Category Archives: Recommended Reading

The Last King (The Ninth Century #1) by M J Porter – Review

Today I’m reviewing The Last King (The Ninth Century #1) by M J Porter

Here’s the blurb –

Genre – Historical Fiction

They sent three hundred warriors to kill one man. It wasn’t enough.

Mercia lies broken but not beaten, her alliance with Wessex in tatters.

Coelwulf, a fierce and bloody warrior, hears whispers that Mercia has been betrayed from his home in the west. He fears no man, especially not the Vikings sent to hunt him down.

To discover the truth of the rumours he hears, Coelwulf must travel to the heart of Mercia, and what he finds there will determine the fate of Mercia, as well as his own.

Review

The book starts with a brilliant scene that details Lord Coelwulf’s capture as he’s brought before the Raiders. It sets the tone of the book perfectly. Coelwulf isn’t afraid to use a bit of bad language and blood will be spilt.

Chapter one goes back to the past to detail the events that led up to his capture as he’s quickly swept up in battle. Coelwulf is used to protecting Mercia from the Welsh but this new threat has come from nowhere.. and at first he hasn’t a clue why.

We soon learn that King Burhred of Mercia ha fled leaving it to the whim of the Raiders.. There’s one hope.. Coelwulf!

Coelwulf has ties back to the throne but doesn’t see himself as a King..but he does like to kill people.. the battle fame.. the thrill of being the best.. and that’s just what Mercia needs right now to survive.

It’s a hard journey for him and his men.. and they don’t come out of this unscathed. I really thought the detail into the battles and injuries was fascinating. I particularly liked the recovery with the constant risk of infection. We are lucky with have antibiotics and such to fight infections.. back then not so much..

The Raiders are numerous..Coelwulf doesn’t stand a chance given the numbers but he knows just how to tip things in his favour.. He has home court advantage so to speak. He’s not alone in this though.. if only the men of Merica could come together to fight.

The final few chapters were pure magic for me as we relive Coelwulf’s capture and learn of his fate. I found myself reading that chapter the 2nd time with different eyes.. a different outlook and that is credit to the author that they were able to mould how I felt and imagined events playing out so easily.

To say this book is excellent would be a understatement.. it’s a blood and gore fest for any fan of the period or this type of novel. You would be forgiven to think a tale with so many battles might get repetitive but no..each are unique and exhilarating.

Overall I loved it, the detail, the use of language, the characters, damn.. I could go on and on.

5/5 Stars!

To find out more head to Goodreadsor Amazon.

If you love it why not pre-order – The Last Warrior: England: The First Viking Age (The Ninth Century Book 2).. I have

Isolation Reads – What’s on my TBR list

You’ve probably noticed but this thing called a virus is going about so many people are now stuck in doors..I hope you are all keeping safe in these uncertain times. I have the pleasure of being classed as a essentially work but when I do have a few moments to relax around work and home schooling I still like to get to grips with a good book.

Today I wanted to share a few upcoming books on my TBR list, Click the pictures to head to Amazon if you want to know more 😊..tell me what you think and hit me up with your own isolation reads.

Footprints in the Sand by Pam Lecky

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Cairo 1887: A melting pot of jealousy, lust and revenge. Who will pay the ultimate price?

Lucy Lawrence throws caution to the wind and embarks on a journey of self-discovery to the land of the pharaohs.

Travelling to Cairo as the patron of the charming French Egyptologist, Armand Moreau, Lucy discovers an archaeological community plagued by professional rivalries and intrigue. It is soon apparent that the thriving black market in antiquities threatens Egypt’s precious heritage.

When the Egyptian Museum is burgled, Lucy is determined to solve the case, much to the annoyance of the local inspector of police, and the alarm of Mary, her maid. But when an archaeologist is found murdered in the Great Pyramid, Lucy is catapulted into the resulting maelstrom. Can she keep her wits about her to avoid meeting a similar fate?

Betray Them All by Keith Nixon

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It’s 3am on a wet, dreary morning in the south of England. Detective Inspector Solomon Gray raids an ordinary-looking house, but inside he finds the exception: an illegal cannabis farm run by a sixteen-year-old held against his will.

Within minutes Gray rushes to another nearby incident. A homeowner has stabbed and seriously wounded a burglar. Semi-retired Charles Sowerby, claims self-defence against the intruder – a traveller by the name of Aidan Jupp, a man with a violent history of targeting society’s most vulnerable.

The stabbing heightens local tensions, inflamed by far-right anti-immigrant activists and the Press. Jupp’s family swear revenge on Sowerby. Then Gray discovers Jupp wasn’t acting alone, so who’s his partner?

Somehow the cannabis farm and the stabbing are connected. Can Gray figure everything out before local tensions boil over?

Shadowless by Randall McNally

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What if the gods themselves wanted you dead?

A young boy lies on a beach on a warm summer’s day. While trying to block the sun from his eyes Arpherius makes a shocking discovery; he has no shadow. Confused and bewildered he asks his uncle why he is shadowless. What he learns is a terrifying secret that will change his life forever.

Set in the Northern Realms, Shadowless is a fantasy novel about individuals born without a shadow. Spawned by the malevolent deities of this world these children of the gods are persecuted at every turn. Hunted by the high priests who carry out the wishes of their gods, hunted by the Shadow Watchers; armed soldiers who are assigned to each temple, and hunted by the gods themselves.

Part-mortal and part-god, the Shadowless live for centuries and face a battle for survival, constantly on the run or hiding in far-flung corners of the Northern Realms.

Soon their lives and fates become intertwined, expedited by the mysterious monk Amrodan. Driven by a series of visions Amrodan travels through the Northern Realms, seeking out the Shadowless and trying to enlist their help to take a stand and fight back against the gods.

The Good Hawk by Joseph Elliott

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If everything was taken from you, what would you do to get it back?

Agatha patrols the sea wall with pride, despite those in her clan who question her right to be there, because of the condition she was born with.

Jaime is a reluctant Angler, full of self-doubt and afraid of the sea.

When disaster strikes, the pair must embark on a terrifying journey to a land where forgotten magic and dark secrets lurk in every shadow…

Five Unicorn Flush

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“Reasonspace is in shambles after the disappearance of all magical creatures. Without faster-than-light travel, supply and communication routes have dried up, leaving humankind stranded and starving. Cowboy Jim and his complement of Reason soldiers search for the relocated Bala using the only surviving FTL drive. On their new utopian planet, the Bala are on the brink of civil war between those who want peace under old-fashioned unicorn rule and those who seek revenge on their human oppressors. Only Captain Jenny and her new brain parasite can stop the Reason plan to enslave the Bala again.

That’s it from me today.. I’ve loads more on my list to share with you so keep an eye out. Whatever you do during isolation..stay safe.

David’s Book Blurg’s Top Choices for 2019

Ok.. so there’s still time for some last minute gifts so I want to share my top picks! These are just some of the books I’ve read/listened to this year! Click the pictures to head to Amazon to have a look in detail!

  1. Are you an audiobook fan? If so you’ve got to get Lucia by Steven A McKay. It’s a gut wrenching slaves tale set in Roman times.51cHfw39UnL._SX342_
  2. Fancy a delicious new mystery novel? then look no further than No Stone Unturned by Pam Lecky. (Currently at the bargain price of £0.99 on Kindle!)46203408._SY475_
  3. Do you like a police procedural kind of novel and like flawed leads? Well The Silent Dead by Keith Nixon is the book for you.47969376._SY475_
  4. Enjoy a bit of Science Fiction without the word count? Take a look at The Bastard Cadre by Lee Carlon!415GhUysFtL
  5. Like a bit of a historical read.. ever heard of the Hittites? look no further than Empires of Bronze by Gordon Doherty.51Odsq2iUkL
  6. Not quite sure what you are after? Fancy more than one book? Well why not get a boxset of goodness? Check out forged in Fire, a set which includes books by authors Prue Batten, Simon Turney and Gordon Doherty 5168XFNxseL

 

There’s so many good books out there.. these are just a few of the hundreds i’d happily recommend so do check out my reviews and see if anything takes your fancy.

Do get in touch and let me know what book gifts you give and receive this year 🙂

Free this week! First Contract: A JJ Stoner short story (The Stoner Series Book 1)

Hey all,

Just a quick post.  I’m sure you’ll remember but I’ve read and reviewed all of the JJ Stoner short stories and thought they were brilliant.

A little heads up Frank Westworth the author has kindly put up the first book in the series for free this week so you’ve still got time to grab it.

Go on..it’s FREE.. you know it makes sense!

Click here to head to Amazon!

Tales of Greed, Scandal & Mayhem from Colin Goodwin

So once in a while I find myself with a TBR list that is falling over under the weight but authors keep churning out high quality work to tempt me in. If I’m not able to review the book quickly sometimes I like to highlight the book on my blog..

Why do I do this?

Well firstly I’d like to know if any of my fellow bloggers have read the book and secondly of course I’d like to tempt some readers but more so i’d just like to get some feedback..tell me if you’ve read the book and if it’s something I need to bump up the list.

Today I’m highlighting the work of Colin Goodwin. Take a look below at his books and what some readers had to say about them. Do they take your fancy? Have you read them already? Do you like the covers? Let me know your thoughts.

Don’t Get Mad Get Even – Published by 2QT Publishing ISBN 978-1-910077-60-3

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5.0 out of 5 stars Intrigue on the cricket pitch! Enjoyable novel about a cricket team threatened with closure unless it wins big

By Worldly traveller on 9 June 2016

Format: Paperback

I really like intriguing rustic tales of greed, scandal and farce. In this entertaining novel, the local cricket team is threatened with closure when a money baron decides he’d like to acquire the land to build on. The cricket club is told it must win a trophy this season or it will be closed. The club employs all sorts for tactics to secure the elusive trophy, bringing on expert cricket players. Even the locals conspire against the cricketers.

 

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read

By Wendy Taylor on 29 March 2016

Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase

Really enjoyed this book. If you like the ‘Agatha Raisin’ series by M. C Beaton then you’ll love this series too. Can’t wait for the next one.

Synopsis

As the cricket season starts, so do the shenanigans…

Life is tranquil in the quintessentially English village of Throttle – until the local cricket team receives a devilish demand.

When industrialist and landowner Sir Alfred Bullock is laid up, his devious son Roland, devises a get-rich-quick scheme. He gives an ultimatum to the cricket club: win a trophy by the end of the season or we take back the ground you play on and sell it for development.

In a desperate attempt to win games and hold on to the pitch, the club enlists the help of a professional whose skills – to the delight of the local ladies – extend far beyond the cricket Field.

Roland, together with an unscrupulous estate agent and two dodgy builders, hatches malicious plans to ensure the team loses its games. Meanwhile, village residents whose houses are devalued by being on the perimeter of the pitch take matters into their own hands to ‘fix’ the club’s failure…

Greed, scandal, tragedy and farce ensue as the cricket club fights for survival against increasingly dangerous sabotage…

 

When in a Hole, Stop Digging – Published by 2QT Publishing ISBN 978-1-910077-80-1

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5.0 out of 5 stars A most enjoyable sequel

By Nigel Hanson on 7 September 2016

A really enjoyable read, just as good as the first book. Just a pity it was finished all too soon.
Really hoping for and looking forward to the extent one.

Synopsis

An ordinary day in a sleepy village deteriorates into chaos.Livid boat owner Albert vows revenge after a humiliating event, and shocked residents of a brand new housing estate mysteriously find fish in the plumbing.A heartless double murderer on the loose and a gun-toting farmer send shivers through the town of Throttle as two amateur sleuths try to make sense of it all.

Meanwhile a pair of sixties throwback detectives attempt to piece it all together, but in reality make matters worse. The local free press needs a story fast, but the novice reporters get a shock as they enter a world far beyond their capability.  Finally, one resident, pushed to the edge by a marital issue, sinks to a new low.   The mayhem continues…..

Author bio

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Colin Goodwin enjoyed a successful career as a welding and fabrication engineer, working in the aircraft industry and welder training for the oil industry.  For the past twenty years he worked in further education, where he also taught stained glass window making.

In the late 80’s he built and fitted out a 40 foot steel narrow-boat, but sold it because it was not fast enough.  He maintains an active lifestyle and has completed London marathons and Great North Runs.  Both Colin and his wife now prefer to go on long distance cycling holidays. Retired 6 years ago, Colin continues to indulge his creative side by repairing anything mechanical, motorbikes (Harley Davidson, BSA, Royal Enfield), cars (1951 Ford Anglia) and model steam engines. The books are available through Amazon, all good book shops and from under the counter at The Hardware Store, in Padiham. The last in the trilogy ‘A Likely Story’ is currently nearing completion.

Chase series by Thomas Dellenbusch free this weekend!

Hey all, a quick heads up. Author Thomas Dellenbusch currently has his Chase series up for free!

That means you can get both books in the series of £0!

These books are on my list to read so let me know if you’ve read them, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Here’s the blurb, you can click the pictures to head to Amazon :-

Translated Version from the popular German book series of Theatre-Of-The-Mind-Stories in Movie Length

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The Hunt for the Mute Poetess

Enrique “Rique” Allmers runs a security firm in Hamburg, Germany. When he encounters a young woman fleeing from pursuers through the local fish-market, he takes her under his wing. They get away, but the same men – now with reinforcements – are still on their tail. Rique doesn’t know
who she is, or the identity of those who are after her. Because she doesn’t speak a word to him…

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The Hunt for a King

Scotland on the brink of independence: the government is planning its own Scottish monarchy. But when a member of the close-knit planning group reveals the identity of the candidate for the throne, suddenly people appear who want to prevent this royal ascension at all costs – including murder. When CHASE is called in to assist, Jérome and Chen Lu travel to Glasgow. Together with the Scotsman James Campbell, they hunt for his father’s murderer. A secretive wax seal leads them into a maze of ancient legends and lost manuscripts. Can they solve the mystery and save the king – or will old ruins become their grave?

Looking for a good book this weekend?

Once in a while I like to promo some books/offers that are just too good to pass up.

Well today I’ve seen three books at bargain prices that I’d like you to know about.

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The first book is a short story by Pam Lecky called In Three-Quarter Time. It’s only 22 pages so perfect for a quick read. I’ve not read it yet but will be doing so myself this weekend and will be reviewing shortly so I’d love to see what you make of it.

The blurb –

A WW1 Era Love Story

Dublin 1914 and war is declared. Each of the Cusack family must face the consequences in their own way. Josie and her young man, Anthony Lanigan, have plans for the future. But her sister Lily is also secretly in love with Anthony and has no idea if her feelings are returned.

Anthony is about to emigrate to America to make his fortune. Will he ever return, and if he does, who will eventually win his heart?

Set against a pivotal time in Irish history, from the Dublin Lockout in 1913 through the First World War to the brink of the birth of the Irish Nation, this story will take you through a family’s experience of war and tragedy, loss and love.

I’ve read Pam’s previous work The Bowes Inheritance and absolutely loved it so I’m certain I’ll enjoy this short tale too.

In Three-Quarter Time is currently FREE! so you’ve got nothing to lose. Click the image above to head to Amazon.


The next book you should all be downloading is The Serpent Sword by Matthew Harffy. You can check my review of the book here.

The Blurb –

Beobrand is compelled by his brother’s almost-certain murder to embark on a quest for revenge in the war-ravaged kingdoms of Northumbria. The land is rife with danger, as warlords vie for supremacy and dominion. In the battles for control of the region, new oaths are made and broken, and loyalties are tested to the limits.

As he closes in on his kin’s slayer, can Beobrand mete out the vengeance he craves without sacrificing his honour… or even his soul?

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Matthew has become one of my favourite authors and at 99p this is a steal! Click the image above to head to Amazon.


Last but by no means least is The Price of Treason book 2 in the Praetorian series by S.J.A Turney. You can read my review here

The blurb –

Two years have passed since the emperor’s loyal Praetorian guardsman Gnaeus Marcius Rustius Rufinus foiled Lucilla’s great assassination plot. Plagued by the ghosts of his past, Rufinus has enacted his own form of justice upon the praetorian cavalrymen who murdered the imperial agent Dis two years earlier.

But the Fates will not let Rufinus rest. Rome is beginning to seethe with rumour and conspiracy as Perennis, the prefect of the Praetorian Guard, and Cleander, the imperial chamberlain, continue to play their ‘great game.’ With the tide of opinion turning against their commander, Rufinus and his friends embark upon a mission to save the Prefect’s family, only to uncover a plot that runs deep… to the very heart of the empire. Armed with rare and dangerous evidence, Rufinus faces insurmountable odds in an attempt to bring the truth to light. To save his prefect. To save Rome. To save everyone he cares about.

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I’ve loved every book I’ve read from this author but boy has he wrote a lot ha ha. If I want a book to read I’m guaranteed to enjoy Turney is the man! At 99p it’s a bargain! Click the picture above to head to Amazon.


 

Please let me know what you think of the books if you’ve already read them. It’s always fun to read others views on books I’ve read.

Have good weekend everyone!

Inkitt Android App Launched

First of all I’d like to welcome you all to my first post in 2017!

During 2016 David’s Book Blurg has went from strength to strength with the thanks to my readers, fellow bloggers and some very supportive authors not to mention those who deal with book promaotions. I really do thank you all for making reviewing such a pleasure and I look forward to connecting more with you throughout the year.

Ok, so for my first post this year it’s not a review..it’s an info post to draw your attention to something I like that hopefully you will aswell.

I’m always looking for otherways to read. Don’t get me wrong, I love Amazon but I like the idea the authors can take control and can share work in different ways to reach a wider audience in whatever way they like.

I found out about Inkitt when I was asked to review some work posted and I loved the idea.

About Inkitt

On the surface, Inkitt (www.inkitt.com) is a platform where aspiring writers can share their novels and inquisitive readers can unearth fresh content. But under the hood, we are democratizing publishing: The Inkitt algorithm analyzes reading behavior to predict future bestsellers. In other words: if readers love it, Inkitt publishes it.

Essentially it’s another way for authors to share their work but what I felt it lacked when I first viewed it was an android app since I don’t read much using my laptop. The iOS app has been available for a little while but I’m an android man..I’ll never leave Samsung.

Thankfully the developers noticed this to and the app is now available for free to download. The below images show what the app looks like on a tablet.

Today I basically want to ask you a few things. Have you heard of Inkitt before? Have you used their website? Will you download the app? If you do download it please let me know what you think.

The app was only released yesterday so its early days but first impressions are good. It easy to use and works well on my tablet so I think I’ll be using this a bit throughout 2017. The offline library is perfect for me since I read on the bus which very rarely has WiFi.

Will it replace my normal means of reading? No… this is an addition, a different way to read books and so far I can see it fitting in nicely. I’m looking forward to seeing what authors I stumble upon.

You can check the app out on the Google play store here – Play Store

Here’s the blurb from Inkitt for the release if you’d like to know more. Let me know what you make of it.

David 🙂


 

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THE INKITT APP BRINGS THOUSANDS OF NOVELS BY INDIE AUTHORS TO ANDROID

Inkitt empowers readers and publishers to discover world’s next best sellers

BERLIN, JANUARY 7, 2017: Inkitt, the world’s first readers and data-driven book publishing house is introducing an Android app for phones and tablets, globally available from today.

Inkitt’s iOS app became available back in November and was well received by users: The app was not only featured on the US App Store but also on numerous other App Stores around the world, as well as on the front page of Product Hunt, ranking in the top 10 in Tech.

 

Inkitt for iOS featured as a top Books app in the US App Store

Following the warm welcome by the iOS community, and in order to meet the demand of their own fast growing user base, Inkitt is now bringing their digital library with thousands of novels by emerging authors to Android devices.

“It was a great reward to see Inkitt featured as a top app in numerous App Stores around the world and receive such great feedback from users” says Inkitt’s Founder and CEO, Ali Albazaz. “Readers were really excited about the iOS app but kept asking when we’re launching on Android too. We heard them, worked really hard and today we’re bringing Inkitt to Android devices. All readers will now be able to discover tomorrow’s bestsellers on the go and read great novels by upcoming authors wherever they are.”

Inkitt for Android – 4 key features:

  • Access to thousands of novels from all fiction genres: fantasy, sci-fi, mystery, thriller, horror, romance, drama, action, adventure, YA and more
  • Personalized reading suggestions: hand-picked novels based on a reader’s favorite fiction genres
  • Customizable look to match user preferences (e.g. font size, color combinations)
  • Online/Offline: readers can save novels to their offline library to access them anytime

Beyond being a platform connecting aspiring authors with book lovers, Inkitt’s mission is to become the world’s fairest publishing house: Its in-house developed algorithm analyzes reading behavior to determine the potential of a novel to become the next bestseller. Using this unique data-driven approach, Inkitt wants to ensure that great works by new and talented writers never again stay in the dark.

Since July, Inkitt has published 7 novels: Catalyst Moon: Incursion by Lauren L. Garcia (Fantasy), Just Juliet by Charlotte Reagan (YA Romance), I Was A Bitch by Emily Ruben (YA Romance Mystery), Esper Files by Egan Brass (SciFi) and Caged by Onaiza Khan (Psychological Thriller),  King’s Lament by Lilia Blanc (Fantasy Romance) and Three Fat Singletons by J.M. Bartholomew (Humor Romance), six of which became bestsellers on Amazon.

 

 

 

 

 

Leading Ladies Fantasy Bundle – Giveaway!

Ok, as you should know I’m a big fan of fantasy books. The endless possibilities just fascinate me.

StoryBundle is a site I’ve highlighted before, it offers a great price for a bundle of books in one go and you get to decide where the money goes.. the authors or StoryBundle and you decide the %. It’s just an interesting idea and I’ve bought a couple bundles myself this year. I’ll certainly not run out of books anytime soon :).

I also like being introduced to authors i might not have discovered and this is the big plus for me. For a good price you can have your eyes opened and find some books that really stay with you.

Well today I’m here to offer you a chance to owe the latest bundle on offer for FREE!

The leading ladies fantasy bundle has a lot to offer, click the picture below to head to StoryBundle where you can read more and view each book in more detail. For around £12 you could own all of these books!

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Why i’m i highlighting this bundle you might ask. Well one of my favourite authours is included , Charlotte E. English, who really has helped me to see how good fantasy can really be. You can find out more about why i love Charlotte’s work here.

So what do i want you to do to have a chance to own this series of books for free? Simple. Comment below and tell me you want to win the bundle. Tell me if you’ve read any of the authors work before.. let me know what you think of the covers or even StoryBundle itself..anything, i just want to see your comments :).

Make sure to tick “Notify me of new comments via email” so if you’re not on WordPress and you win you’ll be sure to get the notification 🙂

You can even share this post on social media, it all counts. Anyone who i know has shared or commented will be put in the hat and i’ll pick a winner 6pm 8th December. It’s as simple as that.

The bundle is only available for another 14 days after that the chance to buy is gone. Grab it while you can.

 

Bernicia Chronicles – What’s next? @MatthewHarffy

Hopefully by now you’ve read the first two books in the impressive series by Matthew Harffy.

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If not click the images above to open a new window to my reviews so you can see what you’re missing out on 🙂

The great news is book three will be out in December! check out my review of Blood and Blade by clicking the image below!

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So what’s next i hear to cry.. well the good news for us is that two more books are planned for 2017!

First off we have a novella – Kin of Cain but also book four in the Bernicia Chronicles Killer of Kings!

Both are available now for pre-order. Click the images to head to Amazon for more details

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I ordered my copies at 1.30am this morning after the kids woke me up…no excuses.. order your copy today 🙂