Monday, August 5, 2013

Virtual Book Tour & Giveaway for Getting Back to Normal by Marilyn Levinson

Welcome to my stop on Marilyn Levinson’s Virtual Book Tour for Getting Back to Normal.  Please leave a comment or question for Marilyn to let her know you stopped by. Marilyn will be giving away one (1) ebook copy of Getting Back to Normal to a random commenter on this post.  Please be sure to leave your email address with your comment or question.  My review will post later this afternoon. 

The Ghosts in My Novels by Marilyn Levinson

Though I’ve never met a ghost, I’ve read enough about ghost sightings and hauntings to believe they exist. Experts in the field say some spirits remain earthbound because they’ve experienced a brutal or sudden death and don’t realize they’re dead. Others remain here because they have unfinished business or issues they need to resolve before passing on. Ghosts, whether you believe in them or not, have a permanent place in our literary lore. We find their unnerving if limited manifestations thrilling. Enticing. Among my favorite literary spirits are George and Marion Kirby in TOPPER and the sea captain in THE GHOST AND MRS. MUIR.

Ghosts appear in my mystery, GIVING UP THE GHOST and my YA, GETTING BACK TO NORMAL as fully-developed characters. In both cases, they have remained on the Earthly plane to settle accounts. Cameron Leeds, the ghost in GIVING UP THE GHOST, is a charismatic scoundrel. A good-looking man with a generous heart, except when he was wheeling and dealing, often at his friends’ expense. Alive, he flirted with every woman who crossed his path. Though his best friend, the town’s police chief, has declared his death an accident, Cam knows he was murdered. Trouble is, he doesn’t know who did it, and he can’t move on until he does. When Gabbie Meyerson rents his family’s cottage—the only place where he can manifest--Cam nags and cajoles until she agrees to investigate. Gabbie starts asking questions, and to her dismay discovers that several of Cam’s so-called friends and neighbors are glad he’s dead and are possible suspects.

Though he was a clever if shady businessman, Cam hasn’t a clue that his thoughtless behavior often enraged people and eventually led to his death. He sent away the only woman he ever loved. In fact, it’s only after he’s dead that he realizes he truly loved her. Lucky Cam receives the golden opportunity very few people get —a second chance to say good-bye.

Twelve-year-old Vannie Taylor has just lost her mother, and her father is a basket case without her. She meets Archie, the ghost in GETTING BACK TO NORMAL, hours after her father has moved her and her brother to live in a dingy cottage on the estate where he manages events. Archie appears, seemingly carefree and funny. Dressed in a tuxedo, he performs cartwheels and handstands. He’s overheard Vannie wondering aloud what to give her brother for dinner, and provides her with a simple recipe. He even tells her where she can get the necessary ingredients.

But Archie is far from carefree, as Vannie and her best friend discover when they research his life. They find out he died chasing the thief who’d stolen his wife’s necklace. Archie tells Vannie he must atone for having left his wife and their one-year-old son before he can go to his rest. She is shocked to learn that Mayda, her parents’ close friend and the last of the family that once owned the estate, is Archie’s granddaughter. Archie asks Vannie to encourage the budding relationship between her father and Mayda--the one thing Vannie doesn’t want to happen. But it may be the only way her life can get back to normal.

Getting Back to Normal
By Marilyn Levinson

Publisher:  Untreed Reads Publishing
Release Date: May 29, 2013

Genre: YA (Grades 6-8)

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Book Description: 

Sixth-grader Vannie Taylor’s mom has just died. Her father’s completely lost without his wife and brings Vannie and her younger brother to live in a dismal cottage on the estate where he manages craft fairs, dinners, and other events.

A ghost named Archie befriends Vannie, and helps her prepare a wonderful supper for her brother. After Vannie discovers Archie’s secret, he asks Vannie to help him make amends for something in his past. But helping Archie means accepting a very large change in her own life. Things get back to normal for Vannie, but not in a way she’s ever imagined.

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About Marilyn Levinson

Marilyn Levinson, a former Spanish teacher, writes mysteries, romance, and books for children and young adults.
Her romantic suspense, DANGEROUS RELATIONS, is a love story entwined with an intriguing mystery. GIVING UP THE GHOST is an entertaining ghost mystery. The first of her Twin Lakes Mysteries, A MURDERER AMONG US, was awarded a Best Indie of 2011 by Suspense Magazine. A new edition of A MURDERER AMONG US and its sequel, MURDER IN THE AIR, will be out soon.

A ghost, a mansion, and a feral Maine Coon cat feature in Marilyn’s brand new YA, GETTING BACK TO NORMAL. Three of her popular out-of-print children’s books, AND DON’T BRING JEREMY, NO BOYS ALLOWED, and RUFUS AND MAGIC RUN AMOK are now available as ebooks.
Marilyn is co-founder and past-president of the Long Island chapter of Sisters in Crime. She lives on Long Island.

Tour Schedule
August 5 - Queen of All She Reads Review, Guest Post & Giveaway
August 6 – StoreyBook Reviews Review & Guest Post
August 7 – Mommasez… Review & Guest Post
August 8 – Thoughts in Progress Review, Interview & Giveaway
August 9 – readalot blog Review & Interview
August 12 – A Chick Who Reads Review & Giveaway
August 13 - Brooke Blogs Review
August 14 – FUONLYKNEW Review


  1. Interesting read, Marilyn! I know many children who would want to check this out. :)

    1. Thanks, Jolyse. Getting Back to Normal is one of my favorite books of all those I've written. I feel such empathy for Vannie, and admire how she deals with the many changes in her life after her mother's death.

  2. Great Post! Thank you for being part of this tour!!

  3. Great Post! Thank you for being part of this tour!!

  4. I'm glad you enjoyed the post, Laurie. And thank you.

  5. I love ghost stories and included a few in my manuscript, Marilyn. I hope that agents/editors/publishers like them too. We seem to share favorite ghosts. I love The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. I hope you are writing a next-in-series to Giving Up The Ghost because I loved it. Keep them coming!

    1. Thanks, E.B. I really should write another story about Cam and Gabbie. Cam did say he was leaving this plane once he resolved his "problem." But, scoundrel that he is, he's been known to lie:)

  6. I love ghost stories and I used to watch the Ghost and Mrs. Muir too. Pretty cover and a great post. Thanks.

    sherryfundin69 at netscape dot net

    1. You're welcome, Sherry. Glad you liked the cover and the post.

  7. I have a cousin who gives nightly ghost tours in an old hotel in a touristy town in Arkansas. Sometimes people ask her if their room is haunted and she replies, "Do you think a ghost would stay in just one room?" I asked her if she had ever seen a ghost and she replied that yes, she had--a little girl hiding behind a chair. I have read both of Marilyn's ghost books and enjoyed them immensely.

  8. Thanks, Pat. I'm so glad you enjoyed them.
    I'd love to go on one of your cousin's ghostly tours.

  9. I always get my interest piqued when I see something with ghosts in stories!


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