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Thursday, November 3, 2016

WOW! Book Blog Tour of Martha Conway's "Sugarland"

5 Star Book Review by Crystal J. Casavant-Otto
I want to start by thanking WOW! Women on Writing for asking me to be part of this book blog tour of Martha Conway's jazz age mystery Sugarland. This was a fabulous read and absolutely deserving of 5 stars!

I was completely taken by the characters of Sugarland. They came to live so vividly you would have thought each one was written by the character themselves. I have no idea what it would be like to be a young black woman on a train during the early 1920's and yet the feelings Eve Riser was experiencing made my stomach knot up.

As a piano player I was excited about the accuracy of the musical references. Additionally, I said to my husband "Martha Conway must be an amazing historian" because she did such a fabulous job with each and every details of the jazz age. Nothing felt out of sync or out of place. As an author, she give you the details you need without any extra flowery page fillers.

I had no idea what was going to happen until the end and yet there wasn't a lot of violent details or gore - so I would feel comfortable having a younger tween read Sugarland as well. This comes to mind because my 9 year old who reads at a 7th grade level had asked if she could read my copy. It was a quick read and definitely kept me wanting more. However, I fell in love with the characters and would love a follow up to this book - I'd like to find out where these lovely people ended up.

Thank you Martha Conway for a delightful read. Your attention to detail and your lovely style was not wasted on this reader. I loved each and every page!

Official Book Summary:

Have you ever wished you could go back in time and experience another time, another place? Now's Sugarland, the winner of a Reader's Favorite Book Award, will whisk you away to Chicago to rub elbows with bootleggers, jazz musicians and more than one unsavory character!
your chance! Martha Conway's latest novel

Follow in the steps of talented young pianist Eve Riser who is caught in a drive-by shooting that kills the bootlegger standing next to her, she forms an unlikely friendship with the bootlegger’s sister, Lena. Eve is looking for her missing stepsister, a popular night club singer who has been missing since the shoot-out, and Lena wants to find out who killed her brother. Together these two women navigate the back alleys and jazz clubs of the Roaring Twenties, encountering charismatic managers, handsome musicians, and a mysterious gangster called the Walnut who seems to be the key to it all.

Hardcover: 314 pages (also available as paperback and e-book)
Publisher: Noontime Books (May 7, 2016)
ISBN-10: 0991618556
ISBN-13: 978-0991618552

Sugarland is available as a print and e-book at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and IndieBound.

About the Author:

Martha Conway’s debut novel 12 Bliss Street (St. Martin’s Minotaur) was nominated for an Edgar Award while Thieving Forest won an Independent Publishers Book Award, the Laramie Award, a Reader’s Choice Award and the 2014 North American Book Award in Historical Fiction. Her short fiction has appeared in The Iowa Review, The Mississippi Review, The Quarterly, Folio, Puerto del Sol, Carolina Quarterly, and other publications.

She graduated from Vassar College and received her master’s degree in Creative Writing from San Francisco State University. She has reviewed fiction for the San Francisco Chronicle, The San Francisco Review of Books, and The Iowa Review. The recipient of a California Arts Council fellowship in Creative Writing, she has taught at UC Berkeley Extension and Stanford University’s Online Writers’ Studio.

Martha Conway's website:

Martha Conway's blog:



----------Upcoming Blog Tour Dates

Thursday, November 3 @ Deal Sharing Aunt
Ready to snuggle up with a great book and a cup of cocoa? Read today's review of Martha Conway’s Sugarland.

Monday, November 7 @ Celtic Lady’s Reviews
Looking for a book to add to your TBR pile? Read today's review of Sugarland.

Keep up with blog stops and giveaways in real time by following r @WOWBlogTour on Twitter.

Get Involved!
If you have a website or blog and would like to host one of the upcoming WOW! Women on Writing touring authors or schedule a tour of your own, please email
Hippie Crystal (fresh off her unicorn)

About Today's Reviewer:

Crystal is a church musician, babywearing mama (aka crunchy mama), business owner, active journaler, writer and blogger, Blog Tour Manager with WOW! Women on Writing, Publicist with Dream of Things Publishing, Press Corp teammate for the DairyGirl Network, as well as a dairy farmer. She lives in Manitowoc County, Wisconsin with her husband, four young children (Carmen 9, Andre 8, Breccan 3, and Delphine 1), two dogs, two rabbits, four little piggies, a handful of cats and kittens, and over 230 Holsteins.

You can find Crystal riding unicorns, taking the ordinary and giving it a little extra (making it extraordinary), blogging and reviewing books, baby carriers, cloth diapers, and all sorts of other stuff at: and

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