Extracts

Book Extract: The Summer Springsteen’s Songs Saved Me by Barbara Quinn

Hello to Barbara Quinn and the birthday blog tour for her novel. The Summer Springsteen’s Songs Saved Me

 

Coming home to catch her husband with his face between the long, silky legs of another woman is the last thing Sofia expects—and on today of all days. So, after scratching an expletive into his Porsche and setting the cheating bastard’s clothes on fire, she cranks up her beloved Bruce and flees, vowing never to look back.

Seeking solace in the peaceful beachside town of Bradley Beach, NJ, Sof is determined to start over. And, with the help of best friends, new acquaintances, a sexy neighbor, and the powerful songs of Springsteen, this may be the place where her wounds can heal. But, as if she hasn’t faced her share of life’s challenges, a final flurry of obstacles awaits.

In order to head courageously toward the future, Sofia must first let go of her past, find freedom, and mend her broken soul.

 

Barbara has shared an extract today. Enjoy.

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Behind us a car’s radio blares “Born in the USA.” Curious, I turn and watch a black convertible pull into the driveway next door. The sandy-haired man in the driver’s seat sings at the top of his lungs and bangs his hands on the steering wheel. He alternates his drumming with a little air guitar. He does neither well.

Mr. Air Guitar gives off an aura of happiness and an appearance that says “I’m carefree” that annoys me. I dislike him, even if he’s a fellow Springsteen fan. He makes me think about the huge pack of trouble I’m trying to unload, the one named Jerome, the one who routinely porks his trainer. Still, nothing requires me to be friends with the neighbors.

Terri opens her door and climbs out. She waves at Mr. Air Guitar, but the man remains engrossed in his playing and fails to notice. He strums a muscled arm again to the blast of the radio, and my ears grow hot. The guy probably knows nothing about the meaning of the song he sings. The mantra “Born in the USA” isn’t a rallying cry for overzealous patriots no matter how many times they try to claim it.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: One Christmas Star by Mandy Baggot

I am happy to be welcoming back Mandy Baggot. She is here with the blog tour for her novel, One Christmas Star. 

 

Emily Parker is set to have the worst Christmas ever!

Her flatmate’s moved out, she’s closed her heart to love and she’s been put in charge of the school original Christmas show – with zero musical ability.

Disgraced superstar, Ray Stone is in desperate need of a quick PR turnaround.

Waking up from a drunken stupor to a class of ten-year-olds snapping pics and Emily looking at him was not what he had in mind.

Ray needs Emily’s help to delete the photos, and she needs his with the show.

As they learn to work together they may just open their hearts to more than a second chance…

 

To celebrate the release of One Christmas Star, Mandy and Aria have shared an extract today. 

 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

‘Tangfastic?’

Before Emily had a chance to reply, the sharing-size bag of Haribos was pushed under her nose by Dennis Murray, the forty-something teacher of the Year Five class. He shook the plastic and all manner of gum, sugar, sweet and sour flew into Emily’s sinuses in one mammoth rush. She picked out a sweet simply to get the bag away from her nose. Popping it into her mouth, the bitterness hit her taste-buds straight off, contorting her expression. She watched, one eye squinted, as Dennis put five sweets into his mouth at once, double-chin wobbling. He was a walking, talking pick ‘n’ mix addict but still his capacity for sugary sweet treats astounded her. Simon had liked sweets – Maltesers, Minstrels, Mars Bites, all the chocolate. Simon had liked chocolate the way Emily liked cheese…

‘So, what do you think the budget meeting is going to be about this time?’ Dennis asked, nudging Emily’s arm as the other teachers joined them in the main hall used for assemblies, performances, lunch and meetings such as these. ‘Christmas cancelled? No unnecessary expense until we’re back in January?’

‘I don’t know,’ Emily answered. ‘But no matter what it is, I can’t protest.’ She lowered her voice and leant a little into Dennis’s personal space. ‘Susan caught me giving Jayden Jackson help with his project this morning and I bought him a bagel because I know he isn’t getting breakfast at home.’ She wasn’t getting breakfast at home herself, but only because the cupboards always seemed to be bare now Jonah had gone. Plus, really strong coffee almost counted as a meal, didn’t it?

Dennis sucked through his teeth, bits of gum crushed between his canines. ‘A double-whammy.’

‘I know,’ Emily said with a sigh. ‘I only narrowly managed to avoid the proverbial third thing because the Sellotape on the Christmas stars held out just long enough until Susan had closed the door behind her.’ But she knew she was under scrutiny and it made her nervous. She pulled at the sides of her maroon corduroy skirt, shifting her bottom on the too-small chair. Had she picked one of the children’s chairs and not a grown-up one. That was exactly how her luck was right now…

‘Definitely no extra baubles for the Year Six Christmas tree this year then,’ Dennis remarked, chewing on more sweets.

Emily’s phone erupted, tweeting like a bird, from inside her all-colours vintage carpet bag. It had been a bargain. Well, actually it had been quite expensive, but it was a genuine 1950s artifact. And she’d been quite emotional on that particular visit to the antique boutique. Emotion and her love of vintage were a heady mix…

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: Magic Under the Mistletoe by Lucy Coleman

What better treat on a Tuesday than to have Lucy Coleman visit Novel Kicks with the blog tour for her festive novel, Magic Under the Mistletoe. 

 

Christmas and romance are in the air…

It’s December 23rd and while everyone else is rushing home for the holidays, workaholic Leesa Oliver is dreading switching on her out-of-office for the festive season. And it seems her equally driven boss, Cary Anderson, isn’t relishing spending Christmas at his family’s country estate either.

So together, they draft an unexpected Christmas contract: They’ll spend half of the holidays with each other’s families, pretending to be a couple. Leesa knows the insufferably good-looking Cary will make her Christmas more bearable, but what happens after the last of the mince pies have been eaten…?

Leesa signed off on a sensible business agreement, but somewhere, amongst the fairy lights and carols something seems to have changed… It seems there might just be some magic under the mistletoe this Christmas!

 

Lucy and Aria have shared an extract with us today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Standing beneath the steady stream of hot water without the overhead shower wetting my hair isn’t easy but it’s so refreshing. By the time I’ve dried, changed my underwear and donned the crease-resistant, long-sleeved top rolled up in my hand luggage, I at least have a bit of my sparkle back. A quick brush of my hair, a squirt of deodorant and then perfume, and I’m done.

Making my way back into the open area of the lounge and scanning around the sea of occupied seats, I look for Cary. His head appears above the crowded masses as he stands to wave at me and I head in his direction. He, too, is looking a little more refreshed, I notice as I sink down very gratefully into the squishy leather seat next to him.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: A Question of Us by Mary Jayne Baker

Hello to Mary Jayne Baker and the blog tour for her novel, A Question of Us. 

Two best friends. Eight pub quizzes. One shot at love…

There are some people who seem like they have all the answers in life. Clarrie Midwinter isn’t one of them.

At the age of 26, tomboy Clarrie is still struggling to become a ‘proper’ grown-up.

She’s eternally strapped for cash, she hasn’t had a date in nearly a year and her attempts to quit smoking tend to take a nosedive after the second pint. Most annoyingly of all, her ladykiller best friend Simon just won’t stop asking her out.

The only thing keeping her sane is her pub quiz team, the Mighty Morphin Flower Arrangers.

But when Simon bets her a date their team will win the quiz league, Clarrie is forced to confront what she really wants out of life – and love. Is it finally time for her to grow up?

 

Mary Jayne and her publisher have shared an extract with us today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

‘The chances of me getting lucky with Sally Pemberton are slim to none,’ Dave said.

‘The chances of Si getting lucky with Sally Pemberton, and me therefore receiving the knock-on benefit of a faster pint, are about 99.9 per cent. I’ll take those odds.’

Clarrie was still squinting at the photo of the dog, which was small and Ewok-like with curly beige fur.

‘I reckon it’s a cavapoo,’ she said.

Si shook his head. ‘That’s not a thing.’

‘It is too a thing, the woman next door to my mum’s got one.’

‘What, so it’s half poodle, half fizzy wine?’

She nudged him, smiling. ‘Half Cavalier King Charles, you div.’

‘You know, dogs really went downhill when they started breeding them for comedy portmanteau purposes.’

‘Go on then, write it down,’ Dave said, rolling the pen to Clarrie. ‘You’re captain, you get final say.’

‘All right.’ She jotted it into the answer box. ‘But if it’s wrong, it’s wrong. I don’t want it following me to the grave like Sonny and the fifth Marx brother.’

Sonny scowled. ‘Do we have to bring that up every week? Anyone could’ve made that mistake.’

‘Very true,’ Dave said gravely. ‘I’m sure Karl had plenty of time after writing Das Kapital for a bit of slapstick fun with the family.’

‘Oh, knob off, can you?’ Sonny rubbed a V-sign at Dave against his cheek. ‘Eight years ago I got that wrong. Jesus.’

‘Still funny though,’ Dave said, grinning. ‘Right, I’m off to the bar. Same again, you lot?’

Jeff was half asleep again, but he flickered to attention when he heard the magic word ‘bar’.

‘Another Landlord for me, young Davy.’

‘Si?’

‘I’ll skip this round.’ Simon waggled his still half-full beer. ‘All right with what I’ve got for now.’

Clarrie glanced at the dregs of her pint. She had to work tomorrow. Probably should go easy…

Oh, what the hell.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

A Moment With… Barbara Wallace

A big welcome to Barbara Wallace who is here to share some fun facts about her novel, One Night in Provence, plus she’s sharing a deleted scene!

Without further ado, over to you, Barbara.

Hi! Thank you for letting me visit.

I’m going to share with you a little secret. As much as writers love telling stories, the actual process of writing a book can be a long and boring process. After all, you try and spend months with the same two people in your head. Therefore we sometimes – okay I sometimes – make up little inside jokes and references as a way of making the work fun.

What I’d thought I’d do today is share some of those behind the scenes facts. I’m also sharing some of the great historical facts I learned while doing research. Provence and Nantucket are both rich with history. Because Philippe is an historian, I was able to weave in a few facts, but just as many ended up discarded. (Until now.)

Lastly, I decided to share a deleted scene with you all as well. I thought it might be fun for you to see the kinds of things that editors suggest we cut.

So, without further ado, let me present, Ten Fun Facts About One Night in Provence (whether you wanted to know them or not.)

The Destination Brides series was originally named Bucket List Brides. We conceived the idea during a brainstorming session on Facebook Messenger. It began as an excuse for Donna Alward, Nina Singh and I to work together on a project. We asked Liz Fielding to join us because working with her was on our personal bucket lists.

Jenna Brown and her colleagues Shirley and Donna were named for my fellow romance authors Jenna Bayley Burke, Shirley Jump and Donna Alward.
In the book, Shirley is dating a man named Joe. In real life, Shirley will be marrying her fiancé Joe this fall.

Chateau de Beauchamp is based on a real five star French hotel: La Bastide de Gordes. Sadly, I haven’t been there. Never been to Provence either. I’ve spent exactly eight hours in France. Long enough to do a hop on/hop off tour of Paris.

Equally sad is the fact that those eight hours are more than I ever spent in Nantucket – despite living four hours away. By the way, The Whaler Inn in Nantucket – the Merchant auction takes place – is also based on a real hotel. The Ocean House Resort in Westerly, Rhode Island. That hotel was recently named one of the best in the country. Oh yeah, and Taylor Swift lives down the street.

The White Terror that Philippe refers to when he first meets Jenna was an uprising staged by the royalists following the French revolution. Members of the noble classes briefly fought back by conducting nighttime terror raids.

The Tour Magne in Nimes is real and you can climb the stairs. It was built by the Romans in 15 BC.

Philippe’s apartment is located in Arles. Vincent Van Gogh also lived in Arles. In fact, I imagined Philippe’s apartment overlooking the park near Van Gogh’s famous yellow house. While living in the Arles, Van Gogh decided to focus many of his paintings on a single theme: Sunflowers. Arles is also where Van Gogh severed his ear.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: One Day in Winter by Shari Low

I am happy to welcome Shari Low back to Novel Kicks and the blog tour for her book, One Day in Winter.

 

On a cold December’s morning…

Caro sets off to find the truth: has her relationship with her father been based on a lifetime of lies?

Cammy can’t wait to surprise the woman he loves with a proposal. All he needs is the perfect ring.

Lila can no longer hide her secret. She has to tell her lover’s wife about their affair.

After thirty years, Bernadette knows it’s time. She’s ready to leave her controlling husband… and never look back.

Over the course of twenty-four hours, four lives are about to change forever…

 

Shari and Aria have shared an extract today.

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Caro

 

‘No, please, you go first.’ The elderly man smiled gratefully, as the young blonde woman held the train door open for him. He’d read the Daily Mail. These… what was it they called them? Millennials? Anyway, according to the papers, the young ones these days were all supposed to be so entitled and self-centred that they didn’t give a hoot for anyone else, but this young lady certainly didn’t fall into that category. Actually, now that their faces were so close together, maybe not so young. Perhaps late twenties? Thirties? Pretty, and without all that make-up the young ones wear nowadays. Eyebrows like snails, some of them. But not this lovely woman.

Caro returned his smile and held the train door open until the gent had, painstakingly slowly, climbed the step on to the train. No hurry. She’d waited this long to make the journey south to Glasgow. Although, right now, there was a huge part of her that wanted to stay in the comforting cocoon of home city.

Aberdeen train station was bustling with commuters arriving from less expensive postcodes. A city with the third largest population in Scotland, after Glasgow and Edinburgh, in the heyday of the oil industry, this had been boomtown. The black gold that was pumped in from the oil rigs off the coast had seeped into every brick of the granite that lined the streets, bringing American oil companies, financial investment, big spenders and the air of confidence that it would last forever.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: Nadine by John Steinberg

A big hello to John Steinberg and the blog tour for his novel, Nadine.

London 1974 – and Peter Greenberg is riding high. Thanks to his magic touch, every play he puts on in Theatreland is a hit and the money is rolling in. The young man’s empire feels secure – but then everything changes. One evening, he calls in to see a rival’s musical and falls head over heels in love.

The beautiful Paris-born dancer who catches his eye is Nadine – a major star in the making. Like Greenberg, the young dancer too is in love – but with someone else. The eternal triangle is complicated by the birth of a child, and by tragic secrets that go back before World War Two; slowly, those secrets reveal themselves in a drama that out-performs anything on the West End stage or Broadway.

Nadine is a poignant story of unrequited love, a love that will one day be returned – and in a most unexpected way…

 

John has shared an extract today. Enjoy.

 

 

**** beginning of extract*****

INTRO

Greenberg has lost his theatre and his luxurious Georgian home. His wife has run off with his accountant with whom she’s been having an affair and he’s been relegated to living in a one bed flat above a North London Florists. With too much time on his hands, Greenberg is teetering on the edge of depression.

A phone call from an unexpected source, Nadine’s father, offers him a lifeline and a chance to salvage his reputation.

 

*****

 

Jacques Bertrand had described himself perfectly. Medium height, with a full head of white hair and a tanned complexion. He resembled Alan Ladd, the 1940s Hollywood actor, Greenberg thought to himself. They had arranged to meet at Nadine’s graveside. It was probably his last chance, Jacques said, to see where his daughter had been laid to rest and to beg for her forgiveness.

 

***

Greenberg couldn’t believe what the other man was proposing. The chance to put together a major musical production based on his daughter’s life seemed completely surreal. It was, in the old man’s words, his ‘last opportunity to try to make up for the despicable way he had discarded Nadine when she had needed him most’.

Alors, Monsieur Greenberg, do we have an agreement?’ the old man said, suddenly coming to life.

‘Jacques, it’s very kind of you, but I’ll need to give it some thought. What you are asking is a huge commitment.’

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: The Postcard by Zoë Folbigg

A big welcome back to Zoë Folbigg and the blog tour for The Postcard. 

 

The sequel to the bestselling phenomenon The Note – based on the true story of one girl and her ‘Train Man’…

A year after the kiss that brought them together in a snowy train-station doorway, Maya and James are embarking on another journey – this time around the world. The trip starts promisingly, with an opulent and romantic Indian wedding.

But as their travels continue, Maya fears that ‘love at first sight’ might not survive trains, planes and tuk tuks, especially when she realises that what she really wants is a baby, and James doesn’t feel the same. Can Maya and James navigate their different hopes and dreams to stay together? Or is love at first sight just a myth after all… 

 

Zoë and Aria have shared an extract from the Postcard today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

6

December 2015, Kent, England

‘Happy Christmas, James. Happy Christmas, girls,’ James’ mum says in a small voice as she raises an elaborately cut glass of sherry at the table. It’s the most flamboyant Diane Miller gets all year.

‘What about me?’

‘You too, dear,’ she says to her husband, as he scratches his white hair. ‘You too.’

James’ dad, Stuart, and his sister, Francesca, barely look up from their plates. Francesca’s wife, Petra, lifts her wine glass, closely followed by James, and they say ‘Happy Christmas’ in unison. ‘Cheers Diane,’ adds Petra. ‘Thanks for a beautiful lunch.’

The Christmas dinner table at the Miller home in Kent is quieter than the Flowers of Hazelworth. It is circular, covered by a neat tablecloth with holly embroidered onto it. I

n the middle, a metal Christmas carousel rotates, where angels chase – but never catch – each other, powered by heat rising from the candles around it. Gold crackers perch uncracked on beige linen napkins, and Diane’s late mother’s Denby ware pottery all still matches.

No one’s elbows knock into anyone else’s elbows. No one shouts ‘SPUDS TO THE NORTH END!’ over a clatter of crockery and glasses. Neither James nor Francesca flash a mouthful of food at their sibling.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: The Time of Our Lives by Abby Williams

Welcome to Abby Williams and the blog tour for her novel, The Time of Our Lives.

Two women from two very different generations are brought together through dramatic circumstances and help each other to forge new paths.

Twenty-six-year-old Erin has everything she’s ever wanted – a good job, a gorgeous fiancé and a best friend who’s always there for her. But suddenly her life comes crashing down around her. Unable to return home to her parents, she takes a room in a house nearby and her life starts over in the most unexpected of ways…

Seventy-six-year old Lydia, who, shocked by the sudden death of her husband, is devastated to discover that he has left her in crippling debt. With no choice but to take in a lodger, Erin comes into her life. When they find a letter hidden in the attic old secrets come to light and, with Erin by her side, Lydia finds herself going on a trip of a lifetime.

 

Abby and Aria have shared an extract with us today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Brad and I had been together for three years, and now I was a fully qualified architect but still also worked as his PA. Watching him now as he walked along the open plan office towards me I felt my heart bang against my chest. Tall, with chocolate eyes and thick, black hair, Brad still gave me butterflies.

‘Erin, have you got my itinerary for the conference tomorrow?’ he asked, standing in front of my desk.

‘Of course,’ I replied, pulling out a glossy brochure from my in-tray and handing it to Brad. ‘I booked you into your usual hotel for two nights and I’ve arranged for the hotel business centre to set up your presentation material so you don’t need to worry.’

Brad smiled. ‘Thank you, that was very thoughtful.’

‘All part of the job,’ I replied sweetly.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: Mummy Needs a Break by Susan Edmunds

A lovely hello to Susan Edmunds and the blog tour for her latest book, Mummy Needs a Break. 

 

With a devilish toddler and baby number two on the way, Rachel’s big dream is to one day go to the toilet on her own. So, she’s surprised to discover that her husband has found the time to have an exciting affair while she’s been bringing up their family.

Suddenly, Rachel is left wrangling with a child who will only eat crackers and a 35-week bump. She knows even Mumsnet isn’t going to solve this.

What Rachel needs is a handsome, good-with-children, single man. But she can barely leave the house without a stain on her top and child on her hip. How on earth can she claim her life back, let alone thinking about dating?

 

Susan and Avon have shared an extract today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

It was after 4 a.m. when I heard a key rattle in the lock as Stephen returned. I was still sitting on the couch, staring blankly at the almost-silent television, tracing patterns in the textured fabric of the cushions. I held my breath as he neared the living room door. The light was on – he would know I was inside. He paused briefly but then the door to the spare room clicked shut. I sat on the couch, my fingers tracking the movement of blood through my temples.

 

Questions were stomping around in circles in my mind: Was she someone I knew? What was going on? What the hell was I going to do?

 

I knew our relationship had changed. But whose doesn’t, when you have children? Years ago, I had a stash of hugely impractical, very skimpy lingerie that I brought out every night he stayed at my place. I crept out of bed sometimes before he woke to put make-up on and would go to a yoga class every night after work and twice at the weekends, coming home relaxed and stretchy. It had been a long time since I had crawled into our bed in anything other than my faded grey favourites and my yoga was now done most often in front of my laptop, with Thomas imitating alongside me, until he got bored.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: The Single Mums Move On by Janet Hoggarth

Today I’m welcoming Janet Hoggarth who is joining me with the blog tour for her book, The Single Mums Move On. 

 

Can neighbours become more than good friends…

After her husband left her, Ali and her daughter Grace enjoyed living in what became known as ‘the Single Mums’ Mansion’. However, with her best friends Amanda and Jacqui moving on, it’s time for Ali and Grace to make their own way. Thankfully, a chance conversation leads to them moving into the infamous South London gated community known only as ‘The Mews’.

In ‘The Mews’ everyone lives in each other’s pockets and curtain twitching is an Olympic sport. The neighbours are an eclectic bunch – from Nick the alleged spy, Carl the gorgeous but clearly troubled Idris Elba lookalike, to Debbie who is about to face the hardest fight of her life, and TV agent Samantha who is not as in control as she likes to pretend.

Each day brings another drama, but along with the tears, real friendships grow. And her neighbours’ problems might unlock the key to something Ali has yearned for all along…

Based on a true story – you’ll never be able to look at your neighbours quite the same way again… 

 

Janet has very kindly shared an extract with us today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

‘I hate everyone looking at me,’ Amanda said tremulously, holding on to her dad’s arm as we waited for the music to start in the antechamber of Rye Town Hall. ‘What if I cry?’

‘You’re supposed to cry at weddings!’ Jacqui said, rolling her eyes. ‘No one’s going to tell you off!’

‘Stop catastrophising,’ I said gently. ‘Just enjoy it. It’s your moment!’

However, when the time came to walk down the aisle, I hadn’t heeded my own advice. As soon as the impressively ornate doors opened and the town crier rang his bell to announce us, I spotted Ifan standing next to Jacqui’s Mark, his hand proprietorially on Grace’s shoulder, eagerly waiting. The first thought that burned in the back of my mind was: I can’t marry a shop assistant. I swiftly berated myself for being such a snob, but in reality, he didn’t earn enough money to support us if we had a child.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract – Willow by Grace Parks

Grace Parks joins me today with the blog tour for the first book in the Pepper Lane Lane series, Willow.

 

Can a socialite and a technophobe fall in love?

A bubbly personality and a great job in social media didn’t mean that Willow Lawson had it all. Her love life was distant memory and her social life only work related. The maddening demands of life seemed to get in the way of finding time for herself or her friends. 

She starts the Pepper Lane Club as a chance to step away from her busy schedule once a month to reconnect with her friends. 

Thomas Greer, the proprietor of the Pepper Lane Café, annoys her. He’s her complete opposite; unsociable, serious, old-fashioned and dead set against social media. 

Always game for a challenge, Willow decides to take him on as a client. She’s going to prove to Thomas that he needs her help. She knew she would be successful, she just didn’t know she would lose her heart along the way.

Can Willow fall in love with a man that doesn’t respect her profession? Will Thomas let go of his preconceptions long enough to get to know the real Willow? Enjoy this sweet romance as Willow finds love and friendship in the first book in the Pepper Lane Series. 

Six women. Six stories. Six chances of love. One café.
The Pepper Lane Series follows the lives of six women as they share life, love and heartache once a month at the Pepper Lane Club. They might be an unlikely group of friends, but it takes all types to form a tribe.

 

Grace has shared an extract today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

The dress was what I referred to as my ‘chameleon’ dress because it somehow fit into any occasion. It was ever so slightly slutty, without being offensive, yet because there was nothing showing it still had an element of demure to it. I hadn’t worn it often, but when I did it was for one reason, and one reason only, to make sure I was in control of the night. Was I wearing it only because I hoped to meet the annoying Thomas Greer tonight? No, of course not. Was I lying to myself? Maybe.

            Riley arrived five minutes early, as she always did. Not that I was surprised, she found lateness to be one of the rudest characteristics a person could have. “So, you find me rude?” I had asked her once. To which she had nodded. Twins, huh? They’re annoyingly honest with one another.

            “Oh wow, you’re wearing your chameleon dress,” she said. “You look gorgeous. Hey, your hair! I didn’t know you dyed it. Suits the dress. You’re very coordinated today.”

            I wiggled my red nails at her. “Why thank you. Only my underwear isn’t red, but nobody is going to see that tonight.”

            “What about Thomas Greer?” she teased.

            That made me laugh. “Gross. I’m not that desperate. Come on, let’s go.”

 

The Pepper Lane Club

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: I Can’t Tell You Why by Elaine Robertson North

Happy Saturday everyone and welcome to Elaine Robertson North and the blog tour for her novel, I Can’t Tell You Why. 

 

Having an affair is inconceivable to Dani and yet she’s having one with Alex. He’s married, he’s an actor and she’s his agent.

Then Dani meets Sean, a paparazzi photographer with a formidable reputation. It’s a profession that makes him unpredictable at best. A dangerous trait when his motivation to expose becomes personal. 

Dani knows she’s made mistakes. She also knows she’s not the first person who wilfully hurt someone they love and is simply unable to explain why.

 

Elaine has shared an extract with us today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Dani is having an affair with Alex. He’s an actor and also married with children; she’s his agent. Their complicated relationship becomes even more so when Dani starts spending time with Sean, a paparazzi photographer. In this extract, Dani is heading home from an event with her two best friends, where the two men in her life – and Alex’s wife – have met for the first time.

 

Dani decided she’d well and truly had enough and leaving Sean to finish up his final obligation – a catch-up with the charity’s publicity team – she headed for the cloakroom for her coat. Much as she wanted to be alone, she couldn’t think of an excuse quickly enough to avoid sharing a cab with Billy and Amanda who had appeared beside her.

Within minutes, she found herself sitting in an uncomfortable silence next to Billy in the back of a cab with Amanda sitting opposite them, looking from one stony face to the other, wondering if she should attempt some conversation. She took a deep breath and smiled.

“Well that was fun!” She waited. Nothing. Not even a glance in her direction. Maybe she should just focus on Dani? She looked at her but her face was giving nothing away.

“You okay Dani?”

As the cab sped past a street lamp momentarily flooding them with light, Amanda couldn’t miss how Dani’s eyes were glistening, a clear sign that her friend was most definitely anything but. But those glistening eyes remained in a fixed stare, focused firmly out of the window while her body language was literally yelling a desperate plea to be left alone. Accepting defeat, Amanda sat back.

She had tried.

The silence continued until the cab pulled up outside Dani’s flat. She opened the door and, without a word or so much as a backward glance, she climbed out, closed the door behind her and headed inside. Billy watched her go as Amanda moved to sit next to him. She took hold of his hand and gave it a squeeze as the cab pulled away again. “You okay?”

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: Truth or Die by Katerina Diamond

I am welcoming Katerina Diamond to Novel Kicks today and the blog tour for her latest novel, Truth or Die.

Their darkest secrets won’t stay buried forever…

The butchered body of a professor is found in a private office of Exeter University. It is the first in a spate of horrific murders that shakes the city to its core.

Who would target a seemingly innocent man, and why? DS Imogen Grey and DS Adrian Miles turn to his students for answers, but their investigation turns up no leads. Someone must know more than they’re letting on…

As the body count rises, the police have to look into the past to uncover the person responsible before it’s too late.

But are they brave enough to face up to the truth?

 

Katerina and Avon have shared an extract today. Enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

‘No, someone from the DCI’s old area. I think they wanted an outsider, someone who wasn’t caught up in any of the local shit,’ Adrian reassured her. Imogen herself had transferred from Plymouth under a bit of a black cloud and so he knew she wouldn’t appreciate working with any of her former colleagues.

‘Yet.’

‘Apparently she personally endorsed his transfer. The DCI has worked out all right. Maybe it’s a good move.’

‘Him? Is he hot?’

‘Why are you asking me?’

‘You can’t objectively say whether a man is attractive? Are you worried that I might think . . .’

‘Don’t finish that sentence. His face is very symmetrical, which suggests he is probably quite good-looking.’ Adrian smiled at her.

‘Wow. I’d hate to hear how you describe me.’ She gathered up her things to go.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Book Extract: Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May

A big welcome back to Nicola May. She is here with the blog tour for her latest novel, Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay. 

Here’s a little about the book:

The cast of the runaway bestseller, The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay, are back – including Rosa, Josh, Mary, Jacob, Sheila, new mum Titch and, last but by no means least, Hot, the adorable dachshund.

Newly wed, and with her inherited corner shop successfully up and running, Rosa Smith seems to have all that anyone could wish for. But the course of true love never did run smooth and Rosa’s suspicions that her husband is having an affair have dire consequences.

Reaching rock bottom before she can climb back up to the top, fragile Rosa is forced to face her fears, addiction and jealousy head on.

With a selection of meddling locals still at large, a mystery fire and Titch’s frantic search for the real father of her sick baby, the second book in this enchanting series will take you on a further unpredictable journey of self-discovery.

 

Nicola has shared an extract with us today. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

PROLOGUE

‘Oh Titch, why didn’t you just ring for an ambulance?’

‘I did, but they’re always so slow getting down to the Bay and I knew you’d know what to do. I’m sorry, Rose. Oooh . . .’

Hot Dog, Rosa Smith’s excitable mini-dachshund, was now running around the Corner Shop making whining noises similar to the ones coming from the young girl in labour.

Flustered, Rosa snapped at him, ‘Hot, will you just stop it?’ She reached for her friend’s
hand and said more gently, ‘Come on, we need to get you upstairs.’

‘No! No, I can’t move.’ Titch was bent over, clutching at the counter. ‘Oh no – I think I’m ready to push!’

‘Shit! OK, OK, don’t panic.’ Rosa hurriedly turned the Corner Shop sign to Closed, dragged the biggest, comfiest dog bed off a shelf and carefully eased her friend to the floor. She then darted into the downstairs kitchen and grabbed a whole handful of clean tea-towels from the drawer.

Continue reading

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Novel Kicks is a blog for story tellers and book lovers.

Facebook
Twitter
Google+
Pinterest
LinkedIn
INSTAGRAM
RSS
Follow by Email
Book Club
Book Club
Twitter
Poll
Archives
Categories