#GuestPost “Eternal Forever” by Syl Waters

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Oh, I do love to write beside the seaside!

by Syl Waters

Out of my window I can see a fat seagull. I don’t know if it’s a he or a she (how do you tell – note for self to check on google). Note to reader, having consulted the expertise of the web I have learned it’s very difficult to tell the difference between a male and female seagull. For your reference, the male may have a bit brighter and more colourful plumage, but the difference is so subtle, so I’ve read, only experienced bird watchers can tell the difference.

I am not an experienced bird watcher.

And so I’m wondering if this seagull is fat or pregnant.

The internet hole looked longer this time and so I have resisted. I can tell you though that a seagull usually lays its eggs at the beginning of May and has a clutch of three. The number three may have special significance in seagull circles, as it’s also after three weeks the eggs begin to hatch.

And so my mind wanders to what a baby seagull looks like and if I’ve even seen one?

Cue google images.

You may or may not be interested to learn baby seagulls (from my expert scanning of images online), appear to be dappled grey. I find myself pondering how such greyness can turn into such strong swipes of black and white in later years. I mean, when you look at a seagull it’s colours are very striking, not striking in a zebra sort of way, but still the body is always white and the wings are always black.

Isn’t it amazing how nature knows where to put the colours?

The baby seagull (also known as fluffy chicks – I’m not sure that’s right…), also is missing the red slash on its yellow beak that adults acquire later in life.

I’ve always thought the red was from the blood of a seagull’s victims.

That could be unfair. I don’t know how dangerous seagulls are, but I bet they aren’t as bad as swans.

Swans scare me.

You can ask my other half, we were out on a hot day having a romantic walk by the canal and I wouldn’t walk past a swan which was sat hissing. He took the mick, royally.

Me? I walked off in the other direction. Romance or saving my life? I’ll save my life every time.

And while writing this, I’m now starting to wonder if my fear of swans is undeserved and I’m ruining my chance of romance. And so I’ve searched the net for ‘are swans dangerous’. There’s a report from the BBC in 2012 called ‘Who, What, Why: How dangerous are swans?’ In it they detail a couple of swan attacks where the birds capsized kayaks and attacked rowers.

I am alarmed.

I would read more, but I don’t know if any of this is helpful for me overcoming my existing fear of swans.

I close the tabs and look back out of the window at the fat seagull. I wonder if soon she’ll give birth to some fluffy chicks? Whether true or not, that’s what I’m always going to call baby seagulls from now on. J

Syl Waters is the author of Who Killed Patrick? and Eternal Forever.


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Fame, glory and… foul play!

Jessie was a shop worker dreaming of the big time, then YouTube found her. But staying in the limelight requires meticulous management: pop stars are made not born.

With awards night approaching, the pressure’s on for Tito, Jessie’s manager, to whip her into shape. Getting so close wasn’t in the contract, but then neither was him being murdered in Spain.

Alone and scared of the negative publicity, Jessie turns to Mack, her account manager at Eternal Forever, the UK’s first digital legacy management agency. But Mack’s got his own issues: the company’s fast running out of cash, his key developer’s on the turn and a blogger’s suicide looks suspicious.

With the assistance of J-Pop, Mack’s assistant and wannabe reality TV star, Jessie turns sleuth. But in a world where everybody’s watching, it’s hard to escape. Reputation is everything and some people will do anything to protect it.

Purchase Links

AMAZON UK

AMAZON US


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Author Bio

Most people know crazy cat ladies are a ‘thing’, but I’m a proud crazy guinea pig lady! I love fun in the sun and plenty of cocktails. My happy place is flip flops. I write stories to keep me company – my characters ensure I’m never lonely and always smiling (when I’m not tearing my hair out!)

Social Media Links

Website     |     Twitter     |     Instagram     |     Facebook


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#ReleaseBlitz “Pairs with Life” by John Taylor

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Humorous Fiction, Romantic Comedy 

Date Published: September 15, 2020

Publisher: Hurn Publications

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 Forty-eight-year-old Corbett Thomas, a one-hit wonder of the 90s, now works as the lead sommelier at Napa Valley’s hippest restaurant. Set to become one of the few Master Sommeliers in the world, Corbett self-destructs during his final exam, ruining his last chance at capturing the stardom and adoration he got a taste for in his youth.

When billionaire game designer, Brogan Prescott, asks Corbett to consult on a major vineyard acquisition, Corbett sees it as a shot at redemption, until he learns of Brogan’s ridiculous vision of a virtual-reality, Woke Ant Colony Winery. Disgusted, Corbett decides to buy the vineyard himself and preserve its magic and history. Cashless, clueless, and with his reputation in tatters, Corbett enlists the help of his bass-player-turned-lawyer Seamus O’Flaherty, who may have finally lost his stomach for Corbett’s bad ideas; his uber-rational daughter Remy, who wants Corbett to uncork some family secrets he’d rather leave in the cellar; and Sydney Cameron, whose sudden appearance in Corbett’s life may repair his heart or shatter it forever.

With their help-and sometimes despite it-Corbett discovers what Brogan has known all along: a four-billion-dollar gold deposit lies beneath the vineyard. If Brogan acquires the property, the ensuing gold rush will destroy Napa Valley.

But if Corbett can get out of his own way long enough to purchase the vineyard first, he’ll be faced with the hardest decision of his life: take the fame and fortune he desperately craves, or save the soul of the valley he loves so much.

 


Excerpt

Let’s get one thing clear – I won that bet fair and square, even though I cheated.

I blame the whole thing on Rick Dornin, who was being particularly douchey that night. I used to be able to choose whichever party I wanted to serve without question. That is, until Dornin arrived at Appellation with his anal-retentive online calendar and industrial-grade Napoleon complex.

Yes, that Appellation. The most coveted dining experience in all of Napa Valley, and one of only nine restaurants in America awarded three Michelin stars. It took a DNA sample and a copy of your credit report to get a table, and then you’d better be ready to cash in your 401(k) when the bill came.

The evening started out normally enough. I arrived at the restaurant an hour before my shift to check reservations, talk to Chef Dan about the evening’s specials, and think of pairings for the prix fixe. Dornin was in his office—a modified broom closet next to the staff bathroom that looked like a hoarder’s den with one, tiny deer trail leading to his desk. In fact, he was always in his office, even when service was slammed, which drove me batshit crazy. I don’t care if you’re General Manager or General Patton—when it’s time to schlep a plate or buff a glass, you step up and do it.

Anyway, I poked my head through the doorway and said, “Hey, Rick,” trying to keep things light and cheery. “What do you know about this Harrison party at eight?”

“Whales,” he replied, not bothering to look up from his purchase orders. “Big whales, like Moby Dick whales.”

“Sweet!” Visions of stockbrokers trying to one-up each other with bottles of Screaming Eagle at five thousand bucks a pop danced in my head. Tips so big they come in a brown paper bag.

“Yes.” Dornin finally looked up at me and grinned like he learned how to do it from an infomercial. “They’ll be in the Veraison Room. With Andrew.”

“What?” I lunged into the tiny office, nearly tripping over a carton of water glasses. “You can’t give it to Andrew!”

“I can give it to whoever I want.” He went back to his purchase orders, feigning a nonchalance that made me want to smack him. “If I want to move Felipe off of bussing and let him pop some corks, I could do that, too.”

Time for a different tack—one that wouldn’t involve me going full-on Hannibal Lecter. “I’m just saying that a party like that comes to a restaurant like this to experience the highest level of service in the world. I’m the guy they’re coming for, not Andrew. I sit for my Master Somm next week, and—”

 “You know what you are, Corbett? You’re an overpaid bartender.” Dornin had thin lips and an Adam’s apple the size of Detroit, and it bugged me. “You trained for twenty years to learn how to pull a cork from a bottle and tell people that red wine goes with steak. Whoop-tee-freaking-do. You’ll work the floor tonight, and you can have the Jansen party on the terrace at seven-thirty.”

My left eyebrow started twitching, which happens when I get stressed out. Apparently, no one can see it, but to me, it feels like a two-year-old is digging tiny fingers into my face and stretching it like saltwater taffy. I considered trying the No One Has Experience At Up-Selling Like I Do approach, but this was the third time in as many weeks I’d had such a run-in with Dornin.

I was done.

It was time to talk to Chef Dan.

Most people remember Chef Daniel Foyer from his five seasons on Elite Chef, The Food Channel’s number one show from 1998 to 2002. With a chin so chiseled it could slice a burnt chuck steak and blue eyes that screamed, “Come taste this gazpacho in my bedroom,” he was the prototype celebrity chef. But Father Time had been most inhospitable to Chef Dan, and for the past couple of years the poor soul tried to counteract a rapid aging process by dunking his scalp and Sam Elliott-sized mustache in a fifty-gallon drum of jet-black hair dye. The net effect was so incongruous with the rest of his wrinkled face that I could barely look at him without drowning in the shore break of cognitive dissonance.

Don’t get me wrong, I loved the guy. He was a loyal and trusted friend, and straight-up the most amazing culinary artist of my generation. But if I’d had any money, I would have bought stock in Just For Men and eventually retire on my Chef Dan profits alone.


About the Author

John Taylor has been writing about wine since 2012, but his meanderings on life began way before that. Born and raised in San Diego, California, John moved to Los Angeles in 1982 to pursue dreams of screenwriting and filmmaking. He attended the University of Southern California, where he majored in Shattered Dreams and False Hopes, with a minor in Getting Gut Punched By Reality. After being handed a degree in Journalism in 1987 as a consolation prize, John dove into a career in music. Because getting gut-punched just isn’t painful enough.

By 1996, John and his band, The Uninvited, had produced four independent albums and became one of the most popular acts in the western United States. This lead to a deal on Atlantic Records, which released the band’s self-titled debut album in 1997. The band had two Top 100 hits, and toured nationally with Dave Matthews, Blues Traveller, Third Eye Blind and many other acts. Their music appeared in the TV shows Beverly Hills 90210 and Party of Five, and in the motion pictures The Commandments and North Beach. The band can also be heard in several HBO Documentaries, video games and on that annoying “One Hit Wonders of The 90’s” station your co-worker always plays on Spotify.

In 2001, John’s vast experience in shattered dreams was once again called into play as the band hung up their touring shoes for good. After a brief but horrifying career in real estate, John got wise and made a career out of his favorite hobby – wine – and has held various sales & marketing positions in Napa Valley since 2011. John’s writing career started in earnest at this point, with blogs, essays and short stories appearing in various publications. John is the author of three novels, including the aptly-titled Pairs With: Life, which will be released by Hurn Publications in September 2020.

 

Author Links

Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter | Goodreads | Podcast | YouTube | Pinterest

 

Buy Links

B&N | Amazon | Kindle | Walmart eBooks (Kobo) | AbeBooks | The Book Depository | Alibris | Publisher | Indiebound




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RABT Book Tours & PR

#NewRelease “Pushing Up Posies (Guerrilla Grannies Mission Two)” by Jo Michaels

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Your favorite dirty grannies are at it again!

Monty, Minerva’s dead husband, is alive—yeah, she nearly peed her pants when she discovered that—and turns out, he’s running from several dangerous people. Unfortunately, he underestimated a woman’s fury when scorned.

The CDC has ordered the women into action: bring Monty in and hand him over. ASAP.

Minerva may have other plans…

It’s another crazy, fun-filled adventure with the grannies, and their shenanigans have just begun.

KINDLE UNLIMITED

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Felicia’s review of book 1, Gray is the New Black

5/5 Stars!

Grannies come in all shapes, colors, sizes, and ages. Yet still blue-haired, little old ladies come to mind at the mere mention of the word.

Fuhgeddaboudit.

While two of the group are grandmothers… and Pearl has blue hair… there isn’t anything granny-like about this group of fifty-something lifelong-friends.

Though they’ve lived normal lives apart and experienced too many of life’s milestones—betrayal, loss, divorce, and widowhood—Pearl, Ethel, Opal, Minerva, and Alma are back together now, living on the outskirts of Atlanta.

And they’re bored.

So what do a ballistics expert, a chemical engineer, an edged weapons expert, a martial arts master, and a former member of law enforcement do for excitement? They find a crime to solve before the police can muck up the works.

It’s while solving a bank robbery that this snarky, irreverent team of badass boomers come to the attention of a secret government agency and are recruited into service. Far-fetched? Okay, a bit, but it’s a good look for this group.

Gray is the New Black is such a fun read because the characters are so relatable. These women are not prim and proper matrons of society. They talk about aches and pains and aging, but they also discuss flirting, dating and sex. Especially Ethel! Insults and f-bombs are part of the endless banter but without rancor or spitefulness. These women are family and the deep love and respect they have for each other is the running thread through the story.

Bits and pieces of each woman’s life are shared as the story unfolds and while some questions are answered, I couldn’t help but want to know more.

I volunteered to read an ARC of Gray is the New Black as part of a book tour, but 1-clicked a copy even before I finished, and I’ve preordered book two. This is Golden Girls meets James Bond meets Mission Impossible and I’m here for it!

Enjoy!

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#Review “Pelvic Flaws” by Nikki Ashton

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Pelvic Flaws

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4/5 Stars!

Divorce can be life changing and for forty-five-year-old Katie Grainger, a mom of three, the changes weren’t good ones.

Though her marriage of eighteen years ended amicably, she’s feeling inadequate and old since her ex moved on, marrying a woman almost half his age and fathering another child.

Vaginal dryness and epic hot flashes aren’t helping either.

A chance meeting with sexy, middle-aged Dex Michaels leaves Katie embarrassed, flustered… and hopeful. For the first time since her divorce, a man’s attention made Katie feel alive. Even though there are no prospects on the horizon, she’s not dead yet.

After two more chance meetings with the tattooist, Katie finds herself dating a man she considers out of her league.

Their journey together will be fraught with vomit, feelings of abandonment, and a boatload of snark.

And that’s just from her three children.

Katie Grainger is every woman who passes thirty-five, single or not, and feels the years creeping up on her way too fast to turn her into her mother. (And her mother is a riot!) Her BFF, Mandy, is always there for her with words of support, sexy underwear and fashion advice… and porn.

Texas-born Dex moves to the UK after losing his dad and hasn’t looked back. He’s also haunted by the death of a former girlfriend who wanted more than he could give.

His attraction to Katie baffles the confirmed bachelor—and makes him happy. He’s almost positive Katie is the one, but she thinks she’s carrying too much baggage and drama.

And she is.

Katie’s fears and insecurities are not unfounded or trivial however, I felt she came off a bit too whiny. But Dex is right there reassuring her every time. But when his past brings him baggage, and Katie’s ex (CARL) pulls a dumb stunt, is she ready to step up and reassure him?

Pelvic Flaws is a fun read because the situations aren’t contrived or over-the-top. It’s grounded in reality and shows kids have growing pains, but so do friendships and relationships… and even divorces. Grab this one today.

Enjoy!

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When one sneeze can ruin your day and it’s not just the hairs on your head that need a dye job, you know your life is changing!
I’m Katie Grainger, I’m 45 years old, a divorced mother of three, slightly annoying at times, but always loveable, kids and I can wet myself at the drop of hat. Actually, it’s more like a sneeze or a cough than a drop of a hat, but whatever the reason, let’s just say I am forever grateful for the invention of the ultra-thin panty pad.
I don’t have a bad life, there’s book club where I discuss the menopause with my friends, there’s Clubbercise where I wet myself and dance like my mother with my friend Mandy and there’s my work which is pretty boring, where I get to learn a lot about reality TV from my much younger co-workers. All of which makes me content – yes, I’d like more sex, but who wouldn’t when their castle hadn’t been breached for four years.
Do I have regrets in my life?
Yes, I do. I regret that my ex-husband, Carl, and I didn’t realise we’d grown apart sooner. I regret not trying more online dating when I first got divorced and I regret that my youngest, Charlie, feels torn between pleasing me and his dad. What I don’t regret is my bag breaking and spilling everything over the pizza place floor, the night Dex Michaels was in there ordering a 9inch meat feast.
Pelvic Flaws is the story of one woman’s struggle with hot sweats, mood swings and perilously poor pelvic floor muscles. It’s the story of Dex, who thinks all those things about Katie are funny and adorable. It’s the story of a romance that could turn into something big. It’s the story of what might be the love affair of the century, potentially being ruined by the baggage that neither of them knew existed.

Buy the Books!

Do You Do Extras?mybook.to/DoYouDoExtras
Pelvic Flawsmybook.to/PelvicFlaws
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#BlogTour “Do You Do Extras?” and “Pelvic Flaws” by Nikki Ashton

Do You Do Extras? and Pelvic Flaws

Author: Nikki Ashton

Genre: Contemporary Romance/Humour

**BOTH BOOKS LIVE NOW**

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Do You Do Extras? (Enemies to Lovers, Romantic Comedy)

Take a normal girl, a Hollywood star, a mean foul-mouthed agent and a pink, glittery sex toy and you’ve got Do You Do Extras – but remember what happens on set stays on set.
Grantley James is Hollywood’s newest action hero. He’s got the looks, the body but can barely crack a smile.
Phoebe Drinkwater is an Extra on Grantley’s new film. She’s happy and fun loving but will never be as beautiful as her parents’ imaginary youngest daughter, Melania.
How will Hollywood’s newest sex symbol take it, when Phoebe literally bumps into him and tells him he has a fat head? Now’s your chance to find out.
At the centre of this beautiful romance are moments that will make you laugh out loud, and those which will pull at your emotions, but all in all you’ll get a stonking good read.
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Pelvic Flaws

When one sneeze can ruin your day and it’s not just the hairs on your head that need a dye job, you know your life is changing!
I’m Katie Grainger, I’m 45 years old, a divorced mother of three, slightly annoying at times, but always loveable, kids and I can wet myself at the drop of hat. Actually, it’s more like a sneeze or a cough than a drop of a hat, but whatever the reason, let’s just say I am forever grateful for the invention of the ultra-thin panty pad.
I don’t have a bad life, there’s book club where I discuss the menopause with my friends, there’s Clubbercise where I wet myself and dance like my mother with my friend Mandy and there’s my work which is pretty boring, where I get to learn a lot about reality TV from my much younger co-workers. All of which makes me content – yes, I’d like more sex, but who wouldn’t when their castle hadn’t been breached for four years.
Do I have regrets in my life?
Yes, I do. I regret that my ex-husband, Carl, and I didn’t realise we’d grown apart sooner. I regret not trying more online dating when I first got divorced and I regret that my youngest, Charlie, feels torn between pleasing me and his dad. What I don’t regret is my bag breaking and spilling everything over the pizza place floor, the night Dex Michaels was in there ordering a 9inch meat feast.
Pelvic Flaws is the story of one woman’s struggle with hot sweats, mood swings and perilously poor pelvic floor muscles. It’s the story of Dex, who thinks all those things about Katie are funny and adorable. It’s the story of a romance that could turn into something big. It’s the story of what might be the love affair of the century, potentially being ruined by the baggage that neither of them knew existed.

Buy the Books!

Do You Do Extras?mybook.to/DoYouDoExtras
Pelvic Flawsmybook.to/PelvicFlaws
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Nikki AshtonMeet The Author

Nikki lives in Cheshire with her husband, two dogs and lovely mother-in-law who supplies her with endless cups of tea. She writes romance with a touch of humour and lots of love, and hopes that she puts a smile on her reader’s faces. Her ambitions of becoming a writer started at the age of 10 when she started writing poetry at school, and was given the honour of reading one of her poems to the rest of her year group (a truly embarrassing experience that she will never forget). Nikki is grateful for the wide variety of strange and wonderful people in her life, otherwise she’d never know what to write about! She is currently talking to family and friends, finding out their innermost secrets in readiness for her next book.

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Although all Nikki’s books are stand alone stories characters do make ‘guest appearances’. So, the best order to read them is:
Guess Who I Pulled Last Night
No Bra Required
Get Your Kit Off
Rock Stars Don’t Like Big Knickers
Rock Stars Don’t Like Ugly Bras 
Cheese Tarts & Fluffy Socks
Rock Stars Do Like Christmas Stockings
Roman’s Having Sex Again
Box of Hearts
Angels’ Kisses
Secret Wishes
Do You Do Extras?
Pelvic Flaws
I Wanna Get Laid by Kade (Complete standalone)

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You can contact her on the following links: