Saturday, 29 May 2021

News From Fahrenheit Press

 

Here's what they're saying, and they're worth listening to...

"4 Books for FREE + 20% OFF EVERYTHING ELSE

Hola Fahrenhistas,


We’ve celebrating public holidays on both sides of the Atlantic this weekend (May Bank Holiday in the UK - Memorial Day in the USA) so we decided to help all your weekends go with a bookish swing…

First off, we’re running one of our EPIC AMAZON PROMOTIONS - we published debuts novels in December 2020 and frankly they got swept away by the Christmas rush. These 4 books are some of the best debuts we’ve ever read and we’ve decided to circle around again and promote them as if they’re brand new books - so for a starter ALL FOUR OF THEM ARE FREE ON AMAZON this weekend."

The whole of their message is here


Friday, 14 May 2021

One Man's Opinion: DEATH NOTIFICATION AGENCY, VOLUME 1: THE REAPER (DNA BOOK 1) by JULIAN OLIVER MEIOJAS

 

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Here's one for fans of the hard-boiled hero who like their protagonist to be caught up in something big. This one will tick all your boxes and then some. 

Told in the first person by a reaper, Ramsay Cames, we know the setup and the energy force that will drive the story from the first few pages. 

This one has snappy everything: dialogue, set-pieces, one-liners, character descriptions and action. It's sharp as hell and grips like it's hanging on for dear life. Fine brushes are used where many a writer would choose the broader option and that has the effect of ramping up the energy and pace to make it speed by. For a fairly short piece of work, it feels like you've been on one hell of a journey by the end and, should you be hooked at that point, book two is waiting for you from wherever you picked up book one.

Spot on.  


The Blurb:

“You got 24 hours to live.”

That’s all he knows. Doesn’t know the how or the why— just the when.

Ram’s a process server, a reaper, for the Death Notification Agency—the DNA—which is now the biggest government organization in the world thanks to a mysterious and highly-guarded technology that can determine the time of anyone's demise, right down to the minute.

That’s where Ram comes in. It’s his job as a reaper to deliver death notices to soon-to-be-deceased citizens 24 hours before they give up the ghost. That’s it. Nothing complex about it. He’s assigned to District 598.4A. Hollywood. Not that one. The other one, in Florida—his own sunny armpit of the world.

And life ain’t that bad for Ram. Besides a wrecked marriage and kids that barely talk to him, Ram floats through his days letting people know when their life’s about to go belly up, then heads to Nasty Nate’s Tavern in his aloha shirt for a drink. As he sees it, at least he’s giving people a chance to put their affairs in order and say goodbye to their loved ones.

It’s definitely not the most glamorous job, but hey, it’s a job. And since the DNA’s never been wrong in predicting a death, he works with the confidence of knowing he’s doing his part to help people in their final hours.

But Ram’s simple life is about to get a lot more complicated when one night…

He receives his own death notice.

The Reaper  (UK) is the first volume of six in the Death Notification Agency series.

Wednesday, 12 May 2021

One Man's Opinion: THE MAN WITH THE GETAWAY FACE by RICHARD STARK

 



The Man With The Getaway Face? 

It's a peach, and a perfectly ripe and juicy one at that. 

Short and pithy, laden with tension within a story that's cut to the bare bones:

New face, new heist, new partners, unwelcome developments and a series of unfortunate events. 

Sweet.  



Wednesday, 28 April 2021

One Man's Opinion: THE MIRACLE LIFE OF EDGAR MINT by BRADY UDALL

 


Grief's a funny thing. It seeps into your being whatever measures you put in place to try and stop it penetrating. The way I picture it, it's taken hold of my insides like ivy might consume a house. Among the centres starved of energy and choked of oxygen have been my my reading and writing parts, which has meant that two of the things I would normally turn to for solace and comfort have been cut off, thus adding to the problem. 

I've been reminded once again that it's often people who make the most difference. Friendship and compassion in all of their forms- smiles, gestures, gifts, warm words, offers of support and the like- really do make a difference. 

One such gesture that has helped me along came in the form of the arrival of a book in the post. It came from Colman Keane who is behind the excellent review site for all things crime here at Col's Criminal Library. It's a great place to find new material, in no small part due to his voracious appetite for books, TV and films, and you should check it out if you've not been there before. I trust and respect his opinions and happened across his thoughts on Edgar Mint. I mentioned that it was the kind of book that might help me out of this ditch I've been in and he sent it along.  

What I think caught my attention in that review was the mention of resilience and stoicism, both of which I felt I might benefit from at the time (and still could). And he was right about the need for those qualities. For Edgar Mint, the passage through life is not a smooth one. He's born into a world that doesn't really want him, so much so that the running over of his head by a mail truck could be construed as a blessing of sorts. 

He's taken to hospital in order to recover and there begins a pattern where he finds a way through the most adverse situations with the help of people who are drawn to him and decide to take him under their wings. 

There's no soft-soaping his journey through life. It's about as tough as anyone could cope with. Particularly brutal is his time in an institution for children who are able to inflict cruelty and pain in ways that I wouldn't have begun to imagine and hope I can forget before too long. 

It's a kind of patchwork of a novel where you move between time period and situation in a way that isn't always linear. Each strand is absorbing and the meandering always take you to a point of interest. Much of the tragedy is related in a matter-of-fact style, but there's a gentle warmth through it all and always a hope that things will get better somehow. 

The conclusion is one that took me by surprise with a twist that offers a new filter for what has gone before, but that's not for me to mention here. 

I'm glad that I stumbled into the review and I'm grateful for kindness that allowed me to read it. The slow burn was exactly what the doctor ordered. Thanks Col.

And it gets better. Having managed to build up periods of concentration spanning more than a couple of minutes, I set off reading The Man With The Getaway Face. It's the opposite of Mint- direct, pacy, tense, totally stripped back and gripping from the off- and I couldn't be more grateful to be able to focus on books once again. 

Now all I need is to find the equivalent medicine for the writing. Though I'm not sure in what form it might come, I'm going to take a leaf out of Edgar's book and just get on with it until things change.   


  

Sunday, 31 January 2021

One Man's Opinion: CHARLIE 316 by COLIN CONWAY and FRANK ZAFIRO

 


My previous encounters with Spokane have been limited, as far as I can remember, to episodes of Frasier where it is used as the butt of many a joke.

This time, I arrived at a very different kind of place. 

Charlie 316 opens with a car chase that escalates into an ambush and a shootout where the only casualty is created by the gun of SWAT officer Tyler Garrett. The outcome is complex and tricky for a number of reasons. The victim has been shot in the back and doesn't appear to have a weapon. The officer doing the shooting is black while the dead man is white. There have been recent cases of racial tension due to a similar incident in Chicago, so everyone's on tenterhooks and worse, Garrett is something of a poster boy for the department.  

As the investigation and the public relations machine get into action, the whole of Garrett's life is put under the microscope and soon begins to unravel. Those in positions of power are mainly loyal only to their positions and genuine friendship and honest police work are not easy to find. 

The news becomes a focus of the national press and Garrett's home address is leaked to the public via social media. Before long, everything is spiraling out of control and it looks as if an innocent man is likely to be thrown to the dogs. 

There's a huge amount in this one. The knowledge of police work is, not surprisingly given the authors, brought to life in terms of its detail and authenticity. The politics of race is sliced up for examination in a number of ways. There are enough twists to take you where you weren't expecting and the action is fast and furious when required. Add to that really strong characters and a real desire to find some kind of justice and you have a substantial crime novel that will pass a good few days of your lockdown. 

If you read it and want more, fear not: this is the opening novel in a series that you can track down via Down & Out Books here


Friday, 29 January 2021

DOWN & OUT BOOKS PRICE SLASH

 



It's almost February, which means it's also almost Valentine's Day and that my latest novel is in season.
 
Down & Out books are marking the occasion by slashing the price to a mere 77p in the UK or 99c in the US. 


And that's not all. The price of Let It Snow, the opening book in the series is also 77p/99c, so you have the option of reading them in order if you haven't already given the series a try. 

There are some excellent reviews of each book to recommend them in case you need the opinion others to sway you. 

If you decide to go for them, I'd like to thank you on behalf of Down & Out and, of course, me. I'm always grateful for any sales, reviews or support and I hope you know that's the case. 

The books are available from these Amazon links:


The offer is also available from all the usual ebook shops and the direct links can be found here

If you pick up the books and read them, let me know what you think. I'm always happy to gather feedback. 

Many thanks,

Nigel

Tuesday, 26 January 2021

One Man's Opinion: HERMIT by SR WHITE

 


Dana Russo, an Australian detective working out in the wilds, is having a bad day. In fact, it's the same bad day she has every year as the events of a personal anniversary surface to challenge her will to live. When a local shopkeeper is murdered early that morning, it proves to be a distraction from her inner struggles, though she'll remain haunted by them whatever happens.

The chief suspect is a man who won't talk. He's in a state of shock and is in no fit state to open up. It's only when Russo interviews him and a bond is formed that they can begin to communicate. Even when they do, it turns out that the man has been living off grid for most of his adult life and is entirely invisible to the state. 

It takes an immense amount of skill for the detective to get her man to talk, but even her talent wouldn't be enough if they didn't recognise something of their mutual suffering in each other. Neither can quite work out what the link is, but their bond grows as they spend time together. 

The rest of the team are busy trying to work out where he's come from, as well as supporting their colleague and untangling each of the loose strands to the case. 

All options are plausible and the aspect of the case are intriguing enough to keep any fan of the police procedural hooked. What takes this to another level are the surges of emotional engagement for the reader in terms of both detective and prime suspect. It's hypnotising and tense and as much as I wanted to get to the core of the case, the direction of the story makes it clear that this isn't going to be an easy thing to deal with.   

I believe Hermit (US) is a first novel and there are elements where this is apparent, especially regarding the levels of Russo's introspection and the maintenance of that particular thread (for me, it eventually moves past it's sell-by date), That said, this is a powerful read and a recommended one. What's exciting is that there might be more books to come- this would be a great platform in the series- and if it is, I think I'll enjoy watching it evolve. 

Check it out.