Blog Tour: Masquerade by Joanna Taylor – Review

masquerade coverMasquerade by Joanna Taylor. 

We’re happy to be a part of the blog tour for Masquerade, the latest release by author, Joanna Taylor. It’s due for release by Piatkus on 6th August 2015.

1786: Regency London. Everyone is hiding something. But someone is hiding everything.

Lizzy Ward never meant to end up working the streets of Piccadilly. So when a mysterious noble pursues her, it seems her luck is changing. But though Lord Hays offers to grow Lizzy’s fortunes, his price is unexpected. She must masquerade in the sumptuous gowns and social mask of a true lady.

With the stakes so high, love is out of the question. But as Lizzy navigates the fashion and faux-pas of the London elite, she finds her tough facade failing her. Lord Hayes wants to show her that nobility is more than skin deep . . . and as the connection between them grows, it’s no longer certain who’s wearing the mask. As the street-girl and the lord collide, Regency London is poised for scandal . . .

Lizzy is a country girl who never wanted to end up in Piccadilly. It’s something she has found herself doing and she doesn’t know how to escape her life. When she meets Lord Edward Hays, she sees him as nothing more than another customer. However, when Edward asks her to be his companion over the week he is in London, her life changes completely.

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Competitions: August -Which Book is This Anyway?

rp_Mystery-Competition-300x1931-300x193-300x1931-300x1931-300x193-300x1931.jpgFancy a book surprise through your letterbox? Welcome to August’s Which Book is This Anyway?

Many of us judge books by their covers and make our choices based on that and the accompanying blurb. Our competition adds a little mystery.

The prize for this competition is a book but the identity of that book will not be revealed until the lucky winner receives it. It could be a recent new release or a well-known classic. Who knows? We may reveal the genre but the book title is a surprise. If you feel like having a guess in the meantime though, that’s OK, just comment below (you don’t need to guess to enter. You just need to leave your name. The guessing is just for fun.)

All we will reveal about August’s choice is this book is contemporary fiction. It’s a whimsical tale of romance, good friends, Mr Right and dreams. I loved this book when I read it. Plus it has a BEAUTIFUL cover.

How to enter:

Comment on this post before the closing date which is Sunday 30th August 2015 at 23.59. One winner will then be chosen at random from the entrants and announced on the Novel Kicks blog on Monday 31st August 2015. If you fancy having a go at guessing what book it could be, that’s OK too although it’s not compulsory.

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Author Interview: Rosie Millard

jacket1 SquareHello Rosie, thank you so much for joining us. Can you tell us a little bit about your route to publication? Had you always wanted to write a novel?

I think every journalist longs to write a novel, not least because our work is fish and chip paper the next day! I signed up for a Fiction Writing course with the University of East Anglia which I did every Tuesday night in London for six months, and The Square came out of that.

 

Can you tell us a little about your book, The Square and how the idea originated?

I wanted to write a satirical novel based in the present day and the garden square where I live in London seemed to be a very fertile starting point! I also wanted to make it a bit racy and fun.

 

What’s your favourite word?

Babies.

 

If you were to enter a talent show, what would you perform?

I would sing Any Dream Can Do from Joseph.

 

What song best describes you?

You Never Feel Happy, Until You Try, by c2c.

 

If you were only allowed to own three books for the rest of your life, which three would you pick?

A Little Princess, by Frances Hodgson Burnett. Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray. Middlemarch, by George Eliot.

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August’s Book Club: Paper Towns by John Green

Bloomsbury Childrens Tie in edition, May 2015

Bloomsbury Childrens Tie in edition, May 2015

Book Corner is our monthly online book club. Anyone can join.

How it works…

We love books and we love chatting about them even more. Every month, we pick a new book for discussion. We will post a question to kick things off and then you can talk about any of your thoughts about the book in the comments box below. The best thing about our book club is that EVERYONE CAN TAKE PART. It’s open to all. You can read the book at any point in the month or if you’ve already read it, tell us what you think.

This month, our pick is: Paper Towns by John Green.

About the book…

Quentin Jacobson has always loved Margo from afar. So when she climbs through his window to summon him on an all-night road trip of revenge, he cannot help but follow. But the next morning, Q turns up at school and Margo doesn’t. She’s left clues to her disappearance, like a trail of breadcrumbs for Q to follow. And everything leads to one unavoidable question: who is the real Margo? 

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Competitions: Winner of July’s Which Book is This Anyway?

rp_Mystery-Competition-300x1931-300x193-300x1931-300x1931-300x193-300x193.jpgIt is time to announce the winner of July’s Which Book is This Anyway? Did you guess which book it was? June’s book was The Honey Queen by Cathy Kelly but what book was it this month?

All we said about it was that ‘this book has been described by one reviewer as the perfect book. It’s about rediscovery, a trip of a lifetime, determination, falling in love and everything going wrong.

Well done to Emma Miller from the West Midlands  who is our winner this month. The competition for August will be open soon.

About ‘Which Book is This Anyway?’

Many of us judge books by their covers and make our choices based on that and the accompanying blurb. Our competition adds a little mystery.

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Novel Kicks Fiction Friday: Childhood Occupation

rp_friday-300x16411111111111111-300x164-300x1641-300x164-300x1641-300x164.pngFriday 31st July 2015.

Fiction Friday is our weekly writing prompt. The aim is to write for a minimum of five minutes and then keep going for as long as you can. Once you’ve finished, don’t edit, just post in the comments box below.

Today’s prompt: Think of the occupation you wanted to do when you were a child. Now give your character that occupation. What if your character woke up one morning and found out he could talk to animals or was due to go up into space or was a fireman? Have fun.

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Blog Tour: My Sister’s Secret by Tracy Buchanan

Tracy Buchanan

Tracy Buchanan

I am VERY excited to be part of the blog tour for Tracy Buchanan’s new novel, My Sister’s Secret. The e-book was released by Avon on 21st July 2015 and the paperback is due for release on 13th August 2015.

About My Sister’s Secret:

Willow’s memories of her parents are sun-drenched and full of smiles, love and laughter. But a mysterious invitation to a photographic exhibition exposes a secret that’s been buried since a tragic accident years ago.

Willow is forced to question everything she knew about her late mother, and the aunt she’s lived with since she was a child.

How was the enigmatic photographer connected to Willow’s parents? Why will her aunt not break her silence?

Willow cannot move forward in her life without answers. But who can she really trust? Because no one has been telling the truth for a very long time.

 

I’ve reviewed the book below but first, to celebrate the release of My Sister’s Secret, Tracy and Avon have shared an extract with us. Enjoy!

 

Chapter One

 

Willow

 

In the middle of the Aegean Sea, Greece

 

August 2016

 

My friend Ajay reckons the Aegean Sea is named after Aegea, queen of the Amazons. My aunt Hope disagrees. She says it’s named after a famous sea goat. I know which one I prefer. In fact, I feel like I’m channelling a female warrior when I do dives like this, all swaddled up in my diving ‘armour’, ready to do battle with the sea and unearth its treasures. I feel it now as the dive boat we’re on bounces over the waves, the sea spreading out around us, the island of Rhodes just a shimmer of land behind us.

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Bella’s Scribblings: Am I a Writer? (Part Two)

rp_Bella-185x300111111-185x300-185x300.jpgMy last post was about what title you should have if you are a person who puts pen to paper (see how well I avoided the whole writer/author debate there?) and it got me thinking.

You can call yourself whatever you like but at the end of the day (sorry that was very corporate speak – apologies) it doesn’t matter what you call yourself but it does matter what you do.

I can tell you have that stunned mullet expression again so please let me explain. If you are a singer then you sing, if you are a saxophonist then you play the saxophone, if you are a runner then you run – I think you’ve got the hang of what I’m trying to say. So if you are an ink slinger or writer working under some other title then what you need to be doing is writing.

I own a Saxophone. It is a beautiful instrument and it lives in a lovely leather case in my loft. I bought it on a whim, as I had always wanted to play one. Little did I know how hard it was and therefore how much time and dedication would be required to achieve this. So I may own a saxophone, but I am most definitely not a saxophonist.

Someone once introduced himself as being a drummer. I was obviously impressed and immediately scrutinized their features for anything familiar, perhaps they had played with world famous artists, been on stage with great legends or even been part of a well known group. However, on further questioning it appeared that he had had a short stint in a local band three years before but was now working in an office, although he was still very ‘into’ music. I asked further if the band was still together and no it wasn’t. I asked if he still had the drums, which he did and if he played them to which his response was , ‘no, not really. I don’t have the time’. Which all begs the question as to whether or not he is a drummer – in mind he is not. I know that sounds harsh but think about it…

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Novel Kicks Fiction Friday: Write it in a Letter

rp_friday-300x16411111111111111-300x164-300x1641-300x164-300x1641-300x164.pngFriday 24th July 2015.

Fiction Friday is our weekly writing prompt. The aim is to write for a minimum of five minutes and then keep going for as long as you can. Once you’ve finished, don’t edit, just post in the comments box below.

Today’s prompt: Tell a love story in a letter. It could be a current love, a long lost love or a relationship between elderly relatives or friends. It could be a series of letters. It’s up to you.

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Blog Tour: Tracer by Rob Boffard

BoffardRobA huge space station orbits the Earth, holding the last of humanity. It’s broken, rusted, falling apart. We’ve wrecked our planet, and now we have to live with the consequences: a new home that’s dirty, overcrowded and inescapable.

What’s more, there’s a madman hiding on the station. He’s about to unleash chaos. And when he does, there’ll be nowhere left to run.

In space, every second counts. Who said nobody could hear you scream?

(Orbit, 16th July 2015.)

We are happy to be welcoming Rob Boffard to Novel Kicks today. We review Tracer but first, we asked Rob a few questions about his new novel and his writing process.

 

Hello Rob, thank you so much for joining us. Can you tell us about your novel, Tracer? 

Thanks for having me. Love what you’ve done with the place. Anyway, Tracer is a sequel to Breaking Bad, and it’s the story of how Walter White faked his death and found another stoner meth cook to… oh no, wait, I wasn’t supposed to tell you about that. Forget I said anything. What Tracer is really about is a courier named Riley, ferrying packages across a city-sized space station that holds the last of humanity. She gets ambushed, and discovers that she’s carrying evidence of a deadly conspiracy.

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Competitions: Red Queen Winners

Victoria-Aveyard_author-photo-copy-5 Red QueenAs part of the blog tour for Red Queen and to celebrate the books release, Orion and Victoria gave us THREE copies of Red Queen to give away. To read our review and an interview with Victoria, click here.

Well done to Debbie Patrick, Susan Carruthers and Karis who have all won a copy of Red Queen.

About the book: 

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

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Novel Kicks Fiction Friday: Solving Problems

rp_friday-300x16411111111111111-300x164-300x1641-300x164-300x164.pngFriday 17th July 2015.

Fiction Friday is our weekly writing prompt. The aim is to write for a minimum of five minutes and then keep going for as long as you can. Once you’ve finished, don’t edit, just post in the comments box below.

Today’s Prompt: Whilst on a second honeymoon, a devoted family man solves a ten year cold case.

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