Friday, August 26, 2016

Sideshow by Amy Stilgenbauer Blog Tour & Giveaway

Book Name: Sideshow

Author Name: Amy Stilgenbauer

Release Date: August 25, 2016

Pages or Words: 61,000 words

Categories: Fiction, Historical, Lesbian Romance, Romance

Publisher: Interlude Press

Cover Artist: C.B. Messer


Abby Amaro wants to sing at La Scala Opera House, but she’s a good girl, and in 1957 good girls get married. Still, when she receives her first marriage proposal, she freezes, knowing the way her suitor makes her feel bodes trouble. When he won’t take no for an answer, she flees, joining up with a traveling carnival.
Thanks to a burlesque trapeze artist and the world’s saddest clown, Abby bides her time and fits in until she can rejoin the world she knows. She doesn’t expect a sideshow strongwoman named Suprema, who captures her imagination. As the carnival makes its way across the Midwest, Abby learns much more than she had ever imagined—about herself, about her identity, and, most importantly, about love.

Abby couldn’t remember falling asleep. She only remembered the dark night and how, outside the window of Della’s trailer, the rolling slopes of Eastern Ohio slowly flattened into the farmland of the western side of the state and faded into darkness. She didn’t say much during the trip, but her mind was spinning, unable to process what she had done.
Once, when she had been a little girl, barely older than Annette was now, her mother had taken her and Natale to visit their aunt in Chicago for a week. It had been a nice visit. They had embarked on the train with a great deal of ceremony, and Za Teresa had spoiled the pair rotten, loading them up with peach-shaped marzipan and pizzelle until they were both sick. She hadn’t left Cleveland for any extended period of time since. Oh, sure, she’d talked and dreamt about it. Nonna often wistfully mentioned taking a trip back to her girlhood home one more time now that the war was over and taking Abby along to look after her, and then, if her opera career took off as she had once hoped, she would be visiting all the great cities. In her scrapbook, clippings of Palais Garnier, La Scala, and The Met were decorated with carefully drawn hearts and hopeful stars and the scrawled word: someday. Still, she had never imagined that when she departed the Coventry neighborhood again, it would be in a burlesque dancer’s trailer.

Buy the book: Interlude Press / Amazon / B&N / Smashwords / ARe
Apple iBookstoreKoboBook Depository / Indiebound

1. Let’s start out by getting to know you. Tell us 4 things about yourself that are not in your bio.
1. When I was 11, I memorized the native birds of Ohio for a couple of extra credit points and have been utterly fascinated by birding ever since.
2. I have more social anxiety about the internet and social media than I do in real life, and I am incredibly anxious about real life. It’s almost a stage fright thing.
3. I used eat raw onions like apples. I don’t anymore, but I’m still awfully fond of onions.
4. I love to cook, but I’m really bad at breakfast food. The only thing I can make is fried eggs.

2. If you could go anywhere, all expenses paid, where would you go?
The world (and universe, if I can go there) is full of so many wonderful places that I would love to visit and things I would like to see. Depending on the limitations of this all expenses paid trip, I would like to tour the world, or travel to Mars, but if we’re talking realistic, I’d really like to go to Sicily. It’s where my mother’s family hails from and we still keep in touch with a number of cousins. I’d love to met them in person.

3. List three books you have recently read and would recommend
It all depends on what you’re in the mood for because I read a wide variety of genres, but the three of the more recent books I’ve finished, loved, and would recommend are:
1. Days of Abandonment by Elena Ferrante. It’s intense and not for someone looking for a light read to be sure, but the prose is astoundingly gorgeous.
2. Life After Life by Kate Atkinson. This book changed the way that I look at historical fiction and the progression of time in general.
3. Definitely, Maybe, Yours by Lissa Reed. Lighter than the other two, to be sure, but it still affected me emotionally. I really appreciated the way Lissa wrote an emotionally damaged character in a delicate but true way.

4. What do you always order in a favorite restaurant?
There’s a local restaurant that makes a sundae, which is chocolate chip cookie dough, rolled up in a tortilla, then deep fried, and topped with vanilla ice cream, chocolate sauce, and caramel. It’s basically heaven.

5. What do you hope to accomplish in the next 12 months?
I have a lot of goals for the next year. I would like to write another book (or two) and get one of those books in the publishing pipeline. I would like to finish the several in progress quilts I’ve been working on and actually start making some of these clothes that I’ve been drawing. On a less “work” note, I would like accomplish being at peace with my life and relaxing around people more so that I can make more friends and be a better friend myself.

6. What do you like to read?
Everything. Is that cliche? I love fiction and nonfiction. Crime and romance. Fantasy and the classics. Everything. I read whatever interests me at the time and more often than not I am reading four or five books at a time: at least one fiction and one nonfiction at all times.

7. What do you look when choosing a book to read?
This is going to sound quite subjective, but what I’m looking for is a spark. Something about the book has to spark my interest, which is admittedly fairly easy for a book to do. I love history, so I’ll often gravitate toward something with a historical element, and most of my shelf does end up being historical fiction or nonfiction, but I read a lot of other things as well. If the story sounds compelling or it’s a subject I don’t know much about, I’ll give it a shot.

8. What do you need someone to invent right away?
Teleportation. I want to travel, but the actual process of getting from place to place is very stressful for me. I don’t like airplanes. I especially don’t like airports. I don’t like ferry boats. I’ve never been on a cruise ship, but I imagine I wouldn’t like that much either. I like the destinations. I’m just not a big fan of the process. So if there’s viable teleportation tech that needs funding out there? I’m in!

9. What does the word "romantic" mean to you?
Have you read Jane Austen’s Persuasion? The letter from Captain Wentworth is, as far as I’m concerned, the most romantic thing that I have ever read. I would certainly swoon if someone wrote me words like that. And yet, romance isn’t only the world’s most perfect letter. It’s also, someone bringing Thai food over when you say, “I’ve had a rough day,” going on a spontaneous riverside picnic, dancing in the kitchen after doing the dishes, sharing responsibilities. Romance, to me, will always have some hint of beautiful words, I’m a writer after all, but I think more so that it’s about sharing a life together.

10. Can you share something about your works in progress?
There’s too many of them? That’s a definite fact. I’m working on three projects right now, hoping that one will distinguish itself as The One to dedicate all my time and energy to, but that has yet to happen. Some hints though are: in one, big band music plays a huge role in the plot; in the second, a failed academic attempts to fool the world; and in the third, we’ll visit Cleveland once again.

Meet the author:
Amy Stilgenbauer is a writer and aspiring archivist currently based in southeast Michigan. She is the author of the novelette series, Season of the Witch, as well as the Young Adult novel, The Legend of League Park. Her short story, The Fire-Eater’s Daughter, was included in Summer Love, an LGBTQ Young Adult collection published by Duet, an imprint of Interlude Press. When she isn’t writing, Amy enjoys all things bergamot and tries to keep her cats away from her knitting.

Where to find the author:  Website / Tumblr / Facebook / Twitter

Tour Dates & Stops:
25-Aug: The Novel Approach, Unquietly Me, Velvet Panic, Bayou Book Junkie
26-Aug: Oh My Shelves, Book Lovers 4Ever, Book Reviews and More by Kathy, A.M. Leibowitz
29-Aug: Scattered Thoughts & Rogue Words, Dawn’s Reading Nook, Love Bytes
30-Aug: Butterfly-O-Meter, Kirsty Loves Books, MM Good Book Reviews
31-Aug: My Fiction Nook, BFD Book Blog
1-Sep: Prism Book Alliance, Open Skye Book Reviews, Happily Ever Chapter
2-Sep: Foxylutely Book Reviews, Bonkers About Books
5-Sep: Divine Magazine, Havan Fellows
6-Sep: Alpha Book Club, Molly Lolly
7-Sep: Wicked Faerie's Tales and Reviews, Charley Descoteaux


  1. Thank you so much for hosting this stop on the tour! I am happy to answer any questions that any of your readers may have.