#PublicationDayPush #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : The Secrets of Latimer House – Jules Wake @Juleswake @0neMoreChapter_

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

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Today I’m on the ‘The Secrets of Latimer House’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a some ‘basic’ information for you.

About the Author :

Jules WakeiJules Wake announced at the age of ten that she planned to be a writer. Along the way she was diverted by the glamorous world of PR and worked on many luxury and not so luxury brands. This proved fabulous training for writing novels as it provided her with the opportunity to hone her creative writing skills.
She writes best-selling warm-hearted romantic contemporary fiction for One More Chapter as Jules Wake and was shortlisted for Romantic Novel of the Year 2020 with The Spark.
Under her pen name Julie Caplin, she also writes the warm and witty Romantic Escapes series.
Between them, the two Js have written eighteen novels, The Secret of Latimer House being the latest.

Social Media Links:
Twitter
Facebook
Instagram

Synopsis :

51miIefEMxSIn the war against Hitler every secret counts…
Society heiress Evelyn Brooke-Edwards is a skilled interrogator – her beauty making her a non-threat in the eyes of the prisoners.
Farm girl Betty Connors may not be able to type as she claimed, but her crack analytical skills soon find her unearthing covert connections.
German ex-pat Judith Stern never expected to find herself listening in to German POW’s whispered conversations, but the Nazis took her father from her so she will do whatever it takes to help the Allies end this war.
Billeted together in the attic of Latimer House – a place where secrets abound – Evelyn, Betty and Judith soon form a bond of friendship that carries them through the war. Because nothing is stronger than women united.
Tucked away in the Buckinghamshire countryside, Latimer House, a grand country estate, stands proudly – a witness to some of greatest secrets of WW2.
Used by the SOE to hold Nazi prisoners of war, this stunning historical novel is inspired by the untold story of the secret listeners of ‘M Room’ who worked day and night to help the Allies win the war. A must-read for fans of Dinah Jefferies, Fiona Valpy, Elaine Everest, Jean Fullerton and Deborah Burrowes.

Purchase Link

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#MiniBlogBlitz #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #Excerpt : Her Honourable Mercenary – Nicole Locke @NicoleLockeNews @HarlequinBooks @MillsandBoon

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘Her Honourable Mercenary’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have an excerpt, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.

About the Author :

ocBgtkswNicole is the author of Harlequin/Mills and Boon Lovers and Legends Historical series. If she isn’t working on the next book, she can be reached at her website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!

Synopsis :

An innocent maiden
And a legendary warrior
When captured and held prisoner in an enemy castle, Margery of Lyon is guarded by brooding mercenary Evrart, who’s been commanded to watch her – day and night. Margery’s determination to escape brings her closer to Evrart, and the kind heart hidden beneath his granite-hard body. Now Margery is torn, fleeing under the portcullis will mean leaving behind the man she’s falling for…

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK
Amazon US

Excerpt :

Margery of Lyon is held captive by Ian of Warstone who has appointed a guard to watch her. The guard (the hero Evrart) is a quiet giant of man, and Margery is very short (think The Mountain from GOT and his wife). This is the moment when he’s first assigned to watch her, and they’re climbing the stairs to enter the room she’ll be imprisoned in. Though she is terrified for herself, Margery is very friendly, Evrart is as silent as a mountain and is used to be being terrified of him, not trying to chat him up.

She swallowed hard. ‘You’re very quiet.’
He said nothing.
She looked up…then up again. His arms were at his sides, his eyes steady, and all that stillness caused something to seethe within her. He was large, but then everyone was larger than her. It was how it had always been.
But being in this fortress, trapped and threatened by Ian of Warstone, wasn’t how it had always been. If only she could wave a sword or conduct her own threats.
The seething turned to roiling. If only she had some way to protect herself! Not just standing here staring out of a window, feeling waves of helplessness, as this man—this warrior, her guard—watched her tremble, heard her teeth chatter whilst he was constant stillness, relentless silence.
‘How will you guard me if you don’t speak?’ she asked.
His brow rose, and she swore she saw the corner of his lip twitch.
Maybe it was the terror, maybe it was because her reason had finally fled, but Margery laughed. It was a choked laugh. More strident than joyful. More sobbing than anything humorous.
And when his brows rose more and his eyes widened…when wariness that couldn’t just be wariness entered his eyes again…the noises she emitted came out harder, until tears sprang from her eyes and she had to brush them away.
She noticed the poor man hadn’t moved, but he seemed to be leaning back. Not with displeasure or cruelty. Not to smirk or laugh—though he should be because of her ridiculous question. But simply to stand there, a bit away from her. And whereas before she’d equated his silence with displeasure, his restraint with formidable trapping walls, now she saw it wasn’t. It truly wasn’t.
It was the way he blinked, and his careful movements as he straightened himself. He was disconcerting because for days she’d been plagued with violence and threats. For months…years…before that, she’d had Josse, Roul, the mercenaries who’d leered and calculated.
When her hood had fallen, he hadn’t elbowed the man next to him. He’d simply looked at her as he looked at her now. Like…a person. And maybe it wasn’t wise, maybe she was wrong, maybe she truly had lost her reason, but she didn’t care that he was quiet. It didn’t mean she had to be.
Resting her hand on his forearm, she said, ‘Don’t mind me—truly. I am harmless. Well, maybe not completely, but I’m not likely to cause any permanent wounding.’
Patting his arm before releasing her touch, she brushed her hands down her skirts, gathered herself, and gave him as reassuring a smile as she could. He wasn’t like Ian or those other guards. Maybe he was like that man with the bloodied apron—the butcher who’d had a happy smile. Maybe they could start again.
Maybe they couldn’t.
His eyes were the size of the moon and his hand gripped his forearm where… She was right. His hand was gripping his arm, right where she’d touched him. His knuckles were white.
With anger?
Was he injured and she’d inadvertently harmed him?
‘Oh!’ she said. ‘Did I hurt you?’
He said nothing, but his eyes grew intent. She felt terrible.
She grabbed his fingers to pull his hand away. ‘Here, let me see it.’
She didn’t know what she’d do, but there she’d been, laughing because she couldn’t harm him, and then she had. She was worried, terrified, but this man hadn’t done anything to her and here she was—
‘No,’ he said, and pulled his hand away from her.
All the while he kept his gaze on her. His hands were rough, his fingers felt thick, but his touch was inordinately gentle.
It was his voice, though, that made her shiver. Deep, gruff. Exactly the voice she’d expected from a man with shoulders that could protect her from a storm.
She held still. ‘Say something else.’
He stared at her so hard she thought he would see to the other side of her before that corner of his mouth quirked again. Was he trying to smile but couldn’t?
‘No,’ he repeated.
Something came over her. Something that wanted him to smile. What was wrong with her? She didn’t need to laugh with this man or ask if he was hurt. His hair might be wet as if was like everyone else who bathed, and he might look vaguely annoyed rather than cruel, but she needed to escape!
As if he’d guessed her thoughts, he abruptly let her hand free and pointed again.
Resolved to do what she must, she continued down the corridor. Before she closed the garderobe door, though, she said, ‘And you’ll stand out here? Then take me to that room and lock me in?’
When he crossed his arms, she answered herself.
‘Of course you will.’

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #ZooloosBookTours @zooloo2008 / #QandAs : Guilt (DI Nicki Hardcastle Series Book 1) #Guilt #DINickiHardcastle – Michelle Kidd @AuthorKidd #QuestionMarkPress @QuestionPress

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘Guilt’ blogtour, organized by Zooloo’s Book Tours.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.

About the Author :

Michelle Kidd Author PhotoMichelle Kidd is a self-published author best known for the Detective Inspector Jack MacIntosh series of novels set in London. She has also recently begun a new series which is set in her home town of Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk – starring Detective Inspector Nicki Hardcastle.
Michelle qualified as a lawyer in the early 1990s and spent the best part of ten years practising civil and criminal litigation.
But the dream to write books was never far from her mind and in 2008 she began writing the manuscript that would become the first DI Jack MacIntosh novel – The Phoenix Project. The book took eighteen months to write, but spent the next eight years gathering dust underneath the bed.
In 2018 Michelle self-published The Phoenix Project and has not looked back since. There are currently four DI Jack MacIntosh novels, with a fifth in progress, and the first DI Nicki Hardcastle novel is due for release in August 2021.
Michelle now works full time for the NHS and lives in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk. She enjoys reading, wine and cats – not necessarily in that order.

Website
Facebook
Instagram
Twitter

Synopsis :

Guilt Book CoverIs a killer born…. or created?

A missing child.
A killer on the loose.
A past that refuses to die.

When a six-year-old boy disappears from a local fair, every parent’s worst nightmare is about to come true.
And for Detective Inspector Nicki Hardcastle, twenty-two years after her own nightmare began, the past she thought was buried starts catching up with her – and fast.
Leading the hunt for the missing child, Nicki soon finds the chase takes on a personal twist, with her own memories haunting her every move.
With time set against them, and a killer following his own chilling agenda, can Nicki and her team stop history from repeating itself?
Only time will tell.
But it’s time they don’t have.

Amazon UK
Amazon US

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! 🙂

Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
I was born in Cambridge but currently live in Bury St Edmunds. I work full-time for the NHS at my local hospital, although I originally qualifed as a lawyer in the early 1990s. I’ve always wanted to be an author, but it isn’t something that is usually on the options list when you talk to your careers adviser at school! I’ve always written – starting to write novels at about the age of twelve or thirteen – and I started out using my mum’s manual typewriter in the days before computers and laptops! Life then got in the way really, and I started out on a career in the law – but writing was never far from my mind. I wrote the manuscript that would turn out to be my first published novel ‘The Phoenix Project’ in 2008, but pushed it under my bed and forgot about it for the next ten years. I eventually self-published it in 2018.

Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
As a child I was always reading – my head was permantly in a book. I went through phases – I loved Enid Blyton (Famous Five, Mallory Towers, St Clare’s) as a young child, and then I moved on to reading anything that had a horse or pony on the cover! When I was around twelve I discovered Stephen King and I’ve loved his books ever since. He is still my go-to author now. He never fails to disappoint. As for now, the one set of books I can always read and read again are the Harry Potter books. It doesn’t matter how many times I’ve read them, each time is like the first time. I think that’s the mark of a brilliant author!

Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
I think it would have to be Stephen King! I love his books and he seems to be able to write about just about anything. I grew up reading his horror books, but he also crosses over into crime and more psychological thrillers. He is such a fantastic storyteller, so I think I’d love to have a masterclass with him!

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 would invite Sherlock Holmes. I think he would be fascinating to talk to! The way his mind works to be able to solve all those tricky cases…..afternoon tea with him would certainly not be dull!

Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
I write longhand so I usually settle down on my bed or in the garden (if it’s nice) with an A4 pad of paper and a pen! I have to have quiet, so no music or anything. Just a cat to sit on my legs and stop me moving!

Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
Ideas pop into my head at all different times of day and night! I find I can’t think of anything if I purposefully sit down to plot a book. The best ideas come to me when I’m not really thinking about writing at all – usually in the gym, walking to work, washing up (!). I don’t consciously base my characters on people I know, but I bet some of their characteristics slip through without me knowing!

Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
I am definitely a plotter! I start with a general idea for a main storyline – then I write a selection of ‘scenes’ to write. I don’t write chonologically, so I can be writing a scene somewhere towards the end before I’ve even written the beginning. It sounds chaotic, and most probably is… but it works! Once I’ve written the selection of scenes I’ve plotted, I then have ideas as to more scenes that need writing….and so it goes on. At some point I then have to sit down and try and move them all into the correct order – which can be a bit of a headache!

Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
I would say the best thing to do is read lots and write lots! Read books by as many different authors as you can in the genre you’re interested in – both good and bad! And then just write! The first draft will never be great – just get the ideas down on paper. The polishing comes later… I have a lot of blanks in my first drafts where I leave a gap to be filled in later, most often with character names. I think character names are really important, as they really have to be a good fit for the story and conjour up the right image in the mind – so I often leave that until last.

What are your futureplans as an author?
I intend to continue writing as many books as I can! Working full-time does curtail my plans a little, but I aim to do one or two books every twelve months. The obvious overall plan would be to give up work and write full-time, but that’s a little way off at the moment!

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

The room frightened him. It was dark and cold, and it smelt funny.
Lucas Jackson blinked back the tears that streamed from his eyes. His hands were still tied behind his back, so he couldn’t brush them away from his cheeks. Instead, they dripped from his chin onto his lap.
The man had been angry at him for wetting himself, and that had earned him the first slap to the face. He’d been forced to sit in the chair, in his wet underpants, all night; his ankles tied to the chair legs with rope. He’d seen the bed by the window, when the man had dragged him inside. But he was secretly quite glad he wasn’t made to lie in it – the mattress was dirty and the walls around the window above it were stained with a horrible, creeping mould.
Lucas shuddered. He hated the dark. At home, Mummy let him have his night light on to help him get to sleep. There was no such light in here. The window had thick wooden planks nailed across it, snuffing out any light from outside.
He didn’t know whether he’d slept at all in the night. He supposed he must have. His neck felt sore and his bottom was numb.
The man had put a smelly piece of cloth across his mouth when he’d tied him to the chair, muttering about how much noise he was making. Lucas didn’t know what else he was meant to do but cry. Why was the man being so nasty? He’d been fun at the fair. He’d made him laugh.
Lucas shuddered again. As his eyes flickered around the darkened room, he saw tangled cobwebs dangling from the ceiling, some of them right overhead. His pale skin shivered with goose bumps. He hated spiders. Almost as much as he hated the dark.

Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, Michelle Kidd.

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!

#PublicationDayPush #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #QandAs : The First Cut – Val Penny @valeriepenny @crookedcatbooks @darkstrokedark

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘The First Cut’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.

About the Author :

Val Penny’s other crime novels, Hunter’s Chase, Hunter’s Revenge, Hunter’s Force, Hunter’s Blood and Hunter’s Secret form the bestselling series The Edinburgh Crime Mysteries. They are set in Edinburgh, Scotland, published by darkstroke Her first non-fiction book Let’s Get Published is also available now and she has most recently contributed her short story, Cats and Dogs to a charity anthology, Dark Scotland.
Val is an American author living in SW Scotland with her husband and their cat.

Website
Facebook Author Page
Facebook
Facebook Friends Of Hunter Wilson & The Edinburgh Crime Mysteries
Facebook Val’s Book Bundle
Twitter
GoodReads Author Page
Amazon Author Page
BookBub

Synopsis :

It’s hard to escape a brutal past…
A vicious serial killer is on the loose. Victims include an academic and notable members of Edinburgh’s high society.
When Detective Sergeant Jane Renwick learns through DNA that a member of her family could be the killer, she is banished to the sidelines of the case and forced to look on impotently as the hunt for the killer ramps up.
Frustrated, she decides to conduct her own investigations.
Has someone from her estranged birth family returned to haunt her? And where will the killer strike next?
It’s a race against time…

Purchase Link

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! 🙂
Thank you so much for hosting me on your blog. I really appreciate it.

Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
I took early retirement when I was diagnosed with breast cancer, and there were times when I suffered severe side effects from my treatment. I could not go out, spend time with friends or indulge in many of my favourite hobbies, but watching daytime television gets very old very fast, so I turned to reading. It was the only thing I had the energy to do and could do safely.
After a while, I began to feel a little better and decided to start reviewing the books I read in a blog http://www.bookreviewstoday.info I enjoyed doing that. Then, as I began to feel better still, I got restless, but was still did not well enough to do very much and I complained to my long-suffering husband about getting bored. It was then he challenged me: ‘If you know so much about what makes a good book, why don’t you write one?’ I did laugh. However, the challenge set, I have been writing police procedural crime thrillers set in Scotland ever since.

Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
I read voraciously. I always have. It is the adventures of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five that led me to Agatha Christie’s novels and a life of crime! I particularly enjoy reading crime fiction and thrillers. I indulge this interest with many crime novels including those by Peter Robinson, Paula Williams, Ian Rankin, Joan Livingston, Linwood Barclay, Erin Kelly and Kathy Reichs.

Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
I have been lucky to have been mentored by some excellent crime writers including Erin Kelly, Karen Campbell, Simon Hall and Peter Robinson, They each have their own strengths, but the most lasting advice came from Peter. He encouraged me to write under my own name, and not a pen name. He also explained to me the doctrine of show, don’t tell. I remain grateful to him and each of the established authors who mentored me.

If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
Jane Renwick, she has plenty of stories to tell.

Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
I usually write with the cat on my lap – not my choice, but hers. Probably because I’m the warmest thing in the room!

Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
I scour the newspapers for ideas and also listen to conversations on public transport – it’s amazing what you read and hear. I carry a notebook wherever I go.

Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
I aspire to being a plotter, but usually my characters divert me and the pantser in me comes to the fore.

Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
Do hone your craft. A large part of writing is practice. Attend classes, writing retreats and writing clubs that allow you to mix with other writers and learn from them. Don’t give up. There is a new book launched on Amazon every 5 minutes. When you publish yours, you’ll have to promote it for the rest of your life.

What are your future plans as an author?
I am working on the next volume in my series The Edinburgh Crime Mysteries. It is due to be published in December. 2021. I have also been asked to contribute to a charity anthology of short stories, so I am working on that. I am also running a short course at Swanwick Writers’ Summer School and have been asked to lead the writers’ group in my village. There is always a lot to do.

Last, but not least : Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?
I very much hope your readers will enjoy my new Jane Renwick Thriller, The First Cut. Here is a short extract:

“Don’t know that name, but there’s nobody else here right now. I’m working. Please just go away.”
He felt the blow of dismissal, like everybody had always dismissed him. How dare they? How dare he? This foreigner didn’t even belong here. None of them did. None of them deserved the time of day, never mind the air they breathed. He would soon stop all that.
He smiled and took a few steps into the room.
“What you busy with? It’s late to be working.” He walked around the desk, took out his blade, and punched it into his victim’s carotid artery with practised precision. He dragged the blade across the neck to slice the artery, a quick second slice to make sure, but the first cut was the deepest. He made no errors, no mistakes. There was no hesitation. His victim stared at him, clutching his throat as the life blood ran out of him. All over the desk, all over the laptop computer, all over the important work that had required his dismissal. The blood sprayed over the desk, spattered the bookcase and into his mouth. That tinny, metallic taste he had come to enjoy. He would need to wipe his face before he left the room. It was a lucky break that he had a packet of tissues.
He smiled as his victim held his neck, the struggle, the gurgle, the death rattle of the man who tried to hold the life sustaining liquid in his body. They all did that. Again, ridiculous. It would never work. Not for long. It splashed through his fingers and onto the floor. That carpet hadn’t been up to much before, and it wasn’t worth shit now.

Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, Val Penny.

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!

#BlogTour #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : Her Previous Self – Anne Allen @AnneAllen21

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘Her Previous Self’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a some ‘basic’ information for you.

About the Author :

Anne Allen lives in Devon but originates from Rugby. Finding early on in life that she loved the sea she spent most of her adult years moving from one coast to another. Her happiest time was spent in Guernsey where she lived for nearly 14 years and her books are all set on that beautiful island. Until recently Anne was a psychotherapist but has now retired to write full time. So far she has published Dangerous Waters, Finding Mother, Guernsey Retreat, The Family Divided, Echoes of Time, The Betrayal, The Inheritance and Her Previous Self, forming the Guernsey Novels series. The books focus on love, mystery, drama and relationships. In her spare time she dabbles in art and very occasionally housework.

Social Media Links:
Twitter
Facebook
Facebook Author Page
Instagram

Synopsis :

Two women, living two hundred years apart but closer than sisters.
Mary, miserable in her marriage to Thomas Carre, a merchant and privateer and living in the newly-built family mansion in Georgian Guernsey.
Lucy, separated from her husband after a tragic loss and now acting as an unwilling sitter for her elderly grandfather, Gregory Carre, who has inherited the same mansion.
Lucy is haunted by Mary’s continued presence in the house and finds herself being pulled more and more back in time. How is it possible for her to live as Mary? To experience scenes from her tragic life? Lucy is forced to come to terms with Mary’s grief as well as her own.
The more enmeshed she becomes the more anxious Lucy is to discover the truth. Why is Mary still restless? What caused her mysterious disappearance two hundred years ago?
And can Lucy move on from her own loss to find happiness again?

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK
Amazon US

Giveaway :

Win 1 x Paperback Copy of Her Previous Self (UK winner) or e-copy for an international winner.
*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.

A Rafflecopter Giveaway

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#PublicationDayPush #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : Surprise Reunion With His Cinderella (Billion-Dollar Matches, Book 2) – Rachael Stewart @rach_b52 @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

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Today I’m on the ‘Surprise Reunion With His Cinderella’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a some ‘basic’ information for you.

About the Author :

2pVWigawRachael Stewart adores conjuring up stories for the readers of Harlequin Mills & Boon and Deep Desires Press, with tales varying from the heart-warmingly romantic to the wildly erotic.
Despite a degree in Business Studies and spending many years in the corporate world, the desire to become an author never waned and it’s now her full-time pleasure, a dream come true.
A Welsh lass at heart, she now lives in Yorkshire with her husband and three children, and if she’s not glued to her laptop, she’s wrapped up in them or enjoying the great outdoors seeking out inspiration.

Social Media Links:
Website
Twitter
Facebook

Synopsis :

lO8kR4PgCan one week in paradise…
…heal ten years of heartache?
When the elite M dating agency sends wealthy Freddie Highgrove to the Seychelles for a weeklong “date,” the last person he’s expecting to be matched with is Jasmine Walker, his first love and ex-fiancée! Ten years ago, his family’s expectations for a high-society marriage sent housekeeper’s daughter Jasmine running. Can one week in paradise bring them back together?

Purchase Link

Giveaway :

Win Prize bundle of 2 Rachael Stewart paperbacks plus assorted goodies (Open INT)
Prize Contains
– Paperback of Tempted by the Tycoon’s Proposal
– Paperback of Surprise Reunion with His Cinderella
– Mills & Boon Notebook
– Rose Gold Pen
– Cute Placemat
– Lip balm
– Sweets
– Heart post-its
– Author Swag

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*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 I reserve 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 I will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

a Rafflecopter Giveaway

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : Lord of the Hunt (Sooty Feathers Book 2) – David Craig @SootyFeathers

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘Lord of the Hunt’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a some ‘basic’ information for you.

About the Author :

Aside from three months living on an oil tanker sailing back and forth between America and Africa, and two years living in a pub, David Craig grew up on the west coast of Scotland. He studied Software Engineering at university, but lost interest in the subject after (and admittedly prior to) graduation. He currently works as a workforce planning analyst for a public service organisation, and lives near Glasgow with his wife, daughter and two rabbits.
Being a published writer had been a life-long dream, and one that he was delighted to finally realise with his debut novel, Resurrection Men, the first in the Sooty Feathers series, published by Elsewhen Press in 2018. Thorns of a Black Rose was David’s second novel, also published by Elsewhen Press. He returns to the Sooty Feathers series with Lord of the Hunt.

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Synopsis :

Death rides the blood of a pale horse
June 1893
Undead prowl the streets of Glasgow at night hunting for blood. They, in turn, are hunted by the formidable Lady Delaney and her apprentice Kerry Knox, whose fight against the secret society ruling Glasgow will lead them into the city’s industrial heart where the poor toil in miserable conditions. Children have been exploited in mills and factories for decades, but the Sooty Feather Society has refined its cruel disregard in service to the undead.
Delaney and Knox are not the society’s only problem. The elusive demon Arakiel employs murder and necromancy in his campaign to seize control of Glasgow, avenging betrayal and reclaiming what was once his.
Wilton Hunt and Tam Foley are lying low in the Highlands where Hunt’s father has recently inherited title and estate. The blue skies and clear waters of Loch Aline may seem a tranquil sanctuary to the city men, but its forbidding forests and shadowed glens conceal dark secrets pertaining to Hunt’s family, and a diabolical revelation will change Wilton’s life forever.
Demons walk the crowded, cobbled streets of Glasgow, and a necromancer’s debt is called in. Knox will learn what joining this war might cost her; Hunt and Foley will learn they can’t escape it. Their diverged paths will meet again when dark magic unleashes a horror not everyone will survive…

Purchase Links:
Elsewhen Press
Amazon UK
Amazon US

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BlogTour #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #PromoPost : The Devil’s Shadow – BJ Edwards @Meddryn

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘The Devil’s Shadow’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a some ‘basic’ information for you.

About the Author :

BJ is a writer of novels, plays and short stories. He also writes screenplays – one of which is currently in development. To date he has published four books, including a collection of poetry. With a passion for history, anthropology and archaeology, he is a former English teacher and theatre director. BJ is totally blind and lives with his partner, his collection of swords and their dogs, Oliver and Sallie. In his spare time, BJ enjoys films, books, training, martial arts and rowing.

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Synopsis :

In a vault beneath the Mediterranean Sea, a creature from myth and folklore sleeps. Government agents David Coswell and Hannah Martin join forces to find and study the creature with the hopes of harnessing its power for their country’s good. Accidentally, they release the creature and London is plunged into chaos. Lawlessness and hedonism spread as Lord of the Flies regains his strength and uses violence and fear to build his new kingdom.
David Coswell, along with his ‘handler’ Sentinel Nutbeam, retired soldier Nigel Carter, and Spanish matriarch Maria Perez help the Prime Minister confront the beast and take back control of a fractured country.
The Devil’s Shadow is a fast-paced supernatural thriller. Sometimes scary, sometimes sexy and always exciting, it is an absorbing tale of friendship, loyalty, faith and belief.

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK
Amazon US

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#MiniBlogBlitz #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #GuestPost : Playing The Duke’s Fiancee – Amanda McCabe @AmandaMcCabe01 @HarlequinBooks @MillsandBoon

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘Playing The Duke’s Fiancee’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a guest post, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.

About the Author :

Amanda wrote her first romance at the age of sixteen–a vast historical epic starring all her friends as the characters, written secretly during algebra class (and her parents wondered why math was not her strongest subject…)
She’s never since used algebra, but her books have been nominated for many awards, including the RITA Award, the Romantic Times BOOKReviews Reviewers’ Choice Award, the Booksellers Best, the National Readers Choice Award, and the Holt Medallion. She lives in Santa Fe with a Poodle, a cat, a wonderful husband, and a very and far too many books and royal memorabilia collections.
When not writing or reading, she loves taking dance classes, collecting cheesy travel souvenirs, and watching the Food Network–even though she doesn’t cook.
Amanda also writes as Laurel McKee for Grand Central Publishing, the Elizabethan Mystery Series as Amanda Carmack, and the Manor Cat Mystery Series as Eliza Casey.

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Synopsis :

A pretend proposal
For the unconventional heiress
When American heiress Violet Wilkins crosses paths with William, Duke of Charteris, she has extremely low expectations of the “Duke of Bore.” But when this seemingly stuffy aristocrat offers her escape from a dreadful arranged marriage, she leaps at the chance! To her surprise, the arresting Charles whisks Vi into an exhilarating make-believe romance. And as she gets to know the man behind the title, she can’t help wanting more…

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Guest Post :

One of the fun things I researched for His Unlikely Duchess (and for “The Dollar Duchesses” series in general!) was the process of being an “official” debutante at the royal court of the nineteenth century. It was a long process, starting with getting approved, curtsying classes, multiple visits to dressmakers, hairdressers, and florists—and making sure you didn’t embarrass yourself in front of the queen. (As Lily would certainly never do!!!)
During Victoria’s reign, the Court Drawing Rooms were held in Buckingham Palace at four stated periods every year–two before Easter and two after. Levées, hosted by the Prince of Wales for the presentation of gentlemen, were held at intervals during the like season in St. James’s Palace. Though of lessening distinction as the Victorian period wore on, the delicious prospect of being presented to the Queen or Prince of Wales continued to be a beacon to ambitious social climbers.
When the date of a drawing room was announced, letters poured into the Lord Chamberlain, suggesting names of ladies for presentation. Everyone who had kissed the Queen’s hand was able to nominate another for presentation. But it wasn’t guaranteed that any name submitted was accepted. The list underwent careful scrutiny by both the Lord Chamberlain and the Queen, Her Majesty only receiving those who “wore the white flower of a blameless life.”
There were only three qualifications for admittance to the throne room:
1.The lady wishing to be presented should be of good moral and social character.
2.Presentation had to be made by someone who had already been presented.
3.The status of the actual presentee. The most obvious candidates, the wives and daughters of the aristocracy, had the privilege of being kissed by Queen Victoria (though no kisses were received if the Princess of Wales were acting as stand-in, and the practice was dropped entirely in the Edwardian era), then came the ranks of those candidates whose presentation would be sealed by the action of kissing the Queen’s hand. These included the daughters and wives of the country gentry and Town gentry, of the clergy, of naval and military officers, of professional men such as physicians and barristers, of merchants, bankers and members of the Stock Exchange, and “persons engaged in commerce on a large scale.”Summonses were sent out three weeks in advance, allowing ample time for the excited debutante or newly married lady, to practice the complicated court curtsy and order the regulated costume demanded for presentation, as laid out, via the Lord Chamberlain’s Office, in Lady Colin Campbell’s Manners and Rules of Good Society, 1911 edition:
Full Court Dress: low bodice, short sleeves, and train to dress not less than three yards in length from the shoulders. Whether the train is cut round or square is a matter of inclination or fashion. The width at the end should be 54 inches. It is also imperative that a presentation dress should be white if the person presented be an unmarried lady and it is also the fashion for married ladies to wear white on their presentation unless their age rendered their doing so unsuitable The white dresses worn by either debutante or married ladies may be trimmed with either colored or white flowers according to individual taste.
High Court Dress: dress of silk satin or velvet may be worn at Their Majesties Courts and on other State occasions by ladies to whom from illness infirmity or advancing age the present low Court dress is inappropriate. Bodices in front cut square or heart shaped which may be filled in with white only either transparent or lined at the back high or cut down three quarters height. Sleeves to elbow either thick or transparent. Trains, gloves, and feathers as usual. It is necessary for ladies who wish to appear in High Court Dress to obtain Royal permission through the Lord Chamberlain. This regulation does not apply to ladies who have already received permission to wear high dress.
White gloves only should be worn excepting in case of mourning when black or grey gloves are admissible. As a lady on presentation does not now kiss the Queen’s hand as formerly she did she is not required to remove the right hand glove before entering the Presence Chamber. This order therefore is no longer in force and a lady wearing elbow gloves and bracelets will find it a great convenience not to be to take off her glove.
It was compulsory for both Married and Unmarried Ladies to Wear Plumes. The married lady’s Court plume consisted of three white feathers. An unmarried lady’s of two white feathers. The three white feathers should be mounted as a Prince of Wales plume and worn towards the left hand side of the head. Colored feathers may not be worn. In deep mourning, white feathers must be worn, black feathers are inadmissible.
White veils or lace lappets must be worn with the feathers. The veils should not be longer than 45 inches.
Bouquets are not included in the dress regulations issued by the Lord Chamberlain although they are invariably carried by both married and unmarried ladies. It is thus optional to carry a bouquet or not, and some elderly ladies carry much smaller bouquets than do younger ladies. A fan and a lace pocket handkerchief are also carried by a lady on presentation or on attending a Court but these two items are also altogether optional.
Armed with the proper arsenal, the young lady or new wife was ready to take London by storm. Queen Victoria held her presentations in the afternoon at 3 o’clock, which caused a traffic snarl of monumental proportions. It was common for the débutante to queue up in her carriage for hours down The Mall towards Buckingham Palace, boxed in on both sides by other equipages and the throng of curious onlookers. Then, once she alighted from her carriage, there was another long wait in the close, sweltering palace antechambers, where neither refreshments nor relief were available.
The young lady who persevered to the end, however, got her rewards. Carrying her train over her left arm, she made her way through the groups of attendants to the anteroom or corridor where one of the lords-in-waiting, with his wand, spread out her train she’d let down, and walked forward to the Throne Room.
Her name was announced as she curtsied before the Queen, so low as to almost kneel, and while doing such, she kissed the royal hand extended to her, underneath which she placed her own ungloved right hand. The peeress or daughter of a peer received a kiss from Queen Victoria. When the Princess of Wales stood in for Her Majesty, the lady being presented curtsied only and did not kiss the Princess’s hand. After passing Her Majesty, the débutante curtsied to any of the Princesses near her and retired backwards in what may be called a succession of curtsies until she reached the threshold of the doorway. The official in attendance replaced her train upon her arm and the presentation was complete!
As was stated above, the reception of a kiss on the cheek from the Queen or the gift of one upon her hand was tossed out when Edward VII came to the throne. Other, more important changes were made to the presentation ceremony. Things were sped up by his reign, the drawing rooms and levees switched to the evening and held in June; the telephone used to summon a débutante’s transport, thus easing the traffic; buffet supper, served from tables laid with gold plate helped to revive waiting ladies; and the court photographers were allotted a room for speedy snapshots of the women.

Levées were conducted somewhat on the same plan as that of the Drawing room but were confined exclusively to men who wear uniform or Court dress. Hosted by the Prince of Wales, later the King, those entitled to be presented to H.R.H./H.M. were members of the aristocracy and gentry, the members of the diplomatic courts, the Cabinet and all leading Government officials, Members of Parliament, leading members of the legal profession, the naval and military professions, the leading members of the clerical profession, the leading members of the medical and artistic professions, the leading bankers merchants and members of the Stock Exchange, and persons engaged in commerce on a large scale. An exception to the rule as regards retail trade was made in favor of any person receiving Knighthood ,or when holding the office of Mayor, or being made a Justice of the Peace, or on receiving a Commission in the Territorial forces.
The workings of the levee were similar to those of the drawing rooms: dates announced and names submitted, and specific court dress required:
The Dress to be worn at Courts State Functions and Levees: Full dress uniform is invariably worn by all gentlemen entitled to wear it. All officers Scottish kilted corps should wear the kilt irrespective their being mounted officers or not. Gentlemen who do not wear uniform may wear either velvet Court dress new style; velvet Court dress old style; cloth Court dress.
The new style velvet Court dress is of black silk velvet. The body of the coat lined with white silk and the skirt with black silk. Steel buttons. Waistcoat of white satin or black silk velvet. Breeches of black silk velvet, black silk hose, patent leather shoes, steel buckled, white bow necktie, white gloves, sword, black beaver or silk cocked hat.
The velvet Court dress old style is very similar to the foregoing with the addition of a black silk wig bag at the back of the neck and lace frills and ruffles.
The cloth Court dress consists of a coat of dark mulberry claret or green cloth with black silk linings, gold embroidery on collar, cuffs, and pocket flaps, gilt buttons with Imperial Crown, waistcoat of white corded silk or white Marcella, breeches of cloth color of coat, black silk hose, patent leather shoes, sword, white bow necktie, white gloves, black beaver or silk cocked hat.
On certain days of the year, the so-called Collar days, high diplomatic and distinguished personages wear the collars and badges of the Garter, Thistle, St Patrick, Bath, and other Orders of Knighthood.

The Magic of Wor(l)ds

#BookBirthdayBlitz #RachelsRandomResources @rararesources / #Excerpt : Haunted – Tessa Buckley @matadorbooks

– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –

Today I’m on the ‘Haunted’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have an excerpt, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.

About the Author :

Tessa Buckley was an inveterate scribbler as a child, and spent much of her time writing and illustrating stories. After studying Interior Design, she spent fifteen years working for architects and designers. She took up writing again after her young daughter complained that she couldn’t find enough adventure stories to read. This led, in 2016, to the publication of Eye Spy, the first in a series of detective stories for 9-12 year olds, designed to encourage reluctant readers. The second book in the series, Haunted, was a finalist in the Wishing Shelf Book Awards 2017.
Tessa lives with her husband and a large white cat called Pippa. in a town on the Thames estuary, which inspired the seaside setting for the novels. She also writes about health and nutrition, and family history, which has been her passion for many years.

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Synopsis :

Alex doesn’t believe in ghosts, but he is about to have his beliefs challenged…
When Jimmy Devlin asks the twins to investigate the strange things that have been happening at The Priory, Alex seizes the opportunity to prove to his sister that there is no such thing as ghosts. However, it soon becomes clear that unquiet spirits are not the only problem facing the Devlin family.
Are the family servants hiding secrets? Has a valuable ring been stolen, or just mislaid? And what has happened to Jimmy’s missing elder brother, Harry? As the twins and Jimmy try to solve the many mysteries of The Priory, they discover they are dealing with a very dangerous enemy…

Purchase Links :
Amazon UK
Amazon US
Troubador Publishing

Excerpt :

Teen detectives Alex and Donna are investigating the spooky goings-on at the old priory where their friend, Jimmy Devlin, lives. Here they are waiting for all the adults to leave the house so that they can search the cellar, where the sound of a crying child has been heard.

We shut the door of the office behind us and hurried down the corridor to the hall, where Jimmy put his finger to his lips. “Shhh,” he said. “We need to make sure there’s nobody left around.” We all stood still for a moment and listened, but apart from the soft whirr of the dishwasher in the kitchen, the house was silent. We were on our own at last.
The cellar door was in a corner, underneath the staircase. It looked incredibly old, and was made of thick planks of wood fixed together with metal straps. Jimmy fitted different keys into the keyhole, one after another, trying to find the right one. Whilst he was fiddling around, I had the strange sensation that we were being watched. I told myself that was daft, because we were the only people left in the house, but I still felt uneasy. Then, as Jimmy tried the last key, we heard the lock turn. “Bingo!” he said as the door swung slowly open, revealing a flight of worn stone steps disappearing into inky darkness.
Nobody wanted to be first to go down the steps into the place where all the strange sounds had come from a few days before. Donna broke the silence. “What we need is some light. It’s only scary because it’s so dark.” She fumbled around inside the door and eventually found a light switch. She was right: once the room below was lit up, I couldn’t believe we’d all made such a fuss about going down there. I was about to pull the door shut behind us (just in case anyone returned and caught us snooping), when Jimmy grabbed my arm. “Don’t do that! You can only unlock it from the hall side. We don’t want to get locked in.” He picked up a massive iron doorstop that was lying nearby and positioned it so the door couldn’t quite shut. Then we made our way carefully down the uneven steps.
Immediately in front of us, various pieces of old furniture were lying around. Behind them was a load of metal racks that looked as if they contained Mr Devlin’s collection of vintage wines. The stone walls and stone paving slabs looked very old, and there was a vaulted stone ceiling, like you see in old churches.
Donna shivered. “It’s a bit chilly down here, isn’t it?”
That was an understatement. The hall we had just left was warm from all the sunlight pouring in through the big windows, but in the cellar it was cold enough to have been a winter’s night. “That doesn’t mean anything,” I said, trying to reassure myself. “Cellars are always cold, because they don’t get any sunlight.”
Whilst we were talking, Jimmy was investigating the bottles on the racks. “I never realised Dad had so much wine. Some of these bottles look really old. The labels are so faded you can hardly read them.”
“Never mind that!” Donna said. “We’re supposed to be ghost-hunting, remember? Alex, see if you can get a reading on the EMF meter.”
I got out my phone and switched on the app. Just as I was checking the reading, which was normal, I felt something brush against the back of my leg. I was so startled, I cried out. Donna laughed. “Don’t be silly, Alex! It’s only Boss Cat! He must have found the open door and followed us down here. Fancy being frightened of a cat!”
I felt stupid for over-reacting. Boss Cat pricked up his ears and ran off towards the other end of the cellar, which was shrouded in darkness. I guessed he was earning his keep by trying to catch some rats. I started to move around the cellar, taking EMF readings as I went. Jimmy was still hovering near the wine racks, and Donna had joined him. Then, as I approached the bottom of the stairs, the temperature suddenly went from cold to icy, and the readings on the meter spiked. Jimmy held up a dusty bottle. “Hey, Alex, look at this!” he said, just as there was an ear-splitting yowl. The cat leapt down off the top of the wine rack, knocking the bottle out of Jimmy’s hands as he went, and shot off up the stairs and out of the cellar like a bolt from a crossbow. There was the sound of breaking glass as the bottle hit the floor, then the light went out and the room was plunged into darkness.

The Magic of Wor(l)ds