Saturday, 28 February 2015

Betrayal by Sharon Browlie

Not got up to much writing myself or anything else for that matter as I've been engrossed in my Kindle book. An excellent story set in Edinburgh, which was a very pleasant surprise when I started reading. I give it 5 stars:
Betrayal by Sharon Brownlie

Helen king is a young woman who has been abused by her father and betrayed by the very people that should have protected her. When she sought help from her father’s employers; the Army, she was sent away to a children’s home in Edinburgh. Here she befriended a boy Ashley Renton. When he was adopted she set out to Gloucester to find him.

At age 15 Helen was ill equipped to fend for herself and soon found herself in the clutches of violent pimp Addie. Her life descended in a never-ending nightmare of drugs and prostitution.

Then one day she overhears a conversation and recognised the voice of her former teacher. Helen decided then to no longer be a victim but return to Edinburgh and revenge the wrongs that were done to her.

Betrayal is a gritty crime novel mainly set in Edinburgh. We get to experience the story from the angle of Helen and from the eyes of D.I. Belinda Brennan as she investigates ‘Helen’s revenge’. I enjoyed this book immensely; the characters are well developed and believable. Edinburgh makes a great setting. And as I used to live there for many years I could clearly imagine where the author was taking me. A great first novel!

Wednesday, 18 February 2015


Here is the first of the reviews I'm doing of a series of four independent writers I promised to review. I did enjoy this one and gave it four stars.

Amie, An African Adventure
By Lucinda E Clarke
Working full time I don’t get to read a lot, so the fact that I managed to read it within a week says a lot about this book. It follows the story of Amie a young na├»ve English woman that follows her husband when he gets posted to Africa. Amie initially has her doubts about going and the author hints that at some point things are going to go very wrong, but convinced by her husband and her family Amie accepts her new life and sets out for Africa with her husband. There an experienced expat woman takes Amie under her wing and shows her the dos and don’ts of living as a white woman in Africa. As Amie initially struggles with the completely different mentality of the citizens of Togodo, she comes to enjoy her new live. So much so she longs to go back to Togodo and its capital Apatu during their annual visit back to England. And here is my slight quibble with the book, Togodo is a fictional country. It is obvious the author has a wealth of knowledge about living in Africa. I’m sure many of the things Amie experiences have happened or been told to the author. She certainly weaves all these impressions into a good story. But every time Apatu or Togodo were mentioned I was left disoriented wondering which country and which regime this was based on and where I was geographically as the story felt very real (somewhere in East Africa near the equator was all we were told) especially . However if you do like a riveting adventure story and to get a general insight into how western white workers live and work in Africa, I can certainly recommend this book.

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Five and Four stars

The first review is in for Blood Ties  and it is a 5 star. This is great news and it reminded me to go and do some book reviewing myself. This is a book I read a wee while ago and the review is long over due.

Fat Vampire:an underdog vampire novella by Johnny B. Truant

I stumbled across this book when I released my own book Language in the Blood and wanted to see what else there was out there in funny vampire books. I liked the idea that not all vampires are slender and beautiful. This is the first in a series currently counting six books.

The story follows Reginald Baskin, an overweight young man who after suffering at the hands of bullies in high school now works at a fitness company. He finds that things are much the same since high school and he is still being tormented by the physically fit.

Things change when Maurice, a young shy Goth starts work. It is he who 'saves' Reginald after he is devoured by vampires. Maurice turns him into a vampire like himself.

Even though Reginald never felt so good, his physical shape hasn't changed. He might feel he is running at great speeds, but most prey could outrun him. I enjoyed the way the author described Reginald's slow acceptance of his new live and the humorous consequences of being a overweight vampire with low self esteem, but the author is also sticking very closely to most vampire myths. I'm looking forwards to reading more in the series and hope the author starts pushing the boundaries of vampire myths a bit more. Promising start to a fun series of books.

I give it 4 out of 5 stars.