Chasing Petalouthes by Effie Kammenou
It is lovely to be involved in the tour for the third part of this delightful trilogy. Chasing Petalouthes by Effie Kammenou works well as a stand alone novel, but why would you want to deny yourself the full intensity of this wonderful story. The tour is run by Love Book Group.
The Gift Saga concludes with the next generation coming into the forefront of the story during their tumultuous years between adolescence and adulthood.
*Read as a standalone or as part of the trilogy
Evvie has lived through more tragedy than a young girl should ever endure, having lost both her father and a most beloved grandmother at a young age. Her rebellious ways are her only defense to mask the ever-present pain in her heart. Closing herself off emotionally, Evvie vows to never let anyone into her heart. But will her determination to keep everyone out see her lose the only person who could heal her broken soul?
Over-achieving, focused, talented, determined to succeed. Those are the traits Stella envies in her siblings and cousins. Her insecurities and lack of confidence stunts her ability to realize her own worth. When an older, handsome young man claims her as his own, Stella believes she has finally found who she has been looking for—someone to love her enough to mold her into the best version of herself. But has she fallen in love too quickly for a man she barely knows anything about?
Chasing Petalouthes (Chasing Butterflies) is the coming of age story of two flawed, young women who push their way out from the confines of the cocoons they’d built around themselves and discover how to soar.
Chasing Petalouthes can be read as a standalone novel. To understand the full emotional impact of these characters histories and lives read Evanthia’s Gift & Waiting for Aegina.
“Quality! Precision!” Madame Rousseau commanded, pacing about the practice room scrutinizing each student’s technique one by one. “Mademoiselle Evanthia, this is not the United States. More is not better here.”
Evvie stared at the stern woman blankly, her lips tightly pressed together. She’d been singled out more than the others for her mistakes and, as a consequence, the other dancers steered clear of her.
“For now, two perfected pirouettes with a higher leg in passé are sufficient and more impressive than three poorly executed ones. Have I made myself clear?”
“Yes, Madame.” Evvie said, making an effort to sound contrite.
“Class is dismissed.” Madame Rousseau tapped a finger on Evvie’s shoulder. “Not you. I’d like a word.”
As they waited for the other students to file out of the room, Evvie wondered why she’d let her mother talk her into this. The schedule was grueling. Every morning she woke at the crack of dawn, greeted by a full day of warm-ups and classes, with only a short break for lunch. There was time for little else, and by the end of the night when she finally arrived back at her tiny, rented flat, exhausted, she collapsed onto her bed and fell sound asleep.
“You need to adjust your attitude.”
Evvie’s eyes widened. “Excuse me? Have I been disrespectful somehow?”
“By adjust I mean soften. Blend. Stop trying to outdo.” Madame Rousseau arched an immaculate eyebrow. “This isn’t a competition or an audition. It’s a workshop for you to master your craft.” She pursed her ruby-painted lips. “Naturally, that can’t be done in a couple of weeks. Normally, our students train year-round and have been with us from a very young age.”
“What are you trying to say?”
“Evanthia, you’re a talented girl. Quite talented, actually. That is why I bother to correct you so fiercely. But I don’t see a hunger in you that tells me dance is your life—your one and only priority.”
Effie Kammenou is a believer that it is never too late to chase your dreams, follow your heart or change your career. She is proof of that. At one time, long ago, she’d thought that, by her age, she would have had an Oscar in her hand after a successful career as an actor. Instead, she worked in the optical field for 40 years and is the proud mother of two accomplished young women.
Her debut novel, Evanthia’s Gift, is a women’s fiction multigenerational love story and family saga, influenced by her Greek heritage, and the many real life accounts that have been passed down. She continues to pick her father’s brain for stories of his family’s life in Lesvos, Greece, and their journey to America. Her interview with him was published in a nationally circulated magazine.
Evanthia’s Gift: Book One in The Gift Saga was a 2016 award finalist in the Readers Favorite Awards in the Women’s Fiction category. Waiting for Aegina: Book Two in The Gift Saga is Kammenou’s latest release.
Effie Kammenou is a first generation Greek-American who lives on Long Island with her husband and two daughters. When she’s not writing, or posting recipes on her food blog, cheffieskitchen.wordpress.com, you can find her cooking for her family and friends.
As an avid cook and baker, a skill she learned from watching her Athenian mother, she incorporated traditional Greek family recipes throughout the books.
She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theater Arts from Hofstra University.
For updates on promotions and the release of Book Three in The Gift Saga
Follow Effie on Twitter @EffieKammenou