The Whisperers of Evernow by Heidi Catherine

May 14, 2019 - 5:49 am No Comments

It’s my turn on the blog tour for The Whisperers of Evernow, 1st in The Kingdoms of Evernow series, a new series by Heidi Catherine 

The Whisperers of Evernow

When the King owns your words, who will own your heart?

Manipulated by a vicious King, Jeremiah is stripped of his identity and forced into a life of silent submission as a Whisperer. Allowed only to speak at the command of the King, one thousand Whisperers must line up in rows and chant their sadistic ruler’s darkest desires. As each evil wish comes true, the King’s power over his impoverished kingdom grows.

When Jeremiah’s fears for the family he left behind are confirmed, he turns in desperation to the most unlikely person for help—the King’s eldest daughter. But is Princess Rose as kind as she is beautiful, or will she lure him into a trap?

To save those dearest to him, Jeremiah has no choice but to put his trust in Rose, whose own life is threatened as her father prepares to clear the path to the throne for his newborn son. Together they embark on a bold plan to overthrow the King and set the Whisperers free.

As love blossoms in this most unlikely place, Jeremiah and Rose must discover how to use the power of the spoken word to conquer more than just the kingdom. They will need to conquer their hearts.

The first book in the spellbinding The Kingdoms of Evernow series, this is a must-read by award-winning author, Heidi Catherine.

The Whisperers of Evernow by Heidi Catherine

Published by Sequel House on 6th April 2019

276 pages

The Whisperers are whispering. The Whisperers are whispering. The Whisperers are whispering. Then silence. There is something sinister about a 1000 voices speaking in sync and with their spoken word having the power to change fate.

Living under a tyrant king has turned the Valley of the Blessed into a poor and desolate land. People were starving and loyalty to the royals was gone. Jeremiah thought he was doing the right thing when he joined the Whisperers. At 16 there was a lot of responsibility on his young shoulders. As a whisperer, everything had to be done in silence or face the consequences of imprisonment or worse death. As the story spanned Jeremiah’s time in the castle, you can see that the pressure of remaining silent and worrying about his family had a detrimental effect on his life. Accompanying him as he does his duties, you meet quite a few characters, but none are as important as Rose. The connection between them, becomes stronger the longer they are in each other’s company, and whilst Jeremiah’s life is sad, Rose’s is not much better.

Whilst the majority of the story is set in the castle, there are times when we are following Micah’s story, Jeremiah’s younger sister, her story shows how she suffered with him leaving and the lengths she had to take to survive. Moving between Jeremiah and Micah’s story was seamless and there was no confusion whose tale I was reading about.

The plot was original, with characters you will love or hate. The descriptive style and the world building of the author enable you to imagine Jeremiah’s world with ease. The story ebbed and flowed depending on the scenes and when the scene had tension or suspense, I felt myself reading faster. It was a refreshing change not to finish on a cliff-hanger and whilst I do not want to give the ending away, I am glad to see that book 2 and 3 are already on pre-order and both will be out in a couple of months.

This is an ideal book for fantasy lovers and perfect for teenagers and adults . This is a new to me author and I enjoyed this book so much, I am off to read their other series.

Purchase Links:

US –  https://www.amazon.com/Whisperers-Evernow-Book-Kingdoms-ebook/dp/B07PJ88Q7W

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Whisperers-Evernow-Book-Kingdoms-ebook/dp/B07PJ88Q7W

Author Bio –

Heidi Catherine is an award-winning fantasy author and hopeless romantic.

Her debut novel, The Soulweaver, won Romance Writers of Australia’s Emerald Pro award and was published by Crooked Cat Books as the first book of a trilogy. After being named as a highly commended author in The Hope Prize, Heidi’s story, The Extra Piece, was published by Simon & Schuster in a collection of stories about disadvantage in our community. She was also a finalist in Romance Writers of Australia’s Little Gems competition four times.

She lives in Australia, not able to decide if she prefers Melbourne or the Mornington Peninsula, so shares her time between both places. She is similarly pulled in opposing directions by her two sons and two dogs, remaining thankful she only has one husband.

Social Media Links –

www.heidicatherine.com

www.facebook.com/heidicatherineauthor

www.twitter.com/heidicatherine

www.instagram.com/heidicatherinewww.amazon.com/author/heidicatherine

A Matter of Latitude by Isobel Blackthorn

May 13, 2019 - 5:36 am 1 Comment

Having read Clarissa’s warning, I volunteered straightaway to be on the blog tour for A Matter of Latitude.

A Matter of Latitude

From the acclaimed author of The Drago Tree comes a riveting thriller about survival, revenge and long-hidden secrets.

When local Lanzarote anti-corruption activist, Celestino, is T-boned on a lonely stretch of road, he knows the collision was no accident.

Wounded and fearing for his life, he hides in an abandoned fishing village, waiting for a chance to make it home. Meanwhile his wife, English expat Paula, is distraught. Her pursuit of answers is deflected when her neighbour, troublesome retiree Shirley Mobad, co-opts Paula on her escapades around the Canary Islands.

Paula’s search for her husband quickly descends into mayhem, danger and intrigue. Before long, she realizes she’s being followed. She needs answers, and fast.

But where is Celestino, and will he ever make it back alive?

“A Matter of Latitude simmers with danger, betrayal and treachery, drawing the reader into the island’s history of shady dealings and uneasy relationships between natives, tourists and expats… Isobel Blackthorn has crafted an atmospheric and setting-rich novel with alluring lyrical style.” – Sandi Wallace, award-winning crime fiction author

So here are my thoughts.

A Matter of Latitude by Isobel Blackthorn

Published on 7th December 2018

290 pages

It took me a while to warm to Paula, as at the start she came across as a bit ungrateful and envious of her parents, but as the story continues you realise how hard it had been for her to adjust to living in a foreign country, not fluent in the language and how hard she was trying for her daughter. When Celestino went missing she was at a bit of a loss and was torn between find out where he was and trying not to get him in trouble with the police. Celestino was a local artist and whilst he was trying to support his family selling the paintings he did, he was running a campaign exposing the corruption on the island.

As I mentioned I have read previous work by this author and I knew that the story would be descriptive, where the scenery was as important as the story and I was not disappointed. As you follow the mystery, you are introduced to some amazing scenery and highlighted throughout are important landmarks to the country. Due to the fine detail, this is a slow-paced mystery and whilst Paula was struggling, she did make some headway. What is different to so many other mysterious is that as a reader we know what has happened to Celestino and throughout the book his story is told.

Whilst this is a mystery, there is also an insight to how money and corruption is spoiling the landscape and whilst places rely on tourism, it shows what damage it is causing.

Another good mystery that will keep you reading to find out that will happen next.

Purchase Links

US – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07KWM65GY

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07KWM65GY

Author Bio – Isobel Blackthorn is a prolific novelist of original fiction across a range of genres, including psychological thrillers, gripping mysteries, captivating travel fiction and hilarious dark satire. 

Isobel holds a PhD in Western Esotericism for her ground-breaking study of the texts of Theosophist Alice A. Bailey. Her engagement with Alice Bailey’s life and works has culminated in the biographical novel, The Unlikely Occultist. 

Isobel carries a lifelong passion for the Canary Islands, Spain, her former home. Many of her novels are set on the islands, including The Drago Tree, which was released in 2015 and is now in Spanish translation, Clarissa’s Warning and A Matter of Latitude. These novels are setting rich and fall into the broad genre of travel fiction, and the novels are as much stories about the islands themselves as they are straight-ahead entertainment.

Isobel has led a rich and interesting life and her stories are as diverse as her experiences, the highs and lows, and the dramas. Some of her writing is dark, like the psychological thriller, Twerk, which is based on six years of research and first-hand accounts of dancers working in what are euphemistically called gentlemen’s clubs. 

A life-long campaigner for social justice, Isobel has written, protested and leant her weight to a range of issues including family violence. A Londoner originally, Isobel currently lives near Melbourne, Australia.

Social Media Links – https://www.facebook.com/Lovesick.Isobel.Blackthorn/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5768657.Isobel_Blackthorn

Twitter http://@IBlackthorn

https://www.instagram.com/isobelblackthorn/

Retriever of Souls by Lorraine Mace

May 12, 2019 - 5:23 am No Comments

It is my turn on the Retriever of Souls blog tour, a new to me author but when I read the blurb it grabbed my attention.

Retriever of Souls

Brought up believing that sex is the devil’s work, a killer only finds release once he has saved his victim’s souls. Abiding by his vision, he marks them as his. A gift to guide his chosen ones on the rightful path to redemption.

Detective Inspector Paolo Sterling is out to stop him, but Paolo has problems of his own. Hunting down the killer as the death toll rises, the lines soon blur between Paolo’s personal and professional lives.

So here is my thoughts on the book.

Retriever of Souls by Lorraine Mace

Published by Accent Press on 13th December 2018

253 pages

The story follows DI Sterling as he tries to stop a dangerous killer. When the mutilated body is found and IDed, he thought he had got his man, but trying to make a case against him was harder than he thought. Not only had he got more bodies turning up, he was also trying to get used to being separated and still being a good dad to his teenage daughter.

The story alternates between DI Sterling and the killer, without being confusing. Reading the killer perspective shows you just how sadistic and troubled the killer was. As you follow DI Sterling you realise just how much of a mess his home life and when more pressure is put on him by his wife, it is a wonder he doesn’t crack. His working relationship with his partner DS Dave Johnson starts off a bit rocky and it did come across as he did not want to work with him, but as the story continues you see him more as a mentor.

As soon as you start the book you know what you are getting into. From the 1st scene, you are taken on a dark journey. There are some topics and scenes that some readers may find disturbing but this adds to the grittiness of the story. The hunt for the killer is hidden with twists and red herrings, that kept me guessing to the end. The plot was well thought out and was fast paced.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys psychological thrillers. As soon as I finished it, I one clicked the 2nd in the series and have pre-ordered the 3rd.

Purchase Links:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Retriever-Souls-positively-compelling-Sterling-ebook/dp/B07HJ83F6N

US – https://www.amazon.com/Retriever-Souls-positively-compelling-Sterling-ebook/dp/B07HJ83F6N

Author Bio – When not working on her D.I. Sterling Series, Lorraine Mace is engaged in many writing-related activities. She is a columnist for both Writing Magazine and Writers’ Forum and is head judge for Writers’ Forum monthly fiction competitions. A tutor for Writers Bureau, she also runs her own private critique and author mentoring service. She is co-author, with Maureen Vincent-Northam, of THE WRITER’S ABC CHECKLIST (Accent Press). Other books include children’s novel VLAD THE INHALER – HERO IN THE MAKING, and NOTES FROM THE MARGIN, a compilation of her Writing Magazine humour column.

Social Media Links –

Website: www.lorrainemace.com

Blog: http://thewritersabcchecklist.blogspot.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/lomace

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lorraine.mace.52

House of Skin by Jonathan Janz

May 8, 2019 - 5:17 am 1 Comment

My turn on the blog tour for House of Skin

Myles Carver is dead. Myles’s wife, Annabel, is dead too, but she is also waiting, lying in her grave in the woods. For nearly half a century she was responsible for a nightmarish reign of terror, and she’s not prepared to stop now. She is hungry to live again…and her unsuspecting nephew, Paul, will be the key.

House of Skin by Jonathan Janz

Published by Flame Tree Press on 9th May 2019

304 pages

When Paul inherited a large estate from his estranged uncle, the thing was that he had no idea why his family didn’t talk about him. Paul was the black sheep of family forced to go into the family business whilst all he wanted to do was become a writer. Once he moves into Watermere, his uncle’s estate, he knew it was the change he needed. As soon as he is there, he is up against prejudice and as you get further into the story, you get an understanding why the town does not like the Carver family. To add to his problems, men are disappearing from the town.

Sheriff Sam Barlow knew Myles Carver personally and Librarian Julia Merrow had her own secrets, that she did not want anyone finding out. Inserted throughout the story was the back stories of Annabel and Myles which gave you a clear picture who and what was occurring in the house. As Paul was trying to write, his work in progress adds to the mystery of the house   

Written in 3rd person POV enables you to get to know the handful of characters in fine detail as each one had their own story to tell on how Myles Carver ruined their lives. There are graphic scenes throughout this story, which adds to the sense that something evil is occurring in the house. One of my favourite scenes was what happened to Emily in the ballroom. I love reading books that has me on tender hooks, as I am turning the pages waiting for something to figurally jump out at me and give me a fright and this book ticked the box.

This is the 2nd book I have read by this author and I am looking forward to reading more of their work

When Paul inherited a large estate from his estranged uncle, the thing was that he had no idea why his family didn’t talk about him. Paul was the black sheep of family forced to go into the family business whilst all he wanted to do was become a writer. Once he moves into Watermere, his uncle’s estate, he knew it was the change he needed. As soon as he is there, he is up against prejudice and as you get further into the story, you get an understanding of why the town does not like the Carver family. To add to his problems, men are disappearing from the town.
Sheriff Sam Barlow knew Myles Carver personally and Librarian Julia Merrow had her own secrets, that she did not want anyone finding out. Inserted throughout the story was the back stories of Annabel and Myles which gave you a clear picture who and what was occurring in the house. As Paul was trying to write, his work in progress adds to the mystery of the house
Written in 3rd person POV enables you to get to know the handful of characters in fine detail as each one had their own story to tell on how Myles Carver ruined their lives. There are graphic scenes throughout this story, which adds to the sense that something evil is occurring in the house. One of my favourite scenes was what happened to Emily in the ballroom. I love reading books that have me on tenterhooks, as I am turning the pages waiting for something to figurally jump out at me and give me a fright and this book ticked the box.
This is the 2nd book I have read by this author and I am looking forward to reading more of his work

 Meet the author:

Jonathan Janz grew up between a dark forest and a graveyard, which explains everything. Brian Keene named his debut novel The Sorrows “the best horror novel of 2012.” The Library Journal deemed his follow-up, House of Skin, “reminiscent of Shirley Jackson’s The Haunting of Hill House and Peter Straub’s Ghost Story” Since then Jonathan’s work has been lauded by writers like Jack Ketchum, Edward Lee, Tim Waggoner, Bryan Smith, and Ronald Kelly. Novels like The Nightmare Girl, Wolf Land, Savage Species, and Dust Devils prompted Thunderstorm Books to sign Jonathan to an eleven-book deal and to give him his own imprint, Jonathan Janz’s Shadow Side. His novel Children of the Dark received a starred review in Booklist and was chosen by their board as one of the Top Ten Horror Books of the Year (August 2015-September 2016). Children of the Dark will soon be translated into German and has been championed by the Library Journal, the School Library Journal, and Cemetery Dance. In early 2017, his novel Exorcist Falls was released to critical acclaim. Jonathan’s primary interests are his wonderful wife and his three amazing children, and though he realizes that every author’s wife and children are wonderful and amazing, in this case the cliché happens to be true.

You can learn more about Janz at http://www.jonathanjanz.com.

A Walking Shadow (Backstage Mystery Book 1) by Elizabeth Ireland

May 7, 2019 - 1:58 pm No Comments

I am on the blog tour for A Walking Shadow by Elizabeth Ireland. A historical fiction, murder mystery.  

A Walking Shadow

In 1871, Lillian Nolan accepts a small role in Macbeth, and finally fulfills her dream of becoming an actress. That is until the renowned, but venomous, female star of the production is murdered onstage opening night. When her enraged spirit haunts the theater, Lillian is shocked to discover she can communicate with her. Offered a Faustian bargain in which she will be given talent and expertise way beyond her ability in exchange for uncovering the killer, Lillian can’t resist.

Her quest for the truth causes her to descend into the Underworld, the den of inequity below the streets of Chicago. What Lillian finds soon embroils her in a battle between her passion for performing and control over her own body as it all plays out in a supernatural game of good and evil.

Here is my review.

A Walking Shadow (Backstage Mystery Book 1) by Elizabeth Ireland

Published on 13th February 2019

189 pages

Written like a memoir for her great grandniece Agnes, Lillian Nolan tells the story of her first performance on stage when the famous Irene Davenport dies on stage. One thing I quickly realised was when Lillian was 17 years old, the life of an actress was not a respected trade and they were treated like 2nd rate citizens. You had to be brave to choose that career and have to have a thick thin, to ignore all the snide comments. Lillian was one such girl, not afraid to get what she wanted, she was very headstrong, but even though her life choice was not what her family wanted, she did have a fan in her Grandma.  As you read this story; you realise how alike they both are.

The story opens with the tragic death of Irene Davenport and as Lillian tells her story, the involvement that Lillian plays in solving her murder. Set in Chicago in the 1870’s, the descriptive scenes enable you to get a feel for what it was like at the times and as you follow Lillian down memory lane, you have the feeling that you are there. The supernatural element adds another layer to the story as Lillian has enough trying to perform on stage without the haunting of a diva actress. As Lillian finds more about Irene’s life she gets dragged into the seedy part of Chicago and comes face to face with the criminal aspect and you understand how sheltered her upbringing one.

This was a gentle mystery which draws you in. You can tell that the author has a passion for the theatre and her extensive knowledge helps make the story authentic. If you like historical mysteries with a touch of supernatural than this is a series for you. With two more in the series I cannot wait to see where this series takes me.    

Purchase Links

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Walking-Shadow-Backstage-Mystery-Book-ebook/dp/B07NQM27YG/

US – https://www.amazon.com/walking-shadow-backstage-mystery-book-ebook/dp/B07NQM27YG/

More about the Series

THE BACKSTAGE MYSTERY SERIES

Tagline: Life upon the wicked stage can be deadly.

Set against the backdrop of the Gilded Age, the Backstage Mystery Series stars Lillian Nolan, an unconventional member of Chicago’s upper class who dreams of a career of fortune and fame in the theater. Talented and ambitious, she possesses a hidden skill which she is extremely reluctant to use—the ability to communicate with those who have died and now live in the world of “The Beyond.” 

The series chronicles her adventures in which she continually becomes enmeshed in solving mysteries which often require her accessing the realm of the paranormal. Filled with an incredible cast of characters—factual, fictional, and sometimes non-physical—who either help or hinder her quest for the truth, the stories take place during a a period considered to be the golden age of both acting and spiritualism in America.

Author Bio –

Elizabeth Ireland discovered her passion for theater early. After receiving undergraduate and graduate degrees in Theater, she accepted a teaching position in a vibrant performing arts department at a college in northern Illinois. For ten years, she taught, directed and ran front-of-house operations. American Theater History—particularly that of the 19th century—has always been of particular interest to her.

She has been a quarter-finalist and a semi-finalist for the Don and Gee Nicholl Fellowship in screenwriting sponsored by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Two of her screenplays have been optioned, but remain unproduced. Her nonfiction work, Women of Vision: Ordinary Women, Extraordinary Lives, was published in 2008. Her work has also been published in a collection of paranormal short stories, Paramourtal: Tales of Undying Love and Loving the Undead. She lives in metro Atlanta with her ever-patient husband, and two quirky dachshunds.

Social Media Links –

www.facebook.com/BackstageMystery/

www.BackstageMystery.com

http://@EbethIreland