#BlogTour Re-Navigation by Sue Parritt

Today it’s my turn on the BlogTour Re-Navigation by Sue Parritt. It’s a story of self-exploration, passion and faith. A tale of what God means to each person on an individual level and how to navigate faith or loss of faith.About the Author

Originally from England, Sue worked in university libraries until taking early retirement in 2008 to concentrate on creative writing. Since then she has written short stories, articles, poetry, a short TV drama script and six novels:

Sannah and the Pilgrim, first in a trilogy of a future dystopian Australia focusing on climate change and the harsh treatment of refugees from drowned Pacific islands. Odyssey Books, 2014. Commended in the FAW Christina Stead Award, 2014. Pia and the Skyman, Odyssey Books, 2016. Commended in the FAW Christina Stead Award, 2016. The Sky Lines Alliance, Odyssey Books, 2016. Chrysalis, the story of a perceptive girl growing up in a Quaker family in swinging sixties’ Britain. Morning Star Press, 2017

Re-Navigation recounts a life turned upside down when forty-year old Julia journeys from the sanctuary of middle-class Australian suburbia to undertake a retreat at a college located on an isolated Welsh island. Creativia Publishing, 2019.

Feed Thy Enemy, based on her father’s experiences, is an account of courage and compassion in the face of trauma as a British airman embarks on a plan that risks all to feed a starving, war-stricken family. Creativia Publishing, 2019.

Sue’s current project, A Question of Country, is a novel exploring the migrant experience through the protagonist’s lifelong search for meaningful identity.

Passionate about peace and social justice issues, Sue’s goal as a fiction writer is to continue writing novels that address topics such as climate change, the effects of war, the treatment of refugees, feminism and racism.  Sue intends to keep on writing for as long as possible, believing the extensive life experiences of older writers can be employed to engage readers of all ages.

Follow Sue Parritt on Facebook, Visit www.sueparritt.comBuy Re-navigation

About the book

A gloomy seascape is of little consequence to Julia, as a ferry transports her to an isolated Welsh island to undertake a Spiritual Development course.

Soon, Julia finds herself surrounded by new friends and questions. As relationships deepen, so does Julia’s feeling that something crucial is missing from her life.

As passion ignites and deep-buried secrets surface, Julia faces choices that will forever change the direction of her life. But at what cost?Review

When Julia treats herself to a spiritual retreat she doesn’t expect her entire life and relationships to be questioned, by herself of all people. Her vulnerability is exposed which opens up a quagmire of emotional turmoil.

Parritt addresses a lot of controversial issues in her story. I believe her intent is to inform, make aware and get readers to think about a variety of issues. I couldn’t decide whether they were purposely presented in a way that comes across as offensive white privilege and ignorance, which is exactly the way it happens in real life, ergo gives her character more of a realistic feel. Or is there a lack of awareness in the tropes and how ignorant some of the dialogue and thoughts are?

That isn’t meant in negative way at all. Having read something about the author I know her intent is to engage. My concern is that readers without that extra info could just see the often offensive characters and not the intent. It’s a provocative way to show the problems in thinking and reactions. Will people recognise themselves in these racist beliefs, sexist presumptions, religious affectations? Or will it just be a case of – that’s the norm.

Spirituality, faith and religion play a large part in the plot. In particular when Julia loses her faith during her time at the spiritual retreat. Loss of self or a complete re-navigation is quite common in an environment where one is asked to delve into emotions, memories and structure of self.

It’s a story of self-exploration, passion and faith. A tale of what God means to each person on an individual level and how to navigate faith or the loss of it.

Buy Re-Navigation at Amazon UK or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: Creativia; pub date 14 May 2019. Buy at Amazon.comAmazon auBuy at Book Depository.

#BlogTour Pilgrim by Loiuse Hall

Today it’s the BlogTour Pilgrim by Louise Hall. It’s contemporary fiction with spiritual, theological and addiction issues woven into the fabric of the story.About the Author

Louise Hall is from Malahide, Co. Dublin. She has previously published two works of non-fiction, Medjugorje: What it Means to Me and Medjugorje and Me: A Collection of Stories from Across the World. Her fiction has been published in The Irish Times and been shortlisted for numerous competitions, such as the RTÉ Guide/Penguin Short Story Award, the Colm Tóibín International Short Story Competition and the Jonathan Swift Creative Writing Awards. Pilgrim is her debut novel.

Follow @LouHallWriter on Twitter, on Instagram, Visit louisehall.ie

Buy Pilgrim


About the book

In Dublin, fourteen-year-old Jen and her father, Charlie, are struggling to cope with the death of their mother/wife. Charlie, in particular, seems to have given up on life. When Jen’s aunt, Suzanne, convinces them to go on a pilgrimage to a strange village in Yugoslavia, there is hope that some solace or healing may be brought to their broken lives.

On their arrival, however, they find a village in upheaval. An influx of pilgrims have swarmed into the village, each looking for their own miracle. Then there are the local police, who aim to suppress this so-called `revolution’. Amid all this, Jen makes a friend, Iva – one of the children who claims to have seen the Virgin Mary.

Told with a deep humanity and grace, Pilgrim is a story about a man who feels he has nothing to live for, and a daughter who is determined to prove him wrong. A nuanced and moving exploration of grief and faith. Unique subject matter based around the famed Medjugorje apparitions. The author already has a dedicated readership built up from her two non-fiction books on Medjugorje. This is her first fictional take on the story.Review

The majority of the book is based upon the Medjugorje apparitions. Medjugorje is a small village in the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. The area is now known as Bosnia and Herzegovina. In 1981 six Herzegovinian children claimed to see the ‘Gospa’ (which is Croatian for lady), when they returned to the same place the next day they saw her again. This time she spoke to them.

All of the above is based on a true story.

The fictional family in this story travels to the village on a pilgrimage. The father thinks it is a bunch of rubbish, but for the young daughter, Jen, it is a glimmer of light in a life filled with fog. After the death of her mother she is struggling to be seen by her father, a man who is drowning in grief. He can do nothing other than wallow in his loss.

Humans like miracles, especially people who find comfort and security in religion and faith. They flock to places that purport to see and experience connections to God. Often in the hope they will experience their own miracle or enlightenment. It’s certainly an interesting phenomenon.

The Yugoslav wars are only hinted upon, aside from the mention of militia and the chapter on the priest in prison. The author doesn’t really go into the atrocities, mass murder, rapes and genocide. I think that was done intentionally, so the focus would be on faith and grief.

For me this was all about how we are linked and connected without knowing it, especially when we live in the same geographical areas. Without being aware of it we are all dominoes on a global stage and when one of us topples we inadvertently touch or hit the next person in the row. It’s also about coping with grief, with loss and trying to reconnect as a family.

It’s contemporary fiction with spiritual, theological and addiction issues woven into the fabric of the story.

Buy Pilgrim at Amazon Uk or go to Goodreads for any other retailer. Publisher: The Mercier Press Ltd (14 Sept. 2018)

#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 Yoga of Max’s Discontent by Karan Bajaj

YogaI kind of love the pun in the title. Other than that the story has nothing to do with Steinbeck or Shakespeare.

This book might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but for others it may be a door to a certain level of understanding. I suppose that will depend on how much a reader has contemplated spirituality, self and/or life.

What is it about? Enlightenment and self-discovery. A trip to discover the meaning of self and life.

You don’t need extensive knowledge of yoga or meditation to read this, although it might add an extra element of understanding if you do.

Max comes to a crossroads on his personal path in life. Perhaps it is the death of his mother that brings everything to a head. His past, present and future flashes before his eyes and suddenly he knows it’s now or never.

He leaves everything behind him, after a conversation with a lightly clad man in the middle of cold city. Viveka sees a kindred spirit in Max and says something life-changing to the young man. Max leaves family, friends, a high-paying job, his apartment and his country soon after.

On a personal level I really enjoyed the deep insight into the yoga and meditation, especially the yoga. It made me look at it from a completely different perspective. Not just relaxation, exercise or plain old balance.

You can tell the story is also a personal journey for the author, which makes the insights so much more enlightening and approachable, despite the surrounding fictional story. An unusual and different kind of read.

Buy The Yoga of Max’s Discontent at Amazon UK or go to Goodreads for any other retailer.