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Rhapsody
by Mitchell James Kaplan

Paperback Publication Date: December 7, 2021
Gallery Books
Paperback; 352 pages

Genre: Biographical/Literary/Historical

 

 

“[A] shining rendition of Swift and Gershwin’s star-crossed love.” —Therese Anne Fowler, New York Times bestselling author

In the vein of the New York Times bestseller Loving Frank, this fascinating and compelling novel “will have you humming, toe-tapping, and singing along with every turn of the page” (Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author) as it explores the decade-long relationship between the celebrated composer George Gershwin and gifted musician Katharine “Kay” Swift.

When Katharine “Kay” Swift—the restless but loyal society wife of wealthy banker James Warburg and a serious pianist who longs for recognition—attends a performance of Rhapsody in Blue by a brilliant, elusive young musical genius named George Gershwin, her world is turned upside down. Transfixed, she’s helpless to resist the magnetic pull of George’s talent, charm, and swagger. Their ten-year love affair, complicated by her conflicted loyalty to her husband and the twists and turns of her own musical career, ends only with George’s death from a brain tumor at the age of thirty-eight.

Set in Jazz Age New York City, this stunning work of fiction explores the timeless bond between two brilliant, strong-willed artists. George Gershwin left behind not just a body of work unmatched in popular musical history, but a woman who loved him with all her heart, knowing all the while that he belonged not to her, but to the world.

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Praise

“Kaplan (By Fire, by Water) builds an enchanting world featuring musical giants George Gershwin and Kay Swift… This spellbinding and luminous tale will linger in readers’ minds long after the final page is turned.” – Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

“Snappy dialogue and lush prose bring the Jazz Age to life as Kaplan takes readers from Harlem rent parties to the stage lights of Broadway… A sumptuous fictional account of a complex real-life romance, this book will stick in readers’ heads like the melody of a favorite ballad.”– Booklist

“RHAPSODY does it all. The novel flows as lyrically through Kaplan’s prose as the wail of the saxophones and crescendos of Gershwin’s keyboards. You can almost hear the taxi horns and clopping hooves of carriage horses in Central Park through his words as you imagine riding down Park Avenue past the towering edifices of lush mansions. As Kay becomes so absorbed in her performing as to be swept away from her audience, I read this book under that same captivation as minutes flowed into hours. Only my noisy team of hungry terriers could break my concentration.”– Bookreporter.com

“Kaplan’s sweeping novel, spanning the years 1917 to 1937, portrays the life of Kay Swift, one of Broadway’s first female composers, extracting her from the shadow of her colleague and lover, George Gershwin… The history is engrossing… Kaplan’s propulsive style imparts a momentum of its own…The many disquisitions, on topics as varied as the underpinnings of American anti-Semitism to the misappropriation of Black culture by well-intentioned Whites, are interesting and important… Our verdict: Get it.”- Kirkus

“A complex and involving story… It is difficult to imagine living a more incredible first half of a life than Swift’s, and Mitchell James Kaplan’s prose luxuriates in depicting her surprising and wildly artistic world.” – Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

“Kaplan’s well-researched and well-crafted historical novel recreates the 1920s and ’30s, telling a mesmerizing story that examines their individual and intersecting lives. He explores why, for Gershwin and Swift, ‘ordinary results’ were not enough.” – Yale Alumni Magazine

“Kaplan’s vivid prose and empathetic characterization shines a spotlight on this remarkable woman who contributed so much to American music.”—Melanie Benjamin, New York Times bestselling author of The Swans of Fifth Avenue and Mistress of the Ritz

“A luminous journey through the jazz age in fast-paced New York City… I was utterly swept away.”—Stephanie Cowell, American Book Award–winning author of Claude and Camille and The Physician of London

“We all know Gershwin, but how many know he was ‘the man behind the woman,’ the conflicted, extraordinary Katharine ‘Kay’ Swift? Mitchell James Kaplan illuminates her in Rhapsody, bringing his impressive knowledge of history, composition, and the heart’s whims to bear on this shining rendition of Swift and Gershwin’s star-crossed love.”—Therese Anne Fowler, New York Times bestselling author of Z and A Good Neighborhood

“Mitchell James Kaplan’s Rhapsody shines a blazing light on the celebrated George Gershwin, uncovering the man behind the legend through the story of the woman he loved, Kay Swift, a brilliant musician caught in the swiftly moving mores of New York’s Jazz Age. Rich with history and packed with intricate detail, Rhapsody soars.”—Randy Susan Meyers, bestselling author of The Widow of Wall Street and Waisted

“Mitchell James Kaplan pens a lilting, jazzy ballad as catchy as a Gershwin tune, bringing to vibrant life the complicated relationship between classically trained composer Kay Swift and freewheeling star George Gershwin. Their musical bond is as powerful as their passion, and jazz-soaked, gin-drenched Broadway is their playground through the tumultuous years of the Great War and Prohibition. Rhapsody will have you humming, toe-tapping, and singing along with every turn of the page.”—Kate Quinn, New York Times bestselling author of The Alice Network and The Huntress

About the Author

Mitchell James Kaplan graduated with honors from Yale University, where he won the Paine Memorial Prize for Best Long-Form Senior Essay submitted to the English Department. His first mentor was the author William Styron.

After college, Kaplan lived in Paris, France, where he worked as a translator, then in Southern California, where he worked as a screenwriter and in film production.

He lives in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia with his family and two cats.

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Ride with the Moonlight
by Andrea Matthews

Publication Date: November 25, 2020

Series: Thunder On The Moor, Book 2
Genre: Scottish Historical Romance/Time Travel

 

 

After rescuing sixteenth-century Border reiver Will Foster from certain death at her family’s hands, time traveler Maggie Armstrong finally admits her love for the handsome Englishman, though she can’t rid herself of the sinking suspicion that her Scottish kin are not about to let them live in peace. What she doesn’t expect is the danger that lurks on Will’s own side of the Border. When news of their plans to marry reaches the warden, he charges Will with March treason for trysting with a Scot. Will and Maggie attempt to escape by fleeing to the hills, but when Will is declared an outlaw and allowed to be killed on sight, they can no longer evade the authorities. Will is sentenced to hang, while Maggie is to be sent back to her family. Heartbroken, she has no choice but to return to Scotland, where her uncle continues to make plans for her to wed Ian Rutherford, the wicked Scotsman who she now realizes murdered her father in cold blood. With Will facing the gallows in England, and herself practically under house arrest in Scotland, she continues to resist her uncle’s plans, but her efforts are thwarted at every turn. Will’s family, however, is not about to stand by and watch their youngest lad executed simply because he’s lost his heart to a Scottish lass. A daring plan is set into motion, but will it be in time to save Will’s life and reunite the lovers? Or will Ian’s lies prompt Maggie’s family to ensure the bond between them is forever destroyed?

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About the Author


Andrea Matthews is the pseudonym for Inez Foster, a historian and librarian who loves to read and write and search around for her roots, genealogical speaking. In fact, it was while doing some genealogical research that she stumbled across the history of the Border reivers. The idea for her first novel came to mind almost at once, gradually growing into the Thunder on the Moor series. And the rest is history, as they say.

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Monday, August 16, 2021

Laura Rahme on Blog Tour for The Secret of Chantilly, December 6-17

Posted By amy @ 7:30 am | No Comments

The Secret of Chantilly
by Laura Rahme

Publication Date: November 28, 2021

Genre: Historical Fiction

 

 

“In my story, there was such a prince. And never in my wildest imagination would I have predicted that I would come to live with him, in his château.”

PARIS, 1792. Antonin Carême is eight years old when he is left to fend for himself in a city about to enter the darkest days of the French revolution. The imaginative boy who yearns for a fairy tale come true soon discovers his talent for pâtisserie.

When he meets the mysterious Boucheseiche, maître d’hôtel for Napoleon’s minister, Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord, Carême’s world is turned upside down. Boucheseiche promises that one day, he will reveal to him the secret of Chantilly.

Appointed chef at the château of Valençay, Carême falls under the spell of the enigmatic Talleyrand. He is soon swept up in his own fairy tale – a whirlwind of princes, princesses and châteaux, with pâtisserie and scandal along the way. Then comes Napoleon’s downfall and everything changes. Can Carême place his trust in the elusive Talleyrand, that limping devil for whom no one seems to matter?

Orphan of the Terror, genius crippled by self-doubt, it will take years for Carême to finally discover the secret of Chantilly.

This is the story of a child who defied his birth to become a legend of French gastronomy and of the unimaginable friendship between two men from entirely different worlds.

From the streets of Paris to the château of Valençay, from the congress of Vienna to the dazzling ballrooms of France’s richest man, Carême recounts adventures colored with spice, humor and tenderness, but always rich with France’s history, its heritage and its great culinary art.

Available on Amazon

About the Author

Laura Rahme is a French-Australian author based in Brittany, France. Born in Dakar, Senegal and inspired by her Lebanese, French and Vietnamese heritage, she has a passion for covering historical and cultural ground in her writing. She has written,

The Ming Storytellers (2012) – a historical novel set in China’s Early Ming Dynasty.

The Mascherari (2014) – a historical mystery with supernatural themes set in 15th century Venice.

Julien’s Terror (2017) – a French Revolution psychological thriller/mystery which pays homage to her Breton origins.

Calista (2021) – a Victorian gothic horror mystery set in 19th century England and Greece.

The Secret of Chantilly (2021) — a real-life fairy tale set in France featuring the first celebrity chef, Marie-Antoine Carême (1784-1833) and one of France’s most influential figures, Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord.

In 2020, Laura announced that she is working on a historical crime novel set in her birth country, Senegal. The Silence of the Pirogue will explore 70s and 80s Senegal, a world she has lived.

Laura plans to craft two sequels to The Mascherari – Malefica and The Master of Cologne.

With Bachelor’s degrees in Psychology and Engineering (Aerospace Avionics), she balances a 20-year career in Tech with her great love of telling stories.

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Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, December 6
Guest Post at Novels Alive

Tuesday, December 7
Review at With A Book In Our Hands

Wednesday, December 8
Excerpt at Reading is My Remedy

Thursday, December 9
Review at A Girl Reads Bookss

Friday, December 10
Review at Novels Alive

Saturday, December 11
Review at Jessica Belmont

Sunday, December 12
Review at 100 Pages a Day

Monday, December 13
Review at Bookoholic Cafe

Tuesday, December 14
Review at Bibliostatic

Wednesday, December 15
Review at MTM Reads

Thursday, December 16
Review at Books, Cooks, Looks

Friday, December 17
Excerpt at Coffee and Ink
Review & Interview at Passages to the Past

Giveaway

Enter to win a copy of The Secret of Chantilly by Laura Rahme!

The giveaway is open internationally and ends on December 17th. You must be 18 or older to enter.

The Secret of Chantilly