hours of the day. Meeting her was a great joy given how much I adore books and how much I love the writing process. 
Talk to as many people as possible; leverage your own network.
Sabrina was inspired to write her novel Why I Love My Gay Boyfriend from her experience working in marketing at a major, global, cosmetics company. “I have always wanted to be a writer,” Sabrina shares. “Even as a child I wrote stories.” With this passion in mind Sabrina was interested in journalism but quickly discovered traditional journalism wasn’t where her interest lay. “Most of what journalism covers is negative; it’s about covering often tragic, negative stories,” Sabrina says. “For me, reading is an escape; I want to bring joy into people’s lives. I want to make people laugh,” explains Sabrina.
 
Read the full article here

A Knight on Horseback: Award Finalist

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We are very pleased and proud to announce that a title by Ellen L. Ekstrom has placed in the OKRWA International Digital Awards for Contemporary Romance Novel.

On June 30, the OKRWA announced the winners and finalists in their well-respected awards and we were very proud to see A KNIGHT ON HORSEBACK place in this category among scores of entries. It’s a well deserved recognition for this veteran writer of enthralling stories of not only romance, but fantasy and historical fiction. Her characters are always multi-dimensional and she brings a realism to her tales that make them relatable to readers. So please join me in congratulating Ellen for this fantastic acknowledgement of her hard work.

9781926760193medEkstrom’s book tells the story of Violet Ellison,  a woman who seemingly has it all: three adorable kids, a handsome – but distant – husband and a home in a good neighborhood. But her life is falling apart: she’s burning the candle at both ends to look after her family, finish a history degree and working a full-time job to keep the bill collectors at bay. The morning she finds a chess piece on the sidewalk, a knight on horseback, things start to change. While not one for fairy tales, Violet’s life takes a Cinderella turn and in finding the perfect dress for a society event, she runs into the perfect man: a rock star she’s had a crush on since her teens. A family friend who reminds her of everything she’s been trying to forget suddenly returns, and Violet has some difficult decisions before her. When it all comes crashing down, she realizes that she really didn’t need a knight in shining armor – just some time and space to figure things out, and maybe some sleep.

Ellen Ekstrom

Ellen L. Ekstrom has been intrigued by all things medieval since seeing Disney’s “Sleeping Beauty” as a five-year old—when it was first run in theaters. Now that she is in her own middle ages, her passion for all things medieval is still strong. She is a member of the clergy in the Episcopal Church and serves as the parish deacon in a local church in Berkeley, California. To support her family and frenetic lifestyle, she works as a legal secretary. Once in a while, she sleeps.

Ellen is also the author of Armor of LightTallis’ Third TuneScarborough; and The Legacy