The Venetian

It’s a trait of ours to be attracted by fear as well as repulsed by it, so I was fascinated to read The Venetian. Having never tackled this genre before I decided to take the plunge. I must say, I was very glad I did.

61rrbvsmrdlThe novel picks up in 2015 with a married couple Rob and Louise who venture to Venice for a romantic weekend. It is clear by the sultry nights and bizarre sights this weekend is going to be anything but normal. I visited Venice in 1972 and recall the hauntingly beautiful sunsets behind this city of canals. Taking us on a whirlwind tour of the winding streets with their Byzantine and Gothic architecture, Struthers devises a unique tour not only for her characters, but for her readers as well.

The focus at this point is mainly upon Louise, a sensitive young woman with a passion for the unknown, and after a fractious few hours with her husband, she sees something that will change the course of her entire weekend – a veiled lady that appears to be trapped between two worlds. As Louise tries to make sense of what she has seen, her passion to visit the island of Poveglia becomes stronger.

Woven into this tale is an English lady living in 1938, a Charlotte Evans bound for Venice with her new husband, Italian doctor, Enrico Sanuto. At this point forward, the pace accelerates as we see Charlotte in love but at the same time entrenched in the mysteries cultivated by two doctors bent on a path of discovery. As Charlotte begins her employment on Poveglia she plunges deeper and deeper into a vivid frightscape where she realizes nothing on the island is quite what it seems.

It becomes clear that these two resilient protagonists, although living in different time periods, are somehow linked. What I liked about this book was the tragedy behind the mystery and the sheer horror of an emerging truth. But most of all, the evil energies we suddenly begin to empathize with. Struthers captures the darkness beyond our perception with every turn of the page.

A treasure trove of detail, filled with suspense and curiosity and a deftly crafted read you won’t be able to put down. I was extremely grateful to TBC for giving me an ARC for an honest review.

The Venetian is published by Storyland Press/Authors Reach (August 4, 2016)

Full Five Star Amazon Review here

Book Description

An Amazon International Bestseller!

For fans of Dennis Lehane’s Shutter Island, Susan Hill’s The Woman in Black and du Maurier’s Don’t Look Now

‘Welcome to the asylum…’

Their troubled past behind them, married couple, Rob and Louise, visit Venice for the first time together, looking forward to a relaxing weekend. Not just a romantic destination, it’s also the ‘most haunted city in the world’ and soon, Louise finds herself the focus of an entity she can’t quite get to grips with – a ‘veiled lady’ who stalks her.

After marrying young Venetian doctor, Enrico Sanuto, Charlotte moves from England to Venice, full of hope for the future. Home though is not in the city; it’s on Poveglia, in the Venetian lagoon, where she is set to work in an asylum, tending to those that society shuns. As the true horror of her surroundings reveals itself, hope turns to dust.

From the labyrinthine alleys of Venice to the twisting, turning corridors of Poveglia, their fates intertwine. Vengeance only waits for so long…


Praise for Shani Struthers, author of the bestselling Psychic Surveys series and Jessamine:

“If you’ve ever watched Ghost Whisperer and enjoyed it, then you’ll love the Psychic Surveys series.” Paranormal Romance Guild

“I was gripped from the word go. Shani is fast becoming one of my favourite authors.” Orchard Book Club

“A ghost story that should stand the test of time.” Jesse Christiansen (author)

“This is one of the best ghost stories I have ever read (and I read a lot!)” Happy Customer

“Ms Struthers tells a gripping edge of your seat story of darkness and possession.” Andy Angel

“From the wickedly tantalizing opening, Highdown Hall never let’s up.” John Bowen

“A refreshing new take on an often overdone genre.” WildWelshWoman

“Eve is a poignant story with a knockout impact.” Mallory Heart Reviews

“This book had me enthralled, bewitched even with some of the wonderful descriptive passage. I was completely at its mercy throughout.” Ashrae – Top 500 Reviewer

“Shani Struthers goes from strength to strength as a writer.” Lady Roachford

Meet the Author

shaniBorn and bred in Brighton, I’m the author of several paranormal books, some set in and around my hometown, others further afield, in the world’s most haunted locations to be exact! After graduating from Sussex University with a degree in Sociology and English and American Literature, I became a freelance copywriter. Twenty years later, the day job involves crafting novels too. I don’t have much time for hobbies at the moment but when I can I enjoy reading, walking in all weathers and lazing with my family. I love chatting to my readers so do get in touch – I’ve a very active Facebook Author page and an occasional newsletter you can subscribe to (see the box below) for information on new books, competitions and special offers.

For a list of all Shani’s books on Amazon: Author Central on Amazon

More Books by Shani Struthers

Psychic Surveys Prequel: Eve – A Christmas Ghost Story
Psychic Surveys Book One: The Haunting of Highdown Hall
Psychic Surveys Book Two: Rise to Me
Psychic Surveys Book Three: 44 Gilmore Street
Blakemort – A Psychic Surveys Christmas Novella – COMING NOVEMBER 2016

For more books by Shani Struthers visit her website here

Why not visit Shani on Twitter and follower her on Facebook.


Please vote for The 9th Hour!

Thank you so much for all those who have voted on The 9th Hour and Chasing Pharaohs, both longlisted for the Summer Indie Book Awards 2016, in Crime Fiction, Thriller Fiction and Historical Fiction.


For those who would like to vote, click on the links below to find The 9th Hour, scroll down to the categories. Crime and Thriller are available and The 9th Hour is listed under both. Check the box next to the Book, scroll down to the bottom of the page and hit the VOTE button. It will take you to another screen which shows a list of all the books chosen this year.

Voting is open until Saturday.

The 9th Hour in Crime ~

The 9th Hour in Thriller

Tight Plot, Great Characters, Great Writing.

Thank you to Elizabeth Horton-Newton, Author for her amazing review of The 9th Hour.

Set in colorful New Mexico, The 9th Hour successfully combines the intense investigation to find a serial killer before he strikes again with the inner workings of the killer’s mind. Into this mix comes a British born detective of African descent and a killer obsessed with Nordic mythology. Stibbe’s ability to bring these diverse elements together shows skilled writing. Her ability to do this effectively, holding the attention of the reader shows real talent.
Detective David Temeke brings a passion to his investigation that is softened by his sense of humor. Teamed with Malin Santiago whose mother was Norwegian and who speaks the language, Temeke has personal issues that crop up during the investigation. Malin has a somewhat dark past herself and struggles with demons of her own. While giving the characters an added dimension, Stibbe manages to keep these side stories from interfering with the plot; finding the serial killer before he claims another victim.
Providing insight into the workings of the police department investigating the crimes, Stibbe builds a tight story with characters that evoke emotions from sympathy to downright disgust.
The character that elicits the most sympathy is Darryl Williams, a distraught father dealing with the worst tragedy a parent can face, the murder of a child. As Williams deals with his loss and the difficulty of raising his remaining daughter’s, the reader is drawn along, sharing his pain.
The story moves forward smoothly, the tension grows, and just when you think everything is about to be resolved, bang; along comes another dark surprise. I highly recommend this book for anyone who enjoys a fast paced and dark detective story. I also look forward to more investigations with Detective Temeke and hopefully his partner Malin Santiago.

Consider also voting for Chasing Pharaohs: A Novel of Ancient Egypt for Best Historical Fiction: – Scroll down to Historical Category and find Chasing Pharaohs in the listings.


Thank you for voting. You ROCK!

In The Lap Of The Gods

In the lap ofIf you enjoyed Ted Tayler’s first three books in the Phoenix series, then you’ll certainly enjoy In The Lap Of The Gods. Taylor’s remarkable sequel is full of tension and suspense, similar in nature to its forerunners. Having received an ARC for an honest review, it wasn’t difficult to view so many scenes through a scope and capture a cast of remarkable characters in the crosshairs. The relationship between the cool, meticulous Phoenix and the sophisticated, discerning Athena is one I thoroughly enjoyed. There was a hominess to it, but at the same time it took on a professional and practical quality when required. The Olympus Committee includes a sparkling mixture of names taken from ancient Greek mythology. Each have flamboyant personalities and skills to fit them.

On the other side of the coin, Tayler has uniquely illustrated the criminal network of a well-established eastern European mob whose army of foot-soldiers is hell-bent on terrorizing the population. But it is the brutality of these migrant recruits and their reckless MO that strikes a chord and a leader who may be the most manipulative psychopath yet. Weaved in between the lines are the police who try to clean up the carnage while hunting down thugs intent on keeping the country on high alert.

There are plenty of fascinating surprises woven through the chapters and high powered action to keep you entertained. With all the bloody scuffles and internal mob affiliations threatening to undermine the inner core, I am reminded that this book would make an excellent movie.

Full Five Star Amazon review here

Book Description

This is the fourth book in the series so far, and it takes the stories featuring the Olympus Project in a new and exciting direction. From Larcombe Manor, Phoenix and Athena have battles to win against vicious gangsters on home soil and urgently need to identify factions within the organization plotting to take it in a different, far more sinister direction.

The opening scenes at Glastonbury 2013 to the closing chapter cover little more than a month in time. Yet in that short month, the landscape surrounding the Project is altered forever. The action is non-stop as it switches from the West Country to Windsor, then from England to the Mediterranean.

Take a deep breath; once you start you’ll want to keep turning pages until the end.
vigilante justice, secret organization, crime thriller, action adventure, closure, revenge, suspense


‘the development of the characters and their relationships is beautifully handled’
‘taut and well plotted’
‘fast, thrilling and engaging’
‘a fascinating array of characters and consistent tension’

Meet the Author

TedTed Tayler was born in Corsham, Wiltshire in 1945. When he was five years old his family moved five miles up the road to Melksham. He’s lived there ever since. He attended Trowbridge Boys High School and left at 18 with a clutch of O and A Levels. He joined a bank initially but moved to a local tyre company because it fitted in better with his musical ambitions. He semi-retired in 2000; Ted’s been married to Lynne since 1971. They have 3 children in their mid-thirties and 4 grandchildren. Let Ted take up the story:-

“I grew up with reading and writing all around me. My mother loved books and I had 2 aunts who taught English. There was no escape. I just put it all on hold from school because of my music and work, until I wrote my book of memories from my life in bands in 2008; it was eventually published in 2011. At the end of 2012, I wondered if I could write fiction! Those are the when’s. I’m beginning to wonder why!

I think of myself as a storyteller; I hope that with each successive book I get better at it. What I’ve been told is that the reader feels as if we’re sat across the table from one another over a drink, and I’m just chatting with them.

As for the thriller series featuring The Phoenix; well life is all about balance isn’t it? Good and evil, love and loss, laughter and tears. The Phoenix believes that criminals should pay for their crimes; the system often fails to deliver the correct punishment. The Olympus agents can help him redress the balance. There are stories left to tell.”

More Books by Ted Tayler

The collection so far:-

We’d Like To Do A Number Now (2011)
The Final Straw (2013)
A Sting In The Tale (2013)
Unfinished Business (2014)
The Olympus Project (2014) Phoenix #1
Gold, Silver, and Bombs (2015) Phoenix #2
Conception (2015)
Nothing Is Ever Forever (2015) Phoenix #3
In The Lap Of The Gods (2016) Phoenix #4

Author Links

For more books by Ted Tayler, visit his website here

Why not visit Ted on Facebook and follow him on Twitter

New Mexico Bucket List

If you find yourself traveling to New Mexico, a truly enchanted place, you’ll want to explore everything from breathtaking sunsets to fabulous local cuisine. If you enjoy food, then you’ll enjoy a taste of these deliciously unique travel books and their illustrations. With the words Bucket List in the title – suggesting 100 things to do before you die – they are hard to pass up.

There are four books listed here available on Amazon and all your favorite bookstores.


Bucket listPatricia Hodapp’s Bucket List of 100 great things to do in Santa Fe is a highly recommended guide for those wishing to explore northern New Mexico’s culture. Once in Ansel Adams and Georgia O’Keeffe country, these rare illustrations such as the Plaza and a burst of clouds above the Sangre de Cristo Mountains correctly depict the unique flavor exclusive to the southwest.

The book recommends tours, bike and hikes, local cuisine, Spanish Market, the Loretto Chapel, Botanical Gardens, where to do art classes and not-to-be missed lectures. One of my favorites is the Natilla desert (must try this!) and catching a Pow Wow or two. Definitely a book to buy for those wanting that extra special dose of New Mexico which can’t be found anywhere else.

Amazon Book link can be found here

Complete Amazon Review here

Book description:

The Complete Santa Fe Bucket List Book is the fifth in the series of Bucket List books by Rio Grande Books. Patricia C. Hodapp, Director of the Santa Fe Library, lists all of the Santa Fe events, places, and distinctive fun that makes The City Different one of the greatest tourist locations in the U.S. There are 100 things that she thinks are noteworthy including: green and red chile; El Rancho de las Golondrinas; sunsets; blue skies; art of Hispanics, Native Americans, and Anglos; museums; Canyon Road; and the Plaza.

What Other People Are Saying About This Book . . .

Pat Hodapp’s Santa Fe Bucket List makes me smile and reminds me of many of the reasons I love Santa Fe. Hodapp combines a librarian’s obsession for getting things right with her passionate, on-going love affair with her adopted home town.

This gem of a book offers unique and valuable suggestions for visitors and locals, things to see and do for all ages, in all price ranges, throughout our fascinating ancient city. Her recommendations include places to eat – one of my personal favorite ways to explore any city. Written with witty prose and honest personal insights, this useful little guide combines fun and facts in a delightful way. I highly recommend it. – Anne Hillerman

Bucket list2

Barbe Awalt’s The Basic New Mexico Bucket List is so much more than chile or the Balloon Fiesta. It is art, Hispanic traditions, turquoise, Native American history, cowboys, museums, and adventure. This is one person’s bucket list.

It is a place to start on your own bucket list in New Mexico. Because this is a hi-tech world, many of the items have a website to get more information for your own adventure. You can even fill out your own 100 places to see in New Mexico. Enjoy New Mexico! It is like coming to another world.

Buying links here

Bucket list 3

The Ultimate Green Chile Cheeseburger Bucket List is the sixth book in the series of Bucket List books from Rio Grande Books. New Mexico didn’t invent the cheeseburger, but it did invent the green chile cheeseburger and is famous for it. When you visit New Mexico you need to eat a green chile cheeseburger.

The book documents green chile cheeseburgers all over New Mexico with the epicenters in Albuquerque and Santa Fe. There are even green chile pizza, lamb cheeseburgers, vegetarian, make your own, and with every kind of topping known to man. The Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail, voted the Best Food Trail by USA Today, is included as a must download. A blank bucket list is included to write your favorites. Contact information on each restaurant is also included. Eat up!

To find out more about these great books why not visit Rio Grande Books

Barbe Awalt and Paul Rhetts started LPD Press in 1984. In 1996 they began Tradición Revista magazine, which focuses on the Hispanic art and culture of the American Southwest, and have published almost three dozen books on Hispanic art and culture. They have also curated an exhibit on New Mexican santos – “Our Saints Among Us” – that travelled to museums and arts centers throughout the country for about six years. Their art collection is on frequent loan to museums and art centers throughout the United States.

They launched a new imprint in 2006 called Rio Grande Books to provide an avenue for books of a more regional nature covering the entire Southwest.

Bucket list4

Why not check out Barbe Awalt’s books here

Books > Travel > United States > West > Mountain


Letters from Elsewhere: Marc

A great post from Miriam Drori’s blog introducing author Catriona King’s main character, Marc Craig.

An' de walls came tumblin' down

Letters from Elsewhere

I’m delighted to be joined today by Maximus Decimus Meridius, a.k.a. Marc, the lead character in Catriona King’s Craig Crime Series. He’s here to tell you who he is and what he does.


My name is Maximus Decimus Meridius, commander of the Armies of the North, General of the Felix Legions…and if you’ve ever watched the movie Gladiator then you’ll know the rest. That’s not really my name, obviously; it’s Marc Craig. But I am Roman, on my mother’s side, and we are both fighting a war, in my case a war against crime.

The other half of my blood is Irish, from the north, but borders are irrelevant to me when I’m hunting for a murderer, and the only blood I’m interested in is the blood left at a crime scene, and the details of its DNA.

I’m a murder detective, a Superintendent now, a promotion I only accepted because…

View original post 420 more words

Red Gold ~ A Gabe McKenna Mystery Review

Red Gold (A Gabe McKenna Mystery Book 1) 

Red GoldGabriel McKenna is grieving the loss of his wife and marinating in a sea of liquid gold, but nothing can prepare him for the surprise that awaits him in New Mexico. It’s easy to appreciate the history, the setting and the characters, especially for Albuquerque residents. As we follow Gabriel through a helter-skelter of incidents, a threatening white envelope on the windshield of his car and a Pueblo Revival style house he can now call his own, there is always that inescapable feeling of tension that kept me riveted.

Kidera’s writing is first rate and keeps at a consistent pace. From the development of Gabriel’s character and to his dry sense of humor, I enjoyed everything about him. He’s human, likeable, and will resonate with a multitude of readers. If you like a book that will keep you turning the pages and makes you shiver with anticipation, then this is just the ticket.

A five star Amazon review by Claire Stibbe.

Book Description:

Shaken by the death of his beloved wife and wrestling with powerful personal demons, Professor Gabriel McKenna leaves New York City for New Mexico to claim an inheritance from mysterious distant relatives. He finds something other than a Land of Enchantment.
Unseen enemies threaten his life. Old friends turn up and rally to his side. Together they plunge into a lethal struggle for a 19th Century treasure, the fabled Lost Adams gold. McKenna enters a world of violence, passion, sexual abuse, deceit, and death that cause him to question his core beliefs and values, and even his sense of self.
Desperate to find a way home, McKenna must first unearth the secret of an old family manuscript and risk his life against overpowering odds. He must rekindle his long-dead fighting spirit and discover new reasons to live and love.

“If you enjoy first-class suspense and an author with a unique voice and style, then you will love ‘Red Gold.’ This novel is a masterful blend of mystery, action, and love story, all wrapped up in a wonderful cast of characters and beautifully-described scenes of New Mexico. Robert Kidera’s first novel is a real treat that will have readers demanding more.”
—Joseph Badal, award-winning author of the Danforth Saga and “Ultimate Betrayal”

“Red Gold” earned the Tony Hillerman Award as Best Fiction of 2015 at the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards. It was also named as Best Mystery of 2015 and the best eBook of the year.


“Author Robert D. Kidera owes me big time. His debut novel in the promised McKenna Mystery series, ‘Red Gold,’ kept me up all night. Who can resist a good old-fashioned treasure hunt? ‘Red Gold’ is a thriller packed with deceit and danger but also compassion. McKenna is a damaged hero, but also one to root for.” —Vincent Zandri, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of “Everything Burns,” “The Remains,” and “The Shroud Key”

Author Bio:

Robert KideraAward-winning author Robert D Kidera’s debut novel “Red Gold” earned the Tony Hillerman Award as Best Fiction of 2015 at the New Mexico/Arizona Book Awards. It was also named as Best Mystery of 2015 and the best eBook of the year.

“Red Gold” is the first volume in the Gabe McKenna Mystery Series from Suspense Books. A sequel, “Get Lost”, will be available on March 8, 2016. “Cut.Print.Kill.”, a third Gabe McKenna mystery, is targeted for release in 2017.

After an early fling in the motion picture industry and a long and successful career in academia, Kidera retired in 2010. With his desire to play major league baseball no longer a realistic dream, he chose to fulfill his other lifelong ambition and became a writer. He is a member of Southwest Writers, Sisters in Crime, and the International Thriller Writers organizations.

The author lives in Albuquerque, New Mexico with his wife Annette and two cats, Otis and Woody. He has two daughters, a grandson and granddaughter. You can reach the author through his website:

Why not visit Robert Kidera at his website here

Take a look at Robert’s profile and books on Amazon