Thursday, 26 July 2018

Meet Ashley & Zena


I’ve always had a love for donkeys and should I have ended up living with lots of land, I would have had a field full of donkeys and a house filled with dogs. However, I settled with two rescue doggies, small garden and living on a pebble in the ocean, but I can still have a donkey or two can’t I?



Yes, I can and they will be real, but virtual! Ok, let me explain. Just because we can’t have a donkey in our garden we can still help towards caring for those who have not had the best life. With this in mind we decided to “adopt” two adorable donkeys from the Donkey Sanctuary in Sidmouth. The two we choose are seriously cute so please meet Ashley and Zena.

Ashley

These two are great great friends with each other.

Zena

I am sure you agree these are two gorgeous donkeys. and over the next twelve months, I will be keeping a close eye on what they are up to and how they are doing and plan to update you on how Ashley and Zena are doing. Please come back to find out just how these two adorable, new friends are getting on.


As always, thank you for visiting and I hope the sun is shining on your face and in your heart.

Hugs
Pauline
x

Monday, 23 July 2018

Addiction - Samantha Tonge



In this special feature about addiction I am truly delighted to have, Samantha Tonge sitting in the hot seat talking about her latest book, published today, 23rd July, Forgive Me Not. Please sit back and be prepared to be surprised.




Tell us a little about your book

Forgive Me Not: A gripping, heartbreaking novel that will take your breath away 

Emma returns to her home, Foxglove Farm, after leaving under a cloud of disgrace two years previously. But there is no red carpet welcome. Her family, friends, the community cannot forget what she did.

It is a story about finding and giving forgiveness, a story about loss, friendship and making amends. It is a warmhearted read, written from the heart, but doesn’t shy away from tackling the grittier aspects of life.





What or who inspired you to write about addiction

In 2016 I found myself sitting in an addiction clinic wondering how I’d got there. My drinking had stretched from weekends to every day of the week. But the problems had started years earlier - I was anorexic and bulimic at university and the mental issues behind the behaviours are very similar.

Getting better was a tough process for me and my family. A big part of recovery is acknowledging the things you have done wrong, the damage you have caused, and -where possible - making amends. And this caused me to think a lot about what forgiveness actually means and how you cope if you can’t give or receive it. I did a lot of research and read some painful stories. Before finding myself in addiction and then in treatment I’d never really thought of this aspect as being a fundamental part of any rehab process. Of course it makes complete sense to me now.


Tell us a little about you?

I live in Manchester UK with my amazing husband and children – and a very furry cat called Mitzie who acts more like a dog. I have a degree in French and German and have travelled widely including an amazing three weeks in Japan. One day I really must set a story there. I’ve sold over 80 short stories to women’s magazines and in 2015 my summer bestseller Game of Scones won the Love Stories Awards Best Ebook category.


You have many books published, (RomCom) but this is the first on addiction, is there another book on its way on this subject and if so can we have a peek at what is about?



Forgive Me Not is my first women’s fiction novel (as opposed to romantic comedy) and my next book in that genre will be out February 2019. I can’t say too much about it at the moment but once again it deals with the challenges we face as human beings that we perhaps keep hidden and try to cope with alone. It stars a lovely main character I have fallen completely in love with and I’m hoping her journey will be very relatable to readers. Sorry that I can’t say more at this stage!




 You can find Samantha on all of these Social Media platforms...





I am sure you agree the authors who have been part of this special Addiction themed Blog have introduced us to some page turning reads. 

Thank you fro the bottom of my heart for visiting and meeting my special guests.
 Until next time, I hope the sun is shining on your face and in your heart.

Pauline

Brought to you by
 In the Cold Light of Day


And

Chill Awards for Independent Authors


Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Addiction - Suzi Stembridge



In this special feature about addiction I am truly delighted to have, Suzi Stembridge sitting in the hot seat talking about her books, The Scorpion’s Last Tale and The Glass Class. Please sit back and be prepared to be addicted!





Tell us a little about each book

In many ways, THE SCORPION’S LAST TALE & THE GLASS CLASS although part of a quartet, are also a duo. Both are set in the 1970s, partly located in Greece and partly in Yorkshire and other areas of Britain.



The Scorpion’s Last Tale takes place in Corfu at the time of the Colonel’s Junta, around 1972-1974 it is not always a comfortable read, this was a grizzly time in a regime that ruled by torture and fear which contrasts with an idyllic family holiday.




The Glass Class is also social history, this partying group of young married couples are finding real life is often tougher than their antics would perhaps suggest.

Both novels feature many of the same characters, particularly the heavy drinking but nevertheless devoted family man, John Griffith Rhyl-Jones and it is pretty obvious he is an alcoholic and his wife affected by his addiction. Although efforts are made by friends and professionals to encourage John to quit drinking, this is never easy. There is plenty of drama in both scenarios, vivid scenery and adventure and there are touching moments of concern. Both books feature death, either accidental or is it outright murder and have elements of a thriller about the plot.  


What or who inspired you to write about alcohol and gambling?

Sadly, it was those closest to me who were forced to confront their addiction to alcohol. These two books do not tackle heart-breaking and difficult path to sobriety, that is too raw. What both books do highlight is, in what is often very close and loving relationship in an addictive marriage, the pain and suffering are not just of the addicted but of the co-dependents. In many ways, heavy drinking was the norm of the twentieth century and the first book in this series CAST A HOROSCOPE also treats, as normal, the characters’ attitude to heavy alcohol consumption, (here 1960s aircrew).


Tell us a little about you?

It is probably the time to admit that I am (just) a pre-war baby! The books discussed above are probably a product of my era (1960s-1980s), my career has always been in travel, from working as an air-hostess in the 1960s in the very early days of package holidays, flying out of Southend airport, up to time of founding and running my own tour operation, taking clients to quieter and remoter parts of Greece, called Filoxenia. Mid-career, I took an Open University degree and graduated after studying the culture and history of Ancient Greece, Modern Art, the Nineteenth Century Novel among other subjects. I am married, we have two adult children and live on the Pennine hills in West Yorkshire. When I retired, I began a series of novels, which I call JIGSAW. I wrote 8 novels and one children’s book about a Spaniel dog. The 8 books form one family saga, comprising two quartets, THE COMING OF AGE (see above) and THE GREEK LETTERS QUARTET, (this last beginning at the time of Greek War of Independence and running to the present day).


Is there another book on its way and if so can we have a peek at what is about?

With my husband, we may write some memoirs about our travels all over Greece at the time of our travel business. Or perhaps there is just one more “Working Title” to complete the Jigsaw! (Characters who have lived and been alive in eight books surely won’t just die all at once!!)



You can find Suzi on all of these Social Media platforms...

Website:

Full Amazon page link: http://amzn.to/1nKE5wR
Link for THE SCORPION’S LAST TALE paperback: http://amzn.to/15mbeF6
Link for THE GLASS CLASS paperback: https://amzn.to/2tZDtcq

Twitter:
WriterOfGreekNovels@zaritsi

Facebook:
Jigsaw: Greek Letters & Coming of Age – Two Quartets
Author– writer of historical novels & contemporary fiction
Greece is the Theme
Pennine Writers & Landscape Artists Capturing Greece

Blog:





I am sure you agree these books are addictive, so please check them out. 
And, don't forget to come back and meet another, best selling author and their page turning book.

See you tomorrow! 
Until then, have a fabulous day and I hope the sun is shining on your face and in your heart.

Pauline

Brought to you by
 In the Cold Light of Day


And

Chill Awards for Independent Authors


Saturday, 14 July 2018

Addiction - Kate Rigby




In this special feature about addiction I am truly delighted to have, Kate Rigby sitting in the hot seat talking about her book, Down the Tubes. Please sit back and be prepared to be hooked!





Thanks so much for having me for this important feature, Pauline




Tell us a little about your book


The story is a hard-hitting one, beginning in the late 1980s and set mainly in London, Bournemouth and Hampshire. It is (mainly) dual-narrated from the point of view of Michael, who left home at the age of sixteen to escape child abuse, and from the point of view his mother, Cheryl, who comes to work in the addictions field in an admin capacity now that most of her children have grown up.

Michael aka Dodo, now aged twenty, hasn’t been seen by his family for years but is living with various other junkies in a succession of rundown flats and maisonettes in London until he eventually ends up on the streets with his dog Woodstock.  He is vulnerable to nasty characters who prey on him until he finally goes to rehab in a rural setting to deal with his issues, though it’s a bumpy ride for him as he needs to face his past.

Meanwhile his mother, Cheryl, is ill-suited to working in the addictions field in many ways (though she herself felt addicted to the adoration she got when she had her babies) and ends up working in an admin role at a Drug Project, 484, almost by default, having not been in the labour market for many years. She and Michael’s paths almost collide, and then, when she gets a job at the rehab, she soon discovers Michael has just left. What she discovers there, in the files, she finds quite unpalatable and she herself goes into a kind of meltdown. 

They're each on a journey, but can there be reconciliation as well as rehabilitation?

I better not say too much more otherwise I’ll be in danger of giving the whole story away!



What or who inspired you to write about addiction

It was inspired by working in the addictions field in the late 80s and early 90s but also there were a lot of drug problems in Bournemouth where I lived from the early 80s. A lot of seaside towns do have or have had similar problems. When I worked in the drug services there was a change in strategy for treating ‘problem drug users’ in the light of HIV. So harm reduction services such as needle exchanges and Methadone programmes were being introduced. I met all sorts of different people, both users and workers and they have inspired some of the anecdotes of this novel. But all characters are fictional. 

As part of my work I also did some research in an all-female rehab and what hit home then was the link between problem drug use and child sex abuse.



Tell us a little about you?


I’ve been writing for many years now with a few small successes along the way, the main one being the publication of my punk novel Fall Of The Flamingo Circus in 1990.  Writing is my biggest passion and creating characters, but away from writing (and reading) I love cats, music, photography and LFC! I have an autoimmune-type illness and so my days are restricted but when I can I’m also a keyboard warrior campaigning against social injustice.



A little bird told me you are writing a follow up, are you able to tell us anything about it yet?

That little birdie told you right although I never set out to write a follow up!  It is still very much a work in progress but it’s about Michael’s story two decades on when something momentous happens in his life, which knocks him off course (again) causing him to relapse. There are more family strains as his past comes back to haunt him and new revelations come to light.  He finds he’s not beaten the addiction demons yet after all but the opening event acts as a catalyst for change. Michael is a survivor and hopes to get his life back on track again in his life though perhaps not quite as he thought. At the moment I’ve not decided yet whether Cheryl’s point of view and/or other narrators will be included.  It will very much depend on how it seems as a whole when I’ve finished the first draft and of course anything can change in a second or subsequent draft!


You can find Kate on all these social media platforms…


Details about Down The Tubes and all my other books can be found at my website:


Or my occasional blog:


I would love to connect on social media:



https://www.facebook.com/groups/127345853945903/ - Occasional Unhip Discussions!




I am sure you agree this books is addictive, so please check it out. 
And, don't forget to come back and meet another and their page turning books.

See you tomorrow! 
Until then, have a fabulous day and I hope the sun is shining on your face and in your heart.

Pauline

Brought to you by
 In the Cold Light of Day



And

Chill Awards for Independent Authors


Thursday, 12 July 2018

Addiction with Mary Grand



In this special feature about addiction, I am truly delighted to have Mary Grand sitting in the hot seat talking about her books, Hidden Chapters and Behind the Smile. Both these books have a theme of addiction. Please sit back and be prepared to be hooked!





Mary, tell us a little about each book


Hidden Chapters, set on Gower, explores motherhood, adoption, and family secrets. In this book Catrin is forced to examine the web of lies and secrets from her past, the unexplained death of her ‘golden brother’, the truths about her alcoholic mother and the relationships she has now with her father 
and husband.













Behind the Smile is about Lowri who moves to an apparently idyllic village on the Isle of Wight. She slowly discovers the secrets people are hiding behind their smiles. One person is hiding a secret addiction to online gambling which is slowly destroying her life.



What or who inspired you to write about alcohol and gambling?

I was inspired to write about alcoholism in Hidden Chapters by adults I have known who grew up with an alcoholic parent. Their experiences were often hidden and yet had a real impact on their adult life and relationships. In Hidden Chapters, Catrin, the main character, must confront her past because of crisis in her family and her marriage. As a result of her childhood, when she was frequently the main carer for her alcoholic mother, she has learned to put the needs of others before herself, has low self-esteem, lives for the approval of others and has lost the ability to feel or express her feelings because it hurts so much. This is her story as she acknowledges how she has been hurt, that she has needs and has a right to love herself and be loved by others.


In Behind the Smile the inspiration came from reading about the growing problem of addiction to online gambling. I was aware of numerous adverts on TV promoting this as a fun activity and offering all kinds of enticements to sign up. On the other hand, I read heart breaking stories of lives ruined by the addiction that is often hidden, even from partners and family. For research I visited online gambling sites and was really shocked at what I found. 

The sites aimed at woman were very “pink”, “sparkly” with cuddly animals and fairies. It was surreal and disturbing.  The sites work at getting people hooked, offering free introductory games with odds inflated to favour the player when she is gambling with play money. Of course, the odds change in favour of the house as soon as real money is involved.

In Behind the Smile, Heather appears to have a perfect life. She starts online gambling for fun, likes escaping into this shiny apparently comfy world that welcomes her back her each time she goes online, and gives her an adrenalin rush each time she wins. However, by the time of this story she is secretly addicted, and no one knows the enormous financial debt she is getting the family into.  Crisis forces the problem into the open, and Heather is faced with difficult choices if she is to find a way to recover.



Tell us a little about you?

I was born in Cardiff and have retained a deep love for my Welsh roots. I worked as a nursery teacher in London and later taught Deaf children in Croydon and Hastings. 


I now live on the beautiful Isle of Wight with my husband, where I walk my cocker spaniel Pepper and write. I have two grown up children.

Is there another book on its way and if so can we have a peek at what is about?
This book is also set on the Isle of Wight. It is about Anya whose husband is killed by a hit and run driver. Slowly she realises that it was not an accident but that the killer is among her closest and most trusted friends.



You can find Mary on all of these social media platforms…

Website: marygrand.net






Book links
Novels



Short Stories
Making Changes   http://amzn.eu/5jbCEv2





I am sure you agree these books are addictive, so please check them out. 
And, don't forget to come back and meet another great author and their page turning books.

See you tomorrow! 
Until then, have a fabulous day and I hope the sun is shining on your face and in your heart.

Pauline

Brought to you by
 In the Cold Light of Day



And

Chill Awards for Independent Authors

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

Addicted - Special Feature



This month I am running special posts that covers Addiction.
I will be featuring Authors whose books tell the story of how addiction impacts on their character's lives.
These are compelling reads that will have you turning the pages to find out just how far these characters will go before it is too far,
or maybe, too far will not be far enough!
 So please come back and find out just how far addiction can take you.


I'm too am a little addictive as  my passion is to write about events that happen in life and change everything for those involved as well as those caught up in the maelstrom. I want my characters to sit at your side, steal your attention and sweep you up in their story. Stories that will bring tears to your eyes, have you laughing out loud and sometimes, what they share with you, will stay  in your hearts for a very long time.




Love, lies and gambling!

Bertie Costain has worked hard all his life in the building trade and now owns his own London-based company. In 1967, approaching fifty and still unmarried he enjoys a playboy lifestyle, but when he meets Kitty, an attractive, wealthy widow ten years his senior, he swiftly proposes.

Swept off her feet, Kitty adores him. The happy couple seem to have it all, but Bertie has a secret. Kitty has no idea their home is mortgaged to the hilt, or that the many expensive gifts he brings her come out of his winnings at roulette.  Proud of his apparent success and ignorant of his gambling addiction, she happily loans him large sums of money, ostensibly for his business.

Convinced with each spin of the wheel that his run of bad luck will change, Bertie gambles for increasingly high stakes, falling deeper and deeper into debt until, facing financial ruin and with nowhere to turn, he resorts to fraud. As their lives begin to unravel, Kitty learns the horrifying truth.

In the cold light of day can their love survive the pain and destruction Bertie’s addiction has wrought?


Please join me over the next few weeks to meet these amazing authors and to find out what makes them write about addiction.


Mary Grand

Behind the Smile 


Hidden Chapters



Kate Rigby 

Down the Tubes




Suzi Stembridge


The Glass Class and The Scorpion's Last Tale

Samantha Tonge

Forgive Me Not






I am sure you agree they all look exciting, so do please come back and meet these wonderful authors and their page turning books.

See you tomorrow! 
Until then, have a fabulous day and I hope the sun is shining on your face and in your heart.

Pauline

Brought to you by
 In the Cold Light of Day



And

Chill Awards for Independent Authors