#BlogTour #Review Murder In The Dark by Betsy Reavley @Bloodhoundbook @BetsyReavley

Title: Murder In The Dark by Betsy Reavley

Publisher: Bloodhound Books

Date Published: 12th December 2018

Genre: Cosy Mystery

Description:

Without a motive, how do you identify the killer?

Imagine a quaint little bookshop. Outside the snow is falling. Inside the shelves are stacked with books by authors waiting to be discovered. What could be better?

When Tilly Edgely lands a position working at Ashton’s bookshop in Cambridge she thinks she’s found her perfect job. But one winter’s morning, when she arrives to open up, she discovers the body of her boss suspended from the ceiling, hanging by a rope around his neck.

DCI Barrett and DI Palmer are called to the scene and quickly find themselves searching for a twisted killer whose identity and motive are nearly impossible to trace.

But just when they think they have the murderer in their sights, another body shows up throwing the case wide open…

Who is behind the killings and why?

The police have their work cut out and key to unlocking the gruesome mystery might be found right under their nose.

But one thing is for certain, this killer will leave you hanging…

Review:

This is the second in series to feature DCI Barrett and DI Palmer but can be read as a stand alone something I can say without a doubt as I’ve yet to read the first!

It’s the run up to Christmas and the body of Dennis Wade, owner of Ashton’s Bookshop, is found hanging from the rafter inside his shop by young employee Tilly Edgely. It’s quickly discovered that it’s not suicide but murder but why would anyone want to kill a respectable bookshop owner?

Barrett and Palmer are tasked to investigate but another body shows up bearing the same hallmarks as the first but with no apparent tie to the first victim.

The killer starts to show off leaving packages, taunting the police, can Barrett and Palmer stop this maniac before they strike again?

This is what I like to call a cosy mystery with a little more bite as the death’s are a little more gruesome than in this type of book. There’s plenty of twists and turns which kept me guessing until the end.

It’s a real character driven novel, we hear from several perspectives throughout the book each one with their own unique voice so I never once got them confused.

DCI Barrett seems on the surface like an irascible, fussy and rude man but dig a bit deeper you find out he lost his wife to cancer and what with the stresses and strains of his job it does make his moods a little more understandable. Palmer seems like his polar opposite happily married with a son, he’s solid and dependable but there’s a little frisson sexual tension between him another a member of the team, Elly Hale, just to make things juicy.

Overall Murder In The Dark is fast paced mystery prefect for those who like their crime novels character driven and a little less graphic.

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About The Author:

Author of The Quiet Ones, The Optician’s Wife, Murder at the Book Club, Frailty, Carrion,betsy reavley Beneath the Watery Moon and the poetry collection The Worm in the Bottle. Betsy was born in Hammersmith, London.

As a child she moved around frequently with her family, spending time in London, Provence, Tuscany, Gloucestershire and Cambridgeshire.

She showed a flair for literature and writing from a young age and had a particular interest in poetry, of which she was a prolific consumer and producer.

In her early twenties she moved to Oxford where she would eventually meet her husband. During her time in Oxford her interests turned from poetry to novels and she began to develop her own unique style of psychological thriller.

Betsy says “I believe people are at their most fascinating when they are faced by the dark side of life. This is what I like to write about.”

Betsy Reavley currently lives in Cambridge with her husband, 2 children, dog and quail.

Betsy’s Social Media Links:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BetsyReavley @BetsyReavley

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

Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Betsy-Reavley/e/B00I970NY4/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1544003078&sr=8-1

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7730760.Betsy_Reavley?from_search=true

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#BlogTour The Burning Men by Steve Parker @JoffeBooks @mrparkerspen

Title: The Burning Men by Steve Parker

Publisher: Joffe Books

Date Published: 3rd December 2018

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

Discover a crime thriller full of shocking twists by one of the most exciting new authors you’ll read this year.

A MAN IS BURNT AT THE STAKE IN A LONDON PARK. HIS SMOULDERING CORPSE IS A MESSAGE OF THE MOST VIOLENT KIND.

The man burnt alive is Davey Caine. He is the heir to the criminal empire created by his father, William ‘Billy’ Caine. Billy is a notorious and violent gangster with total control of South East London. But he’s not the man he used to be and the sharks smell blood in the water.

Detectives Ray Paterson and Johnny Clocks must find the killer before Billy extracts his own brand of justice. They find themselves drawn ever deeper into London’s underworld.

The streets explode into violence and the body count rises. Men are shot and burned alive in a tit-for-tat power struggle between rival gangs.

Detectives Ray Paterson and Johnny Clocks find themselves trying to control men of extreme viciousness. Men who have no fear of the law and its consequences and who are unafraid to kill anyone who stands in their way — including police detectives.

Paterson is stunned when he’s offered the chance to stop the conflict dead in its tracks. If he ignores it, the mayhem continues. If he takes it, there will be a price to pay.

What he doesn’t know is that the price will come with hidden and devastating consequences.

ON THE STREETS OF LONDON, A SIMMERING GANG WAR IS ABOUT TO ERUPT WITH PATERSON AND CLOCKS CAUGHT RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE.

This is the third in a series of action-packed, edge-of-your-seat crime thrillers, with an ending that will have your heart in your mouth.

Perfect for fans of Kimberley Chambers, Damien Boyd, Rachel Abbott, Patricia Gibney or Martina Cole.

Detective Superintendent Ray Paterson is a young and (thanks to family money) wealthy womaniser, separated from his model wife and tipped to be the youngest ever commissioner of police. He knows he’s weak when it comes to practical policing and struggles to find a place among his peers, desperate to be a good policeman and not just a ‘climber’.

Detective Inspector Johnny Clocks is a foul-mouthed, working-class officer. He grew up surrounded by rogues and villains to become a first-class thief taker with the Met police. However, his childish attitude has short-circuited his career and he spends his days antagonising as many people as he can.

THE SETTING
Bermondsey is an area of London nestled on the banks of the River Thames. It once had a reputation for housing more armed robbers, murderers and career criminals than anywhere else in the country. Now one of the most upmarket places to live and work in London, it has all but severed itself from its working-class roots. Home to the iconic Tower Bridge and crammed with expensive apartments, art galleries, fancy restaurants and famous residents. But for the police, those who truly know, Bermondsey never lost its roots . . . or its reputation.

DETECTIVE RAY PATERSON
Book 1: THEIR LAST WORDS
Book 2: THE LOST CHILDREN
Book 3: THE BURNING MEN

BLOG TOUR Banner - The Burning Men

Review:

So this is the third in the Paterson and Clocks series while it could be read as a stand alone, it does refer to the previous books so I’d personally start with the first if you don’t want any spoilers (you can read my review of Their Last Words here).

Paterson and Clocks are called to a crime scene where a man has been cuffed to a pole and burnt alive. They quick find out that he is no other than David Caine who’s father Billy Caine is a notorious gangster.

As their investigation progresses they find themselves blocked at every turn by Serious and Organised crimes who claim that they will put their undercover operatives in danger.

Billy wants revenge for his son but can Paterson and Clocks stop him before it turns into a full scale gang war on the streets of London.

This a real gritty and gruesome novel! So much is pack into It’s pages, brutal and bonkers gangsters, kidnapping and stomach churning murder!

As I said in my first review, Steve Parker really puts his police experience into his writing and gives a lot more of the procedural side of things than most authors to give it that realistic feel.

To me Clocks is his same old self in this novel, dishing out his own brand of pitch black humour and mouthing off to anyone and everyone. The only thing that has changed for me is his relationship with Paterson, which has become what looks more like a friendship with some grudging respect on either side. Paterson on the other hand is a broken man, self medicating and burying his problems which I feel are going to come to the surface soon!

To me the second half of the book turned into a bit gangland drama, which I have to be honest I’m not really a fan of and would have preferred a bit more focus on the police procedural side but of course that’s just my opinion.

I would recommend The Burning Man to anyone who loves a good gritty gangland thriller mixed with a police procedural. The ending leaves it open for another book, I’m interested to see where the story is heading.

About The Author:

I was born and raised in South East London (Peckham to be precise – cushty, my son). At the ripe old age of twenty-one, I joined the Metropolitan Police where I served for twenty years Steve Parker author photobefore I was pensioned out with a serious back injury. I then went to work as an enforcement officer for a local authority before taking redundancy.

Thankfully, I’ve been blessed with a complete lack of DIY skills so was legitimately able to get away with swanning around the house doing bugger all, all day long. Finding myself with plenty of spare time and a deep desire to never work for anyone again, I gave myself permission to go back to writing (I’d been writing on and off for years).

When I’m not writing, I’m out taking photographs, something I’ve done since I was a nipper and will do until the day I shuffle off this mortal coil.

I live down in the windier part of East Sussex near the sea with my long-suffering wife and my ‘off-her-nut’ cockerpoo. I have two sons of whom I am so proud, I cannot begin to tell you.

#BlogTour #Review The Adorable Fat Girl and The Mysterious Invitation by Bernice Bloom @rararesources @Bernice1Bloom

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Title: The Adorable Fat Girl and The Mysterious Invitation by Bernice Bloom.

Date Published: 12th November 2018

Genre: Humour

Description:

Mary Brown receives an invitation to a funeral. But she has absolutely no idea who the deceased is. She’s told that he invited her on his deathbed, and he’s very keen for her to attend, so she heads off to a dilapidated old farm house in a remote part of Wales. When she gets there she discovers that only five other people have been invited to the funeral. None of them knows who he is either.

NO ONE GOING TO THIS FUNERAL HAS EVER HEARD OF THE DECEASED. WHAT IS GOING ON??

Then they are told that they have 20 hours to work out why they have been invited in order to inherit a million pounds.

Who is this guy and why are they there? And what of the ghostly goings on in the ancient old building?

Featuring Mary Brown, star of the Adorable Fat Girl series of books, in her greatest adventure yet.

This is BOOK NINE in the series, but can be enjoyed as a stand-alone book or as part of the series.

You Can Buy Your Copy Here:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07KFSL7VX

US – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07KFSL7VX

Review:

So this is actually the ninth in the series which frankly I had no idea when I was reading it! I can say hand on my heart it works really well as a standalone.

Mary Brown is sent an invitation to a funeral for Reginald Charters, only problem, she has no idea who the man is!

Unable to pass up an adventure, she sets out to Wales and meets six other people who also have no clue why they’ve been invited either. They are each given clues as to why they’re there, but how do the events from the past have anything to do with them?

I absolutely devoured this novel!

This was a humorous and entertaining read and really not what I was expecting, in a good way! I kind of didn’t read the blurb properly and I was expecting a cosy mystery, which don’t get me wrong, there is an element of mystery but it’s more focussed on the unconventional cast of characters. It also has dual timelines, one going all the way back to 1943, the other now which is a difficult thing to pull off but this book certainly does!

I love a book that teaches me something! The historical aspect of the story is really strong and I did not know that during the war Italian prisoners of war were sent to Wales to help the farmers.

I liked the theme running through the book of be kind to strangers because you never know what might happen, I think it’s something we forget sometimes in this day and age.

Mary is such a fun and feisty character that I really warmed to. She’s surrounded by a real mix of characters too which she plays off nicely.

My only issue was the fact it was a little short!

The Adorable Fat Girl and The Mysterious Invitation is fun and entertaining that mixes a bit of mystery with historic events to make a really compelling read.

Also according to the little author’s note at the back of the book there’s going to be a follow up to this book, I can’t wait!

Adorable Fat Girl and the Mysterious Invitation Full Tour Banner

About The Author –

My name is Bernice Bloom and I write funny novels about a crazy lady called Mary Brown in my ‘Adorable Fat Girl’ series. 

Mary is funny, gorgeous and bonkers. She’s also about six stone overweight. When she realises she can’t cross her legs and has trouble bending over to tie her shoelaces without wheezing like an elderly chain-smoker it’s time to take action. But what action? She’s tried every diet under the sun.

This series is the hysterical story of what happens when Mary joins ‘Fat Club’ where she meets a cast of funny characters and one particular man who catches her eye.
The series follows Mary as she goes on safari, on a cruise, to a weekend yoga retreat and on an incredible adventure when she receives a mysterious invitation to a funeral.

The stories are laugh-out-loud funny and will resonate with anyone who has dieted, tried to keep up with any sort of exercise programme or spent 10 minutes in a changing room trying to extricate herself from a way too-small garment that she ambitiously tried on and is now completely stuck in. xx

My website is: www.bernicebloom.com

Social Media Links –

https://www.facebook.com/BerniceBloombooks/

https://twitter.com/Bernice1Bloom

#BlogTour #Review Keep Her Close by Erik Therme @bookouture @ErikTherme

Title: Keep Her Close by Erik Therme

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 5th December 2018

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Description:

Someone took your daughter. And nobody believes you…

Then:
Three-year-old Ally was found alone in a parking lot.
She was barefoot and dressed only in a yellow sundress. In the middle of winter.
What kind of person would abandon their daughter?

Now:
Fifteen years later and Ally has a new family.
But her real father has sent her a letter.

And now Ally is missing.

A gripping twist-filled thriller that will have you looking over your shoulder. Perfect for fans of Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train and Teresa Driscoll.

Review:

The book starts with a really heartbreaking scene. A young married couple Holly and Dan find a little girl, obviously neglected and abused in nothing but a dirty dress all alone in a parking lot. She has a little cardboard sign Free to a good home. A dead woman they assume is her mother is found not far away.

Fast forward fifteen years and the little girl that they christened Ally is now a happy eighteen year old, that is until a letter shows up claiming to be from her real father. Unable to stop her curiosity, Ally goes to meet him but now she’s missing.

I found this book quite a quick and easy read with plenty of suspense and mystery, that preys on every parents’ nightmare, a child going missing.

A stand out character was Dan. He works hard to help support Ally, even though Holly and her new husband earn so much more than him. He also has a tendency to lose his temper with often disastrous consequences. He’s very overprotective of Ally even though she’s not his biological daughter and will stop at nothing to find her.

To me, Ally came across as a little spoilt but she has a child-like sense of the world and gullibility that makes you forgive that.

I have to be honest for the most of the book I believed it could happen in real life but the ending was a little out there for me but it was still enjoyable.

Overall Keep Her Close is a solid psychological thriller that will tug on those heart strings as well as keep you on the edge of your seat.

Keep-Her-Close-Blog-Tour

Author Bio:

Erik Therme has thrashed in garage bands, inadvertently harbored runaways, and met DarthErik Therme (author photo) Vader. When he’s not at his computer, he can be found cheering for his youngest daughter’s volleyball team, or watching horror movies with his seventeen-year-old. He currently resides in Iowa City, Iowa—one of only twenty places in the world UNESCO has certified as a City of Literature.

Author Social Media Links:

Website: www.eriktherme.com 

Twitter: www.twitter.com/ErikTherme

Goodreads: www.goodreads.com/author/show/7831573.Erik_Therme

Facebook: www.facebook.com/erik.therme

#Review The Windmill Cafe: Summer Breeze by Poppy Blake @poppyblakebooks @HarperImpulse

Title: The Windmill Café: Summer Breeze by Poppy Blake (Book One)

Publisher: HarperImpulse

Date Published: 9th March 2018

Genre: Novella, Chicklit

Description:

As Rosie Barnes serves glasses of tangy lemonade and ice-cold prosecco at her summer garden party, she couldn’t be happier. The Windmill Café, with its peppermint green sails is a roaring success and has given Rosie a chance to escape the heartbreak of her busy life in London.

But then disaster strikes when popstar Suki Richards is taken unexpectedly ill at the party. Now all eyes are on Rosie…have her famous raspberry cupcakes poisoned her most high-profile guest? Or is someone else trying to damage Suki’s chance of stardom?

If Rosie wants to save her picture-perfect life, and the reputation of her beloved Windmill Café, she’s going to have to get to the bottom of the mystery…and fast!

Review:

So due to a scheduling mishap I had a little gap so I thought I’d pick up first in the Windmill Cafe series which has been on my tbr list since the beginning of the year (oops!).

Former florist Rosie Barnes moved to Norfolk after a particularly bad break up, landing a job at the Windmill cafe and going back to one of her first loves, baking.

She convinced the owner to throw a summer garden party and manages to get up and coming pop star Suki Richards and her friends to attend but disaster strikes when she is taken ill and her future hangs in the balance.

With the help of her new friends, especially the handsome Matt she must get to the bottom of the mystery and save her job and the Windmill cafe!

So from the absolutely gorgeous cover I was expecting some sort of sweet rom-com but actually it was more a romance mixed with a bit of cosy mystery, which as a big mystery lover I adored! It is a little heavier on the romance aspect but after so many gruesome crime books I’ve been reading of late, it made a nice change.

I felt very sorry for Rosie, she obviously has very low self-esteem and suffers from a compulsion to clean especially when she feels things around her are getting out of control. It’s nice to see through the book how she grows and becomes more confident.

Matt is also a sweet character, practical, unwavering in his support of Rosie but he hides a bit of heartbreak in his past himself.

I would have liked to dig a little deeper into Matt’s story and some of her other friend’s like Mia but I know there are two other books so I hope to get to know the characters better. Also I wasn’t a fan of the Poriot like gathering of the suspects together before an arrest is made but that’s just me being a bit fussy.

Overall The Windmill Café is a sweet, light-hearted novella with a subtle nod to classic crime fiction and good dollop of romance, perfect for a bit of escapism. A great start to the series!

About The Author:

Poppy Blake is an avid scribbler of contemporary romance and romcoms. When not writing she loves indulging in the odd cocktail or two – accompanied by a tower of cupcakes. The Windmill Cafe series follows the life and loves of Rosie and Matt in the glorious countryside of Norfolk and will be opening its doors in March 2018 with Summer Breeze. Why not pop in for a visit?

Other Books In The Series:

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The Windmill Café: Autumn Leaves (Book 2)

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The Windmill Café: Christmas Trees (Book 3)

#BlogTour #Review Dead In The Water by Simon Bower @SimonBowerBooks @MiddleFarmPress #damppebblesblogtours #DeadInTheWaterBook

I was lucky enough to read this book earlier this year and today I’m re-sharing my review as part of the damppebbles blog tour. First a little about the book: 

Title: Dead In The Water by Simon Bower

Publisher: Middle Farm Press

Date Published: 9th May 2018

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

Was it murder, suicide or an accident? Who will be next to die?

Six international friends all appear to be successful, albeit to different levels. A human rights’ lawyer, an IT geek, a businessman, a waitress, a phone guy and a physiotherapist. None of them are known to the police.

One of them must know what happened that fateful night on the catamaran.

Agent Georges Fournier is assigned the case in the French resort town near Antibes. He’s short on time, with a growing health problem and a District Attorney who just wants the case closed as accidental. But he’s not letting go.


Chrissie is a single mother and respected flight attendant in New York. When she finds out who her father is, she’s ecstatic and wants to meet him.

But within a week she’d wish she’d never known.

Published by Middle Farm Press in May 2018 and only 99p to download on Kindle for a limited time!

Amazon.co.uk: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dead-Water-Simon-Bower-ebook/dp/B07CVQH56L/ref=la_B07CVX87L6_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1529592666&sr=1-1

Amazon.com: https://www.amazon.com/Dead-Water-Simon-Bower-ebook/dp/B07CVQH56L/ref=mt_kindle?_encoding=UTF8&me=&qid=1529592739

Waterstones: https://www.waterstones.com/book/dead-in-the-water/simon-bower/9780992889692

Foyles: https://www.foyles.co.uk/witem/fiction-poetry/dead-in-the-water,simon-bower-9780992889692

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Review:

I have to say this book turned out to be not quite what I expected. From the synopsis, I thought ‘Oh, yes this going to be the usual murder mystery,’ but there was kidnapping, blackmail with plenty of twists and turns and a little bit steamy to boot.

The prologue to the book starts off quite intriguing with an unidentified woman just on the edge of consciousness about to drown. Then it travels back five months and we meet the rest of the cast. Charlie, a bit of a chancer always bemoaning his luck. Ana, a seductress and Charlie’s girlfriend. Scott, Charlie’s brother, trapped in a loveless marriage, a bit jealous of his younger brother. Len and Mia Hubbard, Charlie and Scott’s aunt and uncle, Len is a bit of a dodgy business man and Mia is a human rights lawyer. Chrissie, a flight attendant, who wants to find her father. And lastly Agent Fournier, a policeman used to dealing with small crimes but he’s determined to prove his worth. I didn’t find most of the characters are overly likeable but I thought they were very realistically portrayed.

I think this is the most I’ve travelled within one book! There’s New York, Los Angeles, Switzerland, London, France, Holland, Monaco…phew I just thought of all the air miles these characters must have clocked up!

Unfortunately, I found the time line bounced around quite a bit and I felt there may have been a plot hole or two. Also a bit confusing at times as the cast was large and with each one having their own chapters it was hard to keep track of.

I’d recommend this for fans of fast paced, character driven thrillers.

About The Author:

Simon Bower is a British and Canadian author born in Berkshire in 1973. Since 1998, he’s36222877_10156287174578828_4215712758408151040_o adopted a global lifestyle, setting up home at times in Europe, Africa and North America.  In 2016 Simon turned to writing full time, which led to his first published work, Dead in the Water, being released in paperback and eBook by Middle Farm Press in 2018. Simon currently lives in France, near the Swiss border, where his young family, mountains, acrylic paint and sharpened skis keep him in regular mischief.

Social Media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SimonBowerBooks

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/simon.bower.books/

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Simon-Bower/e/B07CVX87L6/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18017224.Simon_Bower

#BlogTour #BookSpotlight #Promo I Know Your Every Move/Sick As Our Secrets by Diane Ezzard @diane_ezzard @rararesources

Today I’ll be shining a spotlight on not just one but two books in the Sophie Brown series by Diane Ezzard!

Title: I Know Your Every Move by Diane Ezzard

Date Published: 2nd June 2017

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

Diezza-72dpi-1500x2000 (1)A sinister phone call, an unknown visitor. Sophie’s life is about to be turned upside down

Sophie has worked hard to free herself from the clutches of addiction and turn her life around. Practising as a counsellor, in a women’s centre in Manchester, she now helps other girls in trouble.
She forms a close relationship with Cassie, one of her clients and tries to help her escape the clutches of a violent boyfriend.

But is Sophie being followed?

How can she uncover the truth, when she can’t trust what is real?

The more she delves, the closer she gets to danger.

Can she revisit her own dark past before it is too late?

You Can Buy Your Copy Here:

UK – http://amzn.to/2tyMlmU

US – http://amzn.to/2tdEdc5

I Know Your Every Move & As Sick As Our Secrets Full Tour Banner

Title: As Sick As Our Secrets by Diane Ezzard

Date Published: 10th December 2017

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

asaos coverWe all keep secrets, don’t we? 

Sophie used to be fearful, with a troubled past. Now, she’s a confident young woman helping others turn their lives around –
or is she?

A nasty surprise awaits her after the funeral of a friend and she soon finds out that nothing is as it seems.

Caught up in the dark world of gangsters and villains in the heart of Manchester she attempts to find Cassie’s killer. Following a trail of lies, she gets so wrapped up delving into the lives of others she doesn’t notice her own life falling apart, back into the grips of addiction.

Can romance blossom for Sophie after all the mistakes she has made in the past, or will her only comfort be drink? Things never end up the way she intends.

You Can Buy Your Copy Here:

UK – http://amzn.to/2AtL4Ft

US http://amzn.to/2BTR1I2

About The Author

Manchester born Diane Ezzard writes emotionally charged psychological thrillers and mysteriesnew orleans about everyday people in seemingly ordinary circumstances until something goes badly wrong in their lives.

Before taking early retirement to concentrate on her writing, she worked as a HR manager, a counsellor, owned a cafe and managed a charity. 

She now lives and writes in South East London close to her daughter and grandchildren.

Social Media Links –

http://dezzardwriter.com/

https://www.facebook.com/dezzardwriter/

https://twitter.com/diane_ezzard