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Getting to know – Carolyn LaRoche

Carolyn LaRoche grew up in snow country but fled the cold and ice several years ago. She now lives near the beach with her husband and their two sons.
She’s been known to lug her laptop to the baseball fields and keeps a notebook by her bed to jot down the next big story idea in the wee hours of the night.
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Daisies in the Outfield
After his professional baseball career crashed and burned, Jamie escaped to the scenic coastal town of Falmouth for a fresh start. With a new career that fit his personality, Jamie lived life on his terms. His terms were simple—fight fires for the adrenaline rush, coaching MLB hopefuls for the love of the game, and spending his nights with one of the many pretty faces that crossed his path. Plenty of women passed through his life but none had tempted him to settle down.
Until a feisty brunette changed all that. Too bad the sexy paramedic had no interest in Jamie or spending the night with him. She carried an attitude as thick as her New York accent and he wanted to coax a smile on her face.Mandy was running from something and Jamie couldn’t help but be intrigued
Can a sexy little wager convince a confirmed bachelor and a woman running from her past to take a chance on love?
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Dandelion Wishes
When a terrible injury ended his pro career, Grant knew nothing would ever take the place of his one and only love—baseball. Fighting fires didn’t hold the same kind of excitement as catching a ninety mile an hour fast ball at Fenway Park but he loved every minute of it. Especially when he met the sassy, sexy as hell paramedic that’s as complicated as a three-alarm fire.
Callie had already lived through her fair share of serious. At twenty-eight, her current plans for the future included having a good time and enjoying the MLB hopefuls that showed up on the Cape every May to play in the summer baseball league. College boys were fun but didn’t hold half the appeal as the sexy firefighter that kept showing up when she least expected it.
He wanted her and she wanted absolutely none of it. Or, so she thought. Grant could not only set her body on fire with just a look but with only a few kisses she started to forget that serious was off the table for her life. After hiding so much for so long, can she open her heart up and trust that Grant’s in it for more than just the chase?
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Tell us about you
I’m a proud wife to the bravest man I know and mother to two amazing boys. I love cheering on my kiddos at baseball games, teaching high school science and trying new recipes I find on Facebook.

What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
My alarm clock? Okay so maybe that’s not exactly what you meant… We only have one life to live and I am not going to spend mine sleeping it away. There’s so much to see and do in this world.

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why?
I’d love to step back in time and spend a day with Robin Williams. He was such a gifted man. His ability to tap into the exact emotion of any given situation went beyond pure talent.

What’s the story behind your latest book?
I love baseball, I love Cape Cod and hot firefighters make for good heroes. Combining the three seemed like a really good idea for a sexy, funny romance.

Tell us your writing process
I am a total seat of my pants writer. My process is nearly non-existent. Once I start work on a story, I write it until its done, do a couple read-throughs and send it off to my beta readers. From there, edits and prep for publication. I don’t have a specific snack or music I like to listen to or anything like that.

What tips can you give other authors who are looking to get the word out about their book?
Network and get comfortable with social media. The internet can be an author’s best friend if it’s used properly. Also, something my husband says to me frequently—make sure you are writing because you love writing. Let the rest fall into place.

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?
I’m not really sure. I’ve been writing for as long as I can remember. The idea to publish my work just sort of evolved over time and a series of unexpected decisions.

Tell us about your main character:
Jamie is a former MLB player with a slightly messy past. After his baseball career comes to an end, he discovers a new love in firefighting. He’s a ladies man with no interest in ever settling down until he meets Mandy.

What are you working on next?
I’m about halfway through the third book in this Cape Cod series. I’ve also begun work on a humorous cop drama.

Do you have any special/extraordinary talents?
Does raising two teen boys count?

Who are your favorite authors?
I love Janet Evanovich. Her characters are so imperfectly real. I am also a big fan of Jill Shalvis. Her romances have a lot of humor and relatable characters.

What do you like to do with your free time?
I’m a beach girl. I love the ocean, the sand, the smell of the air. I dabble a little in crochet but I am not very good at it and I love to try new recipes.

Tell us about your plans for upcoming books.
I have always wanted to write a story based on the many letters my father wrote to my mother while he was fighting in the Vietnam War. I think that might be next big project.

Where can people find you on the web? 
Twitter: @CarolynLaRoche
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolynLaRoche

Any final thoughts?
Don’t be afraid to try out new authors. In the last three years my indie horizons have been broadened tremendously. I’ve discovered amazing writers I’d have never known existed if I’d stuck with only the shelves of Barnes and Noble.

An Excerpt from Daisies in the Outfield
“Come on, Sally, when’s dinner gonna be served?” All the guys had a girl name for their night on kitchen duty. Jamie’s was Sally. Grant had been harassing him big time and it was getting way beyond annoying. Every time the door to the house opened, he held his breath hoping Mandy would walk in.
“You’ll get your food when it’s ready,” he snapped, not bothering to hide his annoyance.
“Touchy today, aren’t we. Is it your time of the month, Sally?”
“Go to hell.” Jamie stirred the sauce then poured the five pounds of pasta into the oversized colander to drain it.
“Damn, man. You need to get laid something serious.”
“You might not understand this, but there is more to life than getting laid and getting drunk.”
“Tell that to my liver and my dick. They are pretty feisty little guys and they want what they want when they want it.”
“You really need a life, Grant.”
“I have a great life. A job I like, a twenty four hour grocery store across the street and
plenty of pretty ladies around town with a thing for firefighters.”
“Why don’t you and your dick go tell the guys grub’s on. I need to step outside for some air.”
“Thinking about my parts got you all hot and bothered, does it?” Grant left the kitchen laughing and Jamie stepped out the back door to the little grassy area behind the fire station. Stretching, he let the cool ocean breeze that always accompanied nightfall, wash over him. The smell of sand and salt assaulted his senses. It was a heady combination on a warm summer night. Even better if he had a certain woman in his arms watching the waves crash in over their toes.
“Hey,” a voice called out quietly from the dimness of dusk. A very familiar voice. A voice that made his heart jump around wildly in his chest. Mandy.
He turned around and saw her standing at the corner of the building, peering at him with an amused look on her face. Suddenly feeling a little shy, he replied, “Hey, yourself,” instead of striding over and taking her in his arms like he had ached to do all day long. Mandy giggled and twisted her hands in front of her.
“What’s so funny?”
“Well, I came here to meet a guy named Jamie but it looks like I’ve found Betty Crocker instead.”
Oh, shit. The apron!
“You got a problem with a man in an apron?” He grinned and she laughed again, shaking her head.
“No. I don’t suppose I do.”
“Good.” This time he did close the distance between them but he didn’t touch her. She shivered a little and he hoped it was because of his proximity and not the evening breeze. “It’s a house joke. The guy on kitchen duty has to wear one—the frillier, the better—and he gets a girl name. Hazing at its best, I suppose.”
“What’s yours?”
“My what?” It was getting hard to think when all he could focus on was her lips and how badly he wanted to taste them.
Mandy ran a finger lightly up his arm until she reached the place where the full length apron started up around his neck and hooked her finger there. “Your girl name. What is it?”
“Sally.”
“Hmmm…I’ve always had this secret fantasy of kissing a girl named Sally. Ever since I heard the song Mustang Sally.”
“You have? Maybe we should do something about that.”
“Maybe we should.” Mandy was more
relaxed than he had seen her over the last few days, flirting with her words and ravaging him with her eyes. He sure liked this side of her.
Jamie bent down and scooped her up in his arms. Mandy wrapped her legs around his waist and her arms around his neck. She leaned back slightly and murmured, “Oh, Sally. You have the most amazing—eyes.” She ran her tongue over her lips, never once looking him the eyes.
“So do you,” he replied focused only on those now slightly dampened lips. The space between them disappeared as she took his mouth with a passion he wouldn’t have thought her capable of. Worried one of the guys might walk outside and see them, he carried her into a stand of pine trees on the side of the building, never once breaking their contact. She let a tiny little moan escape as she ended the kiss.
“I’m sorry. I couldn’t help myself.” She sounded embarrassed.
“I never want you to not do that if you have the urge. Did that even make sense?” He chuckled huskily against her throat as he placed tiny little kisses across the neck line of her top. The thin, silky material was erotic, caressing his chin and cheek as he explored the bare skin of her shoulder with his tongue.
“Yes. It made sense.” She pulled his mouth back up to hers. “I feel like doing it again.”
Jamie dropped to his knees, setting Mandy gently onto the ground. He sat in the cushion of the pine needles and pulled her onto his lap. “Then by all means—”
The second kiss was better than the first as his tongue sought hers. She was as fervent as he was in her desire to get as close as possible. If he weren’t in uniform, twenty feet from ten other guys, he would have given into her every demand. As it was, they were about to go to a place he wouldn’t return from without an ice cold shower so he pulled back reluctantly.
“Did I miss something?” he whispered against her ear.
“No. Why?”
“This morning I wasn’t sure I would ever see you again. I mean, there was something—”
“I know. I’m sorry. I was having some doubts but then I talked to Callie and worked a few things out.”
“I like when you talk to Callie.” He grinned and pressed a kiss to the side of her neck, behind her ear. “Can you talk to her more often? Preferably on a day when I am not on duty?”
Mandy laughed. “I think that can be arranged.”
“Are you hungry?”
She shook her head. “Not anymore.”
There was no mistaking the meaning in her words. “Yeah, me either. Unfortunately, I have to get back inside. The captain can be a bit of a ball-buster.”
Mandy moved to stand but Jamie pulled her back in, crushing his lips to hers in one last hard kiss. He wanted to remember the feel of her lips all night long. She snaked her arms around his neck and murmured, “I know exactly what you mean.”
His hands slid up her back slowly, slipping under the hem of her top and finding the soft skin of her lower back. A groan rumbled through his chest. Frustration mounted and that ice cold shower was definitely about to become reality.
“I should go,” she whispered. “I don’t want you to get in trouble on my account. I’m thinking you are going to need those balls your captain will want to bust in the near future.”
He groaned again, this time in sweet agony over the image her words had conjured in his mind. They walked out of the stand of trees hand in hand, Jamie cursing his need to be employed.
“Are you sure you don’t want to come in for a bit?”
She shook her head. “No. I don’t want to get in the way.”
“You are never in my way.”
He loved the way all her skin, not just her face, changed colors when she was embarrassed. Half the time he said stuff like that just to make her blush.
“See you for the game tomorrow night?” he asked, wrapping his arm around her waist and pulling her in for one last kiss.
“Wouldn’t miss it for the world, Coach.” She batted her eyelashes exaggeratedly and gave him a sugary sweet smile.
“Good. I’ll make sure one of my uniforms is clean just for you.”
“You can but you’ll be wasting your time.” Mandy stepped away and gave a little wave. “I never lose a bet. Enjoy the rest of your shift.”
He watched as she walked away, stopping just before she turned the corner and blew him a little kiss.
What the hell was all that?
That was a side to Mandy, he hadn’t expected. All her temperature changes over the past few days hadn’t prepared him for what had just gone down.
The door opened behind him. “Where the hell’d you get off to, man? I was about to call in search and rescue.”
“Nowhere. I’ve been out here the whole time.”
“You’ve got dirt on your knees.”
“I dropped something.”
“And found it by rolling around under the trees?” Grant reached up and pulled a pine needle out of Jamie’s hair.
“I guess so.”
“You look like a freak in that apron.”
“Mandy likes it.”
Grant’s eyes widened as he scanned the area. “She’s here?”
“Was. I invited her for dinner.”
“Well, why didn’t you all come inside then?”
Jamie turned and grinned at his friend. “Because she skipped the meal and filled up on desert.”
“You dog! You didn’t—?”
“No! Not that. I would have but you know, work and all.”
“Always getting in the way of the good stuff,” Grant grumbled as they returned to the kitchen. “If I could get paid for having sex, I would.”
“You can. But, you can also get arrested for it.”
“I meant legally, you ass hat! Maybe I’ll become a porn star.” He gyrated his hips exaggeratedly, making Jamie laugh.
Jamie pulled off his apron and tossed it to Grant. “Sorry, dude. You better stick with fighting fires. You’re on cleanup. I need a shower.”
A very, very cold shower.

Cheryl Low might be an Evil Queen, sipping tea and peeping on everyone from high up in her posh tower—a job she got only after being fired from her gig as Wicked Witch for eating half the gingerbread house.

…Or she might be a relatively mundane human with a love for all things sugary and soap opera slaps.

Find out by following her on social media @cherylwlow or check her webpage, cheryllow.com. The answer might surprise you! But it probably won’t.

Social Media Links: Twitter& Instagram: @cherylwlow Website: cheryllow.com

In the Realm there are whispers. Whispers that the city used to be a different place. That before the Queen ruled there was a sky beyond the clouds and a world beyond their streets.

Vaun Dray Fen never knew that world. Born a prince without a purpose in a Realm ruled by lavish indulgence, unrelenting greed, and vicious hierarchy, he never knew a time before the Queen’s dust drugged the city. From the tea to the pastries, everything is poisoned to distract and dull the senses. And yet, after more than a century, his own magic is beginning to wake. The beautiful veneer of the Realm is cracking. Those who would defy the Queen turn their eyes to Vaun, and the dust saturating the Realm.

From the carnivorous pixies in the shadows to the wolves in the streets, Vaun thought he knew all the dangers of his city. But when whispers of treason bring down the fury of the Queen, he’ll have to race to save the lives and souls of those he loves.

A deliciously decadent debut that will make you reconsider the world within which we live – because how different are we than Low’s drugged-up citizens of the upper crust?” — Sara Dobie Bauer, author of the Bite Somebody series

Grab your copy now World Weaver Press Amazon Barnes & Noble iTunes Kobo Goodreads

“Vaun took another deep drag off the cigarette one of his new friends, Gabby, had offered him. She and the man sitting beside her pretended quite comically to be from the High. The prince did not ruin the show by telling them that he knew everyone in the High, to some degree. The quality of their vanity charms indicated they were not, not to mention the state of their clothing. Being rude was only fashionable if one’s victim was up to the challenge and could strike back. Besides, Vaun never discouraged people who tried so hard to amuse him.

The prince exhaled black smoke. It was thick and dramatic, but his skin didn’t hum the way it usually did after a deep breath of dust. In fact, the tingle was more of an agitation, making him shift in his seat and flick his cigarette more angrily than usual. Ash fluttered through the air. How much tea did he have to drink for a decent buzz? He all but dropped his cup back on its chipped saucer in disgust. “I shouldn’t have come,” he muttered.

“You’re leaving?” Gabby’s smile faltered. Her fingers clenched around her teacup. She wore fingerless, black lace gloves like his sister did on occasion and Vaun noticed that her skirts and bodice were also in dark colors with hints of lace sewn in wherever possible, some obviously added as an afterthought and not even matching the lace elsewhere. It would have been easier to try to imitate the High fashion of Belholn but Gabby had aimed even higher, for the princess herself.

“Yes. I’m sure I have a date somewhere.” Some part of him enjoyed the distress of the people around him at the possibility of his departure. It made him want to leave even more.

“Wait!” Gabby grabbed at the man beside her, whose name Vaun had forgotten a while ago, and tugged at the sleeve of his obviously repaired jacket. “Show him,” she whispered urgently.

Vaun took another draw of his disappointing cigarette. The best part about going to a teahouse or club in the thick of the Main was how the people tried so desperately to impress him. The people in the High knew him too well to try so hard. They feared his mockery even more than they desired his attention. But this group had spent the better part of the last hour trying to wow him with their trinkets and knowledge of the High. It was all nonsense read from the paper and mostly outdated. “I truly doubt you have anything to show me that I have not seen.”

The man reached into his jacket a little uncomfortably and took out a small mason jar. Others giggled, recognizing it, but Vaun only blinked at first. Its glass belly was full but not with anything liquid or solid. Light, captured and pulsing, swirled inside the jar. Vaun felt it as much as he saw it. He heard it like a whisper against his senses and found himself leaning forward to see it more clearly: a soul. Vaun had seen them before, but they weren’t common. So uncommon, in fact, that he was surprised they hadn’t led with this in their attempt to impress him. He supposed they might have been afraid he’d take it. Soul capturing was an old craft that most considered barbaric now.

His gaze turned up from the jar to the man holding it. “Who is it?” The soul was a beautiful captive, but the person walking around without it was the real prize—the puppet, someone that could be made to do anything.

“I couldn’t say.” The man smiled. “He wouldn’t be much of a spy if I did.”

Q&A With….

Cheryl, thanks for stopping by my blog today. Tell our readers about you
I was born and raised in California but moved to Sweden when I was twenty-three. I now have dual citizenship and somehow ended up moving so far north that I’m actually in the Arctic Circle. I love cafes and sugary treats and that love has forced me to spend a lot of time at the gym.

What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The desperate hope that there will be a box of cookies waiting for me and all my books will magically be edited.

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why
Gail Carriger. Because there would be tea and probably some sort of pastry involved and I just image she’d be a delight to talk to.

What’s the story behind your latest book?
Vanity in Dust is a product of obsessive imagining. It’s pure fantasy born from daydreams. A world driven by magic, where it’s become their drug of choice and inevitably clouded their minds. Once I laid the groundwork for the world, I built it by wondering in my daily life, how would this work in the Realm? Which inevitably led to them turning a library into a café where they can whisper their secrets and pretend to read books—most without words.

Tell us your writing process
I’m an outliner. I fell into it a while back. I obsess over a story for a while, building a list of ideas and scenes and then when I’m ready, I flesh that out into a full outline. Then I pick a month and write on a word-count-a-day schedule. It really works for me and I love doing it.

What tips can you give other authors who are looking to get the word out about their book?
Twitter and Instagram are your friends and finding a community of other writers and readers can be really helpful and supportive. There’s a lot to be learned from other authors successes and mistakes.

When did you realize you wanted to be a writer?
There wasn’t a time when I didn’t want to be a writer. I’ve always been in my own world and writing happened even before I was ready to be an author.

Tell us about your main character:
Vaun Dray Fen is a prince in a city where that means everything and nothing. He has more power than almost anyone around him, but comes to realize that’s not saying much because his mother rules over every choice they make. He’s spoiled and light-hearted and indulgent but finds out he might be capable of more than playing his mother’s jester.

What are you working on next?
The second book in the Crowns and Ash series has been turned in to my amazing editor. It’s going to be a five book series so that should keep me pretty busy for a while.

Do you have any special/extraordinary talents?
Cookies! I am really good at baking cookies. Cake, not so much.

Who are your favorite authors?
Genevieve Cogman and Gail Carriger come to mind first. Amazing world builders with stories that are both exciting and hilarious. I also love Emily Gee, Tanith Lee, and Christopher Rice.

What do you like to do with your free time?
Between the books I want to write and the books I want to read, my free time is well and truly filled.

Tell us about your plans for upcoming books.
Detox in Letters is the second book of the Crowns and Ash series and we’re hoping to have that out next year.

Where can people find you on the web? 

Website – http://cheryllow.com/
Twitter- https://twitter.com/cherylwlow

Any final thoughts?

Questions are fun! And now I want cookies.

Facebook Page COTC

Hey folks!

Just a quick one today. We finally got a new page up on Facebook for Creatives On The Couch 🙂

Do us a favor and stop by and like our new page and share with your mates 😉

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Interview With ….

MediaKit_BookCover_LeavingShangrila

Isabelle, thanks for being my guest today. Tell us about you. 
If I were an animal, I would be a mountain goat – minus the goat. I love the outdoors, and mountains in particular and whenever I have a chance, I am on one: hiking, biking and/or skiing. Despite now calling myself a writer, my first love was math and quantitative models. I used to love just working with my computer. But my life now could not be more different. I hardly even build a spreadsheet, and spend my time talking and managing. It is interesting how life evolves when you are open to it.

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why?
Whenever I get asked a question of who is my favorite person, or role model, or who I’d like to hang out, I could easily tell you that there isn’t one person in particular, but that there are a ton of people that I admire and that, them, collective, would give me the inspiration and all skill sets. But to properly answer the question, I’d have to say one of the players in the Warriors basketball team. I know they just lost… but I would like to be with them to feel the energy of their team, witness the camaraderie they built together, and have that feeling that only winning a sports game can give you.

What’s the story behind your latest book?
As it is usual with those who have early starts that are difficult, it becomes easier to just put it in the past and never truly revisit it. That is what I did. I creative a narrative for my life that did not include my childhood. I did not want to be defined by it, nor ever be labeled a “victim.” But when my first son was born, I felt this strong desire to tell my story. I wanted him to know who I was, what I overcame, and that all we had in our life was a result of a lot of effort to bring us to the fortune we currently we enjoy. And that desire never let up. I just kept writing and writing. Years after, I took a writing class on a whim and for the first time I shared my story, with total strangers. Their reaction astounded me. They wanted to know more, felt inspired by it and asked me to tell the rest. That is when I realized that a story of a girl who grew up within a dysfunctional family in the jungles of Brazil was actually relatable to many people. I believe it was the first time I truly realized that there was a common humanity to us all.

What is your writing process? 
I don’t really have a set process. As I usually have my computer nearby, whenever I have a block of free time, I open it up and start writing. In fact, I am writing this interview under the canopy of a redwood tree while my son is getting ready for a baseball game. My process is simply finding – and capturing – time.

Tell us about your main character
Leaving Shangrila is a memoir, so naturally, I am the protagonist of the story. It is challenging to write about oneself in a way that does not feel self-serving, self-critical, or its flip side, self-aggrandizing. I took great care to write about me, and all others in my story in the context of the facts that occurred. I did not want to portray myself as a victim, which I could easily have done. Nor did I want to portray myself as a hero, as I suppose I could have given how I was able to overcome the adversity in my life. But neither of those would be true. I had plenty of flaws, and not all of those because of how I grew up. I believe I owned them in the book. I believe they made me who I was and informed the decisions I made.

If your book was to be turned into a movie, who would play the lead role and why.
I am not sure I am aware of the teenage actress within the age range for the story, but I would like it to be someone like Tora Birch (who is definitely an adult now and would not the person) when she played My Girl years ago. Mostly because she was so tenacious, and unafraid, even though she was still vulnerable and scared.
What are you working on next?

What advice do you have for other writers who want to get the word out about their book?
Start early. I heard this advice myself, that is, to start promoting the book a year before it gets out. I did not pay heed at the time… so when I finally started focused on marketing, I felt completely overwhelmed. There were so many avenues, at all kinds of different price points, and I also have to say, a lot of predatory people who offered their services for thousands of dollars, without much of a guarantee of what would be the outcome. It is challenging to sift through all the information and make informed decisions that are right for your book. I enlisted friends who have published books as advisors, but also I relied heavily on the Book Acquisitions Editor because I felt that he was someone I could trust. So besides the starting early (a must), do find someone you can trust – and who is willing to help you – to sort through the maze.

What is your favorite book on your shelf right now?
I suppose what seems to be everyone’s favorite: The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. I find the book extraordinary in how she developed the characters, told the story. It is the only book I can remember that made me cry. And I related to one of the sisters, Isabelle (not only because we share a name). She was so strong, so wanting to become bigger than everybody’s expectations of her. She wanted (and did) to make a difference. She took risks.

Do you have any special/extraordinary talents?
It depends how you define that. I could brag about speaking multiple languages, or some prowess intellectually or professionally. But I don’t think at the end, life is about that. I just simply and actively try to be the best person I can be. I love deeply, I choose honesty, I persevere through adversity, I nurture my friendships and I try to help others. Is that special? I would hope not, because I wish all people lived like that.

You are given the choice of one super power. What super power would you have and why?
If I could have a superpower than I could impose on others, it would be to erase all lying from the world.

List 5 things on your bucket list:

  • Travel in Iceland for at least a month
  • Complete the 10 day (or is it 11 day) hike around Mount Blanc through France, Switzerland and Italy with my family.
  • See my children achieve happiness in life, however they choose to get there.
  • Achieve professionally something makes a meaningful impact in the world. My job is important, Leaving Shangrila hopefully will inspire countless people. But I mean something larger, some that can tangible make the world a better place. I don’t know what the metric it is for that yet.
  • Retire at 55 (by retiring, I mean not needing to work, but choosing to work if I want to).

Where can readers find you on the web?
My website is www.isabellegecilsauthor.com

Any final thoughts?
If you read Leaving Shangrila and wonder what it is you can do, do the following:
1) Choose honestly, always. The only people who benefit from lies are no one.
2) When something seems amiss with others, just ask whether all is right in the world. Do something. And something other than think “that is none of my business.” Imagine the people you could help!

VBT – HAND OVER FIST

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Hand Over Fist
by Michael Ross

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GENRE: Thriller

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BLURB

When an old friend disappears, Martin learns nothing is what it seems…

Martin Russell can barely face the future. With dismal life prospects and an estranged family, he is at the end of his rope. When an old friend, Hannah, elbows her way back into his life, Martin’s luck begins to turn around.

Hidden within the shadows of evil, there must be some good…

Ex-policeman Bobby Tanner lost everything one rage-filled night. Now he runs a reading group for alcoholics where he meets a young drug dealer, Zack, who disturbs him in a way that’s hard to define. Bobby soon discovers the teenager is in over his head and has been dealing with a despicable individual known as The Chemist.

The roots of evil run deeper than we imagine…

Martin’s lucky streak begins to unravel when Hannah suddenly goes missing, and he turns to a friend of a friend, Bobby, for help. Thrust into an underworld empire of corruption and half-truths, he learns his friend may not be who he thought she was.

In a shadowed world of deception, stalkers, and despicable drug dealers, Bobby and Martin must uncover the truth, and fast…

Several lives depend on it.

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BOOK EXCERPT

…but there was something gnawing away at him; something about Zachary Jackson that was just not right. He seemed like a good kid, a good son to a troubled mother and a dying father. But now Bobby stood in the shadows watching Zack leave The Chemist’s house and he cursed his sixth sense.

The Chemist’s house was one of a pair of semis that were angled at the end of Shortcross Drive. The area was the roughest part of the city, an independent borough with its own self-administered terms of crime and punishment. The crimes that carried the heaviest forms of punishment were those that affected The Chemist negatively. Punishments ranged from being forced to cut his lawn for a month to having both your knees smashed by a crow bar. And even worse penalties if you failed to insist to A&E staff that you’d been hit by a car.

By the time the local police force had recognised The Chemist’s power, it was easier to leave him well alone than to face the cost of breaking down his power base. The semi detached council house was fortified more strongly than a clearing bank’s vault. Over the years, every door and window had been replaced and so heavily reinforced that it would take a tank to force entry into the property.

HAND OVER FIST purchase

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AUTHOR Bio and Links

It was a strange and twisting road that led to the publication of my first novel. From my humble beginnings, as an office clerk, to ownership of a multi-million dollar business I always maintained my love for literature.

Born and raised in Bristol, England. I spent most of my life in business, my companies turning over in the region of $500 million. The majority of that time marketing cars, eventually owning the largest Saab specialist in the world, before a bitter divorce forced me rethink my priorities. Particularly between 2003 and 2005 when I had to accept that I was no longer a millionaire but literally penniless. I avoided bankruptcy by the skin of my teeth and slowly rebuilt my life.

This led me to the life changing decision to leave the bustling city and move to live halfway up a mountain in the Welsh valleys. At the same time I started a part time six year English Literature course at Bristol University, and attended creative writing classes at Cardiff University. I left school at sixteen and this was my first taste of further education and an immense challenge.

I eventually adjusted my thinking to the academic life, and on 30 June 2015 had confirmation of my 2.1(Hons) degree from Bristol University. At the same time I also won the prestigious Hopkins Prize for my essay on Virginia Woolf and the unsaid within her text. Now the university courses are finished it will, with any luck, gives me plenty of extra time that I can devote to my fiction writing.

Thanks to the university experiences, my interest in English literature has flourished over recent years. Hopefully I have evolved as a writer from my earlier work in short stories (over ninety of them.) Although interestingly my first three novels have all been developed from a long forgotten short story.

Life is, once again, very good, and I live very happily halfway up a mountain, in the Welsh Valleys, with my wonderful partner Mari, and our rescue dog Wolfie.

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Facebook www.facebook.com/michaelross.writer
Twitter @mikerosswriter
Website www.michaelrosswriter.com
Blog http://mikerosswriter.wordpress.com

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

Michael will be awarding a $10 Amazon or B/N GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

Enter to win a $10 Amazon/BN GC! A Rafflecopter Giveaway
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Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:

http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2016/03/vbt-hand-over-fist-by-michael-ross.html

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Interview With ….

Michael, thanks for being here today. Tell us about you.
I was self employed from the age of nineteen, and in retrospect I was, what is called nowadays, an entrepreneur. I owned a finance company, an art gallery, an antiques centre, I was a director of a PLC, and of a professional football club, and several car sales sites and workshops. Turning over close to $500m in my lifetime. Before a bloody divorce I was a millionaire, after the divorce I was insolvent. In an eighteen month period my life went to sh*t.

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why?
Leonardo da Vinci. Just to spend time in the company of that extraordinary brain would be mind blowing (I know what I’ve done there!)

What’s the story behind your latest book?
There is bits of my DNA in all my major characters, men who have hit rock bottom and survived. Two characters who against all odds are rebuilding their lives, and with the disappearance of a friend how their lives interact to overcome the odds. I have a couple of villains of whom I am really proud, Nash and The Chemist are the most vilest of creatures.

What is your writing process? 
I like to walk my dog Wolfie around the hills near where I live, and think about my stories without interruptions. My partner is a professional musician and she hates music being on in the house , so I have got used to writing with no background noise.

Tell us about your main character:
Bobby Tanner has hit rock bottom, he is an ex copper who has disgraced himself and served a prison sentence, but he is a really decent human being who grabs the opportunity to rebuild his life.

If your book was to be turned into a movie, who would play the lead role and why.
Tom Hardy – such a talented actor, who can dig really deep into a character

What are you working on next?
The third book in the Out Of Hand series (number two is already ‘in the bag.’)

What advice do you have for other writers who want to get the word out about their book?
Write for pleasure not money, accept it is a long arduous journey, take pride in your work, and type with your fingers permanently crossed.

What is your favorite book on your shelf right now?
Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell

Do you have any special/extraordinary talents?
I am a survivor. Over the years I got sick and tired of people saying that to me. “Don’t worry mike, you’re a survivor.” Ahhhhhh.

You are given the choice of one super power. What super power would you have and why?
Rather glib, but the ability to time travel and lurk around Dallas 11.22.63 and find out the truth of that day.

List 5 things on your bucket list:
I’ve done so much in my lifetime I’m struggling. Visit Peru. One more fall in New England, which is probably my problem, that most of the items on my bucket list would be repeating stuff that I have already done.

Any final thoughts?
Thank you so much for stretching the muscles in my brain.

VBT – Musings of an Earth Angel

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Musings of an Earth Angel
by Suzanne Adams

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GENRE: Young Adult/New Adult

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BLURB:

22-year-old Samantha Kingston had the perfect job, perfect boyfriend, and perfect Friday nights. When disaster strikes she loses everything and is propelled into a journey where evil and good, dark and light are battling for her destiny. Will the Demon Brigade viciously destroy her? Or will her Angel team and the Divine help her to elevate and see her real truth as an Earth Angel?

9781504339605_COVER.indd

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BOOK EXCERPT

I had heard of being possessed by demons, but I never thought I would be so lucky as to get to have the experience firsthand. Once again, I could feel my body trembling and that strange bitter saliva building in my throat. I needed an exit strategy—and fast. I’d learned to expect and accept crazy episodes, but I had hoped I could at least enjoy Rose’s birthday dinner out with my friends.

Sweat trickled down my forehead, and I pushed my chair away from the dinner table and staggered to my feet. Rose grabbed me by the forearm. She and the others had already enjoyed three bottles of Prosecco; and the night was just getting started at La Lune et La Soleil, the hot new restaurant in midtown.

Rose raised her voice above the clink of glasses and hum of conversation. “Where are you going? Jacob’s just getting to the good part. You gotta listen.”

With sweat now dripping down my cheeks and the back of my neck, I sat back down as Jacob continued with his crazy story. He’d been over served at a party a few weeks ago and jumped into a parked cop car. The keys were somehow still in the ignition, and he drove through town shouting at random people through the car’s megaphone. Then he somehow managed to escape without the local cop tracing him. He’d gotten away scot-free—so far.

The waiter brought over the first course and Ken, a good friend to both Rose and me, proposed another toast. “To the beautiful birthday girl and to another great year of us all having fun together!”

I raised my glass of sparkling water—I could barely stay sane as it was these days and was terrified to think how my body would react to alcohol, at least for now anyway. Woozily, I toasted my dearest friend as best as I could. I fought to keep my eyes from rolling into the back of my head and almost dropped my glass.

“Whoa!” Ken said. “You sure that’s just sparkling water?”

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AUTHOR Bio and Links:

MediaKit_AuthorPhoto_MusingsOfAnEarthAngel

Suzanne Adams is an author, motivational speaker and Life Purpose consultant from Atlanta this is sharing her zest for life with audiences around the globe. She believes that having fun and following your passion are the keys to finding true happiness and she’s passionate about helping unlock what that means for you.

Suzanne’s purpose is to teach people how to live a life of fulfillment and joy. She does this through teaching you her proven 5 step process to attract happiness and freedom into your life. Her first book, Musings of an Earth Angel, was just published this fall. You can connect with Suzanne here. (www.suzanneadamsauthor.com)

Spotify Playlist
https://open.spotify.com/user/musingsofanearthangel/playlist/7r74qUqUAS2RjLEtYKT3Eq

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100009032734848

https://twitter.com/musingsofanEA

http://instagram.com/samanthakingstonea/

http://www.musingsofanearthangel.com

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

Suzanne Adams will be awarding an autographed copy of Musings of an Earth Angel (US only) to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

Enter to win an autographed copy of the book – a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Interview With ….

 

Suzanne, thanks for being here today. Tell us about you. 
I love to travel and I think having fun is one of the most important things you can do for yourself. I believe we all have the power to make our dreams become our realities!

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why?
Oprah for sure! I admire her so much and I would have so many questions I would want to ask her.

What’s the story behind your latest book?
Musings of an Earth Angel was written with the intention to teach the reader more about who they are on a deeper level. It was meant to teach about happiness and personal growth through a magical and mystical page turner of a story!

What is your writing process?
I always open setting an intention, saying a prayer, and then playing classical music. I do the my best to get out of my own way and see what can flow through me!

Tell us about your main character:
Samantha has a fun quirky personality. Just like most people in life, she really wants ot be happy, but she isn’t so sure exactly how she is supposed to accomplish that. Samantha always seems to find her sefl in crazy predicaments and is constantly growing and learning.

If your book was to be turned into a movie, who would play the lead role.
My book will be a move!! I would love it if the lead was played by Chloe Grace Moretz

What are you working on next?
I am working on the second book of the trilogy for Musings of an Earth Angel.

What advice do you have for other writers who want to get the word out about their book?
Write from your heart, be authentic, and never give up!!

What is your favorite book on your shelf right now?
Probably the Hunger game series.

Do you have any special/extraordinary talents?
I can do energy healing!

You are given the choice of one super power. What super power would you have and why?
Instant manifestation powers! I have learned how to manifest things and in fact I teach about this topic. I believe we can all manifest our hearts desires. It would be really cool though to click my heels, or snap my fingers and be sitting on the beach in a blink of an eye.

List 5 things on your bucket list:

  • Travel to Australia, Thailand, and Bali. 
  • Help with production of Musings of an Earth Angel, the movie.
  • Go on dancing with the stars. 😉

Where can readers find you on the web?

www.musingsofanearthangel.com

www.suzanneadamsauthor.com

www.facebook.com/Musingsofanearthangel

Book trailer:

My Life: Poetic Literature

My Life Poetic Literature banner
About the Book:

Title: My Life: Poetic Literature
Author: Charles Leon Fantroy
Publisher: ‘JourStarr Quality Publications
Pages: 151
Genre: Poetry

MY LIFE: POETIC LITERATURE is a compilation which derives from my many thoughts over a span of thirteen years.

My poetic words speak to the multitude of those who encounter hardship and encourage all to overcome the adversities that one faces. I aim to have my words reverberate from a mental realm; because if a particular plight cannot be handled mentally, than the physicalities are but a hindrance.

The mind is the maker and the molder of all conditions.The thoughts that I’ve transcribed onto paper are channeled to positively engage and to motivate all; no matter nationality or creed. I myself am a voice with an abundance of thoughts to share.

My Life Poetic Literature
For More Information
My Life: Poetic Literature is available at Amazon.

About the Author

Charles Leon Fantroy, Jr.

Charles Leon Fantroy Jr. was born and raised in Washington D.C. His journey through the trenches of a Federal Penitentiary started at seventeen years old. He honed and practiced his writing skills during his years of incarceration behind the four walls of Leavenworth, as a way to express himself. Now at the conscious age of thirty six, he has finally perfected his true passion, which is to share his rhythmical array of completed poems, fictional novels, as well as full length movie scripts. He has continued to educate himself in completing eighteen months at Stratford University as a certified internet specialist. Charles Leon Fantroy Jr. is soon to be released from prison where he looks to delve into a bright future of continuing to write quality novels and movie scripts as well as being a positive influence to society.

For More Information
Visit Charles Leon Fantroy’s website.
Connect with Charles on Facebook and Twitter.

Interview With….

Charles, thanks for being my guest. Tell us about you. 
I’m extremely strong driven, especially when it comes to the completion of a project. I believe that no matter how dire one’s predicament, there is still room to flourish. And that philosophy has been indoctrinated in my own way of life, hence with that belief, makes me me.

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why?
That one person would be Ben Affleck. I have a number of completed movie scripts and Ben Affleck being the professional that he is on camera as well as his directing capabilities, I believe that our collaborating on a number of projects would make for a plethora of quality movies being brought to the big screen. I want the reader to get a general idea from the very first poem, that the words that I bring forth in MY LIFE: POETIC LITERATURE aren’t just a testament to my own growth and development, but also to send a concise message that no matter what one may endure, the strength to overcome should be much greater.

What’s the story behind your latest book?
I started off writing poetry at nineteen years old as a way to express myself. The thought at the time of actually having my deepest thoughts one day published was never a thought. But over the years as I’ve delved more into embracing my potentiality to possibly share my words as upliftment to those who may be unsure as to the trajectory in which their life is headed.

What is your writing process? 
In regards to poetry, once I bring the title of the poem to fruition, that guides me to formulate the poetic words onto paper.

What are you working on next?
I have a novel/movie script which is titled ONE WOMANS JOURNEY about a young mother name Sharee who is a young mother of two boys who lives in Inglewood California. Sharee is a product of the streets with a bad reputation. She is falsely accused of a crime and sentenced to thirty years in prison. While in prison her oldest son is violently killed, which causes Sharee to change her violent life style in hopes of making it out to her only remaining son who has now followed his older brothers path of a life of crime.

What advice do you have for other writers who want to get the word out about their book?
First, in anything you do, you do it from the heart, and I believe that genuineness will reverberate to others. Secondly, encircle yourself with people who genuinely believe in your craft. And thirdly stay persistent because behind a hundred rejections, there are two hundred acceptances. But you’ll never know unless if your stay persistent.

What is your favorite book on your shelf right now?
My favorite book right now I would have to say is: “THE FOUNDATIONS OF SCREENWRITING” By: Syd Field, which gives an in depth step by step guide to the art of writing a movie script.

Do you have any special/extraordinary talents?
Well as far as special/extraordinary talents. I don’t know if this would be extraordinary, but I can write a novel from beginning to end in my end, then transcribe it onto paper.

You are given the choice of one super power. What super power would you have and why?
That one super power by far would be to better educate the youth, no matter nationality or creed. Too many of the youth do not understand that their actions of today can and will inevitably affect their actions of tomorrow. The kids are our future and that one super power would go to the advancement of the youth in believing that anything is possible if they just believe.

List 5 things on your bucket list:

  • To see a number of my novels adapted into full length movies.
  • To start a mentoring program for at risk youth.
  • To travel abroad.
  • To become fluent in two more languages.
  • To leave this earth knowing that I made a difference in a positive way.

Where can readers find you on the web?
www. thenoblewon.com, on FACEBOOK at: https://www.facebook.com/FantroyJourstarr/ on TWITTER at: https://twitter.com/TheNobleWon1

Any final thoughts?
I would like to thank CA Milson for giving me the opportunity to be heard. I truly hope that MY LIFE: POETIC LITERATURE is felt as a form of spoken word from me to the readers.

VBT ~ New York Night by Stephen Leather

NBTM_NewYorkNight_Banner copy

 New York Night
by Stephen Leather

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GENRE: Horror/Supernatural

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BLURB:

Teenagers are being possessed and turning into sadistic murderers. Priests can’t help, nor can psychiatrists. So who is behind the demonic possessions? Jack Nightingale is called in to investigate, and finds his own soul is on the line. New York Night is the seventh novel in the Jack Nightingale supernatural detective series.

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BOOK EXCERPT

Sara could see that he was afraid so she smiled what she hoped was a comforting smile. ‘It’s a game,’ she said. ‘It’s just a game.’

‘If you want to play a game, let’s play Grand Theft Auto,’ said her brother. Luke was ten, six years younger than she was. They rarely played together but she needed another pair of hands for the Ouija board and Luke could be relied on to do as he was told.

‘Because I want to play this,’ she said.

‘It’s stupid,’ he said. ‘I’ve never heard of a game like this before.’ He sat back on his heels. They were in her bedroom. He was rarely allowed into her room and had looked at her suspiciously when she had first suggested they play a game together.

‘You liked Charlie Charlie didn’t you? Well this is the same. You can ask it question and it’ll answer.’

‘Charlie Charlie is for fun,’ said the boy.

‘So is this. But with Charlie Charlie you can only pick one of four answers, right? This way the spirits can talk to us.’

‘Spirits? You mean ghosts?’

‘It’s all the same. Look, it’s a game. Just a game. Do you want to play or shall I tell mom you haven’t done your homework?’

Okay, okay,’ mumbled Luke. ‘Don’t give me a hard time.’

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AUTHOR Bio and Links

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Stephen Leather is one of the UK’s most successful thriller writers, an eBook and Sunday Times bestseller and author of the critically acclaimed Dan “Spider’ Shepherd series and the Jack Nightingale supernatural detective novels.

Before becoming a novelist he was a journalist for more than ten years on newspapers such as The Times, the Daily Mirror, the Glasgow Herald, the Daily Mail and the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong. He is one of the country’s most successful eBook authors and his eBooks have topped the Amazon Kindle charts in the UK and the US. In 2011 alone he sold more than 500,000 eBooks and was voted by The Bookseller magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the UK publishing world.

Born in Manchester, he began writing full time in 1992. His bestsellers have been translated into fifteen languages. He has also written for television shows such as London’s Burning, The Knock and the BBC’s Murder in Mind series and two of his books, The Stretch and The Bombmaker, were filmed for TV. You can find out more from his website http://www.stephenleather.com and you can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/stephenleather

Jack Nightingale has his own website at www.jacknightingale.com

You can buy New York Night on Amazon at http://www.amazon.com/New-York-Night-Nightingale-Supernatural-ebook/dp/B017T03500/

You can buy New York Night on Kobo at https://store.kobobooks.com/en-ca/ebook/new-york-night-the-7th-jack-nightingale-novel

You can buy New York Night on iBooks at https://itunes.apple.com/gb/book/new-york-night-7th-jack-nightingale/id1057762247

You can buy New York Night at Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/591862

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RAFFLECOPTER GIVEAWAY

Stephen Leather will be awarding a $50 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a $25 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn host.

Enter to win a $50 Amazon/BN GC – a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Follow the tour and comment; the more you comment, the better your chances of winning. The tour dates can be found here:  http://goddessfishpromotions.blogspot.com/2016/01/nbtm-new-york-night-by-stephen-leather.html

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Interview With….

Stephen, thanks for being my guest today. Tell us about you.
I have a pilot’s licence, but I don’t really like flying! I did learn how to paraglide (where you fly a parachute with a huge fan on your back) but that was even less fun. I have jumped out of planes four times. The first three times were with the RAF’s display team which meant climbing out onto the wing of a biplane and jumping off. It was a long time ago! But here’s the thing. I have a real fear of heights and almost never use lifts (elevators, as the Americans call them). My publisher used to be based on the 22nd floor of a tower block. I used to walk up the stairs rather than use the lift! I have been stuck in lifts four times in my life so my fears are not groundless!

If you could hang out with one famous person for one day, who would it be and why?
Living or dead? If dead, I’d choose Jesus. I have so many questions for him. If living, Stephen Hawking. Again, I have so many questions and frankly I find his black hole book more confusing each time I read it.

What’s the story behind your latest book?
New York Night is the seventh book in the Jack Nightingale supernatural detective series. The first five were published by my UK publisher Hodder and Stoughton and were set in the UK. I am now self-publishing the books and have moved the character to the United States. The first self-published book was San Francisco Night and the next one will be Miami Night. In the latest book, teenagers in New York are being possessed and turning into sadistic murderers. Priests can’t help, nor can psychiatrists. So who is behind the demonic possessions? Jack Nightingale is called in to investigate, and finds his own soul is on the line.

What is your writing process?
I sit in front of the TV with my Mac on a coffee table. I watch TV as I write and always have done. It helps when I need to describe a character’s clothing and the credits are always a good source of names! I drink a cup of coffee pretty much every half hour and my cat (one of three) Peanut Butter sits on the sofa next to me to keep me company.

Tell us about your main character:
Jack Nightingale as a cop who was sacked after a man he was interviewing was thrown through a window and fell to his death. No one knew for sure if the man had jumped or if Nightingale had pushed him, but it was the end of his police career. He became a private detective, and just before his thirty-third birthday he is told that his father was a Satanist and that he sold Jack’s soul to a devil. On his birthday, the devil is coming to collect the prize. That’s the first book, in which Jack has to find a way of saving his soul – by the time we get to New York Night he is much more familiar with the supernatural world. He travels from city to city fighting the forces of darkness while keeping his own soul safe. Jack smokes too much (so much so that when I’m writing I feel like having a cigarette even thought I’m not a smoker! He has a good sense of humour and often says things that make me laugh out loud!

If your book was to be turned into a movie, who would play the lead role and why.
I’m lucky in that at the moment Martin Campbell (Goldeneye, Casino Royale) is directing the movie of my book The Chinaman. The hero of the title is played by Jackie Chan and the IRA villain by Pierce Brosnan. How cool is that? For Jack Nightingale, I think I’d like to see him played by Benedict Cumberbatch. He’s the perfect age!

What are you working on next?
I am working on the 13th Dan ‘Spider’ Shepherd book, Dark Forces. Shepherd is up against a Syrian sniper who travels to England to carry out a terrorist atrocity.

What advice do you have for other writers who want to get the word out about their book?
Concentrate on your writing and the readers will seek you out. There’s nothing worse than a writer clamouring for attention, especially on social media. Best to concentrate on producing the best books you can. I wouldn’t bother with Twitter – everyone seems to be shouting and no one is listening – but have an informative and interesting web page and Facebook page. And have an email list that fans can sign up for – that way you are sending information to readers who are genuinely interested in hearing from you! And always respond personally. If a fan has made the effort of contacting you, the least you can do is reply!

What is your favorite book on your shelf right now?
A book on lock-picking. I am teaching myself to pick locks.

Do you have any special/extraordinary talents?
I’m usually good at predicting the future based on what is happening in the present. I think that comes from spending so much time plotting books. I can usually see when out politicians are making mistakes, and can predict what will happen when things go wrong!

You are given the choice of one super power. What super power would you have and why?
Time travel, backwards and forwards. It would answer all those questions I need answering. I would love to see how much of our beliefs about our universe are true. I’m not sure I believe in the Big Bang, for instance. Or that the universe is expanding. I figure time travel would provide the answers!

List 5 things on your bucket list:

  • Go dog-sledding in Alaska
  • Ride a camel across the safari
  • Fly a helicopter
  • Bob-sleigh down the Cresta Run
  • Climb Everest

I’m pretty sure I’ll get around to the first three at some point!

Where can readers find you on the web? My website is www.stephenleather.com and I am often on my Facebook page – https://www.facebook.com/stephenleatherofficial – where I am happy to talk to readers!

Any final thoughts?
If you’re a reader, keep reading. And if you’re a writer, keep writing!