Wednesday, September 22, 2021

RELEASE BLITZ - CONTEMPORARY - UNDER PRESSURE (The Kings of Kroydon Hills) by Bella Matthews

Is it possible to meet the right person at the wrong time?

Under Pressure, an all-new hilarious and emotional sports romance by Bella Matthews is available now!

I had my friends. I had football. I had a future I was set on, until her.

Eleanor Kingston was the girl. The one I’d choose if I could, but all I had to give was one night. My life had been decided for me, my future predetermined.

There’s no room left for football or love.

If you get only one life, how hard would you fight to live it on your own terms?

I had my family. My career was set. I was back to begin the life I was meant to lead when I met him. We promised each other no tomorrow, no names, only one night. But fate had other plans. Sebastian Beneventi may think he’s protecting me, but I’m no damsel in distress.

No more running, it’s time to fight for what I want for a change.

Grab your copy today!
FREE in Kindle Unlimited
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2SRSGvZ
Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/undpressure

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Author Info
Bella Matthews is a Jersey girl at heart. She is married to her very own Alpha Male and raising three little ones. You can typically find her running from one sporting event to another. When she is home, she is usually hiding in her home office with the only other female in her house, her rescue dog Tinker Bell by her side. She likes to write swoon-worthy heroes and sassy, smart heroines with a healthy dose of laughter thrown in.

Connect With Bella
Website: https://bit.ly/3zs2kV2
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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

SPOTLIGHT w/INTERVIEW - YA HUMOR FANTASY - TALES FROM THE FOXES OF FOXHAM (ZANI's Tales Trilogy) by Matteo Sedazzari

Tales from The Foxes of Foxham 
ZANI’s Tales Trilogy
by Matteo Sedazzari
Publisher: ZANI 
Genre: Light Fantasy, Humour, Young Adult. 
ISBN: 13-978-1838462420
Number of pages:207 
Word Count: 60428 



Tagline: A magical adventure story, packed with colourful characters and exciting situations, in a battle of good versus evil. Set in 1950’s Naples and Norfolk.



BLURB
It is the late fifties and the Witches of Benevento are determined to plunge the world into darkness by kidnapping and sacrificing the jolly and young Neapolitan fox, Alberto Bandito, in a sinister ritual.

Yet, fortunately for Alberto, he is rescued, then guarded, by his loving mother Silvia and mob boss father Mario with his troops, a good witch Carlotta with an uncanny resemblance to Marilyn Monroe, the Bears of Campania, the boxing wolves’ brothers Francesco and Leonardo, and other good folks of Naples and beyond.

However, their protection is not enough, for Alberto has been cursed. So, the young fox, along with his family, has to travel to the village of Foxham in Norfolk, the spiritual home of foxes across the world, to rid himself of this spell. The ritual has to be performed by a good fox witch, Trudi Milanese, but there is a problem, Trudi doesn’t know she is a witch….

Tales from The Foxes of Foxham is a magical adventure story, packed with colourful characters and exciting situations, in a battle of good versus evil.

Amazon UK     Amazon     Blackwells    Hive



Excerpt 
‘Soon, my wicked friends, very soon, we will sacrifice that ugly fat fox…’ announces Enoch in a noble manner, as he stands on a makeshift timber platform in the middle of Hickling Broad marsh, with Ettore on his right-hand side, and Diana, Monica, Caterina, Andriana and Benedetta just standing behind the dark lord and the black cat in a bowler hat.

As Enoch exclaims the words ‘ugly fat fox’, the sinful crowd erupts into euphoria, bellowing at full volume with voices from the world of nightmares, ‘Kill the fat fox! Kill the fat fox! Kill the fat fox.’



Author Info
Matteo Sedazzari developed the zest for writing when he produced a fanzine entitled Positive Energy of Madness during the height of Acid House in 1989.  

Positive Energy of Madness dissolved as a fanzine in 1994 and resurfaced as an ezine 2003 which became ZANI, the ezine for counter and pop culture in 2009,  promoting online optimism, along with articles, reviews and interviews with the likes of crime author Martina Cole, former pop star and actor Luke Goss, soul legend Bobby Womack, Clem Burke of Blondie, Chas Smash of Madness, Shaun Ryder of Black Grape/Happy Mondays and many more.

After producing and writing for his own publication, Matteo’s next step was to pen a novel, A Crafty Cigarette – Tales of a Teenage Mod.

Matteo is influenced by Hunter S Thompson, Harlan Ellison, Kenneth Grahame, Arthur Conan Doyle, Mark Twain, Irvine Welsh, DH Lawrence, Alan Sillitoe, Frank Norman, Joyce Carol Oates, Mario Puzo, Iceberg Slim, Patricia Highsmith, Joe R. Lansdale, Daphne du Maurier, Robert Bloch, George Orwell, Harry Grey and many more.  American comics like Batman, Superman and Spiderman, along with Herge’s Tintin, also provide Matteo with inspiration.

Matteo also finds stimulus from many films like Twelve Angry Men, A Kind of Loving, Blackboard Jungle, Z, Babylon, This Sporting Life, Kes, Midnight Cowboy, Scum, Wild Tales, The Boys, Midnight Express, La CommareSecca, Dr Terror’s House of Horrors, so on and so forth.

As for music, anything that is passionate, vibrant and with heart is always on Matteo’s playlist.

Matteo Sedazzari resides in Surrey, which he explores fanatically on his mountain bike. Matteo supports Juventus, travels to Italy and Spain, eats and dresses well, as he enjoys life in the process.

The Book Junkie Reads . . .Reckless Dreams  Interview with  . . . Matteo Sedazzari . . .

How would you describe your style of writing to someone that has never read your work? 

A modern-day ‘pulp fiction writer,’ fast-paced storytelling that is engaging, amusing, entertaining, and at times enlightening. I have many influences, from Hunter S Thompson to Arthur Conan Doyle. Yet the two authors that were the reference points for Tales from The Foxes of Foxham were Kenneth Grahame (Wind in The Willows) and L. Frank Baum (The Wonderful Wizard of Oz). Their writing style draws you into a magical adventure, be it Toad getting arrested or Dorothy on the yellow brick road. For my first novel, A Crafty Cigarette – Tales of a Teenage Mod, my key reference authors were Mark Twain (The Adventures of Tom Sawyer) and Joe R. Lansdale (Hap and Leonard), as their first-person narrative, whether it is Tom Sawyer or Hap Collins, is like hearing the character speak to you. That is what I emulated for my debut novel; I made the book read like a teenager is talking to you. My second novel, The Magnificent Six in Tales of Aggro, an anthology set in West London, I turned to Martina Cole (British Crime writer) and Robert Bloch (Psycho), as there is an urban underbelly theme to this book. Yet the list is long of influence and inspiration for all three of my novels, yet I find it good practice to immerse myself with books of a similar style and genre when writing.

Do you feel that writing is an ingrained process or just something that flows naturally for you?

A combination of both. I never suffer from writer’s block as such. Yet, some days, I will be more productive and creative than others. I do find the first ten minutes is the ‘acid test,’ as I can be easily distracted. Then once I start writing, it does begin to flow naturally, and I am in the zone. 

What mindset or routine do you feel the need to set when preparing to write (in general whether you are working on a project or just free writing)?

I create a timetable and schedule for research and writing with self-imposed deadlines. I am well organised, due to running an online magazine. So I am accustomed to allocating time to a specific project, and I am willing to miss a ‘social gathering’ if a job needs to be completed. Regarding Tales from The Foxes of Foxham, I drafted the outlines of the first 12 chapters by hand. Then I copied the text onto a spreadsheet, with columns for word count and status.  As mentioned earlier, I turn to books for influence. For the Foxes of Foxham, I binged on TV shows, like Once Upon a Time, The Twilight Zone, Luna Nera, Always a Witch, The Animals of Farthing Wood, ITV’s Wind in The Willows (1980s), and many more. 

Films I watched to get me into the mood to pen The Foxes of Foxham were Universal films Frankenstein and Dracula, loads of Hammer Horror films, The Phantom Tollbooth, Zootropolis, Paddington 1 and 2; again, there is a vast list. Then I turned to research the folklore of Norfolk, as much of the book is set there. I took two holidays to Norfolk to take photos and get inspiration. In Tales from The Foxes of Foxham, there is fantasy, magic, horror, witchcraft, anthropomorphic foxes fighting the good fight, adventure, and outlining social issues like prejudice and animal cruelty, two things I strongly oppose. It might sound that it was full-on, yes it was, but fun. Yet, I did find time to watch sports, hang out with friends, and such. I always have a balance, and as a rule, I don’t write after 10.00 PM; that is movie time!    

Do you take your character prep to heart? Do you nurture the growth of each character all the way through to the page? Do you people watch to help with development? Or do you build upon your character during story creation?

Yes, I do take the character prep to heart, as the development is an emotional one. Along chapters for Tales from The Foxes of Foxham, I wrote a list of characters and their traits. I gave this to Andy Catling, the illustrator, I gave him carte blanche. He gave the characters life, more than I did, as he got my vision. A good example is Alberto Bandito, the young fox from Naples, who The Witches of Benevento want to sacrifice. His original draft was exactly how I saw Alberto in my mind’s eye. Getting the draft and the final copy from Andy, was as exciting to me as seeing Italy scoring a winning goal in a football game, or hearing the band of my youth, The Jam’s new single. There was pure passion and understanding between Andy and me, a creative friendship, that I am sure will grow and grow. 

Regarding the writing of Tales from The Foxes of Foxham’s characters they developed as I was writing them, and some of them change their course. Like Carlotta, the good witch, who saves Alberto, originally, she was going to be killed off in Chapter five or six, as a bad witch. Then I saw that she would make a great hero, for she is young, hip, beautiful and finds the right path. There was going to be a human, male, who saves Alberto, but sadly, he was not written into the book, and replaced by Carlotta. Most of the characters in this book are total and utter figments of my imagination, however some real historical people do make a brief cameo.  For the characters in A Crafty Cigarette, and The Magnificent Six in Tales of Aggro, I drew a lot of inspiration from family, friends and foes. 

Do you have a character that you have been working on that you can't wait to put to paper?

Presto, a fox magician, who wears the traditional black top hat and a cape with red lining, carries a silver-topped black cane and drives a yellow Edwardian roadster, similar to the car, Bessie, that Jon Pertwee drove when he was Dr Who. A fox wizard that is a mixture of good and bad. 

Presto lives in Sardinia and earns a living performing magic tricks around the island, and occasionally he will pickpocket the unsuspecting tourists. Whether the Foxes of Foxham go to Sardinia, or he goes to Foxham, I haven’t got that far, but he will appear in the sequel.   

Can you share your next creative project(s)? If yes, can you give a few details?

Even though I have a follow up to Tales from The Foxes of Foxham in mind. I have a book written many years ago on the hard drive, about a commedia dell'arte troupe led by a clown that try to bring down a totalitarian regime in renaissance Florence, which I would like to bring out. I would certainly do a follow up to A Crafty Cigarette, and another London theme anthology. Yet I want to spend at least the next six to eight months, pushing Tales from The Foxes of Foxham. Then April next year, I will review my next writing project. 

What are some of your publishing goals for this year?

ZANI, which is my website for popular and counterculture, has published other books; A.G.R‘s thriller trilogy, The 7PS, one and two are already out. Paolo Sedazzari’s Feltham Made Me is a witty coming of age story about three Feltham friends in the 1970s and 1980s. Dean Cavanagh’s humorous, brutal, poignant, and philosophical novel, The Secret Life of The Novel and Irvine Welsh and Dean Cavanagh’s Performers, staged at the Edinburgh Festival in 2017 about the cult film from the 1960s, Performance. Yes, Irvine Welsh has published a book with ZANI. 

We are bringing out Jason Disley’s The Desired Article: A Concise Look At Style. Fashion.  Articles written by my friend, Jason, an author and poet on ZANI last summer, were well received, so Jason and I thought, let’s do the book. We plan to go to market by the end of 2021.

If you could have dinner/dinner party with 7 fictional characters, who would they be?

Winston Smith from 1984, just to see how he is doing. Hazel, the rabbit, from Watership Down, I am sure he could spin a yarn or two. Tom Ripley, I would be careful not to upset him, yet I am sure I would find his conversation uplifting. Toad from Toad Hall, I know he will be a laugh at the table. Dorothy Gale would add magic to the dinner party. Irene Adler, the strong-minded woman, who outwitted Sherlock Holmes, her conversation would be intelligent and full of insight. Long John Silver, a guest who will give the dinner party an edge. Seeing Long John Silver having a drunken argument with Toad would be out of this world. The food choice would be French cuisine in a Tudor mansion-style dining room, just like Cluedo or Clue, as you say in the USA. 

Where would you spend one full year, if you could go Anywhere, money is not a concern? What would you do with this time?

Italy, from top to bottom, by foot, train, boat and bike. I wouldn’t be fussed over accommodation, as long as it is basic and clean. As most of the time, I will be exploring, seeing the culture, from football to art galleries, learning the language and sampling the food. Being half Italian, I have been there many times, from Sardinia to Rome. Yet to have 12 months there, would be a dream come true, and a possibility, if I get a number one international best seller. 

And oh, I wouldn’t post anything on social media, until the year was over!

https://www.zani.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/zanionline  
https://www.instagram.com/zanionline/ 
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Matteo-Sedazzari/e/B01DO6ZJ5M/   
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/15092835.Matteo_Sedazzari

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BOOK BLITZ w/EXCERPT - YA FANTASY - THE GROVE by Karri Thompson

The Grove
by Karri Thompson
Publication date: September 21st 2021
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult



BLURB

Entering the woods is forbidden. To go in can mean a fate worse than death. At least that’s what seventeen-year-old Laura has been told. But living in a new town with nothing to do, she ignores her mother’s dire warnings and explores the forest near her home.

The trees entice Laura deeper into the woods. A mysterious, soothing voice calls her name, and she becomes lost. When a young man finds her, she thinks she’s saved. But he insists their meeting is more than a coincidence. For centuries, his colony has been waiting for a savior. With his alluring eyes and gentle smile, Laura almost believes his crazy story.

Caught between worlds, and with her life at stake, she doesn’t know who to believe or trust. Her heart tells her one thing and her head another.

Is it her destiny, or will her fate only postpone the inevitable?

Goodreads

Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play


EXCERPT:

The hair on my arms rose. My heart thumped hard, the blood pulsing through my chest into my throat. Looking left and right, my muscles tensed to run or fight.

“Who’s there? What do you want?” I said at the same low whisper, my voice shaking.

A shimmering blur disappeared behind a tree—a featureless something, flashing in indistinguishable color as quickly as a silent whip.

“Laura,” someone said again, gentle and feather-light, drifting between the largest trees in front of me.

I held my breath.

“Laura.” My name resonated through the humid night air, echoing through the sugar maples before it thinned and died.

It was a male voice, full- bodied, but lacking malevolence and hostility. Strangely, it put me at ease. There must be a boy somewhere out here in the woods. I was sure of it. The voice sounded young, maybe my age of seventeen.

Or maybe it was a ghost. My Uncle Dean had told me the locals believed these woods were haunted. But ghosts couldn’t kill. At least that’s what I believed.

“Who are you?” I asked, relaxing my stiff muscles just enough to take a step forward. My shoulders dropped as I exhaled a pent-up breath. Broadening my stance, I leaned forward, raising the branch, and squeezed my eyes shut, hoping to hear it again.

“Laura,” it repeated. The word lingered through the dead of night, ringing softly in my ears. I opened my eyes.

“How do you know my name?” I asked, moving toward the direction of the voice. As a cool breeze rustled my pajama shorts, I wrapped one arm around myself.

A bird chirp rode the wind, followed by several more, weaving into a rhythm of tweets and trills. I looked up. Within the tousle of leaves and sway of thin limbs, perched a gathering of birds, flexing their wings for flight.

I took a step backwards, my eyes fixed on the canopy of leaves.

The bird calls increased, one squawk overlapping the other until their unique melody collapsed, twisting into an eerie song and wing beats.

“A–are you still there?” I breathed, eyeing the woods ahead of me and taking another step back.

A smear of color flashed to my left, and a cloud of leaves rose from the forest floor.

“Don’t go,” I said, breaking from a whisper.

The woods resonated with angry bird speak, their unnatural song thumping in my ears.

“I want to see you,” I shouted above the rising mad twitter.

A shadow skated across the ground at my feet. Wings flapped overhead, and a bird beak met my scalp with a hard peck.




 

Author Info

Karri Thompson, a native of San Diego, attended San Diego State University where she earned her bachelor’s degree in English and master’s degree in education. When she’s not writing novels and teaching high school English, she can be found nerding out at San Diego Comic-Con and cooking delicious meals for her family. Karri is the recipient of the San Diego Book Awards Best Published Young Adult Novel for 2014.

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TOUR Audio - CONTEMPORARY - BLUE BAYOU (The French Quarter Collection, #1) by Jiffy Kate Narrators: Loretta Rawlins, Eric Michael Summerer

BLUE BAYOU
The French Quarter Collection, #1
by Jiffy Kate
Narrators: Loretta Rawlins, Eric Michael Summerer
Released: April 30th 2019
Length: 8 hours 42 minutes
Publisher: Tantor Audio
Genre: Romance



 The Book Junkie Reads . . . Review of . . . BLUE BAYOU (French Quarter Collection, #1) . . .  Did you ever find such a jewel? I was or was not ready for the enjoyment that I got out of this one. I loved Carys from the start. She was spunky and determined. She loved the legacy left to her by her grandparents and her mother. She was just a little lost on how to make the legacy more of what it was and better at the same time. 

Then there was Maverick. He had morals. I could not say that for Mr. Kensington. Grandson Maverick was much more like Grandpa Maverick. Grandpa Maverick left much of himself behind in his journals and most of all in his grandson. 

There was much for me to love here. The Blue Bayou, the French Quarter, the characters primary (Carys & Maverick) and secondary (CeCe, Jewel, Shep and more) and most of all the world created by Jiffy Kate's words. I could see the Blue Bayou. I could see the quarter and surrounding areas. I love that level of imagery. 

I owe thanks to Loretta Rawlings & Eric Michael Summerer. They gave a new layer of dimension to the characters. They gave that extra to the characters through narration of the story, tone, pitch, and variation.  

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Jiffy Kate. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.



The road to self-discovery leads Maverick Kensington deep into the heart of New Orleans. The colorful characters, beautiful scenery, and a hot mess of a woman he finds along the way offer him the perfect place to reinvent himself. 

The French Quarter and Blue Bayou are exactly the change of pace he's looking for, helping him escape the soul-sucking work he does for his father's company. 

Carys Matthews is young and inexperienced. Having her family's hotel dropped in her lap after her mother's untimely death, she's struggling to keep her head above water and keep the hotel's doors open. She doesn't have time for relationships, but Maverick Kensington is worth an exception. Besides, his stay is temporary and a fling never hurt anyone, right? 

His passion and business know-how is exactly what she needs. Her carefree spirit is what he wants. 

Their whirlwind relationship is one for the books until truths are untold and assumptions are made. Everything comes to a screeching halt just when they were getting to the good part. 

There's always been a saying around the hotel: eventually, everyone comes back to the Blue Bayou. Will Maverick be the exception? 

Contains mature themes.

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Jiffy Kate is the joint pen name for Jiff Simpson and Jenny Kate Altman. They're co-writing besties who share a brain. They also share a love of cute boys, stiff drinks, and fun times. Their first published book, Finding Focus, was released in November 2015. Since then, they've continued to write what they know—southern settings full of swoony heroes and strong heroines. You can find them on most social media outlets at @jiffykate, @jiffykatewrites, or @jiffsimpson and @jennykate77.
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Maverick Kensington - https://images.app.goo.gl/NW4YtaEEah3zr2AK6

Carys Matthews - https://images.app.goo.gl/e6gxpRA7XJkTV5LV8

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COVER REVEAL - DARK CONTEMPORARY - DUPLICITOUS (A Tale of Treachery, #1) by Yolanda Olson & Abigail Davies

Duplicitous
A Tale of Treachery #1
by Yolanda Olson & Abigail Davies 
Release Date: TBD
Cover Design: Pretty in Ink Creations
Genre: Dark Student/Teacher Romance



I’m the worst thing that’s happened to almost everyone I meet.

I learned that from Momma.

I was hoping that things would have been different this year—that I wouldn’t have been the embarrassment of Piedmont High, but I was wrong.

It started with the whispers, like it always does, but then the looks followed.

Not just anyone’s look.

His.

I may have felt this before for another man but not as strongly as I do for him.

He knows that I’m different, that I’m dangerous, yet he doesn’t stay away.

It’s almost as if everything that’s bad about me calls to him.

He wants me to show me that things can be better than they are, that the world isn’t black and white.

And while I know that this is wrong, he makes it all seem so goddamn right.

From USA today bestselling author, Yolanda Olson and Abigail Davies comes the beginning of a thrilling forbidden series.





Yolanda Olson is a USA Today Bestselling and award-winning author. Born and raised in Bridgeport, CT where she currently resides, she usually spends her time watching her favorite channel, Investigation Discovery. Occasionally, she takes a break to write books and test the limits of her mind. Also an avid horror movie fan, she likes to incorporate dark elements into the majority of her books.

You can keep in touch with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.




Abigail is the author of over twenty five novels; her favorite to write being anything full of angst and drama. Her writing space is her safe haven where she can get lost—and tortured—in the world of her characters.

When not writing, Abi is mother to two beautiful daughters, a black cat, a chocolate labrador, and three guinea pigs.



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