Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The Trouble with Fate by Leigh Evans ★ ★ ★★

 Reviewed by Guest Reviewer TRACY HARRIS


Hedi Peacock is a half breed with a twist. Half Fae and half Werewolf, she has struggled to fit in  since she saw her Were father and Fae mother brutally murdered and her twin brother stolen and returned to the Fae Realm. Armed only with her wits and her awakened Asrai amulet, Merry, she works as a barista whilst caring for her Fae Aunt, Lou, who has been slowly dying since the Portals to the Fae Realm, Merenwyn, were closed.
Life runs smoothly, or as smoothly as it can for a woman touched with magic in a world full of iron, an unfortunate ability to mind walk at inopportune moments and an “inner were” that longs to be released, until her long lost Were crush, Robson Trowbridge, walk into her Starbucks and her world spins on its axis.
Hedi discovers that her aunt has been kidnapped and her life is being bartered for the return of an amulet, an amulet that Hedi doesn’t possess and last saw on Trowbridge’s neck the night of her parent’s murders. Tracking Trowbridge down, Hedi discovers that not only her life was ruined that fateful night. Trowbridge lost his Alpha, his wife and his family and now spends his days as a Rogue, running from his past and the new Alpha of his pack, his power crazed uncle, Mannus. The only problem with returning the amulet, is that it will mean the portals to Merenwyn will reopen, a treaty will be broken and war between the two species will ensue.
Leigh Evans has not written your typical Faery tale. Hedi is not your average faery princess waiting to be rescued from her golden tower. She isn’t your normal, beautiful heroine. In actuality, she is a defiant young woman who has discovered there is no place in either the Fae or Were worlds for her, due to her mixed blood. She desperately mourns the loss her family, especially that of her twin brother, Lexi. Understandably, she has a very large chip on her shoulder which can lead to an antagonistic character which, occasionally is very difficult to sympathise with.
Evan’s writing style is direct and intense. Her characters are well crafted with intricate back-stories. She gives us a tale that moves quickly, pacing it well and allowing the characters and their relationships to grow naturally.
A born and bred Canadian, Evans lives in Southern Ontario with her husband. She has raised two children, three dogs and a few cats. About four years ago Evans came to the conclusion that she shouldn’t let her dreams die and thus The Trouble with Fate was born. This is Evans’ first published book, and she has been contracted for another three books (total of four).  The next in this series, The Thing About Were’s, is scheduled for publication in July 2013.

RELEASE DATE:  January 2013
For more information and to purchase please visit TheTrouble With Fate
Leigh Evans Website:  (As a side-note if you have ever dreamed of writing a book do check out Leigh's blog.  It will certainly inspire you. She writes of her journey to publication.)

I was born in Montreal, Quebec but now live in Southern Ontario with my husband. I’ve raised two kids, mothered three dogs, and herded a few cats. Other than that, my life was fairly routine until I hit the age of 50. Some women get tattoos. I decided to write a book. A little tardy, but then again, Mum always said I was a late bloomer.




Saturday, January 12, 2013

SHADOW OF THE ROCK by Thomas Mogford ★ ★ ★★

Reviewed by Guest Reviewer TRACY HARRIS


Exotic locales, intriguing characters and a storyline that deepens with each turn of the page, this is what Thomas Mogford offers us in his first published novel, SHADOW OF THE ROCK.
Spike Sanguinetti is a Tax Lawyer in the financial hub of Gibraltar, a British Territory, situated on the Southern Coast of Spain. On a hot, sultry night Spike’s evening is interrupted by an old schoolmate, Solomon Hassan, who begs for Spike’s assistance. A woman has been murdered on a beach in Tangiers and Solomon has been accused.
Reluctantly, Spike agrees to assist his friend and in an effort to delay Solomon’s extradition back to Morocco, heads to Tangiers. Local authorities have wiped their hands of any further investigation, concentrating instead on getting their suspect back into their hands. Spike starts to dig further into the murder and discovers the seedier side of Tangiers and its dangers.
Following the trail of the dead Esperanza, Spike meets Zahra, a Bedouin woman. Zahra is investigating the mysterious disappearance of her father several years ago, an event that links not only back to Esperanza but to Solomon and his employers, an international corporation with financial ties to both Morocco and Gibraltar.
The path to the truth is a long and winding one littered with corruption, bigotry and the lure of the lucre. Violence loiters threateningly behind the darkened corners of the slums of Morocco whilst egotistical power moguls flaunt their wealth with careless abandon. Spike with a unique style and confidence perfectly carries the story.
Mogford has written a novel in a tight, efficient style without losing rich images that allow the reader to vividly experience the Spike’s world. Quirky secondary characters, such as the philosophical hotel receptionist, relieve the tension through wry comedy.
Mogford was a journalist and a translator for the European Parliament. Whilst studying to be a lawyer, he discovered that the long hours involved didn’t leave time for writing but luckily for us he refocused his talents into his first love, writing.
This is the first in the series of Spike Sanguinetti, with his next venture “Sign of the Cross” taking him to Malta where he discovers the death of his Aunt and Uncle are not as clear-cut as they seem. Set in the land of the Knights of St John, I can’t wait to visit with Spike again.

My review copy of "SHADOW OF THE ROCK" thanks to the lovable people at Bloomsbury Publishing Australia

To buy or learn more visit SHADOW OF THE ROCK
EBook available here from Bloomsbury SHADOW OF THE ROCK EBook $4.99

Release Dates: 1st September 2013


Thomas Mogford has worked as a journalist for Time Out and as a translator for the UEFA Champions League. His first novel in the Spike Sanguinetti series, Shadow of the Rock, was published by Bloomsbury in 2012. It received a starred review from Library Journal, which described it as a 'breathtaking debut ... Mogford's exotic locales, gorgeous prose, and closing twist make this debut a showstopper'. Thomas Mogford is married and lives with his family in London.