Strategy #BlogTour #GuestPost Anita Waller @anitamayw @Bloodhoundbook @sarahhardy681

Today I have the pleasure of being one of two stops on Anita Waller’s Strategy blog tour! 🙂

Strategy blog tour banner (2)

Many thanks to Sarah Hardy, at Bloodhound Books, for the opportunity to join in.

Guest post…..

(Anita Waller, 9 July 2017)

Murder, necessary murder

Since the publication of Beautiful, in August 2015, this has been my tagline. I use it because sometimes it really is nec(essary to murder a character, because that character, in one way or another, has really upset somebody else to the point where it is necessary to murder them. See?

Let’s look at 34 days, my third published book and a massive seller both here in the UK, and in the US. It has also spawned a sequel, Strategy, a new release for August 2017.

There are two lead characters in 34 Days, Anna who is married to an abusive husband, Ray, and Jenny who was raped by this same man virtually on the eve of her wedding to Anna and Ray’s son, Mark. This rape also resulted in the birth of a son, Adam. DNA testing proved Ray to be his father.

So now do you understand about necessary murder?

Once Anna found the courage to leave Ray, he was never going to be allowed to live, and Jenny set about doing the deed with a ruthlessness that shocked Anna. She was single-minded to the extent that she killed three people; Joan Jackson and James Oswoski, with Ray Carbrook sandwiched as a killing in between those two. She needed to make Carbrook’s death appear to be the work of a serial killer, so she had to kill the other two as well.

Necessary murders…

However, Jenny had an almost-conscience; she documented the murders in a series of letters to protect her family. If she had to go to prison for the murders, then so be it, just so long as nobody else in her family could be blamed in any way. Nobody was, her planning was meticulous, and she had an alibi of strength – she was in Sheffield with Anna, supported by additional confirmation from Anna’s neighbours, while Ray was being killed in Lincoln.

But it’s only an hour between Lincoln and Sheffield…

So just why did Jenny feel it necessary to kill this man? Why didn’t she just cry rape when it first happened? Initially she was scared she would lose everything. She loved Mark, and it was so close to the wedding. The pregnancy threw everything into further turmoil, and she had to try and put it behind her, and move on in their lives.

But she couldn’t forget. Adam was the constant reminder. And then Anna left Ray. Now her reasons came tumbling out of her memories, and she contacted Anna. Ray had become a necessary murder.

He was abusive to Anna.

He had raped Jenny and never acknowledged it.

He had fathered Adam, creating an issue with Jenny bonding with her son.

Necessary murders aren’t always solved. In Jenny’s case, because of a watertight alibi, she was never suspected, and we see her at the end of the book, still keeping a distant watch on Mark and the children.

But then she develops a Strategy, and along comes book two.

Jenny is a plotter, a planner, a strategist, a murderer. You might need to read Strategy…

strategy 1

Publisher: Bloodhound Books (10th August 2017)


A gripping psychological thriller from an international best-selling author

How much can one family take?

Jenny Carbrook murdered three people to make it look as though there was a serial killer at work in Lincoln, when the only person she wanted to kill was Ray Carbrook, her father-in-law, who had raped her the week before her marriage to Mark, Ray’s son.

Jenny wrote letters detailing her crimes in order to protect everyone she loved, but was forced to go into hiding before retrieving the evidence against her.  Not only did she leave the letters behind but also her young daughter, Grace.

Now Jenny has a plan, a strategy, to get the letters back. But it’s not only the letters that Jenny has in her sights…

Strategy is the follow up to the international best-seller 34 Days, it can be read as a sequel or an unmissable stand-alone.

Anita Waller is the best-selling author of Beautiful, Angel, 34 Days & Winterscroft  

Buy a copy……

About the author…..

Anita Waller

Anita Waller was born in Sheffield, South Yorkshire in 1946. She married Dave in 1967 and they have three adult children, Matthew, Siân and Kirsty along with seven grandchildren ranging in age from Brad at 23 down to baby Isaac at 2 ½ years.

She began writing when she was around 8 years of age, writing ‘compositions’ at junior school that became books with chapters.

In 1995 she sent Beautiful to a publisher and as they reached the contract stage the publisher went into liquidation. It was all to do with Eric Cantona and leaping over the barrier – don’t ask!
As a result, the book was consigned to the attic in dejected disgust but in 2013 it was dragged out again for an enforced complete re-type. The original was written on an Amstrad 8256 and the only thing that remained was one hard copy.

Anita is not a typist and it was painfully reworked over two years, submitted to Bloodhound Books who, within three days of reading it, offered her a contract. 31 August 2015 saw its release into the wide world.

Following the outstanding success of Beautiful, she began a sequel on 27 December 2015, finishing it on 19 March 2016. The new novel, Angel, was launched on 7 May 2016.

34 Days followed, with its launch in October 2016. This was a huge success, particularly in the United States. While this, her third book in the psychological thriller genre, was flying out in all directions, she began work on her fourth book.


Winterscroft was a change in genre. It is a supernatural tale, set in Castleton, Derbyshire, and its release date was February 2017.


While she was writing Winterscroft, it became very clear from reading reviews that a sequel to 34 days was needed, and she began work on that. Bloodhound Books will be launching her latest work, Strategy, on 10 August, 2017.


So where next? Her current work in progress is going by the working title A Legal Issue, and once again is a psychological thriller.

In her life away from the computer in the corner of her kitchen, she is a Sheffield Wednesday supporter with blue blood in her veins! The club were particularly helpful during the writing of 34 Days, as a couple of matches feature in the novel, along with Ross Wallace. Information was needed and they provided it.

Her genre is murder – necessary murder.


Amazon page:

Facebook page:  @anitawaller2015


Twitter:   @anitamayw



34 Days:


The Queen Of New Beginnings #BlogTour Therese Loreskär @loreskar #AuthorFacts

Today I have the pleasure of being one of two stops on Therese Loreskar’s The Queen Of New Beginnings blog tour! 🙂

The Queen of New Beginnings Blog Tour banner

Many thanks to Sarah Hardy, at Bloodhound Books, for the opportunity to join in.

Facts about Therese Loreskar…..

Name: Therese Loreskar

Age: 40

Living: West coast of Sweden, just beside the sea.

Family: 1 husband, one cat, two children and four dwarf hamsters.

Occupation: Write books and eat dark chocolate. (The latter might not pay me as much as I’d wish it did)

Spare time activities: Write books and eat dark chocolate

Best countries in the world: Sweden and England (used to live in Cambridge)

Biggest dream: Eat as much dark chocolate I’d like to without having to consider any possible side effects (bad or good), and see my novels become Hollywood movies.

Favorite authors: Sophie Kinsella and Marian Keyes.

Books published so far: Number 15 will be out just before Christmas. (Yes, this is truly crazy…)

Favorite food: Salmon and dark chocolate. (Not at the same time, duh!)

Favorite music: Out of the blue Oxford and Glee

If I could have super power: The ability to fly, and dance ballet (again, not at the same time)

Working on: A bestseller who’s going to hit Hollywood hard time (hm…correction… writing a crazy story about three people meeting at a death café….it’s possible that no one will ever read this).

More info:

The Queen of New Beginnings cover

Publisher: Bombshell Books (10th August 2017)


A laugh out loud comedy about starting again

Kajsa lives in a large house in Stockholm along with her three children and their dog. Since coming clean about lying on her popular blog she no longer has any work. Not only that but she has kicked her husband out because of his sex addiction.

While her husband is in rehab trying to fix his little problem, Kajsa’s mother-in-law is thrown out of her retirement home and comes to live with her daughter-in-law.

Then Kajsa receives an unexpected offer to move to a fashionable part of London. But having to look after her mother-in-law makes life complicated.

Can Kajsa rid herself of her baggage and make a fresh start with her children in England?

This laugh-out-loud comedy looks at the daily struggles we all face with our families and asks if starting again is ever really possible.

The Queen of New Beginnings is a laugh out comedy that you won’t be able to put down. It’s the follow up to Therese Loreskar’s hilarious Queen of Blogging, but you can easily enjoy this one as a stand-alone too!

Buy a copy…..

Author bio…..

Therese L

Therese Loreskär started her carrier in 2010 as a Swedish author. She self-published her first novel which was very well received and quickly sold out!

In 2014 she signed up to a publishing house. Her novel called “The Queen of Blogging” was released and the feedback was overwhelming! People referred to the book as a modern “Bridget Jones” and couldn’t get enough of the main character, Kajsa. The next book “The Queen of Blogging 2” was released shortly after to all the reader’s delight.
Therese has since then published 4 bestselling children’s books as well. She often does tours at different schools and talks about her books. The children love her visits and Therese always enjoys talking to her little readers.
“The Queen of Blogging 1 & 2” have also been recorded and launched as audiobooks in addition to paper backs in Sweden. Her biggest dream is to have “The Queen of Blogging series” made into films, and she secretly keeps a list in an old drawer of presumptive actors that would do the characters in her books justice.
Her never-ending energy for writing and entertaining people with her characters is her biggest trait.
Therese lives in the countryside along the west coast of Sweden. She has a rather big and busy household, with (one) husband, two children, one deaf cat, five hamsters and a grandmother.

Saving Sara (Redemption Series Book 1) by @NicolaMarsh #Review

Saving Sara (Redemption Series Book 1) by [Marsh, Nicola]

Publisher: Lake Union Publishing (1st August 2016)


When Sara Hardy inherits a cottage in the small town of Redemption, Connecticut, it is just the break she needs to draw a line under her past—to begin again, on her own.
Sara never thought she’d be starting over. She was married, successful, and the mother of a beautiful girl. But the life she thought was on the right path has taken a series of wrong turns…
Meanwhile Jake Mathieson has a lot on his plate. Still reeling from a tragedy for which he feels responsible, he finds himself unexpectedly caring for his six-year-old nephew. In desperation, he comes to Redemption to enlist the help of his Aunt Cilla, a widow with demons of her own.
Jake is intrigued by Cilla’s cautious new neighbor. Like him, Sara is desperate to put the past behind her but not quite sure how to begin. Can Redemption offer either of them a second chance to find hope and happiness—perhaps even to take a risk on new love?

My review…..

Saving Sara is a lovely read. Another book which has been waiting patiently on my kindle. I’m so glad I finally got around to reading it.

When we first meet Sara, she is attending a funeral. The funeral is for her 3 year old daughter, Lucy, which is just heart-breaking. We don’t find out what happened straight away, but as well as losing her daughter, Sara’s marriage is falling apart and she finds herself in Redemption, in a house left to her by her grandmother, in an attempt to heal.

Jake is also trying to heal. He still can’t forgive himself for an accident he feels he caused, but he has to pull himself together to some degree when his sister asks him to take care of his nephew whilst she gets herself well. Jake also finds himself in Redemption when he enlists the help of his Aunt Cilla, who lives next door to Sara.

Now, it is quite obvious that Sara and Jake are going to click, but it’s far from straight forward and I thoroughly enjoyed their story. They are lovely characters and I was routing for them all the way through. Cilla too!

This story is full of raw emotion, which I felt on every page. There is unimaginable loss and grief, but also learning to live again. It’s a beautiful romance with the happiest of endings.

I will be purchasing book 2 in this series.

Buy a copy…..


Pay The Penance #BlogTour #Extract @RobAshmanAuthor @Bloodhoundbook @sarahhardy681 #bloghounds

Today I have the pleasure of being one of two stops on Rob Ashman’s Pay The Penance blog tour! 🙂

Pay The Penance blog tour banner

With thanks to Sarah Hardy, at Bloodhound Books, for the opportunity to take part.


Chapter 1

New JerseyJune 1985

Fabiano Bassano was watching baseball in his man-cave.

The room was full of excited chatter as the additives

from the fizzy drinks and chocolate snacks began to kick in and the kids went a little crazy. He liked nothing better than watching the game with his five grandchildren. They were mad about baseball and mad about Grandpa.

Whenever they got together it was always the same. The kids talked over the commentary, walked in front of the TV, and bombarded him with questions about the rules, but that was fine. For Fabiano Bassano, enjoying the ball game with his grandchildren had nothing to do with the ball game.

Hey, what’s going on,’ he cried, holding up an empty beer bottle. ‘Who’s on bar duty?’

One of the children reached up, snatched it from his grasp and dashed into the kitchen, returning a minute later with a frosted replacement, courtesy of Grandma.

Zak, the youngest, snuggled on to the chair alongside him.

Grandpa, why do you have this silly picture?’ His shock of black tousled hair hid his face as he gazed at a silver framed photograph in his tiny hand. He looked up, his moon face and bright eyes waiting for his favourite playmate to respond.

Yes, that is a silly picture, isn’t it?’They both laughed.‘What is it?’‘I don’t know. Someone gave it to me. I like it, don’t you?’ ‘Yes, I like it too.’

It makes me smile.’‘It makes me smile too, Grandpa. Who gave it to you?’‘A friend of Uncle Chris.’‘Is he the one who died?’‘Yes. He died when you were small.’‘I like it.’ Zak turned the picture over in his hands and the

frame caught the light.‘I’ll let you into a secret.’ Fabiano bent his head and whispered

into the child’s ear. ‘Do you know what today is?’ ‘No, what?’

Today is its birthday.’

Its birthday?’ Zak was fixated, not taking his eyes off the image. ‘How can a picture have a birthday?’

Well, it’s one year ago today that the photograph was taken.’

Wow, then it does have a birthday.’ Zak and his grandpa sang Happy Birthday. But Grandpa struggled on occasion to get his words out. When they finished he dabbed his eyes with his sleeve.

Now put it back and we can watch the game.’Zak shuffled off the chair and placed it on the shelf. It was an odd photograph.


Publisher: Bloodhound Books (8th August 2017)

A stunning serial killer thriller from The Mechanic Trilogy

Murder. Corruption. Revenge. 

Lucas has been tracking a killer, known as Mechanic, when his world is shattered. Unable to continue his hunt for the murderer he is forced to rely on his friend and colleague Dick Harper. But Harper has a knack for not playing by the rules. And he doesn’t disappoint.

Meanwhile Detective Moran is trying to piece her life back together. The police stumble upon new evidence without grasping its significance and she must divert the investigation if she is to survive.

The police are closer to Mechanic than they realise which puts Moran right in the firing line.

Mechanic, as usual, has other plans and the consequences for Lucas and Harper are terrifying…

Pay The Penance can be read as a gripping stand alone or as part of the thrilling Mechanic Trilogy

Also available:

Book 1: Those That Remain

Book 2: In Your Name

Reviews for The Mechanic Trilogy:

“Wow what a gripping, seat clenching , addictive read this book is, can’t wait for sequels to come out”

“Top class entertainment. An excellent debut novel full of fast paced action, thrills and spills.”

“I think I have just found myself a new crime thriller author and series that will be going straight on my “must read authors list”.

“Kept me on the edge of my seat so many twists and turns”

Buy a copy…..

About the author…..

Rob Ashman

Rob is married to Karen with two grown up daughters. He is originally from South Wales and after moving around with work settled in North Lincolnshire where he’s spent the last twenty-two years.

Like all good welsh valley boys Rob worked for the National Coal Board after leaving school at sixteen and went to University at the tender age of twenty-three when the pit closures began to bite. Since then he’s worked in a variety of manufacturing and consulting roles both in the UK and abroad.

It took Rob twenty-four years to write his first book. He only became serious about writing it when his dad got cancer. It was an aggressive illness and Rob gave up work for three months to look after him and his mum. Writing Those That Remain became his coping mechanism. After he wrote the book his family encouraged him to continue, so not being one for half measures, Rob got himself made redundant, went self-employed so he could devote more time to writing and four years later the Mechanic Trilogy is the result.

When he is not writing, Rob is a frustrated chef with a liking for beer and prosecco, and is known for occasional outbreaks of dancing.

Rob is delighted that all three books in the Mechanic Trilogy will be published with Bloodhound Books in 2017.

You will find all of Rob’s books on his Amazon author page



Transition by Jo Huey #BlogTour #Extract @Joanne_Huey @emmamitchellfpr

Today I have the pleasure of being one of two stops on Jo Huey’s Transition blog tour! 🙂

Transition Blog Tour Banner

Many thanks to Emma Mitchell for the opportunity to join in.


***Mine is extract 3, so please make sure you visit the previous stops, as shown on the banner above, if you haven’t already.***

Stimulating my brain and being active was important, I felt like a vacuum wanting to suck up all the information. Unfortunately, my mum found this frustrating and difficult.

You may have heard of the saying ‘children should be seen and not heard’, I got the feeling that is what my parents wanted from me. I wasn’t like Daisy; she would just do as she was told with no questions. She would never ask why or challenge what people said, they were her elders and she had the utmost respect for them.

It didn’t matter to me who I was asking, as far as I could see they were questions, nothing rude – just me needing and wanting to know more. But at that time children had their place and it wasn’t for a child to know things that weren’t relevant or their business.

It was hard to know how to improve my relationship with my mum; we are different people and just because we are family doesn’t guarantee we will get on. I’ve heard other people say this and whilst it is hard to hear, it is true. Thankfully, I’ve managed to realise that how I’ve been acting towards my mum is from a place of anger and hurt and learning to let that go and forgive has been a long time coming. Sometimes you just don’t like or get on with your family, I know I had periods with Daisy where we just didn’t like each other. But we do still love each other.

Dad was forever saying that I would never be able to do the things I dreamed about and I should be ‘realistic’; choose options at school that would help me get a job etcetera.

Dad never inspired me or supported me in a way I believe a parent should do. I see now how my friends treat their children and whilst part of me admires it, a big part is jealous and often I feel like they are spoiling their children.

But that isn’t the case at all. They are just doing what parents do, taking their kids to clubs, events, parties and school; supporting them with their homework; telling them they can achieve and do whatever they want to. They listen to their troubles, and tell them they don’t have to worry about anything.

My life was the opposite of that. I had to get myself everywhere I needed to go, bike or bus. Dad rarely took us anywhere and Mum didn’t drive. Dad was absent much of the time; and Mum wasn’t academic – she tried, but she wasn’t always able to help with homework. At the time, I felt my dreams were never encouraged; and I had to face the cold truth that I wouldn’t be able to even attempt achieving my dreams or take a risk. Sometimes I came up with random ideas like wanting to be a pop star or something but I didn’t want to hear I couldn’t do it, that completely shattered my excitement. It didn’t matter to me whether it was a practical idea or that it was likely, I just wanted to embrace it and have fun with it.

Mum did listen at times to my troubles but I always felt it was with half an ear out for something else. Her attention never felt like it was 100% on me in any given moment. This is understandable now because she had so much on her plate at home and I do believe she did her best. As for worrying about things, I felt I had the world on my shoulders, and the responsibility that came with living in an alcoholic environment felt too much for me. I spent far too much time worrying about things and feeling on edge, anticipating what was going to happen, if an argument was imminent or if I was going to be shouted at.

One thing I recall vividly is that my home was never a safe place to be, it should be the main place where you feel safe but for me there was danger, a lot of unknowns, and I had little or no way of protecting myself.

Transition cover

An autobiography of Jo’s life from the trauma and unpredictability of living in an alcoholic home, through self-development transformation to the more content, happy and successful business woman she is today.

Jo shares her many insights into alcoholism and the effects on the family. An honest and brutal account of Jo’s experience with her father’s addiction to alcohol, she shares the highs and lows of life with an absent father and busy mother.

After life hit an all-time low in adulthood she decided to turn her life around and start a journey of self-discovery. Jo transformed herself through therapy, self-help books, groups, events and more which she shares in the book.

If you have experienced the challenges of living with someone’s drinking, then you’ll relate to Jo’s experience and feel the connection with her story.

If you are interested in an inspirational and motivational story, then you won’t be disappointed. Within the book, Jo shares several techniques you’ll be able to learn and use in your life if you really want the change you seek.

Jo Huey is an inspirational & motivational speaker, coach and author.

Jo gets up every morning wanting to help those with experiences like hers, those affected by someone’s drinking. She connects the dots to form a new picture using practical tools & techniques with the aim that they would genuinely feel better about themselves and live a calmer and chaos free life.

Buy a copy…..

Facebook Q & A

Thursday, 10 August at 8.00 p.m.

About the author…..

Jo Huey_Portrait_pink

Jo is an inspirational speaker, coach and author. She is also an adult child of an alcoholic and shares her personal story of living with an alcoholic father for 16 years and how that has impacted her adult life.

Jo is brutally honest about her experience, explaining how she coped as a child in an alcoholic home and the self-development journey she took in her twenties to overcome the trauma.

If you’ve experienced the impact of living with a heavy drinker, someone’s addiction or mental health problem you’ll relate to Jo’s story. For those of you that haven’t experienced what an alcoholic home brings it will give you an insight into the damage it causes to the family.

Jo shares her story for two reasons, the first is to connect with those that have been affected so they know they aren’t alone and the second to educate and inform others about this very hidden problem.


SICK (The Sick Series Book 1) by ChristaWojciechowski @ChristaWojo #Review

SICK Part I (The Sick Series Book 1) by [Wojciechowski, Christa]


Everyone has a breaking point. Is this marriage based on unconditional love or an unhealthy obsession?

Susan Branch’s life revolves around the care of her charming and inscrutable husband John, a man born into wealth and prestige who lost his family’s fortune when his mysterious chronic illnesses left him bedridden. Together they live a decrepit existence beholden to the current owners of his family’s former estate.

After years of devoting herself to John’s care, Susan is worn out and frustrated. Yet she is determined to scrape together whatever resources she can to keep John comfortable and happy. This includes stealing Demerol from the doctor’s office where she works to feed John’s ever-increasing need for pain medication.

As John’s condition continues to puzzle doctors, Susan begins to notice strange objects appearing around her house. Ever wary of creepy Old Pete, the groundskeeper, Susan decides to confront the elderly man and put an end to his snooping for good.

John suffers a critical emergency, but he is saved and is soon released from the hospital. As his health begins to improve, Susan dreams of a normal life, but her hope for a miracle transforms into a nightmare one fateful afternoon when she discovers the true cause of John’s sickness.


My review…..

It didn’t take me long to read Sick, as it is a novella, and I always find short stories hard to review as it’s so hard to do so without giving too much away, but I’ll do my best.

John is sick, very sick. His wife Susan has been caring for him for years. His chronic illnesses have meant that most of her time has to be devoted to taking care of him and she struggles to hold down a job and keep on top of the ever increasing medical bills. Is this really her life, her marriage? In sickness and in health and all that, but she is becoming increasingly frustrated. So much so that she risks her job, and more, by stealing medication from work, to pacify John. However, things just go from bad to worse.

When she starts finding odd objects around their house she thinks the creepy grounds keeper is responsible. She is totally not prepared for the truth!

Sick packs an awful lot into it’s relatively few pages. A lot of emotion, mainly stress and anxiety on Susan’s part in particular. It’s a difficult subject matter, but I feel it is very well written with a shocking conclusion.

Thanks to Christa Wojciechowski for my review copy.

Buy a copy…..

Previous post featuring Christa Wojciechowski…..

Q&A with author, Christa Wojciechowski


#CoverReveal of Broken Bones by @WriteAngie + bonus content! @bookouture @nholten40

I am thrilled to be joining in with Angela Marsons’ Broken Bones cover reveal! 🙂 

Many thanks to Noelle, at Bookouture, for the opportunity to take part.


They thought they were safe. They were wrong.

The murder of a young prostitute and a baby found abandoned on the same winter night signals the start of a disturbing investigation for Detective Kim Stone – one which brings her face to face with someone from her own horrific childhood.

As three more sex workers are murdered in quick succession, each death more violent than the last, Kim and her team realise that the initial killing was no one-off frenzied attack, but a twisted serial killer preying on the vulnerable.

At the same time, the search begins for the desperate woman who left her newborn baby at the station – but what looks like a tragic abandonment turns even more sinister when a case of modern slavery is uncovered.

The two investigations bring the team into a terrifying world of human exploitation and cruelty – and a showdown that puts Kim’s life at risk as shocking secrets from her own past come to light.

A gripping new crime thriller from the Number One bestseller – you will be hooked until the final jaw-dropping twist.

About the author…..

Angie - updated author photo - no credit needed

Angela Marsons is the author of the Amazon Bestselling DI Kim Stone series – Silent Scream, Evil Games, Lost Girls, Play Dead, Blood Lines, Dead Souls and now Broken Bones. Her books have sold more than 2 million in 2 years.

She lives in the Black Country with her partner, their cheeky Golden Retriever and a swearing parrot.

She first discovered her love of writing at Junior School when actual lessons came second to watching other people and quietly making up her own stories about them. Her report card invariably read “Angela would do well if she minded her own business as well as she minds other people’s”.

After years of writing relationship based stories (The Forgotten Woman and Dear Mother) Angela turned to Crime, fictionally speaking of course, and developed a character that refused to go away.

She is signed to for a total of 16 books in the Kim Stone series and her books have been translated into more than 20 languages.

Her last two books – Blood Lines and Dead Souls – reached the #1 spot on Amazon on pre-orders alone.


A special treat…..


By Angela Marsons


Black Country

Christmas Day

Elaine Goddard sat on the roof of the thirteen storey block of flats. The winter sun shone a grid on to her bare feet dangling over the edge.

The protective grate had been erected some years ago after a father of seven had thrown himself over.

By the time she was eleven she had stolen a pair of wire cutters and fashioned herself an access point to the narrow ledge that was her place of reflection.

From this vantage point she could look to the beauty of the Clent Hills in the distance, block out the dank, grubby reality of below.

Hollytree was the place you were sent if Hell was having a spring clean.

Problem families from the entire West Midlands were evicted from other estates and placed in Hollytree. It was displacement capital. Communities around the borough breathed sighs of relief as families were evicted. No-one cared where they went. It was enough that they were gone and one more ingredient was added to the melting pot.

There was a clear perimeter around the estate over which the police rarely crossed. It was a place where the rapists, child molesters, thieves and ASBO families were put together in one major arena. And then guarded by police from the outside.

But today a peace settled around the estate giving the illusion that the normal activities of robbing, raping and molesting were on pause because it was Christmas Day. That was bollocks. It was all still going on but to the backdrop of the Queens speech.

Her mother was still slurring her way around the cheerless flat with a bottle of Gin in her hand.

But at least Elaine had this. Her one piece of heaven. Always her safe place. Her escape.

She had disappeared unnoticed up here when she was seven years old and her mother had been falling all over the flat pissed as a fart.

How lucky was she to have been the only one of the four kids her mother had been allowed to keep?

She had escaped up here when her mother’s drinking partner, Roddy, had started pawing at her groin and slobbering into her hair. Her mother had pulled him off, angrily, shouting something about ruining her retirement plan. She hadn’t understood it when she was nine years old but she had come to understand it now.

She had cried up here on her sixteenth birthday when her mother had introduced her to the family business and to their pimp, Kai Lord.

She’d been up here two months earlier when he had finally found her.

And she’d been up here when she’d told him to fuck right off.

She didn’t want to be saved. It was too late.

Sixteen years of age and already it was too damn late.

Many times she had fantasised about how it would feel to lurch forward onto the wind. She had envisioned herself floating to and fro gently making the journey like a stray pigeon feather all the way to the ground. Had imagined the feeling of weightlessness of both her body and her mind.

Elaine took a deep breath and exhaled.

In just a few minutes it would be time to go to work. Heavy rain, sleet, snow, Christmas – nothing kept the punters away. Trade might be slow but it would still be there. It always was.

She didn’t hear the roof door open or the footsteps that slowly strode towards her.

She didn’t see the hand that pushed her forward.

She only saw the ground as it hurtled towards her.


And here it is…..


Pre-order now…..



Out 3rd November 2017!

Catch up with the first 6 books in the series (if you haven’t already!) here….

Angela Marsons’ Amazon Author page


Holy Island (The DCI Ryan Mysteries Book 1) by @LJRoss_author #Review

Holy Island: A DCI Ryan Mystery (The DCI Ryan Mysteries Book 1) by [Ross, LJ]


Detective Chief Inspector Ryan retreats to Holy Island seeking sanctuary when he is forced to take sabbatical leave from his duties as a homicide detective. A few days before Christmas, his peace is shattered and he is thrust back into the murky world of murder when a young woman is found dead amongst the ancient ruins of the nearby Priory.

When former local girl Dr Anna Taylor arrives back on the island as a police consultant, old memories swim to the surface making her confront her difficult past. She and Ryan struggle to work together to hunt a killer who hides in plain sight, while pagan ritual and small-town politics muddy the waters of their investigation.

Murder and mystery are peppered with a sprinkling of romance and humour in this fast-paced crime whodunnit set on the spectacular Northumbrian island of Lindisfarne, cut off from the English mainland by a tidal causeway.

My review…..

I know I am probably in a minority having only just got around to reading Holy Island (The DCI Ryan Mysteries, Book 1). I know this is a very popular series!

L J Ross very kindly sent me her new book, Cragside (The DCI Ryan Mysteries, Book 6) and I’m a bit of a stickler for reading a series in order, so I thought it was about time I started this one and I know exactly what I’ve been missing out on now!

DCI Ryan is a very intriguing character. Good looking, but not arrogant. Understandably standoffish at times, but likable. I was drawn to him immediately. He has been living in Lindisfarne since having to take leave, but is soon thrown back into work when the body of a young girl called Lucy is found dead on the island. Former local resident, Dr Anna Taylor is called in as a police consultant. The chemistry between them is quite obvious early on although they act like they don’t like each other to start with.

As the investigation into Lucy’s murder progresses, we learn more and more about certain local residents, who aren’t all as they first seem, and it’s easy to start suspecting everyone. There are some evil characters in this story and all are seemingly normal to begin with. Ryan and his colleagues have no idea of the danger they’re facing.

The twists and turns in this story are plentiful and the suspense had me hooked from start to finish and kept me guessing the whole way through. I didn’t even pretend to have this one sussed at any point! That ending!!

The setting sounds amazing and is now on my list of places to visit, hopefully before too long.

Holy Island is a brilliantly written police procedural which has everything I love in a book. It’s fast-paced, beautifully descriptive, with excellent characterisation and a storyline that kept me reading ‘just one more chapter’. There’s also a bit of romance and, even better, it’s the first in the series and I have another 5 to look forward to!

Buy a copy…..

About the author…..

LJ Ross

L.J. Ross is the author of the international #1 bestselling series of DCI Ryan mystery novels. Her debut, Holy Island, was released in January 2015 and went on to become a Kindle UK #1 bestseller. Its sequels, Sycamore Gap, Heavenfield, Angel and High Force have all been top five bestsellers. The novels are all available to purchase in e-book, paperback and audiobook formats on the Amazon store (the audiobook version of High Force will be released in early 2017). Holy Island is also available in German translation.

Louise was born in Northumberland, England. She studied undergraduate and postgraduate Law at King’s College, University of London and studied abroad in Paris and Florence. She spent much of her working life in London, where she was a regulatory lawyer for a number of years until taking the decision to change career and pursue her dream to write.

Now, she writes full time and lives with her husband and son in Bath. She enjoys reading all manner of books, travelling and spending time with family and friends.

If you would like to connect with LJ Ross, she would be very happy to hear from you:

Lovely gifts from L J Ross…..

Thank you! 🙂

Reality Rehab #BlogTour #Extract @BigRealityStar @emmamitchellfpr

Today I have the pleasure of being one of two stops on Lisa Mary London’s Reality Rehab blog tour 🙂 

Reality Rehab Banner

Many thanks to Emma Mitchell for the opportunity to take part.

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Soap legend’s life goes pear shaped


With her flowing blonde tresses and hour glass figure, she won a legion of male fans. But the years have not been kind to former Jubilee Road star Gloria Grayson.

Today she is unrecognisable as the actress once voted soap’s sexiest female. Wearing a ketchup stained dressing gown, with dark roots growing through her bleached hair, the 53-year-old actress looked bloated as she binned household rubbish outside her £2 million mansion in London’s exclusive Highgate.

The 18 stone star has been a virtual recluse since she was fired from her £200,000 a year role as glamorous pub landlady Stella Love. She divorced hell-raising actor ‘Mad’ Tommy Mack two years ago, following a domestic incident in which he was arrested outside their home wearing only boxer shorts. Soon after, he too was axed from his role as womanising police detective Mickey Dunn, in the hit crime series, Cop Shop. In a dramatic TV exit, his character was mown down by a bendy bus. In recent years Mack has also disappeared from the public eye amid rumours of ill health.

A neighbour of Miss Grayson’s, who did not want to be named, said the star’s shocking weight gain was the talk of the neighbourhood:

‘My husband and I used to watch her in Jubilee Road, in those days she was quite the slinky sex bomb. You wouldn’t believe it’s the same woman to see her now, slobbing around the village in an extra large tracksuit. We often see her gorging herself in the local restaurant, with that tubby little dog. It’s better dressed than she is. It bit me once and she wasn’t a bit apologetic.’

Readers’ Comments (726)

Michael Martin, Milton Keynes

Good God, what a state. And to think I used to fancy her!

Dan67, Nottingham

She’s not shy of a pie (or twelve).

Sarah Gardiner, Stroud

I hardly recognised her, she’d need Vaseline and a crowbar to squeeze into Stella Love’s mini skirts now!!!

Carrie, London

Leave her alone, it’s nobody else’s business if she wants to eat herself to death.

Jo-Jo, South Wales

Gloria should try the Cambridge Diet it’s wonderful, I lost two stone in 6 weeks.


Publisher: Ivan Berg (12th July 2017)

Faded TV star Gloria Grayson has hit rock bottom. Sacked from her starring role in a top soap, divorced from hell-raising actor ‘Mad’ Tommy Mack, and obese from binge eating, her days as Britain’s sexiest blonde are well and truly over.

Gloria has gained 70 lbs when a paparazzi snaps unflattering photos, and a cruel tabloid article relaunches her career. Instantly, she and her fat, feisty dog Baby-Girl are booked for TV’s Reality Rehab. Gloria is locked up with an American psychotherapist, a rabble of D-list celebrities and umpteen cameras, then put on a starvation diet. But worse is to come, with the shock arrival of her alcoholic ex-husband.

Tears and tantrums ensue, as the divorced couple’s joint therapy sessions take over the show and ratings soar. The other celebrities are infuriated to be sidelined and Reality Rehab fast becomes The Tommy and Glo Show. But Gloria and Tommy are hiding explosive secrets from each other and 10 million viewers – Reality is stranger than fiction!

Reality Rehab is the debut novel of Lisa Mary London, a journalist and former reality TV producer. A cast of hilarious characters, cliffhangers galore and an authentic voice that could only come from a TV insider, Reality Rehab is this year’s must-read!

‘Could just be the funniest book of the decade’ – Rajee Narinesingh, US Reality TV Star

‘The perfect frothy but sharply satirical read. Great fun!’ – Bee Jones, Glossed in a Good Book

Donate to Dogs! Mutts with Friends Dog Rescue & Rehoming receives £1 from every paperback sold. Enjoy a rollicking good read and help hounds – Like Joey Essex, it’s a no-brainer!


Buy your copy….


#flashbackfriday with @Dougieclaire Liane Moriarty @ShappiKhorsandi @Wendy_Walker @KFrenchBooks @JessikahHope

Hi and welcome to my #flashbackfriday feature. 

On the first Friday of each month I like to have a little look back at what I was reading a year ago.

Here are my reviews from August 2016…..

Local Girl Missing


Truly Madly Guilty by [Moriarty, Liane]

Truly Madly Guilty


Nina is Not OK by [Khorsandi, Shappi]

Nina Is Not OK


All Is Not Forgotten: The gripping thriller you'll never forget by [Walker, Wendy]

All Is Not Forgotten


The Girls' Ghostbusting Agency: An absolutely hilarious cozy mystery (Melody Bittersweet Mysteries Book 1) by [French, Kitty]

Melody Bittersweet……


41Byd8fIx-L._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_ (2016_04_02 17_33_15 UTC) - Copy

A Single Drop of Perfect & other stories


Have you read any of the above?