Tag Archives: WWII novels

Scent of Triumph is a Wartime Novel of One’s Woman’s Journey to Protect her Art, Heart, and Family

Scent of triumph

The Scent of Triumph, by Jan Moran, is a beautiful book on so many levels! For some reason, I become often really attached to books on perfume, or other such goods/products that are passed down as an art form from generation to generation. That the novel was set amid the turmoil of WWII, just made the book more exciting for me as it’s one of the historical periods that I most like to read about, especially in terms of what happened to families, occupations, and in turn, how their lives were most often changed.

You can see quite easily upon reading that Moran did extensive research into the time and place for this book. Couple that with exquisite character development, with characters who are fully dimensional and connective, as well as lush descriptions and fluid sentences, and this novel came together as one that I had a hard time ever putting down. It’s a novel that absorbs and captivates you, compelling to read it in one sitting.

Not only that, but I love reading about women who overcome adversity by showing great courage and strength. In her main female character of Danielle Bretancourt Von Hoffman, we have a woman of such caliber and yet who holds so much grace. She is a perfumer in an old family business and she’s talented, as she has the gift of scent, one in which allows her to pick up nuances of fragrances and how they react together, in order to create perfection. It’s her passion, as is keeping her family business and history alive for future generations.

When WWII breaks out, she’s left to rebuild her life and her business, to use her art form and gifts to start anew again in a new place. From Paris to Hollywood, Danielle has to leave her life behind and fit into the glitz and glamour of America in the 1940s. I LOVED all the details of perfume and fashion of the time. Moran certainly also did her research in these areas. Chanel is one of my very favorites, as a strong business woman and innovator, and Danielle’s spirit mirrors a little of Coco. She’s very driven in a male-dominated world and it’s her passion for her work that drives her forward.

Of course, as with the alluding tension in the opening scene, there is also romance. But it’s the type of romance I prefer, a little more subtle and not overpowering Danielle’s obvious independence. It’s enough to make you want to turn the pages, but not distracting to the overall story. It’s more a ships passing in the night-type of romance. The type that makes your own heart flutter for them. You’ll definitely feel for Danielle as she also struggles with family and life moments in regards to children and how families are torn apart during war time. I know I anguished a bit for her and yet cheered in her determination to keep herself, her family, and her art afloat amid very difficult times and circumstances.

There’s a lot packed into this book, but you never feel burdened by any of it or not complete, and I felt that all parts are intertwined elegantly together into a story of devotion and zeal. This one woman will steal your heart with her unwavering spirit.

An eloquent novel that will sweep you back in time to a place of struggle and fervor for living, Scent of Triumph will leave you breathless, yet overjoyed at the nature of women who struggle to define and keep hold of their families and their art.

If you like any of M.J. Rose’s novels like I do, especially The Collector of Dying Breaths, you’ll love Moran’s Scent of Triumph. Moran’s ability to take you back in time and place, opening your mind and senses, is truly her gift as a storyteller and a writer. I hope to read more by Moran in the future!

If you want to get lost in a book, I highly recommend this one!

Enjoy this Excerpt from Chapter 29:

The gardener coaxes seeds from the earth, lavishing attention on their every fragile leaf, their magnificent blossoms. How fragile, how fleeting—this beauty, this love. Only the perfumer can capture, extend nature’s response.Oh, that we could grasp real love so. –db

22 April, 1941

Beverly Hills, California

Merci, Danielle,” the young woman said as Danielle placed an armload of fragrant white lilies next to the blush pink roses and purple hydrangeas she had already chosen. “You always choose my best flowers.”

Danielle smiled at her friend, the owner of the Flower Pot in Beverly Hills. “And you always have the best flowers in town, Mimi.”

Maisoui, my brother sent some potted gardenias from the farm, too. They’re heavy with buds, perfect for your boudoir. Did you see them? They’re in the front of the shop.”

Danielle meandered through a brilliant maze of cut flowers, charming topiaries, and magnificent floral arrangements. The scents that swirled through the air lifted her spirits.She drank in the aromas wafting through the air, closing her eyes as she leaned into an exotic flower or plant to breathe in its scent. I could almost be in Grasse.

She rubbed the glossy green leaves of a gardenia, touched the moist earth in the pot, and let her fingers trail along a fresh white flower bursting from a tightly swirled bud.

Perhaps I’ll capture this aroma, she thought. Cool greens combined with sweet gardenia, the moist earth, the warmth of the sun—it would be perfect for this season. Maybe a new line of garden-inspired perfumes—

“Danielle?”

Am I hearing things? She heard someone call her name. And not just anyone, but it sounded just like—And that scent…the patchouli, the hint of rose…it was Spanish Leather and the scent of his warm skin…oh, mon Dieu! She felt a hand on her shoulder, and a quiver coursed through her.

“Danielle.”

Slowly she swung around. The shop seemed to fall away. She blinked, staring at a handsome man holding a bouquet of roses. “Jon?

“It must be kismet.” A wondrous smile spread across his face. “I stopped to buy flowers for Abigail, and here you are.” He touched her shoulder and caught her hand, drawing her to him, intensifying his delicious scent.

“I can’t believe it,what brings you here?” Her heart beat wildly, and she was certain he could see it beneath her blouse.

“I had to attend to some business with ships in the Long Beach harbor. I didn’t have much notice. So I thought I’d surprise Abigail.”

Danielle laughed nervously. “Oh, you would have. But she’s not here. She’s in San Francisco with Lou. He has a film shooting on location.”

He ran a hand through his thick hair, releasing a faint scent of the sea. “Ah, once again, I should have called ahead.”

He smiled wistfully at her, his warm eyes crinkling at the corners. She remembered how one side of his mouth tugged more than the other, and the cleft in his chin seemed more pronounced. His face was leaner, but his chest was broad, and he looked more muscular. He’s even more magnificent than I remembered.

“Then our meeting really is kismet,” he murmured. His deep baritone voice was charged with emotion. “You look different, Danielle, you’ve bloomed, just like these flowers. How long has it been since that day outside your apartment?”

Danielle’s cheeks grew warm, and she moistened her lips to speak. Before Cameron, she thought with a jolt.

“Here, I’ll get these for you.” Jon paid for her flowers and scooped them into his arms.

She said, “I’m parked in the back, follow me.” As he held the door for her, she glanced over her shoulder, and noticed his gaze lingering on her body. She laughed nervously. “I’m in the Delahaye.”

Jon walked to the car and let out a low whistle. “What a beauty—the car, too,” he added, looking appraisingly at Danielle.

“Jon, you’re being naughty. And I’m supposed to be mad at you.” She unlocked the doors.

“At me? Why?”

“Well, why shouldn’t I be? You show up again with no notice at all.”

“Danielle, let’s not waste time on the past.” Taking the keys from her, he opened the car and placed the flowers inside. “I didn’t call you, or anyone, because I didn’t know how much time I would have. As it is, I only have a few hours, and I don’t know when I’ll return.” A serious look shadowed his face for an instant. He took her hands in his. “But I’m here now, and it’s a beautiful day. May we enjoy it together?”

Scent of Triumph: A Novel of Perfume And Passion~

SCENT OF TRIUMPH

By Jan Moran

(historical novel)

Release date: March 31, 2015
at St. Martin’s Press
384 pages

ISBN: 9781250048905


Synopsis~

Perfume is the essence of beauty, the heart of illusion, the soul of desire. It is my past, my present, my future. —from the journal of Danielle Bretancourt

When French perfumer and aristocrat 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 the remains of her family, relying on the strength of Jonathan Newell-Grey, a British shipping heir and Royal Navy officer. Finally, in the wake of unspeakable tragedy, 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.

Amidst the glamour of Hollywood’s Golden Age, Danielle works her way up from meager jobs to perfumer and fashion designer. Still, personal happiness eludes her. Can her sheer force of will attract the elusive love she desires, or will it only come at the ultimate cost?

Jan Moran, Author, Biography~

Scent of Triumph - Jan MoranJAN MORAN is the author of Fabulous Fragrances I and II, which earned spots on the Rizzoli Bookstore bestseller list, and other contemporary novels, including Flawless, Beauty Mark, and Runway.

A fragrance and beauty industry expert, she has been featured on CNN, Instyle, and O Magazine,
and has spoken before prestigious organizations, including The American Society of Perfumers.
She earned her MBA from Harvard Business School and attended the University of California at Los Angeles Extension Writers’ Program.

Visit her website. Follow her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest

Subscribe to her newsletter

Go deeper with her Reader’s Discussion Guide
Purchase Links~

Buy the book: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes & Noble | Apple iBooks

IndieBound | Powell’s | Books A Million | Kobo | eBooks.com | GooglePlay

Giveaway~

You can enter the global giveaway here or on any other book blogs participating in this tour. Be sure to follow each participant on Twitter/Facebook: they are listed in the entry form below (click to view entry form).

************************

Entry-Form

************************

Visit each blogger on the tour and tweeting about the giveaway everyday of the Tour will give you 5 extra entries each time [just follow the directions on the entry-form]!

Global giveaway open internationally: 1 winner will receive 1 print copy of Scent of Triumph

EXTRAS~

BONUS OFFERED BY THE AUTHOR
– independently from this book tour –

Scent of Triumph Vintage Perfumes

With every purchase of Scent of Triumph, she is offering a free ebook of Vintage Perfumes, a nonfiction guide to the finest classic perfumes, for epub and mobi. Just email her some proof of your purchase (receipt, email receipt, photo of yourself with the book or ebook on your reader, etc.), and she will send you the free ebook of Vintage Perfumes.
Click on the banner below for more reviews, interviews, excerpts, articles, and giveaway options:

Scent of Triumph banner

 

7 Comments

Filed under Book Reviews

Bianca’s Vineyard is a True Historical Fiction that Captures the Legacy of Family, Loyalty, and Legacy

02_Bianca's VineyardI particularly love books that are based on true stories of families who endured World War I or II, because there is always so much depth to them. This era of history is seeped in stories that even the most likely of writers couldn’t even create….like the saying “sometimes real life is more exciting than fiction” applies I think!

Of course, with many of these war time families eventually having members come to America to re-build life, this meant that many families were separated, pain and secrets never much spoke of, and life took on the form of farming or wine making in the West.  This is what we find in the lovely book called Bianca’s Vineyard, by Teresa Neumann.

Of course though I love the historical stories of family vineyards, and the passing along to new generations of tradition (I learned to love this through reading past books and also sometimes having the chance in my day job to write about wine and vineyards in articles), this book wasn’t primarily about a vineyard, which had drawn me in at first, but in essence, it did really complete my hopes as it was a family story that spanned almost 90 years. The vineyard was the fruit of the story, the inheiritence that brought with it a mystery of Bianca’s Uncle Egisto, a sculptor who came to America to make money after the war (and it’s true– he was an amazing sculptor and carved many of the statues in St. Paul, Minnesota!), and his wife Armida, who struggled mentally and returns to Italy and ends up caught up in the horrors of Mussolini. Egisto then continues to work hard and raise their children, but he doesn’t want to give up on Armida in Italy (though she wasn’t his first choice to marry and didn’t know her well before they were married, he was very loyal!). That’s where the love story within this book is contained, within his faithfulness, and it will make you hold your breath.

The book juxtaposes between pre-WWII, WWII in Italy under Mussolini, and life in America. The family is reminicient of so many families that were torn apart by the horrors of war, where impulsive, quick, and detrimental decisions had to be made and atrocities endured. But as a vineyard binds, so can a family’s legacy. As part of a vine dies, a new season will bring growth. So can it be with love and with families. This book’s family history will tear your heart apart. It really touches on how hard it was for immigrants during the war, but also hard sometimes for the women immigrants as they felt lonely and out of touch, especially if they couldn’t speak the language.

I really liked the character development in her book and believe that her characters felt authentic and emotional. I was compelled by each situation and felt even sadder realizing that this was based on the author’s husband’s family history. I also really liked that she included so much historical detail and facts into her novel as this is what I look for in quality historical fiction. I like to be drawn in to the character’s time and place beyond only into their angst and personalities.

Neumann has presented a lasting memory of her husband’s family that can be passed down through their own future generations. As captivating as a sunset over a field of grapes, this story is  compelling, well-written in prose and dialogue, features historical and eloquent details, and rivets us with emotional drama which makes this book a page turner and a lasting addition to any book shelf.

Bianca’s Vineyard, Synopsis

02_Bianca's VineyardPublication Date: November 12, 2010
All’s Well House Publishing
Formats: eBook, Paperback

Genre: Historical Fiction

Bianca Corrotti’s vineyard is more than a piece of mouth-watering real estate in Tuscany. It’s an inheritance; a storehouse harboring the secrets of her Uncle Egisto Bertozzi, a world-class sculptor, and his troubled wife — a woman whose destiny converges with Mussolini’s when WWII overtakes them all. Based on a true story, Bianca’s Vineyard follows a devoted family of strong-willed men and lion-hearted women waging an epic battle against a gathering storm intent on destroying their lives.

Praise for Bianca’s Vineyard~

“Bianca’s Vineyard is many things: a striking portrait of wartime Italy under the Fascist reign of Benito Mussolini; a poignant story of family, torn apart and brought back together in the decades that spanned the Second World War; a love letter to the Tuscan countryside through its downfall and triumph. But beneath the lush descriptions of the Italian wine country and the startling brutality of a gruesome war that left a lasting impression on the entire world, it’s a story about forgiveness and second chances, and true love that prevails. The novel, ultimately, is a beautifully descriptive piece of historical fiction that spans nearly ninety years of one family’s history, focusing on one of the most pivotal moments of the twentieth century. The plot twists and turns with all of the provocative intrigue of family lore, but never fails to delight.” — The Portland Review

“Bianca’s Vineyard is involving and smoothly written, which is not surprising because Neumann is a journalist. Her dialogue is crisp and believable, and her evocation of the battle between partisans and Nazis is painful to read. Most of all, her story is of the secrets, compassion, family loyalty and long memories of people in small villages.” — St. Paul Pioneer Press

“Filled with drama and mystery, this page turner will have you longing for a vineyard of your own. Recommended for readers of historical fiction with lush settings and fans of family sagas.” — JoAnne Drake, Willamette Woman Magazine

Bianca’s Vineyard is beautifully written and is rich in culture and complex characters. Neumann gives you a realistic picture of what people went through during the war and how they survived a terrible force bent on destroying everything they have worked hard for and loved. I highly recommend this story! You will fall in love with it the moment you start the first page. Five Stars! — Historical Novel Society, Layered Pages

“Teresa Neumann’s wonderful novel, born in the contemporary history of Italy, has the impact that only a true and deeply human story could deliver. This is no fluffy Under the Tuscan Sun affirmation of all the cliches about Italy that you’ve read in recent years. Yes, the long family table under the sun, the wine and the wonderful Italian food, and the charming Italian eccentricity are all there … but this book is a riveting human story told by a master storyteller. It transcends place and time. With the instincts of a detective, Neumann investigated the tangled and often missing threads of a family story that found its way through the decades down to her. She has created a story that absorbs, stuns, and sometimes overwhelms the reader with its reality and immediacy.” — Dick Paetzke, Author of Postcards: Little Letters From Life

Buy the Book~

Amazon US
Amazon UK
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository
IndieBound

Author Teresa Neumann~

03_Teresa NeumannTeresa Neumann was raised in a large, boisterous Irish-Catholic family from Iowa and is the author of “Bianca’s Vineyard,” and its sequel, “Domenico’s Table.” Both books are based on the true stories of her husband’s Italian family in Tuscany. She has lived in Oregon for over 30 years with her husband and three children. In addition to enjoying family, writing, reading, meeting her readers, wine tasting, traveling, and all things Italian, Teresa loves playing the fiddle with other musicians.

For more information on Teresa Neumann and her novels please visit her website and blog. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Goodreads.

Giveaway~

To win a Kindle eBook of Bianca’s Vineyard, please complete the Rafflecopter giveaway form below. TWO copies are up for grabs tour wide. Giveaway for U.S. residents only, per Historical Fiction Virtual Book Tours.

Giveaway ends 11:59 p.m. on August 26, must be 18+ to enter. Winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter on August 27 and notified via email. They have 48 hours to claim prize for new winner is chosen.

Rafflecopter LINK: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/share-code/MzUyMmRmMzEyNWJhM2M1M2I1ZjgwZmVmZGZmMTBiOjE1OA==/

Bianca's Vineyard_BlogTour Banner FINAL v2

Tour Schedule: http://www.hfvirtualbooktours.com/biancasvineyardblogtour

Hashtags: #BiancasVineyardBlogTour #HistFic #HistNov

Twitter Tags: @hfvbt @intrepidwriter

1 Comment

Filed under Book Reviews

The Bone Church by Victoria Dougherty Top Notch WWII and Cold War Espionage Thriller

02_The Bone Church

Reading The Bone Church has now cemented me as a Victoria Dougherty junkie! She writes a type of thriller I love, full of drama, intrigue, and historical stories of people who lived in occupied situations, both in WWII and in post-war situations all too soon forgotten in Eastern Europe. I’m very happy that learning about Victoria led me to her blog, Cold,  and her beautiful posts, as well. I look forward to reading much more of her writing on her blog or elsewhere, as well as future novels.

So what did I think of The Bone Church? A brilliant, beautiful book in all its harrowing content, seeped in struggle and sacrifice. It’s haunting and absorbing in all the very best ways. Victoria’s writing is literary; she has immense talent and a gift for words and storytelling that is few and far between. This is a book for an intelligent reader–one who likes to read for substance, for critical thinking and being held captive by feeling, for those with minds who can focus on her content and her juxtaposing between time frames.

The Bone Church is for someone who likes a book to concentrate on and contemplate. Be ready to take the plunge, because once I did into the first few chapters, it compelled me to not put it down. The characters will immediately seep into your heart and mind and they’ll not let you go. You’ll want to hear their story as much as they want to tell it. You’ll feel as if you are being pursued as they are pursued.

Magdelena’s story is featured in several parts–as she hides from her Jewish heritage during Nazi occupation of Czechoslovakia in WWII, and with her Christian husband, Felix, get caught up in a very scary plot, to the book’s present day in Prague during the Soviet post-war occupation in 1956. Then, there is also murder and suspense and pursuit. There are dangerous alliances.

This book can easily be defined as the epitome of cold war thriller, not only full of espionage and spies like John Le Carre (though with a similar feeling and even better writing–and Le Carre’s Russia House is one of my favorites), but with a focus on the real families that were actually effected by the political strife and domination too.

Victoria tells the story of so many real people of this era.  In creating her characters, she showcases their loyalty, despair, love, and hope while intertwining things that might seem intangible, danger, a touch of pensive, and tucks in the brooding introspection that comes from intensive turmoil, death of loved ones, and fight for survival.

She’s right when she describes her work as “cold,” yet it isn’t cold to the touch. In fact, I easily connected to the storyline, the characters, as well as feeling and understanding the austere story. I really think she could easily be one of the next blockbuster authors in her genre. She’s right on par to step up on the list for anyone who likes novels of Le Carre, Ian Fleming, and Tom Clancy. She’s extremely talented and The Bone Church is a must read for serious readers! Can’t wait to read more!

The Bone Church, Synopsis~

02_The Bone ChurchPublication Date: April 15, 2014
Pier’s Court Press
Formats: eBook, Paperback

Genre: Historical Fiction/Thriller/Suspense

In the surreal and paranoid underworld of wartime Prague, fugitive lovers Felix Andel and Magdalena Ruza make some dubious alliances – with a mysterious Roman Catholic cardinal, a reckless sculptor intent on making a big political statement, and a gypsy with a risky sex life. As one by one their chances for fleeing the country collapse, the two join a plot to assassinate Hitler’s nefarious Minister of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda, Josef Goebbels.

But the assassination attempt goes wildly wrong, propelling the lovers in separate directions.

Felix’s destiny is sealed at the Bone Church, a mystical pilgrimage site on the outskirts of Prague, while Magdalena is thrust even deeper into the bowels of a city that betrayed her and a homeland soon to be swallowed by the Soviets. As they emerge from the shadowy fog of World War II, and stagger into the foul haze of the Cold War, Felix and Magdalena must confront the past, and a dangerous, uncertain future.

Buy the Book~

Amazon UK
Amazon US
Barnes & Noble
Book Depository
IndieBound

Author Victoria Dougherty, Biography~

03_Victoria DoughertyVictoria Dougherty writes fiction, drama, and essays that often revolve around spies, killers, curses and destinies. Her work has been published or profiled in The New York Times, USA Today, International Herald Tribune and elsewhere.

Earlier in her career, while living in Prague, she co-founded Black Box Theater, translating, producing and acting in several Czech plays.

She lives with her husband and children in Charlottesville, Virginia.

For more information, please visit Victoria Dougherty’s website. You can also find her on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Pinterest.

Tour Schedule:  http://hfvirtualbooktours.com/thebonechurchblogtour
Tour Hashtag: #BoneChurchTour

The Bone Church_BlogTour Banner FINAL

2 Comments

Filed under Book Reviews

Peter Danish’s The Tenor is a Beautiful Story of WWII, Music, and Love

02_The Tenor

LOVE this cover!!

The Tenor, by Peter Danish, is a book of superb storytelling, with a very real and likeable protagonist and an enthralling theme. I’ve always been a fan of classic music and the opera, so this book that showcases both history and the art of music, as well as the intrigue of the war and romance, was a wonderful fit for me. Danish’s sentences are silky and lush with description.

For instance, to start with, how can you not be drawn in by this copy:

“If he’s caught, it will mean a firing squad.  If he does nothing, she will surely die – and the world will never know the greatest voice of all time.  That’s something he simply can’t accept – whatever the risk.”

​In 1941, an Italian soldier, an aspiring opera singer himself, risked his life to ensure that a wonderfully talented young Greek opera singer made it through WWII alive. This is his story.

And it certainly is Pino Vaggi’s story told with all the fervor of a trained singer belting out words from his pipes. It’s a beautiful piece of storytelling and the best kind, based on a true story. I love books like this from the WWII era, because there was so much rich culture intertwining at the time. This was a time when so many had dreams for them all to ripped away by war, for nothing to be stable, and for all sorts of various love affairs and marriages to take place.  Danish’s book offered nothing less than a wonderful story of heart and determination, of both love and sacrifice. The selfless nature of people during this time period was really brought out by Danish in his novel.

I enjoyed Danish’s details, and the thoughts of his characters were vivid, especially with Pino. I felt at most times I was inside Pino’s head and feeling or reacting to what his senses and emotions were taking in. He blended bits of a true story into fiction and presented it in a very real way.

The sentences in the book, many beautiful, made this book more like art than historical reenactment. Most of his sentences rolled off the dainty corners of my mouth, or would have had I been reading aloud. In some cases, however, he may have liked the sentence or phrase so much that he repeated it (such as with aroma at the beginning), which I think an editor should have re-worked into a one time thing for better impact, but it worked out a little better as the story flowed on. Overall, they had lovely, flowing imagery and I enjoyed the journey that they took me on as I read the book.

If you are a fan of books that are as beautiful and as enthralling to read as their covers that catch your eye, then this book of historical drama is most likely for you. I’d especially say that those who are true lovers of the stage, symphony, and opera are going to love how that world fits into this novel. The beauty of the words do a real justice to the basis of the true story and immortalize the journey not only of the people in his novel, but all people of this time period who struggled through similar situations. The stories of so many who came to America on the back of their dreams are all so amazing and The Tenor is a unique read in this sub-genre of historical fiction with musicality of prose and mesmerizing lyrical writing.

The Tenor, Synopsis~

02_The TenorPublication Date: February 24, 2014
Pegasus Books
Formats: Hardcover, Paperback, eBook

The Tenor is a sweeping tale of historical fiction in the style of Ann Patchett’s “Bel Canto” and De Burniere’s “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.” It swiftly moves from Pino Vaggi’s youth in pre-war Italy, to his coming of age as a soldier in war-torn Greece, before ending in a shattering surprise finale at Maria Callas’ historic final performance ever on the stage of New York’s Metropolitan Opera House in 1965. It is based loosely on the stories and anecdotes that I learned from several of Maria Callas’ personal friends and from nearly a dozen trips to Italy and Greece to research the subject.

Pino Vaggi is not like the other children in Italy in 1930. While they play soccer, he listens to opera. By age ten, he is already a child prodigy, an opera singing sensation on the fast track to a major international career. On the eve of his debut, WWII breaks out. The theater is closed. The season is cancelled. Pino is drafted. He is stationed in war-torn Athens, where he hears and ultimately falls in love with another child prodigy, the young Maria Callas. There is one major problem: she is the enemy.

However, as famine devastates Athens, (a famine created by the diversion of humanitarian aid meant for the Greeks to the Russian front to feed the German Army) the artist in Pino can’t fathom the thought of the greatest singer the world will ever know perishing, especially if he is in a position to prevent it. With a firing squad in the balance, he repeatedly risks his own life to protect and feed the young girl and her family. In the process, his love for her deepens, until something tragic happens – something with devastating consequences that blows the young lovers apart.

Praise for The Tenor

“Mr. Danish’s clever use of the history of one of the greatest voices ever to sing, Maria Callas, and a little known part of that history, her early life during turbulent times in the world, gives this a truly romantic and involving idea…. I loved it and any opera lover would too. Easy, readable and knowledgeable about life, music and all the stuff that happens in between….!” – Aprile Millo, Metropolitan Opera Star

“Mr. Danish’s exceeding knowledge of and passion for the medium of opera suffuses every line of this cinderella narrative, one that provides a thrill ride for both the novice and the seasoned opera fan. The Tenor is impossible to put down….” – Samuel Juliano, Wonders in the Dark

“As an operatic diva that has sung over 100 performances with the Metropolitan Opera, I can say without hesitation, that “The Tenor” is a riveting and accurate tale of life imitating art! Peter Danish’s story telling ability is lyrical and powerful as he explores the life of an opera singer through passion, longing, romance and war! The accuracy of his descriptions about a singer’s journey, his musical and operatic references and his colorful characters, including the incomparable Maria Callas, make this a must read!” – Victoria Livengood, Metropolitan Opera Mezzo Soprano

“Whether Peter Danish is writing about music, history or travel in his vastly entertaining novel, “The Tenor,” his words fly off the page. The whirlwind of images invites the reader into a world that will be familiar to some, foreign to others—but captivating to all. Read it!” – Richard Sasanow, Editor-in-Chief BWW Opera

“The easy flowing prose of Mr. Danish’s historically engaging novel is expertly paced and eloquently depicted. As an opera singer who has sung hundreds of performances around the world I think this book will be a compelling read for music lovers and an exhilarating story for all readers. Bravo, Mr. Danish!” – Korliss Uecker, Metropolitan Opera Soprano

“Each page of Tenor is as rich as a box of Italian chocolates. By page 8 I already found 7 lines I wanted to steal. Dive in and trust author Peter Danish to sweep you up and lead you through a remarkable adventure! I couldn’t put it down.” – Tom Dudzick, playwright, Over the Tavern, Miracle on South Division Street

“Facts and fiction playfully intertwine in this opera lover’s delight!” – Alberto Ferreras, award-winning author, ‘B as in Beautiful’

“The Tenor was not what I was expecting. Yes, it’s about opera. Yes, it’s an homage to art and artists. Yes, it’s about dreaming of fulfilling one’s destiny. But, it’s about all those things without being fussy or precious. It’s decidedly unfussy–because it’s about people who work really hard….Peter Danish creates characters you root for. He has woven a tale that keeps you wanting to find out what happens next! I think they call those page-turners!” – John Cariani, Tony Award Nominee, playwright, ‘Almost Maine’

“With his far-reaching opera expertise and keen insight into the Italian soul, Peter Danish draws us into his captivating story of the joys and heartaches of the performer’s life. The result is a satisfying read for book lovers and opera lovers alike. Bravo, Il Tenore!” – Erica Miner, Award-winning Author, ‘Murder in the Pit’

Buy the Book~

Amazon (eBook)
Amazon (Paperback)
Amazon (Hardcover)
Book Depository

Author Peter Danish, Biography~

03_Author Peter DanishPeter Danish is the Classical Music Editor in Chief for BWWClassical.com, the classic music site for BroadwayWorld.com, covering and reviewing the classical music performance in and around New York City and the greater New York Area.

A proud member of the Dramatists Guild of America, he is the playwright of the play: “Gods, Guns and Greed,” as well as the new musical: “The Flying Dutchman.”

His writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, Ad Age, Ad Week and Media Week Magazines.

Author Links

Author Website
Danish Media Group Website
Facebook Page

 Tour Schedule: http://hfvirtualbooktours.com/thetenortour

Tour Hashtag: #TheTenorVirtualTour

The Tenor_Tour Banner_FINAL

 

4 Comments

Filed under Book Reviews

Terror Lurks in the German Woods: Guest Post by the Amazing Horror Author Brian Moreland

Hi, Erin, thanks so much for having me back as a guest on your blog. Today, I’m sharing some background of my novel, Shadows in the Mist, a historical horror thriller that explores the dark side of World War II and the Nazis’ fascination with the Occult.

The main characters are U.S. infantry soldiers: Lt. Jack Chambers and his ragtag platoon known as “the Lucky Seven.” During the first weeks of October 1944, Lt. Chambers and his platoon have been fighting the German army tooth-and-nail in the bloody Hürtgen Forest that borders Belgium and Germany. All Lt. Chambers wants to do is get his few surviving men out of the war in one piece and return to London to find the English Red Cross nurse he fell in love with. But Fate has a different agenda for the Lucky Seven, and especially Jack Chambers who has ties to a top-secret war he didn’t even know was taking place.

The Lucky Seven are chosen to lead a rogue commando team behind German lines. The mission: infiltrate a Nazi weapons camp. As Lt. Chambers and his men venture into the thick and foggy woods, they discover something evil is hunting them and it won’t rest until every soldier is dead.

To make this novel as compelling and authentic as I could, I interviewed WWII veteran soldiers, both American and German, who fought in the famous Battle of the Hürtgen Forest. I traveled across Germany with historians and personally walked the battlefields, graveyards, and toured a private museum. You can see the photos here.

273_Shadows_Master_Front_cover_for_Samhain300Shadows in the Mist weaves together war-time adventure, horror, and historical facts based on my research of the Nazis and the Occult. The Indiana Jones movies Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Last Crusade depicted the Nazis on quests for the Ark of the Covenant and the Holy Grail. There is plenty of evidence the Nazis went on such quests in search of mystical ways to gain more world power. In fact, they formed an entire division called the Ahnenerbe-SS. While the supernatural mystery I have created is a work of fiction, the inspiration behind it is terrifyingly real. Had the Nazis used their research to pull this off, we might have had a different outcome to the war.

I hope you enjoy reading Shadows in the Mist as much as I enjoyed researching and writing it. You can read a sample of the book at www.BrianMoreland.wordpress.com 

All the best,

Brian Moreland

GIVEAWAY!!!!!

Because Brian is the nicest horror writer I’ve even met (though most are pretty nice and normal people), he’s doing a giveaway that you DON’T WANT TO MISS!!

He’s giving away a free e-book copy of SHADOWS IN THE MIST and also a FREE SIGNED PAPERBACK COPY OF SHADOWS IN THE MIST!!

What an amazing deal. Try to win it for yourself or have him sign it to whom you’d like and you can give it as a Holiday gift!

Details:

*Signed paperback mailed to U.S. only.
*Must leave a comment after the post with email or
email me to hookofabook@hotmail.com with entries completed.
*Must enter to win by 11:59 p.m. EST on Dec. 12th.
*One entry for comment/leaving email.
*Email used for communication with winner.
*Will be randomly drawn on Dec. 13 and notified.

EXTRA ENTRIES:

+1 additional entry each (you can any you wish, one or all) for; just email which ones you did to me for credit.:

Follow my blog

Following @ErinAlMehairi on Twitter

Following @BrianMoreland on Twitter

Following Brian on Facebook (see below)

Liking Brian’s books on Amazon.

Author Bio, Brian Moreland~

368_Facebook_author

Brian Moreland writes novels and short stories of horror and supernatural suspense. His first two novels, Dead of Winter and Shadows in the Mist, are now available. His upcoming novella, The Witching House, will release August 2013, and novel The Devil’s Woods will release December 2013. He loves hiking, kayaking, watching sports, dancing, and eating cookies. Brian lives in Dallas, Texas where he is diligently writing his next horror novel. You can communicate with him online at http://www.brianmoreland.com/

 Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/HorrorAuthorBrianMoreland

Twitter: @BrianMoreland

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1150022.Brian_Moreland

Brian’s Horror Fiction blog: http://www.brianmoreland.blogspot.com

Coaching for Writers blog:  http://www.coachingforwriters.blogspot.com

You can purchase Shadows in the Mist at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Shadows-Mist-Brian-Moreland/dp/1619210665/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1354766751&sr=8-2&keywords=brian+moreland, Samhain Publishing: http://store.samhainpublishing.com/shadows-mist-p-6933.html, and many other places nationwide.

9 Comments

Filed under Guest Posts