Monday, 25 April 2016

Cancelled vows

Book Description for Cancelled Vows:

Police Chief David O’Callaghan and Chelsea Adams’ wedding day is fast approaching. Unfortunately, at the last minute, David discovers that there is one small problem to be taken care of before he can tie the knot—divorce his first wife!

Lauren Carr takes fans of the Mac Faraday mysteries to the Big Apple in this nail biting adventure. In Cancelled Vows, David, Mac, and Gnarly, too, rush to New York City to dissolve David’s marriage to an old girlfriend—and he’s got five days to get it done. When murder throws up a road block, it is up to David’s best man, Mac Faraday, and Gnarly, K9-in-waiting, to sort through the clues to get David to the church in time!

​Buy the book here:  Amazon

Author's Bio:

Lauren Carr is the international best-selling author of the Mac Faraday and Lovers in Crime Mysteries and the Thorny Rose Mysteries. Lauren is a popular speaker who has made appearances at schools, youth groups, and on author panels at conventions. She also passes on what she has learned in her years of writing and publishing by conducting workshops and teaching in community education classes. She lives with her husband, son, and four dogs (including the real live Gnarly!) on a mountain in Harpers Ferry, WV.

Connect with the author:  Website  ~  Twitter  ~   Facebook


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My Review

I really enjoyed this book - not only is it a wonderful murder mystery but also a will they/ won't they romance? Coming from the UK I found it difficult to believe that someone could get married without knowing that they had, yet I guess that anything is possible in Vegas? This is just the beginning of a fast-paced story with some wonderful characters, not least Gnarly the ex-army dog who is just fabulous and the star of the show for me.
In the beginning I found it hard to like David as he'd let his fiancee down badly in the past. He really tried to make amends though and grew on me. The ending was totally satisfactory but not at all what you might expect even if you were hoping for a happy ending. Loved it! I really hope there is more from this author.


Thursday, 21 April 2016

Reckless traveler

Author Bio:

Walter Rhein was born in Northern Wisconsin. After earning a degree in English literature, he moved to Lima, Peru where he worked for 10 years as a teacher, translator, editor and writer. In 2009 he returned to the US. He is the author of "Beyond Birkie Fever," "Reckless Traveler," and the dystopian fantasy novel "The Reader of Acheron." He can be reached for questions or comments at:

Book Blurb:

Reckless Traveler: an autobiographical novel of adventuring in South America, sure to delight anyone with a passport. 
PerĂº and beyond: Through the alchemy of travel, youthful folly may bring disaster or wisdom . . . and more. 
The instructional travel guide for aspiring backpackers: learn how to bribe police, avoid malaria, and find employment abroad -- and what to do (and not to do) when armed mercenaries detain your charter bus. 
Awaken your inner explorer with Walter Rhein's Reckless Traveler, expat tales from a decade of discovery.

Book links:
Reckless Traveler:
Beyond Birkie Fever:
The Reader of Acheron:

Author Links:
Heroic Fantasy writers:
Streets of Lima:
Amazon Author Page:

My Review

This is an amusing account of the author's time in South America. The chapters are short and i went to bed intending to read just a couple and found myself reading the whole book in one go.It offers an insight into the South American mentality - I can quite understand how Walter initially planned to stay for a few months and ended up spending ten years there. his advice on dealing with bureaucracy will no doubt ring a bell with many travellers the world over - if in doubt photocopy everything first! I'm not sure about the medical advice he was given by the locals but it certainly gives the reader an insight into another culture and way of thinking. i have to wonder what the author is up to now - after a bus 'hijack', robbery, illness, life must seem quite tame?


An octopus in my ouzo

Escape to the sunlight and colour of a wild island in the South Aegean...
Loving Life on a Greek Island

14 April 2016, Pb, £8.99, ISBN: 978-1-84953-860-2

With a laptop and hiking boots, surrounded by wild beauty and traces of ancient history, Jennifer plans to embrace her new life on a tiny Greek island to the full.
Bursting with Mediterranean flavour, An Octopus in my Ouzo takes you from surviving winter storms to serving drinks on the beach, dancing and walking and swimming your way around the island with an exuberant fisherman and an adorable canine companion a funny, sad and inspiring journey to find that happiness lies in living small and thinking big.

‘Poetic, touching, enlightening: Jennifer’s very personal journey into Greece’s deep heartland will give even the most couch-bound armchair traveller itchy feetAnne Zouroudi

A seductive evocation of Greek island life and an honest exploration of what it means to try to live differently. An Octopus in My Ouzo is about diving into the unknown and staying afloat’ Lizzie Enfield


About the author

Jennifer Barclay grew up in the north of England in a village on the edge of the Pennines; she left for Greece after university, lived in Canada and France and the south coast of England before moving to a Greek island. She works with books as an editor and agent and writes for newspapers and magazines. She has previously written Meeting Mr Kim and Falling in Honey, and her blog about daily life is at: 

 My Review

I devoured this book in two days and now wish I could read it again for the first time. So much of Jennifer's story resonates with me, having also taught English in Greece and tried to start a family in my forties! Maybe she is my alter ego? At any rate, this story will delight, enchant and fill you will joy and sadness. Against the backdrop of a seemingly idyllic island, real life goes on with its ups and downs coming full circle and Jennifer Barclay makes some keen observations. From now on whenever I come across a cultural difference, I'm also going to refer to it as a seahorse moment!!
I really appreciated the author's view on Greece and it's not a tale seen through rose-tinted glasses yet her love for the people and the place shine through. I may just have to buy the paperback edition now to put on my 'Greek' shelf and i'll be checking out her first book too. Brilliant!



Death of a bride

Blurb: Of all the plans a bride makes in anticipation for her wedding day, dying is definitely not one of them. 
The Zampetaki mansion, on the remote island of Gadvos, welcomes dozens of guests for the grand wedding of Cassandra Zampetaki and Homer Cara. It's a wedding that will never take place. The bride's lifeless body is found, brutally murdered, on the morning of the wedding. Planned to look like an open-and-shut case, the mastermind behind it all did not figure on Hellenic Police Captain Costa Papacosta and Lieutenant Ioli Cara to be among the guests. 
A storm rages outside and no one is able to leave the island. In a battle against time, the dynamic investigating duo must solve this intense case before the guilty party can depart from the island. 
Everyone is a suspect and no one is safe. 
Join in on the thrilling mystery and try to solve the crime. The clues are all there... 

Bio: Luke Christodoulou is an English teacher (MA Applied Linguistics - University of Birmingham), a poet and an author. 
He is also a coffee-movie-book-Nutella lover.
His first book, THE OLYMPUS KILLER (#1 BESTSELLER - Thrillers), was released in April, 2014. The book was voted Book Of The Month for May on Goodreads (Psychological Thrillers). The book continued to be a fan favourite on Goodreads and was voted BOTM for June in the group Nothing Better Than Reading. In October, it was BOTM in the group Ebook MIner, proving it was one of the most talked-about thrillers of 2014.
The second stand-alone thriller from the series, THE CHURCH MURDERS, was released April, 2015 to critical and fan acclaim.
The third stand-alone thriller, DEATH OF A BRIDE, is available now!
He is currently working on the fourth book from his planned Greek Island Mysteries book series.
He has, also, ventured into children's book land and released 24 MODERNIZED AESOP FABLES, retelling old stories with new elements and settings. The book, also, features sections for parents which include discussions, questions, games and activities.
He resides in Limassol, Cyprus with his wife and daughter.
Hobbies include travelling the Greek Islands discovering new food and possible murder sites for his stories.

Author links: WEBPAGE :

My Review

Luke has been on my radar for a while now but this is the first book of his that I've read. The opening chapter sets the scene with the death of a bride to be. As you might expect from a thriller, it is quite graphic at times which is fine for the blood and gore types. On the other hand, the way in which the characters are all introduced at the same time and the fact that the police duo hold their inquiries in the library in an attempt to solve the mystery is very reminiscent of Agatha Christie. I loved the descriptions of Crete and they have reinforced my urge to revisit the island. The plot is well constructed and the book is easy to read so I would thoroughly recommend this book. I'm now going to search out Luke's earlier standalone thrillers. For me, not much can beat a good greek thriller unless it's actually reading it in Greece!


Thursday, 14 April 2016

In the context of love

Book Description for In the Context of Love:

What makes us step back to examine the events and people that have shaped our lives? And what happens when what we discover leads to more questions?
Angelica Schirrick wonders how her life could have gotten so far off-track. With two children in tow, she begins a journey of self-discovery that leads her back home to Ohio. It pains her to remember the promise her future once held and the shattering revelations that derailed her life.

Can she face the failures and secrets of her past and move forward? Somehow she must learn to accept the violence of her beginning before she can be open to life, and a second chance at love.
Buy the book:   Amazon   Barnes & Noble

“Linda K. Sienkiewicz’s powerful and richly detailed debut novel is at once a love story, a cautionary tale, and an inspirational journey. In the Context of Love should be required reading for all wayward teenage girls—and their mothers, too.” ~Bonnie Jo Campbell, author of National Book Award Finalist, American Salvage, and critically acclaimed, Mothers, Tell Your Daughters.
“With tenderness, but without blinking, Linda K. Sienkiewicz turns her eye on the predator-prey savannah of the young and still somehow hopeful.” ~ Jacquelyn Mitchard, author of the #1 NY Times Bestseller, Deep End of the Ocean
“Absorbing, heartbreaking, compulsively-readable and insightful, Linda Sienkiewicz’s In the Context of Love casts a hypnotic spell. This is storytelling at its best.” ~ Lewis Robinson, author of the critically acclaimed, Officer Friendly: and Other Stories, and Water Dogs

Book Trailer:

Author's Bio:

Linda K. Sienkiewicz is a published poet and fiction writer, cynical optimist, fan of corgis, tea drinker, and wine lover from Michigan. Her poetry, short stories, and art have been published in more than fifty literary journals, including Prairie Schooner, Clackamas Literary Review, Spoon River, and Permafrost.

She received a poetry chapbook award from Bottom Dog Press, and an MFA from the University of Southern Maine. Linda lives with her husband in southeast Michigan, where they spoil their grandchildren and then send them back home.

​Connect with the author:   Website   Twitter   Facebook



Win a $10 Amazon gift card (International)

My Review

At first, not knowing what to expect, I wondered if this book would be just another chick-lit book with a HEA. How wrong could I have been?
The language of this story is quite beautiful, heart-wrenching yet managing to drive the plot at the same time. It's a coming of age story that will resonate with everyone as we watch Angelica's story unfold.
How many of us can look back on our lives and wonder about our first love? Angelica was a golden child, yet one who made some choices which would follow her throughout her life. I was interested to know how the author would resolve the story and it's this which keeps the reader engrossed to the end. I enjoyed reading about her adolescence as well as becoming part of her modern day family. The characters are well-drawn and the writer manages to portray a slice of American life.
Interesting though Angelica's story is, there's also the back story of her parents. If anything I found her mother equally fascinating and their stories will remain with you long after you finish the book. At times the book is quite sad as it plucks at the heartstrings. It is this all-pervading sadness about missed opportunities, lies and deception that make you hope for a happy ending. This is no easy-read but one which will make you run the gauntlet of emotions as we watch Angelica try to come to terms with the past in order to move forward.


Wednesday, 13 April 2016

The owl goddess

The boy watched the star fall. It fell very slowly, and it was not one light but a multitude of lights spinning lazily through the night sky. Then great silver fish flew through the sky and other mysterious lights began to appear on the mountain. At last a great thunderbolt struck the ocean. The sound was flat and hollow and unbelievably loud, as if a giant had stamped on the earth. And the sign of the Goddess appeared in the sky – the sign of the Sacred Mushroom. These are the events that mark the arrival of the Atlantis, the doomed starship, bringing new gods who would change the life of the boy and his people forever.

Amazon US:

Amazon UK:

Universal link:


Jenny Twist was born in York and brought up in the West Yorkshire mill town of Heckmondwike, the eldest grandchild of a huge extended family.
She left school at fifteen and went to work in an asbestos factory. After working in various jobs, including bacon-packer and escapologist’s assistant (she was The Lovely Tanya), she returned to full-time education and did a BA in history, at Manchester and post-graduate studies at Oxford.
She stayed in Oxford working as a recruitment consultant for many years and it was there that she met and married her husband, Vic.
In 2001 they retired and moved to Southern Spain where they live with their rather eccentric dog and cat. Besides writing, she enjoys reading, knitting and attempting to do fiendishly difficult logic puzzles.
She has written two novels - Domingo’s Angel – a love story set in Franco’s Spain and harking back to the Spanish Civil War and beyond - and All in the Mind – a contemporary novel about an old woman who mysteriously begins to get younger
She has contributed short stories to many other anthologies, of which two – Doppelganger and Uncle Vernon have been released as short ebooks.
Other works include the Mantequero series: novellas about a Spanish mythological figure, and An Open Letter to Stephen King & Other Essays, a compilation of non-fiction essays and articles.
Her new novella, The Minstrel Boy, will be published in the anthology Letters from Europe in the spring of 2016.

Jenny Twist

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Amazon Author Page

Twitter: @JennyTwist1