Category Archives: April Author Spotlight 2015

#AtoZChallenge Round Up Featured Authors

I’ve finished my A-Z Challenge and I’d like to thank all the wonderful authors I featured.

Firstly, I’d like to thank them for writing wonderful thought-provoking books.

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You made me think about love, good and evil, forgiveness and vengeance, relationships, our history, our future. You also made me laugh and cry, feel angry and happy, you frightened me and entertained me, but overall you made me think about myself, because every book I read teaches me something about myself as person and as a writer.

Secondly I’d like to thank you for being kind enough to answer my questions and visit my blog. It was a pleasure to have you.

THANK YOU Tag Cloud (card thanks greetings gratitude welcome)

I really appreciate the support, because although the spotlights were for you, I was also being implicitly supported as a blogger and writer. Thank you for trusting me to feature you.

Here are all my wonderful featured authors and their blogs.

They have all written wonderful books which have inspired me in the last six months. Check them out!

Ava Zavora her website

Laura Taylor her Blog    

Faith Mortimer her Website/blog

Alison Williams her Blog

Erica Stevens her Amazon page

Mark Rubinstein his Website

Terry Tyler her Blog

Olga Nuñez Miret her blog

Jo Robinson  her Blog

Karen Long her Blog

Dominic Piper his Amazon Author Page

Lara Ormiston her My Blog

Noelle Granger her blog

Matt Cairns his  Blog 

Geoff Le Pard his blog:

June Kearns his Website  

Regina Jeffers her Website  

Ita Ryan her Amazon author page

Elizabeth Hein her blog

Georgia Rose her  Website and Blog

Fran Clark her blog

Frances Evesham her Website/blog

Davis Burnett his Blog

Cathrina Constantine her Blog

Ben Adams his website and blog 

Loreen Auguri her blog

 

You can also check out their interviews and featured books here on my blog.

Letter Z The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘Z’ is for Ava Zavora author of Dear Adam.

Z

Why do I recommend Dear Adam?

The closest I ever came to a computer or mobile phone before the age of 30 was while watching Star Trek! But like most of my versatile generation, I caught on quickly, so now I’m a proud and proficient user of social networks and digital communications, that’s why I’ve been waiting to read a book like Dear Adam for some time.

I admire Ava’s bravery in daring to experiment with the traditional layout of a novel, because the majority of the dialogue takes the form of twitter messages, PM, emails, and telephone conversations on Skype.

The novel also addresses contemporary issues of new kinds of social interaction, and how friendships and romantic relationships can flourish without any kind of physical contact, rendering the participants vulnerable to lies and scams, or unprecedented opportunities and lasting relationships.

There’s no getting away from the Byronic Hero, although I’m not complaining, just wondering where they’re hidden in real life. Adam is mysterious, magnanimous, wealthy, and wicked, but he has an endearing quality: he loves our heroine, so we can overlook all his flaws, can’t we?

There are two endings. I much prefer the second, because it improved the whole experience of reading by presenting an inspiring grand finale, where fiction and metafiction challenged me, as the reader, to decide what I had been reading, and what the final outcome would be.

If you’d like to read an innovative and thought-provoking novel, which also has all the traditional elements, such as a neat plot, real characters, and diverse geographical settings, then this is the book for you.

Dear Adam

What is Dear Adam about, Ava?

Dear Adam is about a book blogger who meets her soul mate online and falls in love with him sight unseen. Adam is everything Eden has ever dreamt of but soon she begins to doubt his truthfulness. Is Adam too good to be true or is the truth more startling than fiction?

Those who are drawn to epistolary novels or movies such as “You’ve Got Mail” and “The Lake House” will love Dear Adam. Quite a few readers have remarked how it is different from every other romance novel they’ve ever read and the intensity of feelings Eden and Adam’s story has aroused in them. I believe that most readers see themselves in Eden, who’s bookish, smart, and independent, yet yearning for a love story right out of a novel. Her relationship with Adam has an old-fashioned appeal with a modern twist of tweets and e-mails instead of letters by post – without foregoing the scorching, sensual elements.

What are you working on now?

I am in the midst of what I affectionately refer to as my bane, an epic fantasy/historical novel I have been writing and rewriting for five years now. Although I have reworked the plot several times, the bones of my novel are comprised of Alexander the Great, the Amazons, and a lost treasure of supernatural origin. I’ve made a devil’s pact with myself to finish it before working on anything else. Hence, I haven’t published anything new in a long while.

AZ - Copy

What would you like readers to know about you?

I’m wildly romantic, secretly believe in fairy tales but outwardly throw up a sarcastic façade, can eat a whole tin of anchovies, laugh hysterically at inane jokes made by 8-year-olds, drown my sorrows in a can of Fanta, recently developed a fascination for fedoras and floppy hats that veil me in mystery, and will likely be fatally injured by the teetering towers of books in my home that form a hazardous labyrinth.

How can we know more or contact you? 

My website

Twitter

Facebook

Goodreads

Dear Adam on Amazon.com and Amazon UK

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 Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

 

Letter Y The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘Y’ is for Laura Taylor author of Desert Rose

Y

Why do I recommend Desert Rose?

Sometimes reading makes me feel guilty of pure escapism based on totally imaginary scenarios, like being on a holiday on a desert island, without a care in the world, with a sexy hero by my side. I enjoyed losing myself in this powerful and unusual love story, which starts off in a prison, in the middle of a war in the Middle East, and ends up back in the safety of a quiet small town.

I loved the way the tension was built up between David and Emma, who were in separate prison cells, and I was enthralled by the love story which gradually developed between the US aviator and a humanitarian worker, building up to the steamy sex scenes which would have greatly shocked readers of Jane Austen, although, I dare add, not readers of Jane Eyre, who are more understanding of strong passions.

Desert Rose has believable and likeable characters. You’ll enjoy it if you’re in the mood for a well written steamy romance. It’s a treat: for pleasure only.

DesertRoseFnl

What’s your book about, Laura?

I think the best way in which to describe DESERT ROSE is to share with your blog readers the Romantic Times Book Review summary of my novel:

DESERT ROSE (Warrior Series – Book #1)

Contemporary Series Romance with a Military Hero.

“A firecracker of a book from Laura Taylor! In the beautifully written DESERT ROSE, a downed pilot imprisoned in the Middle East learns the true meaning of love when a lovely humanitarian relief worker is thrown into the next cell. Ms. Taylor brings more than one tear to the eye as she brilliantly depicts the very high price sometimes asked of individuals in the name of higher causes. But it is the joy of her lovers’ triumph over their adversity that will linger with you always.”

Romantic Times Book Awards for DESERT ROSE:

  1. Reviewer’s Choice Certificate of Excellence for Best Series Romance Novel;
  2. Reviewer’s Choice Award for Best Bantam Loveswept Novel of the Year.

I believe that DESERT ROSE, as well as the three other novels in the WARRIOR SERIES, will appeal to readers of sensual contemporary military romance.

Perhaps the thing that sets the entire WARRIOR SERIES apart from most books in this genre is the fact that it is my personal tribute to the military men and women who sacrifice and serve across the globe. Both my father and my late husband served in the military, and it’s my love for them that is reflected in the heroes I’ve created for heroines of DESERT ROSE, MIDNIGHT STORM, HEARTBREAKER, and MORE THAN FRIENDS, the four romance novels that comprise the WARRIOR SERIES.

Warrior Series

What are you working on now?

I think my answer will surprise you! My schedule in recent weeks has been hectic, and I imagine it will continue in that vein for many more weeks to come. I’m currently monitoring the French translation for DESERT ROSE, I’m assisting the Chinese translators who are handling the translations for all four of the books in the WARRIOR SERIES, and I’m completing the first edit of my next book, which will be released mid-summer.

LAURA (1A)

What would you like readers to know about you?

I would like readers to know that I appreciate them. I appreciate their many years of loyalty and encouragement as my writing career has unfolded. I appreciate their praise when they take the time to review my books. In particular, I appreciate the fact that they inspire me to always strive to be my best and to write classic love stories that affirm our collective belief in the attainment of a true and lasting love.

As a thank you to readers and as an introduction to the WARRIOR SERIES, DESERT ROSE is free for Amazon Kindle, B&N Nook, Apple, KOBO, and Smashwords. Additional contemporary romance titles available at your favorite ebookstore: MIDNIGHT STORM, HEARTBREAKER, MORE THAN FRIENDS, FALLEN ANGEL, WILDER’S WOMAN, MOMENT BY MOMENT, WARRIOR SERIES Boxed Set, THE CHRISTMAS GIFT, ANTICIPATION, SEDUCTION, SURRENDER, SUBLIME, and the LOVE AT THE BEACH Boxed Set.

And I hope you will accept my sincere thanks, Luccia, for your kind invitation to visit with your blog readers.

How can we learn more or contact you?

DESERT ROSE (Warrior Series, Book 1) ~ 4.5 stars on 47 reviews

‪#‎AMAZON US 

#AMAZON UK

‪#‎NOOK 

#‎iTunes 

‪#‎KOBO 

#‎Smashwords 

My Blog         

Twitter    

Facebook  

TSU        

Pinterest

Thank you so much for your visit, Laura, it’s been great to have you featured on today’s Author Spotlight. I look forward to reading your next book this summer, because I’ve read almost all the others!

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Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

 

 

Letter X The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘X’ is for Faith Mortimer author of On Christmas Hill

X

Why do I recommend On Christmas Hill?

I love Christmas, and I love the way seasonal literature and films enhance our experience of this ancestral need to believe that good can and will conquer evil. I like to believe good people attract good luck, so good things happen to them, eventually, in spite of the difficulties they encounter. On Christmas Hill makes us believe in the magic of Christmas, at least for a few wonderful hours.

It has all the ingredients for a great romantic and suspenseful read, such as a lost love letter delivered much later, but not too late, an unfaithful husband, a cruel jealous girlfriend, a cheating boss who sacks ex-mistress, a negligent and miserly landlord, parents who abandon their child in need, a Byronic hero, a single mum with many worries, and a fatherless child who writes a letter to Father Christmas asking for a father for Christmas.

I loved the positive, endearing characters who were generous, honest and gullible, while I disliked the bad ones, who were selfish, scheming, and cruelly intolerant. I enjoyed the gradual unveiling of the plot, as the characters grew in depth, while the twists and turns led to an ending Father Christmas would approve of.

I enjoyed On Christmas Hill because it’s so easy to love, so delightful to read, and so hard to forget, that I’m sure I’ll be rereading it next Christmas.

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What’s your book about, Faith?

Firstly, before I answer your questions, may I just say how nice it is to be featured on your blog today? I am indeed honoured and appreciate it immensely. Thank you.

On Christmas Hill is primarily a romance, but I like to think it is more than just a ‘boy meets girl and happy-ever after’ scenario. All my regular readers and followers know that I write in three genres: psychological thrillers, mystery suspense and finally, romance which is usually unsettled and antsy in some way. Such is the case as with On Christmas Hill, and because of this I believe a good cross-section of readers – both male and female – enjoy the story.

Yes, we have a hero and heroine, a ruthless ex-lover and dire circumstances which I believe all makes for an interesting and gripping read. But because life isn’t a bed of roses, catastrophes and difficulties are constantly being thrown at us, and subsequently, our destiny is usually out of our control.

In, On Christmas Hill, the heroine is in trouble. Distressed, desperate and with no one trustworthy to turn to, when help does arrive (our hero) she cannot bring herself to believe someone is as nice and honest as they appear. The results are surprising.

Brutal Trade cover 2 cover image 6

What are you working on now?

My editor and I are in the middle of editing my latest suspense thriller. Entitled, A Brutal Trade. This novel is the 7th in my Diana Rivers series, (all standalone books).

Set on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, author and sleuth, Diana Rivers and old flame Adam, a Chief Superintendent in the UK police force; team up again in a fight against money-laundering. Only this time calamities escalate tenfold when they become involved in a horrific battle involving human trafficking and the illegal sale of body parts – real dark fiction.

I became interested in this subject after learning about the plight of real-time women who have been trafficked through Cyprus. I realize slavery has always been in force throughout the world since time began, but with international media we are seeing and hearing about it daily. Once published, I plan on giving a generous portion of my royalties towards charities aimed at stopping these dreadful crimes against humanity.

PENTAX Image

What would you like readers to know about you?

I like to think I’m an ordinary person, with a loving husband and family. I have travelled extensively ever since I was five years old, and because I enjoy learning about foreign countries and customs I often share my discoveries in my novels.

After school I trained as a Registered nurse, learned to sail and have the proud distinction of being a Yacht Master! Apart from sailing, I enjoy skiing, reading, hashing, walking, acting and cooking.

I took up writing seriously after sitting a Science degree when I was forty(ish!) Now I am lucky enough to have retired from ‘real work’ and happily write as often as I can. I consider myself a very lucky person as I now have the best job in the world!

You can find me on:

Facebook:

Twitter:

Website/blog:

Goodreads page:

Amazon Author Page:

Amazon UK Author Page:

All my books can be found on:

Amazon US:

Amazon UK

Nook:

Kobo:

Apple:

Google:

Thank you so much for your visit, Faith, it’s been great to have you featured on today’s Author Spotlight. I look forward to reading your psychological thrillers and mystery suspense novels.

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Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

Letter W The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

 April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘W’ is for Alison Williams author of The Black Hours.

W

Why do I recommend The Black Hours?

The Black Hours is not an easy novel to read because it’s based on the true story of a cruel witch-finder during the English Civil War, in the 17th century.

Alison Williams thrust good and evil upon me disturbingly, because at the beginning, evil is shown to have the upper hand. I was outraged as I was taken inside the vicious witchfinder’s sick and manipulative mind, which enabled him to enlist the help of the landowners, magistrates, other members of the clergy, as well as some spiteful townspeople. I was shocked by the plight of the hopeless good people like poor Alice, who was constantly in the throes of a dreadful situation, because she was almost alone, poor, and helpless.

I was appalled and angered by the rampant misogyny, injustice, and violence for three-quarters of the novel, until eventually a small light shone, and a sensible and respectable hero appeared. At last I had some hope that the situation would improve, and it did, in a way which may not be totally satisfactory for those of you who like HEA, but in the only way such a dark episode could end realistically.

I loved the way Alison transported me to rural 17th century England, into the cottages, the prisons, and the courts, making me feel I was really there as I squeezed my kindle in horror. I couldn’t stop reading in spite of the distress I was feeling, because I really felt sympathy and concern for Alice and her grandmother’s plight.

The Black Hours is a must for lovers of well-written historical fiction, which deals with ordinary people and factual events, and for readers who don’t mind being chilled to the bone.

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What’s your book about?

The Black Hours’ is set during the infamous witch hunts in England in the seventeenth century. The witch craze that had seen thousands of deaths across Europe was more or less over by then, so this was a bit of an anomaly. But Matthew Hopkins used the chaos of the civil war to make some money out of witch hunting. What’s different about my book is that not only is it based on a real figure – Matthew Hopkins was, unfortunately, all too real – it also tells the stories of the ordinary people affected by what he did. I do think that sometimes historical fiction focuses too much on the bigger picture, the important people. I visited the Museum of Witchcraft in Cornwall during my research and saw a list of names of those persecuted and realised that behind each name was a real person. A person with a family, with hopes, dreams. With feelings. What I wanted to do with The Black Hours was to somehow let people know what had happened to real people, how it felt for them to be caught up in events they couldn’t control. It tells the story from two sides – with alternating viewpoints from Matthew himself and from one of his (fictional) female victims, Alice Pendle.

What are you working on now?

As well as writing fiction, I also work as a freelance writer and editor. The ‘day job’ is keeping me really busy at the moment and I’ve had the pleasure of working with some wonderful writers. Unfortunately that means my fiction wiring has had to take a bit of a back seat. But I am researching a couple of ideas for my next book – both historical fiction. One is based on the life of French Romantic artist Eugène Delacroix, focussing on his painting ‘The Death of Sardanapalus’. The novel will tell the story of the (fictional) woman used as the model for the concubine in the painting, and the story of the concubine herself, drawing parallels between their lives. The other is based on something I read about Guy Fawkes – that there is a theory that he was actually married. I wondered what it would be like to be his wife, and want to tell his story through her eyes.

Alison Williams

What would you like readers to know about you?

As well as editing and writing, I’m planning to launch an online magazine for independent writers later this year, so I’m busy trying to set that up at the moment. I really enjoy writing articles and over the last few years have had lots of articles published online – I think this is definitely the way forward for magazine publishing. I love the idea of combining that aspect of my writing with my interest in and experience of self-publishing. I found it very time-consuming and frustrating to find lots of reliable information when I was self-publishing for the first time and think that having access to all that information in one place, with articles by authors, editors and marketing experts would be really helpful and that’s what I’m hoping the magazine will provide. It’s early days but I’m very excited about it.

How can we find out more or contact you?

My Blog

Facebook

Twitter: @Alison_WiIliams

Amazon.co.uk author page:

The Black Hours on Amazon.com

The Black Hours on AmazonUK 

 

Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

 

Letter V The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘V’ is for ‘Vampire Novels’ and Erica Stevens, author of The Captive Series.

V

Why do I recommend The Captive Series?

I remember being terrified yet addicted to the tandem Christopher Lee, ‘The Vampire’, and his frequent pursuer, Peter Cushing, in the notorious ‘Hammer’ Dracula films I watched avidly in the 1970s, such as The Brides of Dracula, Dracula: Prince of Darkness, Dracula Has Risen from the Grave, Taste the Blood of Dracula, Scars of Dracula, Dracula AD 1972, The Satanic Rites of Dracula, and The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires, etc.

 Christopher Lee as Dracula 1958.

Christopher Lee as Dracula 1958.

I thought I had outgrown vampires. I hadn’t read a Vampire novel since I read Dracula as a teenager, and I had no inclination to do so now, in spite of their renewed popularity, until my daughter, teacher and mother of two of my three grandchildren, convinced me to read Captured, the first novel in The Captive Series, which was free at the time, and still is.

Captured

This is what happened: in a matter of weeks, I had read the whole series of five books! My daughter was always a book ahead of me, so there was plenty of teasing and debating about what would happen!

I liked the way Erica created a credible future world in which Vampires rule over humans with extreme cruelty and tyranny. I felt empathy from page one with Aria, the free-spirited and brave human blood slave, who is the daughter of the rebel leader. She is captured by the ruling vampires and taken by Braith, a Vampire Prince and heir to the throne (and Byronic hero in disguise!)

All the characters come alive because they have different facets, including flaws and virtues, and they all develop throughout the novel, along with their changing circumstances.

The story is intriguing, original, and well planned and drawn out, including family feuds, secrets, and lots of action. Eventually, no-one was as good or bad as they seemed, and there are plenty of twists and turns, and surprises, to keep me hooked to the end of the series.

I enjoyed the unusual and sweet romance between the young human and the vampire, including a lot of tension, and obstacles to be overcome, but no explicit sex, although there were some violent and gory scenes especially between the violent and bloodthirsty vampires.

I’m not sure if I’ll be reading any more vampire novels, although if there’s yet another sequel to this series, as Erica has promised, I will certainly be reading! However, I’m glad I read this collection, because it is a well-written and enjoyable read. It also reminded me of my (almost) forgotten teenage interest in these supernatural creatures.

The Captive Series

 

What is The Captive Series about, Erica?

The Captive series is a different take on vampires. It’s a dystopian series based in a future where vampires have taken over and rule the world. Some of the humans have helped to keep the vampires in control while others live in the forest and fight against them. Aria is one of the rebels, and when she is caught she finds herself in the hands of the vampire prince, Braith. Neither of them know what to make of the other but a forbidden love slowly begins to grow between them. The vampires in this series aren’t friendly, they’re not all evil, but they are definitely unapologetic of their actions. This series is an interesting, fun ride with many twists and turns throughout it.

What are you working on now?

Right now I’m working on the fourth book in my Vampire Awakenings Series under my other penname, Brenda K. Davies. It’s a more adult content paranormal romance series. Afterwards, I will be returning to The Captive Series to write the seventh book in the series.

What would you like readers to know about you?

I have many many ideas for future books!

Erica

How can we know more or contact you? 

Captured Links on: AmazonApple iBooks Barnes & Noble, Google Play Books KOBO, and Smashwords:

Join my Mailing list.

Follow me on Twitter: @ericastevensgcp 

My FB page

My Amazon page

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PD. By the way, in case you think vampires novels are a new trend in literature, have a look here for more information on 19th century Vampires,  such as The Vampyre by John William Polidori (1819), Varney, the Vampyre by James Malcolm Rymer (1845-47), Carmilla by Sheridan le Fanu (1872), The Fate of Madame Cabanel by Eliza Lynn Linton (1880), Dracula by Bram Stoker (1897), and The Blood of the Vampire by Florence Marryat (1897), among others.

I’ll have to write a post on ‘Rereading the Vampire’

 

Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

 

 

Letter U The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘U’ is for Mark Rubinstein, author of Mad Dog House and Mad Dog Justice.

U 

Why do I recommend Mad Dog House and Mad Dog Justice?

Mad Dog House is a compelling read. It’s a disturbing urban thriller which I read in one sitting. I loved the way the author took me right into the diverse characters’ tormented minds. I was challenged, as they were, to confront the forces of good and evil, and decide how far I would be we are prepared to go to defend and protect my family and lifestyle. What would I have done?

I enjoyed Mad Dog House so much, I couldn’t wait to read the sequel, Mad Dog Justice, which I also read in two sittings, because unfortunately I had other things to do, otherwise I would have finished it in just one day! I would strongly recommend reading both, preferably in the order they were written. They can be read alone, but that would be a great pity.

Mad Dog Justice takes up almost a year after the events narrated in the first book. This time, I was forced to face even more physically dangerous and morally complex situations with the characters. I struggled with them, as they had to give up everything they have in order to recover the privileged and comfortable, middle-class lives they had worked so hard to build for themselves, after managing to leave behind their disadvantaged and traumatic childhoods in Brooklyn.

It’s an exciting read, which is not meant for the faint-hearted! There are plenty of pursuits along the streets of NY, as ruthless killers hunt them down. Once more the climax is surprising and well unraveled, and the conclusion is brilliant.

Mark Rubinstein is an exceptional writer who manages to push the reader into the action-packed stories, including well-written descriptions, vibrant dialogues, illuminating interior monologue, and pulsating action, which make up both of these thrilling novels.

I’m desperately waiting for a third installment…

Mad1

 

What is Mad Dog Justice about, Mark?

Mad Dog Justice is a sequel to Mad Dog House. You need not have read the first thriller to love the second. Roddy Dolan, a surgeon, and Danny Burns, an accountant, are in the crosshairs of ruthless hitmen. They think they know why, but aren’t sure. Is it the mafia, the Russian Bratva, or someone else? Any reader will identify with these suburban guys who must decide how to save themselves and protect their families. Anyone who loves suspense and unremitting tension will love Mad Dog Justice, a thriller that rushes at a torrid pace to a stunningly unpredictable conclusion.

Mad Dog Justice

What are you working on now?

I’ve just completed a new standalone novel, The Lovers’ Tango (June 2015). It’s a suspense-filled, romantic, legal thriller. Bill Shaw is a best-selling crime writer. His life changed the moment he met the beautiful actress Nora Reyes. Following Nora’s death, he’s in the DA’s sights because of eerie parallels between Nora’s dying and a novel Bill was writing. In a harrowing progression of events, a murder trial ensues. What exactly did happen between Bill and Nora the day she died? The novel blends suspense, tragedy, and romance into a timeless story of love, loss, and the beguiling mystery of memory. It’s a story about lovers locked in a tragic final dance.

Mark Rubinstein

What would you like readers to know about you?

I’ve written four novels, two novellas and five non-fiction books. I practiced psychiatry until two years ago, when I began writing fiction on a full-time basis. After graduating from college with a degree in Business Administration, I entered the army, was assigned to a medical unit tending to paratroopers of the 82nd Airborne Division. I then returned to college, studied the pre-medical courses, was accepted to medical school, and eventually became a psychiatrist specializing in forensic psychiatry.

How can we find out more or contact you?

Links: Mad Dog Justice on Amazon:

My Website

My Twitter page: @mrubinsteinCT

My Facebook page

 

Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

Letter T The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘T’ is for Terry Tyler, author of Kings and Queens

T

Why do I recommend Kings and Queens?

I loved the unique premise of Kings and Queens. It is an original take on the Tudors by transferring them to contemporary England. It was fun working out who the contemporary characters might have been in Tudor England, and watching how the author adapts them and their circumstances to recent times. Terry has chosen a very clever way of exposing her main character, who is denied a point of view in the novel. Various first person narrators, his wives and his best friend, each with their unique voice, tell us all about Henry Lanchester, so that we get to know Henry through the eyes of those closest to him. Another noteworthy aspect is that it brings the reader face to face with the cyclical nature of life, love, and history. People with power, their behaviour, as well as the way those around them regard them, has not changed for centuries. There are also many humorous moments, and twists and turns, making it an entertaining and enjoyable read. A must for lovers of Tudor England and contemporary family sagas.

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What type of reader would enjoy your novel, Terry?

My recent novel Kings and Queens and its sequel, Last Child, have been enjoyed by people (like me!) who are fascinated by the intricacies of human relationships and don’t expect hearts, flowers and happy ever afters; the romantic element in all my books tends to be quite down to earth.   Kings and Queens and Last Child will be up your street if you love to get your teeth into a good family saga, especially if you have any interest in Tudor history, as they’re a modern day reflection of the lives of Henry VIII, his wives and children. However!! Non-history lovers can enjoy both books just as contemporary dramas, or if they would like to know more about the history first there is a link to a blog post, in each book, giving a brief account of the relevant period. I’ve been so grateful for and delighted by the reviews I’ve had for each book – now I’m just hoping I can come  up with the goods for a third one…!

What are you working on now?

I am currently writing another ‘big business and complicated families’ drama, this time based on the Wars of the Roses. This one is slightly different, though, because it’s only based on historical fact rather than being a modern re-telling; I started to write it in the same way as I had Kings and Queens and Last Child but realised, about 30K words in, that it wasn’t working; the story of the Wars of the Roses is too complicated and there were too many aspects that I couldn’t relate to 21st century living, so I had to grit my teeth and start a complete re-write – never a nice thing to face up to.

The story is not related in any way to the previous two; I never intended to write a series. The other difference is that it’s darker, with a psychic element, and a hint of evil occurrences from quite early on. Oh, and last night I thought of a lovely twist for the end, too!

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Question 3. What would you like readers to know about you?

My plan is to move into historical fiction after I’ve finished this book; I have a novel with the preliminary notes written that’s been in my head for about 15 years – I’m a bit scared of all the research needed, though, and I might change my mind if I get another idea for a contemporary novel, but I want to write a post apocalyptic drama, too.

I’d also readers to know that I have a book review blog, on which I review submissions to Rosie Amber’s book review team (I review a couple a month for Rosie) and my own reading choices. I started it because I get so frustrated by the fact that some terrific books receive next to no recognition, then it developed to include the book review team submissions too, though I don’t take in review requests myself.

I have a blog on the UK Arts Directory on which I write articles about self-publishing, here , and a personal blog on which I write about anything that comes into my head! I’m on Twitter and Goodreads. I’m also on Facebook but I don’t use my author page very much.

My Amazon Author Page

Kings and Queens on Amazon.com on Amazon UK

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Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

 

Letter S The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘S’ is for Olga Nuñez Miret, Spanish Translator and author

S

Why do I recommend translating your novel into Spanish?

Spanish is spoken by 410 million as a first language and by 90 million speakers as a second language. English has 360 million native speakers and 400 million speakers as a second language. By second language I mean people who speak the language as well as another language fluently. That means that there are almost 1,300 million fluent speakers of English and Spanish. That’s a huge number of people. It’s 300 million speakers more than Mandarin Chinese. (There are also over 600 million speakers of English as a foreign language with varying degrees of competency, but these are not included in the figures I’ve mentioned). It sounds like a good idea to have your book available to a wider audience, but I’ll let Olga tell you all about it, after all, she’s the expert.

Olga Virgin of the Sun new

Why should authors have their work translated into Spanish, Olga?

Spanish is the second most widely spoken language after Mandarin with 404 million native speakers. Although many might read in other languages, most people who read for pleasure prefer to read in their own language and therefore the potential market for books in Spanish is very large. I also think it adds to the portfolio of an author and also opens up the opportunities to engage with a new group not only of readers but also of writers.

Olga A Journey to Happiness

Which books have you translated recently? What are you working on now?

I have recently translated A Journey to Happiness from Spanish to English. This novel is a spiritual journey to Buddhism by bestselling Spanish author Paloma Caral. At the moment I’m editing a thriller translated to Spanish (Estrecho Mortal by Bob McDermott) and I’m also completing the translation of the last novel in my YA trilogy Angelic Business.

Olga cup cakes

Which are the challenges you face when translating a novel?

Sometimes the book might be about subjects I’m not very familiar with and they require a good deal of research (I’ve translated books about the Incas, books looking at the history of the Vatican, and currently the book I’m editing is set in the world of international shipping business, so nautical terms are a must!), sometimes there might be issues of localization (do we want to use local names, are there terms or things that don’t apply or concepts that are unlikely to be understood)… A degree of interpretation of the original is required although luckily I can contact the authors for clarification if I need to. I try to do a quick draft and then re-read the translation and make sure it “sounds” right. Ah, if I spot the odd typo in the original I’ll report back (never enough eyes!).

Olga

What would you like readers to know about you?

I’m from Barcelona and have lived in the UK for over 20 years. I love books and have written since I was very young. After studying Medicine and specializing in Psychiatry I could not resist spending more time with books and completed a BA in American Literature and a PhD on the same subject (also writing about films). Once I discovered self-publishing, it seemed natural to me to publish my books both in Spanish and English as I have always written in both and I find translating a great way to get to deeply understand other people’s writing and books. And it’s also a good way to edit my originals. Partly for personal interest and also as a psychiatrist I love interesting and challenging characters.

How can we find out more or contact you?

My website

My Amazon author page

I have a Twitter account: @OlgaNM7

My blog

I also have a Facebook authorpage

My Goodreads author page.

G+ 

Pinterest

Wattpad

 

Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

Letter R The April A to Z Blogging Challenge #AtoZChallenge

April Author Spotlight 2015

Letter ‘R’ is for Jo Robinson, author of African Me & Satellite TV

R

 

Why do I recommend African Me & Satellite TV?

Where to begin telling you why I loved African Me & Satellite TV? Perhaps because it’s the only novel which has brought a tear to my eye, or perhaps because Jo has summarised the heart-wrenching story of Africa, or even more of Colonisation, in a beautiful and moving novel.

In the true Postcolonial style, like Lessing or Gordimer, Jo gives a voice to the minor character in her novel, because she knows that real history is not made up of the names of Kings and Queens, but of the names of anonymous, apparently secondary, previously unseen and unheard characters, like Christopher, a seemingly mentally retarded gardener, who acts as a catalyst for the moral awakening of Suzette, and her whole town.

I suffered as I read about the lies, repression, silence, hatred, racism, intolerance, and worst of all indifference, until Suzette realises that when injustice reigns, happiness is impossible because, as she reminds her neighbours, ‘he who allows oppression shares the crime.’ However, realisation and compassion will not come easily, many human and emotional sacrifices are to be made, as black and white South Africans are able to understand and forgive, although Suzette reminds us that, ‘not everything is forgivable.’

This novel is about empowerment, redemption, positive action, and second opportunities. Christopher’s childhood friend, Terry, reminds us that, ‘if we’d all been pacifists we’d probably still be slaves.’ Although the ending is optimistic, the reader is aware that there are many people missing at the funeral, many of them who would prefer the injustice to continue. In fact, the battle for justice has only just begun.

Do not read this book if you’re not prepared to feel torn apart and then stitched back to hopefulness. Do not read this book if you want a light and easy read. Do not read this book if you don’t care about injustice, freedom, discrimination, or cruelty. This book is for people who still have hope in making the world a better place. Do you?

AM Cover V1 - Copy (2) Smashwords

What is African Me & Satellite TV about, Jo?

African Me & Satellite TV is about standing up for what you believe in, and speaking out against injustice. It’s about a woman who has lived in fear of others finding out what she truly believes – especially her own family, because she has some very well hidden but powerful beliefs. She lets life pass her by rather than rocking the boat, the same way that most of us do on one thing or another. We let things go. We look away from the pain of others rather than face the wrath of the majority. Something happens in this story though that leaves Suzette no other path, and she finally finds the courage to do the right thing.

What are you working on now?

Right now I’m working on finishing at least two of the books in my Shadow People series which I plan on publishing at exactly the same time, as well as three non-fiction books. I love to write mainstream fiction as with African Me, but I also write other genres. The Shadow People series probably covers a couple of genres just on its own. As well as aliens including dragons, water dwellers and a race of sentients that resemble giant Earth chickens, it encompasses many things from spirituality to angels, demons, and ancient legends. The multiverse has reached a tipping point where evil must be stopped from being the major force in it if all is not to be lost forever. A small group of people join forces with others, including the mysterious living spaceships – the Vimana, and an equally mysterious group of angelic beings.

Jo Robinson Photo.jpg 1.jpg 2

What would you like readers to know about you?

I’ve been a writer for much, much longer than I realised. I wrote courses and put together brochures, and translated and typed stories for others for a while. Even as I wrote the first paragraph of African Me & Satellite TV, which was the first fiction I ever wrote, I still believed that to be a writer you had to be taught – go to college and learn it. I was wrong though. Writers just are. From the books that they read, and the fiction that has probably always played out in their head way before they scribbled their first word. As well as writing I also love a bit of art. I’m well aware that I’m not as good at painting and sketching as “proper” artists, but lately having discovered the joy of digital art and photography (also not as good as the “propers”), I’ve discovered a brand new love of cover design. What more could I ask for than books and their covers? I’m probably seen as eccentric by those around me, apart from my feathered horde of two parrots and two weaver birds, who just see me as theirs.

How can we find out more or contact you?

Global link for African Me & Satellite

My Blog

Find me on Google+

Find me on Goodreads

My Twitter

My Amazon Author Page

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Please take some time to check out some of the other blogs on the A-Z Challenge. There are plenty of interesting and varied topics.

 

 

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