SUSAN P BAKER

This week’s author lives in Mexico – another place on my bucket list – Susan I’ll be over soon! No, don’t panic my bank manager would be at the airport AK47 at the ready.

We’re in exalted company as Susan was a lawyer and then a judge and so all her books have a legal base, one of my favourite genres.

Susan_P_Baker_Photo_

Susan is also a grandmother and is a prolific writer with five novels and 2 non fiction books to date. And she likes chocolate, so we know she is one of us. You can find out more on her website  www.susanpbaker.com

She’s suggested I mention two of her books and the first one is My First Murder, the first book she wrote and it is FREE so you can grab a copy here. https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B013XEIUMO

My-First-Murder-original

or here on the universal link https://www.books2read.com/u/4jKNoD

Mavis Davis, a likable, new-to-the-job private investigator, not only has one of the wackiest office staffs in mystery fiction, but also goes about solving her first crime in her own, independent, highly interesting way. When greasy-spoon cafe owner Carl Singleton shows up wanting to hire Mavis to solve the murder of one of his waitresses, Doris Jones, a woman with whom he has fallen in love, Mavis reluctantly takes the job especially when Carl confesses that all the other private investigators in Houston have turned him down. But, facts are facts, and Mavis has to face that she has bills to pay that serving legal papers won’t cover.  Though the Houston Police Department, including Mavis’ boyfriend Sgt. Ben Sorensen, get in her face and try to discourage her, Mavis dives head first into the case. What she learns is, there is scandal deep in the heart of Texas. She only hopes she can uncover it before it’s too late for her.

Unaware KINDLE

Unaware is Susan’s latest book.

What you don’t know CAN hurt you.  Frustrated with the two controlling men in her life, Dena Barlow Armstrong has outlined a rosy future for herself and her children, independent of them. Her husband, Zack, constantly pushes her to turn over her inheritance to him, and when she doesn’t, he punishes her with his indifference. Her law partner and cousin, Lucas, controls her money and the types of cases she accepts.

Just as Dena begins to achieve her goal of independence, someone emerges with very different plans for her. Unaware of the danger she faces, Dena lives her life as a wife, mother, and attorney. Then one day when her husband is out of town, the stranger lurks in her garage, waiting until she and the children go to bed…

This standalone novel is Susan P. Baker’s sixth mystery/suspense novel.

Here is the link so go have a look (I’m told proper marketing people tell the public what to do – whereas I would probably write why not take a look? But I’m getting tough these days!!) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XTV5PTP  I’m off to get it right now 🙂 so I’ve persuaded myself, I must be a good salesperson after all!

Have a great week and take care.

CLARE BLANCHARD

You have to admit that us authors are a very special breed, weird maybe but extremely clever.  Last week I told you about a book that chronicled Eve’s life (yes the very first one) and this week we’ve moved on to ghosts from a later era.

Author Clare sent me two pictures, she said one was formal and the other informal. I’m not going to choose, I’ll use them both – it shows us writers as human, with real lives outside our fictional works – although I sometimes have my doubts about that!

Over to Clare.

Do you believe in ghosts? I didn’t, until I stayed at a hotel in the centre of Prague one night a few years ago. As I lay in bed, I became aware of a disturbing presence in my room. It was haunted, as well as haunting. It was the ghost of a man desperate to have his story told. I had no idea who he was and was too tired to be scared. The next day, I got up and wandered into a bookstore only a few hundred yards away. Taking an intriguing-looking book called Praga Mysteriosa off the shelf, I read to my surprise that the very street in which my hotel stood was said to be haunted by a ghost – the ghost of a barber who had abandoned his wife and daughters in the 17th century to go and become an alchemist. Bohemian Mystery is the result of my encounter with his ghost.

BohemianMysteryAdventureCOVER

A beautiful and thought-provoking novel….”

Bohemian Mystery is an intriguing novel, which opens in medieval Prague, a city at the heart of Bohemia, with its unique source of moldavite, a green gemstone laid down by a meteorite at the dawn of history. Sylvia, the protagonist, has an instinctive affinity to the city, which is where her own mother was born. But in modern Britain this is at odds with her burgeoning career at a prestigious girls’ boarding school – an institution steeped in hierarchy and eccentricity, which Clare Blanchard describes with an irresistible meld of humour and satire. However, gradually her affection for Prague draws her back again and again and she discovers that there are unexpected links between the old city and those ancient Etruscan civilisations that instigated the spread of culture and architecture across continents. She learns also that many of these legends stretch back to biblical times, and that there are even connections pulling at her own roots. Her life and purpose are transformed by these revelations. Bohemian Mystery takes you on a satisfying journey, providing food for thought long after the book is closed – a journey well worth travelling.

Brenda Parker, author of The Cilento Dove and Anya Paris

The experience of living in two or three different cultures drives Clare’s wicked sense of humour, but also makes her plots quirky, with unexpected twists of history woven in. Give Bohemian Mystery a try!

You can buy Clare’s book here https://www.amazon.com/dp/B06XX66Z7C

and visit her website  www.clareblanchard.com

ANGELIQUE CONGER

This week’s author came up with a question many of us might have thought about for a moment and then dismissed it as one of those unexplained events.  Angelique Conger took this one step further and wrote a whole book about it. I think it’s a really novel (excuse the pun) idea. In Angelique’s own words …

Book photo, resized

Have you ever wondered about Eve? I did. I wanted to know how she managed life in a new world. How did she have that first child by herself, did someone help her? Then I wondered, how many children did she have? And how did they think about writing? And, did they live in a cave or in the open or build a house? All these questions left me wondering. The only way I could find the answers was to write a book.

I’ve lived a while, I’ve thought about this a long time. And when it came time to write her story, it felt like she sat beside me, whispering into my ear. I’d reach a block and not know what could possibly happen next. All I could do is walk away from it. When I came back and set my fingers on the keys, the answers were there. Some questions couldn’t be answered. Eve had no idea what happened.

Each day’s writing was a miracle to me.  Writing is a miracle for me. Before that November day in 2013, when I started this, I had never been able to set down a decent short story. After 3 months, I had a decent start in rough draft form.  Those were tough years, and I learned a lot.

Through it all, Eve has become my friend. Ancient Matriarchs: Eve First Matriarchs is her story. Each new tale I write comes easier, though none are ready without lots of extra work, they are coming easier.

Ancient Matriarchs, Into the Storms, Ganet Wife of Seth will be ready to join Eve, First Matriarch on your kindle or bookshelf soon.

Eve - First Matriarch

I just love that cover don’t you? Here are the buyinglinks https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MU4KRWT/

To find out more about about an amazing lady with such an original idea you can visit her website  http://AngeliqueCongerAuthor.com where you can sign up for a free book.

Does anyone know, is that an apple tree on the banner at the top of Angelique’s web page? just thought how appropriate that would be.

RIVERS AND RAIN

By now you must be wondering if we saw anything else besides temples on the Big Trip. Not a lot, although we had asked for a cultural tour. Our guide took us to a huge open area stretching for miles covered with crumbling temples which a long time ago must have been a vast city, but what excited him the most was this Buddha’s head in a tree. I’m still trying to work out which was there first.

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We were almost at the end of the guided part of our tour, and it culminated in a fabulous river cruise  on the Chao Phraya River back to Bangkok.

I’m not sure if you can see it too well, but they were building another huge Buddha statue on the banks of the river. I was curious to know if maybe wealthy families funded such structures, as they did in Europe for the church as a ticket into heaven, but I suspect not. If anyone knows, please share it.

Now we were our own, time for the fun to begin!

ADVERT BIT

Just an update to let you know I am nearing the end of the first draft of Amie book 4. Not sure of the title yet but I think it will have the word revenge in it – she’s got so feisty and a lot braver.

HISTORY BIT

Now I promised to tell you why Queen Vic was so cross with her eldest son, in fact cross is putting it mildly, she never forgave him. You see the prince had been so regimented that when he finally got permission to go to university, even under strict controls, he met a lady. Well I won’t describe what dastardly details he got up to, I expect he tickled her ankle or something obscene like that, but when mummy heard about it she sent Albert to have a little word, or a big word if you like.

BERTIE YOUTH

Sadly, it was no one’s particular fault, but it rained that day and Prince Albert got very wet. (He refused to talk indoors as he thought he saw a reporter from The Mirror behind one of the oak trees).

ALBERT 2

Albert not looking well.

And you can guess the result can’t you – he went back to Windsor and very inconsiderably died, thus leaving Victoria inconsolable – and it was all Bertie’s fault.

Till next week. – to be continued.

NOT ABOUT LUCINDA (FOR A CHANGE)

I’m typing this under the dining room table, squirming in shame because it has dawned on me that my blogs have all been about me, me and then a bit more me – oh and a lot of dead people too.  But blogs are for sharing, so it’s about time I introduced you to some other great writers besides myself ha ha (Ignore that). So the plan is to feature a new writer each week besides my usual blog and the first up on the podium is

JULIE C GILBERT

Julie Gilbert 2013 (5 of 25)

Hi. Thanks for letting me chat with you today about the latest Heartfelt Cases story. The Christian Mystery series features a pair of FBI agents and several really personal cases. As one of my narrators pointed out, I sort of have a thing for kidnapping. Such is the case here too. The Keres Case can be read alone, even though it’s book 4. There are tie-ins to The Quinn Case – a short prequel – as well as the first three stories, which are their own novellas. If you enjoy mysteries and suspense stories with dashes of humor, this is a great series for you to check out.

The Keres Case:

After six years of silence, a serial kidnapper and killer returns …  His plans are convoluted. His motives are obscure. He leaves notes, cards, and other clues. What he truly wants is a worthy opponent. He kidnaps a boy only to return him in the Erie National Wildlife Refuge as promised. Then, he snatches one of the volunteers searching the woods for the child.

The Keres Case (1)
When FBI Special Agents Ann and Patrick Duncan are assigned to the case, they soon realize the kidnapper likes getting personal. To make matters worse, the perpetrator has help from surprising sources: victims’ families. The more the agents learn about The Keres Legacy, the clearer it becomes that their family and friends are both fair game.

Losing clearly means somebody dies, but even winning might come at a cost.

Invitation:

The Collins Case is permafree so you can grab that any time.

If you’d like Heartfelt Cases 2: The Kiverson Case, all you have to do is sign up on my website.

I look forward to meeting you. If you have questions or comments, you can always reach me at devyaschildren @ gmail.com (take out the spaces).

Sincerely,

Julie C. Gilbert

Invitation:

The Collins Case is permafree so you can grab that any time.

I checked out Julie’s author page and she has over 20 books on there, a prolific writer, so do go and take a look.

I am featuring authors in my monthly newsletter as well as a chance to win a book and enjoy backstories so here is the link if you would like to sign up  http://eepurl.com/cBu4Sf   Have a great week everyone!

ALMOST THE END OF BIG TRIP GUIDED TOUR – ON AND ON WITH VICTORIA

There was one more temple complex to visit, Wat Yai Chai Mongkol (don’t worry I can’t pronounce these names properly either). This was acres and acres of ruins stretching almost as far as the eye can see.

THE PROMO BIT (only because I’m told ‘it’s the right thing to do’)

Just in case you’ve not come across my Amie series – she’s the young housewife I take out of England and dump in Africa and then civil war breaks out. She has a terrible time and then the saga continues in books 2 & 3. I am currently writing book 4, it’s a wonder she’s survived this long. 🙂  This is the link for book 1. http://amzn.to/2ieb5zo

And to be extra helpful, this is what they look like. Thanks to Daz Smith for the covers and to Gabi Plumm for making them readable 🙂

THE HISTORY RUBBISH

You must have heard by now that Victoria was soppy over Albert, so soppy that she wanted to name all their children either Albert or Albertina until it was pointed out to her that they would get all their banks accounts and post and credit cards muddled up if they all had the same name.

A good example was the day Victoria turned 25, (she had already been on the throne for 7 years) and she received a portrait of himself from Albert with a group of angels in the background, and she was quite thrilled. (The day DH gives me something like that he’s out the door!)

TRY TO IMAGINE THE NAUSEOUS PICTURE HERE

Victoria was jealous of any time Albert spent with the children. Albert, or Bertie the eldest boy, wasn’t making much progress and the royal couple noticed with horror that he was everything his father was not, – charming, easy with the opposite sex and eloquent with a gay, (no, not that sort of gay) sunny nature. As they saw it, he was well on the road to ruin.

BERTIE SAILOR OUTFIT

 

But his greatest sin was one his mother could never forgive him for – next week, or maybe the week after if I change my mind.

BREAKING NEWS

Those of you who have put up with my inane / insane ramblings over the last few months may remember that I hate giving books away for free. It’s not that I’m mean, but when I think of the blood, sweat and tears, the hours of labour, not to mention the cost of editing and the cover design, it’s hard to hand it over for nothing, even though, like many other authors I’m not in it just for the money.

So, at the beginning of this year I decided that if at all possible I’d not give books away – free chapters yes, but not the whole book. Whether I can keep to this remains to be seen.

TLP HIGHER RES

This is all leading up to my news that I am reducing the price of Truth, Lies and Propaganda book 1 to $/£0.99 for five days only.

To tempt you to download it for that ridiculous price, here is an extract:

It’s rare that you get away with trying to cut corners – someone somewhere will always notice – and we fell into this trap in a big way.

We were on another shoot for Durban Tourism. This time they were quite specific about what they wanted. Not just the usual sea, sun and sand, they explained, this is more for those looking for adventure.

“We need to show the different kinds of things the visitors can do, active things.”

“Fine,” we said, “what do you suggest?” Ah, that set them thinking, but eventually they came up with an answer. One of those wildly, adventurous, active things they wanted was fishing in the rock pools off the shoreline.

Now personally I wouldn’t go on holiday to catch fish in rock pools, especially things with claws and teeth, but I guess they knew what they were talking about and knew what normal people really liked to do on holiday. Who was I to question them?  crayfish

This was a larger than normal budget shoot, it must have been for a really big, important expo. We could have real, live models from the modelling agency and, much to my horror, the clients said they wanted real, live fish as well!

I’d planned to stock up on fish props from the local toy shop, or if they didn’t stock plastic crayfish, (I had my doubts about that), at worst I would change that to the ‘ocean fresh’ counter at my local supermarket. But now that wasn’t going to work either if they wanted them alive. Carl knew of a couple in his favourite fish restaurant, but when he went to enquire about them, unfortunately they’d been eaten the night before.

That was plan A and B up the creek, so we moved on to plan C. I would pop down as the fishing boats came in the following morning and purchase a couple of live crayfish from them. No, correction – I would get someone else to go down and buy the creatures, my bravery has its limits.

Plan C wasn’t going to work either. Crayfish were not in season and were nowhere to be found in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Natal. Could we think of a plan D?

Carl was a very keen fisherman and he came up with the bright idea of bringing some crayfish up from Cape Town. He picked up the phone.

On day one of the shoot, we met up with the models at a very smart, colonial hotel just north of Durban. They looked young and absolutely gorgeous, so understandably, I hated them on sight.

Next came Carl, straight from the airport, complete with a large box filled with ice and three crayfish in the back of his SUV. I found it hard to believe they had survived the trip still alive, but I was not about to question their health.

We lugged the camera gear, plus the box of crayfish, through the hotel, past the swimming pool and down to the rocks below. We were joined by the male model, I think he was called Sam, he was the one who would be doing the fishing.

Carl kept the fish in the box until he was ready to shoot the scene, and then slid them into the large, enclosed rock pool. He was not going to show they were in a confined space, but use creative camera angles to suggest they had access to open water and so on. I’m sure you get the picture. We did too.

The crayfish took to the water with glee, and then must have been thoroughly cheesed off when they were immediately recaptured by the male model, muscles rippling in the wind, as he suddenly leapt out of the water holding up one in each hand. You’d think the silly creatures would have learned their lesson the first time round. I could add here that I observed from a very safe distance, just in case they escaped and came my way.

Eventually we got the whole programme in the can (I’m using a little more in-house language speak here) and after the edit, the clients viewed it and were very happy. The clients were very happy for two whole days, until they received a call from a rather irate gentleman, obviously an important crayfish expert, who demanded to know why we were trying to pass off Cape Town crayfish as swimming off the coast of Durban. Didn’t we know that further south the crayfish were bright pink and the pale coloured ones lived near our shores? Or was it the other way round?

Frankly no, we didn’t. Nor apparently did our clients from the Tourism Board. I can’t remember what happened next, but we were in disgrace after that episode. It was no good us whinging about the huge number of awards we had won, or how many other happy clients we could mention. We had got it wrong this time.

umhlanga beachfront

Now as 2017 is the year I learn to market, apparently I need to tell you why you must buy my book and how you can’t live without it.

It’s a great book.

It will make you laugh and gasp out loud.

It will tell you stuff about Africa you didn’t know.

It will tell you what goes on behind the video cameras and how the ‘truth’ is manipulated.

It’s a good read.

It won’t be this cheap again for a long time.

You will enjoy it.

Amazon.com  4.8 on 41 reviews   4.7 on 35 reviews on Amazon.co.uk

And to be extra helpful, here are all the links.

http://amzn.to/2ihtYNf

B& N http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/truth+Lies+and+Propaganda    

Apple itunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/truth-lies-and-propaganda/id1146681503

Kobo https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/truth-lies-and-propaganda

Scribd. https://www.scribd.com/book/321929081/Truth-Lies-and-Propaganda

Inktera http://www.inktera.com/store/title/78827da8-7700-48f0-b070-dbb4f255e162

Did I do all that right? Bear with me, I’m learning.  All comments from you proper marketing people gratefully received!