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Cover Reveal – A Taste of Death By H.V. Coombs

A Taste of DeathAvon Books is bringing out a new book called ‘A Taste Of Death’ by H.V. Coombs and it’s been described as ‘Midsomer Murders’ meets ‘The Great British Bake-Off’ in this foodie delight with murder at its heart.

What the back cover says:

The first murder happened while I was making meringues…

When Ben Hunter moves to become head chef at the Old Forge Café in the quiet village of Hampden Green, a tricky recipe for egg-based desserts isn’t the only thing he gets embroiled in. As he struggles with a whisk in his first week , he gets an unexpected visit from DI Slattery – there’s been a murder and he’s a suspect. Ben resolves to get to the bottom of the mystery, and he soon discovers that this sleepy Chilterns village is covering up a whole lot more than an appetite for sweet treats…

Sounds like a deliciously gory book to look forward to!

You can pre-order A Taste of Death from Amazon and will be available to buy from 24th July 2017.

Angela Clarke

Angela ClarkeAngela is an author, playwright, columnist and professional speaker. Her debut crime thriller ‘Follow Me’ was named Amazon’s Rising Star Debut of the Month January 2016, long listed for the Crime Writer’s Association Dagger in the Library 2016, and short listed for the ‘Good Reader Page Turner’ Award 2016. ‘Follow Me’ has now been optioned by a TV production company. The second instalment in the ‘Social Media Murder’ Series, ‘Watch Me’ is out January 2017. And the third ‘Trust Me’ is out now.

  1. To readers of the blog who may not be familiar with you or your writing, can you tell us a bit about yourself and how you got into writing.
    My name is Angela Clarke and I’m a chocoholic. I also write the ‘Social Media Murder’ Series, including CWA Dagger in the Library long listed and Dead Good Reader Page Turner short listed ‘Follow Me’, which has been option by a TV production company, and Sunday Times bestseller ‘Watch Me’. I got into this by accident, I set out to write about the internet and how we use our new found online power for good and bad, but the body count was so high it had to be crime, baby.
  2. Your successful social media series is all about social media, why did you decide to use this topic?
    So many crime novels are based in a community, with that location shaping both the characters and the story. With 15 million people in the UK on Twitter, and 24 million Brits using Facebook every day, social media is our newest, biggest and fastest growing community. It links people who might otherwise never have interacted or met, opening us up, and influencing us in ways we’re only just starting to appreciate. It’s fresh and fertile ground to explore the darker side of humanity.
  3. If you were to start your own book club, what authors would you ask to join?
    Oh! So many! Like most writers, I was a reader first and I love books. I’ve just finished Luca Veste’s ‘Blood Stream’, which was dark and disturbing, and delved into reality TV, online interaction, love and other themes close to my heart, so I definitely want him in. I’ve also just read Steve Cavanagh’s ‘The Liar’ which was a rip-roaring legal thriller with a former con artist turned lawyer at its heart: his Eddie Flynn is an amazing character. So he’s in! And then we need some ladies to even out the testosterone; I’d go for Claire McGowan, Steph Broadribb, SJI Holliday, Jane Casey and Sarah Hilary, because I love their characters and their work, and I know I can get pissed with them. Wine is an important part of a book club, right?
  4. What’s your favourite form of social media to communicate on?
    It changes daily, and for different reasons. I like Twitter for jokes, Facebook for secret clubs, Snapchat for filters, and Instagram for making me feel calm. I’m having a hectic day today, so Instagram it is. Excuse me while I go meditate over a shot of some beautifully lit, artfully arranged books and a cup of coffee.
  5. What’s your favourite part of the writing process?
    Either the bit at the very beginning, when you have this idea you can barely contain, and it’s bubbling out of you at every opportunity. (Not to be confused with the bit where you actually start typing). Or the bit at the end when you’ve redrafted, and what was as unwieldy word monster has taken shape and looks like a real book. And you give a big sigh of relief because you can still do it (and you feared you couldn’t).
  6. What do you think makes a good crime book?
    A killer hook. A pacey read. And enough tension you need a massage while reading it.
  7. If Freddie and Nas were to be adapted for screen, who do you imagine playing the ladies?
    Freddie and Nas are quite young, only 24 in ‘Trust Me’, which makes it hard to pick. For Freddie, you want someone like Pheobe Waller-Bridge or Lena Dunham five years ago. Bel Powley from ‘Diary of a Teenage Girl’ would be great. For Nas, perhaps Amber Rose Revah or Aysha Kala, who were both great in ‘Indian Summers’. It speaks volumes of the media industry, that there aren’t a huge number of young, female, mixed heritage or British Asian actresses getting screen time at the moment.
  8. From books and films, who has been your favourite bad guy?
    The unnamed serial killer in Graeme Cameron’s ‘Normal’. He’s a deliciously darkly comic creation, you find yourself rooting for him. He’s a brilliant character!
  9. Trust Me

  10. If you were stranded on a desert island, which three books would you bring with you to pass the time?
    Does my Kindle count as one? If not, could I just take my current TBR (to be read) pile with me? I have so many I want to get through it’d be really handy.
  11. What area do you suggest a budding writer should concentrate on to further their abilities?
    Make sure that you have a strong hooky plot that can be condensed (and sold) on one or two snappy sentences. If those sentences reel people in and make them want to hear more, you know you’ve got a strong idea.
  12. When sitting down to write, what is the one item you need beside you?
     Water. I drink gallons of the stuff. It powers me, like other people use coffee. I can’t function without it. Unless I spill it over my keyboard, then I can’t function at all.
  13. And finally Angela do you have any projects or releases on the horizon which you would like to share with the readers of the website?
    I’m so excited that the third in the ‘Social Media Murder’ Series, ‘Trust Me’, is out June 15th. It’s inspired by a real-life case, and centres on a head teacher who sees a serious assault live streamed over the internet, but when she reports it she discovers the account it streamed from has been closed, and she has no idea who the victim, or the perpetrator is. No one believes that what she saw is real, and she has to find a way to track down the girl in the live stream who needs her help. It’s an exploration into how the internet has opened a window into strangers lives, and sometimes you see things you shouldn’t have. Things that could put you in danger.

Follow Angela Clarke on Twitter Angela Clarke for updates or check out her website at Angela
Clarke

You can buy the ebook and paperback from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Trust Me By Angela Clarke

Trust Me‘Trust Me’ is the third book in Social Media Murder series by Angela Clarke

When Kate sees a horrific murder streamed live on her laptop, she calls the police in a state of shock. But when they arrive, the video has disappeared – and she can’t prove anything. Desperate to be believed, Kate tries to find out who the girl in the video could be – and who her killer is. Freddie and Nas are working on a missing persons case, but tensions in the police force are running high and time is ticking. When Kate contacts them, they are the only ones to listen and they start to wonder – are the two cases connected?

‘Trust Me’ is the latest book in the Social Media series and this time the book focuses on Periscope, a video sharing platform.

We meet Kate, a school principal who witnesses a violent attack on Periscope but just as she goes to report it, the video vanishes leaving Kate to wonder did she really see it? Kate then goes to Freddie and Nas asking for their help but as there is no video, there’s no evidence so there is nothing that can be done. But Freddie believes Kate and begins her own investigation which brings forward more people who saw the horrific video and a proper case is established. The story is seen from the perspective of Freddie and Nas, Kate and the clever inclusion of people directly involved in the case.

Like the previous books in the Social Media series, the book is sharp and snappy and flows at a fast paced with each chapter ending on a cliff hanger and leaving the reader thoroughly engaged. I love the relationship between Freddie and Nas, where Freddie is sharp and outspoken and not one for obeying rules, Nas is quiet and determined and regularly apologising for Freddie’s behaviour, their interactions made for entertaining and insightful reading as they pieced together the clues of the puzzle and how they regularly had to fight for their places in the predominantly male workplace.

As the plot follows many perspectives, this gives the story a great sense of urgency as it is a race against time to solve the crime before it’s too late.

I really enjoyed this story, it really highlighted the dangers of social media and how the platforms that we all use for fun and engagement, can also be used for such cruel activities.

Sharp, fast and insightful from the very start, ‘Trust Me’ is another great story from Angela, packed with twists and drama, this book was a rollercoaster of a read!

You can preorder the ebook and paperback from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 15th June 2017.

Cover Reveal – The Forget Me Not Flower Shop

The Forget Me Not Flower ShopI’m excited to reveal the pretty cover to Tracy Corbett’s new book called ‘The Forget Me Not Flower Shop’.

What the back cover says

Evie runs a florist, The Forget-Me-Not Flower Shop. A new man is not what she needs, but can plumber Scott Castillo fix her boiler and thaw her heart too?

Scott is trying to balance paying the bills with caring for his sick mother and parenting his nephew, Ben, who at 18 is marrying his girlfriend Amy. Amy’s mum Patricia hides her husband David’s infidelity from their hopelessly romantic daughter. Patricia’s tennis partner Martin moans about his inability to satisfy his wife, Laura, who helps brides find their perfect dress for their dream wedding, despite her own marriage being a mess.

Perfect for fans of Lucy Diamond.

You can pre-order The Forget-Me-Not Flower Shop from Amazon and will be available to buy for only 99p from 3rd July 2017.

Book Tour – Just For The Holidays By Sue Moorcroft

Just For The HolidaysToday on the book tour for Sue Moorcroft’s, ‘Just For The Holidays’, Sue tells us ten ways to make holidays more bearable.

Ten ways to make coming home from your holiday bearable.
No matter how fantastic your holiday, you’ll face the inevitable flatness of returning to reality. It may involve chores that have stacked up in your absence or return-to-work blues. (Or both.) They only sully the memory of your holiday and make you wonder whether it was worth the aggro. It was worth it because holidays allow you to decompress, try new things, have fun and gain a lot of weight. Here are a few ideas that might ease the pain.

1. Before you go away, make an online grocery order for an appropriate date/time upon your return. It saves you a) having to think about something as mundane as a shopping list when your head is still full of fun stuff b) having to trek around the supermarket.

2. Use a laundry service for that first huge wash when everyone tips out their suitcases. I was surprised how reasonable it can be – less than a modest meal out for, say, four people. Choose one that does the ironing too.

3. Consider doing a labour swap with a friend. While you’re away they cut your lawn/feed your cat/water your plants – and when they’re away you do theirs.

4. Book an extra day’s holiday so you don’t have to return to work the very day after you’ve travelled home. It gives you one last lie in and an opportunity to get over it if you’ve had a long/hassled trip.

5. Don’t get on the scales for at least a fortnight after you return. There’s no point making yourself feel bad about a few extra pounds. Returning to your usual routine will take care of some of them naturally. (Probably. Or possibly, anyway.)

6. This is a really boring one – get anything you can up to date before you go. Coming back to those five loads of washing you conveniently forgot or that bulging inbox you ignored is just not worth the stress. Particularly if you’re going to ignore points 1-4.

7. Show off your suntan and all your holiday pix to your friends.

8. Plan something good to coincide with your homecoming. I once returned to a completed extension to the house and enjoying that took all the pain out of my return.

9. Have a little coming-home pamper session, either self-adminstered or at the salon.

10. Book another holiday.

You can buy Just for the Holidays from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops from 18th May 2017.