Excerpt from Maybe Baby by Carol Thomas

This week I’m delighted to feature an excerpt from Carol Thomas‘ new title for Ruby Fiction Maybe Baby. Carol previously joined me on my blog on 19 November 2018 to talk about her debut novel for Ruby Fiction The Purrfect Pet Sitter – have a look at that interview here – Maybe Baby follows on from that first book, although it can be read as a stand alone title.

Over to Carol

Thank you for having me on your blog, Morton, and for the opportunity to share an excerpt from Maybe Baby. The part I have chosen, and cheekily abridged so as not to give too much away, finds best friends Lisa and Felicity at the end of a long weekend in France (staying in Lisa’s parents’ house). I chose it because it reflects the friendship and interaction between the two characters well, and makes me smile. I hope you and your readers enjoy it…

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Excerpt from Maybe Baby – a romantic comedy, full of love, true friendship and humour.

“Lisa raised her glass to Felicity. ‘We’re finally on our girl trip, just the two of us, I’m so pleased we found each other again, and … hello, who is that?’

The sound of tyres against gravel drew their attention towards the driveway, but being at the back of the building, they couldn’t see who was there.

Felicity stood up and grabbed her towel. ‘Whoever it is can’t see me like this. I’ve got enough rolls to open a boulangerie.’

Lisa giggled. ‘Wait, don’t leave me.’ Realising Felicity was heading inside, she swung her legs out of the paddling pool, hurriedly rubbed her feet on a towel, and followed, closing the patio door behind them before panicking about the fact they were dripping water on her mum’s floor. From their vantage point behind the sofa, the two women watched as a suave man wandered round the garden. Dressed in a smart casual style, he wore navy, fitted jeans; an untucked pale blue, tailored shirt; and tan, leather-weave jute loafers without socks. His tanned skin, along with his dark hair, which occasionally flopped across his sunglasses, made Lisa think he was French.

‘Who the hell is Monsieur Hottie?’ Flick asked. ‘Do you think he’s a thief? The place is supposed to be empty until your parents return.’

‘No. The hire car is on the driveway, it’s broad daylight and … well, look at him.’

‘Perhaps he’s—’

‘A very posh gardener?’

With a couple of athletic strides, the man ascended the steps of the terrace. He walked towards the door and lifted his sunglasses before knocking and peering in.

Lisa and Felicity attempted to stand still, but the fact he lifted his hand in a single wave and offered a smile revealing a fine set of white teeth made it obvious he had seen them.

‘Well, now we look stupid hiding behind here.’ Felicity nudged Lisa towards the door.

‘I can’t go. I’m only in a T-shirt and pants. At least you’re in a swimsuit and towel.’ Lisa pulled the bottom of Nathan’s T-shirt down, attempting to cover her knickers.

Felicity edged forward. ‘What if he’s dangerous?’

‘Nobody that good-looking could be dangerous.’

Felicity looked admonishingly at Lisa. ‘And that’s why he’s dangerous! You’d better stay behind me.’

‘Wait!’ As they were about to open the door, Lisa grabbed Felicity’s arm and whispered, ‘Can you speak French?’

Felicity matched Lisa’s hushed tones, ‘I can say my name, age, where I live, and Jean Paul works in the garden.’

Lisa looked at her, dumbfounded, before they both giggled.

‘You cover me and I’ll speak,’ Lisa affirmed.

Felicity opened the door. Both women took in the sight of the man’s handsome features. His ice-blue eyes contrasted with his tanned skin, dark hair and the fine stubble that outlined his heart-shaped face.

Bonsoir.’

From her position behind Felicity, Lisa spoke, asking, in French, if she could help him in what she hoped was a calm steady voice, but reminded her of her mum attempting to be posh. With an amused grin the man introduced himself, speaking English with a soft, intoxicating French accent, as Florian. He explained that he was the son of their nearest neighbour and that he taught Lisa’s mum’s art class. As a favour to Lisa’s parents, his father had prepared the hot tub for their arrival, and he was there to check on the chemical balance of the water.

Satisfactory explanations having been provided, Lisa and Felicity ran to find some more suitable clothes while Florian directed his attention to the hot tub. Hurrying back downstairs, they paused at the bottom of the wooden staircase. Looking across the lounge towards the terrace, the two women tilted their heads in unison at the unexpected sight.

Lisa spoke first, “Is it just me, or is there more chemistry going on out there than just checking the pH balance in the hot tub?’”

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About the book

Maybe Baby is a romantic comedy and the sequel to The Purrfect Pet Sitter (Lisa Blake book #1). While each book can be read as a standalone story, Maybe Baby revisits the characters from The Purrfect Pet Sitter (http://getbook.at/TPPSAmazon) as they move into the next phase of their lives.

The blurb:

Just when you thought you had it all worked out …

Best friends Lisa and Felicity think – maybe, just maybe – they finally have everything sorted out in their lives.

Lisa is in a happy relationship with her old flame, and busy mum Felicity has managed to reignite the passion with her husband, Pete, after a romantic getaway.

But when Lisa walks in on a half-naked woman in her boyfriend’s flat and Felicity is left reeling from a shocking discovery, it becomes clear that life is nothing but full of surprises!

Genre: Romantic Comedy

Published by: Ruby Fiction

Buying Links:

Amazon: http://getbook.at/MBAmazon

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/maybe-baby-35

Ruby Fiction: https://www.rubyfiction.com/dd-product/maybe-baby/

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About the Author:

Carol Thomas lives on the south coast of England with her husband, four children and lively Labrador. She has been a playgroup supervisor and taught in primary schools for over fifteen years, before dedicating more of her time to writing. Carol is a regular volunteer at her local Cancer Research UK shop. She has a passion for reading, writing and people watching and can often be found loitering in local cafes working on her next book.

To keep in contact with Carol use the following links:-

Website http://carol-thomas.co.uk

Facebook http://facebook.com/carolthomasauthor

Twitter @carol-thomas2

Pinterest Carol thomas -Author

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/carol_thomas2/

Blog: http://carol-thomas.co.uk/blog

 

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available now as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon Kindle, Audio, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available now from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKobo, Apple iBooks. This will be available as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms – Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Spotlight on Guest Author Sadie Ryan

This week I am featuring guest author Sadie Ryan. Her novel Behind Closed Doors was published on 14 May 2019 by Ruby Fiction.

1. Tell us a little bit about yourself?

Hi, there, lovely to be asked to be on your blog to talk about me and my novel Behind Closed Doors which was published on 14 May 2019. A domestic/noir/thriller debut.

I’m 54 years old and very proud of my age. It’s the time in my life where I feel most comfortable with myself and with who I am. It’s taken me along time to get to this place where I think life is just what it is…it’s just life…just live it.

I live in Cheshire, I have been married and divorced, have two wonderful children, a dog called Willow and a cat called Freddie. I’ve moved house six times in seven years, which is going some. After my divorce I couldn’t settle anywhere. I couldn’t settle in the county so then moved to the Midlands then found I really missed Cheshire and moved back. All that should have exhausted me and it did. I’m settled now and the thought of moving house again fills me with dread, although I’m pretty good at it.

I’ve been writing for ten years on and off.

I love my own company which is pretty important for a writer. I don’t like travelling as much as I used to when I was younger. Having said that, I love cruises and have travelled with Cunard in the last few years and been totally spoilt. I have to laugh, I think it’s an age thing or so my kids tell me, but who needs the hassle of airports if you can avoid them, right?

I love my garden and spend a lot of time there when I can and when the British weather allows me to.

2. Have you always written?

I’ve not always written, but I’ve always read a lot. I remember the first book that got me into a heavy reading pattern where I just became obsessed with books, that was Sweet Savage Loveby Rosemary Rogers. I was sixteen. From then on, I knew that I wanted to write. But I knew to do so I had to read a lot and learn and that’s what I did.

I started writing around ten years ago. I first started writing paranormal romance, a genre I still enjoy reading. I do have a novel hidden in the back of my drawer, which I hope one day to blow the dust off and take another look at it. I then wrote chick lit and finally fell into writing thrillers. I think sometimes you have to just write until you find your niche.

3. What did it feel like when Ruby Fiction said they wanted to publish your debut thriller?

It was a surreal experience to be honest after so long trying. I still can’t believe it’s happening. I was ecstatic with happiness and a little overwhelmed.

I have been writing for ten years on and off and submitted enough to damage the rainforest because many of those submissions used to be on paper. Nowadays, it’s so much simpler to email. Getting rejected by email is no less painful than an envelope thumping down on the door mat. Getting accepted is glorious either way.

After so many rejections I often became disheartened with the industry and thought I would never get published. But I read that I needed to believe more in myself and my writing. And that’s what I did. I finished Behind Closed Doors and sent it out and received a lot of positive attention, clearly positive thinking worked! Then it happened. I had American and UK publishers interested and when Ruby Fiction came along, I was immediately sold on them, and here I am, a published author, published by an amazing publisher with an amazing team behind them.

4. What was the inspiration behind your novel Behind Closed Doors?

The idea for Behind Closed Doors came after a trip to London and walking along the streets of Kensington near the Palace and looking at the small houses that are so very expensive around there. An idea struck me, I discussed it with my partner with whom I always draw out the plots of my stories. I spoke to some of the residents and my idea was born. I write organically, so whilst the idea for the story was there, as I wrote the story developed.

5. If you had to cast a film of your novel, who would play the lead parts?

I love this question because I actually picture my characters very distinctly when I’m developing them. Sometimes they change persona once I begin but often, I stay true to who I’ve decided on. In Behind Closed Doors, I’ve imagined Julianne Moore in the lead role of Tina Valentine, strong personality, intelligent with lots of depth. For the antagonist, Megan, I pictured Charlize Theron, beautiful and dangerous and the role of husband goes to Jon Hamm J. I love this aspect of developing my characters, with real faces it helps me create their story.

6. Where is your favourite place to write?

My favourite place to write is my office, with a blanket around my knees and a hot water bottle. I know I sound like an old granny, but really, I’m not, it’s just that sitting in one place for long periods of time you get cold. I have the blinds closed for less distractions. My little dog in her basket under the table and my cat squeezed in behind me on my chair.

I tend to lose concentration after about an hour and jump on the internet. I find this helps me clear my thoughts. Then I force myself to get back to work after about twenty minutes. Oh, and I always, always have chocolate nearby. Crackers as this sounds, when I get to a part in the story where I get stuck, having some chocolate helps me work it out! Maybe it’s psychosomatic, but hey-ho, it definitely helps me.

7. What can we look forward to from you next?

There is another psychological thriller already with Ruby Fiction, which I’m hoping will be coming out later this year. It’s about, deception, betrayal and murder. When a couple lose everything and crippled by debt, help comes in the form of a stranger, but it’s what lies behind the façade that makes it a race for survival.

I’m working on my third novel which is a work in progress at the moment but very nearly finished. This third book is slightly different than its predecessors in so much that it’s a crime thriller about a woman who’s been living a lie. I don’t want to say too much about this yet as I’m still working on it and things can change.

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To keep in touch with Sadie try-

Her website www.sadieryan.co.uk

Twitter @The_SadieRyan

Facebook Sadie Ryan Author

Instagram sadie.ryan.author

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About Behind Closed Doors

She’s in your house, now she wants your life …

Tina Valentine has it all: the loving family, the beautiful house, the successful career.

But then Megan Pearson starts work at Tina’s law firm and with her arrival the perfect world Tina has built for herself starts to collapse as it becomes clear that the newcomer is intent on infiltrating every aspect of her life.

Something is obviously wrong with Megan but nobody else seems to see it. As the mind games and manipulations continue, Tina comes to the sickening conclusion that now she’s opened the door to Megan, it’s going to be impossible to make her leave …

To buy Links

Amazon UK  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Behind-Closed-Doors-gripping-thriller-ebook/dp/B07Q282G9P/

Amazon USA  https://www.amazon.com/Behind-Closed-Doors-gripping-thriller-ebook/dp/B07Q282G9P/

AppleiBooks  https://books.apple.com/gb/book/behind-closed-doors/id1457689508

Nook    https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/behind-closed-door-sadie-ryan/1131014859

Google Play    https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=Jc-UDwAAQBAJ&dq=behind+closed+doors+sadie

Kobohttps://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/behind-closed-doors-157

 

Thank you for joining me this week, Sadie. Good luck with sales for your new book.

 

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available now as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon Kindle, Audio, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available now from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKobo, Apple iBooks. This will be available as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms – Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Focus on Daughter of the House by Victoria Cornwall

This week I’m joined by Victoria Cornwall, who agreed to answer some questions about her latest novel for Choc Lit, Daughter of the House.

I like many of your readers have read all of your books and have delighted in the links between them – how does Daughter of the House relate to the others?

Daughter of the House has two links. The first is the hero’s father. He is a cousin to the mother of Beth Jago. Beth is the heroine in The Daughter of River Valley.

The second link involves Evelyn, the heroine of Daughter of the House. She has a connection to Nicholas, the hero of A Daughter’s Christmas Wish. As Daughter of the House is set in late 19thcentury and A Daughter’s Christmas Wish is set during and after WW1, I think readers will probably be able to guess the connection, although I won’t say it here as I wouldn’t want to give too much away. Having said all that, if you have read A Daughter’s Christmas Wish, you’ve already met Evelyn in her later years. Although each book is connected, each novel is a stand-alone tale and can be read in any order without spoiling too much of the plot.

When you are writing your novels, which sense, apart from sight, is uppermost in your mind and why?

We are all aware of the five senses – touch, taste, smell, sight and hearing. However, the one that is uppermost in my mind is not a person’s experience of the world by external stimuli, but how a person experiences the world internally. The lurch in one’s stomach at bad news, the pulsing of one’s heart when frightened, the anguish felt inside when distraught. I want to place the reader in the character’s shoes so they feel their pain, joy and fears too.

I can’t resist asking my favourite question – which actors would play the lead roles in a film of this book?

This is an easy question. Whenever I write a new book, I compile a mood board for the wall. I also use Pinterest. I had two pictures to represent the main characters. Luckily for me, they both happened to be actors which has helped with this question enormously!

Aiden Turner, as Ross Poldark, became Drake Vennor, the working class hero in Daughter of the House.

Joanna Vanderham’s character in The Paradise, called Denise, became my heroine, Evelyn Pendragon.

Daughter of the House wishlist of actors

You can see my Pinterest mood board for Daughter of the House, by following this link https://www.pinterest.co.uk/vickiecornwall/daughter-of-the-house/In fact, the mood boards for all my novels are there to browse through.

When you get chance to read yourself, what do you like to read?

I like to read historical romance, although I have read very little over the past year. This is partly due to time constraints, however I also prefer not to read when I am writing or editing as I need to take a break from the written word, get off the chair and do something completely different – preferably outside in the sunshine.

What can we expect from you next?

There is another book in the Cornish Tales series, which I hope will be out later this year. I don’t have a release date confirmed yet so it is a case of watching this space. I am also writing another book at the moment, which will form the next generation of the Cornish Tales series and center around WW2. However, it is still in the very early stages and it could be a long time before it is fit to be read, let alone published.

About The Daughter of the House

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The daughter of the house is often overlooked …

Evelyn Pendragon is spirited but lonely, and largely ignored by her parents whose attentions are taken up with her brother, Nicholas: the expected heir to the family’s Cornish estate and the one who will carry on the Pendragon name.

Stifled by her aristocratic existence, Evelyn finds companionship in an unlikely place when she befriends Drake Vennor, an apprentice gardener on the estate.

But When Evelyn’s life is thrown into turmoil by a tragedy, she realises just how much she has come to rely on Drake.

Will family expectations and the burden of the Pendragon name mean she must turn her back on him when she needs him the most?

To buy links

Amazon UK  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Daughter-House-Choc-Lit-Heart-warming-ebook/dp/B07NVP25L3/ref=la_B01N1YETJ4_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1551539340&sr=1-5

Amazon USA https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07NVP25L3/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i4

Apple iBooks https://itunes.apple.com/gb/book/daughter-of-the-house-choc-lit/id1453386829?mt=11

Nook https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1130646504?ean=2940161448342

Kobo here

Google Play here

About the Author

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Victoria Cornwall grew up on a farm in Cornwall. She can trace her Cornish roots as far back as the 18th century and it is this background and heritage which is the inspiration for her Cornish based novels. Following a fulfilling twenty-five year career as a nurse, a change in profession finally allowed her the time to write.

Victoria’s writing has been shortlisted for the New Talent Award at the Festival of Romantic Fiction and twice nominated for the RONÉ “Best Indie or Small Published book” Award. In 2017, her debut novel, The Thief’s Daughter, was published by award winning independent publisher, Choc Lit, and was a finalist for the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Joan Hessayon Award.

Victoria is married and has two grown up children. She likes to read and write historical fiction with a strong background story, but at its heart is the unmistakable emotion, even pain, of loving someone.

Social Media and website links

Website: www.victoriacornwall.com

Twitter: @VickieCornwall

Facebook: www.facebook.com/victoriacornwall.author

Instagram: www.instagram.com/victoria_cornwallx

Pinterest: uk.pinterest.com/vickiecornwall

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Thank you for answering my questions Victoria. I have read Daughter of the House – it is a great historical read and I was fascinated to read the inspiration for the story. I have read all of Vickie‘s books and can’t wait fo the next one. I loved the characters of Evie and Drake and the book evoked many emotions as I was reading, in particular indignation related to how women were treated in the past. Highly recommended five star review.

As I type there are many Choc Lit and Ruby Fiction books available in an Easter sale priced at only 99p until midnight on 24 April 2019. This includes Victoria Cornwall‘s The Daughter of the River Valley and my The Girl on the Beach. So you can grab a bargain if you are quick!

 

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available now as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon Kindle, Audio, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available now from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKobo, Apple iBooks. This will be available as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms – Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Five Things You Would Never Guess About Author Carol Thomas

It’s Carol Thomas’ turn to share five things that you would never guess about her.

1 – I had a fear of dogs!

When I was little, a German shepherd dog pushed me into a swimming pool. It resulted in a temporary fear of water, and a longer-term fear of dogs. While I am so much better with dogs now and would consider myself a dog-lover – having owned three adorable Labradors – I still get a little nervous around German shepherd dogs and when unknown dogs run up to us on walks.

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2 – I hated school and then became a primary school teacher.

I wasn’t bullied, my teachers treated me well, and I achieved good grades; I just really didn’t like school and frequently persuaded my mum to let me take time off.

Ironically, after the birth of my first daughter, I was inspired to focus, went to college, developed a love of learning, and worked hard to become a primary school teacher; a job that combined my new-found love of learning with the enjoyment I discovered looking after children.

3 – I have cried on the stage of the Globe Theatre.

In my second year of teaching, I was asked to teach year six and only agreed to do it if I could prepare for the SATs via a scheme of work I had devised based on Romeo and Juliet. You could get away with that then, unlike now.

We took a trip to the Globe Theatre, and while I was bursting with pride and had tears in my eyes in the background of every photograph taken, my class acted on the stage. It is one of my proudest teaching moments, and the whole class did brilliantly in their SATs.

4 – My husband delivered our third baby.

On a frosty morning in December 2007, I went into labour. When it became apparent that things were progressing quickly, defrosting the car was abandoned in favour of grabbing towels, boiling water, and phoning the hospital (minus the boiling water – you don’t really have to do that bit). With the aid of the ambulance service on the telephone, my husband delivered our baby girl.

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We were fortunate that everything went so smoothly, and it was an amazing experience. The ambulance arrived sometime later.

(Wow!)

5 – I led a campaign to save our local allotments and won!

Ten years ago, the council were making plans to put a road across our local allotments, including my dad’s award-winning plot – seriously, it had won the town council’s best allotment cup four years in a row, what were they thinking? I created an online campaign to save the allotments and backed it up with coverage in the local press. I put petitions in as many local schools and shops as I could persuade to get on board.

My dad and children enjoying the allotment

The campaign was a success. I presented the petition at a council meeting, the planned road was reassessed, and my dad still has his allotment. He also went on to win the best allotment cup for a further three years!

I’m loving this series of blogs – like learning more about my fellow authors and lovely Carol Thomas is so supportive and part of the wonderful group Apricot Plots. Thank you, Carol

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About the author:

Carol Thomas lives on the south coast of England with her husband, four children and lively young Labrador. She has been a playgroup supervisor and taught in primary schools for over fifteen years, before dedicating more of her time to writing. Carol is a regular volunteer at her local Cancer Research UK shop. She has a passion for reading, writing and people watching and can often be found loitering in local cafes working on her next book.

Carol writes contemporary romance novels, with relatable heroines whose stories are layered with emotion, sprinkled with laughter and topped with irresistible male leads.

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Maybe Baby (Lisa Blake book #2)

 Just when you thought you had it all worked out …

Best friends Lisa and Felicity think – maybe, just maybe – they finally have everything sorted out in their lives.

Lisa is in a happy relationship with her old flame, and busy mum Felicity has managed to reignite the passion with her husband, Pete, after a romantic getaway.

But when Lisa walks in on a half-naked woman in her boyfriend’s flat and Felicity is left reeling from a shocking discovery, it becomes clear that life is nothing but full of surprises …

Maybe Baby is a sequel to The Purrfect Pet Sitter but can also be read as a stand-alone novella.

Published by Ruby Fiction

Link to buy the book: http://getbook.at/MBAmazon

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The Purrfect Pet Sitter (Lisa Blake book #1)

Introducing Lisa Blake, the purrfect pet sitter!

When Lisa Blake’s life in London falls apart, she returns to her hometown rebranding herself as ‘the purrfect pet sitter’ – which may or may not be false advertising as she has a rather unfortunate habit of (temporarily) losing dogs! 

But being back where she grew up, Lisa can’t escape her past. There’s her estranged best friend Flick who she bumps into in an embarrassing encounter in a local supermarket. And her first love, Nathan Baker, who, considering their history, is sure to be even more surprised by her drunken Facebook friend request than Lisa is. 

As she becomes involved in the lives of her old friends Lisa must confront the hurt she has caused, discover the truth about her mysterious leather-clad admirer, and learn how to move forward when the things she wants most are affected by the decisions of her past.

Published by Ruby Fiction.

Link to buy the book: http://getbook.at/TPPSAmazon

To get in touch with Carol try the following links :

Website and Social Media Links:

Website http://carol-thomas.co.uk

Facebook http://facebook.com/carolthomasauthor

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.co.uk/carol_thomas2/

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/carol_thomas2/

Blog: http://carol-thomas.co.uk/blog

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available now as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon Kindle, Audio, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available now from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKobo, Apple iBooks. This will be available as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms – Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Mother Sayings From The Truth Lies Buried

For Mother’s Day last weekend, I put a series of posts on the group Apricot Plots about the sayings of Jenny Simpson’s late mother. Jenny is the heroine from my novel The Truth Lies Buried. I thought I would share them here, along with short extracts from the book.

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“Handsome is as handsome does”

Extract from The Truth Lies Buried – ‘She might have imagined his emotion, but she didn’t think so. He may be an attractive man, but as her mother had often said, ‘Handsome is as handsome does’. The veneer of politeness and concern could veil something much darker.’

‘Things make more sense when you write them down.’

Quote from the book – ‘I’ll get some paper and a pen. Things make more sense when you write them down.’
Now I’m starting to sound like my mother. Great!’

‘Don’t let things fester, better to challenge them head on.’

Extract from The Truth Lies Buried – ‘Another of her mother’s sayings washed into her mind … Don’t let things fester, better to challenge them head on …’

‘The world is your oyster. You can be whoever you want to be.’

Quote from the book – ‘She reasoned aloud. ‘The world is your oyster. You can be whoever you want to be, Jenny.’ It was another of her mother’s well-worn phrases. Why did they automatically appear in her head? It was inevitable using the phrases upset her, as they reminded her of her mother too much.’

‘If you don’t know what to do with things, put them in a box until you do.’

Extract from The Truth Lies Buried – ‘Another of her mum’s precepts for life reared up unbidden from the midst of what her mother must have seen as homely and Jenny viewed as a mess: ‘If you don’t know what to do with things, put them in a box until you do.’ She hadn’t yet dared to look in the loft to see just how often her mother had followed her own advice.
She needed boxes and she needed them now.’

A bed should be made to look inviting, so you want to get into it.’

Quote from the book – ‘He looked over. ‘You really didn’t need to make the bed. I don’t usually bother.’
‘A bed should be made to look inviting, so you want to get into it.’ She was quoting her mother, but suddenly realised what she had said and the possible misinterpretation of her words. She blushed to the roots of her hair, mainly because of the unexpected tingle the thought of getting into bed with Carver had created in her body.
He grunted something unintelligible and rushed from the room.
Oops. She laughed. Belatedly, she hoped he hadn’t heard her giggle.’

‘Pull yourself together, girl. You are not a jelly. You are a strong woman used to looking out for herself.’

Extract from The Truth Lies Buried – ‘Pull yourself together, girl. You are not a jelly. You are a strong woman used to looking out for herself.
It was another of her mother’s well-worn maxims.
Jenny laughed aloud as she went straight into the kitchen, filled and switched on the kettle. Her mother would never be completely dead whilst Jenny was repeating her sayings and following her rituals.’

I had such fun writing these sayings for the book. I hope you enjoy them too.

About The Truth Lies Buried

Two children in a police waiting room, two distressed mothers, a memory only half remembered …

When Jenny Simpson returns to the seaside town of Borteen, her childhood home, it’s for a less than happy reason. But it’s also a chance for her to start again.

A new job leads to her working for Carver Rodgers, a man who lives alone in a house that looks like it comes from the pages of a fairy tale – until you see the disaster zone inside …

As Jenny gets to know Carver she begins to unravel the sadness that has led to his chaotic existence. Gradually they realise they have something in common that is impossible to ignore – and it all links back to a meeting at a police station many years before.

Could the truth lie just beneath their feet?

The Truth Lies Buried is now available as an eBook, paperback and audiobookif you would like to read more.

 

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available now as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon Kindle, Audio, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available now from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKobo, Apple iBooks. This will be available as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms – Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Spotlight on Guest Author Jenni Keer

This week I’m joined by Jenni Keer, author of The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker.

Thank you so much for inviting me over to your blog, Morton. I can’t sit down because I’m still floating after an amazing couple of months since the ebook launch. Over 100 Amazon reviews to date and a brief flirtation with an Amazon Bestseller flag – life couldn’t get any better. (Wow! Congratulations ❤️)

I asked Jenni some questions:-

1) What made you start writing?

Like many children, I loved reading and adored creative writing at school because I could just let my imagination run wild. But after leaving education, I didn’t ever seriously think about writing fiction, either for fun or for publication.

My love of reading endured, however, but my foray into novel writing only came about when my children were little. I used to meet up with a friend, who, like me, had four children under five, and the books of Katie Fforde, Trisha Ashley, Milly Johnson et al saw us through some dark days. Out of a conversation with her, probably over our twelfth cup of coffee, we decided to write a love scene after a discussion about an unsatisfactory passage we’d both read (not by any of the aforementioned authors, I hasten to add). I think it was a case of don’t criticise unless you can do better.

Fast forward a week and I’d practically written a whole book in my head. And that was it – I was hooked. A real light bulb moment which kick-started a quest that was to take me eight years.

2) Do you think what you write is influenced by the area you live in?

Most definitely. So far, I have written five full-length books, two of which will be published, and all of them have been set in and around fictional places in East Anglia.

I actually hail from Kent but married a Suffolk lad and have now lived here for half my life. It’s a beautiful part of the world and I can’t imagine living anywhere else. There are picturesque beaches, stunning countryside vistas and it is a much slower pace of life – or maybe that’s just me getting older.

Living on the Norfolk/Suffolk border, I have a special place in my heart for both these counties and spend my time very much split between the two. I also think it is an underrated part of the country, so I have great pleasure in bringing it to other people’s attention.

 3) If your book was made into a film, which actors would you like to play the lead roles?

I had to answer a similar question for my blog tour, where I decided Billie Whitelaw should play Brenda, until the lovely John Jackson pointed out she is actually dead – which would make that rather difficult. (I had no idea she’d passed away.) The late, great Geraldine McEwan is another candidate but she had similar technical issues. I might have to leave her casting to the director…

Someone like Kristen Bell (The Good Place) for Lucy – petite and blonde, and slightly fragile. George needs to be an attractive bulky man who can pull off a pair of spectacles and a bit of attitude – maybe Chris Hemsworth. I think it’s hard for the author because they have such a definite picture of each character in their head, that no one quite fits the bill.

4) What is your favourite childhood book and why?

There is no one book that stands out so I’m afraid I’ll have to name several. Enid Blyton’s The Faraway Tree– for its originality and hilarious characters. Which child didn’t want to visit the Land of Do-As-You-Please? Anne of Green Gables– for tugging at my heartstrings and giving me a kindred spirit in Anne – a child with an over-active imagination. And Du Maurier’s Rebecca (in my teenage years) for its romance and melodrama, and for being a book that isn’t straightforward.

5) What are you working on now?

Once you get sucked into the publishing world, you have to juggle many things and I’m currently working on two books, so my head is everywhere. I’m finishing the copy edits for book two, The Unexpected Life of Maisie Meadows.

It’s the tale of a young woman desperate to reunite her scattered family, but when a curious tea set from her past starts to catapult her family members back into her life at an alarming rate, she wonders if bringing them together again was such a good idea. It is set in an auction house and I’ve had great fun researching this locally.

I’m also writing and planning book three. Although, traditionally a pantser, I only begin to plan when I’m about halfway through the book.

Thank you for inviting me, Morton. It’s been lovely to visit, even though I’ve spent all my time on the ceiling. Jenni x

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To find out why Poldark is holding the book, and why his nipples are so important,  you’ll have to give it a read…

LucyBakerOutNow_TWAbout The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker

Meet Lucy, aged 25, and Brenda, aged 79. Neighbours, and unlikely friends.

Lucy Baker is not your usual 25-year-old. She is more at home reading and knitting in her cluttered little flat than going out partying and socialising.

79-year-old Brenda is full of wise and wonderful advice, but when she’s diagnosed with dementia her life begins to change. Before her memories slip away for ever, Brenda is desperate to fulfil one last wish – to see Lucy happy.

Gifting Lucy the locket that helped Brenda find her own true love, she hopes to push her reticent neighbour in the right direction. But is Lucy Baker ready for the opportunities and heartbreaks of the real world? It’s about time she put her knitting needles aside and found out…

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker will be the most charming, heart-warming and feel-good novel you will read this year, perfect for fans of Ruth Hogan and Gail Honeyman.

‘A charming read!’ Heidi Swain

‘A wonderful antidote to a harsh world’ Bella Osborne

‘A magical story about love and friendship, full of fun and sparkle. You won’t be able to resist the cast of quirky characters!’ Fiona Harper

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker – ebook 10th January 2019 and paperback 21st March 2019. Buying link  bit.ly/JKHopes

And Jenni Keer‘s next book The Unexpected Life of Maisie Meadows is out on 8 July 2019 and available for pre-order now.

About Jenni Keer

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Jenni Keer is a history graduate who embarked on a career in contract flooring before settling in the middle of the Suffolk countryside with her antique furniture restorer husband. She has valiantly attempted to master the ancient art of housework but with four teenage boys in the house it remains a mystery. Instead, she spends her time at the keyboard writing women’s fiction to combat the testosterone-fuelled atmosphere with her number one fan #Blindcat by her side. Much younger in her head than she is on paper, she adores any excuse for fancy-dress and is part of a disco formation dance team.

Facebook JenniKeerWriter

Twitter @jennikeer

Instagram JenniKeer

Website jennikeer.co.uk

 

Thank you for joining me this week, Jenni.

I recently read The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker:-

A five star debut read, this book made me laugh, reminisce and cry. I loved the characters, particularly Lucy and Brenda. I can’t wait to read more from Jenni Keer.

 

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available now as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon Kindle, Audio, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available now from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKobo, Apple iBooks. This will be available as a paperbackand audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms – Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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Five Things You Would Never Guess About Author Tora Williams

Another post in my blog series sharing five things you would never guess about an author – today it’s Tora Williams in the spotlight.

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Over to Tora

  1. I’m terrified of heights. To the extent that I get panicky if I have to stand on a chair to change a light bulb. Fortunately I’m quite tall, so I can reach most of the light fittings in my house with my feet firmly on the floor. Weirdly, my acrophobia never stops me wanting to climb all the towers when I visit castles. What usually happens, though, is that I get halfway up the staircase, remember I’m now a long way from the ground and get horribly dizzy. By then it’s too late to turn round, so I crawl to the top on hands and knees and cling to the wall until my knees have stopped shaking enough for me to attempt the descent. My worst experience was climbing the tower of St Vitus Cathedral in Prague Castle. Not only is it the highest point in the castle, it stands on top of a whacking great hill. There might have been crying involved.

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  1. I love train journeys, the longer the better. I regularly travel to Prague to visit family, and always go by train (I hate flying – see 1, above). The journey takes two days, and it’s a wonderful opportunity to catch up on my reading and unwind from the stresses of work. Sadly the overnight train that I used to take from Amsterdam to Prague no longer runs, so now the journey involves several changes and an overnight stay in Brussels, but it still beats flying.

 

  1. I originally trained as a civil engineer. My first job after graduating involved working on a sewage treatment project. It was every bit as grim as it sounds and put me off sweetcorn for many years.

 

  1. I’m licensed to drive HGVs in Botswana. Not that I’ve ever tried, but at least the opportunity’s there should I want it. It was actually a clerical error. I went out to teach in Botswana a few (*cough* twenty *cough*) years ago, and had to apply for a driving licence. The clerk at the licensing centre should have stamped the boxes beside ‘motor cycle’ and ‘car’, but stamped the wrong line, so I’m licensed for cars and HGVs instead.

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  1. I love disaster movies, the more apocalyptic the better. This is an enthusiasm I share with my younger brother, so while other families spend Christmas watching films like It’s a Wonderful Life and Elf, we’re watching back-to-back death and destruction in 2012 and The Day After Tomorrow.

 

Thank you, Tora. Well I don’t know about my readers, but I found the above fascinating!!!

About Tora Williams:

Tora Williams writes historical romance with a dash of intrigue and adventure. When she was a child, family holidays usually involved visiting Welsh castles, where she would make up stories in her head about the women and men who once lived there. When she started writing she naturally set her stories in medieval Wales and the turbulent border between England and Wales. She lives in Shropshire, England in a house that doesn’t contain nearly enough bookshelves. You can find out more about Tora at http://www.torawilliams.uk

Tora’s third book, His Clandestine Bride, was published on March 11th.

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Here is a little bit about the book:-

Snowed in with the man who abandoned her five years earlier, Norman widow Isobel de Brockton is terrified he will discover her secret. If Edmund Granville finds out, she risks losing all she holds dear.

Edmund is determined to earn the king’s favor by catching a fugitive. The last thing he needs is to be stuck in a castle with the woman who cruelly cast him off. But after Isobel’s young son is lost in a blizzard, Edmund learns the truth behind their separation.

Now he resolves to reclaim his bride, but the deep wounds of their past haven’t mended. Can they finally heal their damaged hearts and seize their second chance at love?

 

Buying Links for the book:

Amazon: mybook.to/ClandestineBride

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/his-clandestine-bride/id1450583175

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1130573669

 

Thank you for joining me Tora – I think you’ve put me off sweetcorn now! Lol.

 

Thank you for visiting my blog – Morton S. Gray – Author. I hope you enjoyed this post. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Christmas at Borteen Bay is available now as both an eBook and audio download – Amazon Kindle, Audio, Apple iBooks, Kobo and Choc Lit for other buying options.

The Truth Lies Buried is available now from all eBook platforms – Choc LitAmazon KindleKobo, Apple iBooks. This will be available as a paperback and audiobook.

The Girl on the Beach published by Choc Lit is available as a paperback and from all eBook platforms – Amazon Kindle, Apple iBooks, Kobo, Barnes and Noble and Google Play.

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