#Blogtour What Tracy Did Next by T. A. Belshaw

It’s my turn on the Blogtour What Tracy Did Next by T. A. Belshaw.

About the Author

T A Belshaw is from Derbyshire in the United Kingdom where he shares a house with his chatty rescue cat, Mia. He writes for both children and adults. A former miner and computer technician, Trevor studied Advanced Creative Writing at the Open University. He is the author of Tracy’s Hot Mail, Tracy’s Celebrity Hot Mail and the noir, suspense novella, Out of Control. Following the sudden death of his wife in 2015 Trevor took a five-year break from writing, returning during lockdown in 2020, when an injury forced him to take time off work. The result of this new creative burst was the Dual Timeline, Family Saga, Unspoken and the Historical Cosy Crime Whodunnit, Murder at the Mill.

Trevor signed his first contract with Spellbound Books Ltd in April 2021. He signed a further mullti-book contract with them in the spring of 2022.

His short stories have been published in various anthologies including 100 Stories for Haiti, 50 Stories for Pakistan, Another Haircut, Shambelurkling and Other Stories, Deck the Halls, 100 Stories for Queensland and The Cafe Lit anthology 2011, 2012 and 2013. He also has two pieces in Shambelurklers Return. 2014

Trevor is also the author of 15 children’s adventure books written under the name of Trevor Forest. 

His children’s poem, Clicking Gran, was long listed for the Plough prize (children’s section) in 2009 and his short poem, My Mistake, was rated Highly Commended and published in an anthology of the best entries in the Farringdon Poetry Competition.

Trevor’s articles have been published in magazines as diverse as Ireland’s Own, The Best of British and First Edition. Follow @tabelshaw on Twitter, trevorbelshaw.com/

About the book

The gossip machine is back with more juicy titbits as Tracy casts her all-seeing eye over the lives of the people around her.

Tracy is in a quandary. Should she accept Detective Sergeant Neil Hartley’s marriage proposal? Is she truly ready for a life of domesticity while there are so many men she hasn’t met yet, so many places she hasn’t been, so many clothes she hasn’t tried on.

A lover of cloned, market stall fashion and the Primark sales rail, Tracy is still working the promotions circuit under the guidance of her uber-iffy agent, Shayne Slider.

What on earth are Faliraki Flaps? What really happened when Tracy went on holiday with her best friend, Emma? Get an insight into what she got up to in her last year at school as Tracy dips into her personal diaries and lifts the lid on her most intimate secrets. What Tracy Did Next. An eye-opening giggle fest.


This is part of a series of short reads – novella length. The trials and tribulations of Tracy told via old diary entries, emails, and in a very narrator speaking to the audience kind of way. It gives the reader the sense that she is often referring to the audience along for the read.

Tracy and friends are off on holiday – a time of reflection for her, during which she can ponder on the proposal of marriage she has recently received. Sounds simple enough, right? And sensible, right? Well, it’s Tracy for one thing and what happens on holiday is either something you are willing to forget about, regret or  it could possibly change your life. I think all of these things apply to the trip they take.

This is more or less the gateway to the popular smut-read, bordering on certain scenarios, then steering clear of too many details. It’s also very much written from a ‘what I think women think and do’ perspective. A read I would put into New Adult, due to the many sexual references. I found it a bit brash and lewd, but I’m sure there are plenty of readers who will enjoy the titillating experiences of Tracy and her friends.

Buy What Tracy Did Next at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Pub date 3 Nov 2022. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour My Sorrow Mi Libertad by Robin Harwick

It’s my turn on the BlogTour My Sorrow. Mi Libertad by Robin Harwick.

About the Author 

Robin Harwick, Ph.D., is a writer, educator, research scientist, and performer. After years spent coaching youth on how to achieve their dreams – she decided it was time to “walk her talk” and spent a few years traveling with her teen son and two dogs before deciding to make Mexico home! Robin is also the founder and director of The Pearl Remote Democratic High School, a radical school that provides space for youth to take control of their education. She is published in peer-reviewed journals, blogs, zines, and anthologies. Her first novel, My Sorrow. Mi Libertad was published in June 2021. 

Robin Harwick, Ph.D. – Author, Educator, Researcher, Survivor, and Youth & Family Advocate. Follow @RobinHarwickPhD on Twitter, on Instagram, Visit robinharwick.com

“The days went by sluggishly when I lived on the streets. The sun didn’t come up until almost eight and went down by a little after four. That gave me an excuse to tuck myself into a sleeping bag for many hours of the day. We also spent several hours a day begging for money on the Ave. Between all of us, we managed to get enough money for one pay as you go cell phone. We took turns checking our messages on that phone – trying to stay connected to anyone we could think of. It felt like if I didn’t have a phone, I’d be forgotten.”

My Sorrow. Mi Libertad. shares the story of fifteen-year-old Didi, whose world is turned upside down when she is placed in foster care while her mother battles heroin addiction and after her father is deported. The story is set in the United States amidst the opioid epidemic and at a time when many families are being separated due to US immigration policies. My Sorrow. Mi Libertad exposes the suffering Didi and other youths in care experience, but more importantly, it reveals their resilience. It is a story of strength, determination, and hope as the young characters learn to take control of their destinies.


‘For the first time in as long as I could remember, my life became kind of boring and uneventful.’ – For me this sentence encapsulates the experience of being a child or young person in the system. You have a constant barrage of trauma, which has led to being in the system, then to top it off there is no consistency in your life. 

Being moved from home, to facility, to yet another house and not being able to maintain regular education or relationships, due to moving all the time. In each new place there is a worry of new dangers, of being thrown away again – there is no optimal situation where trust can grow and safety can be felt. Let’s be clear, although the system is hopefully addressing the immediate dangers, neglect and safety issues, they certainly aren’t looking at how tumultuous a life in the system is. The system is inadequate at best, it’s failing children, and unfortunately it is also often producing the adult who repeats the cycles they were exposed to in the first place.

Being able to feel safe enough to be breathe and be bored is a huge moment – just saying. It is a step towards a future Didi is finally allowed to direct herself.  It also means having to be honest about her loved ones and their lack of accountability.

Harwick intentionally leaves the politics of the situation aside and focuses on Didi and her experiences – it’s a personal story, as opposed to a universal one, and yet it is and always will be both.

Buy My Sorrow. Mi Libertad at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Qvixote Press pub date 24 Jun. 2021. Young adult novella – £7.28 (UK). Buy at Amazon com.

#The Visitor by Louvie G. Tucker

Today it’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour The Visitor by Louvie G. Tucker.

About the Author

Louvie G. Tucker lives and works in the Pacific Northwest with his wife. Born in Buffalo, New York, he’s called various U.S. states, Japan, and China home at points in his life. When he’s not working in cyber security, he enjoys rock climbing, staying up to date on current events, keeping up with his Japanese language skills, and riding his bicycle. He is currently working on the second book in the Corrupted Genes series.

About the book

Nusans don’t cause trouble. Peter is a good Nusan. Single, annoyed with his best friend’s constant blind dates, and comfortably provided for with his job as a genmod technician, he spends his days telling expectant parents what their unborn children will look like. For a fee, he can modify physical and mental traits. 

To ensure Nusa’s perfect society, however, it is law that all babies must be born with white skin, an IQ 120 or above, and without any illnesses or disabilities. These modifications are free of charge. It’s the law. And good Nusans obey the law. The people of Susa, however, are known to be troublemakers. 

Thank goodness the dark-skinned Susans all live south of the border, in Susa. The closest Peter ever has to come to a dangerous Susan is either on the silver screen being vanquished by a heroic Nusan hero or on the news as deporters — the force charged to keep Nusa safe — prepare to send them south to Susa. 

That is, until a dark-skinned visitor is suddenly inside the four walls of Peter’s quiet existence. Snarky. Irreverent and without any regard for the rules, the stranger should be a Susan but is he? Why is he claiming to have fallen from the stars? 

Everything Peter knows is suddenly in question and even his status as a good Nusan is under threat as deporters seek him out on suspicion of a capital crime. Has Peter caused trouble? 

Life as Peter has known it is fragile. Can he survive long enough to learn the truth? And will he even want to believe it once he finds it?  


This is a novella length read and although it’s dystopian it is very much a social commentary on our society now. On racism, eugenics, capitalism and the division of people. The cracks in society that are becoming wider and the voices of dissent who rise up to counter the hatred.

Peter is a law-abiding Nusan, who believes the propaganda both for his people and for the Susans. The slogans reminding him of his duty and to not doubt the hierarchy or upper echelon. the light-skinned Nusans, who stay out of trouble, as opposed to the Susans, the dark-skinned troublemakers.

The author doesn’t wander too far from reality with the baby factory genetics. Parents being able to pick eye colour, skin colour, gender and size. It also means they are able to eradicate genetic faults, and yes they are the ones who decide whether it is a fault. This is already a possibility in many countries. The problem with that is what one person may view as a disadvantage another may adore.

I hope this isn’t the last we read by this particular author. I’d like to see the more speculative elements fade to let the social commentary be heard more clearly.

Buy The Visitor at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour And Then She Shines by Helen Libby

Today it’s my turn on the BlogTour for And Then She Shines: A Collection of Novelettes – Five women, five different issues, five ‘feel-good’ reads. And Then She Shines brings together brings together four previously published novelettes, along with Helen Libby’s new story, Cassie’s Choice.

About the Author

Originally from North Wales, Helen currently lives in Shropshire with her husband and their dog. Helen worked for many years in the public sector and has an administrative background. She writes both fiction and non-fiction. As well as being an indie author, Helen is a self-publishing consultant, offering editorial, self-publishing, and writing services. To find out more, please go to: www.helen-edwards.co.uk 

Follow Helen @helibedw on Twitteron Istangram, on Amazon, on Facebookon GoodreadsBuy And Then She Shines

About the book

Ruby’s Secret – Can you keep a secret? All the clothes Ruby’s bought may have filled her wardrobe, but they haven’t helped her to feel fulfilled. She’s been holding back on her dream of travelling for years. And now Ruby’s in debt. A LOT of debt. She’s so ashamed. She doesn’t want anyone to know, not even her boyfriend, David. He’s so careful with money – he wouldn’t understand. Ruby’s trying to change. She wants financial stability AND a good relationship. Will she be able to resolve her debt before David discovers her secret?

Love, Anna – Stay or go? Anna’s a romantic. She loves musical theatre, but her life is a far cry from her favourite shows. When her boyfriend Joe tells her he doesn’t love her anymore, she doesn’t know what to do. Anna just wants to be loved, but Joe suffers from depression, and they’ve both been unhappy for a long time. A last minute trip to Paris gives Anna some time to reflect, and shows her whether life can ever really be like a musical.

Laura’s Embrace – “People who love me leave me.” Laura makes a New Year’s resolution – to find her birth mother. She needs answers. What she doesn’t need is a relationship, so when things start getting serious between her and Rob, she does her best to hold back. Only Rob won’t take ‘no’ for an answer, and Laura is torn. Will Laura find her birth mother? And will love find a way?

Finding Ella – He knows everything about her. The only thing she knows about him is that he’s her husband. Can she fall in love with him for a second time? Ella’s lost her memory – the last ten years of her life. Her friends and family want her to slot back into place, only it’s not that easy. Will Ella’s memory return? Does she need to remember her husband in order to love him again? Join Ella on her journey of self-discovery.

Cassie’s Choice – “Something is missing from my life, and I can’t pinpoint what it is. Could it be a baby? Maybe.” What if you think you want a child, but your partner doesn’t? It’s time for Cassie to make her mind up. Does she want a baby, or not? If she does, is she willing to leave her beloved husband, Alex, in order to start again? Can you miss something you’ve never had? Does Cassie need a baby in order to feel fulfilled? So many questions, and she’s running out of time.Review

This book contains Helen Libby’s new story Cassie’s Choice and also the stories Finding Ella, Laura’s Embrace, Love Anna and Ruby’s Secret. All of them are novelette length.

In Finding Ella it’s about estrangement and coming to terms with living a life that Ella doesn’t remember and yet is somehow stuck in. In Ruby’s Secret the main character manages to justify her failings and put them on her partner, who in turn becomes the scolding parent. It’s a little bit of a role reversal when it comes to the blame game.

I have to say the story of Love Anna wasn’t an easy read. Yes there has to be an acknowledgement that someone living with a partner with depression suffers with them, but to me Anna represented the typical reaction of someone who doesn’t understand what depression is. I found her quite selfish and self-obsessed. Me, me, me how does this impact me? Joe has to confront his mental health issues so they – she – can be happy again.

Cassie’s Choice was an interesting one, I firmly believe that for a relationship to succeed long term there has to be a consensus about what both want when it comes to important milestones in life, such as marriage and babies, regardless of whether you want either or not. Waiting until one person is ready or appeasing them is just delaying the inevitable, which for women usually means a missed bio clock or having to restart their lives when they have passed their prime. Honesty at the beginning can save a lot of heartache.

Overall I believe Libby wants to her stories to convey women who discover they are strong enough to make their own choices and be bold enough to embrace the change they need for themselves. I wouldn’t exactly call them uplifting stories, perhaps because what they all have in common is a woman who is struggling with their situation and emotional well-being.

It depends on perspective I suppose. Some situations can be perceived as a character becoming emboldened enough to get what they want, however it can also be viewed as selfish and as seen just through their eyes, despite the impact of their decisions reaching beyond their own person.

I would call the stories brief moments of honesty and putting oneself at the forefront of our own needs and wants, regardless of how it may come across. Possibly something women need to do more often.

Buy And Then She Shines at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher : Helen Libby; pub date 1 Nov. 2019. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour Into the Summerland by Julian Cundy

Today it’s my pleasure to kick off the BlogTour for Into the Summerland by Julian Cundy. It’s a short and thoughtful piece of fiction. Into the Summerland is speculative, spiritual and perhaps even motivational at times.

About the Author

Living in Westcliff-on-Sea Essex, Julian Cundy is a British adventurer, dedicated day dreamer, wordsmith and observer of life and all its absurdities. He is a recognisable character in his home town thanks to his eye-catching outfits comprising fine hats, cravats, tails and spats.

Follow @CundyJulian and @Authoright on Twitter

Follow JulianCundy on Instagram

Connect with RealJulianCundy on Facebook or on YouTube

Visit juliancundy.com

Buy Into the Summerland

About the book 

The eternal question – what happens when we die? Is there a consequence from how we lived? Is there a reckoning?

Henry Ashton’s turbulent life is at an end. As he moves on from this world, he discovers how elusive the final peace can be.With a spirit companion by his side, Henry learns there can be no peace without reconciliation, no rest without acceptance. He must walk his own path to absolution.

“For some souls the transition from mortal life to eternal peace is an easy one, soon completed. For others, who have been troubled in their life or who cannot reconcile the events and their part in them, the journey is longer…and harder. But every soul will find its rest.”


I wonder how many of us would choose to relive both the highlights and the lowest points in our lives, even after death and as a last task before passing on to the next level. Assuming there is one to pass on or over to in the first place, but I suppose that depends on each individuals faith, belief or complete lack of either.

In this novella length story the reader revisits the past with the newly departed Henry, who has to have closure with all the emotionally charged moments of his life in an attempt to find peace in himself , his actions and decisions. This session, which appears to be endless and without any time constraints, is a challenge he needs to succeed at in order to move on.

It is a lesson in reflection and speaks to the walls we build inside our minds and hearts to seal off the most painful memories. Everyone makes mistakes, and there are no do-overs in life. We aren’t born with a manual on how to take the best path in each situation.

It is a thoughtful piece of fiction. I suppose if seen from a more psychoanalytical perspective one could also view Chuttlewizz as the conscience urging Henry to look back upon his life and make peace with his internal fears, anger and also the small pockets of joy and tranquillity. He doesn’t believe he deserves the latter and regrets the former.

Although this can be perceived as a spiritual story, it is quite simply a natural progression towards the end of a life. The older we get the more we tend to dwell on the paths taken, the mistakes we made and any possible regrets we may have. It’s interesting how we tend to focus on the negative rather than reminisce about the positive and happy times.

What I really liked was the inference or premise that after death our souls need to be whole again before they can be released. The notion that we need to fix the holes in our souls to be able to move on and rest in peace. Perhaps we shouldn’t wait until our last breath to do so.

It is speculative, spiritual and perhaps even motivational at times.

Buy Into the Summerland at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.

Paperback edition Kindle edition

Publisher: Little Bang Publishing (Length 77 pages)

Follow the Tour:

Monday 11th June Cheryl M-M’s Book Blog

Tuesday 12th June Wrong Side of Forty

Wednesday 13th June Spiritual Media Blog

Thursday 14th June Abooktasia

Friday 15th June Portable Magic

Monday 18th June Big Book Little Book

Tuesday 19th June Belleandthenovel

Wednesday 20th June A Daydreamer’s Thoughts

Thursday 21st June Portable Magic

Saturday 23rd June Cupcake Mumma

The Bone Collection by Kathy Reichs

the-bone-collectionOne of things I enjoy most about stories written by Reichs is the way she combines fiction with fact. I feel as if I always come away knowing just a little bit more, especially with the short stories. Reichs often uses the shorter format to highlight, educate and inform her readers.

The Bone Collection is, as the title implies, a collection of four short stories. It includes Bones in her Pocket (15.5), The Swamp Bones (16.5), Bones on Ice (17.5) and First Bones (0.5). The numbers represent the reading order in the Temperance Brennan series.

I had read all but First Bones before, however I read the stories again, because they are always fascinating.

First Bones is actually a prequel to the very first Brennan story. It explains how she discovers her true calling and real passion. Crime calls her name softly and entices her towards the all consuming darkness of mysteries and murder.

Bones in her Pocket brings mystery to what should be a simple identification. Why are the remains of a young woman found with the skeletal remains of a small animal. This amateur killer has made the kind of mistakes an experienced killer wouldn’t have made.

The Swamp Bones is an excellent example of how Reichs incorporates important environmental issues into her stories, both short and full-length ones. Burmese Pythons play a pivotal part in this novella.

Bones on Ice is about the body of a young woman who died during a climb up Mount Everest. Reichs discovers that all is not what it seems with this case. She also gives readers an insight into just how dangerous the climb is and how many people have died during said climb. Their bodies lie unclaimed as a testament to how lethal Mount Everest can be.

Not everyone can turn a novella into a tiny novel or give readers the feeling that they have just read the equivalent of one on a smaller scale. It is something Reichs does very well.

Buy The Bone Collection at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.

Read The Swamp BonesBones Never Lie,  Bones in her Pocket or Speaking in Bones by Kathy Reichs.

Read ExposureSwipe or Code by Kathy and Brendan Reichs.

Read Two Nights by Kathy Reichs.

Bomber Boy: Rise of the Underwear Bomber by Ike Pius

bomberThis is a novella length story

In light of recent terrorist attacks in the last few months and indeed in the last few decades the premise may seem a little forward thinking. However the reality is even the terrorist has a voice, and this story is looking at it from a perspective other than that of the victims.

Farouk is planning to kill a plane load of innocent people. Why? Because they are infidels of course. Does it matter whether he has his reasons for doing so?

Pius starts out strong, but tapers off towards the end. I would have liked to have seen him explore the thoughts, mindset and interactions of the terrorist. How one minute Farouk is the friendly compassionate conversationalist to the people around him and then in his head Farouk the murderer-to-be is having an entirely different conversation.

Bomber Boy starts off as an ambitious idea, but it seems a little rushed. The difficulty with a novella is that it needs to draw you in and keep you there without having the advantage of the full length novel to do so.

Buy Bomber Boy at Amazon UK or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.

Shadow Journey by S.D. O’Donnell


This is a novella featuring Vera Blackstone from S.D. O’Donnell’s novel Deadly Memories. It is written as the type of letter you would leave behind for your loved ones when you die. A confession, a lightening of the heavy burden she has carried for over 35 years. A chance to finally take a breath with a clear conscience and at the same time helping those around her to understand Vera. Her actions, her choices and her personality become a lot clearer.

I enjoyed the frankness and realistic approach to the topic. There are no platitudes or fluffy marshmallow scenes. Instead it is the hard reality of life.

Why must the terminally ill suffer till the very last hour? Would you be able to make a choice of that magnitude? Should we have to help loved ones in secret because it is a crime in most countries? Or take them to die on foreign soil because the rules say they have to suffer till their body gives in?

The way O’Donnell approached the relationship between Alice and her parents is also very interesting. Mother and daughter have a fractured relationship full of friction. Alice is a Daddy’s girl, which is fine but she resents her mother and is critical of the care her father is getting. She even goes as far as to threaten prosecution if she finds out her mother has killed her father. A clear case of putting her needs and wishes over that of her parents.

Vera is a strong woman, who loves her husband very much, which is why she chooses to listen to his wishes and not those of her own. Sitting on that type of secret for so many years would probably be the undoing of most people. It not only makes Vera stronger, it defines her as a person and also helps her to understand her own choice at the time.

For such a short piece it was quite emotional and prolific. I have to say I really enjoyed it and look forward to reading more by O’Donnell.
I received a copy of this book courtesy of the author.