#BookReview “The Silver Rose Dating Agency” by Angelena Boden

SRDA cover

~~~

5/5 Stars!

Containing all the elements of a first-rate cozy mystery—animals, food, murder, mystery, quirky characters–The Silver Rose Dating Agency uses current events and daily life to spin a dark, but fun story.

Fun in the way that despite the obstacles and pitfalls the cast of characters navigate, the story doesn’t take itself too seriously.

Sixty-year-old Kitty Merriweather and Eighty-year old Edna Reid couldn’t be more different if they tried, but they do have one thing in common… they both lost their husbands within the last year. That alone pulled me right in, being a recent widow myself. The author did a wonderful job of keying into their fears, pain, and regret. It felt realistic and not overblown and schmaltzy.

But where Edna was pragmatic, Kitty was flighty. Determined to keep active after losing her beloved Ted and retiring from the café that had been her life’s work, Edna volunteered in the Hope Valley community, won awards for completing crossword puzzles, and on a lark joins the church choir. The wealthy Kitty had never worked and left her home in the city to take up residence in the estate in Hope Valley they’d planned to retire to because “that’s what Bob would have wanted.”

Edna becomes concerned with Kitty gets involved with a man through an online dating service. The octogenarian is not well-versed in computers or the Internet, but feels something is off with Kitty’s “relationship.”

Sleuthing around by asking questions, using online search engines, and her gut instincts, Edna believes Kitty’s long-distance paramour may be much closer to home than she realizes it. However, Kitty will not have any of it and continues with her online relationship, even going so far as to send “Harvey” money.

Edna is determined to identify the scammer but has too many suspects to chose from. The alcoholic choir director with a gambling problem; the village hustler in charge of the gambling, or the young man who works as Kitty’s gardener? Or someone else?

A tiny thread involving Kitty’s late husband could be key to solving the mystery… but not before someone commits murder.

Well-developed characters help this read hum right along. I loved Edna. Bold, witty, and sarcastic, she seldom held her tongue but was never rude or overbearing. I believe the more time the delicate, refined Kitty spent with Edna; she became more like her.

Although the main characters in the story are in their sixties, seventies, and eighties, dropping the ages by forty years wouldn’t change the story. While aging does bring its obstacles, life is still faced in much the same way, except, hopefully with much more wisdom. Just ask Edna.

Enjoy!

~~~

When lonely widow Kitty Merriweather moves to Derbyshire’s Hope Valley, she joins the Silver Rose online dating site because it offers a safe place for the over sixties to find romance.

There, she meets the enigmatic Harvey, a scientist working on a conservation project in Bali who promises her “hot days and stormy nights.”

Love blooms quickly but Kitty breaks all the rules laid down by the agency, putting herself at risk. When little things don’t add up she dismisses them as being unimportant. Nothing matters more than her plans for them to live happily ever after.

When she confides in her new friend, Edna Reid, octogenarian and former café owner, Kitty gets angry at Edna’s implication she is likely the victim of a scam. The more Edna hears about Harvey, the more she is convinced he’s only interested in Kitty for her money.

Using her knowledge of computers Edna finally uncovers the truth, but where does black magic and murder fit into this intriguing cosy mystery?

Purchase Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US  

~~~

full tour banner

~~~

#BlogTour “The Silver Rose Dating Agency” by Angelena Boden

tour banner

~~~

SRDA cover

~~~

When lonely widow Kitty Merriweather moves to Derbyshire’s Hope Valley, she joins the Silver Rose online dating site because it offers a safe place for the over sixties to find romance.

There, she meets the enigmatic Harvey, a scientist working on a conservation project in Bali who promises her “hot days and stormy nights.”

Love blooms quickly but Kitty breaks all the rules laid down by the agency, putting herself at risk. When little things don’t add up she dismisses them as being unimportant. Nothing matters more than her plans for them to live happily ever after.

When she confides in her new friend, Edna Reid, octogenarian and former café owner, Kitty gets angry at Edna’s implication she is likely the victim of a scam. The more Edna hears about Harvey, the more she is convinced he’s only interested in Kitty for her money.

Using her knowledge of computers Edna finally uncovers the truth, but where does black magic and murder fit into this intriguing cosy mystery?

Purchase Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US  

~~~

Author Bio

Angelena Boden has spent thirty- five years as an international training Angelena Bodenconsultant, specialising in behavioural management and conflict resolution. She trained in Transactional Analysis, the psychology of communication and behaviour, her preferred tool for counselling and coaching.

She originates from the Peak District but has spent a lifetime travelling and living in places as far apart as Vancouver, Dubai, Paris, Seville and Iran. Now semi-retired in Great Malvern, she writes every morning, walks the hills and paints landscapes every afternoon and fits family and reading in between.

She is the author of two novels published by Urbane Publications (rights reverted) and two self-published cosy mysteries and a number of business books (Management Pocketbooks). Angelena is a regular blogger for a mental health publisher (Trigger) and Autumn Voices website which promotes authors over 60.

Social Media Links

Website

~~~

full tour banner

~~~

#BookReview “Lost In Translation” by Audrey Davis

LIT cover

~~~

4/5 Stars!

“Sometimes we tolerate things because we are afraid of the consequences of change. But fear of change is no reason to carry on when things are wrong.”

The quote spoken to Charlotte Egerton by a friend sums up her existence.

After ten years, Charlotte’s marriage has settled into a tolerable state. Husband, Dom, is obsessed with work, running off evenings and weekends to leave her to care for their two young sons.

Or is Dom obsessed with something other than work?

Charlotte has suspicions but soldiers on like a Stepford wife… a term bestie, Ruth, does use to describe her. Even after she finds a business card with a questionable note written on the back, Charlotte allows Dom to double-talk her, again, and put the onus on her for being so suspicious.

I rolled my eyes so hard after that conversation, I got a headache. But there was more to come.

Dom drops the bombshell on  Charlotte that their UK-based firm is opening a new office… in Switzerland, and they’re moving.

Honestly, if Charlotte had a brain in her head, she would have told him, “No, YOU’RE moving.” But nope. Dom and the boy’s happiness came first. This was for the good of the family. *Insert dramatic eye-roll.*

Being his usual busy self, Dom leaves most of the packing/unpacking to an unhappy Charlotte. She chides herself for being so resistant to change and vows to make an effort to adjust to life with the Swiss.

Making friends with some of the parents of her son’s classmates, Charlotte settles into a routine, once she learns to drive on the other side of the road.

But she still isn’t happy. Charlotte finally admits to herself that Dom’s double-talk is nothing but lies. While the betrayal hurts, she wonders why she isn’t heartbroken. And what about the single-father whose high school son babysits her boys? Why does having coffee with him feel better than being in the same room with Dom?

Charlotte Egerton annoyed me to no end! She reminded me of Wile E. Coyote in the last scene of the cartoon where the anvil he’s set up for the Roadrunner falls on him instead and he walks away in defeat. Dom’s explanations and excuses were so flimsy you could see through them, but Charlotte was “afraid of the consequences of change.” She lied to herself as much as Dom did and held everything inside.

Until she didn’t.

With inspiration from Ruth and another surprising source, Charlotte finds her spine… and wow! Look out!

Davis delivers another story full of heart and warmth with a protagonist who really isn’t a doormat, she just had to learn “fear of change is no reason to carry on when things are wrong.”

Enjoy!

~~~

SYNOPSIS

Charlotte Egerton and family are off to Switzerland, after husband Dom bags a big-time job promotion.

But Charlotte isn’t exactly yodelling with delight at the prospect. Not since a chance discovery cast a shadow over her ten-year marriage. And navigating twisty Swiss roads and getting to grips with French only adds to her woes…

Following a bumpy encounter with an arrogant German, Charlotte is far from convinced the expat life is for her.

With doubts about Dom — and concerns for her best friend, Ruth — plaguing her mind, will Charlotte embrace the Swiss way of life, or are some mountains just too hard to conquer?

Embark on a journey filled with laughter, tears and lessons in love. Sometimes you just have to seize the day…

Purchase Links

Amazon UK  

Amazon US  

~~~

full tour banner

~~~

#BlogTour “Lost In Translation” by Audrey Davis

tour banner

~~~

LIT cover

~~~

Charlotte Egerton and family are off to Switzerland, after husband Dom bags a big-time job promotion.

But Charlotte isn’t exactly yodelling with delight at the prospect. Not since a chance discovery cast a shadow over her ten-year marriage. And navigating twisty Swiss roads and getting to grips with French only adds to her woes…

Following a bumpy encounter with an arrogant German, Charlotte is far from convinced the expat life is for her.

With doubts about Dom — and concerns for her best friend, Ruth — plaguing her mind, will Charlotte embrace the Swiss way of life, or are some mountains just too hard to conquer?

Embark on a journey filled with laughter, tears and lessons in love. Sometimes you just have to seize the day…

Purchase Links

Amazon UK  

Amazon US  

~~~

Praise for Audrey Davis

‘Warm, witty and highly entertaining.’

‘The author never fails to provide humour and pathos in equal measure.’

‘The story-telling is rich, intelligent and rewarding.’

~~~

Author Bio  

Audrey Davis is a Scottish-born former journalist, now resident in Audrey DavisSwitzerland. Her newspaper career saw her cover events in Northern Ireland and the Falkland Islands, as well as working for a London-based movie magazine writing reviews and carrying out interviews.

She self-published her debut romantic comedy novel A Clean Sweep in June 2017, following an online Open University course in Writing Fiction.

Audrey followed up with a short, darker prequel A Clean Break before beginning work on a rom-com novella trilogy with a ghostly twist – The Haunting of Hattie Hastings. Again, reviews across the board were excellent, and it was combined into a standalone novel in November 2018. Her third novel, A Wish For Jinnie, was published in June.

Apart from writing, Audrey enjoys travel and spends a lot of time in Edinburgh. At least she did until recently…  She is an avid cook, watcher of scary movies and reluctant gym-goer.

Social Media Links  

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram

Website

~~~

full tour banner

~~~

#BookReview “When the Children Come” by Barry Kirwan

cover

~~~

5/5 Stars!

When the Children Come pulled me right in from the first page. No introductions or descriptive narrative. Kirwan dropped me right into the action.

Nathan, a military vet who never wanted children, is ironically guarding over two-hundred of them. He’s their protector and possibly last chance for survival… as long as he stays awake.

The story pulls back to explain how Nathan and the children came to be hiding in the abandoned school, and who they’re hiding from.

I enjoyed this page-turner, reading it quickly, and ending up frustrated I’d have to wait until fall for book 2! HA!

Nathan is a great protagonist/hero. While he appears to be negative in the beginning, his backstory explains the guilt he feels for the lives lost during his three tours in Afghanistan—and his PTSD.  But with the words of his late CO playing on repeat in his head, Nathan pushes on to be the protector and leader he doesn’t want to be but knows he has to be.

Lara and Raphaela, two women connected to NASA in different ways, are amazing sources of counsel and support for Nathan. Kudos to Kirwan for continuing to write strong, confident female characters. Nathan wonders more than once how he came to be surrounded by women smarter than him. However, it will take smarts and the Special Forces training Nathan has tried to bury to fight an enemy they know nothing about.

My favorite character though is ten-year-old Sally. After her brother is murdered, Sally runs for her life, straight to Nathan who lives in the same apartment building. Though he doesn’t know the child, her fear and his gut instincts tell him something is wrong. The streets are too empty for New Years Day. The adults who begin to gather are angry. And there are no children. Along with Lara—Nathan’s New Year’s Eve blind date—he takes the child and flees the city in search of help and answers. Each leg of the journey brings no answers and more hopelessness, but Nathan can’t help but notice as their situation becomes more dire, Sally matures, adding things overlooked or unspoken to the adults’ conversation.

When the trio meets up with others searching for answers while trying to survive, the ten-year-old becomes the unspoken leader for the children, and that’s how Nathan treats her as he and others train the children in basic survival skills to protect themselves and to kill. They know if adults fall asleep it’s kill or be killed when they wake up.

It wasn’t lost on me that while adults fought over race, politics, and authority, there was no dissension between the children. They didn’t separate by race or gender. There were no outcasts, no labeling. Without the societal burdens adults choose to carry, the children share one focus… to survive. However, as chances of survival shrink and the enemy reveal themselves, the children’s focus turns to revenge. War is coming, but it takes time to plan and train because it will be winner take all. They’ll only get one chance to take down an enemy that’s growing in number, more advanced… and not human. It’s ironic the group’s best chance for survival and victory is also not human.

I’ve read and enjoyed first contact stories before, but the unique plot and realistic characters of When the Children Come make it a memorable book that goes on the re-read shelf.

Enjoy!

~~~

Nathan, emotionally scarred after three tours in Afghanistan, lives alone in Manhattan until New Year’s Eve, when he meets Lara. The next morning, he notices something strange is going on – a terrified kid is being pursued by his father, and a girl, Sally, pleads with Nathan to hide her from her parents. There is no internet, no television, no phone coverage.

Nathan, Lara and Sally flee along the East Coast, encountering madmen, terrorists, the armed forces, and other children frightened for their lives. The only thing Nathan knows for sure is that he must not fall asleep…

Praise for When the Children Come…

A fantastic and original premise…flashes of Stephen King and MR Carey.” Tom Witcomb

A nicely taut thriller, with a Lee Child feel to its staccato writing and strong action sequences, and a high concept stretching the novel into true science fiction territory.” Amanda Rutter

Not just a page-turner – all in all a fabulous novel, which I was sad to finish.” Loulou Brown

Purchase Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US

~~~

full tour banner

~~~

#BlogTour “When the Children Come” by Barry Kirwan

tour banner

~~~

cover

Nathan, emotionally scarred after three tours in Afghanistan, lives alone in Manhattan until New Year’s Eve, when he meets Lara. The next morning, he notices something strange is going on – a terrified kid is being pursued by his father, and a girl, Sally, pleads with Nathan to hide her from her parents. There is no internet, no television, no phone coverage.

Nathan, Lara and Sally flee along the East Coast, encountering madmen, terrorists, the armed forces, and other children frightened for their lives. The only thing Nathan knows for sure is that he must not fall asleep…

Praise for When the Children Come…

A fantastic and original premise…flashes of Stephen King and MR Carey.” Tom Witcomb

A nicely taut thriller, with a Lee Child feel to its staccato writing and strong action sequences, and a high concept stretching the novel into true science fiction territory.” Amanda Rutter

Not just a page-turner – all in all a fabulous novel, which I was sad to finish.” Loulou Brown

Purchase Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US

~~~

Author BioJF Kirwan

I was born in Farnborough and grew up watching the Red Arrow jet fighters paint the sky at airshows. I didn’t get into writing until years later when I arrived in Paris, where I penned The Eden Paradox series (four books) over a period of ten years. My SF influences were Isaac Asimov, Arthur C. Clarke, Frank Herbert, and Orson Scott Card, but also David Brin who writes about smart aliens. Iain Banks and Alistair Reynolds remain major influences, as well as Neal Asher, Peter F Hamilton and Jack McDevitt.

My main SF premise is that if we do ever meet aliens, they’ll probably be far more intelligent than we are, and with very different values and ideas of how the galaxy works. As a psychologist by training, that interests me in terms of how to think outside our own (human) frame of reference.

When I’m not writing, I’m either working (my day job), which is preventing mid-air collisions, reading, or doing yoga or tai chi. When I’m on holiday I’m usually diving, looking for sharks. Most times I find them, or rather, they find me.

Social Media Links

Facebook 

Website 

Twitter  

~~~

full tour banner

~~~

#1DayBlogBlitz “Editing Your Novel’s Structure: Tips, Tricks, and Checklists to Get You From Start to Finish” by Bethany A. Tucker

tour banner

~~~

book cover

Editing Your Novel’s Structure: Tips, Tricks, and Checklists to Get You From Start to Finish

~ Guest Post ~

Editing is the process of making new choices. I’m not afraid of editing and I would argue no one should be. It’s this space, potentially sacred space, where you stand and survey the work of your hands and your mind and you practice discernment. “Does this produce the impact I intend?”

Don’t judge. Not yet. You’re still on the journey. It’s your work, but it’s not finished work. So it can be however it is and there’s no need to feel bad about it. Tell the little judgy voice in your brain to take a vacation. You have editing to do.

There’s something terribly exciting within this freedom of the editing process. It’s the chance to choose and choose again. Some of us get stuck in endless choosing or rather, not choosing, but that’s not true editing. That’s procrastination and fear. If you’re truly editing and not hiding, then it’s this place of creation, of refining what is being born, finalizing the brushstrokes on our painting of words.

When you find yourself meeting your soul on the page of edits, make friends with it. Listen to the nasty things it whispers. Listen and set them aside. There are nuggets to learn beneath those whispers. What you fear points to your hope. What makes you cringe can show you what you would love. Listen deeper. Listen to the passion and desire, the secrets of yourself that show up in the creative journey. Take the time to watch yourself. “Oh, I wrote that? Why did I put that in? What does that say about me?” Editing may require exploration of self, perhaps with a side of dancing with your shadow. Especially if we’re writing about ourselves, veiled or unveiled.

Give yourself the freedom to work through those emotions and deal with what arrises. Our books, especially our first book or two, say a lot about who we are. It’s like therapy, to be honest. And if you need therapy, or a good listening ear during the process, please, seek it out. Choose someone who can hold space and listen to you without telling you what your experience means. The meaning has to come from you. In this space we needs guides and words shamans, not dictators and gatekeepers. A friend will keep us honest, not tell us the right choice.

Those choices, those edits, they have to be ours. The work is ours. Guard it but don’t be precious. Because even after we turn our work loose on the world, it is still evolving. We are like Pinochio’s maker, Geppetto. We create, and then when our work comes to life, what it does after we can only guide. We do not know where it will go, or how it will be seen. It is beyond us, even if it comes from us. How anyone will respond says as much, if not more, about them than it does us.

Art is a mirror. It shows us ourselves as we create and edit it, and it shows us others as they meet it and either embrace or hate it. All we can do is create the most beautiful, the most flawless mirror we can, and then release it, taking all those skills we learned creating it with us to our next project and then, slowly, by creating and editing, and creating again, we become masters of our craft.

~~~

SYNOPSIS

Before it’s time to check for commas and iron out passive voice, fiction writers need to know that their story is strong. Are your beta readers not finishing? Do they have multiple, conflicting complaints? When you ask them questions about how they experience your story, do they give lukewarm responses? Or have you not even asked anyone to read your story, wondering if it’s ready?

If any of the above is true, you may need to refine the structure of your story. What is structure you ask?  Structure is what holds a story together. Does the character arc entrance the reader? Is the world building comprehensive and believable? These questions and more have to be answered by all of us as we turn our drafts into books.

In this concise handbook, complete with checklists for each section, let a veteran writer walk you through the process of self-assessing your novel, from characters to pacing with lots of compassion and a dash of humor. In easy to follow directions and using adaptable strategies, she shows you how to check yourself for plot holes, settle timeline confusion, and snap character arcs into place.

Use this handbook for quick help and quick self-editing checklists on:

– Characters and Character Arcs.
– Plot.
– Backstory
.
– Point of View.
– A detailed explanation of nearly free self-editing tools and how to apply them to your book to find your own structural problems.
– Beginnings and Ends.
– Editing for sensitive and specialized subject matter.
– Helpful tips on choosing beta readers, when to seek an editor, and a sample questionnaire to give to your first readers.

Grab your copy of Edit Your Novel’s Structure today! Now is the time to finish that draft and get your story out into the world.

Purchase Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US

~~~

Author BioBethany Tucker

Bethany Tucker is an author and editor located near Seattle, U.S.A. Story has always been a part of her life. With over twenty years of writing and teaching experience, she’s more than ready to take your hand and pull back the curtain on writing craft and mindset. Last year she edited over a million words for aspiring authors. Her YA fantasy series Adelaide is published wide under the pen name Mustang Rabbit and her dark epic fantasy is releasing in 2021 under Ciara Darren. You can find more about her services for authors at TheArtandScienceofWords.com.

Social Media Links –   theartandscienceofwords.com, mustangrabbit.com

~~~

#BookReview “The Chocolate Box (Foodie Romance Journeys)” by Isabella May


4/5 Stars!

Determined to overcome a lifetime of invisibility and low self-esteem, Eleanor Finch snags an HR-position at a posh travel agency. But it’s not just any agency. It’s owned by siblings she’s known since childhood… but they’re not friends. The sister, Clementine Westwood, in true mean-girl fashion, was her tormentor, and the brother, Barnaby, her lifelong crush who only spoke to her in school as part of bets from his mates.

Now, a decade out of school, with a sleek, fresh look and a new name—courtesy of her ex-husband—Ellie Sanchez prepares to stun her former classmates, with her endgame being becoming BFFs with Clementine, and Barnaby’s wife.

However, her plans fall flat when neither sibling appears to recognize her.

Undaunted, Ellie is a virtuoso in her new position, and even establishes a bond with the oldest Westwood sibling, Brooke.

When the company’s working capital begins coming up short, Ellie takes charge and demands the siblings accompany her on a team-building retreat. Her plans for revenge and recompense take a turn for the worse, due in part to a box of decadent… and hexed chocolates, a fire, and her own arrogance.

Though a tad bit slow in spots, I enjoyed Ellie’s journey to self-realization. However, for me, it wasn’t as much a romantic comedy, but more black comedy/dark humor because while Ellie’s goal is marriage, the read is romance lite. But there are plenty of laugh-out-loud and giggle moments, and the snark and dry wit are off the charts. Ellie’s internal thoughts have some great one-liners, and her exploration of her relationship with her parents, especially her mom, through flashbacks help explain Ellie’s current personality.

In the end, as Ellie’s scheme spirals out of control, she has to decide what’s more important… who she is, who she wants to be, or who she’s pretending to be?

The Chocolate Box is an enjoyable read I do recommend.

Enjoy!


Ellie Sanchez wants revenge. Spurned during her school days at prestigious Monty’s academy when she was plain Eleanor Finch, and played second fiddle to her idol, Barnaby Westwood, and his show-off sister, Clementine, Ellie will stop at nothing to turn the tables now she’s all grown up. The siblings and their snubbing have been the catalyst for everything that’s gone wrong in her life, from parental neglect to her divorce.

When the Westwood travel merchandise company advertises for a new HR manager, Ellie decides her unique combo of karma and Law of Attraction has finally come good. And she’ll be bagging herself a cherry-on-the-cake, second, and richer, husband in the process – once Barnaby sees how much she’s changed, anyway. 

Fast forward two years and he STILL doesn’t recognise her! 

Fast forward two years and the company is in a financial mess.

Last Chance Saloon-style, Ellie coerces the siblings and their older sister, Brooke (the perpetual spanner in her works) to a rustic gîte in Normandy for a spot of team-building… over a very ‘special’ box of artisan chocolates.

Cue ALL the fireworks in the cocoa bean version of Jumanji…

KINDLE UNLIMITED

AMAZON US

AMAZON UK

AMAZON CA

AMAZON AU




#BlogTour “The Chocolate Box (Foodie Romance Journeys)” by Isabella May



Ellie Sanchez wants revenge. Spurned during her school days at prestigious Monty’s academy when she was plain Eleanor Finch, and played second fiddle to her idol, Barnaby Westwood, and his show-off sister, Clementine, Ellie will stop at nothing to turn the tables now she’s all grown up. The siblings and their snubbing have been the catalyst for everything that’s gone wrong in her life, from parental neglect to her divorce.

When the Westwood travel merchandise company advertises for a new HR manager, Ellie decides her unique combo of karma and Law of Attraction has finally come good. And she’ll be bagging herself a cherry-on-the-cake, second, and richer, husband in the process – once Barnaby sees how much she’s changed, anyway. 

Fast forward two years and he STILL doesn’t recognise her! 

Fast forward two years and the company is in a financial mess.

Last Chance Saloon-style, Ellie coerces the siblings and their older sister, Brooke (the perpetual spanner in her works) to a rustic gîte in Normandy for a spot of team-building… over a very ‘special’ box of artisan chocolates.

Cue ALL the fireworks in the cocoa bean version of Jumanji…

KINDLE UNLIMITED

AMAZON US

AMAZON UK

AMAZON CA

AMAZON AU


Author Bio

Isabella May lives in (mostly) sunny Andalusia, Spain with her husband, daughter and son, creatively inspired by the mountains and the sea. Having grown up on Glastonbury’s ley lines however, she’s unable to completely shake off her spiritual inner child, and is a Law of Attraction fanatic, as well as a Pranic Healer.

After a degree in Modern Languages and European Studies at UWE, Bristol (and a year working abroad in Bordeaux and Stuttgart), Isabella bagged an extremely jammy and fascinating job in children’s publishing… selling foreign rights for novelty, board, pop-up and non-fiction books all over the world; in every language from Icelandic to Korean, Bahasa Indonesian to Papiamento!

All of which has fuelled her curiosity and love of international food and travel – both feature extensively in her cross-genre novels, fused with a dollop of romcom, and a sprinkle of magical realism.

You can follow her Foodie Romance Journey series at the following hang-outs:

Website

Twitter

Facebook

Instagram




#GuestPost “Wicked Writing Skills – Activity Book for ages 7+” by Lexi Rees

tour banner

Thanks so much for inviting me to join you today to chat about the inspiration behind my new kids activity book – Wicked Writing Skills.

My first creative writing book, Creative Writing Skills, is a best-seller and has now been translated into German and Italian, whilst the Spanish edition will be released in early 2021. That book focuses on fiction writing, i.e. what a parent would normally associate with “creative” writing, but I always wanted to build on this. 

Creative Writing

Non-fiction writing is such an important skill, not just as part of the curriculum, but in life, but I realised there were no creative writing activity books for children on the market that show them how to approach all these topics. Whilst Wicked Writing Skills explores opinions, debates, persuasive writing, instructions, news reporting, and marketing.

Although my first published book was fiction, I’ve always loved the non-fiction side of writing. When I was ten, I wanted to be a journalist, in fact my first “job” (work experience whilst still at school) was in the offices of my local newspaper. Anyway, despite studying Journalism, my writing went in a different direction and I ended up working in corporate and investor communications. I’ve also had articles published on a freelance basis, but I never ended up working as a full-time journalist.

The pair of books, Creative Writing Skills and Wicked Writing Skills, therefore, play to both of my passions – as a fiction author and as a corporate comms person!

Over the summer holidays I ran a series of kids creative writing camps, via Zoom for obvious lockdown reasons, including one on news reporting which proved really popular. Over half term, I ran a Hogwarts inspired creative writing course, and two of the most popular activities (as voted by the kids) were being Rita Skeeter (i.e. news reporting) and potions class (i.e. instruction writing).

I really hope Wicked Writing Skills inspires youngsters and helps them gain confidence in every aspect of their writing, regardless of the format.


cover

Wicked Writing Skills: Over 90 non-fiction activities for children

Writing is like a spell. It can melt hearts and fry brains, twisting and turning as the magic works.

Want the world to fall at your feet, destroyed by the might of your pen?

– Sharpen your powers of persuasion

– Sky-rocket your debating skills

– Add ooomph to your reports

– And lots more!

Packed with top tips, this awesome workbook has everything you need to know to become a WICKED WRITER.

Purchase Links

AMAZON UK

AMAZON US


G I V E A W A Y

Win an activity book – Wicked Writing Skills (UK Only)

https://kingsumo.com/g/fja7mq/win-an-activity-book-wicked-writing-skills


Author Bio

Lexi Rees

Lexi Rees was born in Scotland but now lives down south. She writes action-packed adventures brim full of witch-doctors, fortune-tellers, warriors and smugglers, combining elemental magic with hints of dystopia. She also writes fun activity books for children. 

Her fantasy adventure, Eternal Seas, was awarded a “loved by” badge from LoveReading4Kids. The sequel, Wild Sky, is available now. 

She’s passionate about developing a love of reading and writing in children and, as well as her Creative Writing Skills workbook, she has an active programme of school visits and other events, is a Book PenPal for three primary schools, and runs a free online #kidsclub and newsletter which includes book recommendations and creative writing activities.

In her spare time, she’s a keen crafter and spends a considerable amount of time trying not to fall off horses or boats.

Social Media Links

Website

Twitter

Facebook

Pinterest

Instagram


full tour banner