Category: Interview

Blog Tour: The Stepsister by Jenny O’Brien

Today I am part of the blog tour for The Stepsister by Jenny O’Brien: I interviewed her!   There is also an INTERNATIONAL giveaway going on.  Be sure to check that out!

Book Description:

When a stranger leaves step-sisters, Victoria and Ness, a half-share in a house in Holland, they think it must be a mistake.

But there’s no mistake when Ness goes missing. 

Desperate for the truth, Victoria heads to Holland to find out what happened to her. Has she, as her texts show, embarked on a whirlwind romance? Has someone abducted her or even worse?

But there’s someone watching, and that person wants her dead. 

Can Victoria find out the truth before it’s too late? 

Buy The Stepsister Now:
Amazon US
Amazon UK


JRR (Jessica’s Reading Room): Tell us a little about yourself.

There’s not a lot to say. I come from Dublin, but my parents moved to Wales when I was in my teens. I currently live on Guernsey where I’m married with three teens and two cats. My day job is nursing.

JRR: Did you always want to become an author?

I’d always liked the idea of writing but, until I came up with the character Dai Monday, the MC in my first book, I thought it was just a pipe dream.

JRR:  What inspires you to write?

I seem to have an abundance of ideas floating round my head and a need to find out what’s going to happen to my characters.  I know the start, middle and end but not the finer plot points.

JRR:  What does your writing process consist of? Do you research, do you handwrite or type, do you listen to music or prefer silence?

Like most authors who don’t write full-time my writing is squeezed in around the rest of my life. I write both in long hand and type. I think it’s important to try and produce something that’s as factual as possible even if it is fiction. I’m forever checking things like train timetables and travel distances, in addition to calling on the kindness of strangers for the answers to my random questions. I don’t listen to music. I don’t need silence and can often be found in a café, notebook to hand. But I never listen to music when I’m working. And even when I’m not working I’m a Radio 4 fan.

JRR:  What kind of advice can you give to aspiring authors?

That a love of books and reading is the precursor to becoming a writer. Read as much as possible, both within and outside the genre you want to write in.

JRR:  Who was your favorite author as a child and did his/her writings influence you to want to become an author?

I loved Enid Blyton but, at that age I had no thoughts of writing as being something I’d be able to do.

JRR: Who is your favorite author as an adult?

There are so many, I read romances and crime/thrillers and it depends on what mood I’m in as to which writer I reach for and, yes, I do re-read my favourite books. For Romances I love Betty Neels, Sarah Morgan, Sue Moorcroft, Jane Linfoot and Eloisa James. For crime/thrillers I love Valerie Keogh, Clare Chase, Martina Cole and Steig Larsson.

JRR:  If you could have dinner with three people (living or dead) who would they be and why?

I enjoy talking about books, so it would have to be three writers:

Agatha Christie, Daphne du Maurier and Elizabeth Goudge.

As they all lived during the last century it’s likely they’d have at least known of each other’s work if not actually met. We’d meet on the south coast somewhere, there’d be fish and lots of nice wine followed by rich coffee and perhaps a smidgeon of cake. We’d talk late into the night…

JRR:  Which book have you always meant to get around to reading, but still not read?

Anna Karenina. It’s considered to be one of the greatest works of fiction – I’m working up to it.

JRR: Thank you for your time with this interview Jenny!


About the Author:

Jenny O’Brien was born in Ireland and, after a brief sojourn in Wales, now resides in Guernsey. 

She’s an avid reader and book reviewer for NetGalley in addition to being a RoNA judge.

She writes for both children and adults with a new book coming out every six months or so. She’s also an avid collector of cats, broken laptops, dust and happy endings – two of which you’ll always find in her books.

In her spare time she can be found frowning at her wonky cakes and even wonkier breads. You’ll be pleased to note she won’t be entering Bake-Off. 

Contact Jenny:
Website/Blog
Twitter @ScribblerJB

**International Giveaway!**

1st Prize: Win an e copy of The Stepsister and crystal, tulip slider necklace ,
2 x 2nd Prize – an e-copy of The Stepsister

a Rafflecopter giveaway
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box above.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Blog Tour: Dog Care at Home by Gina Harding @rararesources

Today I am part of the blog tour for Dog Care at Home by Gina Harding: I interviewed her. There is also an INTERNATIONAL giveaway going on.  Be sure to check that out!

The PawLife Guide: Dog Care at Home

Dog Care at Home gives you the information you need to have a happy and healthy dog no matter what your dog’s current stage in life, in just 10 minutes a day. Over 200 hours of research including interviews with veterinarians and fellow dog owners around the world, 

Dog Care at Home is the all-in-one book to have at home, with six veterinarians that have contributed to this ultimate guide, rest assured you are in reliable hands.

Inside you will discover:

– Choosing the right breed
– The basic steps of raising a puppy
– What vaccinations are for and why your dog needs them
– Travelling with your dog
– How to perform CPR on your dog
– Health and hygiene including dental care
– Choosing the right veterinarian
– When it’s time to say goodbye
– And much more!

PawLife’s Dog Care at Home is the answer for all your dog parenting needs in one comprehensive guide that ensures your dog lives a long, healthy and happy life.

Buy Dog Care at Home Now:
Amazon US

Amazon UK


JRR (Jessica’s Reading Room): Tell us a little about yourself and your fur-baby Harley.

My name is Gina and my fur baby is Harley. The easiest way to describe myself is that I’m a 32-year-old single girl living in Brisbane with my 5-year-old Toy Poodle x Jack Russell.

I’m a semi-punk girl and have eight tattoos including my childhood cat’s name ‘Becky’. Harley is a mischievous, smart yet crazy dog with an awesome personality all rolled into a 3.8kg bundle of love. Harley is the best thing that has ever happened to me and I’m so grateful that she came into my life.

JRR: Aww! Gotta love the fur-babies!  <3 Where did the idea for PawLife come from?

Harley had numerous health issues when she was little, and I struggled to find the one website where I could go and get all the information I needed. So being a creative person, I created PawLife. I wanted to create a community for like-minded people who want their fur-baby to live the best possible life.

JRR: My sister has had dogs with health issues too.  When did the idea for Dog Care at Home come to you? Why did you decide to write it?

The PawLife blog took off and people were really enjoying it. I had been open for a year and had a catalogue of blog posts and I thought having a guide in your home that you can refer to quickly and easily when you needed some information would be perfect for all dog owners no matter their dog’s stage in life.

I decided to write Dog Care at Home because I think every single dog parent around the world will find great value in it and it will be a value resource to have at home.

JRR:  This sounds like  a book every dog owner should have!  What is your favorite breed?

My favourite breed of all time is a Rottweiler. Our family dog was a rotty named Khan he was a mixed breed with a Ridgeback and he was beautiful. Loyal, protective, fun. He passed away at the age of 15 if my memory serves.

JRR:  How long have you had dogs as pets? My sister and I had two Dalmatian/Labrador mix dogs growing up. You would not have known they were part Dalmatian if you had not seen the momma! They took after the Lab in almost every way.

I have been around animals since I was born. My first family pets were Becky a tabby cat and Tammy a chihuahua and they both passed when they were about 15 years also. I’ve loved animals all my life and I am an equal dog and cat person.

JRR:  How did you research for Dog Care at Home?

I researched using veterinary medical books and resources. Also, I have six veterinarians that have contributed to Dog Care at Home so everyone dog owner can be assured they are in good hands. It took just under 12 months to write Dog Care at Home, it has been a lot of work, but I know fellow dog owners will love it and find it very useful.

JRR:  Who was the most influential author you read when you were growing up? And who is your favorite author as an adult?

Growing up I read the Goosebumps series by R.L. Stine and The Magic School Bus series by Joanna Cole and Bruce Degen. Today, my number one favourite series is House of Night by P. C. Cast, Kristin Cast. My other favourite authors include Sophie Kinsella – Finding Audrey, Ellen Schreiber – The Coffin Club series and of course yes, I loved the Twilight series.

JRR:  I loved R.L. Stine growing up!  And I enjoy Sophie Kinsella as well! 

If you could have dinner with three people (living or dead) who would they be and why?

  1. Kim Cattrall; Actress, So, we can talk everything Sex and the City.
  2. Sammy Robinson; You-tuber, she is absolutely lovely and can give me some much-needed style, beauty and travel advice.
  3. Tony Robbins; Life coach, I’ve listened and read all of his material and would love to have a few hours to help fine tune my aspirations and life goals.

JRR: Which book have you always meant to get around to reading, but still not read?

Anything by Jane Austen, I’ve always wanted to read her novels but haven’t because to be honest I feel intimidated by them because I feel that I wouldn’t understand them to the full extent.

JRR:  What’s the best advice you have ever received?

When I stress out or questioning myself about everything, I always facetime my best friend Nick and he always says to me “Kiikers (my nickname) just (swear word) do it”.

It always makes me laugh. Sometimes you can bring yourself down or question yourself when you are trying to do something new or have an idea. The right people will love you and support you and that’s all that matters.

JRR:  Will you write a “Cat Care at Home” or are you strictly a dog person?

I will be sticking with dogs only as that’s my area of expertise and my passion.

JRR:  Is there anything else you would like to share?

PawLife is my passion, it’s my life as with Harley, we are a team. My goal in life is to help fellow dog owners and their furbabies live the best possible life.

JRR: Thank you for your time with this interview Gina!


About the Author:

Gina is an enthusiastic dog lover, so much so that she founded her own dog blog business called PawLife, which has been awarded top 10 Australian Dog Blog. This wouldn’t be possible without her best friend Harley, who is a toy poodle mix. They are continually going on new adventures, testing out new squeaky toys.

Gina recently discovered her writing passion and wanted to create the ultimate guidebook that would support, educate and inspire pet parents and yet to be pet parents around the world. Gina and Harley are originally from Australia, where the weather is always beautiful. This is Gina’s first book and looks forward to writing many more to help fellow pet-parents; with her fur-baby Harley by her side.

Contact Gina:
Website
Pinterest
Instagram

**International Giveaway!**

Win a 12 Piece Dog Toy Starter Box from Zenify

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box above.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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Blog Tour: Josie James and the Teardrops of Summer

Today I am part of the blog tour for Josie James and the Teardrops of Summer by Lily Mae Walters. I interviewed her today. There is also a giveaway going on if you live in the UK!

Book Description:

Josie James is an ordinary 13 year old until something extraordinary happens during her summer holidays. Whist staying at her Great Grandmother’s cottage in the country she finds herself swept into the cursed world of Suncroft where it is perpetual winter.

Her new friends believe she could be the Chosen One who it is foretold will lift the curse, but there are more pressing matters.

The Teardrops of Summer – magical crystals that render the owner immortal – have been stolen.  Along with her telepathic husky-dog Protector Asher and her new friends, Josie must race to find the Teardrops and prevent catastrophe for their world.

Buy Josie James and the Teardrops of Summer here!


JRR (Jessica’s Reading Room): Tell us a little about yourself.

I’m married with 2 teenage children. I was born in Coventry on April Fools Day. I have an older brother and trained as an accountant.

JRR: An April Fools Day baby!  What inspires you to write?

Everything inspires me, from a song, something I see or overhear and even once an advert I saw on the TV.

JRR:  You never know what may cause that inspiration!  What does your writing process consist of? Do you research or ‘go with the flow’, do you handwriting or type, do you listen to music or have silence?

Most of my writing is go with the flow. I usually think about my next chapter whilst walking my dogs or as I’m drifting off to sleep. I always use my laptop now and tend to have silence or sometimes a movie I have seen over and over again that I don’t need to concentrate on.

JRR:  I always think of things (not writing, but things I need to do) while in the shower. It just hits me!  What kind of advice can you give to aspiring authors? I know the journey to become published and can be long and hard.

The best advice is to keep going. Keep writing, keep editing and keep querying.

JRR:  Don’t ever give up!  Who is your favorite author as an adult?

My favourite author is Philippa Gregory.

JRR:  Who was the most influential author you read when you were growing up? Did his/her writings influence you to want to become an author?

The Worst Witch book by Jill Murphy has always stuck in my head and I dreamed of going to Cackles. I suppose in a way it was wanting to go to this imaginary place that made me want to make up my own imaginary worlds.

JRR: If you could have dinner with three people (living or dead) who would they be and why?

I would love to have dinner with the Queen, not a state formal occasion but something small where you could see what she was really like. My late grandparents, I always spent Christmas Day and Boxing Day with them and would love to have just one more meal with them. But most of all I would like to have dinner with my dad before his dementia set in so I could tell him I loved him just one more time and he would know I was his daughter again.

JRR:  Which book have you always meant to get around to reading, but still not read?

Too many to list.

JRR: Too many books and never enough time!  What’s the best advice you have ever received?

You can’t change the past. Why waste time worrying about something you can do nothing about? Instead focus on the future and what you can do to make it better for you and others.

JRR: For someone who has not read anything written by you, what do you recommend for a start?

As I only have one book out in each genre I can only recommend Josie James for children or people who enjoy a fantasy series. As an adult my time slip romance, Reflected Destinies is a must.

JRR:  Where did you get the idea for the Josie James series? Is Josie based off anyone you know?

Josie came to me a few years ago. She just started to develop in my mind over a few weeks and months. She is very loosely based on myself and my friends as teenagers.

JRR:  Josie James will be a series of five novels, do you already know how it will ultimately end? And what can you tell us about the husky Asher? How quickly do you think the complete series will be released?

I know how each book will vaguely pan out and how ultimately it will end. Asher is based on my own husky Aisha. She is absolutely loopy and many of the things that Murphy and Asher do in the books are things that Aisha and her brother Max have done. We are hoping to release a book every 9 months.

JRR: Is there anything else you would like to share?

Thank you for taking the time to interview me and share on your blog.

JRR: Thank you for your time with this interview!


About the Author:

Lily Mae Walters chose her pen name in honour of her beloved grandparents who also star in the Josie James series. She is married with two teenage children, and two huskies that are the inspiration behind Murphy and Asher in the books.

Lily Mae lives in Nuneaton, England and finds herself using local  places and even her old school in her stories. Family and friends mean the world to Lily Mae and many will find themselves popping up throughout the series.

Lily Mae also writes for adults under the name of Florence Keeling.

Contact Lily Mae:
Twitter @LilyMaeWalters1
Instagram

 **UK Giveaway**

Win a signed copy of Josie James and the Teardrops of Summer

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box above.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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