A Mother’s Goodbye by Kate Hewitt Extract


My arms ache with the need to reach and hold my precious child, and then to never let go. But I can’t. I know I can’t.’

Heather is devastated. There’s no way she can keep her baby. She can barely pay the bills as it is. But when she meets Grace, a wealthy, single career woman, who wants a baby more than anything, Heather believes she has found the perfect adoptive mother.

As Grace and Heather’s lives become entwined, they are tested to breaking point, though neither can deny the other’s love for the child. But just when they think they are learning how to live with each other, they receive devastating news that turns their fragile world upside down.

Will either mother know what is the right thing to do for the child they both love?




The day of my father’s funeral one of the partners, Bruce Felson, calls to tell me I’ve made Harrow and Heath seven million dollars in a single hour after I set the share price yesterday for a new social media company.

‘You’re on fire, Grace,’ he says with a laugh into the phone, that comfortable, jocular chuckle of an amused uncle, a forbearing father. I’m so tired even my teeth ache, and I’ve been wearing a pair of four-inch Louboutins for eleven hours.

‘Thanks,’ I say, my tone lacking its usual brisk vigor. I wonder why I even answered the call. I’d been in the elevator up to my apartment after attending my father’s funeral service, burial, and an interminable two hours at the country club in Connecticut where I’d held the reception, making chitchat with strangers, old business acquaintances of my dad’s, some of my parents’ old couple friends I hadn’t seen in about twenty years.

When I’d seen Bruce’s name flash onto my screen I’d answered as a matter of habit, a Pavlovian response to the pressures of work, because in venture capital you’ve always got to be on the ball, looking for the next opportunity before anyone else finds it. And I want to make partner before I’m forty, which is in seven months. I’ve been a principal for four years, and I’m ready. I’m so ready.

‘Oh,’ Bruce says, as if he’d just thought of it, which I’m sure he has. ‘Is today your father’s…?’

‘Yes,’ I say simply, and his chuckle peters out.

‘Sorry,’ he says, all stiff politeness now. ‘Did it go, ah, well?’

Do funerals ever go well? Can I even judge such a thing at this moment? People came. A priest spoke. There were a lot of murmured words and wilted sandwiches. ‘It was lovely, thank you,’ I say, and Bruce gives a pleased grunt.

‘Good, good.’ An awkward pause. ‘Well, then. See you tomorrow.’

I disconnect the call and step out of the elevator to unlock the door to my apartment, my hands nearly shaking with the effort. I’m so tired I feel like I could cry, and that is something I haven’t done since my father died a week ago. Behind me my neighbor’s door, the only other one on the floor, opens.

‘Oh, hello.’ The woman’s voice is cheerful, inviting conversation. I’ve been living here for four years and I should know her and her husband’s names, but I don’t. I turn back with a distracted half-smile and my key clatters onto the marble floor. ‘Been somewhere exciting?’ the woman asks brightly, and all I can do is stare.

I’ve shared minimal, meaningless chitchat with my neighbors over the years; I think our longest conversation has been about when the recycling is going to be collected after Christmas. They pushed me a Christmas card under the door several times, and I’ve forgotten to give one back. How on earth can I tell this woman with her squinting, near-sighted smile what I’ve been doing today? So I don’t.

‘Nothing terribly exciting.’ I try to smile but my face feels funny. The woman nods, clearly waiting for more, but I don’t have anything and so I turn my smile into something more of a farewell and stoop down for my key. She stays in her own doorway, waiting, while I fumble with the lock and finally, thankfully, close my door behind me.

My heels click across the marble foyer, echoing in the emptiness. Ahead of me floor-to-ceiling windows overlook Central Park, twilight already settling over it, the shadows lengthening between the clusters of trees, the traffic emptying out, a few cabs gliding down Fifth Avenue.

The air smells of lavender and lemon, the organic furniture polish my cleaner uses. Everything is still and quiet and perfect, my oasis in a full, frenetic life.

My father is dead.

I feel like I should cry, but I can’t. The tears have gathered into a cold, hard lump in my chest. I feel it every time I swallow. I picture it ossifying, getting harder and bigger, choking me, taking me over. But still the tears won’t come. They came after my mother died; hot tears pouring down my cheeks while my father held me. A grief shared is one divided, lessened; I bear the weight of this one all alone, and it’s crippling me. I am bowed beneath it.

I walk to the window, kicking off my heels, flexing my cramped toes, but even that small thing feels like an indulgence I shouldn’t enjoy, not now. Not when my father is no longer alive. How can I enjoy anything any more?

One hand rests on the cool glass, connecting me to the world. Ten stories below two women walk along the cobbled pavement by the park, deep in conversation, gesturing widely. Behind them a mother, or perhaps a nanny, hurries her child along. He’s holding a soccer ball and dragging his feet; the woman is steering him by the shoulder.

When the reception after the funeral ended, I went to the club’s bar and drank two Scotches, neat, my father’s drink, while the bartender polished glasses and the club emptied out. The alcohol seethes in my stomach now; I didn’t used to like whisky, but I learned to drink it. When you work on Wall Street, whether it’s investment banking or venture capital, and just about everyone other than the secretaries is male, you need to do that kind of pseudo-masculine stuff. Drink whisky. Laugh at the titty jokes. Play golf, or at least be interested in it. I’ve even smoked a cigar.

But now I’m home, and the apartment is as empty as it ever was, and I feel like I can’t stand it for a second longer. The silence screams at me, hurting my ears.

On a normal night I’d change out of my suit, pour myself a glass of wine from the expensive bottle I keep chilling in the fridge, and settle down in front of the TV to watch the news on CNN. After about five minutes, if that, I’d switch to Bloomberg to keep up with the financial markets, because I can’t stay away. Then I’d do thirty minutes on my elliptical trainer before getting ready for bed. And I’d feel happy, damn it. I’d feel happy and satisfied, and just a little bit smug, but in a good way. I had it all, I really did. Now I feel as if I have nothing.

I’m alone.The words rattle around like marbles in the emptiness of my mind. Of course, I’ve known I’m alone for a long time. I’ve been single for my entire adult life, save a few forays into relationships that never went all that far, mostly because I didn’t see the point.

My work has precluded a lot of things: lots of good women friends, serious boyfriends, long vacations, any semblance of what most people call normal life. But it’s made me a lot of money, including a cut of the seven million today, and I’ve enjoyed the chase, the discovery, the benefits. I never felt like I was missing out. I never wished for more than I had.

But right now I have a deep, primal need not to be so alone. I need someone here with me, someone to shoulder something of what I feel, and the sad and glaring truth is that there just isn’t anyone to do that.


1x Paperback copy of A Mother’s Choice

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Links & Bio

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39752303-a-mother-s-choice?ac=1&from_search=true 

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07BYVQCPF/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738 

About Kate Hewitt: Kate is the USA Today-bsetselling author of over 60 books of women’s fiction and romance. She is the author of the Hartley-by-the-Sea series, set in England’s Lake District and published by Penguin. She is also, under the name Katharine Swartz, the author of the Tales from Goswell books, a series of time-slip novels set in the village of Goswell.

She likes to read romance, mystery, the occasional straight historical and angsty women’s fiction; she particularly enjoys reading about well-drawn characters and avoids high-concept plots.

Having lived in both New York City and a tiny village on the windswept northwest coast of England, she now resides in a market town in Wales with her husband, five children, and an overly affectionate Golden Retriever.

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/katehewitt1 

Website: http://www.kate-hewitt.com/ 


The Planetsider by GJ Ogden Excerpt


Several generations after ‘The Fall’, the scattered clusters of civilisation that grew in its wake live in ignorance of the past. No-one wants to know what caused such devastation or why. No-one, except Ethan.

Ethan used to believe in the guardians; mysterious lights in the sky that, according to folklore, protect the survivors, so long as you believe in them. But the death of his parents shattered his faith and forged within him a hunger to know more. One night, a light grows brighter in the sky and crashes to the planet’s surface. Ethan then embarks on a heartbreaking journey in which harrowing discoveries unveil the secrets of the past, and place him at the centre of a deadly conflict.

Powerful, thought-provoking and emotionally absorbing, The Planetsider is a gripping, post-apocalyptic thriller that will keep you hooked until the very end.


“Sal? What happened? Where am I?” he said weakly, still groggy from the combination of head injury and powerful medications. He groaned. “I feel like I’ve got the mother of all hangovers…” He tried to lift his arms but the straps resisted him. “What the…? Sal, why am I strapped into this thing?” he said, and then panic took hold. “Am I okay?” Maria could hear the fear in his voice. “Sal, I am hurt?”

“You’re fine, old man,” Maria said, unclipping the straps so that Kurren could lift his arms. The plate dropped gently to the deck and Kurren sat up gingerly. He then anxiously touched the back of his head. “You hit your head pretty hard during the attack,” said Maria, “so I strapped you in here. I had planned to keep you unconscious for a while longer to let the meds work, and just wheel you out, but things have changed.”

Kurren looked around, quickly surveying the damage to the ship. “We made it then?” 

“Just about,” said Maria. Kurren tried to stand, but dropped back, grimacing from the pain. He felt queasy from the concoction of drugs that were circulating around his system. Maria put a hand on his shoulder. “Take it easy, you’ve had a rough ride,” she said.

Kurren nodded and attempted a smile, then shivered. “It’s damn cold in here,” he said, “did they shoot out the heating controls too?”

Maria smiled. “Why, do you want me to get you a blanket?” she teased, happy to see the old Kurren coming back to life.

“Yes, please, nurse,” said Kurren, “and any chance of a bed bath?”

Maria laughed out loud and Kurren joined in, but soon regretted it as pain spasmed through his chest, making him cough. It tasted bitter, like burnt plastic. After he had recovered, he spat a globule of black phlegm on the silver decking. 

“Lovely,” said Maria.

“I made it for you,” said Kurren smiling. “So, what’s the plan, Captain?”

Maria’s face tensed up. “We’re in pretty bad shape,” she said, flatly. “We came down on automatic, just as planned, but the main drive is shot and the core is unstable.” Kurren looked over at the rear of the ship and saw the sparks arcing from the engineering consoles. “There’s nothing we can do to stop it,” said Maria, “so the plan is to salvage what we can and get the hell away from here before it blows.”

“How long?” asked Kurren. He had stopped smiling.

“No way to tell exactly,” said Maria, “but not long. We need to get moving; can you stand?”

Kurren looked down at his feet and saw that they were covered in gel. “You owe me a new pair of boots,” he said with fake seriousness.

Author bio

G J Ogden studied Physics at UMIST, but spent more time writing for and later editing the University magazine, GRIP. This was the stepping stone into the first of his careers in IT journalism. He created and launched Custom PC magazine for Dennis Publishing Ltd, the most successful enthusiast PC magazine in the UK, before later moving into technology PR and marketing. A proud nerd and sci-fi geek, he has had a lifelong love of computers and technology. The Planetsider is his first novel.

Author links





Book links

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/38474204-the-planetsider?ac=1&from_search=true 

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B079Q4JY9M/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738 

The Curse of Time by M J Mallon Guest Post


Magic, the word evokes such sparkling excitement!  From the first moment I discovered Aslan in C S Lewis’s The Lion, The Witch and the WardrobeI was enchanted. I purred with delight! I have always loved cats, so it is no wonder that when a captivating black cat crept into my garden one day he woke my sleepy self from the deepest slumber.

Image of Samantha’s cat, Lily, (modelling for my cat character Shadow,) courtesy of Samantha Murdoch: https://samanthamurdochblog.wordpress.com.


I began to write. Each morning thereafter I continued, scribbling in a notepad by my bed, my chosen genre fantasy, or to be exact magical realism.

The definition of Magical Realism is….. A literary or artistic genre in which realistic narrative and naturalistic technique are combined with surreal elements of dream or fantasy.

I set my narrative in my home town of Cambridge, a city with a multitude of possibilities. There are ghosts, unusual cafes, quaint punting boats, magnificent colleges, connecting bridges and the incredible Chronopage clock that graces Kings Parade. With fabulously inspiring names such as Kings College, the Corpus Christi Chronopage, The Bridge of Sighs and Clowns Café, how could I not? My old hometown Edinburgh creeps into the story too, with the booming sound of the one o’clock gun on Princes Street Gardens. I’d recommend you read the book carefully or you may miss it!

There is a paranormal feel to the novel, with an abundance of strange episodes. Meet the Spirit who unexpectedly arrives at a sleepover party, Esme, a girl trapped in a mirror and the Creature that comes alive in the most astonishing way.

The Curse of Timeis ‘a clear labour of love,’ sweet words gifted by one of my reviewers. Everything I care about, or reflect upon is in this book. It is a little piece of my soul. Art places a huge part, coming alive rather akin to Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray. It is a new twist on an age old story. Time, myths and time’s wicked companion aging are central to the plot. Beauty is represented by the magical crystals which are hidden from view in the magnificent and powerful Crystal Cottage. There are a multitude of themes to whet the readers’ appetite from hypnotism to mental health issues such as self-harm.

Recently, I decided to enhance my paperback release by adding illustrations designed by the talented artist Carolina Russo who blogs at:  https://yesterdayafter.com/

Carolina had already produced a fabulous portrait of my character Esme, (the mirror girl who self-harms.)

Permission granted to share above image on blog tour. ©Carolina Russo: https://yesterdayafter.com/

I have now commissioned Carolina to design the Creature with the mysterious and beautiful Crystal cottage in the background. It is so exciting to witness Carolina’s interpretation of my words, in art, from the tentative beginnings of a pencil sketch to the final version.

Permission granted to share on blog tour ©Carolina Russo: https://yesterdayafter.com/

Art truly comes alive in the Curse of Time and in these fabulous commissioned pieces of art, which appear in black and white in the paperback version of the book. There is much to come; I am so excited at the prospect of continuing this series with The Curse of Time Book 2 Golden Healer. I feel blessed, fortunate and thankful.



Click here to win a £35/$50 Amazon gift card! For international winners, the gift card value will be equivalent to £35. If it’s not possible to purchase a gift card, cash equivalent of £35 will be provided instead.


Fifteen-year-old Amelina Scott lives in Cambridge with her dysfunctional family, a mysterious black cat, and an unusual girl who’s imprisoned within the mirrors located in her house. When an unexpected message arrives inviting her to visit the Crystal Cottage, she sets off on a forbidden pathway where she encounters Ryder, a charismatic, but perplexing stranger.

With the help of a magical paint set, and some crystal wizard stones she discovers the truth about a shocking curse that has destroyed her family’s happiness.

Author Bio

I am a debut author who has been blogging for three years at my lovely blog home Kyrosmagica: https://mjmallon.com. My interests include writing, photography, poetry, and alternative therapies. I write Fantasy YA, middle grade fiction and micro poetry – haiku and Tanka. I love to read and have written over 100 reviews: https://mjmallon.com/2015/09/28/a-z-of-my-book-reviews/

My alter ego is MJ – Mary Jane from Spiderman. I love superheroes! I was born on the 17th of November in Lion City: Singapore, (a passionate Scorpio, with the Chinese Zodiac sign a lucky rabbit,) second child and only daughter to my proud parents Paula and Ronald. I grew up in a mountainous court in the Peak District in Hong Kong with my elder brother Donald. My parents dragged me away from my exotic childhood and my much loved dog Topsy to the frozen wastelands of Scotland. In bonnie Edinburgh I mastered Scottish country dancing, and a whole new Och Aye lingo.

As a teenager I travelled to many far-flung destinations to visit my abacus wielding wayfarer dad. It’s rumoured that I now live in the Venice of Cambridge, with my six foot hunk of a Rock God husband, and my two enchanted daughters. After such an upbringing my author’s mind has taken total leave of its senses! When I’m not writing, I eat exotic delicacies while belly dancing, or surf to the far reaches of the moon. To chill out, I practise Tai Chi. If the mood takes me I snorkel with mermaids, or sign up for idyllic holidays with the Chinese Unicorn, whose magnificent voice sings like a thousand wind chimes.

Social Media:

Authors Website: https://mjmallon.com
Collaborative blog: https://thesistersofthefey.wordpress.com
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
My Facebook Authors/Bloggers Support Group: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club
Tumblr: http://mjmallonauthor.tumblr.com/

Buy Paperback Book link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Curse-Time-Book-Bloodstone/dp/1999822439/

Cards from Khloe’s Flower Shop by Isabella Louise Anderson Review


As the owner of a successful florist shop, Khloe Harper trusts her instincts. She has a strong bond with her family and friends, but after being betrayed by her last love, she’s kept herself at arms’ length from romance. When dashing entertainment attorney Derek Thomas walks into her store, Khloe’s interest is piqued. What at first seems like a business relationship quickly turns into romance, and Derek slowly plucks away the petals she’s been hiding behind. Just as Khloe lets down her guard, she discovers that Derek may not be worthy of her love after all.

Frumpy Connie Albright has a faux fascination with an imaginary man named Walt, thinking that by sending herself flowers from him she’ll feel less out-of-place with the “mean girls” she works with. When she comes face to face with her possible prince charming and thinking she might have a happy ending, when a truth is revealed, she wonders if she’ll ever have a Cinderella story.

A recently widowed senior, Gabby Lewis, isn’t ready to give up on love—which means releasing herself from survivor’s guilt and taking a chance on finding happiness and companionship again. After signing up for an online dating site for senior citizens, much to her surprise, she’s matched with Harry, an energetic and loving man, who quickly eases himself into her heart. Will Gabby take the leap of falling in love again, knowing it’s possible to have two loves of her life?

As each woman’s story develops through flowers and cards sent from Khloe’s shop during the Fall months, they begin to learn that love can only truly blossom when you trust your heart.


This was such a lovely, fun book, especially since I read it during a few days of really bad snow! It was the bookish equivalent of a welcome burst of sunshine. Khloe, Gabby and Connie each had their own distinctive stories throughout the book, which piqued my interest. I love books with multiple protagonists, and each of them had a unique voice and flavour to bring to the story. I loved how the three of them were from different generations too, proving that age is irrelevant when it comes to finding love and happiness. There were plenty of twists and turns to keep things interesting, and I found the writing style engaging. Overall, I’d recommend this book as a fun, romantic read to brighten up dark wintry days.

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29923543-cards-from-khloe-s-flower-shop?ac=1&from_search=true

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/search/ref=x_gr_w_bb?keywords=9780991416721&index=books&linkCode=qs&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21


eBook copy of either; “The Right Design,” “Cards From Khloe’s Flower Shop,” or “The Hollywood Setup.” by Isabella Louise Anderson

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Author Bio

Isabella Louise grew up with a book in her hand, and to this day nothing has changed. Aside from writing, she focuses her time on featuring other authors on her blog, Chick Lit Goddess, along with sharing book reviews. Isabella Louise is also a member of the Romance Writers of America.

She lives in Dallas with her husband, enjoys spicy Indian and Mexican food, margaritas, and red and white wines. She loves spending time with family and friends, and cheering on the Texas Rangers. When Isabella Louise isn’t working on her next release, her attention is also on her Scentsy business, where she’s a consultant.

Website: http://www.isabellalouiseanderson.com/

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/ChickLitGodess

The Eden Paradox by Barry Kirwan Guest Post


Insomnia – a mixed blessing for a writer


People ask me when I write, as I have a demanding day job (I work in aviation safety and security, so pretty busy these days). I tell them I get a lot of insomnia, that I write in the dead of night, as there are no distractions, no one to email at that time of night, nothing on TV. Wow, they say, that must be cool, you can do two jobs!


Er… not that cool, actually.


Sometimes it is. I wake up at 3am, and after twenty minutes trying to get back to sleep, I realise sleep has left the building, so I get out of bed and fire up the laptop, bash the keyboard until six am, and then start getting ready for work. Usually in that time I can write half a chapter. There are no distractions, and the mind is lucid at that time of day, so new ideas flow. Not a good time for editing, when you need a cold rational eye, but for new stuff, it rocks.


However, sometimes insomnia is hell: you are desperately tired and just cannot sleep. People give me useless advice: just go to sleep, what is the problem, count your breaths, relax man! If only it were that easy. Most people never experience bad insomnia. Good for them. And I have to admit, that without it, I would never have written so much. Still, insomnia and I are not exactly friends, even if occasional bedfellows. So, I wrote about it once, based on a particularly bad night. This is what it feels like:


I crack open a crusty eye towards the offending instrument. 2:15. Fuck, an hour since I woke up, two hours since I went to bed, having taken the usual potions guaranteed to make me sleep eight hours. I change sides again, left side of my face on the pillow this time, flat on my stomach.

I could count my breaths again. What did I reach earlier? 237? What’s my record? Read, the books say – what else would they say, they’re books for Christ’s sake. But I’m tired, too exhausted to read. Anyway, light wakes you up, they also say.

It’s dark outside. I’m a chronic insomniac, I can pretty much tell the time by the shades of black, the depths of night. And the sounds. The cars usually stop after 1:30, pizza moto’s – those mechanised mosquitoes I’d like to swat – give up around half-past midnight. Of course an ambulance can happen anytime, or some asshole driving home fast, drunk, heading towards their own bed, probably after ‘sleeping’ in someone else’s first, racing towards Morpheus’ embrace, that cool balm that evades me.

Lucky bastards.

I turn back onto my right side, that’s the best one for sleep, or for relaxing without sleeping. I let my mind drift. The office starts up: what I should have said to my boss, but of course didn’t. Great, that’s really going to help. Someone else at the office. Marna, her breasts in my hands, her lips hard against mine, me shoving her up against the back of my office door that won’t lock… I sigh. That’s not exactly going to help me sleep, either. I sneak another pointless time-check, hoping my brain will recognise the figures and suddenly shout, ‘Oh shit, sorry man, I thought it was only 10:30, here you go, sleep time!’

02:39. Brilliant.

I get up. No need to turn the light on, I know the layout of my bedroom like a blind man. I walk over to the window and open it a crack; it’s cold outside, but quiet enough now to allow in some fresh air without the attendant noises that might wake me. Except the foxes of course, haven’t heard them yet tonight. I really should buy an air rifle. Just kidding. Probably. Maybe. I peel back the curtain. Ice-white stars puncture the darkness. No moon, though, that old insomniac’s nemesis. Nope, no excuse this time.

I try some yoga, a shoulder stand, feet stretching up in the air, balancing on my shoulders and elbows. My neck feels tight; I shouldn’t really go up into it just like that. But then ‘should’ has no rights here does it? I should be asleep after all. I come down, lie flat on my back, knees up. I can feel there’s more oxygen now the window’s open. Before it was like a deluxe coffin. I wonder if I’ll sleep when I’m dead, or just lie there for eternity listening to the worms munching rotting flesh. I shudder, get up, collapse back into bed.

I ram the pillow vertical up against the headboard, sit cross-legged, back against it, and meditate. Try to anyway; it’s difficult to meditate when you’re so fucking tired. Desperate; tortured. Scenes flash through my mind; it’s like channel hopping on TV. I wait. The TV goes off. I see an empty universe. I move the current one aside so there’s nothing there, really nothing, not even distant stars. I imagine it’s two hundred years in the future, so I’m dead and long forgotten, and concentrate on the space, the sound it doesn’t make, the texture it doesn’t have. I focus really hard, stretching my mind out in all directions, surfing nothing. My back relaxes, tension dissolves, cool rain drizzles down my spine like pebbles tumbling down an up-ended rainstick. Now, it has to be now. I lie down. One last glance. 3:03. I close my eyes; right side; breathing calm. I can feel it coming. Shhh. Don’t scare it off. Sleep. God’s design error. The little death.



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A murder… a new planet mankind desperately needs… a thousand-year old conspiracy… What really awaits us on Eden? In a world beset by political turmoil, environmental collapse, and a predatory new religion, a recently discovered planet, Eden, is our last hope. But two missions have failed to return. Blake Alexander and his crew lead the final attempt to bring back good news. Meanwhile back on Earth, Micah Sanderson evades assassins, and tries to work out who he can trust as he struggles in a race against time to unravel the Eden Paradox.

Book links:

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13054426-the-eden-paradox?ac=1&from_search=true

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0982369840/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738

Author links:

Website: www.barrykirwan.com

Blog: blog.barrykirwan.com

Twitter: @Eden_paradox

Facebook: https://facebook.com/EdenParadox

Author bio: Barry (J F) Kirwan is a split personality. He writes science fiction under the name Barry Kirwan, and thrillers under his pen name J F Kirwan. In his day job, he travels worldwide, working on aviation safety. He lives in Paris, where he first joined a fiction class – and became hooked! This led to an acclaimed four-book series called the Eden Paradox. But when a back injury stopped him scuba diving for two years, he wrote a thriller about a young Russian woman, Nadia, where a lot of the action occurred in dangerously deep waters.Two of these thrillers are now out and he’s working on the third, as well as a new science fiction novel called ‘When the children come.’


Joshua N’Gon: Last Prince of Alkebulahn by Anthony Hewitt Review



Joshua N’Gon is a Fourteen year old foster child from Africa. He has grown up in a loving home in north London and for all intents and purposes he was an ordinary teenager. The reality though could not be further from the truth. Joshua is a mystery wrapped up in an enigma and he is beginning to understand he has a destiny that is far beyond what he could ever have imagined.

On his tenth birthday he receives a mysterious package from his birth parents. He is given articles of technology that even his young mind realized were so far beyond what he knew and understood that they were almost magical. Joshua straps on a tribal hierloom of obvious alien origin – a miraculous multi-tool he calls his RCT– Real Cool Tool that bonds with his arm and is irremovable. And so begin his physical changes too, the headaches, the flashes of genius, the visions and the amnesia.

With his friends Brick and Mina they slowly help him to unravel the mystery of who he is. In the meantime dark corporate forces are gathering in the horizon as Joshua’s talents and his interest in finding his family has piqued the curiosity of powerful people. Soon as his life and the life of those he loves are threatened he must come to grips with his gifts and the miraculous alien technology that founded his people.


This is a story that at its heart is about finding out who you are and where you come from. That’s all Joshua wants. Although he has a happy home with his foster family, he can’t help wondering where his family comes from. As the story unfolds, he discovers the truth of his roots is far greater than he could ever imagine.

This was a really good adventure story that had slight echoes of Harry Potter i.e. the protagonist’s life changing on a birthday, finding out about his family etc. The worlds in the story were richly built and the characters were very well drawn. I enjoyed allowing myself to be drawn into the story and finding out what happened as it unfolded. It’s a fairly quick read that can be enjoyed on a rainy afternoon.



Anthony has been writing for over 15 years. Mainly writing for mature readers, his genre of choice has always been speculative fiction. The YA category is such an exciting category that he wanted to include a diverse set of character with a different cultural perspective. He’s enjoyed himself so much he intends to keep creating fantastic new stories for a 12+ audience.



Book website: www.thelastprince.co.uk

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36222715-joshua-n-gon?ac=1&from_search=true

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/0956266010/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738


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88 North by J F Kirwan Review


Would you kill your loved one to save the world?

 The world’s most-wanted terrorist is on the loose, and this time the threat is global. To stop him, Nadia infiltrates his organization, from the triads of Hong Kong, to the refugee-smugglers of Sudan, to the Mafia gangs running oil platforms in Sakhalin. But in the end, she must travel to the top of the world and confront her sworn enemy on the Arctic ice, where she will face a terrible choice.


This was a fast-paced book that offered a refreshing change from traditional festive reads. No mistletoe and wine in this book, instead there’s a terrorist hell-bent on causing as much destruction as possible! Enter Nadia, aka the female version of James Bond, whose mission is to stop him before something terrible happens. She chases him all over the world, ending up in an epic showdown on the Arctic ice.

This was a really engaging read that took me all over the world, from Sudan to the icy Arctic, and I really enjoyed following Nadia on her quest to track down Salamander. She really does have nothing to lose and has a particular axe to grind with her nemesis, making her story a very intriguing one indeed. If you’re looking for a female James Bond, look no further than Nadia Laksheva!

The Buy Link


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Author Bio

J.F. Kirwan is the author of the Nadia Laksheva thriller series for HarperCollins. Having worked in accident investigation and prevention in nuclear, offshore oil and gas and aviation sectors, he uses his experience of how accidents initially build slowly, then race towards a climax, to plot his novels. An instructor in both scuba diving and martial arts, he travels extensively all over the world, and loves to set his novels in exotic locations. He is also an insomniac who writes in the dead of night. His favourite authors include Lee Child, David Baldacci and Andy McNab.


Author links:

Website: www.jfkirwan.com

Twitter: @kirwanjf

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kirwanjf/

The Forgotten Room by Ann Troup


Can the past ever be forgotten?

As soon as nurse Maura Lyle sets foot inside the foreboding Essen Grange, she feels

shivers ripple down her spine. And the sense of unease only increases when she meets

her new patient, Gordon Henderson.

Drawn into the Henderson family’s tangled web of secrets and betrayals, Maura can ignore

the danger lurking behind every door no longer. Even the door she has been forbidden

from opening…

Essen Grange is a house with dark and cruel intentions. But now that darkness has turned

on her, can Maura escape before it’s too late?

 The chilling new novel from the bestselling author of The Lost Child and The Silent Girls. Perfect for fans of Erin Kelly, Claire Mackintosh and Tracy Buchanan.


Ann Troup offers up yet another darkly delicious tale with The Forgotten Room. With plenty of twists and turns to keep you guessing, this is the perfect Halloween read for scaring yourself silly. The writing is rich with description and a tightly-woven plot that has obviously been well-thought-out makes for a fast-paced, gripping read.

Having read Ann Troup’s previous novels The Lost Child and The Silent Girls, I was eager to dive into this book. The sense of unease is built expertly from the first page and as Maura delves deeper into the Henderson family history, which becomes ever more sinister by the page, the tension builds to a very satisfying crescendo.

With quality writing, a cast of pretty nefarious characters and spine-tingling twists, The Forgotten Room is a book that’ll definitely stay with you long after you reach the end.

Author Bio

The Forgotten Room is Ann’s third book, following on from The Lost Child and The Silent Girls. She lives in Devon near the sea and spends her time either writing or dabbling with art. To see what she’s getting up to next follow on Twitter – @TroupAnn, or Facebook at Ann Troup Author.


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The Sinking Chef by Sylvia Ashby Review


“Bridget Jones meets Burnt in this delightful comedy novel about a talented YouTuber and the guy who keeps trying to bring her down. Although part of a series this book is completely standalone, as are all other novels in the Pot Love Series.

In Belsize Park, London, Ashley works hard on her daily YouTube channel “The Sinking Chef”. It’s filmed right in her kitchen, so she doesn’t go out much.

James is a gruff British TV director, turned publisher, who Ashley had a crush on ages ago. She has moved on but when he calls with an offer to take her out to lunch she doesn’t say no. It’s only lunch – what can go wrong?

The day Ashley meets James for lunch and he promises her a book deal, she makes the worse decision in her life – to hide the book deal from her boyfriend, Giacomo. As things progress Ashley’s secrets mount up and other things in her life unravel. Is there a connection? And how is she going to get out of this without losing Giacomo and the life she loves?

Set in the heart of fast-paced London, The Sinking Chef is a charming story of love, recipes, secrets, and the determination to do thinks right by those you love most in your life.”


Bridget Jones meets Burnt is a very good description for this fun, flirty read. Ashley reminded me a little of Rachel Khoo, who filmed her Little Paris Kitchen series directly from her own kitchen! When her ex-crush gives her the chance to make her dreams come true, her organised life becomes a web of lies and secrets…

This was a light, fun read that I enjoyed after handing my sixth novel in. The story flowed well, although I did feel the pacing was a little quick in places. I enjoyed getting to know Ashley – she was a very contemporary character who was easy to like. She really was a modern day Bridget Jones, with two men vying for her affections! Her journey throughout the story was engaging and I was interested to see what direction she might take.

Overall, this was a really enjoyable, easy read that provided the perfect post-draft completion stress reliever!


Click here to be in with a chance of winning a £25 Amazon voucher or a digital copy of The Sinking Chef!

Author Bio and Links

Sylvia Ashby is fond of the written word: books, blog posts, recipes, even an explanation to the HM Revenue & Customs as to why she thinks skirts should be exempt from VAT – she’s written it all!

She likes travelling and has lived all over Europe – London, Brussels, Amsterdam and Sofia, Bulgaria. Currently, she lives in Leuven, Belgium with her husband, daughter, son and a sparrow called Jack, who comes occasionally to peck the seeds she leaves for him on top of the garden shed.

Website: http://www.sylvia-ashby.com/

Twitter: @bysylvia_a

Deadly Burial by Jon Richter Review


When DI Chris Sigurdsson is assigned a grisly murder case on remote Salvation Island, he knows that it might be his strangest yet.

A forgotten wrestling star of the 1980s has been poisoned whilst in the ring, and amidst the slippery lies of his dangerous opponents, unravelling the victim’s murky past is almost impossible.

And as a storm threatens to cut Salvation Island off from the mainland, the race is on for Sigurdsson to find the ruthless killer before he strikes again…


This is a delightfully spooky and sinister tale from a very talented author. Jon Richter expertly builds the tension and intrigue, leaving you wondering ‘whodunnit?’ until the satisfying reveal. I love a good crime novel, and this was a compelling tale that kept me gripped until the very end.

DI Chris Sigurdsson is dispatched to Salvation Island to solve the murder of Vic Valiant, a wrestling star from the 1980s. The island already has a sinister past, having been terrorised by a serial killer years before. It’s Sigurdsson’s job to unmask the killer before a fierce storm isolates them from the mainland…

I really loved this book. It’s fast-paced, gripping and action-packed, with a flawed protagonist who’s afraid of his own mortality and a compelling mystery at its heart. I would recommend this book for fans of Stuart Macbride’s Logan McRae series.

Book links:

Book is on sale at Amazon at the following link:



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Author Bio

Jon Richter lives in London and spends most of his time hiding in the guise of his sinister alter ego, an accountant called Dave. When he isn’t counting beans, he is a self-confessed nerd who loves books, films and video games – basically any way to tell a good story. Jon writes whenever he can and hopes to bring you more disturbing stories in the very near future. If you want to chat to him about this, or about anything at all, you can find him on Twitter @RichterWrites, or at his Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/richterwrites2.