June 2020 will see me in print in three different places!
1 Dark London
Dark London is a two volume anthology of stories drawing on the darker side of the Capital’s streets and the people that fill them.
My story that lurks between the covers of Volume 1, hidden between stories by Jess Popplewell and Anne-Marie Ormsby (The Tower) and a safe distance from the foreword by Alice Castle (The London Murder Mysteries)
December Fog is one of those stories that floated around in my mind for several years with no natural outlet … until Dark Stroke came up with this collection.
A period piece set back before the Clean Air Act, in a time when heating was by coal and gas lighting was pretty high tech stuff!
The tale follows one man and his … No, that would give too much away!
I wonder … will you find the contemporary political joke in the tail?
The list of authors includes some fabulous writers:
Miriam Drori Jess Popplewell Ted Bun Anne-Marie Ormsby Kate Braithwaite Donna Cuttress Sue Barnard Sam Hall Cathie Dunn
And there are more stories in volume 2
Featuring tales by these talented scribes:
Angela Wren Chris Dommett Alice Castle Richard Savin Alan Taylor Marie Gault Tom Halford Denise Bloom Harper Channing
All the royalties from the sales of these books will go to The London Community Project and Centrepoint.
2 Murder in the Nudist Colony
A second Short Story in a charitable anthology.
Murder in the Nudist Colony, not a very PC title but it was chosen deliberately using the antiquated term “nudist colony” for a slightly retro, humorous touch. All the stories feature a murder in a place used for naturist recreation. The original idea was to have all the stories called “Murder in the Nudist Colony” but that was abandoned as too silly. Except …
My story is called “Murder in the Nudist Colony” and is set in a very British Nudist venue of considerable vintage. The crime is however very contemporary.
The other stories by such luminaries of naturist fiction as Paul Z Walker, Wallace Greensage, Robert Longpre, Matthew McDermott, Will Forest and Jacob Drake.
As well as new comers to the genre James Gault, Stan Muir, Adreas Nudetzki, Ana Juric, Hannah Steenbock, Gregg White and Robert Payne.
The collection sit behind a superb cover illustration by Fabien Barabe
Diverse, humorous and dark … read it! It is fun.
Royalties from this collection will be going to Médecins Sans Frontières (aka Doctors Without Borders)
3 The Last Day of June
A serious tome, for me. Hence it is published under a different name, Edward Yeoman and not Ted Bun.
Once again it is a story with a very long period of gestation. It started back in 1974, when I heard Al Stewart sing a song with a similar title. I kept returning to the idea’s and images the song had brought to mind and eventually I started to write the story in summer 2019.
The tale starts in 1934, when the last day of June was the last day of life for a lot of people. Taking three different view points the book sweeps through Europe and European History to the conclusion in 1974.
“I started to read it and couldn’t put it down!” Robert Whiston-Crisp
According to Robert’s wife, “He sat out in the garden and started reading it. He didn’t move until four o’clock when he went to the loo, came back and kept reading!”
A tale of two sisters,
one her father’s joy, happy go lucky take each day as it comes, nearly
thirty-year-old Erin. The other, her mother’s little girl, sugar and spice and all
things nice. Married, a baby on the way, a part time teacher life is perfect
for Amanda, until she discovers that her husband has been secretly visiting the
same café as she does. Just a little lie … that is the first of many.
As Amanda’s life is shredded,
Erin’s wobbles but they find they need each other.
A good read, stretching
the credulity a bit far in a couple of places.
Born in the Wrong Body (The Nudist Series)
An interest read about
a woman born in a male body and her struggles to be accepted and to escape.
Just a little bit too
Fools and Their Toys
Not Michael Beyer’s
best by a considerable distance. It takes a different view point on the events
in the earlier Sing Sad Songs.
I found the timeline
confusing, which made it very difficult to follow the narrative.
The author indicates at
the start of the story that he intends to meld the two books into one at some
stage. Fools and Their Toys will benefit, I’m less sure that Sing Sad Songs
Mortal Blow (Wilson Book 12)
If you have waded
through the 11 books to get here, you’ll know about the Circle. You’ll know
about the corruption in the Police Service of Northern Ireland.
You may have heard of
the Panama Papers
Well Sammy Rice’s foot
turns up and all hell breaks loose.
A fabulous Finale.
Border Badlands (Wilson Book 11)
DS Wilson is sent to
the South to help with a brutal murder, the powers that be know that the
killers and the motive are in the Northern Ireland even if the crime wasn’t.
A bit of a pot-boiler
there to convince the reader that he deals with other crimes beyond the Circle.
Good detective story if
a little lackluster for the series.
A Field Guide to Fauns
Fifteen-year-old Devon Martinez is a very damaged and abused young man. He has been rescued by his father and is taken to join his step-family. Step-Mum is a beauty, her twin daughters are as like physically as they are different behaviorally. Devon is an introvert drawn to drawing pictures of Fauns, in fact his only friend is a faun!
Now they are all going
to have to accommodate Devon’s problems and issues as he comes to terms with
the abuse from his dead mother and coming to live in a naturist park.
Michael Beyer’s years
of teaching enable him to get right beneath the skin of his characters and
imbibe them with real traits, emotions and responses.
One to read.
Book of the Month
Super scientist, Professor Theo Cray, gets drawn into a murder case.
A former student has been killed within a few miles of a place he is visiting.
Then the body count
starts to mount, as armed with his computer modeling software he deduces
deaths, murders, almost too many to count.
skills enable him to detect bodies under the ground from the clues left by
The problem is the cops
don’t believe him. He has to catch the serial killer on his own.
Clever, well written
and blood soaked.
5 Stars (just)
The Reed Ferguson Series: Books 7-9: A Private Investigator Mystery Series – Crime Suspense Thriller Boxset (The Reed Ferguson Mystery Series
Reed Ferguson and his
team of social misfit helpers blunder around 3 more cases aided by the glamourous
Girlfriend and slightly hostile lady cop.
Fun light and not to
serious even though the body count starts to stack up.
And … If the computer
guy can hack everyone else’s mobile phone records in stories 1 – 8 why is it
down to Reed to find a number noted somewhere in Case 9 before he can make
progress … Just Askin
Enjoyable light reading
by R A Dee
An amusing like
variation on the ‘Deep Space Asteroid Miner’ genre of sci-fi. Joe Tide is in
deep space with is eccentric ship board computer, when he gets a Mayday from a
pleasure yacht. He ends up stuck for the entire journey home with the man
hating Professor Melissa Scrivener.
This book adds little
to the sum of human knowledge or understanding but that is not what it about.
As I say amusing, fun and easy reading.
Now, Then, and Everywhen
(Chronos Origins Book 1)
by Rysa Walker (author)
Time travel in short
installments all vaguely linked …. A cast of hundreds all called Kate.
historical content on the early days of the American Civil Rights movement and
the early days of the Beatles
It all got to confusing
and little got resolved.
As a fan of good
science fiction … I was disappointed.
Paul Kater’s book Time
to Time (Reviewed in January) was a much better stab at time travel fiction.
Started the month looking forward to meeting my American family in Florida. The month ended locked down in France, plenty of time for reading and writing.
Dorelle’s Journey (The Cloud Lands Saga Book 1)
A nice tale of a warrior girl (Dorelle) and her fighting, talking and thinking dragon.
Dorelle is a Dragon Rider, Mashira is her dragon. They have a different concept of duty to the commander of the Wing they belong to. To save Mashira’s life they have to run. Then things get worse, safety or duty?
A nice read, nothing deep, no hidden messages but fun
Magical Miss Morgan
Miss Morgan is one of those teachers that inspire, that is until the Wee People from the Kingdom of Tellosia turn up. Then things go to pot!
Attempts at getting her sacked and physical threats. A conflict with her boyfriends daughter. And fairies.
The Norwall Pirates, are there to help of course, this is a Michael Bayer book! Even if their involvement is always positive!
Fun easy reading, with lots of little moral messages either hidden away or slapping you around the face.
The Imposter’s Inheritance (Glass and Steele Book 9)
Maybe this should be a Glass and Glass book … Miss Steele has been Mrs Glass for quite a while.
Matt and India become embroiled in the theft of a magical gold coronet and the machinations of Lord Coyle. There are plenty of suspects for the crime all with good alibis for the time of the crime. After a lot of investigation they manage to solve the crime … and Lord Coyle?
Nice writing lots of little sub-plots with well drawn minor characters to help keep you reading. I rather enjoyed this one
This Won’t End Well
by Camille Pagán
Spoiler alert … it did.
Written as a diary with e-mail correspondence between the characters this story is about a failing human, in a failing romance, part of a failed family. Annie Mercer loses her job after complaining of sexual harassment. Annie’s best friend becomes obsessed with selling health supplements, instead of being a pal in her hour of need. Her boyfriend hightails it to France when they should be wedding planning.
Enter a new neighbour, followed by a detective, a violent lover … or is it. Annie has a new interest in life … Even Annie’s depressed mother has a new interest in life.
The plot swings between obvious to rather silly as it goes along. The only character that you really get to know is the rather wobbly heroine, Annie. I am sure in real life the other people in the story have more depth than gets into the diary.
Fun but rather empty.
I’ll give it 3 Stars
The Harlech Beach Killings: A Snowdonia Murder Mystery Book 2
The Snowdonia Killings: A Snowdonia Murder Mystery Book 1
by Simon McCleave
DI Ruth Hunter, a refugee from the Metropolitan Police (a London cop) takes up a new job in Wales, or a fictional country that has Welsh named places randomly distributed (and sometimes randomly spelt) across the landscape.
Ruth is on the run from the horror of London crime and the loss of her lover, who got on a train and is never seen again, despite checking the CCTV at every station.
Her partner in crime solving is an alcoholic Detective Sergeant with a huge need for a vodka breakfast that no one has noticed …
Both stories are Murder whodunits that lay lots of false trails about and are fundamentally good stories, except our damaged twosome manage to destroy rather of innocent(ish) lives as they bark up the wrong trees.
In the second story Ruth has a new relationship … but I guess it is doomed as she is still in love with her missing partner.
2 Star pot boilers
THE SPICE MAN OF CASABLANCA (Tea and Scones at the Canal Side Cafe’ Book 1)
by Maggie Morley
Two interchangeable young girls go on a cruise. One pulls the Third Officer, the other the man from the British Consulate. How did the man from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office get involved? The Spice Man deals in other things.
Sadly there is little more to the plot. There are lots of changes of clothing, a plentiful descriptions of items on the menu and people who get introduced and disappear for ever.
James Wesley, Wes, was a CIA operative, he was sent to jail when his team fouled up an operation and the wrong people got killed. He is towards the end of his sentence when his ex-wife has been killed in a terrorist attack in Spain. He also discovers that his young son, Ethan, is missing. But Wes didn’t know he had a son.
Given early release, Wes is picked up from his jail by the CIA. He escapes with his life and runs … desperate to find safety and his son.
He is helped by the men he left in prison and the orphan of a Yugoslav Warlord, who had died in the prison days earlier.
Maybe the CIA are a little late getting on his trail but that would ruin the story, flawed but not fatally.
A tense thriller.
The Baby Werewolf
Michal Beyer turns the attention of the Norwal Pirates on discrimination on grounds of visual difference. The Baby Werewolf is real, except he is not a werewolf. He is a boy with a difference. Once the Pirates understand this they are well on the way to solving several murders in a tale with more than a little mayhem.
The story bounds along at great pace, always keeping one foot in reality while everything else runs wild. Real young adult material
The Boy… Forever
Another great story from Norwall, this one gets wild with Chinese Vampire Magicians and a boy called Icarus Jones.
Icky is immortal, trapped in the body of a ten-year-old but immortal. His latest attempt at suicide brings him to Norwall. Followed by a cast of misfits, the dragon child, a general who is of great antiquity.
The Norwall Pirates become involved … well they would.
Young adult fantasy … at it’s best. Raising questions of right and wrong as it goes.
The Ship That Rocked the World: How Radio Caroline Defied the Establishment…
by Tom Lodge (author), Steven Van Zandt (foreword)
Tom Lodge was a highly respected broadcaster in the early days of Radio Caroline. The man largely responsible for creating the success that Caroline became.
The book is limited to the Authors time and personal point of view of events – an autobiography – and, as such, a very different book to Ray Clarke’s biography of the radio station .
The writing is generally simple, interesting and engaging. It does however get a little repetitive.
A chalk and cheese job but if I had to choose … I’d go for Ray Clarke’s bigger picture.
Copper City Slag (Copper City Chronicles Book 2)
by Otha Foster (author)
Eric’s family decided to move back to Copper City after his father, a minister, has a crisis of faith. A teenager on the very edge of sexual awakening, Eric is torn apart from his almost girlfriend.
Arriving in Copper City, the place where his parents grew up, he soon finds himself embroiled with Alicia Martin, sex siren and trouble causer. The girl his parents and Aunt have warned him to stay away from .. Almost fitting the British slang ‘Slag’ but then …
Why have his parents told him to stay away from Alicia? Why is there bad blood between Eric’s father and Coach Martin? With the police involved, Eric talks to the Press, in the form of Bill Clark (the hero of Fifth Sun) owner of the Copper City Chronicle.
This is a convoluted story of family relationships and attempted murder, just a little to far fetched for me.
Who Told You That You Were Naked (Copper City Chronicles Book 3)
by Otha Foster (author)
A stronger story than Copper City Slag. It contains a real killing, that occurs on the day Eric Carvin is doing work experience with Bill Clark at the Copper City Chronicle. A prostitute is killed and Eric wants to get to the bottom of the story even if the police and sheriff are not.
A foster child known to PK, Eric’s little sister, knows may have clues to the back story of the dead girl.
Meanwhile, Eric is fast falling in love.
A pacy, well written story, well worth pushing through the slag for!
The Case of the Erotic Equestrian (Miles Grant)
by Jack Dearborn (author), Ellen Dearborn (editor)
Now too rich to have to work, Miles takes the odd case to keep himself busy. Out of the blue his wife’s family have a case for him, someone is leading their daughter astray . Miles and the family take a road trip to help out. Miles quickly discovers what is going on … then what is the solution? Miles doesn’t want to give advice!
A light fluffy tale, a harmless poolside read.
A strange book, a who dunnit that isn’t really interested in who dunnit.
The writing is beautifully observed, little details abound. The research into the art and artists is detailed and described in detail.
It starts so well, a murder described so vividly the electricity sparks and crackles off the page. The brutality, the violence and the pain for the people finding the body of a loved one. Then it loses pace,
The assorted relationships are all convoluted twisted and unsatisfactory. The detective, Connor Reid, is obsessed by the victim and her sister, after having released them from captivity that was part of a crime that killed their mother. Late in the book he wonders if he has been stalking them … yes! On the other side of the coin, he is blissfully unaware that the victim had other relationships, visited certain places and … I don’t want to get into plot spoilers.
Detective Reid also appears to be left alone by his bosses, no pressure, no other cases, to take months to deliver an arrest.
The main problem with the pace though is backstory, lots of backstory, the same backstory, repeated several times. So much well observed and beautifully detailed in the writing; signifying very little.
Nice writing style, plot and editing need work
Divergence: A group of naked girls interrupts a kayaking trip
by P.A. Choi (author)
Boys go canoeing , beginner falls out and is rescued by naked girls …
Sunny Mates and Murders: A Chinese Cozy Mystery (A Raina Sun Mystery Book 5)
Anne R. Tan
Everything goes wrong Raina … except it doesn’t it all seems to work out. Not my cup of tea … abandoned at about 50%
Not that Hollywood, the one in Cumbria. For that matter, it isn’t the famous Hattie , Hattie Jacques either. Although, Hattie Mulberry is a larger, voluptuous and sexually aware lady of a number of years life experience too. She has been married twice, once to an Italian and then more recently and, all too briefly, to Hugo. Hugo had a massive heart attack, Hattie was sat at the Captain’s table on a cruise with him at the time.
Hattie comes to Hollywood to collect on an inheritance,
Holly Cottage, which has been left to her by an aunt. The day she arrives there
is a funeral next door at Holly House, preceded by a loud argument between two
The next day with her furniture in the cottage and Alf, and his dog Ness, set to work tidying the dilapidated garden, Hattie decides to call at the big house. Where she meets the recently widowed Daphne, a far from merry widow. Daphne’s husband, a popular man with the gang at the pub, apparently committed suicide. Daphne describes him as a happy man. A man who wouldn’t have left her in a parlous financial state by breaching the terms of his life insurance.
Alf is a gardener and handyman who worked at a ‘hotel’ a short distance from Hollywood. Hattie had met Alf when she been employed at the ‘hotel’ before marrying Hugo. There is much more than a bacon sandwich and a roll-up to Alf and the ‘hotel’ might deserve the inverted commas!
Stop her from getting bored in her new rut, it is Alf who suggests that Mrs Mulberry should become the village Miss Marples. Her first case awaits.
The cast of village characters are nicely drawn, pencil
outlines where that is all that is needed, watercolours where colour is needed
and just a few detailed portraits. It is a well-balanced piece of writing in
this respect. Just enough to make the difference between the vicar’s hippy-dippy
second wife and the nosey shop keeper very clear.
The randy pub manager is one of Hattie’s big fans, although
it would appear that most of the pub regulars are victims of her undoubted
charms. As you would expect from a village crime story, the pub, the shop and
vicarage are all frequently visited locations.
The plot is a simple vehicle to enable the likeable and less
pleasant characters to interact with Hattie. Only the out and out baddies are
not redeemable in this light story.
All you have to do is get yourself a nice cup of something, a packet of your favourite biscuits, sit in your favour fireside chair and turn the pages while smiling at these delightful characters. Well, that is what I did.
Oh, and did I mention Drake? I should have mentioned Drake, too late now you’ll have to read the book to find out!
Abbie is the Restaurant Critic for the New York Sentinel and she has the body to go with it, after a life time of indulging in the finest food available. So much so she is no longer able to go ‘undercover.’ The restaurants know her and she is starting to get special treatment!
As a result, she is replaced by Barry and demoted to a once a week column until she loses some of her identifying weight.
Why is she so addicted to food? Her Grandmother, Gigi, who taught her to cook to keep her away from her warring parents? Her parents? Social pressure?
sometimes indirectly, by the males in her life she sets about rebuilding
read, however I found the detailed recipes that ended many chapters an
affectation that cost the book a whole star and her girlfriend, Jess just
Stars – 1 for the cookery lessons.
Lost in Time
The stories of two women living centuries apart, but through the actions of others, in the same region of France.
is apparent from the very beginning that both of the women are trapped. Only
one has the power to set them both free and she doesn’t know it.
older story set in the time of Charlemagne offers a tale of blood, violence, and
feuding. The heroine, although loved by father and her future husband, is
treated as a chattel battered to please the King. Forced into an arranged
marriage to man she hardly knows sent across the country from Vaulun to the
citadel of Carcassonne to marry the Count.
other contemporary woman, Madie, has been left a house by her estranged. Francophile,
mother. Not that she wants to keep it, do it up and sell it; get back to
Newcastle and her life as an academic, that’s her plan. Her mother it transpires
had other ideas. Trapped in the house, she finds herself the focus of attention
from the locals, in more ways than one.
there is the mystery of her father …
she is best known as a writer of historical romance, the story set in
contemporary time is an elegantly written and realistic romance.
his written a delightful piece of time travel fiction. The main character
Cordelia Brown used to (or is it, she will?) work for a company that makes time
machines. Until, it all goes to pot one day and she escapes in an unfinished
time machine. When we meet her she is building a new life in the past, has a
boyfriend in a different country but in contemporary time.
All is going well until, agents from her time appear
and … the rest you will have to read for yourself.
A fun uplifting tale, cleverly plotted.
The Real Story Of The Boat That
The story of Radio Caroline, written
by someone who was there, for part of it. A well written book sprinkled with
dozens of amusing, scary and totally mundane anecdotes collected from former DJs,
the Owners, office workers and supporters of Britain’s first commercial radio
The book covers the heady early days
of the Station in the 1960 through the low times, the shipwrecks being
impounded, to the modern day.
Radio Caroline still transmits to the
East of England, 24 hours a day- everyday, on the medium wave and to the rest of the
world via DAB and the Internet. They use the Radio Caroline ship, the Ross Revenge
(a record breaking trawler before she became a broadcast ship) for a monthly
broadcast under the guise of Radio Caroline North.
The book is illustrated with a
selection of photographs, many of which unless you are a transmitter-mast nerd,
look much the same.
I found it to be an interesting read.
Two worlds are suddenly linked, ours
and one where the Church has developed mental powers. Powers that they need tortured
souls to sustain. Guess who’s souls they are after.
A Murder and a spate of disappearances bring Detective Chief Inspector Seamus Brogan to a remote part of the countryside outside Dublin. Where he finds himself driving off the road, literally the road has disappeared. He has crossed into the other world.
Can he save himself, the rather
attractive woman who was with him and the rest of our world?
A cleverly constructed tale. I
enjoyed turning the pages.
A Friend in Need
Elizabeth M. Hurst
A second story set in the same
village and involving characters we met in Siren Spirit.
Once again we have a well written and
engaging story of spirits trapped in a place beyond their time, while people
try to deal with the issues in their own lives.
The representation of Selena’s
depressive illness and behaviour is one of the best I have encountered in
A likeable story, a good fireside
read for a cold winter’s evening … or maybe on a sun lounger by the pool.
A Wife and a Bisexual Husband
A novel, written in a woman’s voice, about
her coming to terms with her husband’s admission that he is bisexual. Not only
is he bisexual he is also impotent, which of course brings, Kate, the wife’s sexuality
This is a patchy exploration of the
doubts and uncertainties Kate experiences along the way to her new life. Some of
her internal conversation repeats several times, others are almost glossed
over. While in her life she struggles with some small steps and at other times
she makes huge bounds almost without thought.
For the patchy nature.
Who Kills a Nudist
A complex story of interwoven crimes
in the English county of Cornwall, a spiritual home of smuggling of all types.
The trigger for the tale is the death
of rather gentle pensioner, a man who was found naked in the sea. He had been
sexually assaulted and violently killed. (That is about it for nudists as far
as this story is concerned!)
Enter Detective Chief Inspector Neil
Kettle, a man with enough on his plate already. Widower of 3 years, his only
real friend his father-in-law who was also a heroic thief taker in his days in
A plot that has more elements than
the periodic table (not really but it is a busy story) the Cornish Detective
could be a series to follow.
A Village by the River
A story from the Nudist Series that
Marin Brant has created.
Jonathon, a born hiking enthusiast,
decides to abandon his damp, clingy clothes, one afternoon when out hiking and
has an epiphany.
The rest of the book concerns his
relationship with Patricia, a girl he encounters while on a naked ramble and
trying to get his friend Timothy, to join him.
A very American book, many of the cultural
references … factory dormitories, for instance, are outside of British
experience. So learnt something as well as enjoying a gentle stroll through
Americana with out my clothes.
A bunch of unrelated books (except 2 by Michael Beyers) that might tempt you
Sky Diving Naked: A Murder of Crows
Set in the Australian outback. A light easy read tale of hitmen taking out people stupid enough to steal from a drug dealer. The police remain at a loss
If you have a couple of hours to kill … Enjoy
Sacrifice (Numina Book 3)
Charlie N. Holmberg
difficult read, to start with. The series has been much darker and Ms
Holmberg’s lightness of touch is less evident. The two main characters are
rather flat the rest of the cast are completely two dimensional – apart from
a scene near the end of the book which
saves the whole project.
this book is the most compelling of the three-book series. The narrative
finally comes to life and the (sketchy) characters fall in line to deliver a
gripping finale a few chapters from the wind down end of the book.
If you are
a fan of Charlie N. Holmberg’s other works… The series awaits
If you are
stuck on book two… Siege and Sacrifice is worth reading on for
If you are thinking about it … Start with the first book and if you love it, it is worth continuing if you don’t click don’t bother.
very funny story once you get into the Scottish argot used throughout.
am a Suverner, I can do cockney if you need me to, however I made sense of the
in 2030. Brexit has happened. IndyRef2 has happened and a thriving Scotland has
re-joined the EU.
Kemp, Minister (not his real title) of Finance, decides to prepare his
autobiography with the help of an English journalist …
Beyer says this is the best book he has written, I’m not sure I agree with him.
number one: Even though the covers might suggest this is a book for children,
it is very definitely a book for adults, that is safe for children to read.
is a very well plotted and written story. Once again, we find ourselves in the Iowa
of town Norwell. While the Norwell Pirates, members of the famous softball
team, feature in this story, other than Valerie, they take the back seat to the
adults this time.
before ‘Sing Sad Songs’ which I reviewed last month, Snow Babies tells the
story of the arrival in Norwell of four orphans, a witch, a social worker and a
man called Catbird. Oh yes and a rather severe snowstorm, probably the worst in
assembled the ingredients, mix well season with a few deaths and …
very good read.
best? Maybe, but I still think ‘Recipes for Gingerbread Children’ (reviewed in
May) might just have the edge… read both and decide for yourself.
Another great story!
Beginner’s Guide to Free Fall
absorbing and well written tale in which nothing much happens but I couldn’t
almost has it all, good job he enjoys, loving wife, a daughter he dotes on and
a sister that worships him. Then in a matter of hours it had all gone, except
in a squalid bachelor flat he has to rebuild his life. He does get help from his
sister and a couple of other unlikely sources.
I am glad I picked this story the Kindle Firsts list … a lovely read.
Book of the month
The Bicycle Wheel Genius
Another outing for the Norwall Pirates, several years further on from the Snow Babies. Former leader Mary is long gone, Valerie is handing over leadership just as the new tale starts.
A mad scientist, a mad (psychotic) killer, killer humanoid robots, a government out of control, aliens, time travel, sexual realignment and the rest of the population of Norwall.
A fun story, although at one point there are too many characters with names beginning with D … and once or twice it becomes a little difficult to follow the narrative. No, you don’t lose the thread it just a bit tangled, then it is that type of non-linear story.
Wow another month dashed by … a few more books read, most of them well worth reading!!
Sing Sad Songs
What a sad song, a sad young man and yet he brings so much
joy to a dysfunctional Norwall family.
Arriving as an orphan, his French family wiped out in a car
accident Francois brings something special to his Uncles Family and his new
adopted brother, Billy.
He is accepted as one of the Norwall Pirates, a softball team and investigators of weird crimes. Rapidly a relationship between Francois and Valerie, a fellow Pirate, develops … all looks wonderful until the Teddy Bear Killer hits town. Even allowing for the strange dreams and the clowns …. had I mentioned the clowns? Or the dreams?
Weird and Wonderful 5 Stars
Chapter (The Invisible Library series)
Another fun instalment in the adventures of Irene the librarian and book redistributor and her sidekick the elegant dragon Kai. This time they need to deceive the man who leads the gang formed to steal the picture that … It makes more sense the way Genevieve Cogman has written it. Even if you got bogged down mid-series it is well worthwhile reading this little gem!
Weird and wonderous 5 stars
The Human Trials: And the Thrill of Being Watched
Ava Lee Mosley
Ava, got into a conversation with me on Twitter, I said I’d read one of her erotic stories. I touch of mild sexploitation, other wise a gentle, consensual sex story. Not badly written, No surprises. No problem. No excitement.
Nothing to get excited about 3Stars
The Church of the Undressed: Paradise Regained
lacklustre priest’s wife inherits a run-down naturist resort, with a few wacky
members. We going to sell it, her husband decides. Then she has a revelation,
God’s work is best done naked. A new church starts. The new church attracts
lots of on line coverage and the attentions of the police.
sprinkled with biblical quotations the story treads that fine line between
titillating fiction and worthy polemic and generally manages to keep its
I am not
sure who the target audience for this book is, the naturists know this already and
the unconverted are unlikely to start the story.
A pleasant enough read.
Well written Well balanced and Well … 4Stars
The Salt Path
An absorbing and almost overwhelming story of a couple beset
with problems. Just little things, his health is failing, being made homeless,
bankrupt, jobless … easy stuff really (NOT!). With nowhere else to go decide to
walk the Salt Path, around the coast of Cornwall, rough camping. There only
means of support, Social security of about £50 a fortnight.
The book describes their painful adaptation to their new lifestyle,
acceptance and finally … read it and find out. The writing is sometimes a
little self-indulgent, but the narrative thread was sufficiently strong to pull
me through these rare patches.
Rags finds himself surrounded by strong, caring and supportive women; most of them strongly influenced by Bea. All wanting the very best for a man they all view as someone very special, Bea’s influence at work again?
If you remember how he left the after party following the final, farewell performance of the Unknown Twins. How he returned to his hotel and he sat and talked the night away. Then you might have an idea where this story starts.
Death Beside the Seaside (A Lady Hardcastle Mystery Book 6) by T E Kinsey (author)
Tiny Flo’ and Lady Hardcastle are back!
On holiday in wonderful Weston, the dynamic duo find themselves embroiled in a multiple murder, spy, hotel mystery. Lots of murders, most of the guests at the hotel involved in espionage and the biggest mystery … who are Chub and Perch or is Antelope and Gazelle? Maybe Flo was correct to name them Leftie and Rightie after their gun hands.
An other rollicking adventure, revealing more of the past adventures of Lady H and her tiny companion, that bustles along like a hat in the breeze along Weston Promenade. At least it prevented Flo’ getting bored waiting for the tide to bring the sea to her!
As ever another fun read, just pipped to book of the month.
A fabulous read 5 Stars
The Reed Ferguson Series: Books 1-3 & Books 4-6 by Renee Pawlish (author)
A couple of box sets, the start of at least 18 stories featuring “not quite a rich boy anymore” detective Reed Ferguson. (Book 5 reveals why!)
The cast of characters are laid down in book 1 and they remain very true to themselves throughout, no sudden super-powers … then with Goofball Brothers as main support players; you wouldn’t expect them too. The plots are all different even if Reed’s technique, a bit like Dick Francis’s detective Sid Halley’s “crash about a bit until someone beats me up”, approach.
I found them to be easy to read and kept me turning the pages.
Good reads 4 Stars
See You at the Bar (A Harry Gilmour Novel Book 5) by David Black (author)
Harry Gilmour continues to fight his war beneath the waves of the Mediterranean. Except in this story he is on the surface of the sea much of the time. His would be nemesis, The Bonnyboy, is still trying to kill the one and only officer who knows the truth about his final patrol.
A less tension riddled tale than earlier books. Instead you worry for poor Harry’s mental and physical health and that of his crew as the submarine is pushed well beyond the normal deployment.
A bit weaker than normal from David Black
A final fling, 3 (+1/2) Stars
The Prisoner’s Key (Glass and Steele Book 8) by CJ Archer
This is really a Steele and Steele book, picking up the story soon after Matt and India return from their honeymoon. A metal magician wants to work with India to create new spells, then he becomes embroiled in a murder. India, Matt and the rest of the crew set out to provide the police with the identity of the real killer.
If you have enjoyed the previous seven stories, you’ll like this one too. It doesn’t, however, give you a reason to read on if you have lost enthusiasm for the series.
A fun read 4 Stars
The Last Dance (The Near-Earth Mysteries Book 1) by Martin L. Shoemaker
The Captain of a ship on an endless voyage is charged with mutiny by the military forces under the control of BIG money. The very junior Inspector General, Park Yerim, is the only inspector available in the narrow time frame available to conduct an independent investigation.
Park gathers testimony from the diverse crew, painting a complex picture of Captain Aames’s character: his heroism, his failures, even his personal passions. As the investigation unfolds, Park finds herself having to hold off powerful interests, each pushing and pulling her in a different direction to the one she wants to pursue. Corruption, conflicting loyalties, and clashing accounts make it nearly impossible to see the truth in fifty million miles of darkness, and Park faces danger from every direction. All eyes are on her: one way or another, her findings will have astronomical implications for all involved
A classic country house style mystery, just the country house is missing. A well-told, enthralling story.
Undoubtedly The Book of the Month 5 Stars
Other Halves (Hannah series Book 2) by Nick Alexander
A typically well crafted book by Nick Alexander. A marriage falls apart when Hanna leaves husband Cliff for his brother James. Cliff then has to struggle, coming to terms with suppressed feeling from his teenage years. In the middle of this turmoil is Luke, the only child and weapon of choice for the warring couple.