#BlogTour | #BookReview | CRAZY-ASS STORIES FOR CRAZY-ASS PEOPLE by Andy Rausch @writerrausch1 (March 25th 2019) @BlackthornTours

Thank you very much to Henry @ Blackthorn Tours and Andy Rausch for providing a copy of the book to [K]

The review below is 100% honest and all of her own views.

Blurb:

This quirky collection of short stories (and one novella) by Andy Rausch contains something for readers of every stripe. Rausch touches on a variety of genres, including horror, comedy, crime, and even Western, but every story features his unique, offbeat wit, superb writing, and razor-sharp dialogue, all delivered from a decidedly off-kilter perspective. His work has been praised by the likes of Cape Fear screenwriter Wesley Strick and Fort Apache the Bronx author Heywood Gould. Author Peter Leonard once compared his writing style to that of his father, Elmore Leonard. Storylines include a naive little boy mistaking a burglar for Santa Claus, bumbling white supremacists attempting to resurrect the dead body of Adolf Hitler, a man who develops an unexplainable craving for the taste of human flesh, a would-be author summoning the spirit of dead novelist Charles Bukowski to assist him writing, a showdown between legendary lawman Wyatt Earp and a deadly serial killer on the dusty streets of Tombstone, and many more. So ask yourself: are you a little bit crazy, and if so, are you up to the task of reading these twenty-two wild and crazy tales of darkness, wackiness, and outright debauchery?

Review:

This is a brilliant collection of short stories, based in a variety of places; cities, to sea to space, with no two stories alike. Genres that you would not expect appear in this wacky collection of short stories.  Just as I thought I had an idea of the plotline, it turns into a crazy-ass story.

As well as the short stories I did enjoy reading the origins of each of them, This is my first book by Andy Rausch but definitely will not be the last. I already have a new list for my TBR!

If you want a unique collection of dark and quirky stories this crazy-ass collection is definitely for you

Author Bio:

Andy Rausch is an American film journalist, author, screenwriter, film producer, and actor.

He is the author of several novels and novellas including Elvis Presley, CIA Assassin. He also wrote the screenplay for Dahmer versus Gacy and is the author of some twenty non-fiction books on popular culture.

Books: Riding Shotgun, Bloody Sheets, A Time for Violence, Layla’s Score

You can usually find Andy on Twitter @writerrausch1, and he maintains a blog at https://authorandyrausch.wordpress.com/

You can buy Crazy-Ass Stories For Crazy-Ass People from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

#BlogTour | #BookReview | A SERPENTS CONSCIENCE by Claude Saayman @CSaayman (June 7th 2019) @BOTBSPublicity

Welcome to our stop on this blog tour. Thank you very much to Sarah @ BookOnTheBrightSide and Claude Saayman for providing a copy of the book to [K]

The review below is 100% honest and all of her own views.

Blurb:

What makes a man risk his life, over and over again, for a few moments of pleasure?

Young Marc lives in an emotionally charged and volatile home environment that sets him on a path to psychological chaos and drug addiction. As a balm for his low self-esteem he develops a need for danger and puts himself in dangerous, sometimes deadly situations. He is just seventeen when he steals his first aircraft. A year later he joins the Air Force where he takes a helicopter for a joyride. He is caught and given a second chance in a fighter training squadron. One Sunday afternoon he decides to take a fighter jet for a joyride.

Marc deserts the Air Force but is caught trying to leave the country. He learns that he will be charged for treason and executed so he makes a daring escape. He is caught and put in a secure facility where he makes another audacious escape. He is caught and thrown into solitary confinement for three years. To pass the time in his cell, he flies imaginary planes. On the verge of insanity, Marc makes one last flight where he discovers the reason for his turbulent life.

On the way to his court martial he escapes and vows to start a new life.

Review:

A Serpent’s Conscience follows Marc Saayman, through his turbulent life as a young child to adult.

When we first meet little Marc his mother and father have a very volatile relationship, at times having to live with his Grandparents, leading to Marc and his brother Clive not having a very stable family life. Because of his experiences and  instability in his life as a child this has made him a vunerable young person that people took advantage of and exploited. This in turn shaped his development into an adult.

Heartbreaking at times as to how he was treated and abused, I found myself wishing for Marc to find the ‘click’ that would help him turn his life around for the better, leaving the drama behind, avoiding the destructive path that he sometimes chose and the consequences that followed.

I do enjoy a well written biography and I think this is one of those books that will stay with me. This really is an unlikely biography as per the title.

The way this book ended I do wonder if there will be a follow up biography in the pipeline? 

I truly hope Marc has found some semblance of peace as the events he has lived through so far are more than most people experience in their entire lifetimes.

[K]

Author Bio:

Some say Claude Saayman is a genius, others say he is just a no-good criminal but very few know that he is one of the greatest impostors of all time. He spent three years in solitary confinement before escaping and starting a new life. Without so much as a high school diploma, he worked as a Surgeon, Engineer Airline Executive and managed a multi-billion-dollar project.

Claude learned the basics of writing in James Patterson’s Masterclass, yet his style has been described as reminiscent of Romain Gary.

To learn more about Claude and his extraordinary life, visit him online at thegreatestimpostor.com.

You can buy A Serpent’s Choice from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

#BlogTour | #BookReview | THE MENTOR by Lee Matthew Goldberg @LeeMatthewG (June 13th 2017) @BlackthornTours

Welcome to our stop on this blog tour. Thank you very much to Henry @ Blackthorn Tours and Lee Matthew Goldberg for providing a copy of the book to [K]

The review below is 100% honest and all of her own views.

Blurb:

Kyle Broder has achieved his lifelong dream and is an editor at a major publishing house.

When Kyle is contacted by his favorite college professor, William Lansing, Kyle couldn’t be happier. Kyle has his mentor over for dinner to catch up and introduce him to his girlfriend, Jamie, and the three have a great time. When William mentions that he’s been writing a novel, Kyle is overjoyed. He would love to read the opus his mentor has toiled over.

Until the novel turns out to be not only horribly written, but the most depraved story Kyle has read.

After Kyle politely rejects the novel, William becomes obsessed, causing trouble between Kyle and Jamie, threatening Kyle’s career, and even his life. As Kyle delves into more of this psychopath’s work, it begins to resemble a cold case from his college town, when a girl went missing. William’s work is looking increasingly like a true crime confession.

Lee Matthew Goldberg’s The Mentor is a twisty, nail-biting thriller that explores how the love of words can lead to a deadly obsession with the fate of all those connected and hanging in the balance.

Review:

When I saw that Lee Matthew Goldberg had written another book I jumped at the chance after loving The Desire Card, and I was not disappointed.
William Lansing reads in his local paper that his old student Kyle Broader has managed to get himself a brilliant job as an editor at a prestigious publishing house, he sees an opportunity to get his book that he has been working on for the last 10 years published.

Kyle is ecstatic that his old college professor has contacted him to publish his opus. The only problem with Wiliam’s book is that it is very dark, and horribly written.

When Kyle sympathetically declines to publish William’s book, events take a dark turn.

William is a very unsettling character, who creates chaos and mental instability in Kyle’s life for spurning his beloved novel. Outwardly a pleasant and charming old college professor to everyone but we, as readers, have access to his thoughts and feelings that paint a very different story. 

I found this to be an unputdownable fast paced thriller, which I read in record time.

I cannot wait to see what Lee will publish next!

Author Bio:

Lee Matthew Goldberg is the author of the novels THE DESIRE CARD, THE MENTOR, and SLOW DOWN. He has been published in multiple languages and nominated for the 2018 Prix du Polar. The second book in the Desire Card series, PREY NO MORE, is forthcoming in 2020, along with his first Sci-Fi novel ORANGE CITY. His new endeavor will be as the editor-in-chief and co-founder of Fringe Press and Fringe Digital, dedicated to publishing fiction that’s outside-of-the-box. His pilots and screenplays have been finalists in Script Pipeline, Book Pipeline, Stage 32, We Screenplay, the New York Screenplay, Screencraft, and the Hollywood Screenplay contests. After graduating with an MFA from the New School, his writing has also appeared in the anthology DIRTY BOULEVARD, The Millions, Cagibi, The Montreal Review, The Adirondack Review, The New Plains Review, Underwood Press and others. He is the co-curator of The Guerrilla Lit Reading Series and lives in New York City.

Social Media links:

Website | Instagram | Twitter

You can buy The Mentor from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

#BlogTour | #BookReview | SAN DIEGO DEAD (Jake Wolfe #4) by Mark Nolan @marknolan (August 31st 2019) @damppebbles

Welcome to our stop on this blog tour. Thank you very much to Emma @Damppebbles and Mark Nolan for providing a copy of the book to [K]

The review below is 100% honest and all of her own views.

Blurb:

Danger awaits Marine-turned-lawyer Jake Wolfe on his vacation to sunny San Diego and Cabo San Lucas. There he finds sugary white sand beaches, warm turquoise water, boat trips among gray whales, and … cold blooded murder.

It was meant to be a relaxing holiday for Jake and his adopted war dog, Cody, but violence erupts when he crosses paths with a criminal cartel urgently seeking to reclaim a deadly package.

Jake learns the missing item is a threat to US citizens and vows to stop the cartel from possessing it, no matter what vigilante justice actions he might have to take.

Time is running out and thousands of innocent lives are at risk. Will the two combat veterans be able to retrieve the dangerous item before the killers do? The clock is ticking, but Jake hopes that if anybody can help find the package, it has to be his highly-trained and ultra-intelligent dog, Cody.

Find out what happens next. Start reading the latest Jake and Cody thriller right now and enjoy another fast-paced stand-alone story by author Mark Nolan.

Review:

When Jake crosses paths with a drugs baron he is drawn into a world of a Mexican cartel who will stop and nothing to reclaim a package that was stolen from them. It is up to him and Cody to find and destroy this deadly item before the cartel, who could trade it to the highest bidder with dire consequences.

Jake Wolfe is a very suave and knowledgeable character. He uses his past Marine experiences to help him complete his missions in the most effective way possible. Cody the war dog knows what is needed of him and when, with or without Jake’s instruction. He has more intelligence than some people I know! Both suffer with PTSD from their former wartime jobs but does not let this stop them from completing their mission. 

I found this to be a very fast paced book and loved that we are given an occasional insight into what Cody is thinking which I found enhances the story. 

This was my first book by Mark, but will not be the last. I need to get more of this series and get my own Cody!

Author Bio:

Mark Nolan has spent much of his life near the seashore. He loves dogs and has often been called a “dog whisperer.” These interests are reflected in his novels where the main character lives on a boat with his highly intelligent former war dog.

You can buy San Diego Dead from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

#BlogTour | #GuestPost | BELLA by R M Francis @rmfrancis (Spring 2020) @Wildpressed @LoveBooksTours

Blurb:

A spectre has haunted Netherton for generations.

Everyone has a theory, no one has an answer.

The woods that frame the housing estate uncover a series of heinous acts, drawing onlookers into a space of clandestine, queer sexuality: a liminal space of abject and uncanny experience.

A question echoes in the odd borderlands of being, of fear-fascination, attraction-repulsion, of sex and death…

Who put Bella down the Wych-Elm?

Guest Post:

BLACK COUNTRY GOTHIC

I think of myself as a landscape writer, so the inspiration for Bella started there – the strange landscape of my home, the Black Country. In Dudley and its surrounding areas there’s an unusual mix of rural and urban, domestic and wild, industrial, post-industrial and hyper-modern. It’s off-kilter, in-between, not-quite-one-thing-not-quite-another. And this weird geography makes the sense of place odd too – both old and new, ruined and re-purposed, safe and unsafe, familiar and unfamiliar, attractive and repulsive. For a writer, these grounds are rich, charged and irresistible – the liminal arena of transition, transformation and transgression. I see it as the fertiliser and seedbed for narrative, drama and poetry – especially Weird tales like Bella. It’s a post-industrial sublime. A Black Country Gothic.

Writers like Joel Lane, Roy McFarlane, Kerry Hadley-Pryce, Liz Berry and Meera Syall all share a fascination and preoccupation with this region, and use its peculiar culture, topography, dialect and spirit of place as symbolic and literal setting for their explorations of sex, identity, murder, mayhem, joy and terror. In Bella, I’m trying to play my own part in this uniquely Black Country literary tradition. All of the writers above, but especially Lane, have been huge inspirations to my poetics and vision.

Speaking of cultural antecedents, this novella plays its part in another region specific literary tradition. The part-fact-part-fable mystery of Bella and the Wych-Elm; an unsolved murder of a woman whose remains were found in the hulk of tree. This story branches into witchcraft, satanism, Cold War espionage and domestic abuse in rhizomes that remain so enigmatic writers, musicians, filmmakers and artists continue to be pulled into her echoing orbit. As did I.

Bella’s secrets, set within the borderless Black Country are the limestone foundations of this love song to my home, its ghosts and its people.

Author Bio:

R. M. Francis is a writer from Dudley. He completed his PhD at the University of Wolverhampton for a project titled Queering the Black Country and graduated from Teesside University for his Creative Writing MA.

He’s the author of four poetry chapbooks, Transitions (The Black Light Engine Room Press, 2015), Orpheus (Lapwing Publications, 2016), Corvus’ Burnt-Wing Love Balm and Cure-All (The Black Light Engine Room Press, 2018) and Lamella, (Original Plus, 2019).

Follow Rob on Twitter @rmfrancis 

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You can buy Bella from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

#BlogTour | #ExtractReveal | THE FINAL TRAIL @LoveBookTours #AAAbbottstories

Blurb:

Family feuds just got bloodier… A gripping thriller, and a great story of death, revenge and vodka.

To save glamorous Kat White’s life, Ben Halloran killed his gangster father. Now his brother wants to even the score.

The gripping Trail series of British crime thrillers reaches its dramatic conclusion in this compelling page-turner.  

Extract:

This is how “The Final Trail” begins. Glamorous Kat White has climbed from rags to riches. She’s built a successful vodka brand and got engaged to the man of her dreams. Her life should be peachy, but the ghosts of the past still have a grip – and threaten to drag her back down. Read the first page of this compelling thriller, the final story in a saga of vodka makers and villains.

“I opened the door,” Kat said, “and saw a man with a gun.” 

She heard muffled gasps from the public gallery behind her. Shaun Halloran’s inquest had attracted quite an audience. The London gangster had died at his son’s hand over a year before, but Kat’s involvement lent the case a touch of glamour. Media, family, friends and random onlookers were squashed into the oak benches. Despite the unseasonal April heat, barely disturbed by a brass fan whirring overhead, the courtroom’s atmosphere was charged with excitement.

To her right, the jurors’ eyes bored into her. Before, they’d been slouching in their casual outfits, layers gradually removed as the humid air took hold. Now, Kat had their full attention. There was even a slack-jawed stare from the young, bearded man who’d been leering when she took the stand earlier.

She was hardly dressed to thrill. Her plain black shift and jacket was a frumpy choice for a twenty-seven-year-old. It didn’t flatter her curves like the outfits she’d worn for glossy magazine shoots, but it contrasted with her blonde hair and creamy skin. A lapel brooch highlighted her green eyes.

Amy, her best friend, had counselled Kat on her appearance before they packed for the trip to London. Kat was well-known as the face of Starshine vodka, the craft brand that was the trendiest drink this year. There would be media interest. She needed to look smart.

Knowing Amy was sitting behind the witness box, only inches away, gave Kat strength to face the jury. Even so, she was gripping the edge of the wooden witness box to stop her hands shaking. The only way she’d coped with the events of that day was to keep memories buried…

Copyright © 2019 A.A. Abbott

Find out more about the Trail series of psychological thrillers here, and about “The Final Trail” at mybook.to/TheFinalTrail. All five crime thrillers are available in ebook, paperback and LARGE PRINT (link to website), which is also super-easy for dyslexic readers to enjoy.

#BlogTour | #Extract | COFFEE TRAVELLER by Fahad Ben G @lordfahad1 (October 29th 2019) @fayerogerspr @authoright

Blurb:

A collection of musings about travel, life, love, family, relationships, the future and growing up in Saudi Arabia, by the author and poet Fahad Ben G.

Information about the Book

Title: Coffee Traveller

Author: Fahad Ben G.

Release Date: 29th October 2019

Genre: Poetry

Page Count: 140

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing

——-

Extract:

Invisible lines tie me to you whether I like it or not.

No matter how much I travel away from you, no matter how far we are, and no matter how different our roads are;

No matter how distinct our stations are, and no matter how your routes and mine are different;

The invisible lines continue to tie me to you.

Constant they are… they exceed the multitude of people between you and me.

Tense they are…indifferent to the laws of the universe or the gravity of Earth.

Unaffected by the amount of rocks and dismal valleys,

That separate my icy mountain from your flaming mountain…

You can buy Coffee Traveller from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

Author Bio:

Fahad Ben. G was born and raised in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. He has a Bachelors Degree in English Language Translation from the College of Languages and Translation at King Said University, and a Masters in English Linguistics from Imam Mohammed Bin Said University. Having lived in France and Japan, he finally settled in London in 2017 where he now works in the diplomatic sector.

#BlogTour | #ExcerptReveal | WAVES BREAK (ON UNKNOWN SHORES) by Barry Litherland @BWLitherland (August 16th 2019) @Lovebookstours

Blurb:

Past events cast shadows you can’t outrun. Wayne and Phil knew that better than anyone, after Stevie died, way back when they were children. A pebble dropped in a pool. Ripples spreading outwards. Who knew where they would end? 

Extract Reveal:

If I’d seen Tyrone before he saw me, I’d have cut down a side street, turned and fled. I’d have barged into a store selling women’s lingerie or slipped into a sex shop – anything to avoid passing close enough for him to recognise me. But I don’t see him. He sees me, and having seen me, he walks straight over.

It’s late afternoon and I’m in the concourse in the town centre, a street away from the promenade. There are hundreds of tourists milling about, many of them freshly arrived. A few gulls wheel overhead, waiting for scraps. There’ll be plenty of those. Even from here, I can smell the burger joints and the fish and chip shops which line the seafront.

It’s Sunday afternoon. I’m on my way to a football match with a couple of friends. Tyrone doesn’t stand on ceremony. He takes me by the elbow and pulls me away. My friends turn, at first surprised, then ready to wade in to help me. Tyrone turns towards them.

‘You really want to?’ he snarls.

‘It’s okay,’ I say quickly, before things get out of hand. No point in littering the neat herringbone paving with blood and bodies. ‘I’ll catch you up.’

Only I don’t catch them up, and I don’t see the match. I’m on a chair in a dull, dimly lit cellar bar opposite Tyrone and two other men who don’t look like they’re here for social chit chat. One of them sits impassively with his arms folded like an eighteen stone, muscle bound, malignant Buddha, and, having fixed me with his eyes, he leaves me wriggling there like a butterfly on a pin.

The other is so smooth he could slide under a door; he’s in his mid-fifties, has dark hair, dark eyes, a dark suit, dark shoes, and a dark mood. It’s the mood that scares me most. That and the knife.

The knife lies on the table between us. The blade is long and only about five centimetres wide at the hilt. The grip is unadorned steel. There’s nothing fancy about it, but there doesn’t need to be. It has a cold, functional look about it that isn’t at all reminiscent a kitchen implement. No, this is completely different.

Author Bio:

Barry Litherland is an author living and working in the far north of Scotland, not far from John O’Groats. He writes in a variety of genres but has achieved greatest success with his recent crime and paranormal crime thrillers, Waves Break on Unknown Shores, The Hand of Ronan Hawke and Turbulence. He is an avid reader and loves classical novels, modern literary fiction and self-published books. When he’s not writing or reading, he likes photography, at an amateur level, cycling, and walking the mountains and coastlines of the Northern Highlands. Some of his photographs are shared on his website bleaknorth.net.

After a successful and rewarding career in primary education, he now considers writing his new vocation, and writes a new book each year. He has two new novels awaiting proofreading prior to publication and – a new venture – two Middle Grade children’s novels (for 8-12 year olds.)

He is married to Susie, has three children, a grandson, Harry, and two springer spaniels, Ziggy and Daisy. 

You can buy Waves Break (On Unknown Shore) from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)

#BlogTour | #BookReview | HOT SPLICES by Mike Watt @BlackthornTours

Thank you very much to Isobel @ Blackthorn Book Tours and Mike Watt for providing a copy of the book to [K]

The review below is 100% honest and all of her own views.

Blurb:

HOT SPLICES features eight interwoven tales about the Film Addicts, the flicker freaks, the Cinephages – they devour film for the high, to connect to the art on the granular level…the bleeding perforations in their skin is just part of the game.

There are five forbidden films, when run together, can induce madness, or release the Dark Gods that created them, speaking through the psychopathic director.

There is a man on the run, with a lost movie that others would kill to obtain. He barely escaped with his life.

There is a tower, once housing for students, now a crumbling, rotting monument to film history, and the men and women who returned to the tower, to die watching their favorite films.

Beneath the tower, there lies something made of light and shadow. It does not love its worshipers…

If you do not love film…
If you do not wish to devour it as it devours you…
If all you seek from film is entertainment…

…This is not the book for you.

Review:

If you do not love film…
If you do not wish to devour it as it devours you…
If all you seek from film is entertainment…

…This is not the book for you.

We follow a group of film addicts as they live for film, be that old favourites, new or the obscure. Some take the obsessions further than others by flixing, placing a film cell in their mouths and absorbing the emulsion off it to heighten their experience and feel part of the show.

When banned films are discovered the addicts obviously want to see them. But with rumours of the films inciting violence and madness is this really a good idea?

I can honestly say I have NEVER read anything like this before, and I probably never will again.

I always thought of myself as a film fan, but these characters take this to a whole other level.  

Whilst initially I did find the story a little confusing due to the intersecting stories this book was written well, all of a sudden all of these little threads clicked into place and I flew through the rest of the pages.

This is a unique story that really should be made into a film. I just hope if it is, it does this brilliant book justice.

[K]

Author Bio:

Mike Watt is a writer, journalist and screenwriter. He has written for such publications as Fangoria, Film Threat, The Dark Side, the late Frederick Clarke’s Cinefantastique, Femme Fatales and served as editor for the RAK Media Group’s resurrection of Sirens of Cinema.

Through the production company, Happy Cloud Pictures, he has written and produced or directed the award-winning feature film The Resurrection Game, as well as Splatter Movie: The Director’s Cut, A Feast of Flesh, Demon Divas and the Lanes of Damnation and the award-winning Razor Days.

He is the author of the short fiction collection, Phobophobia, the novels The Resurrection Game and Suicide Machine, and from McFarland Publishing: Fervid Filmmaking: 66 Cult Pictures of Vision, Verve and No Self-Restraint. In 2014, he launched the acclaimed Movie Outlaw book series, focusing on “underseen cinema”. He is also the editor-in-chief of the bi-annual publication, Exploitation Nation.

Through Happy Cloud Media, LLC, he edits and publishes 42nd Street Pete’s Grindhouse Purgatory Magazine, as well as Pete’s autobiography, “A Whole Bag of Crazy”.

In 2017, he edited the NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD novelization by John Russo, and the 40th Anniversary printing of Paul Schrader’s TAXI DRIVER screenplay, featuring a new interview with Robert De Niro, published in 2018 by Gauntlet Press. 

Links: www.happycloudpictures.net
www.happycloudpublishing.com
mikewatt.me

You can buy Hot Splices from the following booksellers (and obviously many more! Support your local booksellers where you can!)

Amazon (UK) | Amazon (US) | Amazon (AU)