Update from Tina

From Contemporary and Historical Romance to Fantasy and Psychological Thriller/Horrors

The summer holidays are over and it is back to school for many children and back to normality – or what passes for it! My youngest has just started school full time so last week was a big week for us all as we waited to see whether she would settle in or not. So far so good, we’ve had no tantrums  – at least from me anyway! I am a little sad to see the summer end as I do like it hot and prefer the flexibility and freedom of summer clothes over winter woollies. There is always some domestic tension this time of the year as I try to turn the heating on and hubby tells me to put a jumper on! I love the harvest time however and I have been busy picking the fruit and veg from our garden and filling our freezer with apple puree, green beans, pea soup and courgette and tomato pasta sauce to enjoy throughout the coming months.

Read on for a summary of our recent reads and those that we have planned for the next few weeks.

Recent Reads – Tina

During the last few weeks I have reviewed some fantastic reads – click on the book title for the review. Also don’t forget to enter our current giveaway of a digital copy of Bloodroom and The Bad Death, donated by the author Naima Haviland. Simply enter your name in the comments section on our review of The Bad Death. One lucky reader will win the prize!

TheBadDeath-KindleCoverThe Bad Death, by Naima Haviland – A Gothic Masterpiece of Dark Romance, Horror and Suspense . Part of the author’s’s vampire trilogy and prequel/sequel to Bloodroom, reviewed on the blog last year (click title for review). Here the vampire myth with African Gullah legends to create a dark and gripping narrative. In The Bad Death, a mysterious African beauty emerges from the family crypt of Julian Mouret. This woman enthralls this handsome slave plantation owner with an outlandish tale of peril and flight. Fearing for her sanity, he determines to keep Anika (or Annie as she is known) safe as a series of horrifying mutilation murders ensues, indicating to the slaves the presence of “plat-eyes”—shape-shifting blood-sucking supernatural creatures. Anika becomes empowered to end the rampage, but at stake is not only her own life but the soul of the man she is coming to love.

The Antique Love, by Helena Fairfax – A sweet contemporary romance, where the hero Kurt, a financial high flyer 18342845[1]who hails from Wyoming, does not believe in love and passion, seeing how devastated others can be when such emotions burn themselves out. Instead he is convinced that he can select a wife based on rationality and logic alone. However, he finds that Cupid has other ideas when he asks Penny, who runs an antique shop in London to furnish his new home adjacent to Richmond Park. Penny is an incurable romantic and has her own past hurts to deal with. Will Kurt succumb to the power of love and will Penny believe that she can be anything more than a kid sister to Kurt?

9196442[1]Wolfkeeper’s Woman, by Lisa Day – A passionate and heart rending romance between homesteader Cassie and Wolfkeeper, a native American warrior whose raiding party killed her husband and who has gifted her baby to his brother and sister- in-law. Can Cassie survive being held captive by a people so very different to her own? Will she free her son and escape? And what of her growing feelings towards Wolfkeeper as he demands control over her body?

Coming Reads

18405661[1]My Brother My Rival (Books 1 and 2), by Eve Rabi – A modern day romance where two brothers unknowingly meet and fall18323152[1] for the same girl, who is also at first unaware that they are related. The characters of the brothers are like chalk and cheese – one is a ladies man, looking for a quick fling and the other for a more permanent relationship. However, what happens when they both decide they want to play for keeps? Who deserves the girl and who will she choose? This is an Eve Rabi book and therefore promises to be no simple love triangle. I have my tissues at the ready for another of her trademark emotional rides where I expect to laugh one minute and cty the next.

SamanthaHolt_ToStealAHighlandersHeart_200px.jpg.opt166x249o0,0s166x249[1]To Steal a Highlander’s Heart, by Samantha Holt –  I am a huge fan of Samantha Holt’s sensual medieval romances. This title, release date 30th September, which is set in the Highlands, also has a paranormal element. In it Alana meets Morgann for the first time in years and he captures her, reigniting the rift and the threat of war that’s existed between the two clans since her father accused Morgann of theft. Unfortunately for Alana, the faeries seek to interfere with her plans to escape and endeavour to ensure a union between the couple. Morgann has his own reasons for taking Alana and they are nothing to do with marriage or war. If only he didn’t find his childhood friend so attractive. When circumstances force them together, Alana’s life is threatened and war is imminent. Can Morgann reveal the truth without losing Alana? And will the faeries meddling help or hinder his cause?(

Gem of Gravane, by Amber Dane – I have read many positive reviews of this author’s work and am15741229[1] looking forward to this medieval romance where, Alric, a loyal knight and a reluctant bridegroom is gifted both lands and a lady by his lord and King William. He comes to  claim his prize of the lady and her manor a year after he has been gifted it. Annabelle can only hope that the coming union will improve the lot of her people, who have suffered in recent years, for the reaction of the knight on seeing her for the first time shows his displeasure. Treachery awaits the couple as they struggle to adjust to married life and learn to trust each other with their secrets and open their hearts to love.

Bellas%20Betrothal%20200x300[1]Bella’s Betrothal, by Anne Stenhouse – Release date 20th September 2013: While travelling north to find sanctuary from the gossip of the Ton, Lady Isabella Wormsley’s room at an inn is invaded by handsome Scottish Laird, Charles Lindsay. Charles has uncovered a plot to kidnap her, but Bella wonders if he isn’t a more dangerous threat, at least to her heart, than the villainous Graham Direlton he wrests her from. Bella hopes the delivery of her young cousin’s baby will eventually demonstrate her own innocence in the scandal that drove her from home. However, Bella’s presence disrupts the lives of everyone connected to her. Mayhem, murder and family secrets also enter the fray. Will the growing but unacknowledged love between Bella and her Scottish architect survive the evil Direlton engineers?

Meanwhile, Caroline returned to the blog from her hols and settling back into her normal routine with her long awaited review for Brooke Morris’ debut fantasy, The Pull (The Nademi Series #1).

the-pull_1The Pull is a young adult fantasy following the main character, Maggie, who discovers that she is half faerie and half demon whose mother escaped from the Old World and into the New. Maggie is at her happiest when hiking and enjoying the forests and yet, in her dreams, she slowly watches forests dry up and wither away. But as she finds out more about who she is will she be able to save her Old World from dying? Whilst in the meantime she discovers that as a half-breed she was meant to be destroyed as her kind (half-breeds) are feared by others including faeries, demons, umbrokers, witches, dwarves and men!

After sorting through e-mails and review requests Caroline has been adding to her ever-growing ‘to read’ list and will be writing a post within the next week or so to provide an incite into some of the requests we have been sent and some of the books that she is excited to read.

The One PercentersAlso, within the next week Caroline is hoping to post her review of John Podgursky’s psychological thriller/horror, The One Percenters. After a man’s wife is murdered he becomes a one percenter, where he decides on who can carry on the human race and eliminates those he believes are weak, ensuring that they do not breed. But will he be able to keep to these rules? Find out more later this week when the review is posted.

Following The One Percenters, Caroline will begin to read the young adult paranormal, Flick, by Keira Des Anges. Please click on the link for more information/synopsis at Amazon.com.

Last but not least, we are interested in hearing your views as authors and readers into the Man Booker Prize rule changes. Will allowing in authors globally mean that many authors will be ignored or pushed aside, or will it allow for more fiction and choice, opening up for all? Please feel free to comment below!

Happy reading!

Tina and Caroline 🙂

About Tina Williams

Book reviewer and blogger and co-organiser of Tamworth (UK) Literary Festival

5 thoughts on “Update from Tina

  1. Hi TIna, I’m interestedto know what will happen next year with the Booker. I’m also interested to find out what you think of Eve Rabi’s book! She certainly is a prolific writer. It looks like another really fun read. Looking forward to hearing about it!

  2. Hi Helena. I’m not sure what to think about the Booker prize. On the one hand it will mean more choice, but on the other hand some noteworthy authors may lose out or slip through the net. I would like to see some high profile prizes for e-book authors, who have not had their books published in print. I think that the literary establishment overlooks them big time when one considers the growth in the e-book market. There are many such authors who write fantastic niche novels for example that grab readers’ imaginations.

    I am part way through Eve’s latest and what I can say is that so far there has been a lot of humour and romance. There has now been a big revelation and I’m thinking that things are about to go in directions that only Eve’s imagination can think of! I have my tissues at the ready and am hoping for a HEA. 🙂

    • My initial response would be to keep the Booker Prize as it is and set up a completely new Global Prize. At least that way more authors will be noticed, both globally and more local. And I also agree with Tina, that there should be a prize going for those recently self-published authors. It is hard to get noticed and those guys have to spend so much time on self promotion as well as writing their work. My hat goes off to them!

      Helena, I loved your post on Buffy today. It made me want to watch it all the way through!

  3. Hi Caroline, I agree it would be great if there were an award for self-pubbed authors. The trouble is, there are so many out there that are poorly written and edited, it’s hard to sort through so many books and find the gems. The Guardian are trying to showcase self-subbed books, and had their first ever self-pubbed romance (yay!) a few months ago http://www.theguardian.com/books/2013/jul/09/self-publishing-tracey-bloom I think there’s also a form where you can recommend self-pubbed books, if you’re interested. Interesting discussion.

    • It is quite an interesting subject and, of course, I see your point regarding self-pubbed authors. There are probably many gems out there that haven’t been promoted so well and readers have so much choice it is difficult to select books sometimes. The Guardian have reached out to showcase those books and I’m sure many authors have appreciated that. In regard to the recommendations, that might be something Tina and myself could look into, especially as we have had quite a few gems! Thanks, Helena 🙂

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