Friday, 19 May 2017

High Force by LJ Ross

High Force (DCI Ryan Mysteries, #5)High Force by L.J. Ross
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received a copy of this book free of charge from the author, in return for an honest review.

This is the fifth part in the DCI Ryan series of books and I have to say, the plot just continues to thicken. The end of Angel (DCI Ryan Mysteries, #4) saw The Hacker make an elaborate break from prison, arriving at the door of an unsuspecting DI Denise MacKenzie. This left me so many unanswered questions which I needed answers to. Thankfully, Ross wasted no time in putting pen to paper and satisfying my ever growing curiosity.
Always one step ahead of the game The Hacker, aka Kier Edwards, does his best at keeping DCI Ryan running in circles. Little clues dropped, but nothing to give away his whereabouts or whatever transport he may be using. It takes a great deal of police manpower to piece together the clues and come up with a viable solution - each time leading them up a dead end street! Edwards is the master of games and loves playing with the emotions of Ryan, however maybe this time he's bitten off more than he can chew. For the first time, we get an insight into how Edwards was shaped from an early age into the dangerously calculated killer that he later became and we learn a little more about his childhood.
Overall, this is a very tense read which keeps you on the edge of your seat. Think you've got Edwards sussed? Think again because there's more twists and turns which will keep you guessing till the very end. Can Ryan and his colleagues save MacKenzie before it's too late? Does she have the strength to keep going or will she give up before her captor? Will everyone survive or are more victims on the cards? Will Edwards ever be caught? These were all questions running round my head whilst reading High Force and the answers surprised even me.
Brilliantly written and engaging. I am now desperate to see how all the loose ends tie up and, as usual, Ross left me with unanswered questions and the need to get my hands on her next book, Cragside - I can't wait!!

View all my reviews

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Actipatch 720 Hour Back Pain Relief


I received the ActiPatch® 720 Hour Back Pain Relief free of charge, in return for an honest review. All opinions are based upon my own experience.

For a good few years now, I've suffered with back pain which mainly affects my shoulders and neck, although I do suffer with my lower back on occasions too. I've tried many forms of pain relief, but struggle to find anything that works without side effects. My trouble is that the muscles in my shoulders and neck have 'knit' together and I get a trapped nerve in my right shoulder which occasionally floors me. Tablets etc provide temporary relief, but I'd much rather try a more natural approach, which is where Actipatch® comes in.
Actipatch® uses Electromagnetic Pulse Therapy, and can be used for the relief of back pain, knee pain, muscle & joint pain, arthritis, sciatica, fibromyalgia, strains, sprains and more!
The most amazing thing about this product is that you don't feel a thing when it's in place. Despite it continuously sending pulses, you feel absolutely nothing.

Here's what you get in the box:

Actipatch®, Stretchy bandage, Instruction leaflet
 Apologies for the pic being on its side, no matter what I did, it came out the same way! Anyway, the stretchy bandage is to help hold the Actipatch® in place, depending on where you use it, however you can use plasters or anything else you find more comfortable.


As you can see, the device itself is pretty small and relatively flat. The idea is to place it so that the painful area sits inside the ring. There is a tiny silver button on the underside of the device which you press to activate it and a tiny green LED light glows on the other side.

Tiny silver on/off button

As I have occasional pain in my lower back, I decided to try wearing it there first using the stretchy bandage. This didn't work for me as I found that the bandage slid around too much and kept getting hooked on my belly bar. Depending on the clothing you wear, I also found that the shape of the device, as well as the green light, could clearly be seen through my clothes which did raise a few questions when people noticed. However, this doesn't really bother me if it actually works - which for me, it did!! I wore if for a few days continuously, even in bed which with this product, you are able to do that without concern. Despite my initial misgivings, I didn't find it too uncomfortable as I half expected it to dig into my skin which it didn't. After just 3 days, I had full movement of my neck and shoulders and the pain was virtually non existent. I still had the occasional niggle if I moved too fast, but apart from that, it seemed to be doing the job.

I'm pretty sceptical when it comes to contraptions like this which claim to help ease pains, and the fact that you genuinely don't feel anything at all, made me all the more sceptical. I was however pleasantly surprised by how much it did actually relieve my pain - fantastic!! Each device delivers a total of 720 hours of constant relief, although the device can be turned off if you feel you need a break from it, then turned back on when required.

As a result, I would definitely recommend this product, especially if all else has failed.
Actipatch® 720 Hour Back Pain Relief is available to purchase from Boots, Amazon and Superdrug as well as Lloyds Pharmacies, and they cost around the £20.00 mark.

Wednesday, 21 December 2016

Beautifully Broken by Laura Lee BLOG TOUR




Title: Beautifully Broken
Author: Laura Lee | @lauraleebooks
Release Date: November 15th 2016
Genre: New Adult

Tour Dates: December 19th – 23rd | December 26th – 30th







I KNEW HE WOULD RUIN ME FROM THE MOMENT WE MET. 

Everything about the man screamed confidence. Sensuality. Intelligence. Worldliness. But it was how he saved me that ruined me most.

Through him, I learned to end my path of self-destruction. I no longer needed to numb the pain with mindless one-night-stands and drunken blackouts. He made me feel worthy. Treasured. Optimistic about my future.

Here I stand four years later, in a coffee shop a world away, still broken…but beautifully so. My scars no longer hold me back. Instead, they give me strength and enrich my appreciation for the good things in life. I have hopes and dreams…faith that anything is possible. I am no longer the lost little girl fighting for survival. I have direction. I have courage. I am not without possibility.

I’ll always have Gavin to thank for that—Mr. Cooper, I remind myself. That’s who he is to me now: just a former teacher. I know what you’re thinking, but don’t worry. I was eighteen when we first met. Legally, we did nothing wrong. Morally? Well, I guess that depends on how flexible your morals are.

My name is Kat and this is my story.

Review

I received a free copy of this book in return for an honest review.

It took me no time at all to get completely lost in the pages of this book and I raced through it not wanting to put it down for one second! I love how honest Beautifully Broken is, and how it doesn't over complicate things, leaving your mind free to immerse itself in the story without losing track. I really warmed to Kat and loved her blunt outlook on life, but began to feel more sympathy towards her when details of her past started to emerge. I really enjoyed how the relationship between 'Sparkles' and 'Red' progressed and found the humorous banter shared between them a pleasure to read. This is the story of one womans fight to show the world that she can cut it with the best of them, despite the most difficult of circumstances. Both inspiring and flabbergasting with a good mix of emotion, turmoil, love and above all, the determination to succeed. 


AMAZON UK: http://amzn.to/2fUQnOU
AMAZON CA: http://amzn.to/2gRzEyg
AMAZON AU: http://amzn.to/2gQcEC6
BARNES & NOBLE: http://bit.ly/2gRzIy4
SMASHWORDS: http://bit.ly/2giLgsX






“Do you want me to turn something on from Netflix?”

“Sure. What’d you have in mind?”

He gets a boyish smile on his face. “Okay…if anyone asks about this, I will deny it until I’m six feet under.”

“And what’s that?”

“I’m going through a Dawson’s Creek binge right now. Wanna watch it with me?”

I can’t help it; I laugh until I’m snorting. “Are you serious?”

Gavin grabs the remote and begins flipping through the menu. “Completely serious. I never joke about The Creek.”

“Wow…I have no words.”

He bumps his shoulder into mine. “C’mon, you’ll love it. Have you ever seen it before?”

“Of course I have!” I reply. “Do you know how many Dawson ugly cry memes there are in existence? I had to know the source.”

“Yeah, I’m definitely Team Pacey all the way. Dawson is way overrated.”

I smirk. “Oh my God, when did you grow a vagina? I could’ve sworn you were a dude.”

His expression changes from jovial to angry in an instant. 

“We both know damn well I’m one-hundred-percent male. Don’t make me prove it to you, Kat.”

And with that, my expression morphs into equal parts stunned and horny. “Uh…”

He clears his throat and pushes a button on the remote. “And on that note…let’s forget I said that and get lost in North Carolina teen angst.”

“Okay, but make sure it’s an episode that has Mitch in it. Dawson’s dad is where it’s at.”

“You like older men, huh? I’ll have to remember that.”

I burrow under the covers and yawn. “I walked right into that one, didn’t I?”

He smirks. “Pretty much.”





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 Direct Link: http://bit.ly/2gquirW









After working a 9-to-5 gig for many years, she happily traded it for a rewarding career as a self-published author. Laura is the author of the bestselling Karli Lane and Dealing with Love series. She is a proud member of the Romance Writers of America focusing on contemporary, urban fantasy, and paranormal romance.

Laura's passion has always been storytelling. She spent most of her life with her nose in a book thinking of alternate endings or continuations to the story. She won her first writing contest at the ripe old age of nine, earning a trip to the state capital to showcase her manuscript. Thankfully for her, those early works will never see the light of day again!

Laura lives in the Pacific Northwest with her wonderful husband, two beautiful children, and three of the most poorly behaved cats in existence. She likes her fruit smoothies filled with rum, her cupboards stocked with Cadbury's chocolate, and her music turned up loud. When she's not writing or watching HGTV, she's reading anything she can get her hands on. She's a sucker for spicy romances, especially those involving vampires or cowboys! 





Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/2htw942









Saturday, 10 December 2016

BLOG TOUR: Late Whitsun by Jasper Kent (Giveaway)




I received a copy of this book free of charge, in return for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

This is the first book in the planned Charlie (Big Bad) Woolf trilogy and having read the blurb, I thought this would be just my cup of tea.
Late Whitsun is set in 1938 and centres around private detective Charlie Woolf - or Big Bad as one former colleague nicknamed him. The handing over of one small package was the only job he was asked to do, easy money he thought, but even nothing ever comes that easy. Upon returning home from doing this 'small' job, he discovers that the man whom he was doing the job for, has been found dead in Charlies flat, and the finger of suspicion points straight to him. Can he manage to clear his name before things get out of hand, or worse, any more murders occur?

This book didn't grab my attention from the get go, but a slight curiosity started forming in my head the further into it I read. Although a little confusing at times (I had to check back through occasionally), the idea of the story is a good one, and there were a few little twists I didn't see coming which kept it interesting. I wouldn't have minded knowing a little more of Charlies background, but hopefully we'll learn more within the pages of the next two books - which I look forward to reading!

Keep reading for your chance to win 1 of 2 signed copies!!

Here are a few questions which were asked of Jasper:
What is the first book you remember reading or having read to you?
Just William, or maybe another of Richmal Crompton's William books, read to me by my dad.
Who is your favourite literary character?
Porfiry Petrovich, the detective in Crime and Punishment.
Which book have you always wanted to get round to reading, but not managed yet?
So many, but top of the list, Catch 22.
If you could only take one book with you on a desert island, what would it be?
War and Peace. If I'm allowed, I'd like it in Russian along with a Russian-English dictionary. That said, quite a bit of it was written in French, so I might struggle without a French-English dictionary too.
What are you currently reading?
Restoration London by Liza Picard - research for my next book.
Who would be at your dream dinner party, alive, dead or fictional?
Alan Turing, Dianna Rigg, Seth MacFarlane, Willow Rosenberg and Graham Greene.
What's the best advice you've ever received?
Get your pet rats sprayed at 3 months - it virtually eliminates mammary tumours in later life.
What's the worst advice you've ever received?
Don't learn the french horn, learn the tuba.
Who is your hero/heroine, real or fiction?
Dr Who
Where are you happiest?
In the pub, with the dog.
Who would you like to star in the film of your life?
Glenda Jackson. I'm off to see her playing Lear soon. If she can do him, I'm sure she could have a good crack at me.
Describe your best ever holiday:
Paris a couple of years ago. Lunch on the Seine, Cav and Pag at the Opera Bastille, dinner at Maceo.
If you could be invisible for a day, what would you do? (easy, tiger!)
Go swimming - it would be an interesting effect.
If I joined you on your perfect day, what would we be doing?
Cooking, then eating with friends.
What do you think is the best thing about social media?
You can turn it off!!
And the worst....?!
The degree to which we perceive our opinions as reinforced and approved.
What is the most important item you require for a quiet night in?
The dog.
Is it best to always tell the truth, or is it sometimes better to tell a little white lie?
I cannot answer that question in a way that would be believed.
What's your signature dish?
Curry
Do you prefer Twitter or Facebook? Why?
Facebook - I'm longwinded.
Which book character do you wish you'd written?
Pinkie Brown
Why did you decide to write a book?
It was on my bucket list
Why did you chose your particular genre?
I started out with horror because that's what I'd been into as a teenager. I'm currently doing crime because you can hang almost anything you like off it.
If you had to write in a different genre, which would it be?
Espionage. Both my horror and my detective stories seem to touch on the world of spying.
What's the worst thing about writing a book?
Selling it.
What's the best thing about writing a book?
Research.
If you could be anyone for just one day, who would it be?
Magnus Carlsen (current World Chess Champion)

Author Spotlight

The Author Spotlight is a slightly different take on the interview style questions, it is a snap shot look at your life AWAY from writing.
Its aim is to allow your readers an insight into other aspects of your life that they may not get from other sources.
If you could tell us a bit about each of the following things, in no more than 10 sentences if possible!

·         Years Ago
 Having lead a pretty stable life for most of my adult years, my thoughts on seeing the title ‘Years Ago’ jump immediately to the last time when things were substantially different for me – and that was at Cambridge, where I read Natural Sciences at Trinity Hall from 1986 to 1989. Natural Sciences is an overarching course that covers all the sciences, allowing for later specialization than more specific science courses would. This was good for me, since at the age of 18 I wasn’t sure whether I preferred Physics or Chemistry, though I ended up specializing in Physics. Not having studied anywhere else I can’t say whether the Cambridge experience is particularly unique, but what I remember most – at an academic level – was not the quality of the lectures or supervisions, excellent though they were. What I recall most is the fact that I was never more than a few paces away from someone who was as fascinated and perplexed by the same questions and problems that I was, or by equally interesting issues in their own field of study. I say ‘at an academic level’, but it turned out that the academic and the social overlapped enormously, so such a conversation was as likely to occur in the bar as in the lecture theatre. I remember being back there a few years ago overhearing a couple of students walking down the street and loudly discussing some aspect of quantum physics that I’d once half-understood. It brought back memories. Mind you, it wasn’t all highbrow: Neighbours started showing in the UK at almost exactly the same time that I first went up to Cambridge, and that was always quite a popular topic of conversation.

·        Family 
I’m from quite a small family. Both my parents are only-children, I have no kids and my sister has two. Somehow we’ve all discovered the trick of getting on very well. There are two secrets to it, the first of which is separation. My parents both grew up – unknown to one another – in Yorkshire and moved to Birmingham, where they met. Thus the idea of moving a nice long way from the family home – in my case, to Brighton – seemed natural. I get back up there five or six time a year, and it does turn out that absence makes the heart grow fonder. The second trick is eating together. It was always pretty strict when we were young that we would sit round the table for the main meal of the day (with the one exception, I recall, of when we were doing something on a Saturday evening which meant dinner clashed with Dr Who, in which case we would move the dining table into the living room so we could watch TV). It carries on today – whenever the whole family is together, things will essentially be arranged around a meal. 

·         Work
After three years of studying, I was a bit fed up with physics and ended up working in software development. I’d done some programming on our VIC-20 at home, but I wasn’t one of those expert self-taught programmers who were around at the time, and I quickly realized the actual ability to write code isn’t what’s most needed in professional software development. More than half the problems you face are down to the difficulties of communication within the development team. Programming on your own is fairly easy, but you can’t produce very much – working in a team means you don’t just have to understand what you’re doing, you have to be able to explain it to others. As a result of that, most of my work nowadays involves training other people in how to develop software, but I still keep my hand in at the code face. Even today it gives a great sense of achievement – quite different from that of writing a novel – to write a program and then to watch it doing what it’s supposed to do, without any further intervention from myself.

·         Hobbies
I suppose my most noticeable hobby is music; I play piano and bass guitar and I used to sing a bit too. For a while I had half an ambition to be a composer, but it turns out I’m more successful at writing squiggles than dots. I also like to cook and I think I do it with a degree of dedication that elevates it from necessity to hobby. I enjoy running too. I’ve done one marathon, about five years ago, which was fun, but the training really takes over your life. In future, I think half-marathons will be the maximum. Some might think I should mention the dog and seven rats here, but if listed anywhere they would be under the heading of ‘Family’.

·         Future
I’m on a bit of a cusp just now. I’ve had five horror novels published, and I’ve just released my first detective story. My plans regarding the next book are for a purely historical novel set in Restoration London. After that I’m really going to have to decide which of those genres is really my niche – or just keep going at all three. And more dogs and rats. 



a Rafflecopter giveaway

You can also buy Late Whitsun from Amazon.co.uk and it's available in Kindle and Paperback.

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Greggs Sweet Mince Pies

Forgive me but I'm going back there again, yes, Christmas!! Those of you who personally know me (or follow me on social media) will probably know that I'm a bit of a sweet mince pie freak - I wait all year for them to grace our shelve and when they do, I simply can't get enough of them.

I have, over the years tried many brands and varieties ranging from the ridiculously expensive to the cheapest there is to offer and only one comes up trumps year after year satisfying this intense craving I have and that's Greggs.

Greggs sweet mince pies are the ideal combination of sweetness, fruitiness and flavour and are paired with a unique shortcrust pastry which compliments the filling perfectly. They come in a box of 6 and cost £1.50 - definitely worth every penny!


Okay, it doesn't take a genius to work out that there's a few missing out of this box but they're just way too yummy not to eat!

I'm gonna stick my neck on the line here and probably cause a bit of a hoo-haa but these pies are THE BEST SWEET MINCE PIES EVER!! So, if like me you're a lover of these seasonal treats, get yourself into Greggs and give them a try - you won't be disappointed!!

Feel free to pop back and share your opinions, I'd love to hear them! ;)