Blog Tour ~ Review ~Operation Clean Up Day by Jason Tucker and illustrated by Nick Roberts.

Operation Clean Up Day Cover

This is the story of two very imaginative little boys and their resistance to cleaning up their toys…

Two little boys are about to go out for the day to the swimming pool as a treat. But before they can go, they must tidy up all their toys – which are all over the house – as requested by their Mummy. The boys consider this a mission! The boys attempt to clean up their toys in various parts of the house while making all sorts of excuses to Mummy to leave the toys where they are. The boys are easily side-tracked when attempting to clean up each room, as they find themselves playing with their toys again, their imaginations taking over. They find themselves driving trains, defending castles from ogres, climbing high mountains, flying spaceships, catching sea serpents and meeting prehistoric dinosaurs. All while trying to clean up their toys!
Written by Jason Tucker and stunningly illustrated by Nick Roberts, Operation Clean Up Day is a fantastic journey through the imagination of two children, who can turn a simple set of toys into an entire fantasy world, whilst teaching children the valuable lesson of tidying up their toys after playtime!

Review

Firstly I would like to thank Clink Street publishing, Jason Tucker and blog tour organiser Rachel Gilbey for the ARC copy of this book in return for an honest review.
Jason Thorpe has written a funny and delightful tale of two little boys and the captivating imaginary worlds they create with their toys. The problem is, they never tidy them up or put them away and have to be persuaded to do so. To help children learn about cleaning up, he has written this book which they can read with their parents. That may sound boring, but I promise you this book it is far from that, it is enchanting, appealing and engaging.
The boys are told that they can only go swimming if they put their toys away, but who would want to tidy up the lounge when in the minds of these little boys it’s Grand Central Station or the bedroom when it’s a galactic space station? But they have promised mummy they will try and they do, but they keep getting distracted and end up playing.
It’s obvious when reading Operation Clean Up Day that writing it was a labour of love, inspired by an affection for imagination and the way young children can turn any room into a magical place. Yet at the same time, rooms can become messy nightmares for the adults in the family. By capturing the children’s mischievous enthusiasm for play but not for tidying up, young readers learn by reading this book, the rewards they can gain by helping their parents. It’s an aid to mums and dads, but by paying homage to the incredible imagery world of young children, Jason Tucker makes this book a joy to read, which is important, because children learn best when it’s fun.
The narrative reads well and the rhyming text is fun and easy to read for parents and young children.
My favourite part is when they have to tidy up their bedroom…
“Onto our bedroom, Mummy says, you have another place to sort
But Mummy, we can’t, this is our galactic space port…. “
Illustrations are an important part of any book for young children, as reading is as much a visual experience, as it is learning the words beside them! In Operation Cleanup Day, the pictures are stunning. They bring the story to life and compliment it perfectly. We have the boys and their mum in the bathroom on one page, then on the other, the world in the minds of the children. The scene has been magically transformed into a pirate’s ship where the boys are fighting off sea monsters on the high seas.
I find it hard to believe that any reader would fail to be charmed by this delightful tale. It’s magical, funny and educational all at the same time. The perfect combination, for parents and children alike.

The book can be purchased from Amazon and Barnes and Noble

About the author:
Born and raised in London, Jason Tucker is married and is a father of three young boys. He is enjoying an international working life basing himself between London and Dubai. This is his first published work with a number of other titles in the pipeline as well as working on a number of other ventures including TV, Film & graphic novels.

 

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Blog Tour ~ Review ~ House of Spines by Michael J Malone.

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Book Summary

A terrifying psychological thriller cum Gothic mystery, as a young man with mental health issues inherits an isolate mansion, where all is not as it seems…
Ran McGhie’s world has been turned upside down. A young, lonely and frustrated writer, and suffering from mental-health problems, he discovers that his long-dead mother was related to one of Glasgow’s oldest merchant families. Not only that, but Ran has inherited Newton Hall, a vast mansion that belonged to his great-uncle, who it seems has been watching from afar as his estranged great-nephew has grown up. Entering his new-found home, it seems Great-Uncle Fitzpatrick has turned it into a temple to the written word – the perfect place for poet Ran. But everything is not as it seems. As he explores the Hall’s endless corridors, Ran’s grasp on reality appears to be loosening. And then he comes across an ancient lift; and in that lift a mirror. And in the mirror… the reflection of a woman… A terrifying psychological thriller with more than a hint of the Gothic, House of Spines is a love letter to the power of books, and an exploration of how lust and betrayal can be deadly…

Review

Firstly I would like to thank Orenda books, the author and blog tour organiser Anne Cater for the ARC copy of this book in return for an honest review.
House of Spines had me scared and just a little freaked out. It is both deeply disturbing and at the same time highly addictive. You find yourself glad you’re not the one living in the house which is haunted by a presence both seductive and alarming. Yet in you go, into the House Of Spines, which Ran McGhie, a poet with mental health problems, inherited from his Uncle Fitzapatrick. As he begins to question if he is losing his grip on reality, you as the reader, begin to question with him, the sanity of entering this house, whose very walls seem to be seeped with a horror leaking through from the past.
The writing is superb! Michael Malone manages with great skill to keep the suspense flowing throughout the story, until the very last page of this highly engaging psychological thriller, with elements of horror and hints of a Gothic mystery. It’s such an engaging combination that I found myself addicted to the Ran’s story. The quality of the narrative forcing me to overcome my feelings dread and alarm at the mounting terror let loose on Ran. Yet you go back in! I needed to know if Ran was suffering a deeply frightening psychotic event, or if the lady in the mirror really was there. Luring him into a world beyond the temple of words, his Uncle had built to beauty of the written word, or was it meant for another reason? Michael Malone cleverly keeps the horror under control, eases the tension back that is coiling around your mind, just enough so that you don’t lose your nerve, but it’s there constantly under the surface. He allows you to calm down a little, only then to send you hurtling back into Ran’s nightmare, but one so seductive, both you and he almost welcome its embrace.
This is without doubt first class story telling from a writer who can form a storyline and characters , that are so engaging, you just don’t want your trip into the House of Spines to end. I may never feel as safe alone in a lift again, even the one in my favourite Waterstone’s bookshop! It’s an odd feeling to know that you are scared of events woven into a storyline, yet on and on you read.
Orenda books have yet again delivered a masterful story to its readers. While author Michael Malone has given booklovers a story which will haunt them for months after they have read the last page.
Bravo to this remarkably talented team.

You can purchase House of Spines from Amazon  / Waterstones / Foyles

Author Bio. 

Michael Malone Photo

Michael Malone is a prize-winning poet and author who was born and brought up in the heart of Burns’ country, just a stone’s throw from the great man’s cottage in Ayr. Well, a stone thrown by a catapult. He has published over 200 poems in literary magazines throughout the UK, including New Writing Scotland, Poetry Scotland and Markings. His career as a poet has also included a (very) brief stint as the Poet-In- Residence for an adult gift shop. Blood Tears, his bestselling debut novel won the Pitlochry Prize (judge: Alex Gray) from the Scottish Association of Writers. Other published work includes: Carnegie’s Call (a non-fiction work about successful modern-day Scots); A Taste for Malice; The Guillotine Choice; Beyond the Rage and The Bad Samaritan. His psychological thriller, A Suitable Lie, was a number one bestseller. Michael is a regular reviewer for the hugely popular crime fiction website http://www.crimesquad.com. A former Regional Sales Manager (Faber & Faber) he has also worked as an IFA and a bookseller.

Michael can be followed on following social media sites –

Facebook / Twitter

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Today is my 50th birthday ~ a celebration in books 💜

Today is my 50th birthday. I’m still not sure how that happened!  I was only a young girl, lost in my favourite Nancy Drew Mystery a few years ago, or so it feels like!

To celebrate, I thought I would post about some of my favourite books, read over the last 50 years.

Childhood wonder through classics like The Eagle of The Ninth! 

th  When consider one of my favourite books as a child, Rosemary Sutcliff’s the ninth legion is always the one I think about. I loved the sense of atmosphere she evoked and I spent many happy hours reading her story, of a Roman legion lost in the mists of time. Even now as an adult, I still love books that feature the Legions of Rome, with Simon Scarrow’s Eagles of the Empire Series a firm favourite.

Teenage angst and tortured love with Jane Eyre! 

th (2) Next is my favourite read as a teenager, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. I fell head over heels in love with Jane and Rochester . It was such an intense love story and read at an age when everything seemed possible, I yearned with equal amounts of passion and longing for their love affair to survive the obstacles it faced.
Moving onto my time at Aberystwyth University, it was here for the first time that I rarely read for pleasure. I studied both American and British literature, but rarely picked up a book for the simple joy of reading. For three years nearly all the novels I read, were connected with one course or another.

Studying history and literature with The Color Purple! 

51IX2DhtQPL._SY346_One of the books I remember most from those years was Alice Walkers, The Color Purple. It was the first book I’d read which featured an LGBT character and reflected what life was really like for women of colour, in a deeply segregated America along racial and gender lines.

I have read hundreds of books since I left University. Those that have meant the most to me are the books that reminded me why I love reading so much. It’s an integral part of who I am and without a book I feel incomplete.
Amongst those books that have stood out for me in the last twenty years are:

Love and heartbreaking reading with The Song of Achilles

download    I adore this this book, with its themes of love and sacrifice. Books rarely make me cry, but this book reduced me to a sobbing wreck on a train journey home from London. I proceeded to buy it for birthday and Christmas presents, because I wanted everyone I knew to read this intense and emotional story. It sits there at the top of my list of all time favourite books.

War and suffering with The Lie by Helen Dunmore.
download (1)  Of all the novels I have read set in or around World War 1, this is the most intense and finest of them all. I was immensely moved by the depiction of the untold damage done to those that survived the nightmare of the trenches. Left damaged and alone with their nightmares, unable to get over the loss of so many while they lived.

The fine line between friendship and love with The Gustav Sonata by Rose Tremain. 

download (2)  I lucky to discover this book because I read Waterstone’s recommended fiction book every month . What a joy it is! It’s themes of love and friendship filled me with longing and hope. If asked about books I would recommend, The Gustav Sonata is one right at the top of my list.

Achingly tender reading with Tin Man by Sarah Winman. 

41PVLWiS12L._SY346_ If any book is going to knock The Song Of Achilles off the top of my all time favourite books, then it will be this achingly tender and astonishingly beautiful book. It reminds me why I love reading. With its themes of friendship, love and the thin line that divides the two, Tin Man should be required reading for all students of English Literature in a modern and changing world.

Reliving my childhood through The Trouble with Goats and Sheep by Joanna Cannon. 

th (3) I think I fell in love with this book because I was a young child during the long hot summer in which it is set. It reminded me of simpler times, of the joy of Angels Delight, adventurous and overly imaginative minds running amok.

There have also been a few much loved non fiction books……

Natural wonder and recovering from grief with H is for Hawk by Helen MacDonald.

download (4) This is the incredibly powerful story of when Helen MacDonald decided to train a Hawk. But that is just one level of the book, because beyond this is her journey through crippling grief and how in training the hawk she found the strength to heal. I came across it in a small bookshop and bought it on impulse, having meant to read it for a few years and I am so glad I did.

Re living the Thatcher years with Maggie and Me by Damian Barr. 

download (5) Maggie and Me is one of the funniest and certainly the most memorable autobiographies I have ever read. The writer despite living through a tough childhood, told his story with remarkable warmth and great humour. I will never think of mouth wash and Tom Jones in the same way, ever again.

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Taking into account my love of theatre, I have started to collect texts from my favourite plays.

The power of theatre to call for freedom to love with The Pride by Alexi Kaye Campbell. 
516e8staf2L._AC_US218_This was an amazingly powerful, emotional, funny and complex love story and depicted the way attitudes towards homosexuality have changed. The line that will always stay with me is,

“What is the point of this stupid, painful life if not to be honest? If not to stand up for what you are in the core of your being?”

Thank you to all the authors that have made the last 50 years more amazing because of the stories you shared with me!

Blog Tour ~Review~ Maria In The Moon by Louise Beech.

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Book Summary

Long ago my beloved Nanny Eve chose my name. Then one day she stopped calling me it. I try now to remember why, but I just can’t.’

Thirty-two-year-old Catherine Hope has a great memory. But she can’t remember everything. She can’t remember her ninth year. She can’t remember when her insomnia started. And she can’t remember why everyone stopped calling her Catherine-Maria.

With a promiscuous past, and licking her wounds after a painful breakup, Catherine wonders why she resists anything approaching real love. But when she loses her home to the devastating deluge of 2007 and volunteers at Flood Crisis, a devastating memory emerges … and changes everything.

Dark, poignant and deeply moving, Maria in the Moon is an examination of the nature of memory and truth, and the defences we build to protect ourselves, when we can no longer hide…

Review

 

I would like to thank Orenda Books, Louise Beech and blog tour organiser Anne Cater for the ARC of Maria in the Moon in return for an honest review.
I have always felt that we have an intrinsic reaction to the books we read, some speak to us, while others leave us emotionless and indifferent. For me it often starts with the cover, which should speak of the story, like a portal into its very soul.
The cover of Maria In The Moon is stunning. It evokes the life of thirty-two year old Catherine Hope in free fall, floating and discounted from the world around her! While the story is a moving evocation of the part memory plays in all our lives. For each of us is made up of recollections and experiences that the shape the adults we become. It talks to the reader of the damage trauma can do, as we develop and grow. With piercing insight into the connection between emotional frailty and the physical reaction to trauma, Louise Beech delivers a poignant and emotional tale of one women’s struggle, to regain memories that always seem out of reach, but which haunt her. With a deft hand the writer takes us and Catherine on a painful journey of discovery. Because only by knocking down the walls her mind has built to protect her, can Catherine hope to heal. It’s a story that explores the frailty of our memories and how the truth though painful, if ignored can do untold damage.
In Catherine she gives us a character who is damaged and yet brave and determined to face those terrors that haunt her. There is no attempt at a trivial pull of the heart strings, it’s an emotional read and one that will affect you deeply, but your reactions will be based on the honest brutality of the experiences Catherine has buried.

Louise Beech has an instinctive understanding of her characters and their stories and delivers a story that will haunt you for weeks, maybe months after you finish it. Told with remarkable sensitivity and though difficult to read in places, needs to be read,  if we are have any hope of understanding the frail hold Catherine and other’s like her, have on the reality of events long since buried.  The actions that drive her to help others that are suffering, help us understand her more, her complex nature and extent of her bravery. You find yourself compelled to read on, to complete the journey with Catherine and to see if she can find peace and from that a life renewed.

It is without doubt a book that once read, will stay with you. It’s a stunning depiction of memory, loss and the power love has to heal.

If your already a fan of Louise Beech then Maria In The Moon will only cement the respect and love you already have for her books. If you have not read her novels, then I recommend you do, dark, poignant and moving, this new release will without doubt garner her many more fans and well deserved that will be.

Maria In The Moon can be purchased from:  Amazon/ Waterstones

Author Bio 

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Louise Beech is an exceptional literary talent, whose debut novel How To Be Brave was a Guardian Readers’ Choice for 2015. The sequel, The Mountain in My Shoe was shortlisted for Not the Booker Prize. Both books have been number one on Kindle, Audible and Kobo in USA/UK/AU. She regularly writes travel pieces for the Hull Daily Mail, where she was a columnist for ten years. Her short fiction has won the Glass Woman Prize, the Eric Hoffer Award for Prose, and the Aesthetica Creative Works competition, as well as shortlisting for the Bridport Prize twice and being published in a variety of UK magazines. Louise lives with her husband and children on the outskirts of Hull – the UK’s 2017 City of Culture – and loves her job as a Front of House Usher at Hull Truck Theatre, where her first play was performed in 2012. She is also part of the Mums’ Army on Lizzie and Carl’s BBC Radio Humberside Breakfast Show.

Louise Beech can be followed on the following social media sites:

Facebook/Twitter

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Blog Tour ~ The Keeper of Secrets by Alice Grey Sharp.

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Book summary. 

The keeper of family secrets, Patricia Roberts grows up isolated and lonely. Trust no one and you won’t be disappointed is her motto. Three men fall in love with her and she learns to trust, only to find that their agendas are not her own. With secrets concealed from her by the ultimate love of her life, and with her own secret to keep, duplicity and deceit threaten their relationship. In a coming of age story set against the sweeping backdrop of the Second World War – evacuation, the Battle of Britain, the Blitz, buzz bombs and secret war work – Patricia ultimately has to decide whether to reveal her deepest held secret for the sake of her future happiness.

Review

I would like to thank Clink Street Publishing, the author and blog tour organiser Rachel Gilbey for the ARC of this novel in return for an honest review.
Alice Graysharp has written a charming and intimate story of one young women’s journey from a teenager to a young woman, during the nightmare of WWII.
As a character Patricia is not easy to like! She is spiky and defensive, judgemental of those around her and a little bit of an intellectual snob! But as the story progresses, you can’t help but warm to her, as the reasons behind her defensive nature are revealed. By the end of the novel I not only liked her, I admired her plucky and determined personality. The author cleverly captures the spirit of the time and imbues Patricia with attitudes toward relationships and life, that so typified the period.
The story itself is very enjoyable as you experience life as a wartime evacuee and the horror of the blitz through Patricia’s story. It was also compelling how the story evoked a period of fear and death, by taking the reader on a journey through streets strewn with destroyed buildings and those that were killed. But the writer doesn’t seek to shock, using violence to scare, but simply to evoke a period where death stalked the population of Britain, in the form of German bombers and flying bombs.
Many of the images from the novel will stay with me for quite some time, as will Patricia’s determination to stick to her chosen career. While love comes her way, it is her determination and single minded spirit, which will stay with me after reading The Keeping of Secrets.
If you were fans of ITV’s The Home front, then I think you will love this highly enjoyable story from Patricia Roberts.

 

The Keeper of Secrets can be purchased from Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Author Bio

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Born and raised in the Home Counties, Alice Graysharp has enjoyed a varied working life from hospitality to office work and retail. She currently lives in Surrey. This is her first novel, and the first title in a two book series, she is also already working on a seventeenth century trilogy. Published in the anniversary month of the outbreak of the Second World War and the Battle of Britain.

Alice Graysharp can be followed via her Website

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Blog Tour ~ Review ~ Locked Up by GB Williams.

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Book summary

A prison officer and a convicted killer must work together to solve a brutal murder and expose conspiracy inside a prison.

Ariadne Teddington is surrounded by people who lie but that is to be expected when you work in prison where every man claims to be innocent.

Charlie Bell, an ex Detective, now finds himself in that prison serving time for murder after having taken the law into his own hands.

When a fellow inmate is killed Charlie is asked to investigate the case from the inside. Soon Charlie finds himself working with Ariande but she is a guard, he is an inmate and some lines should never be crossed…

Can two people on different sides of the law come together to solve the case?

And do the answers lie closer to home than anyone ever imagined?

Review

I would like to thank publishers Bloodhound books, GB Williams and Sarah Hardy for the ARC of this novel in return for an honest review.
Yet again Bloodhound books have delivered another fantastic thriller, this time from GB Williams, whose has set her action packed tale of murder and corruption inside a fictional British Prison.
I am always a little wary of reading books set behind the walls of a prison, having worked within this environment for 15 years, I find the factual inaccuracies distract me from the enjoyment of the story being told. But the writer has delivered a tale that captures the underlying threat of violence and intimidation that stalks the landings of so many prisons. It gives this novel an edgy grittiness that turns it into a real page turner. It was almost impossible to put down, though work got in the way and I was forced to. Yet the minute I left work, I returned to the story, eager to know if the violence and tension on the prison landing had broken out into a riot of violence.
Given that so many modern thrillers always seem to feature Police Officers and their sidekicks, it’s great to find a story with an original angle. Recently I read a thriller whose hero was an environmental health officer and it gave the story a refreshing angle. Having the heroes in Locked Up as a serving prisoner and prison officer means it’s both original and highly readable. These are two characters that should be on opposite sides of an unusual relationship, one that is fraught with so many possible complications that it leads to a thrilling story with multiple twists and turns.
Your going to want to know if Charlie and Ariande survive the conspiracy which plagues this prison. It will tie you up in knots trying to figure out who are the real criminals and who are those meant to enforce the will of the courts. No one is quite who they seem and that is what keeps you reading, because first appearances are deceptive.
Highly enjoyable and exciting to read, I would recommend this to any thriller lover, looking for a book with a hero whose past puts him on the wrong side of the law!

 

You can purchase Locked Up from Amazon

Author Bio

Gail Wiliams

After being made redundant in 2012, GB started taking her life-long passion for writing more seriously and looking to sell her work. Specialising in complex, fast-paced crime novels, she started writing the Locked Series in 2014, and has been working to polish and perfect since – not to mention – sell.

GB was shortlisted for the 2014 CWA Margery Allingham Short Story Competition with the story Last Shakes, now available in Last Cut Casebook. She is also a feature writer and comic book reviewer on www.warpedfactor.com. Crime novels are her stock in trade, but she has had success with short stories in various genres including steampunk, horror, erotica and general fiction. 

With bills to pay, she’s back working as a systems architect by day, a freelance fiction editor and keen writer of an evening and weekend. GB really needs to learn to sleep.

Originally from Kent, GB moved to South Wales as a supposed first step on a year around the world.  Then she met a guy.  Kept the guy, kissed the travel goodbye. Knowing that the best way to travel is by book anyway, she has always read, always written. GB now has two grown-up children, the world’s most imperious cat, a house full of books and a hard drive full of manuscripts (though some will never be allowed out of a locked basement).

GB Williams can be followed on the following social media sites.

Facebook/ Her blog / Author website /  Twitter

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Blog Tour ~ Review ~ Death Wish by Linda Huber.

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Book Summary

Secrets. Lies. Murder.

When Leo decides to go into business with his mother-in-law he soon realises his mistake. Eleanor is the mother-in-law from hell and will stop at nothing to get what she wants. Her daughter, Ashley, has her own reasons for hating her mother. The atmosphere is toxic and old wounds refuse to heal.

Next door, eight-year-old Joya has a difficult life. Her parents argue constantly and her grandmother, who lives with them, is approaching death.

Soon these two families will collide and the consequences might just be fatal…

Review

I would like to thank the publisher Bloodhound Books, author Linda Huber and blog tour organiser Sarah Hardy for the ARC of Death Wish in return for an honest review.

Bloodhound Books have a proven track record of publishing great thrillers, packed with secrets, murder and lies.  Death Wish by Linda Huber carries this on, with a story of two families whose worlds collide, in a tale of fatal consequences.

Linda Huber weaves an intricate series of events into a tale about how families in turmoil, can make decisions that could tear them apart. All the characters within this book are well written and highly believable. Little Joya is without doubt my favourite, she is the connection between the two families, caught up in the erratic, almost comical actions of the adults around her.  You can feel her mounting confusion as she tries to decipher why her parents and neighbours, are behaving in such a guilty fashion.  The dynamics within the families is also superbly drawn.  You can understand why they seem so dysfunctional and how they could end up following the path they do.  Under pressure from a domineering mum and another suffering from a life limiting disease, it all adds to the strain they are under.  Which makes their actions if not understandable or  justified, they are believable and shocking.

The writer skilfully draws all the threads of her story together to form a conclusion which will leave you shocked and unnerved. Could you to, having been caught up in a series of misadventures, follow the same path as the families in this story? You may think you wouldn’t, but Death Wish will make you question those dearly held assumptions.  It conveys a tense and anguished mood of two families in crisis.

What I enjoyed about this novel was the intimate and claustrophobic feel, as you followed the main characters down the path to a conclusion they could not avoid.

I read Death Wish in two very enjoyable sittings and would recommend it to anyone seeking a family based drama with murder at it’s heart.

You can buy Death Wish from Amazon

Author Bio

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Linda grew up in Glasgow, Scotland, but went to work in Switzerland for a year aged twenty-two, and has lived there ever since. Her day jobs have included working as a physiotherapist in hospitals and schools for handicapped children, and teaching English in a medieval castle. Not to mention several years spent as a full-time mum to two boys, a rescue dog, and a large collection of guinea pigs.

Her writing career began in the nineties, when she had over fifty short stories published in women’s magazines. Several years later, she discovered the love of her writing life – psychological suspense fiction. Her seventh novel, Death Wish, will be published by Bloodhound Books in August 2017.

Linda can be followed on Facebook / Author website / Twitter

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Blog Tour ~ Review ~ The Blood of Kings by Angela King.

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Book summary

1559. A girl arrives in London to search for her brother. Aalia, an awkward, arrogant teenager plans to bring William to his senses, until she discovers that both their lives are based on a lie. Aalia must unravel a web of secrets but has the weight of her past to contend with. Courageous and undisciplined, Aalia gradually comes to terms with the truth that William, her brother, has royal blood. Deciding to undermine the men who want to use him as a pawn, Aalia must negotiate a world where secrecy arms the powerful. But unwilling to ask for anyone’s help she is forced into making a fateful decision. Who can she trust when everyone around her is plotting? Is the truth really something worth dying for?

This epic story of secrets and betrayal paints a vivid picture of Elizabethan England and asks questions that span beyond the test of time.

Review

I would like to thank the Publishers Bombshell books, the writer Angela King and blog tour organiser Sarah Hardy for the ARC copy of this book in return for an honest review.
The Blood of Kings is an intriguing tale of a young headstrong girl Aalia, who comes to Britain to track down her brother and save him from the men, who seek to use him to dethrone Elizabeth I.
The character of Aalia was my favourite thing about this book. She is brave, beautiful and headstrong! Not for her a life as a doting wife and mother, only able to wield influence through the men she is related to! This fascinating character is determined to circumvent the men who seek to control her. Feisty, she mesmerises those around her with a beautiful singing voice and her refusal to be cowed by danger. She is not perfect, her stubborn nature gets her into many scraps and serious danger, but this is what makes her so much fun to read about. You’re never going to be bored when the lead character is as daring as Aalia.
The story is filled with the intrigue of the Tudor court and the story weaves from the hustle and bustle of the Thames out into the courts and homes of the Tudor society. We are treated to a story that takes us right into the heart Elizabethan London, down its side streets and into its Inns. Angela King weaves a story that brings the atmosphere of this period into a very enjoyable novel. There is murder, betrayal and acts of great courage as Aalia and her supporters seek to stop her brother William from making a terrible mistake. A story so full of plots that you read on just to see if Aalia will survive.

If you like you stories jam packed with adventure and treachery and your heroines brave and yet flawed, then this is the book for you.

The Blood of Kings can be purchased from Amazon

Arthur bio 

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I’ve always loved words, those little black squiggles dancing around the page lead inside a secret world – the world of imagination.

I’ve always loved writing – diaries, stories, letters – I’m a compulsive writer. My favourite task is pinning the imagined world into words – it’s also the most exciting but I’d rarely let anyone read my work.

I was born in Wimbledon but my first memories are of Clapham Common, where I lived until I was six years old. Next I moved to Kent, to an ancient village on the fringes of the Thames Estuary. I loved books and dreamed of becoming a writer – my English teacher was really encouraging – but I come from a long line of practical dreamers who need first to earn a living.

After school I went to Medway College of Art in Rochester, to study design. The course was meant to teach design techniques that could be ‘geared’ to any medium but it failed, most students dropped out before the first term ended. I ‘geared’ towards costume and embroidery and during college holidays worked at ‘Bermans and Nathans’, a company who provided costumes for film, television and theatre.

My first ‘proper’ job was working as assistant designer to the most amazing man, Bruno Stern (there’s a book waiting to be written). The company was based in Dover Street and made beautiful clothes for the rich and famous. It was a surreal place to work but after problems getting home during a year of unplanned rail strikes, I decided to find employment nearer home.

By this time I’d married – Michael King. He was working as a goldsmith in Essex and we were living in the village of Paglesham when I got a job with a local theatrical costume company. I loved my job and started writing children’s books with an illustrator friend. Together we produced two little books – ‘Olly the Octopus’ and ‘The Squeaky Knight’. In 1980 I began working on my first novel when we had a season of disasters – Michael was involved in a terrible car crash, the company where he worked went bankrupt, my old dog died and our beautiful, grade 2 listed cottage, burned down. Feeling it was time for change we moved to Cumbria.

We started our own jewellery company in 1984, working from home. We had two small children and no income. Michael manufactured while I went out selling his work at craft fairs. We struggled at first – finding customers, building a reputation. We moved to bigger premises in 2002 and now employ four jewellers and two design consultants.

While my children were growing up I studied with the Open University. I also worked for a small company which made docu-history films for museums and wrote articles for magazines and specialist publications. Then, in 2008, two very close friends died, kicking me into action – if I didn’t write my novel soon it might never be written. I joined a couple of local creative writing groups and finally allowed my imagination to run free.

In 2016 I had short stories published in three different anthologies: Dark Minds (Bloodhound Books), Happily Never After (C & P Writers) and Dot, Dot, Dot, (Wiza Words).

Angel King can be followed on her as Blog and on Twitter

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