Gail Anderson-Dargatz – update on a new literacy learner novel

Gail Anderson-Dargatz has visited Reading Recommendations previously to promote two other books she published in the Orca Rapid Reads series, here and here. She’s back now to tell us about a new addition to this important series.

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Race Against Time: a Claire Abbott Mystery
by Gail Anderson-Dargatz
Published by Orca Books
Genre: Crime, Mystery

Small-town reporter Claire Abbott wakes from a nightmare, convinced a bomb will go off in the local school. And then, strangely enough, there really is a bomb scare. After the school is cleared by police and their sniffer dog, Claire is certain the threat isn’t over. People are behaving strangely. Claire believes a bomber will attack the school. But when? And who is the bomber? Claire must track down the culprit and stop him before the bomb goes off.

Race Against Time is the third novel in a series of mysteries featuring journalist and sleuth Claire Abbott.

Gail Anderson-Dargatz has also contributed to Carin Makuz‘s The Litter I see Project.

Where to purchase copies:
Orca Books

About RAPID READS

In our increasingly fast-paced world we believe there is a need for well-written, well-told books that can be read in one sitting. Rapid Reads are short books for adult readers. They are intended for a diverse audience, including ESL students, reluctant readers, adults who struggle with literacy and anyone who wants a high-interest quick read.

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Bob Van Laerhoven – update and a special offer

Belgian author, Bob Van Laerhoven, has returned to Reading Recommendations to tell us of a new English translation edition of his novel, Baudelaire’s Revenge, and a special price for the eBook at Amazon for the rest of December.

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Baudelaire’s Revenge: A Novel
by Bob Van Laerhoven
Translated by Brian Doyle
Published in English by Pegasus Books
Genre: Fiction – mystery, thriller, suspense

Winner of the Hercule Poirot Prize for Best Crime Novel – Winner of the USA Best Book Award 2014 in the category Fiction: mystery/suspense

Paris police commissioner Paul Lefèvre, robust and hirsute, hardly seems like a poetry lover. Nonetheless, he instantly recognizes the messages accompanying murder victims killed in flamboyant ways as excerpts from poems by the scandalous, recently deceased poet Baudelaire. Is this gruesomely inventive serial killer exacting revenge on Baudelaire’s enemies? Paris is in an uproar in 1870. The Franco-Prussian War is on full boil, the poor are hungry and insurrectional, and the decadent rich are partying. As Lefèvre and longtime comrade Inspector Bernard Bouveroux—they served together as soldiers in Algiers—seek to stop this diabolical, perhaps otherwordly serial killer, the philosophical Lefèvre is haunted by traumatic memories of war and a childhood abomination. He is also longing for his sharp-witted beloved, the now-missing prostitute Claire de la Lune. In this superbly crafted Hercule Poirot Prize–winning mystery, Belgian writer Van Laerhoven vividly and astutely evokes a city under siege and keenly portrays the complex and controversial Baudelaire. But he also constructs a wildly convoluted and sexually explicit gothic tale of monstrous urges and violently broken taboos.

Some great news: Amazon has selected BAUDELAIRE’S REVENGE for their Kindle 100 promotion for the month of December. From 12/1 to 12/31, it will have a promotional price of $0.99, and it will receive featured placement on the Monthly Kindle Deals page and in Amazon merchandising materials. (Availability of this special may be limited to North America.)

Amazon Canada

S.K. Nicholls – update on a new novel

Happy Birthday, S.K. Nicholls!

S.K. Nicholls has been previously promoted on Reading Recommendations. She’s back now to tell us about a book recently published, the first in a new detective series.

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Naked Alliances: A Richard Noggin Novel (The Naked Eye Series Volume 1)
by S.K. Nicholls
Publisher: Brave Blue Heron Books
Genre: Crime fiction

When a young immigrant woman and an exotic dancer are forced to flee men with guns and have no place to hide, Richard Noggin, P.I., can’t turn his back—even if helping out makes him a target. Richard plans to impress an aspiring politician by taking on a big white-collar case that could take him from the streets to an air-conditioned office. Instead,he’s handed a cold case and quickly finds himself sucked into a shadowy world of sex, secrets and…murder. Marked for a bullet and stretched thin by his investigations, Richard reluctantly teams up with the unlikely, brassy custodian of the young woman on the run. With bodies piling up, Richard and his companion are forced to go undercover in a most unlikely locale: the Leisure Lagoon, a nudist resort. Going undercover in this instance will mean going uncovered…but lives are at stake—and this Naked Eye will have to juggle to keep his balls in the air and connect the dots before anyone else is murdered. As his pulse-quickening quest for answers leads from the dark corners of Orlando’s Little Saigon to the sunny exposure of the Leisure Lagoon, Richard will be put to the test. Just how much will this Naked Eye have to bear…or bare? The heat is on in this quirky Sunshine State crime thriller.

**From smt: I had the opportunity to beta-read and provide suggestions on this novel almost a couple of years ago now, and thought at the time that this was going to be a great novel once it was published. Since publication, I received a complimentary copy and reread. I’m happy to say that this novel is now better than I expected it could be! Well done, S.K. Nicholls! You are sure to find many new readers and fans for this detective series! Congratulations!

Where to purchase and for more information:
S.K. Nicholls’s blog and website
Amazon
Now also available in an Audible edition!

Tim Baker – Update on a new Flagler Beach novel

Tim Baker is back with another new novel, and his wonderful character Ike is in it!! Tim has been associated with Reading Recommendations since the beginning and I’ve been pleased to announce each new novel as they are released. I’m also pleased to have been a beta-reader of this novel and I can honestly say this is the best Tim Baker novel I have read yet – and I’ve had the great pleasure of reading every one!

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Blood in the Water
by Tim Baker
Genre: Suspense/Thriller

Blood in the Water – my ninth novel – tells the story of Bob “Oscar” Oscarson, who finds a 300-year-old Spanish coin while SCUBA diving. Naturally he thinks his find is only the beginning. Unfortunately, he’s right—it’s the beginning of trouble the likes of which he never imagined.

In the book, we also see the return of Flagler Beach P.I. Steve Salem and his partner Val Casey (Backseat to Justice), who are investigating the disappearance of a retired architect from Rhode Island. Somehow their investigation connects them to Oscar and his mystery coin, and before long…there’s blood in the water.

Available in paperback and Kindle.

Also, to celebrate this new publication, Tim is offering a couple of his earlier books FREE!! for a limited time … The True Meaning of Free Choice

Judith Barrow

judith headshot Judith Barrow

What is your latest release and what genre is it? Living in the Shadows is the last of my trilogy. It’s a Family Saga but is also a cross-over into Historical and Crime fiction.

Quick description: Living in the Shadows, set in 1969, is the story of how the next generation is forced to live with the consequences of the actions of their parents. The first book, Pattern of Shadows was inspired by my research into a disused cotton mill in Lancashire in the North of England, and its history of being the first German POW camp in the country. Pattern of Shadows begins the story of Mary Howarth, a nurse in the hospital in the camp and the consequences of fraternization in WW2. The sequel, Changing Patterns, set in 1950/51 is a stand-alone book but also continues with the story. In Living in the Shadows the dark history of the Howarth family is potrayed against the era of the sixties; of free love, cults, drugs, pop music and miniskirts.

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Brief biography:
I was brought up in a place called Saddleworth, a group of villages on the edge of the Pennines in Yorkshire. I moved to Pembrokeshire in 1979 with my husband and three small children into a half-built house in a field. I have had short stories and poems published, two stage plays performed and have written two children’s books. I tutor creative writing for adults under the Lifetime Learning Scheme for Pembrokeshire County Council and hold private creative writing workshops. I write family sagas which sometimes slide over into other genres.

Layout 1Links to buy Judith’s book:
Pattern of Shadows:
Amazon.co.uk & Amazon.com
Kobo
Barnes & Noble
Changing Patterns:
Amazon.co.uk & Amazon.com
Kobo
Barnes & Noble
Living in the Shadows:
Amazon.co.uk & Amazon.com
Kobo
Barnes &Noble

Or all from Honno – Welsh Women’s PressLayout 1

Judith’s promo links:
Blog
About Me
Twitter
Facebook
Pinterest
Saddleworth House Apartment

What are you working on now?
At the moment I’m writing the prequel to my trilogy and also a novel about a woman caring for her elderly mother who has dementia, which is a cross-over genre into Crime and Romance.

Judith’s reading recommendation:
May I recommend two authors, Susan? Thorne Moore and Terry Tyler. If not, I’ll stick to Terry; I’ve read most of her books and really enjoy them. She has a novella out today. Thorne has a book coming out in June, though, if you wanted to keep her in mind; she’s also a brilliant author … Sorry, am I straying from my remit?

Seumas Gallacher – a few thoughts on returning to self-publishing

Seumas Gallacher has been a long-time pal of Reading Recommendations and has done a great deal to promote (and become friends with!) many of the other authors I promote, as well as with me, and of my writing! He has been featured in the group, Reading Recommendations Revisited, and has returned to tell us of his recent publishing experience and why he switched back to self-publishing, a story that is best told in the Kind Sir’s very own inimitable style.

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The Jack Calder Series
by Seumas Gallacher

… having recently returned to the ranks of the self-published author brigade, I’m delighted to report that the joy of being able once more to track my Amazon Kindle activity on a daily basis makes me a much happier scribbling bunny

… I traipsed into the realm of the ‘housed writers’ for a year, and although the good people at Crooked Cat Publishing, Stephanie and Laurence Patterson, are delightful folks, and easy to communicate with, I missed
the complete ‘control’ over my own literary destiny via the promotional push program that every author needs

… I know many authors are content to let that part of the ‘business of writing’ remain with a publisher, but I felt I needed to be closer again to the action, hence the parting of ways

… result? … my ability to monitor the movement on my sales downloads has been productive, and my titles are selling regularly, if modestly, but have certainly picked up pace from the last several months

… the most recent launch in August 2015, KILLER CITY, is doing well, but astonishingly to me, the earliest two titles, THE VIOLIN MAN’S LEGACY and VENGEANCE WEARS BLACK have each found a new lease of readership life

… strange ol’ business, huh!…

…the universal buying links are:

THE VIOLIN MANS LEGACY

VENGEANCE WEARS BLACK

SAVAGE PAYBACK

KILLER CITY

Seumas’s Website, Facebook, and Twitter pages.

And here’s the man himself with a poetic tribute he made to me on the occasion of Reading Recommendations‘s 2nd Anniversary!

PS. On a personal note, I have had the great honour to read all of Seumas’s novels and enjoyed every one of them, so much so that his books were included in my annual Best Books Read list – two years in a row! smt

Glen R. Stansfield

Me Bahrain PortraitHSGlen R. Stansfield

What is your latest release and what genre is it? Fishing for Stones – Crime/Action

Quick description: Steve and Andy are the best of friends. Steve’s loyalty to Andy means he will do anything to help him, even if it means breaking the law.

When Andy’s wife leaves him she leaves a mountain of debt. Andy is about to lose the house and is to be made bankrupt. Steve decides he must do whatever it takes to help him.

He learns of a diamond deal that’s about to take place in the highlands of Scotland, and hastily concocts an audacious plan to steal them.

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Brief biography:
Glen R. Stansfield is a qualified aircraft engineer, a profession he has pursued for over forty years. A lifelong interest in crime, in particular forensic psychology, led him to write his debut novel, Fishing for Stones. When not writing, he can usually be found on two wheels, often using his motorcycle to raise money for charity. His work has taken him to Bahrain, where he lives with his wife, Jess.

Links to buy Glen’s book:
Amazon.com Paperback and Kindle
Amazon UK Paperback and Kindle
My online store

Glen’s promo links:
Website
Twitter
Facebook

What are you working on now?
My second novel, Harry, is set in Kuwait and London. A plague of brutal beatings of the homeless has hit the Tower Hamlets district of London. One attack soon turns into a murder inquiry. Before long, other bodies begin to appear in the borough, but this time it isn’t the homeless who are suffering. Someone is killing the criminals. A serial killer is on the loose. This book is firmly in the Crime Genre.

Glen’s reading recommendation:
I particularly like Lin Anderson, a Glasgow-based author who created the series about forensic scientist
Rhona MacLeod.

Seumas Gallacher – Reading Recommendation Revisited

Seumas Gallacher was first featured on Reading Recommendations in April 2014, and has been a true friend to the site … and to me!, ever since! Seumas not only reblogs his fellow authors’ promotions, but reads and reviews their books, has invited them to write guest blog posts, and has been a great pal to all of us ever since we first “met” online. I’m very pleased now to present Seumas Gallacher to you again on Reading Recommendations Revisited, because I have since read all his books and consider him to be a top-notch author who has the keen ability to tell a gripping tale. I highly recommend everything Seumas has written. Besides all that, he wears a kilt!

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RRR: Since your first promotion on RR, what have you been doing?
SG: The fourth Jack Calder crime thriller, Killer City, was launched a couple of months ago, and its place in the Work-In-Progress slot has been taken over by the fifth in the series, Deadly Impasse. IMG_0954 copy 2

However, since last time m’Lady Susan allowed me space on her Reading Recommendations pages, the most significant development for my writing has been the arrival of the partnership with a publisher . . . yes, gasp!, a real live publishing house. The excellent partnership of Laurence and Stephanie Patterson of Crooked Cat Publishing, based in Edinburgh, have taken my work aboard. All previous three self-published titles have been re-launched under their imprint. Among several positive additions they bring to my scribbling efforts is the assignment of a professional editor, the superb, eagle-eyed Maureen Vincent-Northam.

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RRR: What else have you been doing, outside of the writing?
SG: I suppose, the achievement of continued breathing is always to be applauded and welcomed. Apart from that, continued association with a marvelous band of kindred writing spirits in the Bahrain Writers Circle has been a source of great sharing pleasure.

Continued regular travel between Bahrain and Abu Dhabi in pursuit of my ‘day job’ of running my Management Advisory Services business adds more colour to my months.

RRR: Is there one marketing tip or trick you discovered while promoting your own books that worked particularly well and that you’d like to share with other authors?
SG: Not so much a tip or trick, more a truism for me is the constant attention to the social network activity which I highly recommend to the modern scribe – being ‘present’ in an engaged manner with the various constituents, such as readers, other writers, editors, and the publishing world at large.

RRR: Please recommend three other authors whose work you have “discovered” or rediscovered this past year whom every reader should consider reading.
SG: As part of my ‘paying it back’ and ‘paying it forward’ I regularly download books from other authors, particularly newbies, and if their content warrants a four-star or five-star-rated review, I publish those on Amazon . . . lower ratings than that, I do not publicly announce these, as I do not feel I have the right to diminish the efforts of any author, and rather would attempt to contact them directly with my opinion and an offer of suggestions for improvements. In the course of doing all of this, I encounter some excellent work. Among these, I highly recommend:

Carol Hedges—her Victorian crime novels are a delight to read. A mixture of dark deeds in the fog-swirled street of London with an uncanny wit make her a must-read author.

Alex Shaw—his insights on the background of the Ukrainian/Russian political intrigues are married cleverly with special agents’ involvement.

Ailsa Abraham—not my usual reading genre, but I was captivated from the start by the mystical nuances of Black Shamans and warrior monks in the yin and yang of seemingly opposing, mystical, spiritual and ‘religious’ provenances.

Thank you, Seumas!

Axel Howerton

Axelheadshotbw2wbAxel Howerton

What is your latest release and what genre is it? AB Negative – Crime anthology, fiction

Quick description: AB Negative is an anthology of Alberta-based crime stories, by Albertan authors. This is a labour of love for crime writers from across the province, focusing on our beloved home province with stories ranging throughout time, geography and stylistic bent. There are dark noirish tales of sin and revenge, drug deals gone wrong, homey stories about neighbourhood killers, humorous tales of bumbling mafiosa, detectives on Stephen Avenue, and futuristic visions of sexbot domination.

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Brief biography:
Axel Howerton is the author of the darkly funny detective novel Hot Sinatra, a finalist for the 2014 Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Novel. Axel is a former entertainment journalist, award-winning poet, and editor. His short fiction has recently appeared in such weird and wonderful publications as Fires on the Plain, Steampunk Originals, Clones Fairies & Monsters in the Closet, Big Pulp, Night Shade, Dark Eclipse, and Sleuth Magazine. He is the editor of the anthologies, Death by Drive-In, Tall Tales of the Weird West, and AB Negative.

Axel is a member of the CSFFA, Calgary Crime Writers, The Kintsugi Poets, and serves on the board of the Crime Writers of Canada. He recently brought the “Noir at the Bar” #NoirBarYYC event to Calgary, Alberta, and he is the owner and publisher of Coffin Hop Press. Axel spends most of his time roaming the untamed prairies of Alberta with his two brilliant young sons and a wife that is way out of his league.

Links to buy Axel’s book:
All the links can be found on the Coffin Hop Press website.

Axel’s promo links:
Coffin Hop Press
Axel Howerton website

What are you working on now?
After having produced, edited and published two anthologies this year, as well as publishing new fiction in great new venues like Sleuth Magazine, I’m going to take a little time for myself and get back to some novel-length projects. One is a humorous action-adventure-style historical look at Fort Whoop-up and the formation of the NWMP in Alberta. The other is a sprawling crime saga involving several characters that have appeared in some of my short fiction.

Axel’s reading recommendation:
The Friends Of Eddie Coyle by George V. Higgins, which was a formative influence on the crime writing of Elmore Leonard. It’s very quick and snappy writing, a lot of dialogue and very little in the way of descriptive prose. Solid crime-writing and excellent criminal characterization from a man who was, at the time, an assistant US Attorney.

Randy McCharles, who has previously been featured on Reading Recommendations, has written one of the stories included in this anthology.

Dan McNeil

Dan Keyboard Dan McNeil

What is your latest release and what genre is it? My latest release is Can’t Buy Me Love, a story of love, larceny and revenge all played out against the backdrop of the British musical invasion of the Beatles in 1964.

I’m not sure what category it falls under, to be honest. Can I make one up? How about “Historical Fiction Caper with a twist of Heist…?”

Quick description: Urban legend states that during the hour The Beatles performed on The Ed Sullivan Show for the first time, not a major crime was committed in New York City.

Sonny Carter, an aging bank robber has just been released from prison after serving a 25-year sentence for trying to rob the prestigious Hudson National Bank and Trust Company. Unrepentant, Sonny is determined to finish what he started back in ’39 – robbing the very same bank. And he figures there is no better time to strike than in the hour the entire world is tuned in to see four crop-topped singers from Britain on The Ed Sullivan Show. He gathers up his old gang and enlists the help of a sexy bank employee, unaware she has a shady secret and larcenous plans of her own.

Can't Buy Me Love cover

Brief biography:
Though I was born in Toronto, I call the nation’s capital Ottawa my home. I’ve been a video editor for over thirty years. I discovered a passion for writing while researching my first book, The Judas Apocalypse (published in 2008). My second novel, Can’t Buy Me Love, is a light hearted romp about a bank heist during the Beatles’ historic visit to the United States in 1964. The Judas Apocalypse cover

Links to buy Dan’s book:
Can’t Buy Me LoveKindle US, Kindle Canada

The Judas ApocalypsePrint US, Print Canada, Kindle US, Kindle Canada

Dan’s promo links:
Twitter
Facebook
Website
Blog

What are you working on now?
Right now, I’m helping a fellow author with some copy editing, as well as putting notes together for my next novel.

Dan’s reading recommendation:
Jeffery Deaver is my favourite author – real page-turning stuff. A particular fave is his The Blue Nowhere. I also really enjoyed local Ottawa author Jasmine Aziz’s book Sex and Samosas – funny and touching; a really great read.