Q&A with David Jackson #HopeToDie

Hi everyone,

So, Hope To Die has been on my TBR and I am working my way to it, but I didn’t reach it in time for publication. But I do get to have David Jackson answer some questions for you guys today! 🙂

About the book:

Hope to Die

On a bitterly cold winter’s night, Liverpool is left stunned by a brutal murder in the grounds of the city’s Anglican Cathedral. A killer is on the loose, driven by a chilling rage.

Put on the case, DS Nathan Cody is quickly stumped. Wherever he digs, the victim seems to be almost angelic – no-one has a bad word to say, let alone a motive for such a violent murder.

And Cody has other things on his mind too. The ghosts of his past are coming ever closer, and – still bearing the physical and mental scars – it’s all he can do to hold onto his sanity.

And then the killer strikes again . . .

Buy the book:

Hope To Die by David Jackson


Q&A with David Jackson:

Jackson, Dave

Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I think I have a split personality, and both halves of me may sound a little unsettling. By day I play the mad scientist, where I breed, evolve and mutate computer programs. By night I play God, populating fantasy worlds with people who are forced to do my bidding (mwahahaa!)


How did you get into writing? Is it something you’ve always wanted to do?

No, it never crossed my mind to be a writer until a few years ago. I’ve always loved reading, though, and writers’ lives fascinate me. One day, feeling bored, I thought I’d give it a whirl. I began with short stories, and that’s when the bug took hold and refused to let go.


Where do you get your inspiration from?

Everywhere and everyone. There are certain writers I admire, and they influence my style, but the inspiration for stories is all around. I think it’s a question of looking at the world in a certain distorted way. You take life as it is, and then you knead it and twist it and stretch it until it becomes the stuff of a story.


How would you describe your writing to anyone who hasn’t read your books?

Fast paced, but with the focus on character. I do my utmost to make my characters feel real to the reader, and that goes for minor characters too. I have also been told that my writing is very cinematic and visual. (That’s a hint to any TV companies reading this).


Do you think social media helps in regard to promotion and drumming up publicity for a new book?

Yes, I think it can. There is only so much a lone author can do, but the right push from a publisher can really help to spread the word. Especially important these days are the book bloggers and reviewers, whose enthusiasm can create quite a buzz.


What’s your most favourite thing about being an author?

I think it has to be the enthusiasm of fans. There aren’t many things we do in life that stirs up fascination in others, but being an author is one of them. There is nothing nicer than receiving an email or a comment from someone who has read and loved one of my books.


What’s your least favourite thing about being an author?

Idiotic reviews.


Where do you see your writing career 5 years from now?

I try not to have unrealistic expectations. I don’t expect to be rich or famous, but I’d like to see a steady progression. I’ll be more than happy if people are still enjoying my books and I still enjoy writing them.


What’s next for you?

You’re the first to ask, so you get the scoop! I’ve just signed a contract with Bonnier to produce two more Cody books. ‘Hope to Die’ is only just coming out, but I’m already really excited about book 3 (more to the point, so is Bonnier!)

*EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEK!!!!!!!* I am so excited!!!!


I often wonder are authors voracious readers. Do you read much, and if so, what kind of books do you enjoy?

I don’t think you can be a half-decent writer unless you read a lot. I read all kinds of things, fact and fiction. To give you an idea, I’m currently reading ‘Behind Her Eyes, by Sarah Pinborough, but I’ve also recently read a history of World War II, a biography, a book on Shakespeare, and a James Bond novel.


Can you tell me your all time favourite book, or if you have to, your top 5?

I think it would have to be ‘Cop Hater’ by Ed McBain. McBain’s 87th Precinct novels were a huge influence on me, and the whole series occupies pride of place on my shelves. ‘Cop Hater’ is not the best in the series, but it was the first, and so deserves singling out for that reason.


Have there been any books you’ve read that you wish you had written?

There are so many, but perhaps ‘The Big Sleep’ by Raymond Chandler. The writing is superb, of course, but what I really love about the Marlowe books is the humour, which can be a tricky thing to pull off. A wonderful example is at the start of the novel, where Carmen says to Marlowe, ‘Tall, aren’t you?’ and he replies, ‘I didn’t mean to be.’


When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?

As I mentioned above, I have a day job, so with that and the writing, very little of my time is spare. What there is of it, I devote to my family.


Have you any hobbies that aren’t book-related?

I love a good walk, a good meal, and a good movie. A perfect day for me is one that contains all three.


What’s your favourite holiday destination?

Again, so many, for very different reasons. I think I’d have to plump for Canada, which seems to have everything and does it in a civilized way.


Favourite food?

Fish, particularly shellfish. I make a mean prawn curry.


Favourite drink?

A nice silky-smooth pint of bitter.

Big thanks to Dave for answering my questions today. It’s always great having you on the blog!

A Tapping at my Door by David Jackson


*Blog Tour* Dog Fight by Michael J. Malone

Hi everyone,

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Dog Fight by Michael J. Malone and I get to share a guest q&a with you all today. First though, here’s all of the bookish info!

About the book:

Dog  Fight.jpg

Kenny O’Neill, a villain with a conscience, returns in a hard-hitting thriller of exploitation, corruption and criminal gangs. When Kenny’s cousin, Ian, comes to the aid of a fellow ex-squaddie in a heap of trouble, he gets caught up in the vicious underground fight scene, where callous criminals prey on the vulnerable, damaged and homeless. With Ian in too deep to escape, Kenny has no option other than to infiltrate the gang for the sake of his family. Kenny is an experienced MMA fighter, as tough as they come, but has he found himself in the one fight he can never win?

Click HERE to get your copy!

About the author:

Michael J Malone.jpg

Michael Malone was born and brought up in the heart of Burns’ country, just a stone’s throw from the great man’s cottage in Ayr. Well, a stone thrown by a catapult, maybe.

He has published over 200 poems in literary magazines throughout the UK, including New Writing Scotland, Poetry Scotland and Markings. His career as a poet has also included a (very) brief stint as the Poet-In-Residence for an adult gift shop. Don’t ask.

BLOOD TEARS, his debut novel won the Pitlochry Prize (judge:Alex Gray) from the Scottish Association of Writers and when it was published he added a “J” to his name to differentiate it from the work of his talented U.S. namesake.

He is a regular reviewer for the hugely popular crime fiction website http://www.crimesquad.com and his blog, May Contain Nuts can be found at http://mickmal1.blogspot.com/

He can be found on twitter – @michaelJmalone1


We never start on a question – this is your chance to introduce yourself and tell us about Dog Fight.

Cool. The blurb runs thusly – Kenny O’Neill, a villain with a conscience, returns in a hard-hitting thriller of exploitation, corruption and criminal gangs. When Kenny’s cousin, Ian, comes to the aid of a fellow ex-squaddie in a heap of trouble, he gets caught up in the vicious underground fight scene, where callous criminals prey on the vulnerable, damaged and homeless. With Ian in too deep to escape, Kenny has no option other than to infiltrate the gang for the sake of his family. Kenny is an experienced MMA fighter, as tough as they come, but has he found himself in the one fight he can never win?


What do we need to know about Kenny O’Neill?  Dog Fight is not his first appearance, does he have baggage?

Our Kenny first appeared in Blood Tears alongside his bezzie-mate, Ray McBain and he has appeared in every one of those novels. He took centre stage in Beyond the Rage and does so again in Dog Fight.

As the blurb says, he’s a villain with a conscience. Kenny is a lot of fun to write, he says and does things I wouldn’t dream of, nor would I (mostly) want to.

As for baggage? A shit-load. That’s an official psychological term by the way. You just have to read the books to get the detail.


It gets a bit “punchy” in Dog Fight, have you a history of getting into scrapes and scuffles which helped with your research? Rumour has it that Ayrshire is the Dodge City of Scotland.

Hell, no. I’m the biggest wimp you’re ever going to meet. I did karate for about 6 months as a teenager and learned all about “control”: striking without contact. And I practised this assiduously, while other people were actually hitting me, the bastards, so I gave it up. For research I read some books on MMA fighting, watched some clips of fighting techniques on Youtube, and I also watched some actual fights on satellite TV – through my fingers. These guys are brutal.

As for Ayrshire being the Dodge City of Scotland? My lawyer says I should reply with No Comment. There are restraining orders in process.


If you could pick one highlight from your writing career to date which memory brings the biggest smile to your face?

Aww, man – so many, and you want me to pick one? I will say that each time I get the first copy of one of my books, fresh off the press, that makes me smile bigly (to paraphrase a certain orange-tinged fellow).


Which book has made the best transition to film or a tv series?

Too many to choose from, and on a different day my answer would change, but today I’ll go with the first four series of Game of Thrones. After that the pacing went to shit. It’s still way ahead of most of the stuff that makes it onto our screens, but the more recent series could have been edited with more care.


And the obvious follow up – which of your books would you want to see make its way into film? You get to pick one and explain why that was your choice.

The Guillotine Choice. It’s set in the 1930’s and 40’s and is based on a remarkable true story about a hugely inspiring man from Algeria called Mohand Kaci Saoudi who submitted to a 40 year sentence on Devil’s Island rather than have his cousin guillotined by the colonialial French power. It would make great viewing – it has resonance with the state of the world today and is a demonstration of the power and strength of the human spirit when faced with potentially overwhelming adversity.


What was the last film you saw at the cinema?

Logan. It was excellent – and a lesson to all the other superhero film-makers that having a few exciting set-pieces isn’t enough. You need an actual story if you really want to engage the viewers.


Lots of discussion on whether the next James Bond and also the next Doctor Who should be a woman.  Do you agree (and if you do – who should get the roles)?

I’m not a big fan of either of these franchises so I haven’t spent much time thinking about it. However, I do think it’s important that we have a wider representation of humanity in our popular media – and Tilda Swinton would make an awesome Doctor Who.


What book(s) are you reading at the moment?

I just started an advance copy of Dennis Lehane’s next book, Since We Fell – out in May. He’s edging into psychological thriller territory here and I can’t wait to see what he does with it. I’m a huge fan of his work.

And nestling in my kindle is an advance of Lucy Cameron’s debut novel, Night is Watching. I’ve heard big things about this book and can’t wait to get stuck in.


You’ve hit your daily word target and saved some seriously good content into the WIP. How do you clear your head and unwind?

Walk the dog, go to the gym, binge-watch something on Netflix, eat too many sugary snacks. Not necessarily in that order.


What advice would you give to your 15 year old self?

Where to start? I was SO self-conscious and it was such a waste of energy. People look at you for like a second, dismiss you and then go back to inhabiting a world with their ego at its centre. Mostly, you don’t mean shit to them.

When in company and struggling for something to say ask the other person a question about them. If you are interested you become interesting.

You won’t always be this skinny. The cakes will catch up with you.

The things that come easy? Work harder at them, then you get a career you enjoy.

Embrace your love of cinnamon. Add it to everything. Especially porridge.

Brussel Sprouts. The curse of your childhood. You’ll never get over it. Not even garlic will make them palatable. You will continue to barf at the sight of them for the rest of your life.

You will develop a healthy disregard for the celebrity obsessed culture that is coming your way. Try to spread this particular view to as many people as possible. In fact make it your life’s work.

And finally, if my young self is going to pay attention to any of this it should be: ignore everything you’ve just read – the most effective lessons are the ones you learn for yourself.


What is the best job you have ever had?

This one. Writer. 100 per cent the best job ever.

Follow the blog tour:

Dog Fight blogtour.png

First Monday Crime Spotlight: Erin Kelly Q&A

Hello fellow crime lovers,

It’s nearly time for the monthly First Monday Crime event run by Goldsboro Books, and I get to share my first First Monday Q&A with one of the panelists, Erin Kelly. You can catch that further down in the post.

Here’s all of the information on website for the panelists for the forthcoming First Monday Crime event taking place on March 6th:

The brilliant Erin Kelly will be telling us all about her belter of a novel He Said/She Said and then former RSPCA officer Daniel Cole – who has well and truly let the dogs out with Ragdoll, a novel so enticing it’s being published in 35 countries – will be revealing all. Did we mention the wonderful Julia Crouch and her chilling new novel: Her Husband’s Lover? She’ll be with us and you won’t want to miss her, nor MJ Arlidge who will be in one of our hot seats, talking about Hide and Seek – the sixth in the awesome DI Helen Grace series. It’s going to be a tough job to keep that lot in line but Barry Forshaw – aka “Mister Noir” – will be making sure our fabulous four sparkle and entertain.

First Monday Crime will be taking place in Browns – The Judges Court (82-84 St Martins Lane London, WC2n 4AG United Kingdom) from 6.30-7.30pm.

Buy your First Monday Crime tickets by clicking HERE!

About Erin Kelly (via author website):

I am the author of the critically acclaimed psychological thrillers The Poison Tree, The Sick Rose and The Burning Air. In 2013, The Poison Tree became a major ITV drama starring MyAnna Buring, Matthew Goode and Ophelia Lovibond. It was a Richard & Judy Summer Read in 2011, and was longlisted for the 2011 CWA John Creasy (New Blood) Dagger Award. The novel has been translated into eleven languages.

I was born in London in 1976 and grew up in Essex. I read English at Warwick University and have been working as a journalist since 1998, writing for newspapers including The Sunday Times, The Sunday Telegraph, the Daily Mail, the Express and The Mirror, and magazines including Red, Psychologies, Marie Claire and Elle. I continue to write about health, lifestyle, women’s issues and parenting.

I live in north London with my husband and daughters.

About He Said/ She Said:


In the hushed aftermath of a total eclipse, Laura witnesses a brutal attack.

She and her boyfriend Kit call the police, and in that moment, four lives change forever.

Fifteen years on, Laura and Kit live in fear.

And while Laura knows she was right to speak out, she also knows that you can never see the whole picture: something is always hidden… something she never could have guessed.

Out in April, click HERE to pre-order your copy!

Q & A with Erin Kelly

Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I live in London with my husband and two daughters. After I left university I was a journalist for years, writing for women’s magazines. I’ve been writing fiction for a decade now and I also teach creative writing.


How did you get into writing? Is it something you’ve always wanted to do?

I can’t remember a time I didn’t know this would be my career. I never had a plan B. Being a journalist helped as I was used to earning my living from words.


Where do you get your inspiration from?

If you need to ask, you wouldn’t understand.


How would you describe your writing to anyone who hasn’t read your books?

I’ve written six psychological thrillers, and also wrote the novelization of Broadchurch. They’re quite literary and gothic. I love stories about long-buried past incidents that come back and haunt people just when they think they’ve got away with it. My biggest influences are Daphne du Maurier, Barbara Vine, and Patricia Highsmith.


Do you think social media helps in regard to promotion and drumming up publicity for a new book?

Up to a point, but you have to be careful not to spend too much time online. It fries your brain.  


What’s your favourite thing about being an author?

The work. I genuinely love spending hours on my own in my imagination.


What’s your least favourite thing about being an author?

The RSI. Seven hours a day at a desk is not good for you.


Where do you see your writing career 5 years from now?

I’d like to keep writing books I’m proud of, and maybe branch into screenwriting too.


What’s next for you?

I’m writing another psychological thriller, about a Victorian asylum.


I often wonder are authors voracious readers. Do you read much, and if so, what kind of books do you enjoy?

Yes! I still read a couple of books a week; fiction in all genres, and I’m increasingly drawn to memoir and non-fiction. I get sent a lot of psychological thrillers but the more I write them, the less inclined I am to read them; it feels too much like work. My favourite recent books have been Instrumental by James Rhodes and The Essex Serpent by Sarah Perry.


Can you tell me your all time favourite book, or if you have to, your top 5?

It would be more like a top 100 but here are a few from that list: The Secret History by Donna Tartt, A Fatal Inversion by Barbara Vine, Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh, Fingersmith by Sarah Waters, On Beauty by Zadie Smith.


Has there been any books you’ve read that you wish you had written?

All of the above!


When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?

Slumped motionless in front of Netflix.


Have you any hobbies that aren’t book-related?

I like to go running to clear my head.


What’s your favourite holiday destination?



Favourite food?



Favourite drink?


Huge thanks to Erin Kelly for taking the time to answer my questions! 🙂

Q & A with R. J. Bailey- Safe From Harm

Hi everyone,

Today I have a little Q & A with R. J. Bailey, author of Safe From Harm. Here’s the bookish info first!

About the book:

Sam Wylde is a Close Protection Officer to the rich and powerful. In a world dominated by men, being a woman has been an advantage. And she is the best in the business at what she does.
She takes a job protecting the daughter of the Sharifs – Pakistani textile tycoons – but she realises that there is more to their organisation than meets the eye and suddenly she finds herself in danger.
Now she is trapped underground, with no light, no signal and no escape. Dangerous men are coming to hurt her, and the young charge she is meant to be protecting. With time running out, can she channel everything she knows to keep them safe from harm…?

Click HERE to order your copy!


Q & A with R. J. Bailey


How did you get into writing?

Well, as many people know by now, “R J Bailey” doesn’t exist. It is a pseudonym for two people, who happen to be married. One of us is an established author, the other a newcomer, so it seemed fitting to give this new venture a fresh identity.


Where did the author’s name come from?

Partially from our initials and partly from the fact that one of us was going to call our first dog Bailey. Then it turned out to be a girl and was re-named Bonnie. But “Bailey” stuck as a name to use somewhere down the line.


And Sam Wylde?

One of us didn’t want to name the hero at all. You don’t have to if it is first person (Len Deighton didn’t identify Harry Palmer in The Ipcress File and subsequent books – only when it came to the films was he named). But in the end we decided there had better be one (and the publishers agreed). Sam was chosen because it is gender ambiguous (like R.J. Bailey) and, following the example of Ian Fleming, Wylde was picked off from an author’s name on our bookshelf.


So how does it work, writing as a duo?

It doesn’t. Only one of us writes at a time, based on detailed character development and plot notes. Then the other revises. Then there is a re-write. And so it goes. With the first book, one of us created the hero’s character, background and job description, the other did the nuts and bolts of the plot. With book two (The Hurting Kind), it was much more collaborative, with both of us contributing to all aspects. It can be fraught, but so far the marriage is intact.


So where did the Safe From Harm plot come from?

It all started with an advert, on Gumtree, of all places, for a female Personal Protection Officer. We were puzzled and intrigued by it – we hadn’t heard of a PPO as the centre of a novel before.

“We are looking for an experienced Female CPO/PPO/Driver OR an experienced Driver with a knowledge of security for our clients in Westminster. (The candidate gender restriction is due to cultural reasons.) You will be driving the new Rolls Royce Ghost and MUST have previous experience driving luxury cars. 
SIA accreditation essential. 
You will be driving a young family with three children who are all schooled in London. 
Your contracted hours are Monday-Friday 0730-1800 during school term times, with alternate weekends (flexibility essential). 
2-3 months during the summer may be spent in Monte Carlo with possible short trips in the winter months to St Moritz. 
To apply for this role you must have a London base and be flexible to adapt to the family and their needs. 

Should you wish to go forward for this opportunity, please register your interest by Monday December 8th.”


Also the title came immediately – we both love the Massive Attack song of the same name.



What research did you do into the world of PPOs?

We spoke to a woman called Lisa Baldwin, who, despite only being in her early ‘30s, has more than a decade’s experience as a PPO. She is based in Dublin, so we flew over and bombarded her with questions – do you have to look like The Rock to be a PPO (she certainly doesn’t)? What skills do you need? Can you carry a gun? (Not in the UK). Are you firearms trained? (Yes, but abroad). What’s the worst part of the job? (The waiting around). She read the finished book and gave it the thumbs up.


And the rich people she bodyguards?

You can find a remarkable amount about people and their rotating art collections (that change automatically three times a day) and enormous garages stuffed with supercars they never drive from reading Tatler and the property pages of The Evening Standard. Also we live close to The Bishop’s Avenue and Witanhurst (the enormous Russian-owned mansion in Highgate, almost next door to George Michael’s London house), and a look at the requests for planning permission on such properties is a good guide to what people with billions spend their money on.


How did you pitch the book?

Well, one of us already had an agent, which helped. We gave him about 15,000 words and he asked us to make it a little grittier. Which is interesting, because some people are now taken aback by the language Sam uses. But she is ex-army, not an ex-nun. So then he sent out about 25,000 words, not letting on who we were. The first publisher liked it and sent it round the office, asking readers to guess whether it was a man or woman writing. About 80% went for a female author. Which we were pleased about, given it is written first person female. So, Simon & Schuster made an offer for two books, both of which are now complete.


Sam’s daughter plays a prominent role. Was that a deliberate choice from the beginning?

Absolutely. We told ourselves it would be like Modesty Blaise, but with childcare issues. And much of the domestic background is taken from the experience of having our own kids – like having to find a ridiculous amount of money for a school “field trip” to Indonesia. What’s wrong with the Lake District?


It is a very fast-moving, cinematic novel. Has there been any film interest?

A nibble from American TV, but to be honest all that is a distraction, as they either buy it or don’t. Usually don’t. So it isn’t worth stressing over. But obviously it would help the series if it had a life on the screen.


Are there more to come then?

You’ll have to ask the publisher! We hope so.

Huge thanks to R.J.Bailey for taking the time to answer these questions! I’ve got this on my Kindle so keep an eye out for my review! 🙂



*Blog Tour* Doorways by Rob Enright

Hi everyone,

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Doorways by  Rob Enright. Rob has kindly done a Q&A with me for today’s post and you can catch that further down! Here’s all the bookish info first though 😉

About the author:

Born and raised in North West London and now residing in Hertfordshire,Robert Enright has been writing for over 10 years. His debut novel –ONE BY ONE – was self published on Amazon in March 2015, receiving critical acclaim and was nominated for Books Go Social Book of the Year 2015. The violent, revenge thriller gave Rob a path into crime fiction, but the constantly embraced geek within him went a different way.

2016 sees the release of DOORWAYS (October 13th) – published by Urbane Publications – the first in the Bermuda Jones series, a dark sci-fi about an agency dealing with the threat of a parallel world. He can’t wait to write the whole series – if he can put down his Xbox controller or his Nerf Guns.


About the book:

The Otherside is located at the fringes of our world, hiding in plain sight and existing within our shadows. Shielded from humanity, the Otherside is watched over by the BTCO, a highly secret government agency. BTCO agents are the few humans who possess ‘The Knack’, a genetic anomaly that allows them to see the truth of existence.

Franklyn ‘Bermuda’ Jones is the BTCO’s finest agent, the only human to have passed to The Otherside and returned. Gifted with the ability to physically interact with The Otherside, Bermuda reluctantly stands between both worlds, pining for the life he had to leave behind and the daughter he can no longer see. Teamed with Argyle, an enigmatic Otherside warrior, Bermuda is assigned the case of a missing woman who has vanished under mysterious circumstances.

As Bermuda delves further into the disappearance, he uncovers a conspiracy that threatens to destroy the truce between two worlds…and finds himself in a race against time to safeguard humanity’s very existence.

Pre-order Doorways HERE.


And now onto the fun bit! 🙂

Bookish questions first:


Can you tell me a little about your journey to publication?


I actually didn’t pitch Doorways to Matt at Urbane Publication. I originally sent him One by One, and luckily, included one sentence about what I was writing next. He emailed me back asking for an outline of the idea for Doorways as he felt it was one he had never come across before, which was obviously exciting.


We then had a conversation and I sent him One by One and a synopsis for Doorways and he was happy enough to sign me to publish it. It all happened out of nowhere as I was expecting to go down the self-publishing route again.


What made you choose to write a dark sci-fi series after writing your previous thriller, One By One?


It was just where my brain took me. I am a massive sci-fi/comic book fan so most of my ideas are within that sort of realm. I have zombie ideas, Vampire idea’s, super hero ideas. The lot. Doorways originally started as something completely different but the evolution of the idea has lead to the current story and I couldn’t be happier. I didn’t have a set idea to change from the crime thriller genre, as there are still elements in Doorways. However, I just followed my brain and let it lead the way.


How would you describe Doorways to readers?

It’s a tricky one to pitch. Matt (Publisher) and I agreed that the genre was ‘weird’. The nearest I can compare to is it’s like a darker Men in Black. A secret agency exists that governs ‘The Otherside’, a world that runs parallel to ours and is full of danger. Humans can’t see the ‘Others’ unless they have a genetic defect known as ‘The Knack’, which the main character, Bermuda Jones, has. However his is stronger than any other human and he and his partner, a former warrior from The Otherside called Argyle, are assigned a case of people going missing from places they physically cant.


As he follows the trail and tries to piece it together, he uncovers a threat that could destroy both worlds.


Like I said….tricky.


What’s your most favourite thing about being an author?


Being able to develop ideas. Like I said, Doorways was very different in its conception. There was no otherside or monsters or ‘Knack’. It was more like limitless, where Bermuda took a medicine that allowed him to see things. The process of creating another world, their laws and how they interact with our world has been amazing.


What’s your least favourite thing about being an author?


Being expected to know every book. Haha. Seriously, whenever a question at a pub quiz starts with ‘Which book….’ I instantly get…’Rob, you’re a writer…’.


That and edits. No one likes doing edits!


Where do you see your writing career 5 years from now?


Hopefully a few more Bermuda Jones Casefiles on the shelves and doing it for a living. We can but hope….


What’s next for you?


Hopefully a successful launch for Doorways. I have no idea what to expect and I am so excited for it. The sequel is already being written so hopefully I can bring some more Bermuda to the world.


Less bookish questions:


Can you tell me your all time favourite book, or if you have to, your top 5?


My favourite series is Justin Cronin’s ‘The Passage’ trilogy. The third book, City of Mirrors is out this year and I can’t wait. The greatest post-apocalyptic series I have read. Will also throw a nod to Garth Ennis’s run on Marvel’s The Punisher. Was superb.


Has there been any books you’ve read that you wish you had written?


Besides the ones above, I would also add Shutter Island and The Martian. Brilliant reads.


When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?


I enjoy computer games and have recently started binge watching TV Shows. Enjoyed Walking Dead and am now watching Preacher. I also like keeping fit so go to the gym regularly, and have been pushing myself to jog more.


Have you any hobbies that aren’t book-related?


Exercise and gaming. 🙂


What’s your favourite holiday destination?


I am desperate to go to Japan. However I have been to a few lovely Greek islands and Egypt which were great.


Favourite food?


Anything Italian!!


Favourite drink?


Diet Coke (much to my dentists chagrin) and tea. However, I have recently taken a liking to Latte and a cheeky G&T.

Huge thanks to Rob for answering my questions! Make sure to keep up with the blog tour!


Weekly Wrap Up September 4th


So its September!!!! I don’t know about you, but I have NO IDEA where summer has gone. Our eldest started back to school this week so it’s been a busy time on the home front but I’m glad to be back in a routine if I’m honest!

I was away this week for a book launch so I am a bit behind with reviews BUT I did manage to post 7 times this week thanks to my being overly organised for once!!!

Anyway, less about me and more about the books! 🙂

Monday saw my blog tour for Graham Smith, with my review for Matching the Evidence going live. I had so much hassle with this post, it went up on 2 or 3 different occasions well before it should have! *shakes fist at WordPress* I got there eventually:

Matching The Evidence by Graham Smith Blog Tour


Next up was the blog tour for A Death in the Family by Michael Stanley. I had posted my review for this before but I got to reshare as part of the tour:

A Death in the Family by Michael Stanley Blog Tour


My FAVOURITE post also went up on September 1st, my monthly book haul. High seventies again for August. I swear these books just fall onto my kindle/into my trolley/through the letterbox. Think Harry’s persistent Hogwarts letters…. *ahem*

My name is Kate and I have  book-buying obsession and I’m not even sorry!!!!

August Book Haul


Next up, I was joined by Jane Corry in anticipation of First Monday Crime (taking place tomorrow) where she answered some questions:

First Monday Crime- Spotlight on Jane Corry


On Saturday, I had the Triple S post, and I had the lovely Mary-Jane Riley join me to talk about her Alex Devlin books:

Saturday Series Spotlight: Mary-Jane Riley

Also, my most favourite Icelander has a blog tour, so naturally I’m on it raving about his new book, Blackout. Catch my review of Ragnar Jónasson’s latest here:

Blackout by Ragnar Jónasson Blog Tour


Last, but by no means least, I was joined by Jackie Baldwin today as part of the blog tour for Dead Man’s Prayer:

Q&A With Jackie Baldwin


That’s been my week here at Bibliophile Book Club. Next week is quieter I think. I have Tom Bale’s All Fall Down blog tour, and you’ll remember I said I’m behind on reviews? I should have reviews for:

  • The Constant Soldier by William Ryan
  • The Truth About Julia by Anna Schaffner
  • Find Me by J. S. Monroe

And maybe a couple of more if I can read fast enough! 😉

How has your week been?! Let me know in the comments!


Q&A With Jackie Baldwin

Hi everyone,

Today I’m delighted to be joined by Jackie Baldwin for a Q&A in the week that her novel, Dead Man’s Prayer has been published as part of the blog tour!

About the book:

Ex-priest DI Frank Farrell has returned to his roots in Dumfries, only to be landed with a disturbing murder case. Even worse, Farrell knows the victim: Father Boyd, the man who forced him out of the priesthood fifteen years earlier.

With no leads, Farrell must delve into the old priest’s past, one that is inextricably linked with his own. But his attention is diverted when twin boys go missing. One twin is recovered in an abandoned church, unharmed. But where is his brother?

As Farrell investigates the two cases he can’t help but feel targeted. Is someone playing a sinister game, or is he seeing patterns that don’t exist? Either way, it’s a game Farrell needs to win before he loses his grip on his sanity, or someone else turns up dead.

Dead Man's Prayer

About the author:

Jackie Baldwin practiced as a solicitor in a rural town for twenty years specialising in family and criminal law. She then trained as a hypnotherapist and now works from home. She is married with two grown up children and loves to walk with her two dogs in local forests. She is an active member of her local crime writing group. Jackie is on Twitter @JackieMBaldwin1 and also has a Facebook page at Jackie Baldwin Author.

Jackie_01_by_Kim_Ayres (1)

And now without further ado, onto the fun part…


First of all Kate, I’d like to thank you for inviting me on to your lovely blog.

(My pleasure Jackie!)


Can you tell me a little about your journey to publication?


To be honest, it was long and frustrating. I was tempted to give up so many times but I’m really glad now that I persevered. I started the book back in 2005 and submitted it to some agents a few years later. A few requested the full MS and gave me some favourable feedback but none took me on. I stopped writing for a few years then got a shot in the arm from a weekend of crime writing masterclasses in Gretna and embarked on a major re-write. This annual event, called ‘Crime and Publishment,’ developed into a supportive community of crime writers with an active Facebook group. Towards the end of February this year, someone posted that Killer Reads were open to submissions. Not really thinking anything of it I sent off my book expecting the inevitable rejection to follow. Two weeks later I was holding a publishing contract. I was completely shocked!


What made you choose to write a crime thriller?

At the time I embarked on this insanity, I had a demanding job and two young children. I thought it would be easier to write about what I know. What did I know about? Not a great deal, seeing as how I was living a low key, fairly rural life. I had attended the local convent school, was a solicitor practicing criminal and family law and lived in Dumfries. A crime novel, utilizing that background seemed the obvious choice. Also, faced with that initial scary expanse of white paper to fill, I felt that a crime novel could supply me with the scaffolding to hang my story on.


How would you describe Dead Man’s Prayer to readers who have yet to pick it up?

It is a police procedural featuring former RC priest, DI Frank Farrell, who returns to his home down in Dumfries to find a local priest has been murdered. That priest had forced him out of the priesthood years ago and he must delve into the life he had left behind to catch his killer. Twin boys are abducted and Farrell starts to see recurring patterns. Is someone messing with his head or is he losing his grip on reality? He must push himself to his limit and beyond to try and prevent any more deaths.


What’s your most favourite thing about being an author?

Well, as I have only been published for 3 days, I’m not quite sure yet. I love the idea of people engaging with my characters and caring about what happens to them the way that I do. If that happens then that will be my favourite thing.


What’s your least favourite thing about being an author?

I am not an extrovert so having to be a bit more visible has been challenging. At times I feel I have left my comfort zone in another country. It is gradually getting easier though. Eventually you might see me dancing on the table at Harrogate. Seriously, nobody put money on that. Never going to happen!


Where do you see your writing career 5 years from now?

I would hope to have written between 5 and 8 new books. I was terribly slow off the starter’s block with this one but I have really got the bit between my teeth now.


What’s next for you?

I am working on the next DI Farrell novel. I am also writing notes for 3 other different books that I am burning to write.


Can you tell me your all time favourite book, or if you have to, your top 5?

There is one that, for me, stands head and shoulders above the rest and that is ‘Pride and Prejudice,’ by Jane Austen. I rarely reread books but I have been back to that one many times.


Has there been any books you’ve read that you wish you had written?

Plenty. I could go on all day. I will content myself with three. These are, ‘The Shut Eye’ by Belinda Bauer, ‘Perfect People,’ by Peter James and ‘Missing Presumed,’ by Susie Steiner.


When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?

I work from home as a hypnotherapist, which I love. I also enjoy walking my dogs in one of the local forests.


Have you any hobbies that aren’t book-related?

I have a very unlikely gym habit. Having been resolutely unsporty for all my life I joined a gym 7 years ago and got addicted to the classes there. Not that you’d think it to look at me. I particularly love, spin, body combat and body pump. From being a total weakling I now nearly burst a blood vessel lifting weights. Who’d have thought? My ambition is to beat my son and husband in an arm wrestling competition. Recently, my son pretended I had him. I really thought it was going to happen and got really excited until he suddenly started trying and crushed me once more. I also love going to the cinema and watching sci-fi on the telly.


What’s your favourite holiday destination?

I just love to go on holiday so that’s a tough one. I would have to say Mexico because the wildlife is so amazing there and I am passionately in love with iguanas. Watching iguanas doing their thing just lights me up. The Galapagos Islands are on my bucket list.


Favourite food?

My husband’s chilli con carne.


Favourite drink?

I would like to say water but it’s actually red wine.


Huge thanks to Jackie Baldwin for joining me on the blog and for answering my questions! Dead Man’s Prayer is out now and you can get a copy by clicking here.

Happy reading! 🙂