Liz Currently Loves…Biblical by Christopher Galt.

21460500

Publication Date: May 1st from Quercus.

Thank you to the author and publisher for the copy via a Goodreads Giveaway.

An apocalyptic thriller on an epic scale that will make you question your own reality.
All around the world, people start to see things that aren’t there, that cannot be. Visions, ghosts, events from the past playing out in the present.

This was brilliant. And extraordinarily unnerving. I’m still in it now 24 hours later thats how good it is.

When people all over the world start experiencing weird sensations of deja vu, followed by hallucinations, Dr John Macbeth gets drawn into a mystery – what he discovers may change humanity forever.

One of the taglines on this is “it will make you question your own reality” – well yes. It absolutely did. Intelligent and extremely addictive reading, not a chapter passed me by without some level of contemplation before diving into the next – this is so well constructed, with so many twists and turns and genuinely mind blowing moments that you will barely be able to catch your breath. With elements of both science and faith, shrewdly playing on that feeling of disconnection we all get at times, you will find yourself thinking about it in those odd quiet moments of life and wondering…

Terrific characters, some peripheral, some magically involving, along with some absolutely stunning scene setting, especially with reference to the hallucinations, I would find it hard to think of an apocalyptic thriller that is better than this one for pure reading adrenalin. It will suck you in, mess with your head, then spit you out the other side feeling like you’ve run a marathon. Maybe. But have you really?

Some fascinating and gripping idea’s here, a thought provoking, stunning read and one I have no hesitation in recommending to anyone who can appreciate a damn good story that not only entertains but also makes you look at the world around you in a whole new way…

Read it. Live it. Love it.

Follow the author on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/CGaltAuthor

Purchase Information: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Biblical-Christopher-Galt/dp/1780874804/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1398844548&sr=1-1&keywords=biblical+christopher+galt

Happy Reading Folks!

Liz Currently Loves…Can Anybody Help Me? By Sinead Crowley.

abc998e9bb8f7bce2c97c10b04bc9ee9

Publication Date: 1st May 2014 from Quercus.

Thank you to the author and publisher for the review copy.

Struggling with a new baby, Yvonne turns to netmammy, an online forum for mothers, for support. Drawn into a world of new friends, she spends increasing amounts of time online and volunteers more and more information about herself.
When one of her new friends goes offline, Yvonne thinks something is wrong, but dismisses her fears. After all, does she really know this woman?

A cleverly plotted, realistically frightening yet addictive story this one, with some intriguing and darkly fascinating twists and turns that kept me reading into the early hours of the morning. At the end of it I was left seriously considering the terrifying amounts of personal information there is out there on the internet about me and mine, and indeed about you and yours…

Yvonne is struggling with new parenthood and finds comfort in the online parenting forum NetMammy, where other Mums like herself discuss the daily grind of life with young children. The beauty and shrewdness of this story comes in the simple things – when asking for advice, you can inadvertantly tell an anonymous voice on the web a great deal about yourself. When someone she has been “close” to online seemingly vanishes, and she reads in the paper about a body being found, her mind connects the two. Dismissing it as unlikely, Yvonne moves on and further into danger.

Some great characters here – not least Sergeant Claire Boyle, pregnant herself, practical, resourceful and completely comitted to her job sometimes to the detriment of her own health – I hope she appears again, so involved did I get in her life. Yvonne and the other “NetMammy” parents are all brilliantly authentic and easy to connect with, they are as real to me as anyone and even now I’m sure I shall wonder what they are doing..

A very relevant and enthralling mystery story, a terrific and compelling look at life lived through social media and all in all an outstanding and gripping tale that will truly spook you. There is not a single thing in here that could not easily happen in reality – and that, as always, is far more unsettling than any horror story.

Fantastic. Highly Recommended. I will resist the urge to delete my entire online profile..

Follow Sinead on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/SCrowleyAuthor

Purchase Information: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1782067221/ref=s9_simh_gw_p14_d0_i1?pf_rd_m=A3P5ROKL5A1OLE&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_r=09V6B1R1NXVYGJ8T1YNC&pf_rd_t=101&pf_rd_p=455344027&pf_rd_i=468294

Happy Reading Folks!

 

 

Why We Read – Guest Post by Jane Isaac

5jane-isaac2

http://janeisaac.co.uk/

Jane Isaac writes brilliant books, the latest of which The Truth Will Out is available now from Legend Press. So I asked her to contribute to the “Why We Read” feature and here is what she had to tell me. Oh and her bookshelves look somewhat like mine!

18854687

 

 

My World of Books

My first memory of stories dates back to Peter Pan. From a very early age I remember being thrust into Neverland and wanting so badly to be Wendy. Shortly afterwards, it was The Lion, The Witch and Wardrobe that captured my attention, a tale that remains one of my all-time favourites. Like many children I was enchanted with the idea of walking through the back of a wardrobe into a new and exciting land; I lay awake at night inventing interesting worlds for my own wardrobe. Later I was captivated by the many tales of Enid Blyton, especially the Secret Seven and the Famous Five, and I think this is where my love of mysteries really began.

As I grew up, the works of Agatha Christie and the fascinating deduction of Sherlock Holmes enchanted me and proved a stepping stone into the wider world of fiction.

For me, there is no greater feeling than wandering around a bookshop and picking out a title, casting my eye over the cover art, soaking up the blurb and reading the first few paragraphs. By then, I’ll know whether or not I’m hooked.

Today I have five family bookshelves in my house, all double skinned and stocked with beautiful stories and prose that I’ve whiled away some very pleasant days enjoying. The books aren’t arranged in height order; they’re stacked haphazardly and laid on top of each other as I retrieve them from time to time and re-read my favourite parts.

I have a Kindle too. I don’t want to miss out on those stories only released in eBook and it is a light and easy method to pack that all important holiday reading, although I’m probably not the most efficient reader. I like to revel in the experience, look at the cover from time to time, flick back a few pages to check a point I think I’ve might have missed – especially if I’m reading a thriller with twists and turns aplenty – and a book allows me to indulge in this pleasure.

I love any prose that enables me to reach into another world and sample it with all the senses and my two greatest loves are travel tales and crime fiction. For me it’s not really escapism, I’m quite happy with my family and my lot in life, more like curiosity, excitement, a sense of adventure and a fascination with people. My mother always said I was nosey!

34

Follow Jane on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/JaneIsaacAuthor

If you would like to read try this! http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/products/jane+isaac/the+truth+will+out/10044463/

Happy Reading Folks!

Liz Currently Loves….The Unquiet House by Alison Littlewood.

20989321

Available Now from Jo Fletcher Books.

Thank you to the author and publisher for the review copy.

Mire House is dreary, dark, cold and infested with midges. But when Emma Dean inherits it from a distant relation, she immediately feels a sense of belonging.
It isn’t long before Charlie Mitchell, grandson of the original owner, appears claiming that he wants to seek out his family. But Emma suspects he’s more interested in the house than his long-lost relations.
And when she starts seeing ghostly figures, Emma begins to wonder: is Charlie trying to scare her away, or are there darker secrets lurking in the corners of Mire House?

This was a wonderfully creepy, atmospheric story, one that had me glancing at all the dark corners in my own house and wondering what might lurk there…

Emma is surprised to inherit the property, especially as there are other relatives much closer who should have been obvious choices. Intending to sell, she goes to visit Mire House and is immediately captivated by it. Upon moving in she meets Charlie and after some strange occurrences Emma realises there is something hidden beneath the tranquil surface.

An extremely cleverly constructed novel, as we move back in time to learn the secrets of Mire House, each separate part is a story in and of itself, all adding up to a complete and compelling tale. Emma is an extraordinarily perfect character to follow along with – solitary and emotional, her thoughts and feelings make up a large part of the slow building sense of menace, and give us a true insight into the ambience of the surroundings. As far as psychological horror goes this is spot on for creating a sense of space and time and putting the reader bang into the moment…and unnerving them utterly. The timeslips are perfect, telling us as they do about previous experiences within the house and giving the whole story a real resonance.

I don’t want to give too much away – safe to say that this one is best read with the lights firmly on or outside in the glorious sunshine (should we ever get such a thing in the UK!) because if there are shadows around you as you read, those shadows will certainly menace you. Some beautiful prose to be had here and a fair few moments of magic…within the quiet..or the Unquiet House.

We all go silent in the end…

Terrific. Highly recommended.

Find out more here: http://www.alisonlittlewood.co.uk/

Follow Alison on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/Ali__L

Purchase Information: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Unquiet-House-Alison-Littlewood/dp/1780876467/ref=sr_1_1_bnp_1_pap?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1398323966&sr=1-1&keywords=the+unquiet+house+alison+littlewood

Happy Reading Folks!

 

 

 

Author Interview: Lisa M Green. The First.

206524301390445527417

I recently read “The First” by Lisa M Green and I thought it was terrific in a most unexpected way. So I tracked the author down and asked her a few questions and here is what she had to tell me.

Tell us a little about where the story came from.

The voices in my head. Seriously, my muse speaks to me in whispers that no one else can hear. One sentence was all it took, though the idea had been shaping in a completely different direction up to that point. She spoke it, and there it was, staring at me in all its glory. What was it? I can’t tell you. I’d be giving away the story. I actually wrote a very poetic blog post on this very thing a while back. But the idea shaped from my obsession with mythology and history. I love the connections between stories and the truths they tell us. I simply built upon that and used the muse’s sentence to construct a backstory for my characters’ world. And The First was born.

How much do you believe our beliefs are shaped by our parents, and what other influences come into play?

Everyone is impacted by their parent’s beliefs, either in a positive or negative way. It’s interesting how the same circumstances and background can force two people in two completely different directions. But I think our own experiences have a much greater impact on our own beliefs than anything else. What we see and feel lies heavily within our souls, within our hearts. That can either choke us or lift us up, depending on the situation and our own response mechanisms. We are the product of both nature and nurture, but we all desire the same thing: wanting to know who we are and why we exist. Those are the questions that we all struggle to answer, and I touch on them in my novel.

Do you have a favourite character from the novel?

A cliché it may be, but my protagonist, Rinni, is certainly my favorite. She is a good bit of me mixed with some other very interesting qualities that I find endearing (those that others may find annoying at times). Yet she always maintains the forward motion of the story and drives the action. Her brother, Mori, is very dear to me as well, simply because he is so likable. He has a sweet spirit that transcends the limitations of his place within the story.

How hard was it to get the spiritual elements of the novel just right?

Extremely. Almost inhumanly so. It was important to stay on track with the plot elements without getting too deep into the spiritual aspects. I wanted the significant parts to stand out without it coming across as being “preachy” or religious in nature. While the story lends itself as a lesson in morality, that is not the message I wish to get across. I write (in all my stories) about beings who struggle to find themselves and their place in the world. I want my readers to think. I want them to reflect on how we view one another and the importance of beliefs, no matter what they are. I want them to admire the beauty of what is good to recognize evil for what it is. The monster is often inside ourselves, and we have to rip it out in order to see things clearly and make wise decisions. But I don’t want anyone to feel like I’m forcing any ideas on them. This is a fictional story that uses some religious elements that I personally find fascinating. I like to put those types of things under the microscope to see what they’re really made of and what they can do.

Ebook or Hard copy

<hides head in shame> I balked at the Kindle for so long because the death of the printed book strikes fear and sorrow into my heart. I love books, especially old ones with that smell that reminds me of my childhood. But I couldn’t live without my Kindle now, for reading all the novels on my reading list. The really important or special ones still get a place on my bookshelves, but those shelves are overflowing at the moment. Don’t judge.

Coffee, tea or other…

Coffee! I cannot get through a day without it. My fiancé is British, so we drink a lot of tea as well, but coffee is a must to stave off my monstrous migraines.

Favourite author/comfort read.

Eek…that’s a hard one. When I need a good laugh, there’s nothing better than Douglas Adams. But C.S. Lewis inspired me in so many ways. Tolkien was one of middle school delights that has followed me all through life as well, but Lewis had a greater influence on my writing. As did Ursula K. LeGuin, whose Earthsea series was so endearing that I tell everyone I know to try them out.
Thank you so much Lisa!

 

Review

In a world where almost nothing is truth and isolation is the purest form of self-deception, the possibility of hope exists only in the heart and mind of a young woman who chooses to follow an unknown path in order to save everyone she knows and loves. Before long, she discovers that her most vital beliefs are based on a deception that will rock the foundation of her entire people. To save them, she must learn to open her heart and sacrifice…everything.

A strange one this for me because it wasnt QUITE what I was expecting ultimately, it was something very different and yet quite beautiful.

We meet a girl, her brother and her family – in the village where she lives they are part of a group responsible for keeping the fire burning at all times.  Using the bark from the Sacred Tree that grows at the heart of the community and provides them with everything they need, it is imperative that it never goes out, so the “shadows” are kept at bay. Through a series of events, she becomes mistrustful of her elders and realises that there are hidden secrets. Bound and determined to ensure the safety of herself and those around her she embarks on an epic journey of discovery.

The underlying themes about belief systems, faith, the real meaning of truth and how accepting we are of what we are taught, are extremely well done here. I am not a spiritual person generally but in a lot of ways this is a very spiritual book – as we take this journey with our main protagonist it evokes a sense of something more and leads to questions of faith v reality and what that can mean.

It has a Post Apocalyptic feel to it, I believe that each reader will take something very different from it and the ultimate resolution will provoke discussion. Before that there is a great adventure to be had here – It is an easy flowing read, the characters are compelling and overall it is a fascinating, well imagined story with a possibly controversial but certainly thought provoking premise.

Kudos to the author for taking a well known genre and giving it a simple twist of fate.

Find out more here: http://lisamgreen.com/

Follow Lisa on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/AuthorLMGreen

Purchase Information: http://www.amazon.co.uk/First-Lisa-M-Green-ebook/dp/B00IFRFCD0/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1398236720&sr=1-1&keywords=the+first+lisa+m+green

 

Happy Reading Folks!

Liz Currently Loves…The Son in Law by Charity Norman.

297f1c5a0dac21e0d0e19f046226b81734i96yad702i7arhazu8

https://www.facebook.com/CharityNormanAuthor?fref=ts

For three years Joseph Scott has been haunted by one moment-the moment that changed his life forever. Now he is starting over, and he wants his family back more than anything.
This is the story of Joseph and his wife, Zoe; of their children, Scarlet, Theo and Ben, for whom nothing will be the same; and of Zoe’s parents, who can’t forgive or understand.

Family Drama. Not my go to type of book when it comes to my choices but I do love a good one. For me there are not many authors out there who can pull off the realism of family life and make it interesting – even in the most extreme of circumstances that can happen to any of us. So last year a very good friend of mine handed me “After the Fall” from Charity Norman and basically said, hey, here you go. HERE is one. And she was right. It was absolutely compelling and yet very real.

So it is true I was looking forward to “The Son In Law” and to finding out if it would have the same resonance for me and it absolutely did. If anything I loved this one even more, probably because it had some extreme emotional truth at its heart and a question I would find hard to answer…how do you forgive the unforgiveable?

Here we meet Joseph, recently released from Prison, wanting to reconnect with his family, but that will not be easy considering the circumstances of his incarceration. As we hear from him, and at various points his Mother in Law Hannah, and Daughter Scarlett, a picture begins to emerge of a tragedy that has torn a family apart. As Joseph tries to put the pieces back together, this is a somewhat dark but also beautiful story, with some truly remarkable characters at the heart of it.

Not least Scarlett. The best part of this one for me was the way she approached things, lost her way occasionally, really wanted to do the right thing without knowing what the right thing is. All her emotions are there on the page and are stunningly real. There is a lot of that going on here, from all the characters. A most terrific reading experience.

Tackling some difficult subjects in a very real, compelling and addictive way this was outstanding. Charity Norman is the latest addition to my “must read” list.

You can follow Charity on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/CharityNorman1

Purchase Information: http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/products/charity+norman/the+son-in-law/9763360/

Also Available:

17125479

In the quiet of a New Zealand winter’s night, a rescue helicopter is sent to airlift a five-year-old boy with severe internal injuries. He’s fallen from the upstairs veranda of an isolated farmhouse, and his condition is critical. At first, Finn’s fall looks like a horrible accident; after all, he’s prone to sleepwalking. Only his frantic mother, Martha McNamara, knows how it happened. And she isn’t telling. Not yet. Maybe not ever.

Review:

Finn Fell. With these chilling words starts “After the Fall”, a novel about a family and their move to New Zealand. Through a series of flashbacks from Mum, we discover how they came to be in NZ, what has happened to them since they arrived and the true nature of the accident that has befallen Finn.Charity Norman has written a terrific novel about what really could be any family – yours, mine, your next door neighbours. They are normal, happy people, very well drawn and it is easy to move into their world. A pretty stunning comment on some of the social issues that can affect families in these times (I don’t want to say too much, as this would have to include spoilers) you are right there with Martha and Kit, as they begin life in a new country, with all the challenges that brings, and as the story unfolds you find yourself rapidly turning the pages to discover how they cope with some very hard issues and choices. It was a book that makes you think…what would YOU do if you found yourself in their situation. It stayed with me long after finishing the last page and I will certainly be reading more from this author. Very very good.

Purchase Information: http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/products/charity+norman/after+the+fall/9466802/

Happy Reading Folks!

The Dead Ground by Claire McGowan. Blog Tour.

20459350ahp-24

Published by Headline: Available Now.

I was lucky enough to read an early copy of The Dead Ground and now I am very happy to take part in the BookBridgr Blog Tour as it gave me the opportunity to ask Claire a few questions and find out a little more about this series and the author behind it.

Here is what she had to tell me.

 

Tell us a little bit about how Paula as a character started to form for you.

I can’t explain this one too much – I was back in my home town, walking along the street, and started thinking about what it might be like to come back and work there permanently, especially if you’d had a reason to stay away for years. Paula is around the same age as me, which makes it easier to know what memories she would have of the past.

I love the fact that she is a forensic psychologist, giving a great twist to standard crime fiction – was there a lot of research involved to make it authentic?

 

I wanted her to have a job that wasn’t part of the police, so she’s always feeling a bit out on a limb, and also allows her to make connections in a different way. I read a lot of books about the profession, talked to people, and subscribed to their trade journal too.

 
How much did your own background influence the writing, especially with regards to the Irish connection?

 
Very much so – I’ve been trying to write about these issues of religion, family, and the past for a long time. Crime fiction gives me a good structure to do this, and hopefully lets me include an interesting story. Ireland is also a great place to write about because it’s modern but religion and the supernatural are still deeply rooted.

 

Can you tell us anything about what is next for Paula?
I’ve set her up with a complicated personal situation, which is going to continue to unfold for a few books yet. And she will find the answers to the big questions she has been puzzling over for several books – but not for a while!

Any writing influences?

 

I read a lot as a child – we lived in a very quiet part of Ireland – so I’m influenced by very pacey, plotty writers like Stephen King and Agatha Christie. I think reading so much of these, plus authors like Jilly Cooper, has driven me towards commercial fiction.

 

One book you recommend to everyone.

 
Recently, Apple Tree Yard by Louise Doughty. She took the crime genre and made it literary and totally compulsive.

 

Dream job if you were not a writer.

 

I have to say I would still be a writer. You don’t have to leave the house in the mornings and can work from bed, it’s pretty much perfect.

 

 Thank you so much Claire!

Review

A stolen baby. A murdered woman. A decades-old atrocity. Something connects them all.
A month before Christmas, and Ballyterrin on the Irish border lies under a thick pall of snow. When a newborn baby goes missing from hospital, it’s all too close to home for forensic psychologist Paula Maguire, who’s wrestling with the hardest decision of her life.

Last year I read “The Lost” the first in the Paula Maguire series from Claire McGowan and I loved every minute of it. Another series added to my “must reads” I was exceptionally happy to receive an advanced reading copy for the next book, “The Dead Ground”.

After the shocking finale to the last story, Paula is struggling with a huge decision so now is really not the best time for her to be immersed in an emotional and heart wrenching case involving a missing baby. Especially when it becomes clear that one missing child is not going to be the end of it.  As the case becomes ever more complicated, Paula struggles to cope and yet somehow she must, in order to save lives.

I love these characters – Paula has such a depth to her and is one of the strongest female leads in a series to be found out there in the world of crime fiction currently. Still haunted by the loss of her mother at a young age and living in a world after “The Troubles” she is both one tough cookie and compellingly vulnerable all in one small package. She trips through life, often acting on impulse, yet highly intelligent and insightful. Surrounding her is an eclectic mix of supporting cast – her Father I am particularly fond of – and together they make for a heck of a team.

The Irish setting is well developed – as someone who knows very little about the background to that time, I find it fascinating how Claire McGowan can give you an understanding by letting her characters talk – when past haunts present as it does in a very real way there, it is through the thoughts, feelings and experiences of the people in the pages that you come to learn and almost see it for yourself.

The mystery element of this particular story is clever and compelling – it twists and turns its way to yet another superb finale, leaving Paula with a few more things to face next time yet wrapping up the current case, perhaps surprisingly – who knows? Me I usually beat the author but this is a twisty tale, how will you get on I wonder?

The personal relationships ongoing in this series is also one of the things I love about it. Particularly well developed and intriguing is the relationship Paula has with her Dad, hence why he is one of my favourite characters here. Her romantic life is beautifully complicated and I will admit that a lot of my time reading this was spent yelling at her about what she should be doing. Pfft. Who listens to me? I’m always right you know.

Overall a terrific read. Fast paced when it needs to be, offering moments for reflection and giving a real insight into both the smaller and larger community psyche if you like, I would highly recommend these for crime fiction aficionado’s. There is a lot of it about – seems everyone wants to write a great crime novel – well Ms McGowan manages that just fine. And seemingly with ease.

Happy Reading Folks!

Find out more here: http://clairemcgowan.net/

Follow Claire on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/inkstainsclaire

Purchase Information: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Dead-Ground-Paula-Maguire/dp/1472204379/ref=pd_rhf_gw_p_t_1_1J8J

Also Available:

17625592

Not everyone who’s missing is lost

When two teenage girls go missing along the Irish border, forensic psychologist Paula Maguire has to return to the hometown she left years before. Swirling with rumour and secrets, the town is gripped by fear of a serial killer. But the truth could be even darker.

 

Not everyone who’s lost wants to be found

Surrounded by people and places she tried to forget, Paula digs into the cases as the truth twists further away. What’s the link with two other disappearances from 1985? And why does everything lead back to the town’s dark past- including the reasons her own mother went missing years before?

 

Nothing is what it seems

As the shocking truth is revealed, Paula learns that sometimes, it’s better not to find what you’ve lost.

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Lost-Paula-Maguire-Claire-Mcgowan/dp/075538640X/ref=pd_sim_b_1?ie=UTF8&refRID=1C325NP16CAMK2DP5D0C

 

Happy Reading Folks!

GREAT EASTER GIVEAWAY WITH THE DEAD WIFE’S HANDBOOK

Bunny18623494

 

THE GREAT EASTER GIVEAWAY WITH THE DEAD WIFE’S HANDBOOK

 

It’s Easter and those nice people at Amazon have reduced the price of both the Kindle and the BEAUTIFUL paperback of The Dead Wife’s Handbook.

 

So to celebrate, we’re combining the two things we all love the best – books and chocolate – in a great Easter giveaway.

 

Just purchase a copy of The Dead Wife’s Handbook on either Kindle (£2.62) or in paperback (£3.49), tweet a proof of purchase to @hannahbeckerman on Twitter, and you could win this DIVINE Hotel Chocolat Easter Bunny that will be delivered DIRECT TO YOUR DOOR (UK only) See Picture above.

 

What are you waiting for?!

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dead-Wifes-Handbook-Hannah-Beckerman/dp/0718178149/ref=tmm_pap_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1397811775&sr=1-1

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dead-Wifes-Handbook-Hannah-Beckerman-ebook/dp/B00F02CI80/ref=tmm_kin_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1397811775&sr=1-1

 

The Dead Wife’s Handbook is the stunning emotional debut from author Hannah Beckerman.

‘Today is my death anniversary. A year ago today I was still alive.’

Rachel, Max and their daughter Ellie had the perfect life – until the night Rachel’s heart stopped beating.

Now Max and Ellie are doing their best to adapt to life without Rachel, and just as her family can’t forget her, Rachel can’t quite let go of them either. Caught in a place between worlds, Rachel watches helplessly as she begins to fade from their lives. And when Max is persuaded by family and friends to start dating again, Rachel starts to understand that dying was just the beginning of her problems.

As Rachel grieves for the life she’s lost and the life she’ll never lead, she learns that sometimes the thing that breaks your heart might be the very thing you hope for.

Author Interview – Charlotte McConaghy. Fury.

057fe4d2a64a90cb49f6891965c4129fCelebrity_photographers_sydney_glamour_nudes_art_photography_Seductive

I recently read “Fury” – Book One of The Cure from Charlotte McConaghy and I was totally addicted. You can read my review again in a while, but first I asked Charlotte some questions and here is what she had to tell me.

Tell us a little bit about where the story came from.

I had the character of Josi in my head long before I figured out the rest of the story. I knew I wanted to tell the tale of a woman who believed she was transforming under the moon, who was burdened by the fear of having committed atrocities, and I didn’t know initially if it was going to be a real transformation or a figment of having endured such a traumatic childhood. The world came when I realized that I wanted to counteract Josi’s fury, and what better way to do that than with a society that has lost the ability to empathize with anger? The world gradually took shape after that, as I realized I wanted to look at why we sometimes seem so frightened of extreme emotions, and like science-fiction should, it looks at what might happen if we continue to be frightened.

How much do you believe that emotions such as anger define us, do you think we could live without our darker sides?

 

 
I don’t think that any one emotion defines us—I think feelings are fluid, ever- changing and very difficult to define. The idea of dark sides is always one that has thrilled me, because I suppose the idea in itself conjures a sense that a dark side is a rebellious side, one that doesn’t conform, doesn’t fear, but instead lives in the thick of desire and indulgence. There are other dark sides, too, darker dark sides, made of anger and cruelty and fear. I’m not going to make a judgement on what people should feel or want or how they should behave, because I think the point of my novel Fury is about people’s right to be whatever they are.

One of my favourite lines from Brave New World by Aldous Huxley reads, “I’d rather be myself. Myself and nasty. Not somebody else, however jolly.”
Josephine is a highly intriguing character – did she change much over the course of the writing?

 

 

Very much so, actually. She was a whiney, complaining nag in the first, ancient draft. Haha. I wrote a very different, simplified version of the story years ago, and then dusted it off to take a read later, horrified by what I found. So I rewrote the whole thing, and though the major story beats remained the same, Josi’s character needed a huge overhaul. She was one-dimensional, she was miserable, and frankly she was just a pain to read. So I worked hard to give her depth and insight—I wanted her to have a great sense of humour, to be dry and sarcastic and clever. I wanted her to be able to laugh in the face of her horrible, tragic life, because that’s as natural as moaning about it is.

 

Can you tell us a little about whats next for Josephine and Luke?

 
Well I’m currently writing book two in the series, which is set, as the cliffhanger at the end of Fury suggests, in the west. I don’t want to give too much away, but the book has a host of new characters, deals with the idea of the cure for sadness, and is still told from the perspectives of Josi and Luke. It’s also very romantic.

Favourite book and/or author.

 
Laini Taylor is my favourite author at the moment, her novel ‘Daughter of Smoke and Bone’ my favourite.
Favourite thing to do on a lazy Sunday.

 
Go to the cinema. Drink wine and eat cheese. Hang out with friends. Luxuriate in a Game of Thrones marathon.
3  people alive or dead you would love to go for a drink with.

 

King Arthur, Lady Guinevere and Sir Lancelot. Haha! And let’s pretend they’re real. Oh, man, that would be the best.

Thank you SO much Charlotte!

About the Author:

Charlotte grew up with her nose in a book and her head in the clouds. At fourteen, her English teacher told her that the short story she’d submitted was wildly romantic, so she decided to write a novel. Thus began her foray into epic fantasy and dystopian sci-fi, with sweeping romances, heroic adventures, and as much juicy drama as she could possibly squeeze in.

 

Her first novel, Arrival, was published at age seventeen, and was followed by Descent, which launched The Strangers of Paragor series, an adventure fantasy for teenagers.

 

She then wrote her first adult fantasy novel, Avery, the prologue of which came to her in a very vivid dream. Her second adult novel, Fury, is the first in a romantic science-fiction series called The Cure, set in a dystopian future.

 

Charlotte currently lives in Sydney, having just finished a Masters in Screenwriting from the Australian Film, Television & Radio School. With her television pilot script, she won the Australian Writer’s Guild Award for Best Unproduced Screenplay of 2013. She will, however, always be a novelist at heart, still unable to get her nose out of the books.

 

Review: Fury.

When emotions are erased from the world, creating a civilization of mindless drones, only those with fury can survive.
On the same day each year Josephine Luquet wakes naked, shivering and covered in blood that is not her own. Under the cold gaze of the blood moon she is someone else entirely, but when dawn breaks her memories flee and she is left with only an icy horror, a burning fury. Amid a sea of drones, she alone hasn’t been cured.

The first thing that I have to say on this one is that it has been a while since a novel in this genre has captured my imagination so utterly and completely that I have literally gulped it down in huge magnificent chunks of reading joy – and come out the other side feeling utterly destroyed that now I have to hang on in there to find out more. I need more I tell you! Book Hangover alert!

So we meet Josephine – from the confines of a psychiatric hospital she tells her Doctor a strange and wonderful tale – and tries desperately to warn him of the danger that surrounds anyone who is close to her at one particular time of the year – a time that is fast approaching. As her tale unfolds, a picture emerges of a cold world – one where emotions are non existant and the ability to feel love, fear, anger, betrayal, almost anything that makes us Human have all but disappeared. Except for Josephine. Well, maybe…

This was a beautifully constructed story – with a highly imaginative and compelling premise – just what WOULD we be without our emotions? I really do not want to go too much into plot detail, the reasons, the truth that lies just beneath the surface, and what may or may not happen because of it – these are the things that make this book so fascinating, such a great read and a truly brilliant page turner that will often have you on the edge of your seat. Don’t make assumptions. I’m just saying…

Characterisation is of a very high standard, Josephine is damaged, uncertain, absolutely sure that she cannot be helped, she just wants to avoid hurting others. The people she meets along her journey are all enigmatic and there is a lot to be revealed – the author leads you slowly but surely through the minefield of a world gone mad..and puts you right at the centre of one girl’s struggle to understand it all.

I would place this book on the cusp of YA and Adult. It has a definite eye towards the YA audience but tackles some very adult themes and does involve occasional sex and violence – I don’t like to put books in boxes but I think that anyone aged around 15 and up will love this and find something to spark their imagination here…

Clever and captivating, at times enchanting and with an ending that will send you into a spiral of dismay at the thought of having to wait any time at all for the next instalment, I highly recommend this one.

Find Out More Here: http://charlottemcconaghy.bounce.com.au/

Follow Charlotte on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/CharMcConaghy

Purchase Information: http://momentumbooks.com.au/books/fury-book-one-of-the-cure-omnibus-edition/

 

Happy Reading Folks!

 

Competition Time.

20638916

To celebrate the launch of TheGuestbook Carina are giving away an iPad Mini! All you have to do is enter the competition here: https://www.wf-site.com/microsite/pages/f8d4c3b5e771aae92862daa114f8d3c6

 

Simply enter your details for your chance to win an Apple iPad Mini pre-loaded with all the holiday reading you could possibly need!
Also, make sure you keep an eye out for author Holly Martin’s daily holiday tips and fun over the next month by following @UKCarina
Holly Martin’s The Guestbook welcomes you to Willow cottage – throw open the shutters, let in the sea breeze, and please do leave a comment in the Guestbook.

You can buy The Guestbook here, available for 99p for a limited time http://amzn.to/1etluti