#BookBloggersSupport22 Challenge 7: Books You’ve Read From Recommendations From Fellow Book Bloggers.

The next challenge in my year long support for book bloggers. (Created by the ladies at PagesUnbound.)

It’s easy to recommend books to others, however it is much harder to match a book to a specific recipient. Some of the books below have been recommendations of either the book or the author. Others have been general recommendations on blogs from keen readers and I have gone ahead and bought my own copy.

Book covers for eleven book recommended to me by fellow book bloggers
Books recommended by book bloggers

First book: Hostile Ground (Stargate SG.1 by Sally Malcolm and Laura Harper) This is fan fiction, written around the popular Stargate TV series. Several authors have written ‘new’ episodes for the characters and I read a variety over the years. My favourite writer was Sally Malcolm, she caught the characters and the dialogue so well that I easily imagined them as real TV episodes.

Book blurb –

It was meant to be an easy mission, a walk in the park. But SG-1’s first trip off-world after Colonel O’Neill’s return from Edora (STARGATE SG-1: One Hundred Days) proves to be anything but easy.

Tapped for a covert assignment, O’Neill must conceal the truth from his team at all costs. So when Dr Daniel Jackson is injured and the mission begins to go awry, tensions quickly reach breaking point. Stranded on a hostile planet, and desperate to find a way home before it’s too late, O’Neill leads his fractured team on a desperate journey across a barren and forsaken world.

Faced with an enemy more vicious than anything they’ve encountered before, only SG-1’s strength as a unit will keep them alive – if the secret O’Neill is hiding doesn’t tear them apart first…

Second book: The Moment By Douglas Kennedy is a cold war thriller set mainly in Berlin. This was recommended to me because I like the edgy and tense themes in spy novels from this era.

Book blurb –

In this, his tenth novel, Douglas Kennedy has written that rare thing: a love story as morally complex as it is tragic and deeply reflective. Brilliantly gripping, it is an atmospherically dense, ethically tangled tale of romantic certainty and conflicting loyalties, all set amidst a stunningly rendered portrait of Berlin in the final dark years before The Wall came down.

Third book: Renegade by Laramie Briscoe. This is one book from the small town contemporary romance series set around a special task force group.

Book blurb –

Ryan “Renegade” Kepler

I’m the type of man who knows what I want. I make up my mind and stay in my lane, never veering off the course I set for myself.

Going into the military? Did it.
Serving overseas? Did it.
Youngest member of the Moonshine Task Force? That’s me.

Whitney Trumbolt

Ryan is ten years my junior, but damn, being a cougar never felt as good as it did the night we spent together. Now all I want to do is go back to how things were before.

But Ryan is my younger brother’s best friend, and where Trevor goes, Ryan goes. Instead I put my head in the sand and do my best to go about my life.

Fourth book: The Lady’s Slipper by Deborah Swift is historical fiction with a botanical theme.

Book blurb –

1660. King Charles II has returned from exile, but memories of the English Civil War still rankle. There are old scores to settle, and religious differences threaten to overturn a fragile peace. When Alice Ibbetson discovers a rare orchid, the Lady’s Slipper, growing in a wood belonging to Richard Wheeler, she is captivated by its beauty— though Wheeler, a Quaker, is determined to keep the flower where God intended it to grow.

Fifth book: The Dead Boxes Archive by John F Leonard is a collection of creepy mild horror short stories with a Dead Box theme.

Book blurb –

The Dead Boxes Archive is a chilling collection of short horror stories and horror novellas. Together for the first time in one volume, seven tales from the critically acclaimed Dead Boxes series.

Dead Boxes are scary things. Wonderful and dreadful secrets hiding themselves in plain view.
On the surface, they often appear to be ordinary, everyday objects. Items which are easily overlooked at first glance. Perhaps that’s just as well because the Dead Boxes are as far from ordinary and everyday as you can get. They hold miracle and mystery, horror and salvation, answers to questions best not asked and directions to places better left unfound.

Sixth book: Writing Vivid Dialogue by Rayne Hall is just one book from her Writer’s Craft series of non-fiction books. I’ve read several and often recommend them to writers to help hone their work.

Book blurb –

Do you want to write fast-paced, exciting, sizzling dialogue?

This book reveals professional dialogue techniques to characterise the speaker, carry the plot forward and entertain your readers.

This is not a beginner’s guide. I assume that you have mastered the basics of fiction writing, and you don’t need an explanation what dialogue is and why it matters for your story. But your dialogue isn’t as strong as your story deserves. Perhaps it drags, perhaps the characters all sound the same, and perhaps it lacks tension, wit or sparkle.

I’ll offer you a toolbox filled with techniques. These are not ‘rules’ every writer must follow, but tricks you can try. Pick, mix and match them to suit your characters and your story.

Seventh book: A Demon Bound by Debra Dunbar is the first book in the Imp series of urban fantasy tales. I’ve read all the books in the series and was really pleased to have found them.

Book blurb –

Samantha Martin is an imp, enjoying an extended vacation from Hel. All she wants to do is drink beer by the pool, play mischievous pranks on the humans, and get her hot neighbor in the sack. It’s a relaxing break from her infernal home, as long as she manages to avoid the angels, who won’t hesitate to execute her on sight. But when her naughty hellhound lands her in trouble with the local werewolf pack, Sam is blackmailed into helping track and catch a killer. The steps she must take to appease the werewolves will put her right in the crosshairs of the angels. And with angels, there is no second chance.

Eighth book: The Worst Journey In The World by John R. McKay is World War Two historical fiction set on a boat heading to Russia via the arctic.

Book blurb –

When George Martin joins the crew of the Royal Navy frigate, HMS Virtuous, he is keen to start his new life at sea, but after trips escorting relief cargoes to the stricken island of Malta, he soon realises that life on a warship is anything but easy.
After the invasion of the Soviet Union by German forces in 1941, George finds himself on the Virtuous’s most perilous journey yet, as it forms part of a convoy heading to Russia. Hunted by Nazi U-boats, surface ships and the Luftwaffe, the crew must endure its greatest foe – the harsh Arctic weather. With temperatures dropping to minus 30 degrees Centigrade and violent storms threatening to sink the ship, George endures the harsh reality of war, whilst at the same time pondering his uneasy relationship with the mysterious Glenda, the girl he has left behind.

Ninth book: Flood by Ann Swinfen is historical fiction set in the Fenlands during the seventeenth century.

Book blurb –

Violence, greed and betrayal threaten the remote communities of East Anglia in the seventeenth century, when ruthless and unscrupulous speculators steal their common lands, while fanatic Puritans bring accusations of heresy and witchcraft. Granddaughter of a local hero, Mercy Bennington moves out of the shadow of her elder brother to become a leader of the protestors, finding the strength to confront the enemies who endanger the survival of her village and her own life. Yet the violence wreaked upon the fragile fenlands unleashes a force no one can control – flood.

Tenth book: The Heretic Heir by G. Lawrence is Tudor historical fiction and features the lives of Mary and Elizabeth.

Book blurb –

February 1603, the last of the Tudor monarchs is dying, but Death must wait for Elizabeth of England to finish her tale…

As The Bastard Princess, Elizabeth Tudor, daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, has fought through a childhood of intrigue and peril to her place as the heir to the English throne. But as her sister, Mary I, the first anointed and sole Queen of England takes the crown, Elizabeth must face her most dangerous challenges yet… for Mary I is determined to return England to the Catholic faith, and will have none stand in her way.

Protestant Elizabeth knows that she must survive the suspicions and distrust of her sister, in a reign where rebellion and war freely stalked the lands of England.
To survive, this heretic heir must hone her skills in survival, wit and wile, in order that she may one day… become Queen.

Eleventh book: The Alchemical Detective by Kirsten Weiss is book one of a paranormal mystery series.

Book blurb –

This metaphysical detective has a murder to solve. But will a devilishly handsome casino owner get in the way?

There’s a storm on the horizon. Riga’s lost her magic and has come to Lake Tahoe for a fresh start and to spend quality time with her new love. But life for a metaphysical detective is never that simple.

Someone’s killing psychics in Lake Tahoe, and the police think Riga may be connected to the murders. The best way to prove her innocence? Catch the killer herself… if she can escape the monster-hunting “reality” show she’s committed to for long enough. And as the killer circles closer, she may become his next target…

If you love talking gargoyles, smart mysteries, and mature heroines with complicated lives, you’ll love this series.

I would happily recommend all these books to others.

Sunday Connection – What’s Been Happening This Week? #SundayBlogShare

Just in case you’ve spent the last few days hoping it’s still the holidays and you’ve been hiding under the duvet…

Here’s what you may have missed:

Monday: Karen Bernard reviewed romantic Suspense – When A Stranger Comes by Karen Bell

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Tuesday: I reviewed historical fiction The Lady’s Slipper by Deborah Swift

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Wednesday: Karen Oberlaender reviewed thriller Nothing Bad Happens Here by Nikki Crutchley

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Thursday: Judith Barrow reviewed literary fiction The Unrivalled Transcendence of Willem J Gyle by J.D Dixon

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Friday: Olga Miret reviewed naval thriller Jonah by Carl Rackman

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Saturday: Alison Williams reviewed cultural fiction All The Tomorrows by Nillu Nasser

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There have also been some fun posts

Top ten new-to-me authors I read in 2017

WWW Wednesday (what are you reading meme)

Plus news from around the Blogosphere

Pages unbound – Book Blogging resources for the New Year

https://pagesunbound.wordpress.com/2018/01/01/book-blogging-resources-for-the-new-year/#like-16481

Is literary fiction in decline? – Asks Caroline at Bookword.co.uk

http://www.bookword.co.uk/is-literary-fiction-in-decline/

January Blues? How To Create A Happiness Jar – Shelley Wilson – Motivate Me Now

https://motivatemenow.co.uk/2018/01/01/how-to-create-a-happiness-jar-for-2018-newyear-inspiration/

Just the thing if you need cash after the holidays – Rachel Poli lists some writing competitions with money prizes!

https://rachelpoli.com/2018/01/03/january-february-2018-writing-submissions/

2018 Book Industry Predictions: Are Indie Authors Losing their Independence?

http://blog.smashwords.com/2017/12/2018-book-industry-predictions.html

Finally a fun post – 10 signs you may not be loving your current read…

https://iwuvbooks.wordpress.com/2018/01/04/10-signs-you-may-not-be-loving-your-current-read/

 

My #BookReview of English #HistFic The Lady’s Slipper by @swiftstory #TuesdayBookBlog

The Lady's SlipperThe Lady’s Slipper by Deborah Swift
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The Lady’s Slipper is historical fiction set in England during 1660. The people are beginning to recover from the Civil War.

Alice Ibbetson is an artist and keen horticulturalist. A rare orchid had been discovered in a nearby wood and Alice has plans to cultivate the seeds from the plant and save it from extinction. But the plant grows on land owned by another.

Richard has left the army after the war; disillusioned, he has recently become a peace-keeping Quaker. He is disturbed that Alice has taken the orchid from his wood and then lied about her actions, however, there are others also interested in the orchid: Geoffrey Fisk is a rich landowner, he wants to exploit the medicinal benefits of the plant for profit, while local wise-woman, Margaret Poulter, also wants to see the orchid.

Taking the plant causes an avalanche of bad luck for Alice, culminating in her wrongful imprisonment for a different crime. Her only friend is Richard, the man she once considered her enemy, and in a daring move, they flee.

This is the type of book which draws you in with the rich language and writing style that offers escapism for a few hours. I really enjoyed learning about the Quaker life and ‘The Society Of Friends’. It gave me one of those ‘aha’ moments as a memory of my Grandmother popped into my head, of a group she took me to once. I researched The Lady’s Slipper Orchid and found that it is still very rare today. A fascinating story; I would have happily read more about Alice and Richard’s adventures after fleeing for their lives. In a sequel, The Gilded Lily, there is opportunity to learn more about others from Alice’s earlier life.

View all my reviews on Goodreads

Book description

‘Compelling and intriguing, this is a well-told story full of wonderful prose and surprising events.’ — Romance Reviews Today

When English artist Alice Ibbetson discovers a rare orchid, the lady’s-slipper, she is captivated by its beauty and fragility. It is the last surviving specimen and she wants to paint it and tend it for future generations.

But she is not the only one who wants the flower – a herbalist wants it for its medicinal properties, and a ruthless landowner hopes that, like the tulip craze, it might restore his ailing fortunes. And pitted against them all is Richard Wheeler, the handsome man of new-found faith, whose searing honesty causes more danger than any deceit.

Soon Alice finds herself caught up in a web of danger, treachery and unexpected passion.
A story of drama, intrigue and romance set in 17th century England. 
About the author

I write historical fiction, a genre I love. I loved the Victorian classics such as Jane Eyre, Lorna Doone and Wuthering Heights. As I child I loved to read and when I had read my own library books, I used to borrow my mother’s library copies of Anya Seton and Daphne du Maurier. I have loved reading historical novels ever since; though I’m a bookaholic and I read widely – contemporary and classic fiction as well as historicals.

In the past I used to work as a set and costume designer for theatre and TV, so I enjoy the research aspect of creating historical fiction, something I loved doing as a scenographer. Each book takes about six months of research before I am ready to begin writing. More details of my research and writing process can be found on my website. I like to write about extraordinary characters set against the background of real historical events.

I live in North Lancashire on the edge of the Lake District, an area made famous by the Romantic Poets such as Wordsworth and Coleridge.

Deborah Swift