Romance Novel Giveaways - Freebies and Giveaways of All Things Romance Romance Novel Giveaways: Where the River Bends by Elsa Winckler ๐Ÿ’• Fun Facts, Book Tour & Gift Card Giveaway ๐Ÿ’• (Contemporary Romance)

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Where the River Bends by Elsa Winckler ๐Ÿ’• Fun Facts, Book Tour & Gift Card Giveaway ๐Ÿ’• (Contemporary Romance)

Kalinda Evans works for the Anglo-Boer war foundation in Canada. She's sent to South Africa to make sure everyone who lost their lives in the war will be remembered. On her drive to the guest farm in Kimberley, South Africa, Kalinda picks up a female hitchhiker and is startled when just moments later, the woman vanishes. Kalinda would be convinced she was dreaming…except there’s still a white lace handkerchief on the passenger seat.

Extreme sports enthusiast and computer game designer Zack Carter is always after the next big challenge. He’s far too busy for romance and adheres to a three-date rule, until he meets his parents’ latest guest. When she relays the story of her mysterious experience, Zack’s family shares the local ghost story. Kalinda and Zack work together to solve the puzzle of the ghost and how it all ties in with the war and the work Kalinda is doing.

As their attraction grows, Zack realizes he no longer feels the need to prove anything to himself. He only needs to prove to Kalinda that he’s more than a good time.

I had a vague idea to bring something about The Anglo Boer War into a story, a war that changed the course of history in South Africa in many ways. The Battle of Paardeberg, a battle the Boers lost and one that also damaged the Boer morale, was fought over the course of ten days on the banks of the Modder River (Mud River). A regiment of Canadian troops also fought with the British side. With them came eleven Canadian nurses who were part of the medical team of the British. While attacking the Boers, led by General Piet Cronje, Lord Roberts who led the British troops, heard there were women and children among the Boers. He sent a letter to General Cronje, offering the women and children a safe conduct, Cronjรฉ asked for medical help but insisted they then stayed with the Boers, a deal Roberts wasn’t interested in. ‘The last of the gentleman’s wars’ is the title of Major-General JFC book about the war, published in 1937. In a world where attacks are meticulously planned, executed with no mercy, the idea of the enemy sending letters to offer help for women and children, seems surreal.

While this exchange of letters was taking place, the only help for badly injured Boers were tobacco leaves to put on their wounds. When reading this, all the ‘what if’ questions popped into my head – what if a doctor and one or two nurses actually did go to the Boers and what if one of these nurses and one of the Boer soldiers fell in love? And that was when the idea of Suzie, the ghost in Where the river bends was born.

*Boer means ‘farmer’ in English and because most of the Afrikaner were farmers at the time of the war, that was what they were called.

"Well, well, well and what do we have here?" It was a new voice.

Kalinda glanced towards the door. At first she thought it was Luke, but then ice blue eyes landed on her and she realised this was someone different. Entirely different. He radiated energy; his mere presence seemed to fill up the room. Something inside of her moved. Breathing was suddenly difficult.

Like Luke, this man was big and tall. And, like Luke, he was attractive. Impossibly attractive. He had Luke's black hair and bushy eyebrows, but there the similarities ended. Instead of a clean-shaven face, he had what was probably a week’s worth of stubble and instead of Luke's easy, open smile, his was mocking. Challenging. And it was doing strange things to her insides.

Her reaction to him was also totally different. She'd smiled easily when she'd seen Luke but now she couldn't get her mouth to move. Her tongue felt too big, her legs were rubbery, and her heartbeat had increased rapidly. What the hell?

She quickly looked down at her hands, willing herself to breathe. But her body refused to behave normally.

"Zach!" Madeline called out and rushed forward to hug him. "I didn't know you were coming to visit." She cupped his face. "What's wrong? Why are you so pale? Has your asthma been bothering you again?"

He smiled and grabbed her hands. “Relax, Mom, nothing happened; I'm fine. I'm pale because I've been to the Antarctic."

"But that was in November last year …"

Ignoring his mother, he crouched down in front of Kalinda. "Who is this gorgeous woman and what is wrong with her hands?"

Kalinda thought it safest to keep looking down on her hands. What this guy did to her insides was ridiculous. He even had a dimple, for goodness' sake.

Madeline sat down next to her again. “Miss Evans …"

"Kalinda. My name is Kalinda."

Madeline patted her arm. "Kalinda is from Canada and she will be a guest here for a week. We only expected her to arrive tomorrow, but then we found her on the road. On her hands and knees. She still has to tell us what happened," she added teasingly.

Zach took Kalinda's hand in his and turned it, palm upwards. The minute he touched her, the air around her became too thick to breathe. Damn it, this was ludicrous. He was merely a man.


I have been reading love stories for as long as I can remember and when I ‘met’ the classic authors like Jane Austen, Elizabeth Gaskell, Henry James The Brontรซ sisters, etc. during my Honours studies, I was hooked for life.

I married my college boyfriend and soul mate and after 43 years, 3 interesting and wonderful children and 3 beautiful grandsons, he still makes me weak in the knees. We are fortunate to live in the picturesque little seaside village of Betty's Bay, South Africa with the ocean a block away and a beautiful mountain right behind us. And although life so far has not always been an easy ride, it has always been an exciting and interesting one!

I like the heroines in my stories to be beautiful, feisty, independent and headstrong. And the heroes must be strong but possess a generous amount of sensitivity. They are of course, also gorgeous! My stories typically incorporate the family background of the characters to better understand where they come from and who they are when we meet them in the story.


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  1. Thanks for hosting me today, Lauren - love your blog!

  2. Congratulations on your latest book release and on the book tour. Am absolutely gorgeous cover and a fantastic excerpt. This sounds like a must read to me.

    1. Thanks, Bea and thanks for stopping by - I hope you'll enoy reading it :)

  3. I am enjoying these tours and finding all the terrific books my family is enjoying reading. Thanks for bringing them to us and keep up the good work.

  4. Are any of the characters in this book based off of real people that you know? Congrats on the release. Bernie Wallace BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

    1. Hi Bernie - thanks for stopping by. No, the characters I created myself. I've based Suzie on a real -ife Canadian nurse, though - those nurses were such brave women!

  5. Are any of the characters in this book based off of real people that you know? Congrats on the release. Bernie Wallace BWallace1980(at)hotmail(d0t)com

  6. Congrats on the new release! I just adore this cover...that guys smile seems so genuine!

  7. Where the River Bends sounds like a good read. Thank you

    1. Thanks, Linda - I hope you get a chance to read it. Thanks for joining the conversation!

  8. Sounds like a wonderful book, thanks for sharing :)

  9. Sounds like a great book. Best wishes on your tour.


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