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Thursday, May 9, 2019

Where the Night Never Ends by Annette Oppenlander - Book Tour - Book Review - Giveaway - Enter Daily!

Hello lovelies!  It gives me great pleasure today to host Annette Oppenlander and her new book, “Where the Night Never Ends”!  For other stops on her Goddess Fish Promotions Book Tour, please click on the banner above or any of the images in this post.

Be sure to make it to the end of this post to enter to win a $20 Amazon or Barnes and Noble Gift Card!!  Also, come back daily to interact with Annette and to increase your chances of winning!

Thanks for stopping by!  Wishing you lots of luck in this fabulous giveaway!

Where the Night Never Ends
by Annette Oppenlander


GENRE: Historical Fiction



A chance encounter between a penniless young woman in search of her missing brother and a hobo burdened with a big secret takes both on a journey to Chicago's glamorous yet crime-ridden 1920s, where prostitution, bootlegging, and corruption rule. Separated by fate and reunited by chance, WHERE THE NIGHT NEVER ENDS is an unforgettable tale of courage and perseverance, a tribute to the triumph of hope and love against all odds.

When feisty and headstrong Samantha Bruno loses her mother in a freak accident, she decides to search for her brother, Angelo, who didn't return from a business trip to Chicago seven months earlier. It is the year 1924, the height of prohibition, and the city of Cincinnati is in the midst of a deep recession. Narrowly escaping a band of thugs, Sam meets Paul, a mysterious hobo with a big secret. Together they embark on a harrowing journey to Chicago, where Al Capone is building an empire.

Just when it seems their friendship is blossoming into something more, a raid tears Sam and Paul apart. Sam is sold into a brothel while Paul is arrested. Trapped without money and desperate to escape her new profession, Sam realizes she is on her own. Not only to free herself and search for her brother among Chicago's three million residents, but also to do the impossible--find Paul.

During his hearing, Paul learns that his father, a wealthy Chicago inventor, is on his deathbed. The judge, an old family friend, gives Paul an ultimatum. See your father or go to jail. Reluctantly, Paul returns home, where he finds that his decision to run away seven years earlier was based on a terrible mistake.

Narrated in alternating chapters by Sam and Paul, with rich historical detail, complex characters, and stunning prose, award-winning author Annette Oppenlander once again delivers a touching novel that lets us imagine what it was like to live and love during the roaring 1920s.



December 8, 1924


When I was little, I believed all people lived in families—warm spaces full of laughter and the rich aroma of pasta sauce bubbling on the stove. I thought I’d stay cocooned forever in the knowledge my father, Luca Bruno, would take me every day to the market or the Italian grocer, my hand securely tucked into his as he stopped to chat with shop owners and neighbors.

That was when we lived in a two-room flat overlooking a garden plot, Papa growing tomatoes large as baseballs against the sun-warmed brick walls of our home and Mamma welcoming neighbors to homemade Apfelstreusel on Sunday afternoons.

It was a memory I didn’t allow myself often because the joy I felt was always snuffed out by the realization I’d never experience such happiness again. These days I preferred to keep my dreams locked up as securely as the rich hide gold coins in a bank vault.

It was easier that way.

The rap on the door was quick and hard—demanding.

Alarmed, I looked at my mother, ignoring the dread rearing up inside my belly. We never had visitors, yet I realized who it was before he spoke.

“Open up. I know you’re in there.”

Mamma shook her head, her eyes, normally the light blue of an early spring sky, clouded with fear. I knew it well. Lately, my mother was afraid of one thing or another all the time.

“I’m going to kick in the door and you’ll pay for it,” the voice outside threatened.

I slowly straightened and took a step toward the door. Then another.

“Samantha!” Mamma’s voice trembled and she shook her head. My feet stubbornly continued toward the door.

When had things changed?

I didn’t remember a day, only Mamma’s expression the weeks after my brother, Angelo, didn’t return. Her eyes had filled with something less alive—a darkening of features, a weariness that extended to everything she touched.

It was as if Mamma’s chest was filled with two animals. One was a fierce lion that roared and fought. It protected. The other was a timid, washed-out mouse, yielding and afraid. Insignificant. In the beginning after Papa was lost, the lion had taken care of Angelo and me. Found smaller quarters we could afford. Visited rich folks to ask for washing jobs. Negotiated. Bought food at the grocer.

I loved Mamma, but I hated the mouse.

I sped up and yanked open the door just as the massive bulk of Mr. Talbott rushed forward. Taken by surprise, he half stumbled, half fell into the room, coming to a stop in front of the ironing board Mamma cowered behind. I bit my lips to hide a smirk. Too bad the landlord hadn’t fallen on his face.

“Mrs. Bruno.” Talbott, nostrils flared and cheeks reddened, rose to his impressive height once more. “You know why I’m here. Almost three months behind.” He gave our shabby room a once over before his deep-set eyes came to rest on me. “I need at least half of the ten dollars you owe or you’ve got to move out.” He extended a palm, each of his fingers the size of a small sausage.



This book was such an intriguing, emotional roller-coaster ride!

I felt instantly connected with the characters; their despair, their anguish, their heartbreak, their hope, their aspiration, their passion, and their triumph!

This is the second book I’ve read from the incredible writer, Annette Oppenlander.  A couple years ago, I had the privilege of reading her book, “Surviving the Fatherland,” and I totally loved it, so I was very excited to read her latest work, “Where the Night Never Ends.”

Mrs. Oppenlander’s writing continues to improve and grow with each book!  I know she will be an author I will continue to read over the years!

This book takes place in 1924 and focuses on Sam, a strong-willed, determined, tenacious young lady that just lost everything – her mother died in a freak accident, she has no money, no place to live, and she is now forced out on the streets.  Sam does have a brother, Angelo, who went on a business trip to Chicago seven months earlier and never returned home.  Now that Angelo is Sam’s only remaining family, Sam decides she must go to Chicago to find him.  Especially since he never made it back, she fears something bad might have happened to him.  On her way to Chicago she came across a gang of thugs, but luckily a hobo came to her rescue.

This book focuses on Paul, aka the hobo that rescued Sam.  He had run away from home (Chicago) seven years ago and has been living on the streets since.  Sam told Paul about her plans to travel to Chicago to find her brother and since Sam was already running into all sorts of trouble alone, he decided to accompany her to keep her safe during her travels – even though she was headed to the one place he has tried hard to escape.

While on their trip Sam and Paul are picked up in a raid; Sam is sold to a Brothel and Paul is arrested.  Paul is given the choice to return home as his father is a wealthy inventor on his death bed or to go to jail – he chose the former.  Sam refuses to stay trapped as a prostitute and plans not only to escape, but to track down both her brother and Paul.

This book also focuses on the hardships and the sufferings that went on during the Prohibition Era of the 1920’s.  During this time when Al Capone was building an empire, and Chicago was infested with crime and corruption.  It was overwhelmingly saddening to read the torment and agony that was instilled upon the city.  The author does not hold back any punches and tells you as it was for the abuse and mistreatment of the usually overlooked folks.

Mrs. Oppenlander has a style of writing that thrusts the reader into the story and makes them feel like they too, are walking those cold, dark, Chicago streets alongside the characters.

I really liked the main characters, Sam and Paul.  They were likable, kind, and genuine.  Sam was tough, feisty, daring, and persistent.  She had already lost everything, so she was gusty – she had nothing else to lose.  Paul was mysterious, brave, courageous, compassionate, and considerate.  He was protective of Sam and truly wanted to keep her safe.  I liked these two characters together and even though it may seem odd that they bonded so fast, I think with all the drama, stress, loneliness, and tragedy, they both needed someone to lean on and they found each other, and it just worked.

I really enjoyed following the story and cheering on the characters!!  Let’s face it – these two needed all the support they could get and me cheering for them on my couch in my PJ’s LOL was definitely going to help them LOL!!!  Sam and Paul just kept getting knocked down over and over again – it’s unbelievable the amount of bravery and courage these two had!!  I don’t know if I could keep fighting like that when it seems all odds are against me.  It was truly inspiring!!!

I think the author did a fantastic job on her character development as these characters were so real and personal on many levels.

The author’s writing is strong and eloquently detailed.  She really provided so much detail in her writing that is was easy to picture!  There were a few times I found myself completely caught up in the story!

This is one book that I can truly say I really enjoyed the ending.  No spoiler alerts here!!!  But I definitely needed a couple tissues.

I really liked the in-depth amount of research the author did while constructing this book.  It was clear she was very familiar and well-versed on the culture, customs, and traditions of the Prohibition Era 1920’s America.  This is honestly not a time-period that I am very familiar with.  However, the author provided so much detail and such vivid descriptions it made the scenes easy to picture.

I enjoyed the history lessons that were weaved throughout the book and learning more about the Prohibition Era, the roaring 1920’s, and old Chicago.  Mrs. Oppenlander found a way to include accurate, historical content that was fun, intriguing, and educational.  I really liked that she used real-life characters and events in the book to help set the tone and create an even stronger and more realistic ambience.

There are some predictable scenes.  However, there are still a few unexpected twists and turns that you won’t see coming!

All in all, I really enjoyed reading this book and would absolutely recommend not only this book, but this author as well!  I was truly impressed with the quality of writing, intriguing storyline, and excellent character development!  I will definitely be continuing to follow this author and check out her upcoming books!  I think all historical fiction readers will like this book too!  So, be sure to add it to your TBR List and get to reading - you won't be disappointed!

**Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this book and have voluntarily provided an honest, and unbiased review in accordance with FTC regulations.**

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Annette Oppenlander is an award-winning writer, literary coach and educator. As a bestselling historical novelist, Oppenlander is known for her authentic characters and stories based on true events, coming alive in well-researched settings. Having lived in Germany the first half of her life and the second half in various parts in the U.S., Oppenlander inspires readers by illuminating story questions as relevant today as they were in the past.

Oppenlander’s bestselling true WWII story, Surviving the Fatherland, won multiple awards, including the 2017 U.S. National Indie Excellence Award. Her historical time-travel trilogy, Escape from the Past, takes readers to the German Middle Ages and the Wild West. Uniquely, Oppenlander weaves actual historical figures and events into her plots, giving readers a flavor of true history while enjoying a good story. Oppenlander shares her knowledge through writing workshops at colleges, libraries, festivals and schools. She also offers vivid presentations and author visits. The mother of fraternal twins and a son, she recently returned to her home, Solingen, Germany where she lives with her husband and old mutt, Mocha.










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Annette will be awarding a $20 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via Rafflecopter during the tour.

**This post contains affiliate links and if clicked and a purchase is made, I may receive a small commission to help support this blog.  This does not cost you anything, it just helps pay for all those awesome giveaways on here.**

This contest is sponsored by a third party. Fabulous and Brunette is a registered host of Goddess Fish Promotions.  Prizes are given away by the sponsors and not Fabulous and Brunette. The featured author and Goddess Fish Promotions are solely responsible for the giveaway prize.


  1. Annette ~ Good morning! Welcome back! It is so great to have you here again! Congrats on your new book and good luck on the book tour! I really enjoyed reading and reviewing your book, thanks for providing the copy! :)

  2. Are any of the characters in the book inspired by people you know?

  3. Thank you so much for this great review, Ally, and thank you for hosting me today. I'm very happy you enjoyed the story. All the best, Annette

    PS I'll be checking in once in a while in case any of you have questions.

  4. Hi Bernie,
    Thanks for asking. Unlike 'Surviving the Fatherland,' which is based on the lives of my parents, 'Where the Night Never Ends' is pure fiction. I did, however, weave in some real characters like Al Capone and George Remus, the king of bootlegging. All the best, Annette

  5. How many books have you written so far?

  6. Do you have any ideas for a sequel to the book?