Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Master's Blog Tour and $20 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway

Good day everyone! Today is my stop on The Master's Book blog tour. I have not read this book yet, but it sounds wonderful. I definitely will not let this story slip by. Check the excerpt below and don't forget to enter the giveaway!

The Master's Book by Philip Coleman 
Publisher: MuseItUp Publishing 
Genre: Upper MG or lower YA Mystery/Thriller
Age: 12+
Publication Date: March 15th, 2013
Page Count: 236

Book can be found at:
 GoodReads | Amazon

Sean moves to Brussels to a house that is a crime scene... 
In 1482 Mary, the last Duchess of Burgundy, lies on her deathbed in a castle in Flanders. She is only 25. In her final moments she makes a wish that, 500 years later, will threaten the lives of a boy and a girl living in Brussels. 
The Master’s Book is the story of Sean, an Irish teenager, just arrived in Brussels to a house that is also a crime scene. Together with Stephanie, his classmate, he finds an illuminated manuscript, only for it to be stolen almost at once. 
Where did this manuscript come from? Who was it originally made for? Is there a connection with the beautiful tomb Sean has seen in Bruges? Above all, why does someone want this book so badly that they are prepared to kill for it? 
Part thriller and part paper-chase, this book is aimed at boys and girls of twelve and over.

Back in the basement, I cleared the shelves and moved them, as usual. Not for the first time, I cringed when they made a scraping sound on the floor. I went straight to the innermost chamber and opened the airtight cabinet. It took a few minutes to get the folders out of the way.
I’d barely finished when I jumped at a noise behind me. Maeve stood there in the doorway with her arms crossed, staring.
The game was really up now. Well, at least Stephanie wouldn’t be able to blame me when the folks found out.
Maeve’s big, round eyes wandered around the narrow room. “So this is what’s behind the shelves.”
“Stay out of this, Maeve. If you say anything to the folks, you’re dead.”
“Why would I do that? I’ve known about this since last Saturday and I haven’t told Mammy and Daddy.”
I almost dropped the folder that was in my hand. “You what? How did you find out?”
“I wanted to hear what you and Stephanie were talking about, so I listened at the door of your room. Then I came down here myself the next morning and tried to unscrew the shelves, but I couldn’t move them on my own. I tried again on Monday, but I still couldn’t move them.”
All that time worrying about keeping Mam and Dad from finding out, and my nosy little sister was watching the whole time. Typical. Just bloody typical.
“So it was you who kept leaving the stool in the way?” I asked, recovering from the shock.
“Yeah, I had to stand on it to reach some of the screws. What are you doing in here now anyway? What’s in that cabinet?”
“There’s a safe at the back of it. Look, here.” I carefully arranged the folders in stacks on the floor. “It’s just that we can’t figure out the combination. We’ve tried de Meulenaer’s date of birth, but that doesn’t work.”
“How did you find that out?”
“We looked at the Internet, of course.”
“Well, maybe there was other stuff about him on the Internet that might have given you a clue.”
“Nah. There was hardly anything in English. There was something about a book he wrote, about some woman called Marie de Bourgogne.”
Maeve pulled at her ear, a habit of hers when she was thinking hard. “Well, Marie could be French for ‘Mary’. There’s a girl in my class called Mary Alcock, and Monsieur Hubert calls her ‘Marie’.”
“You mean your French teacher?”
“Who else? What’s Bourgogne though? Mary of Bourgogne?”
And then there was that “ping” in my brain. Our visit to Bruges. How could I have been so dense?
“It’s Burgundy,” I cried excitedly. “Of course. Mary of Burgundy. Remember when we visited her tomb, and Dad was talking about her?”
“Oh yeah, that’s right.” Maeve pulled on her ear again.
“It doesn’t get us any nearer to finding out the combination, all the same.”
“Well, maybe if this guy was interested enough in Mary to write a book about her, he came up with a combination that had something to do with her. What about her birthday? Have you thought of that?”
“Meh, it’s worth a try, I suppose. Come on up to my room, and we’ll have a look. We needn’t put all this stuff away, but we’d better put the shelves back.”
Back upstairs I typed “Mary of Burgundy” into Google. It recognised the name when I’d only got as far as “Mary of B—”. Maeve crouched beside me and stared at the screen as the results page loaded.
This time we got tons of stuff in English, starting with a long Wikipedia article. Luckily, her birthday was on the first line: the thirteenth of February, fourteen fifty-seven. I didn’t bother reading any more.
“Can we go now?” I said.
“Just a minute,” said Maeve, scribbling frantically on a piece of paper.
“How long does it take you to write out one date?”
She scrunched up the paper and shoved it into a pocket in the front of her skirt. We closed the screen and headed back downstairs. This time, she called out the date to me while I punched it on the number buttons of the safe, making things a bit faster.
13021457. I got the error message again. Another one of Maeve’s crackpot ideas. Still, I’d better try out all the combinations. So I went through the same rigmarole of different formats, with and without zeroes.
In a way I almost felt pleased when none of them worked. I turned back to Maeve. “So much for that notion. It wasn’t such a great idea after all.”
“Don’t give up just yet. Try the date she died.”
“Why would anyone pick the date someone died? Besides, you didn’t write it down.”
“Yes, I did. It was on the first line of the article.”
I sighed, annoyed at Mauve for thinking of checking the other important dates. “All right then. Read it out.”
“Nah, it doesn’t work,” I said when I got another error message.
“Maybe try just the year.”
I did that. I waited for the error message to pop up, but instead the safe whirred a little bit longer than before. The door popped open.
It couldn’t really be that simple, could it?

Author bio 
Philip Coleman has worked as a biologist for most of his life—in Ireland, Belgium and now in Switzerland. Having been an avid reader all his life, he took up writing only in 2006. This is his first published novel. He drew his inspiration for the story from the period he spent working for the EU in Brussels. He has a grown-up son and daughter (who were roughly the same ages as Sean and Maeve during the time in Brussels but otherwise aren’t a bit like them at all!). He now lives in France. 

Author Sites:
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Today's stop was brought to you by Candace at CCB Book Promotions

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  1. Replies
    1. Thanks for stopping by, Celeste. Good luck.

  2. I hope that excerpt helps convince people to pick the book up! Thanks for hosting a tour stop!


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