Saturday 28 March 2015

Book Review: An Accidental Murder by J New


I find murder mysteries absolutely fascinating, even when say Poirot has got them all in a room, dissects each person's role (or non-role) effectively, before revealing the killer.

Sherlock Holmes is perhaps the most famous of sleuths. I thought An Accidental Murder would run something like these great classic detective tales, but having read Miss New's superlative Predator or Prey story collection, I should have known better.

Miss New has weaved a tale that seems quirky at first. It's hard for me to say exactly what is going on without revealing what I think are key plot points, but it would not be a give away to say that the cat 'Phantom' (he of the cover) is not all he seems to be!

I know they say don't judge a book by its cover, but look at it - don't you want to be on that train to find out what's going on ??
This book is utterly intriguing and I would say it's biggest strength, apart from the elegant story telling, is the beautifully crafted detail the author has put into this book. Everything is so wonderfully described, placing you in the moment.

Things get really claustrophobic as the killer is revealed. Even then, one is not sure how the story is going to end. There are many great characters in the story, of course, our heroine Isabella is a given, but I liked Ginny too (though that could be explained by the fact I loved her namesake in Harry Potter).

Mystery and murder intertwine in a deliciously wicked way that make the reader yearn for more. Not sure how many books will be in this series, but sign me up for the lot.

I rarely read a book in one go, but this totally did it for me.

Get it today.

Friday 27 March 2015

Book Review: Isca - The Roman Fortress by Ceri Bladen

Isca, by talented author Ceri Bladen, is one of those wonderful tales that sweeps you effortlessly into the world she has created.

That often quoted line 'the devil is in the detail' rings very true here. The world building is impressive. You are left with no illusions with regards to the historical setting. You can literally smell the sand, feel the heat from the sun, and, as befits a story set in Roman times, you are never far from the clashing of swords and severing of heads. And yet, this is not Tunisia, or Rome, or Greece. The story takes place during the Roman's occupation of Britain.

At Isca's heart is a romantic story between Branwen and Marcus. I really loved much of the dialogue between these two. The characters were well drawn and the interplay never came across as syrupy. I even thought some of the exchanges were humorous. It's uncertain as to whether this was the author's intention. Lines such as:-


"Yes, it is another land far off."
"Have you been there?"

Marcus shook his head. "No, Italy and here really. I have marched through other countries, but we don't have time to look around because we are off marching again the next day."

I could understand Marcus' frustration. But couldn't help but chuckle at that. If not for all the marching and fighting, Marcus could go sight seeing :)

I have to say I was not a huge fan of those big budget Hollywood films like Ben Hur and so on. But Isca, given a budget and a great director is one film I could see on the big screen.

There is scope to develop this tale still further, but it is complete story in itself. Jump in, you'll love it!

Tuesday 24 March 2015

Dream the Crow's Black Dream - Major Cover Reveal!

Hi all. Well here is the front / spine / back cover of the new book, out 1st May or you can pre-order the Kindle version now!

Let me know what you think of the artwork, and of course, the story, when you've read it!

This is the fourth in my Tale of Vampires series, if you haven't checked out 
  • Murderous Little Darlings
  • The Blood and the Raven
  • Innocent While She Sleeps

I advise you try these first!

Yes, there is one for the second in series The Blood and the Raven. Enter and try to win!

Tuesday 17 March 2015

Book Review: Corridors of My Mind by Angel M. B. Chadwick

Well. Sit yourselves down. Maybe I haven't read much poetry in a while, though I read Tennyson quite a lot, or as I like to call him "The one who plays all my favourite tunes at once".

The beautifully titled Corridors of My Mind, by Angel M.B. Chadwick, has created a collection of poetry that is, to be blunt, a quite astounding piece of work. Some of the chapters hit home runs more often than others, but Hurt Me is a stand out piece, I literally bled every line - so if anyone is thinking of writing poetry, and would like to refer to it in a modern life context, you really should read this book. It towers above anything I have read in years. I don't sugar coat books or authors - truly, if I like something, they'll know about it!

That's not to say you'll enjoy everything about it. Some of it really hits you like you woke up one day and decided to headbutt a rhino.

I don't wish to make light of this collection. It's a great literary set, and anyone who has never known anything from life probably won't glean anything from this collection. But, if you're like me, a repeat offender from the school of hard knocks, you'll take something from this book.

It will beat you, pummel you, make you want to submit. Don't read it fast - make sure you take your time, because there is a lot to absorb. Don't move onto the next poem until you have taken in the previous one. In the end, you will read it all. And you'll be grateful for the experience.

Sunday 15 March 2015

Teaser Poster: Stormling II: The Curse of Avonwych

Stormling was my first attempt at a full length novel. I started putting pen to paper (or finger to keyboard) in 2011, and in 2014, I finally released the book.

It went through a number of changes, as did I, and yet it remains my most ambitious project to date.

With this new story, I think the foundation of Book One will give readers much excitement with the impending release of the second in the series. I certainly hope so anyway!

Through the Dark Winter and A Tale of Vampires series, I have learned so much. It's my ambition and my duty to give you the very best story that I can. You, dear reader, give me your time - so it can hardly be said you give me, the author, something for free.

In 2016, this book will see the light of day. As I am working on other projects at the moment, I cannot offer you a firm release date. But I won't let you down, that much I promise you!

You can catch up  with Book One, here:

Pre-ordering Dream the Crow's Black Dream (A Tale of Vampires, #4)

If you were thrilled by Murderous Little Darlings, spooked by The Blood and the Raven, and turned inside out by Innocent While She Sleeps, you might just be interested in my fourth-in-series Tale of Vampires, which is available on Kindle pre-order now, with the paperback to follow close to the release date of 1st May 2015.

This Tale is is the longest of the four to date, and serves more like a mini-novel than a novella. We are reintroduced with a favourite protagonist, and a wicked antagonist.

Expect spooks, chills, gore (in context!) and thrills, which will give you an ending you are not expecting.

Make my day, keep the vampires at bay, and hit that pre-order button now!