Tag Archives: novels

MURDER AT THE MYSTERY BAY HOTEL by Marcia Spillers#cozymystery #guestpost

Murder

Murder at the Mystery Bay Hotel

by

Marcia Spillers

 

Murder

Genre:  Cozy/Amateur Sleuth Mystery

Series: Mystery Bay Series #1

Release Date:  January 18, 2017

Can Delphie Beauchamp, a Texas-born research librarian fresh from a break-up with her two-timing boyfriend, help best friend and newly elected Chief of Police Em Landry, solve a double homicide in the old Mystery Bay Cemetery? Chief Landry needs Delphie’s help in solving the murders, along with determining why specific graves from the early eighteen-hundreds have been vandalized. Her canine best friend in tow, a twenty-two-pound dachshund named Huckleberry, Delphie heads for the tropical island of Mystery Bay, Florida where she begins a journey that includes a pinch of gold, a touch or romance, and a wallop of ghosts, in a race to solve the mystery, of the Mystery Bay Hotel.

EXCERPT

The smell of the ocean, crisp and briny like a jar of pickles, held just a hint of murder in the air. I picked up my luggage from the small carousel inside the terminal and opened the glass door of the Mystery Bay International Airport. The sultry, mid-October sunshine hit me all at once, along with the sweet fragrance of the red, frangipani trees that bordered the edges of the sidewalk. Amazing how paradise was just a plane ride away.

“God, what a beautiful day.” I dropped my suitcase on the pink-hued coral sidewalk and pulled out my sunglasses. Before I could slip them on, Huckleberry, my twenty-two pound, red Dachshund whined for me to take off his winter sweater. Poor little guy. The outfit worked great for the chilly October weather in central Texas but not the south Florida humidity.

“Sorry, Huck.” I unhooked his leash and pulled off the sweater. Stretching out his long body, Huckleberry trotted over to the nearest hibiscus bush and hunched over.  Seconds later he sighed in relief.

I coughed and fanned the air. Guess he wasn’t that hot in his sweater after all.

BUY LINKS

AMAZON US

AMAZON UK

Five Pieces of Useful Advice for New Writers

Each time I begin a new book, an essay, a blog, I feel like a novice writer still learning the craft.  At first I’m full of self-confidence, new ideas, creativity; certain this will be the project that makes a difference in the world. Then I sit down in front of the computer and stare at the screen, wondering what in the world made me think I could ever be a writer.

After several minutes of self-examination, I shrug it off and force myself to write a few sentences.  Nothing fancy, nothing earth-shattering- just something to get my fingers moving on the keyboard.  And then the magic happens.  I get into the groove and begin to write.  As I write, I grow interested in what I’m writing, and sentence after sentence shows up on the page.

I said this to introduce you to my first piece of writing advice, which is, above all, be interested in what you write.  Maybe it sounds simplistic, but it rings true with every project you begin. And to be interested in what you write, means selecting the correct genre or project.  Let’s face it-you’ll be spending many long hours with your manuscript so you better make sure you enjoy each other’s company.  My first book, “Murder at the Mystery Bay Hotel”, took me three years.  I rewrote the manuscript five times before it was published.  The saving grace was that I enjoy humor, which is evident in the book, and of course, South Florida where the book is set.  The fact that I’m in love with the mystery genre didn’t hurt either. Those three key elements allowed me to read the manuscript over and over until my eyes burned, to edit each word, each line for all those elements that turn an idea into a book.

The second thing and I don’t say this lightly, is to learn the craft of writing.  Go to workshops and conferences, take classes, chat up other writers to see how they go about this business of writing.  Not only will you learn how to write, but you’ll form a network of people for support and encouragement.  As weeks turn into months, this encouragement will be crucial to keep you focused on your project.

The third piece of advice, one that I wish I’d known about before I began writing, is to learn the guidelines of your genre if you’re writing fiction.

Genres have specific guidelines that you might want to become familiar with before you begin your project.  “Murder at the Mystery Bay Hotel” is marketed as a cozy mystery, but it contains elements of romance, paranormal, and suspense, so it crosses genres.  It’s considered to be an “out of the box” type of cozy mystery. My readers either love it completely or don’t like it because it doesn’t follow the traditional lines of what they’re used to reading.  One of the main complaints I received concerned a ghostly Sea Captain who is pivotal to the story line. As a general rule, ghosts don’t normally appear in cozy mysteries. Fortunately, I’ve had many more positive reviews than negative, and if I had to do it again, I’d still write it the same way.  However, for future books, I plan to stay a little closer to standard guidelines.

Something I learned along this journey, just recently, in fact, was to prepare for the unexpected while writing.  I began this post in anticipation, researching a few facts, stretching my fingers as I settled down with the keyboard, prepared to share my thoughts.  Around the second day of this journey, I noticed a slight headache coming on.  I shrugged it off and continued to pound the keyboard.  By that evening, however, the slight headache had morphed into a hand clutching my forehead accompanied by a sore throat and sniffles.  Long story short, after the doctor’s visit, I was now the proud owner of a healthy case of the flu and the writing had to take a back seat while I recovered.

The moral of the story is this.  The best intentions can be sidelined by the unexpected.  If it occurs, take the time you need to deal with whatever is happening, and then begin afresh with your writing.   Writing reflects your state of health, mind, personal life, and other factors, so, try to be at your best when you sit down to write.  And please, no regrets, no beating yourself up because your writing has taken a temporary back seat.  We’re all human – problems come and go. You will write again. Just be sure to stock up on the tissue of your choice in case you get the flu.

My final piece of writing advice is something I’m still working on myself, which is, learn from your mistakes, stay balanced, and move on when the book is finished.

 After my first book, “Murder at the Mystery Bay Hotel” was published, I rejoiced in all the good reviews, and sort of squirmed at a couple of not so good reviews.  I pondered what I could have done differently, and should I have done anything differently.  What I came to realize, is that no matter what mistakes I’d made, the book was completed and I’d accomplished a lifelong dream.  I was now a published author and no one could take that from me.   It was time to celebrate, to give the book a chance to find a life on its own, and began the second in the series.  In other words, plan carefully, keep the highs and lows you’ll experience throughout this journey on an even keel, and turn your focus, your passion, onto your next project.  Life will continue as it always does, and you want to make sure you’re moving with it and not standing at the sidelines.

Happy writing and until next time!

 

ABOUT MARCIA SPILLERS

 

Murder

Marcia Spillers has been a Librarian/Archivist for more than twenty years.  Currently a school librarian, she lives in Austin, Texas with her two chows, Bella and Susie Bear.  Marcia spent seventeen years in south Florida perfecting her writing skills, along with completing the Writer’s Program at UCLA.

Blog:  http://www.marciaspillers.com/blog/

Website:  www.Marcia Spillers.com

@mysterywriter2

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/marcia.spillers.7

THE COLD ROOM ~ a DI Eleanor Raven novel by Karen Long #interview

cold room

The Cold Room

by

Karen Long

cold roomPublication Date: 8th May 2017

Series: Eleanor Raven – Book 3

Genre: Crime / Thriller

The brand new thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat from the author of The Safe Word and The Vault.

Winter is settling on Toronto and a series of seemingly unconnected murders are weighing heavily on DI Eleanor Raven. When an army veteran holds his family hostage, leaving chaos and an unidentifiable skeletal human hand in his wake, Raven is left tangled in a web of leads, lies, and secrets, with each thread leading her closer to the all too terrifying truth.

But with time running out, Raven needs to re-connect with her past life – the one she thought she’d finally escaped from – if she’s to find out who the killer is before they strike again . . .

Buy Links

AMAZON UK

AMAZON.COM

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

I’m thrilled to have Karen Long here at Celtic Connexions to answer a few questions. Without any further ado…

When did you first know you wanted to be an author?

I have always loved creative writing. Conversations are ethereal endeavours, which change with time and recollection. Putting words onto a page and making them available to people you have never met, is a deeply personal and thrilling concept. I’ve always wanted to write and ultimately to be read, probably since primary school.

Of all the cities in the world, what was it about Toronto that made you want to set your novels there?

Toronto is a fabulous city. It is exotic, exciting, a little dark and dangerous in places but has a recognisable British vibe to it. It felt very liberating to set the novel there and I have visited all of the places mentioned. One of the reasons to take a break from writing the series is that I’ve run out of geographical experience.

Where do the ideas for your books come from? Do you use actual events then massage them into your own fictional work?

I was staying in Toronto when I read an article in a local paper about a ‘Red Letter’ sexy kidnapping that went wrong when local residents, fearing a woman was being abducted, called the police. It was such a gem of an idea, I used it as the basis of the first book. Every experience you have, from a snatched conversation, a trip to a museum or listening to the radio,  provides material. The fun is raking through the mundane and seemingly irrelevant, to find the idea that will launch your story.

Is your Eleanor Raven character based on anyone in particular or a mish-mash of a number of people?

Eleanor can only exist because I can share, or at least imagine her thoughts and reactions. Every character I write, even the psychopaths, are believable to my way of thinking. I don’t share their life experiences (that’s what the internet is for) but I absolutely understand how they reach their conclusions. Therefore, I suppose they are all manifestations of my personality. However, none look like me so I take physical attributes from people I meet, or actors I like.

Anything else you’d like to share?

It’s been an absolute pleasure answering these questions.

Thank you so much for taking time out during your busy blog tour to stop by and answer these questions.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

ABOUT KAREN LONG

cold room

Karen Long was born and raised in the English midlands, educated at Bangor University and taught English and Drama for fifteen years. During her teaching years she studied biology and neurology with the Open University and this interest in medicine, forensics and forensic psychology is reflected in her writing. She is an enthusiastic traveller and has spent time in Toronto, which became the backdrop and inspiration for The Safe Word.

She is a keen amateur naturalist with a deep and abiding love for the crow family. She has dedicated time, love and several fingers in an effort to rehabilitate crows, magpies, rooks and ravens.

Karen is happy to correspond with readers and can be contacted through her website KarenLongWriter.com, where she posts regular blogs.

The Safe Word is Karen’s first novel and was an Amazon bestseller, later joined by the second in the Eleanor Raven series, The Vault.

FACEBOOK

WEBSITE

BLOG

TWITTER

GOODREADS

All author or review enquiries, please contact Karen Long’s Personal Assistant J.B. Johnston – brookbooks@hotmail.co.uk

Did you know that Eleanor Raven is also online?

http://twitter.com/RavenEleanor

https://www.facebook.com/TheEleanorRaven/

GIVEAWAY!

2 lucky readers have the chance of winning a signed paperback copy of the book!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

PLUS…………..

HEAD ON OVER TO GOODREADS FOR ANOTHER CHANCE TO WIN A COPY OF THE BOOK!

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/236099-the-cold-room

THE OTHER SIDE by Kaylor Ward

Kaylor Ward

The Other Side

by

Kaylor Ward

 

Kaylor Ward

Genre: Contemporary Fiction

(Jodi Picoult meets Clare Makintosh)

Release Date:  14th May 2017

Publisher: Parker Press Publishing

Lauren is locked in a cell. She knows she shouldn’t be there.

When Lauren and Rick are left an allotment they embark on a lifestyle change that is supposed to bring their step-family closer together. They embrace the chance for a slice of the good life, fresh air and family times together. Lauren and Rick are in love and happy but sometimes their past issues surface. For Lauren it’s the affair that her first husband had before he left her. For Rick it’s the children he was alienated from and forced to leave behind seven years ago.

One day a new family move into a cottage behind the allotment. That day changes everything. That day they start falling apart.

Praise for The Other Side

‘A  wonderful new voice in cross-genre women’s fiction that will keep you spellbound’ Best-selling author, Catrin Collier

‘A thoroughly enjoyable, bittersweet read’ Helen Carey

EXTRACT

Prologue

The door shut with a cold, hard slam sending harsh metallic echoes around her. Her eyes shot warily from left to right as she raked her fingers through her hair and tried to make sense of her situation. She was in a cell. She had asked them not to lock her in, but they hadn’t paid her any attention. Where there had been a face a few seconds ago, there was now a slammed metal door with peeling grey paint showing the cracking blue paint beneath. She hated confined spaces. They told her there was a buzzer if she needed anything. Needed anything?

Panic welled in her chest, her throat and her brain as the grey walls and the naked single white light closed around her. Breathe…breathe…slow…down… This was not the place for a panic attack. Not here, not today. She was alone. She had to get through this. Focus…focus… Think yourself somewhere else.

She thought of her daughters, their smiles and their joy. She lay on the hard thin plastic mattress on the concrete bed, and pulled a thin blue blanket over her head to block out the light, to block out the room, and to block out now.

BUY LINKS

AMAZON UK

AMAZON US

ABOUT KAYLOR WARD

Kaylor Ward

Kaylor Ward, originally from London, now lives in South Wales. She worked for many years as a management consultant and trainer, writing part-time until her first book was published under the name, Michaela Weaver (Manic Mondays). She has studied creative writing at Masters level, and in addition to her writing she is a qualified Writing Coach. Michaela is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, and a reader for their New Writers’ Scheme. Michaela writes cross genre contemporary fiction with psychological twists often about the darker side of family and domestic life.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kaylorward

Twitter: @kaylorward

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16812960.Kaylor_Ward?from_search=true

Website: www.kaylorward.com

GIVEAWAY

Kaylor Ward

PRIZES

Kindle Fire!

Lolita Wine Glass from Jack’s wine bar

Bottle of vino from Jack’s

Scarf from Puffin Island

JUST FOLLOW THE LINK TO ENTER THE COMP!

http://kaylorward.com/index.php/kaylors-sign-up-contest/

AND, AS IF THAT WASN’T ENOUGH………….There’s a free 6 week novel writing course for everyone run by Kaylor Ward herself! Here’s the link to access it!

   http://kaylorward.com/index.php/free-course-lp/

COVER REVEAL ~ THE COLD ROOM by Karen Long

cover reveal

The Cold Room

by

Karen Long

 

cover reveal

Publication Date: 8th May 2017

Series: Eleanor Raven – Book 3

Genre: Crime / Thriller

The brand new thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat from the author of The Safe Word and The Vault.

Winter is settling on Toronto and a series of seemingly unconnected murders are weighing heavily on DI Eleanor Raven. When an army veteran holds his family hostage, leaving chaos and an unidentifiable skeletal human hand in his wake, Raven is left tangled in a web of leads, lies, and secrets, with each thread leading her closer to the all too terrifying truth.

But with time running out, Raven needs to re-connect with her past life – the one she thought she’d finally escaped from – if she’s to find out who the killer is before they strike again . . .

Buy Links

AMAZON UK

AMAZON.COM

ABOUT KAREN LONG

cover reveal

Karen Long was born and raised in the English midlands, educated at Bangor University and taught English and Drama for fifteen years. During her teaching years she studied biology and neurology with the Open University and this interest in medicine, forensics and forensic psychology is reflected in her writing. She is an enthusiastic traveller and has spent time in Toronto, which became the backdrop and inspiration for The Safe Word.

She is a keen amateur naturalist with a deep and abiding love for the crow family. She has dedicated time, love and several fingers in an effort to rehabilitate crows, magpies, rooks and ravens.

Karen is happy to correspond with readers and can be contacted through her website KarenLongWriter.com, where she posts regular blogs.

The Safe Word is Karen’s first novel and was an Amazon bestseller, later joined by the second in the Eleanor Raven series, The Vault.

FACEBOOK

WEBSITE

BLOG

TWITTER

GOODREADS

All author or review enquiries, please contact Karen Long’s Personal Assistant J.B. Johnston – brookbooks@hotmail.co.uk

Did you know that Eleanor Raven is also online?

https://www.facebook.com/TheEleanorRaven/

 

GIVEAWAY!

2 lucky readers have the chance of winning a signed paperback copy of the book!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

FIND ME AT WILLOUGHBY CLOSE by Kate Hewitt #women’sfiction #giveaway

Willoughby Close

Find Me at Willoughby Close

by

Kate Hewitt

Willoughby Close

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Release Date: 14/03/2017

Series – Willoughby Close #3 (can be read as a standalone)

Welcome to Willoughby Close… a charming cluster of cozy cottages, each with a story to tell and a happy ending to deliver…

Harriet Lang had the perfect life, so she’s left reeling when everything is taken from her in one fell swoop. Suddenly, Harriet learns her beautiful farmhouse in the Cotswolds is double-mortgaged, her husband Richard’s been unceremoniously fired—and he’s become a little too close to his young, sexy assistant.

Harriet moves into Willoughby Close with her three children, trying to hold her head up high. With the help of her neighbor and newfound friend Ellie Matthews, Harriet starts to rebuild her life–but dipping a toe in the dating pool feels strange and meanwhile, her children are struggling in different ways. She wonders if starting over is really possible…

Then Willoughby Close begins to weave its healing magic on both her and her children, and Harriet begins to see a way forward. She even starts to date sexy local vet Tom Roberts–but when Richard reappears in her life, wanting to make amends, Harriet must make the painful decision about how much of the past can be forgiven—and what kind of future she is fighting for.

EXTRACT

“Come on,” Harriet said now, as she climbed resolutely out of the car and gave them all as cheerful a smile as she could. “Let’s check it out.”

The movers had already come; Harriet had marked what furniture to take from their house to Willoughby Close, and it had been a depressingly small amount. The big, bespoke kitchen table wouldn’t fit, and the huge dresser with all the pottery she’d collected over the years wouldn’t either. In fact, at least two-thirds of their furniture was going into storage, which was expensive, but Harriet couldn’t bear to lose all of it along with the house. They’d need it when Richard got his job, and they bought something bigger.

She’d spent hours and hours, weeks and months, selecting all the furniture for the house, with the help of the expensive interior decorator who had more or less held her hand through the entire process. She’d bought tasteful antiques interspersed with fresh modern pieces, carpets, and kilims from various holidays, watercolors and oil paintings of places that were meaningful to them. Sophie had once said, with admiration that bordered on envy, that Harriet’s house could be featured in Country Life.

And so it would again. This was a blip, damn it. Things were going to get better. Richard was going to find a job, he’d said so, and they’d get back their house or buy an even better house, and she’d live there without him, happy and defiant. Or something like that. She couldn’t picture specifics yet, but she couldn’t stand the thought of the rest of her life looking like… this.

The children trooped silently behind her as she fumbled with the keys and then opened the door to number two. The smell of fresh paint and emptiness hit her like a smack in the face. It was the smell of fresh starts, and she didn’t want one.

She stepped inside, reaching for the lights. Although it was only four in the afternoon it was already getting dark, the skies heavy and low with gray clouds. Spring felt a long way off, despite the fact that it was mid-February, and the spattering of snowdrops interspersed with an early crocus or two that she’d seen on the drive in.

“This is it?” Mallory’s voice rang through the empty space, scornful and incredulous. William kicked at the skirting board, scuffing the pristine white paint. Chloe stuck her thumb in her mouth.

“Yes, this is it,” Harriet said, trying to pitch her tone somewhere between firm and bright. “It’s lovely, isn’t it?”

BUY LINKS

AMAZON

KOBO

iBOOKS

GOOGLE BOOKS

ABOUT KATE HEWITT

Willoughby Close

Kate Hewitt is the author of over 65 novels of women’s fiction and romance. Whichever the genre, she loves telling a compelling and emotional story. An American ex-pat and former New Yorker, she now lives in a small market town in Wales with her husband and five children. You can learn more about her books and life at http://www.kate-hewitt.com.

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/KateHewittAuthor

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/katehewitt1

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1269244.Kate_Hewitt

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/katehewitt1/

Blog: http://www.acumbrianlife.blogspot.co.uk

Website: http://www.kate-hewitt.com

GIVEAWAY

1st Prize – £10 Amazon Gift Card

2nd Prize – a print copy of MEET ME AT WILLOUGHBY CLOSE (book 1)

Willoughby CloseGIVEAWAY OPEN INTERNATIONALLY

a Rafflecopter giveaway

THE BLOOD DETECTIVE by Dan Waddell #guestpost #crime #giveaway

blood detective

The Blood Detective
by
Dan Waddell

 

blood detective

Genre: Crime

Release Date: 28/02/2017

Nominated for the CWA New Blood Dagger in the UK and Macavity First Book award in the USA, and winner of the Prix Cezam Littéraire.

As dawn breaks over London, the body of a young man is discovered in a Notting Hill churchyard. The killer has left DCI Grant Foster and his team a grisly, cryptic clue. It’s not until the clue is handed to Nigel Barnes, a specialist in compiling family trees, that the full message becomes spine-chillingly clear. It leads Barnes back more than one hundred years – to the victim of a demented Victorian serial killer. When a second body is discovered Foster needs Barnes’s skills more than ever. The murderer’s clues appear to run along the tangled bloodlines that lie between 1879 and now. And if Barnes is right, the killing spree has only just begun . . .

The Blood Detective is a haunting crime novel of blood-stained family histories and gruesome secrets.

‘Expertly plotted and with great attention to detail, this is the start of a series that has already put down substantial roots of its own’ – Mark Billingham.

‘A fascinating and original investigation into the dark roots of our family trees’ – Val McDermid

‘There’s panache aplenty in this intriguing tale. Sharp plotting, elegant writing, engaging characters, a cracking climax. A series is promised. Bring it on!’ Reginald Hill 

BUY LINKS

AMAZON UK

AMAZON US

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

The plot of The Blood Detective came to me quickly, once I had developed the premise. The main characters had also slotted neatly into place. Nigel, the eager genealogist who escapes into the past because he finds the present too jarring; Grant Foster, the detective who lives in the present because the past is too painful.

Yet I had nowhere to set it. Nearly all the crime novels I love have a sense of place; almost like another character. Think of Rebus’ Edinburgh, Marlowe’s Los Angeles, Philip Kerr’s Nazi Berlin. I knew I wanted London as a backdrop, but which part?

At the time I was living in North Kensington, on the outskirts of Notting Hill, then teeming with tourists expecting to see a floppy-haired Englishman like Hugh Grant around every corner. I knew and had witnessed a far seedier, edgier side to the area; its history was one of abject poverty, slum housing, and racial tension. The chocolate box image projected by the movie contrasted with the reality I knew, but still, I never thought of setting a book there.

That was until inspiration struck in the unlikeliest of places. A few things have happened to me in the back of black London cab, not all pleasant, but solving the final puzzle of a novel was a first.

I was riding back from Shepherd’s Bush through Notting Dale, the grubby, snot-nosed brother to the Hill’s sleek young man. As we approached the area where I lived, the driver pointed out a small street beside the railway arches, filled with a row of identikit 1970s houses.

‘You know what that used to be?’ the cabbie asked

Any Londoner knows that getting in a discussion with a black cab driver is unwise, unless you’re clinically insane or a purveyor of far right wing politics. So I feigned disinterest. But as any Londoner will tell you, disinterest does nothing to deter a chatty cabbie. Only outright disdain will do.

‘It was Rillington Place,’ he added.

Now I was interested. Rillington Place – the scene of the Christie murders, for which another man was originally wrongfully hanged. The case was turned into a film, with Richard Attenborough playing the murderer, the mild-mannered murderer next door and a recent TV recreation with Tim Roth as a far more sinister John Christie.

After he dropped me off, I went to back to Rillington Place and walked along it, counting the houses.

I stopped. There was no number ten.

The street name had been changed. It’s layout altered. The houses had been demolished and replaced. Yet they still couldn’t bring themselves to build a number ten. Instead, between numbers nine and 11, there was a narrow gap, filled only by a tree.

I had my setting. A theme, too. That no matter how hard we try, the past cannot be swept away. Places still bear the effect of what has gone on before, even if that imprint exists only in people’s minds.

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

ABOUT DAN WADDELL

blood detective
in London, Britain March 21, 2016
This image is copyright Suzanne Plunkett 2016©.
For photographic enquiries please call Suzanne Plunkett or email suzanne@suzannelunkett.com
This image is copyright Suzanne Plunkett 2016©.
This image has been supplied by Suzanne Plunkett and must be credited Suzanne Plunkett. The author is asserting his full Moral rights in relation to the publication of this image. All rights reserved. Rights for onward transmission of any image or file is not granted or implied. Changing or deleting Copyright information is illegal as specified in the Copyright, Design and Patents Act 1988. If you are in any way unsure of your right to publish this image please contact Suzanne Plunkett on +44(0)7990562378 or email suzanne@suzanneplunkett.com

Dan Waddell is the award-winning author of more than 20 works of fiction and non-fiction, among them the bestselling book which accompanied the BBC TV series Who Do You Think You Are? His first crime novel, the critically-acclaimed The Blood Detective, won the prestigious Prix Cezam Littéraire in France and was nominated for debut awards in the UK and USA. He lives in London with his family.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Dan-Waddell-26697085916/?ref=bookmarks

Twitter: https://twitter.com/danwaddell

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/646165.Dan_Waddell

Website: www.danwaddell.net

<><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>

 GIVEAWAY

An ecopy of the book!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Behind the Lie by Amanda James #psychological #suspense

A Sense of Place

Thanks for having me on your blog Melanie, to talk about my latest book, Behind the Lie. Here is a flavour of what the story is about…

Amanda James

Holly West has turned her life around. She’s found a successful and loving husband in Simon and is expecting twins. She is definitely a woman who has taken back control of her future.

Until she gives birth, only for one twin to survive. Holly can’t let it go.

Holly’s world is in a tailspin and suddenly she can’t trust herself or anyone else. No one believes her, not her husband or her best friend. Because she thinks she knows the truth…her son is still alive and she won’t stop until she finds him.

This story is within the psychological suspense genre, and as well raising lots of questions about what will happen next in the readers’ mind, I have tried to create a strong sense of place. For me as a reader, ‘stepping into’ a story and feeling part of the characters’ lives is essential. Therefore as a writer, I don’t feel that I can see where I am going without having a firm sense of place. I am a visual writer, and one of my ambitions is to see my work on the TV, or even the cinema screen. Think big I say!  I have taken two extracts from Behind the Lie to illustrate.

I chose this extract to try and get across the feeling I have when I’m pottering about on the beach and sticking a toe in the surf! I want the reader to ‘see’ the scene in the story and the characters living inside it. See what they see, and empathise with their feelings. I think writing in the first person also helps to place the reader in the head of the characters. I hoped to get across the contrast between Cornwall and London too, within my main character Holly’s mind.

Paddling in the Atlantic in late March is not something I would go in for normally, but Demi’s enthusiasm wouldn’t let me sit on the dunes huddled in my duffle coat. A duffle coat and a blanket to be exact, because my coat will no longer fasten over my bump. So here I am, ankle deep in the surf and actually loving it, the biting cold has subsided and it feels almost warm.

            ‘So refreshing isn’t it?’ Demi asks rolling up the hem of her jeans which are already damp.

            ‘Actually yes it is. Makes you feel alive and connected to nature,’ I say looking at a fishing boat, a red splash on the horizon.

Talk of the city brings a disgruntled image of my husband’s face to mind, soft grey eyes steely with contempt. He wasn’t best pleased at all the other night when I told him I wanted to stay until tomorrow. I don’t normally go against his wishes, but I am just not ready to go back yet. I think it might be that I am at the nesting stage, and nests are built at home. I never think of London as my home, but I’d never tell Simon that of course. Also I wanted to spend another day with my bestie. It’s been far too long…and I am happier being here with her than I have been in a long time, if I’m honest with myself. I don’t usually allow that – honesty. It’s no good for me.

            ‘You okay?’ Demi asks and splashes a few droplets of sea water at me. I raise a quizzical eyebrow. ‘Well you look, kind of far away.’

            ‘I was back in London so yes, I was.’

I use a similar scene below to show how important Holly’s environment is to her healing. She has been told that her son died three weeks previously, and she’s struggling to come to terms with it.

At the water’s edge I roll up my crop trousers and splash through the waves. I slow my power walk down a few gears though; otherwise I’ll soon be drenched. The chill of the ocean climbs up my claves and cools my heated skin. I turn in a circle, tip my face to the sky and spread my arms. It’s a Tuesday out of season, so there’s not many here on the beach today to see me, and to be honest I couldn’t care less if they do. This place, the ocean makes me feel so free, so peaceful and calm. A deep breath fills my lungs with fresh ozone and seaweed and I close my eyes and let a little bit more pain slip away on the tide.

In my mind’s eye I place an image of a happy little boy playing on the dunes behind me with his sister. He’s wearing a white sunhat and dungarees, his sister is dressed the same, apart from a yellow, hat and they are laughing and digging in the sand. Of course I realise this can never happen, but it helps a little to picture it. Ruan was a part of me, albeit for such a brief time, and he always will be.

And here I use an idyllic scene in order to contrast with the turmoil in Holly’s mind. Hopefully the reader can also ‘look’ out at the landscape while empathising with Holly. They see what she sees, feel what she feels.

A recent summer shower has awakened the verdant green of the landscape – a patchwork of hills and valleys dotted with brown farms and white sheep. Crystal blue skies growing in confidence soon banish the remnants of rainclouds, and once again, beyond the car windscreen, the world looks idyllic. Inside my head things are very different. Inside my head are a tangle of thoughts and feelings, clashing, writhing and tying themselves in knots.

There are of course many other examples but I’m sure you don’t want the whole book, Melanie! I hope your readers will have enjoyed the little visit into my head … and to a speedy virtual look at Cornwall of course. 🙂

Amanda JamesAmanda James has written since she was a child, but never imagined that her words would be published. Then in 2010, after many twists and turns, the dream of becoming a writer came true.

Amanda has written many short stories and has five novels currently published. Her time travelling debut – A Stitch in Time was published in April of 2013 and has met with great success.

Amanda lives in Cornwall and is inspired every day by the beautiful coastline near her home. Three of her novels are set there, Somewhere Beyond the Sea, Summer in Tintagel and Behind the Lie – April 2017 pub – HQUK ( HarperCollins)

Amanda can usually be found playing on the beach with her family, or walking the cliff paths planning her next book.

Author links – Amanda’s blog – http://mandykjameswrites.blogspot.com/

Twitter – @akjames61

Facebook mandy.james.33

Buy Links – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Behind-Lie-Amanda-James-ebook/dp/B06XKCP4L6/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

Summer in Tintagel (Urbane Publications July 2016)
Cross Stitch (Choc Lit December 2014)
Somewhere Beyond the Sea ( Choc Lit April 2014)
Dancing in the Rain (Choc Lit March 2014)
A Stitch in Time (Choc Lit) – http://www.choc-lit.com/
Righteous Exposure (Crooked Cat) – http://www.crookedcatbooks.com/

Amanda James

THE LISBON LABYRINTH by David Ebsworth #political #thriller

lisbon labyrinth

The Lisbon Labyrinth

by

David Ebsworth

 

lisbon labyrinth

Genre: Political thriller

Release Date: 1 May 2017

Publisher: sBooks

Lisbon, 1974. Journalist Jack Telford must hunt down a killer, solve a deadly riddle, renew his acquaintance with an old flame, and survive Portugal’s revolution in this taut thriller with a life-and-death finale, which Jack may survive, but only at great cost.

There is a dossier, upon which the whole of Portugal’s future may hang, and Jack’s quest to find both the killer and the lost documents will drag him into a labyrinth of deception and danger. Will his best-intentioned actions perhaps have the worst of consequences?

Is it too late for Jack’s past to be finally redeemed by love? And, in a world where nobody can be trusted, can Jack even trust himself?

EXTRACT

Jack Telford had been tortured in the past. In Spain, more than thirty-five years earlier. In ’38. It had cost him his left eye and much more besides. His interrogator now, as then, was a lieutenant. On this occasion, the fellow had introduced himself as Tenente Estéves. Slim and slight. A neat civilian suit, naturally, but a lieutenant – a lieutenant firmly in the pay of a secret police force deployed by the regime that had ruled Portugal with an iron fist over the past four decades.

BUY LINKS

AMAZON

KOBO

iTUNES

ABOUT DAVID EBSWORTH

lisbon labyrinth

David Ebsworth is the pen name of writer Dave McCall, a former negotiator for Britain’s Transport & General Workers’ Union. He was born in Liverpool but has lived in Wrexham, North Wales, with his wife Ann since 1981.

Following his retirement, Dave began to write historical fiction in 2009 and has subsequently published five novels: political thrillers dealing with the 1745 Jacobite rebellion, the 1879 Anglo-Zulu War, the battle of Waterloo, warlord rivalry in sixth-century Britain, and the Spanish Civil War. His sixth book, Until the Curtain Falls – published in May 2017 – returns to that same Spanish conflict, following the story of journalist Jack Telford who, as it happens, is also the main protagonist in The Lisbon Labyrinth.

Each of Dave’s novels have been critically acclaimed by the Historical Novel Society and been awarded the coveted B.R.A.G. Medallion for independent authors. His work-in-progress is a series of a further nine novellas, covering the years from 1911 until 1919 and the lives of a Liverpudlian–Welsh family embroiled in the Suffragette movement.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/EbsworthDavid/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/EbsworthDavid

Goodreads Author Page:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5780879.David_Ebsworth?from_search=true

Website: http://www.davidebsworth.com

Author: http://www.davidebsworth.com

Publisher: http://sbooks.co.uk

 

DEATH OF A CUCKOO by Wendy Percival #review

CuckooDeath of a Cuckoo

by

Wendy Percival

Cuckoo

Genre: Cosy Mystery

Series: An Esme Quentin Short Read

Release Date: 6 March 2017

Publisher: sBooks

A letter. A photograph. A devastating truth.

When Gina Vincent receives a letter of condolence from a stranger following her mother’s death, a photograph slipped inside reveals a disturbing truth – everything she’s ever known is based on a lie. Shocked and disorientated, she engages genealogy detective Esme Quentin to help search for answers.

The trail leads to an isolated and abandoned property on the edge of Exmoor, once the home of a strict Victorian institution called The House of Mercy and its enigmatic founder, whose influence seems to linger still in the fabric of the derelict building.

As they dig deeper, Esme realises that the house itself hides a dark and chilling secret, one which must be exposed to unravel the mystery behind Gina’s past.

But someone is intent on keeping the secret hidden. Whatever it takes.

EXTRACT

I ran down the steps and squeezed my way down the slim passage. In the recess was a narrow door but it didn’t match the faded, peeling paint of the remainder of the house’s decoration. It was brighter, as though it had been protected from the elements. As I stepped closer, I realised that’s exactly what had happened. Under my feet were pieces of broken planking. Until very recently, this doorway had been covered by a decorative panel and disguised. So who had uncovered it? It couldn’t have been there at the viewing.

LINKS

Buy link:

http://amzn.to/2nzijPK

Goodreads link:

http://bit.ly/2nieCuW

My Review

I found this book an easy read. I finished in one sitting. I loved Esme. She reminds me of a young Miss Marple, determined to get to the bottom of any mystery no matter how big or how small.

Wendy’s writing is strong and her descriptive narrative of the old Victorian institution, I felt like I was there along with her characters.

I’ll definitely be looking for more books by this author.

ABOUT WENDY PERCIVAL

Cuckoo

Wendy Percival was born in the West Midlands and brought up in the Worcestershire countryside. After training as a primary school teacher she moved to North Devon in 1980 to take up her first teaching post and remained in teaching for 20 years.

An impulse buy of Writing Magazine inspired her to start writing seriously. She won Writing Magazine’s Summer Ghost Story competition in 2002 and had a short story published in The People’s Friend before focusing on full-length fiction.

The time honoured ‘box of old documents in the attic’ stirred her interest in genealogy and became the inspiration for the Esme Quentin mystery novels Blood-Tied and The Indelible Stain. She is currently working on the third in the series, where the clandestine past of the Second World War provides the secret world into which Esme must delve to uncover the truth.

When she’s not writing fiction, Wendy conducts her own family history research, sharing her finds on her blog, www.familyhistorysecrets.blogspot.com.

Wendy lives in a Devon thatched cottage beside a 13th-century church with her husband and a particularly talkative cat.

You can find more on her website www.wendypercival.co.uk.

Facebook: http://bit.ly/2mJj8TC

Twitter: https://twitter.com/wendy_percival

Goodreads Author Page: http://bit.ly/2lhecIA

Blog: http://familyhistorysecrets.blogspot.co.uk

Website: http://www.wendypercival.co.uk

Publisher: http://sbooks.co.uk

 

LOVE BLEEDS BLUE by Emma Calin #PassionPatrol

love bleeds blue

Emma Calin announces today the release of the third novel in her ‘Passion Patrol’ series: ‘LOVE BLEEDS BLUE’.

Firmly in the ‘suspense romance’ genre, this story features another sassy female hero-cop who is as passionate about her job as she is about the love in her life. Each Passion Patrol novel can be read as a stand-alone story, characters from previous stories make cameo appearances across the series.

Book Title:

LOVE BLEEDS BLUE by Emma Calin. A stand-alone fast-moving action adventure with a love story at its core. The third novel in the Passion Patrol Series, featuring hot cops, hot crime and hot romance.

 

love bleeds blue

Blurb:

A London girl cop, a violent political crisis, an instant decision. One moment of courage to catch the destiny of history.

When single mother Sergeant Sophia Castellana stumbles into a terrorist shooting, things are not as they seem. Global forces beyond her grasp sweep her up into an audacious scheme to re-unite a world in chaos. The love of a far younger man, the infatuation of a charismatic woman leader seduce her into a blur of inappropriate love and infinite danger. Power and celebrity beckon, betrayal and violence threaten every move as events unfold in the city of Paris. Her brute courage and loving woman’s heart confront ruthless enemies who offer no second chances. She knows the streets, she knows her power as a lover. Can she, dare she seize the prizes before her? Will a world offer her the choice?

Love Bleeds Blue, another stand-alone novel in the #1 Kindle Bestseller, Passion Patrol suspense romance series . Steamy Emma Calin holds nothing back to bring you her juicy mix of cops crime and passion.

EARLY REVIEWS FOR LOVE BLEEDS BLUE:

“Politics – Philosophy – Terrorism – Romance – Coup D’ Etats – Assassinations – World Reordering – Steamy Hot Sex! An intriguing love story.” Charles Smith, USA.

“Between the criminal plots, assassination attempts, and cases of almost innocent subterfuge, Ms. Calin weaves in passionate sex scenes that threaten to set the pages on fire.” Anneli Purchase, Canada.

“Staggering!! Wonderfully descriptive coupled with an outstanding story line makes this book a must read! The underlying satire provides some essential humor through out the book.” Evonne Hutton, South Africa.

Launch Details:

LOVE BLEEDS BLUE is out, worldwide, on Amazon for Kindle and digital e-readers, on the 3rd April 2017. The print edition will be available by May 2017.

The launch price is 99c/99p and FREE on Amazon Kindle Unlimited but will go up to $2.99/£2.50 after the 17th April.

Universal Book Sales Link on Amazon: http://www.smarturl.it/AmazonLBB

COMPETITION:

For the two weeks following the launch there is a Rafflecopter sweepstake link in the back of the book, to win a brand-new Kindle Fire 7″ Tablet worth $50 (gift card equivalent alternative in countries where product not available).

 

love bleeds blue

FREE BOOK FROM THE PASSION PATROL SERIES: Try one of the Passion Patrol novels for free https://www.instafreebie.com/free/1LZ7p