Tag Archives: Books

BLOG TOUR – Outcast by Chris Ryan!

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Outcast by Chris Ryan!

Chris was born in Newcastle, my neck of the woods! So how could I not jump on the chance to be part of the blog tour!!

Here’s the blurb

After single-handedly intervening in a deadly terrorist attack in Mali, SAS Warrant Officer Jamie ‘Geordie’ Carter is denounced as a lone wolf by jealous superiors.

Now a Regiment outcast, Carter is given a second chance with a deniable mission: locate SAS hero-gone-rogue, David Vann.

Vann had been sent into Afghanistan to train local rebels to fight the Taliban. But he’s since gone silent and expected attacks on key targets have not happened.

Tracking Vann through Afghanistan and Tajikistan, Carter not only discovers the rogue soldier’s involvement in a conspiracy that stretches far beyond the Middle East – but an imminent attack that will have deadly consequences the world over . . .

Review.

Outcast follows the journey of Officer Jamie ‘Geordie’ Carter.  Carter is a likeable fellow, but he’s ruffled some feathers along the way and has found himself out of favour with his superiors.  

On his current assignment it looks like he’s about to make things worse but just when things are about to get interesting an offer comes his way that he can’t resist.  

A fellow Blade, his mentor, David Vann has gone missing while on assignment, information is lacking so Carter is sent in the extract Vann.

As soon as Carter picks up the trail he gets a sense something isn’t quite right but little does he know what kind of shitstorm he’s about to walk into.

There’s action and betrayal behind every chapter and it ends up a race against time for Carter as there’s much more at stake than we first thought.

This is my first time reading a Chris Ryan book and I’ve heard many a good thing said about his work. Flow wise the book didn’t disappoint, it’s all about the build-up but with plenty of action and adrenaline as Carter constantly reassess the situation as the plot takes a twist. Character wise it didn’t disappoint either, the plot leaves little chance to give the characters too much depth but perfectly matches the flow as the author packs details in that quickly help you assess the characters and their motivations.

There’s a real authentic edge to the tale, the setting within Afghanistan after the withdrawal of western troops which gave the perfect backdrop for this story.

Outcast is a fast-paced thriller that fans of the genre will love. There’s a twist at the end which I hope means we will see more of Carter.. I’ll be waiting 😊

My thanks go to the author, publisher and Rachel @ rachelsrandomresources.com for having me on the tour! I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review but I’ll be more than happy to grab a copy too 😊

5/5 Stars from me 🙂

To find our more head to Goodreads, Amazon or Browns Books.

Why not follow the tour?

Author Bio

Chris Ryan was born in Newcastle.

In 1984 he joined 22 SAS. After completing the year-long Alpine Guides Course, he was the troop guide for B Squadron Mountain Troop. He completed three tours with the anti-terrorist team, serving as an assaulter, sniper and finally Sniper Team Commander.

Chris was part of the SAS eight-man team chosen for the famous Bravo Two Zero mission during the 1991 Gulf War. He was the only member of the unit to escape from Iraq, where three of his colleagues were killed and four captured, for which he was awarded the Military Medal. Chris wrote about his experiences in his book The One That Got Away, which became an immediate bestseller. Since then he has written over fifty books and presented a number of very successful TV programmes.

Social Media Links  

Twitter

https://twitter.com/exsaschrisryan

https://twitter.com/ZaffreBooks

BLOG TOUR – The Capsarius by Simon Turney!!

Today is my stop on the blog tour for The Capsarius by Simon Turney! Book 1 in the brand new Legion XXII series.

Here’s the blurb

Warrior and combat medic, Titus Cervianus, must lead a legion and quell the uprisings in Egypt in a new Roman adventure from Simon Turney.

Titus Cervianus is no ordinary soldier. And the Twenty Second is no ordinary legion…

Egypt. 25 BC. A former surgeon from the city of Ancyra, Titus Cervianus is now a capsarius – a combat medic. He is a pragmatist, a scientist – and deeply unpopular with his legion, the Twenty Second Deiotariana.

The Twenty Second have been sent to deal with uprisings in Egypt. Founded as the private army of one of Rome’s most devoted allies, their ways are not the same as the other legions’, which sets them apart and causes friction with their fellow soldiers.

Marching into the unknown, Cervianus will find unexpected allies: a local cavalryman and a troublesome lunatic. Both will be of critical importance as the young medic marches through the searing sands of the south, finding forbidden temples, hidden assassins, and worst of all, the warrior queen of Kush…

Review

Cervianus isn’t your typical Roman solider, he’s a also a medic. At times this role seems to have an advantage as he gets a few perks but it soon become clear it’s not a free ride in any sense and he has his own unique battles to face in this role.

He’s also an outcast within the legion.. as a medic he puts some of his faith in knowledge and skill while many still hold the belief a man’s life is in the hands of the Gods.

The twenty second legion have been given the task of tackling the Kushite’s in Egypt and to take back what is rightly theirs!

It’s not going to be an easy fight for sure but Cervianus has to hope his fellow soldiers don’t kill him first.. he doesn’t make friends easily.

Cervianus has luck on his side I feel and makes it to the battle but events along the way give him pause for thought.. maybe there is something to be said about the will of the Gods.

What Turney always does so well is the battles and the detail added to everything to set the scene, from the makeup of the army, the buildings, the heat.. the dints in a helmet.. nick in the armour.. everything.. it just puts you right there in the action.

For fans of the genre there’s plenty of action but what I’ve always admired about Turney’s work is how he manages to interweave personal fights too, it’s not just about the big battle… there’s lots to this tale to savour.. read it slowly, enjoy every morsel offered and I guarantee you’ll not be disappointed. It’s a talent to add knowledge and detail to an exciting plot like this one, some readers are simply in it for the action but Turney adds detail without forcing it, or slowing the pace.

I can honestly say I was hooked in from the prologue which set the tone of the story and has my mouth watering for more! Bring on book 2.

I also really enjoyed the character development throughout this one. It’s difficult at times to make characters real but Turney seems to do this effortlessly and I loved the relationship dynamic growing within the senior staff… oooo the tension!! You could cut it with a knife!

It’s a 5/5 star rating from me!

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon!

My thanks go to Andrew @ Head of Zeus for inviting me to participate in the tour. I was given a ARC of the book to aid in my review but as a massive fan of Simon’s I bought a copy too and book 2 in the series is already pre-ordered 😊.


Why not follow the blog tour?


About the author.

Simon Turney is from Yorkshire and, having spent much of his childhood visiting historic sites, fell in love with the Roman heritage of the region. His fascination with the ancient world snowballed from there with great interest in Rome, Egypt, Greece and Byzantium. His works include the Marius’ Mules and Praetorian series, the Tales of the Empire and The Damned Emperor series, and the Rise of Emperors books with Gordon Doherty.

Follow Simon

Twitter: @SJATurney

Instagram: @simonturney_aka_sjaturney

Website: http://simonturney.com/

BLOG TOUR – The Wickham Market Murder by Iain Maitland

Today is my turn on the blog tour for The Wickham Market Murder by Iain Maitland, Book 1 in the Bloomfield & Palmer series.

Here’s the blurb

Suffolk, 1907.

Wickham Market’s local constable William Palmer spends his days yearning to solve a significant case so he can earn his detective’s badge.

But Palmer is torn, because he is also in love with the school mistress Alice Kemp who doesn’t want to leave the village.

One night, the night of a dramatic storm, there is a murder. A housemaid – Evelyn Maud Roberts – is found stabbed to death at the local vicarage.

Palmer has his chance to make a name for himself.

The local doctor declares that Evelyn was six months pregnant.

And the vicar’s daughter, Charlotte Mellor, names three men who may have reason to commit murder; Walter Fisk, soon-to-be-master at the workhouse; Albert Nunn, the postman; Frederick Hawes, the slow-witted village boy in love with Evelyn.

Palmer investigates. But he only has so much time before Inspector Bloomfield – the veteran detective from Suffolk Police – arrives from Ipswich to take over the case.

And before the killer strikes again.

Review.

On a cold and horrible night, Evelyn Maud Roberts rushes for the safety of shelter from weather.. not knowing her life is soon to end.

When her body is discovered, local constable William Palmer decides he wants to solve this himself before reinforcements arrive. Palmer is quite a no nonsense guy and speaks without thinking sometimes..unfortunately this means the investigation doesn’t go as planned.

Soon reinforcements arrive in the form of Inspector Bloomfield. When you put these two together you get a kind of Sherlock Holmes type vibe, the inspector showing Palmer the way, tricks of the trade, the tools to help him as the investigation continues. Bloomfield is flawed though, he can have a blinkers on, which to me seems quite logical as without the tools to investigate you’d be left to rely on your gut and would go with it.. but will he get the right man form the crime? And before another body hits the floor?

The case isn’t clear cut though, there’s multiple suspects all with motives and questionable alibis…all these men could be the father to Evelyn’s unborn child…they have a lot to loose, given the tools available in 1907 it seems like this case will go nowhere.. until things kind of take a drastic turn of events.

I really enjoyed the plot and the pace, it was easy to follow and I was fascinated to see how they might solve this case without clear cut evidence. What was even better is that the story really highlighted justice, or rather injustice at times and how difficult it would be to solve some cases.

The Wickham Market Murder isn’t an overly long book either, which I really enjoyed… towards the end I was utterly focused so would have been highly annoyed if I had to put the book down ha ha. I loved escaping into this world, this case, and I was left wanting more. I’d loved to see this team return, this duo have more tales I’m sure 😊

It’s a cracking 4/5 stars from me!

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads

My thanks go to the author, the publisher and ZooloosBookTours for having me on the tour. I had a copy of the book so was my pleasure to jump onboard! 😊

Why not follow along?

Author Bio

Iain Maitland is the author of three previous psych thrillers, The Scribbler (2020), Mr Todd’s Reckoning (2019) and Sweet William (2017), all published by Contraband, an imprint of Saraband. Mr Todd’s Reckoning is coming to the big screen in 2023.

Iain is also the author of two memoirs, Dear Michael, Love Dad (Hodder, 2016), a book of letters written to his eldest son who experienced depression and anorexia, and (co-authored with Michael) Out Of The Madhouse (Jessica Kingsley, 2018).

He is also an Ambassador for Stem4, the teenage mental health charity. He talks regularly about mental health issues in schools and colleges and workplaces.

Find out more about Iain at http://www.iainmaitland.net and twitter.com/iainmaitland


Follow him at:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/iainmaitland

Website: www.iainmaitland.net

BLOG TOUR – The Lost Boy of Bologna by Francesca Scanacapra

Today I’m kicking off the blog tour for The Lost Boy of Bologna by Francesca Scanacapra!

Keeping reading too! If you like the sound of the book there’s a chance to win a copy! UK Only.

Here’s the blurb!

Bologna, 1929. A newborn baby boy is abandoned by his desperate unmarried mother, who believes he is dead and that she is to blame. Heartbroken, she leaves her child, accepting that her actions will haunt her for the rest of her days. But unbeknown to her, the kindness of a stranger means the starving baby survives. And so begins the extraordinary life of Rinaldo Scamorza

Following several years in an orphanage, where Rinaldo still holds onto the hope that his mother will come to claim him, he is entrusted to a heartless foster-mother who treats her charges as nothing more than financial opportunities. Yet amidst the cruelty and violence of this loveless environment Rinaldo meets fellow orphan, Evelina, and the two children create a bond which they believe will never be broken. 

Rinaldo holds tight to the few people who show him love, and he becomes a loyal, intelligent and kind boy. But his life is shattered when aged barely 13, Evelina is sold into prostitution by their foster-mother. 

As he grows up and becomes more resourceful, he finds work as an errand boy in a brothel, where he encounters Evelina once again. But in his efforts to help her escape her life of exploitation, another dark misfortune pulls them apart and she disappears. 

When at last Italy begins to emerge from the shadows of World War II and Bologna’s economy recovers, Rinaldo uses his intimate knowledge of the city to change his life for the better. But through everything, the successes and the moments of loneliness and misery, the women he yearns to see again – Evelina and his mother – are always on his mind…

Fans of Angela Petch, Helen Fripp, Dinah Jeffries, Rhys Bowen and Louise Douglas will adore this captivating historical novel.

Review

A desperate mother struggles to support her new-born baby, with little money and with the babe sickly she’s in a very bad place. When the baby turns blue the new mother fears the worst! When there’s no signs of life the mother does what she feels best.. the last resort.. she leaves the baby with everything she has, including a family earring in the hope it can be used the pay to give the baby the funeral he deserves.

Little does the new mother know the baby survives, although still a little sickly. The baby is named Rinaldo Scamorza.

Rinaldo spends years in the orphanage waiting for his mothers return, he never gives up hope, but no one is looking for him.

Eventually after a tough start to life he’s set to leave the orphanage. Little does he know his hardships are just beginning. The only good thing in his life is Evelina, she’s like a big sister to him but as a pretty girl her life’s not going to be easy either.

Evelina and Rinaldo learn the hard way that there are some very bad people in life. Some of the events are quite difficult to read as they cause very personal traumas to the characters.

As we fast forward through Rinaldo’s life I was just waiting, desperate to see where he would end up. Little did I know his whole world is going to be fractured again.. but will the latest events be good or bad? I’ll let you find out 😊

I loved the plot of this one, when you start this, you’re in it for the long haul as it’s all about that build up, the history. The pace was prefect, but I can’t lie, I powered through those last 3 – 4 chapters. You know something is coming, you know how you want it to play out, but will it?

As much as some of the events are harrowing, the word best to describe this book is “Hope”.  Rinaldo never gives up… he never stops thinking about his mother and Evelina.

I can’t stress enough how much I loved the flow, the connections built with the characters. It meant there were many times I felt warm and fuzzy as events linked to Rinaldo and played out beautifully, full of emotion.. Wow

I spectacular 5* which I’d highly recommend

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

My thanks go to the author, publisher and Rachel @rararesources for having me on the tour. I received a copy of the book in our to take part in the tour but have already added this to my purchased list 🙂 Too good not to buy!

Why not follow the tour?

Author Bio –

Francesca Scanacapra was born in Italy to an English mother and Italian father, and her early childhood was spent in Bologna, the city whose rich history has been the inspiration for the Bologna Chronicles series of novels. Francesca’s adult life has been somewhat nomadic with periods spent living in Italy, England, France, Senegal and Spain. In 2021 she returned to her native country and back to her earliest roots to pursue her writing career full time. She now resides permanently in rural Lombardy in the house built by her great-grandfather which was the inspiration for her Paradiso Novels.

Social Media Links –

Twitter https://twitter.com/FrancescaScana2

Insta @francescascana2

Giveaway!!!

Click here to enter the giveaway to Win 5 x PB copies of The Lost Boy of Bologna (Open to UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

BLOG TOUR – Blood Sentence by Keith Nixon – Review

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Blood Sentence by Keith Nixon!

Why not follow the follow the rest of the tour?

Here’s the blurb :-

Three bodies, one suspect. That suspect is you…

When the unidentified corpse of an apparent suicide victim is found hanging above a complex pattern of forty photographs of children, Detective Inspector Jonah Pennance of the Met’s specialist Sapphire Unit is brought in to investigate.

A post-mortem reveals the suicide was murder, and Pennance realises he knows the man. But as the body count rises, all the signs point to a care home in Kent – a place that Pennance is all too familiar with.

The problem is the only person connecting the victims is Pennance – and he has a solid motive for wanting them dead… Can Pennance prove his innocence?

Perfect for fans of Ian Rankin, Stuart MacBride, and Peter James Blood Sentence is the first book in the explosive series featuring Detective Inspector Jonah Pennance.

Review

I’m a massive fan of Keith’s work so jumped at the chance to be part of the blog tour, I already had the book downloaded so was eager to get stuck in.

From the blurb I was already excited, a new series by Keith..what’s not to love? But the name Pennance.. that rung a bell. If you are a fan of Nixon’s work you’ll know Pennance had a small role in the author’s previous Solomon Gray series so I was great to see him get his own story!

I know what to expect from Keith so I’ve high expectations.. boy did he deliver! But the best thing was simply the feeling the book gave me, it felt familiar with the tie back to the authors previous work but also new and refreshing.

So you want to know about the plot. The book starts with the death of a man in strange circumstances and it soon becomes clear for DI Pennance there’s links to his past.. things he would rather forget.

His attention is drawn away as he’s pulled to Wales to assist in some enquires..the case has his name written all over it but Pennence doesn’t have a clue how he’s involved.

It’s kind of a whirlwind from then on as Pennence struggles to put the pieces together, investigating a death of an animal rights activist and how the hell it links back to him! He doesn’t even know the guy.

In Nixon’s style which I love, the author weaves the tale in such a masterful way that the truth only becomes clear when he wants it to and Penances’ world is turned upside down forever.

It’s not a typical police procedural tale, it’s a thriller, its personal, intense and gritty with some marvellous storytelling!  I almost feel bad I demolished this in a couple sittings but it’s a real page turner and sucks you in!

It’s a cracking 5/5 stars from me!

My thanks go to the author, the publisher and ZooloosBookTours for having me on the tour 😊

To find out more head to Amazon or Goodreads

About the author

Keith Nixon is the best-selling author of sixteen novels and one million words in print, including the Margate based Solomon Gray series of over 250,000 copies in circulation and reached no.1 on Amazon in the UK, US, Canada and Australia.

Keith lived near the gritty seaside town of Margate, where many of his novels are based, for 17 years before relocating to the edge of the Peak District with his family where he lives today. Keith works in a senior sales role within a high-tech industry and has regularly travelled all over the globe.

His novels are published by Gladius Press and Bastei Lubbe (German)

Follow Keith:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/keithnixonauthor

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/keith_nixon/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/knntom

Website: keithnixon.co.uk

BLOG TOUR Princess No Knots by Deborah Dillon & Matt Richards

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Princess No Knots by Deborah Dillon, Illustrated by Matt Richards.

Here’s the blurb.

Princess No Knots LOVES her long golden hair as much as she LOVES her bath time, but she does NOT love having it brushed. When her flowing locks end up in knots, the King tells her they will have to be cut and takes away her crown. Enter a world of determination, sprinkled with a small dose of magic, to find out if the strong-willed Princess finds a way to get back her crown, keep her name and save the hair she so loves. A must read rhyming picture book for any parent who struggles with the dreaded ‘hair wash’ night! Available on amazon.co.uk.

Review

Princess No Knots is a lovely little book about a Princess who absolutely hates to have her hair brushed.

She must quickly learn how to deal with her emotions to make sure she doesn’t loose her crown.. a Princess must look the part after all.

I read this with my two little girls and they loved it, they were engaged from first page to last.

The story itself is easy to follow and is paced nicely to enable younger children to read this themselves.

I enjoyed the message of the book and it helped me start a talk with my kids on how sometimes you have to do things you may not like but it gets it on the right level so they can fully understand why.

When asked the girls really wanted to tell everyone how lovely the illustrations are, although Georgia fully believes they aren’t anywhere near as good as her drawings ha. I apologise to the wonderful illustrator Matt Richards for that comment! ha

Georgia loved the book so much she has read it by herself a few more times independently which was lovely to see.

Overall Princess No Knots is a colourful and engaging read to support younger children as they learn in life.

Abi & Georgia rated this 5/5 stars!!

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon

My thanks go to the author and Rachel @rararesources for having me on the tour and for providing a copy of the book for the girls to read. They are more than excited to let some of their friends see this one 😊

Why not follow the tour?

Author Bio –

Deborah Dillon’s love of books, poems and story telling stems from her Granddad Jim who always used to make up stories at bedtime when she was young. Every story would take her to crazy worlds of adventure and friendship, each story sprinkled with a tiny bit of determination.

Since having children of her own Deborah has continued this family tradition but rather than keeping all the stories in her head, she decided to write them down. As her children were growing up she was inspired to write about whatever obstacles or challenges they, or their friends, faced then overcame.

Deborah is a firm believer that something magical happens when you read a book together.

Social Media Links –

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/deborah.dillon.56/

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/deborah.dillon.56

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/DeborahDillon01

BLOG TOUR- A Night of Flames by Matthew Harffy! HAPPY PUBLICATION DAY!!!

Today is my turn on the blog tour for A Night of Flames by Matthew Harffy! It also happens to be the official publication day too!!!

If you follow my blog you’ll know Harffy is a firm favourite so to say I was eager to get to grips with this one was an understatement!

Here’s the blurb

In the wild lands of Norway, Hunlaf must quell a vicious slave uprising in Matthew Harffy’s new historical adventure.

A wild land. A lethal fanatic. A violent revolt.

Northumbria, AD 794. Those who rule the seas, rule the land. None know the truth of this more than the Vikings. To compete with the seafaring raiders, the king of Northumbria orders the construction of his own longships under the command of oath-sworn Norseman, Runolf.

When the Vikings attack again, the king sends cleric turned warrior, Hunlaf, on a mission to persuade the king of Rogaland into an alliance. But Hunlaf and Runolf have other plans; kin to seek out, old scores to settle, and a heretical tome to find in the wild lands of the Norse.

Their voyage takes them into the centre of a violent uprising. A slave has broken free of his captors and, with religious fervour, is leading his fanatical followers on a rampage – burning all in his path. Hunlaf must brave the Norse wilderness, and overcome deadly foes, to stop this madman. Can he prevent a night of flames and slaughter?

Review

Firstly I have to commended the author on creating a new series set away from his Serpent Sword series but at the same time offering subtle nods to his previous work. These litter eastereggs are there to find and really did put a smile on my face. I know the characters aren’t real but at the same time the investment you put into a story as the reader makes them real, so adding in these little extras triggers the memories and it’s great to see those adventures are still locked in my head 😊.

So we are back with Hunlaf, he’s firmly shed his monk robes for the touch of cold hard steel but that doesn’t mean he’s still not conflicted at times. Mainly because the warrior life has come easy to him and sometimes that doesn’t sit well with his soul. He’s about to be tested like never before.

Runolf wants to start building his boat to cross the sea to find out what has become of his family. Hunlaf has a desire more then most to join him after his kin was take in a previous Viking raid. Neither know how their loved ones fair so as you can imagine.. there’s a lot of nervous energy going around with them both eager to set sail.

After receiving the blessing of the King to build the boat and with orders to gain a truce with the Norse we see a few new faces join our band of heroes and at times tensions can run high but the call of the sea and the torment it can cause soon allows bonds to grow.. which will make future events even harder to swallow. The journey across the sea will be completed but comes at a price.

When eventually they arrive on Norse lands all is not well. A slave has revolted and is causing havoc. If Runolf and Hunlaf ever want to see peace and their kin again they must fight a new threat.. and this threat is a little bit crazy to say the least.

We learn early on that death will show it’s face so while I was kind of prepared it really didn’t help lessen the shock when events unfolded.

What happens next is beyond belief and is the best 10 – 15 chapters I’ve ever read in my life…the grizzly horror.. the bloodshed.. the pain.. it’s beautiful in it’s madness as Hunlaf tries to make it out of this one alive.. but nothing is certain, but.. Anything is possible.

If it’s even possible I think Harffy gets better and better which each offering and as this is still a relatively new series for the author it’s given him the ability to explore things a little more than with his established characters I feel.. he really let his creative juices flow on this one.

I always like to comment on writing style, chapter length etc but on this one I simple can’t.. I was so engrossed I just didn’t take that in.. I just ploughed through this one with a desire to learn the outcome.. We know Hunlaf makes it through this adventure as he’s the one recounting the tale to us but the rest is not known and there’s so much at stake… I really didn’t want to see loose anyone but it wouldn’t be a Harffy book without a few tears.

It’s a 5* from me without a shadow of a doubt.

It’s unreal how haunting amazing this book is.. how is it even possible to write something so disturbingly beautiful! There’s so many emotions that pass through you as you read this one and it’s something that will really stay with you.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

My thanks go to the publishers for gifting me a copy of the book for review! This one was on pre-order too but it’s always exciting to get to read in advance in order to jump on a wonderful blog tour!

Why not follow the tour??

About the author

Matthew Harffy grew up in Northumberland where the rugged terrain, ruined castles and rocky coastline had a huge impact on him. He now lives in Wiltshire, England, with his wife and their two daughters.

Follow Matthew

Twitter: @MatthewHarffy

Website: www.matthewharffy.com

Follow Aries

Twitter: @AriesFiction

Facebook: Aries Fiction

Website: http://www.headofzeus.com

BLOG TOUR – Son of Mercia by MJ Porter

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Son of Mercia by MJ Porter!

Here’s the blurb

Tamworth, Mercia AD825.

The once-mighty kingdom of Mercia is in perilous danger.

Their King, Beornwulf lies dead and years of bitter in-fighting between the nobles, and cross border wars have left Mercia exposed to her enemies.

King Ecgberht of Wessex senses now is the time for his warriors to strike and exact his long-awaited bloody revenge on Mercia.

King Wiglaf, has claimed his right to rule Mercia, but can he unite a disparate Kingdom against the might of Wessex who are braying for blood and land?

Can King Wiglaf keep the dragons at bay or is Mercia doomed to disappear beneath the wings of the Wessex wyvern?

Can anyone save Mercia from destruction?

Review

I’m a fan of MJ Porter but being prolific with the releases I find it hard to keep up ha! I jumped at the chance to get onboard with this new series early!

The story follows young Icel whose past is shadowed in mystery.. his mother unfortunately died and he’s never known who his farther is so he’s been raised by his uncle Cenfrith. Icel has trained in the arts of healing but there’s something in him just waiting to come out.

King Ecgberht is looking to expand his reach and senses weakness in Mercia. He’s right I guess as King Wiglaf seems to disappear but why? And have we been given the full story?

When King Ecgberht descends Icel is forced to flee to safety with his uncle and his friend Edwin. Along the way Icel learns a little of past events but only what his uncle allows. Will he ever learn the full truth?

What happens next was the most amazing few chapters I’ve ever read! I can’t spoil it but Cenfrith is an amazing character who supports Icel and keeps him safe. When the opportunity comes for Icel to save Mercia he sets out to find King Wiglaf.

The tension mounts and battle commences.. it’s time for Icel to learn more about himself than he ever thought possible.

Son of Mercia is a real coming of age tale for Icel as he learns what kind of man he’s destined to be… although there’s certainly more to come.

I can’t give this anything less than 5*. The plot was astonishingly gripping. I’ve struggled the past few months to devote time to reading but I was hooked as soon as I picked this one up and it’s helped me fall back in love with books again.

What a cracking read! I look forward to more!

My thanks go to MJ Porter, Boldwood Books and NetGalley for providing a copy of this ebook in return for my honest review and Rachel from http://www.rachelsrandomresources.com  for having me on the blog tour!

This a certainly a book I want on my shelf so will be ordering a paperback asap!

To find out more why not follow the blog tour? or head to Goodreads or Amazon!

Author Bio –

MJ Porter is the author of many historical novels set predominantly in Seventh to Eleventh-Century England, and in Viking Age Denmark. Raised in the shadow of a building that was believed to house the bones of long-dead Kings of Mercia, meant that the author’s writing destiny was set.

Social Media Links – https://twitter.com/coloursofunison

https://www.instagram.com/m_j_porter/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7163404.M_J_Porter

BLOG TOUR – Monster Max and the Marmalade Ghost  by Robin Bennett, with illustrations by Tom Tinn-Disbury

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Monster Max and the Marmalade Ghost  by Robin Bennett, with illustrations by Tom Tinn-Disbury.

Here’s the blurb

Max and Peregrine are volunteering at an old people’s home, when strange things start to happen: one resident is walking on the ceiling; one is riding their wheelchair through walls; and Reggie says his marmalade is haunted (although no one listens). Can Max and his friends work out what’s happening to protect his family and the local community? Things aren’t looking good – the Marmalade Ghost is turning into a gloopy Godzilla, Max falls out with his (joint) best friend, and then, just when it can’t get any worse, someone kidnaps Max’s cat, Frankenstein… will they meet a sticky end?

Time to ‘Protect and Do Good Stuff!’

Why not follow the tour?

Review

Monster Max and the Marmalade Ghost is a fun little tale which my two 7 year olds really enjoyed reading. Max has a very cool secret.. he can turn into Monster Max and use the powers gained to do good assisted by his faithful friend Peregrine! Which is exactly what they set out to do when it appears the marmalade in the old people’s home seems to be haunted!

The style of writing is easy to read with kids and the illustrations break up the tale nicely to allow the kids time to absorb the story without overloading them. The page count too helps, it’s a god length being over 100 pages but I broke it down and read the story over 3 nights, each nights the girls eager to see what would happen next.

There’s lots of humour added to give the kids a little laugh too, burps a plenty 😊

When asked what the girls enjoyed it was a resounding success for Max’s monster transformation! And they loved the illustrations.

It’s a fun little kids mystery adventure and my two loved following Max’s journey!

It’s 5/5 Stars from my two!!

To find our more head to Goodreads, Firefly Press or Amazon.

My thanks go to the author, Firefly Press for allowing me to review an ARC as part of the blog tour arranged by the wonderful Rachel @ Rachel’s Random Resources –@rararesources!

A copy has already been bought too.. The girls loved it!

Author Bio –

When Robin grew up he thought he wanted to be a cavalry officer until everyone else realised that putting him in charge of a tank was a very bad idea. He then became an assistant gravedigger in London. After that he had a career frantically starting business- es (everything from dog-sitting to cigars, tuition to translation)… until finally settling down to write improbable stories to keep his children from killing each other on long car journeys.

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BLOG TOUR! Hustle by Owen Mullen

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Hustle by Owen Mullen, book 3 in The Glass Family series.

Here’s the blurb

If you mess with the Glass family, don’t expect to live to tell the tale…

What was meant to be a straightforward jewellery heist goes horribly wrong, and the thieves are forced to take a hostage to make their escape. But when they discover their prisoner is the infamous Nina Glass – one of the bosses of the most dangerous criminal dynasty in London – they soon realise they have made a terrible mistake.

Greed wins out over good sense and the gang decide to make the best of a bad situation. They send Luke Glass a ransom note. But messing with London’s top crime dynasty is a serious error. Now Luke must track down the gang who abducted his sister before they carry out their brutal threats.

The Glass family have other problems. The crooked cop they have on their payroll – DCI Oliver Stanford – makes an unwelcome discovery. The insider they had all presumed dead, may in fact have survived, and still be feeding information to the police. 

Under attack from all sides, and desperate to save his sister, Luke has the reputation and survival of the crime dynasty in his hands – is this the end of the Glass family?

Three people can keep a secret – if two of them are dead…

Review

First things first, you don’t need to have read the first 2 books in the series to be able to follow this one. What I love about Owen’s work is how he easily slips in key info to remind readers of past events which is just the right amount for a new reader to be able to follow.. but at the same time I do recommend reading the rest of the series…it’s bloody good!

We are back with the Glass family and a new threat is about to hit the family hard.

During what should have been a straightforward robbery a hostage is taken.. that hostage is Nina Glass. The robbers didn’t know that at first but now they do they have a choice…and they decide its time to have a bit of fun with the Glass family..

They must be crazy as Luke Glass isn’t a man to cross but Luke might have his work cut out for him on this one… he doesn’t know who these people are.. or where they are.

Luke uses all his contacts to find Nina, even risking his inside man within the police force but will it be enough.

What I really enjoyed with this one was the development of Nina. She’s a tough cookie but we see deeper into her personality, more than we ever have before. Simply no other word for it than WOW!

With each instalment of the Glass family the tale goes deeper, darker and grittier than previous and it’s seriously too good not to read and love!

I also love how Owen manages to pack so much into his tales. Not only does Luke have to save his sister but there’s some wannabes looking for a piece of the action they feel belongs to them.. Should the family give ground or stand up to these fools.. again.. no one messes with Luke Glass. No one messes with the family.

Another 5* from Owen…I’m not sure how he manages to do it but he clearly knows the recipe for a good gangland thriller.

To find out more head to Goodreads or Amazon.

My thanks go to Owen Mullen, Boldwood Books and NetGalley for providing a copy of this ebook in return for my honest review and Rachel from http://www.rachelsrandomresources.com for having me on the blog tour! I had the book pre-ordered from day one and look forward to having a paperback join my collection soon.

With book 4 in the series on the way I’m a very have man.

Author Bio –

Owen Mullen is a highly regarded crime author who splits his time between Scotland and the island of Crete. In his earlier life he lived in London and worked as a musician and session singer. He has now written seven books and his first gangland thriller for Boldwood, Family was published in January 2021.

Social Media Links –  

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Bookbub profile https://www.bookbub.com/authors/owen-mullen