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I am so excited to be able to be part of the blogger group revealing this gorgeously festive book cover today!!

Description:

Christmas is a time for family and friends, miracles and magic, falling snow and roaring fires, fun, laughter and festive feasts. In Snowflake Cove, it’s also a time for secrets to be revealed…

Evie Starr is hoping for more than a sprinkling of magic this Christmas. The family-run Snowflake Inn is virtually empty and the Starr’s financial future isn’t looking bright. But Evie’s gran, Jessie has a secret that might help.

Enigmatic, Zachary Thorn is every woman’s dream. He’s also ex-SAS, so his secrets are classified. The Christmas Special of his feel-good, TV show is set in Michaelmas Bay – until a phone call means he’s spending Christmas in nearby Snowflake Cove.

Evie’s best friend, Juniper thinks boyfriend Darren has a secret. Evie knows he does. And Evie’s niece, Raven is hiding feelings for Juniper’s brother – who has a secret crush of his own.
But the biggest secret in Snowflake Cove is the identity of Raven’s dad.

With snow falling thick and fast and secrets being revealed one after another, will everyone be snuggling up by the fire on Christmas Eve, or are some secrets best kept hidden…?

 

 

Christmas Secrets In Snowflake Cove Cover Reveal

 

Are you ready?

 

CSiSCfor KINDLE

 

Doesn’t that just say festive loveliness?  This cover makes me want to curl up with a gingerbread latte and get lost in Snowflake Cove!

Publication date is 1st November , so why not head over to Amazon UK  to order a copy today.

 

About the Author:

Having lived and worked in London for several years, Emily returned to her home town of Hastings where she now spends her days writing… and chatting on social media. Emily is a Member of the SoA, a PAN member of the RWA and a Pro Member of ALLi. She’s an Amazon bestseller and a Kindle All Star. Emily loves writing and her stories are sure to bring a smile to your face and a warmth to your heart.

Emily says, “I write about friendship, family and falling in love. I believe in happing endings.” When she isn’t writing, she can be found enjoying the stunning East Sussex coast and countryside, or in a wine bar with friends, discussing life, love and the latest TV shows. Chocolate cake is often eaten. She dislikes housework almost as much as she dislikes anchovies – and will do anything to avoid both.

Social Media Links –
https://www.facebook.com/emilyharvalewriter

https://www.twitter.com/emilyharvale

https://www.instagram.com/emilyharvale

 

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Hello and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Dead Lands, a trilling crime story set in the 1970s.  I am delighted to be able to share a guest post with you about the research behind the book so grab your cuppa and read on…..

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Description:

Dead Lands is a thrilling crime story set in the 1970s. When a woman’s body is found a special team is called in to investigate and prime suspect Alexander Troy is arrested for the murder. Desperate to remain a free man, Troy protests his innocence, but refuses to use his alibi. Trying to protect the woman he loves becomes a dangerous game – questions are asked and suspicions deepen. When the prime suspect completes a daring escape from custody, DI Breck and DS Kearns begin the hunt. Breck wants out of the force while Kearns has her own agenda and seeks revenge. Breck has his suspicions and she wants to keep it from him, and a right-wing march provides an explosive backdrop to their hunt for Troy. Dead Lands is the thrilling debut of award winning short story writer Lloyd Otis, and intelligently covers issues of race, discrimination and violence in a changing 70s landscape. 

You can buy a copy of Dead Lands via:

Urbane Publications (Publisher)
Amazon UK
Wordery
Book Depository

** My thanks to Matthew Smith at Urbane Books  for my copy of this book and to Abby Fairbrother (the immensely awesome Anne Bonny Book Reviews) for inviting me to be part of the blog tour **


Guest Post:

Dead Lands – building the story

A tremendous amount of research had to be conducted for Dead Lands and this was mainly for two reasons. The first reason:  the story is set a few decades ago and the second reason: a real-life event serves as its backdrop. I had to find out what the climate was like back then. I needed to feel it to some extent, to smell it, and to understand what the attitudes were like towards migrants, towards the police, and women. An author has to approach this sort of research carefully, which can be highly rewarding. To learn something new that will affect your story, or that you could insert into it for more realism, is an amazing feeling and I felt grateful to know what that was like.

Language and attitudes definitely change over time and I had to make a decision on how to approach that. For this story, I tried to strike a balance. With Dead Lands being set in the latter part of the 70s, it made sense that the attitudes of the times were reflected as much as possible without being an obstacle to the main story – although I gave myself more flexibility with the language. I spoke to people who were around at the time which was very important, because sometimes there is no substitute for speaking to someone who lived during a particular period. Of course you have to find those people, but when you do and you hear what they have to say, well it’s worth it. It really is.

With that part in place, I had to think about the other layers of the story and how they would interlace with each other as seamlessly as possible. Which character would have their identity pulled apart and questioned, which character would be telling the lies, and who would be hiding the biggest secrets? Setting Dead Lands in the past enabled me to highlight the complexities of proving guilt – DNA procedures as we know them today weren’t in place back then, so you really needed a good detective at the helm. Therefore, in terms of the people leading the charge, I needed strong characters.  I liked the polar opposites of a male and female investigators, and especially in that period of time, so Breck and Kearns fitted the bill perfectly. Having them operate within a fictional unit offered some flexibility with regards to what that unit was allowed to do, and in Breck, we have a bit of a maverick. A different kind of officer operating in a turbulent part of South East London. Amongst the temptations and whispers of corruption, he’ll do his job and he wants to do it the right way. That’s what he signed up for and why he joined the force. But ultimately, as the investigation progresses, he feels something is up, he’ll follow his nose and see it through to the end.

There’s a gritty underbelly to the story and life in the force is not sugar-coated in Dead Lands. Work for Breck provides a temporary escape from his feelings of discontentment and relationships are particularly important in this story. We even see this with Troy. From being a city high-flier to a man on the run, he is forced to turn to a small net of trusted people that may or may not be able to help him.

That is the landscape which I set out to create. There is no internet, no mobile phones, just a man and his limited resources, with an alibi that he can’t use and time running out.


Now I don’t know about you, but that has got me really keen to get reading and find out more!!  Perhaps I may just sneak this one up the reading pile and get lost in the world of Breck.  My review will be posted in November (sometime….)

 

Follow the blog tour:

BANNER

 

SNARE new front cover

** My thanks to Karen Sullivan and Anne Cater for my copy of this wonderful book and for inviting me to be part of the blog tour **

 

Description:

After a messy divorce, attractive young mother Sonia is struggling to provide for herself and keep custody of her son. With her back to the wall, she resorts to smuggling cocaine into Iceland, and finds herself caught up in a ruthless criminal world.

As she desperately looks for a way out of trouble, she must pit her wits against her nemesis, Bragi, a customs officer, whose years of experience frustrate her new and evermore daring strategies.

Things become even more complicated when Sonia embarks on a relationship with a woman, Agla. Once a high-level bank executive, Agla is currently being prosecuted in the aftermath of the Icelandic financial crash. Set in a Reykjavík still covered in the dust of the Eyjafjallajökull volcanic eruption, and with a dark, fast-paced and chilling plot and intriguing characters, Snare is an outstandingly original and sexy Nordic crime thriller, from one of the most exciting new names in crime fiction.

My Thoughts & Review:

When you pick up any book in the Scandi Noir genre you’re instantly looking for something that will blow you away, something that will chill you to your core (more the weather conditions than the plot but if the plot is good enough, it can certainly have that impression on you), but most of all you’re hoping for an exceptionally written book that leaves you with an intense book hangover.  Snare by Lilja Sigurdardóttir is all of the above, and then some!

Readers first meet the main character Sonja as she is smuggling drugs into Iceland at the “request” of the criminal underworld.  Following a heartbreaking and messy divorce, she lost custody of her son, she has sunk to drug smuggling to try and survive.
Sonja’s efforts in bringing the cocaine into the country are under scrutiny of customs officials, and one in particular is sure that she’s up to something.  Bragi is close to retirement and after his wife going into a care home, his job is all he has left and he’s determined to prove his worth.

And if drug smuggling with a cat and mouse chase wasn’t enough for readers, there is a deliciously thrilling thread of financial crime running through the plot that involves another character linked to Sonja.
At the heart of this book is the story line of a desperate mother who will do anything to win her son back, the problem being that she needs to outwit those around her who have a vested interested in her in order to gain her freedom.

Lilja Sigurdardóttir has created a very powerful book, with a plot that will stay with readers long after they’ve finished reading.  It is a book that readers will struggle to put down, and if they do manage to, the book will only call out to them tauntingly to be picked back up.
Sometimes when you read a book you can imagine a scene play out, or you can see the setting because of the language used by the writer, but in the case of this book, you really do feel like the whole thing plays out like a movie in your mind.  There’s just something so fantastic about the writing.

Characterisation in this is perfect, I could not help but feel connected to the different characters and their tales and despite wanting to dislike Sonja for her drug smuggling, I felt that I sympathised with her in a way.  And boy did I feel my heart thundering when she was passing through customs, she may have appeared cool and collected but I was a nervous wreck on her behalf – astounding writing!!

An excellent addition to the Scandi Noir genre, packed with tension, suspense and a crime story that gets under your skin!

I also think that credit and appreciation should go to Quentin Bates for his wonderful translation.

 

You can buy a copy of Snare via:

Orenda eBookstore
Amazon UK
Wordery
Book Depository

 

Follow the blog tour:

snare blog poster 2017

Hello and welcome along to another post to Celebrate Indie Publishing, today I am delighted to share a book from the wonderful Orenda Books, today’s fantastic book featured is In Her Wake by Amanda Jennings.


 

Description:

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A perfect life … until she discovered it wasn’t her own.

A tragic family event reveals devastating news that rips apart Bella’s comfortable existence. Embarking on a personal journey to uncover the truth, she faces a series of traumatic discoveries that take her to the ruggedly beautiful Cornish coast, where hidden truths, past betrayals and a 25-year-old mystery threaten not just her identity, but also her life.

Chilling, complex and profoundly moving, In Her Wake is a gripping psychological thriller that questions the nature of family – and reminds us that sometimes the most shocking crimes are committed closest to home.

 

My Thoughts & Review:

In Her Wake is one of those books that seems to have haunted me since I finished it some weeks ago, so much so that it’s been almost impossible to find the right words to review it.  It’s exquisitely written and so wonderfully plotted with some incredibly emotive moments deftly woven through it.

The reader first encounters Bella as she travels back to the home of her parents in preparation for her mother’s funeral.  It’s fair to say that her emotional state at that point makes her incredibly fragile, but yet, she has startling moments of clarity in her mind that give the reader hope that all is not lost.  Following the tragic events in the once family home, Bella makes a break for freedom, sets out on a journey of self discovery that takes her to the Cornish coast.
One of the things I found most spectacular about this book is that despite being in the middle of one of the most emotionally charged, Bella manages to put one foot infront of the other and live.  In the midst of such grief and tragedy, there is a sense of hope radiating slowly from the pages of In Her Wake and it’s ever so subtle.

Without giving too much away about the plot, I think this such a hauntingly beautiful book, so clever and sharp, yet there is a rawness to the situations that some characters have experienced.  There are points in the plot that I found myself thinking “what would I do in that situation?”, or “how would I cope if faced with that knowledge?”, and genuinely felt that I went on an emotional rollercoaster whilst reading this.
Initially I found that I didn’t understand Bella, or her mother Elaine.  But given that the narration is primarily from the perspective of Bella we only see Elaine through the eyes of a child who lacks the whole picture.  That’s not to say that her opinions are skewed, but once you have read the book and reflect back, you begin to realise more about Elaine than was first apparent.

The descriptive qualities of the writing are superb, I felt St. Ives come alive from the pages, I could smell the sea, I could feel the sand beneath my feet and could see the exquisite details inside the church.  When a book can transport you so easily, you know it’s a good one!

When people tell you that this is a book that left them breathless it’s wise not to ignore them, and I’m just sad that I waited so long to read this one!

 

You can buy a copy of In Her Wake via:

Orenda Books eBookstore (publisher)
Amazon UK
Wordery
Book Depository

 

** My thanks to Orenda Books for taking part in Celebrating Indie Publishing **

My copy of In Her Wake was purchased via Amazon UK


 

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Just in case you missed all the buzz earlier about this lovely festive book cover reveal, allow me to share this with you……

 

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Isolated and unwelcome in the picturesque seaside village of Rawscar, Reverend Cass Fordyce has lost her faith and her home. Christmas is coming, and she isn’t looking forward to it. Then she meets attractive local man Hal – twice divorced and with a reputation as a ladies’ man he’s everything that a celibate vicar like Cass should avoid…especially as Hal is hiding secrets of his own, including his past with the mysterious Anna.

Can Cass ever find her way in Rawscar? What secret does Hal have to hide? And is there ever such a thing as a truly fresh start?

 

**A HEART-WARMING CHRISTMAS TALE OF LOVE, FRIENDSHIP AND STARTING OVER**

You can pre-order a copy via Amazon UK now!

Hello and welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Linda Prather’s latest thriler Innocent Blood.  I am delighted to be able to share a guest post with you today written by Linda about characters that make her cringe, so get comfortable and enjoy!  Oh and don’t forget to check out the other stops on the blog tour for some fantastic reviews!

INNOCENT 6 FINAL

Description:

Loki Redmond swore she’d never return to the reservation, but two missing hunters and the ancient Choctaw myth of Nalusa Falaya take her and her brother, Dadron, on a dangerous trek through the wilderness.

Meanwhile, her partner Jake Savior, heads to Tunica, Mississippi, to investigate the second mass killing by a Choctaw police officer. 

Are the cases connected?

The only thing they know for sure is innocent blood has been shed, and unless they can find the source more are going to die.

 

You can buy a copy of Innocent Blood via:

Amazon UK


Guest Post:

WRITING CHARACTERS THAT MAKE ME CRINGE
Robert from The Forgotten
Working in the criminal justice system in the USA I’ve had the opportunity to see different types of scenarios of crime that made me cringe inside. A huge fan of shows like Criminal Minds I would often find myself looking at the evidence, studying the victims and the perpetrators looking for an explanation. I also do that with my characters. Delving into their dark minds, looking for that one glimmer of something good, or simply some explanation for their crimes.
There were times as Robert’s character developed when I wondered if there was good somewhere deep inside him.Perhaps a redeeming quality that made him worth saving. As time went on, I realized that some minds are damaged beyond our understanding. Things have just become too twisted and warped. Although I occasionally felt sympathy for Robert, I found no redeeming qualities to exploit.
Robert is a handsome young man, with a charming smile, dark eyes, and the heart of a crazed killer. He feels no sympathy for his mother’s victims, nor for his own perverted pleasures. He would most likely be diagnosed as criminally insane. There are moments of lucid thought when you’ll almost feel he’s about to change. Don’t get taken in by his charm. Raised by his insane mother, his crime spree started at the tender age of ten, but his madness started long before that—along with his hatred of dogs and animals.
Some fascinating passages from Robert’s mind:
The Indian had looked at him long and hard, but it wasn’t as though she was looking at him. Instead she was looking through him, seeing inside him. Way down deep to the part of him no one knew and no one saw. I should have killed her and the dog.
Suffering doesn’t always mean dead. The dog had suffered too, but it was still breathing, still snarling and growling. What if the girl lived?
He’d learned early to keep his urges in check by working with the old and feeble. There was something cathartic about watching them slowly waste away, their eyes constantly searching the hallways in hopes of a visit from a relative, or a friendly face. They were the real forgotten. Put out to pasture to rot from the inside out.
Love a twisted killer? Then you’ll thoroughly enjoy Robert.

 


My thanks to Linda for joining me today and sharing that fascinating insight with us!
BLOG BLITZ (5)

The Watcher Cover

** My thanks to Rachel Gilbey  for my copy of this book and for inviting me to be part of the blog tour **

 

Description:

It’s 1949 when Netta’s father Max is released from a Siberian POW camp and returns to his home in occupied Germany. But he is not the man the little girl is expecting – the brave, handsome doctor her mother Erika told her stories of. Erika too struggles to reconcile this withdrawn, volatile figure with the husband she knew and loved before, and, as she strives to break through the wall Max has built around himself, Netta is both frightened and jealous of this interloper in the previously cosy household she shared with her mother and doting grandparents. Now, if family life isn’t tough enough, it is about to get even tougher, when a murder sparks a police investigation, which begins to unearth dark secrets they all hoped had been forgotten.

 

My Thoughts & Review:

The Watcher is the continuation of the story of Max, Erika and Netta Portner from Fifteen Words (my review can be found here).
Often there is a danger with follow up books that they don’t meet the high standard set initially, but here I think it’s fair to say that The Watcher is a wonderfully written book that is packed with strong emotions and exceptional characters.

The physical and psychological scars of the war are deeply imprinted on the souls of  Max and Erika.  Upon his return home Max is not the man he once was, and far from the man that Netta is expecting from the tales told my her mother and grandparents.  But more difficult, is that he is so far from the man that Erika used to know, his traumatic experiences in the Siberian POW camp have reshaped this character beyond recognition.  Today he would probably be diagnosed with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), but not back in 1949.  The murder investigation and the secrets that are unearthed add an extra layer to this well crafted plot.

As before, the author writes with a wonderful descriptive quality that gives the reader fully detailed account by these characters, there is a rawness to the prose that evokes emotion from the reader and almost makes you want to reach out to these characters.  You become invested in their lives and well being.  There is a poignancy in any tale about survivors of WWII, but here there’s something more.  Perhaps because I read Fifteen Words and witnessed the suffering that the characters endured previously I felt more of a connection reading The Watcher, but I really felt this book tugging on the heartstrings and lingering in my head long after I finished reading it.

I would thoroughly recommend reading both Fifteen Words and The Watcher, they are definite must reads for fans of WWII fiction.

You can buy a copy of The Watcher via Amazon UK

 

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