#BlogTour! #Extract from #AShotInTheDark by Neil Richards and Matthew Costello (@neilmustard @katonahprod) @RedDogTweets

Today I have the pleasure of hosting an extract from ‘A Shot In The Dark’ by Neil Richards and Matthew Costello. Many thanks to RedDogPress for asking me to be involved with the blog tour. Before I share the extract however, is a little bit more about the book and the authors behind it:


Sussex, England, 1929.

Mydworth is a sleepy English market town just 50 miles from London. But things are about to liven up there considerably, when young Sir Harry Mortimer returns home from his government posting in Cairo, with his unconventional American wife – Kat Reilly. No sooner have the two arrived, when a jewel robbery occurs at Harry’s aunt’s home – Mydworth Manor – ending in one of the thieves being shot…and killed. The local police are baffled by the case. But Harry and Kat have an edge in the hunt for the second thief: not only do they have certain useful “skills” they’ve both picked up in service of King, President and Country, they also have access to parts of English high society that your average bobby can’t reach. Because this Shot in the Dark…could have come from anywhere.

Buy now from: RedDogPress Shop // Amazon UK

About the authors.

Co-authors Neil Richards (based in the UK) and Matthew Costello (based in the US), have been writing together since the mid-90s, creating innovative television, games and best-selling books. Together, they have worked on major projects for the BBC, PBS, Disney Channel, Sony, ABC, Eidos, and Nintendo to name but a few. 

Their transatlantic collaboration led to the globally best-selling mystery series, Cherringham, which has also been a top-seller as audiobooks read by Neil Dudgeon. 

Mydworth Mysteries is their brand new series, set in 1929 Sussex, England, which takes readers back to a world where solving crimes was more difficult — but also sometimes a lot more fun.


KAT REILLY WATCHED her husband Harry shield his eyes from the morning sun as he studied the unloading process of the cross-channel ferry at Newhaven dock.
She knew him well enough to see that he was concerned.
The Pride of Sussex had berthed an hour late, and, in the frenzied hurry to turn the ship around, Kat had already seen one precious cargo slip from its net and smash on the quayside.

While the steamer belched smoke into the sky, hordes of trucks, horses and carts, and hand-barrows swarmed around the dock-side, as passengers called instructions, and customs men tried to intervene. So much for all the English politeness and decorum she’d been expecting to see on this, her first trip to Britain!
Though, in truth, Sir Harry Mortimer seemed as ever to typify the calm, unruffled English gentleman. Tall, slim, his black hair longer than she’d ever known it, jacket slung nonchalantly over one shoulder, white cotton shirt sporting a dashing red tie.
All he needed was a tennis racquet to complete the look.
Or should that be – a cricket bat? He turned back to her.

“Hmm… just going to have a quick word with those chaps over there. Make sure
they, er…”
She grinned at that. “And how will that go?”
Harry – with one of his great smiles – nodded.
“You think they won’t welcome my advice?”
“With open arms, I’m sure. That or clenched fists.”
“That is my car they’re about to drop on the quay.”
“Your car?”
“Ah, right. Sorry – old habits. I mean our car. Thing is, she may not be a Bugatti, but that Alvis is damned
precious to me.”

“Good luck. Back in New York nobody argues with the longshoremen.”
“Well, I fancy we’re a tad more civilised over here.”
“Civilised? Nine o’clock and I’m still waiting for that coffee you promised.”
“How about we stop in at a local hostelry en route and celebrate my return to the motherland, and your
first visit, with a slap-up breakfast?”
“Forgot you don’t quite speak the lingo yet. Means ‘large’. The works!”
“Sounds delicious.”



#BlogTour! #Extract from ‘A Cruel Deception’ by Kim Booth (@K_B_Author) @BOTBSPublicity

Many thanks to Sarah for inviting me to take part in the blog tour for ‘A Cruel Deception’ by Kim Booth. Here is an extract from the book, as well as the blurb and the all important ‘buy’ link:

For Joan and Ted Warner, an innocent and trusting couple, a chance encounter with Barbara Hendry, a cunning con-woman who turned their settled lives into a living nightmare

The Warners were not victims of a remote scam, carried out over the internet by fraudsters from afar. For six years, faking a friendship face-to-face, this plausible woman carried off the impersonation of a member of the nobility fallen on hard times, manipulating the emotions of her victims, deceitfully draining them of every penny they had set aside for their retirement, and plunging them into debt.

Hendrys intention was to slip away, having sucked the Warners dry of all their hard-earned savings. But for some dogged investigative work by a determined detective she would have succeeded- and remained free to prey on other vulnerable victims.

Follow this journey of fraud and depravity in the company of the one man who knows the full story – the British detective who cracked the case and brought Barbara Hendry to justice.

Buy now from Amazon


During the following months and after having spent a large amount away on the fraud enquiry it was time to return to getting on with my local work and wait for justice to take its course. I had left requests for statements to be recorded from witnesses that I had been unable to see and was waiting for any replies. In my absence there had been a number of burglaries at large houses on the patch that needed looking into, I still had the enquiry to pursue where an “additional” grave had been discovered by a gardener in a local graveyard and I had also been given an enquiry to look into about some very suspicious “goings-on” and a very large country house in the north of the patch. Gossip was rife about women being chased around the very large gardens of the premises scantily clad, chauffer driven cars arriving at all hours of the day and night being let into the premises which were guarded by very large metal gates. I decided to go and take a look to see what was going on, and when I approached the gate was met by a very large male with no neck who when I enquired as to who lived there was told in no uncertain terms to “Piss off!” not a good move really by the man on the gate it only served to feed my appetite as to what was going on.

I had not introduced myself for fear of compromising any future enquiries but as it turned out the premises were owned and being used by a multi-national company as a “knocking shop” where executives would no doubt take advantage of the pleasures on offer to ease the process of any business negotiations! The premises later featured in a national corruption enquiry involving a well-known national company.

#BlogTour! #Extract from Honeymoon For One by Frankie Collins (@frankiecollins_) @BoldwoodBooks #Boldwoodblogtour

Frankie Collins Blog Tour (2)
Many thanks to Boldwood Books for inviting me to take part in the blog tour for ‘Honeymoon For One’ by Frankie Collins, it’s a pleasure to be involved! For my stop on the tour, I am delighted to be sharing an extract from the book itself. Before I do that, here is a little bit more about the book, as well as the all important ‘buy’ link. Enjoy!


When disaster strikes, paradise calls…

As a published novelist, Lila Rose has been writing about fictional weddings all her life. But disaster strikes on her own big day when she hears her philandering fiancé, Daniel whispering sweet nothings to someone else.

With her dream day shattered, all Lila wants to do is run and hide, so she decides to fly solo on her own honeymoon.

When Daniel arrives in the resort with his new squeeze, Lila strikes up a ‘showmance’ with hot new movie star, Freddie Bianchi. Freddie is perfect for the part and Lila soon relaxes into her leading lady role.

But as truth starts to merge with fiction, could real love be in the air?

Buy now from Amazon UK


Your wedding day is the start of a life-long journey, and, like any other journey, it
requires a lot of planning.
First, and most importantly, you need to know where you’re going and how you’re
going to get there. Are you on a one-track path to growing old together or are you
planning on making stops at pets, babies or house moves?
On a real trip you’re going to want insurance, but on the life-long journey of
marriage, assurance is what you need. Are you doing this with the right person? Will
they stand by you for better, for worse? For richer, for poorer? In sickness and in

When your plans are all in place and it’s time to set off on this wonderful, wild
adventure, the only thing left to do is pack – but pack light.
Unfortunately, on this non-stop flight to a happy ever after, ex-boyfriends will not
fit in the overhead storage, no matter how much you dissected the relationship. All
baggage must be destroyed before boarding – you absolutely cannot bring your baggage
into a marriage.

Before you tie the knot, customs will confiscate any and all contraband still on
your person, not limited to, but including flirtatious WhatsApp threads and other
miscellaneous weaponry.

I’m travelling light today. All I have with me is my something old (a necklace my
grandma left me in her will), my something new (the sapphire studs in my ears), and my
something borrowed (a handkerchief from my mum, which I’m going to keep in the
pocket of my wedding dress, because you’d better believe I had my wedding dress made
with sneaky pockets). My something blue is (apparently) my best friend, Ali, who is
currently lying on the chaise longue at the bottom of my bed in my hotel room.
‘Oh, Lila,’ she says dramatically. ‘Are you sure you want to do this?’

I smile at myself in the mirror. Most best friends are supportive, attentive maids of
honour. Ali is showing me her love and support by constantly questioning whether or
not this is the right thing to do. I wouldn’t have her any other way though.
‘I’m pretty sure,’ I tell her. ‘I made sure I was sure before I spent thousands of
pounds on a wedding and a honeymoon.’
‘Well, yeah, I figured,’ she replies. ‘But… I don’t know, I don’t think I thought you’d
go through with it.’
I laugh.
‘And yet here we are,’ I say, smiling at her.
‘Daniel is… you know, he’s fine,’ she says.
‘Fine,’ I repeat back to her. Just what a bride wants to hear on her wedding day.
‘Yeah, he’s fine… he’s maybe just fine though?’
My best friend hasn’t waited until my wedding day to say this, she’s been telling
me for years that Daniel was just too boring to settle down with. I think this is a ‘speak
now or forever hold your peace’ type conversation, not that the latter sounds remotely
like something Ali would do.
‘I know you think he’s boring,’ I tell her. ‘But, maybe “boring guys” are the ones
you settle down with? Take that playboy banker you met last weekend – you wouldn’t
marry him, would you?’
‘Well, someone clearly did,’ she points out. ‘There was a wedding ring in his hotel
‘Was?’ I dare to ask.
‘Yeah, I flushed it down the lav,’ she says casually. ‘I really don’t appreciate being
lied to.’
Ali is a real force to be reckoned with.
‘I know you’re only being semi-serious with the whole talking me out of getting
married thing,’ I start. ‘But honestly, I’ve thought this through. I love him, we’re happy
together – OK, things might not be wild, but I know in my heart that it’s time to put sexy
playboy bankers behind me.’
‘Well, that’s what I do with them,’ Ali says with a wiggle of her eyebrows.
I know that Ali just wants me to be happy, but I did consider all of this before
agreeing to marry my fiancé, Daniel Tyler, and when I say I considered it before
agreeing, I mean I literally asked him for a moment, before I gave him my answer. The reason for this is because marriage is something I take seriously. My parents, both sixty-
five years of age, have been married since they were nineteen. I might be thirty-one, but I want to marry once, and for life. I had a blast in my twenties, Daniel and I moved in
together when I was twenty-nine and now, comfortably accepting of the fact I am in my
thirties, I finally feel ready to tie the knot.

When some women say they have been planning their wedding for years, what
they really mean is they’ve been dressing up in net curtains as kids and trolling
Pinterest for flower arrangements as adults. Well, I really have been planning weddings
for years… sort of. Not my own wedding and I’m certainly not a wedding planner.
I’m a rom-com author and although the weddings I work with may be fictional, I
haven’t just planned a lot of them – I’ve ruined a lot of them too. I’ve written ten books
now, so it’s pretty safe to say I’ve considered every possible triumph, every little hiccup
and every epic fail my romantic yet devious mind can conjure up.
So, yes, while I have researched flowers, cakes and dresses, and tweaked them
accordingly (pockets! Honestly, this is going to be a game changer), I don’t just know
what this wedding needs, I know what it doesn’t need too. Obsessing over what flavour
frosting to have is rather silly – that’s just the icing on the cake. What you should be
worrying about are the things that are out of your control.
I have essentially reverse-engineered every single wedding I’ve ever written, to
make sure that my real wedding is perfect. It’s kind of a genius move.

About the author.

Frankie Collins is the pseudonym of Portia MacIntosh, bestselling romantic comedy author of 12 novels, including It’s Not You, It’s Them and The Accidental Honeymoon. Previously a music journalist, Frankie writes hilarious stories, drawing on her real life experiences.

Follow Frankie on Twitter

#BlogTour! #Extract from #MummyNeedsABreak by Susan Edmunds (@SusanEdmunds) @AvonBooksUK

Many thanks to Avon for inviting me to take part in the blog tour for ‘Mummy Needs A Break’ by Susan Edmunds! Seeing as it was my daughters 6th birthday on Wednesday, this particular mummy certainly needs a break! For my stop on the tour, I have the pleasure of hosting an extract from the book. Before I do, here is a little bit more about Susan Edmunds’ novel and the all important ‘to buy’ link. Enjoy!


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?

Buy now from Amazon UK


I stared at him. An evening chorus of crickets had started up in the garden, highlighting the silence between us. I watched him struggle for words. My flicker of hope that there was a story to explain the messages evaporated. He had always become tongue-tied at the first hint of a lie and would avoid someone for months rather than risk a confrontation.

The back of my throat was caustic with heartburn and fear danced on my nerve endings. I had only just finished getting the baby’s room ready, and Stephen still had to put the cot back together. What had he done to us? To me?

I poured myself a glass of iced water, wishing it were wine, my hands shaking. It was only 8.30 p.m. What was I meant to do? I pondered calling a friend but what do you say:
‘Hello, nice evening isn’t it? I think I’ve just caught my husband having an affair.’
If it turned out he wasn’t, it would be witheringly awkward to make small talk with the neighbours at our next barbecue.

And if it transpired that he was – but we stayed together regardless – no one would look him in the eye. I could not imagine anything worse than turning up to drinks at my perfect friend Charlotte’s house and having everyone look at me, the scorned wife. Poor Rachel, stuck with a cheating husband and a new baby.

#BlogTour! #Extract from #CallMeALiar by @ColetteMcbeth @HeadlinePG @AnneCater

‘Call Me A Liar’ is on my TBR and I hope I can get round to it soon, however I am delighted to be hosting an extract of the book for my stop on the blog tour today. Thank you to Anne Cater for the blog tour invite. Before we get to the extract, here is a bit more about ‘Call Me A Liar’:

You could say it started with vanity. We believed we were special. But the truth is we were simply vulnerable.

Months after landing their dream job, five brilliant young minds are sent on a remote retreat.

But when one of them disappears, they’re forced to question why they were brought there in the first place.

And for the first time in their lives, they realise too much knowledge can be deadly . . .

One of them is lying.
One of them is guilty.
No one is safe.

Buy now.



Lewes Police Station

October 2017

Let me say this: cracking Libby’s skull was not part of the plan. I can’t even remember hitting her; it was more of a violent push in the deep heat of an argument and before I could do anything to change the outcome, she was flying backwards, her head making a strange metallic sound as it connected with the stone floor. Ting! That’s the only way I can describe it, like one of those instrumental triangles we used to play in school. It was a shame about the floor too – if it had been a shag pile carpet rather than porcelain, Libby might not be unconscious in hospital. But I’m certain safety was not uppermost in their minds when they were designing that house. It was all sharp angles and hard surfaces and glinting, gleaming glass that allowed your own reflection to stalk you.

I don’t mention any of these misgivings to the police, though. My solicitor has advised me it’s not a good line of defence. They’re hardly going to charge a floor covering with a violent crime, he says.

It’s me they have in their sights, at any rate. Every question is angled towards my guilt. What I did. What I failed to do. My shortcomings – of which there are many – have been itemised and catalogued, and while individually they appear harmless enough, their combined effect in the harsh light of the interview room creates an unsettling picture. I don’t doubt this is the ploy, the web the officers are spinning around me. But it is an effective one nevertheless. Having listened to their accusations and character assassinations for the best part of eight hours, I’m beginning to scare myself.

The main issue appears to be my scant adherence to the rules. Yes, it’s true, there are rules of engagement when you find your self in such situations. Say your wife or child goes missing, say you stumble across a body, or in my case, you happen to knock out a loved one, there are set procedures and scripts to follow. Firstly, you raise the alarm. You call 999. You attempt to help the victim. You account for every second spent before help arrives. Officer, I passed wind at 2.02 p.m. You display the correct mixture of horror, fear and sadness. You cry the requisite amount of tears. Basically, you’re aiming for high levels of authenticity in every single action. Anything too forced or overly dramatic will arouse suspicion. Anything too casual and you are cold and callous. It’s a balancing act and I’m no circus entertainer. I’m failing spectacularly.

I did nothing. Try explaining that one away. I tell them I panicked but even that’s not true. I wasted precious minutes standing over Libby unable to compute what had happened. There was nothing left inside me, no nerves or sensory receptors to send messages to my brain. Even when finally I leant over her to assess the level of damage, I became instead mesmerised by my own face, gawping at me from the polished brilliance of the porcelain floor.

Well, look what you’ve done.

You thought you were special.

Turns out you’re every bit as bad as the rest.

The officers say they want to know everything, but this is a lie. They want to know everything around the narrow field of their investigation, scavenging for morsels of extraneous information that will get us nowhere while blocking out the bigger picture. I have no intention of pandering to them. I could tell them Amy Winehouse was playing on the karaoke system at the party downstairs, not Amy herself, obviously, but Will’s brutal destruction of ‘I’m No Good’, but that would be pointless scene­setting, nothing more. I could make a stab at describing the hurt Libby inflicted upon me. Her revelation chiselling into my bones. I don’t love you, I never did. How she stood in front of me and delivered this nugget of truth. I could tell them how it burnt through the epidermis right down to the subcutis, how I thought the pain might send me mad with grief, but this would provide them with a motive, allow them to craft a neat narrative around revenge.

And this is not a story about revenge.

It’s about ambition and greed, and love, I suppose, and what we do in the name of them.

I tell the officers I looked out of the window and saw the car and the two men getting into it and driving off. I tell them I ran into the hallway and that’s when I saw the smoke and felt the blistering heat.

Have I mentioned the fire?

It has been suggested several times that I started it deliberately to cover up my crime, as if an assault wasn’t enough for one evening and I decided to go the whole hog and burn the place down.

Let me say this clearly: I did not start the fire but someone else did.

Everyone invited to the party was meant to die in that fire.

And just because we survived doesn’t mean we’re safe.

Not even Libby, if she ever wakes up.

#BlogTour! #Extract from #TruthOrDie by Katerina Diamond (@TheVenomousPen) @AvonBooksUK

Many thanks to Avon for inviting me to take part in the blog tour for ‘Truth or Die’ by Katerina Diamond. If you’ve been wondering about whether to buy the book or not, here is an extract for you all to whet your appetite:

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?

Buy now from Amazon


At the top of the window he had a couple of tricky manoeuvres to do before he could get over the second ledge onto the small balcony. Once they had been executed, he grabbed the thin ledge and pulled himself up, and then hoisted himself over the wall. One last push before he could get onto the roof. He could go to the side and climb up that way, but it wasn’t as interesting for his followers and so he continued on his path straight upwards.

He climbed up the final window and grabbed hold of the feet of the statue standing at the top of it. He didn’t know who it was of, probably St Peter. Neither history nor religious studies were his subjects at school, so he hadn’t paid attention on the various school trips they had made to the building over the years.

He got his hand around the spike at the centre of the top of the roof and pulled himself up. He didn’t give himself time to rest; he wanted his followers to see the view and so he spun around and looked out over the city. His phone was a tiny blip on the ground from where he was standing, but he waved nonetheless. He would splice the footage together later and put it to music. This was going to look awesome; he couldn’t wait to watch it back.

#BlogTour! #Extract – A Random Act of Kindness by Sophie Jenkins (@SophieJenkinsUK) @AvonBooksUK

The final stop on the ‘A Random Act of Kindness’ is here with me, TWG, where I will share an extract from Sophie Jenkins’ new book. Thank you, Avon, for having me on the tour!

It only takes a moment, to change a life for ever…

Fern is too busy making sure other people feel good about themselves to give much thought to her own happiness. But somehow, without her noticing, life has run away from her.

Suddenly, Fern realises her vintage clothes business is struggling, and the casual relationship she’d always thought she was happy in doesn’t look so appealing.

But sometimes, karma really does come through. And when Fern goes out of her way to help 85-year-old Dinah, little does she realise their new friendship will change her life.

Dinah may have troubles in her past, but she’s lived and loved to the full. Can Dinah show Fern that even the smallest acts of kindness can make the world a better place?


Anyway, I can get no enjoyment from wearing Enid’s blouse after remembering that. I’ll try it on again in three days’ time. So I hang it back up again, put my shirt back on and once more I’m at a loose end in my empty house. I ring Betty. ‘The undertakers have been,’ I tell her.
‘Oh, Kim,’ she says. ‘Poor Enid. Poor you.’
‘Yes, well. No use brooding. I’m going to ring a chap called Cato Hamilton to clear her belongings.’

‘Kim,’ she says quickly, ‘it’s far too soon to get rid of things. George might want them. Don’t do anything you’ll regret. Just try to go on as usual for now.’

George won’t want them. He has his own things. ‘I can’t go on as usual without her.’

‘No. Of course not.’ She’s quiet for a moment.

‘Do you want anything of hers?’ I ask.

‘Kim, if you want my advice, you’ll wait a bit.’

I grunt a laugh. ‘Why? In case she comes back?’ I can hear Betty suck in through her teeth at my admittedly tasteless remark. ‘I’m sorry. I don’t know what’s come over me,’ I say apologetically.

She breathes out a forgiving sigh. ‘Grief affects everyone differently,’ she says. ‘I expect it’s different for men. The sentiment, I mean. I didn’t feel right getting rid of Stan’s clothes. I felt it wasn’t enough that I’d lost him, I was giving away what little of him I had left. I gave his watch to my granddaughter’s boyfriend and when they broke up, I regretted it, but she was heartbroken and I didn’t like to bring it up. I know I sound rather mercenary, but I still think of tracking him down now and then, you know, to ask for it back. I wouldn’t mind paying him for it.’

I nod. ‘You should do that,’ I tell her.

‘Young people don’t wear watches anyway.’

‘Don’t they?’ I doubt this is true, but the sense of the world getting away from me comes over me strongly. I want to ask her what proof she has of this.

Buy now.

#BlogTour! #Extract from #Tightrope by Marnie Riches (@Marnie_Riches) @OrionBooks

I am so excited to be taking part in Marnie Riches’ blog tour today for ‘Tightrope’, many thanks to Orion for my invite. I was hoping to review the book today, however I didn’t receive a copy until too late so I will be sharing an extract from the book inside. I will be reading and reviewing as soon as i can though!

What happens when a private investigator ends up being the one uncovered?

Having lost everything after a failed marriage, Beverley Saunders now lodges in the basement flat of a house owned by her best friend Sophie and her husband, Tim. With Bev’s former glittering marketing career in the gutter, she begins to do investigative work for other wronged women, gathering dirt on philanderers, bosses and exes.

But when Beverley takes on the case of Sophie’s friend Angela, who is seeking to uncover grounds for divorce from her controlling husband, Jerry, the shadow Science Minister, she soon discovers that she isn’t the only one doing the investigating…

Beverley has a secret history she doesn’t want coming out – but will she manage to stay hidden long enough to give Angela the freedom she deserves?

‘Tightrope’ will be published by Orion on the 11th July and can be pre-ordered now from Amazon



‘Balls to Dr Mo and his group-therapy cobblers,’ she said, savouring the sight of the object of her desire. Endorphins

fizzed in her bloodstream. The rush of a conquest was always a narcotic, numbing the jab, jab, jab of her conscience that insisted she was derailing her own fasttrain back to a future worth having. With a quick glance up the double-parked street of elegant Edwardian brick terraces, she negotiated a traffic hump. The car shuddered and her teeth clacked. OK, perhaps she was going a little too fast. Eyes back on the prize. ‘Oh, Mama. I cannot wait to get you home and rip off your—’

When the 4×4 ploughed into her at speed, Beverley Saunders’ little VW Polo lurched improbably to the right, missing the parked Audi on the opposite side of the road by only inches. Her airbag inflated immediately.

‘Jesuf pft.’ A muffled outcry was all she could manage until the bag deflated, leaving her gripping the steering wheel with white-knuckled, shaking hands. Stunned, she stared at the bag that now looked like an oversized, spent johnny. ‘What bastard . . . ?’

Flushed through with adrenaline, she applied her handbrake, punched her hazard warning lights into life and

stepped out of the car. The culprit was looking down at her from the elevated vantage point of an Overfinch Range

Rover. Staring directly at Bev open-mouthed as though she

couldn’t quite believe what had just come to pass.

Bev took in the devastation wrought on her beloved little VW by the unforgiving bulk of this pimped-up Chelsea Tractor – or rather, Hale Tractor in this overpriced pocket of Cheshire. Enraged, she marched up to the driver’s side window of the 4×4, expecting to find some washed up soap

actress or footballer’s wife.

‘Get out of the fucking car, lady !’ she yelled.

The woman raised her hand to her mouth, but otherwise didn’t move.

She didn’t seem to be a celebrity, but Bev knew her type well. High blonde ponytail. Pearl earrings. Expensive looking fur gilet that showed off the owner’s reed-like arms, accented with a shitty taupe silk scarf that chimed

in perfect harmony with the Farrow and Ball-painted doors and window frames of the surrounding houses. Rocks on those bony fingers that could fund a developing country.

That much she could see through the glass.

‘Entitled shitbag. I’m talking to you !’

Bev eyed the stoved-in passenger side of her Polo, noticing how the tyre was facing inwards at an untenable angle. A flicker of guilt strobed at the back of her mind, telling her that a crash was karmic payback for being weak. But that didn’t excuse this stupid cow. She thumped the bonnet of the Range Rover.

‘You killed my car !’

Shutters were twitching either side of the street. Cleaners and nannies peered out at the scene, no doubt making

morality judgements as Bev cursed and the blonde finally emerged, tugging at the ties of her gilet.

‘I’m so, so sorry. My foot slipped and I just shot out.’

The blonde looked back regretfully at the give-way markings on the road.

‘I take it you’re not hurt.’ Bev eyed the pristine white Range Rover. It didn’t have a single dent in it. Naturally.

And those gleaming black alloys were intact. Naturally. Only the Polo looked like it had been in a fight with

Godzilla. ‘Details !’ Her heartbeat was thunderous as she proffered the brown envelope from a recent, terrifying

HMRC communiqué and a pencil she’d stolen from IKEA.

‘I think we’ve got to call the police, get a reference number or something, but first, we exchange details.’

‘Yes. Of course.’ The blonde dithered, clearly looking for something to lean on. Opted for her bonnet. She wrote,

‘Angela Fitzwilliam’ in a shaky hand.

The crash threatened to send Bev careening to the rock bottom of a cliff face she had already been struggling to cling to, let alone scale. She was just about to subject the woman to another tirade of expletives, when the guilt flickered on again ; brighter and steadier, this time, like a searchlight

shining on her shortcomings. She privately acknowledged that she hadn’t really been paying attention either. Too busy staring at the extremely rare, mint origami kit she’d bought off the old guy in Rusholme. A moment of eBay madness, indulging in the very compulsion she had sworn she would eschew. Dr Mo would remind her that she had taken four steps backwards in the board game of her life, sliding down yet another damned snake at a point where she’d hoped to climb the next ladder. Well, the self-appointed saviour of the obsessive, the compulsive and the habitually disorderly would have to damn well find out first.

Maybe she was equally to blame for being unobservant. But this woman looked loaded. She could almost certainly afford to lose her no claims bonus and pay the excess. Bev, on the other hand, had a stack of unopened bills waiting on the side in her crappy flat, not to mention the tax demand. Screw it.

‘So, you admit, it was your fault ?’

The woman closed her large, deep-set eyes and held up hands that were beautifully manicured. ‘Oh, absolutely.

Mine entirely.’

A fixed-up car, a month or two of lovely physio, being pummelled with warm oils by some beefcake – the nearest Bev would get to a massage now that she was permanently broke. A couple of grand in damages would clear some of those debts. Bish, bash, bosh. Bev mentally rubbed her hands together and thanked God for silver linings.

#BlogTour! #Extract from Enemy at the Window by A.J.Waines (@ajwaines) @Bloodhoundbook

It is TWG’s turn to host A.J.Waines and ‘Enemy at the Window’ today, and for my stop on the tour I have an extract from the book. Before that however, is a little bit more about the novel, as well as the purchase link. Enjoy!

Someone knows what you did… and they’re watching you…

Daniel is living the dream with a devoted wife, perfect job and adorable toddler. Until out of the blue, his wife accuses him of having an affair and stabs him in a frenzied attack with a kitchen knife. As his wife is sectioned in a psychiatric ward, Daniel returns home from intensive care to find his precious world is inexorably falling apart:

Who is prowling around his house?

Why is someone sending threatening postcards?

And who is his son talking to in the dead of night?

As Daniel attempts to put his life back together, a merciless force just out of reach is unravelling it, bit by bit, until Daniel is plunged into his worst nightmare.

Buy now from Amazon


When Sophie opened her eyes everything was wrong. Someone had tucked her into bed, but it wasn’t hers. She wasn’t in the right place. This wasn’t home.

The last thing she remembered was the sound of a police siren. Somebody further up the street must have had an accident or maybe it was coming from the television. She wasn’t sure. Before that, the childminder had let herself in and was holding her phone, looking horror-stricken. Then there had been a woman wearing green pulling at her arm. She looked like she’d just hopped out of a helicopter or been sky-diving.

What was Daniel doing lying there on the floor under the kitchen table like he’d fallen asleep? And who had spilt all the red paint?

She needed to get out of here; to start clearing it all up.

She struggled against the crisp white sheets. They were too tight. As if she was strapped down. Looking over to her right there was another bed, and then another next to that. Wait a minute – there are other people here. What’s going on?

The curtain on her left was pulled aside; the rings rattling along the pole like coins spilling from a fruit machine. A woman dressed in a blue uniform looked down on her.

‘How are you, Sophie?’

‘Where am I?’

The nurse smiled and held Sophie’s wrist as she focused on her watch. ‘Do I know you?’

Sophie read the name ‘Rose’ on her name tag, but it didn’t mean anything to her.

‘You’re in hospital – you’re safe.’

Rose leant over to plump up her pillows and Sophie flinched. ‘Don’t worry… no one is going to hurt you.’

‘This isn’t right. I’m not…’

‘Rest for now. There’s some juice on the table if you want it.’

Sophie narrowed her eyes. There was a persistent throbbing sound. Too loud. Trapped inside her head. Clanging and banging. She jerked from side to side to try to find the source. They’re trying to electrocute me. They’re trying to kill me. Her bones felt like they were on fire beneath her skin. She called out.

‘Help… help me!’

The same nurse returned to her side, looking inconvenienced.

‘What’s the matter?’ she said, her hands on her hips.

‘That noise? What are you doing to me?’

The nurse glanced at something above Sophie’s head and gave her the kind of smile reserved for someone who has already made too many claims on one’s patience.

‘It’s your heartbeat,’ she said. ‘It’s nothing to worry about.’

‘My heartbeat?’

‘Yes. You’re hearing the blood pumping inside your head, that’s all. It’s normal.’ The nurse turned, her soft soles squeaking on the linoleum.

It was starting to become clear. Daniel had told lies to make these people keep her here, so he could shack up with that slut he’s been seeing behind her back. She tried to rear up again, but her head hurt and things started to swim out of focus.

Her body shook uncontrollably and a burning sweat encased her, followed by a chill that made her teeth rattle. Oh God, I’m dying.

For a moment she wondered if she was in fact already dead and her body was making its journey towards an everlasting black hole. She tried to call out again, but nothing happened. No sound came out. She was locked inside the tomb of her own body. Then suddenly, as if a switch in her brain clicked off, she started to drift into a hazy calm.

Don’t panic… it’s only a dream… you’ll wake up in a minute.

#BlogTour! #Extract from #TheMummyBloggers by Hollie Wainwright (@hollycwain) @legend_press

Today I have the pleasure of sharing an extract from ‘The Mummy Bloggers’ by Holly Wainwright. Many thanks to Legend Press for the blog tour invite. Before that though, here is a little bit more about the book and the all important purchase link:

The Mummy Bloggers cover

Elle Campbell is a glossy, lycra-clad mum with washboard abs, a ten-year plan and a secret past.

Abi Black has quit sugar, moved to the country and is homeschooling her kids.

Leisel Adams slogs away at her office job each day before rushing home, steeped in guilt, to spend precious moments with her kids before bedtime.

All three share a label that they simultaneously relish and loathe: mummy blogger. And when they are nominated for an award with a hefty cash prize, the scene is set for a brutal and often hilarious battle for hearts, minds-and clicks. As the awards night gets closer, their lies get bigger, their stunts get crazier – and some mistakes from the past become harder and harder to hide.

Buy now!


A #grateful day.

Ever had one of those days, Mummas, where you
realise that maybe, just maybe, you’re doing a good
job at this mothering thing after all? One of those
days where you can see all of the tiny sacrifices you
make for your family paying off?
I feel that way today. The sunlight is coming
in through my kitchen window. The washing up is
done, the laundry is folded away, the kitchen smells
of warm, comforting home cooking. It smells of love.
I have just finished baking some #healthytreats for
my family that I know will nourish them and make
them smile.
It’s one of those days when I’m so grateful that I
made the choice to stay at home and put my energy
into what matters. One of those days when I know
that making the effort to prepare healthy meals for
my boys was the right decision. It’s a day when I’m
so happy that I have been the one on the floor playing
trains with them.
It’s one of those days when I know that everything
I have been through, I have been through so I could
get to be right here today, in my beautiful home
with my three beautiful men. There’s nothing like
a #grateful day. I hope you’re having one, too. And
if today’s been tough, know that tomorrow can be
better #loveandlight

Elle snapped another selfie to go with her post. I am
grateful that my new lip filler has settled, she thought, but
didn’t type. I am grateful that Cate is getting paid to play trains with the boys. I’m grateful for Organic Annie’s home- delivery brownies. I’m grateful it’s not the day when Adrian’s girls come over to sulk at me. I’m grateful I am not Feral Abi.
‘Come on, boys, it’s bathtime!’ Elle called through the
kitchen door.