Today I will be sharing an extract for my spot on the blog tour for the novel Fox Halt Farm by Celia Moore. This one is available now. There is also an international giveaway going on! Be sure to check it out!
Opening on a cliff edge, Billy finds herself alone and betrayed. She believes everyone and everything she loves is threatened. Richard’s world is aglow with wealth, love and unswerving family loyalty but then his perfect life crosses Billy’s. He could save Billy, her beloved dairy cows and Fox Halt Farm but this young woman isn’t in the mood to be rescued.
Nothing will stay the same. Should they trust each other? Will their secrets tear their lives apart?
Fox Halt Farm is hard to put down. The story cracks along and you are caught up in Celia Moore’s vivid storytelling from the start. If you love novels by Jill Mansell, Fiona Valpy, Lucinda Riley, Maeve Binchy and Danielle Steel you will love this novel too!
July 1989 Berkeley Square, London
Richard is just like Mum’s photo which sits on the sideboard at Fox Halt Farm; seeming no older, and equally smart in his three-piece suit and wide-striped shirt with a button-down collar. There is no whiff of the rotten fish from the last time I was near him, instead I inhale drifts of vanilla as he opens a door to another room.
‘This is your office; it’s just for the two of you.’ He waves his arm into a room no bigger than a large cupboard. ‘Sorry.’ Richard says, sounding embarrassed. ‘This was the only place we could find for you. We haven’t taken on a third graduate because we couldn’t find any more space to accommodate them.’
‘Isn’t this an eight-storey building?’ Simon asks, sounding as surprised as I feel; there isn’t even a window.
‘No, nine, but the business keeps expanding. We are taking on two floors in the building next door. We should have the extra space by Christmas, so I promise you more luxury then.’
In our ‘office’ two small desks with a computer on each, are jammed tight together. There is just one phone, which either of us could reach at a stretch. I wonder what we’ll be expected to do? ‘I’ll show you the rest of the place.’ Richard turns away, expecting us to follow.
There are people in every nook and cranny. Cigarette smoke swirls up behind low partitions, and the racket from each member of staff trying to make themselves heard above their neighbours, or shouting out of self-importance, makes me suddenly relieved we have our cupboard to hide in. Everyone greets us enthusiastically, laughing loudly with crass quips like ‘Welcome to the madhouse,’ and ‘You will love it here.’
There is no warmth in the final department we enter. The large open-plan room occupies more than half a floor and it is as though all its occupants immediately hate us. ‘This is the typing pool and these ‘lovely ladies’ will be doing all your letters for you,’ Richard says. I can’t believe we won’t be able to do our own typing. I wish we could because this is not a typing pool, this is more like a lagoon of insidious alligators.
‘I’ll introduce you to Chantelle, she has started here today too.’ Richard walks up to a Chinese looking girl who is about our age.
‘I am not new to MarcFenn,’ she explains, ‘this is a transfer for me.’ She speaks with a soft French accent.
‘Oh,’ Simon says. I notice he has grown an inch in height and how he has set his shoulders back.
‘Yes.’ Chantelle smiles at him. ‘I requested a move here for three months from the Paris office. I wanted to improve my English.’ I think Chantelle doesn’t need to improve her language skills, and I think that Simon has fallen in love in an instant.
‘I am Simon,’ he tells her, holding out his hand. ‘This is Billy.’ His voice sounds posher than I’ve ever heard it before.
‘Pleased to meet you.’ Chantelle raises a perfectly shaped eyebrow a fraction, and I see how she squeezes his hand gently. She is beautiful; her long black hair has red highlights and dark make-up emphasises her black eyes. The tilt of her head and dimpled smile make it look like she is up to mischief, God help you, Simon. I think.
Richard interrupts my thoughts. ‘We’ll go back to my office now,’ he says. ‘We can discuss what I have in mind for you both to do.’ It sounds like we may have options.
About the Author:
Celia Moore (1967-now) grew up on a small farm near Exeter. She had a successful career as a Chartered Surveyor working in the City of London before working her way back to Devon. In 2000, she left the office to start a new adventure as an outdoor instructor, teaching rock climbing and mountaineering. Today she gardens for a few lovely customers, runs and writes (accompanied at all times by a border terrier x jack russell called Tizzy). She is running the London Marathon in April 2019 for three cancer charities.
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Today I am part of the blog tour for WTF, God? : Understanding God in the Midst of Transition by Michelle N. Onuorah which is being hosted by Itsy Bitsy Book Bits. I will be sharing my review.
Crossroads are an inevitable part of life. But how do you navigate them when your life is not your own?
At 22-years-old, Michelle Onuorah was a bestselling author, former runway model, and recent college graduate with the world at her fingertips…Or so she thought.
In a matter of weeks which turned into months…and eventually most of her twenties, the God of the universe systematically revealed that He was also the God of her life – and she was not. With breathtaking candor, razor sharp humor, and bold vulnerability, Michelle shares the ten key lessons she’s learned about God, life and understanding both in the midst of ceaseless transitions.
In her words, “This book is for those of you who believed with all your heart that you would end up in one place and somehow, despite following God – or maybe even because of it – ended up on a completely different path. This is for those of you who, though you love God, sometimes wonder who He even is. This is for those of you who choose to believe He’s still good.”
This book is for you.
WTF, God?: Understanding God in the Midst of Transition
Author: Michelle N. Onuorah
Published: January 13, 2019
Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: February 17-20, 2019
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars
Imagine you have your life planned out the way YOU want, but God has other plans for you and it is a 180 from the reality you had in mind. This is what happened with Michelle N. Onuorah’s life in the 5 years from when she graduated college. And it started with 4 words: “We’re letting you go”.
WTF, God is Onuorah’s memoir of her unexpected life that God had planned all along. Yes, the title means just what you think it means. Imagine your frustrations with life take hold of you so much that you have to yell out “WTF, God!?!?!?” Yes, there is some foul language in this memoir, but it is not extreme as you may think it is going to be.
Onuorah is candid about her life history, struggles, and her addictions despite her fears of admitting them to us, the reader. As I was reading it felt as if she was talking directly to me. I know a little of her history as I have read all of her previous works and enjoyed them, and even have communicated via email with her, but now I feel I know her more personally. WTF, God is a short memoir just over 100 pages and can be read very quickly. In the first 90 minutes of reading it I was over halfway done with it!
Despite the roller coaster that life may bring us, Onuorah shows us through sharing about her life that God knows what he is doing and to have faith in Him. Despite the title possibly turning you off of the book, please pick up WTF, God. You won’t regret it!
WTF, God is recommended.
Michelle N. Onuorah is the bestselling author of Type N, Taking Names, Remember Me, Jane and Atlas Died. WTF, God? is her debut non-fiction release. The daughter of Nigerian immigrants, Michelle grew up with a love of storytelling. At the tender age of thirteen, she wrote her first book, Double Identity, and self-published it the next year. For three years, she ran an independent magazine, MNO, and served as the main writer and editor-in-chief. Her writing has appeared in Vestiges Literary Magazine, Avalon Literary Review, and Medium.com among others.
A graduate of Biola University, Michelle is putting her film degree to use by producing a new teaching series under her company, MNO Media, LLC. The series, Life in His Light, is designed to help Christians who struggle with depression overcome it.
Today I am part of the blog tour for Dark & Fluffy Volume II by Janet Stock. This is her second collection of short fiction pieces.
Following on from Dark & Fluffy, this collection is a further nine short fiction pieces. The title Dark & Fluffy II, reflects the general styles of the stories/prose in the book. Some are a bit darker, and may be a bit uncomfortable to read, Death by Testing and The Broken Arrangement fall into this category. Others are happier, feel good pieces like The Disney Club. Whatever your preference, I’m sure you’ll find something that will grab your attention.
Author: Janet Stock
Published: December 15, 2018
Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: January 30-31, 2019
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars
Dark & Fluffy: Volume II is the second short story compilation written by Stock. You needn’t have read the previous Dark & Fluffy as they are all individual short stories. There are nine stories and something for everyone: Some are ‘cute-ish’ while some leave you needing more (we can say Death by Testing!?!?!)
What I really liked about Dark & Fluffy is that Stock wrote a brief introduction talking about each story. This is a short book around 70 pages so it can be read in an hour or two.
Dark and Fluffy: Volume II is recommended.
About the Author:
I am married with one teenage son and have always been a keen reader and writer since being young. I was born in Lancashire but have lived in Lincoln for over 30 years.
Several years ago I decided to take my writing seriously. I completed an OU course in creative writing and a Writers Bureau course. Initially I concentrated on short story writing, and when I turned fifty this year, I self-published my first book, Dark and Fluffy.
I love writing short stories, but my main goal is to have a novel published. Ten years ago, I started the first book of a trilogy of novels called The Little Servant (The Wait’s Son). I am still working on this, but now I have a serious intent to get this finished this year.
My favourite genre is medieval fiction, Bernard Cornwell is my favourite author. I also like to read Edward Rutherford, Stephen King, and Dean Coontz.