Monday, February 17, 2020

NBtM Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway: Finding Lisa by Sigrid Macdonald

Welcome to my stop on the NBtM virtual book tour for Finding Lisa by Sigrid Macdonald. This book tour was organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. On my stop, I have an excerpt for you as well as a guest post. I also have a tour wide giveaway where you can win a $20 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card. Be sure to check out the rest of the stops on the tour for more excerpts, guest posts, interviews, and reviews. Enjoy!
Title: Finding Lisa
Author: Sigrid Macdonald
Publisher: Totalrecall Publications
Publication Date: July 30th 2019
Print Length: 288 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller, Women's Fiction
Finding Lisa is a character driven story about a quirky Canadian woman named Tara who is about to turn 40. She dreads the thought. Everything is going wrong in her life from her stale marriage to her boring job to her hopeless crush on a 24-year-old guy. The only thing right in Tara's life is her best friend Lisa who has just confided that she is pregnant and the baby does not belong to her partner Ryan, who has a history of domestic violence. Then Lisa disappears and the search is on to find her.

All the carts were taken at the supermarket on Tuesday. I found one off to the side of the vegetable aisle. It had a defective wheel, which resulted in me almost overturning a display of cantaloupes. The cart was also enormous. No doubt this was a deliberate ploy on the part of the supermarket to encourage excess shopping.

"I feel as though I'm driving a school bus," I announced to the frail, pale orange-haired woman to my left, who was squeezing the small, unappetizing looking cantaloupes.

She smiled faintly and nodded. I wondered how she had the strength to push the heavy cart through the long aisles of the grocery store at her age.

"Mum, I'll go with you to one of those Women against Rape meetings if you want?" Devon said to my astonishment, his voice rising at the end of his sentence. "There’s only one condition. You have to watch 8 Mile with me."

"8 Mile? Isn’t that the movie based on the book by Stephen King?"

"Nah, you’re thinking about The Green Mile," Devon replied. "8 Mile is the story of a rapper in Detroit. It's based on the life of Eminem, whose real name is Marshall Mathers. Eminem even stars in it," he said with increasing enthusiasm.

"I think it’ll give you a better idea of where he's coming from. You know, you're always talking about these girls who've been, like, abused and what horrible lives they've had. You even feel bad about boys who were taken advantage of by priests or their hockey coaches. So why don't you have any sympathy for Marshall? His mother was abusive. She was mean to him, and she did drugs! Also, she, like, gave him something called Munchkins syndrome," Devon added uncertainly.

"Munchausen syndrome?” I asked, trying to picture the tough guy with the tattoos and bad attitude as a small child with a manipulative and controlling mother.

"Yeah, that sounds right. She made him feel sick when he was totally healthy. And, Mum, I know you would respect the way Em felt about his little brother, Nathan. He, like, didn't wanna leave him alone in the house with his mother when he finally split from Detroit. He's also really keen about his daughter, Hailie Jade. He talks about her all the time in his songs and on TV."

I pushed the buttons on the radio. The Steve Miller band was singing, "Time keeps on slipping, slipping into the future." I had a sense of motion. The car was moving forward, and with every traffic light I passed, I was moving farther away from Lisa and our routine evenings at the ByTowne Theatre. The rest of us were going ahead, and Lisa had been left behind. I wanted to go back, not just to last Thursday night, but to my university days, so I could live my life all over again.

I wanted to be sixteen or twenty-six again, making decisions based on what I knew now. So many lost opportunities. How had I managed to completely screw up my life? I'd done everything wrong except that I hadn't become a street prostitute or a serial murderer. Too late for the former—who would want me? But there was still time for the latter.
Originally from New Jersey, Sigrid Macdonald lived for almost thirty years in Ottawa, Ontario, and currently resides in Weston, Florida. She has been a freelance writer for years. Her works have appeared in The Globe and Mail newspaper; the Women's Freedom Network Newsletter; the American magazine Justice Denied; The Toastmaster; and the Anxiety Disorders Association of Ontario Newsletter. Her first book, Getting Hip: Recovery from a Total Hip Replacement, was published in 2004. Her second book, Be Your Own Editor, followed in 2010. Although Finding Lisa is written in first person, Macdonald only resembles her character in the sense that she once had a neurotic fixation on her hair, and she has always been called by the wrong name; instead of being called Sigrid, people have called her Susan, Sharon, Astrid, Ingrid and, her personal favorite, Siri.

Macdonald is a social activist who has spent decades working on the seemingly disparate issues of women's rights and wrongful convictions; she has worked at the Women's Center at Ramapo College of New Jersey and Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, and was a member of AIDWYC, The Association in Defense of the Wrongly Convicted. She owns an editing company called Book Magic. Sigrid is a public speaker and a member of Mothers against Drunk Driving, Ottawa Independent Writers, the American Association of University Women, and the Editors' Association of Canada.

If I could live anywhere in the world for a year while writing a book that took place in that same setting, I would choose Toronto. I've traveled throughout the US and Canada, lived in both countries for extended periods, been to the Caribbean and Europe. And I would still like to go to Italy and Greece, or Asia and Africa, but if I were to stay anywhere for an entire year, and be happy there, it would be Toronto.

Why Toronto? First, I went to graduate school in Toronto. Having grown up in the suburbs of New Jersey, in beautiful, quiet, serene small towns, it was a shock to suddenly be in the middle of a city with about 3 million people at that time. I grew up outside of Manhattan, so I was used to a huge city, but New York was overwhelming for me. I loved to visit the museums, especially art and history, but when it came to settling down and really feeling at home somewhere, NYC was not my town. Toronto was. Every street in Toronto had a different personality. One street could be all Hungarian restaurants. The other had a huge outdoor market called Kensington, which had special bread shops and fish stores. There was a classy elegant area called Yorkville and University Drive with campus buildings and museums. Then there was the banking sector and on to Chinatown, or the harbor where you could take a ferry out to Toronto Island, ad infinitum. Living in Toronto was like living in 10 cities condensed. It was very multicultural way before diversity and multiculturalism became a phenomenon elsewhere.

Toronto is a place that I have loved and lost because right before I was about to finish my Master's degree at the University of Toronto, I went home to New Jersey to visit my parents, and I was hit and nearly killed by a drunk driver. I made three attempts to return to Toronto after the accident, but my mobility was never good enough for me to live in such a large metropolis again. So I have had a longing for Toronto for many years.

Second, the city would be a great place to write a book because there would be infinite plot lines. Anything could happen in Toronto! It's conducive to romance, historical fiction, suspense, and psychological thrillers. Or in my case, it's appropriate for a memoir. If I ever had the opportunity, I might settle down in a beautiful downtown apartment and reminisce about the years that I spent there when I was younger and how I have changed over time and compose a story about my younger self. Or maybe I would create a story like the movie Sliding Doors with Gwyneth Paltrow that talks about alternate realities; what kind of life would I have had if I had been able to continue living in Toronto? If instead of having the accident so early on in my life, I had delayed dinner by 10 minutes that fateful evening and consequently was never hit by that car? I might have written Finding Lisa, about the disappearance of one woman's best friend, from the 22nd floor of my apartment building in Toronto.
Sigrid Macdonald will be awarding a $20 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter after the tour. To increase your chance of winning, leave a comment at a different stop on the tour each day. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. When you have bog readers in your family, it's always great to hear about a great book you think one would enjoy. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Hi James, thanks for the kind words. I know what it's like to be in a family full of readers. My sister and I have our own unofficial little book club because we do a couple of books a week on audio as well as print books. It's fun to exchange titles back and forth. Sigrid

  2. Hi Heather, thanks so much for hosting me. Much appreciated. Hope you're having a great Monday. And a big thanks to Goddess Fish Promotions as well! Sigrid

  3. This sounds like a very good book.

  4. nice book cover and the book sounds interesting.

  5. Who is your favorite literary character of all time?

  6. Love the blurb- sounds like a book I'll enjoy

  7. Thanks for sharing, Sigrid! Toronto sounds nice, but, for me, there's no place like home.

  8. thanks this sounds like an interesting book

  9. What books are you looking forward to reading in 2020?

  10. Loved hearing about this awesome book! Thanks for the opportunity to win. Hope you are having a terrific Thursday!

  11. I hope your book is a success. It sounds interesting.

  12. Where do you find is the most inspiring place to write uninterrupted? Rosanne rosans4comcast(dot)net

  13. Sounds like my kind of book! Thanks for the excerpt!

  14. I love the cover, sounds like a good book.

  15. Sounds interesting, thanks for sharing!

  16. Mystery/thriller - a favorite of mine to read!
    Thank you for the review.

  17. After getting out of domestic violence, I don't know if I can read this or not, without triggers.. It does sound like a great book.

  18. Sounds awesome! Looks like a great book. Hope your weekend is going well

  19. My daughter would enjoy this book

  20. This sounds really awesome! Looks like a great book. Hope you had a great weekend

  21. Definitely an interesting read this is going to be.