#BlogTour 30 Days In June by Chris Westlake @ChrisWestlake2 @DamppebblesBTs #damppebblesblogtours

Title: 30 days in June by Chris Westlake 

Date Published: 26th December 2019

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Description:

On the 1st day of June 1988, the residents of south Wales were thrown into a state of panic when a married couple were brutally murdered in their own home. The killer, nicknamed Spartacus by the media, did not flee the scene immediately; instead, he stayed to carve Roman Numerals onto his victims’ chests.

This was the beginning of a month-long killing spree, each murder taking a step closer to home.

Seventeen-year-old Jeffrey Allen was to be the final victim, on the final day of the month. Instead, he became the only survivor, and the only real witness. The killings ended as suddenly as they began. Jeffrey relocated to London, changing his name, and his identity, to Marcus Clancy. His past life became merely a dark secret.

On 1st June 2018, 30 years to the day since the first killing, a mysterious figure refers to Marcus by his old name, through closing lift doors.

Is Spartacus back? If so, has he returned to finish what he failed to do thirty years ago?

And so begins 30 days of terror for Marcus Clancy, culminating in dramatic fashion on the final day of June.

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Review:

I want to thank Emma Welton for inviting me on this blog tour and providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

30 Days in June is a tense psychological thriller with a beginning that really draws you in.

The story has two narratives, 1988 when Spartacus was at the height of his reign of terror and thirty years later when Jeffery Allen, now Marcus Clancy, the serial killer’s only surviving victim, is trying his best to get on with his life. Unfortunately for him someone doesn’t want that, has Spartacus come back to finish him off? 

To me, Marcus wasn’t all that likeable but he was definitely interesting and at times quite an unreliable narrator that you’re not entirely sure you can trust. I did feel sorry for him especially as he started to lose his grip on his sanity.

I have to be honest it lost a little bit of steam at certain times through the book, specifically when Marcus was talking to his therapist, I just wanted to get back into the thick of the story. 

I’d recommend 30 Days in June if you like a realistic character driven crime story. 

About The Author:

After completing a Creative Writing course in 2010, Chris Westlake’s short story, Welsh89766424_10157887519643828_4696678877139828736_o Lessons, was awarded 1st place in the Global Short Story Award (not bad for the first writing competition he had entered). He followed this up with 1st place in the Stringybark Erotic Fiction Award and 2nd place in the HASSRA Literary Award.

Chris has written three novels. 30 DAYS IN JUNE is his first crime thriller. He is currently writing his second thriller, on schedule to be completed in 2020. He is determined to write many, many more – his main regret is that he didn’t start writing earlier.

Chris considers himself to be a developing author. He is always looking to improve, to make his next novel even better than the last. He is continuously experimenting with different styles, different genres.

damppebbles blog tours

#BlogTour #AuthorInterview The Walls We Build by Jules Hayes @JulesHayes6 @rararesources

Today I have a fabulous Q&A with Jules Hayes as part of the blog tour for her novel The Walls We Build, along with a chance to win yourself a copy of the novel (see bottom of post) but first a little about the book:

The Walls We Build_Ebook

Title: The Walls We Build by Jules Hayes

Date Published: 23rd March 2020

Genre: Historical Fiction

Description:

Three friends … 

Growing up together around Winston Churchill’s estate in Westerham, Kent, Frank, Florence and Hilda are inseparable. But as WW2 casts its menacing shadow, friendships between the three grow complex, and Frank – now employed as Churchill’s bricklayer – makes choices that will haunt him beyond the grave, impacting his grandson’s life too.

Two Secrets …

Shortly after Frank’s death in 2002 Florence writes to Richard, Frank’s grandson, hinting at the darkness hidden within his family. On investigation, disturbing secrets come to light, including a pivotal encounter between Frank and Churchill during the war and the existence of a mysterious relative in a psychiatric hospital.

One Hidden Life … 

How much more does Florence dare reveal about Frank – and herself – and is Richard ready to hear?

Set against the stunning backdrop of Chartwell, Churchill’s country home, comes a tragic story of misguided honour, thwarted love and redemption, reverberating through three generations and nine decades.

For readers of Kate Morton, Rachel Hore, Katherine Webb, Lucinda Riley and Juliet West.

“Passion, intrigue and family secrets drive this complex wartime relationship drama. A page turner. I loved it.”  #1 bestselling author, Nicola May

You can buy your copy here:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0855YZ3GG/
US – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0855YZ3GG/ 

Waterstones – https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-walls-we-build/jules-hayes/9781916338005

The Walls We Build Full Tour Banner

Q&A with Jules Hayes

Can you tell me a little bit about your book?

Thank you for inviting me onto your blog. It’s great to be here.

The Walls We Build is a sweeping generational saga, which charts the repercussions of a tragic event within one family. The story reverberates from 1920s England, across the wasteland of the Second World War, and into the present day.

The novel follows the story, and secrets, of three friends, Florence, Frank and Hilda – all three live and work around Chartwell, Winston Churchill’s home. Only months after Frank’s death in 2002, his grandson is approached by Florence. Soon afterwards, the untangling of the past becomes Richard’s obsession as he discovers both a mystery aunt who still resides in a psychiatric institution, and the double life that his grandfather had led for forty years. 

The narrative weaves between events from the past relating to Frank, Florence and Hilda, to incidents in the present with Richard. The intertwining of these two time frames culminates towards the end of the story when Richard, helped by Florence, begins to piece together his grandad’s secret life. 


Where did the inspiration for your book come from? 

I’ve always been intrigued with the life of Winston Churchill and when I came across a photo of him addressing his troops in 1943 Tripoli, North Africa, I had that ‘what if’ moment. What if a soldier amongst the crowd was Churchill’s old employee from Chartwell? Perhaps his bricklayer, as I’m intrigued with Churchill’s passion for bricklaying in his spare time! Perhaps they had a unique relationship – I liked the idea of juxtaposing the ordinary and the extraordinary man. How will their paths cross again? And in what capacity will Florence, my other main protagonist, and Frank’s friend but true love, fit into the story? I knew then that at the heart of the novel would be an unconventional love story, as well as a mystery, and all set against the rich backdrop of war and its aftermath. But I also knew too that I needed a present day protagonist, Richard, Frank’s grandson, to untangle the intrigue of the past.  

If you could describe your book in one sentence what would it be? 

The Walls We Build is a historical romance, but is also a present day mystery; although underpinning the narrative is, I think, a pacey thriller too. 

What is a typical writing day like for you? 

On my writing days I get up very early and I’m at my desk for 6am. I work for as long as I have concentration, around 1pm, and then do other things, exercise, chores, dog walking. Later I will read other people’s books, read around for research, or do some editing. I can’t write new words after 2pm!

If you could recommend just one book to read what would it be and why?

Primo Levi’s If This Is A Man/The Truce – it’s a non-fiction book but written so hauntingly. Levi was a Holocaust survivor and his descriptions of the human condition are just as relevant today as they were at the time of writing. It’s a little of a masterclass on writing with dignity and perception.

Who are your favourite authors? 

Kate Atkinson, Maggie O’Farrell, Sebastian Faulks, Margaret Atwood and Alex Marwood. 

Tell me something interesting about yourself (that’s not in your author bio!)

When I went to university at 18 in London, I wanted to reinvent myself and so a week before leaving home I dyed my hair black and then got my mate, who was a hairdresser, to painstakingly bead my hair!
It looked fabulous and I cannot believe I do not have any photos! Before the mobile phone…

What are you currently working on?

Currently I’m working on, and near to completing, my next Jules Hayes historical novel, (Jules is my pseudonym – I also write contemporary thrillers as JA Corrigan). I’m working too on a speculative thriller, which when completed, will be my next JA Corrigan novel. 

About The Author:

Jules Hayes lives in Berkshire with her husband, daughter and a dog. She has a degree inThe Walls We Build Author Photo modern history and holds a particular interest in events and characters from the early 20th century. As a former physiotherapist and trainer – old habits die hard – when not writing Jules likes to run. She also loves to watch films, read good novels and is a voracious consumer of non-fiction too, particularly biographies.

Jules is currently working on her second historical novel, another dual timeline story.

Jules also writes contemporary thrillers and speculative fiction as JA Corrigan.

Jules Hayes  can be found at:

Website: https://www.jules-hayes.com/

Twitter @JulesHayes6  – http://www.twitter.com/JulesHayes6

Facebook Author Page: JulesHayesAuthor – http://www.facebook.com/JulesHayesAuthor

Instagram: JulesHayes6 – http://www.instagram.com/juleshayes6

Writing as JA Corrigan, Jules can be found at: Website: http://www.jacorrigan.com

Twitter: @juliannwriter – http://www.twitter.com/juliannwriter

Facebook Author Page: JA Corrigan – http://www.facebook.com/jacorrigan
Instagram: corriganjulieann  http://www.instagram.com/corriganjulieann

Giveaway to Win a Signed copy of The Walls We Build (Open INT)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for dispatch or delivery of the prize.

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c69494361/?

#BookReview The Three Women by Valerie Keogh @ValerieKeogh1 @Bloodhoundbook

Title: The Three Women by Valerie Keogh

Date Published: 17th February 2020

Publisher: Bloodhound Books 

Genre:  Psychological Thriller

Description:

How well do you know your friends?

When Beth, Megan and Joanne meet at university, they become inseparable friends who’d do anything for one another — even agreeing to keep what happens one shocking night a secret.

Now in their forties and outwardly successful, each of the three has dealt with what happened in their own way. But secrets and lies leave their mark.

When Megan decides to tell her fiancée the truth about that night, it threatens to ruin the lives of everyone around her.

And someone is prepared to do anything to stop that happening…

Valerie Keogh is also the author of The Dublin Murder Mysteries. The Three Women is an utterly compelling psychological thriller which fans of authors like Louise Jensen, B A Paris and K.L. Slater are sure to love. 

Review:

I want to thank Valerie Keogh for providing me with a copy of The Three Women in exchange for an honest review.

I’ve read quite a few of Valerie’s Keogh’s novels but I think this has to be my favourite of all of them!

The Three Women is an utterly absorbing psychological drama that pulls you in and doesn’t let you go.

The story was, for me, all about how one incident can affect those involved in different ways and of course friendship.  

We follow Beth, Joanne and Megan from their chance meeting at university to an incident that changes their worlds to who they have become now. Each one of the characters was unique, flawed and realistic. I got surprisingly emotionally involved with all of them. 

I did find the ending a little predictable but there were few good shocks and surprises to keep me on my toes.

The Three Women is enthralling, emotional and engaging, I’d highly recommend it!

About The Author:

Valerie Keogh grew up reading Agatha Christie so when she started writing it seemedBetter photo natural to write crime novels.

In March 2018, Valerie signed a two book contract with the publisher, Bookouture. The first of these, Secrets Between Us, was published in Nov 2018 and the second, The Housewife, in Feb 2019.

In June 2019, Valerie signed a three book contract with Bloodhound books. The first psychological thriller, The Three Women, was published in Feb 2020, the second is due in June 2020 and the third in Sept 2020. Bloodhound are also publishing Valerie’s Irish Crime series, the first of which, No Simple Death was published in Dec 2019, the second, No Obvious Cause in Jan 2020, the third, No Past Forgiven in March.

Valerie also writes a series based in the UK featuring Nicola Connolly, a serial killer. The Hudson and Connolly series: Deadly Sleep, Twisted Power, Bitter Business, and Wicked Secret.

Valerie has also written a stand-alone psychological thriller, Exit Five from Charing Cross

#BooksOnTour #Review Murder At Enderley Hall by Helena Dixon @NellDixon @bookouture #cozymystery

Title: Murder At Enderley Hall by Helena Dixon

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 19th March 2020

Genre: Historical Cosy Mystery

Description:

An escape to the country… ends in death.

Summer 1933. Fresh from the discovery that she has family living nearby, Kitty Underhay has packed her carpet bag, commandeered a chambermaid and set off on a visit to stately Enderley Hall. She’s looking forward to getting to know her relatives, as well as the assembled group of house guests. But when elderly Nanny Thoms is found dead at the bottom of the stairs after papers of national importance are stolen, Kitty quickly learns that Muffy the dog’s muddy paws on her hemline are the least of her problems.

Calling on ex-army captain Matthew Bryant for assistance, Kitty begins to puzzle out the mystery. And when more shocking murders follow, the stakes are raised for the daring duo as never before. Which of the guests stand to gain from the theft of the documents? And which, as the week progresses, stand to lose their lives?

A charming cozy historical murder mystery that fans of Agatha Christie, T.E. Kinsey and Lee Strauss won’t be able to put down!

Buy Links: https://geni.us/B0825Z6KBRSocial 

Murder at Enderly Hall - Blog Tour Poster

Review:

I want to thank Noelle Holten from Bookouture for inviting me on this tour and providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

This second ripping roaring adventure with Kitty Underhay but don’t worry if you haven’t read the first, this can easily be read as a standalone.

Kitty is invited to Enderley hall by her Aunt Hortense and cousin Lucy, it’s not long before she’s drawn into a case involving the theft of some important documents from her uncle’s study. If that wasn’t enough Nanny Thoms is found dead.

Suspicions grow and Kitty invites her friend Matthew Bryant to help. Will they stop the murderer before they strike again?

Murder At Enderley Hall is a well written and utterly thrilling historical mystery!

I liked the character of Kitty even more in this book. She’s still her stubborn self, no matter how much Matthew tries to get her to stay out of danger she won’t, with her thirst for adventure and determination to find the truth.

There’s plenty of red herrings glore, intrigue and a little bit of will they, won’t they between Matthew and Kitty. Honestly, there’s never a dull moment in Murder at Enderley Hall!

In these uncertain times, Murder at Enderley hall is a great escape from reality for a few hours.

I cannot recommend this series highly enough. I can’t wait to read more adventures featuring Kitty and Matthew!

About the Author:

Nell Dixon was born and continues to live in the Black Country. Married to the same manDSC_7063 copy for over thirty-five years she has three daughters, a cactus called Spike, a crazy cockapoo and a tank of tropical fish. She is allergic to adhesives, apples, tinsel and housework. Her addictions of choice are coffee and reality TV. She was winner of The Romance Prize in 2007 with her book Marrying Max, and winner of Love Story of the Year 2010 with her book, Animal Instincts. She also writes historical 1930’s set cozy crime as Helena Dixon.

Author Social Media Links:

Website: http://www.nelldixon.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/nell.dixon

Twitter:      https://twitter.com/NellDixon

Happy Publication Day! The Devil Wore Black by Mark L. Fowler @MFowlerAuthor #PublicationDay

Hello lovelies! Today I’m wishing a happy publication day to Mark L. Fowler for his new book The Devil Wore Black, the third in Tyler and Mills series. I’ve not had a chance to read it yet but it sounds great!

Title: The Devil Wore Black by Mark L. Fowler

Date Published: 21st March 2020

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

November 2003. When a priest is found crucified, following the desecration of local churches, hysterical media coverage focuses on terrorism and a satanic cult operating out in the wilds of North Staffordshire. Panic grips the city. 

DCI Tyler and DS Mills are under pressure as the toxic atmosphere deepens. One line of enquiry, involving historic allegations against the murdered priest, is close to home for Tyler and threatens to tip him over the edge. But Mills has a hunch that could lead the investigation in a different direction, until a serious complaint is made against him. 

The investigation appears to have stalled, when a second ritual murder is discovered. The pressure to find the killer mounts, and as winter closes in the detectives find themselves pushed to the limits. 

The Devil Wore Black is the third in the highly acclaimed Tyler and Mills series. It can also be read as a standalone crime novel.

You can buy your copy here:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/DEVIL-WORE-BLACK-Tyler-Mills/dp/B084WNSK46/  (paperback)

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B085782F95

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B085782F95

About The Author:

Mark is the author of the successful Tyler and Mills historic crime series. RED IS THEmark l fowler COLOUR, the first in the series, set in 2002, was shortlisted for the 2018 Arnold Bennett Book Prize. It is based on the discovery of a schoolboy missing since 1972. BLUE MURDER begins when a singer on the threshold of fame and fortune goes missing and an ex band member is found murdered. THE DEVIL WORE BLACK, the latest in the series, involves the discovery of a crucified priest. All three books can be read as standalone crime mysteries.

SILVER and SEXTET are psychological suspense novels. SILVER features journalist and writer Nick Slater, who becomes obsessed with a strange, unpublished manuscript that a famous author was working on when she was murdered. SEXTET is about sibling rivalry between twin sisters, and the weird game that they played as children.

Mark also writes fantasy fiction. COFFIN MAKER, a highly original gothic fantasy, finds Death being sent two very different apprentices. THE MAN UPSTAIRS features hard boiled detective Frank Miller, who discovers he is a fictional detective and that his author is plotting to kill him off and end the series, combining the author’s interest in crime and fantasy fiction in homage to classic noir.

Amazon Author page: 

https://www.amazon.co.uk/MARK-L-FOWLER/e/B00QFR53KE

Twitter: @MFowlerAuthor

#BlogTour #BookReview 5 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Maurice Barkley @MauriceBarkley @WriteReadsTours

5 adventures of sherlock holmes

Title: 5 adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Maurice Barkley

Date Published: 20th February 2018

Genre: Mystery/short stories

Description:

5 STORIES 

1-Extreme danger. Children’s lives are at risk. 

2-Holmes prevents an injustice and triumphs over a greedy family. 

3-A train arrives 3 years late. Only Holmes can solve this one. 

4-Holmes battles blundering politicians and a master criminal. 

5-An elaborate crime with a strange motive.

Review:

I want to thank the Write Reads for inviting me on this blog and providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I always find it interesting when an author takes on literary legend and one of my favourite fictional detectives, Sherlock Holmes.

This book contains five stories; The Holborn Toy Shop, The Legacy of Doctor Carus, The Train From Plymouth, The Whitehall Papers and The Grosvenor Square Furniture Van.

Each story stays true to the original Sherlock Holmes stories in setting and pace but Maurice Barkley still manages to stamp his own unique take on both Sherlock and Dr Watson.

There are of course cameos from Inspector Lestrade, Mrs Hudson, Wiggins and the irregulars and even Sherlock’s brother Mycroft.

The Legacy of Doctor Carus and The Train from Plymouth were my favourites as they felt the most like the original stories while also being fascinating mysteries too!

I did feel a couple of the stories weren’t quite as strong, mystery wise, as the other but of course that’s just my opinion.

5 adventures of Sherlock Holmes is a quick and engaging read that is a nice nod to the original stories.

About The Author:

Maurice Barkley lives with his wife Marie in a suburb of Rochester, New York. Retired maurice barkleyfrom a career as a commercial artist and builder of tree houses, he is WRITING and busy reinforcing the stereotype of a pesky househusband. Favorite relaxation is throwing peanuts to squirrels, blue jays, cardinals and chipmunks from his porch. Once he built a doll hair-making machine using an old sewing machine. It worked, but his wife got tired of making Raggedy Ann dolls, so it sits in the garage.

https://www.amazon.com/ADVENTURES-SHERLOCK-HOLMES-Maurice-Barkley-ebook/dp/B079YX6KD2/ref=sr_1_5?keywords=maurice+barkley&qid=1576672024&sr=8-5

@MauriceBarkley

#Review 52 Weeks of Writing Author Journal and Planner by Mariëlle S. Smith @rararesources

Hello lovelies! Today I have my review of 52 Weeks of Writing Author Journal and Planner with a fabulous giveaway (see bottom of the post) but first a little about the book:

52 Weeks - cover-image

Title: 52 Weeks of Writing Author Journal and Planner by Mariëlle S. Smith

Date Published: 1st December 2019

Genre: Non Fiction/writing

Description:

Are you ready to become the writer you were always meant to be? 

52 Weeks of Writing will get you cracking by making you plan, track, reflect on, and check in with your progress and goals an entire year long. 

52 Weeks of Writing will help you dig deep by offering questions and writing prompts designed to unravel whatever truths about your writing you’re ready for. 

52 Weeks of Writing will keep you inspired by delivering a thought-provoking writing quote every week. 

  • Do you struggle with setting goals that reflect your daily reality? 
  • Do you want to practise breaking goals down into manageable chunks? 
  • Would you like more insight into your writing habit(s) and figure out why you keep getting in your own way? 
  • And do you want to create a sustainable writing practice that honours your needs and desires as a writer? 

Then the 52 Weeks of Writing: Author Journal and Planner is for you. 

52 Weeks of Writing brings together every lesson Mariëlle S. Smith has learned as a writing coach and writer. Wary as she is of comparisonitis and unhealthy competition, this author journal and planner was designed to help writers develop and fine-tune a practice that works for them. 

If you’re ready to get out of your own way and become the writer you’re meant to be, pick up your copy of 52 Weeks of Writing today.

You can buy your copy here: https://mswordsmith.nl/journal/

Review:

I want to thank Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on this tour and providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

52 weeks of writing has been compiled by Mariëlle S. Smith, writing coach who has managed to publish eight books since 2018 which as a person like myself who can’t even finish one seems like a huge feat!

I want to point out this book is not a how to write manual. It’s something that will help you identify what is getting in your way of writing, help you set goals and recognise when you might be setting yourself up for failure.

I found myself reflecting on what is holding me back, I still haven’t quite gotten to the bottom of it yet but I hope with the use of this book I will do soon!

There are also some helpful writing prompts along the way if you’re struggling with your creativity.

52 weeks of writing is a handy book that feels like you’ve got your own personal writing coach! 

About The Author:

Mariëlle S. Smith is a coach for writers and other creatives, an editor, (ghost) writer, and52 Weeks - Author Photo custom retreat organiser. In 2019, she moved to Cyprus, and island in the Mediterranean Sea, where she organises private writer’s retreats, is inspired 24/7, and feeds more stray cats than she can count. 

Social Media Links – 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mswordsmith

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mariellessmith/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtnYOpjmj83mvMM2L348F1w

52 Weeks - Giveaway

Giveaway to win….

THREE paperback copies of the 52 Weeks of Writing Author Journal and Planner,

TWO paperback copies of Tarot for Creatives: 21 Tarot Spreads to (Re)Connect to Your Intuition and Ignite That Creative Spark, and

ONE coaching session.

https://mswordsmith.nl/en_GB/giveaway/