7 days to go… and a sneak peek

(Click image to read sample)

This time next week, I will be a published author. I started to write Black Wood in January 2013 and was lucky enough to secure an agent in June 2013, which led to my book deal in May 2014. Back then, the release date seemed so far off, but now that it’s nearly here, I can’t quite believe it!

I’ve loved the journey… I’ve learnt so much about the process of writing, editing and the business of publishing, and I’m still learning. But for now, I will celebrate this huge milestone by letting you know that you can now read a sample! This is the first time that any of this work has been available publicly, so I really hope you enjoy it!

Please let me know in the comments 🙂

…and if you do, then stayed tuned for next week’s ebook blog tour… details below:

You can still pre-order the ebook for 59p – but the price will rise soon, so if you like the sample, get in quick!

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And just to remind you that it’s not all about me… Coming up later this week:

The Venus Trap by Louise Voss #review

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 17.27.38With Valentine’s Day on the horizon, what better than to share my thoughts on a fantastic psychological thriller of obsession and unrequited love?

Here’s the blurb: 

Jo Atkins’ sixteenth year was disastrous: she lost her dad, was assaulted by a stranger, and then had her heart broken. For the last twenty-five years, she’s believed that nothing could ever be as bad again.

She was wrong.

Now, still smarting from her recent divorce, pretty, self-effacing Jo finally gathers the courage to enter the dating scene. She meets Claudio, whom she vaguely remembers from her youth, but after a few dates decides he’s creepy and politely tells him ‘thanks but no thanks’.

But Claudio has no intention of letting her go.

Instead of never seeing him again, Jo wakes up sick and terrified, handcuffed to her own bed. She is given a week to prove her love for Claudio—or he will kill her.

Claudio, it turns out, is a man with nothing left to lose…

And what did I think? Well, firstly, thank you to the author – the lovely Louise Voss – and the publisher for the review copy via Netgalley.

This is the first of Louise’s solo novels I’ve read, and I did wonder how it would differ from those written with her co-writer, Mark Edwards. I’m not sure what comparisons can be made, other than to say that both authors produce very well written, engaging stories that pull you in and keep you there. The main difference, I’d say, is that this is much more of a woman’s book, in many ways (not to say that men couldn’t learn a thing or two from it about what NOT to do!) In The Venus Trap, there is a lot of talk of past dating disasters and the main character, Jo, narrates these in the midst of her current biggest disaster – a date that has led to her being kidnapped and imprisoned in her own home by a man she vaguely remembers from school.

Her tormentor tries to torture her into loving him.

As things unravel, we start to work out what has made him act like this, and through the schoolgirl diaries of Jo, we get a beautiful, if tragic, story of her past loves, her difficult teenage years and what has shaped her into the woman she is. Voss has a knack for capturing the teenage angst with brilliant, often dark humour. There are many excellent turns of phrase and proper laugh out loud moments, in both teenage Jo and adult Jo’s accounts, and the dark side of her current situation is neatly and believably handled. This is one of those books that you’ll want to recommend to your friends, so much of it is relatable – especially for anyone who has suffered the perils of the dating scene.

I can’t recommend it highly enough.

ALSO… as The Venus Trap is released on 24th February, which is the same date as the eBook release of Black Wood, Louise and I will be collaborating and chatting over at LizLovesBooks.

Don’t miss it!!

21 days to go…

Screen Shot 2015-02-03 at 13.18.48I can barely sleep. I am suffering from nausea, shaking and abject terror. The fear has struck! And no, it’s not a side-effect of doing dry January (note: I didn’t do dry January… everything in moderation. Except at book launches.)

Yes, the time has come, well, almost. The eBook of BLACK WOOD comes out in 21 days. TWENTY ONE DAYS. 504 hours. Less, actually, as anyone who has pre-ordered on Amazon will get the book auto-delivered at 00:00… in under 492 hours.

The palpitations have started.

Please send calming thoughts.