#BlogTour #GuestPost #CoastalCrime Before I found You by @DaisyWhite1922 @JoffeBooks #NewRelease #CrimeFiction

Brighton Palace Pier at dawn
Before I Found You by Daisy White
Synopsis:

A child found alone on the beach, shouting into the waves.

A mother who served ten years for a crime she says she didn’t commit.

Ruby Baker is back with another seaside mystery. When she and her friends rescue a child from the beach in a storm, police are baffled. Nobody has reported a child missing, and the girl seems so traumatised that she is unable to speak.

In Johnny’s hairdressing salon, the notorious Beverly Collins makes an appointment with Ruby, but it soon becomes clear the woman wants more than a haircut.

Beverly has just been released from Holloway Prison after serving ten years for child cruelty. The body of her missing daughter was never found, but Beverly insists she is innocent, and she wants Ruby Baker’s Investigation Bureau to prove it.

This isn’t going to be an easy investigation. Opinion is divided on Beverly’s innocence. Reporters Kenny and James are keen to uncover a big story, while Ruby’s best friend, Mary, is distracted and struggling to deal with motherhood.

As Ruby tries to unravel the past, she discovers that Beverly Collins’ release seems to have triggered a bizarre chain of events.

Was she really framed, and if so, where is her daughter Ella now? And who is the mystery girl on the beach?

#GuestPost by Daisy White

Crimes on the Coast…

For me, Brighton was an obvious choice to set the Ruby Baker mystery series. This was partly because of my family history – four generations have lived and worked in Brighton, and I have a rich seam of memories to mine in terms of social history. Brighton is a buzzing, multicultural city now, but in 1963, when the Ruby Baker books begin, it was a smaller town, with new development on the horizon.

Setting a mystery book by the sea has major advantages. The writer has easy access via the coast, whether it is the beach, or ports or fishing harbours.
Murderers and victims can move to different countries, and the sea gives a vivid contrast to any criminal doings on land.

The beach was a big draw for Brighton in the early sixties, and my characters spend a lot of time down near the pier, discussing cases, socialising and drinking. With no money to spare, the bars, clubs, ‘fancy restaurants’ and pubs we know today were well beyond the reach of Ruby and her friends. A date was more likely to be a shake and a cigarette at the Milk Bar, or a bag of chips down at Brenda’s, before a walk along the beach.

The seasonal changes of the coast are important, and weather can turn the most placid of settings into a terrifying setting for dramatic rescues and crimes. The sea and coastline feature heavily in all of the Ruby Baker books, starting with Ruby’s dramatic rescue in the first chapter of ‘Before I Found You.’

Daisy White author photo
Daisy White
Authors Links:
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#BlogTour #GuestPost #Location Tall Chimneys by @Alliescribbler Allie Cresswell @rararesources

Tall Chimneys - Cover image
Tall Chimneys by Allie Cresswell
Synopsis:

Considered a troublesome burden, Evelyn Talbot is banished by her family to their remote country house. Tall Chimneys is hidden in a damp and gloomy hollow. It is outmoded and inconvenient but Evelyn is determined to save it from the fate of so many stately homes at the time – abandonment or demolition.
Occasional echoes of tumult in the wider world reach their sequestered backwater – the strident cries of political extremists, a furore of royal scandal, rumblings of the European war machine. But their isolated spot seems largely untouched. At times life is hard – little more than survival. At times it feels enchanted, almost outside of time itself. The woman and the house shore each other up – until love comes calling, threatening to pull them asunder.

Her desertion will spell its demise, but saving Tall Chimneys could mean sacrificing her hope for happiness, even sacrificing herself.

A century later, a distant relative crosses the globe to find the house of his ancestors. What he finds in the strange depression of the moor could change the course of his life forever.
One woman, one house, one hundred years.
Publication Date: 12th December 2017

Guest post:

Location
There is nothing better than a book with an evocative, tangible setting. What would Wuthering Heights be without the brooding moor? What a loss the teeming streets of London and the busy banks of the Thames would be to Dickens’ novels. Anthony Trollope is the master of fictional geography. His imaginary county Barsetshire takes on a life on its own in his novels.

I think location should be authentic. If a writer sets his novel in Dallas he needs to know the geography, the street lay-out, the whereabouts of the rail terminus and the police station. You can be sure, if he gets it wrong, a reader will point it out to him, and rightly so. If readers are to engage with our stories we must make them believable. Similarly, if a writer uses an imaginary setting, that, too, must be plausible and consistent, so that readers can immerse themselves in it. Any wrong note will jar, and break the spell. I don’t know if you recall the film Somewhere in Time? A man literally wills himself back in time seventy or so years, transporting himself bodily through the power of his mind, but the discovery of a modern coin in his pocket breaks his concentration and he is yanked back to the present. This is not an experience we writers want for our readers!

Location should also be dynamic – it must exert an influence on the plot and the characters, or else, what is the point of it? It must be much more than a flat and immutable canvas. It must breathe and ripple and play a part. I might almost say it should be a character itself – changing, developing, vital, unpredicatable.

Location plays a large part in my latest novel, Tall Chimneys. It is set in Yorkshire, in a rural community hemmed in by moor. It is a beautiful setting, very painterly, and I introduced an artist, John Cressing, to render its colours and textures. The house itself is located in a peculiar depression in the moor, a sort of crater, surrounded by trees and invisible to the passer by. I wanted a sense of seclusion, for it to be outside of modern progress and almost outside of time itself. I hoped the house and the woman would be in a sort of vacuum, their close kinship fermented by their utter isolation. But I found the amphitheatre-like setting did occasionally echo with strains of the modern world – I couldn’t keep it out entirely. So the rise of the Fascists in the 1930s, the abdication crisis and WW2 do find their way to Tall Chimneys. The house is a shelter to the woman but it is also a huge burden of responsibility. At one point she asks herself if it is a refuge or a prison.

I have always been fascinated by houses and I wanted Tall Chimneys to have a vivid presence in the book, to be a character itself. It exerts a strange influence on Evelyn, my protagonist. In another of my books, Relative Strangers, a dysfunctional family spends a week at a country house and it acts as a crucible for all their resentments and misplaced loyalties. With all its many rooms and labyrinthine passageways, there is nowhere to hide and the family’s secrets come spilling out with tragic results. In The Hoarder’s Widow, a woman has become almost imprisoned in her house, fenced in by the towering piles of furniture and rubbish accumulated by her compulsive hoarder husband. In each case, the location of the stories – the houses and their surrounding environments – are authentic – I drew out their floorplans and gardens and localities so that I would be sure to be consistent. Each plays a part in the plots, influencing events, so they are dynamic too. I hope each is more than just bricks and mortar in the readers’ minds. I hope, like every good location, they reach out and grab the imagination, and draw the reader in.

Tall Chimneys - Allie Cresswell
Allie Cresswell
Author Bio
Allie Cresswell was born in Stockport, UK and began writing fiction as soon as she could hold a pencil.
She did a BA in English Literature at Birmingham University and an MA at Queen Mary College, London.
She has been a print-buyer, a pub landlady, a book-keeper, run a B & B and a group of boutique holiday cottages. Nowadays Allie writes full time having retired from teaching literature to lifelong learners.
She has two grown-up children, one granddaughter and two grandsons, is married to Tim and lives in Cumbria, NW England.
Tall Chimneys is the sixth of her novels to be published.

Author links:
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/alliescribbler/
Website – http://allie-cresswell.com/
Twitter – https://twitter.com/Alliescribbler

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#BlogTour #GuestPost The Puppet Master by @Abigail_Author @Bloodhoundbook #WritingAsTherapy #NewRelease #CrimeFiction

Abigail Osborne - The Puppet Master_cover_1
The Puppet Master by Abigail Osborne
Synopsis:

Looking for your next unputdownable psychological thriller? Then try Abigail Osborne’s unmissable The Puppet Master, a stunning thriller full of twists and turns.

Billie is hiding from the world in fear of a man who nearly destroyed her. But a chance meeting with budding journalist, Adam, sparks a relationship that could free her from her life of isolation and fear.
Unbeknownst to Billie, Adam knows exactly who Billie is and is determined to expose her and get justice for the lives he believes she has ruined. But first, he needs to convince her to open up to him. As an unwanted attraction blossoms between them, Adam comes to realise that all is not as it seems.
Who is really pulling the strings? And are Adam and Billie both being played?

One thing is for sure, The Master wants his puppets back – and he’ll do anything to keep them.

#GuestPost:

 

Why Writing is a Form of Personal Therapy

I imagine that every author has a different reason for choosing to write the books that they write. But we probably all have the same deep-seated desire to analyse the world that we live in. In my opinion, the best books make you think about the world in which we live, in a different way than we normally do. The author has accomplished this feat because their passion and insight leaps off the page. For me, I feel that writing is a way of taking the significant feelings we have in our minds and working them out on the page, getting to the bottom of how we really feel and why.

I started to write my book out of loneliness. I was in a job that meant I had a silly amount of time on my hands and no one to spend it with. I love to talk to people but everyone I knew worked during the day and it was driving me crazy not being able to communicate with anyone. To have a proper meaningful discussion. At the end of the day, my husband was so tired from work, he could only handle the simplest of conversations but I needed more than that. So, when I started writing my book it gave me the opportunity to talk. What I didn’t realise was that it would open up an avenue of my mind previously unexplored.

It gave me the ability to take the things I had experienced in life and analyse them. Through my characters, I was able to explore the darker shades of life. I’d tried to have deeper and darker conversations with friends but that’s not what you really do with friends. When you see them, you want to have fun and catch up on each other’s lives. Not get into the nitty gritty of personality, experience and bad things in life. I feel the British way is to get on with things. Don’t dwell on the negative. But sometimes, it is good to dissect these things. To talk about them and explore them and the effect that they have on us. One of the themes in my book is what is often considered a ‘taboo’ subject. It isn’t something I could start a conversation about with just anyone. Even with my closest friends, I wouldn’t be able to discuss it the way I do in the book. Writing the book was so liberating because I could take topics and experiences close to my heart and using this fictional world I could examine them in any way I chose.

Writing this book has changed me. It has given me a better sense of self as I was able to take events from my life and weave them into this tale of fiction. I probed important issues to me and resolved them in my head through my writing. For instance, Adam’s loneliness mirrored my own at the time. Saving him from that loneliness alleviated that feeling within me and I began to appreciate how lucky I was to have my husband and that you don’t always need to talk to be close. You just need to know that person will always be there.

The overarching message of my book that I wanted to get across, became more of a message to myself. You can go through horrific things but there will always be a light at the end of the tunnel. Don’t let what happened in the past define your future. Love can be a powerful antidote for those who have experienced evil. The closure and insight into my life and myself has been incredible and I would really encourage people to give it ago. You never know what you might find out about yourself.

download
Abigail Osborne
Authors links:
Website: http://abigailosborne.co.uk/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/abigailosborneauthor/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Abigail_Author

#GuestPost Lord Of The Dead by @RichRippon @ObliteratiPress @NathanOHagan #NewRelease #Indie

*I am proud to post this #GuestPost this morning as not only does the novel sound intense and intriguing. The title pretty much summarises how I feel this cold foggy November morning! lol*

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Lord Of The Dead by Richard Rippon
Synopsis:

A woman’s body has been found on the moors of Northumberland, brutally murdered and dismembered. Northumbria police enlist the help of unconventional psychologist Jon Atherton, a decision complicated by his personal history with lead investigator Detective Sergeant Kate Prejean.

As Christmas approaches and pressure mounts on the force, Prejean and Atherton’s personal lives begin to unravel as they find themselves the focus of media attention, and that of the killer known only as Son Of Geb.

Lord Of The Dead is a gripping, startling piece of modern noir fiction.

“A stunning debut. If Thomas Harris was to write a British take on the Nordic-Noir genre, this would be it. Rippon is an exciting new voice in British crime fiction.”

Nathan O’Hagan, author of ‘The World Is (Not) A Cold Dead Place’

#GuestPost:

Cave, Mann and Deep Red

 I wrote my new novel, Lord of the Dead, on the back of cigarette packets. Not literally of course – that would be just mad. What I mean is that it was written in a very piecemeal style and on the hoof, using snatches of stolen time. Anyone with a full-time job and a family knows how hard it is to find spare time for a hobby or passion. And so, my book was written on the bus, to and from work, or an hour here and there after the kids had gone to bed.

I wrote in notebooks, on scraps of paper, or in emails that I’d send to myself. Sometimes I’d write a few hundred words in one go, other times just a few lines. Sometimes, weeks would go by and I’d not have written a thing.

The result was inevitably patchy. Names – or their spellings – would mysteriously change from one chapter to the next. Plot strands would begin only to be completely abandoned. Once, a character was spectacularly killed off, only to appear in much better health later on.

Time for research was scant. I relied on Google and Twitter; the latter providing a forensic expert and someone living with cerebral palsy, who graciously helped to answer my stupid questions online. Close friends – a cop and a nurse – helped to keep things real when it came to police and hospital procedures.

When I grew closer to finishing, my patient agent – a former editor – helped me make sense of the mess, and told me what was working and what wasn’t. After multiple reworks, revisions and redrafts, it grew closer to something resembling a novel.

Over almost two years of writing it, I had a number of inspirations. Michael Mann’s 1986 film, Manhunter, featured a killer who’d watch the families who would eventually become his victims. Brian Cox – as Hannibal Lector – has a great line: “Have you ever seen blood in the moonlight, Will? It appears quite black.” I became interested in writing a killer who revelled in the night, felt empowered and emboldened by it. It was the starting point for the character and his motivation. I wondered what aspect of the night and darkness might fuel his fantasies. I also loved the idea of someone who was a watcher. I wrote my villain as someone who liked to surveil the cops as well as his victims, and was always one step ahead, and ready to strike.

I became obsessed with the Manhunter soundtrack. A difficult-to-find collection of electronica and eighties pop-rock. Similarly, I was listening to Nick Cave’s album, Push the Sky Away on endless loop. There were a number of tracks that seemed to resonate with what I was aiming for. Songs like We No Who U R, Water’s Edge and the title track, had a beautiful, hypnotic and ominous quality that I’ll forever associate with Lord of the Dead. Later I saw the video for We No Who U R, with a shadowy figure wandering through a forest at night, which could have been depicting my antagonist himself.

As a teenager, I became a fan of horror movies and decorated my bedroom with gory posters from Fangoria magazine. When I was writing the book, I bought a blu-ray of an old favourite, Dario Argento’s Deep Red, which I’d previously owned on bootleg VHS. Back in the day, the ‘video nasty’ scandal had led to a number of titles being banned outright, and others severely cut by the British Board of Film Classification. Me and my friends, who preferred our horror unadulterated, would buy copies by post, videos that would have terrible image quality, colours that bled into each other and tape-chewing tracking issues. Deep Red features a number of gruesome and ritualised killings and an antagonist who’s hiding in plain sight. Both of these elements feature in Lord of the Dead, and although I don’t think the book is an outright horror, it certainly doesn’t shy away from the horrific.

As I write this, I’m pondering a sequel to Lord of the Dead and hopefully, I’ve learnt something from the chaotic way I tackled the first book. Planning is the key. Then, I’m going to take it one chapter at a time. ‘Write one true sentence, and then go on from there…’ was Hemingway’s advice. I’d like it to have a subtly different vibe – the same, but different. It exists in the same world of course, but the main characters have been dramatically and permanently affected by the events of the first book. The villain needs to be completely different, something we’ve never seen before, and therein lies the challenge – and the fun.

RR
Richard Rippon
Author Bio:
Richard Rippon has been writing since 2007, when his short story, Full Tilt, was long-listed for a Northern Dagger award. In 2009, he won a New Writing North Award for his first novel, The Kebab King. Since then he’s had a number of short stories published in newspapers, magazines and online. In 2012, he was commissioned to write a short story (The Other One), which appears in the Platform anthology. He lives on the North East coast with his wife and two children, and works in Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Richard was also a social media phenomenon in 2016, as one of the men behind the twitter sensation #DrummondPuddleWatch.
Authors Links:
Follow Richard on Twitter @RichRippon
Facebook https://www.facebook.com/richard.rippon.3.

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Q&A with @ellisshuman #Author of The Burgas Affair #GuestPost #Inspiration #Indie

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The Burgas Affair by Ellis Shuman
Synopsis:

She’s an Israeli data analyst. He’s a headstrong Bulgarian detective. Together they must track down those responsible for a horrific bombing.

In the wake of a deadly terrorist attack at Burgas Airport in Bulgaria, Israeli and Bulgarian intelligence agencies launch a joint investigation. Detective Boyko Stanchev on the police task force teams up with Ayala Navon, a young Israeli intelligence analyst on her first overseas assignment.

The two must establish whether the terrorists were assisted by a Bulgarian crime organization in laying the groundwork for the attack.

It should be a routine investigation, but shadows of the past keep interfering.

Boyko’s interactions with a crime boss pursuing a vendetta against him threaten to throw him off track. Ayala’s pursuit of the terrorists and their accomplices brings up painful memories of a family tragedy.

Boyko and Ayala form a shaky alliance, one that evolves into growing cooperation and affection as they desperately race against time to uncover who was behind the Burgas bombing.

The Burgas Affair is a fictional account of the aftermath of a very real terrorist attack. On July 18, 2012, a deadly explosive rocked a tourist bus at Burgas Airport, killing five Israelis and their Bulgarian bus driver. The terrorists responsible for this murderous attack have never been brought to justice.

Q&A:

Q) For the readers, can you talk us through your background and the synopsis of your new novel?

A) I was born in the United States but moved to Israel as a teenager. I finished high school in Jerusalem, served in the Israeli army, and was a founding member of a kibbutz. I have worked in many professions but the latest is content marketing. My job was relocated to Bulgaria for two years and as a result, my novels are very much connected to Bulgaria.

My new novel deals with the aftermath of a terrorist bombing in Bulgaria, in which five Israelis and one Bulgarian were killed. This happened at Burgas Airport in July 2012. In my mind I envisioned a joint Israeli-Bulgarian investigation. The novel is primarily focused on the interaction between the Bulgarian detective and the Israeli data analyst on her first overseas assignment who have teamed up to track down those responsible for the bombing.

Q) Can you talk us through the journey from idea to writing to publication?

A) The terror attack at Burgas Affair took me by surprise. Although I grew up in Israel and was very familiar, unfortunately, with similar bombings, I never imagined that one could occur in Bulgaria. I kept thinking about this and then my creative mind envisioned what happened the next day. I was sure that Bulgarians and Israelis would work together in this investigation so I came up with idea to write a fictional account of their teamwork. The result is The Burgas Affair, available for download at Amazon with a paperback edition to follow.

Q) What are your favourite authors and recommended reads?

A) I frequently write book reviews and when I do, I usually write about books related to Bulgaria or Israel. I am probably one of the most ‘prolific’ reviewers of modern Bulgarian literature that has been translated into English. That said, one of my favourite authors is Haruki Murakami. I have an entire bookshelf devoted to his books. They fascinate me because they transport me to Japan in a very surreal way.

Q) What were your childhood/teenage favourite reads?

A) I can’t recall having favourite reads as a child, but I did read a lot! As a teenager, my favourite author was Kurt Vonnegut. I especially enjoyed his novels Cat’s Cradle and The Sirens of Titan. I wrote my major high school project on Vonnegut’s writing, although I didn’t enjoy his later works as much. From time to time I come across Vonnegut quotes that prove to me that he was a very talented writer.

Q) What has been your favourite moment of being a published author?

A) The Burgas Affair was traditionally published in 2016. Because I had a lot of connections in the Bulgarian media, I was able to sell the Bulgarian language rights to the book to a major publisher in Sofia. My favourite moment as an author was attending the book’s presentation in Sofia and participating in the book signing there. The novel is now being published in its original English for the first time.

Q) Who has been your source of support/encouragement, throughout the writing process?

A) Today, my creative writing focuses on my love for two countries – Israel and Bulgaria. My wife, Jodie, has been with me all of my adult life in Israel, and she shared the two years of my relocation in Bulgaria, something we labelled our Bulgarian adventure. She has given the greatest support for my writing, and has encouraged me every step of the way. In addition, she reads my writing, makes comments and suggestions, and helps me correct the occasional spelling mistake!

#GuestPost:

What Inspired Me to Write “The Burgas Affair”

In my crime thriller, The Burgas Affair, Bulgaria and Israel conduct a joint investigation into a terrorist bombing at a Bulgarian airport. The novel is based on a very real terror attack, but the investigation I describe is completely fictional.

One of the questions people ask me when they hear about the book is what inspired me to write it? For me, the answer is simple. The novel is set in two countries I love: Bulgaria and Israel. While there are many novels set in Israel, it is quite unlikely that you will find a novel in the English language with a Bulgarian setting.

I have a particular affinity for anything and everything connected to Bulgaria and that is because my wife and I lived in Sofia for two years (2009-2010). I was on a relocation assignment from my job and we made the most of our stay in Bulgaria. During our free time we explored the country and we were astonished by what we saw. Bulgaria has picturesque villages; a rich culture and history; beautiful forests, mountains, and seashores; and very friendly people.

When we returned to our home in Israel, I couldn’t stop thinking about Bulgaria. I wanted to share my experiences with others, especially those who know nothing about the country. I began writing travel articles about Bulgaria, encouraging people to visit and see how wonderful a place it is.

I also began featuring Bulgaria in my fiction. My first novel, Valley of Thracians (published in 2013), was set entirely in Bulgaria. It was warmly received by many as an introduction to Bulgaria.

My new novel, The Bulgaria Affair, is my second work of fiction to take place in Bulgaria, as well as being set in Israel, my home. My experiences in Bulgaria, and my desire to share them with others, inspired me to write my novels. I hope readers will share my enthusiasm for the country.

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Ellis Shuman
Authors bio:
Ellis Shuman was born in Sioux City, Iowa, and immigrated to Israel as a teenager. He completed high school in Jerusalem and served for three years in the Israeli army. Along with his wife, Jodie, he was a founding member of Kibbutz Yahel. After working for several years in the hotel industry, he today writes and edits online marketing content. In the years 2009 – 2010, his job was relocated to Sofia, Bulgaria. His writing has appeared in The Times of Israel, The Huffington Post, The Jerusalem Post, Israel Insider, and on a wide range of Internet websites. His collection of short stories, The Virtual Kibbutz, was originally published in 2003. His novel Valley of Thracians was published in 2013. Ellis lives with his wife, children, and grandchildren on Moshav Neve Ilan, outside Jerusalem.

Authors Links:
Ellis Shuman Writes: http://ellisshuman.blogspot.com
Ellis Shuman on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ellisshumanauthor
Ellis Shuman on Twitter: https://twitter.com/ellisshuman
Ellis Shuman on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1529444.Ellis_Shuman

**The Burgas Affair has been released on 30th October 2017**