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Archive for the tag “religion”

Blog Tour – ‘Sign of the Cross’ by Glenn Cooper ~ @blackthornbks @GlennCooper

It is the start of a brand new week and I am delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for ‘Sign of the Cross’ which was published in paperback and as an eBook on the 4th July 2019 by Black Thorn Books.  It is also available as an audio book.  I would like to thank Holly Domney for inviting me to participate in this tour and for my review copy.

I will tell you all in a minute my thoughts on ‘Sign of the Cross’.  First though here’s what the book is about.


Book Blurb

Abruzzo, Italy: a young priest suffers the stigmata of the crucifixion.

The Vatican, Rome: the Pope calls on Harvard professor Cal Donovan to investigate the truth of the priest’s claim.

Berlin, Germany: a neo-Nazi organisation believes the priest is the key to an earth-shattering secret. A secret that can be used as a deadly weapon.

When the priest is abducted, a perilous race against the clock begins. Only Cal can track down the ruthless organisation and stop it, before an apocalyptic catastrophe is unleashed.


My Review

I liked the sound of ‘Sign of the Cross’ and was looking forward to reading it. The first couple of chapters really drew me in and I felt as if I was being taken on a journey around the world.

This was an intriguing and interesting read. I can’t even begin to imagine how much research the author did for this book, but it must have been a lot. There was just so much detail, some of which I have to admit was lost on me. I personally found this book to be quite heavy going at times. I am so glad that I persevered with it though as it proved to be really good.

The history of the Holy relics was quite fascinating. There were some interesting theories too which got me thinking. I actually felt as if was learning something whilst reading this book.

Things got really frantic when the priest was kidnapped. It literally was a race against time to save him before it was too late.

Out of all the characters I really liked Cal Donovan. I found Irene a bit prickly at first. I guess she had good reason to be that way though and I did eventually warm to her. It’s interesting how Giovanni seemed to choose both her and Cal to communicate with, though I’m not sure that he even knew what was happening.

If you are into historical fiction and religious conspiracy thrillers then you really should give ‘Sign of the Cross’ a go. I would say it is definitely a story that requires a lot of concentration though. I hope to meet Cal Donovan again in future books.


‘Sign of the Cross’ is available to buy from Amazon UK:-



About Glenn Cooper

Glenn Cooper chairs a media company, Lascaux Media, which produced three independent feature-length films. His debut novel, The Library of the Dead, became an international bestseller and was translated into thirty languages. All his seven published books have become top-ten international best-sellers.



Website – www.glenncooperbooks.com

Twitter – https://twitter.com/GlennCooper


Ringwood Publishing

Ringwood Publishing

I am very interested in learning about various publishers and what they do.  Ringwood Publishing kindly took the time to write a guest post for me.


First of all, we would like to thank Sonya for giving us the opportunity to write a piece for her blog.

Ringwood Publishing was founded by a group of Scottish friends who appreciated the difficulty of getting published in Scotland when you don’t have an agent or are not already known to the public. Creating Ringwood was an alternative to self-publishing for Managing Director and author Sandy Jamieson. His first published book, “Own Goal”, became a best-seller which allowed the company to go forward.

Ringwood quickly opened itself to other authors and has now for central mission to nurture and support new talented Scottish writers and established writers wishing to change the focus of their work. Its mission is to get their initial work published and then continue to support them and publish their further work, until such time as bigger, better–resourced publishers wish to publish them. All profits are directly re-injected in the company, in order to make future projects possible.

Ringwood is dedicated to publishing work of fiction and non-fiction, with a focus on Scottish key themes: politics, football, religion, money, sex and crime. Our catalogue contains a wide range of books, which include, amongst many fascinating titles: Carol Fox’s “Memoirs of a Feminist Mother”, a powerful and fascinating story about the author’s fight to become a single parent through infertility treatment; Sandy Jamieson’s “A Subtle Sadness”, an exploration of Scottish identity and politics; Stephen O’Donnell “Scotball”, a searing examination of the current state of Scottish football and the various social, political and economic forces that combine to strangle its integrity and potential; Jonathan Whitelaw’s “Morbid Relations”, a darkly comic take on modern Scottish life and family relationships; but also Gordon Johnston’s “Calling Card”, a crime novel which explores the impact of stress and trauma on individuals, encompassing their resort to addiction, recovery, and denial.

For more information, please visit www.ringwoodpublishing.com, where all our books can be ordered. Paperbacks and e-books are also available on Amazon.

Laure Deprez
Managing Director

‘Codex’ by Adrian Dawson

I was lucky enough to win a copy of ‘Codex’ during a giveaway last year.  I wasn’t sure if this novel would be to my liking but decided to give it a go and I wasn’t disappointed.  If anything, it made me wish I had read this book earlier.

Lara who has been missing for three years is on her way back home to her father on a Boeing 747, Flight 320.  However, little does she know what is about to happen.  A bomb planted on the plane explodes killing everyone.  Jack Bernstein, chess Grandmaster and now an IT entrepreneur is informed of his daughter’s death.  He believes the bombing to be a terrorist act until he is sent a code to decipher, thus realising that his daughter’s death is as a result of something much more sinister.  Jack uncovers a global conspiracy and a corporation who will stop at nothing to protect their secret and get their hands on his computer system.

I found the first chapter so exciting that I just wanted to keep reading on.  I felt that there was a slight lull in the next couple of chapters, but after that it was nonstop excitement.  This book gave me hours and hours of pleasure.  I was totally hooked most of the time and felt as if I was somewhere else.  I was left in awe of Adrian Dawson’s writing and his wordplay throughout.  One sentence that jumped out at me was:-

“Dust grains had purchased holiday apartments on every level surface and cobwebs hung like satin shrouds between the shelves.”

This author has definitely done his research.  The titles for each chapter were well thought out too.  ‘Codex’ has lots of twists and turns.  Just as you think you know what is going to happen next, something totally different occurs.  It’s full of shocks and surprises, a real thriller!

I give this book a well-deserved 5 out of 5.

‘A Land More Kind Than Home’ by Wiley Cash

I was very kindly sent an advance review copy of this novel by Alison Barrow at Transworld Publishers.  Wiley Cash, the author of this book, was inspired by a true story.  This is his first novel and it is set in North Carolina where he lives.  It is being published here in the UK by Doubleday in hardback on 29th March 2012.

‘A Land More Kind Than Home’ is a spellbinding and heartbreaking story about cruelty and innocence, and the failure of religion and family to protect a child.  It shows how people can take their faith too seriously and how this can sometimes lead to harm.

One Sunday, nine-year-old Jess Hall watches in horror through the crack of a window of a church as his older autistic brother is smothered during a healing service in the mountains of North Carolina.  The unimaginable and totally shocking violence that follows has to be untangled by the local sheriff.  This story is narrated by three of the main characters; Jess Hall whose brother has been killed, a religious woman who had concerns about the pastor and his behaviour, and the sheriff who has had his own tragic past.  What happens at the end of the story is awful.

I really enjoyed this novel.  Gripping all the way through, this is one of those books that you just want to keep on reading.  It has been very well written and the words flowed easily.  The characters came across as so real and I felt at times as if they were speaking out loud telling their stories to me, accents and all.  I do hope I don’t come across any wooden crates containing snakes though!

I give this book 4 out of 5.


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