Army of Authors Blog Tour – B L Blair

The Lost Macaw

by B L Blair

You don’t know how excited I am to feature this new release on my blog today.

Pets and Mystery go hand in hand, right? Well, they do in my world.

The Lost Macaw is the fourth novella in the Lost and Found Pets Mystery series.

Alexandra Prescott is a licensed private investigator specializing in finding missing animals. Reuniting pet and owner is more than just a job.

A former client hires Alex to find her lost parrot. The bright colored bird has flown away before, but this time there is evidence that Molly was kidnapped. The demand is simple—the bird for the pictures.

When her client suffers a stroke, Alex is left with a ransom note, a missing bird, and some very incriminating photos. She is in a race against time to solve the mystery of the lost Macaw.

***

This cosy mystery can be read in around two hours, so it’s perfect for a wintry evening in front of a warm fire.

Let me convince you  with an excerpt:

“Your little old lady is quite interesting, Alex,” Halie said.

“What do you mean?”

“She didn’t exist until about thirty years ago.”

“What?!”

“I did a preliminary background search on her. In general, she is clean. No debt. The house is paid off as is her car. The one thing that jumped out at me was the fact that she had a safe deposit box at four different banks.”

Luke raised one eyebrow. I got a sinking feeling. I had noted the bank accounts but hadn’t really given them much thought.

“Yeah,” I said, “I saw those.”

“So why does an eighty-year-old woman need four safe deposit boxes?”

“Why does she need more than one?” Luke muttered.

“Exactly,” Halie said. “So I dug a little deeper.”

“What did you find?”

“About thirty years ago, Joseph and Trudy Kearns purchased the house on Carriage. Back then, it was a new neighborhood, and the prices were cheap. They paid cash. They also opened a bank account, and Joe got a job working for the city. Those are the first records I can find for either one of them.”

“Trudy would have been fifty at that time. Her husband probably a few years older. What about birth certificates? Social security cards?”

“They had them, but conveniently, they were issued from a small county in Virginia where a massive flood destroyed all their records. The county office was in the process of moving the old paper records to electronic when the flood hit.”

“Let me guess. The Kearns’s records did not survive the flood.”

“Nope.”

“So the only records for them are the ones they had in their possession.” I paused a moment. “Do they look real?”

“Yes,” Halie replied.

“So they could be authentic.”

“Or really good forgeries. In some ways, it was easier back then.”

“Anything else?” I asked.

“Not really. Lives on a fixed income of social security and a small pension from her husband’s job. It isn’t much because he only worked for the city for twelve years before he had to retire.”

“Okay, thanks Halie.”

After ending the call, I looked at Luke. He had a perplexed look on his face that I had a feeling mirrored mine.

“Who the hell is Trudy Kearns?”

Intrigued? I bet you are – me too 🙂

You can grab your copy at any of these fine retailers: Amazon, Nook, iBooks, Kobo, and Smashwords. And, if you want to catch up on earlier books in the series, head on over to the author’s Amazon page where you’ll find the whole motley crew. 

With these being priced at only 99c, they’re sure to make great Christmas gifts too.

If you purchase any of the books, please consider leaving a review afterwards. Reviews keep writers writing 🙂

Thanks for reading 🙂

Book Review – Women’s Fiction

In the Best Interest of the Child
by Felicia Denise

Severely injured in an accident that forever changed her life, 10-year-old Olivia becomes another faceless, under-served child in foster care. With no time to mourn or grieve, the young girl is easy prey for uncaring social workers and ambivalent foster families.

Olivia quickly learns to hold her tongue and mask her emotions. Even when exposed to neglect, bullying, and assault, no one seems to care. Holding fast to the teachings of her late father, Olivia ages out of the system broken, but no longer a victim.

Now a successful child advocate attorney, Olivia is a passionate voice for children. However, a routine case assignment by the court plunges Olivia back into the trauma of her childhood. If she doesn’t face her demons, a child will be sent into foster care, and Olivia will lose the only chance at love she’s ever had…or wanted.

Foster care for her young client is not an option. But Olivia’s emotional scars run even deeper than she realized. Reconciling with her past means Olivia must confront the one woman she blames for her battered soul.

A woman who has no idea who Olivia is.

My thoughts:

You know the feeling when you settle down to watch a movie, one starring your favourite actor or actress, and then you realise the film is nothing like you ever expected of him/her? The same could be said of this book. I expected great things, but what I got was totally wonderful. This is a story full of heart, but grounded in pain and despair. Yet, the author finds hope and positivity in a case that could easily become just another statistic in a flawed system.

The unfortunate events that befall young Rena are far too similar for Child Advocate, Olivia Chandler, to brush aside. This time, the child she sets out to help will have a much more profound effect on her personal life.  For while Olivia is the best damn advocate any child could hope for, she is also a victim of the same system – the foster care system – that threatens to leave its mark on yet another young life.

Of course, Olivia will not let that happen and, aided by a team of professionals unswerving in their desire to make a  difference, she embraces the challenge with open arms and a wilful spirit.

But, she didn’t count on meeting the Bellamy family, whose resolve to care for Rena is just as strong as her own. However, this family is no ordinary family. This is a family who genuinely care, for each other and for those within their reach. And now, Olivia is in their reach – in the reach of one persistent, funny, gentle, caring and honest man – Bruce Bellamy.

The two of them fit – that’s all there is to it – they are meant to be, but that doesn’t mean things fall into place in an instant. Bruce is one resourceful chap, and his determination knows no bounds until Olivia can delay the inevitable no more. It is both hilarious and heartwarming to see these two – both with pain in their past – come together. Long may they reign!

This relationship develops as Olivia battles for Rena; her single-mindedness to act in the best interest of the child is impressive. Olivia is a force to be reckoned with. But, this case, this time, circumstances closer to home make her realise that she has to face up to her past and deal with her own demons. With Bruce’s help and encouragement she may now succeed. Fortunately, a second book awaits.

This is an engrossing read, with a cast of characters that liven up every page. You’ll find yourself laughing, crying, smiling and sighing as this story unfolds. A definite 5 star read. Bring on Book 2!

It’s here …

Remember those awesome Black Friday deals I mentioned some time ago?
Well, they’re here – all singing and dancing and waiting for you to press the pretty ‘one-click’ button.

You can do that for me, can’t you?

Aww! I knew I could rely on you.

 

 

Here you go then, click on the happy word and let the fun begin – ENJOY! 

One last thing, I don’t want to keep you from these wonderful authors, but if you do buy – and subsequently read – any of these books, please consider leaving a review afterwards. Reviews keep authors writing!

Thanks for reading!

Going full circle

Sometimes, all it takes is time. While hammering away at my keyboard for NaNoWriMo, a momentary lapse in concentration had me hunting through old files for my very first Nano effort.

Granted, it doesn’t take much to distract me, but this story – The Nasrid Charm – just won’t lie in the shadows.

I think it comes to mind at least once a month, and especially during Nano prep or writing.

There  has to be a reason for this, don’t you think?

I’ve never been one for muses, and am rather envious of those who suffer at the hands of an attention-grabbing muse. So, why will this story not just sit back and let me get on with my writing? Maybe, this is its time to shine.

I’ve restructured  this story a gazillion times, taking it from a single novel to a series of novellas, but nothing has ever felt right. When I wrote this back in 2011/12, it drew me into the world of fiction as a writer, rather than the avid reader I was and still am.

Problem was, I was rubbish at it. I had no idea about POVs, or voice, or exposition – I was a victim of my reading material and spewed out some particularly purple prose. in my mind it was a case of putting words onto the screen and telling a story.

Okay, so shoot me. I made the ultimate error, assuming anyone could write a book. (Although, that is true, anyone can write, but whether they should is a different matter. I shouldn’t have … then)

Hopefully, I’ve learnt a thing or two since then. So with that in mind, I am bringing The Nasrid Charm back out of the darkness, blowing away the cobwebs and re-writing it as it was originally meant to be – but with a tad more knowledge and – fingers crossed – a little more skill than I had back then.

I know I’ve said this before – in fact, only a few months ago (or was it only weeks?) I posted that I was rekindling the story in series format.

But, hey, a girl (ahem – artistic licence, ok?) can change her mind, can’t she?

I recall being so excited about this story back in the day, I even got a local artist to design this cover.

I loved his style – still do – and admired his interpretation of those white-washed Spanish villages. (I’ve learnt a bit about what makes a good cover too!! – heck, we all make mistakes, don’t we?)

Can you tell the genre from this? Ha ha! I have to laugh myself – it’s pretty dire, isn’t it? Oh well, things can only get better, right?

Bubbling with enthusiasm, I posted excerpts for critique and … hmm, you can guess the rest. Suffice to say, I discovered there’s more to writing a good story than just putting words on paper.

This time, I’ll do the story justice – while maintaining the essence of the original story though – and it’ll likely involve a complete re-write – but I reckon I can do it now.

In the meantime, I’ll get back to my Nano draft which, I’m pleased to report, is looking quite healthy.

Like I said, sometimes it just takes time … and work, lots of work.

Look out for more news on my progress with The Nasrid Charm in 2018.

Thanks for reading 🙂

 

Army of Authors Blog Tour – Peter Mulraney

Are you a lover of crime fiction but don’t have the time to devote to a lengthy tome?

You are!

So, you’d be interested in a series of criminal investigations where you could read each story in one sitting?

Is that a “yes”?

Well, read on then. “Stella Bruno Investigates” is a series of quick reads.  Each book in the series only takes around an hour and a half to two hours to read. So, there’s no waiting for days to find out who did it.

You’re in, right?

Peter Mulraney, the author, gives me some insight into his “Stella Bruno Investigates” series:

The series is set in and around Adelaide, South Australia, and centres on criminal investigations led by Detective Sergeant Stella Bruno. I have the inside information on Adelaide – it’s my home town.

Stella is assisted by Detective Constable Brian Rhodes, who’s approaching retirement, harassed by Detective Inspector Frank Williams, and distracted by Shaun Porter from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

In addition to all the crime, the stories also follow Stella’s developing relationship with Shaun and provide insights into her life as a single mother with a fourteen-year old son. You’ll also discover some of the benefits she enjoys by being part of an extended Italian family.

If you’ve never been to Australia, these stories will give you a little taste of life ‘down under’ where you can experience the North Wind as hot and blustery and winters without snow and ice.

Now we  established your interest, how do you fancy a deadly game of hangman?

Here’s the inside scoop from Peter:

A Deadly Game of Hangman, Book 4 in the series, tells the story of Stella’s investigation into the murder of a young man whose body is found hanging from a tree in Adelaide’s famous Park Lands, which ring the city centre. The killer tried to disguise the murder as a suicide but there are some things about a hanging that you just can’t hide from a forensic pathologist, like Dr Steve Wright.

The case gets a little more interesting when the body of a friend of the first victim is found hanging from a tree in Morialta Park, in the foothills on the eastern edge of the Adelaide metropolitan area, and the similarities strongly suggest to Stella that she is dealing with a serial killer.

And, just to keep you up until you’ve finished, I’ve built in a little bit of suspense towards the end.

If you’re anything like me, you’re already heading over to Amazon to hunt down this author and his books.

But wait!

Here are the other titles in the series so far:

  • The Identity Thief
  • A Gun of Many Parts
  • Bones in the Forest

Pretty intriguing titles, aren’t they?

For more info on the author and his books, be sure to check out his website too.

 

Remember to leave a review if you read an author’s books – reviews keep authors writing.

Thanks for reading 🙂

Calling book-lovers – it’s blog hop time :)

Whether you’re a reader, writer, publisher, or just an all-round bibliophile, you’re in the right place! The Iris Chacon blog is only one of the many stops you’ll want to make (often!) on the NurtureYourBooks.com BLOG HOP between November 9th and 27th, for fun, friends, freebies, and fabulousness. Nurture Your BOOKS™ Blog Hop Prizes: For […]

via Welcome to the NYB November Blog Hop! — Author_Iris_Chacon