Books/fiction/net galley/crime fiction

Did she fall or was she pushed?

Crash and Burn

By Lisa Gardner

A very complex tale with the medical symptoms well detailed but just how she fell down the first time still remains suspicious in my mind.

A tale full of twists and turns and flying into the unknown. Di d she/didn’t she? Did he/didn’t he?  With little explanation until the very end and yet…

Post concussion syndrome and PTSD seem to have go scrambled in her memory so that reality and imagination become intertwined and then whose memories is she remembering anyway? Are some of them false? And implanted by her husband?

Post concussion syndrome – according to has three major aspects: physical, emotional and behavioural.

Physical symptoms include headaches, vertigo, nausea, and problems tolerating light and noise; emotional and behavioural can include aggression, anxiety, depression, disturbed slep, personality changes and sudden emotional outbursts; cognitive symptoms can include difficulty in memory, concentration and attention, problems with reasoning and learning new things. All or most of these were demonstrated by the wife here in this story.  But as we don’t know exactly what her behaviour was like before she ‘fell’ down 3 times we cannot tell just which symptoms were there before or not. We only have the husband’s word for what she was previously like. And slowly we learn that she was not who we thought she was. And just how much of a victim she was or wasn’t.  We also learn different stories about how she came to leave the Dolls House all of which are traumatic. What is clear is that her time in the House scarred her dreadfully and whatever she did afterwards can be thought of as being a direct or indirect result of what happened to her there.

I had realised who the husband was – or at least his relationship to the Dolls House by half-way through but still failed to guess what his actual role was – I knew what he had done to the Dolls House but not the consequences.

Here we see a tale that encompasses child abduction – or is it? Fostering for cash or is it? And do remember that when children go missing for any length of time, the parents are always the prime suspects, just like the spouse is in a case of a murder.

I give this 5 stars. It kept me hooked and kept surprising me. A Lisa Gardner goody.


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Skeletons on the beach

LowCountry Boneyard by Susan M Bowyer

A Boneyard here in the Lowcountry is where trees go to die. It is the beach of trees washed up from the sea and delta, and the branches remind the artist of skeleton hands and fingers.


This is a story of betrayal, corruption, over-whelming pride – leading to a fall, and forgery. Lust and greed and most of the other seven deadly sins also make an appearance.

As it so often seems, in many of these ‘aristocratic’ families, there is a fearsome matriarch with an over-wheening pride in an ancestry such that only marriage and children from a limited genetic pooll will answer, and woe betide anyone who defies the matriarch!

Genetic traits however, are just that, and are passed down the family tree, often unwelcomingly – hence the Habsburg nose (and lip) for instance. habsburg

But other traits are mental rather than physical and artistic ability is one such trait that is often passed down the family line, and so it is here.

This third book in the series about the Lowcountry is not quote as fresh as the first and the romantic storyline is getting rather laboured I felt. I also linked the genetic trait very early in the story although I never suspected quite how determined the matriarch could be about preserving her lineage.

So some more obvious points and some not, still plenty of twists and turns to intrigue the reader and keep you wondering how it all happened. 3.75 stars.

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BlogTour: Guild of Immortal Women

Title: Guild of Immortal Women
Author: David Alan Morrison
Publication Date: November 2014

Two bodies are discovered on the grounds of “The Bastille,” home to a coven of witches who belong to the Guild of Immortal Women. The bodies have strange characteristics, so what follows is a combination merry and sinister romp through ancient history. Medieval times are brought to life through a massive Tapestry adorning the mansion’s walls where the characters — animals and humans — emerge through tears in the fabric. It is up to Detective Matt Mathers and social worker Lynn Swanson to solve the murder-mystery while dealing with the strange world of magic, Guardian Abbey’s amnesia from her past lives, and the devilish mission of Robert and the Doctor to create an immortal heir through the laboratory.

Foreword Reviews‘ 2014 INDIEFAB Book of the Year Award Finalist


DAMheadshot.jpeg Author Bio:
Dave Morrison (CI & CT, NIC-A, SC:L, NAD-5). Dave received his A.A. in ASL/ENG Interpreting from L.A. Pierce College in 1989. In 2000, he obtained his M.A. in Theatre Arts from the University of Kentucky. He has interpreted in a variety of venues, from the courtroom to funerals to underwater conservation forums. As an actor, he has been seen on stage, TV and film. He is currently an adjunct instructor of Drama at Skagit Valley College and works with local theatres as a director, actor and instructor.
Author Links:


Q: What is the story of how you came up with the idea for GUILD OF IMMORTAL WOMEN.

In 2007 my father died. We had been estranged for most of my life and we had just spent the last couple of years rebuilding a relationship. I went to my best friend’s house to do some healing and she reminded me of the book idea she had told me about years before.  She convinced me to write it as a way of grieving.

Q: How did you pick the women who would be Immortal?

Holly wanted Joan of Arc to be Amelia Airhardt and had always been set on Eleanor as the head of the Guild.  As for the others, we literally sat on the phone – me in Seattle and she in southern California – and searched the internet for the most interesting women we could find.  I was surprised at the lack of information on famous females of ancient times!  

Q: What was the hardest part of writing your books?

 Editing! That answer is easy – it’s always the editing.  As writers we put so much of our life and soul into these written pages! Many of us slave over specific words or phrases for hours. None of that matters in editing.  If it doesn’t work for the story or pacing, out it goes.  Books are so much like turkey at Thanksgiving – one knows about the preparation of an eloquent meal, but when you have to face the heat of the kitchen yourself….oy! Another story.

Q: What project are you working on now?

 Once TRAVELS WITH PENNY and GUILD are out into the world, I’d like to take a short break first.  I feel pretty ragged about now…signings, book festivals and so forth take a lot out of you.  When I’m back at the keyboard, I have another work, ANGAKOK, with Booktrope, that needs some attention.  Tick tock!

Q: What is the most interesting part of your daily life?

 Wow.  Good question.  I never saw myself as having a particularly interesting life.  But, then again, “interesting” is relative, isn’t it?  My day jobs are a sign language interpreter, instructor at a community college and theatre director.  I like to think that just by showing up I get a full plate of drama and entertainment.  

Q:  What is your writing process like?

I’ve always been one of those people who sees entire scenes in my head.  As soon as a scene appears, I try to rush over to the keyboard and get it down.  The problem is that the scenes don’t always appear in the correct order. I see the end of a book (or play, as I’m also a playwright) first, or the dramatic climax first.  Every so often I write down the scenes on index cards and lay them on the floor to see what piece of the story is missing.  Maybe this is why editing is so difficult.

Q: So you don’t pre-plan your work?

Not usually, no.  I follow the age-old advice of “write with the end in mind” as well as my characters, but not much else.  I’ve found this syle has pros and cons – like anything – but for me it works.  I set out with my characters’ having a goal, some personality quirks and things they are afraid of.  Then, I just throw obstacles at them.  It easier with something like TRAVELS, as it was a memoir and I didn’t have to invent anything.  If you knew my family, you’d understand.  Once I got over my anger at them, I learned to see them as an entire lifetime of entertainment value.

Q: What advice do you give new writers?

Write. Write what you see.  Write what you feel.  Somewhere, somehow, someone is going to love your stuff.  But always remember – someone is going to hate it as well.  Ultimately, you need to be satisfied with what you’re doing.

Q: Any last words?

Yes.  Make sure to have a life.    Let your art flow from your observations of the everyday; don’t lock yourself away in some dark, dank place with a bottle of Jack Daniels and a laptop.   We are on this Earth to engage with our surroundings; to love and experience this great thing called LIFE.



This tour was organized by Good Tales Book Tours.

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Dick Lochte talks about his Sleeping Dogs:

Can you tell your readers something about why you chose this particular topic to write about? What appealed to you about it? Why do you think it is different and your approach is unique?

Originally, my book SLEEPING DOG would have had a much different title. I got the idea for the book from an article in the Los Angeles Times about racehorses being stolen in California and transported into Mexico where they would literally be run to death in small tracks there. The plot popped into my head: when a teenage boy’s beloved animal is horsenapped by a Mexican cartel, he and a grumpy, not-entirely-sober horse trainer would undergo a series of adventures searching for the horse.  Alas, the book and especially the popular film BLACK STALLION appeared suddenly and it seemed the boy, the trainer and the horse story, while considerably different from mine, was not different enough. I put the concept aside for a while, but one morning a local television news show carried a feature about dogs that were being stolen locally to be used to train illegal fighting dogs. I thought I could have my young heroine, Serendipity Dalquist, discover her dog is missing. After getting the run-around from the police she decides to hire the human bloodhound, private eye Leo Bloodworth, to find the dog. He refuses. His sleazy office mate, takes the case and is murdered.  And Serendipity’s and Leo’s adventures begin.

 As for my approach, I decided to play with the first person narrative, letting Serendipity and Leo narrate their own chapters, not always agreeing on what really happened.

How long do you think about a topic before deciding to write about it? Do you have a set of notes or a note book where you write down topics that appeal before making a decision as to which topic this time?

I get an idea for a story (from news reports, a person I notice on the street, a comment someone makes, whatever). I don’t think too much of it at the time, but if it persists, I’ll spend a few minutes spinning it around and either wind up discarding it or noting it down in an “Ideas” file. Most of these remain in the file, but on rare occasions, two or more of the ideas seem to coalesce. And that will be my next book.     

 How long does it take to research a topic before you write? And for this book?

A friend says he believes research to be a writer’s tar baby: you can get so caught up in it, the book is never written.  That won’t happen to me. I keep research at a minimum, either by writing about things I know very well, making stuff up, or by spending quality time with my good assistant Google.

 SLEEPING DOG was a different situation. Written before Google’s Sergey Brin and Larry Page were even in their teens, it required a number of hours in neighbourhood libraries studying maps of California, current news about dogfights and dog thefts, the 1960s hippie movement, banking conventions, conversations with members of the Los Angeles Police Department, a working private detective, bankers, and visits to various locations in Southern and Northern California.

What resources do you use? In general and for the last book that you wrote?

See answer to 3.

How helpful do you find authority figures such as the police when you say you want to write about them? Is there a good way to approach them in your experience?

The easy way to get cooperation from the police is to go through their public relations department. That’s true for business executives, too. But you have to be very careful in making your request sound as if your subject’s contribution will benefit the organization.

How many times have you been rejected before your first novel was accepted or before this book was accepted?

SLEEPING DOG was my first novel. On the first week it was submitted, it was turned down by one publisher and purchased almost immediately by another.

Did you need to self-publish on e-books before a publisher took you up?

No.  All of my book originally have been brought out by publishers.

Would you recommend self-publishing and building an audience before approaching a publisher? If so, what benefits do you see that it might have for the aspiring novelist?

Sorry, but I have no practical experience in self-publishing. If you want an uneducated opinion, I would recommend an aspiring novelist submit her or his work to a publisher first.  The success of 50 SHADES and the handful of other examples of self-publishing best sellers strike me as rare as white alligators. 

Does writing provide sufficient income to live on? And how long did it take before this happened?

I’d say the income will probably not be sufficient enough. SLEEPING DOG was a fairly successful first novel that went into three printings and earned a very nice paperback advance, along with an advance for the next two novels. That, and the very quick option of film rights, meant I could cut back on journalism, which was my occupation at the time.  But many of my writer friends have continued their day jobs. And that’s another plus for the writing profession: you don’t have to give up the day job. 

What is the best piece of advice you were given that you could pass on to aspiring writers?

The advice is painfully simple: finish the book. Don’t keep polishing that first chapter until it shines. Don’t get four or five chapters down and set it aside to start “something more saleable.” Don’t talk yourself into turning your idea into a screenplay. Write the book, all 90,000 words. And then show what you’ve done to the most critical person you know – preferably someone with no empathy affect. You don’t have to agree with everything they say, but if they trigger any doubts, pay attention to them.

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Arcane Forest: Blogtour

Title: Arcane Forest Anthology
W.J. May, Chrissy Peebles, C.J. Pinard, Kristen Middleton, Karen De Havin, Kaitlyn Davis, Emma Shade, Kate Thomas & Natasha Brown
Publication Date:
March 19, 2015

Get Lost in Worlds of Fantasy and Awe

Read 9 different first books from 9 different Fantasy (romance) series. We hope you enjoy the books you are about to read and meet some new characters to love!

Note: Some of these books are part 1 and may end on cliff hangers.

Book 1 by W.J. May – Rae of Hope
Book 2 by Chrissy Peebles – Eternal Vows
Book 3 by Kaitlyn Davis – The Golden Cage
Book 4 by C.J. Pinard – Enchanted Immortals
Book 5 by Kristen Middleton – Wicked
Book 6 by Karin De Havin – Jin in Time
Book 7 by Natasha Brown – Fledgling
Book 8 by Emma Shade – Finding Obscurity
Book 9 by Kate Thomas – Resounding Truth

iTunes | Goodreads | Amazon | B&N

Author Bios

Kaityln Davis
Bestselling author Kaitlyn Davis writes young adult fantasy novels under the name Kaitlyn Davis and contemporary romance novels under the name Kay Marie. Always blessed with an overactive imagination, Kaitlyn has been writing ever since she picked up her first crayon and is overjoyed to share her work with the world. When she’s not daydreaming, typing stories, or getting lost in fictional worlds, Kaitlyn can be found indulging in some puppy videos, watching a little too much television, or spending time with her family.

Author Links:

Website | Facebook Fan Page | Amazon Author Page

Natasha Brown
Natasha Brown was born in Nevada City, California. Being an only child, she resorted to using her imagination while exploring the forest surrounding her home (a nasty habit she hasn’t been able to break). Her natural interest in fantasy ignited when her parents read The Hobbit to her as a youth, and from then on anything seemed possible. Once awarded with a Hershey’s bar ‘the size of a Buick’ in her high school English class for creative writing, her passion and interest in literature has never dimmed.

She now lives in Littleton, Colorado with her husband, two children, and two dogs.

Author Links:

Facebook | Twitter | Blog

CJ Pinard
A little about me – I’m a west coast native who has lived on both coasts and now lives near the middle, in Colorado! Coming from a family of writers and editors, I feel writing is in my blood and hope people will lose themselves for a little while in the fantasy and fun of my stories. I also love sweet red wine, the SF 49ers, and unlike most authors, I don’t have any cats. When I’m not writing, I can be found chasing around my kids or working at my day job, which I totally feel interferes with my real life, but it also gives me inspiration for my books, since reality is sometimes way more interesting than fiction.

I also love getting notifications that people have sent me an email, added me on (like page) Facebook or (friend page) Facebook or on Goodreads. So stop by and say hi – don’t be shy! I’m not! Email me at:

Author Links:

Find me:
Like me:
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Karin De Havin
Karin De Havin is a historian, turned writer. Karin writes Young Adult fantasies as well as New Adult contemporary stories from her timber frame home in the Pacific Northwest. She lives with a pair of tuxedo cats that like to help her write by jumping on the keyboard, and her pianist husband who occasionally is known to wear a tuxedo and tinker with the keyboard too.

Follow the latest news about new releases at:
Karin De Havin website

Karin loves to hear from her readers.
Contact her on her Facebook Fan Page.

Emma Shade
Emma lives in Indiana with her husband and three crazy cats. She’s currently pursuing a degree in Visual Communications with Photography. When she’s not busy writing her next novel or doing college homework, Emma enjoys curling up with a good book.

Author Links:

Author’s Website

Kristen Middleton
Kristen Middleton lives in the Midwest and enjoys writing Horror and Fantasy, as well as Contemporary Romance. Since 2011, she has written over nineteen books, many which have been translated into other languages. Kristen also writes gritty biker stories under the pen name of Cassie Alexandra.

Author Links:
Facebook | Amazon | Website

WJ May
Wanita May grew up in the fruit belt of Ontario – St.Catharines. Crazy-happy childhood, she always has had a vivid imagination and loads of energy.

Wanita and her husband run an online business, dealing in antiques and collectables – particularly jewelry and porcelain (one of the business’ website: ).

Her first book, Rae of Hope – from the Chronicles of Kerrigan was a huge success and she’s gone on to write many more books. Check her out!

Author Links:

Facebook Fan Page | Website | Twitter


SIGN UP FOR W.J. May’s Newsletter to find out about new releases, updates, cover reveals and even freebies!

Chrissy Peebles
Chrissy Peebles has always loved reading and writing fantasy from the earliest age she can remember. She lives in a busy city with her husband, two young kids, and three cats. Chrissy also loves to snap photos as her favorite hobby.

Author Links:

Facebook Fan Page

Kate Thomas
Kate Thomas, is the author of the upcoming Equilibrium Series, a five-book supernatural new adult series and The Resounding Series, an eight-book series, with plans for a few more series in 2015.

She is a CPA by trade, a church planter and entrepreneur at heart; however, writing and reading are passions she just can’t help but indulge in. With more ideas than one person should be allowed, she is blessed to have a muse that doesn’t seem to take a vacation and more energy that one might consider healthy.

She writes under the following pen names:
L.A. Starkey – Young Adult & Middle Grade Paranormal
Isabella James – Sci-fi/Fantasy

Author Links:

Goodreads | Twitter | Website | Amazon


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This tour was organized by Good Tales Book Tours.

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