Wednesday, 1 November 2017


Don't you all just love a blank page, a blank screen. Just waiting to be filled with words ideas and a lot of love? The start of a new project. Do you develop plotline first or do you just flow and go where the ideas take you? Do you escape and become lost in the drama and find you need time to ajust back to the 'real world' after a long writing session? We write and our words become polished by our fabulous editors, but doesnt predictive text drive you bonkers? We write with a passion and passion and predictive text really do not mix.

When you are writing one idea and another comes zooming into your head to the point of distraction that you excuse yourself from a writers meeting and escape to the loos and only emerge after next novel is complete. Got to act fast haven't you? Before that idea bursts, never to be thought of again. When you are in a situation or you people watch and know that would be great to write about, so you napkin grab and write it down, only for it to be added to the hundred napkins on the passenger seat of your car.

When you think as a writer its a good idea to write a blog and free write without the safety net of an editor, laying yourself bare and raw for all to see. Like seeing into your soul.

When in real life you are an honest person and people tell you that you lie for a living.

When you see an actor saying your words and the acting is so good you don't believe you ever have written them.

When you have written a fecking amazing review and you see it in a book, only to see someone else put their name to it.

When you have a story you have to keep deep inside as there would be so much trouble if you let it out. So you do anyway but change all names, places and juggle events.

When your favourite pen runs out.

When you use that old type writer. Just for fun.

When you procrastinate and write silly lists.

Writing                      THE END

Saturday, 28 October 2017

A Clean Sweep by Audrey Davis

Relationships are at the heart of this story and each of the characters are at a crossroads of change in their lives. Each chapter we learn a little more of each character individually and slowly we learn how they are all connected.

The story is very fast paced with lively words from page one that are so full of spark and energy they explode off the page with enthusiasm, sweeping the reader along in their energetic almost hyperactive way, that is thoroughly entertaining.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Meet the Author - Anne Allen

My inspiration for The Betrayal, Book 6 in The Guernsey Novels.

The Betrayal’, like the 5th book, ‘Echoes of Time’, is dual-time, with chapters set during WWII and the present day. The events I describe during the Occupation are based on fact, but the characters are fictional.

The first inspiration for this story was the deportation of Jews from Guernsey by the Germans during WWII. There was only a handful on the island and not long after the Occupation in 1940, they were singled out for more onerous treatment than other islanders. Eventually they had businesses and property confiscated before, in 1942, being sent to concentration camps. None returned. It is now considered a shameful blot on the island’s history, but the then local government was powerless to resist their German ‘masters’.
On a brighter note, the second inspiration was the artist Renoir. He spent the summer of 1883 in Guernsey painting numerous versions of a particular bay, Muelin Huet, amongst others. At least one of these paintings is in a museum. I joined these two known events to produce ‘The Betrayal’.
Leo Bichard is a prominent businessman whose French grandmother was a Jew, although both his parents were Christians. His family have never mentioned their ancestry but, unfortunately for Leo, someone tells the Germans, and he is deported with other Jews to concentration camps and does not return.
A matter of days before the Germans arrive, Leo sends his beloved wife, Teresa, and child to England and he stays to defend his property and stand alongside his fellow islanders. However, the Germans soon impose severe restrictions on the population and Leo is forced to close his business and months later his house is taken over by soldiers and he has no choice but to live with his housekeeper in her small cottage.
When Teresa returns after the war, she finds her home wrecked and the family’s valuables, including an extensive art collection, missing. One of those was a treasured family painting by Renoir. Learning she is a widow, she returns heartbroken to live with her family in England.
In 2010 Nigel and his twin Fiona, locals who have lived in London since university, return to Guernsey and buy a long-established antiques shop. A year later, during a refit, they find a hidden stash of paintings, including what appears to be a Renoir. Days later, Fiona finds Nigel dead, an apparent suicide. Refusing to accept the verdict, a distraught Fiona employs a detective to help her discover the truth.
Searching for the true owner of the painting brings Fiona close to someone who helps to heal her broken heart. But there are important questions to answer before she can lay her brother's ghost to rest —
Who betrayed Leo? Who knew about the stolen Renoir? And are they prepared to kill – again?

Anne Allen lives in Devon, by her beloved sea. She has three children and her daughter and two grandchildren live nearby. Her restless spirit has meant a number of moves which included Spain for a couple of years. The longest stay was in Guernsey for nearly fourteen years after falling in love with the island and the people. She contrived to leave one son behind to ensure a valid reason for frequent returns.
By profession Anne was a psychotherapist but long had the itch to write. Now a full-time writer, she has written The Guernsey Novels, the sixth having been published on 20th October 2017.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017


Life can be funny at times. I don't mean funny ha, ha, just funny at times. We never know what, or where it may take us, or the time it may take away. I find myself with not much free time of late. I like to look after my clients and be fully involved to take them and their books to the next level. I like to discover fresh and new talent to let loose on the writing world and this blog is one of the ways in which I find just what I am looking for.

Lately I have been spending time with a very special person and have been homing in on their talent and watching the way the world sees them in a different light. Given the opportunity they have a talent so great, they can go on to achieve nothing but good things. Unfortunately like a lot of us who work in media they have had their share of knock backs. But we all know from  knock backs there can be come backs and I know in the future this will be 'one to watch' They will go on to great things.

My little cottage in beautiful North Yorkshire is calling to me, my desk all set to prepare for my new ideas, to flow and turn into presentable words. My editor knowing I will be keeping them very busy over the next few months and knowing I have the backing of my wonderful co-writing team.

So off I go into the unknown. Sadly leaving me no time for reviews over the next few months. New projects await. Pencils need sharpening and in a world with no predictive text holding me back, a story will surface with new names and places and faces. Covering and completing the pages.

See you all soon

Nikki Bywater

Christmas at Bay Tree Cottage by Linn B. Halton

A cosy Christmas read, built around the renovation of a cottage. A cottage where once hope and dreams for the future were tragically put on hold, when life did take a whole different direction for the cottage owner Elana and her young daughter. When handsome and young Luke steps in to help with the work, foundations are built on to form feelings that can no longer be ignored and with a little help from a Christmas spirit, can hearts also be restored to let a little love in?

I loved this book from beginning to end. Pure escapism and if I had the chance I would have read it all in the one sitting. Just simply one of those perfect reads that you can get so involved with the characters that you can get completely lost in the book and forget about everything for a short while and take a break out of your own life and become captivated in someone else’s. Leaves you feeling good.

Christmas at Bay Tree cottage is out on the 27th October pre-order now on

Sunday, 17 September 2017

Girl in the Castle by Lizzie Lamb

Henri finds herself in a whole heap of trouble, she heads for the Highlands of Scotland to escape and Castle Tearmannair is as faraway to hideaway as anyone could get. She is set to work in the castle library, cataloguing the contents of its ancient and dusty book collection. Looking for items of value, to help save the castle crumbling from age and decline, while waiting for the dust to settle on her own problems.

Employed by an eccentric laird in what in every way this remote place should be a quiet retreat, she doesn’t count on meeting his handsome son and setting her heart on adventure and new discoveries, she may treasure forever.

Lizzie Lamb knows how to tell a good tale and her mix of romance and adventure surrounded in a scottish setting is the perfect place to meet a wonderful bunch of characters and with a picturesque flow of words that flourish and flow off the pages, the reader is transported right into each and every scene. 


Saturday, 16 September 2017

Monday, 28 August 2017

The Big Dreams Beach Hotel by Lily Bartlett

After living her dream life in the Big Apple, Rosie unexpectedly finds herself back in her home town of Scarborough, where she is now running a run-down old-fashioned Victorian hotel. The hotel is filled with its own community of permanent residents who are used to the laid-back and gently atmosphere of the hotel. A far-cry from the hustle and bustle of New York City.

All is set to change when the hotel is bought by two eccentric American brothers, who even though have never been to see the hotel decide to make some very big changes and transition manager Rory comes in to oversee the renovation.

With a cast of colourful characters and a lively and witty narration to the book you are in for an entertaining read. I like the way the story has the theme of two story-lines from the past and present running parallel along side each other. A perfect beach, or by the pool holiday read. I also have a soft spot for Scarborough as it is my home town and having spent time myself in New York, I think Scarborough is just as charming and charismatic and you get that feel from the book. 

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Killer Affair by Rebecca Chance

Their two worlds could not have been further apart. Lexy is a popular reality star who lives her life to stay in the limelight. She has the looks, confidence and charisma to stay at the top of the fame game, she is everything plain-Jane Caroline is not. When a lucky break presents itself to blogger Caroline, which takes her right into the heart of Lexy's life. Caroline begins to feed off Lexy's put downs towards her and digest them into a drive to take all that Lexy has. Caroline becomes fuelled by a whole new confidence and setting her sights high, and a mighty rivalry and revenge is ready to put in play and sparks will fly.

Racy, steamy and sizzling scenes there is no holding back from author Rebecca Chance on this front and by heck how good she writes them... HOT! Along with a sensational storyline that is enticingly entertaining from beginning to end. The sparks flying between the two leading ladies you can feel exploding out of the pages as the story reaches its climax. NOT TO BE MISSED.

Killer Affair will be available to buy from the 27th July 2017.
Click here to pre-order from Amazon

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Nikki Bywater

We are artists.

We feel things more deeper, and we see things much brighter...

Saturday, 8 July 2017

Born to Dance by June Tate

Bonny Burton was born to dance. It was everything she ever wanted and her chance to dance and become a professional has come. Bonny gets her big break that can only lead to bigger and brighter things, her talent can take her all the way to the top. Soon her heart is also dancing when well known boxer Mickey enters her life and she feels she is living her dreams. However just as soon as opportunity comes a knocking, it can cause you to fall and throw a few gangsters in with the glamour and glitter, along with crime and corruption in the mix and you have a knock out of a story.

Another great read from author June Tate. 

Friday, 30 June 2017

The Secrets of Villa Rosso by Linn B. Halton

Ellie has found her perfect soul mate in husband Josh, for the past couple of decades they have enjoyed a happy married life and have two children, however when Ellie is called away on an unexpected business trip to Italy and visits the enchanting Villa Rosso, she meets Max and feels strangely drawn to him and that they may have a deep connection. Knowing she is in love with her husband she struggles to understand her feelings towards Max. Is it possible their connection is from another time and place, or even another life?

I always like author Linn B. Halton books for there subtle hint of the paranormal and this creates another dimension in a lot of her stories and with a touch of mystery too surrounding this story, you will be pulled into this story straight away and the story will captivate you to the very end. Linn B. Halton knows how to tell a good romance story that will tug on your heartstrings.

The Secrets of Villa Rosso will be out on the 21st July 2017.

Saturday, 24 June 2017

The Second Chance Café in Carlton Square by Lilly Bartlett

Emma a busy mum of twins, takes a chance of turning a disused pub into a café to help give young people a second chance at turning their lives around for the better, by offering them traineeships for them to learn all aspects of working in a café and also help provide a warm and friendly atmosphere for customers.

A nice and easy read which is fast-paced, lively and very entertaining and the story will make you laugh out loud in places. There is a great mix of characters and it is a story that does not over do it on the drama, but is a down to earth realistic, everyday sort of plot line. This is the second book in the series, but it can be read as a stand-alone.

Saturday, 17 June 2017

The Dockland Girls by June Tate

Set in Southampton in the 1940's, three strong and independent women form strong bonds and friendship through the hardship of the aftermath of the Second World War, picking up the pieces and trying to overcome the trauma of their past in order to make their lives better for the future.

What I like about June Tate books is that they are not only historically correct and well researched with the facts of the era she sets her books in, but the way the characters and their situations are so real and true to life that you just cannot help but become emotionally involved with the characters. June Tate knows how to tell a good story. I highly recommend any of June Tate's books and there is a large back catalogue to chose from. So that's your summer reading sorted!

Monday, 12 June 2017

Exclusions of Emotions by Nikki Bywater

 Remember everything is just a dream away, we write so anything is possible. Things sometimes seem tough and there seems to be no way out, but never give up and never stop fighting for what you believe is right.

 Run away for a while and take some time out. Get lost in a good book. Take off on a plane and explore the world. Take off in your mind and explore. Find a place, a quiet place and reflex. Scream when you need to scream. Cry when you need to cry. Get angry and shout at the injustice of it all. Try and see why? How did it come to this? Why can't you see? How could you? But you did...

They blame the government.They blame cutbacks. They blame the system, pushing the responsibility onto my shoulders, my shoulders are strong. They leave it to me to pick up the pieces. The mess they have made. The life they almost destroyed. For they are weak and we are strong. They don't listen and don't allow opinion. Know they are wrong and we know they have wronged.

You hurt and we can take away the hurt. We will help you find a way through this. Look ahead and not behind. Keep focused and have a focus. Believe in yourself and have faith in others. Lose your trust in people and find it in others. Keep searching. You dust yourself down now and get yourself back up. Make time and take time. Smile, laugh, love life.

Knowing that people do care and we are always here to listen and to be a helping hand. From your first breath to my last. Nothing will tear us apart. We have love and there will always be love.

Saturday, 10 June 2017

Silver Threads The Memory House Book #5 by Bette Lee Crosby

This is just a really sweet story about Drew who after tragic circumstances finds his whole world turned upside down. Drew is a totally devoted dad to daughter Brooke and he finds it a struggle juggling fatherhood and his job and after a further dangerous and difficult situation presents itself, Drew decides to move them both to a new town for a fresh start. This leads them to the magical and mystical Memory House. A place were kindred spirits seem to all end up who are in need of a helping hand.

This is just an amazing read, at first it felt more like a crime and suspense type thriller of a book, but it soon showed to be an emotional romantic and moving read, which pulls you right into the heart of the story. Each page is beautifully written and before I knew it I was almost at the end of the book. I have not ready any more books in this series and that did not matter, the book works as a stand-alone story. If I could give this book more than five stars, I would.

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Fur Coat & No Knickers by Adrienne Vaughan

From reading the catchy title of this book you will be captivated into a wonderfully told collection of short stories. Words beautifully created, with realistic situations and characters. Touching tales at times, with twists and turns that are emotionally moving.

I enjoyed each and every word of this book. There is a poetic interlude between each story, making it so easy to read the book in one sitting. I especially liked the link in poetry to the authors other book titles too as I think all Adrienne Vaughan books are just fabulous.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

A Fabulous Cover Reveal From Author Suzy Turner

Aphrodite's Closet

Agatha Trout didn’t even know she had a Great Aunt Petunia, so imagine her surprise when she finds Petunia left her a corner shop in her will. But it’s not just any old corner shop—it’s a corner shop that needs something unique, something the town of Frambleberry has never seen before. Influenced by her confident best friend, Coco, Agatha is soon convinced that there’s only one way to go: an adults-only sex shop.

While some of the townspeople are clutching their pearls in horror, others are open to the new experiences this shop offers. But not everyone in Frambleberry is convinced. Will the women soldier on in the face of violent threats or will their fears get the best of them—and their new venture—before it even gets off the ground? 


About the author
Born in England and raised in Portugal, Suzy lives with her childhood sweetheart Michael, two crazy dogs and a cat.
Shortly after completing her studies, Suzy worked as a trainee journalist for a local newspaper. Her love of writing developed and a few years later she took the job of assistant editor for the region's largest English language publisher before becoming editor of a monthly lifestyle magazine. Early in 2010 however, Suzy became a full time author. She has since written several books: Raven, December Moon, The Lost Soul (The Raven Saga), Daisy Madigan's Paradise, The Ghost of Josiah Grimshaw, The Temporal Stone, Looking for Lucy Jo, We Stand Against Evil (The Morgan Sisters), Forever Fredless,  And Then There Was You, Stormy Summer and her latest, Aphrodite’s Closet.
In 2015 she launched her popular 40+ lifestyle blog which continues to go from strength to strength, while just over a year later, she trained to become a yoga instructor. Suzy continues to write, blog and teach yoga in one of Portugal’s loveliest settings - the Algarve.

Lifestyle Blog: 

Monday, 8 May 2017

A Fabulous Cover Reveal From Author Linn B. Halton

The Secrets of Villa Rosso:
Escape to Italy for a summer romance to remember
When Ellie Maddison is sent on a business trip to Southern Italy, she's reminded why she loves her job – set amongst rolling vineyards and rich olive groves, the beautiful Villa Rosso is the perfect escape from her life back home. But what Ellie isn't prepared for is the instant connection she feels to the estate's director Max Johnson, or the secrets they share that are as intertwined as the rambling vines that cover Villa Rosso.

It's not long before Ellie finds herself entangled in the history of the place, trying to understand the undeniable effect Max is having on her. As their relationship grows, what will Ellie discover about this idyllic villa and those who have walked through its doors?

What started as a simple work trip will change Ellie's life forever.

Available to pre-order now in eformat and paperback
eformat release date: 21 July 2017; paperback 5 October 2017
Published by: Harper Impulse

Author bio:
Bristol-born Linn B Halton lives in the Forest of Dean, in the UK.
"I'm a hopeless romantic, self-confessed chocaholic, and lover of strong coffee. For me, life is about family, friends, writing ... and house renovation! Oh, and the occasional glass of White Grenache..."
An Amazon UK Top 100 best-selling author with A Cottage in the Country in November 2015, Under the Stars and A Little Sugar, A Lot of Love also became best-sellers in 2016 & 2017. Linn's novels have been short-listed in the UK's Festival of Romance and the eFestival of Words Book Awards. Linn won the 2013 UK Festival of Romance: Innovation in Romantic Fiction award.
Linn writes chick lit, women's contemporary fiction and psychic romance for Harper Impulse, Choc Lit and Endeavour Press.


It isn’t just the sunshine and the electric blue sky, but the musical calls of the countryside that reach out to me. A chorus of low-level sounds play like a soft melody in the background. It’s breathtakingly beautiful and I feel like I’m watching a re-run of a favourite film. I could stand here for a long time simply taking in the detail and with each sweep of my eyes noticing something new.
Spinning around I look back at the villa, taking in the rustic beauty of the stonework and the pale orange-red hue of the sun-bleached roof tiles. This is, quite simply, unreal. It’s a little piece of heaven and, so far removed from my daily life that it’s hard to believe this is on the same planet. The sheer scale of the landscape literally steals your breath away. I’m a mere speck, small and insignificant in the grand scheme nature is presenting to me. But rather bizarrely, it doesn’t feel alien in anyway at all. The vastness isn’t overwhelming, but strangely comforting.
I walk back to a cluster of wooden tables surrounding a small fountain and take a seat. As I dive into my bag to extract some sunglasses, I hear a polite cough and look up at the face staring down at me.
‘Mrs Maddison? I’m Max, Max Johnson. Welcome to Villa Rosso.’
I stand, automatically plastering a pleasant smile on my surprised face as recognition kicks in. I know this man, I mean, I’ve met him before. At least I think I have, but there’s nothing similar reflected back at me, only a warm smile. The sort of smile that radiates out from mysteriously deep, hazel eyes. We shake hands. He’s younger than I expected, probably in his early forties and tall. Six foot something that’s for sure, because I feel he’s towering over me, but then I am seated.
‘I’m sorry to disturb you. I just wanted you to know that I’m here at your disposal whenever you are ready to begin. Would you like me to fetch you a coffee so you can sit for a while and enjoy the view?’
Although I knew he was British, his tan and elegant demeanour lend an air of cosmopolitan sophistication. I would not have been at all surprised if he had been Italian. He’s hovering politely and I still haven’t answered him…

Friday, 5 May 2017

May 2017

Hi all

 What a busy month it is in the book world, lots of new books and parties to attend. I am just climbing back into my much needed reading chair after having to take a short break to deal with the real world. It's funny what life can throw at us when we least expect it. Sometimes the shock of a change can take some getting over, especially when it can so badly affect a person we really care about. But we are fighting back now and it does make me very sad to think this whole situation was caused by a lack of communication. I cannot tell you how frustrating that is for someone like me who deals day in day out with words.

It so wonderful when authors who go on to MAKE IT BIG still keep in touch with little old us. We do like a good catch up over coffee every now and again. It's also great to keep working with the same authors and build up friendship and acquaintances over the years. Always great to meet new authors and writers too. I love being a part of the book community and being part of the buzz of a new book.

Over the passed few weeks I have also been away writing. I have also been working on a new children's book with my daughter Chloe. She is eighteen now and a keen artist. We have been storyboarding some ideas and she is enjoying the process of watching her ideas take shape. I know she will finish in her own time and produce something really good.

My son Liam is now writing... Politics are his thing and he is very much in the know. Unlike me who needs to read up on this subject. Cannot let my boy down! So proud hhe now too is a published writer. Well done son!

So the weather is getting hotter... We all hope and I know you all like to read in the sun, so hopefully in the next few weeks we will be able to add some good books into your to read pile.

Keep smiling

Nikki and the team at BOOKS4U

Crime in the Second World War: Spivs, Scoundrels, Rogues and Worse by Penny Legg

An excellent and intriguing collection of true life stories of the crimes that went on during World War II. Using photographs and well researched information, from small petty crimes, to murder and many more, author Penny Legg captures in detail the crime cases, the people involved and how they were solved. We see the dark side of the war with crime rate up by fifty-seven percent between 1939-1945, with blackouts and air raids providing the spivs, scoundrels, rouges and worse, the perfect opportunity to take advantage of the situation, for them to carry out their crimes. The book can be used for reference purposes to dip in and out of, or if you are like me and find this a fascinating subject, you will have read it cover to cover before you know it! A great and knowledgeable source of information, that I learnt so much from.

Saturday, 22 April 2017

Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong by Gina Kirkham

Constable 1261 Mavis Upton takes us back through her Police career to share hilarious highlights from her career, from starting as a trainee, to her probation, through to being a Police officer. Mavis may be a fictional character but some of the stories are based on true life events.
The stories will have you laughing out loud and are hugely entertaining. There are lots of mishaps and calamities and it does go to show there is nothing as Queer as Folk! This is a book that oozes charisma and character.
There are many laughs but the more serious side of policing are touched upon too, and Mavis personal loss in her private life that will touch your heart, and have you reaching for the tissues. This is one of those books you will not be able to put down a very interesting, and enjoyable read.

This fabulous and funny read published by Urbane Publications comes out on May 18th and is available to pre-order now at

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Nikki Bywater On Speaking Out and Speaking Up

Words can come easy at times, they flow and grow into a perfect scene. Taken from a dream our imaginations allow us to run free and flow into our deep and darkest inner mind and we create. We invent. We have a cast of characters ready to reveal their inner secrets, feelings and emotions in a heartbeat. Anything can happen along the way. We can also take it all away in a moment. We breathe life into our characters and take readers with us along for the ride, into the escapism of our worlds.

Writing about true life events. An event that changed our life forever. Not so easy is it? Personal feelings and knowing truth and trust must be respected at all times. Just how much to reveal too. Do you kiss and tell all. Do you hold back, speak out or go away quietly and say nothing?

Sometimes some things need to be said, stories have to be told. Those words can offer comfort and help others, help others to know they are not alone. To express ones feelings through the written word often can bring comfort at the darkest of times. It can be a source of revenge for some to express feelings, feelings of pain and disappointment, feelings of despair. A chance to express your point of view, give you a chance to speak and express yourself. A chance for closure. There is nothing worse when you meet a poor communicator, especially when it is during a time when good communication really counts. When a decision out of your control can come at a high cost for someone you know best.

Sometimes people can charge ahead without knowing the full facts and jump to the wrong conclusions. You can try and speak and try to get them to listen to what you know, but if they are unwilling to listen and judge a situation on what and how they see it. The spoken word means nothing. They send you free falling into the abyss and the impossible. When we write, we can write ourselves out of any situation, in real life we are powerless and must surrender to fate. Our path was written out, we knew were we were going, but in that split second everything changed and anything could happen.

One person's wrong decision. One person's will and way. Their way, their choice. With no ending in sight and no knowing what will come next there is a word that now stands up, stronger than the rest. HOPE. Hope is always there and hope can bring change for the better. Sometimes out of the hopelessness of a situation, hope will be there, followed by love, kindness and understanding things can slowly turn around. Now we are heading towards an ending. Now we can tell our story from the beginning and it will all make sense.

So we get our pen and paper and we make a start. We follow our heart and we do it because it is the right thing to do. To be outspoken and to make a stand. To fight for what is right and what needs changing. To turn something bad into something really good...

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

After She's Gone by Sheryl Browne

Genre: Thriller
Release Date: 21st Feb 2017
Publisher: Choc Lit (Death by Choc Lit)
He’s killed your child and kidnapped your wife. What would YOU do?
There’s evil and then there’s Patrick Sullivan. A drug dealer, pimp and murderer, there are no depths to which Patrick would not sink, and Detective Inspector Matthew Adams has found this out in the most devastating way imaginable. 
When Patrick’s brother is shot dead in a drug bust gone wrong, the bitter battle between the two men intensifies, and Matthew finds it increasingly difficult to hold the moral high ground. All he wants is to make the pimping scum suffer the way he did … the way Lily did.
But being at war with such a depraved individual means that it’s not just Matthew who’s in danger. Patrick has taken a lot from Matthew, but he hasn’t taken everything – and now he wants everything.



‘Oi, you can’t park there!’ a police officer yelled as Matthew mounted the kerb, careering his car haphazardly to a stop on the pavement.
His gut twisting violently inside him, his head reeling, Matthew ignored him, ramming his door open instead to scramble from the car and set off at a run.
‘What the …?’
Vaguely aware of the man giving chase, Matthew kept going, attempting to push past another officer closing in in front of him, only to be caught from behind.
‘Whoa. Come on, mate, you need to get back.’ Taking hold of his arm, the officer behind attempted to steer him away. ‘There’s been an accident up ahead. We need to clear—’
‘Shit, it’s Adams.’ The officer in front intervened.
‘Who?’ The man still hanging on to his arm asked.
‘Detective Inspector Adams,’ the officer in front supplied warily. ‘Let him through.’
Stumbling forwards as the guy behind relaxed his grip, his legs like dead weights beneath him, Matthew forced himself on, bypassing other officers, who now stood respectfully aside.
His wife was with her. Matthew swallowed back a hard knot in his throat. She was crouched over her, holding her impossibly small hand in her own. She didn’t look up. Rebecca kept her gaze focussed on their daughter. His daughter. Matthew felt something break inside him as he took in his baby’s injuries, her broken body, the slow trickle of lifeblood pooling beneath her, staining the drab, grey road crimson.
Please don’t. Matthew prayed hopelessly as he moved closer. Please don’t do this. The world seeming to slow to a stop around him, the use of his legs finally deserting him, Matthew dropped to his knees at the side of the child he’d loved with every fibre of his being ever since he’d first glimpsed her tiny form on the monitor.
‘Hey, Tigerlily,’ he said, his voice cracking as Lily’s eyes fluttered open. Wide blue eyes, once crystal clear with the innocence of childhood, they were filled with confusion and pain as she looked pleadingly up at him, silently begging him, her daddy, to fix it. His heart turned over as her lips parted. She wanted to speak. She couldn’t. Please don’t try to speak, baby. Tears he couldn’t hope to hide streaming down his face, Matthew leaned towards her, brushing her blood-matted, beautiful blonde hair gently away from her face. ‘Daddy’s here, darling,’ he choked. ‘It’s going to be just fine.’
Lies. Lies. He screamed inside. It was going to be fine. It could never be. He couldn’t fix it. How could he let his little girl go knowing he couldn’t? Cradling his baby gently in his arms, Matthew’s heart splintered inside him as he watched her life ebb away.


They were taking her away in an ambulance. What use was an ambulance? Panic engulfing him, Matthew took a faltering step towards it, and stopped. He couldn’t. Couldn’t ride with her, watch as the warmth drained from her body, her baby-soft skin turning blue and cold. Life fucking extinct.
‘Matthew!’ Rebecca called to him as, his chest heaving, Matthew turned away. Terrified of what he might see in her eyes, he couldn’t turn back. This was his fault. He should have been there. He’d promised to drive them to the cinema. He’d known Patrick Sullivan might make good his threat. He should have been there! A potent mixture of grief and rage broiling inside him, Matthew recalled his last encounter with the sadistic piece of scum with sickening clarity. Sullivan’s expression hadn’t altered when he’d informed him his brother had been an unfortunate casualty in a drug bust gone wrong. Matthew had been surprised. Sullivan’s hatred of him went way back since they were kids in school. Guessing he would hold him personally responsible, Matthew had been bracing himself for Sullivan to reach across the table and attack him right there in the prison interview room. Instead, Sullivan had reached casually for a cigarette. Lighting up, he’d glanced down and scratched his forehead slowly with his thumb.
‘How’s that pretty young wife of yours, DI Adams? Pregnant again, isn’t she?’ he’d enquired eventually, blowing smoke circles into the air as he’d looked back at him. ‘Give her my regards, won’t you?’
Sullivan had then leaned forwards, a twisted smirk on his face, his eyes as black as molasses and swimming with pure evil. ‘I would do it myself, but I’m a bit busy … banged up … in here.’
It had been a threat. Innocent to all ears but Matthew’s, it had been a direct threat. And now, still sitting pretty in prison with a cast iron alibi, Sullivan was no doubt congratulating himself on a job well done, imagining that he’d also succeeded in warning Matthew off pursuing him once he got out. Wrong, you bastard.

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Heartache, humour, love, loss & betrayal, Sheryl Browne brings you edgy, sexy, heart-wrenching fiction. A member of the Crime Writers’ Association, Romantic Novelists’ Association and shortlisted for the Best Romantic e-book Love Stories Award 2015, Sheryl has several books published and two short stories in Birmingham City University anthologies, where she completed her MA in Creative Writing.
Recommended to the publisher by the WH Smith Travel fiction buyer, Sheryl’s contemporary fiction comes to you from award winning Choc Lit.
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And now my review:

Detective Inspector Matthew Adams finds his work and private life collide with a bang after a terrible family tragedy. Matthew must fight through his emotions and stay on the right side of the law to face his nemesis the evil Patrick Sullivan. Overcome with grief and with those he loves dearly in peril. A deadly came of cat and mouse pursues and they can only be one outcome. Matthew must act and think fast before time runs out and he loses everything.

An intense thriller that is full of suspense and keeps the reader completely in the driving seat of a roller coaster of emotions. Fast paced and the personal and not just the police side of the book, gives the reader an emotional attachment to the characters, the heartache and the pain, the frustration and despair, sweeps you along in the tension and heat of the moment. This is the first in the DI Adams series and I am very much looking forward to seeing how the characters grow and develop over time.

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Making Tracks by Ian Harding

A wonderfully worded collection of poems from simple observation of life and nature, blended with everyday thoughts of life and love. A remarkable look through the lens of life and capturing it essence beautifully. I read this book in one sitting and I enjoyed every minute and moment of it.