Kill for a Copy Review

Kill for a Copy

Kill for a Copy

I received a copy of Kill for a Copy in exchange for an honest review. Because Kill for a Copy is an anthology comprised of seventeen short stories, I decided it would be best laid by my bedside table so I could read it at night (with the hope that it didn’t scare me too much it kept me awake!) What I found inside was a wonderful plethora of stories that ranged on the horror spectrum from light-hearted humour to downright nasty but I enjoyed each and every one of them.

Each author has added a piece of their own voice and in their own story, brought Kill for a Copy to life. Home, Sweet Home by Jack Rollins was the first in the book and as I read this curled under the covers, I literally could not put it down. I had to know what would happen.

My favourites in the anthology were Bon Apetite by Stuart Keane, Redwood by Angus Fenton, Bedlam Betty by Brian Barr and Tactile Living by Audrey E. L. Coots but each and every one of the stories brought something different to the anthology and made me think. Definitely worth the read if you love a good yarn!

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Sojourn: The Wildlands – a Review

Sojourn: The Wildlands
I was given a copy of Sojourn: The Wildlands by B. D. Messick in return for an honest review.

The story is set in a post-apocalyptic world where everything beyond the small cities, called Enclaves, is wasteland. However, when a person turns eighteen they must travel to a new Enclave, chosen at random, to start their new life.

Rayn is a seventeen year old girl looking at facing her future while dealing with the typical struggles of a teenage girl. Her best friend, Luk, is a little younger than her and his Sojourn to the new Enclave won’t start until a few months after her so she is facing a long trek across the wildlands on her own.However, a couple of days in and her best friend Luk is there to find her. He can’t stand not being with her and they share their first kiss in a run-down camper van.

The story moves forward from there, taking the reader day to day through the struggles the pair face including hunting for food, searching for water and making tough decisions. They have some luck on their way as well as some bad times but come through it together.

I love Rayn as a character. She’s strong and independent. She is the one doing most of the leading throughout their Sojourn although she doesn’t believe it (and knows that without Luk she might not have survived). She has studied well and the time spent with her father before her Sojourn is always coming back in some way in terms of map-reading or shooting. She’s a smart girl.

Their relationship is just budding throughout this book and we watch as she goes from unsure to bashful to confident still in this honeymoon phase.

The book ends on a cliffhanger, leaving the reader to wonder what will happen in the next book. It’s a great read and I would recommend this to anyone who likes YA and post-apocalyptic.

 

Saying Goodbye to 2015

There’s always something quite nice and refreshing about a new year. I always find myself gearing up ready for exciting things. I make goals for myself and put in plot points to reach them. I relish the idea of starting afresh and while 2015 has not been a particularly arduous year, I feel like 2016 is signalling great new things to come.

Already I have had news that a co-written novella by myself and David Owain Hughes has been accepted for publication. I have a novel in with Dark Chapters Press which I hope to hear about come February and already a couple of short stories lined up to be in anthologies.

I have plans to finish writing a series of novels that I’m working on. This year I wrote two which means I’m challenging myself to write five novels next year in that series. I have another idea brewing that could possible be something in the middle grade/YA range which I’m excited about and of course I’ll try and keep up with short story submissions.

In other things I want to challenge myself to read more. Although the latter half of this year has gotten relatively better, I’ve picked up an actual reading challenge and started compiling a list of books that I want to acquire.

And of course there are those usual personal goals in amongst all of that including being more organised and certainly more assertive. That’s always a hard one, isn’t it?

Whether you’re a goal setter or not, I wish you all the most happy of New Years and hope that 2016 brings everything you could want.

 

 

White Walls and Straitjackets: a Review

I finished reading White Walls and Straitjackets after a copy was given to me from the publisher. I went into the book knowing nothing about it except that I loved the cover art and I was taken by complete surprise.

I met Harry and Crystal, two very devious, manipulative characters who are on the run together. They’re certainly a very toxic mix but they don’t think so and keep on going. When they find a book entitled White Walls and Straitjackets in the glove compartment, Harry begins to read to Crystal as they drive. The first few stories he reads scare them both but as the book winds on they both realise something is happening.

The book contains a lot of gore throughout and some very interesting characters and while gore is not usually something I go for, this I enjoyed. The characters are woven into the main thread until it came out with an ending that left me shocked. The novel itself is written in a different format which I really enjoyed. Having stories within a novel was something I’ve not seen before and I thought it might be distracting but actually, it really worked.

Allegiant: a review

In case you want to read this, be aware of possible *spoiler alerts*


I was as attached to Allegiant as the first two books and couldn’t put it down. Following Tris’ journey through the factions, the factionless and then then outside world was brilliant.<br><br>I really liked that there was a split point of view in the last book. Giving the reader an insight into what was happening for Tobias was good and it meant that we were left wondering what was going on with Tris. Seeing Tris and Tobias at war over their opinions and personalities worked well throughout. It showed how different they were but they always came back together, as if they were magnetised, despite some wrong and misguided choices throughout. The two were meant to be together and  I could feel that from the very start.<br><br>I did find that the story was a little drawn out and perhaps could have been wrapped up sooner. I think the deaths that occurred within the novel were quite important to the narrative but the lead up to it and Caleb who was supposed to open the doors because he was the most hated, I found this bit quite unnerving. It was almost like he was forced into making the decision without much choice and not given a lot of thought around it. It was a big decision and I think one that perhaps he wouldn’t have made if not pressured to do it.<br><br>However, it was a good book all round and one that I enjoyed. There were a lot of good themes within this and think it would be a good read for anyone who likes YA.

Blood Moon Rising Event

I bet you’ve all heard of the Blood Moon that’s going to be happening overnight? I know I’ll be up to watch this rare phenomenon that won’t happen again until 2033. But what about Blood Moon Rising the event?

Are you a fan of horror, sci-fi or fantasy? Do you love reading? If so, this event is for you. I’m taking part in a social event hosted on facebook whereby 31 authors will get to talk to you over the course of the month of October to tell you about themselves and their work. It’s a great chance to meet and greet some new authors and find some new reading material. I know I’ll be tuning in every day to see who I can meet!

I’ll be taking part in this wonderful event on 11th October where I’ll have the full day for a Q&A and you will be able to get snippets of my current work in progress. Interested? All you have to do is follow this link: Blood Moon Rising Facebook Event

I hope to see you there so I can connect with you all!

Rayme Michaels on writing Screw the Devil’s Daiquiri

I would like to start off by thanking Alice J. Black for this opportunity of promoting myself as a writer and author, along with my work, on her blog. I greatly appreciate it and would also like to say hi to her followers and fan base. Hi, everyone, and thanks for reading! Cheers!

After high school, I studied Theater Arts Performance and Radio Broadcasting in college, and then, as an undergrad, majored in Philosophy with a minor in Psychology. I then went on to get a Master’s Degree in Comparative Philosophy while working as a teaching assistant. Screw the Devil’s Daiquiri is my first full-length novel, but it is my third book, my other two being novellas released in 2012. My first book was a quirky, bawdy comedy entitled Incorrigibility. My second one is a dark, gory, romantic vampire thriller called Red Love, which won Honorable Mention right at the top of the list for General Fiction in the 2014 London Book Festival.
I became a bookworm at the age of eight and have been influenced by, and continue to enjoy, a wide variety of writers that range from the solemn to the satirical, the serious to the jovial, both in fiction and non-fiction, contemporary and old. This invariably comes out in my writing, since my literary interests are very broad. As an existential thinker, I am fascinated by the human mind and the human predicament, yet, as a Rabelaisian human being, laughter and joy are the reasons I get up in the morning. Well…that and sex, of course. Oh, and my first name is pronounced with two syllables, by the way. The “e” is not silent.
I am pleased to announce the promotion of my dark, urban comedy drama, Screw the Devil’s Daiquiri. Here’s the synopsis:

When womanizer, and possible schizophrenic, John Hazel, is suddenly offered a serious job promotion by the CEO of his company, David Wall, under the condition that John help him kill his wife, John finds himself between a rock and a hard place when Mr. Wall’s wife, Victoria Wall, asks John to do the same for her.

John, an office temp, photographer and university teaching assistant of philosophy, has more than enough on his post-traumatic, hyperactive mind, without something as absurd as this weighing down on him, not to mention that he is haunted—well, annoyed more than anything—by either the spirits or imaginary spirits of Giovanni Boccaccio, Francois Rabelais and a she-devil named Sabrina. Influences such as these do not help with John’s very prurient but fascinating mind, which his psychologist tries as best as she knows how to get to the bottom of.

His life-long existential crisis, having two hit men on his back, a bad-to-the-bone best friend named Alex, and a manic, sex-crazed, power-hungry, confrontational co-worker named Jackie, who happens to be Mr. Wall’s mistress, certainly do not help matters either. Life does not seem to want to let up on John. Will he make it through this very bizarre time of tribulation, or will he end up behind bars, stone-cold dead, or simply cracking under the weight of it all?

Screw the Devil’s Daiquiri is available in both print and eBook formats.

Book Details:
Screw the Devil’s Daiquiri
By Rayme Michaels
Publisher: Melange Books
ISBN: 978-1612359311
ASIN: B00LBBLZCE
Pages: 224
Genre: Contemporary Fiction, Urban Comedy, Drama

All three of my books can be found at my Lulu spotlight below and at just about every other online retail book outlet, including Amazon, of course. Please help support me and my work simply by liking my Facebook author page below. For copies, author interviews, blog posts, updates, or more information, please find and contact me at:

Rayme Michaels Links
Email: theray_81 (at) hotmail.com
Publisher’s Website Landing: http://melange-books.com/authors/raymemichaels/screwthedevil.html
Blog: http://www.rayme-michaels.blogspot.com
Lulu Spotlight: http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/Rayme
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Rayme_Michaels
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rayme-Michaels/1654482248109702

Divergent: A Review

<a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13335037-divergent&#8221; style=”float: left; padding-right: 20px”><img alt=”Divergent (Divergent, #1)” border=”0″ src=”https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1328559506m/13335037.jpg&#8221; /></a><a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13335037-divergent”>Divergent</a&gt; by <a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4039811.Veronica_Roth”>Veronica Roth</a><br/>
My rating: <a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/866386653″>5 of 5 stars</a><br /><br />
I have to say that from the moment I picked this book up, I found it so hard to put down. I was immediately sucked into the world of the Factions. I went along the journey with Beatrice as she went to the Choosing Ceremony and picked the Faction she would spend the rest of her life with. I was with her when she changed her name to Tris and became tougher and fought the Abnegation thoughts that kept creeping back. Despite the fact that Tris had a lot of self-doubt, she was a smart girl and she did what she thought was right. She’s a very strong, independent woman and I like that about her.<br><br>The budding relationship growing between her and Four moves at a great pace and left me in anticipation for them to finally get together. Their relations were described brilliantly and the author let the reader into Tris’ mind so we could understand where she was coming from the whole time.<br><br>The world of the Factions is built really well. Everything has been considered and I found myself immersed in the factions wondering which one I would have chosen.<br><br>A brilliant book. I can’t wait to start the next one!
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<a href=”https://www.goodreads.com/review/list/29103098-alicejblack”>View all my reviews</a>

Jessica Rhodes talks about her Debut Novel

Name: Jessica Rhodes

Age: 24

Where are you from? Ramsgate, Kent.

Tell us a little about yourself ie. education Family life etc.

I was born and raised in Ramsgate, and have always loved writing. My highest achievement to date is a BA (Hons) in Music from the University of East Anglia, which I received in 2013. I have a lovely baby son called Charlie, and I’m marrying my fiancé Josh in August 2016. We are also the proud owners of 3 gorgeous cats, who are mad as hatters but lovable with it!

When and why did you begin writing? I started writing in my GCSE year, so about 2007/2008. I did a piece about human grief in which the protagonist’s daughter passes away, shortly followed by her mother. It got a high grade and sparked my interest in the human psyche.

Do you have a novel/collection published? Would you like to tell us about it? I am currently publishing my debut novel, Lady Cannibal, with Immortal Publishing in America. It’s the first in a series of books, which is pretty exciting.

What inspired you to write your first book? I got the opening line for Chapter One of Lady Cannibal at 2 am! It was weird to wake up and have that line going round my head, but once it was down on paper that was it.

Do you have a favourite character from your book? If yes, who is it and why? My favourite character in my book has to be Serena Raymond. She’s feisty on the outside, but on the inside she’s fragile and hurting a great deal. Exploring her is one of my favourite things to do.

Is your book part of series? If so what can readers expect to find in your series? It is, and people can expect to find a lot of darkness, depravity and sexual tension as well as every range of emotions possible.

Do you have a specific writing style? Not really. I suppose my “style” is simply to sit down and ask the book what its story is. It sounds weird, but I literally think to myself “What does this book want to tell me? Whose story am I telling? What’s the story here?”

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing? Starting a book! Once I’ve started a book, I’m away, but looking at that blank page is the most daunting thing I will ever face.

What are your current projects? I’m working on my second novel, Prison of the Angels, and editing my fiancé’s book Shadowborn.

Can you share a little of your current work with us? That would be telling! No spoilers!

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life? A lot of them are based on my own life experiences and events that have happened to me, especially the experiences that shape Serena. She is, to all intents and purposes, my twin. Just with a far better job!

What books have most influenced your life most? Do you have a mentor? I think it would be better to say which authors influenced my life! They are Patricia Cornwell, Kathy Reichs, Kate Rhodes, P D James, J K Rowling and the wonderful Sir Terry Pratchett. As for a mentor … I have a lot of friends who kick me up the backside when I’m slacking!

Have you ever been able to travel in regards to your books? What was it like? I’ve had the opportunity to travel, but not in regards to my books. Travel is a huge passion of mine, even though I’ve only been to Europe, and I hope to take my son abroad when we can afford it.

Do you have any advice for other writers? Always listen to yourself. Don’t listen to people who say you should write in a specific style, or with a set number of words, because it’s all a matter of opinion. As long as you are being true to the book and true to yourself, nothing else matters.

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers? Other than enjoy the book, nothing really!

What book are you reading now? I’m reading The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman for a website I review for. Juggling that and a baby is certainly fun!

Do you remember the first book you read? If not tell us what your favourite book is and why. Hmm … my favourite book has to be Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. I just love how feisty Jane is, how firm she is in her moral outlook, and how she stands by her decision not to marry Rochester and make him a bigamist. She is the older sister I wish I had.

Other than writing do you have any hobbies? I like keeping fit through a mix of Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred and martial arts, and I love cooking and baking. I also love reading when I get a chance, although playing with my son on his playmat is far more fun!

Do you have a day job? If so, what do you do? I used to work for the NHS as admin staff, but I’ve applied for Kent Police as an officer. I’ve passed shortlisting so just have vetting and medicals to pass before I can potentially be an officer!

What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching? I love Strictly Come Dancing and the Great British Bake Off, as well as Masterchef and Celebrity Masterchef. As for films … if I listed them all we’d be here all day!

Favourite foods /Colors/Music.

Foods is a hard one – I’m pescetarian so I love a lot of Asian flavours, and I also love a good Sunday roast! Just with fish rather than meat. Colours-wise, I like dark colours such as purple, red, black, blue and green. I’m not one for pastels and floral prints – you’re more likely to see me in jeans and a t-shirt than a fashionable dress! Music – again we’d be here all day! At the moment I’m loving Pentatonix, Peter Hollens, Evynne Hollens and Lindsey Stirling as well as Nathan Alef and Merlin Showalter.

Links: www.writersedit.com – Writer’s Edit, the site I do freelance reviewing for.

Blog: thehomegrownmum.blogspot.co.uk – my parenting blog.

theliteraturewhisperer.wordpress.com – my book review website.

Facebook: www.facebook.com/somethingtosaytoyou – author page.

www.facebook.com/theserenaraymondnovels – the book series page.

Twitter: @JLRhodes91

Instagram: jessica.rhodes91

Bio: I was born and raised in Ramsgate, and have always loved writing. My highest achievement to date is a BA (Hons) in Music from the University of East Anglia, which I received in 2013. I have a lovely baby son called Charlie, and I’m marrying my fiancé Josh in August 2016. We are also the proud owners of 3 gorgeous cats, who are mad as hatters but lovable with it!

Elena talks about her Writing

Name: Elena

Age: 33

Where are you from? Ripley, NY, USA

Tell us a little about yourself ie. education Family life etc. I have two sisters (twins) who recently had babies just six days apart! I am a speech therapist and have my Master’s degree in Communication Disorders and Sciences. I love my job!

When and why did you begin writing? I have always loved writing and began when I was about in 3rd grade. I always had stories floating in my head!

Do you have a novel/collection published? Would you like to tell us about it? Not yet…

What inspired you to write your first book? I was walking home from school in 7th grade and had an idea for it. It literally popped into my head. Maybe an angel gave me the idea like in The Bishop’s Wife…..

Do you have a favourite character from your book? If yes, who is it and why?   My main character is Charlotte, a teenager who lives with her stepmother who gradually becomes an alcoholic. She is my favorite character because she has overcome a lot in her life. I also like her friend Lara because she has juvenile arthritis and has to use a cane or wheelchair and makes Charlotte appreciate what she has.

Is your book part of series? If so what can readers expect to find in your series? It’s not yet but it could be

Do you have a specific writing style? Hmmm….not really

Is there anything you find particularly challenging in your writing?   Sometimes I am not sure where to go with the story and don’t work on it like I should

What are your current projects? My Charlotte story, a story about a non-Jewish persecuted person in World War II and a kid’s ghost story

Can you share a little of your current work with us? It’s too long

Are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life? Not really, it’s pure imagination!

What books have most influenced your life most? Do you have a mentor? I love Eva Ibbotson, Roald Dahl, Bruce Coville, Ray Bradbury, Tolstoy….   I don’t have a mentor though

Have you ever been able to travel in regards to your books? What was it like?   No, unfortunately

Do you have any advice for other writers? Keep working on it no matter what!

Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?  Read my work!

What book are you reading now? The Illustrated Man by Ray Bradbury and Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

Do you remember the first book you read? If not tell us what your favourite book is and why.   It’s Spring!

Other than writing do you have any hobbies? I love to read, walk and hike. I also enjoy movies

Do you have a day job? If so, what do you do? I’m a speech therapist

What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching? The Simpsons, Disney films, I love Lucy, The Addams Family

Favourite foods /Colors/Music.   Lasagna, silver and purple. I like most kinds of music (except country). I listen to classical when I write

 

Twitter:  Elenaspeech

Purchase links for my novel: Hopefully coming soon!