Friday, 27 September 2013

Beyond the rainbow with Carmel Harrington

Carmel is married to Roger with two small children Amelia and Nate, she lives a pretty idyllic life in Ireland, full of stories, songs, hide and seek, Mickey Mouse, walks on the beach, tickles, kisses, chocolate treats and most of all abundant love.



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Your novel is called ' Beyond Grace’s Rainbow' please could you tell me about it?
It's the story of a young mother, Grace, who finds out that she has cancer. She needs the help of her biological family, as a bone marrow transplant is needed. But as she's adopted and all previous attempts at connecting with her birth mother ended badly, she must bravely make the decision to find her family one more time. Just when she thinks life can't get any more complicated, Liam, her ex-boyfriend and father to her little boy Jack turns up and he's determined to prove to Grace that he's worth a second chance.



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'Beyond Grace’s Rainbow' is about Grace, please could you tell me about her?
Grace is first and foremost a mother. Her whole world revolves around her young son Jack and he will always come first. She's strong, loving, fun and extremely loyal. Her friends mean everything to her and she is the lynch pin between them all. She works as an interior designer and lives in Dublin. She loves karaoke and a good night out with her friends. She's had a lot of heartache in her life, but despite the heartache she hasn't let it define her or make her bitter.

They say the journey to being published is one of the hardest an author can take, please can you describe the journey that you went on?
It is certainly quite difficult and you need patience. I did things a little differently that a lot. I decided to selfpublish rather than attempt talking to publishers. I felt that if I could show that BGR was liked as an indie author, I might get taken seriously by a publisher. So last August BGR hit the ebook shelves and did quite well. It won a Kindle Book Award and spent a short time as a besteller. I eventually signed with an agent in January 13 and then the process of searching for a publisher began. Although I selfpublished BGR, I really wanted a publisher to republish it. I felt strongly that Graces story was one that should be read by more than the people I had managed to reach myself as an indie author. I am very privledged that HarperImpulse, an imprint of HarperCollins believed in Graces story. It's been an exciting few months since I signed a contract with them and I am enjoying every moment watching Grace's story reach a new audience under their guardianship.



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Are any of the characters in 'Beyond Grace’s Rainbow' anything like you?
Quite a few of my close friends say that Grace is very like me and I take that as a huge compliment. I know though, that Gerry for e.g. has a lot of my flamboyant tendencies. And the nurturing side of my character is in Tom too.

Writers put so much time and energy into their characters and I have been told in the past that a writer carries their characters around with them.
So my question is if you could go out for a day with any one of your characters: who would it be, what would you do and why did you pick this particular character?

Oh that is such a good point and very true. I worry about my characters a lot. Are they happy? Was that the right HEA for them? It's true that they become friends, family actually. So when a reader/reviewer compliments a character and say they like him/her, you feel like a proud parent!
And in answer to your question, without doubt I would chose to go out with Gerry. We would spend hours getting ready and as he is the style guru I know that I would look fantastic! Then we would eat at a very stylish restaurant and go drink cocktails while people watching at the hottest venue in town. There would be a lot of laughs and a fabulous night guaranteed!

If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
Never stop believing that it can happen, dreams do come true. I'm proof of that.

What can we expect next, any future books in the pipeline?
Sleep of Dreams my second novel will be published by the end of the year. It's about twins Sarah and James who live very different lives, but share an incredible bond. Sarah is a mother of 3 children and money is tight. She also has a secret that only James knows about. James on the other hand is handsome, single and very much plays the dating game, having decided that he'll never settle down.

Was there any book you read as a child that convinced you that you wanted to become a writer? If so, which one was it?
Every book I've ever read has made me want to write. I couldn't name one. But my childhood favourites were anything from Dr. Seuss, The Lord of The Rings Trilogy and Charlie and the Chocolate factory.

if there was one saying that could sum up your life, what would it be?
Great question! It took me a while to learn this, but now this pretty much sums me up.

Do what makes you happy, be with who makes you smile, laugh as much as you breathe and love as long as you live.

But if i'm allowed one more, this is one I love and is kind of apt for me, as I'm such a late starter with my writing career.

"You've always had the power my dear, you just had to learn it for yourself." Glinda, the good witch, Wizard of Oz.



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If you were told that you could live any day without repercussions for your actions, what would you do and why?
What an amazing question! Wow, ok, let me think about this and I'll come back to it.
Right, I'm back with my answer!

OK, here's what I would do. I'd fly to Chicago and have dinner with Oprah. She would clear all previous commitments to see me, because this is my fantasy right?
Stedman and Rog could come too and keep each other entertained while Oprah and I bond. I am convinced we would be great friends. By the end of our chat she would agree to help me raise some money for my favourite charities - LauraLynn House, Jack and Jill Foundation, Barnardos and Breast Cancer Research. We'd plan a huge gala charity black tie event, that we would both host and huge sums of money would be raised!
And then, (look I'm human ok?) she would read Beyond Graces Rainbow and tell the world that they simply HAD to read it!

if you could choose one book that you think everyone should read, what would it be and why?
To Kill A Mockingbird - by Harper Lee. This book really was the first I'd ever read that opened my eyes to both the kindness and cruelty that this world can offer. I devoured this book when I was 13 and as I read it tears flowed down my cheek. It changed me and I've never forgotten it. I pick it up every now and then and I'm overdue a reading again actually.
It's a simple story at first glance, but it tackles many serious topics head on. A true classic.

What or who in life inspires you?
My children inspire me every day. I watch them and I learn so much from them and want to be a better person just for them.



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I would like to thank Carmel for talking to Love of a a Good Book!

Thursday, 26 September 2013

My Book Moment - A bolt out of the blue!

Today's book moment is by Catriona Merryweather, you can find Catriona at Fabulous book fiend


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I've been agonising over how to word this but I'm just going to write a hope that something comes across.

I decided to do a break up of mine because it felt like I was actually living someone else's life, that this wasn't happening to me, and still when I tell people about it now. The sometimes can't believe that it happened!

So I was living with my fiancée, we'd recently moved to be closer to his family and we'd both been struggling to find work. I was doing supply teaching as well as doing some private tuition and working behind a bar and he'd only recently found a job about half an hour away. Things were tough, then in the same week, my guinea pig died and so did my grandmother. Luckily I also found out that I had a job interview that week so that eased the blow a wee bit. The interview was the same day as my grandmothers funeral so I arranged to go back home with my parents for a couple of days afterwards.

Unfortunately I didn't get the job but the real blow was when I was about to return 'home' to my fiancé he text me telling me not to bother coming back. He told me he'd decided that he was fed up having no money, he hadn't missed me when I'd been gone, so it would be better if I didn't come back. I was devastated, I didn't know what to do. I had to make a final trip down there, put some of my stuff into storage, bring the rest up to mum and dads. Let my various employers know that I wasn't going to return and ring the letting agency of the flat I'd just put a deposit on to tell them I wouldn't be taking it up after all-all a bit of a nightmare.

It literally all felt like it was happening to someone else, someone I was reading about, not to me. To make matters worse, I was paying his phone bill and through that I found out that during the tough time we were going through he was also cheating on me! My friends and family were super supportive and I wouldn't have been able to get through it without them. I moved back in with my parents, my best friend would take me for nights on the town and everyone understood that I was literally starting back from square one again. I had the phone cut off which was definitely something a heroine in a book would do and within two weeks I was working for another supply agency, getting loads of teaching work which eventually led to something full time!



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This was a horrible time in my life but definitely shows what strength I've got to have come out the other end. It allowed me to look back on the relationship and see what I bad place I was really in. Like a heroine in a book I triumphed over it because of those I had around me and because of my own conviction. I'm a better person because all that happened to me, and though I am still struggling with the debt that the relationship left me in, my career has gone from strength to strength and I have a fabulous flat I can come home to at night. So that's my book 'moment' if you like, an October 4 years ago...

Thanks for having me on your blog and allowing me to share my story.

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

The Shine on Award

The lovely cleopatralovesbooks nominated me for this pretty award.


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THE SHINE ON AWARD
Here are the rules of the award:
1. Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
2. Acknowledge that blogger on your blog, and link back.
3. Share seven random, interesting things about yourself.
4. Nominate up to 15 bloggers for the Shine On Award, provide a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.

I visited cleopatralovesbooks today and thanked her for my nomination. You really should pay Cleopatra a visit over at her beautiful blog.
I love her book banner, it's very pretty!

My 7 random facts: (I can hear my friends and family laughing at this, because I'm just generally random)

1) I eat cheese every day! This is a positive I got from having coeliac disease.

2) I still have the very first toy, a musical apple with moving characters. It's in my memory box and I hope one day to show it to my children.

3) Both these pictures are me, there's 4 years between the taking of them.


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4) I have 3 tattoos and I'm very tempted to get another one.

5) My personal twitter account is often found tweeting pictures of hot guys.


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6) I quote sex and the city episodes.

7) I speak basic Turkish but would love to be fluent.

Blogs I'm nominating are:

http://chicklitvfantasy.wordpress.com
http://bookswithbunny.blogspot.co.uk
http://owamyau.wordpress.com/
http://shazsbookboudoir.blogspot.co.uk/
http://iheart-chicklit.blogspot.com
http://www.lizlovesbooks.com
http://afterthefinalchapters.com
http://www.jenniferjoycewrites.co.uk
http://www.bestchicklit.com
http://www.onemorepage.co.uk
http://shelovestoread.weebly.com/
victorialovesbooks.wordpress.com
http://readinginthesunshine.wordpress.com/

Thank you for reading xx

My Liebster Award: My nominations

The lovely Emily from 'ow Am Yau? nominated me for the Liebster award about a week ago and I apologise profusely to Emily for taking so much time to get this post up.
The only excuses I have is that I've been reading and googling hot men!

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Then yesterday Emma from Chicklit vs Fantasy also nominated for the Liebster award, so I stopped googling Ryan Gosling, Tom Hardy and co and decided to get my post done.
What I'm going to do is combine the two and answer all questions in one post.

A huge thanks to both lovely ladies for thinking of me and my blog when they received their nominations, I'm very honoured to receive this, thank you!



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So what is the Liebster Award you ask?
The idea behind the award is to give bloggers the opportunity to build their community and get to know one another. It’s the perfect way to meet new people and let them find out some interesting facts about you.

Okay, so here are the rules:
Each nominee must link back the person who nominated them.
Answer the 10 questions which are given to you by the nominator.
Nominate up to 10 other bloggers for this award.
Create 10 questions for your nominees to answer.
Let the nominees know that they have been nominated by going to their blog and notifying them

Emily asked me:

What was the first CD you ever bought?
I've been thinking about this and I honestly can't remember, that's terrible isn't it!

If you could only eat one food for the rest of your life what would it be
Cheese!

Who was your favourite teacher at school and why?
Mr Targett my primary school teacher, such an amazing teacher who encouraged my love of books and writing. At that age I was always writing poems and short stories.

If your life was made into a movie what genre would it be? (i.e. rom com, thriller, horror)It would be hard to classify, if we were working off my love life it would be a comedy!

What’s the tackiest thing you’ve ever bought while on holiday, either for yourself or as a gift?
I bought an I love Turkiye hat! I love that hat, but several people said it was tacky. Until Gok Wan tells me so, I don't care!

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What animal do you think most reflects your personality the best? (or, the way I wanted to phrase this question: a) what would your patronus be, and b) what form would your daemon take?)
My Patronus would be a dog (stop your laughing) I'm loyal and friendly but if you do something against someone I care about, you will get my back up.
And my daemon would be a hare, The HARE DAEMON represents your passive, kindhearted, and honorable nature. Though you are occasionally shy with new people, friends admire your unshakable tranquility, even in the face of chaos. (Ok so I took a google test for b)

Last thing you saw at the theatre?
The wizard of oz

Have you ever had a crush on an embarrassing or inappropriate celebrity?
I used to love 'Waking the Dead' and developed a bit if a crush on Trevor Eve.

What’s in your pocket right now?
A tissue.

Say you wake up tomorrow morning to find you’re invisible. What’s the first thing you do?

Find the nearest hot guys house and head into his shower.

Emma asked me:

Who is your favourite author and why?
I've many authors who I love to read. It's impossible to narrow it down to one. Sorry!

Who is your favourite book boyfriend?
Jacques from Winter Wonderland, I love that man.

What’s your favourite place in the world?
Again it's really tough, I live in the Midlands & I love where I'm from but my dads family are from Scotland and I feel so at home when I'm in Scotland.
But I also love Calis which is in Turkey, I like me when I'm in Calis.

Where do you love to read?
Lounging on my bed.

You can only read 3 books for the rest of your life, what would they be?
1) Summer Sisters by Judy Blume
2) Winter Wonderland by Belinda Jones
3) The Life List by Lori Nelson Spielman

There were so many books running through my head, but I picked these because
1) This is a book I often re-read and still learn from.
2) It's got my book boyfriend in it and it's such a wonderful book
3) This will remind me of all the things I want to do.

What is your favourite drink (alcoholic and non)?
I love cocktails and wine.
I also love cranberry flavoured drinks, with or without vodka and archers.

What’s your comfort food?
Nutella on toast.

If you have had a bad day what do you do to cheer yourself up?
Read or listen to some upbeat music.

What is your favourite picture?


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What is your most prized possession?
Probably my phone, it's got so much of my life on it. Books, pictures, emails & the ability to stay in touch with friends all over the world.

Now it's my turn, I nominate;

http://readinginthesunshine.wordpress.com/
http://shelovestoread.weebly.com/
https://victorialovesbooks.wordpress.com/
http://Tishylou.wordpress.com
http://fairytaleendingbookreviews.wordpress.com
http://amandanason-keepingupappearances.blogspot.co.uk/


The 10 questions I'm asking are:

1) What quote do you think everyone should know?
2) Describe your ideal Saturday?
3) What do you thank your blog for?
4) What's the best book you've read that's also been a great movie?
5) It's time to create a cocktail for your blog, what's in it?
6) What's your favourite season and why?
7) Twitter or Facebook?
8) If you could be cast in any movie, what would it be and why ?
9) Sweet or savoury?
10) Post a picture of one of your favourite celebrities.

So there you have it, my answers and nominations.

Thank you once again Emily and Emma. I hope everyone reading this likes my answers and to my nominees have fun.

Xx

The Conception of The Cityscape Series by Jessica Hawkins



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After college, I went rogue. A vacation to Costa Rica turned into a two-year stay, where I lived the life of a drifter. I stayed in one town, but it was somehow both constant and momentary; an endless drip of sunshine, ocean water and surfing combined with a revolving door of other travelers. It was a six-hour bus and ferry ride to get there, much of which took place on unpaved roads. This bus delivered some of the most interesting, open-minded, unusual people I’ve met to date. Sometimes they’d stay a week, sometimes six months. Some of them are still there.
But just as quickly as I’d fallen under its spell, the good life lost its charm. Time did not exist. It was hot and lethargic and the most pressing issue each day was the state of the surf. I was ready for more stimulation, something to strive for.

I spent nine months between Costa Rica and New York City working part-time and living rent-free to save money. In college I’d started a list – 30 things to do before I turned 30 – that only consisted of two things. One of those things was to write a book. With fresh experiences in my rearview mirror and plenty of time, I wanted to explore a kernel of a story that I’d always had in my head.
I never questioned what I wanted to write about. I always found adultery fascinating. It’s the most hateful crime, because it’s against the heart. It’s personal, painful and irrevocable. So why do people do it? In the moment, what kind of person has the willpower to cut through the sex haze – and what kind of person just can’t? Is it ever OK?

I wrote approximately four scenes, a couple of which ended up making it into the final version of The Cityscape Series. The ballet scene in the beginning was originally an art gallery. The very last scene of Come Alive was originally an experiment in third person. Once converted to first person, its essence survived mostly intact, and now it’s an essential core scene. I guess I just needed to have that moment happen, and the story kind of evolved around it.



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Here’s a funny anecdote about that time period: I had no idea what I was doing, just that I needed to put these characters on paper. I’ve said before that Anna Karenina was something of an inspiration to me – I’d just read the book in Costa Rica and I always knew I wanted to write about infidelity. As a placeholder, I called the female lead Anna, a young woman with a nervous habit of pulling on her right earlobe. There were only two names I ever considered for the male lead, and the first was David. I knew I wanted him to be a strong personality who wasn’t afraid to pursue the things he wanted. I didn’t read romance. The brashest male I could think of was from one of my favorite TV shows at the time – the hot and sexy Christian Troy from Nip/Tuck. So the other contender was Christian. I’d always loved that name, the way it sounds coming out.

I abandoned the story before I moved to New York. Inspiration to write didn’t strike again until a little over a year ago – about four years after I’d written those few scenes. I didn’t remember much about what I’d written. Imagine my surprise when I opened the file to find the placeholder names I’d chosen: Christian and Anna. Obviously, I had to change them, but fortunately, I hadn’t become too attached. And I believe David and Olivia would’ve won in the end; Olivia Germaine came to me one day, and I never looked back after that.

From there the story just poured out of me. When I made the decision to quit my job and commit to The Cityscape Series full time, the floodgates opened. In the beginning, I didn’t know how it would all end. I thought everything had to wrap up perfectly. The more I wrote, the more flaws I saw in Olivia, and that’s when I knew that this story was far from perfect. There was a lot of ugliness in it too, and that was okay. But there was one thing that never changed about that kernel: no matter what, this would be a story about love. And that’s more or less how The Cityscape Series came to be.

Amazon.com
Amazon.co.uk
Jessica Hawkins




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A big thank you to Jessica and the tour for stopping by today!

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

Coco's Secret by Niamh Greene

Niamh Greene's new novel Coco's Secret is a deeply moving reinvention story that will be enjoyed by fans of the modern day fairytales of Cecelia Ahern. Throw in Niamh's unique brand of heart-warming storytelling and readers are in for a real treat.

Coco Swan has always been embarrassed by her name.

With a name like Coco, she thinks people expect her to be as exotic and glamorous as the famous designer, not an ordinary-looking small-town antiques dealer who could win an award for living cautiously.

But when a vintage Chanel handbag turns up in a box of worthless bric-a-brac, Coco's quiet world is turned upside down. Where did it come from? And is it just coincidence that it's the same bag Coco's late mother always wanted for her?

When Coco discovers a mysterious, decades-old letter hidden in the bag's lining, she sets off on a quest to piece together the story behind it, stumbling across secrets that span three generations as she goes.

Could the beautiful Chanel bag be about to teach Coco more than she wants to learn? Or will it show her just where her heart can take her if she lets it lead the way?




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When Coco discovers a vintage Chanel bag in the bottom of a box of junk she purchased at auction, it seems as though fate is delivering a message.
After all isn't this the bag her mum was always talking about.
But does fate plan on delivering more than just the message.....

I'm a big believer in fate and I am prone to buying a handbag or two (sadly not Chanel), so from the blurb alone I was excited to read this book and it didn't disappoint. If anything it excelled!

I LOVED this book!
It's the first Niamh Greene I've ever read and within the first few pages I was enthralled.

Packed full of wonderful characters I found myself laughing along with Ruth, teary eyed with Tatty, anxious with Mark and excited to find out the mystery behind the letter with Coco.
Coco was instantly relatable and I love the determination she showed in tracking down the truth!

As I read the last sentence I found myself smiling, I closed the book and stroked the Chanel bag on the cover, life delivers us messages in many forms and this book is one of them!

'Coco's Secret' is a beautifully written tale of fate, love and longing!


5/5

A big thank you to Penguin for sending me a copy to review!

Monday, 23 September 2013

The Pimlico Kid by Barry Walsh

One boy. One street. One summer he will never forget.

A powerful and poignant debut from a compelling and authentic voice in commercial fiction.

It’s 1963. Billy Driscoll and his best mate, Peter ‘Rooksy’ Rooker, have the run of their street. Whether it’s ogling sexy mum, Madge, as she pegs out her washing, or avoiding local bully Griggsy, the estates and bombsites of Pimlico have plenty to fire their fertile imagination.

Billy is growing up and after years of being the puny one, he’s finally filling out. He is also taking more than a passing interest in Sarah Richards, his pretty neighbour. But he isn’t her only admirer – local heartthrob and rotten cheat, Kenneth ‘Kirk’ Douglas, likes her too – something drastic must be done if Billy is to get his girl.

When Rooksy suggests a day out with Sarah and her shy friend, Josie, it seems like the perfect summer outing. Little do they know that it will be a day of declarations and revelations; of secrets and terrifying encounters – and that it will change them all forever…




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Billy Driscoll & his best mate Rooksey (Pete) have the whole summer holidays to be mischievous and adventurous, it's going to be a summer to be remembered.

Barry Walsh brings us a gripping read that had me giggling and in some parts gasping in horror at the things the boys got up to.
It was a truly wondrous read that made me think of the carefree days that childhood should bring, the adventures of a new day and the friendships that can be formed in an instant.

It's a story that brings out many emotions in the reader, it really is many things within the cover, but no one could tell you the story better than the 'Pimlico Kid' himself!

If the summer of 69 is the song that takes you back to summers past then the 'Pimlico Kid' is the written equivalent.
Bring summer back and get your copy today.

5/5

I would like to thank Broo from Wade and Doherty Literary Agency Ltd and Barry Walsh for kindly sending me a copy to review

Friday, 20 September 2013

Tagged: TV Boyfriends!

This morning I was tagged in a post by the brilliant Victoria to name my Top five TV boyfriends!
You can see Victoria's choices here.

A bloggers game of tag and a chance to perv, I was in!
But this proved to be a hard task, how could I pick just 5 top men!
Admittedly if I walk around the streets of my home town I probably couldn't find one. I apologise to the men where I come from , but honestly if you really are hot, where are you hiding????. Or maybe as my mum says, "if you put down a book once in a while and leave the house, you might notice them!"

But when it comes to men on TV, like with book boyfriends, I'm a whore!
Five I cried, how could I pick Five!

In no particular order, MY men are:

Chandler Bing

If you've not seen friends then please lift up your right hand and hit yourself with it!
Friends is amazing!
But for me, Chandler was always the one. Handsome, funny and just genuinely awesome!
I love a sense of humour, if men can't make me laugh then it's doomed! I love to laugh and smile.



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Kelly Severide

A really hot fireman who is also sex mad!
Cha-Ching
Seriously though he does have feelings too and ummmmmm, sorry that chest keeps distracting me.


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Steve McGarrett

Hello Five-O, I love Steve, as ex military he still has the uniform and he carries a gun. He is muscly, cocky and funny.
And he lives in Hawaii, sun, sea, sand and Steve!


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Derek Morgan

I love the show Criminal minds, I long to be Penelope, so that Derek Morgan can call me baby girl!
This guy is deep but also clever, handsome and considerate.
Even solving murders, the guy looks hot!


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Mark Sloan (McSteamy)

Greys introduced us to McDreamy and then hot from the shower in waltzed McSteamy, now I've met many Doctors but none that look like this.
I tried to book a flight to Seattle and then remembered the important fact that he isn't real. I mean I'd be willing for him to give my body a checking over, for medical purposes of course.


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So there you have it my five TV boyfriends
But I couldn't leave without a picture of my favourite silver fox!



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I'm tagging:
Kevin http://iheart-chicklit.blogspot.com
Jennifer http://www.jenniferjoycewrites.co.uk
Rea http://reabookreview.blogspot.com/

My Book Moment - Interconnected

Today's book moment is by Tanya Farrell, you can find Tanya at After The Final Chapters
Tales of Asynner
Twitter and Facebook



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I would imagine everyone has a moment in their lives that they could call their ‘book moment’. I have had two. This is not necessarily a good thing, while one was up to that point the very best moment in my life the other ripped my heart to shreds and yet they couldn’t be more interconnected.

25th November 2002.
I was working as a supervisor in a café (everyone got a great kick out of it because it was called Eat Me, with the logo on the shirt right on my left boob). We, of course, weren’t allowed phones on our person during our shift and to be honest nobody cared. These were the days that if you had a good phone you had WAP on it and – wait for it, you could get emails! I mean, was Facebook even around then? I don’t think even Bebo was around. So not having your phone was no big deal.
I sat down for my lunch break at 2.00pm. It was my mum’s birthday in 2 days time and me being me I had forgotten to post a card and I needed to ring and warn her not to expect it on the day of her birthday. See earlier that year, in March, I got on a bus to visit friends in Tramore Co. Waterford. I had just left my job and I hadn’t decided how long I was going for. I got on the bus in Belfast after giving my mum a hug and kiss and said “I’ll see ya when I see ya”. I got a job and was in no rush home. Anyway, I took out my phone and sat down to eat my lunch. A Thai chicken Panini and a bottle of Club orange. My phone rang and my world changed forever. I noticed that the number was my aunts. My brother was on the other end and kept saying to me “Where are you”, “who is with you”. My dad came on the line and uttered 7 little words and my world crashed. “Mummys been killed in a car crash”. I still can’t think of those words without being stabbed in the chest, even right now my top is soaked from tears. As I sat and screamed and screamed with my phone ringing in the background all those sitting around me just sat and stared not knowing what was wrong or what to do. That unfortunately was my first book moment.



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25th November 2007.
That’s right 5 years to the day. This was the day of my second book moment. I was 35 weeks pregnant. After having 4 miscarriages and going into premature labour at 20 weeks a couple of years before it looked like, even after a problematic pregnancy, I was finally going to have my baby. I had been in hospital for a few weeks but I was let out for the day. I went with Brian for lunch and I went in search of a white cardigan. My baby was due on December 30th and I needed a cardigan. I tried Next and Tesco to no joy. I also went to Smyths as we had missed a birthday the week before and then finally to my mother in laws for a cuppa. At 4.30 I asked Brian to bring me back as I was uncomfortable and couldn’t settle. At 6pm just as he had arrived home my waters broke and I went into labour. When he got back to the hospital – in record time – I was rushed to theatre and had an emergency caesarean section. Jamie was born weighing 5lb6 oz and absolutely perfect.



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I was told he would have to go to neo-natal for a few weeks until he neared his due date.



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Later than night they brought him to me, he was thriving and needed no help. They kept warning me he would have set backs, would struggle to breath and need oxygen, that he would definitely regress and have to go to special care. Oh no, not my Jamie. He never needed any help, not once, He was sent by and looked after by his very own guardian angel – my mummy. I believe it was no coincidence that he was born on November 25th. The worst date in my life is also one of the best!



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I would like to thank Tanya for sharing her truly touching book moment

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Geli Voyante's Hot or Not: COVER REVEAL

Today I'm very excited to be part of this cover reveal!
I think it's a beautiful cover and cannot wait to read the book!

From Elle Field, the author of Kept, Geli Voyante's Hot or Not will be released on October 17th in Kindle and paperback formats. You can add it to your Goodreads shelf today!

'I think I will always be known as the Hot or Not girl, defined by it for the rest of my career. Even my tombstone will read: Angelica “Geli” Voyante, beloved trendsetter. Death? Not Hot.

Yet, it doesn’t sound right. Why won’t anyone realise that there is more to me than this fickle persona I have inadvertently become?'

Geli Voyante is bored of being the Hot or Not girl, even if it has the perk of sitting next to Theo, the newspaper's very Hot political columnist. She's also getting a little lonely being single.

When her arch-nemesis Tiggy Boodles gets engaged, and other loved ones start to settle down, it's time for Geli to convince Theo that she’s not as shallow as her column suggests and, more importantly, she’s the one for him. Geli should remember though that there are always two sides to every story, and that applies to people too...



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A Heart Bent Out of Shape by Emylia Hall

For Hadley Dunn, life so far has been uneventful - no great loves, no searing losses. But that's before she decides to spend a year studying in the glittering Swiss city of Lausanne, a place that feels alive with promise. Here Hadley meets Kristina, a beautiful but elusive Danish girl, and the two quickly form the strongest of bonds. Yet one November night, as the first snows of winter arrive, tragedy strikes.

Hadley, left reeling and guilt-stricken, beings to lean on the only other person to whom she feels close, her American Literature professor Joel Wilson. But as the pair try to uncover the truth of what happened that night, their tentative friendship heads into forbidden territory. And before long a line is irrevocably crossed, everything changes, and two already complicated lives take an even more dangerous course...

A Heart Bent Out of Shape is the story of a first love, a terrible tragedy, a snow-filled paradise; a year that will never be forgotten.



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When Hadley Dunn is given the opportunity to spend a year in Lausanne, she isn't aware of the challenges this beautiful city is about to bring!

'A Heart Bent Out of Shape' is a wonderfully descriptive read that carries the reader to the beautiful Swiss city of Lausanne.
Through the writing of Emylia Hall, you can almost feel the crisp air on your face!

The characters are fascinating, I've never read a book before where it felt as though every character had a secret, I love the mysterious air that they all exuded.
Hadley was a lovely character and she faced so much throughout the story, it really was a challenging year for her.
But the character who I liked the most was Hugo, the relationship that developed between him and Hadley had me intrigued and it felt to me as though he was there when Hadley needed him the most, even if their friendship was turbulent at times!

A poignant read with romance, trauma, twist and turns!

4/5

I would like to thank Ben from Headline Books!

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Going crazy with Elizabeth Forbes



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Your novel is called 'Nearest Thing To Crazy' please could you tell me about it?
A quiet country village is pleased to welcome a glamorous new resident, a novelist renting a cottage for six months to work on her new book. However, she seems to be targeting one of the women. Strange things start to happen: someone is definitely playing mental games, but it’s not clear who, and why.

"Nearest Thing To Crazy' is a psychological read, did you find it took over as you started to write it?
It was quite a difficult project to write at times. Getting inside the mind of someone who was going through such psychological turmoil was exhausting, and I can only liken it to being a method actor, having to become that character, really get inside her head. I think any book one writes has to take over, because if it doesn’t grip the writer then it won’t grip the reader.

They say the journey to being published is one of the hardest an author can take, please can you describe the journey that you went on?
Firstly I was lucky enough to find an agent, the wonderful Broo Doherty and she nurtured the book and me throughout the writing process, giving advice and support which was invaluable. Then it finally went out into the world and Cutting Edge Press said they loved it and wanted to publish it. I was very lucky to be taken up by such a young and innovative company because I believe they really care about each book they take on. They have involved me in every step of the publishing process, choosing the cover, the typefaces, each stage of setting and proofing, so I really felt I was in good hands, and that they respected both me and the book. They are also doing a brilliant job on the publicity front, and because they are small it’s like a family and we have a lot of fun together.



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Are any of the characters in 'Nearest Thing To Crazy' anything like you?
I don’t think so. I try and develop characters who have had life experiences totally different to my own – that way it’s more interesting to discover how they will react to the challenges I put them through. If I was simply writing a diary of my own life, I would know how it was going to turn out, and that would be dull, I think. It’s the ‘not knowing’ what will happen next that makes the writing process so exciting so I need to get to know these strangers and let them tell me who they are.

Writers put so much time and energy into their characters and I have been told in the past that a writer carries their characters around with them.
So my question is if you could go out for a day with any one of your characters: who would it be, what would you do and why did you pick this particular character?

I would obviously have to go out with Cass, because she’s flawed and vulnerable which I think is what makes her human. I like her dry sense of humour and her ability to laugh at herself. And I like the contradictions in her make up.

If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
I think reading is vital. Reading all sorts of different genres and seeing how other authors make a success – or not – of their work..

What can we expect next, any future books in the pipeline?
I’m working on my new novel right now and hopefully it will be ready for publication next June. It will be another psychological thriller, very possibly a bit darker than Nearest Thing to Crazy. I can’t say much more than that at the moment.

Was there any book you read as a child that convinced you that you wanted to become a writer? If so, which one was it?
I wish I could say there was. I read avidly as a child and a teenager. Going through different stages, like everyone else. I remember sneaking my mother’s Jean Plaidy novels which were quite racy. Then I discovered Jane Eyre which terrified me. And then I went through a D H Lawrence phase, Aldous Huxley, George Orwell - that was in the days when Penguin Books were that splendid orange and it was almost a status symbol to have a collection on one’s bookshelf. Rather pretentious, I guess.

if there was one saying that could sum up your life, what would it be?
However dark life seems, things will always get better.....

if you could choose one book that you think everyone should read, what would it be and why?
Henry James Portrait of a Lady. The writing is superb, and the characters are so real. The section where he gets right inside Isabel Archer’s consciousness is oft-quoted because it is so very good.

What or who in life inspires you?
Other writers, books, movies and television. Newspapers, magazines, radio phone-ins. I think as a writer you have to be a sponge soaking up everything – even if it’s not a conscious thing at the time.

What is your all time favourite book?
Portrait of a Lady, Henry James

if 'The Nearest Thing To Crazy' was to be made into a film, who would you like to star in it?
Hmm, that’s a bit of a pipe dream. Great question and took me a long time to decide. Dan could be Greg Wise, possibly. And Cass could be Kate Winslett. As for the glamorous Ellie that’s a difficult one. Maybe Rachel Weisz would be a possibility.

Please could you tell us a bit about your writing process?
Slow to start, and then obsessive and all-consuming. The obsessive and all-consuming part is the best bit, although sadly not necessarily compatible with family life.

Your 5 dream dinner party guests?
Wow, another really interesting question that took some pondering: Boris Johnson, Mick Jagger, Bill Deedes, Bill Nighy and Ian McEwan. All men, all to myself. So I’ve got politics, music, media, theatre and literature. That would be a great evening.



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I would like to thank Elizabeth for talking to 'The Love of a Good Book'

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

'Kissing My Old Life Au Revoir' Two day offer!

On the 19th of August I told you about the 5* read which is 'Kissing My Old Life Au Revoir'
On Wednesday the 18th and Thursday the 19th of September, Eliza Watson is giving you the chance to get this wonderful book free: all you have to do is click here for amazon.com and here for amazon.co.uk

Event planner Samantha Hunter is prepared for a few challenges when escorting a group of good ole boy beer distributors to Paris, the city of haute cuisine and fine wines. However, she doesn’t foresee being passed up for a promotion because she is too professional and doesn’t knock back beers with her clients.
Her focus soon switches from landing the well-deserved promotion to finding her free-spirited sister, who lives in Paris and has disappeared, leaving behind family secrets to be uncovered.
A sexy puppeteer helps Samantha search for clues to her sister’s whereabouts and teaches her to embrace her inner child. And a funeral-crashing psychic demonstrates the importance of living life to the fullest.
It takes Samantha’s life spiraling out of control for her to finally get a life.




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When Samantha arrives in Paris she's excited to be involved in an important business meeting with her beer distributing clients, thinking this could be the making of her career, Samantha sets her sights on a promotion.
Excited to share this experience with someone, Samantha reconnects with her sister Libby who is currently living in Paris.
For most people Paris is the city of love, for Samantha it is the city of surprises and not of the good kind........

I really enjoyed 'Kissing My Old Life Au Revoir' It was inspiring reading as Samantha set about changing her life, she is a strong career woman and at times is certainly tested.
But her strength remains throughout, which makes her a great heroine to read about.

And one of the people to help Samantha stay strong is gorgeous Parisian Luc. Luc is the man everyone deserves to see Paris with, he sounds like the perfect guy, caring, there when needed and did I mention HOT!

But as with most stories for every hot guy we are rewarded with, we get someone who gets the blood boiling, introducing the artist that is Bruno, a nasty brash character who definitely tests Samantha's kind nature.

The ending has left me longing to visit Paris and I live in hope I may meet a Luc!

5/5

The Life List by Lori Nelson Spielman

Brett's Life List

1. Go to Paris

2. Perform live, on a super big stage

3. Have a baby, maybe two

4. Fall in love

Brett Bohlinger seems to have it all: a plum job, a spacious loft, an irresistibly handsome boyfriend. All in all, a charmed life. That is, until her beloved mother passes away, leaving behind a will with one big stipulation: In order to receive her inheritance, Brett must first complete the life list of goals she'd written when she was a naïve girl of fourteen.

Grief-stricken, Brett can barely make sense of her mother's decision-her childhood dreams don't resemble her ambitions at age thirty-four in the slightest. Some seem impossible. How can she possibly have a relationship with a father who died seven years ago? Other goals (Be an awesome teacher!) would require her to reinvent her entire future.

As Brett reluctantly embarks on a perplexing journey in search of her adolescent dreams, one thing becomes clear. Sometimes life's sweetest gifts can be found in the most unexpected places.



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When you look back on your life, do you ever wonder what happened to the hopes and dreams you had as a child?
Or can you even remember them?

When events change spectacularly in Brett's life, she is given a reminder of her past, 'The Life List', that she wrote when she was just 14 years old, tasked with completing the list 20 years later, Brett finds herself on the road to discovery.
Is it possible that the 14 year old Brett, knew what she was talking about........

I loved this book!

There are some books that I feel everyone needs to read and this is one of them, it's on my Christmas list to buy for people.
Because of its wonderful mix of characters and the truly inspirational message it delivers, I know this story is one that will stay with the reader forever!

I learnt so much from Brett, Sanquita and the letters, I felt myself growing with the story and by the last page I was ready to throw caution to the wind and make my 14 year old self proud!

Buy this book, learn from this book and love this book!

5/5

Monday, 16 September 2013

Not Pretty Enough by Jaimie Admans

New Year's Resolutions:
1. Lloyd Layton will know I exist. He once said three whole words to me, so this is obviously progress. If I don't get a proper conversation out of him soon, then I'll take my top off and streak through the cafeteria, because nobody could fail to notice these boobs.
2. I will not get expelled for streaking through the cafeteria."

Those are the words that begin her mission.

Chessie is fourteen, not pretty enough, and very much in love. Lloyd Layton is hot, popular, and unaware of Chessie's existence.

Her goal is clear: to get Lloyd to love her as much as she loves him, and she has exactly one year to do it.

As Chessie's obsession with Lloyd reaches boiling point and she starts to spin a web of lies that spiral out of control, Lloyd turns out to be not quite the prince she thought he was.
Can Chessie avoid the gathering storm before things go too far?



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As with all the books I've read by Jaimie Admans, I was gripped from the first page,

There is something extremely unique and refreshing about Chessie and that's the fact that everyone will empathise with her.
We have all been in that situation where we long to have someone notice us, to feel for us in the same way, we do for them.
I liked Chessie instantly, she goes through so much at such a young age.
But don't pity her, this girl is feisty and determined.

It's a witty, heart warming read that delivers a great message to the reader.

The story left me stunned when it ended, I wanted more, I needed more!
Which means I'm eagerly awaiting the second book.

5/5

I would like to thank Oops I Read A Book Again for sending me a copy to review for the blog tour!



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Friday, 13 September 2013

My Book Moment - Comfort & Cuddles

I'm pleased to share this lovely 'My Book Moment' with you.
Today Trish from Tishylou's World is sharing with us her book moment,



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I don't have a book moment as such. More of a "book revelation".

I've always been a reader. My childhood and teen years were spent browsing the shelves of our local library and taking my new treasures to my secret reading place, a hill nestled deep in the cemetery that was next to our old house. I know this sounds morbid, but there really was nothing else to do where I grew up in Canada. I'd spend as many hours as possible reading everything from Babysitters Club, Sweet Valley High and Judy Blume to RL Stine, Danielle Steel and Stephen King as I grew older.



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But my whole book world changed when I moved to England from Canada in 2000. I was 22 when I discovered "chick-lit". Authors like Jane Green, Jill Mansell, Chris Manby, Rowan Coleman, Carole Matthews, Belinda Jones and so many more, opened up a whole new genre. Whatever you want to call it, these books have inspired me, encouraged me and comforted me when I've been at my lowest points.



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I have met some amazing people through these books and social media. I have had the amazing opportunities to meet some of my favorite authors including Jane Green, Miranda Dickinson and Caroline Smailes. I met the adorable Kirsty (miss LoveOfAGoodBook) herself at Christmas-time last year. I have made friends. I love that! I've started my own blog Tishylou's World and started reviewing for handbag.com, which has encouraged me to try lots of new authors I would never have picked up normally. My book revelation has changed me and I am so glad!



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I've just ended a 10 year engagement and I will be turning to my books for comfort and maybe even guidance. If the women in my books can do it, why can't I??

I would like to thank Trish for sharing her 'My Book Moment'

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Joining Jenna's Journey with Julie Ryan

Julie was born and brought up in a mining village near Barnsley in South Yorkshire. She graduated with a BA (hons) in French Language and Literature from Hull University. Since then she has lived and worked as a Teacher of English as a Foreign Language in France, Greece, Poland and Thailand. She now lives in rural Gloucestershire with her husband, son and a dippy cat with half a tail. She is so passionate about books that her collection is now threatening to outgrow her house, much to her husband’s annoyance! “Jenna’s Journey” is her début novel set in Greece, a country to which she has a strong attachment. She is now working on a second novel in the series, “Sophia’s Story.”



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Your novel is called 'Jenna's Journey'' please could you tell me about it?
Jenna's marriage is in trouble and one day on a whim she decides to go to Greece alone to sort out what she's going to do next. Whilst there she inadvertantly becomes involved with an antique smuggling ring. She meets Tom and they become friends but she feels he's not quite on the level. Then she falls madly in love with Nikos, the hotel owner but he also has a secret from the past. There's a twist at the end so I don't want to spoil it by giving any more away.

'Jenna's Journey' is about Jenna, please could you tell me about her?
Most of the story takes place in 1987 when Jenna is in her late twenties. She's insecure about herself but has a strength of character that means she's a 'survivor'. Basically though, she just wants to fall in love and live happily ever after. To achieve that she has to hurt the one person she is closest to.

They say the journey to being published is one of the hardest an author can take, please can you describe the journey that you went on?
This is my first novel so it's been a steep learning curve. I love the fact that it's now easier than ever to publish a book yourself but the hard bit starts when you've finished the manuscript. Luckily I have a good friend who has helped with the techie parts and I did put my manuscript out to a small group of Beta readers. Their comments have been invaluable and it wouldn't be the same book without them.

Are any of the characters in 'Jenna's Journey' anything like you?
I didn't base any of my characters specifically on me although there is a lot of me in Jenna. However, by the end of the book she had morphed into someone else entirely. I like to think she is a younger, prettier, slimmer version of me.



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If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
Write because you enjoy it and get your manuscript into the most polished form you can. Make sure you have a good online presence too. Oh and don't forget to set up blog tours well in advance. I almost left it too late but luckily a few people managed to fit me in with about a month's notice. That's at least three pieces of advice I wish I'd known earlier.

What can we expect next, any future books in the pipeline?
I'm hoping that this will be the first of my Greek mysteries. I'm currently sketching out some ideas for another novel set in the same place but telling the stories of some of the other characters. It's provisionally called 'Sophia's Story.'


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Was there any book you read as a child that convinced you that you wanted to become a writer? If so, which one was it?
As a child I was mad about Enid Blyton's books. So much so that I got told off at school for trying to copy her style! It's strange that the writing bug has always been there but it's taken a long time to resurface. I definitely owe my love of books to her.

if there was one saying that could sum up your life, what would it be?
Seize the moment! I really do believe that we should live life to the full and make the most of any opportunities. Don't sit at home waiting for things to happen, go out there and make them happen.

if you could choose one book that you think everyone should read, what would it be and why?
One of the books that I never tire of reading is John Fowles' 'The Magus'. Every time I read it, I see something new in it. It's definitely worth a read if you haven't come across it. It's also set in Greece, which for me is a big attraction.

'Jenna's Journey' ' is set in Greece, what was your inspiration behind this country?
I've been fascinated by Greece since the moment I first visited it. There's something magical about the place and the light is really special. The scenery is stunning, the people friendly and the food's not bad either! Add great climate, fantastic beaches and plenty of history, it's one of my favourite places. Writing 'Jenna's Journey' was in part a way of transporting myself there, if only as a writer!


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I would like to thank Julie for talking to 'The Love Of A Good Book'

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Under Fire with Rachel Amphlett

Rachel Amphlett previously worked in the UK publishing industry, played lead guitar in rock bands, and worked with BBC radio before relocating from England to Australia in 2005.

After returning to writing, Rachel enjoyed publication success both in Australia and the United Kingdom with her short stories.

In August 2011, Rachel published her first thriller, 'White Gold', as an eBook with a paperback version being released in 2012.



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Your novel is called 'Under Fire' please could you tell me about it?
When an explosion rocks a Qatari natural gas facility and a submarine disappears on the way to being decommissioned, Dan Taylor is convinced the UK is next in the terrorists’ line of fire.

As Britain enters its worst winter on record, Dan must elude capture to ensure the country’s energy resources are protected. At all costs.

In an action-packed adventure, from the Middle East through the Mediterranean to London, Dan and his team are on a quest which will test every choice he makes. Assisted by the exotic Antonia Almasi, Dan realises he faces an adversary far greater than he ever imagined.

And not everyone is going to survive.

'Under Fire' is about Dan Taylor, please could you tell me about him?
Dan was the protagonist in my previous thriller, White Gold, and so many people asked me if I was writing about him again, I sort of felt obliged to! I’ve written Under Fire in such a way that someone can pick it up as a standalone read though, so it doesn’t matter if you’ve only just discovered him.
He’s a bit of a rogue, has his own way of doing things and although he respects authority, he doesn’t always do what he’s told.
After suffering from PTSD for many years, Dan’s now helping with research into new explosive devices when he receives a call for help. He’s unwittingly thrown in at the deep end, with the UK Government threatening prosecution for what he got up to in White Gold but also from the terrorists that seek to destroy the UK’s gas reserves.



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If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
Don’t give up.​

What can we expect next, any future books in the pipeline?
There certainly are. I’m in the very early stages of a new standalone thriller which features different characters and I’ve got 2-3 other projects in the pipeline. I’m sure somewhere down the track there will be a third Dan Taylor thriller too, as I’ve got an idea buzzing around in my head which involves him and the team.

Was there any book you read as a child that convinced you that you wanted to become a writer? If so, which one was it?
I was at a thriller-writing workshop last year and it was really funny because everyone confessed that they started out with Enid Blyton’s Famous Five series as children – it must be a pre-requisite for writing thrillers or something...!

if there was one saying that could sum up your life, what would it be?
I only saw this quote yesterday and it’s perfect:
“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing” ~ Helen Keller

if you could choose one book that you think everyone should read, what would it be and why?
I guess from a writing perspective, it would have to be Stephen King’s ‘On Writing’. Not only is it a fascinating autobiography but he talks about the writing process in a very accessible way. I’ve probably read it three times now over the years and I always learn something new.

What or who in life inspires you?
For my writing, I’m always inspired by news reports – I’m a news junkie. I read about current affairs, science, history, the environment, health – there’s a whole filing cabinet chock-full of ideas for stories. I think as an author you have to have a thirst for learning – you have to be interested in what goes on around you – even chance comments by people can trigger an idea.
It’s that need to learn which keeps me driven – if I wasn’t writing right now, I’d be studying something.

What is your all-time favourite book?
I always say ‘The Eagle Has Landed’ by Jack Higgins because I read that when I was about 12 or 13 and it was the first real thriller I’d ever read. We were over at my grandparents one weekend and I was stuck for something to read so my Grandad gave me that to get on with – and I absolutely loved it.
I read it again a couple of months ago and it’s still a great story – I highly recommend it to anyone who hasn’t read it before.

'Under Fire' is set in different countries. Have you visited these countries and if so which was your favourite?
It’s quite funny actually because I only confessed to someone the other day at a book signing that the on-foot chase scene in Under Fire had a previous incarnation from a short story I’d written when I was about 14 which was inspired by a trip to Malta with my grandparents when I was 11. I’m going back there for a week at the end of September and I can’t wait to see how much has changed all these years later. I’m sure Malta will feature in a future book too.
I love travelling so I guess that’s why my books do tend to have an international flavour to them – if I can write about somewhere I’ve been, it really does help to gain that sense of ‘place’ in my writing. Any excuse to travel is fine by me!



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I would like thank Rachel for talking to 'The Love Of A Good Book'