Books, Self-publishing

New Release: The Planting of the Penny Hedge by Chris Turnbull

My Detective Matthews Novel is out now!
Available on paperback or kindle



Cover design by Joseph Hunt of Incredibook Design

When an unknown man is discovered dead on Whitby beach, it is assumed that he has drowned. However, when the police arrive at the scene it soon becomes clear that there is more to this case than a simple drowning victim.
The chief calls in newly appointed Detective Benjamin Matthews to look into the case. Matthews, originally from Whitby, has been living these past two years in York as a PC, and is less than happy with his transfer back to the harbour town.
With a relocation, a family conflict and now a new case to solve Matthews is well and truly thrown in at the deep end; and the more he delves into the young mans complex life, the darker things get.

Books, Life, Self-publishing, Uncategorized

The inspiration behind ‘A Boy from the Streets’


A boy from the streets will be the first novel that I have published but not the first book I have written. It was while I was researching for one of my other books which hasn’t been published yet that I came up with the inspiration and the basic outline for the story.

While reading ‘Small Wars Permitting: Despatches from Foreign Lands’ by Foreign Correspondent Christina Lamb I came across something I hadn’t heard about before and it shocked me. This is taken from Christina’s book:

“There was one aspect of life in Rio I knew I would never get used to. Every morning when I arrived at my office downtown, there would be bundles in the doorways. After a while I discovered they had names and faces. These were children, some of the thousands – some say millions – of street kids who roam Brazil’s cities. Sometimes they would be sniffing glue from shoemakers’ tins or out of coke bottles for a high to dampen their hunger. Most Cariocas just step over them as if they were insects. Some areas like Ipanema had even erected iron railings round the parks to stop the children going in.
The first year I lived in Rio, Amnesty International ran a series of advertisements: ‘Brazil has found a new way of taking its children off the streets – killing them.'”

The book goes on to talk about 500 killings in one month alone, many of whom were children.

“Death squads pick up and kill the street kids who so upset the tourists and the businesses dependent on tourism. Many of the squads are run by policemen who have no shame about their methods of cleaning up the streets.”

After the initial revulsion and the coldness that pervaded my body at the thought of what these poor children endured and disgust at humankind, the beginnings of a story formed. I picked up my pen and the words flowed. This has now been polished by me and my editor and a new beginning was added later on as the story changed shape in my head. A Boy from the Streets was born. I am now coming to the end of the journey with this book as I aim to publish it early April.

Check it out:

Two babies abandoned at birth—one grows up in a life of privilege, the other in poverty.

On the 12th of September, 1981, twin boys are born in a Brasilian hospital and left to their fate as orphans. Jose is adopted by a couple who takes him to England, but the other isn’t so lucky. Pedro ends up on the streets of Rio, left to fend for himself in a harsh and unforgiving world.

Love and betrayal.

Twelve years later Jose’s family returns to Brasil, where he learns the truth about his adoption and his twin. Thinking his adoptive parents no longer want him, he runs away to find his brother. What follows will shake Jose to the core and shape the rest of his life—if he can survive.


Jose isn’t the only one whose life will change. Pedro is offered an opportunity beyond any of his wildest dreams, but to keep it will mean the betrayal of someone he loves. This proves to be a far greater challenge than he anticipated when the orphan finds himself suddenly surrounded by family who, unfortunately, don’t all have good intentions.

Hopes and dreams.

A Boy from the Streets will tug at your heart-strings and have you rooting for the little guy as you follow the twists and turns this multi-continental tale takes.

A small snippet from the beginning of A Boy from the Streets:

“Fernando, we must take them both, we cannot separate twins.”

“Christina, you’re too soft, we can’t bring up two children. You’re not strong enough to cope with the needs of twins. Your constitution is weak. It would be unfair to all of us.”

“I know my health is delicate, Fernando, and I will always regret that I can’t carry your baby to term inside me, but I know I can love and care for these twins. We can afford to hire help…” She trailed off when she saw the determined jut of his chin, the expression that brooked no further argument. Christina decided to try one last tug at his conscience anyway. “If we leave one behind, he might end up on the streets, an urchin living in squalor and fighting to survive… if he even makes it past babyhood.”

“Christina, your abundance of love does you credit, but I have no doubts the other boy will be adopted also. The only thing left to do now is to choose which one you would like?”

Christina’s heart sank as she looked at the two bundles in front of her. He was asking her to choose one, like picking out a pair of shoes from the rows on display in a shop. One stirred and let out a howl, disturbing his twin. It was almost as though he were alert to the inherent danger in this situation and was warning his brother.

Print & Kindle Copies available NOW


Books, Life, Self-publishing

My Review of: The Curse of Arundel Hall: A Yellow Cottage Mystery by J. New


This is the second book I have read by J. New and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The first book held no surprises but this one did. I felt myself tense up and hold my breath as I waited for the outcome of the mystery. Yes it is slightly cliched in places but charmingly so. This vintage murder mystery is well written with good pacing and characters. The main character Ella stayed consistent throughout both books and I look forward to seeing where her adventures take her next time.
Books, Life, Self-publishing, Uncategorized

My Review of ‘An Accidental Murder: A Yellow Cottage Murder, Book One by J. New


This is the first book I have read by this author and found her writing although not my usual type of read to be very much to my taste. The flow of the book was evenly paced and the characters were well written and clearly defined. I have to say the book didn’t hold many surprises in the outcome but strangely that didn’t deter from my enjoyment in the slightest.
The cover is perfect for the story.
I look forward to reading the next book in Ella’s journey which luckily for me is already on my kindle.
Books, Life, Self-publishing, Uncategorized



There is a growing trend in society to believe that books should be free or heavily discounted and we have all been guilty of feeding into it. I pick up freebies but I am also happy to pay for the books I want. Maybe I can’t get all the ones I want but hey isn’t that just life? I see lots of clothes I like and I might be able to pick up a new dress for a special occasion or a new pair of jeans because my old ones have holes in where no self-respecting forty-something wants holes but I can’t buy every item that my heart desires. Certainly not on my non-existent income as an author. Just as well I have a full-time job that stops me from being a starving artist languishing in a garret with only bread and water to sustain me. My day-time job takes up a huge portion of my week and often leaves me drained but from somewhere I have to find the time for my passion which is writing. My dream would be my writing to take off and be able to write full-time but alas that can’t be at the moment.

Everyone of us has had people who ask for a free copy, I’d like to quote my friend and fellow author Chris Turnbull “erm No! There is no such thing as a free copy…even I don’t get a free copy and it’s my book.” 

We do have a free copy on our computers, sure and we can send it to our Kindle device but if we want a print copy of our book, we have to pay – the proof copy isn’t even free. But let me tell you a bit more about what we’ve paid for: A beautiful cover, a feast to the eye, to tempt you, an editor to shape our words and spot mistakes and inconsistencies. And let’s be clear on this my editor and cover designer, both wonderful women who are also authors won’t accept it if I ask them to provide their services for free–which I wouldn’t do. Some people pay for marketing and do promotional giveaways.

I have three novelettes on the market at the moment and a pending novel (having the red pen treatment). A novelette is small, doesn’t require the same time frame to write it but I still used my time and I still paid for the above items. Yesterday was the two-year anniversary of my first novelette ‘As Dreams are Made on.’ Based only on the cover and editing alone I have lost £36.00 on it. So to recap, two years on and with 104 kindle sales and 16 paperback copies I am still in the red. I haven’t set my price high 0.99p/c because it is a short read. An hour or so of entertainment for under £1.00/$1.00 but still people want it for free. You could argue that if they like it they might buy one of my other books and yes that is true but lets also go back to the earlier paragraph where I acknowledged that I can’t buy all the books or clothes I like. So maybe it would generate sales–but maybe not.

Books aren’t just entertainment they are often an escape from reality –a reality that many people find challenging so given the duality of the product why do we question its value?

I’ve got an experiment for you to try (I won’t do it myself as I previously mentioned my busy schedule 🙂 )

Walk in to or phone your hairdresser and ask them if they will give you a free haircut.

Ring your garage next time your car needs a service or MOT and ask them to do it for free

Who loves having their nails done? Manicure? Pedicure? Facial? Let’s see about this freebie

The list is endless.
I would love to hear back from anyone who gets a freebie. Good luck and happy hunting.

But for this author who works endlessly and pays for the services I receive the only freebies I will consider are those that I choose to give for a promotional event which will require your participation.

For anyone who believes that authors should be paid for their work please leave a comment in support and it you are so inclined please share it with the hashtag #Booksarenotfree let’s get it trending.

If you are interested in my books follow the links:



If you want to know more about my books have a look at the other pages on this website. You can even see the reviews that I have left for the books I’ve read recently.


Books, Life, Self-publishing, Uncategorized

West Midlands Attending Author: Laura Morgan



1.Can we start with your name and where you’re from?

I’m Laura Morgan, originally from Essex but I now live in the West Midlands.

2. Most authors love reading, is this true for you and if so who was/is your inspiration?

Oh absolutely. I love reading anything dark and powerful. I found there was a real gap in that market a few years ago and that was what inspired me to write my first dark novel. They say if you can’t read the book you’re trying to find, then you have to write it, and that’s exactly what I did!

I do have a few big influences though. JR Ward is one of my all time favourites, as is Pepper Winters and Colleen Hoover.

3. What genre do you write in or do you cross over into many?

I’m one who crosses over. I have a dark paranormal series, a contemporary romance duology and a crime novel coming out soon. I also write dystopian science fiction under another pen name too. I just write what comes to me, regardless of genre.

4. If you could take any character from someone else’s book and make him/her your own creation who would it be and why?

I’d have to say Rhage from the Black Dagger Brotherhood. I’ve always had a thing for the bad guy with a heart and he was the one character who stayed with me long after reading about him. I’d love to take him and make him my own. To pop him in my worlds and see what happens!

5. When did you first start writing?

I’ve always made up stories since being a child, but I only started properly writing them down around four years ago. I hadn’t even realised that coming up with stories in my head wasn’t what everyone did. I figured it was the norm to conjure up characters and storylines, but got the shock of my life when I realised that wasn’t quite the case. That realisation gave the push I needed to finally put pen to paper.

6. Do you plan every inch of your books or do you just let the words flow?

Both really. I plan some, usually at night while I tell myself a story to fall asleep. Then the next day, I type up what I came up with and then some more.

7. Who is your favourite character and why? (your own character)

My favourite character has to be Cate, the Dark Queen in my Black Rose series. She’s dealt some pretty bad cards in the first book and is pushed in directions she doesn’t want to be, but then she finds her strength and turns it all around. She becomes a force to be reckoned with and I absolutely love her for every moment of it.

8. Was there an event in your life that triggered a particular book, or even a scene in a book? If so what was the book and what was the event?

Not really. There are a few real moments I have added along the way. Secret scenes only those who know me really well will spot, but most of all I will see a real-life scenario and ask ‘what if?’ That’s what makes it into the story rather than a real event as such.

9. Are you working on anything at the moment? If so can you share any tasty morsels?

I’m about to release a new story called Rough Love. This one is a modern day tale of both the good and bad in our world. A world where love can conquer all, but at the same time the monsters can also win a few of the battles along the way. It’s a contemporary crime with elements of romance, but fundamentally it’s a mystery and a dark one at that!

10. What one piece of advice would you give to someone starting out?

Don’t get too swallowed up in sweating the small stuff. Just sit down and write. Blurt out an initial draft and don’t give up. It’s better to have a rough draft you can work on a million times than nothing at all.

11.What do you do when you’re not writing?

I love to sing and am part of the Military Wives Choir, through which I’ve had some great opportunities to sing with famous artists and even go on the radio with the amazing Chris Evans. I’ve written poems and songs for them as well and hope to have even more input as time goes on. It’s something I hadn’t thought I’d love so much when I started out doing but now couldn’t live without!

12. What is the hardest part of the whole writing, editing, marketing process for you?

The marketing. I’m too nice and don’t like to bombard people or shove my cards under anyone’s nose I find. I’m awkward like that, but I guess it comes with the territory or being a loner who sits in front of a computer for hours on end talking to imaginary people lol!

13. We all have those friends or family members who make sweeping statements about our writing or the process, which is your particular bug bear?

Because I write romance, the amount of people who tell me random stories about their lovelife is unreal! But then they almost always follow up their story with a, ‘but don’t put that in your book!’ Really?! I think you fail to comprehend the complexity of the writers’ imagination if you think I’m going to put you in my next book 😉

14. What is your idea of happiness?

Being able to write and do what I love for the foreseeable future. I truly love what I do and would adore being able to write full time. My family are incredibly supportive and it’d also be amazing not to have to sacrifice my family time so much.

15. For this one I want you to showcase your creativity by painting me a picture, with words, of your ideal setting to write in.

I love to sit down in my nice and warm writing cave with my coffee brewed to perfection and perhaps a biscuit or two for dunking. Next, it’s on with the writing playlist and I choose whichever one ties in with my current piece of writing. With (ideally) no distractions, I then close my eyes, focus on the story, and begin to type. The words are then not simply black and white symbols on a page, but the narration of the movie playing out in my head. They flow perfectly and only stop when I say so…

16. What makes you laugh/cry?

I’m a sucker for love. I cry at the sweetest of stories and the heart-warming ones. Laughing wise, I’m like a twelve year old. A good fart joke or someone falling over will get me giggling every single time!

17. You’re stranded on a desert island and you can take three men/women who would they be and why? This can be practical or purely sexual in nature.

I’ve got a serious fan-girl situation going on with a singer/writer called Corey Taylor so he’d be first on my list for shooting the breeze, singing together and having some fun (he also comes across as a hilarious guy.) After that, I’d have to go with some eye candy—the one and only Tom Hardy. He’s a great actor and has been the inspiration behind many of my leading men so he’d have to come along to keep on inspiring me 😉 Then, I’m thinking some more eye candy and my other inspiration, Henry Cavill. He seems so nice and gentlemanly, but also like he’d fun and perhaps let me ogle him while he’s swimming and hunting 😉

18. What is your most annoying habit?

I don’t think I have one really? My hubby might tell you differently though, but I do know I can be quite annoying with grinding my teeth at night. I sometimes wake myself up with the noise it’s that bad, oops!

19. Please tell me about your books? For each one please send a pic (kindle cover would be perfect)

I have quite an extensive collection now! The Black Rose series is my dark paranormal collection. They have angels and demons galore, and of course all the dark deeds you might expect given the setting. I cover controversial and taboo subjects, as well as the age-old concept of balance between the worlds of light and dark. I drag the reader kicking and screaming through both the good and bad in this and other worlds.

My contemporary romances Forever Lost and Forever Loved are set in the real world, but one just as dark in its own way. You have hookers and gangsters, but also the story of a young woman who’s overcoming her own history via their world. Plus, you have a hot alpha lead you cannot help but fall in love with haha!

With my science fiction, I wrote from another perspective. One of a futuristic society where the human race is no longer in charge of the earth. Following an alien invasion, the series begins with the story of a young woman who has been brought up under their reign, but she has a bright future ahead of her, if only she can overcome the obstacles in her path first.

  1. Lightning round
    Tea or Coffee? Both! Earl grey tea for me though, if you please
    Cash or credit? Cash
    Cats or Dogs? Dogs – I have a furry friend who sits by my feet as I type
    Beach or Mountain? Beach, but always in the shade otherwise I melt haha
    Summer or Winter? Winter
    Sweet or Savoury? Savoury – I’m a crisp monster
    Early riser or late riser? Late riser for sure!
    Morning or Night? Night
    Christmas Tree – real or fake? Fake
    Sex – Lights on or off? On!

    Thank you very much for taking the time to answer these questions.
    Please leave Facebook, Twitter, Website links so we can check you out further.

Books, Self-publishing, Uncategorized

My Review of CXVI by Angie Smith



This is another book that sat on my kindle for a while but the moment I opened the pages I was hooked. Ms. Smith writes a believable mystery thriller which keeps you on the edge of your seat and explodes in more drama at the end.  DS Maria Barnes is not a cliche character, she very much holds her own with insights into a more complex character. Superintendent Greg Woods sees something in Barnes that her other colleagues don’t. He looks beyond her prickly, almost autistic nature and sees her potential. The relationship ( work/friendship) between them is lovely and natural, building throughout the story.
A series of deaths which first appear unrelated start to show the traits of a series of killing with one obvious link – the Roman Numerals. The more that  Woods and Barnes dig they find that the connection leads them to a rich and beautiful widow.
There are many threads woven into this tapestry of a book and not one of them was loose. 
This book is cleaver and exciting and well written.
The ending was not one I saw coming. I will be picking up books 2 & 3 in this trilogy.



My Review of The Lake of Lilies by Julia Sutton

Lake of Lilies


A thoroughly enjoyable read. The main character, Lisa Reynolds, is a likeable and believable woman who is a witness to a scene that ends in a murder which changes Lisa’s life.

There is a lot of description which keeps you on the edge of your seat as you wonder what might happen. It is a beautiful story of love and loss.

I wanted to keep reading, picking it up each day was a pleasure.

My only real issues were that there were too many speech tags that became distracting and slightly annoying but not enough to put me off reading. I think removing some of these could make the book stronger.

Without wanting to give anything away, I also felt that the resolution was a packaged a little too neatly. It was reminiscent of a 70’s or 80’s crime shows. I think it could have benefitted from a little more grit at this point.

Overall I loved immersing myself in this book and the lives of the characters. I look forward to seeing what this talented author writes next.