Thursday, 31 January 2019

Saving Paludis by Clayton Graham



Title: Saving Paludis
Author: Clayton Graham
Genre: Science Fiction
Publication Date: June 2018
Publisher: Publicious Pty Ltd



Finalist in the Readers’ Favorite 2018 International Book Awards


An alien revolution centuries in the making will change mankind’s future forever …

Police agent Stefan Lattanzis never expected his planet to become a battlefield, nor Earth for that matter. But when scientists from Paludis share a technological breakthrough with Earth authorities, peace escalates to the brink of war in a hurry. It doesn’t help that the local aliens have a dangerous and mystifying agenda of their own. Meanwhile, a desperate human cult has its own plans to exploit the powerful new technology…

To keep his home world alive, Stefan must team with two strangers, a botanist and a mysterious seer. As embattled factions vie for control of the universe, the trio must trust in each other to keep the new technology from ripping time and space apart.

Saving Paludis is an electrifying sci-fi thrill-ride. If you like futuristic technology, alien political intrigue, and high-octane, paranormal action, then you’ll love Clayton Graham’s interstellar adventure!

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Excerpt:

SELMA RETURNS HOME

Rain was falling in a steady drizzle as Selma turned into the road that led to her domicile. It was not yet fully dark and the final vestiges of sunlight creeping through a solitary hole in the clouds had turned the aluminium domes of the dwellings to a blood red. The roadway, smooth and black and shiny, snaked like a ribbon through the glistening streetscape and dark, low clouds threatened to crush the buildings beneath their ponderous weight.

Strangely, she’d encountered few individuals as she walked through the streets and, like on the drive south, very little traffic. It was as if a giant hand had been placed over the mouth of Kentucky, stifling its usual raucous behaviour. Selma assumed most people were indoors and she wondered if a storm was approaching.

She stopped outside her home, unable to resist a glance back to that part of the road where she had been abducted by Serpentine. Serpentine! Where was he now? She palmed the switch, pressed the code buttons in the right sequence and her door slid open. Entering, Selma turned on the light and the door closed behind her. The rain suddenly increased in ferocity, and she heard its rattling on the dome of the house. She looked around. Nothing had been disturbed, nobody had gained entry.

She strolled into the lounge and sat down. The videoscreen stared at her blankly. Selma switched it on. There was a message scrolling across the bottom of the monitor. She stared at it in amazement, leaning forward in the chair. Then she shook her head and palmed the screen off, then back on again. The message was still there, scrolling innocuously over a documentary film displaying the attractions of Martian architecture. A change of channels did not remove the words. A cold, dark chill seemed to grip her mind and Selma just sat there, unable to move even a finger. The words clutched at her sanity:

Following a savage attack on Saltzburg, Earth forces are now occupying East Paludis. West Paludis authorities have every reason to suspect an assault on our continent is imminent. Our forces are well prepared and confident of repelling the aggressor. If you are not involved in any military or civil defence body, please stay in your homes …

After several minutes Selma rose, left the screen on, and walked through to the bedroom. She changed into her work uniform and sat on the bed, staring at the red sash of the Natural Order as it lay on the cover. If Kentucky was to be attacked, she would have been better staying with Joby and Marta. Earth forces! It didn’t make sense. Why were they here? Should she go to work? Was nurturing babies not important anymore?

She left the house and went next door. There was nobody in, so she tried further along.

“Please,” she said, as an elderly man answered the door. “What’s going on? What’s this about an invasion?” Raindrops trickled down her face.

The man looked at her quizzically. He was tall and frail with a head full of grey hair, large bags hung under his bloodshot eyes. Selma could not recall seeing him before.

“I’ve been away,” Selma added. “I don’t understand the message on the screen.”

“It’s that fool, James,” the man replied eventually. “Thinks he can take on the entire universe.”

Selma paled. “So it’s true. We’re going to be attacked.”

The man shuffled his feet. “Won’t worry me none,” he said. “I’ve had my share of implants, transplants and injections. I’m about done for this world, anyway.”

Selma backed away, turned and ran back to her home. Something niggled at her mind, something she had to do. A copter swooped low over the rooftops, the sound whining through her head, and she panicked, expecting some kind of attack. Frantically, heart beating madly, she fumbled with the door code and burst into her home. The words were still crossing the screen. She slumped in a chair, pondering what to do. She just couldn’t wait here to die!





About the Author:


As a youngster growing up in the cobbled streets of Stockport, UK, Clayton Graham read a lot of Science Fiction. He loved the ‘old school’ masters such as HG Wells, Jules Verne, Isaac Asimov and John Wyndham. As he left those formative years behind, he penned short stories when he could find a rare quiet moment amidst life’s usual distractions.

He settled in Victoria, Australia, in 1982. A retired aerospace engineer who worked in structural design and research, Clayton has always had an interest in Science Fiction and where it places humankind within a universe we are only just starting to understand.

Clayton loves animals, including well behaved pets, and all the natural world, and is a member of Australian Geographic.

Combining future science with the paranormal is his passion. ‘Milijun’, his first novel, was published in 2016. Second novel, ‘Saving Paludis’, was published in 2018. They are light years from each other, but share the future adventures of mankind in an expansive universe as a common theme.

In between the two novels Clayton has published ‘Silently in the Night’, a collection of short stories where, among many other adventures, you can sympathize with a doomed husband, connect with an altruistic robot, explore an isolated Scottish isle and touch down on a far-flung asteroid.

He hopes you can share the journeys.





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Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Secrets of Windy Springs by Valarie Savage Kinney





In the Presence of Knowing
Book 1

Keisha is pregnant and on the run from an abusive ex-boyfriend. Hiding out at Windy Springs Renaissance Festival, she discovers a world of magic.

Stepping into new and unfamiliar territory, she finds herself among people different from any she’s met before. Though she feels she’ll never fit in, Keisha finds hope when she meets Rogan, who plays the troll. As friendship blossoms into romance, she soon discovers that Rogan, as well as others at Windy Springs, have abilities beyond the average individual – abilities that the child growing within her shares as well. When danger comes to Windy Springs, she’ll need the combined powers of Rogan and his friends to keep her and the baby safe.

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When Knowing Comes
Book 2

Twisted magic pervades the enchanted forest at Windy Springs Renaissance Festival. Strange physical symptoms plague Keisha as her second season of vending at Windy Springs begins.

Violence and destruction bring fear to the festival as long-harbored secrets threaten to emerge. When stunning truths are unveiled, Keisha struggles to come to grips with a new reality. Will her relationship with Rogan withstand the coming changes or will the darkness he reveals about his past destroy the promise of their future?

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The Knowing Child
Book 3

Evie O’Connor isn’t a typical three-year-old. She hears the cries of the dead and the dying. Her burgeoning ability brings the scars of a painful past into her parent’s lives.

No matter how hard she tries to forget, the effects of neglect and abuse linger in Keisha O’Connor’s mind. Nightmares, anxiety, and something more sinister have a grip on her she can’t break. When her daughter Evie makes a terrifying announcement, the walls surrounding her perfect life come tumbling down.

At Windy Springs Renaissance Festival, the familiar isn’t what it seems. A bizarre twist of fate puts Evie in danger as the Rennies band together to save the child… and possibly take down one of their own.

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Knowing His Madness
Book 4

Life hasn’t gone the way Dashiel Winston once thought it would. His ability has destroyed his marriage, wreaked havoc on his mind, and left him weighted by the burdens of his past decisions. At fifty-seven, he lives alone with little company beyond the voices vying for attention in his head. For too many years, he’s buried himself in the fantasy life he’s created; everyone who knows him sees him as the flamboyant, addled pirate, Captain Dash. He’s loving, he’s jovial... and his heart is about to break from the terrible pain it carries.

When his deepest secrets are forced out in the open and his most treasured relationship threatened, he’s left with a choice: come clean about the decades of lies he’s built his life upon, or risk losing both his family and his sanity.





About the Author:

Valarie Kinney is a writer, fiber artist and Renaissance Festival junkie with a wicked caffeine addiction. She resides in Michigan with her husband, four children, and two insane little dogs.

She is the author of Heckled, Slither, Just Hold On, and the Secrets of Windy Springs series, as well as short stories in various anthologies.














Tuesday, 29 January 2019

Initiated to Kill by Sharlene Almond


Title: Initiated to Kill
Author: Sharlene Almond
Genre: Psychological Thriller
Publication Date: January 1, 2015


Initiated to Kill tells the story of an infamous historical serial killer, connecting to present-day events in Seville, Spain. Annabella Cordova quickly becomes embroiled in the conspiracy involving the university she studies at. Her life is turned into chaos when her friend disappears, seven days later a gruesome package is delivered to Andres Valero; the troubled detective, returning from forced leave, only to be faced with horrific crimes that brings his memories to the surface.

Annabella's past collides with her present, a traumatic childhood event leaving her deaf and without both of her parents. Her ability to read facial and body language in people leads her to discover parallels from an earlier century.

Annabella and Andres must use their skills to track a brilliant killer; a psychopath exploring the mind and actions of an infamous serial killer, and how his crimes are linked to a controversial conspiracy, only he can unravel.

The novel continuously takes the reader back in time to the 19th century; creating a psychological profile of the serial killer that wanders the London streets, his paintings depicting crimes only seen by a killer’s eyes.

Annabella and Andres combined must stop this person at any cost, and reveal a conspiracy hidden for centuries.


Excerpt:


Prologue
January, 1888

      The solemn lodge hid from unworthy eyes, unnoticeable forgotten place made of granite. Two Sphinx-like granite lions with women’s heads peered down from the entrance of the lodge. An ‘ankh’ adorned the lion’s neck entwined with a cobra. An image of a woman embellished the neck and breast of the other lion, speaking of fertility and procreation.
      Fervent men slowly made their way up the three levels of narrowing steps, passing under the two Egyptian swords with curved serpentine blades, and through the two tall bronze doors.
      One man glanced up as he ascended the steps, silently mouthing “the temple of the Supreme Council Freemasons,” made of brass letters and set into stone. He looked toward the plaque cut into stone, “Freemasonry Builds Its Temples in the Hearts of Men and Among Nations.”
      Stone columns grew tall, high above the entrance and partially concealed an image of an Egyptian god, backed with radiating sun and flanked by six large golden snakes. He entered into the lodge entirely made of marble, exotic wood and statues carved from gold.
      The offices, dining room, Council room, temple room and meeting room were decorated with many symbols, especially the serpent, and portraits of famous and influential men lined the walls. The lights shone above the men, resembling stars in the dark blue sky. And the golden serpents slightly watched in the blue heavens.
      The dark-headed man slowly removed his clothes and put on the long black robe, placing a hood over his head to partially conceal his face.
      In the recesses of the ancient temple, an ornately decorated room is filled with candles, lighting the way for the men filing in. Dressed in long black robes, hands pressed solemnly together, slowly the row of men trudge into the Temple room. Each with their face down and instinctively form a large circle in the room.
      The room fell with a deathly silence, then ‘knock, knock, knock.’ The Worshipful Master spoke, “You will admit him in the name of the Grand Architect of the Universe, and let him be placed in the West.”
      Gradually the door creaked open, and a young man enters with a black robe and the left knee and breast exposed. The young man’s face covered by the dark cloth and led around the circle by a rope around his neck. The candidate is lead to the oath of secrecy where the Worshipful Master stands. A sword is pricked to the candidate’s left breast.
      “As this is a prick to the flesh at this time, so may the remembrance of it be to your conscience hereafter, should you ever attempt improperly to reveal any of the secrets with which you are about to be entrusted.”
      The group silently watch as the candidate is instructed to kneel with his left knee bare and bent, his right foot forming a square and the body being erect in that square. The left hand supports the Volume of the Sacred Law, compass and square and right hand placed thereon.
       “ ‘Vouch safe Thine Aid, Almighty Father, Grand Architect of the Universe, to this our present conviction. Grant that this Candidate for Masonry, now kneeling before thee, may dedicate and devote his life to thy Service, and become a true and faithful Brother amongst us. To this end endue him with such a competency of thy Divine Wisdom, that assisted by the secrets of our Royal Masonic Art, he may be better enabled to display the beauties of true godliness to the Honour and glory of Thy Most Holy Name.’ ”
      “ ‘I do most solemnly and sincerely promise and swear to have my throat cut across, my tongue torn out by the roots, and my body buried in the rough sands of the sea at low water mark, where the tide ebbs and flows in twenty-four hours ... should I ever knowingly or willingly violate this my solemn oath or obligation as an Entered Apprentice Mason. So help me God.’ ”
      The young man is then presented with white gloves and escorted to the pedestal in the East to become an Entered Apprentice.
      Throughout the ceremony the dark-haired man’s heart skipped excitedly. Another man would join them, and this man would be the one. He had done a lot to encourage them to allow this man to be initiated.
      He would help him achieve their ultimate goal and reign supreme.

      A candlelit chamber houses a secret meeting where four men sit around a table, each wearing the long black robes and only talking above a whisper.
      “The time has come to make our stand and proclaim to our Brothers that it’s time. It’s our time to cause such a panic, that people will not know whom to turn to. That the reliance on religion and government will pass. It’s our time to take control, and whoever does not stand behind us will fall.”
      “Yes, we must give a sign to our Brothers that can only be recognised by them, but will shock the world over again.”


Author Bio:

I have a diploma in Body Language and Criminology, enabling me to explicitly portray my main character. Living in Auckland, New Zealand with my two dogs and partner, I enjoy watching documentaries about history and conspiracy theories, giving me ideas for my next books. At 31 years old, I have a diploma in Cognitive Behavioural therapy, Freelance Journalism, and Editing and proofreading; giving me the ability to better understand the human mind, writing about it in manner her readers can understand and connect with.

I have also started up two additional websites: Body, Mind and Health services and Animal Health and Welfare Services:

Both websites are based around my qualifications in Counselling, Personal training, human and animal nutrition, Animal behaviour and Natural therapies.




Monday, 28 January 2019

Caged Fire by L.M. Preston


Title: Caged Fire
Series: The Vigilant Book 1
Author: L.M. Preston
Genre: NA/Urban Fantasy
Publication Date: March 7th, 2019


They say you can't run away from your problems. EmVee knew from experience it was true. She and her father tried to run, until the truth came and got them. Now with nothing to lose, she must confront the monster that changed her life forever. Unfortunately, she has to work with his best friend, Kayson who she is almost sure, isn't quite as nice as he seems. Kayson revealed not just why her father disappeared, but a new world of mmagicalthat wanted the debt he left behind to be paid.




Insatiable Darkness - Book 0 Caged Fire - Book 1 Unbreakable Darkness - Book 1.5


Excerpt:

“Look kid, your father’s time is running cold. They are on to us, too many lives are at stake if either of you get caught.” Rocky handed her a thumb drive. “It’s a matter of your life and his death. He owes me, and I owe another a favor.”

“You give it to him,” EmVee replied evenly, checking her emotions and desire to punch the guy and run.

“No, this is where my road ends. Remember. Remember the name to nowhere and the code is your father’s real name. If you are his daughter. He would have told it to you, it’s a safe-word of sorts. I’m tired of running and they made sure I don’t have anything to run to. My son, he’s out there somewhere, and I’ll die taking the name of his safe-place with me. He’ll be free of them, both of them. Max and you have a chance. Don’t forget my name. It’ll mean something someday I hope. Run. Run now.” Rocky grasped her wrist, yanked it toward him, and placed the thumb drive in her hand.

EmVee looked at the drive, squeezed it in her palm.

Rocky tossed something in his mouth and pushed her back. “Look away, kid.” His body started convulsing. He groaned and collapsed, eyes open and staring towards the moon teased by dark clouds.

Sweat slid from under her drawn hoodie. Why’d he’d do it? They could’ve taken him to a hospital.

She glanced around quickly, then went for Rocky’s pockets. She reached in his jacket, flesh and entrails had spilled from his waist and into his coat. EmVee jerked back, shook her head a shaky sigh escaped her lips. She bit down on her lip and did what she had to do. In his jacket she found his cellphone and put it in her back pocket. His wallet she stuffed in the side pocket of her backpack. There was nothing else.

Putting her hand over her nose, swallowing back the tangy taste of vomit. She reached over and closed Rocky’s blue eyes. She’d never forget them.



Author Links

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Sunday, 27 January 2019

An Unconventional Affair by Mollie Blake



Title: A Risk Worth Sharing
Series: An Unconventional Affair Book 2
Author: Mollie Blake
Genre: Erotic romance suspense
Publication Date: 26th January 2019


This second part of An Unconventional Affair finds Barrington Stone working in Australia for a year. Tranquility “Tee” Hammond, fifteen years his senior, has ended their affair, but for Barrington it was never over. He can’t wait for the year to pass to go back to her. However, after a drunken encounter, with a woman he later discovers is a sex worker, his life is changed forever. How can he possibly leave Australia, now that he has a daughter?

After accepting that Barrington won’t be coming back to the UK, Tee rekindles her relationship with the charming-yet-unconventional Sebastian Chandler, owner of a motorsports racetrack. Although living with Sebastian is “complicated” and life for the couple isn’t perfect, they are settled and Tee is happy.

But everything changes when Barrington returns. Tee’s heart is in turmoil, and Sebastian is afraid he will lose the woman he loves. As the plot thickens and twists unravel, Barrington must decide if there is one risk worth sharing.



Author Bio:

Mollie Blake is a published author of contemporary romance. A lover of reading sexy stories, Mollie decided to go one step further and write her own. Her romances are filled with danger and peppered with hot sexy scenes. She is a member of International Thriller Writers and UK Romantic Novelists Association.





*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.







Saturday, 26 January 2019

Awakening The Trinity by Brittany Elise


Title: Awakening the Trinity
Author: Brittany Elise
Genre: YA Supernatural Fiction
Publication Date: September 2018


In the seventeenth-century, an all-powerful witch called Rionach the Dark ruled the Celtic nations with an army of enslaved werewolves. In order to restore balance between Light and Dark, the Trinity of Light was summoned to vanquish the Dark Witch and end the Battle of the Dark Ages.

Seventeen-year-old Quinn Callaghan lives in the small, rustic town of Silver Mountain. Its location may be rural, but it is home to an ancient pine forest that surrounds a supernatural hotspot–a nexus of raw and powerful energy.

When a charismatic witch from Ireland, and a mysterious guy with a secret of his own are drawn to the area, Quinn finds out that she inherited her rare abilities from a revered ancestor. Could it be that she shares a bloodline with the Original Trinity? Nearly 300 years later, the Darkness is returning to Silver Mountain, and the Trinity must stop it.



My Review:

This first book in a young adult supernatural series is written from Quinn's point of view, and is an enjoyable and quick read.
Quinn is an inexperienced witch who isn't always happy with her powers and knows little about witchcraft as her mother died before teaching her. She lives with her Dad, and all is well with her and her best friend, Anna (Annabelle), as long as Quinn doesn't come into contact with anyone's blood!

When a new guy turn up in the small town of Silver Mountain, Quinn can sense he's a supernatural being but doesn't know what he is. However, she's determined to find out, as he attends the same school and they are drawn to each other.

Quinn has to accept her powers and learn to use them effectively, as only a powerful light witch can fight the dark and dangerous power that has resurfaced after hundreds of years.

This is a well-paced story, with engaging characters, and a mix of magic, mystery, and teen romance.

Though there is an ending to this book, there is obviously much more to follow!


Author Bio:

My love for writing began at a very young age–way before I could even type on a keyboard. I was always writing short stories and poems with a fan club of one (my mom.) I never stopped writing, but I don’t think I believed in myself enough to actually pursue it as a career. When I enrolled in college, I took as many creative writing classes as they offered, and ended up graduating with a degree in photography and minoring in English.

I enjoy art in all its forms, but writing has always been my first love. Even when I was pursuing other careers, writing was always my go-to comfort.

I later became an animal obedience instructor and met a children’s author through my dog training. She helped me get my foot through the door, so to speak, and I haven’t turned back since. During the day, I manage an FBO at my local hometown airport, and by night, I dive into my writing with my husband and my four-legged children by my side.




Friday, 25 January 2019

A Heart in the Right Place by Heide Goody and Iain Grant


Title: A Heart in the Right Place
Authors: Heide Goody and Iain Grant
Genre: Comedy Horror
Publication Date: 30th November, 2018


All Nick wants to do is take his dying father for a perfect father-son weekend in the Scottish Highlands. It’s not much to ask, is it? A log cabin, a roaring fire, a bottle of fine whisky and two days to paper over the cracks in their relationship.

However, Nick didn’t plan on making the trip with a dead neighbour in the back of his car. Or the neighbour’s dog. He really didn’t plan on being pursued by a psychotic female assassin intent on collecting body parts. And he really, really didn’t plan on encountering a platoon of heavily armed mercenaries, or some very hungry boars, or a werewolf.

A Heart in the Right Place - a horror comedy about setting out with the very best intentions and then messing everything up.




Excerpt:

A Heart in the Right Place is a comedy horror novel about Nick and Tony, a son and father on a weekend away together. Little does Tony realise that Nick has hidden the corpse of their neighbour, Oz Bingley, in the boot of the car (for complicated and silly reasons). Little does Nick realise that two criminals, Adam and Finn, need Oz’s body (for other complicated and silly reasons). In this extract, Adam and Finn, visit a nursing home in their attempts to track down Oz…

      Outside the Avebury Court nursing home in Birmingham there was silence. At one o’clock in the morning it wasn’t a huge surprise.
      “How will we find Doreen Bingley?” whispered Adam, scanning the large, mock-Georgian frontage.
      “What details did you find out?” asked Finn, not bothering to whisper.
      “Mr Argyll pays her bills, so we know she’s a resident. I haven’t got a room number or anything.”
      “Well, we can either hope they are prepared to come to the door and let us in,” said Finn, picking up a brochure from the covered porch, “or we make them all come outside.”
      “And how might we do that?”
      “We set off the fire alarm.”
      “The fire alarm?”
      She rolled up the brochure and pulled a lighter from her pocket.
      “Oh. Right, that’s a bit...” He pulled a face. “A place like this will have their alarms linked to the fire brigade control room, you know.”
      There was a garage attached to the side of the sprawling house: a brick structure with wooden doors, built in an age when cars were far narrower. A shoulder barge broke the wood around the lock. Thirty seconds later Finn re-emerged with a squeezy bottle of lighter fluid, a hi-vis workman’s tabard, and cobwebs all over her Muubaa.
      She threw the tabard at Adam. He caught it and held the mouldy item gingerly in disgust. “What’s this for?”
      “Looks authoritative,” she said. “Now: back door.”
      She doused the edge of the brochure with lighter fluid, lit and carefully posted it through the front door.
      They waited on the back lawn. It took three minutes for the alarms to go off: a shrill shock of a noise in the early morning. Lights came on almost immediately. It was another two minutes before the first people emerged.
      “This way,” said Adam, waving them over. “Everyone assemble here.”
      The residents shuffled onto the lawn, some with the aid of Zimmer frames. Most of them were wet as well. Obviously the building had a sprinkler system.
      “Ladies this way, men over there,” Adam called. The hi-vis did indeed give him an authoritative air. “Doreen Bingley?” Adam asked each lady as they passed. He received a variety of responses, from a polite “No” through sleepy (or dementia-fuelled) confusion, right up to shocked outrage from the more security-conscious oldies.
      “Who are you?” demanded one feisty old biddy.
      “We’re here for your safety,” said Adam.
      “Has Audrey signed you in?”
      “Everything’s fine.”
      “We know what elder abuse is. I’m not afraid to call Esther Rantzen.”
      “I’m sure you’re not,” said Adam.
      Finn left him to it and moved through the crowd. “Where’s Audrey?” she asked. A damp and scowling crone pointed out a stout woman in a towelling gown, pushing a white-haired man in a wheelchair.
      “Audrey?” called Finn.
      “Yes?” The woman squinted. “Who are you?”
      “You see this?” asked Finn. She held up the lighter fluid so Audrey could read the label.
      “I struggle without my glasses,” said the woman, squinting. “I—”
      “You see this?” repeated Finn. She squirted a good quantity of fluid into the white-haired man’s lap.
      “My pyjamas are leaking again!” he declared.
      “See this?” Finn pulled out her lighter.
      “You’re crazy,” said Audrey, finding her voice. “The police are on their way.”
      “Not soon enough. Where is Doreen Bingley?”
      Audrey’s brow creased. She was having trouble understanding.
      Finn flicked her lighter. The little flame brought the woman’s attention into sudden focus. “Doreen’s dead.”
      “Dead? When?”
      “Been a week or more now. It was her heart in the end.”
      “Oz? Her son?”
      “Yes?”
      “Seen him?”
      “He’s been in a couple of times to sort out her stuff. He said he was staying at her old house. Please put the lighter down. Rob here hasn’t done anything to deserve this.”
      “I need new pyjamas!” announced the old man.
      “Where is he?” asked Finn.
      “Who?”
      “Oz.”
      “I don’t know! I think he’s staying in his mom’s old place. You know, making arrangements.”
      “Do you know the address?”
      “Yes, it’s Langford Drive or something like it. I—”
      Finn took her picture; Audrey blinked at the flash. She tried to rub her eyes, but Finn grabbed her wrist, twisting it in a subtle but wonderfully agonising way, and marched her round to the driveway and their car. Finn whistled and waved for Adam.
      By the time the blue lights of the fire engines appeared along the road, they were accelerating away, a discarded hi-vis tabard left on the pavement.


Author Bio:

Heide Goody is the stupid one in the writing partnership and Iain Grant is the sensible one. Together, they are the authors of over a dozen books.

The ‘Clovenhoof’ series (in which Satan loses his job and has to move to Birmingham) has recently been optioned by a Hollywood production company.

Heide and Iain are both married, but not to each other.






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Thursday, 24 January 2019

The Monsoon Ghost Image by Tom Vater


Title: The Monsoon Ghost Image
Series: The Detective Maier Mystery Series Book 3
Author: Tom Vater
Genre: Crime fiction


Dirty Pictures, Secret Wars And Human Beasts – Detective Maier Is Back To Investigate The Politics Of Murder

The third Detective Maier mystery is a taut and crazy spy thriller for our disturbing times.

When award-winning German conflict photographer Martin Ritter disappears in a boating accident in Thailand, the nation mourns the loss of a cultural icon. But a few weeks later, Detective Maier’s agency in Hamburg gets a call from Ritter’s wife. Her husband has been seen alive on the streets of Bangkok. Maier decides to travel to Thailand to find Ritter. But all he finds is trouble and a photograph.

As soon as Maier puts his hands on the Monsoon Ghost Image, the detective turns from hunter to hunted – the CIA, international business interests, a doctor with a penchant for mutilation and a woman who calls herself the Wicked Witch of the East all want to get their fingers on Martin Ritter’s most important piece of work – visual proof of a post 9/11 CIA rendition and the torture of a suspected Muslim terrorist on Thai soil. From the concrete canyons of the Thai capital to the savage jungles and hedonist party islands of southern Thailand, Maier and his sidekick Mikhail race against formidable foes to discover some of our darkest truths and to save their lives into the bargain.


Excerpt:

Detective Maier arrives in Bangkok, Thailand’s capital, and lets the city’s downtown area wash over him.

The City Glows

People came to Bangkok to roll around in it, to wallow in its neon-lit troughs, to commune with its countless ghosts on crumbling street corners, to fall into its cheaply perfumed sheets, to experience vulgarity at its least refined and most institutionalized. The Thai capital was something else – eleven million souls and then some, crammed onto a skyscraper-strewn flood plain on the banks of the tarry Chao Praya River that snaked like a python stuffed with garbage and miscreants towards the Gulf of Thailand.

There was nothing to look at in downtown Bangkok, but there was plenty to see.

From morning to morning, a haze of mediocrity hung above the area, an insipid film of average - best reflected in the prevalence of Hitler T-Shirts in the tourist markets, the alleys populated by hustlers, the overpriced restaurants selling Thai food no Thai would eat, the awful cover bands that churned out uninspired, hollow rock standards to drunken degenerates, the mean, beady eyes of white men and Arabs that poked out of decrepit sports bars and followed passers-by like persistent venereal diseases, the incredible cacophony of terrible tattoos displayed on wilting flesh, and the thousands of burnt out and beaten women who were waiting to open their legs, mouths and asses for less than 50 bucks.

War lords, perverts, sex fiends, bank robbers, murderers, white collar criminals, illustrious devotees of both the short and the long con, fugitives from all five continents and a whole lot of people that didn’t quite fit into any category of the above but veered from suspect to unsound dropped by. The Thais welcomed them all the way Europeans welcomed Santa Claus, like an old, rather distant friend who came to play and left presents.

Fellinis, that’s what Maier called the holiday psychos who arrived in their thousands every day. These men roamed the night life strips of Nana, Patpong and Soi Cowboy, hungry expressions on their taut, love-starved faces as they scanned thousands of women, men and transgenders, looking for the one. The one. The one who’d agree to be abused in exchange for cash, in whatever way the client dreamed up.

The Thais smiled into this ongoing tropical apocalypse of crass impunity tempered by an unhealthy dose of gonorrhea, superstition and chili sauce, with exceptional detachment. One had to go with it, float in its odd current, soak up its magic. Politicians relied on fortune tellers. Sacred tattoos that stopped bullets and attracted partners of the opposite sex and, of course, money, were highly sought after. Bangkok was really all about the money in the right pockets, to keep the locals either driving fancy foreign SUVs, or living impoverished in the shadows of concrete fly-overs.


Author Bio:

Tom Vater has published four crime novels and is the co-owner of Crime Wave Press, a Hong Kong based crime fiction imprint. He writes for many publications including The Wall Street Journal, The Daily Telegraph, CNN and The Nikkei Asian Review. He is a best-selling non-fiction writer and co-author of the highly acclaimed Sacred Skin (www.sacredskinthailand.com).






Wednesday, 23 January 2019

The Hairy Hand by Robin Bennett


Title: The Hairy Hand
Author: Robin Bennett
Genre: Children’s Gothic / Adventure
Publication Date: 19th January, 2019
Target Age: MG (8-12 years)


A scary adventure for 8-12 year olds, full of jokes, magical familiars and a Dickensian cast. When Septimus inherits a magical, treasure-finding Hairy Hand from his uncle, life suddenly becomes a lot more exciting - and dangerous!


My Review:

I enjoyed this humorous and moderately gruesome read which, I think, will appeal to its target audience.
Septimus Plog, or Sept for short, doesn't have the best upbringing and doesn't fit in in his village. An unexpected inheritance from his uncle, a powerful magician, changes that.
Sept embarks on a journey, not only to find his late uncles home, but also to find himself and to stand up for what is right.
There's an amazing cast of ghastly characters, including Sept's parents, Plog the Sneaker and Gertrude!
A fun and adventurous fantasy story of good versus bad, determination and resisting temptation.



Author Bio:

Robin Bennett is an author and entrepreneur who has written several books for children, adults, and everything in between. Listed in the Who’s Who of British Business Excellence at 29, his 2016 documentary "Fantastic Britain", about the British obsession with fantasy and folklore, won best foreign feature at the Hollywood International Independent Documentary Awards, and his first book for young adults, Picus the Thief, won the Writer's News Indie Published Book of the Year Award in 2012.










The Faberge Entanglement by Lesley Meryn & Elle Brookes


Title: The Faberge Entanglement
Authors: Lesley Meryn & Elle Brookes
Genre: Romance, Thriller, Suspense, Adventure
Date Published: July 2015


Sabinne ‘Saber’ Darrieux’s father, the billionaire CEO of Frontenac Global Security has been kidnapped. His ransom is not cash in a numbered offshore account, or a briefcase of Bearer Bonds but something utterly unique, incredibly valuable, and until recently, hidden away from the world.

The kidnapper seems to know Saber very well and knows that the next day, through her work as an elite translator she will be in the same location as the Object. She must steal the Object and deliver it to the kidnapper to ransom her father.

Adrian Steele, a British Intelligence agent has just come off of two harrowing missions. Upon returning to London for a well-earned rest, he learns that his friend and a fellow agent have been murdered in Moscow, but not before he made use of a unique Object as a mobile ‘drop site’ for the valuable intelligence he was carrying.

The drop site is traveling from Moscow to England. Steele insists on completing the mission to honor the death of his friend, Gerry Cornell.

At an ultra-chic quasi-diplomatic gathering in a mansion in Windsor, England, Saber and Steele meet and find themselves faced with a powerful, undeniable attraction. But at the moment, this compelling attraction is very inconvenient.

In reality, they are at the mansion to check out the security arrangements — for their own reasons — to steal the Object, a FabergĂ© egg worth thirty million dollars. But who will get to the egg first?

Fabergé eggs are very famous for their unique surprises. Saber and Steele are about to be very surprised, indeed.

And when Saber clashes with Steele; more than sparks will explode!


Excerpt:

         The engine of the performance-tuned Mini roared under his expert handing as he shifted into higher gear. Her eyes flickered down to the tachometer, then to his serious profile.
         "Why do you want the egg?" Saber asked bluntly. She glanced out the window, recognizing the road turning. She had to do something quickly or she would be lost. In more ways than one.
         "If I told you, then I'd have to kill you,” he replied through a clenched jaw, only half joking.
         "Kiss me again, and it'll be worth it," she whispered as she leaned into him. Her warm breath tickled his ear. She edged even closer.
         She reached down pulling up hard on the parking brake with her right hand, grabbing the steering wheel with her left at the same time. She wrestled with the wheel, trying to maintain control as the little Mini Cooper S wove madly from side to side, spun in a half circle and shuddered to a stop in the deserted road.
         He stared at her, looking deep into her bottomless eyes.
         She stared back into his eyes, licking her lips.
         "You've got very interesting ideas about foreplay," his voice just barely above a whisper, his heart thundering faster than before.
         "Is that what this is?" she asked of him, breathless.
         "Isn't it?"



About the Authors:

Lesley Meryn

Enjoyed an exotic, adventure-filled childhood, following her anthropologist father and travel writer mother to the farthest corners of the world. She later took inspiration from her Aunt Sophia Francesca and became the author of romantic adventure novels. She alternates her time between Los Angeles, and a family property located in Yorkshire England.



Elle Brookes

She is the author of the first two books of the Time Frame Series. Loves travel, discovering new foods to try, reading and writing. She currently lives in the central highlands of Costa Rica with her cat Nikola and her hedgehog Quiller.









RABT Book Tours & PR


Tuesday, 22 January 2019

Mistress of Desire & The Orchid Lover ~ The Quest!

by J. A. Jackson




Neither Tiara Blake or Delmar Devereaux has a past to be proud of. With a joint history packed with dishonesty, blackmail—and a juicy, torrid love affair—the pair didn’t expect their paths would cross again.

Can a quest to break an ancient curse give two former lovers a second chance?

After a torrid love affair, shady businessman Delmar Devereaux disappeared from Tiara Blake’s life, leaving her to raise their twin sons on her own. So, when he shows up unannounced one day, her first instinct is to kick him to the curb.

But Delmar has discovered a centuries-old curse placed on the pair by their ancestors—and he needs Tiara’s help to break it. Ending the curse means they will have to learn to trust each other, which won’t be easy when their explosive secrets are revealed.

Once again torn between lust and duty, can Delmar and Tiara discover the true meaning of love in order to break the curse before it’s too late? Or will their complicated past doom them forever?

Join Delmar and Tiara in Book II of the Mistress of Desire and the Orchid Lover on their sensually sizzling action-packed adventure!


Excerpt:

Delmar’s voice was sad and serious. “I come to ask the three of you for your help. I have nowhere else to turn. The courts won’t help me. The legal system is useless,” his words tumbled out. “You see, for it was I, who started my problem in the first place, and well the courts won’t even hear my case,” he sighed heavily.

Glenda sighed. “This sounds serious if you can’t use your money to persuade the courts.”

“It is serious,” Delmar assured them. “Let me go back to the beginning. Perhaps you were aware of my case in court almost a year ago, concerning the twin sons, that Tiara Blake, had?”

“Yes, of course, it was all over the news,” Consuelo stated, in an excited Spanish accent.

“Yeah, I heard all about it too,” Nona said glumly. “The DNA found you were not the father and those tests are normally 100% accurate.”

“Yes, they are supposed to be. But there are ways around them,” Delmar paused. “You see a root worker, a spell caster. She assured me, that she could cast a spell that would exclude me as the father of the twins.”

Glenda interrupted. “Yes, but everyone knows that DNA is 100 percent foolproof and it doesn't lie. No spellcaster or root worker can mess with biological DNA.”

“Glenda is right,” Nona stated. “DNA tests are considered infallible – they are the gold standard in court.”



About the Author:

J.A. Jackson is the pseudonym for an author, who loves to write deliciously sultry adult romantic, suspenseful, entertaining novels with a unique twist. She lives in an enchanted little house she calls home in the Northern California foothills.

She spent over ten years working in the non-profit sector where she wrote grants, press releases and contributed many stories to their newsletter. She was their Newsletter editor for over ten years. She loves growing roses, a good pot of hot tea, chocolate, magical stories, suspense stories, ghost stories, and reading Jane Austen again and again in her past time.



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