blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Networking for Writers – Lizzie Chantree*

Are you swamped with book marketing and looking for a way to find new sales? Learn simple and
effective networking techniques, to grow your readership and connect with other authors and book lovers, today!

Whether you are a new or experienced writer, self-published or traditionally published, this book
will show you how to grow your readership and author network, through some of the most powerful
of all marketing tools – word of mouth and recommendation.

This book will show you:
How networking can help you sell more books.
Why author branding is important.
How networking hours work.
Specific Facebook groups for writers
How to utilise social media to grow your readership.
How not to waste valuable writing time.
How to make our marketing more effective.

Throughout Networking for Writers, we will explore running or attending book signings, hosting seminars, finding a writing buddy or mentor, author networking groups, social media planning and so much more.

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International bestselling author and award-winning inventor, Lizzie Chantree, started her own business at the age of 18 and became one of Fair Play London and The Patent Office’s British Female Inventors of the Year in 2000.

She discovered her love of writing fiction when her children were little and now works as a business mentor and runs a popular networking hour on social media, where creatives can support to each other. She writes books full of friendship and laughter, that are about women with unusual and adventurous businesses, who are far stronger than they realise.

She lives with her family on the coast in Essex.

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My thoughts:

This slim book is full of useful information for writers, both aspiring and established, on how to market yourself and your work. Chapters cover different social media platforms and how to get the most out of them as well as tips on using software and connecting with fellow writers and readers.

Lizzie Chantree self published her first few books and knows a lot about building your own readership through savvy use of existing tools and networks, and I’ve read some of her books having seen them mentioned on social media – so it does work!


*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Clipped Wings – Molly Merryman*

In her exhilerating book Clipped Wings: The Rise and Fall of the Women Airforce Service Pilots of WWII, author Molly Merryman shines light on the critical and dangerous work of the daring female aviators who changed history. New York University Press classics series has just updated the book with Merryman’s reflections on the changes in women’s aviation in the past twenty years. A documentary based on Merryman’s work, Coming Home: Fight For A Legacy, is currently in production.

The WASP directly challenged the assumptions of male supremacy in wartime culture. They flew the fastest fighter planes and heaviest bombers; they test-piloted experimental models and worked in the development of weapons systems. Yet the WASP were the only women’s auxiliary within the armed services of World War II that was not militarized.

In Clipped Wings, Merryman draws upon finally-declassified military documents, congressional records, and interviews with the women who served as WASP during World War II to trace the history of the over one thousand pilots who served their country as the first women to fly military planes. She examines the social pressures that culminated in their disbandment in 1944—even though a wartime need for their services still existed—and documents their struggles and eventual success, in 1977, to gain military status and receive veterans’ benefits.

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WASP Missions

Airplane ferrying was the initial mission for which WASPs were created, and it would occupy nearly half of all active WASP graduates when the program ended in December 1944. Planes produced in the United States needed to be flown from the factories to air bases at home, in Canada, and overseas. To handle this transportation demand, the ATC hired thousands of male civilian pilots to ferry planes. These male pilots were later commissioned directly into the AAF if they met the requirement and desired commissioning. The WASPs were brought on as ferrying pilots, and by the time they were disbanded in December 1944, they had delivered 12,652 planes on domestic missions. By that time, 141 WASPs were assigned to the ATC. Although they comprised a small percentage of the total Ferrying Division pilots, WASPs had a significant impact. By 1944, WASPs were ferrying the majority of all pursuit planes and were so integrated into the Ferrying Division that their disbandment caused delays in pursuit deliveries.

The days of ferrying pilots were long and unpredictable. At bases that handled a range of planes, pilots did not know from one day to the next what planes they would be flying or how long of a flight to expect. In Minton’s words, “We usually reported to the flight line at seven o’clock in the morning and looked at the board to see what had been assigned us in the way of an airplane, where it went and what we would need in the way of equipment to take along, and then we would go out to find our airplane and sign it out at operations and check it over to be sure everything was okay with the airplane. And then we would take off to wherever the plane was supposed to go.”

Ferrying military aircraft during World War II was not an easy task. The majority of these planes were not equipped with radios, so pilots navigated by comparing air maps with physical cues (highways, mountains, rivers, etc.) or by flying the beam. (The “beam” was a radio transmission of Morse code signals. A grid of such beams was established across the United States. To follow the beam, a pilot would listen on her headphone for aural “blips” or tones to direct her. This required a great deal of concentration and was not always accurate.) Both navigational techniques were difficult, and this was compounded by the facts that many air bases and factories were camouflaged, blackouts were maintained in coastal areas, and the navigational beams were prone to breaking down. Problems sometimes arose with the planes themselves, which ha d been tested at the factories but never flown. Cross-continental flights often took several days, depending on the planes being flown and weather conditions.

In addition, planes equipped with top secret munitions or accessories had to be guarded while on the ground, and WASPs received orders to protect these planes at all cost. WASPs flying these planes were issued .45 caliber pistols and were trained to fire machine guns.

Molly Merryman, Ph.D. is the founding director of the Center for the Study of Gender and Sexuality and an Associate Professor at Kent State University. She is the Historical Research Producer on the upcoming Red Door Films documentary about the WASP, Coming Home: Fight For A Legacy. She has directed and produced nine documentaries that have been broadcast and screened in the United States and United Kingdom. She is the research director for the Queer Britain national LGBT+ museum and is a visiting professor and advisory board member for the Queer History Centre at Goldsmiths, University of London. Merryman is the vice president of the International Visual Sociology Association.

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Giveaway: $25 Amazon GC (International)

My thoughts:

This was really interesting and packed with details from Congressional hearings, people’s memories and official records of the WASPS. At times it was a little hard to engage with all the facts and figures, but I feel like I learnt an awful lot about the fight to allow women to fly, from WW2, right up to recent times.

I am always fascinated by incredibly brave and determined women who repeatedly get shot down and “put in their place” by often incredibly ignorant men who have completely lost sight of the big picture. These women were extraordinary and wanted to fly in combat, just like men, and being smaller and lighter were probably better built for such roles.

A really fascinating insight into the battle for recognition and understanding of how much female pilots could, and indeed have, contributed.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Get a Grip, Love – Kate Lucey*


A candid book that uses a mix of colloquial chat, peer and personal experience, and expert advice to talk about tackling mental illness as part of the generation so often poked fun at for having feelings – and who often call themselves out for it, too.

A record-breaking number of anti-depressants are being prescribed each year. While positive steps are being taken and we are speaking more about our problems, in this new age of having conversations about mental health, everyone and their neighbour has a ‘miracle cure’ to throw at those of us who are struggling. There’s an enormous gap in the knowledge and understanding of what depression is and isn’t – not least in that it doesn’t look the same on every person.

Exploring the science behind mental illness and its treatment, and including stories from a number of sufferers of depression and anxiety disorders, Get a Grip, Love provides a witty, razor-sharp exploration of mental health, and a no-nonsense guide that explains where the advice to ‘go for a run’, ’stay off social media’ or ‘make some new friends’ comes from. It separates the facts from the fiction about what could work, speaks openly about how it feels to live with a mental health disorder, and demonstrates that it’s ok to feel the way that we do when we’re struggling, and that we certainly don’t need to get a grip.

Funny, irreverent, and understandable, Get a Grip, Love recognises that depression sucks, but that together, we can get through it.

My thoughts:

I have depression and have been living with it for some time now so it was interesting to see how someone else deals with their own illness and finds a way through it.

I dipped in and out of this book, not all of it was easy reading when it feels a little close to the bone but it was an interesting and informative read.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Optimise Your Immune System – Marie Ruggles, RD, CN*

Many people think that it’s normal to come down with an illness each year and, for some, two or three times a year. Yet researchers have proven that nutrition and lifestyle factors can boost your immune system.

Learn how to build a kitchen pharmacy of whole foods, superfoods and nutrients to provide a stable foundation for your health. And when you’re at an increased risk of infection, know what to do to derail a virus before it takes hold.

Follow this immune-boosting roadmap to a healthier diet, making you less prone to viral infections and more resilient after an illness.

In Optimize Your Immune System, you’ll read about the three phases of immune support.

Phase I: Everyday immune strengthening and care

Phase II: After exposure to an unhealthy person or environment

Phase III: Immune-boosting support to prevent an illness when you feel like you’re coming down with something

For each of these phases, Marie Ruggles, M.S., R.D., C.N., C.D.E., draws upon over forty years of experience within the wellness arena.

The book begins with her explaining how the immune system works and what it does. From there, she discusses the foods that help and hinder our immunity. She even gives a whole foods quick start guide for those who aren’t too certain where to start.

She also shares the concept of juice bathing, and how to use that to minimize the fuss and mess of juicing while maximizing its benefit.

Optimize Your Immune System makes specific recommendations for how to fortify and stimulate your body’s natural defenses using a simple kitchen pharmacy, no matter which phase of immune support you are facing.

Diving deep, the book looks closely at whole foods, superfoods, nutrients and supplements, even giving specific product recommendations for those brands and products the author personally loves most.

The final chapter of the book pulls everything together in an easy-to-reference format sharing phase-specific recommendations, as well as how to eat more nutritious foods even if you’re on a limited budget.

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Marie Ruggle’s teaching focus is on coaching others to take back their power by developing a home inventory of natural wellness solutions. She is obsessed with searching for the healthiest products and bringing nutrition science (eating for prevention) into the kitchen by sharing easy hacks for getting real food on the table with minimal effort. Her background is in Nutrition & Public Health. She has a master’s degree from Columbia University where she started her career in research. She also has a certification in Essential Oil Safety and has been a Certified Diabetes Educator for many years.

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International Giveaway: $25 Amazon e-gift card

My thoughts:

I have a terrible immune system and pick up every bug going, which was the worst when I worked with those delightful germ factories known as children – I had a permanent cold!

I’m always looking for ways to boost my system and stay healthy (Vitamin C and Zinc are a good starting point) so this book was really interesting – there were lots of useful and practical ideas about eating better and managing your health without breaking the bank and buying endless gadgets.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

books, reviews

Book Review: The Geeky Stitching Co’s Little Book of Cross Stitch – Jess Payne

You will find over thirty of our bestselling designs in this book as well as seven new patterns to stitch up, we have everything from rainbows to fluffy animals and not a country cottage in sight!

A great book for beginners as well as experienced stitchers who are fans of stitching cute stuff and fun puns.

My thoughts:

I’m not very crafty but I’d like to be and cross stitch looks like something I could probably manage, not as complicated as knitting, which just had me all tangled up.

These patterns are super fun and cute and it seems very follow the pattern and you can’t go wrong. Which is good.

As we’re going to be locked down for the foreseeable future, it’s probably a good time to try to learn a new skill and this seems an excellent place to start.

Thanks to Blue at Clink Street for my copy.

books, reviews

Book Review: Cookfulness – Ian Taverner


Create Space For The Happy Stuff!

This cookbook is crammed full of new and innovative ways, hints and tips, designed specifically for people with chronic pain and mental health conditions, by me, a fellow sufferer.

It is all to help you WANT to cook, not have to!

Cooking really can be a therapy. Cooking really can ignite your passions. Cooking really is possible!

If you are having a bad day, I want to make it better. If you are having a better day, I want to make it good. If you are having a good day, I want to make it great. If you are having a great day, good on you!

My thoughts:

Packed full of delicious recipes for days when your mental health, disability or chronic condition isn’t playing ball, with simple steps and tasty ingredients, this is a terrific book for people like me who struggles to cook when my body and brain don’t want to do anything.

With a difficulty rating, tools list, and lots of tips to help you perfect your dish, from super simple eggs to slightly more complex cakes (nothing is too fiddly though).

Hoping to get a lot of use out of this in 2021 as I miss cooking but need simpler ways to make delicious things.

Thank you to Blue at Clink Street for my copy.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Let’s Talk About Cats – Anita Kelsey*

Let’s Talk About Cats: Conversations on Feline Behaviour features 16 unique in-depth conversations
with devoted feline experts, each chapter answering a question about our cats.

An abundance of catty conversation points which provide many useful takeaways for cat owners to improve their own every-day connection with their cats.

This book, the first of its kind, presents the combined wisdom of experts from all over add space the
world on the psychology, behaviour, diet and training of cats, in a relaxed and add space conversational style.

Contributors include Jackson Galaxy, star of My Cat From Hell, and composer David Teie, whose ground-breaking album, Music for Cats, was released by the Universal Music Group.

Each illuminating chapter exudes a love for cats and a wealth of fascinating insights.

This book is packed with helpful advice, guidance and true stories from the author’s own professional experience of cat care topics, explaining the most important cat concepts, giving food for thought and expanding on all the most important issues and debates in the cat world.

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Anita Kelsey holds a first class honours degree in Feline Behaviour and Psychology (work based BA
Hons) and runs a vet referral service dedicated strictly to the diagnosis and treatment of behaviour problems in cats.

She is also a qualified cat groomer and specialises in grooming aggressive or phobic cats. Anita writes for Your Cat Magazine and is on their experts panel answering readers questions on cat grooming.

She also advises on feline behaviour for the CFBA (Canine and Feline Behaviour) magazine as well as being a full member.

Anita, a strong advocate of a vegan lifestyle, is based in London but consults all over the UK as well as international requests. She lives with her husband, a music producer, and two Norwegian Forest cats, Kiki and Zaza.

Her debut book ‘Claws. Confessions Of A Professional Cat Groomer’ was published by John Blakes in 2018 and her second book Let’s Talk About Cats, Conversation On Feline Behaviour is due out November 28th 2020.

(I had to include both author photos – the author’s cats are gorgeous!)

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My thoughts:

I love cats, they’re such adorable weirdos, I grew up with them and still miss my childhood chum Tribble (yes, from Star Trek) a lot, even though she crossed the rainbow bridge many years ago.

I currently catsit for friends and neighbours (available to do so across North London and potentially further if you need me!) and my lovely little furry pals always make me smile. I have “shares” in two of my neighbours’ cats as I’ve looked after them and they occasionally pop into to visit.

So, this book was something I was really interested and looking forward to reading – I was not disappointed. Full of useful and interesting information from experts and plenty of advice for cat lovers (not owners, cats have staff!) to help you better understand your feline overlords.

Written in an accessible, friendly and helpful style, with chapters on different areas of cat behaviour, psychology, attitudes, food, training and wisdom, I recommend it for anyone who has cats or is thinking of getting one.

I personally think it will help me get on with my cat clients even better, as they can sometimes be a little tricky to read and it’s helpful to have some ideas about what might be going on in their fluffy little heads.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: How Love Actually Ruined Christmas (or Colourful Narcotics) – Gary Raymond*

RARELY HAS THE POWER OF CINEMA BEEN FELT BY SO MANY, IN SUCH OPPOSING WAYS…

“Love Actually dulls the critical senses, making those susceptible to its hallucinogenic powers think they’ve seen a funny, warm-hearted, romantic film about the many complex manifestations of love. Colourful Narcotics. A perfect description of a bafflingly popular film.”

By any reasonable measurement, Love Actually is a bad movie. There are plenty of bad movies out there, but what gets under Gary Raymond’s skin here is that it seems to have tricked so many people into thinking it’s a good movie. In this hilarious, scene-by-scene analysis of the Christmas monolith that is Love Actually, Gary Raymond takes us through a suffocating quagmire of badly drawn characters, nonsensical plotlines, and open bigotry, to a climax of ill-conceived schmaltz.

How Love Actually Ruined Christmas (or Colourful Narcotics) is the definitive case against a terrible movie. With a foreword by Lisa Smithstead.

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Parthian Books WHSmith

Gary Raymond is a novelist, critic, editor, and broadcaster. He is presenter of The Review Show for BBC Radio Wales and editor of Wales Arts Review. He is a regular writer on film, music, literature, and theatre, and can often be heard on BBC Radio 3 and 4 as an arts commentator and reviewer. His novels include For Those Who Come After (Parthian, 2015), The Golden Orphans (Parthian, 2018), and the upcoming Angels of Cairo (Parthian, 2021).

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My thoughts:

Love Actually is the worst Christmas film ever, possibly one of the worst films. So I went into reading this knowing that I already agreed with the title – I refuse to sit through this deeply weird and very rubbish film every year.

Gary Raymond breaks down the film scene by scene and examines its lazy plotting, terrible script, casual misogyny and fatphobia, and the total lack of good jokes. The excellent actors are totally wasted on the ghastly plots, some of which never seem to actually go anywhere (poor Laura Linney).

I found myself nodding along to Raymond’s excellent dissection of this genuinely terrible film and wishing Richard Curtis had just done a Vicar of Dibley special instead.

An excellent book for anyone who likes film, Christmas and would rather poke themselves in the eye with a roast parsnip that sit through the drivel that is Love Actually again this Christmas. 2020 has been bad enough, do yourself a favour and watch literally anything else. Or read this book.


*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books

Blog Post: Busting the Brass Ceiling – Fanchon Blake & Linden Gross

BustingTheBrassCeiling

Congratulations to author Linden Gross on the release of Fanchon Blake’s fascinating story, Busting the Brass Ceiling!

Read on for more details and an exclusive excerpt from the book!

BustingBrassCeiling-eBook-Cover_for publication

Busting the Brass Ceiling: How a Heroic Female Cop Changed the Face of Policing

Publication Date: November 20th, 2020

Genre: Non-Fiction/ Police/ History/ Women in History

FANCHON BLAKE joined the LAPD in 1948 and walked a beat in a skirt and heels for three years. Her ambition to rise in the ranks would be curtailed by an increasingly discriminatory agenda, but her relentless tenacity finally led to a promotion to sergeant nineteen years later. When LAPD policy barred her from rising any further and threatened to eliminate women from the department, she sued. The historic case would change the face of policing around the country.

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Excerpt

Enough!

The words CONFIDENTIAL SURVEY caught my attention. I picked up the paper and read: A Survey to Justify Why Men Do Not Want to Work with Policewomen. I loved the LAPD. But I sure didn’t love the way they treated the women on the force. Were things about to get worse?

I looked around the LAPD squad room, where I worked as a detective investigating forgery, but no one was paying attention to me. I gazed again at the paper I held. It was from the chief’s office, complete with an authenticated signature. For years, I had protested the fact that no new women officers were being hired, and that a substantial number of female sworn officers had already been reassigned to desk jobs. Now it seemed that management was setting up a justification to eliminate women from the job altogether.

Surely, the chief had more brains than to try to circulate something as bizarre as this survey, but nobody else would dare take that kind of action without his knowledge. I couldn’t let this go unchallenged. I would have to flush it out into the open, which meant confronting the chief. I couldn’t do that alone. He would crucify me.

I convinced the president of the Los Angeles Policewomen’s Association to ask the chief to explain the blatantly anti-female survey to his female officers. Surprisingly, he agreed to meet with us on January 10, 1971.

Available on Amazon

About the Author

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LINDEN GROSS is a bestselling writer. She ghostwrote Julia “Butterfly” Hill’s New York Times bestseller The Legacy of Luna (HarperCollins, 2000). Publishers Weekly wrote that Hill’s “firsthand exposition of destructive forest practices … is extremely powerful, and her book, a remarkable inspirational document, records a courageous act of civil disobedience that places her squarely in the tradition of Thoreau.” Gross is also the writer behind Kathryn and Craig Hall’s national bestseller, A Perfect Score: The Art, Soul, and Business of a 21st-Century Winery (Center Street, 2016).

Gross has authored, co-authored, or ghostwritten an additional eight books, including Ms. Cahill for Congress (Ballantine, 2008), the stirring tale of public school teacher Tierney Cahill, who on a dare from her class ran for U.S. Congress, and Surviving a Stalker: Everything You Need to Know to Keep Yourself Safe (Incubation Press, 2013), a revised edition of To Have Or To Harm (Grand Central Publishing, 1994), the first book written about the stalking of ordinary people. Gross also functions as a writing coach and an editor, helping other people to write their nonfiction books and novels, several of which have gone on to become bestsellers.
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Blog Tour: In Sat Nav We Trust – Jack Barrow*

In SatNav We Trust – a search for meaning through the Historic Counties of England is a journey through ideas of science and belief, all the while searching for meaning and a bed for the night. Or was that the other way around?

On May 1st 2013 I set off from Oxford on the trip of a lifetime. It wasn’t a trip around the world or up the Himalayas, I set off to visit every one of England’s 39 historic counties. These are the counties that used to exist before all the boundary changes that chopped Yorkshire into bits, got rid of evocative sounding names such as Westmorland, and designated the big cities as metropolitan boroughs. I wanted to visit England as it used to be, although that’s not quite how it turned out.

In SatNav We Trust started out as a travelogue exploring all the usual suspects, spectacular landscapes, architectural or engineering wonders, historic towns with their cathedrals and castles. However, it soon developed into a journey through ideas and beliefs, an exploration of how the rational and the apparently irrational jostle for position in human experience. The book discusses our fundamental scientific understanding of the universe when, deep inside us, we might be as irrational as a box of frogs. This context, the exploration of England—the places stumbled across with no day to day plan, created the backdrop for these ideas.

The book takes the form of a journey through one English county a day. Rather than having a plan, other than a rough anticlockwise direction of travel, the trip was largely spontaneous. This unplanned nature is what drives the narrative, similar to the way a MacGuffin drives a story, and opens the possibility of stumbling across unintended experiences.

The journey is taken in a fifteen-year-old 4×4 referred to throughout as The Truck, along with a sat nav referred to as Kathy (actually the voice of Kathy Clugston from Radio 4). Rather than paying for hotels this was a camping trip to keep the costs down. The logistics of finding somewhere to camp each night provided further challenges. All of these inconveniences, and the unexpected solutions that followed, provided useful metaphors for concepts that arose in the philosophical exploration.

The result of this unplanned approach is that the story only covers the areas of the counties passed through. There are no descriptions of the obvious locations in each county because the journey simply didn’t pass that way. However, this means that there were unplanned encounters with places such as a village falling into the sea, the wonderfully mad Tees Transporter Bridge, or accidentally driving a speedboat with two drunk blokes without any consideration about how to get ashore.

Jack Barrow is a writer of books and blogs about ideas based on popular philosophy in modern life. He is a critical thinker but not a pedant. He has an interest in spiritual perspectives having been brought up as both a Mormon and a Jehovah’s Witness. He’s not sure, but he believes this particular ecclesifringical upbringing makes him a member of a pretty exclusive club. He is also fascinated by science. At the same age as his parents were taking him to church services, he was also watching Horizon documentaries and Tomorrow’s World, becoming fascinated about science and technology. Perhaps around the time of the moon landings, when he was six or seven, he came to the conclusion that, sooner or later, people would realise that the sky was full of planets and stars, science explained the universe, and that there was no God looking down. He really thought that religion’s days were numbered. Declining congregations seemed to back that up, but since then there has been a growth in grass roots movements that seem to indicate people are looking for something to fill the void left by organised religion. He now has a particular interest in the way people are creating their own spiritual perspectives (whatever spiritual means) from the bottom up using ideas sourced from history, folkloric sources and imagination. Rather ironically it was members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses who first introduced him to the landscape of Wiltshire, with its stone circles and ancient monuments, which later kindled his interest in spiritual beliefs taken from more ancient perspectives.

He has also written a novel; The Hidden Masters and the Unspeakable Evil is a story of a group of magicians who discover a plot to build casinos in Blackpool and so turn the resort into a seedy, tacky, and depraved town. During this hard-drinking occult adventure, with gambling and frivolous trousers, Nigel, Wayne and Clint travel north on Friday night but they need to save the world by Sunday evening because they have to be back at work on Monday morning.

Jack lives in Hertfordshire, England, where he earns a living writing about things in engineering; this usually means photocopiers and bits of aeroplanes. He shares his home with R2D2 and C3PO, occasionally mentioned in his blog posts. People used to say he should get out more. At the time of writing he is currently shielding from the apocalypse, having been of a sickly disposition as a child, and wondering if he will be able to go to a live music pub ever again.

My thoughts:

An interesting wander around England’s counties, including ones like Rutland and Westmorland, that don’t technically exist anymore. My own county of Middlesex only exists as a postal county, having been swallowed up by London over the years.

I got a bit cross with the lack of organisation at times – not having investigated campsites in advance horrifies me, I would need to know where I was sleeping before I arrived. But that’s just me. There was a very freewheeling, take it as it comes feel to the narrative.

Dipping into his own past and that of the land around him for stories and anecdotes as he travels, Jack seems a little like a travelling storyteller, someone perhaps unfamiliar in our modern age, but perfectly common in the past.

Reading this in the post-lockdown days of 2020 was slightly jarring, you certainly can’t just travel freely around the UK anymore so there was an extra edge of nostalgia there, that I don’t imagine the author thought of.

It was fun to stop places I’ve been to, and interesting to learn a little about places I haven’t, and I certainly know which campsites are best avoided!


*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.