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Are you an author or a writer? and my TikTok Confession by Jina Bacarr

January 11, 2023 by in category historical fiction, Holocaust, Jina’s Book Chat, Paris novels, Writing tagged as , , , , , ,
@jinabacarrauthor

WIP woes… #booktok #authorlife #writersoftiktok #amwriting #ameditingfiction #womensfiction #booktoker @bookandtonic #writer #authorsoftiktok #heartbreakingstories #amediting edit

♬ original sound – Jina Bacarr Historical Author♥

No, this isn’t a trick question.

It’s the challenge we ladies of the pen all face in our social media, digital, crazy, mad, mad world…

The answer is: BOTH.

The writer is me in total chaos working on an insanely difficult book about rape in France during World War II with a deadline looming. My office is a mess, I’m a mess… the manuscript, thank God, is NOT a mess but it’s not finished yet. Weaving such a trauma against the backdrop of the Nazi Occupation is the most gut-wrenching task I’ve ever faced. It’s taken me a while to get a handle on the story of two sisters and how the rape of one of them affects them both.

That’s the writer me.

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Now for the author me.

That’s the me writing this post because this is my chance every month to reach out to you guys and let you know what’s going on in my world. It’s how we present ourselves to the book world and at times is as just as trying and difficult as the writer me.

Hence, my TikTok confession.

I hope you enjoy my video showing me in my office drowning in research material… oh, Lord.

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And now for some good stuff, if I may.

My WW2 story THE ORPHANS OF BERLIN is now FREE to read in PRIME on Amazon 

THE OPRHANS OF BERLIN

Meet the Landau Sisters barely surviving in Nazi Germany… and Kay Alexander, the amazing debutante from Philadelphia who will stop at nothing to save them from the Nazis in 1939 Berlin…

And of course, there’s a British pilot hero to die for…

US https://amzn.to/3TMKZlf

UK https://amzn.to/3Qjp5mB

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A Walk in the Rain

September 26, 2022 by in category Poet's Day by Neetu Malik tagged as , , , , ,

A Walk in the Rain

Paris, they say, 
is beautiful 
when it rains—
now I know.


The cobblestones 
gleam beneath 
our feet, as you 
and I, our arms 
entwined, 
inhale the scent 
of romance 
washed clean 
of old arguments 
betrayed loyalties. 


Nothing in between 
but occasional 
crisp sparks 
of our own 
lightning, intense, 
tempered only 
by the summer 
zephyr carrying 
whiffs of rosemary 
drenched in the ardor 
of Paris. 

©Neetu Malik

Previously published in The Poetic Bond V by Willowdown Books, U.K, in 2016


Some of Neetu’s Books

THE POETIC BOND VI

Buy now!
THE POETIC BOND VI

THE POETIC BOND V

Buy now!
THE POETIC BOND V
THE OCOTILLO REVIEW SUMMER 2018 VOL 2.2

THE POETIC BOND X

Buy now!
THE POETIC BOND X

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Mothers and Daughters theme for my next Paris WW2 novel… how the dynamic shapes us growing up by Jina Bacarr

July 11, 2022 by in category Jina’s Book Chat, Writing tagged as , , , ,

When I was a little girl about six, I lived with my Irish grandmother when my mom was away doing amazing things… I thought she was a princess doing good deeds because I heard from my grandmum about the ‘people she helped’ and saw her wearing beautiful dresses in the pictures she brought home.

Ah, yes… my grandmum loved to spin stories about how my mom was the spitting image of her grandmother, an English lady of the realm who fell in love with an Irish rogue and ran away from home with him.

My mother was a model.

The people she ‘helped’ were the ladies in the audience.

And the dresses I saw were designs she wore for shows.

And the part about English royalty? My grandmum swore it was true, her eyes sparkling as she mixed up Irish potato pancakes (boxty, my favorites) and I believed it.

Because what little girl doesn’t want to believe her mom is a royal lady?

I still don’t know if the story is true, though my Great-Aunt Marie swore it was… and since she was a pious lady who lived her life as a lay sister among the nuns, who’s going to dispute it?

So what does this have to do with my upcoming Paris WW2 book?

It’s about the dynamics of how we see our mothers and how it shapes us growing up. My mum taught me to be a ‘lady’ and look for the good in everyone and never be selfish if we had extra cake or leftover pot roast and share it with someone who needed it. Since Mom was a great cook, she never lacked for takers.

My mom became the inspiration for the German girl’s ‘Mutti’ in my story. Kindness, understanding… and also the model for the American heiress’s mom… Philadelphia society with an Irish lineage.

Mothers and Daughters… a quilt rich with history and ideas… highs and lows… sorrows and sighs. But in the end, they’re our mothers and God bless them.

Jina —————–

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mom and me

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My next Paris WW2 book will be released in Fall 2022. More info coming!

Till then…

check out my Paris WW2 novels:

Paris 1940

The Lost Girl in Paris

My heroine, Angeline de Cadieux, is a Roma girl in WW2 Paris… she’s strong, fights in the Resistance… makes exquisite perfumes and comes up with an amazing marketing campaign during the war to boost morale in France.

Thank you!

UK https://amzn.to/3j7eU6S

US https://amzn.to/3aD9Jae

CA https://amzn.to/3IbaVRZ

AU https://amzn.to/3xtrF1A

 

 

The Resistance Girl

Juliana discovers her grandmamma was a famous French film star in Occupied Paris & her shocking secret…

US https://amzn.to/2FoKKeS 

UK https://amzn.to/3bU18Qv  

CA https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B08DNDHDG4

AU https://amazon.com.au/dp/B08DNDHDG4

 

 

 

 

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The Secret Babies of Dachau by Jina Bacarr

January 11, 2022 by in category Holocaust, Jina’s Book Chat, Paris, Paris novels, perfume, Reading, Writing tagged as , , , ,

(The video above takes place on a train in 1944 Germany — my heroine, Angeline, is very pregnant and on her way back to Auschwitz with two SS guards…)

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Nothing is more heartbreaking than holding a newborn baby in your arms and it doesn’t cry.

The anguish, holding your breath while you wait for that first sign of life, the tears that fall upon your cheeks as you pray for that lovely, beautiful cry.

Then… a burst from the baby’s lungs and a heart-swelling joy overcomes you when the infant’s wail fills the air like an angels’ choir.

But what if you’re pregnant and imprisoned in a concentration camp in Southern Germany? A place where American soldiers were so devastated by the horror they found when they neared the camp, they wept when they liberated Dachau on April 29, 1945.

They discovered more than thirty railroad cars filled with dead bodies.

What if you were imprisoned there? Would you have lived? The odds were against you if you were a soon-to-be-mother.

It’s well documented the chances for survival for pregnant women and their babies in the camps was practically zero. They were immediately singled out for execution when they arrived.

It pains me to write this, but Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS, was determined to exterminate all Jewish children (he proclaimed his policy in a secret speech in Poland on October 6, 1943).

As many as 1.5 million Jewish children died in the Holocaust.

Thanks to survivors’ stories and seven Jewish mothers from Hungary, we have the miracle of the Dachau babies. How for reasons never made clear, these mothers were allowed to live and brought to a sub-camp of Dachau in the waning days of the war known as Kaufering I.

And how under horrific conditions (no hot water, no instruments for the prisoner/doctor), they delivered seven healthy babies from December 1944 to April 1945 when fate stepped in and dealt them a cruel blow… I shan’t spoil it for you, but I promise you, I followed these events as they happened in ‘The Lost Girl in Paris’.

My heroine, Angéline de Cadieux, was there and very pregnant.

How did this Frenchwoman born Roma find herself in a concentration camp with Hungarian mothers-to-be? It was a challenge to orchestrate the series of events that bring her there… counting the days of her pregnancy in Paris, being honest to the unsanitary, degrading conditions found in the camps, the treatment of Roma by the Third Reich. Few have written about the Roma Holocaust and how anywhere from 220,000 to half a million Romani people died at the hands of the Nazis.

I admit it was a tremendous undertaking bringing all this to my story. I spent many sleepless nights trying to bring justice to these unbelievable women who not only survived the camps, but had the courage to tell their stories.

I have tried to tell one woman’s story albeit fiction, but everything Angéline de Cadieux experiences in the camps is based on truth.

So, my friends, cry as I did, become angry these events ever happened, but most of all, never forget.

—————- 

THE LOST GIRL IN PARIS is now available across all platforms.

Available in e-book, print and audio

The Lost Girl in Paris universal link: https://books2read.com/u/3LyrdN

It’s the story of woman who survived both Auschwitz and Dachau, but never spoke about it until she meets a young reporter named Emma Keane who touches a nerve in her that now is the time to speak about those times. Her memories are as vivid to this eighty-year-old as if she were the seventeen-year-old girl who ran away to Paris to become a parfumier after losing her mother to the Nazi war machine.

I wrote THE LOST GIRL IN PARIS to pay tribute to the strong women who survived the Holocaust and willingly shared their stories with us. The horror of Nazi brutality, the loss of family, their dignity… but also about their strength just to ‘survive another day’.

And the strong bonds with their sisters-in-arms they formed with fellow prisoners. How they learned to trust each other and stood up against the enemy to save each other.

We must never forget.

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Here is a second short excerpt from THE LOST GIRL IN PARIS:

 

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 The LOST GIRL IN PARIS is part of the ‘Get Inspired’ promotion in UK, AU, and NZ

New Zealand: https://www.kobo.com/nz/en/ebook/the-lost-girl-in-paris-1

UK: https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/the-lost-girl-in-paris-1

AU: https://www.kobo.com/au/en/ebook/the-lost-girl-in-paris-1

 

 

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Perfume: what you never expected to find in a World War II novel set in Occupied Paris by Jina Bacarr

October 11, 2021 by in category Jina’s Book Chat, Writing tagged as , , , ,

I’ve had a zillion jobs in my career.

US Army rec specialist in Europe, AM/FM radio commercial artist, traveling cosmetic saleslady for a French company, club dancer, soap opera player, writer for kids’ TV…

And perfume model.

So, what does a perfume model do?

The gig started when I got a call from the modeling agency I worked for asking me if I was available to introduce a new perfume. Since I was freelancing for a travel magazine company in Beverly Hills back then, I jumped every time the agency called me with a perfume job.

The pay was good. The hours ranged from four to six hours a day. The location was always a posh department store (remember Bullocks, I Magnin’s?), and occasionally, I’d get to wear wardrobe from the couture department to complement the color scheme and theme of the perfume.

I felt like a film star.

After a session with the perfume rep explaining their marketing campaign, off I went. Sashaying around the store like I was walking on the red carpet. I’d engage customers in small talk and introduce them to the perfume.

I’d spray it on their wrist – or mine if they preferred – and then gave them a sample. It wasn’t easy. I was snubbed by snooty women, hit on by male customers, and constantly asked, ‘Where is the ladies room?’

By the end of my shift – toes squashed in three-inch heels – my feet were killing me.

But I loved it. The customers were enchanted by the quick whiff of a new fragrance and loved being whisked away for a moment of glamour. I’d regale them with my stories about Paris and the Belle Époque department stores I visited along with the history of perfume.

And the different notes of the perfume. Top, heart, base.

I soon discovered you didn’t sell the steak… perfume, that is… but the sizzle. The mystique, the mood. I had to evoke an emotional response in the customer and I did it by storytelling and learning as much as I could about perfume. How it’s manufactured, the ingredients, what that perfume can do for that customer to make her happy, feel sexy. Powerful. Loved. I became an amateur ‘nose’, learning about the different scents and essences and how they configure in varying ratios to make up a lovely new fragrance.

I used that perfume experience to create parfumier Angéline de Cadieux when I wrote ‘The Lost Girl in Paris’.

How a girl from a controversial upbringing becomes a famous perfumer during the war when she comes to Paris in 1940 to escape the Gestapo. Then how she uses perfume to do her part to win the war…

THE LOST GIRL IN PARIS is up for pre-order – and my just-revealed cover is on Amazon!

Release date: November 30, 2021

US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B09B1QDRVW/

UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B09B1QDRVW/

CA https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B09B1QDRVW/

Australia https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B09B1QDRVW/ 

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Photo credits:

Jina Bacarr: Laura Burke Photography

Background: ID 137251284

© Viktoriya Panasenko | Dreamstime.com

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Nearly 500 ratings on Amazon UK!

The Resistance Girl

Juliana discovers her grandmamma was a famous French film star in Occupied Paris & her shocking secret…

UK https://amzn.to/3bU18Qv 

US https://amzn.to/2FoKKeS

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