Monday, 28 November 2016

Christmas is Coming...


Christmas seems to have rather crept up on me... 

I don't have any presents bought as yet but do have this gorgeous Christmas banner from my publishers, Accent Press, so I thought I'd share it with you. I love the cover for my most recent book in the series, A Jersey Bombshell, and was thrilled to see it in this banner.

It's been a very busy year, so I'm hoping to have a few days over the Christmas period doing as little as possible and catching up with the books on my 'To Be Read' pile before it threatens to topple over.

I've bought quite a few Christmas themed books to get me in the mood for the build up to Christmas and after that will probably be reading books that remind me of holidays, or maybe a few historicals to sweep me off to another era. Either way, books will be on my present wish list.

How about you? What will you be doing over the Christmas holidays apart from the usual getting together with family and friends?


Monday, 14 November 2016

New Book Alert! The Amulet by Effrosyni Moschoudi

When Katie loses her Athens office job, a gypsy woman hands her an amulet for good luck. Next, she gets hired as hotel receptionist on the Greek island of Sifnos and everything seems perfect, except for the overbearing hotel owner, Mrs. Matina. One of the guests, heart-stoppingly handsome Aggelos, keeps saving the day whenever Katie needs help. As she falls in love, she grows all the more intrigued by him and his quirky friends, including a little girl who keeps turning up on her own. Add a psychic, half-mad elderly woman into the mix and you’re in for a few laughs. Things are not what they seem in this small, family hotel and get even more complicated when the gypsy woman shows up again. Will Katie ever work out that Aggelos is a guardian angel that came with the amulet? And if she does, will she be able to keep him? It may take a miracle. But on an island as magical as Sifnos, anything is possible!


EXCERPT


When Katie arrived back at Hotel Asimi the sun was slowly gliding towards the horizon against a pastel-coloured sky. She was strolling past the hotel’s thatched umbrellas, making her way towards the entrance when her jaw dropped. Sitting on the bottom step was Aggelos. He was holding an orange juice carton, drinking through a straw thirstily.
Katie put her hands on her hips and gawped when she stopped to stand before him. ‘Aggelos! How did you do that?’
Aggelos beamed at her and pulled a long tendril of silky hair back from his brow. ‘How did I do what?’
‘How did you get here before me? It was a good five kilometres out of Asimi where I left you. Did you hitch a ride?’
Aggelos pointed at his feet. ‘Yes. On those babies.’ He chuckled and winked. ‘I’m a fast walker.’
‘But . . .’ She scratched her head. ‘You can't be faster than the scooter I was on, surely.’
Aggelos stood and scrunched up the carton, then hopped up the few steps to the bin. He tossed it inside and shrugged when he returned to her at the bottom of the steps. ‘Nah, you’ve been gone ages. I bet you wandered around the village and lost track of time.’
‘I did buy an ice cream . . . and lingered at the village square for a while,’ she mumbled.
Aggelos tilted his head. ‘See? Not Superman, after all.’
‘I never said you’re Superman. But, I have noticed you tend to save the day.’
Aggelos put up a finger. ‘Now, that’s a compliment and a half! Thank you, Katie.’
Katie heard the sound of her name on his lips again and it made her knees weak. Earlier, when he was drinking his refreshment she couldn’t take her eyes off his pouted lips around the straw. She’d tried to imagine there and then how it would feel to kiss them. Now, as he gazed at her, his wide smile exposing perfect pearly whites, she shifted her weight from foot to foot, wondering if she had it in her to ask him out. She decided it was too soon. After all, she’d never done this sort of thing before. As she contemplated all that, Aggelos was telling her about the beauty of the places he’d explored that day. She kept nodding and making the odd comment and, all the while, marvelled at his perfectly sculpted features.

INTERVIEW

Welcome, Effrosyni. You must be excited about your newly published novel, The Amulet. What is it about?

First of all, thank you so much for inviting me to your blog. I am excited to be here! The Amulet is a romantic comedy with angels that is set on the enchanting Greek island of Sifnos. The story has romance, intrigue, humor and a touch of drama – so a bit of everything really. I also made sure to tantalize my readers again by describing Greek dishes, like I often do in my books. One of my beta readers reported she had to put the book down at some point and go get something to eat!

Sounds delightful! And I understand you have a giveaway open at the moment for Team Effrosyni members. What is the team about? And can you tell us more about the giveaway? My readers are book lovers and they may want to enter


Team Effrosyni is my way of playing Santa with my fans! Anyone is welcome to join and it’s all free. Every time I release a book, I’ll be giving all the members a FREE advance reader’s copy to read without any obligation. Members are also able to enter occasional giveaways that are open exclusively to them. For the one I created to mark the launch of The Amulet, there are tote bags up for grabs as well as a bunch of six kindles set in Greece by authors I admire. 




Your readers are welcome to join Team Effrosyni. Once they do, they will be immediately taken to a screen that will disclose the giveaway link so they can enter. It’s that simple, and there’s still time to join! All details about Team Effrosyni are here: http://effrosyniwrites.com/join-team-effrosyni/

I sent a FREE ARC copy of The Amulet to all team members before the launch. Any new members can grab the book off Amazon for only 99c. The book will remain at this bargain price while the giveaway is still running.

That’s great. What plans do you have for the future? Any new books in the pipeline?

I’ve decided to take time to work on my back list for a while before writing another novel. The Necklace of Goddess Athena has popular themes (mythology and family drama) for Greek readers and I want to try marketing it in my country too. I’ve started translating it into Greek and hope to finish it in 2017. I also plan to change the covers of my romance trilogy, The Lady of the Pier. Other than that, I intend to write a couple of short non-fiction books, but it’s still too early to say more about that. On the subject of novels, I have ideas for a couple more standalone stories with angel characters from The Amulet brewing in my head.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR




Effrosyni Moschoudi was born and raised in Athens, Greece. As a child, she loved to sit alone in her garden scribbling rhymes about flowers, butterflies and ants. Today, she writes novels with Greek lovers in mind. She lives in a quaint seaside town near Athens with her husband Andy and a naughty cat called Felix.

Effrosyni is a proud member of the writer's groups eNovel Authors at Work, ASMSG, and the Fantasy & SciFi Network. Visit her website for free excerpts, book trailers, and to join her team of loyal readers that enjoy exclusive benefits:

On her secondary blog, she shares her favorite Greek meals with the world. Visit at your own peril. It will make you very hungry!

LINKS

Saturday, 5 November 2016

NaNoWriMo 2016 - Taking Part


I've decided to take part in NaNoWriMo 2016 to give myself a deadline for Beautiful Faces, a novella and prequel to Broken Faces. This novella will introduce readers to the characters whose lives I've written about in Broken Faces and what happened to them from November 1914 - November 1918. 

I wanted to write the novella because I loved the idea of revisiting two of my main characters, Lexi and the man she loves, Freddie. Freddie only sees her as his friend's younger sister, and the story runs from early June 1914 to just before the start of the Great War, where Broken Faces continues their story and NaNoWrimo seemed like the perfect way to get me to finish that first difficult draft.

I've taken part in NaNo several times before and actually finished writing the 50,000 words in the time frame given three times. I think the first time I completed NaNo was when I finished the first draft of Broken Faces, the second time was when I wrote my one and only YA novel - that's still sitting in a laptop somewhere - and the third time was to help me finish the second book in my Jersey Scene series, A Jersey Affair. NaNo is great fun, you have writing buddies whose word count you can see each day and that and the stat graphs are a great incentive to help you keep going each day.

That said, I'm sitting here writing this when I've only actually done 435 words out of my required 1,667 today... So, I'd better get going and get on with it, otherwise Beautiful Faces certainly won't be ready for my January publication date.

Sunday, 25 September 2016

Jersey Festival of Word 2016




I've bought my tickets and am looking forward to attending various talks from Thursday through to Sunday at this year's Jersey Festival of Words

From Anne Sebba, Alison Weir, Michael Morpurgo, Louise Doughty, Antonia Hodgson and Rachel Abbott to Kelly Clayton, Claire Boscq Scott, Sophie Cousens, Simon Scarrow, Victoria Hislop, Paul Darroch and Ian Ronayne and many, many more, it's difficult to fit in all the talks/workshops, etc.

Here's the link for tickets.

I can't wait!




Also at the moment is my book, Broken Faces, written as, well, me, Deborah Carr has been reduced for a short time (until 4 October) to 99p \ 99c on Amazon

Broken Faces is set in WW1 in both Jersey, Shropshire, France and Belgium. It's the story of the hallowed privilege who believed life was always going to be golden. It's also the story of two young men in love with the same woman and of thousands of broken men who returned from the Front with masks over their faces to hide the irreparable damage. These men were expected to live a “normal” life. 

Spanning the 1914-18 war it is ultimately a story of how love can triumph over adversity in the most unexpected of ways.

Here's a picture of the book in front of Jersey's PoW camp from WW1, Les Blanches Blanques and here's a link to discover more and see a few pictures of the camp.

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Shaman's Drum by Ailsa Abraham


Genre: Magical Realism / Religion
Release Date:  5 Jan. 2013
Publisher: Crooked Cat Publishers

England in the near future. 
Mainstream religions have been outlawed, and the old gods rule again. 
Iamo has been a priest of the Great Mother and is sworn to celibacy, but his love for Riga, a Black Shaman, a magical assassin, caused him to break his vows. After being imprisoned apart from each other for three years, Iamo accepts an offer to earn them both a pardon and the possibility of marriage. If they survive.
 
Iamo and Riga must discover why demons are breaking through from the other side. Which of the cults are renegades who allow the demons through? Who can they trust? 
Combining their powers, they face the ordeal with the help of a band of eclectic pagans, spirit creatures, Riga's Black Shaman brothers, an undercover Christian granny, and three unusually energetic Goths. 
It's a tough assignment, but the hope of a life together keeps them fighting.

EXTRACT
The Demon Prince, like all demons, had once been human. He’d been a Handsome man but all manner of evil thoughts and deeds had distorted his face and body. His skin was that of a rotting corpse, maggots and other larvae constantly dropping from it. His mouth hung slack, showing his sharp carnivore’s teeth. Even from this distance I could smell his breath, like a blast of hot air from an abattoir. He was a walking irony of knightly valour in armour made from the nails of his victims. His helmet was a priest’s head, the expression of horror still fixed on it and the eyes still moving. His hands were claws that grasped and pulled everything towards him, he was the embodiment of greed. Nothing that anyone else possessed was safe, especially their souls.  His eyes emitted a black luminescence that darkened all around it. Within his circle it became impossible to think clearly, only to walk towards the inevitable death and enslavement he promised. What else was there in the world? What was the purpose of resisting?

In slow motion, I saw him raise his wand, fashioned from a new-born baby’s arm and point it at Iamo. Thick black sludge solidified and shot towards the monk, my partner, and in that moment I realised that it wasn’t just desire I felt for him. I loved him. I threw myself forward, knocking Iamo sideways and took the full force of the black fireball on my chest but a pale blue lightning bolt leapt between Iamo and the site of the hit, bouncing back towards the Demon Prince, who staggered and fell. The other demons stood bereft. Without their leader to command them they had no will of their own. Only the one who had crawled within touching distance of me was still unstoppable and he sank his rotting, grime-encrusted fangs into my leg.

BUY LINKS


About Ailsa
Ailsa Abraham writes under two names and is the author of six novels. Alchemy is the prequel to Shaman's Drum, published by Crooked Cat in January 2014. Both are best-sellers in their genres on Amazon. 

She has lived in France since 1990, enjoys knitting and crochet and until recently was the oldest Hell's Angel in town. Her interests include campaigning for animal rights, experimenting with different genres of writing and trips back to the UK to visit friends and family. She runs an orphanage for homeless teddy bears and contributes a lot of work to Knit for Africa. She is also addicted to dressing up, saying that she is old enough to know better but too wise to care. 







Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Review: The Magic of Ramblings by Kate Field

Today I'm reviewing The Magic of Ramblings by Kate Field.
Published by Accent Press on 8 September 2016

Here's the blurb:

Running away can be the answer if you run to the right place… 

When Cassie accepts a job as companion to an old lady in a remote Lancashire village, she hopes for a quiet life where she can forget herself, her past and most especially men. The last thing she wants is to be drawn into saving a community that seems determined to take her to its heart – and to resuscitate hers… 

Frances has lived a reclusive life at Ramblings, a Victorian Gothic mansion, for over thirty years and now Barney is hiding away there, forging a new life after his medical career ended in scandal. He doesn’t trust the mysterious woman who comes to live with his rich aunt, especially when she starts to steal Frances’ affection – and maybe his own too…


Review: Cassie is hiding from something, or should I say someone. She's sad, lonely and scared and wants to hide herself away from life. Fitting her belongings into one bag she fakes a reference and manages to get a job as a companion to Frances Smallwood, a fragile, but determined older woman. Frances hasn't left her beautiful home for years apart from to go to church, she's pretty much ignored by her three grown up children and would be alone if it wasn't for her hairdresser, housekeeper, and doting nephew, Barney. 


Like Cassie, Barney has had his fair share of heartache and has come to Ramblings to get away from the shambles of his life. He's brusque, angry most of the time and suspicious of people he doesn't know. So when Cassie moves into the large house and takes over caring for Frances - a woman with her own secrets - he's unimpressed and determined that her visit won't last very long. Underneath his bearded face and scowl he's more handsome than Cassie expected and despite her insistence that she keeps her self to herself, she ends up becoming more involved in the lives of those people around her in more ways than she, or they, could have expected.

I loved this book and couldn't wait to discover exactly what had happened to Cassie and how she and Barney were going to resolve their differences. Frances was also a fascinating character with obvious sadness in her life that she was keeping to herself as well as her difficult relationship with her children. I spent the entire weekend thoroughly involved with the three of them, with Cassie's fight to move on from her past, and her battles with Barney. Barney... what a gorgeous hero! Looking forward to reading Kate's next book.

Definitely a 5* rating from me!

Buy Links: Amazon UK  Amazon US



About the author:
Kate Field lives in Lancashire with her husband, daughter, and a recently arrived Russian Blue kitten, who may prove so distracting that she never has time to write again. The Magic of Ramblings is her first published novel.

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/KateFieldAuthor/
Twitter: @katehaswords

GIVEAWAY
A £25 or equivalent Amazon Voucher
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/4be03017191/




Tuesday, 13 September 2016

Visiting Rachel Brimble's Blog

I'm chatting to lovely fellow author, Rachel Brimble on her blog today about my writing, my books and other bits and bobs. Please pop over and say hello. 

http://rachelbrimble.blogspot.com/2016/09/welcome-accent-press-author-georgina.html