Sunday, 24 May 2015

Review: These Secrets We Share by @MsEmmaHannigan


Published: April 2015
Publisher: Hachette
Format: Paperback

A review copy was provided by Hachette in return for an honest review

Emma Hannigan has a real talent for sucking you in and really making you feel for the people she rights about. They don't feel like fictional characters. They feel like real people.

An event has torn the Conway family apart. An event so jarring that it sent her son half way across the world never to be heard from again.

Max has his own life now. He is a successful doctor and has a loving wife and daughter. He doesn't need anyone else.

That is until an event shatters his daughters world and leaves her confused and lost about life and her future.

At the same time Max's mother Clara decides its time to reach out. She wants to put the past in the past. She wants to know her family again.

They decide it that it will do Nathalie some good do get away for a while and to get to know her grandmother.

Initially Nathalie is less than delighted about being shipped of but as she gets to know Clara she finds they have more in common than she first thought. Their shared love of fashion and fabric brings them together to design a quilt for Nathalie to take home.

Clara's history is revealed through a series of heartbreaking letters that Nathalie finds in Clara's sewing room. As each square of the quilt is added a piece of the past comes to life. Past and present come together and the two form an unbreakable bond.

When the two families are finally reunited they discover that family is more important than even in the past that can't be changed. The last chapter had me in pieces!

These Secrets We Share was a real heartwarming read. Full of warm characters that will remind you of the importance of home and family

Highly recommended



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Saturday, 16 May 2015

Spotlight on: Emotional Healing After Being Cheated on by Hersh Alexander @avoid_drama

Emotional Healing is a follow up to You Cheated (Now Fix It). This volume captures the heartrending, emotionally-charged collapse that occurs when someone discovers their greatest trust has been discarded. The phase following such a calamity, and how you handle it, will determine your psychological health and ultimately your future.

The author speaks directly to the offended party, drawing from the mistakes of others to capture the do’s and don’ts of post cheating behaviors. At first, the hurt and anguish will seem unbearable, driving your self-esteem and confidence to all new lows. A sense of worthlessness will temp you back into the arms of the ‘cheater’, before you have a chance to heal and understand. Stop! Take the time, and follow the steps outlined in this guide to heal your heart, before you attempt to heal a rocky relationship.

Can, or should you forgive? A truly difficult decision, but one that should be made after your head’s on straight and you’ve worked through some issues. However, revenge is never the answer. It will merely lead to further bitterness and heartache. Learn to cleanse your mind, to laugh, and to trust again. Don’t accept unnecessary blame for circumstances that are out of your control, and when needed, seek counseling.

Patience will be your ally in this battle to regain your life, and if you decide to salvage your relationship, it will be a must to reassemble the shattered pieces in an attempt to make it whole. A caution about depression: watch for the signs and pursue avenues of help rather than trying to cope alone.

Accept, heal, and move on to a renewed life of love and support. Buy this book to take the first step on the road to recovery.

Buy on Amazon

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About The Author 

Bertram Alexander, known among friends as “Hersh.” After growing weary of folks asking if he was related to “Alexander the Great,” Hersh now uses the moniker “Alexander the Creative” as his identity with new friends on this website.

Hersh offers, “I believe that most people would rather hear real answers as opposed to buttered-up niceties that only reveal half the truth. Humor can be a great way to handle stressful relationship moments. Researching views and feedback is one of the oldest ways of finding out what truly works.”

For the record, he admits to making plenty of mistakes in his personal life—and learning from each and every challenge along the way. Researching to decipher life’s “why’s” and “what if’s” prevents one from making the same mistakes again and again. And let’s face it: We’re all hoping that as we go through life’s journey, each step will move us forward in the quest for lasting love… because relationships are something you should never take for granted.

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Monday, 11 May 2015

Review: Two Fridays in April by @roisinmeaney


Published: March 2015
Publisher : Hachette Ireland
Format: Paperback 

Thanks to Hachette Ireland for the review copy 

Roisin does it again! Another brilliant read full of wonderful characters!

Two Fridays In the same month. but what a difference a year can make.

It's the second of April and its Una's birthday but no one feels like celebrating. Why? Because its also a year to the day since Una's dad was knocked from his bike and killed.

Since then nothings been the same. A rift has been created in the family. Daphne is not Una's biological mother so she now feels like a liability.

Daphne adores Una but feels unsure around her. She wants her to feel safe and loved but she doesn't know how to do it. She cant turn to her own mother, who is distant and seemingly uncaring.

Mo feels totally alone in the world. Her husband was gone long before he died due to dementia and now then her only son was taken from her. She feels like she has no part left to play.

In the end it takes Una to realize that one of them needs to act in order to save what they have left. Throughout the course of the day they discover that all the ever needed was right in front of them. They just needed to open there eyes and see it.

The character development in Two Fridays is fantastic. You really fall for the characters and you as a reader go on the same journey as they do. You feel what they feel. It takes a really talented author to evoke such empathy.

As always I hate to turn the last page but I loved every minute of the journey.


★ ★ ★ ★  ☆

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Monday, 20 April 2015

Guest post and Giveaway: Dead Money Run by @jfj_books

Lou Malloy learns of his sister's death right before he is released from prison, having served 15 years for the theft of $15 million from an Indian casino. He wants two things: to keep the $15 million, which no one has been able to find, and to track down and punish whoever killed his sister.

Lou Malloy teams up with Hilary Kelly, a private investigator. In no time, Lou has found the hidden $15 million, recovered guns and ammunition hidden with the money, and murdered two low-level mobsters and fed them to the crocodiles.

As the body count rises, the story grows more complex and his sister's death becomes more mysterious.

Guest post: Why is the Reader Important?

Before I begin my effort, I simply want to say that my words are for the first time author and not someone who has been scooped up by a big named agent. This is for the beginner and a writer who has decided to brave the wilds of the self-publishing forest, like myself. Critiquing one’s work is always easier after you have stepped into a few potholes along the way.

I can’t tell you how many times I have read a book only to find that the title of the book has nothing to do with the story. I suppose it is easy to do as a 
writer to forget the reader in the publishing process. If you rely on a publisher to put your book to market, you have to satisfy the publisher’s need for the book to be a commercial success. All too often, however, the first time writer gets caught up in the perception that the publisher comes first, then the editor, then the agent, then the publicist, then the bookseller and finally the reader. What order you put them is not as important as the fact that they are all hovering. So how do you make everyone happy? The answer is simply you don’t. Remember, you are the writer. So write the book and think about the person who is going to read it. They are the ones with the money.

Often books become great books by accident. The writer finishes his manuscript and once the euphoria dissipates surrounding that event, you are left with the reality of what to do next. The first thing I do is put yourself in the position as a reader. Trust me, this is not easy to do, but do it anyway.

Next, don’t go it alone. Writing a book for the first time can be like taking flight. You have checked everything, you have your parachute, all the switches have been engaged, the weather has been cleared and the tower has given you the all clear, but you are missing something. You are missing a map. In the book business that can be the need for a proofreader. In finding a proofreader, remember, all proofreaders are not equal. Some specialize in technical journals, some poems, others non-fiction or historical fiction, and the beat goes on. If you are an author who has an agent and a publisher has picked up the book, the publisher will have a person who will proof your book, but it is not for you, it is for the publisher. For a writer in this position, this is where the rubber hits the road. You finally get the book back from the proofreader and you, as a writer, feel like you just sustained a head-on collision. Nothing about your book looks the same. So what happened?

The book was involved in a multi-car accident. The idea that you had has been changed to the idea of the publisher. Generally speaking, the writers with commercial presence are not affected by such happenings, but at some point in their professional life they were. Everyone gets the rejection feeling one way or the other. So what’s the solution? Hire a proofreader. Get active in the production of your book. Don’t surrender control. You wrote the book for a reason. Stick to it.

When I first decided to self-publish, I built a website that was functional. If you are using Amazon to sell and publish your books, you don’t need a website for the purpose of selling them. The website should be informative. It should be a site where the reader can learn about the writer. Next, get comfortable with the idea of social media.

Next, I would then take the time to study the various service providers in the field of self-publishing. They are not all equal. Some charged for their effort. My advice would be to use a company like Amazon to self-publish. With Amazon, getting your book to a reader in a printed or ebook format is free. A writer can’t get a better deal than that. Next, hire a proofreader that you can communicate with. Let them know what you’re trying to do. They have probably been there done that. If during the course of your effort you see that the proofreader may not see or buy into that you want to do, get another proofreader.

Last, but not least, write another book.


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Monday, 6 April 2015

How to start Writing

Have you ever dreamed of being a famous author like Stephen King or Tom Clancy? If you have, you might have wondered what is involved in breaking into the writing field. How does a person go about making a living as a writer? What steps do they need to take? The answers to these questions are contained below. While a person must possess a natural talent for writing, there are things that everyone can do to sharpen their skills and improve their existing writing, such as use the services provided by Write Wisdom. Here are some tips to become a successful writer.

1. Write as much as you can, as often as you can

The only way you will truly improve your writing abilities is to do it during every free moment you have. This is how all of the great writers became great. If you are going to become outstanding at any particular skill, you need to continue to practice whenever time permits. You may have a full-time job and other family commitments, but do not use these things as an excuse for not writing. Make a schedule that allows you at least two hours each day for writing.

2. Enroll in a writing class

Getting instruction and constructive criticism from someone who is trained to evaluate writing can be very valuable for someone who has aspirations of becoming a professional writer. Most universities offer some form of creative writing course that you can attend. Talk to the professor who teaches the class about your career goals as a writer. Getting honest feedback from a stranger is very important. If you ask your friends and family what they think of your writing, they will always be kind in their appraisal in order to avoid hurting your feelings. This will do nothing in terms of helping your development as a writer. You need someone who can honestly tell you if your work is terrible, then give you some advice on ways to go about making it better. 

3. Submit your writing samples

Once your writing has reached a level where you feel that it is worthy of being seen by people in the literary world, you can begin to send samples of your writing to any of the various publishing companies. You might also want to contact magazines. If you get rejected, do not give up. Keep working to improve your writing.

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Sunday, 29 March 2015

Harassment through twitter lists and how to stop it

When you think of the many ways that you can be harassed on the internet Twitter lists probably didint even appear on your list of possibilities. It didn't appear on mine either until it happened to me.

The thing is I wasn't even aware it was happening for a long time. This is because of a major flaw in the twitter listing system.  A twitter user does not have to ask your permission to add you to a list and unless you regularly check all notifications ( I get hundreds everyday) you may miss this fact that you have been added to certain lists.

Lists can be great. I use them myself to categorize people I follow into lists such as "PR and Publishing" and "bloggers". Its a great way of keeping your feed organised. 

However I have also seen people be added to lists such as "Idiots" or "Stupid people". Not a very nice thing to discover. 

I myself was added to a list called "plagiarizers" . This person had no real evidence of any plagiarism other than a few generic tweets that were posted when my account was hacked. Never the less I was now stuck with this label. When your blogger or writer being accused of plagiarism is possibly the worst thing that can happen .

Whats even worse is there is no official button to remove yourself from these lists and the owner of said list refused to take me off it.

I wasn't willing to put up with this so I looked for a round about way to fix this and I found it.

First of all : Check what lists you have been added to 

So I've decided I don't want to be on the "Hablando de Apple Watch" list. 

How to remove yourself from a list 

1) Click on the author of the list. In this case "Juan Luis Martel"

2)Click the cog wheel beside the follow button

3) Click Block and then confirm

4) Hover over the blocked button to unblock them again. 

* That step is important. Just blocking doesn't remove you from a list . You must unblock again*

If you look again on lists your a member off that list should no longer be there. However this person can re add you to that list so to prevent that you must block them again 

Hopefully this solves your problem. If you found this post helpful please 

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