Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Book Tour for Barbarian Bride by Eva Scott (Review & GIVEAWAY)


As a fan of TV shows like Rome and Spartacus I was immediately drawn to Barbarian Bride by Eva Scott.  Keep reading to get a taste of this book as well as learning why Ms. Scott and her readers love the Roman era like I do from the author herself.  You'll also get my impressions of this book and the chance to win a copy of it as well as another of Ms. Scott's books to US readers.  So let's give a big welcome to Eva Scott........

Stories set in Ancient Rome are certainly growing in popularity. Just last month Hollywood released the movie Pompeii all about the eruption of Mt Vesuvius and the chaos which followed.  Such a huge disaster was on a scale with the tsunami which hit Thailand and nearby countries and the terrible typhoon which devastated the Philippines recently.  Even though the Pompeii disaster happened thousands of years ago it resonates with us.  What would we do?  How would we act to save our loved ones?  The story is enhanced by our real emotions as we hold our breath for the characters.
Television shows like Spartacus speak to the issue of slavery which has reared its ugly head in our modern age.  There are people in our society who are in situations not of their choosing, shackled in slavery often under our noses.  Shocking in the 21st century when we think we have come so far as a society.  Perhaps some things never change?  And in that statement lies the attraction to stories set in Ancient Rome.  The issues faced by Romans are the same ones we face today.  Ancient Rome is the “granddaddy” model of ourWestern society.  The echo of Rome lingers in our cities and our cultures.  Watching stories played out in that long-ago world help us reflect on our own situations from the safe distance of time.  
Of course one thing which never changes down the ages is human responses to love, anger, lust and hate.  Put humans in any setting, any time period, and they will fall in love, break up, and misunderstand each other, form fast friendships and test loyalties.  And if they’re doing it in a toga all the better!

On the bloody ground of the Colosseum, she fights to save her life. In the treacherous boxes above, he fights to save their love.
Though Klara didn't love the man who was to be her husband, she didn't want him murdered, and she vows to track down the man who committed the crime. Sickened that she'd been attracted to the mysterious Roman, Klara tracks Lucius Aurelius to the fringes of the Roman Empire, only to find that they've both been trapped in a clever plot to overthrow Klara's father, the Chief of the Huns.
Klara is separated from Lucius, captured by slavers and sold to a gladiator school. She is the only one who can save herself, by fighting for her freedom. Lucius can ensure her battle is easier, but only by sacrificing himself. How much is he willing to give up for the fiery woman he's come to love?

EXCERPT:

Klara stepped into the room, darker than the one she left.  As her eyes struggled to adjust she made out the figure of his man with his back turned to her.  Should she speak?  Or wait to be spoken to like Sirom said?  Unsure, she shifted her weight from one foot to the other.  
The man turned at the sound of her stirring.  His hair was cut short in the Roman fashion and his face was clean shaven.  She didn’t recognise him until he spoke her name.  “Klara.”  
“Lucius!” she cried, as relief and joy flooded through her in equal measure.  
“Shh,” he hissed yet with laughter dancing in his voice.  “We don’t know who is listening.”  He stepped forward and opened his arms.  She flew to him pressing herself against his chest, his heart beat confirming he was real.  “I thought I’d lost you,” he said into her hair.  “You were there one minute and gone the next.”
She pulled back and stared up into his sky-blue eyes.  “I’m here now and so are you.”
“Don’t ever disappear on me again.  Where I go, you go.  Got it?” He held her face gently in his callused hands and kissed her with a soft tenderness which meant more than passion.  
Tears welled in Klara’s eyes at the rough affection in his tone.  Life had been so very harsh for such a long time she had forgotten what it was to receive kindness.  “You’ll know where I am for the time being,” she said to cover up her awkwardness.
“Yes, about that.  Of all the things that could have happened to you.  You’re a gladiatrix!”  Lucius held her at arm’s length, taking in her appearance.  “Getting you out of this mess is going to be tricky.”

BUY LINK:  ESCAPE PUBLISHING  |  AMAZON  |  BN

MY IMPRESSIONS OF THIS BOOK:

As a fan of the TV shows Rome and Spartacus I was immediately drawn to this story and its compelling characters, vivid depiction of ancient Roman life, and edge of your seat political intrigue.  From start to finish this book makes for an exciting and engaging addition to Ms. Scott's Romancing the Romans series that can be read on its own, but considering Ms. Scott's talent on display here you'll want to read the rest of the series too.

Klara is the daughter of an influential Hun who values her independence and desires more out of life, but whose future is to marry a childhood friend.  This event is life-altering in more ways than one as political machinations leave her life in jeopardy and have her crossing paths with Lucius Aurelius, which gives her more excitement than she ever expected.  Klara is an immensely likable character with a modern day sensibility.  She's strong-willed and rolls with whatever is thrown at her which she'll need when she's forced into becomeing a gladiatrix.  Her interactions with Lucius were entertaining with witty and engaging dialogue and hinted at their burgeoning sexual attraction.

Lucius is the son of a Senator who knows his place in society but wants to experience more.  He travels through the countryside earning money working as a tradesman which allows him to interact with all the various social ranks.  As he too values independence and the excitement of living life to the fullest he's immediately drawn to Klara and together they must fight to stay one step ahead of those wanting to eliminate them for political gain.  The sexual tension between him and Klara is obvious from the moment they meet.  The similarities in many of their desires and their social class make for a deep-seated connection that's palpable even when they're separated.

Ms. Scott has written an exciting story that vividly depicts life in Ancient Rome across all social ranks.  From the decadent lifestyles of the Senators to the bloody and gritty existence of life in the arena, readers are put on an exciting path to HEA where the protagonist's lives are in jeopardy and only love and belief in each other will see them to safety.  Political machinations are nicely spaced throughout the story alongside a satisfying romance that kept me fully immersed in the story and have me looking forward to what Ms. Scott plans for next in this entertaining series.

My rating for this is an A.

*I received this book from NetGalley for review in exchange for my honest opinion.

AUTHOR INFO:

Eva lives on the Sunshine Coast, in Queensland Australia in the town which brought the world the Bee Gees. When she’s not writing romance you can find her out on the water kayaking, fishing or swimming. When on dry land it’s all about the shoes and the coffee (and old Bee Gees records).

WEBSITE:  http://www.evascottromance.com/
FACEBOOK AUTHOR PAGE:  http://www.facebook.com/eva.scottromancewriter
FACEBOOK BOOK SERIES PAGE:  http://www.facebook.com/pages/Romancing-The-Romans/476218929112324?ref=hl#!/pages/Romancing-The-Romans/476218929112324
TWITTER:  http://www.twitter.com/EvaScottWriter

**********GIVEAWAY**********

Eva will be awarding a copy of Barbarian Bride and The Last Gladiatrix (the first book in the Romancing The Romans series) to a randomly drawn commenter during the tour (US ONLY).

-To be entered, LEAVE A COMMENT STATING WHAT DRAWS YOU TO THE ROMAN ERA, along with your email addy (no email=no entry).
-Winners will be chosen randomly from all comments made throughout the tour, so the more you comment the greater your chances of winning.  A list of all participating blogs can be found here.
-Giveaway ends at 11:59 PM CST on 4/16!

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