Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Ambitious Madame Bonaparte by Ruth Hill Chatlien

The Ambitious Madame Bonaparte is the book review that never happened.  I am sure that I would have enjoyed the book had I read it however life has had other plans for me and I have been tending to personal matters.  I hope to have the time soon to read and review it.  Do not let my affairs stop you from checking out the other reviews or reading it yourself.


Monday, March 3
Review at Words And Peace
Tuesday, March 4
Review at The Reading Life
Thursday, March 6
Review + Excerpt + Giveaway at I Am, Indeed
Friday, March 7
Review + Giveaway at Queen of All She Reads
Sunday, March 9
Review + Giveaway at Just Reviews.
With extra information here.
Monday, March 10
Review at Jorie Loves A Story
Tuesday, March 11
Review at Making My Mark
Interview at Enchanted by Josephine
Wednesday, March 12
Review at Chocolate & Croissants

Author Ruth Hull Chatlien

on Tour
March 3-12, 2014

The Ambitious Madame Bonaparte

[historical fiction]
 Release Date: December 2, 2013
Publisher: Amika Press, Chicago
ISBN: 978-1937484163
484 pages
Available from 
Amika Press
AmazonBarnes and Noble, and iTunes.


As a clever girl in stodgy, mercantile Baltimore, Betsy Patterson dreams of a marriage that will transport her to cultured Europe. When she falls in love with and marries Jerome Bonaparte, she believes her dream has come true—until Jerome’s older brother Napoleon becomes an implacable enemy.Based on a true story, The Ambitious Madame Bonaparte is a historical novel that portrays this woman’s tumultuous life. Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte, known to history as Betsy Bonaparte, scandalized Washington with her daring French fashions; visited Niagara Falls when it was an unsettled wilderness; survived a shipwreck and run-ins with British and French warships; dined with presidents and danced with dukes; and lived through the 1814 Battle of Baltimore. Yet through it all, Betsy never lost sight of her primary goal—to win recognition of her marriage.[provided by the author]
Ruth Hull ChatlienRuth Hull Chatlien has been a writer and editor of educational materials for twenty-five years. Her specialty is U.S. and world history. She is the author of Modern American Indian Leaders and has published several short stories and poems in literary magazines. The Ambitious Madame Bonaparte (2013) is her first published novel.
She lives in northeastern Illinois with her husband, Michael, and a very pampered dog named Smokey. When she’s not writing, she can usually be found gardening, knitting, drawing, painting, or watching football.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Biblilotheque Forney Paris (Forney Library)

 The Hotel de Sens is a city palace in the 4th arrondissement in Paris that is now home to the Forney Library.  The palace was originally owned by the archbishops of Sens (a commune in Northern Burgundy).  The library is supposed to host an impressive decorative art and textile book collection.  I must confess I have never stepped foot inside the library.
 I am always in such awe of the library from the outside.  The building is one of the few vestiges of medieval architecture.  On my visit to Paris last spring the tulips were in full bloom.  It was just fitting that they were red.
 I am not sure if it was intentional that they would match the door.  I adore this red door.  There is a church on Rue Rivoli in the Marais that also has a large red door.  The French love their colour.  Given that it is still February I want to give you as much red in France as I can.
 Even the ladies who came here to enjoy their lunch had a splash of red.
Maybe next time I will step inside.

This is my contribution to Dreaming of France, hosted by Paulita at An Accidental Blog.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Orange You Glad it is Friday

Strolling the markets in Paris you can always find the prettiest floral arrangements.  I adore the selection of colours in these bouquets.

Happy Friday.

Orange You Glad it is Friday is hosted by Maria at Life's Sweets and Spices.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

La Patisserie Rouge (the red pastries)

 So, I am sitting in bed with a horrible cold.  I cannot really taste anything but that is not stopping me from craving something sweet.  Actually I would love some cold ice-cream.  My throat would love some cold ice cream.  One of these desserts would also do the trick.  I love the little dessert with the raspberries. It is an amaryllis-think macaron wafer with cream and fresh raspberries. I always have one of those with a nice cup of tea when I am in Paris.

 However the one next to it with all the fruit is calling out my name.  I love chocolate but I really enjoy fruity cakes.  Anything with the taste of fruit is a favourite of mine.
 Given it is February and love is in the air maybe  you would like a strawberry macaron.
What about a big kiss from a chocolate frog?

I am always up for an eclair.  Decisions Decisions.  This is why I love going on vacation to Paris.  The decisions I have to make there are always so delicious.  Which dessert would you choose?

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Happy Valentines Day French Style

 Back in 2005 I was in Paris just before Valentine's Day.  The French do not celebrate the day the same way we do.  They are much more low keyed about it than we are.  This shop was down the street from my hotel.  I loved the bright red hearts in the window.  They added a splash of colour to a rather grey sky.
Of course a box of macarons from Laduree is always to make one's heart flutter.   I hope that everyone had a lovely Valentine's Day.

This is my contribution to to Dreaming of France hosted by Paulita at An Accidental Blog.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

The Eyes of India

 It has almost been nine years since I was in India.  I spent 3 weeks in Rahjastan traveling throughout the area.  My time there was incredible.  India by far is one of my favourite countries.  As a photographer the photo opportunities were both generous and inspiring.  This was one of the first times I spent time shooting street photography and people.  For me, the photo above speaks to maternal love.  You can see the mother's pride and protectiveness of her son.
 I do not know what this little girl was looking at, however every photo I have of her has her looking backward.  I love the contrast of the colours of her flowers against the blue backdrop.
 This child was stunning.  She was with her brother selling produce at the market.  Her eyes were alive with life.  I wonder were she is today.  Is she married with her own children?  I hope wherever she is she still has life in her eyes.

 I shot this man early in the morning at a festival in the dessert.  Early was around 6 am.  The dessert area was crisp and starting to come to life as people began to commence their day.
This man was at the same market.  I love the contrast of his skin against the bright red of his turban.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Palais des Thes

With Valentine's Day soon upon us a box of tea is the ideal present.  Especially a box of tea from France.  Imagine the delight on someone's face when they realize they can start their day with a little touch of France.
I am a huge fan of tea and start every morning with a cup of tea.  Palais des Thés was kind enough to send me a box of le matin (the morning).  With a selection of 6 teas every morning cup of tea will be a French treat.  The box has a lovely assortment of 8 bags of each of the following teas.  There is a flavour for every mood.  

Thé des Moinesa floral blend inspired by a Tibetan traditional recipe.
Grand Yunnan Imperial: a beautiful Chinese black tea.
Sencha Ariake: a delicate Japanese green tea.
Big Ben: an English blend of black teas.
Thé des Lords: an Earl Grey black tea with bergamot
Gout Russe 7 agrumes: a black tea with citrus fruits
So which is my favourite?  Given I always start my day with Earl Grey, The des Lords is my initial pick.  Each tea is delightful.  Gout Russe 7 agrumes is quite refreshing with its citrus fruits.  Whether there is a Francophile or tea afficiando in your life this is the perfect Valentine's Day.    What is best is that there tea is available in the U.S.  Yes flying to France for some tea would be so much fun but you can visit their store in NYC.  
Merci a Palais de Thes for the lovely box.  It is the perfect way to start the day and contribute to Dreaming of France hosted by Paulita at An Accidental Blog.  

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