#BookSale “Killing The Girl: A story of murder and redemption” by Elizabeth Hill

A perfect life, a perfect love – and a perfect murder.

For over forty years Carol Cage has been living as a recluse in her mansion, Oaktree House. Fear is her constant companion. She’s been keeping a secret – and it’s about to be unearthed.

When she receives a compulsory purchase order for her home, she knows that everyone is going to find out what she did to survive her darkest weeks in 1970. She writes her confession so that we can understand what happened because she wasn’t the only one living a lie. The events that turned her fairy-tale life into a living hell were not all they seemed.

She’s determined not to pay for the mistakes of others; if she has to face justice, then they will too.

Carol Cage has a terrible secret … and she’s about to exact retribution on everyone who had abandoned her.

NetGalley reviews for Killing The Girl


‘I was so entertained by this book. There was an unexpected soulfulness as many of us may be able to relate to an intense but doomed first love.’
‘I am sleep deprived from not being able to put it down’
‘This is a truly amazing book that I don’t know if I can describe it enough to give it the justice it deserves.
‘I am sorry Ms Hill, my review goes nowhere near giving enough credit for a beautiful book: it is thoroughly absorbing.’

99c / 99p thru August 31st

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#FREE “Girl in Trouble (An Alex Mercer Thriller Book 1)” by Stacy Claflin

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Series Complete: Binge read today!

He gave up his daughter years ago, but now he’ll risk his life to save hers.

Alex Mercer is no stranger to kidnappings. The emotional scars still run deep from his sister’s disappearance years earlier. His daughter Ariana remains safe long after her adoption, and he cherishes the few times a year he gets to see her. The joy is palpable when he takes her on their first one-on-one outing. At least until he pauses to answer a text and Ariana disappears…

Wracked with guilt and determined to find answers, Alex teams up with an unlikely ally at the police department. As the clues reveal a pattern of missing girls, the kidnapping case becomes a race against time to save Ariana. What cost is Alex willing to pay to keep his daughter alive?

Girl in Trouble is the first book in a series of thrilling stand-alone novels spun off from the USA Today bestselling Gone Trilogy. If you like heart-pounding suspense, page-turning action, and characters you’ll never forget, then you’ll love Stacy Claflin’s engrossing new series.

Read Girl in Trouble today!

Goodreads

AMAZON

and all online retailers

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#FREE “Killing Me Softly” by Bianca Sloane


“Best book I’ve read in a LONG time!” – Adam Croft, bestselling author of “Her Last Tomorrow.”

A shocking murder. A web of deceit. A twist even Hitchcock wouldn’t see coming.

It starts with a phone call – Sondra Ellis’ beautiful baby sister, Tracy, has disappeared during a jog along Chicago’s snowy lakefront.She’s even more devastated when Tracy’s mangled body is found days later, the victim of a mugging gone wrong.

A year later, Sondra continues to struggle with Tracy’s death. Her trauma deepens when she discovers series of odd and unsettling cracks in her sister’s seemingly perfect life: puzzling messages, inexplicable meetings, and secrets and lies at every turn.

As Sondra continues to dig into the mystery of what happened to her sister, she has no idea she’s on her own collision course with life and death.

For fans of Patricia Highsmith, Mary Higgins Clark, and Alfred Hitchcock, Killing Me Softly is a page-turning psychological thriller that will keep you up long past your bedtime.

Download Killing Me Softly today!

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Smashwords


#BookReview “The Bellhop Only Stalks Once” by Cat Hickey

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An anonymous shrieking toddler and an annoying, overly attentive, flirtatious young bellhop not only interrupt a young woman’s morning yoga routine on the beach, but they’re just the beginning of the vacay-from-hell.

Chloe’s already on edge, proven when Cooper, the steadfast and dependable… and controlling and boring fiancé back home continues to intrude into her thoughts.

Determined to enjoy her Costa Rican getaway, Chloe pushes the negativity from her mind and goes on a guided tour of the island’s volcano trails a few hours away the next day.

However, during her outing, the pesky bellhop, Jaime, shows up again, waving his arms and calling her name. Perturbed, before Chloe can respond, Jaime disappears… without a trace. No one else saw Jaime. Not the park ranger or the resort employees escorting her, but they all discount anything serious happening to the errant bellhop.

Unable to shake her feelings of dread, especially after finding a pendant of Tlaloc—referred to by locals as the God of Death—on the spot where Jaime disappeared, Chloe’s fears are realized when other bellhops go missing from Club Pacifica and other surrounding resorts.

Before the mystery is solved, Chloe will make two new friends, confront a drug dealer, assault a chicken, take a mind-altering drug, become a prime suspect in the case, and develop feelings for one of the resort employees.

And Cooper shows up.

As Chloe plays private investigator, she’s also on a path to self-discovery. One she’s avoided for far too long… and may not live long enough to enjoy.

While I would have liked more details about Chloe’s backstory, her growth during the story made up for what I didn’t know. She’s surrounded by a great cast of characters who may or may not be worthy of her trust.

Despite the dark overtones of kidnapping, The Bellhop Only Stalks Once is a fun read. Well-written with a smooth pace, it was an easy one-sitting read as I needed to know “what happened next.” Mystery readers will enjoy Chloe’s journey.

Enjoy!

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Lies, secrets, and a sinister plot hide in broad daylight at the heart of the Club Pacifica.

A beautiful tropical resort, exciting new friends, and a handsome guest liaison – it’s the perfect getaway for Chloe, a free-spirited Baltimore girl just getting to know herself. But the vacation of a lifetime quickly takes a dark turn when a young, overly flirty bellhop starts following her everywhere. It gets even worse when he disappears, and Chloe is the sole witness.

As bellhop after bellhop goes missing, she struggles to figure out what’s happening. When suspicion falls upon her, Chloe must not only try to rescue the kidnapped bellhops, but also to clear her name.

Complicating things further is the relationship she forms with Mateo, Club Pacifica’s guest liaison. Charming and easygoing, he is everything that her fiancé at home is not, and she finds herself fighting a growing attraction to him. But can he be trusted?

She soon discovers that she’s landed herself in a world of secrets, and, worse, that these are not just those of others, but also the secrets she keeps from herself.

Can she find her way through all the lies to finally discover the truth before it’s too late?

Purchase Link – http://mybook.to/bellhop

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#BlogTour “The Bellhop Only Stalks Once” by Cat Hickey

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Lies, secrets, and a sinister plot hide in broad daylight at the heart of the Club Pacifica.

A beautiful tropical resort, exciting new friends, and a handsome guest liaison – it’s the perfect getaway for Chloe, a free-spirited Baltimore girl just getting to know herself. But the vacation of a lifetime quickly takes a dark turn when a young, overly flirty bellhop starts following her everywhere. It gets even worse when he disappears, and Chloe is the sole witness.

As bellhop after bellhop goes missing, she struggles to figure out what’s happening. When suspicion falls upon her, Chloe must not only try to rescue the kidnapped bellhops, but also to clear her name.

Complicating things further is the relationship she forms with Mateo, Club Pacifica’s guest liaison. Charming and easygoing, he is everything that her fiancé at home is not, and she finds herself fighting a growing attraction to him. But can he be trusted?

She soon discovers that she’s landed herself in a world of secrets, and, worse, that these are not just those of others, but also the secrets she keeps from herself.

Can she find her way through all the lies to finally discover the truth before it’s too late?

Purchase Link – http://mybook.to/bellhop

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Author BioCat Hickey

Cat Hickey has a Master’s degree in Biology, and teaches Anatomy and Physiology at a university in Baltimore, MD, USA. She writes light-hearted mysteries and thrillers that are based, partly, on her extensive travels around the world. She is also an avid yogi who teaches aerial yoga and practices aerial circus arts, and spends the rest of her time with her four rescue animals, which consist of three cats and a horse.

Social Media Links

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#Featured “The Silent Surrogate: A Psychological Suspense Thriller” by N.L. Hinkens

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– A psychological thriller novella guaranteed to keep you gripped until the finish line! –

What if the perfect revenge was built on a lie?

After years of searching, Nora has finally tracked down the woman who destroyed her life. She rents the house next door under an assumed identity, but before she can put her plan for retribution into motion, the woman’s mysterious young lodger goes missing. As evidence of foul play mounts, a web of lies begins to unravel, and a shocked community is ripped apart. When the trail to the abductor leads to where no one imagined, Nora discovers that everyone is harboring secrets, and no one can be trusted.

With an innocent life at stake, and hopes for revenge fading fast, Nora faces a harrowing decision that will awaken the dark past she desperately wishes could be undone.

But will the truth she uncovers prove more shocking than the lies she has believed?

Will you enjoy The Silent Surrogate? If you read any of my favorite psychological and domestic suspense thriller authors including K.L. Slater, Shalini Boland, Adam Croft, Kathryn Croft, Lisa Gardner, Louise Jensen, or Rachel Caine, the answer is a resounding yes! (This is a novella-length read designed to introduce you to my psychological thrillers!)

KINDLE UNLIMITED

AMAZON US

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#GuestPost “Landsliding” by Mandy Jameson

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~ Guest Post ~

by Mandy Jameson

Before being selected by Lightning Books to be part of their ebook series, Mandy JamesonLandsliding was self-published by me. During that process I learned the importance of having confidence in my novel – and if I hadn’t, I’d have given up a long time ago!

Initially, I followed the well-trodden path of sending the early chapters to literary agents in the hope that they’d be interested in the rest of the book. Each time I’d wait in agonised impatience for a positive response, but none came. Every agent gave me good feedback – they liked my writing, they thought the content would appeal to a wide audience – but nobody picked it up as a novel.

One time I was especially hopeful when I sent the first chapters of Landsliding along with a covering letter to an agent I’d seen speaking at a literary festival. She emailed back within 24 hours and my heart nearly leapt out of my mouth when I saw her name in my inbox; I was convinced she was writing to say she wanted to publish the novel.

Unfortunately, I was wrong. She certainly liked it – her message was full of compliments about my writing style – but said that the book wasn’t quite what her agency was looking for at that time. My disappointment was intense but I was determined to keep going.

I’d already had to learn resilience when a fellow member of my writing group voiced her opinion about the first chapter of Landsliding. Within the group we would review each other’s work on a regular basis and gave our views in a frank yet careful way. Nearly everyone was polite and would veil any criticism with a balancing amount of compliments – but not this person.

She told me the first chapter was ‘boring’ and the characters didn’t interest her. I bit back my instinctive reply – which was to tell her she was wrong – and managed to keep smiling despite a temptation to burst into tears. Luckily nobody else in the group agreed with her and I soon realised that the occasional negative response is part of being an author. Not everyone can like your work.

So when the publishing world didn’t show immediate interest in Landsliding I had to stick to the courage of my convictions: that it was a strong, interesting story that would appeal to a wide audience. That’s when I decided to self-publish – and when the five star reviews started coming in, I was thoroughly relieved.

At times, though, my resilience was tested to the limit. One such occasion was a book fair attended by some of the dreariest people I’ve ever had the misfortune to meet. I sat stoically at my stall, trying to look unconcerned as the attendees drifted past, showing no interest in my book (or anybody else’s) and even less interest in me.

On the rare occasion that somebody stopped at the stall, it was to request the name of a good local restaurant or to confirm the quickest way to M&S. Do you realise you’re at a book fair?, I wanted to ask. One woman – who did ask what my novel was about – yawned ostentatiously as I was telling her, then walked off without saying any more. I wanted to cry.

Fortunately my belief in the book paid off. When Lightning Books said they wanted to publish Landsliding as part of their first e-series, I was so happy. The stress of awaiting a positive response from an agent; the indignity of being told my story was boring; the tolerance I had to show at that book fair – it was all worth it.

Now I’m writing my second novel and no doubt the process will start all over again. This time, though, I know what to expect!

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When Julia’s husband leaves her, and their small son Matty, to live with another woman, her friends, especially Caroline and Vick, rally round to help. But when Julia starts a new relationship, after a chance meeting, her friends are not quite as supportive.

Julia sees Brendan, the quietly spoken IT guy who comes round to fix her computer, as a loving and protective man and, as time passes, a potential father figure for Matty. Caroline and Vick, on the other hand, see him as jealous, controlling and potentially dangerous. He appears to be a man with a secret past.

What her friends don’t know is that Julia has secrets of her own which, if they get out, will almost certainly shatter her fragile domestic bliss.

Landsliding is a compelling drama that turns your expectations on their head with a subtle twist that will leave you wondering where your sympathies lie.

Amazon UK

Amazon US

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About Mandy Jameson

Originally from Manchester, Mandy Jameson spent ten years living in southwest France where Landsliding, her first novel, was written with the encouragement of a prolific writing group.

Now settled in Sussex with her daughter, her passions include football, chocolate and walking on the Downs.

She is working on her second novel.

Twitter

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#BookBlitz “A Fool’s Circle” by Suzanne Seddon

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Welcome to the super huge, A Fool’s Circle MEGA giveaway!!! Check out this amazing Domestic Thriller by Suzanne Seddon, and enter to win this fantastic haul!

unnamedA Fool’s Circle

Publication Date: March 17th, 2019

Genre: Thriller/ Domestic Thriller/ Suspense

Kate Sanders has suffered many years of physical and mental abuse at the hands of her abusive husband Alan, and convinces herself that she is only holding the family together for the sake of her eight-year-old daughter. If it wasn’t for her best friend Jill Reynolds, she would have taken the suicide option a long time ago.

As she desperately seeks a way to escape, she is contacted by a solicitor. Kate’s old aunt has died and she has been left a small fortune.

For the first time, she sees the light at the end of the tunnel. She dreams of a fresh start, a new home, a new life. What Kate doesn’t know is that Jill and Alan have their own secrets, and are both desperate to get their hands on her money.

Kate soon finds herself falling for the charms of Jonathon Jacobs in what she believes to be fate finally intervening and offering her a second chance, unaware that each move he makes has been directed, orchestrated and well-rehearsed as he begs her to leave her husband Alan.

But is it all too late, as she finds herself in the frame for murder?

Add to Goodreads

Amazon US| Amazon GER | Amazon UK | Amazon India

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Excerpt

 Chapter 1

A blonde head bounced on the floor in time to the yelling. Rays of the early morning sun caught her golden hair, and motes of dust hung in the air. Sophie Saunders was eight years old. Kneeling down on the floor, she played with her dolls, drumming Ken and Barbie against the carpet, her body bent forward, almost as if she were praying in her immaculately clean and pressed school uniform. But today her school uniform was the last thing on her mind. She bashed the dolls’ heads off the pink floor in unison.

‘Ring-a-Ring-a-Rosie,’ she sang aloud to herself as she tried to drown out the voices that rose up through the floorboards.

The noises from downstairs were a regular occurrence, and fast becoming the norm. Sophie felt her dad’s anger, ever-present in his voice as it vibrated through her bedroom, positioned over the kitchen. Scared, she dropped her dolls, raising her arms and clasping her small hands over her ears. Sophie closed her eyes. Blinded, she felt for Barbie and Ken and gripped the toys by the legs. With one in each hand, she remained still for a moment, and as the voices intensified beneath her, she sensed them possessing the dolls.

‘You’re an old bag. I hate you!’ Sophie’s voice was deep and rough, as she rammed Ken’s head into Barbie’s chest.

‘Why are you always so nasty to me?’ She raised the pitch of her voice as she shook the dolls hard.

‘Because you make me want to vomit when I look at your fat ugly face,’ she growled.

‘Please stop being so cruel to me,’ she enunciated.

‘Who do you think you are? Don’t you dare tell me what to do, bitch!’

With each word, she struck Ken against Barbie, again and again, until finally Barbie’s head popped off and rolled across the carpet.

That hadn’t been her intention. She didn’t mean to decapitate the poor doll. Shocked, she stood up as she searched for the missing head. She found it under the bedside cabinet at the back, by the wall. She crouched down, stretched out her arm and grabbed it. Sophie sat up on her knees, struggling to reattach the plastic head to its body.

 

‘Bloody shit! Why won’t it go on?’ The racket from below grew ever louder. ‘Bloody shit.’ Frustrated, she gave up, and flung the dolls across the room.

Downstairs, her father, Alan, almost lost his head. He shouted louder as his wife, Kate, persisted as the peacemaker.

‘As useless as a one-legged woman in an arse- kicking contest.’

His voice echoed around the large stark white room, drowning out the soothing music from the old radio sitting on the window ledge.

‘You’re one useless bastard!’ The barrage of abuse had just hit average level.

‘Fucking useless.’ The kitchen had seen better days, as had their marriage, but Kate worked hard to keep both spotless and functional.

‘Can you hear me?’ She strived hard at everything, as she had for a lifetime.

‘Hello? Is there anyone home?’ However, her efforts now went unnoticed or drew heavy criticism for no reason.

‘I’m fucking talking to you, whore.’ She knew only too well what was about to come her way, as she moved the blonde strand of hair out of her blue eyes and concentrated. She placed the boiled egg safely into its cup.

‘Where’s this fucking breakfast, for fuck’s sake?’

She reached out her arm, picked up the knife and, clenching it tight in her hand, she decapitated the top of the egg.

‘I can hear you, Alan.’ The toast was the light side of brown, just as he liked it, but who knew these days? ‘There’s no point keeping on at me, shouting. I can’t go any faster.’

She set the breakfast plate before Alan. His face was dark and menacing—the antithesis of the light sense of fun that had been knocked out of her.

‘About fucking time. Talk about slow. You’re like a human fucking sloth.’

 

After ten years together, she found it more of a challenge to stay positive. Alan had turned negativity into a vocation.

‘What the flying fuck is this?’ She stared at the top of his head, bristling with the military-style haircut he’d had since he was a child, raised by an army commander who gave no quarter.

‘Do you seriously expect me to eat this fucking lot of shite?’ Alan had adopted the same rank in the family, but hadn’t served a moment in the services. ‘All these years, and you still can’t boil a fucking egg? I mean, it’s not fucking rocket science.’ She watched him as he snarled at her. ‘You’ve got to be having some sort of a laugh.’

He pushed the plate away with such force, it shot forward and hit the condiment pots. Kate flinched as the sharp noise pierced her ears. ‘Why, what’s wrong with it now?’ She clenched her fists as her body shook. Her nerves were all on the surface, as he mocked her and revelled in her fear.

‘What’s bloody wrong with it? It’s the wrong colour, undercooked and looks like my fucking snot. You really are a fucking retard!’

 

She watched as his sneer took what used to be a pleasantly rugged face – a lifetime ago – and warped it monstrously.

‘Well, I can do another for you, if you like. It won’t take me a minute!’

She tried her hardest to stay calm, fearful of what might come next.

 

‘That’s how long I think you boiled that one for, a fucking minute, so what’s the bloody point? You’ll only mess it up again, you thick tart.’ Kate, petrified, noticed the pure evil as it manifested once again across his face.

‘You’re miles away these days. Maybe you should go see a doctor and get some happy pills from him. For fuck’s sake, you can’t even time an egg.’ Once again defeated, she bit her lip and her voice broke.

‘Well, I did boil it for three minutes.’ She watched his face as it reddened. She knew the inevitable was about to happen, and wished it over and done with.

‘Yeah, yeah. Let’s face it, darling, you’re no good at cooking, no good in bed—in fact, you’re no good at fucking anything really. I bloody dread mealtimes in this house.’

The victorious grin that had taken residence across his smug face frightened her.

‘I try my best, Alan, I really do.’ Kate’s voice sounded weak. Alan fed off her vulnerability as he chipped away at her. He cranked up the volume another notch.

‘You really are a fucking retard. You’re trying to poison me with salmonella.’ Alan stretched out his arm, picking up the boiled egg. Terrified, she eyed him as he gripped it tightly in his hand. ‘Trying to do me in with food poisoning, are you?’

Kate jerked as he lobbed the egg towards her, raising her arm, shielding it from her face as it side-swiped her head. She tried to pick fragments of sticky shell out of her hair.

‘That’s what I think about your boiled eggs. Now go and fucking clean it up!’

She decided the best defence was to stay silent. Terrified, she turned her back on him, and tried to disappear into the background.

‘Don’t turn your back on me, I’m fucking talking to you! You’re one ignorant bitch. Don’t you dare fucking ignore me!’

She closed her eyes tight and gritted her teeth, trying hard to remain calm.

‘I’m not ignoring you. I’m trying to get Sophie’s breakfast ready or she’ll be late for school.’

Her smooth tone stoked his fury more. ‘I don’t even know why I fucking married you. I could’ve done so much better. My parents were right on the money when they said I married down. An army bigwig and a doctor they were, and what are you? A washed-up failed actress, a shit teacher, and a poor excuse for a fucking wife.’

She ignored him as the vile comments became more and more aggressive.

‘I mean, have you taken a fucking good look at yourself lately?’

He rotated his chair towards her. She watched him in terror as he looked her up and down like he’d just stepped in a massive turd.

‘Please don’t, Alan. Please don’t start again today.’

She arranged the plate of food as fast as she could. Jumpy and exasperated, she picked up the tea towel from the draining board and wiped the edges clean, as he continued to mock her.

‘“Please don’t, Alan – please don’t, Alan.” Can you hear yourself, Kate?’

The onslaught continued towards danger point.

‘You’ve really let yourself go over the years. You need to get yourself to the fucking gym and start exercising. I married a woman, not a lard arse. Just look at you!’

She was tall and well-proportioned. If Alan wanted an anorexic model, he was living in cloud cuckoo land – and the wrong neighbourhood.

‘Oh, for crying out loud, Alan.’ Her adrenalin kicked in, and she snapped out of her former resignation. She threw down the tea towel on the worktop. ‘I do exercise, Alan, when I have the time!’

‘Ha! Are you having a fucking bubble? You keep telling yourself that. You’re a silly stupid fat tart. You should take a leaf out of your friend Jill’s book. Now she looks great. Perfect little figure, and a great pair of tits!’

He did nothing to hide the wicked grin that was plastered across his face, or his semi- erection. Watching him, repulsed, she tried logic. ‘Well, Jill hasn’t got any children to worry about, or a husband for that matter, so she has more time on her hands than I bloody well do.’

She continued to busy herself, reaching into the cupboard next to her and removing a plate.

‘Excuses, Kate, always bloody excuses with you! Don’t you know the truth always comes out? Mind you, you wouldn’t know the truth if it jumped up and took a bite-sized chunk out of your big fat fucking arse, you thick bitch.’

Her stomach churned. She didn’t want another fight. Against her better judgement, she apologised. ‘I’m sorry about the egg, Alan, I really am, but do you have to do this now? Sophie will be down for her breakfast any minute.’

She showed him Sophie’s plate. Desperate, she reminded him of their daughter’s existence. Kate was taken aback as she heard the almighty roar that bellowed out of his mouth.

‘Who the fuck do you think you are? You think you can tell me what I can and cannot do in my own house!’

The house belonged to both of them, a wedding gift from his parents, but she wasn’t about to argue the toss about that now.

‘Please, Alan, Sophie will hear you. It’s not fair she has to listen to this day in, day out. Do you not think about what this is doing to her? She’s your daughter, for heaven’s sake.’

She hated the sound of her weak voice. ‘Well, that’s fucking debatable.’ Sickened, Kate watched him as he swayed in his chair like a hypnotised cobra. A dreary Coldplay song rang out on the radio.

‘I don’t give a toss about you or your fucking daughter.’

The saliva flew in all directions across the kitchen, as he continued to spit more venom in her direction.

‘It’s my fucking house, my rules. Anyway, look at you. And what’s that on your face? Is that make-up and lipstick you’re wearing? Where do you think you’re going today with all that crap on your face? You look like a washed- up old whore!’

She was frozen to the spot, and the colour drained fast from her face.

‘It’s just pink lip gloss, for goodness sake. What the hell’s wrong with you?’

His eyes bulged from their sockets like a bullfrog’s, his tongue sharp like a flickering whip, as he leapt from his chair and grabbed her firmly by the hair. ‘Lip gloss, my arse.’ She fought hard to hold on to Sophie’s plate as he ground his thumb into her mouth and smeared the tacky pink gloss across her cheek.

‘Ha! That’s more like it! As if lipstick or lip gloss is going to help you.’

She felt the sting as the palm of his hand connected hard against her cheek. He picked up the dirty tea towel.

‘Please, Alan, stop this.’ He rubbed it hard across her flushed skin. Kate, struggling to breathe, heard the crash as the plate fell to the floor.

‘Look at the tea towel, cunt. It’s fucking make-up. Stop fucking lying to me!’

She could smell the remnants of the stale booze on his breath, which made her heave. ‘I’m not lying.’ She struggled hard to pull away from him, her eyes drawn towards the doorway. She noticed Sophie standing there, her perfect angelic face pale and in shock.

‘Go away!’ Kate mouthed to her terrified daughter.

‘What was that, bitch? Are you talking back to me again?’

She felt the sharp pain hit, as he punched her hard in the stomach. As Kate fell to her knees, she heard Sophie’s voice.

‘Leave my mummy alone!’ Kate looked up at him, and at the same time his expressive dark eyes narrowed. Alan turned around and faced his daughter.

‘Oh, it’s you! Have you seen your mother? Doesn’t she look like a cheap whore? This is what you’ll look like one day if you let yourself turn into a sack of shit like her!’

He hoisted Kate up from the floor by her hair, on to her feet, and slapped her viciously again across her cheek.

She screamed. ‘Get out, Sophie! Get out!’ Kate watched Sophie as she turned around and raced from the kitchen in floods of tears. She pleaded with him:

‘Alan, please stop this! Please!’ She stumbled as he pushed her hard into the side of the Formica worktop. Unsteady on her feet, she reached out with both hands and gripped on to it.

‘You’re lucky I’ve got things to do today and that I don’t have to spend another minute looking at your gormless fucking mug!’

She watched as he grabbed his jacket off the back of the kitchen chair and threw it across his right shoulder.

‘What have I told you about lying, Kate?’ She saw the triumphant expression on his face as he left the kitchen and whistled down the hallway. Kate listened out as he opened the front door, and jumped as she heard his voice again.

‘Make sure you clean up all the mess and scrape all that raw egg off those bloody tiles.’

She closed her eyes for a split second and there came another almighty loud bang as the front door slammed shut behind him. Kate’s whole body trembled with this aftershock.

‘God help me,’ she said to herself. She crawled across the kitchen floor, picked up the newspaper off the chair and gathered the food and shards of broken plate onto it as she chanted to herself.

~~~

Now the giveaway!!!

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First Prize

A signed copy of A Fool’s Circle

$10 amazon gift card

A Fool’s Circle – fridge magnet

A Fool’s Circle– Keyring

A Fool’s Circle – makeup bag

A Fool’s Circle – 6 pack of red pencils

A Fool’s Circle – Pen

A Fool’s Circle – wooden book mark

3 Note books

1 sequin pencil case

7 piece makeup brush set

Rituals…50ml Zensational foaming shower gel

Rituals…#HOLIAWESOME gift set containing

Playable foaming shower gel 50ml

Crackling body mousee 50ml

1 shower Pom Pom

5 assorted 7th heaven face masks

3 assorted 38g Lindt Lindor chocolate bars

Second Prize

Digital Copies of A Fool’s Circle

Incredible right? AND this giveaway is open to EVERYONE!!!

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About the Author

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Suzanne Seddon was born in 1968 in Islington, London. After leaving school she had many interesting jobs, from swimming teacher to air hostess, and was able to travel the globe. Now a single mum to her teenage daughter Poppy-willow, Suzanne spends her days writing and has written several articles for magazines and newspapers.

Growing up, Suzanne witnessed mental and physical abuse within her own family which strongly influenced her when she wrote her first play, A Fool’s Circle, when she attended the famous Anna Scher Theatre. Suzanne, however, was not content to leave it there and decided to go ahead and transform her play into a novel.

Not one to shy away from exciting challenges, she also wrote, acted, directed, cast and produced a trailer for the book around her hometown in Islington with the support of local businesses, who recognised the drive and importance of Suzanne and her work.

Suzanne is a passionate writer and she is determined to be heard so that the issue of domestic abuse is raised amongst the public’s consciousness, empowering others to speak out. She wants those who suffer at the hands of another to have their voices heard, loud and clear.

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#Review “One Night Gone” by Tara Laskowski

One Night Gone cover

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5/5 Stars!

Excellent read seamlessly weaving the summer of 1986 and fall of 2015 together to solve a mystery and a murder.

Carny girl Maureen Haddaway disappears near the end of summer. Except for one friend, no one appears to care in the upscale touristy town of Opal Beach. Maureen was one of those girls—here today, gone tomorrow—low class and with questionable morals which made her unworthy of true concern or a real investigation.

Fast-forward to 2015 and meteorologist Allison Simpson is a betrayed, disgraced divorcee desperate to piece her life back together and reclaim her dignity. Talked into house-sitting in ritzy Opal Beach during the off-season, Allison gets drawn into the mystery of Maureen’s disappearance.

I’m not generally a fan of dual timelines, but One Night Gone drew me in from the beginning. There’s no fluff or filler and its dual POVs of Maureen and Allison got me into their heads and mindsets without locking me inside, desperate to escape. They have a great awareness of the characters they interact with so I had a good idea of who they each were dealing with. Good writing!

I felt bad for Maureen—her situation kept going from bad to worse, and she didn’t always make the best decisions and was too smart for her own good sometimes, but her intentions were not self-serving.

Didn’t feel as bad for Allison. While she had done nothing wrong and was indeed, the victim in her situation, her response could have been less… dramatic—even though I loved it!

That being said, and unless I missed something, I didn’t get the whole Allison meltdown-thingy in the aftermath. Duke was a cheating dork. Bye!

However, she had a good rebound. She’s nowhere near perfect and no longer tries to be.

There are lots and lots and lots of villains in this read. Everyone is bad! Okay, maybe bad is overstepping, but they all have agendas in 1986 and in 2015. Getting in the way could be deadly, and with so many agendas in play, I didn’t see the plot twist coming until the author smacked me with it! HA! Bravo! Well-played!

Great ending and the only thing missing FOR ME was another good dig at Duke the dork ‘cuz he SO deserved it!

One Night Gone is a slow-boiling thrill ride I highly recommend!

Enjoy!

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Synopsis:

“A subtly but relentlessly unsettling novel.” —TANA FRENCH, author of The Witch Elm

It was the perfect place to disappear…

One sultry summer, Maureen Haddaway arrives in the wealthy town of Opal Beach to start her life anew—to achieve her destiny. There, she finds herself lured by the promise of friendship, love, starry skies, and wild parties. But Maureen’s new life just might be too good to be true, and before the summer is up, she vanishes.

Decades later, when Allison Simpson is offered the opportunity to house-sit in Opal Beach during the off-season, it seems like the perfect chance to begin fresh after a messy divorce. But when she becomes drawn into the mysterious disappearance of a girl thirty years before, Allison realizes the gorgeous homes of Opal Beach hide dark secrets. And the truth of that long-ago summer is not even the most shocking part of all…

“A heart-wrenching and suspenseful novel of betrayal and revenge. Stunning!” —Carol Goodman, award-winning author of The Night Visitors

“Featuring a brilliantly executed dual timeline with two unforgettable narrators, One Night Gone is a timely and timeless mystery that will keep you obsessively reading well past your bedtime.” —Paul Tremblay, author of The Cabin at the End of the World

Book Details:

Genre: Mystery,Suspense

Published by: Graydon House Books (Harlequin)

Publication Date: October 1, 2019

Number of Pages: 352

ISBN: 1525832190 (ISBN13: 9781525832192)

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | Goodreads

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Read an excerpt:

Opal Beach was about a two-hour drive without traffic from downtown Philadelphia. It was somewhere halfway between Ocean City and Atlantic City and way less touristy. The beach always reminded me of vacations as a kid, running barefoot on hot sand, creating lopsided sand castles with plastic buckets, breaking crab legs and sucking out the meat. But there was also a sense of slowing down, of taking it all in, and I needed that now. I could feel the air change, the way it clung, coated, opened everything up. Through the car windows, the Oc¬tober air was shockingly cold but also reviving. The salty air had always bothered my mother and sister, who complained it was too humid and their tongues felt strange, but I loved the way it worked its fingers into my hair and curled around the tendrils. It made me feel a little wild, a little different. Untamed. Like anything could happen. Was I really doing this? Was I really pressing on this pedal, steering, guiding these four wheels to a stranger’s beach house, where I would live for the next three months alone? It had all happened so fast. A blur, really. Annie’s friend Sharon, with that same nurse-like efficiency that Annie had, set it all up so quickly that I’d barely had time to adjust to the idea before it was actually happening. But I was used to life messing with me now, used to tripping over a curb or forgetting to eat breakfast or chipping a nail, waking up only to discover that everything I’d known to be true was suddenly different. So in some ways this journey, the picking up and leaving behind, felt like an emerging. Like Rockefeller, the hermit crab I’d bought on our family vacation one year at a boardwalk shack, I was crawling out of a dingy shell and moving into a shinier, larger home. (Unlike Rockefeller, though, I hoped I wouldn’t die from the soap residue that was left inside the new shell when someone tried to clean it too vigorously before setting him inside the cage.) I drove down a two-lane road just off the ocean, the main drag for all the beachfront houses. I could imagine that on a weekend in July it looked like a parking lot as families navigated in or out of town, canoes and coolers tied up on their roof racks. But now it was eerily vacant, and I had the sense I was the last woman on earth, that in my quiet drive alone the rest of humanity had vanished. I was trying to decide if that was a good thing or not when a giant orange Hummer zoomed into view behind me and passed without slowing down. “Well, so much for that. Asshole,” I said. The houses were dramatically large and looming, blocking what otherwise would’ve been a magnificent view. You could tell which ones were just rentals—the monstrosities with thirteen bedrooms and a six-car garage that five families could rent out at once. But further down the road, the houses had more style and character. The kind of places—lots of windows, big porches, nice landscaping—that would make your mouth water even without the lush ocean backdrop as icing on the cake. I slowed as my GPS indicated I was getting close, but even so I almost missed the tiny driveway and its faded, weather-beaten road sign declaring my new mailing address: Piper Sand Road. I had made it. The long gravel drive split off halfway up, with one side leading to the Worthington house and the other side to their neighbor’s. When I’d first met the Worthingtons for my “job interview” just a few weeks before, I’d been so nervous about the whole thing that I’d taken the wrong driveway and parked in the neighbor’s lot and stared at it for a good minute before realizing the house number was wrong. But now, pulling into the correct driveway slowly, it felt like an adventure movie soundtrack should be swelling. And our heroine finds her destiny. I could imagine Annie’s reaction when she finally saw the house in person. It was stunning. The surrounding homes were propped up on beams, like old ladies hitching up their skirts so they wouldn’t get wet in the surf, but that just gave the Worthingtons’ house an understated effect. It stood confident and modest between them, a beach gingerbread house right out of a fairy tale, with light blue curtains and sweeping eaves. I parked right at the porch steps and got out, wrapping my cardigan around me to stave off the whipping wind. The front porch was small but quaint, with two wooden rocking chairs and a small white table with flaking paint. I ran my palm along the back of one of the tall chairs, and it creaked from my touch. The chairs seemed to be more for decoration than sitting. Dolores, Sharon’s sister who lived in town, was supposed to be meeting me to hand over the keys. Yet it seemed I’d arrived first. I’d had to come one week sooner than planned, as Patty and John had been whisked away to her mysterious assignment in Eastern Europe a little earlier than expected. Patty had called me from the airport with the news. I’d pictured her in her white visor and tennis sneakers rushing through the terminals, bags bouncing off her lower back as she breathlessly gave me instructions. Still, I half expected Patty to appear in the window as I squatted down and peered inside the house. It was hard to see with the bright sun glaring at my back, but I could make out the shadowy silhouette of the large island counter in the middle of the kitchen. Beyond that room, I remembered, was the living room, with doors and stairs leading to all the many nooks of the house. All empty now, waiting for me. A shiver curled from my spine up to my neck, unwinding inside me. Calm down, you idiot, I told myself. Not everything is a trap. Think positively, and positive things will come. *** Excerpt from One Night Gone by Tara Laskowski. Copyright © 2019 by Tara Laskowski. Reproduced with permission from Graydon House Books (Harlequin). All rights reserved.

 

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Enter To Win:

This is a rafflecopter giveaway hosted by Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours for Harlequin and Tara Laskowski. There will be 1 winner of one (1) copy of One Night Gone (print). The giveaway begins on September 23, 2019 and runs through October 6, 2019. Open to U.S. and Canada addresses only. Void where prohibited.

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#BlogTour “Simon Says” by Jo Wesley

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Simon Says cover

Her life may not be perfect but she’s happy. Until she makes a terrible decision – and learns the hard way that home is not a place of refuge.

Not while Simon lurks in every shadow.

He groomed her as a teen: terrorised her into fleeing, leaving her baby behind. Now the man who destroyed her childhood has become the perfect father to her teenage daughter. And her return threatens his future.

A desperate man is a dangerous one.

Simon says she must leave or suffer the consequences. She refuses.

Now it’s his move. Because it’s not enough to face your demons.

Sometimes, you must destroy them.

Purchase Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US

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EXCERPT

Ade’s thick fingers rested on the settee arm. He didn’t notice me staring at them. His attention was on the TV and the wagon that billowed a cloud of dust as it raced across the desert, followed by a dozen or more horses ridden by men in blue with flapping yellow scarves. One of the riders yelled something to his companion and Ade leant forward, frowning. Thick lines crinkled his forehead, ending where his hair line once would have been, but now there was just shiny smoothness against which the light from the TV reflected. He needed a cowboy hat. That way only the horseshoe of hair which hung over his ears would be seen and no one could tell he was bald.

He went to pick up the remote control and caught my eye. Did he know I’d been staring at him? I looked down at my hands. They gripped my knees so tightly, my knuckles jutted like the Rockies.

Ade took a drag of his fag and pointed the remote control at the TV. Music crashed into the room, the beat of a drum, the dah dah dahhh of a trumpet as two Red Indians popped up from behind a rock. Talk about old-fashioned.

“I can’t hear,” he said.

I nodded and turned away. What was I doing here with a bunch of old men? There must be somewhere better to hang out tonight. Even Mrs. Hamilton’s. Or with the goths at the precinct, although they hadn’t been there when I’d walked past earlier. Hannah Curtis had become a goth and she reckoned they weren’t as scary as they looked and much nicer than the chavs who laughed at me for being a swot. It wasn’t my fault I was in the top set. Thank goodness I hadn’t gone to Grammar or else they might pick on me like they did the other kids who got off that bus. They left Troy alone, but only because Issie Saunders fancied him. I’d seen the way she pushed her cronies to one side so she could flutter her eyelashes when he walked past.

I’d try the precinct again. Hopefully, Hannah would be there. As I stood up to leave, Ade turned to me.

“Not leaving already?” He grinned. “I have this effect on women.”

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Author Bio

SIMON SAYS isn’t my first thriller. Several unpublished novels went before it, but there was something about this story that made me come back to it time-and-time again. Although it was written in 2015, recently a few author friends encouraged me to publish it as they remembered reading it years before.

I used to work in an office where the wider team comprised people working with drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence and general community safety. I wrote SIMON SAYS during this period and my team provided information and advice. Also, the Red Watch team at the local fire station read my first chapter during their tea break and advised on a couple of points to make it more accurate (I thought it would be one person, not the whole team reading it!).

Currently, I am completing a novel in another genre, but I really enjoy writing thrillers, so I am planning my next one.

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