#BlogTour : Production Values by Liv Bartlet @LivBartlet : @rararesources : #Extract : #Giveaway (Open Int’lly)

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With all the best will in the world I know I cannot read all the books that come into my email box. “Production Values” by Liv Bartlet is a book I am sharing an extract for as part of the blog tour with Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources.

Synopsis:

“Mornings like this I can understand the appeal of killer high heels. How they click with command down the sidewalk: Get out of my way, I’m in charge and I’ve got the footwear to prove it.”

At the age of 28, Kat Porter has become the it-girl of British TV Production. Gut, gumption, and artistry have carried her through a dozen impossible scenarios to arrive at her first run as Executive Producer, and now all three muses point to Ian Graham’s star power as the key to Los Angeles and golden statues.

But disaster looms as Ian twists Kat into a chameleon fit for success. Ian’s young daughter is thrown into the spotlight and Kat must face the consequences of her neverending quest for acclaim.

Production Values takes a biting but fun look at Hollywood—from the way we interpret female ambition to the influence of the paparazzi on how TV shows and stars fail or succeed. 

Purchase Links:   – Amazon US –  Amazon UK

Extract of Production Values: 

Intro:  After Kat and Bea fought about a tattoo-revealing stunt in a script read-through, Kat took off for Germany. Now she’s returned to London, ready to apologize and armed with an idea for a new TV show.

Excerpt

I knock on Bea’s open office door and close it behind me before she can look up from her computer. “So, who wants to be friends again?”

It’s been too many days with the combatants retreated to their respective corners. I’ve knocked on Bea’s apartment every night since I returned from Germany, but she’s not there—she’s been at the refugee clinic, where she goes when life turns bad. When I’m not writing like a dervish, I’m full of abject misery.

Which is why I’ve practiced an apology that I hope will tumble the wall between us. “The tattoo thing was stupid. No matter how it started, I know it looked terrible. I did everything you said. I spent money on a guest star to chase success in all the wrong ways. If we can’t make it on our merits, it’s not worth it. You were right.”

Bea blinks at me, the only crack in her neutral nonconfrontational face. Then she melts. She won’t make this hard. She never does.

“We’ve worked so hard, Kat. If the rumor reaches the board, they’ll shut us down. We can’t be that show.” Bea sighs—deep, from her soul. “But I’m sorry, too. I overreacted.”

I hug her without warning. I want it all the way over. Bea’s not a hugger, not unless she’s applying comfort like medicine, but she takes none herself, so this kind of mutual affection feels like cuddling a street cat.

Bea pushes back and holds my shoulders. She looks at me, reading me, her head tilted to the side. “And how was Germany?”

“It was fine, I’m fine. Still on the rails, I promise.” I cough to cover up the threat of tears.

Bea talks to her mom every day, and the whole family pops in for a video chat at least once a week. My lack of family has always struck her as a great sadness, a heartbreak I know she carries for me all the time.

“Anyway, I think I’m giving up on men for a while,” I lie. I’ll never give up on love, it’s the only thing that thrills me as much as my art.

“Sure you are,” Bea laughs, but lets me have my game.

“And in my spinster state, I’ve decided you need a date. My gift to you. Want me to set you up with Wayne? He still captures more accidental footage of you than anyone else.”

Bea shudders and crosses her arms in front of herself. She never dates, never. “Will I get to go back to giving up on romance in twenty-four hours when you forget your vow of celibacy?”

I snort with laughter.

Bea puts her arm around me and I lean onto her shorter shoulder. “We okay again? I miss being okay. Feels like it’s been a long time.”

“Yeah, we’re good. Better than. We’ve got each other and we’ve got 21 Things. And something new, actually.” I bring up the paper-clipped stack of papers from my side. “I know every idea for post–21 Things has been rejected thus far, but I think this is the one.”

“Ideas are good,” Bea prevaricates and reads the title page. “What’s K-Town?”

“It’s what all the military people there call Kaiserslautern and the surrounding posts and bases.”

“So, military . . . drama? Judging by the number of pages? In Europe?”

“Full-hour comedy with a dash of drama. Dramedy, though I will deny ever saying that word. Edgy. Real people, real lives.”

“This sounds like an excuse for you to watch hot men in uniform. Can I nix any actors you’ve fangirled? Maybe I should do casting.”

“Stop. Ian was good for the show. But, yes, you can have casting privileges if you like the pilot script.”

Bea chews that spot on her lip, the one that bleeds sometimes. “Kat, I don’t have the talent for anything beyond 21 Things. This was magic.”

“Of course you have the talent! What are you talking about? You make money drip out of advertiser pockets!”

“I’ll do what I can. You create. Tell me where you want it. If Anna wins—”

“LA. An American network. It’s going to be possible. Because we are going to get nominated and we’re going to awards shows and we’re going to have it-quality buzz. And then—National Network. National is where this show belongs.”

Bea nods and bites her lip hard. I’m not surprised to see a slight red stain on her teeth. “Let’s think on it. We might have something else. Something I’ve been too in denial to even touch.”

About the Authors:

Liv Bartlet is the pseudonym for writing partners Becca McCulloch and Sarah McKnight, who have been building worlds and telling stories together for more than a decade. They’ve logged hours of behind-the-scenes movie and TV footage and challenged each other in a friendly Oscar guessing game every year this millennium. Lifelong Anglophiles, their Monkey & Me world sprang to vivid life on a trip to London that included divine pastries, sublime art, and a spectacular pratfall in the British Museum.

Becca is a professor, a scientist, and a secret romantic who insisted their first order of business in London was a meandering five-mile walk to see Big Ben. She lives with her husband, children, and an ever-expanding roster of pets in Logan, Utah.

Sarah is an Army brat, an Excel geek, and has a lot of opinions on the differences between science fiction and fantasy. She lives with her cat, Sir Jack—who is featured prominently on Liv’s Instagram —just outside Salt Lake City.

Social Media Links – Website – Twitter – Facebook – Instagram

∗∗∗ GIVEAWAY ∗∗∗

Production Values - Giveaway - Off-ScriptFINAL.jpg Giveaway – Win  Production Values & Off Script e-books & $25 or equivalent Amazon Gift Card (Open Internationally)

*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 I reserve 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 I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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#BlogTour : The Penance List by S.C.Cunningham @SCCunningham : @rararesources : #Extract #Giveaway (Open Int)

The Penance List - Ebook

Today I am able to share an extract for “The Penance List” by S.C.Cunningham as part of the blog tour by Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources.

Synopsis:

This one comes with a warning – a steamy suspense-ridden psychological thriller – think Silence of the Lambs meets 50 Shades and hold on tight! S C Cunningham writes with a skilled mix of fuelled tension, dark humour and pulsating sex scenes. Grab a glass of wine, close the bedroom door and read alone!

What happens when opposites attract – when a scorned childhood sweetheart grows into a gorgeous sexual tour de force – when a fun loving career girl, her racy girlfriends and insatiable lovers get caught in his revenge – when sex becomes a weapon, hearts become bait and straight tastes gay – when hi-flying careers, clandestine affairs and wannabe starlets are hunted by celebrity hungry press? Obsession, kidnap, murder… and he’s just getting started!

Purchase from  – Amazon UK

Extract:

Three fun loving friends meet regularly for lunch, they have no idea that a stalker sits in a café opposite, taking pictures of their every move. 

Cellini’s Restaurant, Chelsea, London

“Granted, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea, if you swallow, you are in the minority, it needs sugar or brandy or something,” Tara blew her blonde fringe out of her eyes, concentrating on her defence.

“Depends on the guy’s diet of course, pineapple is meant to be good, no fast food, no ciggies, no drugs and it could almost be palatable,” her two girlfriends looked at her blankly.

“It’s full of protein, low on calories,” she enthused, but no, they were still not convinced.

Click, click… hidden in a cafe across the street, he pulled on the focus, fitting all three into shot.

As per normal for most Fridays, the girlfriends giggled through lunch discussing men, or the lack thereof. Tara, Helen, and Josie were single, beautiful, intelligent, best of friends. They’d reached the age of thirty having avoided the three things that sap a girl’s energy; marriage, divorce and kids.

It wasn’t that they didn’t want long term relationships; they were sexually active and adored men, they’d just never quite understood the workings of the male mind.

If you give them what they want the chase is over and they move on, if you don’t give them what they want, you are a frigid bitch and they move on. If you give them the babies their egos crave for, they are out the door, financing as little as possible, and seeing their offspring at weekends, between the golf, football and their latest sexual conquest. They want commitment yet freedom, for you to be faithful, yet them to be free, for you to be a full-time mother, yet them a part-time father. You couldn’t win.

Sourcing a man that knows what he wants, is a balanced, reliable, trustworthy soul mate, a good father, exciting and sexy as hell, was a tough call. Maybe the girls asked for too many boxes to be ticked, their quality control buttons set too high.

Maybe they shouldn’t even consider long term stuff until the guy was at least over thirty five, forty, settled in who he was and what he wanted. The trouble was a girl’s time clock ticked away. The choices were test tubes or older men. The most important choice a person makes is the parent of their child; no one wants to give the poor innocent thing a dodgy one that they have to live with for the rest of their lives.

It was tricky, can’t live with men, and can’t live without them. Hell, did they need to have babies anyway? Weren’t they overrated and oversupplied?

Tara Warr had a particularly high setting on her quality control button, although highly sexed, she was extremely choosy, the consequences of which led to long periods of man-drought. She was currently going through a serious dry patch, climbing the walls; she hadn’t been with a man for a year. She craved the relaxed laissez-faire attitude of Helen.

Helen Howard had a lower par setting, ‘love the one your with’, she made do with whatever was available on the day, or rather, whoever actually showed an interest in her, which, because she was beautiful, was quite a lot of men.

Josie James had little interest, what was all the fuss about? She would laugh along with the girls stories of man-woe, giving advice and sympathy where needed. She seldom dated, was wary of men and happy to be alone; she was more interested in her career and quite satisfied with the trusted middle finger of her right hand.

However cynical they appeared, they each had the romantic seed of hope, that one day Mr Right would come bursting in on his white charger or gas-guzzling SUV and whisk them away to a life of happily ever after. Meanwhile they waited, grazing on titbits that were, more often than not, bad for them.

Tara and Helen had met as juniors at a convent boarding school for young ladies, upsetting a multitude of nuns in their wake. Josie had been adopted by the feisty twosome years later at college. Her cheeky up-front London cockney savvy and their self-effacing Sloaney wit made an entertaining mix. They had stuck together through thick and thin, enduring life’s roller coaster; a good team.

Their bond was about to be tested. Evil was entering centre stage of their cosy, comfortable lives. It had been sitting on the periphery for years, plotting, planning, patiently waiting. It was watching them now; they only had to look up through the restaurant window to see it, hiding behind the large black lens that focused directly on them.

Click, click… the shot pulled in tight, slender fingers wrapped the stem of her glass.

“I love it, but I totally understand those that don’t, especially when you think about where it’s actually coming from… so to speak,” giggled Tara. “Excuse the pun!”

“Yes, urrgh!” Helen groaned, jumping on the gruesome fact with gusto.

Although she loved sex, she was not an advocate of placing anything remotely live or squidgy in her mouth. Her retch-reflex was too sensitive, oysters, snails and egg white had the same effect. She hated blow jobs.

“Think about it T, they urinate out of the same hole, it’s absolutely disgusting!” she raised her hand to the front of her face, blocking out the image.

“Yuk! Second thoughts don’t think about it, don’t even go there,” too late, she’d gone there, her face scrunched up with disgust.

“But, so do we,” corrected Tara, levelling up the case for the opposition.

Helen grimaced; covering her face with both hands to push away two sets of visuals. Looking down at her wine glass, the yellowy chardonnay didn’t look quite so appealing.

“Urrgh… STOP… I’m eatin, do ya mind?” moaned Josie, her cockney accent shouting over the two girls. She punched them both smartly on the shoulder, secretly loving it when they got into full debate on the endless subject of men and their ever-fascinating appendages.

About the Author:

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British Crime Investigator & Crime Writer, Siobhan C Cunningham creates steamy psychological thrillers and kick-ass paranormal romance with a skilled mix of fuelled tension, dark humour, and pulsating sex scenes. Having worked in the very industries she writes about, her novels offer a fresh level of sincerity and authority, rare in fiction.

An ex-model, British born of Irish roots, she married a rock musician and has worked in the exciting worlds of music, film, sports celebrity management and as a Crime Investigator for the British Police (Wanted & Absconder Unit, Major Crime Team, Intelligence Analyst, Investigations Hub).

Abducted as a child, she survived; and every night for months afterward, she prayed to God, asking for a deal. This personal journey sparked the fuse behind the intriguing and riveting fictional world she portrays in The Fallen Angel Series. Twenty years later she crossed paths with a violent serial attacker who haunted the streets of London, the seed for The David Trilogy was sown, book one is The Penance List, and has been adapted to film screenplay.

She is the proud mother to contemporary Artist Scarlett Raven and is owned by three dogs.

Social Media Links  – Website – Twitter –  Facebook – Instagram – LinkedIn – Google+ – Amazon Author Page

Giveaway – Win 1 x Signed Copy of The Penance List (Open Internationally)

*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 I reserve 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 I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

**** CLICK HERE TO ENTER ****

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#GuestPost : The Invisible Hand by James Hartley @jameshartleybks @rararesources #TheInvisibleHand #Giveaway

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Today I have a wonderful Guest Post by James Hartley, author of The Invisible Hand : Shakespeare’s Moon – Act One.  James explains how books, especially those by Paul Theroux helped him.  Purchase from – Amazon UK ~ Amazon.com

Synopsis:

The Invisible Hand is about a boy, Sam, who has just started life at a boarding school and finds himself able to travel back in time to medieval Scotland. There he meets a girl, Leana, who can travel to the future, and the two of them become wrapped up in events in Macbeth, the Shakespeare play, and in the daily life of the school. The book is the first part of a series called Shakespeare´s Moon. Each book is set in the same boarding school but focuses on a different Shakespeare play.

Guest Post by James Hartley:

When books are your best friends

I was ill recently. Not anything life-threatening, but enough to put me down and keep me there, to change my world and leave me out of everyone else’s.

Stuck in the house, alone, immobile, I felt as though I were living a parallel existence to my neighbours and the rest of the world. My usual routine made no sense and was largely impossible. I wondered how everyone else could carry on, laughing and running about, when I was aching and felt so useless. As usual when I became ill, I could’t believe how much I´d taken my good health for granted and vowed to do a million things when I got better and never be lazy again.

Unable to sleep or concentrate on films or television, I reached for the books I´d been reading up to then and rejected them: no, they were for when I was well. Some other person had been reading those books, not me. Now I needed something different. Some comfort reading, perhaps, but not necessarily an easy read. Just a dependable one. An old friend.

Looking about the house, I spied Paul Theroux´s book about travelling the coast of the Mediterranean, The Pillars of Hercules, up on a top shelf in the living room, and thought: Yes, that´s what I want. What I need. I have all of Theroux´s travel books huddled together at home, close at hand; battered old copies which have criss-crossed the world and relationships with me.

I don´t know what it is about these books, why they comfort me in dark times, but I think it has something to do with the time I suffered a shocking bereavement, over ten years ago now. Someone very close to me had left the house in the morning and had never come home. It was an accident, they said, but that´s no comfort. There are no answers in accidents, only chaos and misery.

Nobody could console me then, no words or drink or actions, and I really don´t know how I even managed to start reading. Perhaps it was an escape from the tears and reality. Back then it was The Happy Isles of Oceana, by Theroux, and I still have the copy I dived into all those years back. That book got me through a vile time. It somehow managed that odd trick books have, like sleep, shock or love, of playing with time, of taking me out of myself, away from my real life, to bathe in a kind of collective sea of imagination which replenished me and gave me a breather and made me come back stronger.

I always feel the need to keep these books close to me after periods in my life like this. They are like mementos, gateways to times past, reminding me of where I’ve been, where I come from. They are good, old friends, always the same and always different each time we meet.

Now, getting better, I salute those old friends, gathering dust, looking down upon me from that top shelf, and I remember why they are they´re there. They´re there because, like me, they have survived and come through.

The trick is to never take them, your health or your life for granted.

I hope you are now on the road to recovery James.  Personally I find books to be a great friend when not feeling well, they can help lift your spirits and have no expectations.  Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts today, and I wish you all the very best.  Yvonne xx

About the Author:

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James was born on the Wirral, England, in 1973 on a rainy Thursday. He shares his birthday with Bono, Sid Vicious and two even nastier pieces of work, John Wilkes Booth and Mark David Chapman.

His mother was a hairdresser with her own business and his father worked in a local refinery which pours filth into the sky over the Mersey to this day. They married young and James was their first child. He has two younger brothers and a still-expanding family in the area. As an Everton fan he suffered years of Liverpool success throughout the seventies and was thrilled when his father took a job in Singapore and the family moved lock, stock and two smoking barrels to Asia.

He spent five fine years growing up in the city state before returning to the rain, storms, comprehensive schools and desolate beauty of the Scottish east coast. Later years took he and his family to baking hot Muscat, in Oman, and a Syria that has since been bombed off the surface of the planet.

James studied journalism in London and later travelled through Ireland, France, Germany and India generally having a good time, before finally settling in Madrid, Spain, where he now lives with his wife and two children.

Social Media Links – ~ Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Goodreads ~ Website

Giveaway *Win 5 x Signed copies of The Invisible Hand with special Invisible Hand tactile pens (Open Internationally)

ENTER HERE 

*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 I reserve 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 I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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#GuestPost : Nature of the Witch by Helen.T.Norwood @ThinkFitFoodFam @rararesources #Giveaway

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I am delighted to be sharing a guest post today from Helen T Norwood, author of Nature of The Witch.  I am gutted that I didn’t have enough time to read this for the blog tour, especially as it is set in my neck of the woods, Cornwall. My thanks to Rachel Gilbey at Rachel’s Random Resources for a spot on this tour.

Synopsis:

Many years ago, magic prevailed in Britain. It was a time when chosen women followed a path forged by Mother Nature herself; a time of witchcraft, of the brotherhood of the Gwithiaz and of the terrifying Creatures.

This has all passed from memory a long time ago. But now, magic has returned. Kiera is the first witch the world has seen in centuries, while Jack must learn the ways of the Gwithiaz. They must not only master their crafts, but also overcome their differences and work together if they are to survive the dark enemy that lurks in the shadows.

In the rugged Cornish landscape where it first began, the two face the dreaded Kasadow: an ancient evil that has awakened and is ready to destroy them, and their magic, once and for all.

Purchase Link: Amazon UK

Guest Post by Helen T. Norwood.

5 Things I Discovered when I Joined my Local Book-Club 

It was 2016 and I’d been thinking about joining a book-club for a while.  However, there were different reasons as to why I hadn’t looked into it seriously.  The main reason being that I just didn’t feel I had the time to commit to reading.

I love reading and I always have.  At that time though, amongst working, having my first child and trying to write my first novel, my ‘to be read’ pile was steadily growing sky high.

Then I saw that a local book-club was looking for new members and I decided to join.  At the time I had just given birth to my second child.  I wasn’t sure how I was going to read regularly with two children, when I’d struggled to find the time with just one!  But I turned up with my newborn baby in tow and here are 5 things I discovered.

1) I do have the time

The club isn’t so intimidating that if I turned up one month without finishing the book I’d find myself ex-communicated.  The whole point of the group is that it’s a friendly and sociable experience where we can chat about a topic we all love- books!

However, my worry that I’d be searching for excuses each month for never finishing the books was unfounded.  Sometimes now I can read a couple of books or more a month.  Where have I found all those extra moments?  They were there all along, I just hadn’t spotted them before.  I read on my lunch break or briefly before I turn the lights out.  Book-club encouraged me to be more organised and make time for books (and I managed to write my novel too; hence the blog tour!).

2) At any stage of life it’s good to make new friends

There are a variety of ages, backgrounds, interests etc. but we all have one thing in common- we enjoy reading.  I think at any point in our lives it has a positive impact to keep meeting new people and enlarging our circle of friends.  At that time of my life, in-between the feeds, the nappies and sleepless nights, it was great to get out the house and talk to other adults about a topic other than babies.

3) It’s fun to leave my comfort zone sometimes

It’s not just the fact that I have made time for reading, it’s also that I am reading books I would never have picked for myself.  I often have a favourite author or genre or a certain type of book that I’m drawn to when choosing what to read.  The wonderful thing about joining a book-club is that I can try books that would never have caught my attention otherwise.  It’s a pleasant surprise to discover and fall in love with new authors, to learn things I never knew before or to realise that a genre I had previously dismissed is enjoyable.  That is certainly one of the best things about book-club; it widens my reading horizons and there are always new books to discover, and maybe I won’t like all of them, but I’m always glad I’ve read something new.

4) It adds to stories when I can look at it from different perspectives

I always feel slightly shocked when I arrive at book-club having absolutely loved a book, only to find the person next to me absolutely hated it.  Sometimes they pick up on things that I hadn’t noticed.  Sometimes I disagree with what they are saying or sometimes I see where they’re coming from, even if I don’t feel the same.  No matter what their opinion is, it’s always interesting to hear it and it allows me to look at the book again through a different pair of eyes.

5) Makes me think deeper about a story

When I have to verbalise my feelings about a book, it makes me look more deeply at it once I’ve finished reading.  I love a story that plays on my mind afterwards.  A good story doesn’t end straight away on the last page; it lingers and plays over again after I’ve closed the book.  However, when I know I will be discussing a book with others I want to be clear in my mind the views I want to share.  Therefore, it makes me look even more closely at what I liked and disliked, how the book made me feel; did I like any of the characters?  How did I feel about the ending?

So, if you’ve been debating whether to join a book-club, but haven’t gotten round to it yet, my advice is to give it a go.  Thanks so much to Yvonne for letting me stop off here on my blog tour.

About the Author:

Nature of the Witch - Author Pic  Helen lives in the UK with her husband, two children and one diva-like cat called Tiger. Helen, like many others, was captivated in her childhood by books from the likes of Roald Dahl and Enid Blyton and any books which took her to new worlds and showed her places of magic and mystery. She has enjoyed writing and creating her own magical worlds from a young age. She is currently writing the second book in the ‘Nature of the Witch’ trilogy which will be out soon.

Follow on: Twitter ~  Goodreads

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Many thanks for reading my post, please give a share if you liked it.  Or go and get yourself a copy of this book and let me know what you think 🙂 xx

#BlogBlitz The Big Event by @AnneJohnLigali : pub by @BooksNAuthorsUK with @rararesources

 

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I am delighted to be on the blog tour for “The Big Event” by Anne John-Ligali. My thanks go to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot.  This book is available as an eBook.  Published by Books and Authors UK.

Synopsis:

You are cordially invited to the party of the season where you’ll meet Constance and her friends in action.

Constance Jeffries is excited when she gets the chance to meet up with virtual friends at a get-together in a London hotel. She’s been tweeting and messaging her lovely friends for years and feels they must be just as excited to finally meet her in person too. Or so she hopes.

A short story about the importance of ‘real’ friendships and how it’s the little things that matter the most.

A gorgeous venue, a room full of friends, what could possibly go wrong?

My Thoughts:

This was a really thought provoking book.  I found the situation that Constance found herself in, to be quite believable.  A lot of people have virtual friends that they virtually meet up with on an almost daily basis.  Using this as the basis for the story, Anne has set out to bring these virtual friends together at The Big Event, a face to face meet up.

A great idea that shows what could happen as social media is more and more dominant in our every day lives.  But there is such a lovely ending to this story.

A quick and very compelling read.  A dip into how social media can over take lives, if we allow it to.  I am definitely looking forward to reading more by this author.

Happy Publication Day Anne xxx

About the Author:

Meet Anne  Anne John-Ligali is a writer and the founder of Books and Authors UK, a popular website featuring author interviews and book reviews. She loves all things books: reading, writing, going to book events, and meeting other book lovers. She has written a series of short stories and is currently writing her first novel.

When Anne is not writing, she is likely to be at soft play with her kids, taking long evening walks in Hyde Park, making green smoothies, window shopping, or having a pampering session at her local beauty salon (whenever she gets the chance). She can also be found watching box sets (albeit with a bit of shame at still having to catch up on Scandal, Grey’s, and Downton).

Originally from Peterborough, Anne now lives in London. After moving to London, she studied graphic design at the University of Arts and has held a number IT administration jobs in the city. Anne continues writing and aspires to write more women’s fiction books, a non-fiction book and several children’s books.

You can connect with Anne on the links below

AUTHOR BLOG: http://annejohnligali.com/

AUTHOR TWITTER: https://twitter.com/AnneJohnLigali

AUTHOR FB: https://www.facebook.com/annejohnligali/

INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/booksnauthorsuk/

BLOGSITE: www.booksandauthors.co.uk

BLOG TWITTER: https://twitter.com/BooksNAuthorsUK

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Book Details:

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 857.0 KB
  • Print Length: 28 pages
  • Publisher: Books and Authors Publishing UK (30 Nov. 2017)
  • Purchase from Amazon UK

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Win Sparkly Afternoon Tea for Two at Vertigo 42 in central London and one e-copy of The Big Event. >ENTER HERE<

 

 

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#Book Review The Things We Learn When We’re Dead by @claidlawauthor #Giveaway

The things we learn COVER FINAL

“The things We Learn When We’re Dead” by Charlie Laidlaw is available in paperback and also on eBook.  Published by Accent Press.

Synopsis:

On the way home from a dinner party she didn’t want to attend, Lorna Love steps into the path of an oncoming car. When she wakes up she is in what appears to be a hospital – but a hospital in which her nurse looks like a young Sean Connery, she is served wine for supper, and everyone avoids her questions. It soon transpires that she is in Heaven, or on HVN. Because HVN is a lost, dysfunctional spaceship, and God the aging hippy captain. She seems to be there by accident. Or does God have a higher purpose after all? At first Lorna can remember nothing. As her memories return – some good, some bad – she realises that she has decisions to make and that she needs to find a way home…

My Thoughts:

Lorna Love is almost a lawyer, working for a prestigious and old firm, her Dad is agnostic, her mum a Catholic, Suzie is her best friend and wants to be an actress.  Now throw in the odd boyfriend, going to heaven, meeting God and meeting his second in command, who is a chain smoker.  Did I forget to mention that heaven is actually a spaceship, and God is a hippy wearing a track suit, or that the spaceship is over-run with hamsters who keep chewing the wiring?

So the main protagonist is Lorna, she has just died.  After waking from the accident to find herself in a spaceship, it is not an everyday occurrence, obviously! Her memories are hit and miss, and as they return we learn of her life up to the point of her accident.  She has what I would call a fairly normal life, education, growing up, university, social life and such, but I found it really interesting to read, captivating and at times sad.  When Lorna meets God she finds he is nothing like she expected, at times he is quite an odd character, but during the course of the story he explains his role and he seems to fit in a quirky sort of way.  Lorna has been taken to heaven for a reason, she will not be told that reason until her memories have sorted themselves, up to this point she wanders round the ship and meets some of the crew.

This is an interesting book to read, I found myself captivated by the characters and the main plot of the story, it is a gentle paced book that takes you through the journey of Lorna’s life, she has had her ups and downs but seems to be moving forward.  It is told in two timelines as such, the main emphasis is on her own life story, as well as her experiences on the ship, a little bit abstract but for me it worked.

When the author approached me to see if I was interested in reading a copy of this book, I was intrigued by the phrase of it being a “retelling of the Wizard of Oz”.  I admit to being baffled by this as I was reading the book, but it didn’t matter as I was enjoying it.  Then suddenly I hit that “I Got It” point of the story, then the phrase made perfect sense and is  very clever.

I would definitely recommend this book to readers of contemporary and general fiction, yes I am aware there is a sci-fi element to it, but it is not overly sci-fi at all.  It is a poignant, funny, sad, philosophical and it will make you think.

I would like to thank Charlie for sending me a copy of his book.  My thoughts expressed here are my own and are unbiased.

About the Author:

  I was born in Paisley, central Scotland, which wasn’t my fault.  That week, Eddie Calvert with Norrie Paramor and his Orchestra were Top of the Pops, with Oh, Mein Papa, as sung by a young German woman remembering her once-famous clown father.  That gives a clue to my age, not my musical taste.

I was brought up in the west of Scotland (quite near Paisley, but thankfully not too close) and graduated from the University of Edinburgh.  I still have the scroll, but it’s in Latin, so it could say anything.

I then worked briefly as a street actor, baby photographer, puppeteer and restaurant dogsbody before becoming a journalist.  I started in Glasgow and ended up in London, covering news, features and politics.  I interviewed motorbike ace Barry Sheene, Noel Edmonds threatened me with legal action and, because of a bureaucratic muddle, I was ordered out of Greece.

I then took a year to travel round the world, visiting 19 countries.  Highlights included being threatened by a man with a gun in Dubai, being given an armed bodyguard by the PLO in Beirut (not the same person with a gun), and visiting Robert Louis Stevenson’s grave in Samoa.  What I did for the rest of the year I can’t quite remember.

Surprisingly, I was approached by a government agency to work in intelligence, which just shows how shoddy government recruitment was back then.  However, it turned out to be very boring and I don’t like vodka martini.

Craving excitement and adventure, I ended up as a PR consultant, which is the fate of all journalists who haven’t won a Pulitzer Prize, and I’ve still to listen to Oh, Mein Papa.

I am married with two grown-up children and live in East Lothian.   And that’s about it.

 

Author Links: Website     Facebook   Twitter

Book Details:

  • Paperback: 397 pages
  • Publisher: Accent Press; UK ed. edition (21 Sept. 2017)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1786150352
  • ISBN-13: 978-1786150356
  • Amazon UK   Amazon US

Giveaway:

Charlie has very generously agreed to provide a signed copy of his book to one lucky winner.  This is open to UK only, the winner will be contacted and their details passed onto the author who will then send out the book.

 Rafflecopter Giveaway Click Here

 

Many thanks for reading my post.  If you liked it, give it a share.  Better still buy the book.