A Lover of Books

Archive for the tag “Accent Press”

Guest Post by Mark Ellis ~ @midaspr @MarkEllis15

It is a real pleasure having Mark Ellis as a guest on my blog today.  His latest book, ‘A Death in Mayfair’, the fourth book in the DCI Frank Merlin series, was published last November in paperback, as an eBook and Audiobook by Accent Press.

Mark has written a post about the research he has undertaken for his books.

 

Researching The World War Two Frank Merlin Detective Series

With this month’s VE Day Anniversary, public interest in World War Two has once again been high. This pleases me as the period is fascinating and one in which I spend considerable time as the author of a series of wartime crime thrillers. My hero, Detective Chief Inspector Frank Merlin, is a Scotland Yard policeman investigating serious crime in London. The series follows his adventures through the war sequentially. Four books have been published so far and I am writing the fifth. The first of the series, Princes Gate, is set in January 1940, at the time of the so-called ‘Phoney War’. The second, Stalin’s Gold, is set in September 1940, at the beginning of the Blitz and the Battle of Britain. The action of the third, Merlin At War, takes place in June 1941, just before Hitler’s invasion of Russia. A Death In Mayfair, the recently published fourth Merlin book is set in December 1941, the month in which the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbour.

A considerable amount of research goes into the writing of the Frank Merlin series. I aim to set the Merlin stories against as realistic a historical background as I can. Before starting to write I spend around three months reading everything I can about the book’s particular period setting. When I started out with Princes Gate, I was very reliant on libraries for my research. I spent much time in particular at the Public Records Office in Kew where they had an abundance of helpful books and documents. Since then, as the amount of online information has proliferated, libraries have become less vital, although I still use them. The internet is an amazing source. If I want to find out the weather in London on a specific day in the war, I can find details online. If I want to find out which RAF squadrons were in the air on a particular day in the Battle of Britain, the internet can tell me. And so on.

Apart from the internet and libraries, I have a useful book collection of my own. It includes several excellent histories of life on the Home Front (eg Philip Ziegler, Juliet Gardiner, Angus Calder), great wartime diaries (Harold Nicolson, Chips Channon, Alan Brooke), memoirs and biographies (Churchill, De Gaulle, Eisenhower) and works of period fiction (Graham Greene, Evelyn Waugh, Elizabeth Bowen). I also travel for purposes of research. While the action of the Merlin books takes place mostly in London, other locations occasionally feature. These have included Berlin, Paris, Buenos Aires, Miami, Moscow, Berlin, Vichy, New York and Cairo, a number of which I have been able to visit.

When I write a book I do not work to an advance framework of the plot. After the initial period of research, I set out on the first draft with plot lines which have come to my mind during that process. With the most recent Merlin book, A Death In Mayfair, my research drew me to the British wartime film industry. I learned that there were as many as fifteen film studios in and around London in the early years of the war. This struck me as a large number and further reading provided interesting detail on cinema in the war years and of its importance to the British public. I thus decided to set the story of A Death In Mayfair against a background of movie stars, directors and producers making films in a fictional film studio beside the River Thames. As I began to write, I set various plot lines running and went where they took me. Then, as is my method, when I was about three quarters of the way through the draft, I worked out how the plots were resolved. This can be a rather nerve-wracking process but somehow it seems to work for me.

The new work in progress, the fifth Merlin book, is set in August 1942. The plot revolves around art theft, espionage and racism in the US forces. My preliminary research included books on wartime Lisbon, the art world, and the arrival of American GIs in Britain. As I’m not yet half way through the draft, I have no idea yet about what will happen. Thus I’m as excited by the development of the story as I hope readers are when it hits the bookshops! It will be out next year.

 

Book Blurb

December 1941. Japanese planes swoop down and attack Pearl Harbour. America enters the war and Britain no longer stands alone against Hitler. But conditions on the home front remain bleak, and for Scotland Yard detective Frank Merlin, life is as arduous as ever.  He is diverted from his tenacious campaign against London’s organised criminal gangs by the violent deaths of two young women in the centre of the city. Merlin investigates and encounters fraudulent film moguls, dissipated movie stars, mad Satanists, and brutal gangsters amongst others as he and his team battle to uncover the and search out the truth.

 

‘A Death in Mayfair’ can be purchased from:-

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Merlin-Noir-DCI-Frank-Novel/dp/1786156725/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=a+death+in+mayfair&qid=1589374554&sr=8-1

Waterstones – https://www.waterstones.com/book/a-death-in-mayfair/mark-ellis/9781786156723

 

About Mark Ellis

Mark Ellis is a thriller writer from Swansea and a former barrister. He is the creator of DCI Frank Merlin, an Anglo-Spanish police detective operating in World War 2 London. His books treat the reader to a vivid portrait of London during the war.

Mark grew up under the shadow of his parents’ experience of the Second World War. He has always been fascinated by the fact that while the nation was engaged in a heroic endeavour, crime flourished. His father served in the wartime navy and died a young man. His mother told him stories of watching the heavy bombardment of Swansea from the safe vantage point of a hill in Llanelli, and of attending tea dances in wartime London under the bombs and doodlebugs.

In consequence Mark has always been fascinated by WW2 and in particular the Home Front and the fact that while the nation was engaged in a heroic endeavour, crime flourished. Murder, robbery, theft and rape were rife and the Blitz provided scope for widespread looting.This was an intriguing, harsh and cruel world. This is the world of DCI Frank Merlin.

Mark Ellis’ books regularly appear in the Kindle bestseller charts. He is a member of the Crime Writers Association (CWA). His most recent book, Merlin at War, was on the CWA Historical Dagger Longlist in 2018. A Death in Mayfair will be published in November 2019.

 

Links

Website – https://markellisauthor.com/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/MarkEllis15

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/MarkEllisAuthor

 

Book Launch – ‘Crossing the Line’ by Laura Wilkinson ~ @ScorpioScribble @AccentPress

Big congratulations to Laura Wilkinson whose book, ‘Crossing the Line’ (previously called ‘Public Battles, Private Wars’) is out today in paperback, published by Accent Press.  I just love that cover.

I read ‘Public Battles, Private Wars’ a few years ago and am posting my review again.  First though lets look at what ‘Crossing the Line’ is about.

 

Book Blurb

Miner’s wife Mandy Walker lives a quiet life. She’s hopeless at everything apart from looking after her boys and baking. Life is fine.

But she knows it could be better.

Her husband’s a drinker and best friend Ruth is busy with a teaching career. Mandy dreams of a different life – an impossible, unachievable life. Only Ruth’s husband Dan believes in her and, after serving during the Falklands war, he’s damaged.

But when the men come out on strike, Mandy joins a support group. She finds friends and strength in surprising places. And secrets and enemies where she least expected them.

Mandy must decide which side of the line to stand on and determine her fate.

 

My Review

‘Crossing the Line’ is set in Yorkshire, Fenley Down in the 1980’s, and tells the story of the miners’ strike.

Mandy is 23 years old, married to Rob who works in the mines, and has children.  Mandy feels as if she is stuck in a rut and wants to do more.  However, a life as a housewife and bringing up the children seems inevitable.  Mandy’s childhood friend, Ruth, who left Fenley years ago, returns with her Falkland’s war hero husband, Dan.  But something just doesn’t add up and Ruth isn’t the person she appears to be.

Conflict with the Coal Board turns to war and the men go out on strike.  The community and its whole way of life is badly threatened and Mandy finds herself joining the Fenley Action Group (FAG) which gives her a whole lot of confidence.  As the strike goes on relationships are tested and Mandy discovers just who her true friends are.

This book is just so different from Laura Wilkinson’s debut novel.  I really enjoyed it and I liked her writing style.  I could actually hear the Yorkshire accent.  Whilst this story was about the miners’ strike it also took a good look at the people affected by it and their families, bringing with it a couple of interesting plots.

Mandy was one of my favourite characters.  She was of strong character no matter what life threw at her and a woman to be admired.  The cakes she baked and the descriptions throughout the book are enough to make anyone’s mouth water.

I give this book 5 out of 5.

~~~~~

‘Crossing the Line’ is available to purchase from Amazon UK:-

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Crossing-Line-Laura-Wilkinson/dp/1786157381/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1552505894&sr=1-5&keywords=laura+wilkinson

 

About Laura Wilkinson

Laura Wilkinson is a feminist and lover of ginger hair. A resident of an unfashionable quarter of Brighton, she likes to write stories which entertain and provide food for thought. Her novels are Crossing the Line, The Family Line, Redemption Song and Skin Deep. Her work has been described variously as ‘compelling’, ‘poignant’, and ‘emotional’. Alongside writing, she works as an editor and mentor, and speaks at events nationwide. She has a passion for fashion and anything which glitters. In another life, she’d make a good magpie.

 

Links

Website – http://laura-wilkinson.co.uk/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/ScorpioScribble

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/laurawilkinsonwriter

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7170702.Laura_Wilkinson

My Top 12 Books of 2017

Well, it’s New Year’s Eve already and I really don’t understand where this year has gone.  I have had some ups and downs blogging wise and haven’t read half as much as I wanted to, but I’m pleased to say all is good with me now and I am feeling very positive.

I’ve read some fabulous books this year and it’s now time to choose my Top 12.

 

1.  ‘Deep Down Dead’ by Steph Broadribb

 

‘Deep Down Dead’ was published in paperback in January of this year by the fabulous Orenda Books.  I wasn’t too sure if this book would be for me, but I needn’t have worried as I was soon hooked.  If I remember rightly I think I was slightly late to work because of it, i.e. I couldn’t put it down.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/01/10/deep-down-dead-by-steph-broadribb/

 

2.   ‘Fade to Dead’ by Tara Moore

 

March was an incredibly busy month for my blog as it’s when I did my two week Urbane Event.  ‘Fade to Dead’ was published last year and it is the first book in the Jessica Wideacre series.  I absolutely loved it and I want to read more by this author.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/03/11/book-review-fade-to-dead-by-tara-moore/

 

3.  ‘Six Stories’ by Matt Wesolowski

 

‘Six Stories’ was published in paperback by Orenda Books in March.  I took part in the blog tour for this book and it was so different to anything I have ever read before.  I just loved it.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/03/29/blog-tour-six-stories-by-matt-wesolowski/

 

4.  ‘The Lies Within’ by Jane Isaac

 

I had the pleasure of taking part in the blog tour for ‘The Lies Within’ which was published by Legend Press.  Until then I had never read any of Jane Isaac’s books.  I was totally gripped and I loved it from start to finish.  I am really looking forward to reading more by this fabulous author.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/05/23/blog-tour-the-lies-within-by-jane-isaac/

 

5.  ‘The Wild Air’ by Rebecca Mascull

 

Rebecca Mascull has done it again with this book, published by Hodder & Stoughton.  It was absolutely incredible and I loved everything about it.  I also was lucky enough to meet Rebecca at her book launch for which I won a ticket.  You can read my review and write up on the launch here:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/05/31/the-wild-air-by-rebecca-mascull/

 

6.  ‘Skin Deep’ by Laura Wilkinson

 

Laura Wilkinson is one of my favourite authors.  I have read and reviewed all her novels so far and was delighted to take part in the blog tour for ‘Skin Deep’ which was published by Accent Press.  This lady is so very talented and can turn her hand easily to writing about different subjects.  I could have cried with joy at being mentioned in the acknowledgements and at having my review quoted inside the book too.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/06/26/blog-tour-skin-deep-by-laura-wilkinson/

 

7.  ‘No Accident’ by Robert Crouch

 

I was given the wonderful opportunity to take part in the blog tour for this book.  I thoroughly enjoyed ‘No Accident’ and was delighted to discover yet another new author and to start reading another series.  You can read my review here:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/08/30/blog-tour-no-accident-by-robert-crouch/

 

8.  ‘Lost in the Lake’ by A.J. Waines

 

I was delighted when A.J. Waines invited me to take part in her blog tour.  ‘Lost in the Lake’ is the second book in the Dr Samantha Willerby series.  I hadn’t read the first one but this didn’t spoil things for me.  I totally loved it and I can’t wait to read more by this author.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/09/18/blog-tour-lost-in-the-lake-by-a-j-waines/

 

9.  ‘No Way Back’ by Kelly Florentia

 

I absolutely loved ‘No Way Back’ which was published in September by Urbane Publications.  I could kick myself for not having read Kelly Florentia’s first novel.  Kelly’s writing is incredible and I really can’t wait to read her next book.  You can read my review here:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/11/11/no-way-back-by-kelly-florentia/

 

 

10.  ‘You’re Next’ by Michael Fowler

Until recently I had never read any of Michael Fowler’s books.  But then I was invited to take part in the blog tour for ‘You’re Next’ and I’m so glad I took part.  Published by Caffiene Nights Publishing, this is the second book in the DS Scarlett Macey series and I really enjoyed it.  I will definitely be reading more of this author’s books.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/11/25/blog-tour-youre-next-by-michael-fowler/

 

11.  ‘Hell to Pay’ by Rachel Amphlett

 

I have read this series from the start and loved every single book, but I think ‘Hell to Pay’ has to be my favourite.  It was a real pleasure taking part in the blog tour.  I can’t wait to read more by Rachel Amphlett.  Here is my review:

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/11/17/blog-tour-hell-to-pay-by-rachel-amphlett/

 

12.  ‘Brighter Days Ahead’ by Mary Wood

When Mary Wood was looking for people to take part in her blog tour I was happy to help as I really liked the sound of ‘Brighter Days Ahead’, which was published in November by Pan Books.  It’s been absolutely ages since I have read a saga and I absolutely loved it.  I now want to read this author’s backlist.

https://aloverofbooks.wordpress.com/2017/12/06/blog-tour-brighter-days-ahead-by-mary-wood/

 

I hope you have all enjoyed finding out what my top 12 books of the year are.  I look forward to reading many more great books next year.

 

Blog Tour – ‘Skin Deep’ by Laura Wilkinson

‘Skin Deep’, Laura Wilkinson’s fourth novel, was published on the 15th June 2017 by Accent Press. Having previously read and enjoyed Laura’s work I was thrilled to be invited to take part in the blog tour for this book. Read on for my review.

You would think that it’s what’s inside that counts wouldn’t you? But unfortunately that’s not always the case. Diana, a former child model is studying art. She has always been admired for her beauty but her good looks are of no use to her. Diana wants her artwork to shine instead. Insecure and desperate for some inspiration, she needs something to help her focus.

Four year old Cal is facially disfigured and lives a life where he is mostly hidden from the world. His parents want to protect him from the cruel things people say. A chance encounter with Diana changes everything as he becomes her muse. As Diana’s reputation develops and Cal grows up, their relationship implodes and both struggle to be accepted for what lies within.

In a society where what’s on the outside counts for more is it possible to find acceptance?

I thoroughly enjoyed reading ‘Skin Deep’ and found it extremely hard to put down. This is one of those thought provoking stories that plays on your mind even when you’re not reading it. I have once again been left really surprised by this author’s talent and the way she can turn her hand to a totally different subject. ‘Skin Deep’ is in two parts, the first one set in Manchester and the second in London. Laura Wilkinson paints a really good picture of what Manchester was like in the 1980s with very colourful descriptions.

The story is narrated by Diana and Cal and it’s through them that the reader gets to meet a number of characters, most of them flawed in one way or another. There were a couple that I really didn’t warm to. I liked Diana and admired her for what she was trying to achieve. She wanted to do the best she could for Cal and to be able to give him a better chance at life. Cal was useful for her too and if it hadn’t been for him Diana might never have got where she did. I felt really sorry for Cal. I think Diana went a bit too far in the end and became rather obsessed with things, though that was partly because she wanted to be successful. What could happen next is left to the reader’s imagination. Things could go one of two ways.

‘Skin Deep’ is a beautifully written book. It deals with a number of difficult issues including drugs, depression and living with facial disfigurement. It really is a must read.

I am really looking forward to Laura Wilkinson’s next book.

I give this book 5 out of 5.

 

About Laura Wilkinson

Liverpool born, Laura is a taff at heart. She has published six novels for adults (two under a pseudonym) and numerous short stories, some of which have made the short lists of international competitions. Public Battles, Private Wars, was a Welsh Books Council Book of the month; Redemption Song was a Kindle top twenty. The Family Line is a family drama set in the near future, looking at identity and parenting. Her latest is Skin Deep. Alongside writing, Laura works as an editor & mentor for literary consultancies and runs workshops on aspects of craft. She’s spoken at festivals and events nationwide, including the Frome Festival, Gladfest, University of Kingston, The Women’s Library and Museum in Docklands. She lives in Brighton with her husband and sons.

 

Purchase Links

‘Skin Deep’ is available to buy from:-

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2rQL8qg

Waterstones: https://www.waterstones.com/book/skin-deep/laura-wilkinson/9781783758678

WHSmith: https://www.whsmith.co.uk/search/go?af=cat1%3Abooks&w=Skin+Deep+by+Laura+Wilkinson

Website/Social Media Links

Website – www.laura-wilkinson.co.uk

Twitter – @ScorpioScribble

Facebook – Laura Wilkinson Author

Instagram – laura_wilkinsonwriter

Pinterest – laura1765

Goodreads – Laura_ Wilkinson

 

Blog Tour – ‘Frozen Minds’ by Cheryl Rees-Price

blog-tour-banner

I am delighted to be taking part in this blog tour celebrating Cheryl Rees-Price’s new book, ‘Frozen Minds’, the second in the Winter Meadows series.  It was published on the 14th October 2016 both as an eBook and in paperback by Accent Press.   Cheryl has written a guest post for my blog which I hope you enjoy reading.  First though, here’s what the book is about.

 

Book Blurb

When a man is found murdered at Bethesda House, a home for adults with learning difficulties, local people start to accuse the home’s residents of being behind the killing. The victim was a manager at the home, and seemingly a respectable and well-liked family man. DI Winter Meadows knows there’s more to the case than meets the eye. As he and his team investigate, Meadows discovers a culture of fear at the home – and some unscrupulous dealings going on between the staff. Does the answer to the case lie in the relationships between the staff and the residents – or is there something even more sinister afoot?

 

Guest Post

THE DETECTIVE

There are so many good detective series books available now that it is a challenge to create a new character. One that is appealing and not the stereo typical drunk troubled detective. There is no magic formula to creating the perfect character (I wish there was). When I started writing The Winter Meadows series I wanted to create a different sort of detective while also making him memorable and appealing. To research I looked at some of my favourite detectives and tried to analyse their characteristics. See if they would make suitable dinner guests, and look for similarities to find out what makes them interesting, and so appealing that the reader starts hunting down the next book. The following is just a sample from my list.

D Wingfield’s Inspector Frost is one of my favourite detectives. I’ve read all nine books, more than once and thoroughly enjoyed the television adaptation where Sir David Jason superbly portrays Frost. Jack Frost is disordered, shabby, and hopeless at paperwork. A widower with a wicked sense of humour, sometimes crude, especially in the books. Yet he is perceptive, sometimes sensitive, and excels at crime solving. Jack Frost is modest and treats everyone, rich or homeless, equally. He’s certainly no action man yet will put himself in danger to catch his quarry. There is something endearing about Frost, he is a character you could have around for dinner and know you would have an entertaining evening.

frost-picture

Colin Dexter’s Inspector Morse is another well-loved character. Featured in 13 novels and played by the late John Thaw in the television series. Morse is snobbish, bad-tempered and has a dislike of grammatical errors. He has a love of classic cars, opera music, real ale, and cryptic crossword puzzles. He can be sensitive, hard-working and is highly intelligent and logical.

Morse’s interesting first name, Endeavour, was not revealed until later in the series and was chosen by his Quaker mother and his father, an admirer of Captain James Cook. Information of Morse’s past is cleverly drip fed throughout the series. Again Morse is not a young fit action hero but uses intellect to fight crime.

A memorable character and despite his haughty exterior Morse is well loved and admired. I imagine he would make a difficult dinner guest, quite possibly unintentionally making the other guests feel inferior.

morse-picture

The list wouldn’t be complete without Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot. The unforgettable Belgian detective is the star of 33 novels and is admirably portrayed by David Suchet among others in the television series. Poirot is known for his impeccable dress code, stiff moustache and walking stick. He could almost be described as having O.C.D with his fussiness over food, and ordered life.

One of Poirot’s most famous phases is “The little grey cells,” and it is doubtless that he has more than his fair share. Highly intelligent and methodical, he uses logical clue based detection to catch the guilty party. Poirot appears to be a solitary figure with few friends and no love interest. He is not known for being emotional. He would make an unassuming, but interesting dinner guest.

poirot-picture

These above detectives are all very different characters yet do have some similarities. Unusual names which makes them instantly memorable. Each has a particular dress code with Poirot and Frost being at opposite ends. All are intellectually gifted and don’t always stick to the rules. More importantly they are all betrayed with imperfections and traits that could make them difficult companions, yet are among the best loved and most memorable characters.

When naming my character I wanted to give him a name that would suit his personality and background. ‘Winter Meadows’ seemed appropriate. Born to hippy parents and raised in a commune, he is intelligent, modest, and compassionate. He likes to see the best in people which is sometimes his downfall. He has difficulty fitting in with the team and is oblivious to the attention he draws from the opposite sex. I hope that readers will grow to love him despite his flaws.

 

About Cheryl Rees-Price

Cheryl Rees-Price was born in Cardiff and moved as a Young child to a small ex-mining village on the edge of the Black Mountains, South Wales, where she still lives with her husband, daughters and two cats.  After leaving school she worked as a legal clerk for several years before leaving to raise her two daughters.

Cheryl returned to education, studying philosophy, sociology and accountancy whilst working as a part time book keeper. She now works as a finance director for a company that delivers project management and accounting services.

In her spare time Cheryl indulges in her passion for writing, the success of writing plays for local performances gave her the confidence to write her first novel. Her other hobbies include walking, and gardening which free her mind to develop plots and create colourful characters.

 

Links

Frozen Minds Amazon

Website

Facebook

 

Interview with Jenny Kane

Author Picture

I would like to introduce you all to Jenny Kane.  Her latest book, ‘Another Glass of Champagne’ was published on the 9th June 2016 by Accent Press and I wanted to know all about it.

 

Firstly, please can you tell me a bit about your new book?

Another Glass of Champagne is a story of friendship, life, dreams, romance, and coffee sipping. Set in and around Richmond Kew Gardens, the action is often located in the cafe that unites all the characters- Pickwicks Cafe House.

Alongside the cups of coffee, there are several bottles of champagne on ice, but only time will tell if they ever leave the fridge and their corks get popped!

Following on from the bestselling novel, Another Cup of Coffee, and the seasonal Christmas novella’s Another Cup of Christmas, Christmas in the Cotswolds, and Christmas at the Castle, Another Glass of Champagne, is the final instalment in the Pickwicks Coffee House adventures.

 

Book Cover

Blurb

A warm-hearted, contemporary tale about a group of friends living in a small corner of busy London, by bestselling author Jenny Kane.

Fortysomething Amy is shocked and delighted to discover she s expecting a baby not to mention terrified! Amy wants best friend Jack to be godfather, but he hasn’t been heard from in months. When Jack finally reappears, he s full of good intentions but his new business plan could spell disaster for the beloved Pickwicks Coffee Shop, and ruin a number of old friendships…  

Meanwhile his love life is as complicated as ever and yet when he swears off men for good, Jack meets someone who makes him rethink his priorities…but is it too late for a fresh start?

Author Kit has problems of her own: just when her career has started to take off, she finds herself unable to write and there s a deadline looming, plus two headstrong kids to see through their difficult teenage years…will she be able to cope?

 

I love the cover.  Did you celebrate with a glass or two of champagne when it was published?

Many thanks. All the covers in the series are wonderfully cheerful.

The novel came out on 9th June, right in the middle of the Tiverton Literary Festival, which I help organise- so I didn’t have time to raise that glass of bubbly until it was all over on 12th June. That evening however, I definitely raised a glass or two to wish Another Glass of Champagne lots of luck!

 

How long did it take you to write?

Six months from start to finish- and I loved every minute. I’m really going to miss writing about Amy, Kit, Jack and the crew at Pickwicks Coffee House.

 

Where did you get your ideas from for this book?

Another Glass of Champagne is the final instalment in the adventures of Amy, Kit, Jack, and their friends. These friends first appeared together in Another Cup of Coffee, and each of them is based on one of the real friends I made at university. The whole premise of the story is what ‘might have happened’ if we’d all made slightly different life decisions than the ones we actually made.

By the time we reach book 5 in the Another Cup of…series, Amy, Kit and Jack are (like their real life counterparts) in their 40’s- and life is still throwing out challenges!

 

Can you relate to any of your characters?

I may… or may not… be Kit! Kit is a writer, mother to teenagers, and a serial coffee drinker- she also writes all her books (some of them erotica), in a cafe- just like me!

 

If one of the characters came alive and spoke to you what do you think he or she would say?

I can tell you exactly what the ‘real’ Jack said before I started writing Another Glass of Champagne– ‘Can you give me a hot boyfriend please?’ Before the series started ‘Jack’ was also quite keen to be a little taller than he is in real life…

 

Will you be doing any book signings?

I have a book launch- which I’m going to combine with a Family Book Quiz- in the coffee shop where I write my books everyday! 1st July, Costa, Tiverton 6.30pm!!

I am hoping to do a launch in a local bookshop as well, but details aren’t finalised yet.

 

What can we expect next from you?

My next book will be out in November and will be called, The Outlaw’s Ransom, which is a medieval murder mystery. This has come about after the success of my part modern/part medieval novel, Romancing Robin Hood.

Many years ago I was an archaeologist and a medieval historian. I’ve indulged heavily in the research I did back then while writing The Outlaw’s Ransom.

 

How has social media helped you?

I constantly Tweet and Facebook- as well as put out blogs on my web site. I hope it helps me spread the word about my work- I’m too scared not to do it to stop doing so now, in case it’s the only way I’m selling my books!

 

Where do you see yourself in five years time?

That’s a very difficult question. I have been writing for 12 years now. I started as erotica writer Kay Jaybee; then 5 years ago I ‘became’ Jenny Kane. In another 5 years, who knows who I’ll be?

I will certainly have written another full length medieval murder mystery by then – as I have been contracted to write a follow up to The Outlaw’s Ransom called The Winter Outlaw.

In Summer 2017 there will also be a new beach read. Abi’s Neighbour will be published in June 2017, and will follow on from my bestselling Cornish romance, Abi’s House.

 

What do you like to do in your spare time?

I honestly don’t have any – I really don’t. If I’m not writing them I’m at work.

 

iPad or Computer?  

Computer. I have a lovely little laptop, which I’ve named Alfie.

 

About Jenny Kane

Jenny spends a large part of her time in the cafe’s of Mid Devon, where she creates her stories, including the novels Another Glass of Champagne, (Accent Press, 2016), Abi’s House (Accent Press, June 2015), Romancing Robin Hood (Accent Press, 2014), the best selling contemporary romance Another Cup of Coffee (Accent Press, 2013), and the novella length sequels Another Cup of Christmas (Accent Press, 2013), Christmas in the Cotswolds, (Accent Press, 2014), and Christmas at the Castle, (Accent Press, 2015).

Her next full length novel, Abi’s Neighbour, will be published by Accent Press in Summer 2017. She is also working on a short historical novel, which will be published in November 2016.

Jenny Kane is also the author of quirky children’s picture books There’s a Cow in the Flat (Hushpuppy, 2014) and Ben’s Biscuit Tin (Hushpuppy, 2015).

Keep your eye on Jenny’s blog at www.jennykane.co.uk for more details.

Twitter- @JennyKaneAuthor

Facebook -https://www.facebook.com/JennyKaneRomance?ref=hl

 

Buy Links

http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Another+Glass+of+Champagne+Jenny+Kane

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss/188-7813436-7626710?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Another+Glass+of+Champagne+Jenny+Kane

 

Blog Tour – ‘The Magic Touch’ by Kelly Florentia

Book Cover

‘The Magic Touch’ is Kelly Florentia’s debut novel.  It was published on the 24th March 2016 by Accent Press in both eBook and paperback.  I’m thrilled to be taking part in this blog tour for which Kelly has written a guest post.

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They say that you should write what you know. I thought long and hard about this before I penned my debut novel, The Magic Touch. I didn’t want to base it on personal experience because then it would be more of a memoir, plus my life is far too dull to write about. I enjoy the research aspect of writing fiction and I like to inject my stories with a little bit of magic. But I also love to write about issues that readers can resonate with, to a point – I’ve done this with my short stories quite successfully. However, during the initial draft of my book, I realised that you do need something solid, a first-hand knowledge. So, I weaved in a Greek Cypriot family and set the story in north London. I then drew my inspiration from my curiosity with the paranormal and my interest in social and emotional issues, and went with it.

But my initial inspiration came from mobile phone applications. Everywhere you look these days people are glued to their phones, trawling through one app or another – playing games, checking the weather report, looking up recipes, posting tweets and Facebook updates. The list is endless. When I first bought my iPhone the seller told me that I’d absolutely love it – ‘It’ll do everything for you,’ he said, ‘it’ll even make you coffee.’ We both laughed. Then one evening it occurred to me, what if there was an app that could predict your future with alarming accuracy, what then? And The Magic Touch was born.

In the story, we follow Emma King, a 39-year-old divorcee who has just turned down a champagne-fuelled marriage proposal from her partner of five years, Harry Georgiades. The morning after seems to dampen his disappointment and all is well in Emma’s world. But when she accidently stumbles across a flirtatious text message on Harry’s mobile phone, her suspicious barometer goes from zero to a hundred in nanoseconds. Her mission? To get to the bottom of his secret affair with the help of her friends and psychic app, The Magic Touch.

The process of writing and researching this novel was a remarkable experience, and I hope that readers will enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

 

About Kelly Florentia

Author Picture

Kelly Florentia was born and bred in north London, where she continues to live with her husband Joe. Her debut novel The Magic Touch was released on 24th March 2016. Her second novel Broken will be published on 20th August 2016.

Kelly has always enjoyed writing and was a bit of a poet when she was younger. Before writing her first novel, she wrote short stories for women’s magazines. To Tell A Tale Or Two… is a collection of her short tales. She is currently working on her third novel.

 

Links

Buy from Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Magic-Touch-Kelly-Florentia-ebook/dp/B01A71UKT2/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1457972874&sr=8-2&keywords=kelly+florentia

Author Website: http://www.kellyflorentia.co.uk

Social media:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Kelly-Florentia-1682213928702931/?ref=bookmarks

Twitter: @kellyflorentia

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/kelly-florentia-39ab764?trk=nav_responsive_tab_profile

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

Pinterest: https://uk.pinterest.com/kell9f/

 

Blog Tour – ‘Redemption Song’ by Laura Wilkinson

Blog Tour Poster

‘Redemption Song’ was published on the 28th January by Accent Press.  Having read and enjoyed Laura Wilkinson’s previous two novels I was honoured to be invited to take part in this blog tour.

Just imagine this.  You’re getting on with your life, studying hard so that you can hopefully have a good career.  Things are going reasonably well and then just like that everything changes.  Unthinkable isn’t it?  Sadly though that’s exactly what happened to Saffron.

Saffron wants to become a doctor and is studying medicine.  But a tragic accident changes her life forever.  Unable to cope anymore and needing a break she leaves London and moves to Coed Mawr, a small coastal town in Wales to stay with her mother.  Saffron starts feeling trapped until she meets Joe, another outsider and they soon realise that they have a lot in common.  But there is something about Joe which Saffron just can’t figure out.  He has a complicated past which is in danger of catching up with him.  Will Saffron and Joe be able to help each other?

Every now and then I see a book cover I really like and in this case it was love at first sight for me.  It is just absolutely gorgeous.

I so enjoyed reading ‘Redemption Song’.  This story has been beautifully told, but then to be honest I wouldn’t have expected anything less from Laura Wilkinson who is a wonderful writer.  I thought this book was so different from her last two though.  It was nice learning a bit about bats throughout the story.  For anyone who wants to know more about them there is a link to a website about bats in the acknowledgements.

I loved meeting all the characters.  Rain, Saffron’s mum, who had also been through a very hard time moved from London to Coed Mawr to try and make a life for herself there.  A female minister, Rain never lost her faith in God despite what she had been through, though I’m sure it was tested.

I spent ages trying to work out what the mystery surrounding Joe was.  It was obvious that something was up.  Even Saffron’s mum couldn’t quite put a finger on it.  I thought Joe was such a nice man.  He brought out the best in Saffron, and feeling that she could confide in him, she was able to talk about the night of the accident and all that was going through her head.

‘Redemption Song’ is a wonderful story that you really won’t want to put down.  Laura Wilkinson’s books just keep getting better and better.

I give this book 5 out of 5.

 

‘Redemption Song’ is available to buy from Amazon:-

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Redemption-Song-Laura-Wilkinson/dp/1783758694/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1454910802&sr=1-1&keywords=redemption+song+laura+wilkinson

 

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