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Nick Louth tells us:

The Body in the Mist Book Cover The Body in the Mist
DCI Craig Gillard, The Body in the Marsh, The Body on the Shore, Trapped
Nick Louth
Crime, Police Procedural
Canelo
20th May 2019

A brutal murder hints at a terrifying mystery, and this time it’s personal.

A body is found on a quiet lane in Exmoor, victim of a hit and run. He has no ID, no wallet, no phone, and – after being dragged along the road – no recognisable face.

Meanwhile, fresh from his last case, DCI Craig Gillard is unexpectedly called away to Devon on family business.

Gillard is soon embroiled when the car in question is traced to his aunt. As he delves deeper, a dark mystery reveals itself, haunted by family secrets, with repercussions Gillard could never have imagined.  

The past has never been deadlier.

  1. 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 do tend to think for quite a long time about a book before setting out to write it. I currently have 3 to 4 novels sketched out to several thousand words, the ideas still circling in my head like airliners waiting to land at Heathrow. I do find that it helps to begin writing some aspects quite quickly. Characters for example do not become real to me until I’ve started writing down their dialogue, and can hear their voice in my head. But plots I can work on for weeks or even months trying to get something genuinely original wriggling in the dark corners of my mind. A lot of my writing is driven by issues that I want to shine a light on. Mirror Mirror for example concentrated on the concept of the instant celebrity, and the costs of that both for the individual and for society.

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

I am good friends with a retired detective inspector, and have contacts with a Home Office forensic pathologist, and a scientist who undertakes DNA analysis. That is a minimum for anyone who is taking their crime writing seriously. There is a lot, of course, available online but some things never seem to be reflected, and you need to know people to know what the issues are. For example when sending off a DNA sample for analysis, do you choose the basic service which may take a couple of weeks, or the highly expensive express service, which may need a senior officer’s budgetary permission? If you want to be realistic about the police you need to reflect some of their day-to-day concerns: staffing shortages, managerial competence, and outdated attitudes to diversity, for example.

  • 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 more successful you are, the easier it is to be taken seriously. As a former journalist I have a forthright way of approaching organisations. In general I would give the advice to make a brief phone call first, then follow-up with a detailed email, which also gives your bona fides, including the name of your publisher and/or agent as well as your own website address.

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

Dozens of times. It was a highly dispiriting experience, but if there’s one thing I should say to budding authors it is do not take no for an answer. Keep going.

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

I was very lucky that my first thriller, while still self published, became the bestselling book in the UK for a couple of weeks in 2014. There were no marketing costs, no agent to pay, and I kept a good slice of the proceeds. That was a phenomenal year, and even though I now have all the apparatus of the professional publishing industry behind me, I still haven’t managed to replicate that experience. But overall, for me, it’s been a decent living.

  • What do you read when you are ill in bed?

I’m almost never ill, and if I was well enough to read in bed, I’d be well enough to write. I certainly written tens of thousands of words when hungover, and sometimes they’re  unusually creative ones.

  • What have you done with the things you wrote when in school?

I wish I still had them, particularly some of the stories I wrote when I was seven or eight. In retrospect it does seem clear what I was destined to do.

  • What, in your life, are you most proud of doing?

Two things: Managing to maintain a very harmonious marriage for more than 20 years and the books I’ve written. Without the first, I doubt whether I would ever have managed the second.

  • Do you have an unusual hobby?

Not exactly unusual, but I’m a county standard chess player. While I have occasionally included a plot strand or two about chess, I do know that it should never be mentioned on the cover because it’s the commercial kiss of death. 

Author Bio:
Nick Louth is a best-selling thriller writer, award-winning financial journalist and an investment commentator. A 1979 graduate of the London School of Economics, he went on to become a Reuters foreign correspondent in 1987. It was an experience at a medical conference in Amsterdam in 1992, while working for Reuters, that gave him the inspiration for Bite, which was self-published in 2007 and went on to become the UK No. 1 Kindle best-seller for several weeks in 2014 before being snapped up by Sphere. It has sold a third of a million copies, and been translated into six languages.

The terrorism thriller Heartbreaker was published in June 2014 and received critical acclaim from Amazon readers, with a 4.6 out of 5 stars on over 100 reviews. Mirror Mirror, subtitled  ‘When evil and beauty collide’ was published in June 2016. The Body in the Marsh, a crime thriller, is being published by Canelo in September 2017. 

Freelance since 1998, he has been a regular contributor to the Financial Times, Investors Chronicle and Money Observer, and has published seven other books. Nick Louth is married and lives in Lincolnshire.

Website: http://www.nicklouth.com/

Twitter: @NickLouthAuthor

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Nick.Louth.Books/

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How to Dream

Dreaming of Rome Book Cover Dreaming of Rome
T.A. Williams
Women’s Fiction
Canelo
6th May 2019

Rome is where the heart is… The heart warming read of the summer

Jo has had enough of handsome men. After a painful break-up, she’s decided she doesn’t believe in love.

Then, while on a professional trip to the magical city of Rome, she meets Corrado, a scientist and her brother-in-law to be, who doesn’t believe in love either. To him, it’s just a biochemical reaction. So what’s the problem?

Well, he’s gorgeous for a start, as well as charming, generous, intelligent and attentive, and she feels herself immediately falling for him, despite her new outlook.

The majesty of the Eternal City brings them ever closer together. But is their relationship doomed, or will love conquer all?

Heartbreaking and hilarious in equal measure, Dreaming of Rome is a joyous and uplifting read from T.A. Williams, perfect for fans of Holly Martin, Tilly Tennant and Jenny Oliver

Trevor Williams says:

  1. 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?

Dreaming of Rome sees a girl who is disillusioned with love meet a scientist who doesn’t believe it exists. They then proceed to fall in love – or do they? The biochemical explanations produced to get to the bottom of what we think of as love fascinate me. Science is somehow trying to explain the inexplicable. All through history, love has been a driving force in life and in literature and I was fascinated to imagine how people with such beliefs might fare when finding themselves faced with something happening to them that they can’t explain away. Whether my approach is unique or not will be up to the reader to decide.

  • How long do you think about a topic before deciding to write about it?

I now have seventeen published novels to my name and no two have followed the same creative course. My very first book was written in under a month (80,000 words in 27 days – you do the sums), while my historical novel, Chasing Shadows evolved over a period of years. Normally I embark upon a new book having taken a decision as to where it is situated, who the main characters are and roughly (and I mean roughly) what will happen. I am a firm believer in letting the book lead me in whatever direction it chooses. New characters pop up as I go along and, if all goes well, round about halfway through, it starts writing itself.

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

I always try to visit the locations of all my books before writing. As I write about gorgeous places like Venice, Florence and St-Tropez, this is not an unpleasant chore by any means (J). I do, however, always research the history of the place (I like history) as well (did you know that just after the Normandy landing in WW2, there was another allied invasion through St-Tropez of all places? As for the details of the contents, I also do a lot of research, whether it be on local food and wine (also not unpleasant), wildlife, traditions etc. I couldn’t quantify it really. As for “Dreaming of Rome” I also did a lot of research on conservation and removal of single use plastics.

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

The internet. Google Earth is fantastic. Also, I make a point of only writing about places set in countries where I speak the language. I did French and German at university and then lived for 8 years in Italy, so am fairly competent in those languages. This allows me to read online stuff in the different languages and, in this way, get a more local and, hopefully, authentic flavour of things.

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

I first sent a manuscript to a publisher for consideration in 1976 (that’s right, 43 years ago) and I was only finally picked up by Harlequin/Harper Collins in 2013. Back in the old days, you sent the whole printed manuscript by post, with a stamped, addressed envelope attached. This cost a fortune and took months to get a response. As a result, I have enough rejection letters to wallpaper my study.

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

There’s a wonderful scene in one of my favourite movies called “Get Shorty” in which Gene Hackmann (who plays a seedy movie producer) tells his client, “The only kind of writing that makes money is ransom notes”. I could just about live on what I earn from my books, but it would be a real struggle. I’ve sold almost 200,000 copies of my books in six years and half the time they were on offer at 99p a copy. Amazon take 30% (or more), I get 50% of what’s left. You work it out. Let’s just say that a new Rolls Royce is not an option. Now, if I could get a movie deal or two…

  • What have you done with the things you wrote when in school?

I still have all 44 handwritten (in pencil) pages of “The Lake Dwellers” – a shameless ripoff of “Swallows and Amazons” that I wrote when I was 13/14. Somehow I doubt if it will ever make it to publication, but I keep it for old times’ sake.

  • Which of your books are you most proud of?

Probably “Chasing Shadows” about two couples travelling along the Pilgrims’ Way to Santiago de Compostela in northern Spain. This book involved a massive amount of research on medieval history, the history of the Camino and the Knights Templar. It also involved me cycling all 1800 kilometres of the journey from here in England to Compostela. Yeh, pretty proud of that. I also think it might be my best book, but that’s not up to me to decide.

Author Bio:

T.A. Williams lives in Devon with his Italian wife. He was born in England of a Scottish mother and Welsh father. After a degree in modern languages at Nottingham University, he lived and worked in Switzerland, France and Italy, before returning to run one of the best-known language schools in the UK. He’s taught Arab princes, Brazilian beauty queens and Italian billionaires. He speaks a number of languages and has travelled extensively. He has eaten snake, still-alive fish, and alligator. A Spanish dog, a Russian bug and a Korean parasite have done their best to eat him in return. His hobby is long-distance cycling, but his passion is writing.

Links to Book:

Amazon (UK)

Kobo (UK)

Google Books (UK)

Apple Books (UK)

Previous Books: Dreaming of Venice, Dreaming of Florence, Dreaming of St Tropez, Dreaming of Christmas and Dreaming of Tuscany

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And the Lore is? Ask the Author

Breaking the Lore Book Cover Breaking the Lore
(Inspector Paris Mystery Book 1)
Andy Redsmith
supernatural, magic, detective
Canelo
15th April 2019
kindle

A magical, mischievous mystery perfect for fans of Douglas Adams and Ben Aaronovitch

How do you stop a demon invasion... when you don’t believe in magic?

Inspector Nick Paris is a man of logic and whisky. So staring down at the crucified form of a murder victim who is fifteen centimetres tall leaves the seasoned detective at a loss… and the dead fairy is only the beginning. Suddenly the inspector is offering political asylum to dwarves, consulting with witches, getting tactical advice from elves and taking orders from a chain-smoking talking crow who, technically, outranks him. With the fate of both the human and magic worlds in his hands Nick will have to leave logic behind and embrace his inner mystic to solve the crime and stop an army of demons from invading Manchester!

And the novel looks like:

Discovering fairies at the bottom of the garden is supposed to be good luck. Except when the fairy has been crucified. Two pieces of wood shoved into the ground, one tiny form fastened on to them. Sometimes, thought Inspector Nick Paris, being a cop could be the worst job in the world. And sometimes it was bloody amazing.

‘Well?’ he asked. ‘What do you reckon?’

Williams the pathologist lay on the grass, examining the scene. He shuffled round and peered up at the detective.

‘I’m not sure what to make of it,’ he replied. ‘I’ve never seen anything like this.’

‘You think I have?’

‘Maybe, Boss,’ said a voice over Paris’s shoulder. ‘We do get to see some mighty weird stuff. Remember I told you about those talking fish?’

‘Bonetti,’ said Paris. ‘That was Finding Nemo.’

For the umpteenth time, Paris cursed the process of allocating sergeants, and wondered how the hell he’d been assigned this one. Life could be a right pain. Still, considering the grisly sight in front of him, it had to be better than the alternative.

‘Anyway,’ he continued, ‘we’re not in Hollywood. This is Manchester, for God’s sake! The leafy suburbs, granted, but your archetypal northern industrial city. Things like this just don’t happen here. Mind you, things like this probably don’t happen anywhere. Help me out, Jack. Is it even real?’

Williams pushed his glasses back on his nose, then pointed at the grass.

‘We’ve got what appears to be blood,’ he said. ‘There’s also bruising around the wounds. Hence the answer is: yes and no.’ He clambered to his feet, brushing the soil from his trousers. ‘“Real” – yes. “It” – no. Most definitely a “she”.’

Paris crouched down to survey the scene once more. The two sticks were in the ground in an X shape, with one wrist and the opposite ankle attached to each. The petite head drooped forward, golden hair obscuring the face. Over the shoulders rose silver wings, glistening in the early morning sun. Below the head he could see a body covered by a pale blue dress. A body that was clearly female, with a sensational, albeit minute, figure.

‘Can’t argue with you,’ he said. ‘Living doll. Well, a dead one. But she can’t be a fairy, because they don’t exist. So what are we dealing with? Freak of nature? Genetic mutation?’

‘Maybe,’ said Bonetti, ‘she really is a fairy. Or a woman who got stuck in a washing machine.’

Paris looked up into his assistant’s permanently vacant face, sitting on top of the solid, rugby player’s torso. He had to admit, a good person to have around if they ever got into a fight. Plus a reasonable enough chauffeur. Apart from that, though, about as much use as the Gobi Desert white-water rafting team.

‘A washing machine?’

‘Happened to me, Boss. One of my shirts shrunk when we put it in extra hot.’

‘I see,’ said Paris, as patiently as he could manage. ‘And did it grow wings at the same time?’

‘No, Boss. Our machine’s too old for any of them fancy settings.’

Paris contemplated life with Bonetti as his sergeant. The alternative didn’t seem so bad after all.

‘Right,’ he said, turning back towards Williams. ‘Any suggestions which actually come from Planet Earth? Or anything else you want to tell me?’

‘I can’t give you a definitive cause of death until we get back to the lab,’ replied the pathologist. ‘I can tell you I don’t appreciate working in a circus.’

Paris raised his head. Shouting voices rumbled down from the house, hidden from view by a thick privet hedge.

‘There you go,’ he said. ‘I’ve always wondered why these people with great big gardens split them into different sections. Now I know. It’s to stop the media from seeing the bodies.’

He looked back at Williams, who frowned at him.

‘Bound to happen,’ said Paris. ‘You know how fast the papers pick up on the slightest hint of a story. Then someone reports finding a murdered fairy? Just be glad my guys are holding them back. Besides, we’ve kept it down to three camera crews and half a dozen reporters; I think we’ve done pretty well.’

Williams tutted. ‘You’re enjoying this, aren’t you?’ he asked.

‘I never enjoy finding the victims. Even when they’re fifteen centimetres tall. But I do like interesting cases.’

‘Indeed. You’ve certainly got one here.’

‘Boss,’ said Bonetti. ‘Do we tell the press anything?’

‘Do we hell!’ replied Paris. ‘Say it’s a hoax. I’m sure Jack can whip up whatever you need.’

‘Of course,’ said Williams. ‘Give you time to whip up the killer, I suppose.’

‘Yeah. Only that won’t even be the hard part. That’ll be dealing with the lawyers.’

‘What do you mean?’

Paris stared up at him. ‘How do you kill somebody who doesn’t exist?’

Author Bio

Andy Redsmith was born in Liverpool and grew up in Runcorn. For university he moved the enormous distance to Salford and has lived in Manchester ever since. He says the people there are great, but we don’t talk about football.

He worked for many years as a project manager in the computing industry, a job which really is every bit as exciting as it sounds. Eventually the call of writing became too hard to ignore and he went off to do that instead. Over the years in IT he worked with some very clever people and some complete weirdos, none of whom bear any resemblance to the characters in his books. Honest.

He has a wonderful wife, a great son, and a loft full of old Marvel comics. One day he’ll get round to selling them. That’s the comics, not the family.

Twitter: @AndyRedsmith

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Not the tourist view

The Body in the Mist Book Cover The Body in the Mist
DCI Craig Gillard #3
Nick Louth
crime, murder, mystery
Canelo
20 May 2019
kindle

A brutal murder hints at a terrifying mystery, and this time it’s personal.

A body is found on a quiet lane in Exmoor, victim of a hit and run. He has no ID, no wallet, no phone, and – after being dragged along the road – no recognisable face.

Meanwhile, fresh from his last case, DCI Craig Gillard is unexpectedly called away to Devon on family business.

Gillard is soon embroiled when the car in question is traced to his aunt. As he delves deeper, a dark mystery reveals itself, haunted by family secrets, with repercussions Gillard could never have imagined.

The past has never been deadlier.

From master storyteller Nick Louth comes the third installment in the DCI Craig Gillard series. Compelling, fast-paced and endlessly enjoyable, The Body in the Mist is a triumph, perfect for fans of Robert Bryndza, Angela Marsons and Faith Martin

Nick Louth is really getting better – this is best book yet.

The story starts slowly, sedately, lulling you into thinking that you know the storyline, but you don’t.

As the story progresses shocking and unexpected revelations take it to a different and very dark level.  This is dark coasts and moors and hills where nasty things happen in the farm woodsheds… And then there is the final page!

The novel is well crafted with logical, if shocking, outcomes that take the story into just what happens in these lonely places, where families have lived a hard scrapple life for many generations, and the neighbours are far away and likely to be feuding. The weather is stormy and dank and cold, and the sun is fleeting and miserly. Not the nice tourist image at all.

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Lying is bad

I never Lie: Book Cover I never Lie:
Jody Sabral
psychological thriller,
Canelo
Pub Date 11 Jun 2018

Is she the next victim? Or is she the culprit…?

Alex South is a high-functioning alcoholic, teetering on the brink of oblivion. Her career as a television journalist is hanging by a thread since a drunken on-air rant. But when a series of murders occurs within a couple of miles of her East London home, she's given another chance to prove herself.

Alex thinks she can control the drinking, but soon she finds gaping holes in her memory, and wakes to find she’s done things she can’t recall. As the story she’s covering starts to creep into her own life, is Alex a danger only to herself – or to others?

This gripping psychological thriller is perfect for fans of Fiona Barton,  B A Paris and Clare Mackintosh. 

Whilst I thought it interesting to to see the lies told to herself by Alex about how she wasn’t an alcoholic, I found the overall story too slow to capture my interest.

Alex clearly thought she was in control even though it was obvious she wasn’t and she ignored her black holes in her memory and the blackouts she experienced. And ignored the fact that she just needed a ‘little drop’ to function.

The decline of an alcoholic and the damage they do to their nearest and dearest and others they come into contact with is shown by the story but I  still didn’t manage to finish reading to the end.

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