Wednesday, July 13, 2022

Virtual Book Tour and Giveaway: The Origins (The Olason Chronicles #4) by J.A. Boulet

Welcome to my stop on the virtual book tour for The Origins by J.A. Boulet. This book tour was organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. On my stop, I have an excerpt from the book as well as an interesting guest post from the author about her writing process. There's also the tour wide giveaway for a chance to win a $15 Amazon or Barnes & Noble gift card. Be sure to visit the other stops on the tour for more content. Enjoy!
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Title: The Origins
Series: The Olason Chronicles #4
Author: J.A. Boulet
Publication Date: June 8th 2022
Print Length: 292 pages
Genre: Historical Romance
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A young mother, Mt Askja and an unbreakable love

In the harsh landscapes of Iceland in 1850, a young girl loses her mother and struggles to grow into a woman alone with only her father’s help. Throughout the breathtaking 20-hour daylight summers and the bleak darkness of winters, Margret falls in love and dreams of a large family but the path to her future is rougher than she expected. The Origins will take you back in time delighting you with endearing Icelandic heritage, visual feasts for the mind and gripping you with the struggle to stay alive on a volatile island.

THE ORIGINS

Experience the rich journey of a 19th century woman who proves that even the weakest people can become stronger than anything you can imagine.

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EXCERPT:
Margret stirred the soup slowly on the iron stove, worrying about her mother. She had always had a wheezy breath, and sometimes in the fields, she would start coughing hoarsely. In the middle of a harvest, she would take many breaks to catch her breath.

When influenza came into their home, Momma had nursed both her and her Pappa better with soups, hot drinks, blankets and loving care.

Now Momma was sick.

Some people had died from this nasty influenza. A few adults succumbed, and many babies died. Margret wrapped her momma’s red shawl around her shoulders and shivered. She couldn’t imagine a life without her momma. It was unfathomable. Momma would just simply have to survive. She must be here with them.

Margret would have to think positively. Such thoughts were like the devil trying to enter her brain. She had heard the pastor at the church say such things. That must be what it is, she thought.

She gazed through the kitchen window across the bleak frozen landscape. Iceland had some bad winters, but mostly it was bearable. Drift ice along the shores in the north brought cold weather along the eastern side of the island, and this past year was colder than usual. They lived on a sheep ranch near Horn. It was an expansive hilly countryside with beautiful views of the ocean to the east, and the mountainous regions rose to the west.

It was quite sunny today, and the weather was pleasant enough to lift her hopes. It was the start of spring and a new beginning. They had harvested all the weak animals before the last harsh winter, the neighbourhood community chipping in to help. Even Margret had been out in the fields tending to the vegetable crops and helping to build shelters for the remaining animals. The winter was typical, cool but pleasant with the ocean air, until January when the winter struck hard, with freezing temperatures and blowing winds. Sometimes the door would stick, the wooden frame swelling in the humidity, imprisoning them all in their home.

Margret sometimes wished she could fly away on a bird’s wings to a different country, somewhere more pleasant, somewhere easier. Her eyes glazed over as the sun shone brightly into the kitchen, warming her hands.

She was only a child, but she had her share of life’s tribulations. Her younger brother had died at birth, and her mother could not conceive again. The doctor said the blood in her uterus was no longer any good. Margret wondered if such talk was true or just a simple explanation for a complex problem.

The soup began to boil, and she grabbed the oven mittens. Margret lifted the pot to the side table, placing it on a large ceramic cooling pad. She ladled hot soup into three bowls. Hopefully, Momma would eat. She sat down and waited patiently for the bowls to cool enough to take one to Momma. Margret laid her chin in her hands and daydreamed across the bleak landscape. One day, she would grow up, fall in love with a handsome man and have many children of her own. She looked forward to that day. Margret always wanted a big family.

The longcase clock chimed at 2 o’clock in the afternoon. The sound awakened her out of the daydreaming.

She tested the soup with a small spoon and blew on it. It was cooled enough. She would feed her mother, and Momma would get better.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
J. A. Boulet is the passionate author of The Olason Chronicles, a historical saga of war, courage, love and strength. Her newest novel The Origins Book 4, the final book in the series, was released on June 8, 2022.
 
J. A. Boulet was born and raised in Western Canada as a first generation Canadian from European descent. Her father enlisted with the Hungarian military and fought bravely during the 1956 Hungarian Revolution, changing sides to stand up for what he believed in. He was granted asylum in Canada and built his family here.

J. A. Boulet was born many years later, raised with strong morals and values, which she stands behind to this day. She started writing poetry at the age of five and progressed to short stories and novels. She has a keen interest in ancestry, healing, family bonds and military history.
 
J. A. Boulet writes with a spine-tingling realism like none other, grabbing your emotions and refusing to let go. The Olason Chronicles is the series you’ve been waiting for. Watch for the next book 1956: Love and Revolution (Dec 2022), a standalone historical romance novel that takes place during the courageous Hungarian Revolution.

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GUEST POST:
- What was your research process for writing this book?

My research takes up a large percentage of time during the writing process, although I enjoy every minute. I am a history nerd so I truly adore digging into history books and finding unfamiliar facts.

One of the reasons I picked historical fiction was to be actively involved in preserving our history. I believe history is very important. I also write historical fiction to spread word of lesser-known facts. Sometimes we can get consumed by large events such as WWI, WWII or explorers. But when we dig deeper, we can discover little things like the beginnings of geothermal heat which actually started from a farmer just wanting to heat his home more efficiently. It is highly relevant to include these tidbits of information because living today, we are constantly writing our own history. The actions we do today will affect the people of tomorrow. In fifty years, our world will be so much different.

As for the process of researching, I will investigate the book idea to see if it has enough available historical data to begin with. Then once I chose a time period and events, this is when I will research as I go along. Large events like the 1875 Mt Askja eruption or WWII are the exception. When there are large complex events, I will study for several days, sometimes up to two weeks, before writing the catastrophic scenes.

At the end of my second draft, I always send my book to a museum expert, someone specialized in the events and time periods of my book. They will do a quick historical fact check and send me edits to complete. I try to edit as much as I can without destroying the fabric of the story. I will alter scenes but sometimes, if it is a minor detail and the story weaves around it, those details unfortunately will be left changed. This is why I always include a Note to Reader at the front cautioning readers that my books are historical fiction. I also leave a detailed Final Note to Reader at the back of the book which separates fact from fiction. This is a unique characteristic of all my books. As a reader myself, I am always delighted to find out that some characters or events were actually real!

I sincerely hope The Origins delights you and takes you on a journey of Iceland! Thank you so much for having me!
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GIVEAWAY:
J. A. Boulet will be awarding a $15 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 over this giveaway.)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

41 comments:

  1. Thank you so much for hosting me today. Love your blog 💕

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    1. You're welcome, and thank you for the lovely compliment <3 Glad to host you again <3

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  2. Definitely looking forward to learning more about Icelandic heritage and following her through her life

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    1. I think many women will relate to Margret. She's an independent intelligent woman caught in the 1850s. She thinks she's weak at first but later discovers that strength comes from within.

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  3. Sounds like an interesting read.

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  4. Congrats on your book. It must be hard ( but rewarding) to write books.

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    1. It is very rewarding! Writing is my life passion. I love every minute of it, even the challenging times. It is all part of the process.

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  5. this sounds like an interesting book

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  6. Thank you for sharing it with us.

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    1. I enjoyed reading the excerpt and think I would like this book.

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  7. The front cover of Origins has a highly detailed and chilling design.

    Nancy
    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

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  8. I enjoy reading Historical Romance. I like the cover and excerpt.

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  9. When did you realize you wanted writing to be your career?

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    1. I've always been a writer, ever since I was a kid. There was never a question in my mind about what I should be doing 💕

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  10. Sounds like a very good book.

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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. I enjoyed the excerpt. Thank you for the giveaway!

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  13. Great guest post and excerpt, The Origins sounds like a great book for me to read! Thanks for sharing it with me and have a beautiful day!

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

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  15. My daughter would enjoy this book

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  16. An intriguing cover, synopsis and excerpt, The Origins sounds like a wonderful story and I am looking forward to reading it myself. Thank you for sharing the author's guest post, bio and book details

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    1. You'll love reading it! Keep your eye out for some summer deals and giveaways

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  17. Thanks for the great blurb and excerpt. The book sounds intriguing. Great cover!

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  18. The book sounds very interesting. :)

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  19. this sounds really interesting

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  20. looks like a fun one

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  21. After reading the excerpt -you had me -this looks like a book I will have to read-thanks

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    1. It is a unique and captivating story. I know you'll enjoy it! Some sales on smashwords and Goodreads will be going on at the end of the tour.

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  22. Where is your favorite place to write?

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    1. I write on my sofa with a big blanket over my shoulders 😅

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  23. Thanks so much again for the giveaway!

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  24. sounds like a fantastic book. I love reading stories that are based in the past.

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