Blog Tour ~ Extract ~ The Roving Eye by Richard Evans.

The Roving Eye Cover

Welcome to my blog where today I am lucky enough to share an extract of Richard Evan’s book, The Roving Eye with you.

Many thanks to Clink Street Publishing, Richard Evans and blog tour organiser Rachel Gilby for allowing me to take part.

Book summary. 

The Roving Eye: A Reporter’s Love Affair with Paris, Politics & Sport

Go. Be there. For the past six decades Richard Evans has followed that dictum  – being where the action was, not just as a tennis writer and broadcaster – 196 Grand Slams and counting – but through his years as a foreign correspondent in America, France and Vietnam as well as a spell as a roving global reporter for the US television programme Entertainment Tonight.
Evans, whose English family fled France in June 1940, also became a National Service Captain in the British army, without having to dodge a bullet which was not the case in Cambodia nor in Miami where he was struck by a cop during an anti-Nixon demonstration.
Evans was in Memphis hours after Martin Luther King was shot; campaigned through Indiana and California with Bobby Kennedy – “a unique politician” – before he, too, was assassinated and witnessed the pre-Olympic demonstrations in 1968 against the Mexican Government which ended in massacre.
He accompanied the Wimbledon champion and activist Arthur Ashe on two trips to Africa, witnessing the dark days of apartheid and was back in South Africa in 1990 covering Mike Gatting’s rebel cricket tour during the historic weeks that saw Nelson Mandela released and apartheid abolished.
Evans paints an insider’s portrait of Margaret Thatcher and No 10 Downing Street during the time he was with the Prime Minister’s daughter, Carol; a romance with the actress Gayle Hunnicutt and two marriages; friendships with Richard Harris, Michael Crawford and more Wimbledon champions than you could fit into the players’ box. He was also the last person to interview Richard Burton.
A life lived to the full, covering the globe with a Roving Eye – being there.

Extract

In 1972, as a free-lance foreign correspondent, I made my second trip to Vietnam & decided to find out what was happening in neighbouring Laos. The capital, Vientiane, turned out to be a melting pot for all the powers fighting for dominance of the old Indo-China.

I decided to make a call on the North Vietnamese ambassador whose residence was a typical Asian-style villa situated in a residential neighbourhood of the city. He came into the courtyard to talk to me, a sweaty, nervous little man who was obviously at his wit’s end.
“They watch me all the time!” he exclaimed in a high-pitched voice using serviceable English. “Look! Look! They have cameras, every move we make is recorded!”
He was pointing to a couple of windows from a nearby house which did not seem to be especially festooned with monitoring kit but, no matter, this poor man was obviously not sleeping well and he was in serious need of repatriation.
The Ambassador was right in as much everyone was observing everyone and trying to make out what was, and what wasn’t, the truth. Mostly it was a pack of lies. There was a Graham Greene novel in every conversation and some of the characters one ran into at the Constellation, run by an amiable but obviously savvy Frenchman called Maurice Cavalerie, could have filled volumes. Although frequently bloodshot eyes offered tell-tale signs of opium addiction, Maurice was a handsome man who had been born of a French botanist father and an upper-class Chinese beauty. Fleeing the fighting in the north, Cavalerie had brought his family to Vientiane and set up his far from upper class hotel with two floors of rooms that reeked of marijuana and a bar downstairs that opened onto the main street. People flocked to it because Maurice knew everyone and could fix anything, especially for the correspondents who drank quantities of his Heineken for which he owned the franchise. There were plenty of flies around this hot, sticky city but none on Maurice.

The Roving Eye can be purchased from Amazon

Author

Richard Evans has been a journalist since the 1960s where he began his career writing for the Evening Standard. He has covered tennis for outlets including the Sunday Times, Fox Sports USA and Tennis Magazine, reporting on more than 196 Grand Slams over the course of his career. Evans was the play-by-play commentator for BBC Radio at Wimbledon for twenty years and was a commentator for the Tennis Channel at the French Open and AO Radio at the Australian Open. He is the author of 18 books, including biographies of tennis legends, the official history of the Davis Cup, and most recently co-authoring Pain, Set & Match.

Richard can be followed on Twitter.

Blog Tour ~ Review ~A Gathering of Ravens by Scott Oden.

a-gathering-of-ravens (1) Beowulf Meets The Lord Of The Rings In An Epic Novel of Vengeance, Faith And The Power Of Myth…….

Book summary

To the Danes, he is skraelingr; to the English, he is orcnéas; to the Irish, he is fomoraig. He is Corpse-maker and Life-quencher, the Bringer of Night, the Son of the Wolf and Brother of the Serpent. He is Grimnir, and he is the last of his kind—the last in a long line of monsters who have plagued humanity since the Elder Days.

Drawn from his lair by a thirst for vengeance against the Dane who slew his brother, Grimnir emerges into a world that’s changed. A new faith has arisen. The Old Ways are dying, and their followers retreating into the shadows; even still, Grimnir’s vengeance cannot be denied.

Taking a young Christian hostage to be his guide, Grimnir embarks on a journey that takes him from the hinterlands of Denmark, where the wisdom of the ancient dwarves has given way to madness, to the war-torn heart of southern England, where the spirits of the land make violence on one another. And thence to the green shores of Ireland and the Viking stronghold of Dubhlinn, where his enemy awaits.

But, unless Grimnir can set aside his hatreds, his dream of retribution will come to nothing. For Dubhlinn is set to be the site of a reckoning—the Old Ways versus the New—and Grimnir, the last of his kind left to plague mankind, must choose: stand with the Christian King of Ireland and see his vengeance done or stand against him and see it slip away?

Review.

Firstly I would like to thank the author Scott Oden and publisher Bantam Press for the ARC copy of this book, in return for an honest review.

I need to say that I loved A Gathering of Ravens! I’ve always had wide reading tastes even when a child. But from an early age historical and fantasy novels have always been my favourites.  So give me a book that combines the mythical elements of Beowulf and the epic fantasy of Lord of The Rings and I become one very happy reader!

I loved the way the writer Scott Oden combined both these elements and yet wrote a story, that while paying homage to his love of English and history, was orginal and addictive to read.

He has given us a hero in Grimnir who reminds me of some of the great hero’s of epic fantasy stories such as Lord of The Rings. He strides through this novel with a commanding presence. In short I found him to be glorious.  I know some people would find it wierd to find a monster such a heroic figure, but to describe him in one word is difficult. He is multi layered as all great characters are.  He seeps into your soul and catches hold of your heart. Grimnir withour doubt is one of my favourite characters within the genre of epic historical/fantasy epics.  He maybe gruff, he maybe consumed by the need for revenge, but he is simply inspiring. For me, he is the heart and soul of this incrediable read.

If you loved Lord of The Rings, then you will adore and be excited by A Gathering Of Ravens. It’s written with passion. The writer understands what makes this genre work.  They need writers who can emerge themselves within the fantasical world they have created and Scott Oden does that.  He most certainly is a up and coming star and I hope he carries on writing such glorious book.

I must admit, I think I love him a little for giving me Grimnir, the son of a wolf and brother to a serpent. 

You can purchase the book from Amazon 

Author

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SCOTT ODEN was born in Indiana, but has spent most of his life shuffling between his home in rural North Alabama, a Hobbit hole in Middle-earth, and some sketchy tavern in the Hyborian Age. He is an avid reader of fantasy and ancient history, a collector of swords, and a player of tabletop role-playing games. When not writing, he can be found walking his two dogs or doting over his lovely wife, Shannon.Oden’s books include the historical fantasy, The Lion of Cairo, and the historical novels, Men of Bronze and Memnon.

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Blog Tour ~ Review~ The Other Twin by L V Hay

 

 

The Other Twin cover

Book Summary

Description When India falls to her death from a bridge over a railway, her sister Poppy returns home to Brighton for the first time in years. Unconvinced by official explanations, Poppy begins her own investigation into India’s death. But the deeper she digs, the closer she comes to uncovering deeply buried secrets. Could Matthew Temple, the boyfriend she abandoned, be involved? And what of his powerful and wealthy parents, and his twin sister, Ana? Enter the mysterious and ethereal Jenny: the girl Poppy discovers after hacking into India’s laptop.

Review

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Other Twin. Many thanks to the author L V Hay, publisher Orenda Books and blog tour organiser Anne Cater, for the ARC copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Its confession time! I love and adore beautiful book covers. I have this mad idea, that they’re a window into the soul of a book.  If the time has been taken to find the perfect image to attract a reader, who is scanning bookshelves in a shop filled with tempting treats.  I believe what I will find within its cover, will fill my mind with wonder, scare me witless or charm me with wondrous delights.

The cover of The Other Twin, if I had seen it on the shelves of my favourite bookshop, would have drawn me straight to it. When I saw it, it made me instantly want place my hand against the hand of the girl on the cover and make a connection with her. It made me want to know who she was, what her story was. It felt like the book would be a tense, edgy read, full of nerve racking drama. The cover did not let me down!

The Other Twin is a chilling, emotional rollercoaster of a read. Within its pages is a dark tale of loss, murderous rage and fragmented relationships. In a time when so much of who we are is shared in online,  but hidden from those who should know us best, The Other Twin delves into mercurial world of social media. Where identity is fluid and the truth almost always just of your reach.

Set amongst the heady social life of Brighton, the story twists and turns likes the lanes of this iconic city. The fate of India and the perceptible threat to her sister Poppy as she seeks to discover the real reason behind her sister’s death, seeps off the page and into the minds of the reader. Anxiety filled my mind as layers of the story were pealed away, until on reaching the last page, only then did I feel able to expel the tension this story invoked within me.

Not only are the characters beautifully written, they do what all creations in a tense thriller should do. They attract you, disturb you and even horrify you, but you can never take you eyes away from them because they’re fascinating in equal turns.

Setting the story in Brighton where all manner of fascinating characters live, a veritable cornucopia of experiences and people gives the story a extra buzz. The city and its vibrant party scene gives a voice to the nightmare India finds herself engulfed in. Almost as a flip side to the fun enjoyable Brighton atmosphere we find ourselves in when we visit as tourists.

If your looking for an exciting and thrilling read, then you need look no further than L V Hay’s The Other Twin!

It can be purchased from Amazon.

 

Author Bio

Lucy Hay author photo

Lucy V. Hay is a novelist, script editor and blogger who helps writers via her Bang2write consultancy. She is the associate producer of Brit Thrillers Deviation (2012) and Assassin(2015), both starring Danny Dyer. Lucy is also head reader for the London Screenwriters’ Festival and has written two non-fiction books, Writing & Selling Thriller Screenplays, plus its follow-up Drama ScreenplaysShe lives in Devon with her husband, three children, six cats and five African Land Snails.

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