Thursday, July 30, 2020

France Book Tours Continues

Most of the time, writing books is a solitary occupation.
I map out characters and family and friends. I visualize places or visit real ones.
Florence, Italy at sunset
I set actions in motion and then see what happens.
But sometimes, I get to connect to the people who read my novels. I feel a bit shy about it, I suppose, thinking of all those people who climb inside my brain, understand me a little bit better because they read the words I've put on paper.
Other times, I'm just really grateful to know that people enjoy visiting the places I've written about, hating or loving the characters in my novels.
Lisbeth at The Content Reader begins her review by revealing that she has followed my blog for awhile. She knows my back story as I sold my belongings and moved to France
And she wrote a terrific review of Falling For Provence.
Here's a glimpse:
Paulita Kincer is very well at balancing a story that plays out on different levels. We get a good glimpse of life in France, its traditions, and its people, as well as a mystery to solve. The characters are well-drawn, as are the surroundings of Provence and Paris. A well-written account of a short time in the life of Fia Jennings, her sorrows, worries, and happy moments. Touching on international history and European travel it makes for interesting, exciting, and varied reading. -- Lisbeth at the Content Reader
If you want to read the entire review, and have a chance to win a copy of the book, head over to her blog here.
Just a few days left to enter to win copies of my book. For a list of all the places with reviews, go to




Thursday, July 23, 2020

Reviews Galore

My virtual book tour is moving at the speed of the internet.
It's always gratifying to receive positive reviews, to know that my words have connected with a reader.
The latest review notes the scenes in Paris in my novel Falling for Provence. Part of the story does take place there. And it made me a little verklempt remembering fond wanderings in Paris.


Meanwhile, I'm in the South of France now, can't complain, although my husband did say he wished we could do some traveling. Travel is tough during a pandemic. Spain may be closing its borders with France again as the virus revs up in Barcelona.
That's another reason why a virtual book tour is the perfect solution.
Don't worry if you can't travel this summer either. A book is a perfect way to journey with new people to new places. May I recommend:


The latest review is from  VVB32 Reads. Here's an excerpt:
Amongst family interactions and drama at a B&B in Provence, the protagonist affectionately known as Fia encounters some shady shenanigans. She gets drawn into an adventure and mystery beyond the scope of daily maintenance at the B&B which kept my attention to the end.
I hope you'll take a look. You can find my book on Amazon, Barnes&Noble or Kobo.
Or go to France Book Tours and enter a chance to win an ebook. 

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Another Review for Falling for Provence

My virtual book tour continues on FranceBookTours. Click on the link to see the stops for this week.

This time, it's the blog "Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers." Here's the link.
You can register to win a free copy of the book at each stop on the tour, and can even get extra chances if you tweet about it.
I'm not sure if the blogger really liked it. I'd love your feedback on the review. An interpretation, if you will.
Here's an excerpt from the review:
The story takes us along for the ride as Fia gets her feet back under her, trying to create a new life for herself and her family, while coming to grips with everything that happened not so long ago.  The monkey wrench of love being thrown in sends her a bit off course, but sometimes exploring those deviations from our chosen path can have AMAZING outcomes.  This time...umm, well, I can't REALLY tell you because it'll ruin the surprise, but let's just say that she DOES get closer to someone, while also cutting ties with several other someone's, and the ending sort of leaves you scrambling for solid ground. -- "Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers"

Hmmm. Well, any press is good press. I hope she did enjoy it, and I hope you'll give it a shot too.

Here's another review from Amazon and the reviewer had a more definitive opinion on the novel.
"Kincer has written a marvelous escape to Provence in this book that will male you forget “the time of Covid” as you get caught up in the simple life that’s healing her soul. Kincer has developed a type of hybrid heist ala Dan Brown (Robert Langdon cryptographic series)and Ritter Ames (Bodies of Art series) that will sweep you into a world you can only imagine while you stay firmly in your ordinary life." -- Amazon review
Here's a photo from a recent trip to Provence to keep you coming back.
Mont Sainte Victoire on a clear day in Aix en Provence


Monday, July 20, 2020

Blog Tour

My blog tour for Falling for Provence begins today. 

My first review for this book tour filled me with glee as the blogger gave me 4 1/2 stars for Falling for Privence and said I was fast becoming one of her “must read” authors. 

France Book Tours never disappoints. If you love reading fiction and nonfiction set in France, you should take a look
Today the tour begins with a guest post by me about our decision to move to France. 

You can find the whole story, along with a book giveaway at Locks, Hooks and Books.
Hope you enjoy it! 

Friday, July 17, 2020

Social Butterflies

This morning, my husband said, "So we have fish & chips tonight?"
"Correct," I replied.
"Then the night market for dancing?"
"Yes."
"The party tomorrow?"
"Right, and on Sunday we're meeting Marie and her family in Carcassonne, then coming back to play cards with Jack and Jules at the pool house."
"Monday?" He cocked an eyebrow at me.
"Dinner at Claudine and Ray's. Then don't forget the Knud and Stella are cooking a rabbit for Jack to try on Tuesday."
"Please tell me Wednesday is free," he said.
"As far as I know," I replied. I didn't mention bellydancing class which Grace and I would go to. He could stay home and rest.
Looking at the schedule, I was thinking of all the nights we don't have to cook dinner, but he may have been picturing just a hectic life.
Grace and Jack, both introverts, have let me know they are fine with a pared down social schedule. 

When we lived in Columbus, we had friends whose company we enjoyed, but we didn't have people over very often, and we didn't get invited to people's homes very often.
We might meet friends for book group or go out together for dinner.
Life in France is a whirlwind of social activities.
Just love this picture of Kris and Rosie headed to our house about 10:45 after the gathering had broken up. 
I often wonder if it is because people are retired so they have more time to get together. Maybe if we stayed in Ohio, it would have been the same.
Maybe it's the cheap wine. We can all afford to gather and drink wine.
Maybe it's the life style that we moved for, looking for a life with more connections to people.
I'm looking forward to some busy evenings with friends in the coming days, but my mornings are still clear if anyone wants to meet for coffee.

Thursday, July 16, 2020

Newsworthy

This week we had a visit from two ABC news reporters.
Don't worry, we weren't in trouble.
They came to interview Earl about a story he covered years ago when he worked at the Tampa Tribune.
Earl in our kitchen with the videographer reflected in the mirror
Earl started out as a television/radio reporter so he wasn't intimidated by the cameras, but he was worried about remembering a case he covered 30 years ago. The problem with covering trials in Florida, is that there are always so many. The case they wanted to talk about was one that was overshadowed by a man who took a tourist from Ohio and her two teen daughters out on a boat and killed them all, throwing them overboard and weighing them down so their bodies wouldn't be found. Who can blame Earl that he wouldn't remember the case of a man who killed just one teenager? (Of course, I'm being facetious. Losing anyone is atrocious, just pointing out that Florida had its fair share of over-the-top murders)
The ABC reporter and videographer came from Paris by train, rented a car in Perpignan, and drove to Quillan.
That's hard core. It made Earl seem very important.
A light in the living room provided back lighting for Earl. We had to remove things
from the coat rack and threw them on the couch so they'd be out of the shot. 
I graded papers upstairs in my office; Grace and Jack hid out in their bedroom; and Earl entertained the news people in the kitchen and living room.
After a few hours, they finished filming and I wandered downstairs to take a few pictures.
The reporter asked questions off camera. She lives in Paris. Tough job. 
You'll see the interview someday on the news program 2020.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Sunflowers



During lockdown, Earl went to the market one day with express instructions to buy plants for our very small garden. We had heard that the plant seller would be there.
Earl put on his trusty mask and walked to the market.
Our outdoor market continued throughout the confinement, supplying fruits, vegetables, cheese and other necessities of life. We would take turns going because buying food in the outdoors seemed preferable to going into the grocery store. The town also took precautions, requiring people to wait at a distance in line and for the employees to pick up the fruits and vegetables as the customer directed them.
The plant seller had taken pre-orders. We didn't realize that, so took what was hadn't been claimed. Earl came home with six sunflower plants, along with a few daisy-type plants.
A selection of plants
I had purchased gladiola bulbs at the grocery.
Grace took charge of the garden, planting whatever we brought home.
As I looked at the plants, I regretted that we hadn't gotten some alpaca fertilizer from a friend in town. The soil in our garden looks a bit like concrete when it dries. I feared for our plants.
We don't have any mulch, although apparently you can get sawdust or chunks of wood from the local sawmill. 
Plants added, including wisteria along the metal brace
We bought some more plants once the local garden store opened. It had a strict policy of "you touch it you buy it" since we were still in lockdown. But overall, we were pleased with our purchases.
Next we had to protect the young plants from the snails.

I collected snails and deposited them across the road by the railroad tracks.
After awhile, we had very few snails in the garden. 
It wasn't long before the sunflowers in our garden began to take off. They grew and grew, climbing taller than the fence and even taller than Earl. 
Our sunflowers grew extraordinarily tall. You can also see the gladiolus blooming
Sunflowers in a field are usually about my height. You can see that in the picture of me from two summers ago.
The gargantuan size of our sunflowers soon gave way to speculation.
Could there be a body buried somewhere in our garden, was our first suspicion. After all, we only bought the house last August. We had no idea about its history.

The sunflower looms over Earl. 
As some friends joined us for dinner in the garden, Ray shared a story about some delicious grapes that a friend had planted and harvested. Extraordinary sized, juicy, and plentiful, he described the grapes. Then, the owner followed the roots and saw that the grapevine had infiltrated the sewage pipe, causing the vines to grow so bounteously.
We figured that sunflowers don't have roots as strong as grapevines so they probably weren't in our sewage pipe.

My hand next to the sunflower so you can see how thick the stalk is --
yes, like Jack in the Beanstalk. I could possible climb them. 
My friend Derrick has another theory. He figures the sunflowers had to grow taller to catch the sun.


A tree across the street sometimes blocks the sunlight, so he speculates that the sunflowers reached for the sky to get the most sun.
Whatever the reason, it's lovely to have a garden full of sunflowers that tower over everyone. We'll sprinkle seeds and see if they come back next year in full force.
But we won't go digging around for Jimmy Hoffa, just in case. 

Monday, July 06, 2020

Sunday Morning Market

Every Sunday, our routine is to go to Esperaza market.
It closed during the lockdown, or confinement as we called it in France, but now is as crowded as it was in previous summers. 
This picture captures the bohemian spirit of Esperaza. 
Yes, that is a cornucopia hat on his head as he carries his instrument. You might assume a guitar,
but don't, because it could be a Medieval stringed instrument that you don't know. 
The first few weeks after lockdown, the town required masks for anyone attending the market. Now that we're more than a month out of confinement, maybe a quarter of the people wear masks, and the people patrolling the bridges to make sure shoppers wear masks, are gone.
Earl and I wear masks when we're walking around but not when we are sitting at a cafe. We especially wanted to wear our masks when an influx of British people began visiting this area of the country. I would feel the same way if a bunch of Americans came to visit. Coronavirus isn't under control in those two areas of the world.
This man plays the banjo while waiting to sell jams, oils and breads
You can get fresh food like fruits and vegetables, or cooked food, like paella, rotisserie chickens, potatoes, or egg rolls. Some mornings we buy egg rolls and eat them as we walk back to the car, but the French don't really eat food as they walk. It's supposed to be more of a dining experience. It's hard to get the American out of us!

Guess what he is selling? Baskets, so he might as well work on one while he's waiting for customers. 
Some of the vendors don't waste their time simply selling their products, they are busy making more, like this basketmaker. It looks more like a wagon wheel to me, but he's the expert.


The material in this booth is amazing. 
You can always find inexpensive clothes at the market, cotton dresses from "Italy" but some of the stalls in Esperaza have hand-loomed material. The colors are gorgeous.

Here you can buy handmade hats, headbands, necklaces, knickknacks.
We bought Grace some fancy gloves from here before Christmas. 
I love the variety of the Esperaza market. There are locally produced products you aren't going to find anywhere else. There's even a stall filled with musical instruments that I know the great nieces and nephews would love. But I won't do that to their parents.
We walk over a bridge going to and from the market. The town has just added flowers to the bridge.
You can tell from the sparkling river and the blue sky that it was a stellar day in the South of France on Sunday.
Here you can see the various people headed across the bridge to Esparaza
Back home in Grandview, we would have gone to mass at the Newman Center and maybe gone to brunch with friends. Or maybe we would have walked to Grandview Avenue for an expensive brunch, or just a cup of coffee at the Grind. It's a different experience, here in France, but one we're soaking in and holding onto every memory.

Friday, July 03, 2020

Bathed in Color -- Art Projected

Our trip last week took us to Carrières de Lumières in Les Baux de Provence.
We visited two years ago when our sons were in France. Now we had the opportunity to take Grace and Jack. 
Love these blues
The show changes twice a year. When we went before, it was Pop Art along with Picasso and the Spanish Masters.  We preferred the Pop Art because it was so cheery and the music was upbeat.
This time, the exhibit was Gaudi and Dali.
The Gaudi exhibit started first. I loved it.

You can imagine how it feels to stand in these colors. 
Gaudi, of course, is the architect for the famous basilica -- La Sagrada Familia --  in Barcelona
We could visit the basilica while hundreds of miles away in France. 
The colors make the old mine come alive.
Earl had to go back to the car because he had his prescription sunglasses on and wisely figured he might need his regular glasses in the dark. So he missed the beginning of the Gaudi exhibit. I insisted he stay for the next one so this is what it looked like as I filmed it. It begins with Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue." Heavenly.



As the music plays and the art comes to life, people can walk around, moving into different areas of the exhibit. Because of Coronavirus, everyone was required to wear masks and we had our temperatures taken before we walked in. They also limited the number of people inside the building so we were able to avoid others.
The second exhibit was Dali, and I'm intrigued by Dali, but have to admit that he is much stranger.


Most of the music they picked for the Dali exhibit could be traced to the 60s and 70s, like Pink Floyd's "Another Brick in the Wall," which wasn't bad.


The music and pictures are a bit more intense in this one.
After watching the exhibits, we wandered to the open air cafe for drinks. The air outside was clear, the sky an eye-watering blue.
Here's a picture we took earlier that day at the Pont du Gard. 
How lucky were we to see the exhibit and then return to a fabulous day as we drove to Aix en Provence for the night? 

Regrets and a Long November Ahead

Now I wish I’d gone into the sea.  The sea was so still yesterday And Earl was right, I should have taken my water shoes.  And I wonder if, ...