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

Oh What A Pavlova

Hey Everyone,

Today I am bringing you a  Q&A session from the lovely Isabella May in honour of her Book Birthday for Oh! What a Pavlova.

Blurb

Oh! What a Pavlova

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?

Purchase Link: myBook.to/pavlova

Oh Waht A Pavlova Book Cover

Q&A

1: Can you summarise ‘Oh! What a Pavlova’ in just a few words?
Okay, are you ready? It’s quite a different premise for a novel…
Cake meets domestic violence, travel, spirituality, comedy, and a bid for freedom in the arms of many an unsuitable man… all set against the backdrop of the weird and wonderful characters of the publishing industry.

2: What was the inspiration for this book?
A burning desire to dispel the misconception that an abusive relationship is abusive all the time: it is not. But I also wanted to portray a very honest picture of the way D.V can splinter the victim’s life. Quite often they are leading a double life, their outer façade so astonishingly different to the unthinkable acts they are tolerating behind closed doors. Ultimately though, I wanted to create a story with a very different message; a message of empowerment for any woman or man who is currently feeling anything but strong.

3: Did you do any research for the book?
Yes. Although I have been to most of the twenty-two destinations which feature in the book, a couple of locations are brand new to me, so I had to read a fair bit about them to get a feel for them. And then to reinvigorate my memory with the sights, sounds and smells of the more familiar places, I turned to Pinterest, which is fantastic for evoking emotion and atmosphere (as well as procrastination!)

And of course, there was a lot of reading to do on the subject of abuse – not so pretty, but essential for furthering my own personal understanding, and so I could tell a more comprehensive story.

4: How do you decide on the names for your characters?
Oh, the character names in this novel have each changed more than half a dozen times. Then again, it is a book that was several years in the making! My second and third novels (The Cocktail Bar and Costa del Churros) were so much easier. The names seemed to magically float into my head from an invisible Idea Cloud and they have stuck ever since.

5: Is there a message for the reader? What do you hope they will get from one of your books?
All of my books have an integral message: you are far more in control of your life than you have ever realized, especially when you let the Universe lead the dance. But hopefully I say this in a subtle way. There is also nothing worse than a Preaching Fairy Godmother…

Author Bio

Isabella May lives in (mostly) sunny Andalucia, Spain with her husband, daughter and son, creatively inspired by the sea and the mountains. When she isn’t having her cake and eating it, sampling a new cocktail on the beach, or ferrying her children to and from after school activities, she can usually be found writing. As a co-founder and a former contributing writer for the popular online women’s magazine, The Glass House Girls – www.theglasshousegirls.com – she has also been lucky enough to subject the digital world to her other favourite pastimes, travel, the Law of Attraction, and Prince (The Purple One). She has recently become a Book Fairy, and is having lots of fun with her imaginative ‘drops’! Costa del Churros is her third novel with Crooked Cat Books, following on from the hit sensations, Oh! What a Pavlova and The Cocktail Bar.

Oh What a Author Pic

Social Media Links

www.isabellamayauthor.com

Twitter – @IsabellaMayBks

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

Instagram – @isabella_may_author

My Previous Posts

See what Isabella’s writing process is as she discusses writing in this post

The Cocktail Bar Review

Oh Giveaway Prize - The Cocktail Bar

My Thoughts on Isabella’s New Book – Costa Del Churros

It was a fantastic read! It was great to see a couple of familiar faces, including revisiting one I previously disliked and now have a totally new opinion of. I really love how Isabella manages to mix reality and a hint of magic. Marvellously written and the characters are so relatable, each one with their own faults and imperfections. As always Isabella writes in a way which allows the words to flow from the pages.

Thanks for reading.

Emma-Louise x

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Blog Tour: Joseph Barnaby by Susan Roebuck {Guest Post}

Joseph Barnaby Full Tour Banner

Hey Everyone,

Sorry for the delay in the post, it was meant to go out yesterday. As thy say though, better late than never. Today I have a guest post from authorSusan Roebuck.

Blurb

Stand by your beliefs – even if it means going to the end of the Earth

By standing up for his principles to save the life of a prize racehorse, farrier Joseph Barnaby loses everything. Now, a personal vendetta has become too deep to fight and he escapes to the island of Madeira where he finds work on a small farm at the foot of a cliff, only accessible by boat. The balmy climate and never-ending supply of exotic fruit, vegetables and honey make it sound like paradise but, for Joseph, it’s the ideal place to hide from the world. Can the inhabitants of Quinta da Esperança, who have more grit in them than the pebbled beach that fronts the property, help Joseph find his self-worth again? And can he escape the danger that draws ever nearer?

Purchase Links

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Joseph-Barnaby-Susan-Roebuck-ebook/dp/B07FMVFLH1/

Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/Joseph-Barnaby-Susan-Roebuck-ebook/dp/B07FMVFLH1/

Guest Post

Portugal. A tiny country with a large heart, that’s what I always say. It’s not my country of birth (that’s the UK) but it’s my adopted country ever since my husband exported me here many moons ago.

It’s such a varied country with different cultures and landscapes. In one day you can drive from the north through national parks, ancient stone villages, past rocky mountains and steep hills covered in vineyards, to the more populated Centre with its famous Coimbra University, the walled town of Obidos down to rocking, vibrant and beautiful Lisbon. Cross over the vast Tagus river onto the south bank and travel through the plains of the Alentejo, past fields of wild-flowers, sunflowers, cork and olive groves with villages of white and blue cottages until the well-known, glamorous Algarve appears, its sparkle reflected in the azure sea because that’s as far as you can go on mainland Portugal.

The country is 900 years old, revels in the fact that it is Britain’s oldest ally (thanks to Queen Philippa of Lancaster who married Dom João I in the 14th century), and, in the fifteen and sixteenth centuries created a huge empire overseas thanks to its New World Discoveries. Portuguese is even today one of the most spoken languages in the world (thanks, largely, to Brazil).

Living in such a beautiful place, I decided to write three novels set here.

The first one was “Rising Tide”, set in a small fishing village in the Alentejo where two strangers meet – crab fisherman Leo from Alaska (straight out of the “Deadliest Catch”) and small boat fisherman, Piper, from Norfolk, UK. They’ve both come to find out more of their families.

The second one was “Forest Dancer”, set in the forest just outside Lisbon. Classical ballet dancer, Flora from London, is left a cottage in the village. She’s failed several auditions and needs to rebuild her career. Can she do that in such an out of the way place? Maybe. She’s caught the eye of a local forest ranger but maybe his love is greater for his beloved trees and forest.

My new novel, “Joseph Barnaby” is not set on mainland Portugal but on the island of Madeira, on a fajã which is a flat area of land at the bottom of a steep escarpment or cliff. Often formed on the islands of Madeira and the Azores from volcanic lava flow before it was stopped by the ocean. Some Fajãs are wide enough to be farmed, but usually the only access to them is by boat.

Madeira is famous for its tropical climate and exotic fruits and flowers. At first, Joe works in a fishermens’ bar where the drink of the day (other than beer) is always Poncha. It’s an alcoholic drink made with Aguardente de cana (distilled alcohol made from sugar cane juice), honey, sugar, lemon rind, and lemon juice. It is all mixed together in a pitcher and the taste is sweet, it doesn’t have a strong alcoholic taste. It really packs a punch.

josephbarnaby

Author Bio

I was born and educated in the UK (I am British!) but now live in Portugal. I’ve been an English teacher for many years with the British Council and also the Portuguese civil service where I developed e-learning courses.

My first love is, of course, my husband, my second writing, and my third painting. And now I have time to be able to indulge in all three.

My debut novel, “Perfect Score” was published by Mundania Press on Sept 21, 2010 and the paperback launched on May 11 2011. It was a finalist in the 2012 EPIC e-book Awards in the Mainstream Category.

My second novel is a dark thriller/fantasy called “Hewhay Hall”. It won an EPPIE award in the 2013 EPIC (Electronic Publishing Industry Coalition) e-Book Awards in the Horror Category.

Next comes “Rising Tide”, published in 2015. Set in Portugal, published by Mundania Press. It is set in a tiny fishing village that the world, and most of Portugal, has forgotten. Read about the wonders of the ocean and see if Piper from Norfolk UK and Leo from Alaska, USA, can find what they’re searching for in the little village of Luminosa.

“Forest Dancer” was published on 20th February 2018 by CrookedCat Books. This is novel number 2 set in Portugal but this time in the forests outside Lisbon, Portugal. Instead of the sea (as in Rising Tide), now find out about the wonders of the forest and whether classical ballerina, Flora, can find what she’s searching for in the small village of Aurora.

On 5th October 2018 CrookedCat Books published my newest novel, “Joseph Barnaby”, another romance/suspense which is set on the island of Madeira.


Social Media Links 

  Blog and website: http://www.susanroebuck.com

General Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SuRoebuck

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SusanRoebuckauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/sueroebuck

Thanks for reading.

Emma-Louise x

Blog Tour: Eternal Seas by Lexi Rees {Guest Post}

Eternal Seas.png

Today I have a guest post from the lovely author of Eternal Seas, Lexi Rees. Thank you to Rachel over at Rachel’s Random Resources for hooking this up.

Eternal Seas Blurb

Such a small parcel shouldn’t cause experienced smugglers much trouble, but this parcel is far from normal. Chased across the seas, Finn and Aria must solve the mysteries within the parcel. What does it mean? Who should they trust? What will happen? The fate of an ancient people depends on them and time is running out …

Eternal Seas cover

Guest Post

Does everyone love to nosy around in their friends’ bookshelves, or is that just me? I have one friend with the best collection of cookbooks – I actually have to remind myself not to just sit on her sofa and read them! My own bookshelves are far too messy to show you, so here’s a tour of my current reads.

Obviously, there’s the pile by the bed – it looks small thanks to the kindle working like Hermione Grainger’s handbag. At night, I mostly read fiction

ES1

Arguably, the more eclectic piles are the ones that find themselves in other spots.

So starting with where I’m sitting now, The Book of Book Lists is written by my school friends husband, Alex Johnson. It’s perfect for distracting me from work, hence why it’s right by my computer. It’s absolutely essential that I know right now what books Bin Laden had in his compound with him. And no prizes for guessing the book most left behind in hotel rooms …

ES2

Next to be stumbled across is a non-fiction on the real characters of the Wild West, The Bad Boys of the Black Hills … and some Wild Women too by Barbara Fifer. So this book has been wandering around the house with me and is now dumped on the floor so when I trip over it I’ll remember to move it. I’m pretending it’s “research” for a book, but basically, I’m just fascinated by the period and the lifestyle. I would have loved to have seen that time.

ES3

I read a lot of craft and horsey books. These two currently live in my lounge for day time reading when I have a coffee; I don’t drink tea – sorry tea-lovers!

And Book Two in Isabella Muir’s Sussex mystery series has been commuting with me this week. Loving it.

ES6

Apart from books, I don’t think I’m particularly messy, but I suspect people might disagree and that this poem by Shel Silverstein sums me up. Top tip – it’s great fun to read this poem in a KS1 class and get a helper to fling clothes all over the place. Guarantee the whole class will love poetry after this!

Messy Room by Shel Silverstein

Whosever room this is should be ashamed!

His underwear is hanging on the lamp.

His raincoat is there in the overstuffed chair,

And the chair is becoming quite mucky and damp.

His workbook is wedged in the window,

His sweater’s been thrown on the floor.

His scarf and one ski are beneath the TV,

And his pants have been carelessly hung on the door.

His books are all jammed in the closet,

His vest has been left in the hall.

A lizard named Ed is asleep in his bed,

And his smelly old sock has been stuck to the wall.

Whosever room this is should be ashamed!

Donald or Robert or Willie or–

Huh? You say it’s mine? Oh, dear,

I knew it looked familiar!

But there is a big worry in this poem. His books are all jammed in the closet? Noooooo that’s just wrong! My books seem to like to travel. And seeing pictures of Eternal Seas finally travelling from my head to other places is just the best feeling ever. So please do share pics of it being read wherever you find it! Make an author happy!

Pre-order Link 

http://viewbook.at/EternalSeas

Author Bio 

Lexi Rees spends as much time as possible sailing and horse riding, both of which she does spectacularly badly. Attempts at writing whilst horse riding have been disastrous, so Eternal Seas was written on a boat; the storm described in the book was frighteningly real.

Eternal Seas - Lorraine-16

Social Media Links

www.lexirees.co.uk

https://www.facebook.com/LexiAuthor

https://twitter.com/lexi_rees

Competition

Win one of two £10 Amazon gift vouchers (UK only). To enter

  1. Share a photo of you with the book (paperback or ebook) on Twitter or Instagram
  2. Tag @lexi_rees (Twitter) or lexi.rees (Instagram) and #EternalSeas
  3. Closing date 30th November 2018
  4. UK only
  5. Winners will be drawn randomly

Illustration competition – would your children like to see their illustrations published in a book?

  • Six lucky winners will have their illustrations printed in the sequel to Eternal Seas
  • Winners and runners up will also have their drawings featured on lexirees.co.ukand on social media

Drawings must be in black and white, and can be in any of the following categories

Aria flying up in the sky

A cat

Mountain ponies

A snow eagle

A demon-goddess

A sailing boat

Finn and/ or Aria

Please see detailed terms for entry requirements

Open to children aged 13 or under

You can enter as many categories as you like

Winners will be chosen by Lexi Rees

Children’s name and age will be published together with their illustration. Parents/ guardians must confirm they are happy with this when they enter. Other information (e.g email address) will not be shared.

No purchase necessary

Closing date 31/1/19

Entries must be scanned or photographed in high resolution and emailed to lexireads@hotmail.com. The winners may need to post originals if the images are not high enough quality for printing. Postage costs will be covered in this case.

Full entry details can be found on lexirees.co.uk

Thank you to Lexi and Rachel for allowing me to be part of this tour.

Emma-Louise x

Guest Post by Isabella Muir

I’m Isabella Muir, the author of the Sussex Crime Mystery series.  This series of three books is based around the character of Janie Juke, a young librarian. Set in the late 1960s, Janie Juke turns out to be an excellent amateur sleuth, following in the footsteps of her hero, Hercule Poirot.  The stories are based in the fictional Sussex seaside town of Tamarisk Bay and are perfect for anyone who loves Agatha Christie and the swinging sixties.

And now – to celebrate the birthday of the great Queen of Crime – Agatha Christie – THE SUSSEX CRIME MYSTERIES is available as a compilation for a special discounted price – only until 15th September.

This collection of three previously published books, includes THE TAPESTRY BAG (Book 1), LOST PROPERTY (Book 2), and THE INVISIBLE CASE (Book 3). All three books can be bought individually.

ABOUT BOOK 1: THE TAPESTRY BAG

A young woman, Zara, goes missing, one year to the day that her boyfriend, Joel, was killed in a hit and run.   Is Zara in danger?  Is she still alive?  What really happened to Joel and who is to blame?

In the quiet seaside town of Tamarisk Bay, the police appear to be doing little to find Zara.  Her friend Janie decides to make it her mission to track her down.   It’s the ‘swinging sixties’ and Janie fears that Zara may be mixed up with drugs, alcohol, or worse.  As Janie explores the strange circumstances of Zara’s disappearance, she starts to question the truth about Joel’s death.

Janie runs the mobile library and has a passion for crime fiction, especially Agatha Christie.  Can Poirot help Janie solve the mystery of Zara’s disappearance?  As she looks for clues Janie comes across some unsavoury characters who each have a reason for wanting Joel dead.  Can she untangle the web of lies and find out the truth?

ABOUT BOOK 2: LOST PROPERTY 

Janie Juke has developed a reputation for finding missing people.  When Hugh Furness asks Janie to track down an old friend, she discovers there is much more at stake than a missing person. 

This new case takes Janie back in time to the Second World War, where she learns about secret missions and brave deeds.  It is the past that holds the key, but she needs to be at her most intuitive to work out what lies behind the rumours and conjecture.

Following in the footsteps of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot, Janie enlists the help of local journalist, Libby Frobisher.  Racing around the seaside towns of Tamarisk Bay and Tidehaven, Janie and Libby track down clues and piece together the facts.

A new decade is looming.  In these last months of the 1960s, time is against them.  Hugh Furness is seriously ill and Janie is just months away from the birth of her first child.   Can Janie and Libby find out who is telling the truth before it is too late?

ABOUT BOOK 3: THE INVISIBLE CASE

It’s Easter 1970 in the seaside town of Tamarisk Bay, and for one family the first Easter of a new decade brings a shocking tragedy.

Amateur sleuth and professional librarian, Janie Juke, is settling into motherhood and some quality time with her family. When her Aunt Jessica is due back from Rome after nine years travelling around Europe, she arrives back in town with a new Italian friend, Luigi, and the whole family soon get embroiled in a tangle of mystery and suspicion, with death and passion at the heart of the story.

As time runs out on Luigi as prime suspect for murder, Janie has to use all of her powers of deduction in the footsteps of her hero, Hercule Poirot, to uncover the facts. Why did Luigi come to Tamarisk Bay? What is the truth about his family?

As Luigi’s story unfolds, tragedy seems to haunt the past, present and unless Janie acts fast, possibly what is yet to come.

What’s coming next?

I have the embryo of an idea for Number 4 in the Sussex Crime mystery series, which will see the young journalist Libby Frobisher lead the investigation – with Janie Juke taking a bit of a back seat!

I am also just putting the final touches to THE FORGOTTEN CHILDREN, which deals with the heart-breaking topic of the child migrants who were sent by the UK to Australia in the post-war era, right up until 1970.  THE FORGOTTEN CHILDREN is available for pre-order, and will be published 29th November.

And when I’m not writing…I help my husband run a small campsite in West Sussex, ably supported by our gorgeous Scottie dog, Hamish!

Readers can keep in touch with me by:

Email: theisabellamuir@gmail.com

Website: https://isabellamuir.com/

Twitter @SussexMysteries            

Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/IsabellaMuirAuthor/

Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Isabella-Muir/e/B074F18ZSY/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

                        The Sussex Crime Mysteries 3D

A massive thank you to Isabella for taking the time to write this guest post.

Thanks for reading.

Emma-Louise x


                 

Guest Post: Jennifer Gilmour {Product Review – Brother Label Maker}

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Since I was young I always loved labelling and when I got my first label maker I was in my element. Do you remember those old style label makers that emboss the plastic type tape?

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Image from – http://restorationstj.com/the-label-maker/

Is it just me or did you also have the urge to go around and label everything?

It also reminds me of The Simpsons episode in which Bart Simpson goes around labelling every item in his path, oh it made me laugh because that was my childhood and a very stationary geekette moment of course.

labelmaker

Image from – https://deadhomersociety.com/2015/10/22/quote-of-the-day-2406/

My husband has his own printing business and I have been helping out packing and design work. I am at home as a writer so always take his packages. One evening he opened a package and turned to me and said “You will love me for this”… only to see it was an electronic label maker for the packages he sends. I could have hugged him or kissed him but I wanted to print the first label, it was an urge and all the memories had come flooding back!

Hubby’s business- www.outfoxprinting.wordpress.com

I have to admit it wasn’t easy to get started and it was a lot of faff to wirelessly print. The software is basic and thats all it needs to be, it was easy to actually type up and print and thats what we wanted to do so that we sped up the packing process.

Alas my first label was printed and I whipped it off the adhesive and stuck it to my husband, I won’t repeat what was printed here but the Bart Simpson in me came out! Oh how I had so much fun, especially when I discovered the mobile phone app which is much more of a faster process then on the computer. We were covered in stickers but it was ok as it was the complimentary roll. The fun was over and we got all serious about the cost side then. I gladly offer to pack so I can use it and yes I am not ashamed to admit it.

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The label printer we have is the Brother QL-810W and we bought it for around £85, it was worth the investment for this price- this was on the offer price on Amazon at the time. The non sale price is around £193 and I think we would of hesitated a little or had been a little disappointed to have to spend that amount on this device.

printer

Here it is on Amazon- https://www.amazon.co.uk/Brother-QL-810W-Connected-Wireless-Printing/dp/B01NC39W6

Like I mentioned before the installation was frustrating, in fact It took me around 40 minutes to set up both computers and two mobile phones. The software on the laptop and the process to get to print is way longer then on your mobile phone which I do find frustrating as I use the computer the most.

If you are using it for a business element, handmade or crafting then this is a good investment or the sale price as its quick to print labels from the Etsy app.

Happy labelling

Thank You Jennifer for sharing your product review with us today.

Emma-Louise x