#BlogTour The Burning Question by Linda Regan

It’s a pleasure to take part in the Blogtour The Burning Question by Linda Regan.

About the Author

Linda Regan is the prolific writer of eight crime novels, as well as a celebrated actress of stage and screen. After winning a worldwide writing competition with her novel Behind You! (2006), Linda published seven more novels, including Passion Killers (2007) which was selected as a Sunday Observer pick of the year. Since then, she has written the immensely popular DI Johnson series (2015) and the DCI Banham series (2019).

In addition to her writing, Linda is a much-loved actress, known for her recurring role in the hit BBC sitcom Hi-De-Hi, and guest appearances in popular shows The Bill, Birds of a Feather, Doctors, and Holby City. Before joining the cast of Hi-De-Hi, Linda started out in a comedy dance troupe in her youth before going on to a lead role in the West End production of Tom Stoppard’s Dirty Linen. Playing such vivid and iconic characters throughout her career, has helped Linda to develop character focused stories that bring a uniquely immersive filmic quality to the page.

In addition to her acting, Linda uses her personal experiences to write her signature brand of “strong crime”. All of Linda’s novels are set in South London, where Linda writes with meticulous knowledge of the landscape where she grew up and currently lives with her husband, actor Brian Murphy. Follow @Linda_Regan on Twitter

About the book

DCI Paul Banham and DI Alison Grainger are back. This time they’re investigating the tragic death of a young woman, burnt in her home. When another identical arson attack is reported, Grainger and Banham are on the hunt for a link, unaware that the new trainee DC, Hannah Kemp, already knows the connection. She also knows that if she comes forward with the information, her own past will come to light, and she’ll potentially lose her job. But, if she doesn’t, more women will lose their lives. 

Hannah knows who they are, and she knows their attacker will stop at nothing to keep his ring of illegal prostitutes earning. Once he realises Hannah is now a police detective, she, too, will be in mortal danger. 

As the clock ticks against her own life, she must decide whether to stay quiet for the sake of her career, or risk everything she’s worked for to stop a ruthless killer once and for all.

Review

It’s a mid-series book, however it is absolutely readable as a standalone novel. DCI Paul Banham and DI Alison Grainger are investigating a fatal arson attack with multiple victims. It soon becomes evident that there was an intended victim and some collateral damage. Unfortunately the victim has a link to someone in the team, one she wants to keep buried for very good reasons.

It’s a balance between police procedural and cosy crime, the focus and the soft layer gives it a more comfortable feel. Despite the subject matter, which is a bit seedy and dark at times, it doesn’t have a brutal hardcore crime vibe. Nothing wrong with that, the author definitely puts an emphasis on the interpersonal scenes and situations.

Perhaps sometimes to the point of making the police procedural side less convincing, because the interpersonal relationships and interactions take precedence over procedure. Again, this is merely a matter of what kind of crime read you are looking for. 

The author definitely likes to muddy the waters when it comes to the rule of law and the areas in between black and white, but perhaps the whole intention is to present a set of flawed characters, because the reality is even the people upholding the law are just mere humans. 

Buy The Burning Question at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Headline Accent, pub date 12th May 2022 | Paperback Original – £9.99. Buy at Amazon comVia Headline.

#BlogTour The Secrets of Hawthorn Place by Jenni Keer

 It’s my turn on the BlogBlitz The Secrets of Hawthorn Place by Jenni Keer.

About the Author

Jenni Keer is a history graduate who embarked on a career in contract flooring before settling in the middle of the Suffolk countryside with her antique furniture restorer husband. She has valiantly attempted to master the ancient art of housework but with four teenage boys in the house it remains a mystery. Instead, she spends her time at the keyboard writing commercial women’s fiction to combat the testosterone-fuelled atmosphere, with her number one fan #Blindcat by her side. Much younger in her head than she is on paper, she adores any excuse for fancy-dress and is part of a disco formation dance team.

Jenni is also the author of The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker and The Unexpected Life of Maisie Meadows. Follow @JenniKeer on Twitter, jennikeerwriter on Facebook, jennikeer on Instagram

About the book

Love will always find a way… Discover the intriguing secrets of Hawthorn Place in this heartfelt dual-time novel, filled with warmth and charm, perfect for fans of Lucinda Riley and Cecelia Ahern.

Two houses, hundreds of miles apart…yet connected always. When life throws Molly Butterfield a curveball, she decides to spend some time with her recently widowed granddad, Wally, at Hawthorn Place, his quirky Victorian house on the Dorset coast.

But cosseted Molly struggles to look after herself, never mind her grieving granddad, until the accidental discovery of an identical Art and Crafts house on the Norfolk coast offers her an unexpected purpose, as well as revealing a bewildering mystery.

Discovering that both Hawthorn Place and Acacia House were designed by architect Percy Gladwell, Molly uncovers the secret of a love which linked them, so powerful it defied reason. What follows is a summer which will change Molly for ever… 

Review

Molly is used to having a safety net, which is probably why she is unable to adult by herself. Even now she wants her mother and stepfather to catch in the midst of her latest fall. This time they have decided to pull the rug out from under her – there is no net. There is nowhere else to go but to her grandfather, in the middle of the sticks with no internet.

It sets her on the path of self-discovery, to friendship, to love and to a story about a hidden love and even bigger secrets. I love the fact the author managed to do all of that so smoothly.

Hawthorn Place and Acacia House – I need that kind of exciting architectural secret in my life. Of course it’s also the kind of secret that could be used for both good or evil. (Yup evil – I have a one-track mind).

Unfortunately I can’t go into the details of what that secret may be, it’s a creative one though, and one that casts a spell on more than one generation.

This dual timeline historical romance takes place in the present and the past. It’s a moving tale of forbidden love, and also one about taking responsibility and being brave enough to grab love when it presents itself. It’s a lovely escapism read.

Buy The Secrets of Hawthorn Place at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher ‏: ‎Headline Accent pub date 14 Oct. 2021. Buy at Amazon com.

Giveaway to Win a Signed copy of the Secrets of Hawthorn Place, plus chocolate and a sparkly pen. (UK Only)

Click here to Enter the Rafflecopter giveaway 

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  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.*

#BlogTour How We Got To Today by Ben Ellis

Today it’s my turn on the BlogTour How We Got To Today by Ben Ellis.

About the Author

Ben Ellis is from Worthing, UK and writes in his spare time. ‘In a Right State’ is his debut novel. ‘Broken Branches’ is his second novel.

Follow @b3n3llis on Twitteron Goodreads, Visit b3n3llis.comBuy How We Got to Today

About the book

How can you find love, when you’ve lost sight of yourself?

Sheridan doesn’t know what he looks like. There’s nothing wrong with his vision, it’s just that he’s the only person in the world who can’t see his own face.

Despite this, he has it all going for him – a good job as an optometrist, a nice home, and a wonderful girlfriend. All until Heidi, totally out of the blue, dumps him.

And to make matters worse, not only has she broken his heart, but she’s disappeared. Distraught, Sheridan begins to search for her, and ends up finding himself along the way. . .

This is a story about how sometimes it’s the people closest to us that see us the best and, if we lose sight of ourselves, can tell us who we really are.

Review

It starts off a little wobbly, but I can only suggest you stick with it. The element that drew me in completely is possibly not what other readers will be attracted to with this read. It might be the disappearance, the search for love or the inability to view oneself as others do.

I was absolutely engrossed by the premise of Sheridan not being able to see his own face or facial features. His obsession with being able to see what others do with such ease and them having such a blasé attitude about it all. The determination to see himself almost eclipses everything except the loss of his girlfriend.

He becomes convinced that there is something more nefarious to her disappearance and all the ties she has broken off, including their relationship. Sheridan wanders between stalkerish, manic and just plain old weird behaviour.

Are the eyes the window to the soul, is there no soul or acknowledgement of self if one is unable to see into the window. What happens when there is a recognition of self?Although I loved this book I sort of wished Ellis had run with the story of Sheridan a little bit more. I found it absolutely fascinating. The ending of this book fits with the overall narrative and plot, and is special in it own way. However, oh my gosh the absolute pot of literary gold in this story was and is the story of Sheridan and his lack of recognition of self, and being unable to see his own face. Something worth exploring in another book perhaps?

Either way it is a read I would recommend and one that doesn’t necessarily fit into a specific genre per se. Ellis has a grasp on something really special in this read. I’ll be interested to see what he comes up with next.

Buy How We Got To Today at Amazon Uk  or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Headline Accent; pub date 24 Sept. 2020. Buy at Amazon com.

#BlogTour A Crown in Time by Jennifer Macaire

Today it’s a pleasure to take part in the BlogTour A Crown in Time by Jennifer Macaire.

About the Author

Jennifer Macaire is an American living in France. She likes to read, eat chocolate, and plays a mean game of golf. She grew up in upstate New York, Samoa, and the Virgin Islands. She graduated from St Peter and Paul High School in St Thomas and moved to NYC where she modelled for five years for Elite. She went to France and met her husband at the polo club. All that is true. But she mostly likes to make up stories.

Follow @jennifermacaire on Twitter, on Amazon on Instagramon GoodreadsThe Time for Alexander series on Facebook, Visit authorjennifermacaire.wordpress.com or jennifermacaire.wordpress.comBuy A Crown in Time

About the book

In the far future, a convicted criminal is given a chance at redemption. Her mission? To save the crown of France by convincing a young noble not to join the ill-fated Eighth Crusade.

But nothing goes as planned, and Isobel finds herself accompanying a hot-headed youth on his way to fight the infidel in Tunis: a battle Isobel knows is fated to be lost.

From the rainy villages of medieval France, to the scorching desert of Tunis – Isobel faces her destiny and tries to fulfil her duty, knowing she can never return to her time, knowing that a wrong move can doom the future, or doom her to be burned as a witch.

Review

Let me start out by saying that the future has a lot to answer for. Imagine the sheer audicity of a future civilisation thinking they can not only meddle and direct the past as they wish, but also mete out punishment in the form of abandoned time-travellers.

The whole idea in itself is a contradiction. We will send you back to ensure a certain event in history happens or doesn’t happen, and if you aren’t succesful you will be expunged from history – oh and by the way it’s a one way ticket. As if the presence of someone who shouldn’t be there in the first place isn’t going to cause any ripples in time whatsoever, especially if they are then resigned to being stuck there regardless of how their mission goes.

Isobel was a bit of a mixed bag for me. At times she appeared fully aware of any possible impact she may have on time and at others she was just reckless, which explains why nothing goes as planned.

What is clear is that, and I found it quite a valid point, is that theoretical knowledge is not the same as on-hand experience. It is one thing to read of poverty, disease, violence and misery, it’s quite another to experience medieval times in the flesh. I think that is certainly a footnote for historians to ponder upon, especially when the research department is prepping time-fixers.

It’s historical fiction within a futuristic setting. Macaire lets the more modern part of the premise walk hand in hand with the historical part like a silent partner. The occasional slip of a word, phrase and flashback is often the only reminder that the main character is merely a pawn in a bigger picture.

Buy A Crown in Time at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Headline Accent; pub date 16 Jan. 2020. Buy at Amazon comBuy at Amazon AuAt Waterstones.

Giveaway to Win a $10 Amazon Gift Certificate  (Open INT) 

Click here to Enter the Rafflecopter giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  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.