US book reviewers, bloggers, book clubs! Giveaway if you reply to this blog!
While No One Was Watching is a novel about Eleanor Boone — a little girl who goes missing from the grassy knoll at the exact moment Kennedy is assassinated and is still missing 50 years on — so what did she see? It’s a story of love, loss and what what happens when you turn your back for a second. But it’s a lot more than that. Find out more on the publisher’s website: LINK Narrated by a local reporter, Dad, divorcee Gary Blanchet and a charismatic African- American retired police psychic Lydia Collins (yes I am British but I wrote an American novel!) it has many more layers, but everything comes together when looking for Eleanor Boone …
And this is Blog post 600! So time for something special!
I aim for 5 posts a week, the odd day off here and there and when I was in LA. I started blogging to talk about all things writing which I do, my critiquing, editing, publishing — and some! I also invite other writers to talk about their books. Sometimes we get into the nuts and bolts of narrative style and sometimes I just talk about books and what inspires us, etc.
Anyway on this lovely Spring morning in Snowdonia I decided I was going to see if we can get some more interest in my novel in the US. The official release date should’ve been April 1st but now it seems like it will be by June 1st. Because it’s a UK publisher they rely on their US distributor and since this is an American novel with the Kennedy angle, I would really like to find a way to get it noticed out there! Hard I know!
As you know I did have a launch party in LA and the reaction from my US friends has been great. SO … while I think of ways to get the word out there, I am planning to give away up to 5 signed copies of the book at my own expense to US followers/bloggers/reviewers happy to review it for me and help me spread the word, mention it to their libraries, write a blog review — that’s if you like it of course! But I’m hoping you will. It’s a chance I’ll take.
So what do you have to do? Well reply to this and let me know if you’re happy to help and where you live in the US and I will pick! Might have to pick them out of a hat to be fair but we’ll see! You don’t have to be a follower of the blog but I do ask for this givevway that you are in the US and have a blog or are in a book club, or will post a review! So please share far and wide I’ll pick some at the end of next week, so a week’s time! MAY 2nd will choose so comment by midnight (UK time) on May 1st!
So to whet the appetite for those who have not read the book I am including a unique extract below!
This comes at the end of Chapter 3 when Gary a reporter for a local paper is called to a park where a little girl is reported missing. Thankfully she’s already been found when he gets there, by an old woman …
I watched from the path until the small group had thinned right
out and then I could see one of the cops holding onto the arm
of the old lady. The other was talking to the girl. I took a step
closer to hear what they were saying.
“She was nice,” the girl said. She was thin, blue jeans, pink t-shirt,
a rain jacket draped over her arm.
“She bought you ice cream?” the cop said.
“She’s just a nice old lady.”
“I won’t press charges,” I heard the mom say. “Katie got lost,
the old lady found her. No harm done.”
So then I wondered if it was worth talking to them at all when
I looked down and realised the little old lady was wearing
slippers. Then one of the cops started talking into his radio.
That’s when I realised who she was. I laughed, thought about
Al. The old folks’ home was a few blocks east of Memorial
Park. As I watched the old lady, standing there in her slippers,
all bent over, I thought maybe I did have a story after all.
Missing Girl found by Missing Woman: All’s well that ends well.
A nice story for somewhere on page three or somethin’.
I recognised the cop holding the old lady’s arm. He looked in
my direction and nodded. I was about to say something about
a photograph and some names when the old lady reached out
her arms to the little girl. “Eleanor,” she said. “My Eleanor.”
The mom stepped closer to her child. “No this is Katie,” she
said wrapping her arms around her, as if claiming her possession.
“We had ice cream,” the girl said trying to pull away from
her mom’s grip.
Then the old lady stood statue still and I realised she was not
only wearing slippers but what at first I thought was a coat was
in fact a long blue dressing gown with chocolate ice cream
dripped on the front.
“Come along Edith,” the cop said. “Let’s get you home. I
think you’ve had enough excitement for one day.”
“Eleanor,” the old lady said again. There was something
about her expression; something I knew would haunt me later.
Maybe the emptiness in her eyes and the way she lifted her
hands out towards the girl.
“Please,” she said “I’ve been waiting for you to come home,
“Edith, this ain’t Eleanor,” the cop said, trying to shuffle the
old lady away and looking in the direction of the other cop.
“This little girl is Katie Brown and this is her mom. I’m guessing
your little girl will be all grown up now?”
The old lady lowered her head, looked down at her slippers.
The cop started to walk with her and I stepped back, caught the
expression on the mom’s face and took the moment to talk to
her. “Grapevine Star,” I said. “A photo and a quote for the
But she turned away.
That’s when the old lady spoke again. “It was the day the
President was shot,” she said and of course we all turned back
to look at her when she said that.
“Eleanor went missing the day Mr Kennedy was shot.”
I saw the horror in the mom’s eyes; she was staring right at
me and then at the cop, the whole time pulling her daughter
closer to her. “Kids do that,” she said. “Wander off.” She
looked at Katie when she said that. “But you found her, right?”
The old lady said nothing, then the cop said. “That was a
long time ago. Let’s get you home, Edith.”
“Please,” she said, “Find Eleanor.”
I stepped closer.
“Come on Edith,” the cop said reaching for her arm.
That’s when she lifted her head, looked right at me. She tried
to shuffle towards me but the cop held onto her.
“What happened to Eleanor?” I said.
I had no idea if she knew what I was but she stood there for
a second and then she said, “Will you help me? Please dear, will
you help me?”
I saw the young cop roll his eyes and link his arm with hers.
He began to lead her away, whispered something to her,
something about it getting late.
“Edith,” I said and as she turned her eyes met mine, just for
a second but it was long enough. “Did you ever find her?”
In a voice as frail as lace she whispered, “She never came
home.” And then so soft I had to lean in real close to catch it,
she said, “Help me. Help me find my little girl.”
©Debz Hobbs-Wyatt, Parthian Books 2013. Can not be reproduced without permission of the author or publisher.
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So do you think you can blog about this book, post a review on some US book sites for me? Please get in touch! Get some discussion going? Would love to send a copy to a book group out there?
Reply to this post and tell me if you want your free copy and where you live in the US! Tell me if you’re a book reviewer/blogger and I’ll email those I choose for where to send the book!
There are still books in stock in the UK on Amazon! Buy me
And The Book Depository offers free world-wide shipping so if you just want a copy please do! And let me know what you think (hopefully something nice of course!)
Also on Kindle too!
And in case you’ve not seen it — here is the book trailer!
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