Book Tour: Divine Poison by AB Morgan


Today I have a review for the book Divine Poison by AB Morgan.

Blurb…

For a community psychiatric nurse, Monica Morris has an unhealthy interest in poison, and when, on impulse, she buys an antique Ship’s Doctor’s Cabinet with a set of leather bound journals she becomes fascinated by the content.

A few days later, she discovers the body of her patient, Jan Collins, and although police assume suicide by overdose, Monica is not convinced.

When more unexplained deaths involving poisoning occur, Monica realises they are linked and so does DS Adams who is investigating. But how are they connected? And why?

When it becomes obvious that she’s unwittingly stepped into a trap set for someone else, Monica’s career, her own sanity and her life are placed at risk. But where can she turn to for help?

Review

I really liked the sound of this book by AB Morgan and was quite excited to get started. However, I have to admit it did take quite a few chapters to pick up for me. I found the beginning bit quite tedious and felt the character was just ‘doing the rounds’ and it wasn’t really leading anywhere. If anyone else finds this I really urge you to keep reading. Once I got over than first quarter it soon picked up and I really enjoyed it. The pace picked up and the intrigue was great. I was kept guessing all the way through without there been any obvious predictable situations.

After that first part the writing flows much more naturally. The chapters are split into sections which I really like. As a busy mother I don’t always have the time to sit and read lengthy chapters so I appreciate the breaks that AB Morgan implemented. 

I liked all the characters on the book. Each brought something different. 

All in all I’d give this book 3.5 stars out of 5. Overall the book was great.

Thanks for reading.

Emma-Louise Smith

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Book Tour: A Vicarage Christmas by Kate Hewitt {Review}

Today I have a review for the book A Vicarage Christmas by Kate Hewitt.

Blurb…

 Welcome to Thornwaite, a quaint village tucked up in England’s beautiful but rainy Lake District… where homecomings happen and surprises are in store for the four Holley sisters…

Anna Holley, the third of four sisters, has always felt a little bit forgotten. A family tragedy when she was a child had her retreating deep into shyness, and social anxiety kept her on the fringes of the cozy chaos of the busy vicarage.

After several years away from home, Anna returns for Christmas… and an important announcement from her father. As much as she once loved the village, coming back is hard and puts Anna’s social capabilities to the test. 

Avoiding her sisters’ bossy questions, she heads out to the local pub one night, and meets a handsome stranger nursing a pint. Somehow, unburdened by expectations, Simon seems like the perfect person to spill all her secrets to—including a hopeless, long-held crush on her sister’s boyfriend. Confident she’ll never see him again, Anna returns home… only to discover the next day that Simon is actually her father’s new curate!

Anna is beyond mortified, but Simon won’t let her retreat into her usual shyness—and for once Anna is forced to confront the past, and all the fears and feelings she’d tried so long to hide. But with his own heartache that needs to heal, can Simon help Anna to make this the most magical Christmas either of them have known?

Review…

I have read a few of Kate Hewitt’s books before and always enjoyed them. A Vicarage Christmas was no different.

This book has elements of mental illness in it, specifically social anxiety and I found it interesting to read about. How it affects the characters and the decisions that Anna makes because of it. 

Anna is a really easy to like character, I sympathised with her completely and really felt for the situation she was put in and also the guilt she felt.

Simon is a really good guy and it was really good getting to know him, I’d quite like a book from him perspective which delves into his past. 

There are elements of sadness in the book but every moment is well worth reading. I was left feeling warm and cozy when it was over.

Kate has such a smooth writing flow that you can easily get through chapters and not even notice. 

I would rate this 4 stars and highly recommend it for anyone wanting a lovely Christmas read.

You can grab your copy here.

Thanks for reading.

Emma-Louise x

Book Tour: Sister, Psychopath by Maggie James {Review}

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Today I have a review for you from the book Sister, Psychopath by Maggie James.

Blurb..

When they were children, Megan adored her younger sister Chloe. Now she can’t bear to be in the same room as her.

Megan believes Chloe is a psychopath and her sister does appear to be a textbook case: cold, cruel and lacking in empathy.

Why does Chloe want to taunt Megan at every opportunity?  And why does she persist in manipulating their mentally ill mother, Tilly?

When Tilly, under Chloe’s malignant influence, becomes dangerously unstable, the consequences are ugly. Megan’s world falls apart. Her sister’s out of control and there’s little she can do about it. Until Chloe’s actions threaten the safety of Megan’s former lover. A man from whom she has kept an important secret…

A study of sibling rivalry and dysfunctional relationships, Sister, Psychopath tells the story of one woman’s struggle to survive the damage inflicted by her own flesh and blood.

Review…

What a corker of a book! I seriously enjoyed reading this. The main character Megan is the sort of woman everyone can relate too. Most of us have siblings or family members we cannot stand, all have unrequited love, and generally stuggle for our careers and money. Chloe on the other hand plays the perfect villian, everythign about her reminded me of the mean girls you get at school and within business enviorments that drive you insane and get away with everything.

The build up through the story to that main critical point was fantastic, I never saw what was coming and the end twist? Saaayyy whaaaat???? I did NOT  see that coming, maybe a few little parts of I had an inkling but not on that scale.

Maggie has a way of writing that sucks you in and keeps you glued to the pages. The character development was really well done. I would give this book 5/5 stars and highly recommend it to anyone who loves a good psychological thriller.

Thanks for reading.

Emma-Louise x

Book Tour: Oh! What A Pavlova by Isabella May {Q&A}

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Today I have an guest post from Isabella May, author of Oh! What a Pavlova.

Blurb…

Kate Clothier is leading a double life: a successful jet-setting businesswoman to the outside world, but behind closed doors, life with Daniel and his volcanic temper is anything but rosy.

Some days – heck, make that EVERY day – cake is her only salvation.

Slowly but surely, the cities she visits – and the men she meets – help her to realise there IS a better future.

And the ley lines of Glastonbury are certainly doing their best to impart their mystical wisdom…

But will she escape before it’s too late?

Q&A…

What process do you follow for your writing? Are you a planner or do you just let it flow? Straight to PC or pen and paper?

I’m a mix of notebooks and PC when I am starting out on a new book. Notebooks are great to transport to cafes (I’m a dance mum so spend a lot of time waiting around with a coffee and cake!). Even in a noisy setting, you will overhear something in a conversation which sparks off an idea. And I often find that my characters start ‘talking to me’ and will let me record several paragraphs of an argument or confrontation … or even a sex scene for a future chapter!

Do you attend writing/author focused conferences? Which is your favourite?

Alas, living in Spain means it’s tricky to get to author conferences. I hope to attend some in the future though. On the other hand, I am near the Gibraltar Literary Festival and have been a few times. It’s had some really inspired line-ups over the past few years, and this October’s is no exception.

How many manuscripts do you have that you never submitted? Will you consider approaching your publisher with them now?

At the time of writing this, my second manuscript (a story packed full of cocktails and my usual jump-off-the-page characters, humour, travel and magic), is with my publisher, Crooked Cat Books for perusal. I’m keeping my paws crossed for a good response! And that’s it. So far, I have only written two books. But book three is already swirling around nicely in my head … that might just have to be based here, on the lively Costa del Sol.

What one piece of advice do you wish you received before you started writing? What one piece of intended good advice, wasn’t what it seemed?

I wish I’d been told to believe in my writing sooner. For years I doubted I had any true ability because I had no writing training or credentials. But eventually my confidence grew with practice, and, to be honest, by attending local writing groups here in Spain and biting the bullet to read my drafts aloud. The best thing I have ever been told when it comes to writing is that the infamous rules are there to be broken. In other words: learn them and then decide which to discard of. Obviously, this will change from novel to novel, but I think that as writers we uphold way too many rules, and actually, it is only through their wild abandon that we will find our true voice.

What is your favourite thing about the whole writing process?

My favourite thing about the whole writing process is that exciting flurry of words which comes out of absolutely nowhere … and then you can’t find pen and paper for toffee/fire up the laptop quickly enough! Those words are almost divine. Record them however you can though because you can bet your bottom dollar that when you do get around to jotting them down later, they won’t be there.

Was there a particular book that made you sit up and think ‘that’s it, I’m going to be an author too’?

Rebecca Campbell’s Light is the New Black is definitely the book that gave me the extra kick up the backside.

Who do you envisage as playing your characters if your book was ever turned into a movie?

Daniel Mays would make the perfect Daniel. As for Kate, I’d love to see either Emma Watson or Emily Blunt take on that role. I think both would portray naivety and self-doubt brilliantly, slipping into self-confidence in the business world with ease. Time to create a secret Pinterest board and start visualising!

What do you consider is your greatest accomplishment?

I hope it doesn’t sound like trumpet-blowing but there are many things I am proud of having achieved: One being *undoubtedly* this book. Then again, it did take a whopping seven years.
But I am also thrilled at the number of countries I have visited. Being one with Itchy Feet who doesn’t get to travel as much as she’d like now life has brought her family to Andalucia (the airfares here are shocking … the rail networks few and far between … the car journeys vast!), I would have to say all the travel I did prior to hitting thirty! I think I have totted up forty countries at last count. And I am also proud of myself for sticking out my degree. It was four years long and some of the ‘pathways’ that went with my Modern Languages degree, were far from fun, or my areas of expertise: Politics, Economics etc etc … Yawn!

I suppose I should also say that I am proud of myself, and my husband, for bringing up two bi-lingual children, giving them opportunities that will really open doors when it comes to their future careers. They both attend the local Spanish state school.

I could go on … but I must retain an element of mystique!

Buying Links

Amazon UK

Amazon.com

Thank you for reading.

Emma-Louise x

Book Tour: Accidental Damage by Alice May {Excerpt}

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Hey Everyone.

Today I have an excerpt for you for the book tour of Accidental Damage by Alice May.

Excerpt…

Twenty minutes later, Beloved Husband and I were both standing on the drive looking at the damage to our home in total silence. Words cannot begin to describe how dumbfounded we were. I do remember thinking irrelevantly that at least it was rather a nice day. Blue sky, sunshine, tweeting birds, you know the kind I mean. Always looking for a silver lining, that’s me, or at least it was. It probably would have been worse if it
had been raining, but let’s face it, things were pretty bad already.
Friendly Local Builder came over to us dusting o# his hands and said, “OK, it’s stable for now, but it’s going to need a bit of work.” A well-meant understatement, I think. Just like when the nurse says, “You won’t feel a thing.”
“I take it there’s no-one inside?” he continued.
Oh damn! Was there? (No you’re right I said something much worse than that but
I am not admitting to it in print.)
The Barbarian Horde! Frantic mental mechanics ensued.
Phew panic over.
“It’s OK,” I stammered after a moment of carefully cataloguing the probable whereabouts of our offspring. “The kids are all at school, and the cat is asleep in the back garden.
“There’s lucky then, could have been worse,” he said cheerfully. Beloved Husband and I looked at him in complete astonishment. Could there
Beloved Husband and I looked at him in complete astonishment. Could there possibly be something lucky about this? Maybe he was right, after all no one was actually dead, except possibly the cottage. It all rather depended on your perspective I supposed.
“Best ring your house insurance then,” he prompted helpfully.
We nodded, that did seem like the only thing to do under the circumstances.
***

A surprisingly short while later Beloved Husband had achieved a degree of
communication with the house insurance company.
With my hands wrapped around a warm cup of tea, (we’re British, what else were
we going to do in a crisis?) I listened as he calmly agreed with the sweet young
thing on the end of the line that it really was highly inconsiderate of us to allow
the house to fall down on a Friday afternoon.
However, after he had politely insisted that yes the situation was fairly critical and no it really couldn’t wait until Monday, arrangements were eventually made for a structural engineer to visit the property to assess the situation later that evening.
Fingers crossed there was something of the house left standing for him to assess
when he got here.
There had been rather a lot of haphazard development at the property over the course of its 350 year existence. The most useful addition at this present time was a fairly large, relatively modern, single-storey extension at the rear of the original two storey cob section.
This was a very useful family room designed around a kitchen with a lounge-style seating area by an open area to one side. The room then morphed into a conservatory / dining area towards the garden. There was also a door that led to a tiny ground ;or bathroom with a minuscule utility area. Fortunately, this part of the house could all safely be accessed via the conservatory doors by the back patio without risking our necks going near the worryingly, wobbly walls at the front.
As a result we were able to corral the Barbarian Horde, on their return from various educational establishments, at the back of the house with sufficient edible supplies, a selection of electronic entertainment equipment and a stern lecture about venturing no further than the bathroom and back on pain of death.
Literally!
We bravely decided to survey the internal damage. On reaction this was probably a rather foolish idea, but I never have claimed to be terribly intelligent.
It was a very surreal experience. The cracks had widened considerably in a very short space of time, allowing loads more daylight to penetrate the small cottage rooms than we usually got from the tiny old windows. Unfortunately this additional lighting allowed us to see quite clearly the substantial internal damage that had resulted.
Friendly Local Builder had stuck around, not only for the entertainment value that we were
we were offering, but also from a genuine desire to help out. He muttered something about needing some more support and disappeared back outside to his truck. He returned shortly with a couple of metal props and a stack of three yellow hard hats. Beloved Husband and I accepted the hats in wordless disbelief and rammed them on our heads obediently before turning towards the stairs.
It was at this point that we began to get an inkling of quite how big a problem we now had. The previously charming, yet slightly rickety staircase was no longer charming and was significantly more rickety. In fact we would be hard put to describe it as a staircase at all. It had been built into the corner of the cob cottage where the slightly smaller of the two massive cracks now ran right up the stairwell towards the roof. (Not an interior design feature I would recommend.)
As Friendly Local Builder did something useful with his props downstairs, we ventured cautiously and no doubt imprudently up what remained of the staircase. I challenge anyone to make sound decisions under similar circumstances.
The damage to the upstairs was comparable to that downstairs, if not significantly worse. Plaster was still falling from the walls in huge chunks leaving thick dust swirling. Early evening sunlight poured in through a significant gap between the wall and the roof at one end, highlighting a scene of utter devastation.
Bedtime was obviously going to be a bit of an issue.
If Accidental Damage sounds like a book you would like to read then you can purchase it here on Amazon UK.
Thanks for reading.
The Stationery Geekette x

Book Tour: Den Of Iniquity by Anabelle Bryant {Review and Excerpt }

Today I bring you a new book from Anabelle Bryant, The Den Of Iniquity. Not only do I have a review for you but also an excerpt from the book.

The Blerb..

Welcome to the most notorious address in London…

Beneath the airs and graces of the Ton lies The Underworld – London’s most scandalous gambling hall.

The only thing darker and more debauched than the hall itself? Rhe proprieter, Max Sinclair. As mysterious as the corners of the city he stalks. 

Max has vowed to take revenge against the men who murdered his mother.The Underworls attracts London’s darkest characters – the perfect partners in crime.

But when Lady Beaumont enters The Underworld,  Max’s life becomes more dangerous than he ever thought possible. 

Review…

I wasn’t sure whar to make of this when I first started reading. I have never read a book set in this era however it worked perfectly with the storyline.

Vivienne was a likeable character, I found her endearing and easy to sympathise with. I could understand her feelings for Max and felt her hurr and anger later.

Max while appearing complex is actually a relatively simple person, he mosses his mother and craves the love he misses. His need for revenge is understandable and adds depth to his character. 

All in all this was an extremely enjoyable book to read and I look forward to the continuing series.

Excerpt… 

With gentle reverence, she laid the card across her skirt and read the neatly printed square letters. Maxwell Sinclair. The name fit. He excuded strength and control, two qualities she lacked or at the least struggled to improve. She peered at the line of type beneath his name. Proprietor. And then the bottom row. Underworld Gaming Hell. Suspicion confirmed. She knew with no doubt the man was dangerous, but proprietor of gaming hell…well, that was as sinful as one could imagine. Yet somehow that fit too. When he’s settled his eyes upon her, his piercing gaze sent delightful prickles up her spine and then much lower  for some odd reason. She  welcomed the thrill, numb since her mother’s death fillwd her with grief and dear for her future. Oh yes, the man was trouble inside and out. If a glance could send a delicious shiver through her, what might a kiss envoke? She shook her head and dismissed the question. Proper ladies didn’t think of kisses.

You can purchase Den of Iniquity from 

Amazon 

B & N

Kobo

Amazon UK

Thanks for reading. 

The Stationery Geekette x 

Blog Tour: Late Whitsun by Jasper Kent [Extract and Giveaway]

On my quest to bring you all new books and interests I am taking part in my first blog tour.
Today I present to you Late Whitsun by Jasper Kent. Not only do I have an exclusive extract but I also have a Giveaway for you to join to win a copy.

The Blerb!

Brighton, 1938 …

Charlie ‘Big Bad’ Woolf thought it would be easy money, and there’s precious little of that for a private detective in a seaside town. It was just a trip up to London to hand over an envelope – a favour for his old partner, Alan O’Connor. But Woolf couldn’t resist taking a peek inside.

The pictures were unadulterated smut; a man and a girl in a hotel room. Blackmail, pure and simple – right up O’Connor’s street. Woolf was happy to be rid of them, handing them over to a masked man in a London park.

When he gets home, O’Connor’s waiting for him, which is a surprise. The bigger surprise is that he’s dead; a bullet through the eye. Woolf is the prime suspect, but when he discovers that the man in the photographs is a German diplomat and the blackmail is being run by MI5, things get more complicated.

It seems obvious who killed O’Connor, but Woolf soon realizes that he’s the only one who cares. With war looming, the good of the country counts for more than the arrest of a murderer. If he’s to see the killer caught, Charlie Woolf must prove that the crime has little to do with the world of espionage …

If that sounds like something you’re interested then you can read Chapter 1

Giveaway

That’s right I also have a Giveaway for you to win a signed copy of Late Whitsun by Japser Kent. 

To enter for a chance to win please follow this link on Rafflecopter. Giveaway closes 21st December. 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for reading and good luck!

The Stationery Geekette x