“Half memoir, half travel, A Yank Back to England...is an absolutely wonderful book, not only about going home again but also about love and family and tradition and the passage of the years.”
—Michael Dirda, Pulitzer Prize-winning literary critic (Washington
To see the entire quote, click here.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Book Giveaway: An Impartial Witness

We here in the Prodigal Household are big fans of mysteries, as many of you know, and we always have our eyes peeled for a good one! Now, with Prodigal Wife's love of anything historical and my fascination with World War I, we're both anxious to get our hands on Charles Todd's new book, An Impartial Witness. And thanks to HarperCollins, we can now offer all our bloggy friends two free copies of Bess Crawford's second adventure!

This book is barely out but great reviews are already pouring in (OK, green-eyed monster, get back in the closet):
"intricate twists and plenty of viable suspects" (Publishers Weekly)
A "plucky, determined sleuth and a thrilling mystery" (Library Journal)
“A smartly plotted, well-told mystery.” (Booklist on An Impartial Witness )

Here is what the publisher says:

Tending to the soldiers in the trenches of France during the First World War, battlefield nurse Bess Crawford is sent back to England in the early summer of 1917 with a convoy of severely burned men. One of her patients, a young pilot, has clung to a photograph of his wife since his plane went down, and Bess can’t help but notice the photo every time she tends to him. After the patients are transferred to a clinic in Hampshire, Bess is ready for her two-day leave, planning to return to her flat in London to catch up on some much-needed rest. But at the railway station, in a mob of troops leaving for the front, Bess catches a glimpse of a familiar face. Could that be the pilot’s wife? And why is she bidding a very emotional farewell to a soldier who is not her husband?

Back in France, Bess discovers an old newspaper with a drawing of the woman’s face on the front page. Accompanying the drawing is a plea from Scotland Yard looking for information from anyone who has seen her. The woman was murdered-the very day Bess saw her at the terminal. Granted leave to visit Scotland Yard to report what she knows, Bess soon finds herself on the search for a devious and very dangerous killer-a search that will put her own life in jeopardy.

Sounds appealing, yes? If you want to try your hand at one of the two free copies, just leave a comment below before September 15. If you wish, you may earn additional entries in the following ways:
*post/tweet/share this giveaway
*tag my own little tome, A Yank Back to England, on Amazon -- England, memoir, travel, travelogue, and travelogues PLEASE!
*if you've already tagged Yank (THANK YOU!), tagging the Kindle edition works too!
*put Yank on your shelf in Goodreads, Shelfari, or LibraryThing. (one entry each)
*TWO entries if you vote for Yank on Goodreads' Favourite Travel Book list or Have Passport will Travel or Best Traveling Vicariously (FIVE if you do all 3)

That's it! Oh--US only please, sorry. And if we don't have your email yet, please leave it so we can contact you if you win. Winners will be announced on September 16, at which time you'll have 48 hours to send us your address, which we will pass along to HarperCollins.
Good luck everyone!

Monday, August 16, 2010

At the market

"You’re a long way from home,” said Frances to a woman vendor.
A Gaelic shrug of the mouth. “Wiz ze toon-el... iz no problem.”
We had found a Normandy farmer’s wife, with tight curly black hair an easy smile and an English accent as thick as Camembert. She had a stall with a huge array of French cheeses and not much else. We walked on, past fruit and vegetable stalls, a poultry vendor, a pork butcher, a baker’s stall with different breads as well as fruit and savory pies. There was even a knife grinder selling cutlery, and flatware. I thought I might even find a candlestick maker! It was fun. The noise, the banter, the odd blares from radios volumed up for sale. Kate slept through it all.