Marriage Unarranged by Ritu Bhathal #new #release #review The Rishtay Series@RituBhathal @SpellBoundBKs

Thrilled to be supporting my lovely friend Ritu Bhathal with her re-release of Marriage Unarranged on 6th June, now published by Spellbound Books!

The cover above has been updated with a little quote from Amanda Prowse on the front! How cool is that!

And a press release…

Marriage Unarranged by Ritu Bhathal

My rating: 5 of 5 stars


Well, I loved Marriage Unarranged so much I read it twice. Lol. It’s quite a long book!
https://mjmallon.com/2020/02/09/book-…

I read it for the first time as a beta reader with an ARC and then again for this review. Everything about this engaging romance appealed to me: the characters, the cultural aspects, the little touches of humour, the Asian family dynamics, the beautiful and informative descriptions of India, (I’ve never been, but it has always been forever on my bucket list,) This story transported me there, and I especially loved the detail in the Gurdwara scenes in which Sikh’s come together to worship and share simple community tasks. Oh, how I would love to visit!

I found it particularly relatable as my mother is from an Asian background and the first thing she says to me in the morning is ‘What are we having for dinner!’ The lovely cooking scene between two of the characters in the book, sums this up so much. Food is of prime importance in Asian culture and can be a great ice breaker.

I also loved how Aashi ‘s character changed as the story progressed, retaining all her admirable qualities (and she has these in abundance,) but becoming more confident. To begin with she is cossetted by her family and her brothers, Sunny and Bali. But, away from home, her trip to India with her brothers and her best friend Kiran does wonders for her flagging self-esteem after Ravi’s selfish treatment.

All the characters in the story are well crafted. I especially have a soft spot for: Aashi, her best friend Kiran, (who fights her corner like every best friend should,) her feisty brother Bali, and Arjun, the potential love interest otherwise known as ‘Pillow.’ Even the subsidiary characters such as the fashion designer Milan are well crafted and entertaining! And, Ravi well he’s a rat!

The fledgling romance unfolding between Aashi and her ‘Pillow’ was just so lovely, especially after all the heartbreak she experienced with a broken engagement.

The reveal towards the end of the story regarding Arjun was an interesting addition and I loved the humorous ending!

I better not say anymore for fear of spoiling the story for you.

My recommendation: Go get a copy! My rating 5 stars.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Marriage-Unarranged-Rishtay-Book-ebook/dp/B09SBSSD67

View all my reviews

Do follow my Bookstagram a/c for all my reviews and blog tour participation:

If you liked my review of Marriage Unarranged by @RituBhathal @SpellBoundBKs please mark it as helpful on Amazon, it helps the author and it helps me gain credence as a reviewer. Many thanks. #writingcommunity #review #romance https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/customer-reviews/R1J5EAM6I8UD4H/

And… Coming Summer 2023, is book 2 in The Rishtay Series! It will now officially be part of a series, The Rishtay Series with book two coming out in June 2023! Rishtay means relationships, which covers both romantic and familial relationships that are at the heart of this whole series.

How exciting is that! Looking forward to reading book 2.

Author Links:

https://linktr.ee/ritubhathalwrites

https://linktr.ee/mjmallonauthor

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We Are Saul – Richard Dee @RichardDockett1 #scifi #new #release #blog #tour #review #extract

It is my great pleasure to share in the excitement of the release tour for Richard Dee’s We Are Saul. I can heartily recommend Richard’s latest novel to you. His writing is ace. So, if you haven’t read it yet… grab a copy!

Release date: 1st June.

Blurb

When Saul is paralysed in an accident, he thinks it’s the end of his life. In fact, it’s just the beginning.

While trying to come to terms with his injuries, the mysterious Dr Tendral offers him a way to make a difference. All he has to do is join his project. There are no other details until he agrees, he’s either in or out.
What choice does he have?
Agreeing is just the beginning. Saul undergoes drastic surgery, only then is the full depth of the project revealed.
Or is it?
As time goes on and he learns more about Tendral’s scheme, Saul’s new life becomes increasingly difficult.
In the end, he has to abandon everything as he learns the truth.



All second chances come with a price.

Links

Purchase http://mybook.to/We_are_Saul

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/60304988-we-are-saul 

This is science fiction, but the author writes with such clarity that you find yourself believing that this too, like so many of the futeristic imaginings of the past, might well be feasible at some point in the coming centuries, if not decades.

Sally Cronin – Goodreads

We Are Saul makes for a sci-fi novel with a difference. There’s modern technology, robots, and something more, but the story offers hope for what could be. But it also offers a cautionary tale of what just might await us in our future. Not everything is as it seems, and very rarely does something life-changing come without a catch. And this is something Richard Dee sets up in this novel really well. I found myself hooked from the first page to the last.

Steven Smith – Goodreads

Richard’s blog post about the launch: https://richarddeescifi.co.uk/new-book-we-are-saul/

Chapter One Extract.

I’m Saul and I’m paralysed. Thanks to a drunk driver my life stopped when I was twenty-five. When I woke up, the last thing I remembered was walking along the pavement on a glorious spring day, following the metronomic motion of a young lady in front of me. One moment, my mind was fixed on speeding up and getting acquainted with the rest of her, next thing, there was a loud noise behind me coupled with a scream. Before I could turn, I felt an impact, a burst of pain and it all went dark.

I opened my eyes to see a man’s face, complete with thick glasses and stubble, staring at me, very close. I blinked, tried to turn my head, failed. It felt like something was holding my neck still. I could move my eyes, that was about it. Flat on my back, my field of vision was limited. There was a lot of noise, machines bleeped and clicked, there was the hiss of compressed air.

“Where am I?” I said, my voice sounded faint and weak, like it was coming from miles away.  

“You’re in a hospital. Intensive Care, actually,” answered the man, moving back a little. “I’m Mr McGee, a consultant neurosurgeon on the staff. Do you know who you are?”

“I’m Saul,” I said. “Why can’t I move?”

His eyes narrowed. “Saul, I’m afraid I’ve got some bad news for you.”

I had sort of gathered that my situation wasn’t brilliant. “Go on then, tell me the worst.” I tried to sound brave, inside I was more than a little frightened. Beside his head, I could just make out a screen. It showed multicoloured flickering lines, a row of numbers. That was me, my life was reduced to mathematics.

“You’ve had emergency surgery to stabilise your injuries,” he said. “Do you remember what happened to you?”

“It’s all a bit hazy, I was walking down the road, there was a noise behind me.” I stopped, that was it. “How long ago was that?”

He looked at me. “This might be a shock: three weeks.”

“Three weeks!” My voice was definitely getting stronger.

“I’m afraid so. What you heard was a lorry mounting the pavement and taking out everything in its path. Six dead but not you, the good news is, you’ll live.”

His face was blank, what wasn’t he telling me? Perhaps I had broken bones, internal damage. I was being kept still while I healed. I tried to move my arms, legs. It felt like they worked but I couldn’t see the sheet moving, had no idea if anything was happening.

The bed suddenly moved, the motion felt strange, as if my head was being tugged by some dead weight attached to it, that I couldn’t see or sense. I felt nauseous. Somewhere below me, I heard a machine start up with a rattle.

“What’s going on? I think I’m going to be sick.” I must have sounded panicked.

“It’s what we call the Low Air Loss and Alternating Pressure Air Mattresses,” he said. “Technical name for a special bed. It stops you getting bed sores from lying in one position, as well as that, it helps takes moisture away from your body if you sweat.”

Although it all sounded interesting, I couldn’t concentrate on his words. I was too busy thinking about the time I had lost. There were things I needed to do. There was clearly more, it was time to find out. “I’ll take your word for it. Tell me the bad news then.”

“Sorry,” he said, “I got distracted. You were thrown thirty feet in the accident. As well as a broken leg and arm, the impact also broke your neck. I’m afraid that it’s damaged your spine.”

“Oh, OK.” It didn’t register. “How long till I’m up and about?”

He shook his head. “I don’t think you understand what I’m telling you.”

Then it hit me, bones mended, spines did not. Panic set in. “What do you mean?” I shouted. “That I’m paralysed? That I’ll always be like this?”

“I’m afraid so,” he said. “We can’t fix you with the medical technology we have at the moment. In time, who knows? Your breathing and bowel function appears to be unimpaired, but your arms and legs don’t work. It’s called quadriplegia. Worst case, we can keep you alive and with care and expert attention, your life can carry on.”

I realised that it was all just ‘doctor speak’ for aren’t we amazing, look at what we can do. McGee probably felt really clever that he was able to prolong my suddenly useless life. There could be a paper in it, recognition of his skill from other doctors. My attitude to medical miracles was different. I looked at the quality of the lives that had been saved, the cost to those who had to do the caring. Just because medicine had advanced enough to make it possible. And from my position of good health, I had often wondered about the benefits of so-called miracle surgery.  

I always thought that just because you could, it didn’t mean that you should. Now I was on the receiving end of the same ability to play God and cheat nature. Despair washed over me, my life had been full of adventure, extremes. I wasn’t used to spending time inside, with nothing to do. Immobility might not kill me but boredom would. Why hadn’t the lorry done a proper job, wiped me out in an unknowing flash; it felt like an additional cruelty to leave me like this.

About Richard Dee

I’m Richard Dee and I’m from Brixham in Devon.  

I write Science Fiction and Steampunk adventures, as well as chronicling the exploits of Andorra Pett, a reluctant amateur detective.

I spent forty years in shipping, firstly at sea, then in Port Control and as a Thames River Pilot, with adventures to match anything you could imagine. When I retired, I just moved them out into space, changed some of the names and wrote them down.

When I’m not writing, I bake bread and biscuits, cook delicious meals and walk the Devon coast.

My first novel, Freefall, was published in 2013, my eighteenth, We Are Saul, will be published in June 2022

I also contributed a story to the 1066 Turned Upside Down collection of alternative history stories. I’m currently working on more prequels, sequels, and a few new projects.

I’m an active member of Exeter Authors Association, attending events and giving talks on World-building for speculative fiction.

You can keep up with me at https://richarddeescifi.co.uk/ where you’ll find free short stories, regular features on writing, book reviews and guest appearances from other great authors.

There’s also an offer for a FREE novella, when you join my subscriber’s newsletter.

I can be found on Facebook at  https://www.facebook.com/RichardDeeAuthor and contacted by email at mailto:richarddeescifi

Linktree: https://linktr.ee/richard.dee.scifi.author

My review:

We are Saul by Richard Dee

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

View all my reviews

I’ve had the pleasure of beta reading an advance copy of We Are Saul by Richard Dee. Every time I read a new story from Richard Dee I am always struck by his ability to create wonderful new story lines, worlds and characters. He is one of my favourite indie authors. Hats off to him!

And We Are Saul was a thoroughly entertaining read from start to finish. What a fabulous concept for a story. I absolutely loved how this explored fascinating medical technological advancement in the form of robotic ‘humans.’ The main protagonist Saul has a terrible accident leaving him paralysed but is given the chance to live fully again by becoming an ARP – a robotic enhanced version of himself – using cutting edge technology.

But Saul begins to wonder at what cost? And what do they expect in return and are there others like him? This tale has love, heart, thoughtful observations and sci fi too! The ending was ace. Loved it and think it would make a great film. Well done Mr Dee!



Please follow my bookstagram account as below image:

https://linktr.ee/mjmallonauthor

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MJ Interviews author @hudson_allan A Drake Alexander Adventure – Vigilantes #author #interview #new #book #release

Hi Allan,

Thrilled to welcome you to my blog to chat about your book launch for Vigilantes. Vigilantes releases today!

MJ: The blurb is very intriguing Allan. Where is the story set and why did you choose to set it in that country/place? Are your novels and short stories set in different countries? And what genres do you write in and why?

ALLAN: First, I would like to thank you, Marjorie for giving me the opportunity to visit your popular blog. The setting for Vigilantes is in Bordeaux, France where my protagonists are attending a funeral for one of their co-workers. Their escapades will take them to different European countries as well as more obscure destinations in Asia. They search for two brothers who have been evading the law for twenty years, by hiding in different countries. I love international stories and I wanted this one to take the readers to different settings as seen through the eyes of my hero.

Yes, I set many of my stories in different settings, different countries. Part of the fun in writing is the research, visiting various cities online, looking at photos, what is the country or city famous for? Can my readers see the cafes and boutiques, hear the language or the birds singing, or the waves beating on the shores? I hope so.

Although my reading preferences lean toward thrillers and mysteries, I love writing historical fiction as well and plain feel-good stories too.

MJ: Aww, so very fascinating and such a breadth in your writing. Thank you for your kind words. I love how you interview so many guests on your blog, Allan. Including me – twice! You are so generous with your time. The writing and creative community is so important isn’t it? You must have met so many amazing guests.

ALLAN: I have indeed, met many wonderful, friendly folks, like you. We are all in the same situation of wanting to share our stories with a new and wider audience. When I originally started my blog – South Branch Scribbler – I did so as a way to share my own writing and books and the idea came to me, I could have guests and share their stories, find out more about them and pass it on. It has been a fantastic experience. I not only discovered really cool people but really cool books. So much fun.

MJ: Yes, my thoughts too. We are all in this together and gain so much by being supportive friends. I see you are from Canada. Yeah! It’s a lovely country, so friendly and welcoming. If I could become an adoptee Canadian I would… My daughters and I visited Montreal in the days of easy travel before the pandemic. I loved it! Which area of Canada are you from? And fill us in on any family/details/hobbies you have…

ALLAN: I must admit, I love Canada and feel most fortunate to be a citizen of this huge beautiful country. Thank you for the nice comments and you’re always welcome. I too, love Montreal, a fascinating city with so many cultures and deep history. But there are so many other great places to visit. I live on the east coast of Canada, in the maritime province of New Brunswick. Our province borders the state of Maine in the west, The province of Quebec in the north, and the Atlantic Ocean to the east. The seaside community I live in is called Cocagne and is mainly a French speaking village of Acadian descendants. The bay is across the road and an inspiration and setting for many of my stories. My family lives close by and I see them all frequently. I’m fortunate that way.

As of late, I have been dedicated to my hobby of writing. I am fortunate to be retired and can devote more time to my stories. Previous hobbies included stained glass and woodworking and as gratifying as they have been, I’ve decided to concentrate on my writing and it remains my central focus.

MJ: Awesome. Your latest book is part of The Drake Alexander series. How many books are in the series and can you tell me how they connect, what inspired them and what they are about?

ALLAN: My newest novel coming is the third in the DA series, titled Vigilantes. The two earlier novels were the first stories I wrote. Drake Alexander is a former soldier of the Canadian Armed Forces. The first novel brings him and his people to look for the man that killed Drake’s best friend’s sister. It took them three years to track him down. During this novel, Drake discovered he and his cohorts have a talent for rounding up bad people. They have the financial resources, the time, the manpower, the know-how and they don’t back down from anyone.

The second novel has Drake and his team rescue a priest that is a boyhood friend of Drake’s when he gets in trouble from an historical relic discovered in his church in Peru. Incan gold and Spanish raiders. This setting was inspired by the horrible plight of the Incan people at the hands of Spanish and foreign looters. It was the first story I wanted to write but when I started, a novel by well known author, Clive Cussler, came out titled Incan Gold. I didn’t want to be accused of plagiarizing Cussler’s idea, so I passed on it and wrote Dark Side of a Promise, which takes place in Bangladesh, another country that amazes me.

Vigilantes picks up from the last tangle with the enemy. As I mentioned earlier, at a funeral, Drake is approached by a man who continues to mourn for his daughter that was killed during a bank robbery twenty years previous and the culprits have never been apprehended. He asks them to help.

MJ: Wow, good luck with Vigilantes, sounds fantastic. As you also write short stories, (and I do too!) which do you prefer writing long narratives, or short stories? I’d love to hear more about your short story collection.

ALLAN: I’ve always enjoyed reading short stories and love writing them. I have no preference when it come to writing a longer or shorter story. Sometimes an idea forms with no length in mind. Occasionally it ends as a short story or novella. Or maybe I get an idea that fits with the shorter version. It would be difficult to say which I like best as I find fulfillment in both. I feel it begins with the idea or inspiration. There have been several times when I sit to write and I intend for it to be a short story but most times, I let the words flow and see where it ends up. It only differs when I decide to write a longer version because of an idea, like the novels we talked about above. But I enjoy both equally.

My latest collection is titled A Box of Memories. Many of the short stories were inspired by memories of an incident in my life or a memory of what may have happened to someone else. One story in particular – Four Boxes of Memories – was inspired by my own boxes of keepsakes, things I can’t throw away, birthday cards, drawings by the boys when they were small, rocks and seashells, postcards, plane tickets, and such that make up our histories. There were four of them and I was thinking that someday I would have to part with them, no matter how dear they were.

MJ: That sounds lovely – I also find it difficult to throw things away! Are you a procrastinator/plotter/panster/cafe/at home writer? What is your favourite place to write?

ALLAN: I have the neatest spot to write in. I converted my previous workshop to a more friendly spot to read and watch movies… and to write. I’m a morning person and I cherish quiet moments. No music in the background, no one leaning over my shoulder. My wife has been terrific, allowing me to write freely and uninterrupted. I write from six in the morning until eleven, usually. And almost every day now. Unlike others, I could never write in a café or in public, too many distractions for me and yet, I admire writers who can do so.

I’m definitely a panster. I run with an idea, no outlining, just enough research to get me going. There have been a few times I knew the ending but not often. I like to see where it all goes. Interesting enough, on my WIP, I was stuck and stared at the computer for some time, unsure of where to go and when I couldn’t decide I started to write about where the protagonist was sitting and then the words followed.

MJ: Oh, me too Pantser to the core! What your writer’s tip and or disaster? Make it funny, serious or both!

ALLAN: So, my one and only tip is to keep writing and sort out the garbage later.

MJ: Sounds like simple but great advice. What do your family think about your writing?

ALLAN: When you mention family, I think of my children and they’re spouses. Their support and encouragement have been tremendous. Always attending my events, sharing my posts, telling their friends but oddly enough, they don’t read my stories. They are happy for my accomplishments but not readers. Oh well.

My other families’, siblings and in-laws for example, read and comment on my writing, usually favorable. They don’t always like the rough sections and tell me so, but in a nice way.

But the support is always there, the encouragement is always appreciated.

MJ: That’s wonderful!

Vigilantes blurb

The master vintner at Chateau Lambert Estates, Jean-Paul Chouinard, stares up the rise at the family cemetery, where the darling of the house was laid to rest yesterday. The grave site is surrounded by four men and a woman. The people whose service Mireille Lambert was in when she died. One of them was her lover. One of them is Drake Alexander.

Chouinard knows what they do. He knows who Alexander is. He hears the whispers. Vigilantes. He grieves knowing the brothers who are responsible for his daughter’s death twenty years ago have not been apprehended. Maybe it’s been too long. Maybe the brothers are already dead. Maybe, if he asked, Alexander and his people could find them.

Buy your copy of Vigilantes on Amazon:

Author Bio

I live by Cocagne Bay in Eastern Canada where the summers are hot and the snow is deep in the winter. I married the greatest gal on earth, Gloria, and have a son Adam, two stepsons Mark and Chris (Mireille)Young. Three grandchildren Matthieu, Natasha and Damien.

I love reading. My mother was a school teacher and taught me to read and write when I was young. I’m presently retired and write as often as possible. My other hobbies include woodworking and stained glass.

I love jazz and am a HUGE fan of JJ Cale.

I have a wonderful life. I hope that you will read my novels – Wall of War and Dark Side of a Promise & a short story collection titled A Box of Memories. I trust you will enjoy them and if so please tell someone.

I can be reached at sbscribbler@yahoo.com Please visit www.southbranchscribbler.com if you like short stories, guest writers, artists and musicians and interviews.

http://allanhudson.blogspot.com/p/vigilantes-coming-soon.html

It’s been such a pleasure to have Allan visit Kyrosmagica blog.

Please comment below to wish Allan much success and congratulations on his new release. It was lovely having him visit, such a Saturday treat. 🙂

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Media Kit: Bloodstone (The Curse of Time Book 1) @NextChapterPB #YA #Fantasy #Release

BLURB

Fifteen-year-old Amelina Scott lives in Cambridge with her dysfunctional family, a mysterious black cat, and an unusual girl who is imprisoned within the mirrors located in her house.

When an unexpected message arrives inviting her to visit the Crystal Cottage, she sets off on a forbidden path where she encounters Ryder: a charismatic, perplexing stranger.

With the help of a magical paint set and some crystal wizard stones, can Amelina discover the truth about her family?

A unique, imaginative mystery full of magic-wielding and dark elements, Bloodstone is a riveting adventure for anyone interested in fantasy, mythology or the world of the paranormal.

TRIGGER WARNING: this book contains mention of self-harm, mental health issues and alludes to the potential dangers of sexual attraction, which may trigger younger/sensitive readers.

To read an excerpt: https://www.nextchapter.pub/books/bloodstone

Now available in wide Distribution :  Kobo, Scribl, Smashwords, Nook, etc and in paperback &  hardback in Barnes & Noble, Amazon, etc:  

https://books2read.com/u/bOyrgW

UK Book Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bloodstone-Curse-Time-Book-1-ebook/dp/B097QZBKNY/

US Book Link: https://www.amazon.com/Bloodstone-M-J-Mallon-ebook/dp/B097QZBKNY/

Universal book Link: http://mybook.to/bstmm

To download a free copy via Book Sirens click this link: https://booksirens.com/book/H4SI6L4/Q9PZX3A

Recent Publicity/Features:

Finalist International Author Prize and Fantasy Book awarded for 5 star and 5++ stars by N.N. Light Vine Voice reviewer and verified (blue check) influencer on Amazon:

https://www.nnlightsbookheaven.com/post/2021-book-award-finalists 

Many thanks to the following authors and bloggers for their kind features, reviews and book alerts

Stephen at Books and Beyond Reviews https://booksandbeyondreviews.com/2021/12/29/bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-one-by-m-j-mallon/

Didi Oviatt 5 star Book Review: https://didioviatt.wordpress.com/2021/12/30/review-5stars-bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-1-marjorie_mallon-nextchapterpub/

James Cudney Book Alert and Review: https://thisismytruthnow.com/2021/07/11/book-alert-bloodstone-curse-of-time-1-by-m-j-mallon/

Richard Dee Review: https://richarddeescifi.co.uk/new-edition-the-curse-of-time-book-1-bloodstone/

S C Skillman: Blog Tour Excerpt: https://scskillman.com/2021/07/06/blog-tour-bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-1-by-mj-mallon/

Sally Cronin New Book On The Shelves: https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/2021/07/07/smorgasbord-cafe-and-bookstore-new-book-on-the-shelves-ya-magic-mystery-bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-1-by-m-j-mallon/

Darlene Foster Blog Tour https://darlenefoster.wordpress.com/2021/07/10/blog-tour-for-bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-1/

Ritu Bhathal Blog Tour: https://butismileanyway.com/2021/07/10/bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-1-by-marjorie_mallon-blogtour/

Allan Hudson Branching Out: http://allanhudson.blogspot.com/2021/06/branching-out-with-returning-author.html

Feature on Alex Pearl’s blog: https://booksbyalexpearl.weebly.com/m-j-mallon.html

To read the reviews on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/58417468-bloodstone

This delightful book will appeal to teens and young adults who love stories filled with magical crystals, dark family curses, and mysteries waiting to be solved around every corner. Each chapter leads you on a journey of discovery where Amelina earns the right to use three wizard stones to reset the balance of time and finally break the curse that holds her family captive. A captivating tale! Author Colleen Chesebro – (Editorial Review of 1st Edition – The Curse of Time Book 1 Bloodstone.)

This is a totally different genre for me, but this year I have been reading books by so many exciting new authors that I wanted to give this book a try. This novel would be great for teenagers, or young adults and it follows the magical story of teenager Amelina as she steps into a world of crystals, magic and wonderment. There are some likeable and not so likeable characters and both are really well written. The book weaves a story of the main character learning new skills and you see her personal growth throughout the story. Nothing is what is seems and you want to find out how Amelia will use her enchanted gifts and learn who she can trust. A book packed full of intrigue, believable characters and poetic verse. Author Lizzie Chantree

This is a brilliant book for young adults interested in magic, supernatural, paranormal, fantasy and myth. I found it highly readable and the author’s imagination is phenomenal, as is the fluency of her language and the dazzling way she describes the curious events and characters in her story. I loved the idea of Esme, the girl trapped in the mirror. Author S C Skillman

An intricate fantasy novel with unique supernatural and magical elements which serves as a highly entertaining read. I had a great time reading this novel and exploring the magical world of Amelina full of magic crystals and enchanted mirrors. Author, Editor and Book Reviewer Heena Rathore P.

At its core, this is an emotional tale about a young girl figuring out her identity, learning who to trust, and discovering there is more to the world than the tangible things she’s experienced in the first one-and-a-half decades of her life. Magic Mirrors? Mysterious appearances? Letters that cannot be destroyed? Puzzling trust? What’s a girl to do when she’s followed by two strange boys in the park, only to realize something darker is beginning to happen? Mallon explores the fears in a young girl who wants to break out of her life but doesn’t know where to turn. She’s unsure about trusting friends and family. Ryder, who saves the day, might actually not be the best thing for her… safety… sanity… security. Can she fight the feelings burgeoning around her? Author James Cudney 

This magical young adult story is brimming with fresh imaginative ideas avoiding tropes often associated with fantasy. I was impressed with the unique vivid visual descriptions which brought both the settings and characters to life and the wonderful standard of writing throughout the story. A magical mystery unfolds for the main character Amelina, who makes discoveries during the plot, so we can enjoy seeing her grow in confidence and skill. The story involves complex content which was difficult to follow initially but becomes more understandable as the story develops. The introduction of the antagonist, Ryder, really helps us to root for Amelina. He is well written, and I enjoyed that he wasn’t given the typical look of a baddie but rather slowly and disconcertingly reveals his darker side, inserting himself between Amelina and her friends. I can see this being the start of a fabulous young adult series and hope there are more books to come! Sarah Northwood Poet and Author

Amelina is written so well. There is a part of her that all of us will recognise and emphasise with. At that awkward age where nothing fits and at the same time you feel as if you can conquer the world. Darkness creeps in slowly in the form of Ryder who at first seems the answer to all Amelina desires, or is he? Author Adele Marie Park

The overall world-building creates a wonderful, spiritual atmosphere. There’s a bit of poetry at the start of every chapter, a nice touch which leads us into the action. The story bravely tackles issues of mental health and self-harm, but in such a sensitive way that it can only help improve understanding.  Author Richard Dee

Amelina is a teenage girl whose world has been turned upside down by a curse within a world where magic is hidden and most don’t seem to know of its existence. In fact, it seems she’s a descendant of a line of magic-wielding enchanters who have a special relationship with crystals. But with this curse, her father is time-ravaged, a girl is trapped in her mirror, and her family is falling apart. There are a lot of unanswered questions come the end of the book, so be on the lookout for more in the series. There are mentions of delicate issues such as cutting and anorexia, both handled with care, and a séance, but I’d recommend this book for older teens and people who love magical stories that involve power within crystals, curses, and unexplainable happenings. Author Rachael Ritchey

This is a wonderful YA fantasy read. It’s very different from others I’ve read and I say this in the most positive manner. One way or is unique is through the use of original short poetry at the beginning of each chapter providing a clue to the chapter content. It is very well done. I do love originality. The whole work has a magical feel about it which draws the reader in with a yearning to learn more about all of the characters and their plight. My favourite characters are, Esme… The girl trapped in the mirror, and Shadow, the black cat. These two characters alone were enough to keep me rooted. Meanwhile, on the serious side of things, there are so many issues going on in this work in addition to that of dealing with a dysfunctional family. One’s familiarity will be tested and emotions may arise. That aside, when you add magic, a black cat, and a guitar and music into the mix… What is there not to love about this work? Author/Reviewer Kevin Cooper – (Previous edition of Book – The Curse of Time Book 1 Bloodstone. )

Amelina is an indomitable heroine who will not rest until she solves the mystery and sets the world to rights. The device of magic crystals as a source of magic is novel and works well. There are loose ends that are clearly available to be addressed in future episodes of this series. As a precursor story that is relatively complete in itself, … as an introduction to the storyline and invitation to read on. MJ Mallon is not afraid to broach the risks that young girls on the cusp are subject to in these unruly times. Both physical violence and dangerous sexual attraction are broached in this tale.  Poet Frank Prem.

Beautifully written and poetic fantasy novel that perfectly sustains mystery and drama throughout the pages. The characters are very vivid and the world is rich in detail and atmosphere. Marjorie is excellent at painting imaginative and believable scenes with words and magic. A fantastic debut! Looking forward to her next book. Author/Illustrator Alina Surnaite

My publisher has added these opportunities to read the first book in the Curse of Time series: Bloodstone for free…

BOOK TITLE: Bloodstone (The Curse Of Time Book 1)

ProlificWorks Giveawayhttps://claims.prolificworks.com/free/zamECb9a

BookSweeps Reader Magnethttps://www.booksweeps.com/free-ebooks/bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-1/

BookSweeps Sweephttps://www.booksweeps.com/join/bloodstone-the-curse-of-time-book-1/

StoryOrigin Reader Magnethttps://storyoriginapp.com/giveaways/59f339e0-bae0-11ec-9429-03bc8087bcb0

StoryOrigin Review Copy Linkhttps://storyoriginapp.com/reviewcopies/f019203e-badf-11ec-bf98-f3e3906b0f3a

Here are a couple of beautiful images from the wonderfully talented Carolina Russo created for me of my characters – Esme – The Mirror Girl… and Eruterac – The Creature.

Images courtesy of Carolina Russo: https://yesterdayafter.com/

AUTHOR BIO

M J Mallon was born in Lion city Singapore, a passionate Scorpio with the Chinese Zodiac sign of a lucky rabbit. She spent her early childhood in Hong Kong. During her teen years, she returned to her father’s childhood home, Edinburgh where she spent many happy years, entertained and enthralled by her parents’ vivid stories of living and working abroad. Perhaps it was during these formative years that her love of writing began inspired by their vivid storytelling. She counts herself lucky to have travelled to many far-flung destinations and this early wanderlust has fuelled her present desire to emigrate abroad. Until that wondrous moment, it’s rumoured that she lives in the UK, in the Venice of Cambridge with her six-foot hunk of a rock god husband. Her two enchanting daughters have flown the nest but often return with a cheery, heart-warming smile to greet her.

MJ’s writing credits also include a multi-genre approach: paranormal, best-selling horror, supernatural short stories, flash fiction, and poetry. She worked with some amazing authors and bloggers compiling an anthology/compilation set during the early stages of COVID-19 entitled This Is Lockdown and she has written a spin off poetry collection, Lockdown Innit.

She’s been blogging for many moons at her blog home Kyrosmagica, (which means Crystal Magic,) where she celebrates the spiritual realm,her love of nature, crystals and all things magical, mystical, and mysterious.

MJ’s motto is…

To always do what you Love, stay true to your heart’s desires, and inspire others to do so too, even if it appears that the odds are stacked against you like black hearted shadows.

Her favourite genre to write is

Fantasy/magical realism because life would be dull unless it is sprinkled with a liberal dash of extraordinarily imaginative magic!

So excited about Bloodstone and happy to say that I am making great progress on the sequel which I hope to submit to Next Chapter Publishing soon.

Please comment below with your thoughts on the 2nd edition of this first book in the Curse of Time series.

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Bloodstone: The Curse of Time Book 1 – Release!!! #YA #Fantasy #New #Release @NextChapterPB

Well, I’m absolutely delighted! Thank you to everyone who has supported me in this journey. A big thank you to all those who have believed in me, read my books, beta read for me, reviewed and encouraged me, I would not be where I am without your support.

ANNOUNCING!!

My YA Fantasy Bloodstone is now available to purchase on Amazon in kindle, (free – kindle unlimited,) and in paperback and large print edition – Thank you Next Chapter Publishing.
MyBook link:
http://mybook.to/bstmm
Amazon Preview Link: https://amzn.eu/iwyO8p3

BLURB

Fifteen-year-old Amelina Scott lives in Cambridge with her dysfunctional family, a mysterious black cat, and an unusual girl who is imprisoned within the mirrors located in her house.

When an unexpected message arrives inviting her to visit the Crystal Cottage, she sets off on a forbidden path where she encounters Ryder: a charismatic, perplexing stranger.

With the help of a magical paint set and some crystal wizard stones, can Amelina discover the truth about her family?

A unique, imaginative mystery full of magic-wielding and dark elements, Bloodstone is a riveting adventure for anyone interested in fantasy, mythology or the world of the paranormal. 

EXCERPT – PROLOGUE

Most people would call our existence strange, but this is more than that; this deserves a headline. We’re not spectacular enough to feature on the national or international news, but we warranted a column in the local newspaper headed by seven not so lucky words: Missing Father Returns After Weird Aging Phenomenon. I’m glad that our short-lived fame died and the paparazzi, (what a joke,) got bored with us. Now we can get back to the day to day living if you can call it that. We live in a typical suburb of Cambridge in an untypical house. It’s no bungalow, the floors just go on and on, and so do the rumours about us. When I say we, I mean our strange extended family comprising mature, tantrum-prone Mum, Dad (alias: old man before his time), teenage me, the most stable of us all (I think), and self-harming Esme, who isn’t my sister but might as well be. I could write a whole book devoted to her alone. Oh, and I forgot to mention our permanent house guest, Shadow, a black cat of inde‐ terminate age and parentage who arrived one day and never left. The rest of the inhabitants of our household (except perhaps for me and Shadow, although his status is open to debate) are dysfunctional, weirded-out characters.

I have to cope with a lot (and that’s an understatement), so I resort to painting, rock-and-roll, collecting crystals, and writing songs and poetry. I enjoy writing haiku, a Japanese form of poetry with three lines and some syllables to count. It soothes me. I write Tanka too; adding two longer lines at the end, which soothes me more. Each poetic puzzle I jot down serves as a clue for less afflicted folk to decipher what the hell I am talking about. So, what am I talking about? The trouble is I don’t know; I’m still muddling through. Although I expect it’s a cry for help (a yell), combined with me dissecting the details about Mum’s life, Dad’s existence and his disappearance, Esme’s imprisonment, and Shad‐ ow’s ability to appear and reappear at a moment’s notice. And that’s saying nothing about living in a house that feels like a living being! Yes, I joke to stay sane. That’s a lot to process (sorry), and it’s only a fraction, a haiku tidbit, so let’s keep it simple but poetic and start with a view.

Large print edition: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B097SLWH49/

Click the free preview above to find out more.

And don’t forget to add it to your Goodreads to read list:

It’s been a lot of hard work and no peace for the wicked!

I am busy editing the second book for release next and looking into a blog tour company to create some buzz for Bloodstone’s official release.

In the meantime, if you can help by sharing, getting the word out and reviewing, (I know many of you lovelies have already read the original edition and your reviews will hopefully be re-added soon via the powers that be at Amazon! I believe Next Chapter is in touch with them…

I will be celebrating today with my lovely daughter who has had covid but is now better and passed her quarantine.

Thank heavens, what stressful times. I hope you and your loved ones are saying safe and well.

.TTFN… (Ta Ta For Now!)

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Lockdown Innit – Poems About Absurdity – #Paperback #Reviews #Poetry #Excerpt

I’m thrilled to announce the paperback of my poetry collection Lockdown Innit Poems About Absurdity has released and is available to buy on Amazon. I’ve been a bit slow of the mark in notifying my blog viewers about this as I’ve been busy editing my second YA Fantasy novel: The Curse of Time #2 Golden Healer.

More about that soon!

I’m particularly thrilled about the paperback release as I created the cover myself. The back cover also features ‘my face with pink hair,” designed by the multi-talented Sarah Northwood. I loved her image so much that I wrote a poem about it.

Here’s an excerpt of the poem from the book which gives you an idea of the quirky nature of the poems within…

This Face 

Here’s my face, I’m in the pink,

A shade lighter here and there,

Black glasses, hint of eyebrows,

Smile of lipstick, small detail of nose,

Black border for my chin and hair.

Sweet perfection, not a hair out of place!

***

Sweet perfection, without any disgrace!

Could that really be me in there?

I didn’t even brush my hair!

Or wipe the gunk off my specs,

Those eyebrows, freshly tweeked,

My hair bobbed, cut to perfection.

Which angel darling created this?

Copyright © 2021 M J Mallon

Also, the reviews have been coming in! The latest which I’ve shared below is from author D.L. Finn, many thanks for the kind review. <3

Reviews mean so much!

“Lockdown Innit” is a glimpse into the pandemic through poetry. There were various subjects and types of poetry, including going to the supermarket, driving, cancer, and books. I laughed when reading “SuperMarket Bozos,” it reminded me of my feisty grandmother. “ROAD RAGE DURING COVID-19” is an all too often occurrence, even during the last year. While “Little Library” offered a picture of something one could do during the stay-at-home orders, read. The collection ended with “THIS author longs for Pets,” and I admit jumping into a cat’s dream might be that perfect escape from the heaviness of the epidemic. This is a book I’d like to go back and read ten years from now as a reminder of this time in history because it gives a unique perspective into strange times. 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56949934-lockdown-innit

It’s a short book of poetry, I hope you might enjoy!

I’ve also produced an anthology/compilation during the pandemic:

This Is Lockdown with many international authors contributing their thoughts on the early stages of the pandemic:

Jackie Carreira (Author), Ritu Bhathal (Author), Tracie Barton-Barrett (Author), Sharon Marchisello (Author), Anne Goodwin (Author), Marian Wood (Author), Willow Willers (Author), Sally Cronin (Author), D G Kaye  (Author), Frank Prem (Author), Sherri Matthews (Author), Fi Phillips (Author), Chantelle Atkins (Author), Adele Park (Author), Richard Dee (Author), Katie Hutton (Author), Catherine Fearns (Author), Miriam Owen (Author), Lynn Fraser (Author), Jeannie Wycherley (Author), Peter Taylor-Gooby (Author), Alice May (Author), Ceri Williams (Author), Drew Neary (Author), Samantha Murdoch (Author), Beaton Mabaso (Author), Jane Horwood (Author), Melissa Santiago-Val (Author)  

“A Piece of Living History!”

This anthology and compilation is for everyone, wherever you live in the world. We are all experiencing the impact of COVID19 and lockdown. As writers, bloggers and creatives we express our thoughts and opinions in writing: in heartfelt poetry, pieces on isolation and the impact of COVID19 and the ‘new normal.’ There are twenty eight talented contributors, including the creative NHS Mask Making Fundraising Team of Jane Horwood and Melissa Santiago Val. The contributors come from as far afield as Australia, Canada, USA and Zimbabwe, or closer to my current home in England – in Ireland, Scotland and Italy.

It is as Willow Willers, a contributor said, ‘A piece of living history.’

This extraordinary and unexpected time period will be shared with future generations one day.

Compiling and editing this anthology has given me a purpose over the period of Lockdown and for that I am grateful.

It is an anthology and compilation of diaries, short stories, poetry and flash fiction set during extraordinary times. This Is Lockdown is written from many perspectives, including a writer’s perspective highlighting the day-to-day life and struggles experienced during such an uncertain and frightening time. It also gives a glimpse into the blogging, writing world. The book showcases several authors and their thoughts on what it is like to experience ‘isolation’ as a writer. I discuss the handling of the pandemic and my opinion about what might happen next. In the final part of the book I share my latest short story: a YA romance set post lockdown along with poetry, and flash fiction inspired by the pandemic.

It has also received excellent reviews. https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54431566-this-is-lockdown/

Sending love to you all this Saturday.

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Weathering Old Souls Cover Reveal by James J. Cudney @jamescudney4 and Didi Oviatt @Didi_Oviatt #historical #fiction #metaphysical #release

I’m pleased to welcome two lovely authors to my blog today James Cudney and Didi Oviatt with their new book collaboration Weathering Old Souls.

Cover Reveal Date:

March 31st, 2021

Book Name:

Weathering Old Souls

Authors:

Didi Oviatt & James J. Cudney

Publisher:

Next Chapter

Publication Date:

May 15th, 2021

Pre-Sale Link:

https://books2read.com/WOS

Goodreads Link:

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56709730-weathering-old-souls

Book Site Links:

*** You can find many posts with character intros & a video about the book in the above links

Description:

Abigail has always struggled with strange voices appearing inside her head. From the relentless tyranny a woman faces on an antebellum plantation to the unknown prison camps in America during World War II, our heroine discovers the past in a way that forever changes her future. There are moments from previous periods that serve as guiding posts for the country’s growth, but they also mark the transitions for Abigail’s own personal history. Her best friend, Margaret, partners with Abigail to discover the identity of these voices while focusing on her passion and quest to become a United States senator. Through it all, a serial killer torments the country, romance blossoms between some of the people they meet during the journey, and secrets long thought buried come to light in devastating ways. With the twisting of elements, numerical alignments, and the trauma of spiritual entanglements, no one will be the same… and just a few might not even be around anymore.

Genre:

Contemporary Fiction but with historical interludes, metaphysical elements, past life regression, suspense / mystery

Release Day Giveaway:

Didi and James are giving away 4 prizes as part of this book launch. The giveaway will run from 3/31 thru 5/16. We will close it after Release Day and select 4 winners.

  • $25 Amazon Gift Card
  • $40 Psychic Services
  • 1 eBook of Weathering Old Souls
  • 1 physical book of Weathering Old Souls (US Only)

About the Author – Didi Oviatt 

Didi Oviatt is an intuitive soul. She’s a wife and mother first, with one son and one daughter. Her thirst to write was developed at an early age, and she never looked back. After digging down deep and getting in touch with her literary self, she’s writing mystery/thrillers like Search for Maylee, Justice for Belle, Aggravated Momentum, and Sketch, along with multiple short story collections. She’s collaborated with Kim Knight in an ongoing interactive short story anthology, The Suspenseful Collection. Most recently, she published her first romance novella titled Skinny Dippin’ which was originally released as a part of the highly appraised Anthology, Sinners and Saints. When Didi doesn’t have her nose buried in a book, she can be found enjoying a laid-back outdoorsy lifestyle. Time spent sleeping under the stars, hiking, fishing, and ATVing the back roads of beautiful mountain trails, and sun-bathing in the desert heat play an important part of her day to day lifestyle. 

Where to find Didi: 

https://didioviatt.wordpress.com

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7207389.Didi_Oviatt 

https://www.facebook.com/didioviatt

https://www.instagram.com/didioviatt/

http://amazon.com/author/didioviatt 

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/didi-oviatt

Listen to Didi Oviatt’s books on Audible:   

https://www.audible.com/author/Didi-Oviatt/B00HVJJTLE

Summary of Didi’s Books: 

Search for Maylee: http://mybook.to/SearchMaylee 

Since Maylee was abducted from her high school the very month of graduation, her aunt Autumn has never lost hope in finding her. 

It’s been three years. Autumn has finally reached inside herself and found the courage to track down an old lead. She travels across the country to find more clues about Maylee’s disappearance. 

But will she be able to pry Maylee’s case back open, and what will she uncover in the process of searching for Maylee? 

It’s a cold, dark world we live in, and Autumn is about to find out just how cruel it can be. But strength and determination are on her side, and she will do whatever it takes to deliver justice. 

Aggravated Momentum: http://mybook.to/Aggravated 

After sisters Markie and Kam get tangled with the wrong people at the wrong time, long-buried family secrets begin to emerge. 

A serial killer is targeting people close to them. As danger inches closer and closer to home, twisted desires become a reality. The deeper they dig, the darker the secrets they find. 

But who is the cold, calculated murderer, and can they find a way to survive? 

Praise: 

★★★★★ – “There is an authenticity to Ms. Oviatt’s writing that is refreshing to experience in a thriller-type novel.” 

★★★★★ – “A murder mystery with plenty of drama, suspense and danger. Fans of mystery and thriller genres will love this book.” 

★★★★★ – “Fast-paced and full of twists I never saw coming. I was hooked immediately.” 

Justice for Belle: http://mybook.to/justiceforbelle 

Ahnia has a very dicey past – one that is scratching under the surface, just dying to get out. 

She’s hit rock bottom, broke and desperate to be on top again. When she finds herself partnering up with man she hardly knows, and who’s utterly untouchable, she’s forced out of her comfort zone in every way. 

Will Ahnia and Mac’s dangerous decision be a success, or will she find herself in the clutches of an unforgiving force, brought about by her childhood sin? 

In this nail-biting thrill ride, no one is as they seem…and no one is truly safe with those they trust. 

Sketch: http://mybook.to/sketch 

When local girl Misty is found dead in an underground bunker, the town is thrown into a whirlwind of panic and speculation. Times are tough, but the spaced-out farmer community pulls together as one, trying to uncover who’s guilty. 

Thrown smack in the middle of the chaos is a group of teens: local troublemakers, but with good hearts. Although they’re innocent, the local law enforcers believe otherwise, and the true killer is lurking far too close for comfort. 

Will the four be able to uncover the truth before one of them pays the price for Misty’s death? 

The Suspenseful Collection (Vol. 1): 

For Mature Readers Only: 
A suspenseful novel with a twist. Eight short stories, by two suspense authors, from diverse backgrounds. From opposite sides of the Atlantic these stories have been created. One author started the tale and the other ended it. No discussion, no pre-planning, but yet their stories are seamless. With just creativity and the use of writing prompts, to craft one tale, with two different writers. This anthology of suspenseful, fast paced and engaging tales covers multiple genres. From heart felt romance, crime, fantasy, and steamy historical fiction. There is a story for everyone! 
 

Blurred Lines (The Suspenseful Collection Vol. 2): 

For Mature Readers Only: 
As the second installment of suspenseful short stories by two suspense authors, from diverse backgrounds, Blurred Lines offers a thrill ride with nine stories in genres across the board. From opposite sides of the Atlantic these stories have been created. One author started the tale and the other ended it. No discussion, no pre-planning, but yet their stories are seamless. With the use of writing prompts Kim and Didi have created tales that will tug at your heart strings, drop your jaws, and leave you clinging to the edge of your seat. From gory horror, romance, crime fiction, family drama, and fantasy, there is a story for everyone! 
  

New Age Lamians: http://mybook.to/newagelamians 

Jackson has barely reached manhood when lightning heralds the end of the world as we know it. The lightning has awakened the Lamians: descendants of the mythological creature Lamia. 

In his world, The Company delivers supplies into his village, and harnesses technology that others lack. Soon, Jackson is taken by The Company; he is to be an ultimate warrior, alongside few others, as their blood is rare and compatible with the technology needed to transform them. 

According to The Company, the Lamians are monsters who need to be defeated at all costs. But is Jackson really the one who can save the world? 

Praise: 

★★★★★ – “A twisty, intoxicating read.” 

★★★★★ – “Genuinely imaginative.” 

★★★★★ – “Compellingly entertaining” 

Skinny Dippin’: http://mybook.to/skinnydippin

When Carla agrees to house sit a condo by the beach for a summer, she’s met with a juicy surprise. Though reluctant, and determined to stay away, Carla is drawn to a young man a few doors down. Blake is handsome, temperamental, and just as determined to win her over as she is to stay away. Will Carla succumb to his possessive, domineering traits and become his for the summer? Or will she let better judgement along with their age difference drive a wedge between the undeniable connection? Three months under the summer sun is about to heat up the parts of Carla that she once believed to be lost, tossed to the wind and gone forever. After an accidentally naked night in the water, everything changes, and Carla is forced to face his persistence head on.

About the Author – James J. Cudney 

Background 

James is my given name, but most folks call me Jay. I live in New York City, grew up on Long Island, and graduated from Moravian College, an historic but small liberal arts school in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, with a degree in English literature and minors in Education, Business and Spanish. After college, I accepted a technical writing position for a telecommunications company during Y2K and spent the last ~20 years building a career in technology & business operations in the retail, sports, media, hospitality, and entertainment industries. Throughout those years, I wrote short stories, poems, and various beginnings to the “Great American Novel,” but I was so focused on my career that writing became a hobby. In 2016, I committed to focusing my energies toward reinvigorating a second career in reading, writing, and publishing. 

Author 

Writing has been a part of my life as much as my heart, mind, and body. At some points, it was just a few poems or short stories; at others, it was full length novels and stories. My current focus is family drama fiction, cozy mystery novels, and suspense thrillers. I conjure characters and plots that I feel must be unwound. I think of situations people find themselves in and feel compelled to tell the story. It’s usually a convoluted plot with many surprise twists and turns. I feel it necessary to take that ride all over the course. My character is easily pictured in my head. I know what he is going to encounter or what she will feel. But I need to use the right words to make it clear. 

Reader & Reviewer 

Reading has also never left my side. Whether it was children’s books, young adult novels, college textbooks, biographies, or my ultimate love, fiction, it’s ever present in my day. I read two books per week and I’m on a quest to update every book I’ve ever read on Goodreads, write up a review, and post it on all my sites and platforms.  

Blogger & Thinker 

I have combined my passions into a single platform where I share reviews, write a blog and publish tons of content: TRUTH. I started my 365 Daily Challenge, where I post about a word that has some meaning to me and converse with everyone about life. There is humor, tears, love, friendship, advice, and bloopers. Lots of bloopers where I poke fun at myself all the time. Even my dogs have had weekly segments called “Ryder’s Rants” or “Baxter’s Barks,” where they complain about me. All these things make up who I am; none of them are very fancy or magnanimous, but they are real. And that’s why they are me. 

Genealogist & Researcher 

I love history and research, finding myself often reaching back into the past to understand why someone made the choice he or she did and what were the subsequent consequences. I enjoy studying the activities and culture from hundreds of years ago to trace the roots and find the puzzle of my own history. I wish I could watch my ancestors from a secret place to learn how they interacted with others; and maybe I’ll comprehend why I do things the way I do. 

Websites & Blog 

Website: https://jamesjcudney.com/ 

Blog: https://thisismytruthnow.com 

Amazon: http://bit.ly/JJCIVBooks 

Next Chapter: https://www.nextchapter.pub/authors/james-j-cudney 

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/james-j-cudney 

Social Media 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jamescudney4 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JamesJCudneyIVAuthor/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BraxtonCampusMysteries/ 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ThisIsMyTruthNow/ 

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/jamescudney4/ 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jamescudney4/ 

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/jamescudney4 

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jamescudney4 

Genres, Formats & Languages 

I write in the family drama, suspense, and mystery genres. My first two books were Watching Glass Shatter (2017) and Father Figure (2018). Both are contemporary fiction and focus on the dynamics between parents and children and between siblings. I wrote a sequel, Hiding Cracked Glass, for my debut novel, and they are known as the Perceptions of Glass series. I also have a light mystery series called the Braxton Campus Mysteries with seven books available. 

All my books come in multiple formats (Kindle, paperback, hardcover, large print paperback, pocket size paperback, and audiobook) and some are also translated into foreign languages such as Spanish, Italian, Portuguese, and German.  

Goodreads Book Links 

Perceptions of Glass 

Father Figure (April 2018) 

Braxton Campus Mysteries 

Summary of Books 

Father Figure (Contemporary Fiction / Family Drama) 

Between the fast-paced New York City, a rural Mississippi town and a charming Pennsylvania college campus filled with secrets, two young girls learn the consequences of growing up too quickly. Amalia Graeme, abused by her mother for most of her life, longs to escape her desolate hometown and fall in love. Contemplating her loss of innocence and conflicting feelings between her boyfriend and the dangerous attraction she’s developed for an older man, Amalia faces life-altering tragedies. Brianna Porter, a sassy, angst-ridden teenager raised in New York City, yearns to find her life’s true purpose, conquer her fear of abandonment, and interpret an intimidating desire for her best friend, Shanelle. Desperate to find the father whom her mother refuses to reveal, Brianna accidentally finds out a shocking truth about her missing parent. Set in alternating chapters two decades apart, the parallels between their lives and the unavoidable collision that is bound to happen are revealed. FATHER FIGURE is a stand-alone emotional story filled with mystery, romance, and suspense. 

PERCEPTIONS OF GLASS SERIES 

Watching Glass Shatter (Contemporary Fiction / Family Drama) 

The wealthy Glass family lost its patriarch, Benjamin Glass, sooner than expected. Benjamin’s widow, Olivia, and her 5 sons each react to his death in their own way while preparing for the reading of his will. Olivia receives a very unexpected confession from her late husband about one of their sons that could shatter the whole family. Prior to revealing the secret to her children, Olivia must figure out which boy Ben refers to in the confession he left her in his will. While the family attorney searches for the mysterious Rowena Hector whom Ben says holds the answers, Olivia asks her sons to each spend a week with her as she isn’t ready to let go of the past. When Olivia visits her sons, she quickly learns that each one has been keeping his own secret from her. Olivia never expected her remaining years would be so complex and life-altering, but she will not rest until her family is reunited after Ben’s untimely death. We all need family. We all want to fit in. We’re all a mix of quirky personalities. Will Olivia be able to fix them, or will the whole family implode? What will she do when she discovers the son behind Ben’s secret? Check out this ensemble cast where each family member’s perspective is center stage, discovering along the way who might feel the biggest impact from all the secrets. Through various scenes and memories across a six-month period, you’ll get to know everyone, learning how and why they made certain decisions. Welcome to being an honorary member of the Glass family where the flair for over-the-top drama pushes everyone to their limits. 

Hiding Cracked Glass (Contemporary Fiction / Family Drama) 

An ominous blackmail letter appears at an inopportune moment. The recipient’s name is accidentally blurred out upon arrival. Which member of the Glass family is the ruthless missive meant for? In the powerful sequel to Watching Glass Shatter, Olivia is the first to read the nasty threat and assumes it’s meant for her. When the mysterious letter falls into the wrong hands and is read aloud, it throws the entire Glass family into an inescapable trajectory of self-question. Across the span of eight hours, Olivia and her sons contemplate whether to confess their hidden secrets or find a way to bury them forever. Some failed to learn an important lesson last time. Will they determine how to save themselves before it’s too late? Each chapter’s focus alternates between the various family members and introduces several new and familiar faces with a vested interest in the outcome. As each hour ticks by, the remaining siblings and their mother gradually reveal what’s happened to them in the preceding months, and when the blackmailer makes an appearance at Olivia’s birthday party, the truth brilliantly comes to light. Although everyone seemed to embrace the healing process at the end of Watching Glass Shatter, there were hidden cracks in the Glass family that couldn’t be mended. Their lives are about to shatter into pieces once again, but this time, the stakes are even higher. Someone wants to teach them a permanent lesson and refuses to stop until success is achieved. 

BRAXTON CAMPUS MYSTERY SERIES 

Academic Curveball: Death at the Sports Complex (#1) 

When Kellan Ayrwick, a thirty-two-year-old single father, is forced to return home for his father’s retirement from Braxton College, he finds the dead body of a professor in Diamond Hall’s stairwell. Unfortunately, Kellan has a connection to the victim, and so do several members of his family. Could one of them be guilty of murder? Then he finds a second body after discovering mysterious donations to the college’s athletic program, a nasty blog denouncing his father, and a criminal attempting to change student grades so the star baseball pitcher isn’t expelled. Someone is playing games on campus, but none of the facts add up. With the help of his eccentric and trouble-making nana weeding through the clues, Kellan tries to stay out of the sheriff’s way. Fate has other plans. Kellan is close to discovering the killer’s identity just as someone he loves is put in grave danger of becoming victim number three. And if that’s not enough to wreak havoc on his family, everything comes crashing to a halt when his own past comes spiraling back to change his life forever. In this debut novel in the Braxton Campus Mystery Series, readers discover a cozy, secluded Pennsylvania village full of quirky, sarcastic, and nosy residents. Among the daily workings of Braxton College and the charming Ayrwick family, Kellan weighs his investigative talents against an opportunity to achieve a much sought-after dream. When this first book ends, the drama is set for the next adventure in Kellan’s future… and it’s one you won’t want to miss. 

Broken Heart Attack: Death at the Theater (#2) 

When an extra ticket becomes available to attend the dress rehearsal of Braxton’s King Lear production, Kellan tags along with Nana D and her buddies, sisters-in-law Eustacia and Gwendolyn Paddington, to show support for the rest of the Paddington family. When one of them appears to have a heart attack in the middle of the second act, Nana D raises her suspicions and asks Kellan to investigate who killed her friend. Amidst family members suddenly in debt and a secret rendezvous between an unlikely pair, Kellan learns the Paddingtons might not be as clean-cut as everyone thinks. But did one of them commit murder for an inheritance? Kellan is back in his second adventure since returning home to Pennsylvania. With his personal life in upheaval and his new boss, Myriam, making life difficult, will he be able to find a killer, or will he get caught up in his own version of stage fright? 

Flower Power Trip: Death at the Masquerade Ball (#3) 

Braxton College is throwing the Heroes & Villains Costume Extravaganza to raise money for renovations to the antiquated Memorial Library. While attending, Kellan stumbles upon a close family friend standing over a dead body that’s dressed as Dr. Evil. Did one of Maggie’s sisters kill an annoying guest at the Roarke and Daughters Inn or does the victim have a more intimate connection to someone else on campus? As Kellan helps the school’s president, Ursula, bury a scandalous secret from her past and unearth the identity of her stalker, he unexpectedly encounters a missing member of his own family who’s reappeared after a lengthy absence. When all the peculiar events around town trace back to the Stoddards, a new family who recently moved to Wharton County, the explosive discovery only offers more confusion. Between the special flower exhibit that’s made an unplanned stop on campus and strange postcards arriving each week from all around the world, Kellan can’t decide which mystery in his life should take priority. Unfortunately, the biggest one of all has yet to arrive at his doorstep. When it does, Kellan won’t know what hit him. 

Mistaken Identity Crisis: Death on the Cable Car (#4) 

A clever thief with a sinister calling card has invaded Braxton campus. A string of jewelry thefts continues to puzzle the sheriff given they’re remarkably similar to an unsolved eight-year-old case from shortly before Gabriel vanished one stormy night. When a missing ruby is discovered near an electrified dead body during the campus cable car redesign project, Kellan must investigate the real killer to protect his brother. Amidst sorority hazing practices and the victim’s connections to several prominent Wharton County citizens, a malicious motive becomes more obvious and trickier to prove. As if the latest murder isn’t enough to keep him busy, Kellan partners with April to end the Castigliano and Vargas crime family feud. What really happened to Francesca while all those postcards showed up in Braxton? The mafia world is more calculating than Kellan realized, and if he wants to move forward, he must make a few ruthless sacrifices. Election Day is over, and the new mayor takes office. Nana D celebrates her 75th birthday with an adventure. A double wedding occurs at Crilly Lake on Independence Day. And Kellan receives a few more surprises as the summer heat settles in Wharton County. 

Haunted House Ghost: Death at the Fall Festival (#5) 

It’s Halloween, and excitement is brewing in Braxton to carve jack-o’-lanterns, go on haunted hayrides, and race through the spooky corn maze at the Fall Festival. Despite the former occupant’s warnings, Kellan renovates and moves into a mysterious old house. When a ruthless ghost promises retribution, our fearless professor turns to the eccentric town historian and an eerie psychic to communicate with the apparition. Meanwhile, construction workers discover a fifty-year-old skeleton after breaking ground on the new Memorial Library wing. While Kellan and April dance around the chemistry sparking between them, a suspicious accident occurs at the Fall Festival. Soon, Kellan discovers the true history and dastardly connections of the Grey family. But can he capture the elusive killer – and placate the revenge-seeking ghost. 

Frozen Stiff Drink: Death at Danby Landing (#6) 

A winter blizzard barrels toward Wharton County with a vengeance. Madam Zenya predicted the raging storm would change the course of Kellan’s life, but the famed seer never could’ve prepared him for all the collateral damage. Nana D disappears after visiting a patient at Willow Trees, leaving behind a trail of confusion. When the patient turns up dead, and second body is discovered beneath the snowbanks, Kellan must face his worst fears. What tragedy has befallen his beloved grandmother? Kellan’s brother Hampton learns essential life lessons the hard way after his father-in-law accuses him of embezzlement. While trying to prove his innocence, Hampton digs himself a deeper hole that might lead to prison. Sheriff Montague wants to save him, but she receives the shock of her life as the past hurtles forward and complicates her future. Between locating Nana D and solving the scandalous murder of another prominent Braxton citizen, Kellan and April’s worlds explode with more turmoil than they can handle. Too bad neither one of them knows what to do about the psychic’s latest premonition. The suspicious deaths happening around town aren’t ending anytime soon. 

Legally Blind Luck: Death via Curse (#7) 

Surprising new family members. A hidden talisman. Deadly curses. Horrific murder. Months after tragically losing a loved one, Kellan learns his relative’s death wasn’t an accident. Someone discovered Queen Tessa’s cursed talisman, and a rogue government agent will stop at nothing to retrieve the heirloom. Too bad it changed hands during an anonymous auction and found its way on campus. Moments before Braxton’s controversial art exhibition opens, Kellan stumbles upon another murder victim. It appears he might be next on the avenger’s list too. Will Kellan protect Tessa’s true heir and prevent a killer’s nefarious plan from ending the curse? Given all the suspects have ties to prominent Braxton citizens, he’s uncertain whom to trust. Together, Kellan and Sheriff April are determined to solve the mystery via legal means or purely through blind luck. 

Amazon Book Links 

Watching Glass Shatter 

http://mybook.to/WGS 

Hiding Cracked Glass 

Father Figure 

http://mybook.to/FatherFigure 

Academic Curveball 

http://mybook.to/ACurveball 

Broken Heart Attack 

http://mybook.to/BrokenHA 

Flower Power Trip 

http://mybook.to/FlowerPowerTrip 

Mistaken Identity Crisis 

http://mybook.to/mistakenidentity 

Haunted House Ghost 

http://mybook.to/hauntedhouseghost 

Frozen Stiff Drink 

http://mybook.to/fsd 

Legally Blind Luck

Wishing them both all the best with their new release.

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M J Mallon. New book launch! | Lizzie Chantree

Thank you to Lizzie Chantree for this lovely book launch post for my new poetry Book, Lockdown Innit.

If you love poetry, then this is the book for you! I’m thrilled to be part of the launch of author M J Mallon‘s new poetry book, Lockdown Innit.  M J is a big supporter of other authors and it’s great to be able to give something back.

Grab your copy of this interesting and thought provoking book here: Universal link for kindle: https://mybook.to/Lockdowninnit

Source: M J Mallon. New book launch! | Lizzie Chantree

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This Is Lockdown Paperback Release!!! #Christmas #Book #Sale #covid19 #poetry #flashfiction #anthology

The paperback for This Is Lockdown is now available to buy on Amazon at the super duper introductory offer price of £6.99/$9.31!

What a bargain.

It is a shorter version (without the diaries,) with black and white photography to include Covid19 Flash Fiction, contributions from the ‘isolation writers,’ poets and creatives.

Book Description – This Is Lockdown – Paperback verison

An anthology and compilation of short stories, flash fiction, contributions from the ‘isolation writers,’ plus poetry written during the time of lockdown in the UK.

This anthology and compilation is for everyone, wherever you live in the world. We are all experiencing the impact of COVID19 and lockdown. As writers, bloggers and creatives we express our thoughts and opinions in writing: in heartfelt poetry, pieces on isolation and the impact of COVID19 and the ‘new normal.’ There are twenty eight talented contributors, including the creative NHS Mask Making Fundraising Team of Jane Horwood and Melissa Santiago Val. The contributors come from as far afield as Australia, Canada, USA and Zimbabwe, or closer to my current home in England – in Ireland, Scotland and Italy.

It is as Willow Willers, a contributor said, ‘A piece of living history.’

This extraordinary and unexpected time period will be shared with future generations one day.

Compiling and editing this anthology has given me a purpose over the period of Lockdown and for that I am grateful. The book showcases several authors and their thoughts on what it is like to experience ‘isolation’ as a writer. In the final part of the book I include my latest short story idea: a YA romance and various short pieces of poetry, and flash fiction inspired by the pandemic.

The wonderful contributing authors and creatives are many in number!

Richard Dee, (Sci Fi , Steampunk, Amateur Detective author,) Catherine Fearns, (Amazon Bestselling Author of Police Procedural/Mysteries and Music Journalist,) Lynn Fraser, (Author,) Jackie Carreira, (Writer, musician, designer and aspiring philosopher,) Willow Willers, (Poet and writer,) Sharon Marchisello, (Murder Mystery, Financial non-fiction,) Fi Phillips , (Author, Copy Writer) Jeannie Wycherley, (dark stories, suspense, horror,) Chantelle Atkins, (urban fiction, teen/YA,) Tracie Barton-Barrett, (Speaker/author,) Peter Taylor- Gooby, (Crime, Love Stories, Political Fiction,) Ritu Bhathal, (Chick Lit romance, poet,) Alice May , (Author, Artist and Speaker,) Miriam Owen, (Blogger and Doctoral Researcher,) Drew Neary and Ceri Williams (Ghost Horror, Supernatural,) Katherine Mezzacappa, (author name: Katie Hutton,) (Historical Fiction/Romance,) Sally Cronin, (huge supporter of indie community/blogger/author) Debby Gies (D G Kaye), (Memoirist/NonFiction,) Adele Marie Park, (Fantasy, horror, urban fantasy,) Marian Wood, (blogger, poet and writer.) Samantha Murdoch, (Writer, Blogger,) Beaton Mabaso (Blogger, African Storyteller,) Frank Prem  (Poet, Author,) Anne Goodwin (Author, Book Blogger) Sherri Matthews (Writer, Photographer, Blogger,) andJane Horwood and Melissa Santiago-Val – Community Masks 4 NHS

Thank you so much to each one of them for being a part of this project.

Please do visit their websites and buy their books to discover the huge variety of writing and creative talent amongst them ranging from talented short story and poetry writers to horror, fantasy, supernatural thriller, romance and memoir writing. And more!!! Plus the wonderful fundraising Community Masks 4 NHS initiative from Jane Horwood and Melissa Santiago-Val which has become Sew Positive.

There truly is something for everyone amongst this international group of writers and creatives who are based in the UK, Ireland, Canada, Italy, America and Zimbabwe.

This is a tough time for writers as it is for everyone. The arts and creative industry is under threat as are businesses worldwide.

PLEASE NOTE – The paperback does not include my personal COVID diaries originally published on the kindle. These are available to read on the kindle version of This Is Lockdown.

Buying Links Paperback:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/This-Lockdown-COVID19-isolation-creatives/dp/1999822455/

The Christmas Countdown sale continues for This Is Lockdown in kindle and Mr. Sagittarius in kindle and paperback. Price is going up soon so check Amazon for the latest price!!!

Kindle Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/This-Lockdown-COVID19-Diaries-Fiction-ebook/dp/B08CD1MCFB/

Kindle Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/This-Lockdown-COVID19-Diaries-Fiction-ebook/dp/B08CD1MCFB/

Same with Mr. Sagittarius, check Amazon for latest sale price!!!

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Mr-Sagittarius-Poetry-Prose-Mallon-ebook/dp/B084DQV3HW/

And the paperback is currently reduced to £6.99/$9.29

Universal link: http://mybook.to/MrSagittarius

Also check out the low price offer on my YA fantasy The Curse of Time too, which is being kept on special low price until the release of the second in the series.

The Curse of Time is available in kindle and in paperback:

Buy Book: myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

So, now that the paperback of This Is Lockdown is done what’s next?

Lots of projects for 2021. But, first will be the edits of my YA Fantasy The Curse of Time Book 2 Golden Healer which I have neglected – there is still much to do!

All the best for a happy and restful festive break.

Much love,

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