Chill with a Book Awards

Saturday, 24 September 2016

Chill with a Book AWARD: Life Class by Gilli Allan





Four people hide secrets from the world and themselves. Dory is disillusioned by men and relationships, having seen the damage sex can do. Fran deals with her mid-life crisis by pursuing an online flirtation which turns threatening. Stefan feels he is a failure and searches for self-validation through his art. Dominic is a lost boy, heading for self-destruction. 

They meet regularly at a life-drawing class, led by sculptor Stefan. They all want a life different from the one they have, but all have made mistakes they know they cannot escape. They must uncover the past – and the truths that come with it - before they can make sense of the present and navigate a new path into the future.


Life Class was read and evaluated by Chill's readers against the five point criteria below

1.       Were the characters strong and engaging?
2.       Was the book well written?
3.       Did the plot have you turning the page to find out what happened next?
4.       Was the ending satisfying?
5.       Have you told your friends about it?




Friday, 23 September 2016

Interview: Thrilling Chilling Author, Karen Long


Chill is excited to have top selling author, Karen Long visiting its HQs today and to my delight Karen is not only a great writer, screen play writer, avid reader, but a runner too!

There is so much to ask you, but let’s start with your Eleanor Raven series books, what are these about?
Set in Toronto, Canada the series are based around the flawed, but intuitive DI Eleanor Raven. It’s her job to get inside a killer’s head and understand his motivations and message. Her journey takes her from the dark heart of Toronto’s BDSM scene, to a killer’s studio, where she is to become his final masterpiece. Surviving this encounter has left her with physical and mental scars, which are affecting her relationships, self-control and ultimately her ability to do her job. ‘The Vault’ is set six months later and pits her against the Collector, who is creating a family of plasticised bodies.



 I can be found with my nose in a crime / mystery / thriller but what excites you to write the genre?

Crime fiction is about the darkness of the soul. The very worst that can be done by and to another individual is the taking of life. I am interested in the intricacies of a twisted mind; the sort of minds that don’t share common human values and follow their desires and internal narratives with a total disregard to the lives and happiness of others. I think I have a darkness within me and need to explore these feeling through a dramatic medium. 

How many have you planned for the series

I’ve just finished ‘The Cold Room’, which is the third book in the series and think that’s where I’m going to stop for the time being. I’ve started a stand-alone thriller, set in the UK.



 Before you started writing full time you were a teacher, what made you take up full time writing?

My husband had just made his first feature film, which enabled me to take a risk and give up my full time job. I had been dabbling with writing for several years, mainly stage plays, but had never had sufficient time to sustain writing a whole novel. Unfortunately I have glacially slow productivity and need a great deal of time to finish anything.

Tell me a little about the screenplays you write and do they tie in with your novel writing?

I mainly write, or rather wrote, psychological horror. Screenplays are a great way to learn how to visualise and condense subject matter. I tend to edit the chapters as if I were presenting scenes and minimise description.     
                                           
What do you do to relax?

I’m a big reader, a keen runner, wildlife enthusiast and lover of a glass of wine.
 And when can we expect your next book out in the big wide world?

‘The Cold Room’ is finished and will be available on Amazon in the next couple of months.

Find Karen's book at ALL Amazon sites including


Wednesday, 21 September 2016

In the Spotlight: Kate Field



Today on Chill, Kate Field as popped in to talk about how books and writing changed her life and how she feels now her first baby, The Magic of Ramblings is out there in the big wide world.

We all have things we’d like to change about ourselves. Top of my list, even above the cankles and the hair that shrivels to a mass of frizz at the first mention of rain, would be the lack of self-confidence.

It wasn't always a problem. I remember a time in infant school when I took part in a Christmas play, and strutted round the stage without a single doubt that I was brilliant, funny, and that everyone loved me.

But at some point over the next few years, I became the shy child, and even worse, the blushing child, cheeks flaming at the merest hint that someone might be looking at me. I have another clear memory from the end of primary school, of sitting in a packed church, waiting to read out a prayer: scarlet cheeks, hands shaking, and feeling sick at the thought of standing up in front of everyone – of being the focus of attention, of getting it wrong, of being laughed at.

From an early age, books were my refuge. I was a voracious reader, and regularly maxed out my library card, borrowing as many books as I could. Reading books let me be anyone and any way I wanted to be. I explored the lands at the top of the Faraway Tree with Moon-Face; I shared picnics and adventures with the Famous Five; I solved mysteries with Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys.



And as I grew older, writing books became a refuge too. But for a long time, it was my secret. I didn't tell anyone I was a writer, let alone dare show people what I’d written. I’m drafting this blog post a week before publication, and even now none of my family or friends have read The Magic of Ramblings. Even my two closest writing friends have only read one chapter.

This is an incredibly exciting time. It’s terrifying too. A book is such a personal thing, and even a work of fiction offers a window into the heart and soul of the writer. Sometimes it feels like I’m that little girl in church all over again.


If age cures shyness and brings confidence, it hasn't happened yet. But age does bring perspective. There are far worse things in life than being laughed at. And if I want my daughter to be brave and strong – to believe that she can overcome any difficulty and achieve her dreams – then I have to show her the way.

BUY LINK


Twitter: @katehaswords

A Jersey Bombshell (The Jersey Scene Book 4) by Georgina Troy

 

Gabriel has returned to the island of Jersey after ten years abroad to help his aging showbiz parents revive their failing Art Deco hotel. This proves to be something of a challenge, especially as his singer father and actress mother are more concerned with staying in the limelight than keeping track of the cash-flow. Gabriel isn’t going anywhere fast…

Meanwhile, he’s stunned to find that the hotel’s new receptionist is the girl he fell in love with years earlier in Vietnam, and someone who is tied to Jersey is the last thing she needs…

Buy links:



Monday, 19 September 2016

On Tour: Little Kitty the Cat Burglar by Caterina Longtail

LITTLE KITTY THE CAT BURGLAR
BY CATERINA LONGTAIL


Genre: Children’s Fiction
Release Date: 5th September 2015

Little Kitty wouldn’t exactly call herself a cat burglar. She just likes to bring back the occasional gift for her humans... A lovely story for younger readers and adults alike - perfect for reading together. Beautifully illustrated by Catie Atkinson and designed by Rachel Lawston.

WHATS SO SPECIAL ABOUT THE BOOK?

The book was written by a group of authors who donated their time free of charge. Each author wrote a chapter of the book. 100% proceeds of the sale of the book are donated to Alzheimer’s Research UK. The authors are: Suzan Collins, Tottie Limejuice, Jo Wilde, JB Johnston, Lucy Rayner, Ros Lyons, Ann Bowyer and Tracy Terry. Together, they became known as Caterina Longtail! The book was edited by Jaine Keskeys.

ABOUT ALZHEIMER’S RESEARCH UK



Check out Alzheimer’s Research UK http://www.alzheimersresearchuk.org/
‘We are the UK’s leading research charity aiming to defeat dementia. We power world class studies that give us the best chance of beating dementia sooner.

Our pioneering work focuses on prevention, treatment and cure. We are energising a movement across society to support, fund and take part in dementia research. We aim to empower people across all generations through greater understanding of dementia. Together we have the power to defeat dementia.’

Alzheimer’s disease is the most common cause of dementia, but there are other types of dementia too. It is possible to have more than one type of dementia at the same time. Alzheimer’s is sometimes seen with vascular dementia or dementia with Lewy bodies. You might hear this called ‘mixed dementia’. (all info taken from Alzheimer’s Research UK website)



GIVEAWAY
A paperback copy of the book

Reviewed: The Wendy House by Pauline Barclay



Review on Amazon (permission given from reviewer to use)

Writing novels that address social inadequacies is a time-honored tradition among the greatest of authors, from Charles Dickens’, OLIVER TWIST on down to Margaret Atwood’s, THE HANDMAID’S TALE. Barclay has just joined that esteemed small group with her latest release, THE WENDY HOUSE.

Never has an author so masterfully entwined the horrifying reality of pedophilia into a story that keeps you wanting to read. Barclay has not delicately or sensitively approached the subject but brilliantly put it forward in all its darkness, while at the same time enticing the reader not to dwell so much on the crime, but to root for the victim to not only survive, but to tell someone, drop her guilt, understand what it is that is happening to her, reconcile with her mother, find resolution.

Oh yes, we want so much for little Nicola to give up her pain and flourish.

Told from the viewpoints of young Nicola and her mother, this intense tale delivers emotions first and information, second.

Pedophiles so cleverly weave their way into families and communities. They know exactly what to say and do to avoid detection and groom their young victims. Learning the signs of something amiss in a child/adult relationship is imperative and it’s all there in THE WENDY HOUSE—the gift-giving, the secrets, the booze, the threats, the strong relationship the abuser establishes with the parents.

Pedophiles can fool the experts so parents cannot be blamed for not detecting the crime happening within their families, but they will bear the results of that abuse—the sullen, unhappy children who later choose perilous lifestyles. And without doubt, they’ll bear the guilt for not protecting those they love the most.

THE WENDY HOUSE, an honest-to-goodness great read despite the subject matter.

Available in Kindle and paperback



Sunday, 18 September 2016

All That The Heart Desires by June Moonbridge



At twenty-five, Desire Hart has experienced enough grief for a lifetime.

Changing everything in her life - her identity, her hometown and her country of residence, Desire is determined that nothing will prevent her achieving from finding her missing son. Not even love.
On a spring evening, she meets the golden boy of F1 racing, Lorcan Shore, and finds herself falling for him. Struggling to suppress her feelings, she realises he could help her get closer to the child she believes is her long lost son.

But nothing goes according to plan. Her identity is revealed by the press, Lorcan has a terrifying accident, and the trail to her son finishes in another dead end. So Desire does what she does best - she runs away.

Set against the glamorous backdrops of Monaco, Paris and Nice, ‘All That the Heart Desires’ mixes romance and mystery as Desire struggles to come to terms with her past.

Will she allow herself to accept love into her life again?



Buy Links:





Saturday, 17 September 2016

First Awards at Chill with a Book!


It’s a very exciting day at Chill with a Book as we announce the first, of what we hope will be many awards.

The first two books to receive the Chill with a Book Award are:

Congratulations to…

Deborah Carr for Broken Faces




AND

 Thorne Moore for The Unravelling.



These books were read by our secret readers and evaluated against the following five point criteria.

1.       Were the characters strong and engaging?
2.       Was the book well written?
3.       Did the plot have you turning the page to find out what happened next?
4.       Was the ending satisfying?
5.       Have you told your friends about it?



There will be more Awards coming very soon to Chill so please keep visiting the site and finding amazing reads.

For more information on Chill with a Book Awards please click here.

Chill with a Book AWARD: Broken Faces by Deborah Carr




Four years. Four lives changed forever.

‘As the weight of the plaster of Paris slowly increased on his face, he tried to steady his breathing and not give in to claustrophobia.’

November 1914
When Freddie Chevalier’s best friend, Charles, joins the cavalry and sets off to fight in the Great War he can’t help feeling he’s missing out. Until the war Freddie enjoyed his bucolic existence working on his parent’s farm on the island of Jersey, but now he yearns for excitement.

He’s always harboured a secret passion for Charles’ fiancĂ©e, Meri. She’s 'The Girl'. The one he loves but can’t have. Nothing compares to the guilt he feels when he and Meri betray Charles in the worst possible way.

Each will discover that they don't know the others as well as they thought. All of them will be forced to take charge of their lives and find ways to live with the consequences of the choices that they and their friends have made. And by November 1918 everything they thought of as familiar will have vanished.

Praise for Broken Faces:

'One to Watch.' GOOD HOUSEKEEPING MAGAZINE

‘Spent most of my weekend quite mesmerised by this lovely book.’ Welsh Annie Top 500 Reviewer Vine Voice

‘Fans of Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society will enjoy.’ Bookmad 

‘A spectacularly powerful book.’ J B Johnston, Brook Cottage Books

‘Beautifully written, meticulously researched, this author is destined to make her mark in the literary world.’ Mr Alan Jackson

‘A poignant story of love, devotion and devastation.’ Pauline


‘Moving and believable.’ Karen Clarke, author of Put A Spell On You

Available in e-book and paperback:

Twitter: @DebsCarr



Chill with a Book AWARD: The Unravelling by Thorne Moore




 BY THORNE MOORE




Genre: Domestic noir
Release Date: 21 July 2016
Publisher: Honno Press
From the Top Ten Bestselling Author of A Time for Silence

The Unravelling

When they were ten everybody wanted to be Serena’s friend, to find themselves one of the inner circle. But doing so meant proving your worth, and doing that often had consequences it’s not nice to think about – not even thirty-five years later.

Karen Rothwell is randomly reminded of an incident in her childhood which just as suddenly becomes an obsession. It takes her on a journey into a land of secrets and lies; it means finding that gang of girls from Marsh Green Junior School and most importantly of all finding Serena Whinn.

Praise for Thorne Moore’s novels

‘A true page turner’– www.gwales.com

‘The most chilling part of Thorne Moore's skill is the way that she represents evil' – Helen Tozer, sideline jelly

BUY LINKS








Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/thorne.moore.7
Twitter: @ThorneMoore
Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6562052.Thorne_Moore
Blog: http://thornemoore.blogspot.co.uk/
Website: thornemoore.co.uk


Thursday, 15 September 2016

On Tour: Shaman's Drum Ailsa Abraham

SHAMAN’S DRUM
 BY AILSA ABRAHAM


Genre: Magical Realism / Religion
Release Date:  5 Jan. 2013
Publisher: Crooked Cat Publishers

England in the near future. 
Mainstream religions have been outlawed, and the old gods rule again.
Iamo has been a priest of the Great Mother and is sworn to celibacy, but his love for Riga, a Black Shaman, a magical assassin, caused him to break his vows. After being imprisoned apart from each other for three years, Iamo accepts an offer to earn them both a pardon and the possibility of marriage. If they survive.

Iamo and Riga must discover why demons are breaking through from the other side. Which of the cults are renegades who allow the demons through? Who can they trust? 
Combining their powers, they face the ordeal with the help of a band of eclectic pagans, spirit creatures, Riga's Black Shaman brothers, an undercover Christian granny, and three unusually energetic Goths. 
It's a tough assignment, but the hope of a life together keeps them fighting.

EXTRACT

The Demon Prince, like all demons, had once been human. He’d been a Handsome man but all manner of evil thoughts and deeds had distorted his face and body. His skin was that of a rotting corpse, maggots and other larvae constantly dropping from it. His mouth hung slack, showing his sharp carnivore’s teeth. Even from this distance I could smell his breath, like a blast of hot air from an abattoir. He was a walking irony of knightly valour in armour made from the nails of his victims. His helmet was a priest’s head, the expression of horror still fixed on it and the eyes still moving. His hands were claws that grasped and pulled everything towards him, he was the embodiment of greed. Nothing that anyone else possessed was safe, especially their souls.  His eyes emitted a black luminescence that darkened all around it. Within his circle it became impossible to think clearly, only to walk towards the inevitable death and enslavement he promised. What else was there in the world? What was the purpose of resisting?
In slow motion, I saw him raise his wand, fashioned from a new-born baby’s arm and point it at Iamo. Thick black sludge solidified and shot towards the monk, my partner, and in that moment I realised that it wasn’t just desire I felt for him. I loved him. I threw myself forward, knocking Iamo sideways and took the full force of the black fireball on my chest but a pale blue lightning bolt leapt between Iamo and the site of the hit, bouncing back towards the Demon Prince, who staggered and fell. The other demons stood bereft. Without their leader to command them they had no will of their own. Only the one who had crawled within touching distance of me was still unstoppable and he sank his rotting, grime-encrusted fangs into my leg.

BUY LINKS




ABOUT AILSA ABRAHAM



Ailsa Abraham writes under two names and is the author of six novels. Alchemy is the prequel to Shaman's Drum, published by Crooked Cat in January 2014. Both are best-sellers in their genres on Amazon.
She has lived in France since 1990, enjoys knitting and crochet and until recently was the oldest Hell's Angel in town. Her interests include campaigning for animal rights, experimenting with different genres of writing and trips back to the UK to visit friends and family. She runs an orphanage for homeless teddy bears and contributes a lot of work to Knit for Africa. She is also addicted to dressing up, saying that she is old enough to know better but too wise to care.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AilsaAbrahamTheAlchemyWriter/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/ailsaabraham
Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6880582.Ailsa_Abraham
Google+ https://plus.google.com/u/0/102947420641875938947/posts/p/pub
Blog: https://wordpress.com/page/ailsaabraham.com/blog
Website: https://wordpress.com/page/ailsaabraham.com
                                                                                                    



GIVEAWAY


On Tour: Mistakes We Make by Jenny Harper


Genre: Contemporary Women’s Fiction
5th book in the Heartlands series (can be read as a standalone)
Release Date: 28 July 2016
Publisher: Accent Press

Sometimes you have to dig deep to discover what you really need.

Marketing events manager Molly Keir doesn’t realise how much she still cares for her ex until she meets him with another woman. Her answer is to seize the chance of a glittering job in London – even though this will mean leaving behind her aging father and pregnant best friend Lexie Gordon.
Adam Blair is in the wrong job. Pressured by his father to join the family law firm, the stress of work helped break his marriage. Now Molly is moving to London, and he knows he needs to move on – but events soon overtake his best intentions.

A year ago, Caitlyn Murray quit her well-paid job to avoid becoming a whistle-blower. Now she is stuck at home with her overworked mother and four needy step-siblings. Tempted by the offer of a good wage, she returns to her old firm – where her nightmare comes back to haunt her.
Molly and Adam seem to have gone too far to recover the love they once had, and when Caitlyn finds the courage to speak out, she brings all their worlds tumbling down.


EXTRACT
Molly Keir rummaged in her handbag and extracted her glasses.
‘Yum, this looks amazing. Scallops, black pudding, Gravadlax, sole paupiettes. Wow. I didn’t realise how ravenous I was till I started reading!’
Lexie whispered, ‘Molly.’
‘Mmm? What do you think about beef?’
Molly.’
Molly looked up at the note of urgency. ‘What?’
Lexie’s face had turned an odd shade, and her brown eyes had a panicky look about them. She was staring over Molly’s shoulder at the doorway.
Molly shoved her glasses back onto the top of her head and swung round. A woman was walking into the room. She was Asian – Indian perhaps? – and classically beautiful. Her hair fell in thick, shiny tresses halfway down her back, her eyes were dark as treacle and dramatically outlined in black. She was wearing scarlet. Afterwards, that was what Molly remembered most – the stunning silky dress, hugging a perfect figure.
For now, the dress and the woman faded improbably into the background because there was a man behind her. Not just any man – Adam Blair.
Molly’s husband.

BUY LINKS


ABOUT JENNY HARPER


I've been a writer for most of my life. I've written and co-authored a number of books on Scotland, a history of childbirth, a children's novel and a romantic novel, all published some years ago. I've now turned my attention to writing the kind of novels I like to read - well written and with some depth, but not literary or too demanding. I like to tackle issues, but also to incorporate the complicated emotional challenges of day-to-day living.






GIVEAWAY
1st Prize – Paperback copy of the book
2nd Prize – ebook copy of the book (x2)