Scouse Gothic by @scousegothic @rararesources #selfpublished #GuestPost

Scouse Gothic by @scousegothic @rararesources #selfpublished #GuestPost

Scouse Gotic

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Melville wakes with a pounding headache – there had been too many hangovers recently, but this felt different. What had he been drinking last night? Then he remembered – it was blood.

Enter the bizarre world of Scouse Gothic where a reluctant vampire mourns a lost love and his past lives, where a retired ‘hitman’ plans one more killing and dreams of food, and a mother sets out to avenge her son’s murder, and , meanwhile, a grieving husband is visited by an angry angel.

Set in present day Liverpool, vampires and mortals co-exist, unaware of each other’s secrets and that their past and present are inextricably linked.

But as their lives converge, who will be expected to atone for past sins?

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 Ian was born and bred in Liverpool but left for university in the 1980’s when the city appeared to be in a terminal decline. After qualifying he worked in London and Essex before finally settling in Shropshire with his wife and daughter.

However a set of circumstances meant that he returned to live in the city once more. What he found was a modern vibrant city. The derelict buildings from his youth had been restored and repurposed. A dock was now a tourist attraction, a church was now a night club, a gaol now a hotel.

It was then that he had the idea for Melville a vampire who had known the city in its prime and had now returned to it. Initially the story of Melville was written as a short story, but the more Ian explored the city the more he realised there were many more tales to tell than just Melville’s. That was when the idea for Scouse Gothic was born.

The first book ‘A Pool of Life ..and Death’ , was very well received and has now been followed by a further two books. Ian continues to spend his time between Liverpool and Shropshire and is currently working on two further projects.

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Scouse Gothic Giveaway Prize

 

Giveaway to Win 2 x Scouse Gothic Mugs  (UK Only)

 

 

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

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Book Review: Jay-Jay and The Carnival @JayJayBus @rararesources #playbus #childrensbook

Book Review: Jay-Jay and The Carnival @JayJayBus @rararesources #playbus #childrensbook

Jay-Jay and The Carnival

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Jay-Jay the Supersonic Bus is a brightly coloured playbus full of toys. He’s always ready for adventure, and after an eventful summer the bus is ready for his journey to the carnival. The children are also excited – but what will happen on the way?

 

Our Thoughts.

My daughter just loves reading these stories! The bright pictures and colours and the adventure. Her older brother will listen to but the amazement and wonder is already drifting away from his imagination! To be replaced with but mum questions.

I will most certainly passes this book onto my kids school when they return in September!

I love Sue Wickstead’s work and will most certainly be an author I miss as I take a step back from book blogging to try and read at least some of my TBR!

 

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Sue tells us about herself…..

I am a teacher and an author and have currently written six children’s picture books with a bus theme.

For over 20 years, alongside my teaching career, I worked with a Children’s Charity, The Bewbush Playbus Association, which led me to write a photographic history book about it.

I soon found that many children had never been on a bus before, let alone a ‘Playbus’ and they wanted to know more. I decided to write a fictional tale about the bus, his number plate JJK261 gave him his name.

‘Jay-Jay the Supersonic Bus,’ came out in print in 2014. It is the story behind the original bus and is his journey from a scrap-yard to being changed into a playbus for children to play in. From Fact to fiction the bus journey continued.

This story has now been followed by five more picture books.

I also undertake events and author bookings and love to share the story. There are also a few more stories in the writing process, with links to real events and buses.

The story has been read in many schools in the south-East of England, where I teach as a cover teacher, it is always well received and certainly different.

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https://www.suewickstead.co.uk

 

Other Resources:   Teacher in the Cupboard             Bewbus Playbus

 

 

Giveaway to Win 1 x Paperback copy of Daisy Daydream the Nursery Rhyme Bus (UK Only)

 

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

Book Review: The Kompromat Kill @FailsafeQuery @rararesources

Book Review: The Kompromat Kill @FailsafeQuery @rararesources

The Kompromat Kill

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When a British Diplomat is kidnapped in the heart of London, followed by a brutal double-assassination in Chelsea, MI5 braces for the threat of deep sleeper cells coming alive.

Hiding overseas with a price on his head, Sean Richardson is tasked to lead a deniable operation to hunt down and recruit an international model and spy. Moving across Asia Minor and Europe, Sean embarks on a dangerous journey tracking an Iranian spy ring who hold the keys to a set of consequences the British Intelligence Services would rather not entertain.

As Sean investigates deeper, he uncovers dark secrets from his past and a complex web of espionage spun from the hand of a global master spy. As he inches closer to the truth, the rules of the game change – and the nerve-wracking fate of many lives sits in his hands…

Tense, absorbing, and insightful, The Kompromat Kill is a gripping thriller leaving you breathless at the pace of intrigue, cleverly unravelled in a dramatic finale.

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My Thoughts

I think I have found myself a new hero! While Jake Flannigan ( David videcette’s series) seems to be taking a well earned rest Sean Richardson is barging him out of them way.

Another fantastic read from Michael Jenkins as Sean battles to save the day, but this time it isn’t all as straight forward as it may seem. We may think we know Sean’s checkered past but Michael is here to fill in the details and it’s not all roses and sparkles.

I did wonder during reading this book what his relationship was with Melissa, though she is named checked several times in this book, it left me wondering if she was just an after thought?

One thing Sean and Jake do have in common is the need for sex, drugs and rock and roll to get away from what is going on in front of them!

This book has some amusing moments my favourite is between Sean and Swartz when Sean asks who is it and he replies “there is only one bloke who ever breaks you out of jail”

As I was coming to the end of this book I started to wonder where the author is going next with this. Sean has a son now which will no doubt confuse things but are we about to learn more about Jack’s other operatives.

My review of The Fail Safe can be found HERE

Michael tells us more about himself below:

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I started climbing at 13, survived being lost in Snowdonia at 14, nearly drowned at 15, and then joined the Army at 16. Risk and adventure was built into my DNA and I feel very fortunate to have served the majority of my working career as an intelligence officer within Defence Intelligence, and as an explosive ordnance disposal officer and military surveyor within the Corps of Royal Engineers.

I was privileged to serve for twenty-eight years in the British Army as a soldier and officer, rising through the ranks to complete my service as a major. I served across the globe on numerous military operations as well as extensive travel and adventure on many major mountaineering and exploration expeditions that I led or was involved in.

I was awarded the Geographic Medal by the Royal Geographical Society for mountain exploration in 2003 and served on the screening committee of the Mount Everest Foundation charity for many years. It was humbling after so many years of service when I was awarded the MBE for services to counter-terrorism in 2007.

The Failsafe Query is my debut novel, with The Kompromat Kill, my second.

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https://www.michaeljenkins.org/

 

Last month I interviewed Michael for my blog, the post can be found HERE

 

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Giveaway to Win 5 copies of The Kompromat Kill (Open INT)

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

Rosebrook Chronicles: The Hidden Stories @SFDPBeginnings @rararesources #Guestpost

Rosebrook Chronicles: The Hidden Stories

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This series of interwoven stories follows the lives of three abused teenagers, desperate to battle past traumas, pursue their dreams, find love and re-establish broken family ties. 

London 1960. Robin is hypnotised by a dazzling moon and it sets him on a quest to seek a better life. Fearful of his future, he puts his trust in the wrong person, clueless of the trap he is falling into.

Dublin 1968. Two Irish orphans are separated by the Church. Six year old Bess panics at the thought of being sent to London. An English family want to adopt her but if only it didn’t mean abandoning her elder brother…
Peter meanwhile, has never forgotten her. Fighting to survive in a brutal orphanage, he risks a dangerous escape to reach the mainland and with the law on his tail, he heads for the Capital to find her.

It is not until the 1970s, the lives of the characters intersect. Struggling to cope in a harsh world, how do their experiences shape them into the adults they become and who among them will be believed?

One politician vows to introduce reforms to protect children. But when his only son is bullied at school, alleged to have committed suicide, he knows there is a lot more tunnelling to do if he is to unearth the evil embedded in society.

With snippets of social history from the 70s to the 90s, this book explores the hidden lives of three ordinary citizens.

These victims never had a voice. 
I wrote this book in order to give them one.

There is even a Book Trailer

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Helen J. Christmas lives on the south coast with her husband. With a love of writing since childhood, she wrote her decade spanning thriller series, Same Face Different Place, Between 2011 and 2017. This five-book mystery suspense series explores British culture and social history from the 70s to the 90s. Inspired by the Bronte sisters in 2016, Helen decided she wanted to develop her writing skills by compiling a book of character-driven short stories.

In 2018 she completed Rosebrook Chronicles (The Hidden Stories), a unique novel which gives extra background information to her series. The 16th Century cottage in which Helen lives with her husband (restored in 1991) provides endless inspiration for writing, something she fits around her family and social life. Helen is a self employed web designer and works from home with her husband, Peter, and she enjoys blogging, country walks, photography and cookery.

Thank you Helen, I look forward to reading more from you.

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

Dead & Talking @DesBurkinshaw @Rararesources #Q&A

Dead & Talking @DesBurkinshaw @Rararesources #Q&A

Dead & Talking

Dead & Talking Kindle sleeve FINAL DES

If a ghost appeared from nowhere, rescued you from suicide and then ordered you to start solving crimes to help dead people, what would you do?

When it happens to Porter Norton, he just wants to put his head in his hands and have nothing to do with it. But now he has to atone for the family curse that has seen all the men die at their own hands for five generations.

The Gliss, the sarcastic spirit that rescues him, says he can now and see and hear the Dead – if he’s close to their remains. Porter has to use his unwelcome gift to clear up past injustices. Or else.

Forced to investigate the murder of a WW1 British Tommy executed for spying in 1917, he begins to suspect the case has links to his own family history. Along the way, Porter enlists the help of a bickering group of misfits, who struggle to stay involved – because only fools believe in the supernatural, don’t they?

Full of pop culture references, banter and twists, the story takes us from present-day London and Flanders to scenes from World War 1. As Porter, The Gliss, and friends, get deeper into the explosive case, they discover their own lives and sanity are at stake. An evil from WW1 pursues them all.

Author Q&A

Dead and Talking - DES DARK

 

Hi Des, and welcome to my blog

Q1: What inspired you to write Dead & Talking?

I was in Hamburg watching the world go by on my way to a wedding in Sweden, and the basic premise occurred to me as I sat outside the same hotel the Beatles once stayed in. Once I had decided the premise, I spent six months researching various aspects of World War 1 and developed the plot from there.

Q2: Who would you want to play the main characters in your book if your novel was optioned for tv / film?

Funny you should say that. My background is TV and various friends who’ve read it have all said it would make a good series. I’m not so sure. But if I had to pick an actor for the part of Porter, I’d say Martin Freeman

Q3: How many rejections did you get before you got a publishing deal?

I got 3 before I decided not to bother. All 3 agents I approached read my letter and sample and called in the book. All 3 said variations of the same thing: it’s great, very funny, great plot, terrific thriller – but which shelf would it go on?  I realised I had written something cross-genre and decided it wasn’t worth waiting for an agent – for this book anyway. Those three rejections took 4 months to pick up. I employed an editor, got beta readers to give it the once over and employed a proof-readers. That’s pretty much what a publisher would have done for me anyway.

Q4: How did you deal with them when you started out?

I’ve been a collaborative writer since I was 17. Everything I’ve done (millions of words) has been edited, sub-edited and re-written. I’m used to it and think it often makes work better to have someone really go through it. I’ve had stories spiked.

So getting those 3 rejections was no problem, but it made me realise (and the early readers have proved me right) that there’s nothing in my book a contemporary audience can’t handle.

Q5: Which authors inspired you to write?

The big writers who’ve always been a part of my life are Jane Austen, Conan Doyle, Douglas Adams, Roald Dahl, Raymond Chandler, PG Wodehouse, Dickens, Maupassant, Zola,  Greene. If you include re-reads, then I must have read 400 books by that list. I’m serious.

However, in the last 10 years or so I have been very influenced by Christopher Fowler, Ben Aaronovitch, Michael Connelly, Henning Mankell, Harlan Coban and Phlip Kerr.

Q6: What are your writing routines?

I must write for at least an hour each day, but it can be as much as 5 hours if my other responsibilities are covered.  I like to start the day by hiding out at the back of a coffee shop with my laptop, but have a great space I can hideaway in at home too.

That is my routine. Write every day.

Q7: If you could go back to when you first started writing what one piece advice would you give yourself

When I was 16 I wanted to write books but had no idea how to do that, so set out to become a journalist. I eventually ended up at The Times before moving onto the BBC. I thought being a journalist was the same as being a novelist. It so isn’t!  However, the experiences I’ve had as a journalist, very few get to have, so it helped in the end. I’ve been to post mortems, been shot at, interviewed the rich and famous, interviewed famous criminals, met war veterans and seen people die.  So my advice to my 16 year old self would be – it’s okay to start writing a novel now, but if you can bring yourself to wait a few years, it’ll be a lot better.

Q8: What would you say to someone who wants to write?

Write. But it’s not as easy as it looks.

Q9: If you weren’t writing what would you be doing?

I’ve been writing for a living since I was 17! My first interview was with Michael Palin of Monty Python. I don’t think I’ve ever been as excited since. Even when I was in TV, I was writing thousands of words a week. But I am a musician and composer, which I do for fun, so I guess if I had to choose, I’d be a full time film composer. There are samples of my instrumental and group work on my website

Q10: Tell me something about yourself your readers might not know?

I’ve sat side by side with both Paul McCartney and Brian Wilson, and played piano with them – Macca in his studio in Rye, Brian at his house in LA. My job takes me to interesting places.

***

Thank you Des it’s been fun X

Born in the middle of the Summer of Love on a pre-fab council estate in Luton, teenage bitterness and a chance viewing of the Watergate movie, All the President’s Men, made him vow to become a journalist and bring down the government.

First he had to pay for his journalism course, so he became a civil servant. Literally the day he had enough for his fees, he packed it in.
Twelve years on from watching the film, he was a journalist at The Times and had a big hand in bringing down John Major’s government. News ambitions sated, he packed that in too.

Several years of working for Channel 4, ITV and the BBC as a senior producer saw him working across the world, but he eventually got fed up with asking bands how the new album was coming along, and packed it in.

He set up his own production company magnificent! in 2002 and simultaneously worked on the BBC Live Events team for another 10 years. But then six years of work on the Olympics came along, so he packed the BBC in. Again.

Des has jammed with many of his heroes from Paul McCartney to Brian Wilson, Queen to Nancy Sinatra. He has interviewed many A-listers, including David Bowie, Michael Caine, John Cleese and even Noam Chomsky.

He has directed/produced a fairly long list of people – Muse, Coldplay, Michael Jackson, Jay-Z, produced BBC3’s Glastonbury coverage for a couple of years, made films about leprosy in India, comedy shorts with Miranda Hart and Lenny Henry and played guitar for Chas and Dave at the Hackney Empire.

He has made 300+ short films for the Queen, MI5, the BBC, Sky, Discovery, EMI, the British Academy and dozens of authorities, charities and private sector firms. His most recent publication was a series of interviews with leading academics like Mary Beard on the state of the humanities which was published as a standalone magazine by the British Academy.

Fed up with travelling and determined to be a half-decent dad, he now works in London as often as he can. He runs the Young Directors Film School making movies with young people and is about to head up the Digital Film and Video MA at Tileyard. An avid musician and producer, he releases his third album as Romano Chorizo (he plays drums, bass, piano, guitar and really bad sax).

He hates to be pigeon-holed, thinks creativity is a learned state of mind and wishes they would teach people memory and learning techniques at school.

Dead & Talking is his first novel, the first in a series of Porter & The Gliss investigations.

 Facebook-XperiaDes Burkinshaw  logo_thumb800@DesBurkinshaw

 

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Buy Des’ new book below:

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

 

I Will Follow Him @HollyTierney @rararesources #Guestpost

I Will Follow Him @HollyTierney @rararesources #Guestpost

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A bachelor party on a cruise ship. What could go wrong?

When private detective Francie is hired to spy on a groom-to-be as he and his bachelor party set sail for the Caribbean, she thinks she’s landed herself a week of paid vacation. Between lounging in the sun and sipping margaritas, she just needs to–best case scenario–report back that he’s on the up and up, or–the unfortunate, more likely scenario–snap a few photos of her target in compromising positions, buy a box of sympathy chocolates for her client, and then collect her pay along with a nice golden suntan.

Blame it on the island breezes or the alcohol, but within hours of setting sail, Francie’s leisurely vacation gets complicated when she starts making careless mistakes. Like accidentally becoming friends with the groom and falling for his best man.

Can she get herself and her mission back on track, or has she blown her cover and possibly even her career?

Buy the book from the links below:

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Oceanic Dreams Series

Set sail for love and laughs aboard the Oceanic Aphrodite.

This series of stand-alone romantic comedy novellas releases throughout the summer of 2019.

To learn about the contributing authors and each book, watch our trailer, here: https://oceanicdreamsbooks.com/series-trailer/   and visit our website, here: https://oceanicdreamsbooks.com/

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The Oceanic Dreams series is a collection of romantic comedy novellas by eight award-

winning, bestselling, and critically acclaimed authors from around the globe.

Meet Holly Kerr, author of I Saw Him Standing There.

Meet Laura Heffernan, author of Time of My Life.

Meet Tracy Krimmer, author of Circle in the Sand.

Meet Kirsty McManus, author of I Thought it was You.

Meet Holly TierneyBedord, author of I Will Follow Him.

Meet Delancey Stewart, author of Take a Chance on Me.

Meet Monique McDonell, author of Shut Up and Dance with Me.

Meet SophieLeigh Robbins, author of The Best of You.

Holly Tierney-Bedord is the author of over twenty books including Kindle Unlimited All-Star winner Sweet Hollow Women.

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