The Love Note: Lone Star Book Blog Tour – Guest Post

THE LOVE NOTE
by
Joanna Davidson Politano
Genre: Christian / Historical Fiction / Romance
Publisher: Revell
Publication Date: October 20, 2020
Number of Pages: 400
Scroll down for the giveaway!

Focused on a career in medicine and not on romance, Willa Duvall is thrown slightly off course during the summer of 1859 when she discovers a never-opened love letter in a crack of her old writing desk. Compelled to find the passionate soul who penned it and the person who never received it, she takes a job as a nurse at the seaside estate of Crestwicke Manor.

Everyone at Crestwicke has feelings—mostly negative ones—about the man who wrote the letter, but he seems to have disappeared. With plenty of enticing clues but few answers, Willa’s search becomes even more complicated when she misplaces the letter and it passes from person to person in the house, each finding a thrilling or disheartening message in its words.

Laced with mysteries large and small, this romantic Victorian-era tale of love lost, love deferred, and love found is sure to delight.

CLICK TO PURCHASE

GuestPost

Storytelling – for better or for worse

 Guest Post by Joanna Davidson Politano

When I was a kid, I wrote stories, and they got me in trouble. Storytelling has always been the way I’ve dealt with life, especially when I was the quiet kid in early grade-school years. I wrote kids in my class into the stories—specifically, the ones picked on by bullies—and made real superheroes out of them. They all had these amazing hidden talents (which often was true in real life too) and the bullies who made fun of them—well, their characters didn’t fare well. I made sure of it. I had a blast writing up these larger-than-life scenarios, and they were incredibly fun.

Until they were found. I’ll never forget the pure torture of knowing they were circulating around the classroom one day. No one had any idea who’d written them (I’d left them behind on the reading rug in the rush to get to lunch), and I was dying inside waiting for them to figure it out.

That’s the tension I brought to The Love Note as I began writing. What is this? Where did it come from? A potent love letter turns up in the midst of a turbulent family, and several people—from maids to newlywed mistresses—encounter the touching words and believe it’s for them. The heroine knows it’s an old letter found in a family desk, and she’s anxious to trace the story of lost lovers and reunite them with the letter that was never delivered—but it happens to be delivered to a few wrong people by accident before it reaches its final destination.

Just like my grade-school classroom, which encountered a subtle shift after the stories leaked, the letter impacts the house as a whole, a catalyst sweeping through all the broken, disastrous relationships and shaking them up. The letter does eventually find its way home, but not before shifting most relationships in the house—for better or worse.

I learned as a second grader that my words, when put together the right way, carried huge weight. Even though I was a quiet kid, my stories could carve their way into places that no lecture or argument could go and actually change someone’s mind. I loved bringing that shift to Crestwicke in my novel, too, and the many broken love stories there. Words have impacts we cannot imagine. Like a knife, they either perform surgery that leads to healing or cut a new wound.

The characters eventually do find out who wrote the letter—and who it was written for—but by then the story had grown so much larger that they almost couldn’t be mad at the trouble it had caused or the person behind it all. The kids in my class didn’t care who wrote the stories in the end, either. I don’t think most of them ever knew. They were mostly interested in how their character came out on the page, and if they were villain or hero. I still can’t believe my silly wide-ruled sheets of paper unsettled that classroom the way they did, but the words meant something, and, even as fiction, they communicated a great deal of truth about how things in that classroom were.

I think I was hooked on writing back then, and even more so when I grew older and found many books that impacted me. So now I still write, still harness words, and sometimes—when I make friends into characters—I still get myself into trouble.

Joanna Davidson Politano is the award-winning author of Lady Jayne Disappears and A Rumored Fortune. She loves tales that capture the colorful, exquisite details in ordinary lives and is eager to hear anyone’s story.
She lives with her husband and their two kids in a house in the woods near Lake Michigan. You can find her at www.jdpstories.com.
———————————
GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!
ONE WINNER: Copy of The Love Note + $25 B&N Gift
Card + Pack of 50 Love Notes Cards.
OCTOBER 27-NOVEMBER 6, 2020
(US ONLY)
FOR DIRECT LINKS TO EACH POST ON THIS TOUR, UPDATED DAILY,
or visit the blogs directly:

10/27/20

Book Trailer

Hall
Ways Blog

10/27/20

Review

Jennifer Silverwood

10/28/20

Character Interview

Reading by Moonlight

10/29/20

Review

Rainy
Days with Amanda

10/30/20

Top Five

Story
Schmoozing Book Reviews

10/30/20

Review

Carpe
Diem Chronicles

10/31/20

Excerpt 1

All
the Ups and Downs

11/1/20

Excerpt 2

Book Bustle

11/2/20

Author Interview

The
Adventures of a Travelers Wife

11/2/20

Review

The Clueless Gent

11/3/20

Guest Post

Max Knight

11/4/20

Top Eight List

Chapter Break Book Blog

11/4/20

Review

Missus Gonzo

11/5/20

Review

Jennie Reads

11/5/20

Review

StoreyBook Reviews

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Something Worth Doing: Lone Star Book Blog Tour – Excerpt

SOMETHING WORTH DOING
A Novel of an Early Suffragist
by
Jane Kirkpatrick
 
Genre: Christian Historical Fiction 
Publisher: Revell
Publication Date: September 1, 2020 
Number of Pages: 336
 
 
 Scroll down for the giveaway!
 
 
Some things are worth doingeven when the cost is great In 1853, Abigail Scott was a nineteen-year-old schoolteacher in Oregon Territory when she married Ben Duniway. Marriage meant giving up on teaching, but Abigail always believed she was meant to be more than a good wife and mother. When Abigail becomes the primary breadwinner for her growing family, what she sees as a working woman appalls herand prompts her to devote her life to fighting for the rights of women, including the right to vote. 
Based on a true story, Something Worth Doing will resonate with modern women who still grapple with the pull between career and family, finding their place in the public sphere, and dealing with frustrations and prejudices when competing in male-dominated spaces.
 
PRAISE FOR SOMETHING WORTH DOING:
“I have long admired Jane Kirkpatrick’s rich historical fiction, and Something Worth Doing is well worth reading! Oregonian Abigail Duniway is a vibrant, fiercely passionate, and determined activist who fought for women’s suffrage. Women of today have cause to respect and admire heras well as the loving, patient, and supportive husband who encouraged her to continue ‘the silent hunt.'” Francine Rivers, author of Redeeming Love 
 
“On the trail to Oregon, young Jenny Scott lost her beloved mother and little brother and learned that no matter what, she must persist until she reaches her goal. Remembering her mother’s words‘a woman’s life is so hard’the young woman who became Abigail Scott Duniway came to understand through observation and experience that law and custom favored men. The author brings alive Abigail’s struggles as frontier wife and mother turned newspaper publisher, prolific writer, and activist in her lifelong battle to win the vote and other rights for women in Oregon and beyond. Jane Kirkpatrick’s story of this persistent, passionate, and bold Oregon icon is indeed Something Worth Doing!” Susan G. Butruille, author of Women’s Voices from the Oregon Trail, now in a 25th anniversary edition
CLICK TO PURCHASE
 
 

SOMETHING WORTH DOING

A Novel of an Early Suffragist

Jane Kirkpatrick

Prologue

June 1852

Her dreams of late had been of books with maps of unknown places. Jenny Scott wished she were dreaming now instead of sitting here beside the family wagon, a gushing stream to serenade them. They’d left Illinois two months previous—2 April 1852. She had written the date in the family journal she’d been assigned to keep as they crossed the continent. Since that first roll-­out of wagons toward the west, Jenny traveled without maps. She needed them to help her reduce the fear and anxiety of the unknown; but she did not have them. Though only seventeen, she’d already learned that living required coming to terms with uncertainty—­not that she did that well. She had lost another kind of map as well—­the map of her mother.

A different kind of pain awaited this June afternoon.

“The agony will be worth it.” Jenny spoke with conviction as she eyed the fat needle her new friend blackened in the flame. Then, “Won’t it?”

“It does have a sting,” Shirley Ellis said. “Fair warning.”

Jenny lifted the dark curls to hold them behind her ears. She thought of her hair as unruly with its thickness and natural twists that made morning brushing a chore. She envied her brothers who kept their hair short, curls under control.

Kate, Jenny’s twelve-­year-­old sister, patted Jenny’s shoulder while Shirley continued. “Shakespeare had this done and even biblical Jacob gave a pair to Rachel way back when. The pain has to come before the glory.”

“Ha,” Jenny said.

“I’m here to comfort you,” Kate said, “but I don’t understand why you want to hurt yourself for fashion.”

Ignoring her sister, Jenny took a deep breath. She sat on a three-­legged stool they used to milk the cow. The stool did double duty as a seat for medical ministrations. Jenny squeezed her eyes shut. “Go ahead. Do it.”

Kate pinched her sister’s earlobe as hard as she could, then said to Shirley, “Now.”

The pain of the needle seared. Her sister’s pinching simply wasn’t enough to dull the agony. But at least Jenny felt misery for something physical instead of the heartache she’d carried since the deaths. Did I know that physical pain could distract from emotional hurting?

She felt the blood trickle down her neck as Shirley pulled the needle out. “It’s a good thing I have a strong stomach,” Jenny said. Kate dabbed at Jenny’s bleeding earlobe. They’d have to soak the handkerchief to rid it of the red. “Are you certain that Jacob gave Rachel a pair of earrings? What chapter and verse?”

“I don’t really remember,” Shirley said. She had thick, naturally arched eyebrows that framed her blue eyes. “It’s too late for second thoughts, though if you don’t put the pin through, it’ll grow new flesh right over the hole.” Shirley dabbed at Jenny’s ear with a clean handkerchief, then wiped the needle, and now rolled it in the flame again until blackened.

“Ready,” Jenny said.

She straightened her back. Kate pinched the other ear and Jenny closed her eyes. The second piercing commenced. Her older sister Fanny, standing to the side, winced. It took a team.

“Finished. And you didn’t even faint,” Shirley said.

Kate dabbed at the blood on Jenny’s cheek, then held out the tourmaline-­studded gold rings. “I’ll put them in for you.”

Jenny felt the metal push into her ears, surprised again at the sting and pain.

“You’ll have to twirl them a few times a day until they heal,” Shirley warned. “You don’t want the skin to attach itself to the rings.” She eyed the earrings now adorning Jenny’s ears. “They’re really pretty with that one gold gem in the middle of the disc. A good size too. Won’t draw too much attraction.”

“Isn’t attraction the point though?” Kate said.

“The point,” Jenny corrected, “is not adornment but memorializing. Momma loved these. She got them from Grandma who received them from her mother, and she left them to me.”

“I thought one of the stones like those we covered Momma’s grave with was your memorial keepsake. You insisted to Papa that you had to put that rock in the wagon.” Fanny dabbed Jenny’s other ear with a bit of whiskey kept only for medicinal purposes.

“You can’t have too many mementos, I say.” Shirley wiped the needle with the liquor, then put it back into her fabric sewing kit attached to her bodice.

“It’s more than a memento. Earrings and rocks and a cut of hair, they’re all ephemera, items of the historical record that are neither documents nor maps,” Jenny said. She touched her ear and winced.

“I’m sorry.” Kate leaned in.

“What’s a little smarting in memory of our momma who endured so much bringing us into the world, and then had to leave it so prematurely? She didn’t want to leave Illinois, you know. I heard her tell Papa that they’d always lived on a frontier, and now civilization was catching up to them so couldn’t they stay and enjoy it. Papa said no.” Tears welled in her eyes while her stomach clenched with anger. It wasn’t fair, it just wasn’t.

“Will you take some item for . . . your friend too?” Fanny asked. Her voice was gentle. A boy Jenny had met on the trail had drowned not long after their mother’s death.

“One earring for Momma and the other for him. And then no more.” She took the mirror Shirley handed her, turned her head from side to side to admire the earrings. “No more sadness. I’ve had enough.” She stood and with conviction declared, “I will control it.”

Their brother Harvey sauntered by as Jenny made her declaration of sending grief away. Harvey, with his good looks and opinions, walked backward away from them then, saying, “You can’t control anything, you females. Not a thing. Lucky for you us men protect you.”

“Ha!” Jenny shouted after him as he turned his back to them, striding off as though he owned the land, the stream—­his future. “No one knows what they can accomplish until they undertake it.” Fanny, Shirley, and Kate nodded agreement.

And so Abigail Jane “Jenny” Scott set forth to do the best she could to prove her brother—­and all men—­wrong. Girls had power too. One day, she’d show them.

Click to read Chapter One

 
Jane Kirkpatrick is the New York Times and CBA bestselling and award-winning author of more than thirty books, including One More River to Cross, Everything She Didn’t Say, All Together in One Place, A Light in the Wilderness, The Memory Weaver, This Road We Traveled, and A Sweetness to the Soul, which won the prestigious Wrangler Award from the Western Heritage Center. 
 
Her works have won the WILLA Literary Award, the Carol Award for Historical Fiction, and the 2016 Will Rogers Gold Medallion Award. Jane divides her time between Central Oregon and California with her husband, Jerry, and Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Caesar.
 
———————————
GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY! GIVEAWAY!
THREE WINNERS!
1st: Copy of Something Worth Doing + Oregon Map Bag
+ $25 Barnes and Noble Gift Card;
2nd and 3rd:
Copy of Something Worth Doing + $10 Barnes and Noble Gift Card. 
SEPTEMBER 15-25, 2020 
(US ONLY)
 
FOR DIRECT LINKS TO EACH POST ON THIS TOUR, UPDATED DAILY, 
or visit the blogs directly:
 
9/15/20
Character Interview
9/15/20
BONUS Post
9/16/20
Review
9/17/20
Excerpt
9/18/20
Review
9/19/20
Author Interview
9/20/20
Scrapbook Page
9/21/20
Review
9/22/20
Deleted Scene
9/22/20
BONUS Post
9/23/20
Review
9/24/20
BONUS Review
9/24/20
Review
 
 
 
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