Category Archives: Book promos

#BlogTour #Excerpt #HunterRevenge by Val Penny |@valeriepenny #LoveBooksGroupTours

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book blurb

Hunter by name – Hunter by nature: DI Hunter Wilson will not rest until his friend’s death is avenged.

DI Hunter Wilson is called to the scene of a murder. He is shocked to find the victim is his friend and colleague, George Reinbold.

Who would want to harm the quiet, old man? Why was a book worth £23,000 delivered to him that morning? Why is the security in George’s home so intense?

Hunter must investigate his friend’s past as well as the present to identify George’s killer.

When a new supply of cocaine from Peru floods HMP Edinburgh and the city, the courier leads Hunter to a criminal gang, but Hunter requires the help of his nemesis, the former Chief Constable, Sir Peter Myerscough, and local gangster, Ian Thomson, to make his case.

Hunter’s perseverance and patience are put to the test time after time in this taut crime thriller.

Hunter’s Revenge is the second in Val Penny’s gripping crime series featuring DI Hunter Wilson.

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meet the author

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Val Penny is an American author living in SW Scotland. She has two adult daughters of whom she is justly proud and lives with her husband and two cats. She has a Law degree from Edinburgh University and her MSc from Napier University. She has had many jobs including hairdresser, waitress, lawyer, banker, azalea farmer and lecturer. However she has not yet achieved either of her childhood dreams of being a ballet dancer or owning a candy store. Until those dreams come true, she has turned her hand to writing poetry, short stories and novels.

excerpt

DS Jane Renwick and DC Rachael Anderson make an interesting discovery when they go to pay the hotel where they are holding the blessing of their civil partnership.

Rachael couldn’t think of a time when she and Jane had had so many days off together. It was lovely. Today, they were going to stop by the hotel in Belford Road, where they had chosen to have their blessing.

There were plenty of fancier venues than the three-star Bruce Hotel, in Belford Road, on the banks of the Water of Leith. But this hotel was within easy walking distance of one of Jane’s favourite attractions in the city: The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. Rachael had agreed to the choice because she knew Jane would like guests to be able to visit the gallery if they wanted to.

“Janey, did you notice the hotel has been sold to a different chain?” she asked.

“Yes. I don’t think it will really affect us, but I want to visit and see for myself.”

“May be not, but the chain’s name is totally unpronounceable.”

“The hotel is still called The Bruce Hotel; it’s just the company that owns it which has changed. The hotel still has the same rooms for our guests who are staying over, and the function suite for us. It will be fine!”

“As long as the honeymoon suite is still as nice, that’s all I care about,” Rachael said.

“We’ll check! I want to take another look at the bar and the restaurant and make sure our cake is organised.”

“One fruit tier for you and one chocolate tier for me.”

“Yes, my little peasant.” Jane laughed and pushed open the door to the hotel reception.

“What cheek! But I’m glad we have time off and can do this together, Janey.”

“And guests should get parked easily on the big day.”

***

Jane and Rachael went to reception to ask for the Events Manager. They were both relieved when the same woman they had made all their arrangements with came out to greet them.

“Hello, ladies. Jane and Rachael, isn’t it? Not long to wait now! Are you getting excited?”

“Ooh yes,” Rachael said.

“Your wedding planner has been in touch to finalise access and arrangements, but would you like to see the function suite again? It has been redecorated since our takeover by Gemuetliche Erholung.”

“So that’s how you say it. I’m glad they haven’t changed the name of the hotel,” Rachael smiled.

“That may change, but not yet. Hang on and I’ll just get the rest of my keys.” The lady disappeared into a room behind the reception desk.

“What are you doing, Janey?” Rachael asked.

“Reading the guest forms on the desk,” Jane replied quietly.

“Why?”

“Because I’m a cop and I’m nosey. Look, it seems Lenny The Lizard Pratt is staying here.”

“He must be feeling the cold today, it’s a bit brisk. Doesn’t he live in Malaga with Jamie

Thomson’s mum now?”

“Yes, that must be expensive. From comments the boss has made, I believe Janice is a bit

high-maintenance. But it looks like he’s here today. Lucky us.”

“Look at that notice-board, Janey.”

“Goodness, the General Manager is a Heinrich Reinbold. I wonder if that is a coincidence?”

“The boss doesn’t like coincidences.”

“Neither do I, Rache.”

After looking around the function area and having another look at the luxurious honeymoon suite where they would spend their wedding night, Jane and Rachael joined the Events Manager for coffee in the bar and paid the balance of their bill.

“We are going to have such a fun day, aren’t we, Rache?” Jane said, as the Events Manager

went to get their receipt. “And it is forever?”

“Of course!” Rachael reached out for Jane’s hand, but noticed she was looking towards the far side of the bar. Two men were sitting with their heads close together, whispering.

“You might pay attention to me when I’m being romantic, Janey. Oh, is that Lenny The Lizard you’re looking at?” Rachael asked.

“Ssssh.” Jane moved seats to sit opposite Rachael. “Make it look as if you are taking my picture, but get those men in the shot,” she whispered.

“Well, at least smile.” Rachael took a couple of photos. She could tell that the men in the background never noticed.

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#BlogTour #Promo #TheRockNRollNThat by Steve J. Gill | @HeresGilly #ROCKNROLLNTHAT@fayerogersuk @authoright

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The Rock ‘N’ Roll. ‘N’ That…
by Steven J. Gill

book blurb

“Rock ‘n’ roll is a nuclear blast of reality in a mundane world where no-one is allowed to be magnificent.” The former manager of The Runaways said that. The mad bastard. And Johnny Harrison swore by it. He had to. Almost forty, fully paid up member of the rat race and bored sh*tless. He had to believe in something. Then something happened. Something magnificent. A once in a lifetime band dropped out of the sky and right into his lap. A band unaware of just how great they could be. A band that had no idea what was about to hit them. A band that needed someone to light the fuse. That someone was Johnny Harrison and the truth was he needed them so much more. They were his ticket out. That’s how it is with THE ROCK ‘N’ THE ROLL. ‘N’ THAT. Buy your ticket and take the ride.

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43531300-the-rock-n-roll-n-that

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Rock-Roll-That-Steven-Gill-ebook/dp/B07K8PMQ91

meet the author

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Steven J. Gill is from  Manchester, living just south of the city centre.

This is his first book. Previously, his writing work was limited to music and football fanzines.

He has had quite the varied career, ranging from finance, delivering enterprise days to schools, undertaker and. driver.

A self-confessed cats, coats and Beatles obsessive.

Very much in right time and right place in the early 80’s and 90’s and duly devoured all that the Manchester music scene had to offer. Talked a lot of nonsense and managed  a couple of bands that never unite made it big. Sings like a donkey braying into a bucket but a very good musical ear would be a fitting epitaph…

Having had somewhat of a literary epiphany at the inaugural Festival No.6 in North Wales, Steven decided it was time to set to and get writing. ‘The Rock ‘n’ The Roll. ‘ N” That…’  is the fruit of these labours.”

As some Scouse pop genius once opined, “it took me years to write, so won’t you take a look…”

social links
Website: http://www.stevenjgill.co.uk

Twitter: https://twitter.com/HeresGilly

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/stevenj.gill/

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

FIVE REASONS WHY READERS SHOULD READ YOUR BOOK by Steven J. Gill

1) Escapism into something that we all hear about and don’t always savour any further than listening to or going to gigs.

2) I’d like to think it’s both funny and gritty with an eye on the foibles of middle age. Anyone with an interest in music and has hit 40 will appreciate the underlying issues and themes.

3) They’ll both love and hate the characters. They are not one dimensional and are flawed in some instances and you’ll identify when they make a wrong decision but hopefully empathise at the the same time.

4) The artwork is brilliant and it’ll look great on your bookcase!

5) And lastly, you’ll make a middle aged man very happy if both read and enjoy this book. As some Scouse pop genius once opined, “it took me years to write, so won’t you take a look..”

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#BlogTour #Promo #TheMonumentalSecret by Julian Doyle |#MonumentalSecret @fayerogersuk @authoright

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The Monumental Secret of the Crucifixion by Julian Doyle

Genre: Non-Fiction

Page Count: 217

Publisher: Chippenham Books

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41968402-the-monumental-secret-of-the-crucifixion

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Monumental-Secret-Crucifixion-Julian-Doyle-ebook/dp/B07D6LSTF8

book blurb

Throughout the history of Christianity there have been those claiming a monumental secret. Often centered around the Church of St. Sulpice in Paris and associated with French esoteric circles like Debussy who wrote in a review:

“Perhaps it’s to destroy that scandalous legend that Jesus Christ died on the cross.”

But even Canon Alfred Lilley came back from St. Sulpice questioning the crucifixion. There must have been some documentation in the church that convinced these people of something portentous. BUT now searching links between the history of Rome and the latest Biblical research, we finally reveal the extraordinary facts that prove exactly what the monumental secret was and its validity making the revaluation of Christianity, as we knew it, inevitable.

meet the author

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JULIAN DOYLE is the editor of ‘Life of Brian’ and is also one of the world’s most versatile filmmakers. He has written and directed his own films, and edited, photographed and created Fx on others. He is most famous for editing the Monty Python Films and shooting the Fxs for Terry Gilliam’s movies ‘TimeBandits and ‘Brazil’, which he also edited.

He has written and directed three feature films. ‘Love Potion’ about a drug rehabilitation centre, described as Hitchcockian. ‘Chemical Wedding’ featuring Simon Callow about the outrageous British occultist, Aleister Crowley and described by one American reviewer as ‘Thoroughly entertaining although at times you wonder if the film makers have not lost all there senses’. He has also directed award winning pop videos such as Kate Bush’s ‘CloudBusting’ featuring Donald Sutherland and Iron Maiden’s ‘Play With Madness’.

He recently wrote and directed the play ‘Twilight of the Gods’ investigating the tumultuous relationship between Richard Wagner and Friedrich Nietzsche and described by ‘Philosophy Today’ as ‘Masterful!’ the film version now being used as a teaching aid in US Universities.

Julian was born in London and started life in the slums of Paddington. His Irish father, Bob, was one of the youngest members of the International Brigade that went to fight against Franco’s invasion of democratic Spain. His mother, Lola, was born in Spain of an Asturian miner who died early of silicosis. She was thereafter brought up in a Catholic orphanage in Oviedo.

Julian started his education at St. Saviours, a church primary school. He went on to Haverstock secondary school, one of the first comprehensive schools in England. His first job was as a junior technician to Professor Peter Medawar’s team, which won the Nobel Prize soon after Julian’s arrival. Not that he claims any credit for that. At night school he passed his ‘A’ level exams and took a Zoology degree at London University. After a year at the Institute of Education, he taught biology before going to the London Film School. On leaving he started a film company with other students. Besides film making, Julian is well known for his Master-classes in Film Directing.

Monty Python’s Terry Jones described Julian as a Polymath.

While still at school, Julian had a daughter, Margarita who was brought up in the family. He then had two further children, Jud and Jessie.

Website: http://www.juliandoyle.info

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#BlogTour #Excerpt #SevenDeadlySwords by Peter Sutton |@Suttope  @Kristell_Ink ‏   #Lovebooksgrouptours

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book blurb

For every sin, a sword

For every sword, a curse

For every curse, a death

Reymond joined the Crusades to free the Holy Land from the Saracens and win glory for himself. Instead, with six others, he found himself bound under a sorcerer’s curse: the Seven Sins personified. Doomed to eternal life and with the weight of the deaths he has caused dragging his soul into the torments of hell, Reymond must find his former brothers-in-arms and defeat them. Riding across a thousand years of history, the road from Wrath to Redemption will be deadly…

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excerpt

The 7 awaited the call. Each had been shriven, each had prepared as best they could for the day. Reymond prayed fervently, while his stomach cramped and a knot of tension crawled up his back. His skin itched. The damn sand got everywhere. He was always irritable before a battle. He hated the waiting. He hated the fighting too, but at least he was good at that part. He reflected that it was only his outward appearance that seemed cool and collected and this was why he’d been renamed Patience. It was not a fitting name, not before a battle.

Especially not when there was no real plan. There were no siege engines at Ma’Arra. The crusaders were expected to run towards the city, climb over the debris into the killing ground and up rickety ladders onto the walls. It seemed the men in charge thought the defenders wouldn’t put up much of a fight.

The 7 were assigned to a squad in the second wave. Could have been worse, could have been better. It meant they’d run over the corpses of the first wave. Each of the 7 waited in his own way; some prayed, some paced, some rested. Reymond may have appeared to be resting but inside his thoughts raced.

The commander for the attack on this section of wall, a noble Reymond didn’t know, asked them to get ready. He had thought he’d be with Curthose, but somehow they were separated from their old command.

It wouldn’t be long now. The men who rested now stood, preparing to run at the wall, in baking heat under heavy armour.

The command was given. Reymond started slowly, neck and neck with the others, but sped up to make the shelter of the ring of debris around the wall. He panted and chafed; deep damp patches spread beneath the armour making it even more uncomfortable.

Broken carts, furniture, doors, even dead animals had been stacked haphazardly. At this barrier the crusaders were at the outer limit of the range of arrows. Reymond looked up and across, his eyes followed the first wave. A fraction of the men who had set off in the charge had made the wall. There were many corpses.

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

This tour was organised and hosted by

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#BlogTour #Excerpt #TheBloodOfKings by Angela King | #AngelaKing    #LoveBooksGroupTours 

We have the privilege of kicking Angela Kings tour off for The Blood of Kings.

After getting a sneak peek at the excerpt I only wish I could have squeezed in a review, but at least I get to add it to the TBR list (it may have been bumped up a few spaces!)

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book blurb

A gripping story of heartache and intrigue 1559. A girl arrives in London to search for her brother.

Aalia, an awkward, arrogant teenager plans to bring William to his senses, until she discovers that both their lives are based on a lie.

Aalia must unravels a web of secrets but has the weight of her past to contend with.

Courageous and undisciplined, Aalia gradually comes to terms with the truth that William, her brother, has royal blood.

Deciding to undermine the men who want to use him as a pawn, Aalia must negotiate a world where secrecy arms the powerful. But unwilling to ask for anyone’s help she is forced into making a fateful decision.

Who can she trust when everyone around her is plotting? Is the truth really something worth dying for?

This epic story of secrets and betrayal paints a vivid picture of Elizabethan England and asks questions that span beyond the test of time.

meet the author

Angela King is a mum, daughter, gran and wife. She writes and lives in Cumbria, in a rosy sandstone cottage where past and present meet in glorious chaos. After a lifetime making stories come to life for other people she decided to make some of her own.

 

buy links

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excerpt

Sanctuary – taken from the 3rd Disclosure

Torches flared as stragglers hiding from curfew joined them in the alley. Aalia kicked at a stumped pile of rags and a furry bag of bones jumped to its feet, wagging what was left of its tail. Beneath its filthy paws the rags shifted to exhume a human face, crusted with age and scowling.

‘You could have brought me supper.’ The beggar reached out a filthy hand.

‘All we’ve left is olives and you never suffered such delicacies.’

Aalia bent to stroke his dog.

‘Last time we met you owned two legs?’

‘A matter of expedience and besides…’ The man shuffled awkwardly, tossing aside the rags. ‘Able men don’t beg.’

‘And there was I hoping we could walk through the city together. I’m tired of boats and water and you promised to show me your home Tom.’

The beggar stretched, leaning his buckled frame hard against the wall.

‘London’s changed beyond my knowing. Everyone’s afraid, wondering what this next queen will bring. Nobody dares speak their mind… and I’d forgotten what it’s like to be cold.’

Georgiou helped sift through the rags until they found a scrap large enough to make a rough cape. He’d known Tom almost as long as he’d known Aalia. Being William’s devoted servant he never left his side, happy to serve in whatever role was needed, whipping boy to guardian angel.

Georgiou held his old friend’s arm.

‘It’s good to see you my friend.’

Tom’s walnut face was deeper incised and his soft brown eyes doused of their usual fire.

‘And it warms my heart to welcome you both. William’s biding his time, quietly gaining support. You’d hardly recognise him… dressed like an Englishman.’

‘Perhaps he’s changed his mind?’ Georgiou spoke gently. ‘Now England has a new queen?’

Aalia laughed. ‘William isn’t dallying with a new hobby but truly believes he’s fulfilling his rightful destiny! The Jesuit, did he know it, woke a dragon not a lion.’

Tom rattled his begging bowl as a passing stranger spat and then pulled Aalia into the shadows and swore.

‘Better whisper such things in Urdu. William’s stirring sedition.’

‘The streets are not safe?’ Aalia bowed her head meekly.

‘We are not safe. Understand this… William pursues a highly contentious path and unless we tread carefully we risk being condemned by association. Give them cause and an English court will bay for hanging… if we’re lucky. Remember they like a good burning because beheading’s reserved for the rich, not nameless bastards like you and me.’

‘Or William?’ Aalia took Tom’s filthy hands and laced them in her supple fingers.

‘Especially William.’ He whispered, levelling her stare.

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#12DaysOfClinkStreet – #Excerpt #Hit by P.S. Bridge | @authoright @fayerogersuk

Welcome to the 12 Days of Clink Street!

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Hit by P. S. Bridge

Hit

Title: Hit (Mark King #1)

Author: P. S. Bridge

Release Date: 27th July 2017

Genre: Thriller

Page Count: 300

Publisher: Clink Street Publishing

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35492995-hit

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Hit-P-S-Bridge-ebook/dp/B071G9Y6HL

book blurb

A terrorist threat, a sinister organisation, and a threat to the security of the free world.

Renowned British lawyer and Sandhurst military academy dropout, Mark Lucas King is assigned the case of his career: to prosecute known terrorist Mohammed Al-Azidi.

All King wants is justice and to do his job successfully. But his peaceful life is shattered when a team of merciless hitmen targets him and his family and the court case collapses. Framed for assault and suspected of his wife’s murder, King must leave his legal career behind and go back to his old career as a British Army sniper in order to catch those responsible and hold them to account. Mark King’s brand of justice doesn’t involve a court room.

Forced to battle against highly trained hitmen to clear his name, King discovers that a sinister organisation known as Invictus Advoca is operating behind the scenes. What is their connection to him and the Al-Azidid case?

As the hunt for those responsible takes him far across Europe, can Mark unravel the mysteries that shroud this secretive organisation and peel back the layers to discover why he and his family have found themselves the target of professional hitmen?

Time is not on Mark King’s side as he races to prevent a global terror threat, discover who killed his wife, and find out who wants him dead, and why.

excerpt

Prologue

Syria, Three months ago

Two black Agusta A109 Grand helicopters surveyed the landscape as they hurtled towards the rendezvous point just south of their current location. They cut through the air, flying low, and kicked up clouds of smoke as they landed just opposite a stone building, one of the few still standing after the destruction of the previous few days. Seven heavily armed men got out, wearing scarfs to cover their faces against the flying dust and dirt as they hurried towards the building away from the rush and noise of the rotor blades downdraft. A young man, dressed as if ready for battle, got out wearing a scarf over his lower face, and Aviator sunglasses. He was carrying a small black Heckler & Koch MP5-K sub-machine gun, and he had a large Kabar army knife, sheathed in his belt. He checked his silver Rolex watch and looked around him to make sure they had not been intercepted or followed. The other armed men stood on guard either side of the doorway of the stone building as he marched through the doorway and into the darkness. Two guards then stood guard in the doorway, gripping their AK-47s tightly.

The convoy of yellowish brown four-by-fours kicked up clouds of dust as they rumbled through the war-torn brown landscape, destroyed by drone attacks and Syrian airstrikes.

Twenty-two months of war had transformed the once thriving town into a barren, derelict wasteland. From his window, MI6 agent Nathanial Williams scoured the ruined buildings behind a pair of Aviators in shock at the utter devastation which had been wreaked on this town, only days before.

The convoy rumbled on its dusty journey as the attaché from the National Defence Force’s Government counterinsurgency force spoke in Syrian to the interpreter sat next to Agent Williams, pointing out key stronghold positions which were active only days before their arrival.

At night, it was a no-go area for anyone, with militia still trying actively to recoup lost ground. The surrounding hills, once inviting, were now foreboding and scarred where mortar shells and artillery shelling had burst upon its surface, causing it to resemble the surface of the moon.

‘We capture this town two days ago. Much killing here. Syrian air force they try to drive back insurgent militia until drone strike.’

Williams turned suddenly.

‘Wait, what, a drone strike did all this damage?’ he asked, shocked at what the interpreter said.

The attaché, a man in his mid-forties who didn’t speak English, looked confused at Williams. Williams, forgetting the need for the interpreter, apologised and turned to the interpreter, asking the same question for him to ask the attaché. He waited patiently for the response.

‘Young boys used play football here. “Middle class” people meet and cook dinner, listen to music all night long. Gone now,’ he relayed to Williams.

The interpreter pointed down the road and waved his arm around.

‘He say cedar trees used grow along all three side,’ he translated as he waited for the attaché to continue.

‘No more. Taken for firewood.’

Williams shook his head in disbelief. He had worked mainly in Europe and this was his first time in a war zone.

The interpreter patted him on the arm to get his attention. Williams’ attention was taken away to huts, lining the roadside, with their tin roofs stripped off, probably to be used by the swathes of refugees who either passed through here or moved from here to escape the approaching onslaught.

‘He says drone strikes like this happen all of time. He said western governments, mostly Americans, they know when Al-

Azidi meets his commanders and they target him two days ago.’

Agent Williams nodded and turned back to look out of the window before their driver, also with the National Defence Force, and dressed in National Defence Force uniform, motioned that they had arrived. Williams jumped out first, his weapon at the ready. The group, made up of six men, mostly from the National Defence Force and one agent, Todd Greamer, from the CIA, huddled together next to the lead vehicle, out of sight of the stone building ten feet away.

‘Right, I want two at the back, two to provide cover fire and Greamer and I will go in the front,’ he commanded in an authoritative, Scottish tone. Greamer nodded, and the interpreter relayed the message to their attaché. Williams rolled his eyes, frustrated with the language barrier and Greamer laughed silently, shaking his head. Williams waited until they were all clear on what to do and they crept out from behind the vehicle towards the building.

Within seconds, they were met by a volley of automatic gunfire and dived for cover, shouting instructions at each other as the bullets bounced off the dry, crumbled stone around them. There were few areas of cover out here and Williams’ heart beat faster. He had been separated from his interpreter and attaché and he looked desperately around for Greamer, who had found cover alongside a pile of rock further up the road.  Greamer nodded to him and Williams nodded back, motioning that he thought there were eight or more men inside.

With a keen and well trained eye, he noticed several men exit the rear of the building on foot, towards a Jeep, whose driver was already looking panicked.

‘Looks like we interrupted your meeting, Azidi,’ Williams said aloud as he motioned for Greamer to follow him. The two men managed only a few steps before one of those fleeing turned and opened fire on them. Williams and Greamer scattered, avoiding the bullets ripping up the ground between them. They were back on track in seconds but the Jeep was mobile and heading off among a cloud of dust and smoke. Williams could hear gunfire back at the building behind them and ran towards the lead vehicle in their convoy. He jumped in and started the engine, wheel spinning into the dust as he thundered after Azidi’s vehicle.

Azidi opened fire on them vigorously from the back of the Jeep and Williams threw the steering wheel left and right, swerving to avoid the hail of automatic fire. His windscreen was hit and Williams, in the panic, flung the wheel round sharply to the left, hitting a rock, causing the four-by-four to crash over onto its side as the engine emitted plumes of smoke. There was a satisfied cheer from the Jeep as it quickly vanished out of sight toward the Lebanese mountains. The pursuing vehicles, realising Williams’ plan and having given chase, screeched to a halt at the side of the overturned vehicle. The wheels were still spinning, and the engine was over-revving, smoke billowing out from the undercarriage. Williams was hurt, not badly but enough to draw blood, and he scrambled out of the passenger window which was facing the sky, covered in blood and dirt, looking beaten but OK.

Greamer grabbed his arm and helped to haul him from the wreckage and clear of the vehicle in case the fuel tank had ruptured. It was a good call from Greamer, for as they staggered away from it, the entire vehicle erupted into flames. The men threw themselves at the ground as the shock wave and heat from the fuel tank hit them like a tsunami, throwing them forward. Williams was the first to put his head up, spitting blood and dust as he checked around for everyone else. Greamer was cut but otherwise unharmed. Everyone seemed OK, breathless, but alive. Williams got up and kicked the stones in frustration.

‘I HAD HIM!’ he shouted to Greamer, who was walking towards him reloading his weapon and looking around for snipers.

‘I bloody had him!’ he cried again at Greamer. Greamer nodded as he handed Williams his water tank, which Williams drank from excessively and wiped his sweat-laden, dirty forehead.

‘Don’t worry man, there’ll be another opportunity to get the bastard!’ Greamer reassured Williams before checking the horizon to see the rush of vehicles coming towards them.

‘C’mon man, we gotta get outta here,’ he warned.

Williams agreed and Greamer patted Williams’ back in support as the group ran back to their vehicles. Williams jumped in the front passenger seat, his weapon ready. Greamer jumped in the drivers’ seat and handed his AR-15 tactical defence rifle to Williams. Williams took it and held it at the ready as Greamer wheel-spun the vehicle around and headed off back in the direction they had come. None of them were happy at getting so close to Mohammed Al-Azidi and letting him get away.

An hour later, Williams and Greamer were at a camp where they had spent most of the night before planning their assault on Azidi and gathering intelligence on where his cell would meet next. It had taken months of planning to get to this stage and Williams was angry and disappointed. He spoke quietly but firmly to his associate.

‘We have to report to London immediately. I need you to go to pick up the Azidi trail and report directly when you have a confirmed sighting,’ he ordered.

His associate, a younger agent, nodded and left the tent, leaving Williams to pack the rest of his gear, before heading out to the airport.

 

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#BlogTour #TheStoryAfterUs by Fiona Perrin | @fionaperrin @lovebooksgroup #LoveBooksGroupTours

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book blurb

Sometimes the end is just the beginning…

If she tries very hard, Ami can remember when she used to have a dynamic and exciting career and a husband who she loved more than life itself, and who was equally smitten with her…

Now she has two children, a terrifyingly large mortgage, and no idea who she has become – or why she and her husband can’t even be in the same room anymore.

With life as she knew it in tatters around her, Ami is heartbroken, and in no way pulling off ‘consciously uncoupling’ like a celeb. But she’s starting to wonder if she just might come out the other side and be… happier?

As funny as Helen Fielding, as poignantly touching as Marian Keyes, Fiona Perrin’s dazzling debut is a story that is as much about finding out who you really are again, as it is about the exhausting balancing act of motherhood. Unmissable for women everywhere.

Buy Link


                https://amzn.to/2Rka46H

meet the author

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Fiona was a journalist and copywriter before building a career as a sales and marketing director in industry. Having always written, she completed the Curtis Brown Creative Writing course before writing The Story After Us

As a mother and stepmother to four teenagers while holding down a fairly full-on job, she wanted to write grown-up commercial fiction about messy, modern love and families – with all their heartbreak, humour and hope. 

She grew up in Cornwall, hung out for a long time in London and then Hertfordshire, and now she writes as often as possible from her study overlooking the sea at the end of the Lizard Peninsula, back in Cornwall. She’s currently there, writing her second novel for Aria.  

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excerpt

Chapter 1

2017

Lars left me late on a Sunday afternoon in January. He threw a couple of bags into his car and drove off with a puff of smoke that could have been drawn by Walt Disney.

I stood at the top of the steps of our north London house as he disappeared around the corner of the road. I felt as if I were looking down at a sobbing thirty-seven-year-old brunette rather than that I actually was her. There was an overwhelming sense that, after ten years, it was Just Me Again.

But, of course, it wasn’t – now I had the kids. I rushed inside and threw cold water over my face at the kitchen sink, drying myself with a tea towel before I opened the door of the playroom. Four-year-old Finn and six-year-old Tessa were sitting on the sofa, frightened by the rowing and confused by the fact that they were allowed to watch a DVD when the rule was only an hour of screen time a day and that was when I needed to moan and drink wine.

‘Is everything OK, Mummy?’ Finn asked, walking over to kiss me. ‘Jemima’s coming to my party on Saturday. She’s my girlfriend and so is Tallulah. I’m going to marry both of them.’

‘You can only marry one person,’ scoffed his sister. ‘Can’t you, Mummy?’

‘Well,’ I said.

‘Except for Henry VIII,’ said Tess, whose special topic at school this term was the fat, monastery-burning Tudor. ‘When he went off his wives he chopped off their heads. You could chop off Jemima’s head and then marry Tallulah.’

‘But Jemima’s got lovely yellow hair,’ said Finn, clutching me.

‘You’d still have her hair if she was dead. You could keep her head in a corner.’

‘That’s enough, Tess.’ My daughter’s current favourite game was burying dolls in graves in the back garden and topping them with twigs. She also spent quite a lot of time on the floor pretending to be a corpse.

‘Daddy might not be back in time for your party,’ I said in a mock-cheerful voice. ‘He’s got to go away for work again.’ In fact, Lars missing his son’s birthday party had been the reason we’d had the enormous row that afternoon when he’d said he was leaving me and our marriage for good.

‘Oh dear,’ said Finn, who was very used to his father being away for his web business.

‘Can we watch another DVD?’ said Tess, who could spot a weak chink in adult armour a mile off.

I put my head into Finn’s neck so that they couldn’t see my face. ‘Yes,’ I said. How would they cope if we really were getting divorced? I worried so much about the impact all our recent rows were having on them; Tess was already really macabre and splitting with her father for good could only make that worse.

I wanted to crawl under my duvet and stay there in the foetal position, but it was approaching Sunday evening. I needed to do what every other family was doing: find PE kits, pack lunches, move miserably towards Monday while still mourning Saturday.

I rang Liv. ‘It’s the worst row we’ve ever had,’ I said, ‘and he says he’s divorcing me.’ She immediately said she’d come round. Then, like a robot, I made fish fingers, gave Tess and Finn a bath, packed their school bags, put them to bed and read them The Cat in the Hat, making an extra effort with my snarky Cat voice.

‘It’s you,’ I said. ‘Thing One and Thing Two,’ and they giggled. After that I poured myself a giant glass of red wine and waited for Liv on the sitting-room sofa, rocking back and forwards, as I relived the last few hours.

*

‘That’s it. We’re getting divorced,’ Lars shouted. It was raining outside. He stuffed paperwork – bills, bank statements – from the kitchen dresser into a bag. I wanted to pull his shirt, tug him so he couldn’t move any more, but instead I just stood and cried.

The argument started because Lars claimed that I hadn’t told him the right date of Finn’s birthday party until it was too late to reorganise his trip to Russia.

It could, however, have been about anything – our arguments had been getting worse over the last few months, despite our going to marriage guidance counselling. They were always about one thing: how Lars spent so much time away for work and less and less time with us, his family.

I knew I’d told him about the party being on the afternoon of Finn’s birthday on Saturday. And why was it my job to remind him of stuff like that anyway?

‘I thought it was on the Sunday and I was going to be back for his birthday evening on Saturday. It’s obviously a mix-up but it’s too late now,’ Lars said. ‘I’ve got to go to Russia.’

‘But we’ve got the Animal Man coming and we’ve sent out all the invitations.’

‘Who’s the Animal Man?’

‘Who do you think he is? He’s a man with animals. Guinea pigs, God knows. He’s the entertainer.’ I sat down at the kitchen table and put my head in my hands. Then I took a deep breath. ‘Are you going to tell Finn?’

‘I’ll tell him the trip’s been booked for weeks and at least he’ll understand. Which is more than you do.’

‘It’s your son’s fifth birthday, Lars. For once, please put your family first. Come to his birthday party.’

‘I’ll be there as soon as I get back from the airport. I’ll still see him on his birthday.’

‘The party will be over by then.’

‘Ami, he’ll have other birthdays, with bigger and better parties. I’ll be at those instead.’

‘The trouble is you know damn well you won’t. You should stop pretending you’ll ever change because we both know it’s bullshit.’

My marriage had turned me into a person who spat out bile like rancid water from a gargoyle. Loving him so much had turned me into someone hateful.

‘That’s it,’ he shouted. ‘I’ve had enough. You go on and on about how bad your life is – so let’s just forget it, shall we? We’ll get divorced and you won’t have to tell me how awful I am to this family all the time.’

We’d both used the ‘D’ word before in the heat of the moment, but still it seemed impossible to me that it would ever happen.

‘How can it be a family when you’re hardly here?’ I whispered. ‘Even when you’re here you’re somewhere else in your head.’

‘I’m thinking about a future for you and the kids. But that’s not good enough for you, is it?’

‘What I want is for us to be equal. I’ve got a business to run too.’ That Monday, I was booked to see the finance director of the tiny advertising agency I’d set up the previous year and I knew he was going to tell me that my balance sheet was looking decidedly unbalanced.

I asked, ‘Lars, do you still love me?’ but he didn’t answer, just ran up the stairs two at a time and threw his clothes into suitcases. I thought I could cope with most things, but I didn’t know whether I could face the fact that he no longer loved me.

He turned from the open wardrobe door and said very quietly, ‘It’s not about whether we love each other any more – that’s not enough.’ This was somehow worse than shouting.

‘Please don’t go,’ I said, following him to the bedroom doorway. I hated myself for my lack of dignity in begging him to stay.

‘I can’t stand it – all we ever do is argue.’

‘We can try…’ I couldn’t carry on with this half-a-marriage, but could I stand to see him finally go?

‘We’ve tried everything.’ His voice was as wintery as the day outside. ‘It’s time to stop trying. I’m leaving, Ami, and I’m leaving for good.’

He said it firmly, as he always did when he’d made a decision.

He carried the bags outside and into the boot of his car, light semi-frozen rain coming down on his white-blond hair so that it stuck to his face. Then he opened the car door, jumped in and drove off.

He was gone and this time it looked as if there was no going back.

*

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#BlogTour #Excerpt #BelfastCentral by A.K. Amherst | @amherst_ak #Lovebooksgrouptours 

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book blurb
Belfast 1993: A nocturnal ambulance service at the Belfast Central Station almost turns deadly for the young paramedic Ryan. In the crosshairs of the IRA, he is badly wounded and wakes up in the hospital with muddled memories. The police close the case fast, leaving too many burning questions unanswered. Most importantly, who was that old man who appeared at the scene out of nowhere and saved Ryan’s life? Not fully recovered yet, Ryan begins searching for the mysterious man, only to get dragged into a feud between opposing paramilitaries – with fatal consequences…

A thrilling story about fates in 20th century Northern Ireland.

Buy Link

meet the author
 
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Born and raised in Austria, A.K. Amherst travelled the world from a young age. This influenced her writing, which relates to history and cultures of foreign countries. Intensive research is part of her job, and she really loves her job. You want to be taken into another setting and experience life from a different angle? Then Amherst is the writer for you.

There is a more detailed author bio on my website if you need it longer, but I prefer to keep it short 😉

Link to author bio “longer version”:

 http://akamherst.com/aboutme/

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@amherst_ak

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excerpt
Belfast 1993
We arrive at the train station within a few minutes. There are no parking lots in front of the station,
so I park behind the police car on the bus track.
We reach the main entrance, but it’s closed.
‘There has to be another way in,’ Jarvis says.
A staircase links the main road with the station’s parking lot, which is situated a bit lower. Jarvis
starts running. I follow him.
There’s a side entrance leading from the parking lot into the building. The glass door was
smashed.
As we enter the train station, I feel unease.
‘Hello?’ Jarvis yells. ‘Is somebody here?’
Jarvis’s voice echoes off the walls. No answer.
What if nobody answers because everyone is dead already?
I swallow hard. ‘Maybe we should wait for the police reinforcement.’
‘Wait? For a patient with a gun wound, every second counts.’
Jarvis runs up the stairs and into the entrance hall. A police officer is lying there on the floor. The
way he’s positioned only leaves one possible conclusion: he is dead.
Jarvis kneels next to him, looking for a pulse. He then turns to me and shakes his head.
The poor fellow definitely had a partner. It would be wrong not to search for him. We have to keep
going. I pass Jarvis and the dead officer and enter the main hall. Two long corridors lead to the
platforms.
Jarvis stands behind me. I can hear him breathe, smell his aftershave.
‘We split. In case you find somebody, let me know over the radio,’ he says and runs down the
right corridor to platforms three and four.
‘Hello? Hello!’ he yells.
On the way to the left corridor, I pass the toilets and stop abruptly. It’s just a notion – a sensation.
I’m proven right. There’s someone in the toilets. A man is sitting on the floor, leaning against the
wall. Above his head is a box filled with paper towels.
The man is unconscious. He was shot in the stomach and had tried to stop the bleeding with the
paper towels. His gun lies beside him.
I kneel next to him. ‘Sir? Can you hear me? Sir?’ I grip the radio on my shoulder. ‘Jarvis. Men’s
toilet, now.’
‘I’m on my way,’ Jarvis’s voice sounds through the speaker.
The wounded man opens his eyes. Fear, hope, pain. I open my emergency backpack. ‘I’m going
to help you. Don’t worry.’ I cut open his blood-soaked shirt with scissors.
He grabs me by the collar. ‘Police,’ he moans.
I press a cloth to his stomach to control the bleeding. ‘Calm down, sir. The police are on their
way.’
Jarvis rushes through the door. There’s a shadow behind him. A shot rings out. Jarvis falls to the
ground. His empty eyes stare at me. From his head wound, blood spreads to the floor. I crawl
backwards.
The shooter is a police officer. He aims his gun at me and pulls the trigger.
It feels like someone rammed a torch into my chest. It burns fiercely. The blood on my fingers
can’t be mine, can it? The bang of the shots still rings in my ears. Behind me, the tile wall feels
cold. I gasp for breath. My vision flickers. Next to the shooter sits the wounded man on the floor,
still leaning against the wall. His eyes are as lifeless as Jarvis’.
Tears and fatigue. I close my eyes.
The next shot is fired. I flinch. Footsteps. Hands on my chest. I look into a wrinkled face; green
eyes look back at me. The old man calls for help over my radio. The answer is a mix of words and
noise.
That won’t save me. At least the excruciating pain will stop soon. I try to think of one last nice
thought. Nothing comes to my mind.
The old man says something. It sounds like the babble of a child.
Something drags me under. An abyss. Silence. Darkness.
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#BlogTour #CalculatedContagion by K.T. Lee | @KTLeeWrites   #LoveBooksGroupTours  

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book blurb
Dani Christensen is a vaccine researcher who has spent her career proving she is more than just the daughter of the company’s CEO. However, as her accomplishments in contagious disease research grow, the wrong people begin to notice. When Dani is isolated from her colleagues at a well-regarded conference in Europe, she is kidnapped and taken to an isolated camp in the Carpathian Mountains.

CIA officers Cam Mitchell and Tyler Scott are sent to observe a suspicious group of armed men in rural Romania. When Cam sees Dani being brought into the camp against her will, he and his partner rescue her and bring her safely back to the United States. The CIA initially believes Dani was kidnapped for ransom, but they soon realize her kidnapper has followed her back to her lab. Now, the CIA must work with their allies in the FBI to catch Dani’s kidnapper before he releases a potentially deadly contagion for his own political gain.

Calculated Contagion is Book 2 in the Calculated Series. All books in the Calculated Series may be enjoyed as standalone novels or as a series.  

Buy Link

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meet the author

K.T. Lee is a writer, mom and engineer who grew up on a steady diet of books from a wide variety of genres. When K.T. began to write the kind of books she wanted to read, she mixed clever women and the sciences with elements from thrillers (and a dash of romance) to create The Calculated Series.

Social Links:

Twitter: @ktleewrites

Instagram: @ktleeauthor

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ktleewrites

Website: https://ktleeauthor.com/

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excerpt

Calculated Contagion 

“Romania?” Cam Mitchell looked up from the small stack of papers, tucked into a standard issue manila file folder, at Morgan Grady. Cam had worked for Morgan in the euphemistically-named Special Operations Group at the CIA for five years, and their interactions had been long been stripped of decorum in favor of results. He never knew what to expect when she summoned him to her office, but a quiet country in Eastern Europe wasn’t exactly on his radar.

“Yes, Romania. You, of all people, should know crazy isn’t limited by geographic area,” Morgan volleyed back, arching her eyebrows. Her short, highlighted blonde hair was as neatly styled as her trademark suits. Morgan had fought to get him on her SOG team because she saw his potential in both linguistics and field work, and they’d been tight ever since. Morgan was just over five feet tall and as tough as any Navy officer Cam had ever served under. She was also good people.

“Fair point. But why is the US jumping on this, Morgan?”

“We’re getting some unusual reports about a group in the mountains we believe is armed and growing. We have a small presence in the country and have agreed to offer military and diplomatic help if it’s needed. Some of our people in the field have sent some issues up the flagpole, so we’re going to look into it. How fresh is your Romanian?”

“It’s a Romance language, ma’am. Shouldn’t take me more than twenty-four hours to brush up if the analysts got the dialect right,” Cam said, not looking up from the packet.

“They usually do. A day is about all you have. We don’t know much beyond the facts that they’re assembling and we’ve seen weapons in the satellite photos. A small group of men came down from their camp to get treatment at a local hospital, which was when we first got an inkling something was off. We’ve gone through the normal channels and haven’t come up with much. The satellite images might be useful, but no promises. Obviously, we’d prefer they remain unaware of your visit.” Morgan slid a satellite photo across her desk to Cam.

“About 500 men and women?” Cam asked, studying the size of the camp.

“That’s our best guess. All of the people we’ve been able to trace back to the camp have been men. We don’t know if they have women there or not. We just want to know what they are up to. If they are just a bunch of Romanian hippies starting a commune, we can leave them alone. If they’re building up a small army, we have a slightly different protocol.”

“Good thing we got the new leg finished,” Cam said, knocking on the hard, composite material, his tone no less objective than it would be if he was talking about a new weapon. Cam had lost his left leg below the knee in Iraq, but thanks to modern technology and some customizations he had insisted upon, he managed well. The injury had been in a previous life, when he was a SEAL trying to locate an enemy hiding among civilians. On his way back to the base, he got hit by an IED. It was a shit-all thing to happen, but he’d been lucky to escape with his life and most of his knee intact. Cam’s leg still occasionally caused him pain, but on his good days, it was a reminder of what drove him, rather than a hindrance. Working with the CIA had restored his sense of purpose that had felt too distant during the long and excruciating days of rehabilitation.

“If you hadn’t worked so hard to break the first three we gave you, you wouldn’t need a new one,” Morgan said, beaming at Cam like a proud parent. The Special Operations Group at the CIA had been relentless when he joined up, testing him regularly to ensure he was physically prepared to be in the field. Cam passed the physical exams easily, but the design team for his custom prosthetic hadn’t been prepared for his capabilities. Cam invested months with the design team, helping them figure out how to improve the mechanical response system and interface with his actual leg. A few revisions and some expensive material changes later, Cam had a new, stronger lower leg. It was time well spent, since other wounded servicemen and servicewomen would benefit from their sweat equity. Pushing himself to try and break the design before it was out in the field resulted in changes that made it unquestionably strong.

“You’re welcome. Your nerds did a good job. Now it’ll hold up in terrain more rugged than city streets,” Cam responded, unable to fully mask the pride of ownership in the design.

“Here are the rest of the satellite images,” Morgan said, handing him an additional stack of photos. He slid them into the folder, behind the rest of the background information. “You leave in four hours. We’re going to drop you about five miles away and you’ll have to hike the rest of the way in.”

“Is Tyler driving?” Tyler was Cam’s best friend, partner and helicopter pilot. They’d had each other’s backs since he started in the SOG, and Morgan kept the two officers together as much as possible. Their results spoke for themselves, and it was rare that Cam worked with anyone else.

“Of course. Take the file, and catch him up when you see him.”

Cam placed the file into his laptop bag. “Good. Let’s do this.”

“Stay safe out there. That’s an order, Cam.” Morgan raised her hand in a half wave as Cam stood to leave. Cam grinned. She didn’t let him get away with much and had no problem kicking his metaphorical ass when necessary, but she didn’t want to see him get hurt. It was sweet. But if he told her that, she’d kick him out of her office. So, a salute was probably safest.

Cam raised his hand to his head, both as a sign of respect and out of the habit he’d never broken since he left the Navy. “Yes, ma’am.”

 

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#BlogTour #NoOneCanHearYou by Nikki Crutchley| @NikkiCAuthor @rararesources

No One Can Hear Your

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book blurb

No One Can Hear You Nikki Crutchley

He said that they’d let me go on purpose. That they could easily find me if they wanted to. He said that they didn’t want me. That I was too much trouble. He said if I went to the cops, he’d know. If I told Sonya, he’d know. If I talked to friends or teachers, he’d know. He told me to pretend it didn’t happen. He told me to consider it a compliment, that I was too strong. His last words to me were, ‘Just forget’.

Troubled teen Faith Marsden was one of several girls abducted from Crawton, a country town known for its picturesque lake and fertile farmland. Unlike the others, she escaped, though sixteen years on she still bears the emotional and physical scars.

Zoe Haywood returns to Crawton to bury her estranged mother Lillian, who has taken her own life. As she and Faith rekindle their high-school friendship, they discover notes left by Lillian that point to two more young women who recently disappeared from Crawton. But Lillian’s confused ramblings leave them with more questions than answers.

As Faith and Zoe delve deeper into the mystery, they become intent on saving the missing women, but in doing so are drawn into Auckland’s hidden world of drugs, abduction and murder. And then Faith decides to confront the mastermind – on her own.

Purchase Link – http://a.co/21oE8Yx

meet the author

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Nikki Crutchley lives in Cambridge, New Zealand with her husband and two daughters. No One Can Hear You is Nikki’s second crime novel, set in the small Waikato town of Crawton. Her first book, Nothing Bad Happens Here, a crime/thriller set on the Coromandel Coast of New Zealand was a finalist in the 2018 Ngaio Marsh Award for best first novel. Nikki has worked in libraries in New Zealand and the UK and now works as a freelance proofreader. Nikki’s flash fiction has been published online and in the Fresh Ink anthology and the upcoming Bonsai anthology.

Social Media Links –

fb.me/NikkiCrutchleyAuthor

                                 Twitter.com/NikkiCAuthor

                                     https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17129077.Nikki_Crutchley

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