Friday, July 10, 2015

A Lady of Good Family by Jeanne Mackin - Spotlight and Giveaway

This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Jeanne will be awarding a $25 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click on the tour banner to see the other stops on the tour.

Raised among wealth and privilege during America's fabled Gilded Age, a niece of famous novelist Edith Wharton and a friend to literary great Henry James, Beatrix Farrand is expected to marry, and to marry well. But as a young woman traveling through Europe, she already knows that gardens are her true passion. How she becomes a woman for whom work and love, the earthly and the mysterious, are held in delicate balance is the story of her unique determination to create beauty while remaining true to herself.

Enjoy an excerpt:

Lenox, Massachusetts

My grandparents had a farm outside of Schenectady, and every Sunday my father, who worked in town, would hitch the swayback mare to the buggy and take us out there. I would be left in play in the field as my father and grandfather sat on the porch and drank tea and Grandma cooked. My mother, always dressed a little too extravagantly, shelled the peas.

A yellow barn stood tall and broad against a cornflower blue sky. A row of red hollyhocks in front of the barn stretched to the sky, each flower on the stem as silky and round as the skirt on Thumbelina’s ball gown. In the field next to the barn, daisies danced in the breeze. My namesake flower.

I saw it still, the yellows and red and blues glowing against my closed eyelids. The field was my first garden and I was absolutely happy in it. We usually are, in the gardens of our childhood.

When I opened my eyes I was on a porch in Lenox, a little tired from weeks of travel, a little restless. My companions were restless, too, weary of trying to make polite conversation as strangers do.

It was a late-summer evening, too warm, with a disquieting breeze stirring the treetops as if a giant ghostly hand ruffled them. Through the open window a piano player was tinkling his way through Irving Berlin as young people danced and flirted. In the road that silvered past the inn, young men, those who had made it home from the war, drove up and down in their shiny black Model T’s.

It was a night for thinking of love and loss, first gardens, first kisses.

Mrs. Avery suggested we try the Ouija board. Since the war it had become a national obsession.

“Let’s,” I agreed eagerly.

About the Author:
Jeanne Mackin‘s latest novel, A Lady of Good Family, explores the secret life of gilded age Beatrix Jones Farrand, niece of Edith Wharton and the first woman professional landscape design in America. Her previous novel, The Beautiful American, based on the life of model turned war correspondent and photographer, Lee Miller won the CNY 2015 prize for fiction. She has published in American Letters and Commentary and SNReview and other publications and is the author of the Cornell Book of Herbs and Edible Flowers. She was the recipient of a creative writing fellowship from the American Antiquarian Society and her journalism has won awards from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education. She lives with her husband, Steve Poleskie, in Ithaca. A Lady of Good Family is available at Barnes and Nobles, Amazon, and other bookstores.


Buy the book at Amazon or Barnes and Noble.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. What writing advice do you have for other aspiring authors?

  2. Thanks for the excerpt and giveaway!

  3. Hi, and thanks for hosting!

    Writing advice: Give yourself a regular work schedule, even if it's half an hour a day. And read. Read like mad, good books, bad books, anything that can teach you more about language and plotting! And then, take chances, play, let your creativity take over.

  4. This sounds like a really amazing book and I'm looking forward to reading it. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Sounds like a wonderful book. I can't wait to read it.

  6. I have enjoyed learning about the book. Thanks for sharing it.

  7. The book sounds very good I look forward to reading it

  8. The entire post was exceptional but I especially enjoyed learning more about the author. Thank you for sharing!


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