Tuesday, February 1, 2022

Book Blast and Giveaway: Talk of Tokyo (Tokyo Whispers #2) by Heather Hallman

Welcome to my stop on the book blast for Talk of Tokyo by Heather Hallman. This book blast was organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. On my stop, I have an excerpt from the book as well as the blast wide giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card. Be sure to visit the other stops on the book blast for more content. Enjoy!
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Title: Talk of Tokyo
Series: Tokyo Whispers #2
Author: Heather Hallman
Publication Date: December 15th 2021
Print Length: 337 pages
Genre: Historical Romance
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CAREFUL WITH YOUR WORDS

1897 Tokyo is no different than anywhere else in the world: men are exploiting women. Specifically, Western men are exploiting Japanese women, and Suki Malveaux holds no punches in her condemnation of their behavior in her weekly column in the Tokyo Daily News.

Suki knows firsthand when Western men arrive at Tokyo Bay there’s only one outcome for Japanese women: a child and new mother left behind as nothing more than discarded shrapnel from the heartless war on love.

Griffith Spenser is her latest target. He’s been seen with Natsu Watanabe, one of Tokyo’s esteemed war widows. Under full anonymity of the moniker “The Tokyo Tattler,” Suki makes sure Griffith knows exactly why his behavior with Natsu won’t be tolerated.

Away from her Japanese mask as a columnist, Suki never intended to meet the cad. When he seeks her out to hire as a tutor for his niece and nephew, she’s faced with seeing him day in and day out without him ever knowing who she really is.

Caught in her struggle for anonymity so she can keep battling for women’s rights, Suki’s about to learn the full impact of her words on the people behind the story, especially on Griff.

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EXCERPT:
Tokyo 1897
Foreign Quarter of Tsukiji


Fluttering her eyelashes in a coquettish manner, which had much in common with trying to dislodge a flying insect, Suki faced the man who held her fate in the palm of his rather well-shaped hands. “I was admiring your fine home.”

“I quite like it myself.”

“Was it constructed after the quake of ’94?”

“We commissioned its construction when we arrived in ’95. I’m assured by its builders it could withstand another earthquake of that intensity. Japanese-style homes fare better than brick and stone.”

“Mother Nature has given us many opportunities to rebuild.”

“Mother Nature?” Spenser furrowed his brow. “I thought it was the giant catfish residing under Japan flipping its tail that caused all these earthquakes.” His tone was teasing, while the observation revealed Spenser as the type of foreigner who bothered learning about traditional culture.

“You know your Japanese folklore,” Suki replied.

“I like to be prepared for all the dragons and ghosts I’m certain to encounter,” Spenser said with a smile that brought out creases along his soft brown eyes. “I should introduce myself, although introductions are probably unnecessary. I’m Griffith Spenser, arrived from England, resident of Tsukiji for almost two years.”

Suki mentally added to the introduction: Spenser counted minor members of the British aristocracy among his family, although he himself had no chance of inheriting a title; his company was the most highly regarded foreign-owned trading firm in Tokyo; he’d arrived with a new bride who left him a year later; and he now graced the bed of war widow Natsu Watanabe. Also, he played lawn tennis.

The Tokyo Tattler’s job was to know these facts about Tsukiji’s most illustrious residents, and Suki needed to continue doing this job, which was why she couldn’t let Spenser’s allure compromise her defenses. The man had asked her to his home without explanation. Although she’d like to imagine he’d summoned her to discuss the modern significance of Japanese mythology, she was a realist. Spenser had a score to settle with the Tokyo Tattler, and all this pleasant banter about earthquakes was merely diversion.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Heather Hallman writes witty, sensual, contest-winning romances set in Meiji-era Japan (1868-1912). She is the author of the Tokyo Whispers series that includes Scandals of Tokyo and Talk of Tokyo.

She is fluent in Japanese language, history, and culture, and earned a doctoral degree in cultural anthropology based on fieldwork research in Japan. She lives in Tokyo with her professor husband and two young daughters. In her free time, she can be found translating ancient Japanese poetry and observing the passing of seasons while sipping green tea. Just kidding, she has no free time. But she does watch something that makes her laugh while she does the dishes.

Perennial obsessions include the weather forecast (she checks three different apps at least three times a day, as no single app can be trusted), Baltimore Ravens football (hometown obsession), and making smoothies that taste like candy bars.

Feel free to chat her up about any of her obsessions, or, even better, about historical Japan—any era is fine, she loves them all. She also enjoys exchanging book recommendations, discussions about the craft of romance writing, and stories about life in present-day Tokyo.

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GIVEAWAY:
Heather Hallman will award 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 and the author assume all responsibility for this giveaway.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

95 comments:

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

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  2. I love the cover and think the book sounds good.

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  3. Hello, Readers! Thanks so much for checking out Talk of Tokyo. I’ve lived in Japan for over thirteen years and counting. One of the many things keeping me here is the cuisine. 🍣🍜🍤

    I LOVE sushi. My favorites are bluefish, whitebait (really cheap and really yummy), salmon, salmon roe, and fatty tuna (not cheap but melt-in-the-mouth delicious).

    How about you? Fan of sushi or other Japanese dishes? If you’ve got a minute to spare, let me know. I’d love to hear about it.

    It’s almost bedtime in Japan, so I’ll be checking comments toward the evening USA time.

    Thank you to All the Ups and Downs for hosting the tour!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you for visiting!

      I don't think I've ever really had any Japanese cuisine. I used to get a snack box from Japan which had a whole bunch of sweet and savory drinks and snacks from there, and it was really good! They have such interesting combinations of flavors, and I love it!

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    2. Yes! The boxes, like the bento boxes, are supposed to offer a little of everything nutrition-wise and taste-wise.

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  4. Replies
    1. Thanks, Michele. I love it, too. It's not typical of the historical romance genre, but neither is the book exactly, although I try to stick with many of the tropes.

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  5. Do you have any advice for new writers?

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    Replies
    1. Use beta readers. I hire beta readers for feedback. Not expensive, only $25 or so. In my experience, they've given good advice about the progression of the plot and character development. It's always important to get your work out there.

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  6. love the cover, this sounds like a great book

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  7. I liked the excerpt. Thank you for the giveaway!

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  8. Love a good romance. Thank you

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  9. What is your favorite childhood book?

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  10. The book sounds great. Best of luck with the publication.

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

    abfantom at yahoo dot com

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  12. It sounds like an interesting book. Thank you for sharing.

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  13. Great excerpt, Talk Tokyo sounds like an excellent read! Thanks for sharing it with me and have a fantastic day!

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  14. Thanks for the great excerpt! This book sounds very interesting. Love the cover!

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  15. I enjoyed reading the excerpt - well done!
    Thank you for sharing this with us.

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  16. You absolutely captivated me with that wicked sense of humor in your description of the eyelashes, the earthshaking fish; I hope the entire book is filled with similar gems!! anns1971@gmail.com

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    Replies
    1. I'm a fan of humor in all genres, and try to get a laugh out of readers as often as possible.

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

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  18. How long have you lived in Tokyo and do you plan on staying?

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    1. For over 13 years. Check out my Life in Japan section of my website for more details on how I got that many years in the country: https://www.heatherhallman.com/

      We're so settled here that I can't imagine us leaving any time soon.

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  19. Replies
    1. The first draft went by quickly, about a few months. Then each subsequent draft took less time until the final drafts, which are just read-throughs. There was also a lot of time between drafts for this one. From the first word to publication...about a year.

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  20. Sounds like an interesting book. Adding to my TBR list.

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  21. I love Japanese food. When we visited Japan many years ago, I thought it was fascinating that some restaurants had non-perishable displays of their various food items to facilitate ordering for those who did not read or speak Japanese.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

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    Replies
    1. Yes! The food art is great and so helpful for those who can't read the menu.

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  22. What did you want to be when you grew up?

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    Replies
    1. An entertainer of some sort. Writing was part of that imagining. How about you?

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  23. Replies
    1. Thanks, Deborah. It's a bit of a departure from typical historical romance. I hope it works!

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  24. Do you listen to music when you write?

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    Replies
    1. I write in a public place in my home--young kiddos--and sometimes I need to be drawn away from my surroundings to get into the head space of writing. But I can't listen while editing. I need to hear all the voices loud and clear.

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  25. David HollingsworthFebruary 3, 2022 at 12:40 AM

    The cover is beautiful.

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  26. Do you have characters living in your head?

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    1. Actually, I feel like they lived 100 or so years ago (when my stories are set) and prod me to share their love stories as authentically as possible.

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  27. Does writing energize or exhaust you?

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    1. I love the feeling of being exhausted by writing because it means I've put in the work. No pain, no gain, something like that. But even when I'm in that exhausted state, when I step away from the computer and think about what I've written, I get excitement flutters in my belly.

      Also, I struggle with eye exhaustion. I swear by blue-light blocking glasses.

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  28. sounds like a fun one

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  29. I so love the cover of this one so pretty.
    heather
    hgtempaddy

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  30. Sounds like a great story. I am usually not into historical romances, but I love strong women characters!

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  31. Replies
    1. Thanks! I love the colors and the Japanese aesthetic.

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  32. What is your favorite way to relax?

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    Replies
    1. Decaf coffee with a heaping dose of cocoa powder and something milky takes the edge off.

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  33. I like the cover and excerpt. Thanks for sharing!

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  34. Replies
    1. The publisher sent me some art, and I thought about the sense of the story and chose a few pieces I liked. Then I worked with the cover designer. It was a very iterative process. Things I wanted didn't work initially, but then the final product was far better than I'd ever imagined.

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  35. The romance book looks fun to read.

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  36. David HollingsworthFebruary 4, 2022 at 7:45 PM

    I think you're so ingenious!

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  37. My question from yesterday doesn't seem to have posted - what's the furthest you've been from home?

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