Rewind, recap: Weekly update w/e 18/11/18

Wowsers … If I was confused before then I am completely flummoxed now. If this posts turns out okay then believe me when I say it is more by luck than judgment as, in my wisdom, I have decided to trial the new WordPress editor for creating my post and I have absolutely no clue what I am doing. I am guessing that this change is imminent whether we want it or not, so I prefer to be an early adopter giving me the opportunity to cock it all up on posts that don’t really matter – like this one…

It is talking to me about blocks and gizmos and thingies and odd settings buttons … Basically it means that I can’t find anything. You will also find that this post is being brought to you in ‘rainbow vision’ as I’ve just found a little gadget thingy that allows me to change the colour of my blocks. This will undoubtedly mean I will spend far longer than is necessary writing this post as I will be sitting here colouring in. Such fun.

Survived week two at work. Week two already!!! Slowly finding my feet and I have managed to build up a little flexi time so that all my bookish events and holidays will be happily covered by paid leave rather than taking unpaid time off. And I still finish an hour earlier every day than I used to. A fraction over two hours earlier on a Friday. Got to love it. More’s to the point, according to my Fat-Bit, my resting heart rate is the lowest it has ever been – even compared to the three months I spent sat on my bum doing the square root of naff all. I am loving this no stress life I now lead. More relaxed, more free time …

This is doubly important now as I have just booked to head back to Crime and Publishment for 2019. For those of you who don’t know what this is, it is a weekend crime writing workshop/retreat which takes place just outside of Gretna, organised by the lovely Graham Smith. My write up on last years event can be found here. This year looks set to be another cracker with workshop sessions led by authors, Caro Ramsay, Zoe Sharp and Doug Johnstone, as well as a session on polishing your pitch from Stan of The North Literary Agency. Cannot wait.

Are the colours mashing your swede yet? Mine too. Can’t stop though. Well … I was being good on the book buying front. That is at least until Louise Beech mentioned that her latest book, Call Me Star Girl was available for kindle preorder on Amazon. I did my usual ‘Orenda Books’ search, just because I was waiting on at least one other book that I knew had already been announced and I hit the jackpot … Eleven preorders later I now have the pleasure of knowing that, on ebook release day, I will be getting my copies of Call Me Star Girl by Louise Beech; The Courier by Kjell Ola Dahl; Welcome To The Heady Heights by David F Ross; The Ringmaster by Vanda Symon; Breakers by Doug Johnstone; Worst Case Scenario by Helen Fitzgerald; Turbulent Wake by Paul E. Hardisty (super excited about this one); Wolves at the Door by Gunnar Staalesen; A Modern Family by Helga Flatland; The Closer I Get by Paul Burston; and The Home by Sarah Stovell. Not all covers have been revealed yet, so I can only show you a few, but the books are all there if you want to be very early and very prepared.

Netgalley wise I had just the one title this week – Red Snow by Will Dean. I’ll be joining the tour on this one in January so it is a must (and I really wanted it so I don’t care :p) Book post, just the one title again too. This time it was Claire Allan’s Apple of my Eye which again, I am on the tour for next year. Two fab titles, proving once again how absolutely lucky I am as a blogger. I will never take that for granted.

Books I have read:

Attend – West Camel

A mesmerising debut novel with echoes of Armistead Maupin and a hint of magic realism…

Under their feet lies magic…

When Sam falls in love with South London thug Derek, and Anne’s best friend Kathleen takes her own life, they discover they are linked not just by a world of drugs and revenge; they also share the friendship of the uncanny and enigmatic Deborah.

Seamstress, sailor, story-teller and self-proclaimed centenarian immortal, Deborah slowly reveals to Anne and Sam her improbable, fantastical life, the mysterious world that lies beneath their feet and, ultimately, the solution to their crises.

With echoes of Armistead Maupin and a hint of magic realism, Attend is a beautifully written, darkly funny, mesmerisingly emotive and deliciously told debut novel, rich in finely wrought characters that you will never forget.

Well I wasn’t expecting that. Or this rather. Not sure what I was expecting when I picked up this book to read, but what I was greeted with was a story which completely engaged me, one that drew me in with beautiful and poetic prose and a story of three very different people, leading very different lives, who become intertwined in a truly magical way. This is not a story for those seeking fast action thrillers, for me this was more akin to the likes of Sealskin or The Bird Tribunal, two books which I absolutely loved. You can order a copy of the book here, and I’ll be reviewing as part of the tour in December, assuming I can find the right words.

Presumed Guilty – Jane Isaac

Accident or murder? 

The first victim – a prominent local councillor, killed in a hit and run ‒ could be either, but the next bodies leave no doubt. A twisted killer is at large. And he’s not finished yet. 

DC Beth Chamberlain, Family Liaison Officer, has to support the victims’ families, but before she can solve the crimes in the present, Beth needs to uncover the secrets of the past. 

Meanwhile, the killer has her in his sights… 

I loved the first book in the Beth Chamberlain series, After He’s Gone, and book two, Presumed Guilty, is every bit as thrilling as its predecessor. Beth is back on family liaison duties after a local councillor is found dead. Who killed him and why is what the police have to find out. The writing and tension in this book will keep you hooked right up until the last page. Out in December, if you’d like to preorder, it is available here.

That was it again for me – two books. Between Nano (up to well over 30k words now), work, and trying to keep up with my exercise so that I don’t turn into a sloth, I’ve not had that much time for reading. I’m still on plan though to all being well, I’ll be increasing my reading speed soon. Busy week on the blog – recap below (assuming I can get it to work in this new formatting …) (p.s yes I am playing with text colours too …)

Her Last Move – John Marrs

And So It Begins – Rachel Abbott

The Growing Pains Of Jennifer Ebert – David M Barnett

The Lingering – SJI Holliday

The week ahead is quite quiet, but do stop by for reviews of Good Samaritans by Will Carver; How to Be Brave By Louise Beech; For Once In My Life by Colleen Coleman and The Aro Street Girls by Lyndsay Campbell.

So that is it from me. Hopefully this post does make sense and looks okay when you read it. If not, blame wordpress … I’m off for another relaxing week at work. Have a fab week all.

Jen

7 thoughts on “Rewind, recap: Weekly update w/e 18/11/18

  1. Glad to hear that your new career is satisfactory on many levels Jen.
    You are a braver woman than I. Can’t seem to work up the nerve to try the new WordPress editor.
    Please post a kitty picture with your next update. I’m a cat person without a cat, so have to live vicariously. 🐈

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