BECOMING JOSEPHINE by Heather Webb

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Continuing my fascination of “the woman behind the man”, I found BECOMING JOSEPHINE on sale for my kindle a while back. I loved Heather Webb’s RODIN’S LOVER (review here) and was excited to read her debut novel.

Here’s the overview via Amazon:

A sweeping historical debut about the Creole socialite who transformed herself into an empress

Readers are fascinated with the wives of famous men. In Becoming Josephine, debut novelist Heather Webb follows Rose Tascher as she sails from her Martinique plantation to Paris, eager to enjoy an elegant life at the royal court. Once there, however, Rose’s aristocratic soldier-husband dashes her dreams by abandoning her amid the tumult of the French Revolution. After narrowly escaping death, Rose reinvents herself as Josephine, a beautiful socialite wooed by an awkward suitor—Napoleon Bonaparte.

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So — I have to admit that beyond knowing that Josephine was married to Napolean, and that he loved her deeply, I knew nothing about her. What a fascinating woman! She lived in very turbulent times and she endured a major amount of hardships and trials, including slave revolts, imprisonment during the Revolution, assassination attempts, and a horrible accident where her balcony gave way with her on it. Ms. Webb states a reminder that this is historical fiction, but most of the events of the story are true. What fascinated me most is how determined and resourceful Josephine was (she was also intelligent and self-centered). She would do what she needed to do in order to benefit herself and her children. I was also surprised at the amount of lovers she took. It felt like Tudor reading with all the bed hopping going on! Josephine used her relationships, though, to survive and to support herself.

Interesting reading, especially if you have never read much about Josephine in the past. I found myself looking up more information online.

You can find this book online or at a bookstore or library near you.

Spotlight on THE SWORD AND SCABBARD by Allen Woods

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I’m happy today to be taking part in the blog tour for THE SWORD AND SCABBARD – a story of Revolutionary Boston.

Here’s what the publicist has to say:

The Sword & Scabbard: Thieves and Thugs and the Bloody Massacre in Boston

by Allen Woods

The Real Sons of Liberty:

HISTORICAL THRILLER EXPLORES CRIMINAL, POLITICAL INTRIGUE IN THE MARCH TOWARDS REVOLUTION

In every basic U.S. History class, children and teenagers learn about the American Revolution and how the colonists came together to fight unfair taxation by their British counterparts, creating a country founded on the values of freedom, liberty and justice. One of the most notorious events leading up to this revolution was the Boston Massacre, which helped light the spark that fueled a rebellion. But what do we know about the events the paved the way to this historic moment?

The Sword & Scabbard: Thieves and Thugs and the Bloody Massacre in Boston by Allen Woods is the first in a series of novels that answers this question, weaving a story of crime, intrigue and politics to look at an unexplored section of history in a compelling new way.

The streets and taverns of Boston prior to ‘The Bloody Massacre’ were filled with brawls and scrapes, hot words and cold calculations. Nicholas Gray and Maggie Magowan run The Sword and Scabbard, a tavern that is the center of both criminal and political scheming. Each is a fugitive from a dangerous past and their relationship grows fitfully in the midst of historic events. The pair remain suspicious of politicians on both sides of the Atlantic, but are eventually caught in a world where politics and crime meet.

“The road to the Revolution was not a smooth one,” Woods explains. “There were almost constant conflicts within the British and American sides, while many ‘ordinary’ people just wished they could live simple lives without all of the political speeches and protests. But inevitably, they were drawn into the conflict.”

In this thrilling, yet in-depth look at life in the colonies and the onset of the American Revolution, The Sword & Scabbard reveals that:

  • Samuel Adams and other leaders saw themselves at war long before bullets flew, and they were willing to use physical intimidation and threats by gangs of unemployed sailors and dockworkers to further their goals.
  • The Sons of Liberty had no belief in freedom of the press if someone published information harmful to their cause
  • Revolutionary Boston was a city in turmoil, not a mythical place of pure and uniform Revolutionary ideals, and was filled with both self-serving and heroic people, as well as many others who just wished they could be left alone.
  • Resistance to the taxes of the Stamp Act (which led to the Massacre and eventually the Revolution) through an import boycott helped John Hancock and other large merchants run smaller competitors out of business.

Allen Woods has been a full-time freelance writer and editor for almost 30 years, recently specializing in social studies and reading textbooks for all ages. The inspiration for The Sword & Scabbard came while doing research for an American history text. He resides in Massachusetts and has been married to his wife, Irene, for over 30 years.

For more information about Allen Woods and The Sword & Scabbard: Thieves and Thugs and the Bloody Massacre in Boston, please visit http://www.theswordandscabbard.com

or his Facebook, LinkedIn and Goodreads pages.

The Sword & Scabbard: Thieves and Thugs and the Bloody Massacre in Boston is available for purchase at lulu.com, as well as Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

 

Me again!

I am reading this book now and really enjoying it. It has the gritty, tough side of Boston in the 1700’s. Life was not easy for those folks and I always appreciate historical fiction that can adequately show both sides of a disagreement. The characters are memorable (and fun, I have to say!). I look forward to more in this series!

If you like historical fiction of this period (American Revolution), then pick this one up today!

Thank you for my review e-copy and having me be part of the blog tour!