Book Review: The Legacy by Alison Knight

An unexpected inheritance. A web of deceit. A desperate escape. 

London, 1969.

James has his dreams of an easy life shattered when his aunt disinherits him, leaving her fortune to her god-daughter, Charlotte. He turns to his friend, Percy, to help him reclaim his inheritance – and to pay off his creditors. But when their plans backfire, James becomes the pawn of Percy and his criminal associates.

Charlotte is stunned when she is told of her windfall. After an attempt at cheating her out of her inheritance fails, James tries to intimidate her. But she is stronger than he thinks, having secrets of her own to guard, and sends him away with a bloody nose and no choice but to retreat for now.

Resigned, James and his spoilt, pampered girlfriend, Fliss, Percy’s sister, travel across France on a mission that promises to free James from the criminals for good. But James isn’t convinced he can trust Fliss, so he makes his own plans to start a new life.

Will James be able to get away, or will his past catch up with him? Will Charlotte’s secrets turn the legacy into a curse?

Purchase Link –  mybook.to/legacy

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Charlotte and James are connected through his aunt who is Charlotte’s godmother. When James is disinherited and Charlotte receives what he considers his fortune, he is livid. He does everything he can, short of murder, to get what he believes is rightly his.

I liked Charlotte. She is sweet and kind and a little naive, but she can take care of herself thanks to her godfather. James, on the other hand, had every opportunity growing up but squandered away his inheritance from his parents on gambling. Money is the only thing that’s important to him and although he can be charming, it’s only when he wants something and he is usually a jerk.

Even though I didn’t really feel a connection with the characters, it was a good story. The last quarter of the book was especially good with several twists. The ending had a surprise which I really liked.

If you like a good story, you can’t miss with The Legacy.

About the Author

Alison has been a legal executive, a registered childminder, a professional fund-raiser and a teacher. She has travelled the world – from spending a year as an exchange student in the US in the 1970s and trekking the Great Wall of China to celebrate her fortieth year and lots of other interesting places in between.

In her mid-forties Alison went to university part-time and gained a first-class degree in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University and an MA in the same subject from Oxford Brookes University, both while still working full-time. Her first book was published a year after she completed her master’s degree.

The Legacy is a drama set in 1960s London. Like her previous book, Mine, it explores themes of class, ambition and sexual politics, showing how ordinary people can make choices that lead them into extraordinary situations.

Alison teaches creative and life-writing, runs workshops and retreats with Imagine Creative Writing Workshops(www.imaginecreativewriting.co.uk) as well as working as a freelance editor. She is a member of the Society of Authors and the Romantic Novelists’ Association.

She lives in Somerset, within sight of Glastonbury Tor.

Social Media Links –

www.facebook.com/alison.knight.942

www.imaginecreativewriting.co.uk

www.darkstroke.com/dark-stroke/alison-knight/

New Releases

Cane Toads

The peaceful, humdrum life of the tiny community at Little Bidwell is shaken to the core by the arrival of several and various visitors. Some have come to appreciate the respite and solitude this secluded and semi-isolated spot offers, but others have a more sinister purpose in mind.

At the centre of events is an ancient chapel whose uses over the years have ranged from place of worship to cattle shed. What will be its function this time?

A runaway child, a grieving widow, a retired pop star and a large dog, romp through the pages as subterfuge and secrets unfold and the Cane Toad is finally ousted.

About the Author:

Janet Ollerenshaw is a retired English & Music teacher and mother of seven children. She has lived in Hertfordshire for most of her life and has been involved with Scouting, animals and arts & crafts alongside her teaching career.  She writes for pleasure and enjoys word-craft, so her writing can be prosaic at times as she feels the experience of reading should be more than just a good story, rather like a fine wine, which touches senses other than simply taste and satisfaction and which lasts the test of time.

Janet has a M.A. in Educational Research from Cambridge and studied with the Open University for her first Degree in Humanities with Music and English Language. She does seasonal work as an exam marker for Edexcel and for the Cambridge International Exam board.  Janet also published the “Turning” series of novels entitled “Inside Out”, “Upside Down” and “Back to Front”, along with another cosy British murder-mystery entitled “Secret of the Snail”.

Excerpt

“Excuse me,” she whispered and he finally looked down into her serious hazel eyes.

“Oh!” he exclaimed, “and who might you be?”

“It doesn’t matter who I am but I need some help with something important.” She tried to speak clearly but was so unused to talking to anyone other than Christopher, that her voice came out squeakily and rather quietly, “he’s up in the woods; in my den, I can’t carry him,” she said.

Fortunately for her, Clive did not wait to ask questions. He could sense the urgency in the young girl’s demeanour and reaching for his coat and boots, he asked her to wait just a moment and he would come. She waited, standing on one leg and resisting the urge to run, but did not immediately notice that the dog lady had joined her by the door. “Are we going somewhere?” she asked, not who are you or what are you doing here, and Bonnie was both surprised and grateful. “Yes,” she whispered again, “He’s just coming now.”

“Cane Toads” is available in paperback and can be ordered from Amazon at:

This novel is also available to download as an e-book from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Janet Ollerenshaw’s Literary Agent: 

Darin Jewell, Managing Director, The Inspira Group Literary Agency, 5 Bradley Road, Enfield, England EN3 6ES
Tel. UK +208 292 5163
E-mail: darin@theinspiragroup.com

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Small Town Boy

A short adventure story written by students in 6L at Durlston Court School

About the Book:

This is a really boring story. It takes place in Normalville, a really, really boring, bleak town. In this town everyone lives the same way, apart from one unusual girl, Felitia. She makes her own rules and follows no one.

Felitia’s brother Brian is desperate to find out her secret. Brian explores the past and teams with the local news reporter.

Will he find out what is really behind the mask?



*All proceeds from the sale of this novella will go to charity*

About the Authors:

The novella is based on an original idea by Callum Murray in 6L.  The class began the novella on the first day of ‘Lockdown 3’ 2021. Sections of the book were written every week by individual pupils and discussed by the class; the final few lines were written on the last day of the lockdown. Durlston Court School is proud of this example of creative collaboration by this group, and I am humbled by their ability to find the best opportunities in such challenging times.

  • Jane Asplin-Locke, Head of English, Durlston School

Excerpt

“My story really started on the day I went to the local library to try and find a book on adventure such as Crisis on Infinite Earths, which I had heard about on the radio. It was so hard to find a book on adventure in the Normalville Library. All the books were all the same size and about the same thing; how to live a perfect Normalville life. There was even one on how to conduct a Normalville burial! Every week I scoured the shelves for any new books. While I searched, I noticed a large ledger open on the desk. The librarian was busy checking that The History of Kilts were in the right order; so, I quietly took a look. The ledger contained Normalville Times Chronicle, which was all the back editions of the local boring newspaper. However, one unusual headline I saw was about to change my life.

The ledger was open on a page from eleven years ago and the headline was Bright flash in Sky and Crash near Normalville. It was an article written by Mr McKellan, our old local reporter. Half of the page had been torn from the book, yet I could read the first paragraph, which explained that eleven years ago there was a bright flash from the sky, something crashed into the woods near John Frost Meadow. I needed to find Mr McKellan’s telephone number. That shouldn’t be difficult as everyone’s phone numbers were all the same except for the last number. There was a telephone directory in the library. I went to find it.”

“Small Town Boy” is available in paperback from Amazon at:

This novella can also be downloaded as an e-book from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Jane Asplin-Locke
Head of English
Durlston Court School
Becton Lane, Barton on Sea, New Milton BH25 7AQ
tel: 01425 610 010
E-mail: jane.asplin-locke@durlstoncourt.co.uk

Book Review: Silver Dollar by Alan Trustman

The author of The Thomas Crown Affair presents this engaging story of a small town girl’s five decade big city life and quest for loves, some intended and some not.

From her risky round the world trip on a dare first date through her chance encounters with “consultants” for the Department of State, in a life of multiple relationships, new and old, you live with​​ our ​Betsy this story of her life and loves.

Amazon

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free copy from the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Betsy is a strong woman whose life is chronicled in Silver Dollar. The book is interesting, and it’s easy to see that the author is used to writing screenplays. There aren’t all of the emotions that are found in most novels, but interestingly, it was still a good read. I’m thinking maybe because he doesn’t give you time to pause. It’s nonstop, one relationship after another in which she finds true love and a whirlwind romance among other things.

This is a quick and easy read that I finished in one evening, and I definitely recommend it.

About the Author

Alan Trustman began his writing career by penning the blockbuster movie The Thomas Crown Affair. This was quickly followed by Bullitt, The Next Man, They Call Me Mr. Tibbs and Steve McQueen: The Man & Le Mans. He has written 30 screenplays, of which 15 have been made into films and two have reached television.

Book Review: Akea – His Mother’s Son by Elizabeth Jade

Akea is no ordinary husky and taking her place as Wolf Queen was just the first step in the journey set out for her by the Great Wolf. Akea’s world turns upside down when humans raid their home, scattering the pack and capturing her hybrid son. Salvador struggles to adjust to a life in captivity quickly realising not everyone approves of his mother’s rise to Wolf Queen. When the Great Wolf sends him warning dreams, Salvador discovers his true purpose for being there.

“Ms Jade perfectly captures the atmosphere of life as part of the wolfpack and its many challenges. Her stories remind me of Jack London’s Call of the Wild, and with ‘His Mother’s Son’ she proves she not only has a knack for creating realistic and powerful characters, but a talent for describing the wild settings they inhabit with a natural confidence that is quite charming.” Colin Garrow (author)

Purchase Links

Amazon UK – https://amzn.to/2rOipYk

Amazon US – https://amzn.to/2Rm43sO

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased. This is the second book in the series, but I didn’t read the first one and it stands on its own.

This story of wolves, their habits, and some of the dangers they face is one that children including preteens will enjoy. The characters are described well and they are given some human traits such as talking. In actuality, wolves can’t talk, but they are known for having good communication skills.

Akea, the queen of the pack, is a husky. Even though she’s not a wolf, others know that she is special, and her son Salvador is a lot like his mother. When he is taken by humans and has no other wolves around him, I could feel his heartache.

Salvador’s story shows children that no matter the trouble you’re in, you should never give up. It also teaches the importance of family. Akea – His Mother’s Son is a quick read and a great story especially for animal lovers.

About the Author

Elizabeth Jade was born in 1998 in Northallerton, North Yorkshire, England, but moved with her family to Wellington in Somerset when she was very young. Her early schooling did not go smoothly, and as a result, she was home-schooled from the age of seven. Her parents soon learned she had a unique slant on life and quickly abandoned attempts to follow the national curriculum in favour of child-led learning.

Elizabeth stumbled into writing at the age of fourteen when she began to suffer from anxiety and depression and quickly found her story ideas pouring out faster than she could get them onto paper.  It wasn’t until the age of eighteen that she realised her struggles in school had been due to Aspergers Syndrome (an autistic spectrum disorder).

As an enthusiastic animal lover, Elizabeth volunteered first at the Conquest Riding Centre for the Disabled and then at St Giles Animal Rescue before moving on to the Cats Protection Homing and Information Centre.  Her gifted way with the cats quickly earned her the title of ‘Cat Whisperer’ from the staff. Since she had always possessed such a way with animals, it was only natural for her story ideas to revolve around them.  

Elizabeth’s personal experience as a young author with the challenges of autism, depression and anxiety, along with her writing theme of acceptance and overcoming obstacles, have led to her having a junior school class named after her.

Social Media Links

Book Trailer – https://youtu.be/GBR5Qmk61yk

Website – https://www.elizabethjade.org

Blog – https://elizabethjade.org/blog/

Goodreads Author Profile – https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6540986.Elizabeth_Jade

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/AkeaWolfStories

Twitter – https://www.twitter.com/AkeaWolfStories

Pinterest – https://www.pinterest.co.uk/AkeaWolfStories

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/akeawolfstories.author/

Book Review: The Road to Cromer Pier by Martin Gore

Janet’s first love arrives out of the blue after forty years. Those were simpler times for them both. Sunny childhood beach holidays, fish and chips and big copper pennies clunking into one armed bandits.

The Wells family has run the Cromer Pier Summertime Special Show for generations. But it’s now 2009 and the recession is biting hard. Owner Janet Wells and daughter Karen are facing an uncertain future. The show must go on, and Janet gambles on a fading talent show star. But both the star and the other cast members have their demons. This is a story of love, loyalty and luvvies. The road to Cromer Pier might be the end of their careers, or it might just be a new beginning.

Purchase Link

Audible UK

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Times are tough and the Wells family is about to lose the Cromer Pier Theatre which has been in their family for several years. The owner, Janet, is at her wits end trying to figure out a way to keep it rather than having to hand it over to the evil Pemrose.

The story was slow for me until I got about halfway through. Eventually, once I learned more about the characters and watched them grow, I finished the last half in one sitting. Lauren and Paul especially learned a lot about themselves, which is kind of interesting since they were the celebrities. Even the characters who seemed to have it all together, like Janet, really didn’t and I enjoyed watching them grow as well.

The Road to Cromer Pier is a well-written feel good book with a good ending.

About the Author

I am a 63 year old Accountant who semi-retired to explore my love of creative writing. In my career I held Board level jobs for over twenty five years, in private, public and third sector organisations. I was born in Coventry, a city then dominated by the car industry and high volume manufacturing. Jaguar, Triumph, Talbot, Rolls Royce, Courtaulds, Massey Ferguson were the major employers, to name but a few.

When I was nine year’s old I told my long suffering mother that as I liked English composition and drama I was going to be a Playwright. She told me that I should work hard at school and get a proper job. She was right of course.

I started as an Office Junior at Jaguar in 1973 at eleven pounds sixty four a week. I thus grew up in the strike torn, class divided seventies. My first career ended in 2015, when I semi retired as Director of Corporate services at Humberside Probation. My second career, as a Non Executive Director, is great as it has allowed me free time to travel and indulge my passion for writing, both in novels and for theatre.

The opportunity to rekindle my interest in writing came in 2009, when I wrote my first pantomime, Cinderella, for my home group, the Walkington Pantomime Players. I have now written eight. I love theatre, particularly musical theatre, and completed the Hull Truck Theatre Playwrite course in 2010. My first play, a comedy called He’s Behind You, is now available on: https://www.silverbirchingtonplays.com/product-page/he-s-behind-you-by-martin-gore

Pen Pals was my first novel, and a second, The Road to Cromer Pier, is now available in all three formats. It was. officially launched on Cromer Pier itself, coinciding with the new season of the Summertime Special Show.

I’m active on twitter @authorgore and on facebook martin gore author. My website is www.martingore.co.uk.

I’m an old fashioned writer I guess. I want you to laugh and to cry. I want you to believe in my characters, and feel that my stories have a beginning, a middle, and a satisfactory ending.’

Social Media Links

Twitter – https://twitter.com/AuthorGore

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/Martin-Gore-Author-1237780169706466/

New Releases

Dolly Donut

A charming and beautiful children’s story with colour illustrations

About the Book:

Wow! When you walked in, so different, fantastic, the shop amazing and unique. Beautiful hand-carved display cabinets filled with amazing bakes, bread and delicious cakes.

Jack Jolly, the finest baker, a happy, gifted man, friendly and helpful with a big warm smile to greet all who came in to his lovely shop. 

Things were changing! Mr Jolly’s helpers had left and, by himself, Jack began to feel very tired. What could he do? There was no-one in the village to help him! 

Well now something magical happened at the bakery, little Dolly Doughnut. How had she come and why? Who was she? What did she do? What changed?

About the Author:

Jenny Ashford is sensitive with an artistic creative interest in many things. She loves nature, sitting or walking in the woods and she loves to see fields filled with wild flowers, hearing birds singing sweetly and peaceful sounds calm her senses. A still moment is just bliss, watching wildlife and the natural world is just amazing and wonderful to her.

Her other interests include art, yoga, healing and natural therapies, national trust properties and gardens, theatre and a variety of music. She enjoys cooking and sharing food with friends and family and eating out is a nice shared treat too.

She enjoyed each fascinating and precious stage of her children’s development. Her writing began with them in mind. Stories for young children first, then poems. Another inspiration for a story came out of the blue. The need to have something to write her thoughts and ideas on became important, so she kept paper and pencil with her almost always.

Excerpt from the book:

“Dolly Doughnut” by Jenny Ashford is available to purchase in hardback from Amazon.co.uk at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

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Tumbleweed Children

About the Book:

Born at home and never registered, John didn’t apparently exist. John has five years of experience, but no one person has his full picture. It might have lacked love, but it did lack care. There may have been some joy, but the courts have decided that the care system can do a better job; give the boy a chance.

About the Author:

Sharon Watters is the eldest of three sisters.  She was brought up in the 1970s when parenting seemed optional and as a result considers herself a bit wild. Sharon has always loved learning but hated being at senior school as she always felt trapped.  She left school angry and bored at age 15.

Sharon is the mother of three grown men, the grandmother of angels and the wife of the most patient man in the world.

Her first qualification was her driving test at the age of 27. At age 29, she passed her first GCSE, and when she reached age 30, she had passed two more. She continued to study and eventually went on to University to read Environmental Science. Sharon then trained as a teacher and later became a dyslexia specialist.

Sharon spent the rest of her full time career in the Special Educational sector, helping children with social, emotional and mental health challenges.

“Tumbleweed Children” is her first novel.  It is a fact-based but fiction ‘social exposure’ story that she hopes raises questions. Sharon has tried to gain the ears of the powers who could change an immoral system but no one is listening. She has written “Tumbleweed Children” in the hope that someone will hear.

Sharon has often been called a social misfit and only recently gave up trying to understand what that means.

Excerpt from the book:

“I threw the bottle of glue and the pots of glitter at the door followed by a chair. Mr Cheval’s face was at the window in the door and was calling out my name and asking me to open the door; first in English and then in French.

The first time my fist hit his pudgy little face, I was surprised just how much it hurt and wondered why he hit Sophie so often but remembering Sophie’s torment, the blows rained down on him. The blood spurted from his nose as I stepped away to admire my handy work. He hadn’t cried yet but for Muriel’s sake he was going to. I dragged him by the front of his jumper towards the masks and pushed his face hard into one. It stuck at an angle into the glue and then I pushed him back onto the seat of a chair.

Morgan’s plight crept into my mind’s eye. I took his bag and emptied it onto the floor and took great delight in crushing the junior toys under my shoes. There was a reading book that I recognised from my early years of primary school so I picked it up and ripped each page out and into half yelling, “you can’t read, you don’t need books.” It was tears I wanted for Muriel and tears I got. He begged me to stop, Mr Cheval called to me to stop, my head teacher ordered me to stop but I hadn’t finished.

Riley saw a chance and dared to move. He wasn’t scared enough and probably believed that he could still be the ruler. With management desperately trying to stop the situation, I knew that I had to up the dominance or I was lost, and no other odd little soul would ever have power again. He was an adolescent male and I was casting him out.

I reached for the fireworks. This was for Ben. Let’s see how you feel when you can’t breathe Boarer.

The hammering on the door became more urgent and was added to by Riley from the inside. I remember the look of disappointment and betrayal on Mr Cheval’s face. The fireworks were made together because I could be trusted. But he had taught me that everyone has a social responsibility to stand up to evil and it would be rewarded.

I lit the first firework. After the first initial burst of sparks died down a plume of smoke belched out, so I lit the other seven in quick succession. The room filled with smoke, the alarms started screaming, and with great performance, the window at the back of the room was shattered inwards. The huge site manager stepped into the room and just calmly stated, “Out.”

He had broken the spell and as he moved the chair from under the door handle the adults spilled in and swiftly dragged us both out.

The fire alarm screaming after 3:30 only brought adults out onto the tarmac. No one said a word to me. I knew that I would not see the year out, but Riley probably would.”

“Tumbleweed Children” by Sharon Watters is available to purchase in paperback from Amazon.co.uk at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

New Releases

What Else am I Feeling?

Third book in an award-winning series helping children to express their emotions

About the Book:

From the international award-winning author Katie Flanagan, ‘What else am I feeling?’ is the sequel to ‘What am I feeling?’

‘What else am I feeling?’ helps to introduce and extend further the vocabulary linked to the emotions children are likely to experience. It offers valuable insights for adults in helping to expand their child’s knowledge, understanding and vocabulary regarding a wide range of emotions. Its gentle approach and warm illustrations helps provide the opportunity to open up discussions with children about a wider variety of feelings in a non-intrusive way.

The forewords for children and adults provide a useful background to help develop understanding of the importance of learning about our emotions and growing in our skills to help children become more comfortable with everyday feelings they encounter.

Through useful questions and suggestions, it also offers ideas and guidance for how best to support children with their emotional experiences. It is a versatile resource; easy for carers, educators and family members to use.

Look out for the accompanying journal coming soon for children to use to personalise their own experience of the emotions covered in this picture discussion book.

About the Author:

Katie Flanagan has worked as a teacher for over a decade and currently works as the Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator.  She has always had a keen interest in helping children to develop emotional literacy skills. When she was teaching, she used to help the children expand their vocabulary around the emotions they experience by getting them to answer how they felt during register time.

She used the opportunity to help teach them new words for different feelings. During this time and in her parenting, she found herself trying to define emotions in a child-friendly way to help describe the emotion and when they might be feeling it. This inspired her to create pictures book with a wide range of emotions to help increase children’s understanding of the emotions and the words they could use. She also decided to create a journal so children had a place where they could explore their own experience of their emotions.

She published the first book, What am I feeling? Defining Emotions in 2017 and has had lots of positive feedback from Educational Psychologists and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service. She won the American Bookfest International Book Award for children’s ‘mind body and spirit’ category 2018. She has had positive reviews from the SEN resources blog, top parenting blogger ‘What the Redhead Said’ and Melissa Hood, Co-Founder of the Parent Practice.

Katie has qualifications in Psychology, PGCE, National SENCo Award, Time out for Parents, and Group facilitator for charity Care for The Family.

 

What Else Am I Feeling?  Defining More Emotions by Katie Flanagan is available in paperback from Amazon at:

Katie’s first book and journal are also available from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

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Tales from Tipperary

The first book in a series of fictional southern Irish tales

About the Book:

The book is set in Tipperary – in the unreal world of the hillslopes below Keeper Hill. Essentially, it is an unashamed homage to a typical past rural community, written in the colloquial and colourful language of the times. It opens with Dandy-the-Galwayman’s arrival in Tipperary shortly after the Famine. The generation that follows him lead a colourful life, weaving a rich tapestry.

Tales include:

  • The reliance of families on children’s rabbit-poaching with ferrets acts of adolescent rebelliousness like setting fire to a load of hay, or building a snowman as a surprise ‘gift’ in an enemy’s back room
  • The death of a young hurler in his very first match
  • The story of a child-saint and her ghostly return to see the new baby
  • The tale of a bonesetter, his place in the community
  • The days of a silenced priest, involving his heroism
  • The confession of an old lady
  • Children cattle-droving at dawn
  • Jealousy when a mountainy man wins the Show-Fair Cup

About the Author:

Edward Forde Hickey lives in Kent with his wife. They have three sons. During the years 1962 until 1998, he taught in inner city primary schools (laterally as a headteacher for 18 years). In early life, he was a pop star with Decca records (see ‘Eddie Hickey/Lady May’) and later sang with the Glenside Ceilidhe Band in The Galtymore Dancehall, Cricklewood (1965/1975).

Born of Irish parents during the Blitz of London, he spent his first five years of life nurtured and moulded by his grandmother in the foothills above Dolla, near Nenagh in County Tipperary. His grandmother is and always was his inspiration; she had a natural gift with words.

Edward has always been interested in folklore and the Irish past (its music, dance and literature). He was a champion Irish step-dancer. He taught and adjudicated it, even as far afield as in Australia, before dedicating himself to research into hillside communities in north Tipperary, from where he brought back tapes of original songs for The English Folk Dance and Song Society.

He keeps a small farm in the foothills of north Tipperary and visits it often.

Review of the Book:

“A wonderful collection of tales delivered by a natural storyteller completely beguiling an effortless evocation of an almost forgotten world a wonderfully personable narration endlessly charming characterisation

Life and death are treated with simplicity, profundity and a lightness of touch. Every individual tale is undoubtedly very strong.”

Jakob von Beyer, Director of Addison and Cole

 

Tales from Tipperary by Edward Forde Hickey is available in paperback from Amazon at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

Grosvenor House Publishing
Tel. 0208 339 6060
E-mail: info@grosvenorhousepublishing.co.uk

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Butcher Boy

A nostalgic story about a young Mancunian lad with a love for loud music and misadventure

About the Book:

There was nothing extraordinary about Pugnatious Smelt. He was just an ordinary boy, born to an ordinary family in a small South Manchester suburb in the 1960s.

This book documents his growing pains as he learns what life is about and how easy it is to make the wrong decisions and yet end with the right result, sometimes.

Excerpt from the book:

“Pugnatious would look at the adverts each week to see if any of the album bands were on live that Saturday and if they were off he would go with a select bunch of friends to experience them first-hand. He was still nowhere near driving age and so it was a bus into the centre and then a walk, a walk he had done all those years before with his father to see the Spinners, this was very different, it seemed that this new generation of musicians felt the need to play loud. Now there is a difference between loud, as measured by Mrs Smelt when he played his records at home, loud as in the volume he played them at when his mother was out and loud at the Free Trade Hall, this was proper loud. So loud he could feel the bass drum in his chest, his teeth would hurt when the guitars hit high notes in the middle of solos and his ears hurt from the overall cacophony of sound. A good night at the Hall would be measured by the ringing and hissing in his ears once he left the building.

Pugnatious like his peers wanted the volume, the louder the better, the greater the ringing in the ears the better the night had been, the more his parents advised against it the more he wanted it, Van Der Graaf Generator gave it to him, Cream gave it to him, Yes gave it to him, Mr and Mrs Smelt gave it to him warning of the dangers of deafness in later life.”

“Butcher Boy:  Pugnatious Smelt – an ordinary boy” by Dik Cavanagh is available to purchase in paperback from Amazon.co.uk at:

Press/Media Contact Details:

New Generation Publishing
Tel. 01234 712 064
E-mail: info@newgeneration-publishing.com

Book Review: Stories and Places I Remember by Joe Giordano

Humorous and poignant, Stories and Places I Remember will take you around the world from the streets of Brooklyn to the beaches of Rio de Janeiro. Meet Anthony in 1950s and 1960s Brooklyn, then journey with a host of other delightful, contemporary characters portrayed in twenty-six tales set in New York, Texas, Brazil, Greece, Ireland, the Middle East, and Italy that will tickle your wanderlust.

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

I have read a couple of Joe Giordano’s books and especially liked Birds of Passage, so I had a feeling I’d enjoy these short stories. I wasn’t wrong!

The first few stories are about Anthony, a kid in Brooklyn in the 1950s and 1960s. He’s Italian, and his parents are immigrants, and he has some interesting stories to tell. The rest of the stories about other people in New York and several other states and countries.

All of the stories in Stories and Places I Remember are short and to the point, and I enjoyed every one of them. What I especially liked was that there was no way how to tell how each story would end. Different people make different choices, and that shows well here. From laugh out loud funny to horrifying to sad, there’s a taste of everything.

If you don’t have time to sit down and read a novel, this is a great book to pick up and read a story at a time. I hope Joe Giordano has more of these stories to come!

About the Author

Joe Giordano was born in Brooklyn. His father and grandparents immigrated to New York from Italy. He and his wife Jane now live in Texas.

As a former 3M International Executive Vice President, Joe experienced the global cultures and locations he writes about.

Joe’s stories have appeared in more than one hundred magazines including The Saturday Evening Post, and Shenandoah. His novel, Birds of Passage, An Italian Immigrant Coming of Age Story (2015), and Appointment with ISIL, an Anthony Provati Thriller (2017) were published by Harvard Square Editions. Rogue Phoenix Press published Drone Strike in 2019.

Joe was among one hundred Italian American authors honored by Barnes & Noble to march in the 2017 Manhattan, Columbus Day Parade.

Visit Joe’s website at http://joe-giordano.com/.

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/stories-and-places-i-remember-joe-giordano/1137467004?ean=2940162872108

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54884376-stories-and-places-i-remember

Apple

Rakuten Kobo

https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/stories-and-places-i-remember

Google Play

https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Joe_Giordano_Stories_and_Places_I_Remember?id=W8b2DwAAQBAJ

Smashwords

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/1037818

New Releases

Czech Mate

A female journalist battles the aftermath of social and personal revolution, arming herself with humour, friendship and love

About the Book

Early in the 1990s, the Czech Republic was changing, desperately trying to enter a western capitalistic lifestyle. But the change was slow motion compared to the turbulent life of a young female journalist trying to do it all – end her first marriage, mother two kids, while drowning in lots of work. One could also say – divorcing chin first, pulling new jobs while juggling old jobs, surrounding herself with loyal friends, and marrying a new man, the love of her life, who was – ooohh my god! – a foreigner… how scandalous!

She is forced to fight with old traditional thinking, the socialistic school system, and a judgemental society. But she is never alone – with the help of her faithful friends, family and a refreshing dose of humour, she finally wins her life game of Czech Mate. And finally, a fresh start. Canada – here they come!

If you enjoyed this book, try the prequel:  Somersaults.

Excerpt from the book

‘After a sleep of what seemed only a few minutes, the phone rang. I reached behind my head, found the telephone receiver and hoarsely said, “Yes?”

“I’m in a jam,” the other end whispered.

“Everyone is in a jam. Who am I talking to?”

“Ivana. I can’t talk aloud. Yesterday, actually this morning, I returned home and didn’t even have time to take off my shoes when my old man yelled at me: ‘Where were you?! And don’t tell me you were at Vaclava’s place, because she just called.’”

“Shit!” I was never a good strategist.

“I was told you told him I wasn’t at your place.”

“Clever boy. And were you?”

“I was, but I left early. Because I missed him so much.”

“So that’s OK; I told him the same thing. Next time you expect to be with me, at least tell me about it, so I won’t call when you are with me.”

I smashed down the receiver and went to make myself a coffee. I had hardly taken five steps when I stumbled over someone’s prostrate body. Dead body; crossed my mind. They snapped Melnek’s neck and left him on my carpet. Now he will stay here until I pay 10,000 crowns. When I pay they will snap my neck to prevent me ratting on them.

I knelt down beside the dead body, turned it, and at last reality dawned on me. This dead body had long blonde hair and snored like a bricklayer.’

“Czech Mate:  Don’t Shoot the Journalist” by Mira Mackis available to purchase in paperback from Amazon.co.uk at:

This book is also available to download in e-book format from:

The book will soon be available in Audio format.

Press/Media Contact Details:

New Generation Publishing
Tel. 01234 712 064
E-mail: info@newgeneration-publishing.com

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Somersaults

A stubborn girl and young woman swims through chameleonic Socialism and its velvet funeral

About the Book

There are somersaults and there are somersaults. Physically … no big deal. Lots of people can do them. This book is about the other kind of somersaults – through life. In this case, from a little girl plunked into the mid-fifties in socialist Czechoslovakia to a rebel at school with beliefs twisted and turned by social storms. Then in 1968, her family lives through morphing into socialism with a human face, the consequent invasion of the Warsaw Pact armies, and ultimately, the Russian occupation. And eventually, for many ordinary people, the reality of the so-called Velvet Revolution of 1989.

When the girl grows into a young woman, she fights with traditions and old thinking. Plenty of humour, the discovery of limits, many sides of the same coin, the power of friendship, stepping into worlds of taboo, and challenging one’s own fear – every somersault has consequences. Intimate, funny, honest.

If you enjoyed this book, try the sequel:  Czech Mate.

Excerpt from the book

‘When a ring from the front gate jarred our thoughts, I could not believe that life on the street could break through our doors and walls, wanting to get inside.

“Go and have a look from the window and see who it is,” mum sent dad. Until then, we had never locked the door and our visitors normally didn’t bother delaying themselves with pressing a bell. Some of them didn’t even stop before opening the bathroom or toilet door whenever they turned up to make us happy with their presence.

“A soldier,” father commented from the window. He hesitated for a moment then energetically stepped from our living room towards the front door.

“I hope you are not going to open it,” mum jumped up from the typewriter causing the smaller photo-frames to lurch and with a crash, hit the desktop.

“Of course I’m going to open it. I’m going out. After all, we don’t have to hide like mice.”

“He has a sub-machine gun,” mum called out to dad and caught the sleeve of his sweater.

“He has it on his back, not in his hands,” answered dad. “If he wanted to shoot, he wouldn’t ring the bell. Girls, go into the kitchen; I’m going out.”’

“Somersaults:  Through the Keyhole” by Mira Mackis available to purchase in paperback from Amazon.co.uk at:

This book is also available to download in e-book format from:

The book will soon be available in Audio format.

Press/Media Contact Details:

New Generation Publishing
Tel. 01234 712 064
E-mail: info@newgeneration-publishing.com

Book Review & Giveaway: The Bus Ride by Joanie Chevalier

The Bus Ride: A Zany Busnapping Adventure

When Devon discovers his car stolen, he must find transportation to get to his destination before the deadline to get what’s rightfully his: the urn containing one-fifth of his deceased momma. He hops on Bus No. 255 and changes the course of the route. As the passengers’ personalities and needs emerge, they go from being strangers to a bonded family within hours as they fight for each other, and themselves… in more ways than one. Funny and sentimental, this story will grab your heart as you cheer everyone on Bus Route No. 255, maybe even the busnapper.

Meet the passengers on Bus No. 255, an unlikely group of people who have no choice but to try to get along and survive when their bus gets busnapped. Meet Devon, who has a deadline he must meet, or risk losing what’s his; Doug, a dreamer of a better life, but first must face a sad truth; Frankie, a life full of loneliness, but unexpectedly becomes a hero; Gloria, a woman who finds validation in the most unexpected place; Autumn, a girl who desires a family, and a sense of belonging; Dave, a man seeking justice and equality, learns to love himself as he is; and the Garcia family, whose family ties brings them to the brink of danger. Follow these passengers as they each fulfill their destinies, together.

Purchase Link – http://getbook.at/TheBusRide

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Doug drives a bus and works a lot of overtime to try to give his greedy wife the lifestyle she demands. When his bus is “busnapped” one day, he doesn’t really mind.

Every person on the bus that day has issues of his or her own. I like how the reader learns about each person as the story unfolds. At the beginning of each chapter, the day and time are listed so that you know if it’s today on the bus or previously – usually yesterday or earlier today. By the end of the book, all of the characters have been developed, and even the busnapper is endearing. I found myself wanting the best for each person.

The bus trip changes the lives of every passenger on the bus. Even though there is some danger and even though the people on the bus have big problems, the story is written in a lighthearted way which made it even more enjoyable. One of my favorite parts is the end when the outcome for each person is told. I definitely recommend The Bus Trip.

About the Author

Joanie Chevalier is a multi-genre Indie Author; Founder & Editor of RAC Online Magazine: Promoting and Encouraging the Reader/Author Connection; and Founder of Our Indie Author Room FB Group, a place where writers in all stages of their career go to learn, inspire, and teach.

Joanie loves the outdoors and nature, reading and supporting fellow indie authors. Her writing is a blend of everything she likes to read: suspense, horror, crime, psychological, non-fiction, and a good short story. She thinks her two Chihuahuas look adorable in sweaters.

Social Media Links –

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Joanie-Chevalier/e/B00P1946MS 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/JoanieChevalier  

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/JoanieC

RAC Website: https://readerauthorconnection.com/ 

Giveaway

*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 despatch or delivery of the prize.

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