Tuesday, August 17, 2021

Book Blast and Giveaway: The Secret of Drulea Cottage (Betwixt the Sea and Shore #1) by Claire Kohler

Welcome to my stop on the book blast for The Secret of Drulea Cottage by Claire Kohler. This book blast was organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. On my stop, I have an excerpt from the book as well as the tour wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card. Be sure to visit the rest of the stops on the book blast for more content. Enjoy!
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Title: The Secret of Drulea Cottage
Series: Betwixt the Sea and Shore #1
Author: Claire Kohler
Publication Date: August 16th 2021
Print Length: 335 pages
Genre: Historical Fantasy
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Briony Fairborn, a midwife in eighteenth-century Scotland, comes from a family shrouded in scandal. Left with only one friend after her mother’s death, she has little hope of gaining any others, let alone finding a husband. Instead, Briony tries to live a quiet life and avoid her neighbors’ ridicule as much as possible.

But things in Everton take a drastic turn when a storm brings foreigners to the village docks.

On the night Santiago Mendes arrives, he comes with a broken ship, a broken leg, and a broken spirit that Briony finds herself profoundly drawn to. Her scarred heart slowly starts to open, and although Briony suspects he may be hiding something, she cannot help but dream of the possibility of love.

That is, until another stranger appears in town, intent on repaying a childhood debt. A dangerously handsome stranger who shows Briony that she’s even more different than she could have imagined. And that her past is far darker than she realized.

Magic, romance, and political intrigue collide as the secrets surrounding one Scottish woman begin to unravel. Secrets that she may not be ready to face.

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EXCERPT:
“Open the door! By order of His Majesty the King!” The harsh shout from the street below wrenched Santiago out of his reverie.

The sounds of merriment abruptly ended within the house, and nervous whispers took their place. Santiago peered down from the balcony at the ten quadrilheiros standing right outside the door. He’d never seen that many gathered in one place, since they typically stayed in Lisbon near the king. What could be so important for them to show up here?

“Santiago!”

The man turned to find his sister standing before him, a nervous Andreas at her side. Her entire body was trembling as though she would fall apart at a moment’s notice, and Santiago observed the way she gripped Andreas’s arm with such intensity that her knuckles had turned white.

“Are they going to arrest us? Why are the quadrilheiros here?” Lucia whimpered in a low voice, her breaths so shallow she could barely get the words out.

Santiago reached out and patted her shoulder. “Calm down, sister. We’ve done nothing wrong. I’m sure they just need information for something—”

The door creaked open below them, and Santiago motioned for Lucia to be silent.

“What’s the meaning of this?” Tomas Cabral, head servant for the Mendes family, demanded. Santiago smirked at the older gentleman’s steady voice; it was difficult for anyone to intimidate Tomas.

“Are Senhor and Senhorita Mendes in?”

Rather than answering, the man said, “Why have you come?”

The leading officer growled and said, “Senhor Mendes is to be taken into custody and his sister brought in for questioning.”

Lucia gasped. “What!”

“Shh!” Santiago insisted.

“You’re arresting Senhor Mendes? On what grounds?” Tomas didn’t sound nearly as confident anymore, but Santiago was proud of the man for not allowing the quadrilheiros into the house yet.

“Treason! Now, stand aside!”
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Claire Kohler grew up in Mooresville, NC, as the eldest of four daughters. Her love of stories began at an early age, and as a child, she could often be found borrowing way too many books from the library and scribbling away in a journal.

In 2016, Claire became a full-time middle school English teacher in a public school. In her second year of teaching, she also taught social studies. After becoming pregnant in 2018, Claire decided to shift careers and become an online ESL teacher so that she could also take care of her newborn at home.

She now lives in Statesville, NC, with her husband, two children, and three cats. She is also an active member of Christ Community Church Mooresville, where she often serves as a Bible study and small group leader.

Claire plans to continue creating exciting historical fantasy novels and potentially branching out into other genres as well.

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GIVEAWAY:
Claire Kohler will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter. Good luck!

(All the Ups and Downs is not responsible for this giveaway, its entries, or the prize. Goddess Fish Promotions assumes all responsibility for this giveaway.)
a Rafflecopter giveaway

51 comments:

  1. Looks like an interesting book.
    Thanks for the contest. 

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  2. Congratulations Claire, sounds great!

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  3. Congratulations on the book release. Sounds like a wonderful book.

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  4. Love the cover and the excerpt sounds amazing.

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  5. David HollingsworthAugust 17, 2021 at 11:21 AM

    Sounds a wonderful book!

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  6. Fantastic excerpt! Definitely makes me want more! Added to my wish list & TBR!

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  7. Nice intro, good to learn about your book.

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  8. How long was the writing process?

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    1. Good question! This is my first novel, and it took about 4.5 years. I've wanted to be a writer for a long time, but I lacked confidence in my ability to make it a career and became a teacher instead. After my husband's encouragement, I decided to take a stab at writing a novel and despite several big life changes (two pregnancies, changing jobs, buying a house), I ended up loving it so much that I've decided to pursue this as a career. I'm currently working on book 2 and hope to have it out next year!

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  9. Sounds like a great book. I like the cover.

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  10. This sounds like an interesting book and I also like the cover.

    abfantom at yahoo dot com

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    1. Thank you! I can add you to my email list if you'd like!

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  11. I'm interested how much research went into this novel? I mean, where do you start?

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    1. Very good question! There was actually a ton of research that went into this, especially about Orkney (the part of Scotland where the book is based). I tried to make it as historically accurate as I could so that readers would feel like it wasn't much of a stretch for this to have actually happened. I don't know how other writers go about the research, but I just searched for information as it came up in the story. For example, my main character's favorite food is fish, so it was good to know what kind of fish are native to Orkney.

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    2. I've been there to visit the Neolithic sites. Don't like fish at all but the whisky's very good!

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  12. Love the sound of this! Thanks for sharing!

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  13. The excerpt is interesting. Thank you for sharing it.

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  14. Looks like a great fantasy. Good work.

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  15. Do you listen to music when you write?

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    1. Great question, but actually I don't. I've tried it, but it works better for me if there is no noise at all, though sometimes I will read aloud from what I wrote most recently to help myself get into the scene.

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  16. I love to read Historical Fantasy books. They are my favorite Genre. Thank you for the giveaway.

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    1. The last book I read (in its entirety) was Tempest Cursed: A Wuthering Heights Retelling by K.C. Lannon. A very intriguing story!

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  18. I love the collaboration of mah=gic & romance. Thank you for the excerpt

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  19. sounds like a fun one

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  20. At what age did you start writing?

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    1. I started writing in middle school, but this is my first full-length novel.

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  21. What's your next novel about or is it too soon to ask?

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    1. I decided to turn this into a series, so I'm currently working on book 2!

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    2. Oh wow! Good luck with that one as well!

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  22. What author do you most like to read?

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    1. That's a very hard question! Ted Dekker is the first author to come to mind.

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  23. I love the plot and cover art for this book.

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  24. I love the book cover, The ship and storm

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  25. Congratulations on your book, thanks for sharing!

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  26. My daughter would enjoy this book

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