Noteworthy Book Releases

#BlogTour #GuestPost
Die Every Day by Gordon Bickerstaff
@GFBickerstaff @LoveBooksGroup #LoveBooksGroupTours

#BlogTour #GuestPost Die Every Day by Gordon Bickerstaff @GFBickerstaff @LoveBooksGroup #LoveBooksGroupToursTitle: Die Every Day

Author: Gordon Bickerstaff

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 396

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

A woman is murdered in a Glasgow city hotel room. Police have everything they need to charge a suspect. Caught at the scene, he confessed, and he’s filled with guilt and remorse. With undeniable evidence; the police expect him to plead guilty.

Rumours suggest the man will plead not guilty and tell his story. If he faces trial, the truth will cause international outrage and the government will fall. Faceless mandarins in corridors of power are determined he will remain silent.

Lambeth Group agent, Zoe Tampsin, is ordered to make him plead guilty. What she discovers will crush her soul and place her next in line to be murdered.
Who is pulling the strings? What secrets are they hiding?  

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following link!

 

And now Gordon Bickerstaff with:

 

Unusual Characters

Unusual characters can add a quirky dimension to a book and one character with a life-saving role that I incorporated into my first book, Deadly Secrets, was the humble pineapple. It proved interesting and a number of readers contacted me to ask if the background information on the properties of the pineapple was true or fiction.

More than 500 years ago, Christopher Columbus ‘discovered’ the pineapple, which he received in exchange for trinkets from natives on the Caribbean island of Guadeloupe. Columbus tasted the fruit and instantly appreciated its commercial potential as a delicious fruit. He was also intensely intrigued by the medicinal uses claimed by the natives.

Columbus discovered they drank pineapple juice as an aid to digestion and a cure for bellyache, particularly when feasting on meat and women used it as a cleansing agent to improve the texture of their skin. Injuries, he discovered, were treated with pineapple flesh to promote healing.

Columbus was more interested in the claim by warriors that pineapple flesh promoted rapid healing when applied to wounds sustained in battle. It is now understood that the pineapple flesh can remove damaged skin tissue and kill bacteria to stop infection and provide a clean, smooth, wound. To Columbus, it was a miracle made for the military but it was a short-lived one. The pineapple had to be fresh and once cut, it soon rots. It wouldn’t travel.

In more recent times, biochemists have established an explanation for these varied uses; the pineapple plant is a rich source of bromelain, an enzyme that can degrade protein. It aids digestion by chopping food protein down to its building blocks, peptides and amino acids.

The natives of Guadeloupe used pineapple juice as an active ingredient for skin care lotions as the bromelain degrades dead or damaged outer layers of skin to expose the softer inner layers. They also used concentrated lotions to remove body hair because bromelain degrades keratin (hair protein).

In more modern times, doctors treating skin burns must first remove dead, charred and damaged skin to provide a clear foundation for a graft and frequently use a combination of surgical techniques and enzymes such as bromelain, which as the additional advantage of reducing accumulation of fluid and lowering inflammation.

Other studies have show that bromelain may be valuable in destroying protein blood clots, which cause heart attack and stroke as well as important anti-inflammatory properties for management of trauma.

With such great potential, why has it not been realized? Only large pharmaceutical companies have the money to undertake the detailed research that would reveal the benefits that can be found in pineapple, and there is no money to be made in showing that pineapple might have health benefits. For the time being, pineapple bromelain must remain an unusual character.

 

About Gordon Bickerstaff

Love reading, writing and reviewing thrillers, mystery, suspense.

I was born and raised in Glasgow but spent my student years in Edinburgh. On summer vacations, I learned plumbing, garden maintenance, and I cut the grass in the Meadows.

I live with my wife in the west of Scotland where corrupt academics, mystery, murder and intrigue exist mostly in my mind.

I have written six stand-alone crime thrillers (Lambeth Group Thriller Series): Deadly Secrets, Everything To Lose, The Black Fox, Toxic Minds, Tabula Rasa (clean slate) and Tears of Fire.

I enjoy walking, 60s & 70s music, reading and travel.

 

Thank you to Gordon Bickerstaff for being featured on my blog today!

 

#BookReview
Instacrush (Rookie Rebels #2)
by Kate Meader @KittyMeader

#BookReview Instacrush (Rookie Rebels #2) by Kate Meader @KittyMeaderTitle: Instacrush

Author: Kate Meader

Series: Rookie Rebels #2

Published by: Kate Meader LLC on December 10, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 319

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Kate Meader

Book Rating: 10/10

 

Synopsis:

Theo Kershaw is the luckiest guy alive.

Roaring back from a life-threatening injury, he has the world at his skates as defenseman for his new team, the Chicago Rebels. Everyone adores his big personality, his on-ice talent, and his killer smile. Everyone but his prickly neighbor – or so he thinks. One chilly Christmas Eve, Theo will learn that maybe the girl next door isn’t such a hater after all …

Elle Butler is the most embarrassing person on the planet.

How else can the ex-military-now-bartender explain her crush on the hot jock who lives across the hall? True, he has gorgeous green eyes and perfect cheekbones, but the filter between his brain and too-sexy mouth is permanently malfunctioning. Yet she can’t stop checking out his Instagram antics or sneaking looks at him when he’s in her bar. So. Mortifying. Running from a past filled with damning secrets, Elle’s determined that this guilty pleasure remains buried in her deepest fantasies.

Because she couldn’t possibly indulge with the Theo Kershaw or make a mistake that draws attention to her under-the-radar life. And she especially couldn’t be a mom to a pro-athlete’s baby … could she?


Review:

Spicy, romantic, and downright addictive!

Instacrush is a lighthearted, passionate rom-com featuring the private, feisty Elle who may or may not be secretly crushing on the heartthrob with the killer buns who lives next door, and the sexy, charismatic Theo who may be more of a thoughtful, sweet, standup guy than anyone gave him credit for.

The writing is witty and playful. The characters are charming, gregarious, and endearing. And the plot is the perfect combination of family, friendship, temptation, desire, palpable chemistry, sizzling attraction, tender moments, sexy times, light drama, and hockey.

Overall, Instacrush is a steamy, fun, swoony edition to the Rookie Rebels series by Meader that will not only please fans of her previous Chicago Rebels novels, but will have you laughing out loud, dreaming of a delicious, worthy book boyfriend, and will without a doubt leave you craving more.

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                                  

 

 

Thank you Kate Meader for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Kate Meader

Originally from Ireland, Kate Meader cut her romance reader teeth on Maeve Binchy and Jilly Cooper novels, with some Harlequins thrown in for variety. Give her tales about brooding mill owners, oversexed equestrians, and men who can rock an apron, a fire hose, or a hockey stick, and she's there. Now based in Chicago, she writes sexy contemporary romance with alpha heroes and strong heroines (and heroes) who can match their men quip for quip.

#BlogTour #BookReview
The Glittering Hour by Iona Grey
@iona_grey @StMartinsPress #TheGlitteringHour

#BlogTour #BookReview The Glittering Hour by Iona Grey @iona_grey @StMartinsPress #TheGlitteringHourTitle: The Glittering Hour

Author: Iona Grey

Published by: Thomas Dunne Books on December 10, 2019

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 480

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 10/10

 

 

Synopsis:

An unforgettable historical about true love found and lost and the secrets we keep from one another from an award-winning author

Selina Lennox is a Bright Young Thing. Her life is a whirl of parties and drinking, pursued by the press and staying on just the right side of scandal, all while running from the life her parents would choose for her.

Lawrence Weston is a penniless painter who stumbles into Selina’s orbit one night and can never let her go even while knowing someone of her stature could never end up with someone of his. Except Selina falls hard for Lawrence, envisioning a life of true happiness. But when tragedy strikes, Selina finds herself choosing what’s safe over what’s right.

Spanning two decades and a seismic shift in British history as World War II approaches, Iona Grey’s The Glittering Hour is an epic novel of passion, heartache and loss.


Review:

Mesmerizing, enthralling, and incredibly moving!

The Glittering Hour is set in London and the English countryside during 1925, as well as 1936, and is told from two different perspectives. Selina, a young woman in her prime who often finds herself and her friends gracing the pages of the gossip rags for their outrageous behaviour and antics, and Alice Carew, Selina’s nine-year-old daughter who after being relegated to her grandparents country home while her parents are abroad embarks on a treasure hunt to discover all her mother’s secrets.

The prose is eloquent and vivid. The characters are creative, intelligent, and rebellious. And the plot, including all the subplots, unravel and intertwine into a sweeping saga of life, loss, family, expectations, sacrifice, self-discovery, friendship, heartbreak, romance, forbidden love, and the special bonds shared between a mother and daughter.

Overall, The Glittering Hour is a bittersweet, beautifully expressive, exceptionally affecting story by Grey that illuminates the enduring passion and power of unconditional love and reminds us that life should always be lived to the fullest. It’s immersive, vibrant, and utterly heartwrenching in spots, and is without a doubt one of my favourite reads of the year. 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or one of the following links.

                                            

 

 

Thank you to St. Martin’s Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Iona Grey

Iona Grey has a degree in English Literature and Language from Manchester University, an obsession with history and an enduring fascination with the lives of women in the twentieth century. She lives in the rural North West of England with her husband and three daughters. She is the award-winning author of Letters to the Lost, and her new book The Glittering Hour is on sale October 17 2019 (UK) and December 10, 2019 (US).

It’s Monday (December 9, 2019)!
What Are You Reading! #IMWAYR
#Books #Reading #TBRList

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? hosted by Kathryn at Bookdate is a weekly post to share what you’ve recently finished reading, what you’re currently reading, and what you plan on reading this upcoming week.

 

So here is what I just read, am reading, and what I plan to read next:

 

What I Read Last Week:

 

Title: Virgin River (Virgin River #1)

Authors: Robyn Carr

Immediate Thoughts: Dramatic, romantic, and emotional!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: October 22, 2019

 

 

Title: Consumed (Firefighters #1)

Authors: J. R. Ward

Immediate Thoughts: Consuming, passionate, and suspenseful!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: October 2, 2018

 

 

Title: Husband Material

Authors: Emily Belden

Immediate Thoughts: Sweet, Witty, and Charming!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: December 30, 2019

 

 

Title: No Mercy

Authors: Martina Cole

Immediate Thoughts: Dark, pacey, and gritty!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: December 24, 2019

 

 

Title: Arctic Heat (Frozen Hearts #3)

Authors: Annabeth Albert

Immediate Thoughts: Compelling, slow-burning, and sweet!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: September 23, 2019

 

 

Title: Forever Friends (Cranberry Cove #1)

Authors: Sarah Mackenzie

Immediate Thoughts: Heartwarming, charming, and uplifting!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: December 10, 2019

 

 

What I’m Currently Reading:

 

Goode girls don’t lie…

Perched atop a hill in the tiny town of Marchburg, Virginia, The Goode School is a prestigious prep school known as a Silent Ivy. The boarding school of choice for daughters of the rich and influential, it accepts only the best and the brightest. Its elite status, long-held traditions and honor code are ideal for preparing exceptional young women for brilliant futures at Ivy League universities and beyond. But a stranger has come to Goode, and this ivy has turned poisonous.

In a world where appearances are everything, as long as students pretend to follow the rules, no one questions the cruelties of the secret societies or the dubious behavior of the privileged young women who expect to get away with murder. But when a popular student is found dead, the truth cannot be ignored. Rumors suggest she was struggling with a secret that drove her to suicide.

But look closely…because there are truths and there are lies, and then there is everything that really happened.

J.T. Ellison’s pulse-pounding new novel examines the tenuous bonds of friendship, the power of lies and the desperate lengths people will go to to protect their secrets.

 

What I’m Reading Next:

 

Acclaimed author Colleen Oakley delivers a heart-wrenching and unforgettable love story about a woman who must choose between the man she loves and the man fate has chosen for her in a novel that reminds us that the best life is one led by the heart.

Mia Graydon’s life looks picket-fence perfect; she has the house, her loving husband, and dreams of starting a family. But she has other dreams too — unexplained, recurring ones starring the same man. Still, she doesn’t think much of them, until a relocation to small-town Pennsylvania brings her face to face with the stranger she has been dreaming about for years. And this man harbors a jaw-dropping secret of his own—he’s been dreaming of her too.

Determined to understand, Mia and this not-so-stranger search for answers. But when diving into their pasts begins to unravel her life in the present, Mia emerges with a single question—what if?

 

Have you read any of my upcoming reads? What do you have coming up?

#BookReview
A Madness of Sunshine by Nalini Singh
@NaliniSingh @BerkleyPub @PenguinRandomCA

#BookReview A Madness of Sunshine by Nalini Singh @NaliniSingh @BerkleyPub @PenguinRandomCATitle: A Madness of Sunshine

Author: Nalini Singh

Published by: Berkley on December 3, 2019

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 352

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Penguin Random House Canada

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh pivots in a new direction with her first mainstream thriller that will be sure to keep readers on their toes.

Anahera Rawiri left New Zealand at twenty-one, fleeing small-town poverty and the ghosts of her childhood with no plans to look back. But eight years later, she returns, seeking familiarity as respite from the shattered remains of her new life. And despite the changes brought on by a bump in tourism–the shiny new welcome sign at the town line and a decidedly less shiny new police presence–Golden Cove appears much as it ever was: a small settlement on the savage West Coast of the South Island, populated by all the remembered faces and set against a backdrop of lush greenery, jagged cliffs, and crashing waves.

Detective Will Gallagher knows all about ghosts; his own chased him out of a promising career in Christchurch, landing him as the sole cop in a quaint town where his most pressing concerns are petty theft and the occasional drunk. When Golden Cove resident Miri Hinewai goes out for a run and fails to return, Will finds himself heading up a missing person’s search that rapidly escalates into an official investigation after this case is connected with similar ones from the past. As an outsider, Will begins to rely on Anahera’s knowledge of the area and its residents to help him delve into Golden Cove’s secrets, and to determine whether it shelters something far more dangerous than just an unforgiving landscape.


Review:

Atmospheric, gritty, and suspenseful!

A Madness of Sunshine is a sharp, compelling read that transports you to Golden Cove, New Zealand, a small coastal town where the sudden disappearance of a local young woman with a bright future unearths a lot of strong emotions, tragic memories, and more long-buried secrets and skeletons than anyone could have ever imagined.

The prose is vivid and precise. The characters are tormented, mistrusting, and diligent. And the plot, including all the subplots, intertwine and unravel subtly into an engrossing, investigative tale filled with life, loss, family, friendship, heartbreak, manipulation, abuse, violence, murder, and a sliver of romance.

Overall, A Madness of Sunshine is an absorbing, dark, ominous tale that does an exceptional job of reminding us that evil can live easily amongst us and is often hidden behind masks of normality. It’s surprisingly the first novel I’ve read by Singh, but it certainly won’t be the last.

 

This book is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following links.

                                          

 

 

Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Nalini Singh

New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh is passionate about writing. Though she’s traveled as far afield as the deserts of China, the Highlands of Scotland, and the frozen landscapes of Antarctica, it is the journey of the imagination that fascinates her most. She’s beyond delighted to be able to follow her dream as a writer. Nalini lives and works in beautiful New Zealand. You can contact her directly through her website. While visiting the site, Nalini invites you to join her newsletter for up-to-date news about both the Psy-Changeling and Guild Hunter series, as well as fun exclusive extras, including free short stories set in her worlds.

Photo by Deborah Hillman.

#CoverReveal
The Bedroom Experiment by Kendall Ryan
@KendallRyan1 #hotjocks

 

 

Today I am excited to bring you the Cover for the new novelette

 from New York Times bestselling author Kendall Ryan.

 

The Bedroom Experiment

Releasing on February 11th for only 99¢!

 

 

When your stepbrother is a hot hockey stud with more notches in his bedpost than, well anyone, he’s the perfect candidate to help you gain a little bedroom experience. At least that’s my plan this V-day…

Note: This is a hot and steamy, standalone novelette. Contents include: One sweet but rough-around-the-edges hockey player who’s going a little crazy. One blunt, knows-what-she-wants heroine who picks through his self-defense. No cheating. Low angst. And a sweet, melty HEA.

Also Note: A short story version of this book was previously free for newsletter subscribers, but it has since been heavily rewritten and has more than doubled in length.

 

 

PRE-ORDER NOW

                              

 

 

 

About Kendall Ryan

A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of more than two dozen titles, Kendall Ryan has sold over 1.5 million books and her books have been translated into several languages in countries around the world. She’s a traditionally published author with Simon & Schuster and Harper Collins UK, as well as an independently published author. Since she first began self-publishing in 2012, she’s appeared at #1 on Barnes & Noble and iBooks charts around the world. Her books have also appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists more than three dozen times. Ryan has been featured in such publications as USA Today, Newsweek, and InTouch Magazine.

#BlogTour #PromoPost
Vile by Keith Crawford
@keithcrawford77 @LoveBooksGroup #LoveBooksGroupTours

#BlogTour #PromoPost Vile by Keith Crawford @keithcrawford77 @LoveBooksGroup #LoveBooksGroupToursTitle: Vile

Author: Keith Crawford

Genres: Fantasy

Pages: 349

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Elianor Paine is a Magistrate of the Peace in the Kingdom of Trist and a republican secret agent. She has 6 days to subvert her investigation, supplant war-hero Lord Vile, then coerce his adult children to start a revolution, before her masters discover the truth and have her killed. Just how far is she willing to go? And can she change the world without changing herself?

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following link!

 

About Keith Crawford

Keith Crawford is a retired Navy Officer, a disabled veteran, a Doctor of Law & Economics, a barrister, a stay-at-home Dad, and a writer. He has written for collections of scholarly works, academic journals, and newspapers including The Economist. He has had more than thirty plays recorded or produced for stage, been listed in a variety of short story competitions (in spite of his hatred of short stories), and runs a radio production company, www.littlewonder.website, which regularly runs competitions promoted by the BBC to help find, develop and encourage new writers.
In 2014 he was lecturing at Sciences Po in Paris and negotiating a contract to write a book on banking regulation, when he and his wife discovered to their delight that they were due to have their first child. Rather than writing more work that would only be read by his poor students, and then misquoted by politicians, he decided he would do his bit to stick his fingers up at the patriarchy and stay home to look after his own kids rather than the grown-up kids of rich people. Two more children swiftly followed. Keith has discovered that if you recite Stick Man backwards you get the lyrics to AD/DC’s Highway to Hell.
This (looking after the kids, not satanic rites with Stick Man) allowed him to support his wife’s career, which appears to be heading for the stratosphere, and also gave him the space to write about swordfights and explosions. And spaceships. All of which are more fun than banking regulation. As an extension to his work in radio production, he set up his own small press, and his first novel, Vile, is due to be published in December 2019. More novels will swiftly follow, like buses in countries that don’t privatise the bus companies.

 

Thank you to Keith Crawford for being featured on my blog today!

 

#BookReview
Woman on the Edge by Samantha M. Bailey
@sbaileybooks @SimonSchusterCA

#BookReview Woman on the Edge by Samantha M. Bailey @sbaileybooks @SimonSchusterCATitle: Woman on the Edge

Author: Samantha M. Bailey

Published by: Simon & Schuster on November 26, 2019

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 272

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Simon & Schuster Canada

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

A moment on the subway platform changes two women’s lives forever—a debut thriller that will take your breath away.

A total stranger on the subway platform whispers, “Take my baby.”

She places her child in your arms. She says your name.

Then she jumps…

In a split second, Morgan Kincaid’s life changes forever. She’s on her way home from work when a mother begs her to take her baby, then places the infant in her arms. Before Morgan can stop her, the distraught mother jumps in front of an oncoming train.

Morgan has never seen this woman before, and she can’t understand what would cause a person to give away her child and take her own life. She also can’t understand how this woman knew her name.

The police take Morgan in for questioning. She soon learns that the woman who jumped was Nicole Markham, prominent CEO of the athletic brand Breathe. She also learns that no witness can corroborate her version of events, which means she’s just become a murder suspect.

To prove her innocence, Morgan frantically retraces the last days of Nicole’s life. Was Nicole a new mother struggling with paranoia or was she in danger? When strange things start happening to Morgan, she suddenly realizes she might be in danger, too.

Woman on the Edge is a pulse-pounding, propulsive thriller about the lengths to which a woman will go to protect her baby—even if that means sacrificing her own life.


Review:

Feverish, intense, and engrossing!

Woman on the Edge is a well-crafted, gripping novel that takes you into the lives of Nicole Markham, a successful businesswoman who finds herself completely paralysed by fear and anxiety after the birth of her baby girl, Quinn, and Morgan Kincaid, a woman with her own traumatic past whose life is suddenly turned upside down when she finds herself a suspect in a crime she inadvertently becomes entangled in. 

The writing is edgy and crisp. The characters are vulnerable, anxious, and troubled. And the plot told from alternating timelines and perspectives keeps you on the edge of your seat as it immerses you in an ominous tale full of twists, turns, deception, red herrings, secrets, obsession, violence, mayhem, and murder.

Overall, Woman on the Edge is a fast-paced, thrilling, sophisticated tale by Bailey that keeps you enthralled from the very first page and is undoubtedly an exceptionally promising debut.

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

                                            

 

 

Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Samantha M. Bailey

Samantha M. Bailey is a Toronto-based novelist, freelance editor, and journalist who has written extensively for Now Magazine, Oxford University Press, and many other publications. She is the co-founder of “BookBuzz,” a promotional and interactive author event held in New York City and Toronto. She holds a Master of Education in Applied Linguistics and credits that degree with her writing career because she wrote her first (unpublished) novel after taking a course on imagination. Now her imagination leads her to create dark and twisty stories, and her debut psychological thriller, WOMAN ON THE EDGE, will be published by Simon and Schuster Canada and Headline UK, and translated into seven languages. She loves reading as much as writing, so when not tapping away on her computer, she’s probably curled up with a really good book.

Photograph by Dahlia Katz Photography.

It’s Monday (November 25, 2019)!
What Are You Reading! #IMWAYR
#Books #Reading #TBRList

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? hosted by Kathryn at Bookdate is a weekly post to share what you’ve recently finished reading, what you’re currently reading, and what you plan on reading this upcoming week.

 

So here is what I just read, am reading, and what I plan to read next:

 

What I Read Last Week:

 

Title: The Life We Bury (Joe Talbert, Max Rupert #1)

Authors: Allen Eskens

Immediate Thoughts: Creepy, intelligent, and twisty!

Rating: 8.5/10

Publication Date: October 14, 2014

 

 

Title: An Unwanted Guest

Authors: Shari Lapena

Immediate Thoughts: Dark, tense, and twisty!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: August 7, 2018

 

 

Title: The Woman Left Behind (GO-Team #2)

Authors: Linda Howard

Immediate Thoughts: Dramatic, passionate, and suspenseful!

Rating: 8/10

Publication Date: March 6, 2018

 

 

Title: Gentlemen Prefer Curves (Perfect Fit #3)

Authors: Sugar Jamison

Immediate Thoughts: Cute, lighthearted, and enjoyable!

Rating: 7.5/10

Publication Date: September 30, 2014

 

 

What I’m Currently Reading:

 

On Christmas Eve in 1988, seven-year-old Alfie Marsden vanished in the Wentshire Forest Pass, when a burst tyre forced his father, Sorrel, to stop the car. Leaving the car to summon the emergency services, Sorrel returned to find his son gone. No trace of the child, nor his remains, have ever been found. Alfie Marsden was declared officially dead in 1995.
Elusive online journalist, Scott King, whose ‘Six Stories’ podcasts have become an internet sensation, investigates the disappearance, interviewing six witnesses, including Sorrel, his son and his ex-partner, to try to find out what really happened that fateful night. He takes a journey through the trees of the Wentshire Forest – a place synonymous with strange sightings, and tales of hidden folk who dwell there. He talks to a company that tried and failed to build a development in the forest, and a psychic who claims to know where Alfie is…
Intensely dark, deeply chilling and searingly thought provoking, Changeling is an up-to-the-minute, startling thriller, taking you to places you will never, ever forget.

 

What I’m Reading Next:

 

In this “thrilling, seductive, and utterly absorbing” (Paula Hawkins, #1 New York Times bestselling author) historical suspense novel in the tradition of Agatha Christie’s Death on the Nile and Ruth Ware’s The Woman in Cabin 10, pre-war tension and forbidden romance abound, and not everyone will survive the journey…

The ship has been like a world within itself, a vast floating city outside of normal rules. But the longer the journey continues, the more confined it is starting to feel, deck upon deck, passenger upon passenger, all of them churning around each other without anywhere to go…

1939: Europe is on the brink of war when young Lily Shepherd boards an ocean liner in England, bound for Australia. She is ready to start anew, leaving behind the shadows of her past. The passage proves magical, complete with live music, cocktails, and fancy-dress balls. With stops at exotic locations along the way—Naples, Cairo, Ceylon—the voyage shows Lily places she’s only ever dreamed of and enables her to make friends with those above her social station, people who would not ordinarily mingle with her. She even allows herself to hope that a man she couldn’t possibly have a future with outside the cocoon of the ship might return her feelings.

But Lily soon realizes that she’s not the only one hiding secrets. Her newfound friends—the toxic wealthy couple Eliza and Max; Cambridge graduate Edward; Jewish refugee Maria; fascist George—are also running away from their pasts. As the glamour of the voyage fades, the stage is set for something sinister to occur. By the time the ship docks, two passengers are dead, war has been declared, and Lily’s life is irrevocably changed.

 

Have you read any of my upcoming reads? What do you have coming up?

#GuestPost #Q&A
Love is a Rebellious Bird by Elayne Klasson
@JKSlitpublicity

#GuestPost #Q&A Love is a Rebellious Bird by Elayne Klasson @JKSlitpublicityTitle: Love is a Rebellious Bird

Author: Elayne Klasson

Published by: She Writes Press on November 12, 2019

Genres: Women's Fiction

Pages: 336

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Who is it we love and why do we love these people? Toward the end of her life, Judith asks these questions, trying to understand why she chose Elliot Pine to love. Why, for sixty years, did she persist in loving someone who never gave as much as he was given? In her quest for understanding, she writes her story to this exceptional man. Meeting as children in Chicago, they move to opposite coasts. Elliot embarks on a remarkable legal career in Washington and New York while Judith raises her children alone in California, after tragedy. Coming together again and again throughout their lives, their love is never equal, Elliot defining the terms of the relationship.

 

“A beautifully written tale of enduring love by a master storyteller.”

— Jill G. Hall, author of The Black Velvet Coat & The Silver Shoes

 

And Now a Little Q & A with Elayne Klasson

 

Can you tell us where the title of this work came from?

The title comes from the opening line of The Habanera, the aria sung by Carmen in Bizet’s great opera of the 1870s. Flamboyant Carmen sings of how you can’t control love. When love does come, you may not want it. However,  “…you call him quite in vain if it suits him not to come…”. There is also a lyric in The Habanera saying “love has never, ever, known a law…” which is fitting and ironic as Elliot, the object of Judith’s love, is a prominent lawyer, for whom the law serves as a type of religion. This is actually the first and fourth title! I abandoned it originally after a friend in publishing dismissively said, “no one likes opera.” But then, after trying two other titles, went back to the original. I love opera. 

 

Why did you choose to write this novel in second person – to have Judith speak directly to Elliot?

I found that after the book was nearly complete, I questioned who Judith was telling her story to. I wasn’t happy with this being told to an anonymous audience. I thought Judith could finally be honest with Elliot by telling the story to him..addressing him even if there was a possibility he might not hear her. She had, for so long, been afraid to express her true feelings to him. If Portnoy hadn’t already done it so perfectly, I might have had it be in a long therapy session! 

 

Childhood love is often dismissed as naive, but Love is a Rebellious Bird follows lovers from childhood throughout their mature lives. Why do you think it’s important we discuss and acknowledge love at every stage of our lives?

I agree that childhood love is often dismissed. Yet, I think these formative relationships in pre-adolescent and teen years are crucially important to who we become and how we view ourselves in relationship to others. I am in such awe of Elena Ferrante’s My Brilliant Friend and the subsequent 3 books in her Neapolitan Quartet. She explores relationships formed in the character’s early years and how this put a deep mark on the women the girls in the quartet become. In Love is a Rebellious Bird, Judith had such admiration and adoration and compassion for Elliot as a kid, no one else could ever match up. She says in the novel that her feelings for him, even when they were young, become the definition of what love is. Similarly, the rejection she experienced from Elliot and others in their elementary and high school years, left marks on her, perhaps forever. I think the sometimes cruel rankings kids give each other, may stay with us. I went to my 50th high school reunion recently. It was a large Chicago high school and a surprisingly well-attended event. And while there were many surprises, the crowds and cliques were still firmly in place.

 

You have lived in a variety of locations over the years, from the midwest, to Barbados, to California. Has this sort of worldliness influenced your approach to writing or the way you understand your characters?

Perhaps the years in the midwest, the Caribbean, and northern and southern California has convinced me of the importance of our universal search for love. I’ve been a columnist in both the Caribbean and California, and it is obvious that everyone wants to be “seen” and understood through intimate relationships. I interview people for most of my columns and I know how much people (old, young, disabled, athletes, professionals, working class) want to be heard and how rarely we listen deeply to each other. I also know that coming into people’s lives at a particular age means we never get to know the person they were in earlier stages. My husband and I recently moved to a different area of California, four hours south of the previous town we’d lived in. I feel sad that no one really knows who we were earlier, just as I can only guess at the rich and juicy lives of the people we are meeting now who are in the later stages of their life (sixties, seventies, beyond). Who were the babes? The powerful men? What were the tragedies? The accomplishments? 

 

While this is your debut novel, you have extensive experience a columnist and journalist. What was your experience in this transition?

I have been writing fiction for twenty-five years. Plowing away at it. My idea was that if I kept writing, I’d keep getting better and eventually, I’d get read. I won a few awards, writer’s residencies, but got very little recognition. But I kept writing fiction because I love doing it. I love creating characters and populating a world with them. But novels take years to complete, and I live inside them. Writing columns and features is another matter completely. It allows me to finish something in a few hours and have that sense of completion and see it in print the next week. It also allows me to broaden my world by talking to real people..not just the ones in my head!

 

Do you find that your background in psychology and studying human behavior has aided you in your writing, especially your fiction writing?

I really do love talking to people and trying to figure out what makes them tick. The act of giving someone your undivided attention, is a successful one in both a therapeutic sense as well as in writing and in life. For years, I taught a university course called, “Frames of Reference,” in which I would lecture psychology students on the various therapeutic schools: analytic, behavioral, humanistic. But I always stressed that the most successful therapeutic method is to truly listen deeply, giving the person the honor of being really paid attention to. I think this works in newspaper interviews and in fiction writing. In fiction, I try to really listen to the character’s voice and what they might be saying and feeling. Sometimes the characters come from real life as I remember them, sometimes they are completely imaginary. But I try to listen respectfully.

 

“A deeply touching story that moves deftly through the decades to a sweet and graceful finale.”

— Carl Alasko, Ph.D., author of Beyond Blame and Emotional Bullshit (Tarcher/Penguin)

 

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links!

                             

 

 

Thank you to Elayne Klasson and JKS Communications for being featured on my blog today!

 

About Elayne Klasson

ELAYNE KLASSON is the author of Love is a Rebellious Bird. She went to university and graduate school in the Midwest—Ohio State University and the University of Michigan with a Masters of Public Health and then a PhD in Psychology. She has lived in Barbados, West Indies, first working as a health-care consultant with Project Hope and the U.N. in the Caribbean; then, several decades later, as a writer and columnist for the Barbados Daily Nation. Her professional career has largely been in academia at San Jose State University, with her research and clinical area of expertise being the severely mentally ill. A recent transplant to the Santa Ynez Valley, she is a popular lifestyle newspaper columnist. Elayne has also appeared on San Francisco public television as a restaurant critic. She is married to David, a scientist. Between them, they have five children, all grown.

%d bloggers like this: