#BlogTour #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : The Girl with the Emerald Flag – Kathleen McGurl @KathMcGurl @HQstories

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

The Girl With The Emerald Flag

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘The Girl with the Emerald Flag’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing a

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About the Author :

Kathleen McGurl author photoKathleen McGurl lives near the coast in Christchurch, England. She writes dual timeline novels in which a historical mystery is uncovered and resolved in the present day. She is married to an Irishman and has two adult sons. She enjoys travelling, especially in her motorhome around Europe and has of course visited Ireland many times.

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About the Book :

Kathleen McGurl author photoA country rebelling
It’s 1916 and, as war rages in Europe, Gráinne leaves her job in a department store to join Countess Markiewicz’s revolutionary efforts. It is a decision which will change her life forever. A rebellion is brewing, and as Dublin’s streets become a battleground, Gráinne soon discovers the personal cost of fighting for what you believe in…
A forgotten sacrifice
Decades on, student Nicky is recovering from a break-up when a research project leads her to her great-grandmother’s experiences in revolutionary Ireland. When Nicky finds a long-forgotten handkerchief amongst her great-grandmother’s things, it leads to the revelation of a heartbreaking story of tragedy and courage, and those who sacrificed everything for their country.
Inspired by a heartbreaking true story, this emotional historical novel will sweep you away to the Emerald Isle. Perfect for fans of Jean Grainger, Sandy Taylor and Fiona Valpy.

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The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #TheCoffeePotBookClub @cathiedunn / #PromoPost : Wolves of Wagria (Olaf’s Saga, Book 3) – Eric Schumacher @DarkAgeScribe #Viking #HistoricalFiction

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

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Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘Wolves of Wagria’ blogtour, organised by The Coffee Pot Book Club.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing a

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About the Author :

Eric Schumacher authorEric Schumacher discovered his love for writing and medieval European history at a very early age, as well as authors like J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Bernard Cornwell, Jack Whyte, and Wilbur Smith. Those discoveries fueled his imagination and continue to influence the stories he tells. His first novel, God’s Hammer, was published in 2005.

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About the Book :

Eric Schumacher authorThree kingdoms. Two friends. Only one way to survive.
For fans of Bernard Cornwell and Conn Iggulden comes the tale of Olaf Tryggvason and his adventures in the battle-scarred kingdom of Wagria.
It is AD 972. Olaf Tryggvason and his oath-sworn protector, Torgil, are once again on the move. They have left the Rus kingdom and now travel the Baltic Sea in search of plunder and fame. But a fateful storm lands them on the Vendish coastline in a kingdom called Wagria.
There, they find themselves caught between the aggression of the Danes, the political aspirations of the Wagrian lords, and the shifting politics in Saxland. Can they survive or will they become just one more casualty of kingly ambitions?
Find out in this harrowing sequel to the best-selling Forged by Iron and Sigurd’s Swords.

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This book is available to read on #KindleUnlimited.

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The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : The Accidental Detective – Melvyn Small @melsmallwriter @northernholmes

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

The Accidental Detective

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘The Accidental Detective’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing a

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About the Author :

MelSmallProfileBorn in Stockton-on-Tees and raised in nearby Billingham, Mel left Northfield Comprehensive School at 16 to train as a civil engineering technician at Cleveland County Council Surveyor and Engineer’s Department. It was during this time, spent either at a drawing board or on the clever end of a theodolite that, following a rather sharp haircut, he was bestowed the nickname Melvis. Thanks go out to Joan the tea lady for that one. Fortunately Mel is not a vengeful chap and has not once even considered informing HM Revenue and Customs of Joan’s illicit below-the-tea-trolley line in Kitkats and Marathons. Whether Mel retains any likeness to the King of Rock ‘n’ Roll is debatable, however even the most imaginative would now concede he is less GI Blues and more the Vegas years. Mel loves a parmo.
On the completion of his traineeship at the council, which included BTEC qualifications studied on day release at both Cleveland Technical College and Teesside Polytechnic, Mel relinquished his unused right to countersign passport applications and photographs, and left local government for a period of employment in the private sector. This included stays at WS Atkins, WA Fairhurst and, perhaps his spiritual home, the now defunct Bullen Consultants Limited. During this period, interrupted by a bachelor’s degree in civil and structural engineering at the University of Sheffield, Mel undertook a lot of modelling work. Three-dimensional ground modelling work to be precise, Mel’s use of isopachyte analysis being now the thing of legend.
A natural engineer, Mel expanded his capability into that of hydraulic engineering soon forming quite a reputation in the fields of both storm water drainage and sewerage design, his skills in this area being such that he soon earned the honorary title of the Shitman. It’s no exaggeration to state that Mel has forgotten more about storm water attenuation than most people will ever know.
Feeling more inclined to a digital era the modelling shitman left the world of roundabout entry deflection and balancing ponds to embark on a career in information technology. Following a master’s degree in information processing at the University of York, he gained employment in the IT department of a large financial services organisation. It wasn’t his fault. None of it. Honest.
With respect to the written word, Mel’s efficient writing style is perhaps the requirement of both engineering and computer science to communicate in a concise manner. The comedy in his literary output being more of a function of a Teesside upbringing. Mel’s first foray into the world of creative writing came in the form of slogans for leading tee shirt retailer Shot Dead In The Head. Mel’s work included the popular ”What Part Of Theoretical Physics Do You Not Understand?” and “If You Can Read This You Are Too Close”.
Upping the word count considerably into that of fictional crime writing, Mel’s first printed work Holmes Volume 1 and the imaginatively titled Holmes Volume 2. The reviews for this reimagining of Sherlock Holmes a dry-witted, working class northerner plying his trade in current day Middlesbrough have been amazing. If you would like a copy of these classics including their cult cover art, act quickly, They will soon disappear to be republished as The Accidental Detective series in November 2022. This will include a new volume of stories including The Darlington Substitution. and two new feature length stories.
And it doesn’t end there. Mel has now turned his writing skills to music and Project Melv!s. The debut single from this initiative, Provisionally Yours, was released in September 2021 and was followed up with The Perfect EP at the end of 2021. Work on an album of original music is currently underway. It’s shaping up to be something quite special.
If you would like an email providing updates on Mel’s various endeavours please sign up to the newsletter.

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About the Book :

Never SUE (5)Thrown together by the British legal system, Holmes and his court appointed psychologist, Dr John Watson, seem an unlikely pairing… but sometimes the stars align.
Our two heroes are soon drawn into a series of riotous adventures that both bewilder and beguile. Holmes’ mastery of data, deduction and logic combines with his gin-dry wit and a casual contempt for life-threatening danger to ensure there is never a dull moment as he and the good doctor battle the mysteries that have the local constabulary baffled.
The game is afoot… oh yes!

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The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#PublicationDayPush #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #Excerpt : Never Rescue a Rogue – Virginia Heath @VirginiaHeath_

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

Never Rescue a Rogue

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘Never Rescue a Rogue’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing an extract, but first I have some information

About the Author :

Never SUE (5)When Virginia Heath was a little girl it took her ages to fall asleep, so she made up stories in her head to help pass the time while she was staring at the ceiling. As she got older, the stories became more complicated, sometimes taking weeks to get to the happy ending. Then one day, she decided to embrace the insomnia and start writing them down. Twenty-five books and three Romantic Novel of the Year Award nominations later, and it still takes her forever to fall asleep.

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About the Book :

Skullsvengeance_eBookWhy on earth would she want to kiss him when he vexed her so?
Diana Merriwell and Giles Sinclair only tolerate one another for the sake of their nearest and dearest. Everyone believes that they are meant to be together, but Diana and Giles know that it is animosity, not attraction, that fuels their barbed exchanges. Anyway, Diana loves her freedom too much to give it up for marriage, and Giles is happily wedded to his bachelor lifestyle.
After Giles’ curmudgeonly father, the Duke of Harpenden, unexpectedly turns up his toes, it’s only a matter of time before the circumstances of his only son’s birth are revealed. With the threat of blackmail hanging over him, Giles must uncover the truth, or he and all those who depend on him will be ruined.
As Giles and Diana dive into his family’s past, the attraction that they insisted wasn’t there proves impossible to ignore. It seems that the future of the Sinclair estate isn’t the only thing on the line…

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And now it’s finally time for the

blog-excerpt

As a bevy of liveried footmen distributed freshly filled glasses amongst his guests, Giles sensed her before she spoke, or rather sniffed her. The heady scent of fat Summer roses tinged with peach and the merest smidgen of vanilla was as unique a perfume as the unconventional and vexing woman who wore it.
“You will be delighted to learn that Lady Sewell and that awful Russian count you insist on inviting to everything are in the midst of a tryst in your music room.”
She had a penchant for bold, fashionable gowns despite her desire to blend into the wall and tonight’s was particularly lovely. The ivory silk skimmed her curves in all the right places while the saucy flashes of red at the hem and the big ribbon which highlighted her trim waist complimented her dark hair to perfection. As was her way, that hair was arranged in an artful but asymmetrical style which went completely against the current fashion for symmetry but suited her regardless, for she wasn’t so much a woman who marched to the beat of her own drum but one who made everyone else seem as if it were they who were out of step. She was, as always, stunning—not that he would ever tell her, of course. “I suppose that shocking incident is bound to feature in your newspaper tomorrow harridan?”
“As usual, I have no earthly idea what you are talking about.” Miss Diana Merriwell sipped her champagne with artful nonchalance as she gazed at the sea of twirling silk on the dance floor rather than at him. “But that is hardly a surprise.” She always delivered her insults deadpan for maximum effect and that never failed to make her feline green eyes sparkle. “You rarely make any sense at the best of times, my dear Lord Bellingham, and I confess, I have long given up any hope of you ever doing so. If you weren’t so inextricably linked to my brother-in-law, I would have washed my hands of the chore of you last winter—but alas…” She sighed as if merely knowing him was a huge inconvenience. “You continue to linger on the periphery of my life like a bad smell.”
Giles took no offence at her words. In the last twelve months she had said far worse and so had he, because sparring was what they did.
“Then you flatly deny all of your insightful contributions to the London Tribune’s gossip column of late?”
“As if the establishment would ever trust a mere woman to write the news.”
“But you are Diana—Goddess of the Hunt and Hunter of the Truth.”
She stifled a yawn. “I simply edit some of the stories for spelling and grammar as a way to pass the time. How do you aristocrats stand the monotonous boredom of an inane life of leisure?” Another well placed barb which made him smile. She loved to put him in his place. Nothing here impressed her.
“And there I was, quietly impressed with your journalistic aplomb, but alas…” He stared at the dance floor too as if he was bored stiff with it all. “Had I known you had no real press credentials whatsoever and are merely a nit-picking grammarian, I never would have invited you here tonight. And now I am peeved, for if you do not smear all of this evening’s shocking scandals over your tawdry paper tomorrow, then who will?”
“A mystery to be sure—but I am certain you will not have to worry. When one courts scandal like you do Giles, word inevitably gets around.” She slanted him a knowing glance. “And fast too… so your father is bound to be spouting steam from his ears in time for your audience with him tomorrow exactly as you intended.”
Her canny intelligence always grated. “As usual, I have no earthly idea what you are talking about either Diana.” The more he got to know her, the more he became convinced she read him like a book and that really galled. Because Giles liked to think he was always the canniest person in any room and several paces ahead of the crowd—but she was always hot on his heels. Or more often, he trailed on hers. “Hardly a surprise when you rarely make any sense at the best of times either. You do know I only tolerate you on sufferance because my best friend married your sister don’t you? Although it is still a mystery to me why he aligned himself with such a bunch of lowly commoners.” He pulled a face as he sipped his drink, even though his lips were twitching because he loved to put her in her place too. She wore her common roots like a badge of honour and sometimes wielded them like a shield to ward off unwelcome attention. “We blue bloods must ensure the purity of our species or civilization as we know it will end and chaos will ensue.”
Like him, she wasn’t the least bit offended by the insult. “Then you flatly deny going out of your way to annoy your father purely for sport?”
It wasn’t for sport. It was necessity. The only avenue available to punish the duplicitous scoundrel for all his many unconscionable sins.
“It is hardly my fault if he finds me disappointing, any more than it is my fault I was born that way.” An outright lie and he suspected she knew it, but he would rather die than let her glimpse any of the sorry truth.
Whilst it was true the insufferable Duke of Harpenden had always considered his only son unworthy in every possible sense, Giles had used outright rebellion as a defence mechanism long before he had discovered the Dirty Secret and that he really was unworthy in every possible sense. By then, it had been too late to rejoice in that enlightening fact. The dreadful die had been cast, the hand of fate had been dealt and there really wasn’t a damn thing he could do about it apart from the one thing which blew his entire world to smithereens. A prospect which he wouldn’t have minded in the slightest if it were just himself it affected. Unfortunately, the awful, unpalatable, and toxic truth had dire consequences for a great many innocent people and, more unfortunately, he had failed to inherit his father’s unfeeling, granite heart. If he had, he would have lit the fuse himself then cheerfully pulled up a chair and enjoyed an entire plate of biscuits while he watched the illustrious name of Harpenden implode spectacularly in the full glare of the public gaze.
“I hear rumour that you are about to do something your father wholeheartedly approves of… and that finally, congratulations are in order.” Her sip of champagne was much too nonchalant this time, as if she were fishing though for the life of him he couldn’t think what for.
“Congratulations?”
“Does the name Miss Dahlia Regis ring any bells?”
“Doe-eyed Dahlia the dumpy draper’s daughter?”
“Surely you mean desirable Dahlia with the newly doubled dowry?” She stared him dead in the eye. “Or perhaps Determined-to-be-a-Duchess Dahlia would be a better description if the rumours I hear about the pair of you are true?”
He couldn’t help but laugh at the preposterousness of her suggestion. “Surely you do not think I am romantically linked to Miss Regis? For she is far too proper for my dissolute tastes.” And far too vapid. Daft Dahlia was her nickname in the gentleman’s clubs because she could not converse without prompts from her pushy father but he was too much of a gentleman to repeat that moniker outside of one.
“Not linked, Giles. Engaged.”

Giveaway :

Win 2 x e-copies of Never Rescue A Rogue (Open INT)
*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.

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The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #TheCoffeePotBookClub @maryanneyarde / #Excerpt : Skull’s Vengeance (Curse of Clansmen and Kings, Book 4) #SkullsVengeance – Linnea Tanner @linneatanner #HistoricalFantasy #HistoricalFiction #HistoricalRomance #AncientRome #AncientBritannia

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

Skull's Vengeance Tour Banner

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘Skull’s Vengeance’ blogtour, organised by The Coffee Pot Book Club.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing an extract, but first I have some information

About the Author :

Linnea Tanner Head ShotAward-winning author, Linnea Tanner, weaves Celtic tales of love, magical adventure, and political intrigue in Ancient Rome and Britannia. Since childhood, she has passionately read about ancient civilizations and mythology. Of particular interest are the enigmatic Celts, who were reputed as fierce warriors and mystical druids.
Linnea has extensively researched ancient and medieval history, mythology, and archaeology and has traveled to sites described within each of her books in the Curse of Clansmen and Kings series. Books released in her series include Apollo’s Raven (Book 1), Dagger’s Destiny (Book 2), Amulet’s Rapture (Book 3), and Skull’s Vengeance (Book 4).
A Colorado native, Linnea attended the University of Colorado and earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemistry. She lives in Fort Collins with her husband and has two children and six grandchildren.

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About the Book :

Linnea Tanner Head ShotA Celtic warrior queen must do the impossible—defeat her sorcerer half-brother and claim the throne. But to do so, she must learn how to strike vengeance from her father’s skull.
AS FORETOLD BY HER FATHER in a vision, Catrin has become a battle-hardened warrior after her trials in the Roman legion and gladiatorial games. She must return to Britannia and pull the cursed dagger out of the serpent’s stone to fulfill her destiny. Only then can she unleash the vengeance from the ancient druids to destroy her evil half-brother, the powerful sorcerer, King Marrock. Always two steps ahead and seemingly unstoppable, Marrock can summon destructive natural forces to crush any rival trying to stop him and has charged his deadliest assassin to bring back Catrin’s head.
To have the slightest chance of beating Marrock, Catrin must forge alliances with former enemies, but she needs someone she can trust. Her only option is to seek military aid from Marcellus—her secret Roman husband. They rekindle their burning passion, but he is playing a deadly game in the political firestorm of the Julio-Claudian dynasty to support Catrin’s cause.
Ultimately, in order to defeat Marrock, Catrin must align herself with a dark druidess and learn how to summon forces from skulls to exact vengeance. But can she and Marcellus outmaneuver political enemies from Rome and Britannia in their quest to vanquish Marrock?

Trigger warnings:
Sex, Slave trafficking and abuse, Violence, Childbirth

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And now it’s finally time for the

blog-excerpt

Chapter 8 The Dragon Insignia
Lugdunum, 20 December, 27 AD

On the eve of the winter equinox, the apartment was unbearably cold. To get warm, Catrin wrapped a shawl around her shoulders and closely watched the guard with tattoos of Celtic knots lining his forehead as he filled the brazier with coal. His glacier-blue eyes pierced through her.
Unnerved, she felt a chill slice down her spine.
Studying the various faces of the men in the atrium, she counted ten more guards whom Trystan had invited to sleep inside on the frigid, cloudless night. The image of the raven-black life thread tying a knot around Marcellus’s red strand on the Wall of Lives flashed in her mind. She knew the vision was a glimpse of her future.
She excused herself to the privacy of her bedchamber, drawing the curtain back to enter. There, waiting on the straw mattress bed was the Raven. She fed it some dried meat strips, then blew out the burning candle and lay on her bedding. The Raven’s soft, feathered head nestled against her neck, providing her much-needed warmth and comfort.
Yet, a chill gnawed at her bones. To ward off the air’s frigid nip, she cocooned herself in a woolen blanket. The silvery moonlight filtered through the uneven surface of the gray-smoked window in the curtained-off room, casting shadows on the wall.
Falling into restless sleep, she dreamed of her life thread tying a knot around Marcellus’s red life strand, but then…
Blood unexpectedly spurted out of the knot and splattered all over a blade that was plunging at her throat.
“This is not a dream!” the Raven’s deep voice cried out.
With her warrior’s instincts awakened, she opened her eyes to find a shadow of a man kneeling beside her. Seeing the dagger in his hand, she quickly blocked his arm and discharged sizzling heat from her fingertips. The sparks of energy forced him to dropped the dagger.
She rolled abruptly to her side to escape, but his strong arm pulled her back as his legs coiled around her hips like a snake. As he reached for the dagger, she cried out to awake the others in the main room and poked her fingers into his eyes.
“Wicked witch,” he snarled in Celtic as he wildly thrust his blade at her. Its metal tip bit into her shoulder, shooting sharp pain down her arm. Fighting for her life, she punched him in the throat.
In the blink of an eye, his body fell hard on hers, forcing the air out of her lungs. She gasped and pushed him off her with a burst of strength. Finally freed of his weight, she staggered to her feet and scanned the floor for the loose dagger or another weapon.
Any weapon!
Another strong hand unexpectedly gripped her injured shoulder from the back. A wave of pain flamed across her chest as she quickly turned to defend herself against the next attacker.
To her relief, Cynwrig’s good eye blazed in the silvery illumination of moonlight from the other room.
“Get back! There are two of them!” he roared.
To make room for the ensuing fight, Catrin stepped back into the atrium and watched. The tattooed men swept around Cynwrig in a deadly dance. Each darted back and forth between the silver light of the moon and the darkness.
The assailant, whom Catrin recognized as Gawain, slammed Cynwrig into the wall and wildly thrust his knife. Cynwrig blocked Gawain’s forearm twice, then swiftly shot his other arm under the assassin’s armpit at the next thrust, gripping his upper arm.
With a loud roar, Cynwrig pushed Gawain back while at the same time curling his leg around the assassin’s calf to trip him into the other attacker.
The dagger flew out of Gawain’s hand and landed with a clink on the floor. Catrin swooped the weapon up into her hand and plunged the blade into the other assailant’s lower back. The man tried to reach around with his hand, but then, his body went limp and crumpled to the floor.

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : Counterpoint – Michelle Cook @CookieM72 @darkstrokedark

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

Counterpoint

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘Counterpoint’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing a

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About the Author :

Author PhotoMichelle Cook writes thrillers and dystopian fiction. She lives in Worcestershire, UK with her husband and their two young children.
Her first joyful steps into creative writing were at the age of ten, when the teacher read out her short story in class. A slapstick tale of two talking kangaroos breaking out of a zoo, the work was sadly lost to history. Still, Michelle never forgot the buzz of others enjoying her words.
More recently, she has had several flash pieces published, was longlisted for the Cambridge Prize for flash fiction, and placed first in the Writers’ Forum competition with her short story The Truth About Cherry House. Her debut novel, Tipping Point, was a finalist in the 2022 Page Turner Awards.
Counterpoint, the sequel to Tipping Point, is her second novel.

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About the Book :

Author PhotoWhat is there left to lose?
It’s 31st October 2041 in England. On her twenty-fifth birthday, Essie Glass still grieves for her family, killed by a terrorist bomb when she was just sixteen. The signs of humanity and climate in decline are everywhere. Roads and communities crumble, floods and fires blight the landscape, and the sea reclaims the islands of the world. Unconcerned, the government tightens its grip on power with brazen propaganda and brutality.
Still, Essie has built a good life with Seth and their four-year-old daughter, Willow. If only she wasn’t haunted by the events of six years ago, when Alex Langford, corrupt businessman-turned-Prime Minister, tried to kill her to conceal his conspiracy to suppress climate-saving technology.
Essie takes solace in her secret plot to build a new prototype. When tricked into revealing the scheme to powerful enemies, she is forced to abandon her cherished family and run for her life. Her flight drives her into the heart of a resistance movement she never knew existed.
Among the chaos, and in mortal danger, will Essie finally find hope for the future?
Counterpoint is the hotly awaited sequel to Tipping Point, a gripping story of political environmental conspiracy.

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The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#MiniBlogBlitz #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #Excerpt : A Stolen Knight’s Kiss – Melissa Oliver @melissaoauthor @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

A Stolen Knights Kiss

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘A Stolen Knight’s Kiss’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing an extract, but first I have some information

About the Author :

A Stolen - Melissa Oliver picMelissa Oliver is from south-west London where she writes sweeping historical romance and is the winner of The Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Joan Hessayon Award for new writers 2020 for her debut, The Rebel Heiress and the Knight.

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About the Book :

A Stolen Knight's Kiss HarlequinCaptured by a knight…
Rescued by his kiss!
When orphan Eva loses the father-figure who’d protected her on the streets of London, she suspects the Knights of Fortitude. But when she steals information from them, she’s caught by brooding knight Nicholas. Learning he might not be the villain after all, she puts her distrust aside to work with him, yet Eva must stay focussed – and not get distracted when they share a stolen kiss!

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And now it’s finally time for the

blog-excerpt

In this scene- Nicholas d’Amberly meets with Eva Siward in a tavern on London Bridge and makes a bargain with her- the return of the pouch that she had stolen from him, for the return of her friend…

Nicholas swallowed down his amusement as the woman mustered all the dignity and poise befitting a lady rather than a conniving thief—his eyes skimmed her from her head down to her toes—albeit an inelegant lady at that. And while he could understand her apprehension at his coming alone, it had been a necessity to protect both himself and the secret work he and The Knights Fortitude did for the Crown. And it had been imperative that the woman had come alone and without any accomplices who might have scuppered his aim to regain the pouch, with not just the important missive it contained but also his mother’s ring.
After all, Eva Siward had gone to great lengths to steal it from him in the first instance so, in truth, it was not outside the realm of possibility for her to use underhand methods to renege on their agreement. Besides, he wanted more from her. He needed answers regarding the men who had hired her. But the only way to achieve his aims was to put his questions to her in a place out of earshot. Somewhere safe.
‘Where are we going?’ she mumbled as he led her through the narrow hall at the back of the tavern.
‘All shall become clear very soon.’
‘I can hardly wait,’ she said wryly.
‘Good, I do aim to please.’ He chuckled softly despite himself as he grabbed a flaming torch from the rusty sconce on the wall. ‘In fact, I had hoped to engage your anticipation.’
‘Indeed, I am all agog, Sir Nicholas.’
He watched her from behind as they made their way down a dozen steps that led to a damp, dark narrow hallway and bit back a smile. Eva Siward was indeed as inelegant and ungainly as he had initially observed, dressed as she was in a long flowing woollen kirtle flapping about her feet and a short cloak draped over the shoulder. Yet it was more than her attire but the way she fidgeted with her veil, the long strides she took when walking and the way the woman had slurped and tossed the ale back in the tavern that amused and surprised him most. Once again, he wagered that it had not been the first time that the young woman had dressed as a boy when he had first encountered her. But then as a London thief it was evidently useful and prudent to disguise herself as she evidently did.
They reached the dead-end of the hallway, moisture skimming the surface of the walls.
‘Where to now, then?’ she muttered, turning to face him.
‘Now we venture below.’ He nodded to the trapdoor beneath the rushes on the floor as he passed her the flaming torch. He knelt and pulled open the square wooden door with the metal ring handle, revealing the River Thames lapping and surging around a waiting skiff far below them. Under London Bridge itself, concealing their descent, this was a highly effective means for The Knights Fortitude to get in and out of the city without arousing any notice. Nicholas could take no chances with this woman, in case she had other accomplices, or even the man who had hired her, ready in wait for him outside the tavern.
She snapped her head around and then shook her head. ‘I am not going down that…that ladder. And I am not going on that thing. Not with you.’
‘It does not seem as though you have much of a choice, mistress,’ he sighed. ‘It’s either that or terminate our agreement here and now.’
‘You are despicable and dishonourable, Sir Nicholas.’
He forced himself to grin, hiding a spark of irritation at being described as such. ‘So I have been told by many a good woman. Not that I would put you in their esteemed company, Mistress Eva.’
Her eyes flashed. ‘I would never expect anything less, sir. We thieves would never dream of being likened to real ladies. After all, we are nothing but the lowest of the low, after all.’
‘Whatever you say, mistress.’ He chuckled. ‘But they’re your words, not mine.’
‘I do not even know whether this is a highly inventive ruse to entrap me for whatever nefarious reason you exalted Knights of the Crown might have.’
‘What an extraordinary imagination you have, mistress.’ He raised a brow, crossing his arms over his chest. ‘And the only entrapment I have in mind is to get you on that skiff, so that we can be away. In fact, the sooner you board it, the sooner you shall be reunited with your friend.’
‘Do you swear to it?’
‘Solemnly. Now, shall we?’

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #Excerpt : Altered Helix – Stephanie Hansen @hansenwriter

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

Altered Helix

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘Altered Helix’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing an extract, but first I have some information

About the Author :

Altered Helix - Stephanie HansenStephanie Hansen is a PenCraft and Global Book Award Winning Author. Her debut novella series, Altered Helix, released in 2020. It hit the #1 New Release, #1 Best Seller, and other top 100 lists on Amazon. It is now being adapted to an animated story for Tales. Her debut novel, Replaced Parts, released in 2021 through Fire & Ice YA and Tantor Audio. It has been in a Forbes article, hit Amazon bestseller lists, and made the Apple young adult coming soon bestsellers list. The second book in the Transformed Nexus series, Omitted Pieces, released in 2022. Her next novella, Ghostly Howls, releases 2/7/23. She is a member of the deaf and hard of hearing community so she tries to incorporate that into her fiction.

Social Media Links:
Website
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About the Book :

AlteredHelix_mock1I didn’t want to take the traditional path. First, I wasn’t ready for college. Second, I was going to live with my best friend, Tiff, and work at the Haunted House. Third, did I mention the hot guy Josh that works there too?
The most exciting thing about Austria’s new job, at a local haunted house, was the fact that the toughest looking people screamed the loudest. But when she meets the boy without a home, Josh, Austria’s life takes intriguing and eventful turns. Up until now, Josh has managed to hang with his Street crowd, but they’re in danger, and so is Austria, the girl Josh recently fell for. The group finds themselves joining forces with previously considered enemies who also now find themselves in danger.
Deeply compassionate and full of twists, Altered Helix captures the struggle of polarized people that must work together for the greater good.

Purchase Link

And now it’s finally time for the

blog-excerpt

The following extract is after our protagonist, Austria, has been working at a new job, the local haunted house, and is now crashing with a few of the other works. It’s begins with Patrice giving a tour of Ethan’s house and leads into a scene between Austria and her love interest, Josh.

She points to the first room on the right of the stairs. I peek in and can see one bed and a dresser. This room is as messy as the other. Finally, she points to the last room.
“That’s where Josh stays.”
My heart rate speeds up just thinking of him. I see a mattress on the floor, piles of books, and art supplies. I want to see what kind of books he reads, and I can’t hold myself back. I walk in and pick up a book. It’s Foundation by Isaac Asimov. I wasn’t able to follow that one as well as I would have liked. I pick up the next. It’s one of the Dark Tower books by Stephen King. I love this series. It looks like there’s more Josh and I could talk about, if we were even talking.
Just then, as if on cue, he enters the room. I had not noticed that the others had left.
“I was just grabbing something quick,” he says.
“Josh.” I grip his hand.
“I, I can’t, Austria,” he says as his chin drops to his chest.
I touch his face and turn it up to me.
“Josh, I don’t want you to get hurt, so I understand. I care about you. I wish there was something we could do.”
“I’m used to my dreams being crushed. It’s easier if you stay busy.”
“Well, I’m not.”
I peck kiss him lightly as I run my fingers through his hair. The electricity makes me lightheaded. I don’t know how I’ve gone a second without this. I put my arms around his waist and lock my fingers so he can’t run.
“Austria, this will just make it worse.”
“I don’t care. No one can see us, Josh. We can just keep it a secret.”
“Not when you can’t control the way you look at me.”
“What way is that?”
“The way you’re looking at me now.”
He kisses me, more deeply than ever before. The heat between us burns yet feels remarkably good. He looks at me, and I can tell he cares, but then he looks away and hugs me. It feels like goodbye.
“Please,” I say. I can feel my lower lip curling into a pout.
“No, Austria, I don’t care what they do to me, but this will put you in danger, and I can’t bear that.”
He walks off. I can’t slow my breathing enough to call after him. Part of me feels broken. I don’t know what to do, so I just walk downstairs to see what everyone else is doing. Luke has joined Josh and Ethan playing video games. He seems to fit right in. I hear laughter from the formal living room and follow it. Ceresa, Patrice, and Tiff have set up a game of Euchre. I join as Tiff’s partner. Ceresa and Patrice are pretty good. Tiff and I have to make some risky calls so we can get ahead. It’s a close game, but we win in the end, even though I don’t feel like a victor.

Giveaway :

Win $10 Amazon Gift Card (Open to US Only)
*Terms and Conditions – US 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.

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The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #ZooloosBookTours @ZooloosBT / #QandAs : The M Word #TheMWord – Eileen Wharton @WhartonEileen @SpellBoundBks

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

The M Word Tour Poster

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘The M Word’ blogtour, organised by Zooloo’s Book Tours.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing an interview between the author and me, but first I have some information

About the Author :

Eileen Wharton Author PhotoEileen Wharton is an Oscar winning actress, Olympic gymnast, and Influencer. She also tells lies for a living. Her first novel was published in 2011 to worldwide critical acclaim. And she’s won awards for exaggeration. It did top the Amazon humour chart so she’s officially a best-selling author. She currently has five ‘lively’ offspring ranging from thirty-three to fourteen years of age, and has no plans to procreate further, much to the relief of the local schools and police force. She lives on a council estate in County Durham. She has never eaten kangaroo testicles, is allergic to cats and has a phobia of tinned tuna. She’s retired from arguing with people on the internet.

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About the Book :

The M Word Book CoverRoberta Gallbreath is middle-aged and menopausal.
She dislikes her children, detests her ex-husband and despises her colleagues.
When her mother dies, Roberta is left with a pile of letters and a mystery surrounding her son. The letters reveal Roberta’s heritage is not what it seems and she is soon on a mission to become a better person.
Told with humour and emotion, The M Word is the tale of one woman’s journey to find out where she came from. As she looks to the past for answers, more questions are raised. Will Roberta discover who she really is?

Buy Link

And now it’s finally time for the

blog-q&a

Hi

First of all thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions, I really appreciate it. Here we go! 🙂
The pleasure is all mine.

Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
I used to work at the Pentagon until I was discovered by Simon Cowell in a karaoke bar in Virginia. I then spent a few years in Hollywood as a star of stage and screen. The fame all became too much for me when I was stalked by George Clooney, so I retired from public life and became an ordinary middle aged woman from the north of England who tells lies for a living.
I’ve always loved books. My parents used to take us the the library and I loved stamping the front page and handing in the tickets. If I wasn’t an author I think I’d have liked to have been a librarian. My fiancé dreads passing a book shop as he knows he’ll lose me for hours. I used to make up stories and create my own books as a child. I always imagined there being a book on the shelves with my name on it. When I was married I wrote in secret for years on a typewriter I hid at the back of a kitchen cupboard. I started submitting to competitions and came highly commended in one run by writer Wendy Robertson. The success helped encourage me to finish my first novel. I submitted it to agents and publishers, found an awesome publisher and I’ve been writing ever since. I now have no agent and three fabulous publishers. I quit teaching this year to write full time.

Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
I loved anything and everything. I loved the Brer Rabbit stories, Tales of Toyland, Mallory Towers and St Clare’s. I loved Judy Blume as a teenager and all American romance books. As an adult I like the classics, modern literary fiction, crime, historical fiction, romance. Anything well written with interesting characters.

Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
I do pick the brains of many excellent writers. My good friend Kerry ( K A Richardson) has helped me enormously with police procedure. I’ve had some excellent advice over the years too. I’d love to have a natter with Lynda LaPlante though. She’s a fascinating character.

If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
I’d invite Oliver twist because he’d be easily pleased with what I fed him and there’s always more in our house.

Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
None really, but the process has changed over the years. I used to write in notebooks and then transfer it to a typewriter (yes I’m old) , a word processor, or a laptop. I now mainly write straight onto the computer because I can type faster than I can write these days. I usually have a cup of tea or six to keep me going through the working day. I quite often team up with friends and we do timed writing, sharing word counts to keep us accountable. I feel extremely lucky to have my own writing room now. I spent years scribbling wherever and whenever I could.

Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
Ideas can come from anywhere. Everyday life, Art, travels. They should definitely be worried. The buggers should sleep with one eye open haha.

Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
I’m a pantser who would love to be a plotter. I have tried plotting but it’s not my forte.

Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
Don’t listen to anything I say.
Try not to compare yourself to others. It always seems like everyone else is more prolific, more successful, smarter, happier, (insert superlative). Appearances are often deceptive especially on social media.
Be prepared for rejection. It happens to all writers. Try not to take it personally.
Keep going. If you give up, you’ll never know how far you could have gone.

What are your futureplans as an author?
Ooh let’s see: BBC adaptation of The M Word. Netflix series of Shit Happens and a Hollywood blockbuster for my crime novels. Maybe a cameo role alongside Idris Elba and Tom Hardy.
I’d just like to keep writing.

Last, but not least : Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?

#speeddating
We’re parked on bar stools in Wetherspoon’s. Little tables are dotted around with a chair either side. A man with grey hair and sideburns is holding a stopwatch and a bell. We’re given numbers and allocated tables at which to start.
‘Isn’t it exciting,’ Tammy says.
‘About as exciting as dipping my fingernails in petrol and setting them on fire,’ I say.
‘Come on, Roberta, play the game.’
‘I’ve been playing the game. It’s called Frauds, Fruitcakes and Flakes.’
‘It’s three minutes of your life,’ she says.
‘Yes, ten times.’
‘You might meet Mr Right.’
‘And I might meet Mr Self-Righteous and Mr Look What I’ve Got in My Right Hand?’
‘You’re so negative,’ she says. ‘Put your name badge on and take your seat at table number one. When the bell goes, you don’t do anything. The men will come to you. Here’s your card. Remember to tick all those you want to see again.’
The whole process is as painful as kidney stones.
Mark sits in front of me and asks me how old I think he is.
‘I don’t know, how old are you?’
‘Guess,’ he says. Oh great, a three-minute guessing game, ffs.
‘’Bout forty,’ I say.
‘Thirty-nine,’ he says. ‘No one ever guesses right.’ Kill me now.
‘I could be watching The Chase,’ I say in an aside to Tammy. ‘Or even better, waxing my bikini line.’ A bell rings, and the throng moves, and people take a seat at their next table.
Joe sits opposite me. ‘I’m Joe,’ he says. ‘And you are?’ Read the freaking name badge, stupid.
‘Roberta,’ I say.
‘Tell me something interesting about yourself, Roberta,’ he says.
‘I crossed the Atlantic with Amelia Earhart.’
‘Really,’ he says. ‘That’s amazing.’ What a tit.
‘Tell me something interesting about you.’
‘I make drawing pins,’ he says. Great, give me some to stick in my eyes. Ding, ding. Saved by the bell.

Isn’t that a great reason to pick up the book and read it?!
Thanks once again, Eileen Wharton, for this lovely interview!

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #BooksOnTour @bookouture / #Review : Murder on Board – Helena Dixon @NellDixon

– The Magic of Wor(l)ds is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free.
I’m grateful of receiving a free copy from the publisher/author in exchange for an honest review of this book. –

Murder-on-Board-books-on-tour

Today I’m delighted to be on the ‘Murder on Board’ blogtour, organised by Bookouture.
To promote this book I’ll be sharing my review, but first I have some information

About the Author :

DSC_7063 copyHelena Dixon splits her time between the Black Country and Devon. Married to the same man for over thirty five years she has three daughters, a cactus called Spike, and a crazy cockapoo. She is allergic to adhesives, apples, tinsel and housework. Her addictions of choice are coffee and reality TV. She was winner of The Romance Prize in 2007 and Love Story of the Year 2010 as Nell Dixon. She now writes historical 1930’s set cozy crime. Nell enjoys hearing from readers and you can read her news and contact her via her
Website
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Bookouture Email Sign Up

About the Book :

Murder-on-Board-KindleKitty Underhay is drowning… in murder.
Kitty Underhay hopes for plain sailing as she caters a 21st birthday party for the Chief Constable’s daughter aboard a luxury paddle steamer. So her heart sinks when she learns that the man her fiancé Matthew has been tailing on orders from Whitehall, Gunther Freiburg, is aboard. And she’s even more horrified when she steps below deck to discover Gunther, dead in the engine room. One of the Chief Constable’s party must be responsible for his demise, but who, and why?
And the evening is on course for further disaster. As the lights go out around the candlelit cake, a terrible scream rings out over the merry hubbub. A priceless diamond necklace has been snatched from around the birthday girl’s neck… Something fishy is going on, but is this the work of the same sailing assassin, or is it a red herring?
With the local inspector in deep water having to investigate his own boss, Kitty and Matt dive in to help. But when Kitty’s eavesdropping puts her in mortal danger, will everything turn out shipshape, or will it be her turn to go swimming with the fishes…?
A totally cozy, absolutely gripping historical murder mystery! The perfect read for fans of Agatha Christie, T.E. Kinsey and Lee Strauss.

Buy Link

And now it’s finally time for my

blog-review

‘Murder on Board’ is the 10th book of the ‘Miss Underhay Mystery’ series and in my opinion it’s still going strong.
Not only the covers are having a great 1930s look about them, but also the stories are very much set in that time frame and I love it!
I can’t really say anything more than that, as I thoroughly enjoyed every single mystery Kitty and Matt (and of course others in their ‘gang’) try to solve in these stories.
Everything happens at a very good pace so you can get to know who is who and play detective yourself on the way.
There are also a good amount of twists and turns to keep you going and root for a ‘happy ending’.
Another beautiful written, unputdownable cozy mystery with some very lovely characters who every time leave me wanting for more about them.
I, for one, can’t wait for the next installment as this promises to be the one we, fans, have been all waiting for. 😉
A job well done, once again, Helena Dixon!

The Magic of Wor(l)ds