Thursday, July 18, 2013

Another French Book Giveaway + A Trip



Usually the giveaways I do here are French cookbooks…or memoirs about life in France….or books on French design and décor. So here’s something a bit different, for those of you who love fiction. And the cover says it all…this is one for the gals!  

You can read all about The Promise of Provence here. The tale encompasses love, expectation and betrayal; aging parents and the war; a lab named Picasso and plenty of lavender; charming Frenchmen, a rich Australian and lots of colorful locals. The action takes place in Canada, the Ukraine, the Luberon, Paris…and brings us finally to a fisherman's cottage, ancient and captivating, in Antibes on the Cote d’Azur.

Author Patricia Sands lives in Toronto. With a happily blended family of seven adult children and, at last count, six grandchildren, she knows a thing or two about relationships and the human heart! Patricia calls herself a travel fanatic and says she can pack a bag and fly anywhere in a flash …especially if it’s the South of France. Her love affair with France began more than 40 years ago when she spent a year backpacking with friends and the passion has  continued to grow. For the last 15 years, she and her husband have returned frequently for extended stays that allowed time “for exploration and valued connections with French friends.” Her most recent visits included three months near Biot and then five months in Antibes in 2011. She says she’s  counting the days until their arrival in Nice this September.

This is Patricia’s second book. Her debut novel, The Bridge Club, was a finalist in the Foreword Reviews 2010 Book of The Year (general fiction), 2011 Next Generation Indie Book Awards (First Novel) and 2012 Indie Excellence Book Awards. The Promise of Provence came out just over a month ago and as soon as I heard about it I knew it make a perfect giveaway. So I rang her up and she graciously offered us three copies, either print or e-book format.

So if you’d like to enter to win a copy, just leave a comment under comments, below. The more creative the better, of course, and if you share thoughts, memories or even fantasies of Provence, that's a plus! Winners will be chosen by Patricia so do your best to capture her fancy. And be sure to leave your email address so we can contact you if you win; signing in with your Google account is not enough.

If you’d like to go ahead and buy the book, you can do that on Amazon here. To learn more about Patricia, her website is here and her blog is here. If you’d like to meet her, she’ll be having a book launch party at the English-language shop Antibes Books (also called Heidi’s English Bookshop) in late September or early October so check her site and theirs for details. The books should be in stock by early September.

Finally, Patricia will be leading two tours, loosely based on her novel, of the Cote d’Azur and Provence in June and July, 2014. The groups will number 14 people each—all women--and at press time the first trip had just one spot left. To see all the info, click here.

50 comments:

  1. What a beautiful cover. The book sounds wonderful.

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    1. Thanks, Carol! I was very pleased with the cover. I asked an artist in Toronto to do a water colour based on photos I had along with details from the story. Then we had it formatted to become a book cover. Good luck with the giveaway!

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  2. We went to Provence in May, staying for a week in St Remy, visiting Les Baux (amazing), Rousillion (sigh), Gordes (wow), and the wonderful little hillcliff villages nearby (cute, cute, cute), as well as Tarascon, L'Isles and the interesting asylum where Van Gogh stayed. The weather was not great...some wind, lots of rain, however it meant we had a lot of the towns to ourselves to splash about in. The markets were wonderful, the food delightful, the wine and cheese inexpensive. Provence has a draw for us now and we want to see more. I am hoping to win a hard copy of this book from Patricia to keep the love light glowing in my love affair with France and especially Provence. Thank you for considering me in your draw. Provence holds such promise for all who visit, it seems like a perfect title.

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    1. Hi Anonymous, what lovely thoughts! But I need your email or a way to reach you if you win. Thanks!

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    2. Even rainy weather doesn't spoil a visit to this beautiful part of the world.

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  3. I think I forgot to leave my name...Lin Powell
    and email address linpowell@hotmail.com

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  4. Sounds merveilleux! And I just read about the tour, which sounds especially lovely and invigorating.
    Julie, I love how you are in the know about writers like Patricia. Always love your blog! A bientot!

    -Susan in NYC ;)

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    1. Thanks for commenting, Susan. Julie's website is fantastic and I am truly honoured to be featured here!

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  5. It's been a bit more than a year since my last trip to France (mostly the Languedoc but a little bit of Provence too--and of course, lots of vin de Provence.) and I can't think of anything I'd rather read than Promise of Provence. I also checked out Patricia's blog and found a great commentary on Le Tour, another one of my loves, passing through Aix-en-Provence through to the area I visited last year near St. Gilles, then north and back to le Sud de France--so many wonderful French memories, and thank you, Julie, for bringing whiffs of France to this Francophile...Carole, sendmeyer@sbcglobal.net

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    1. Carole, It's such a treat to be able to share the place I love with others who feel the same. Hope you come back soon!

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    2. Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Carole, and for checking out my blog! How lovely that you have such wonderful memories of France. Hopefully you will be back before you know it!

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  6. I am always interested in books about France, especially Provence, which is a favorite. I like to see how other people enjoy the Country. I have stayed in Nice, Menton, St Remy, Gourdes and many others. I have been to France three different times and still want to return again. Once you've seen France, they can't take it away from you, you must return.

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    1. Barbara, thanks for commenting. Perhaps our tour in June 2014 will be just the temptation you need to return to France!

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  7. Provence! My Earthly Paradise. After 14 years of vacationing there with my late husband, two years alone before that, I miss it with an ache. I don't drive so it's not the same without a car. We loved all the remote villages and the perches.I love Pastis but it never tastes as good as when drinking it in Provence.
    I named my mini poodle Pastis. He's now eight and a great comfort to me.
    cigalechanta@hotmail.com

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  8. Antibes is my favourite town in Provence! There is so much there; the Cap, the vieille ville, the musees (including of course The Picasso Musee), the harbour and yachts, the fountains, the beaches and the amazing views from the Chapel Garoupe! So much to do and see not forgetting the large market and Heidi's bookshop near the bottom! I bought quite a few books there including ones on food, art and the landscape and culture of Provence! My memory of my visit last year,(wiith my cousin who had not visited before) was sharing a drink with my Facebook friend Carol Drinkwater in a bar next to Heidi's and close to where Graham Greene used to sit outside another bar! Antibes, an often ignored Provencale town certainly reminds me of books! Here's to my next visit!

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    1. Susy, you love Antibes as much as I do! I will be having a book launch there at Heidi's bookshop early in October this year so if you or any of your friends are there, please join us. Good luck in the giveaway!

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  9. I have not been to France yet Julie. It is at the top of my list! Paris, Provence, Beune! Until then I love to read magical books like this!!

    xoxo
    Karena
    2013 Designers Series & Giveaway

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    1. Karena, I hope your wish comes true to visit France. Join us on the tour next June! Good luck in the giveaway. Bonne Chance!

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  10. The possibility of my visiting France is extremely remote! I however love all things French (my current viewing of Tour de France is a case in point). I just so enjoy the scenery especially the commentators views on the various chateau's and countryside that is passing. It is an extremely vivid way of bringing France to me. I'd love to win this book and hope that I do!

    mystica123athotmaildotcom

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    1. I've been watching Le Tour too and I agree with you that the scenery is a good part of the enjoyment! Bonne chance in the giveaway!

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  11. Its been 2 years since my visit to beautiful Provence, and I miss it so much! I have loaded all of my pictures onto a digital photo frame that plays continuously on my desk at work, and I often find myself just staring and remembering the lavender fields, the markets, the people....

    I would love to win a copy of Patricia's new book. It may help ease the yearnings until the next time I can visit Provence!

    Laura Lewakowski
    lauralewie@hotmail.com

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    1. Laura, I can feel that love for Provence! Digital photo frames are fabulous for helping us relive the memories. You are so right about that! Good luck with the giveaway!

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  12. Planning a trip to Provence in September and am enjoying reading all the books with that setting! This looks wonderful m

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    1. Bon Voyage, Nancy! I will be in Nice in September and October and am already counting the days! I have no doubt you will be visiting many of the towns mentioned in The Promise of Provence. I also have no doubt that no matter where you go or what you do there, you will love it! Good luck with the giveaway!

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  13. I would love to visit Provence one day. For now I would be happy to win a copy of Patricia's book to take me there. my email is darlene.foster@telus.net if I should win.

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    1. Darlene, enjoy the trip from the comfort of your favourite reading spot for now. Take a look at the women's tour I am leading to Provence next June ... you never know! We actually just sold out the first tour and have planned a second. Good luck with the giveaway!

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  14. Julie, I'm in Cannes right now, heading to Marseille next week. As I'm from Toronto and I know the name of the author very well:-) I would like to read this new book!

    Thank you!!
    All the best, Maya

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    1. Maya, you have me intrigued! Have we met? I love your "la Torontoise" handle! Lucky you to be in France now. Good luck with the draw and in Toronto you can always pop in to Ben McNally's Books on Bay Street or my local indie, A Novel Spot, in the Kingsway.

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  15. if you love Provence, if you dream to travel or even live there for a while you have to read this great great book. Apart from a great story with richly detailed and loveable characters, you will also find tons of references to places to visit and eat in Provence! would love to win an extra copy to offer to friends. Emma @Words And Peace. ehc16e at yahoo dot com

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    1. Emma, thank you for your lovely words. I love how you love this story and good luck with the draw!

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  16. Here's to hoping this book can take me back to sipping Rose in the Luberon! ;-)

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    1. Aha! You obviously have some warm memories of the Luberon, Elizabeth! This book will most definitely transport you back. Best wishes on winning the giveaway!

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  17. It was a Book on Provence that first led me to visit ten years ago. Now, I am preparing for intensive treatments for Lyme disease and have gratefully stumbled upon a blog and book to transport me vicariously to the healing lavender fields of Provence. And wouldn't it be splendid to celebrate recovery after four long years by joining in on the book tour! That's the dream...

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    1. Dear Myrna, your comment brought tears to my eyes and I wish you the best of luck with your treatments. I know this is a tough disease with which to be faced and The Promise of Provence will hopefully transport you.I'm sure you have lovely memories from your trip ten years ago. Keep in touch and let me know how you are doing. The tour would indeed be a splendid celebration! Good luck with the giveaway!

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    2. Oops! Forgot to leave my email. Eselect@aol.com. and yes, many wonderful memories including one where we stepped into what turned out to be a private reception for veterans of the French Resistance! Everyone seemed o.k. with us being there; hopefully not because we looked as if we, too, had lived to tell about it.

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    3. What a special experience that would have been!

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    4. That would have been a special experience indeed!

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  18. Sitting on my shelf above my computer where I sit for many hours a day is a little figurine of a woman with a basket of lavender and the tool they chop it off with dressed in the native costume--beside her is a lavender scented bar of soap-I see the travels happening in my mind and one day they will happen! The region has such an allure for me I cannot explain it really. The thought of reading a book in this setting really appeals to me. Being a lifelong student of French and The French also adds to my curiosity!

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    1. Lisa, it sounds like you and I share a love of all things French! Keep dreaming of that trip and you will make it happen one day. In the meantime, I wish you luck in the giveaway. Bonne chance!

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  19. The cover is beautiful and a book with a dog named Picasso and lavender fields sounds intriguing.
    Ann
    cozyintexas@yahoo.com

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    1. I am glad you like the cover, Ann. I do too! I had a Toronto artist paint a water colour based on photos and details of the story and then we formatted it to create the cover. When I began writing the story, I didn't know I was going to include a dog but when he appeared I fell in love with him, just like Katherine! Good luck with the draw!

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  20. As they say in France, "Mazel Tov" on your new publication! I had a lifelong dream come true of living in Paris for 4+ yrs. with a smack-on view of the Eiffel in my 6ème étage flat in the 7ème. Unfortunately the dream became a bit of a "cauchemar", as I went over with a husband, but repatriated to Florida with 2 cats! That wasn't in my movie. I did visit Nîmes & Cannes before living there. And, spent some time in Bandol & Cassis (not quite Provence), "discovering" the rosés of the area. Returned to Paris last Sept. only to have my trip cut short due to needing cervical spine surgery & an I. D. theft. Who knew? However, loving France brings hopes and dreams into your soul, just as the title of your new work. Bonne chance with sales & all your future endeavors!
    À la prochaine, gail young (gailinparis@aol.com)

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    1. Gail, I see a book in your comment! Vraiment! I'm sorry your rêve became a cauchemar ... life does that at times! The Bandol and Cassis areas are favourites of mine too ... especially when the tourists have left and the wines of that region are magnifique. Thank you for your good wishes about my novel. The response has been wonderful and there's nothing that pleases an author more than making readers happy! Good luck with the giveaway and your future dreams. (I spend a lot of time in FL in the winter. Are you still there?)

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  21. Therese LombardoJuly 21, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    Provence - I first fell in love with it while enjoying Peter Mayle's series, and now I live vicariously through other travel writers' expeditions through fields of lavender and beyond. Would love to add your book to my travel library! Have just returned from another trip to Paris [I really can't complain about that, oui?] but have still never made it out to Provence. Une jour. . .

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    1. I am SUCH a fan of Peter Mayle's books too and, like you, his words were my first introduction to that special part of France many years ago. How lovely that you spend time in Paris ... next time you must hop on the TGV and go south! Good luck with the giveaway!

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  22. My two favorite things: France and reading......I would really love to read this book while visiting France.
    ...Kim:)



    kgoodgine@bellsouth.net

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  23. My two favorite things: France and reading.......Oh how I would love to read this book while visiting France!
    Kim


    kgoodgine@bellsouth.net

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    1. Those are my two favourite things too, Kim! Good luck with the giveaway!

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  24. It is quite nice to read a book before travelling to France. If any one planning to visit France than read this book it can help us.

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