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A Giveaway of The Rescued by Marta Perry

What do you think of when I say the words Amish schoolhouse? Did you picture a small white frame building in a secluded rural spot, with children in Amish clothing playing ball or tag outside? That’s the most common image we have, especially of the Pennsylvania Amish.

But Amish schooling wasn’t always so peaceful. In the aftermath of World War II, the key word for American culture was progress, and that concept included schools. Small, one-and-two-room rural schools were closed, large consolidated high schools built to serve families from a number of communities, and the idea of a small local school gradually disappeared.

Except for the Amish. In most areas with large Amish populations, the plans of state educational bodies and the needs of Amish families came into direct conflict. As long as their children could attend small local schools with neighboring farm children and quit school after eighth grade, the Amish were content to send their youngsters to public schools. But when it came to busing children long distances to spend the day studying subjects which their parents considered unnecessary or in opposition to their beliefs, Amish parents balked.

Did you know that in one fall term in the early 50s, over a hundred Amish parents were jailed for the offense of refusing to send their children to consolidated schools? My new book, THE RESCUED, brings to life one such parent, whose courage in the face of imprisonment for her beliefs not only inspires her descendant in the present day to act courageously, but also brings her to a new love and eventually a better life for herself and her children.

Here’s a bit about my story, THE RESCUED, in stores everywhere on June 2nd.

What do you think of when I say the words Amish schoolhouse? Did you picture a small white frame building in a secluded rural spot, with children in Amish clothing playing ball or tag outside? That’s the most common image we have, especially of the Pennsylvania Amish.  But Amish schooling wasn’t always so peaceful. In the aftermath of World War II, the key word for American culture was progress, and that concept included schools. Small, one-and-two-room rural schools were closed, large consolidated high schools built to serve families from a number of communities, and the idea of a small local school gradually disappeared.As an Amish wife and mother struggles to hold her family together, a story from the past teaches her how to face her daily challenges with strength and love . . .

In modern day central Pennsylvania, Judith Wegler tries to heal the growing rift between her husband, Isaac, and his teenage brother Joseph—whom Judith and Isaac have raised as their own ever since both brothers lost their parents and siblings in a horrific fire. Meanwhile, Isaac’s hurtful silence about this tragic past has robbed Judith of any certainty of her husband’s love.

But when Judith’s grandmother gifts her with an antique study table, she discovers a hidden packet of letters that changes her life . . .

In 1953, widow Mattie Lapp fights against the county’s attempts to force Amish children to attend a consolidated public school, even if it means arrest and imprisonment. Mattie knows she can’t face this challenge alone, and turns to her late husband’s cousin Adam for help, but she’s terrified at the prospect of relying on someone else.

Now, as the two women’s stories converge, both must learn to stand up for their beliefs and to love again, even when it means risking their hearts . . .

WANT TO WIN A COPY OF THE RESCUED? One person who leaves a comment will receive a free copy of The Rescued, courtesy of my publisher, Berkley Books. 

For an EXTRA chance share this post and leave a comment if you do.

Giveaway starts today, Tuesday, May 26th and ends Tuesday, June 2nd.

*Giveaway is only open to US residents*

Introducing….New York Times Bestselling Author Hazel Gaynor Plus Giveaway

Introducing….New York Times Bestselling Author Hazel Gaynor

A-Memory-of-Violets-Hazel-GaynorI sometimes describe myself as one part writer, two parts mum and I think this is a pretty accurate description! Life as a writer with two young boys is certainly busy, and far from the idyllic image people might have of a place of calm and serenity to channel my writing muse! Writing happens when the kids are at school and in snatched moments between playdates and rugby training and cooking the dinner. It’s busy, messy and, at times, chaotic – but it’s also wonderful and I wouldn’t swap it for the world.

I started writing in 2009, following redundancy when I was in my late 30’s. From my fledgling experience as a parenting blogger, to freelancing for the local press and eventually starting the novel I’d been talking about for years, my route to publication has been far from straightforward. But all the ups and downs, the pain of rejections, the nerves as the book eventually goes out into the world have all been so worth it. To finally see my books in the hands of readers is very special indeed. It just goes to show that you should never give up, and that it is never too late to start.

It was sometime in 2010 when I first started to scribble notes and ideas for a novel based around the lives of London’s flower sellers at the turn of the century. That novel would eventually become A MEMORY OF VIOLETS. I’d loved Pygmalion and My Fair Lady since playing the role of Eliza Doolittle in the school musical (of which there is, unfortunately, video evidence!) I wanted to understand more about the real Elizas – the young women who sold flowers and watercress on the streets of Victorian and Edwardian-era London.

During my research, I was surprised to learn that many of the youngest flower sellers were orphaned, blind or physically disabled in some way. I also discovered the work of Victorian philanthropist, John Groom, who gave many of these young girls and women a home at his ‘crippleage’ where he taught them how to make artificial flowers and took them off the streets. Their work became widely known in London, and eventually led to their involvement in the very first Queen Alexandra Rose Day in June 1912. But it was when I read Henry Mayhew’s, London Labour & The London Poor, in which he records detailed interviews with London’s street sellers from the late 1800s, that I came across an account of two orphaned watercress sellers. I knew immediately that I had found my story and that I wanted to combine the idea of two orphaned sisters with the work of John Groom and his Flower Homes.

Since my debut novel, THE GIRL WHO CAME HOME, was published in April 2014, I’ve been blown away by the reaction of readers. I love receiving messages through my website and am always very touched when readers take the time to contact me and share their response to my characters. To have watched the novel go from being self-published, to a fully-fledged book published across the USA and to then hit the New York Times bestsellers on three occasions has been simply amazing, and I’m so very grateful to all the readers who made this happen.
I am now very excited to be publishing my second novel A MEMORY OF VIOLETS and can’t wait to see what this next chapter of my writing life will bring.

From the author of the USA Today bestseller The Girl Who Came Home comes an unforgettable historical novel that tells the story of two little sisters – orphaned flower sellers – and the young woman who will be transformed by their experiences.

‘For Little Sister … I will never stop looking for you.’

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  1. Among the filth and depravity of Covent Garden’s flower markets, orphaned Irish sisters Flora and Rosie Flynn sell posies of violets and watercress to survive. It is a pitiful existence, made bearable only by the presence of each other. When they become separated, the decision of a desperate woman sets their lives on very different paths.
  2. Twenty-one-year-old Tilly Harper leaves the peace and beauty of her native Lake District for London, to become assistant housemother at Mr. Shaw’s Home for Watercress and Flower Girls. For years, the home has cared for London’s orphaned and crippled flower girls, taking them off the streets. For Tilly, the appointment is a fresh start; a chance to leave her troubled past behind.

Soon after she arrives, Tilly discovers a notebook belonging to Flora Flynn. Hidden between the pages she finds dried flowers and a heartbreaking tale of loss and separation as Flora’s entries reveal how she never stopped looking for her sister.  Tilly sets out to discover what happened to Rosie. But the search will not be easy. Full of twists and surprises, it leads the caring and determined young woman into unexpected places, including the depths of her own heart.

 Buy Links: Amazon / B&N / IndieBound

GIVEAWAY!!

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Hazel Gaynor photoHazel Gaynor’s 2014 debut novel THE GIRL WHO CAME HOME – A Novel of the Titanic was a New York Times and USA Today bestseller. A MEMORY OF VIOLETS is her second novel. Hazel writes a popular guest blog ‘Carry on Writing’ for national Irish writing website writing.ie and contributes regular feature articles for the site, interviewing authors such as Philippa Gregory, Sebastian Faulks, Cheryl Strayed, Rachel Joyce and Jo Baker, among others.

Hazel was the recipient of the 2012 Cecil Day Lewis award for Emerging Writers and was selected by Library Journal as one of Ten Big Breakout Authors for 2015. She appeared as a guest speaker at the Romantic Novelists’ Association and Historical Novel Society annual conferences in 2014. Originally from Yorkshire, England, Hazel now lives in Ireland with her husband and two children.

For more information, visit Hazel’s website at http://www.hazelgaynor.com/ or Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/hazelgaynorbooks or follow her on Twitter @HazelGaynor



Meet Olivia Newport Plus Giveaway

Maybe not all of you know me. But you’re stopping by Destination Amish because you enjoy stories about the Amish—or at least you’re curious.

A little background: I first became interested in writing about the Amish when I discovered a family line that traced back to the 1738 arrive of the Charming Nancy in Philadelphia. This ship was later called the “Amish Mayflower” because it carried so many Amish families. One of them, apparently, was my ancestor, Jakob Beyeler. In genealogy circles—and in fitting with the Amish practice of nicknames to distinguish people with the same first name, he is known as “Pioneer Jakob.”

The result of that discovery was my Valley of Choice series, which includes both a contemporary story and a historical thread in which my imagination unfolded the story of my own ancestors around the historical hooks my research turned up. Just a few days ago all three stories were released in one big fat Valley of Choice book. It’s kind of fun to see them all together!

It seemed that my mind did not let go of Amish history. I started a new series called Amish Turns of Time. These are three stand-alone stories set in the 1910s in three different places. Each story unpacks a crisis, conflict, or challenge in Amish history. This series began with Wonderful Lonesome last year. Now I’m tickled that the second story, Meek and Mild, has hit the shelves.

Here’s the back cover copy:

Suddenly shun has become a serious word for Clara Kuhn. As 1917 approaches, her Amish church’s aging bishop is coming down hard on members who dally in untraditional practices—like offering Sunday school for children—and Clara’s gift for telling Bible stories to little ones collides with new mandates. The young Pennsylvania Amish woman had always moved freely over the state line to visit family in the more progressive Maryland district, but now those visits are coming under scrutiny by some members of Clara’s church.

On the verge of accepting Andrew Raber’s marriage proposal, Clara is unsure what to make of his new hobby to rehabilitate an abandoned Model T. Just how ward can they push against the bishop’s wishes?

As the chasm widens between Old Order Amish and the Marylanders, and tensions rise between longtime friends and close-knit family, Clara and Andrew must look inward to examine their own hearts and consciences and, above all, seek Gottes wille—God’s will.

For your favorite book-buying options, go HERE

Meek and Mild

Olivia is happily giving away a copy of her new book Meek and Mild to one lucky reader!

To enter leave a comment for Olivia.

For an EXTRA chance share this post and leave a comment if you do.

Giveaway starts today Thursday, February 12th and ends on Thursday, February 19th.

*Giveaway is only open to US residents*


 

Olivia-Newport

 

Olivia Newport’s novels twist through time to find where faith and passions meet. She chases joy in Colorado, where daylilies grow as tall as she is. Her husband and two twenty-something children provide welcome distraction from the people stomping through her head on their way into her books.

Find Olivia: @OliviaNewport, Facebook, www.olivianewport.com