‘His Ladyship’ is Now Available for Pre-Order.

Get Stevie’s new book for just 99p! Pre-order now, using the link on her post.

Stevie Turner

My new LGBT novel, ‘His Ladyship‘, reached the Longlist of the 2021 Page Turner Awards and is now available for pre-order at the special price of just £0.99 /$0.99 until October 24th, when the price will rise to £1.99/$2.99:

You can find ‘His Ladyship’ here. Thanks to Phil Huston for the edits and Teagan Geneviene for the cover.

Norman Wicks is 57, overweight, and has diabetes. He is sick of his life. He has never left home, had a girlfriend, or held down any kind of job. The only friends he has are online, as he prefers to stay in the comfort zone of his bedroom. His devoted 92 year old mother Agnes waits on him hand and foot.

Norman has a secret he has kept hidden from the world for the majority of his life, but now he is desperate to bring it out into the…

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Free Book Just for Today

Hurry! Get your free copy of Stevie’s book. One day only! And please don’t forget to give it a fair review after reading.

Stevie Turner

My family drama ‘Barren‘ is free just for today. It was published in October 2020 and so far has one 5 star rating:

Esme Jones and husband Aron have completed their family and have twin sons Jared and James. Esme’s older sister Eden Reece is desperate for a child, but a hysterectomy has put paid to any chance of her becoming a parent. When Esme offers herself as a surrogate, Eden and husband Billy are delighted. However, when Esme notices the first fluttering of life inside her and a scan reveals that she is carrying a girl, both sisters are not prepared for the outcome which threatens to tear the fabric of the whole extended family apart.

As always, if you enjoy reading it, please consider leaving a review.

Apart from the usual blog hop on Monday, I’ll be winding down on writing blogs next week. We’ll be…

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Blogtour: A Fear Of Heights by Tallis Steelyard

Today I have the opportunity to feature the new book from Jim Webster. The latest adventure from Tallis Steelyard in Port Naain.

‘A Fear Of Heights’.

And now a brief note from Jim Webster. It’s really just to inform you that
I’ve just published a full Tallis Steelyard novel. Yes the rumours are true.
Tallis Steelyard, the man who considered jotting down a couple of anecdotes
to be ridiculously hard work, and considered the novella form to be the very
pinnacle of literary labour, has been cozened into producing a novel.

In this novel, recounted by Tallis Steelyard in his own inimitable manner,
we discover what happens when the hierarchy plots to take control of the
Shrine to Aea in her Aspect as the Personification of Tempered Enthusiasm.
Will the incumbent be exiled to a minor fane in the far north? Will Tallis
end up having to do a proper job? Does ordination and elevation beckon for
Maljie?
This story includes the Idiosyncratic Diaconate, night soil carts,
Partannese bandit chieftains, a stylite, a large dog and some over-spiced
food. On top of this we have not one but two Autocephalous Patriarchs and a
theologically sanctioned beggar.

Available both for kindle and in Paperback.

Here is the story that accompanies this blog tour.

Quiet and restrained.

Had I not been there I might not have believed it, but I was there so I do.
Maljie, sounding entirely sensible, commented that now some of the better
grocers and provisions merchants were delivering into her part of the city,
it no longer made sense to go into the market to do one’s own shopping. It
must be mentioned, if only in passing, that she never in point of fact
intimated that it was because she was growing old or any nonsense like that.
It was just so much more sensible and convenient. Especially when we were at
that time of year when there is often so much illness about.
So every week she or Margarita would send a mendicant with their order, and
every week the cart would pull up outside their house and deliver. It was
all most civilised and the system is becoming more popular generally,
especially amongst those of a certain age.
Obviously I have many patrons who will do something similar. They will have
their maid do the shopping. Cook will give the maid the order and the young
woman will go out and purchase the appropriate items. If the order is large,
they may send a footman or gardener with her. If it is very large, the
assumption is that the emporium will deliver. Other household items are
dealt with in much the same manner. The housekeeper will send a maid out to
purchase black lead, spare collars, soap, buttons and a couple more dickeys
for the lady’s husband. Indeed the only thing Madam will purchase in person
are her own clothes.
The advantage of the system my patrons use is that the maids who do this job
are both experienced and motivated. Those who do the deliveries for various
emporia often lack both qualities.
A friend of mine called Cragan has in the past been employed to do the job
delivering. In all honesty he didn’t enjoy it. Firstly there are the lists
provided by the customer. The shopkeeper will give the list to the most
junior member of staff. This person will go round the shop and the warehouse
at the back to put the order together. If the list is clearly written, and
the junior employee confident in their literacy, this system can work well.
Even ignoring misspellings and hand writing, (caster sugar and castor oil
should not be easily confused) there are the times when one runs headlong
into the sink of ignorance which is the natural state of being of some of
the juniors Cragan was forced to work with. It was he who was forced to
explain to a customer why the individual who had packed the boxes had
substituted female sanitary products for the crème brûlée she had ordered.
But even if the junior employee is assiduous, efficient, and well-motivated,
(an apparently rare combination) the best you can hope for is that they will
send you what you have put on the list.
One of the best juniors Cragan has ever worked with pulled him to one side
and commented that the customer had wanted one sack of porridge oats. The
sacks they sold were so heavy that Cragan could just about lift them, with
care. On the other hand the shop did have smaller bags such as you could
hold in one hand. Did Cragan have any idea which his customer might prefer?
Cragan remembered that she was a widow woman, living alone. He took the
small bag, only to be sent away with a flea in her ear as she had been
buying the porridge oats for her son, who was responsible for providing
breakfast for a score of workmen engaged in clearing away the fire damaged
ruins of a house nearby.
But perhaps the biggest disadvantage of this system is that you never spot
the real bargains. For example, Maggin’s will regularly get in some Colbig
wheels. Made in Colbig, a town far to the east across the mountains, deep in
barbaricum. These are cheeses a yard across and a two hand spans deep, but
they are initially made in thinner plates. With the ‘Traditional,’ the
bottom plate will be smeared with honey berries, then the middle plate
placed in top, again smeared with honey berries, and then the top plate put
on, the whole garnished with roasted and salted nuts, bound tightly in linen
and left to mature for a year or so. You can also purchase the “Black Seal”,
which is made in exactly the same manner but is matured for three years. The
‘White Seal’ is made without rind and is matured under nut oil for a full
five years.
Finally there is the “Demon’s Breath”, made with Devil’s Pomatum in place of
honey berries and fire nuts in place of the usual selection, then matured
for six months. Apparently attempts to get it mature for longer have
resulted in cases of spontaneous combustion.
I confess I rarely shop in Maggin’s. This is not because of any doubts as to
the quality. Maggins purchase only the best. Produce can travel considerable
distances to get there. But there is the matter of cost. To buy a Colbig
Wheel would cost me perhaps two or three month’s earnings. Yet I was walking
past as they were unloading a dray. Two young fools, racing their
Commendable Monocycles, went too close to the horses, spooking them. The
horses set off, showering cheeses the length of the street. I helped sort
out the mess and sweep up. Indeed I recognised the two injudicious
monocyclists as a pair who had caused chaos as they plunged through the
dancers of the Shrine of Aea in her Aspect as the Personification of
Chastity as the girls processed along Ropewalk in a terpsichorean fashion.
It took my cousin Thela nearly an hour to sort the girls out, disentangle
costumes, and generally restore hair and make-up. Thus I had no inhibitions
about mentioning their names to the manager. On the strength of that old
Maggin himself gave me a full Black Seal. A fair number of the other wheels
were put on sale at a substantial discount because the layers had split
apart due to the impact. There was a queue of buyers all that day.
But back to the point. One has to consider the carters who do the
deliveries. Cragan commented to me that in his father’s day it was a most
genteel trade. One would take out a cart load and would take all day
delivering. During this time you could find yourself drinking tea, putting
up shelves, or helping the maid move furniture into the spare room. Now, the
service has become fashionable and you are always rushing. You set off with
a full cart and have barely an hour to make the deliveries before they want
you back at the emporium for the next cart load. He commented that if ever
they organise chariot racing at the race course, the first generation of
charioteers will all have learned their trade driving the grocery delivery
carts.
Still, Maljie stuck with her sensible decision. In winter I could see how
the disadvantages were outweighed by the advantages. Indeed she behaved with
absolute decorum for several months, venturing out rarely and even then
acted in a sober and reserved manner as befits a lady of her maturity.
It was only recently that I chanced to meet Maljie and a number of her
friends in the street. I was alerted to the fact that something was
happening by the music I could hear. As I waited there was a procession of
fiddlers, bladder pipe players, and dancers. Leading the dancing was a
kimono clad Maljie. She and her collaborators had tankards filled with raw
spirit flavoured with juniper berries. As they danced down the street
towards me, Maljie waved her tankard in my direction. “Hello Tallis, it’s
spring.”

You can find out more about Tallis and his world by visiting the main blog.
https://tallissteelyard.wordpress.com/

Random Acts of Kindness Day + Free Book!

Kindness, and a FREE BOOK! If you get your free copy, don’t forget to give it a fair review after reading.

Stevie Turner

Did you know that Wednesday 17th February is ‘Random Acts of Kindness Day’ in the UK? Even if you’re not in the UK you could spread some positivity today and make somebody smile, give a donation to charity, or you could even collect somebody’s medication who is self-isolating… the possibilities are endless.

I’ve already done my bit this morning. A woman I’ve often seen while walking around the village said hello as we approached each other from different directions. We started to chat, and in the end I had recommended my dentist to her as she was looking for a dentist who carries out sedation. She was overjoyed to have found just what she was looking for by stopping to pass the time of day with a relative stranger. She couldn’t thank me enough, and went on her way quite happily.

So… I’ll carry on with the kindness today. I…

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Blogger’s Books: Stevie Turner

I am very happy to feature the latest book from author and blogger Stevie Turner.

Here is her synopsis of the new novel.

Esme Jones and husband Aron have completed their family and have twin sons Jared and James. Esme’s older sister Eden Reece is desperate for a child, but a hysterectomy has put paid to any chance of her becoming a parent. When Esme offers herself as a surrogate, Eden and husband Billy are delighted. However, when Esme notices the first fluttering of life inside her and a scan reveals that she is carrying a girl, both sisters are not prepared for the outcome which threatens to tear the fabric of the whole extended family apart.

‘Barren’ is released on the First of October, and is available to pre-order now. For the whole of that month, it is on offer at just 99p/99c.
It is also free on Kindle Unlimited.


For readers outside of the UK, here is the Amazon.com link.

Stevie is a very engaged member of our blogging community.
To find out more about her writing, or to visit her blog and social media pages, please follow the links below.

Website: http://www.stevie-turner-author.co.uk/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/StevieTurner6

Blog: https://steviet3.wordpress.com/

Pinterest: https://uk.pinterest.com/stevieturner988/

Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Stevie-Turner/e/B00AV7YOTU/

Email: stevie@stevie-turner-author.co.uk

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7172051.Stevie_Turner

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UClWFuLQHDqGmOM3KbKJ-Z0g

Blogger’s Books: Jack Eason

I have featured Suffolk-based blogger and writer Jack Eason here before, with his excellent novel ‘Race Against Time’. Now I am happy to get the chance to promote his latest book, which is on sale for just 0.99p, and free for Kindle Unlimited users.

This is the synopsis.

A science-fiction story with a difference.

Apart from chronicling the ultimate change of life for a select few individuals, it questions all accepted ideas by closeminded academics that leave no room for alternative thinking by some among their number.

It is also about a woman born ten years after the Romans left Britannia forever and a man born in the twentieth century.

Add to that everything that is currently environmentally wrong with our planet today, and you have all the necessary ingredients for an enthralling tale.

You can find out more about Jack and his other books by following the links below. Please try to find time to support another one of the great writers in our community.

https://whizbuzz.wordpress.com/2020/01/14/the-magisters-jack-eason/
https://www.facebook.com/jack.eason.18?fref=ts

Here is a link to Jack’s blog, where you can find out more, and read his many interesting articles.
https://havewehadhelp.wordpress.com/

Author Tim Baker: A Free Book!

I am very happy to bring you news of a FREE Kindle book for everyone, not just KU members, from Tim Barker. This is available to download through Amazon free of charge until the 29th of March. So you have four more days to take advantage of Tim’s great offer. Use this link.

Here is a synopsis. It looks good! Something for us all to read during the current stay at home period.

(If you get a copy, don’t forget to leave a fair review on Amazon after reading it.)

Kurt’s life has been one dead end after another since he was convicted of attempted rape thirty years ago.
Inspired by a dream, he thinks he’s finally found the way to Easy St. and it starts with kidnapping Vicky, the woman who had him arrested all those years ago.
Surely Vicky’s husband, wealthy investment consultant Jimmy, would pay handsomely for the safe return of his wife.
But Kurt soon learns that even Easy Street has its share of pot holes.
After the road trip from Hell, Kurt arrives in Florida to learn that Jimmy is planning to leave Vicky and may not be interested in saving her. On top of that Jimmy’s mysterious mistress wants her own piece of the action.
To make matters worse, Kurt gets on the wrong side of a biker, a bookie and an ex-Navy SEAL who seem determined to make the rest of his life as painful as possible.
Meanwhile, Danny Putnam is enjoying life in Florida. He owns a successful dive shop and has a very comfortable lifestyle until he starts having bizarre dreams about his murdered wife and a beautiful woman he has never met. Suddenly his comfortable life becomes very complicated.

Living the Dream by Tim Baker, is both humorous and action packed. All of the characters in this novel have a plan and a few dreams. As their lives begin to intersect, they find out that dreams really can come true, for better or for worse.

If anyone else is offering free or good value books during this time, let me know.

Book Review: Turncoat’s Drum

This title was ‘suggested’ to me by Amazon. It is set in a period I am interested in, and on offer at just 99 p for 377 pages, I thought it was good value too. This is book one in series of six, by the same author. It forms part of the ‘Shadow On The Crown’ set of novels, all set during the turbulent years of The English Civil War, from 1642-1651.

Like many similar books in the genre, it takes a series of real events, then peoples them with characters who actually existed, mixed in with fictional ones who mainly drive the plot. In this case, we see the effects of the Civil War in the Western sector of the conflict through the eyes of the opposing generals of the Royalist army, and the Parliamentary rebels seeking to overthrow the monarchy. Also individual soldiers and cavalrymen on both sides, as well as the officers and noblemen drawn to conflicting causes.

Civilian life is dealt with in detail too. The ravaged countryside, looting, stealing of food and livestock, and destruction of property during bitter sieges and larger battles. Women on both sides hoping for love or marriage in the midst of war, strumpet camp-followers trailing both armies selling their bodies for financial gain, and unscrupulous businessmen seeking to profit from selling goods to both sides at inflated prices.

And the ‘Turncoat’ of the title is reflected too, with some soldiers willing to change sides after losing in a battle, or for the chance of better pay, or more loot.

This book has an old-fashioned style, but that is a good thing. It reflects life in 17th century England well, a time when landowners demanded obedience from their workers, mothers sought good matches for their sons and daughters to retain their wealth and inheritance, and bitter differences in religious practices often lent a ruthless fanaticism to the battles. There is a softer side too. Relatives and old friends discovering each other on the opposite side during a skirmish, families divided by adherence to one cause or the other lamenting the events that brought them to this.

Historical accuracy is first rate, as all the engagements between the two sides actually happened. Then there is the description of camp life, or the hardships of defending a town under siege. The weapons used, the uniforms worn, and the tactics employed by the opposing armies, all are related in authentic detail. And when it comes to the full-on battles, the author has done his homework, with completely believable blow-by-blow accounts of 17th century warfare, from cavalry formations, to the ghastly wounds inflicted by the weapons of the time.

This is my kind of book, and I lapped it up. I have also just bought the second book in the series, which follows on from the last page of this one.

If you like your history bloody, bawdy, and completely true to life, then this is a book for you.

Here is an Amazon link. (It is still just 99 p on Kindle.)

Book Review: Human Flesh

I read a review of this on Olga’s blog, and I was intrigued enough to buy a Kindle copy straight away. Here is a link to her review.

#TuesdayBookBlog Human Flesh by Nick Clausen (@NickClausen9) A scary novella that asks us some uncomfortable questions #RBRT

It is another of those ‘short books’, at just 114 pages. But it was only 99 p, so I’m not complaining.

I started reading it that night, and finished it the next night. I was quite keen to get to the end, even though I did guess the outcome almost from the start.

This book is variously described as ‘chilling’, horrifying’, and other scary words.

But I have to say from the start that it neither scared me, nor chilled me. There is nothing new here, and better horror stories are available, no doubt.

However.

This short book is all about the unusual and compelling construction. There is no narrative, as every chapter is brought to us via the blog entries of one of the main characters, or a transcript of police reports, emergency phone calls, and answerphone or text messages exchanged. This is never confusing, and always clearly explained.

I really enjoyed this approach, which reminded me of the best-selling novel ‘Three’, which I reviewed earlier this year. In fact, I doubt this story would have worked at all in a conventional format, and because of that, I am sadly not rushing to read any of the author’s other work. Even with such an unusual construction, such a well-used theme has to have something different to make it grab the reader. In my case, that element was lacking.

So, to synopsis.

Two children, a brother and sister, are sent to spend two weeks with their elderly grandfather in a remote district of Maine. (Yes, Maine. But forget Stephen King)
He is acting strangely, and has been inconsolable since the death of his wife during a particularly bad winter.

One of the children blogs about what happens, and a friendly neighbour helps them both, when things get weirdly out of control. We get treated to wind spirits, Native American legends, and some definite cannibalism.

You get the idea.

That winter is also exceptionally bad. The extreme weather sets off a chain of events that nobody could have suspected, and that leave everyone with terrible facts to face.

With no spoilers, that’s about it. Full marks to the author for packing so much into so few pages, and extra marks for the cool construction.

But I am happy that I only paid 99 p for the experience.

If you think you would like it more than I did, here’s an Amazon link.