A Lover of Books

Archive for the month “February, 2015”

Guest Post by Nick Peterson

Pearl's Hereafter

Nick Peterson has just published his debut novel, ‘Pearl’s Hereafter’.  Here is Nick talking about his book.


First of all, I’d like to thank Sonya for hosting me on this wonderful blog. What I’d like to do while I’m here is introduce my new book and share a little bit about myself too. Hopefully, you will like what you read!


About Pearl’s Hereafter

What would you do if you could turn back the clock?

Crippled with regret and misery, Pearl Greenwood thinks that it is far too late for second chances. Sixty long years have passed since she married the wrong man and let her hobbies fall by the wayside. But on her deathbed, however, she is given the opportunity to re-live her life and remedy her old mistakes.

Transported back to her twenty-first birthday party in 1953, Pearl embarks on a trip down memory lane that is fraught with confusion and difficult choices. Despite the gift of hindsight, Pearl still struggles in her pursuit of happiness and freedom, realising that every choice has its repercussions.


About me

Hi there! My name is Nick and I’ve enjoyed writing ever since I was a child. However, I only began producing full-length novels after I graduated from university. Since then, I have written three books in total, with Pearl’s Hereafter being the first! I have been trying to publish my work in the traditional manner, but it seems that the literary agents aren’t interested, so I’m finally taking matters into my own hands! After all, books are meant to be read, aren’t they?

If you wish to accompany Pearl on her crazy journey, then you can do so right here:


And I also do some blogging, so you’re very welcome to drop by and say hello:


‘The Venus Trap’ by Louise Voss

The Venus Trap

Today sees the publication of Louise Voss’s new book, ‘The Venus Trap’.  I was kindly sent a copy to read in return for an honest review.  I have in the past reviewed a couple of novels written by both Louise Voss and Mark Edwards and I loved both of them, so I was looking forward to seeing what this book would be like.

‘The Venus Trap’ is spread out over five days.  In the first chapter the reader is introduced to the main character, Jo.  Having recently gone through a divorce she has finally plucked up the courage to go out dating.  After a few not so good dates Jo sees a face from the past, one she can only vaguely remember from her youth.  Claudio it turns out has always been keen on her and they end up going out together a couple of times.

Jo’s ex-husband has taken their little girl on holiday leaving her with a few days in which to relax and do her own thing.  She goes on a third date with Claudio but decides that he is creepy and that she doesn’t fancy him.  However, it seems giving him the brushoff is a big mistake.  The next afternoon Jo wakes up feeling really ill and discovers that she has been handcuffed to her own bed.  She is a prisoner in her own bedroom with no way to escape.  Claudio, her captor, has no intention of letting Jo go and he gives her one week in which to declare her love for him.  Will Jo be able to do what Claudio wants?

I enjoyed ‘The Venus Trap’ and found it to be a pretty thrilling read.  I thought this story might get a bit dull with mostly just the two active characters in it, but I was pleasantly surprised.  It worked well I think with Jo being forced to go back into her past and what she went through as a teenager.  The poor thing thought she would never have to experience anything so bad again.  How wrong was she!

I couldn’t believe Claudio and the lengths he went to try to get Jo to fall in love with him.  Some of the things he did were just plain evil.  It does go to show though just how fragile the mind is and how certain events can set a person off.

‘The Venus Trap’ looks at the emotional impact divorce can have on you, the dangers of dating and being obsessed.  It is a warning to all about what can happen.

I give this book 4 out of 5.

Book Launch – ‘Last Child’ by Terry Tyler

Last Child

Congratulations to Terry Tyler who has just published her new book, ‘Last Child’.


Book Blurb

LAST CHILD is the sequel to Kings and Queens, Terry Tyler’s modern take on the story of Henry VIII and his six wives.

Harry is gone, his legacy passed on to his children ~

Thirteen year old JASPER, who views the directors of Lanchester Estates as Harry Potter characters, and finds out that teenage love affairs are no fairytale.

ISABELLA, the eldest daughter; lonely and looking for love, she returns from a holiday in Spain with more than just a suntan.

Wild, independent ERIN, the girl of Transport manager Rob Dudley’s dreams, whose priority is not a husband and family but the continuation of her father’s work.

You will also meet the ambitious Jim Dudley, ex-nanny Hannah Cleveley, Rob’s long suffering wife Amy, and Raine Grey, whose nine days as PR manager for Lanchester Estates have a devastating effect on her life.  LAST CHILD takes the drama, passion and intrigue of Kings and Queens into the present day, with echoes from the past ~ and a glimpse or two into the future….


‘Last Child’ is available to buy on Amazon.

UK – http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B00TV1YBSQ?*Version*=1&*entries*=0

US – http://www.amazon.com/Last-Child-Terry-Tyler-ebook/dp/B00TV1YBSQ/ref=sr_1_1_twi_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1424516648&sr=8-1&keywords=Last+Child+Terry+Tyler

‘The First Lie’ by Virginia King – Cover Poll / Competition




Virginia King is the author of ‘The First Lie’.

Book Blurb

What if the truth was hidden where you’d never ever find it?

When Selkie Moon reclaims the name her mother gave her, she unwittingly triggers a series of events so bizarre, she’s forced to delve into the murky depths of the past and face the shocking truth about herself.


Poll and Competition 

‘The First Lie’ is a multi-layered psychological/mystery thriller.  As you can see above two covers have been designed for this book, the second one being the new one.  Virginia King would love to know peoples opinions of the covers.  Which cover image best reflects this genre and would make you click on it to find out more?

Vote in my poll below:-


Virginia King is offering a copy of her book (ebook) to one lucky person.  To enter this competition just leave a comment below about the covers, i.e. the designs, why you prefer the one you do etc.  Virginia will then pick a winner.

This competition is open worldwide and it closes on the 25th February 2015 at 11:59 p.m.


Visit Virginia’s website – http://www.selkiemoon.com

Blog Tour – ‘Heart Search: Betrayal’ by Carlie M A Cullen


Last month I participated in the cover reveal of Carlie M A Cullen’s new book:-


I am now taking part in the blog tour.  Below you can read an excerpt from the book.


Excerpt from Chapter 20

“Then I wondered if all three were interrelated to form one big picture. There’s clearly much more bubbling away with Liam than we’ve considered. As each new thing has happened, we’ve been reactive, but apart from amassing the guards and installing security devices, we haven’t been very pro-active. Everything has been about protecting ourselves and our loved ones, which I’m not saying is wrong, but we’ve never given Liam reason to fear or even respect us. I think the closest we’ve come to that is Iskra’s incredible fight for survival and how many of them she was able to debilitate single-handedly. As a result, Liam will now see Iskra as a serious threat. Now this could be a clever ploy on your part that I’m unaware of. Keeping Liam in the dark about how strong we are collectively could work in our favour as he could think he’ll march in and trample all over us. However, the flaw in this is the traitor, who will have told him everything about our individual powers, our weaknesses and strengths. The one blessing here is Liam doesn’t know everyone’s abilities. We’ll still have a few elements to surprise him with as long as the information about the twins hasn’t leaked out.

“Anyway, going back to my original linking of the three phrases, I got to thinking about the traitor. Those of us who are party to the information, know this person has supplied Liam with plans of the manor on which were marked the positions of the CCTV cameras, the lights, the routes of the security patrols and other useful details. Suddenly, it all came together in my head like a jumble of words which had become unscrambled . . .” I heard a small gasp and glanced to one side. I knew Jakki had tuned in with me and could see where I was heading. She’d just got a picture of what I was about to reveal and her eyes widened in horror. She grabbed my hand nearest to her and held it tightly. “The traitor is going to blind us immediately before the attack!”


If reading the excerpt above has left you wanting more, watch this book trailer:-


To celebrate the release of her new book Carlie is running a giveaway.  As well as signed print copies of the complete series you can also win these:-




Click on the link below to enter:-



‘Heart Search: Betrayal’ is available to buy from Amazon – http://hyperurl.co/HeartSearch-Betrayal

Interview with Bekki Pate

The Willow Tree

Bekki Pate has just had her debut novel, ‘The Willow Tree’ published by Britain’s Next Bestseller.  She kindly took the time to answer some questions for me.


Congratulations on having your debut novel published.  Can you tell me a bit about it please?

The novel is a dark, gory horror story that centres around several protagonists including a man on the hunt for his missing girlfriend, a young girl who loses her memory, and the demon that follows her. It is also about friendship and love, involving the young girl and the people she meets on her journey to finding out who she is. It is full of twists, and ends on a cliffhanger that I have already been told is really frustrating for the readers as now they have to wait for the next book!


What made you want to pen your first novel?

I have always loved writing, and as a child I loved scary stories such as the Goosebumps and Shivers series, which heavily influenced my earlier work when I was around eight! As a lover of books, I just wanted to write something that I would love to read, and I think I have accomplished that.


How long did it take you to write?

The whole trilogy took me around seven years, but this one has taken the longest as I have changed it so many times!


Where did you get your ideas from?

I love Stephen King and Richard Laymon, so I think I have been influenced by their way of storytelling, but I usually just ask myself “what scares me?” and I go with that.


What exactly does Britain’s Next Bestseller do to help those wanting to publish a book?

Once they accept your manuscript onto their database (you first have to submit a few chapters and synopsis, and then the whole book, and if they like that then you get onto their website) you have a few months to try and obtain 250 pre-orders so it became a campaign of pestering my friends and family, co-workers etc, to pre-order the book. This is harder to do than it sounds – not all authors hit their target.


Are you planning to write more novels?

I have written another two novels that follow directly on from this one, and after this I will probably be taking a break for a bit as I am expecting my first child which is really exciting 🙂 But it has made me a bit exhausted and less motivated to write recently.


Who are your favourite authors and did any of them inspire you?  

I love Stephen King, Sarah Waters, Richard Laymon, Elizabeth Kostova – I think all books I read inspire me in some way (unless they were really bad!) so I think I take something from each of them and carry that on to shape my own work. Every writer has their own voice, but they also have the voices of all the other writers whose work they admire.


Where do you do most of your writing?

Usually anywhere I can – at my desk in the spare room, on the sofa, in a cafe etc. – I don’t mind where I am too much as long as it is relatively quiet and I can sit comfortably.


‘The Willow Tree’ is available to buy on Amazon:-


‘The Single Feather’ by Ruth F. Hunt

The Single Feather

Ruth Hunt has just published her first book, ‘The Single Feather’.  When Ruth contacted me regarding doing something on my blog I was really interested.  I love the cover of her book and the way the white feather stands out.

Below are some questions and answers which Ruth sent over to me.


Can you tell me about yourself, your background and how you got into writing?

My name is Ruth F. Hunt and I live in Lancashire.  I was very keen on writing as a child and teenager, and wanted to study Journalism, but at the age of 18 I had an accident and was left with life-changing injuries.

For years after that I didn’t write as time was taken up with work. My disabilities were also getting increasingly difficult to cope with, and I spent a lot of time in and out of hospital.  However, a change in circumstances when I was 30 meant I had long periods at home on my own, and that was when I started to write again.

I launched into writing a book, but halfway through I realised it wasn’t working.  So I took two novel writing courses with http://www.writingclasses.co.uk  and on the first course, the character of Rachel came to me. It was like a complicated jigsaw at first, trying to find pieces that would fit, and taking out those that were not quite the right shape. After many, many drafts I was ready to submit and eventually The Single Feather was ready for publication.

I’m now working on a second novel as well as a collection of linked short stories.


Was it because of your own experiences of disability that you decided to have a disabled protagonist?

I have had the benefit of being both able bodied and disabled, and one of the first things I noticed after the accident,  was just how few disabled people I saw in public life, in  films and on the television.  It’s the same for novels.   Bar books for children, there are very few novels with disabled characters let alone a disabled protagonist.

So, it felt right to have a disabled protagonist, especially now as views among the general public have changed. Where once a disabled person may provoke pity, the national press, has been accusing many disabled as ‘faking it’, being ‘scroungers’ and receiving a lot of money from the state.  Older people often have the same problems as disabled people but have been treated differently. It’s one source of tension I wanted to explore in the novel.


The ‘vehicle’ you use for structuring the novel revolves around an amateur art group.  Why an art group?

Rachel is an outsider, in every sense of the word. At the start of the novel, she escapes from her home, and moves to Carthom, where apart from help from an agency who visit her, she is on her own.  I thought about who else would be around during the day time, which is where the art group come in. They are all misfits, and some lonely and isolated, and some carrying heavy, smothering secrets around, just like Rachel.  In the novel, it’s not just Rachel who is transformed, but individuals within the group, and the group as a whole. Though it must be said that not everyone has a positive transformation!


The cover is very dramatic – with the contrast between the white feather and the dark background. What was the thinking behind it?

The cover as you say shows a pristine white feather, with the background a close up of the detail of the individual strands of the feather.

Rachel is presenting herself as the white feather, hiding the complicated detail behind – such as where she lived prior to Carthom and how she got injured. However, it’s not just Rachel who is pretending to be someone else.

How can you go through life hiding who you really are?


You mention Carthom, which is a fictional village in the North of England, but you also mention real places such as The Dream sculpture in St Helens?  Why did you do it like this?

I wanted Rachel and the group to live somewhere that could be anywhere.  So a reader could imagine the characters being part of their own community.

As for The Dream, this sculpture has personal significance for me and my family, as my dad died at Sutton Manor Colliery, which used to be located where the sculpture is now.

Also, being called ‘The Dream’ was a free gift fiction-wise.  Rachel starts the book talking about her hopes and dreams, and so at the close of the book, they all help each other to reach The Dream sculpture.  Will they each get what they want? That would be telling!


‘The Single Feather is available as an eBook on Amazon – http://goo.gl/plCeyR

Blog Tour – ‘Obsession in Death’ by J.D. Robb


‘Obsession in Death’ is J.D. Robb’s new book.  It is being published by Piatkus on the 12th February 2015 in both hardback and eBook.  For these next two weeks a number of book bloggers are celebrating J.D. Robb’s latest novel which marks twenty years of the bestselling In Death series.  I love crime fiction and was thrilled to be invited to take part in this blog tour.  Until recently I had never come across J.D. Robb’s work so was really happy to be introduced to it.

Based in New York, ‘Obsession in Death’ is set in the future.  It is 27th December 2060 on a crisp winter morning.  A body of a woman is discovered lying stretched out on a bed in her luxury apartment.  On the wall above her the murderer has left a sinister message in bold black ink which is targeted at Lieutenant Eve Dallas.

Eve Dallas is famous for her high-profile cases and her marriage to a billionaire businessman.  Naturally she receives a lot of unwanted attention and has learnt to deal with intense public scrutiny and media gossip.  However, this appears to be different.  Eve has got a secret admirer, someone who is totally obsessed with her and who just can’t stop thinking about her.

With time against her, Eve is forced to play a very delicate and dangerous psychological game.  The killer is desperate for something she can never provide; approval.  Once that becomes clear Eve knows her life and the lives of the people she cares about the most will be at risk.  Just how far will the murderer go to prove how much Eve means to him or her?

I thoroughly enjoyed reading ‘Obsession in Death’ though I did find it hard understanding some of the police lingo and the expressions.  I was amazed by the technology used throughout and had to keep reminding myself that the story is set in the future.

I found ‘Obsession in Death’ to be exciting, thrilling and fast-paced.  It held my attention and was hard to put down.  I kept wondering who was going to be the next victim.  Spread out over five days, it certainly didn’t take Lieutenant Eve Dallas long to solve the crime.  It was just as well really with a lunatic on the loose.  Eve came across as smart, tough, very brave and extremely quick thinking.

There was a good mix of characters in this story.  I really liked Eve’s partner, Detective Peabody.  I also thought Eve’s husband was lovely and very supportive.  He went out of his way to help her.

Having now finished ‘Obsession in Death’ I will definitely be reading more of J.D. Robb’s novels.

I give this book 4 out of 5.


About the Author


J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) published her first novel in 1995, with the In Death series.  Robb has become one of the biggest thriller writers on earth, with each new novel reaching number one on bestseller charts over the world.  With over 450 million copies of her books in print, she is indisputably one of the most celebrated and popular writers in the world.






Interview with Simon Chambers

Devil's Playground

Last year Simon Chambers had his debut book published by Percy Publishing.  He kindly took the time to answer some questions for me.


Can you tell me a little bit about ‘Devil’s Playground’ please?

After serving my full 22 years in the army of which 16 years was with Airborne units and then finishing my army career with several years in the Territorial Army, I was looking around for something along the same lines. I didnt like being a civilian and was still pretty fit for my age. I got the opportunity to work for Eric Prince of Blackwater after being reccomended by some of my American Special Forces friends and was the only British Para on Paul Bremers bodyguard team in Iraq. It was 2004 and we were in some pretty tight situations. It was still early days and Iraq resembled the wild west. Mercinaries/Contractors were doing some very difficult jobs but still getting some pretty bad press and when any of us were killed or wounded we wouldnt appear in the military casualty figures. We were an asset they could forget if they needed to. People though we were highly paid killing machines with no rules of engagement. Nothing could be further from the truth and so I decided to look over my daily ‘Battlefield’ notes and write about it. Try to set the record straight so to speak.

The book explains the problems getting into this line of bussiness and then doing your best to keep the job while trying not to get shot and blown up. It should put a lot of people off even contemplating this line of work. I hope it gives the reader a good idea of the daily life of a bodyguard in the early days in Iraq and describes some of the incidents that would not have made the press.


What inspired you to write this book?

As I said I wanted to try to set the record straight. Some of the things I saw civilian security contractors do when under fire would have got them a medal had they still been serving. Some of my own team and others on the same contract were killed and I myself ended up getting shot and wounded. This made me more determined to write about our operations.


Did it take you long to write?

It took me about 6 months to write but I was then threatened by Blackwater and told I couldnt publish the book even though I had originally asked and got their permission. Until Clifford Marker from Percy Publishing took me on board I had tried for almost 10 years without any luck.


Did you have to do any research for it?

Very little as I had a daily diary of virtually everything that had happened. Most of what happened was etched firmly in my minds eye. It also helped that I took many photos, over 1000, which helped jog my memory on some incidents. I did a little research on events going on around us at the same time and I researched the Karbala incident mentioned at the back of the book as this happened some time after we had handed the CPA over to the US Army.


Have you got any other writing projects on the go?

I’m a staff writer for Airsoft Action Magazine and I’ve books 2 and 3 already written and waiting for Percy Publishing to help me edit them. These are on my further career with other companies working on different Iraqi projects.


Describe a day in your life.

At the moment I’m waiting for the start of another ‘Security project’ once again in a Hostile enviroment. Its what I do and enjoy. Its also the reason I have to use a pen name to maintain Operational security. Im busy writing course programs, editing my books and keeping people informed via the internet and facebook…and drinking lots of coffee.


What do you like to do in your spare time?

I parachute in my spare time and belong to an organisation called Pathfinder Parachute Group Europe. We specialise in jumping with round military static line parachutes for fun and as part of our efforts to keep the veterans in the public eye we represent them every year by jumping into Normandy and Arnhem in WW2 uniform and from a Dakota aircraft. At least 80 percent of the guys are former Paratroopers from all around the world. 27 countries were represented within Pathfinder last count. Jumping with these guys helps keep me sane.



‘Devil’s Playground’ is available from Amazon:-

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