Cover Reveal! Timeshaft – Stewart Bint

Today is cover reveal time for my good and amazing barefoot author friend – Stewart Bint.  He is funny, caring, a brilliant autbor (many of his books scared the living daylights out of me) and very supportive to other authors, including humble little me.

Booktrope are shortly publishing a revised edition of Stewart Bint’s time travel novel, Timeshaft…and here’s a sneak preview of the dazzling new cover created by Booktrope designer Troy Johnson.  Originally published on Smashwords in 2013, the new edition features a new beginning and ending, along with a number of new scenes.

Blurb

By the twenty-seventh century, mankind has finally mastered time travel—and is driving recklessly towards wiping itself out. The guerilla environmentalist group WorldSave, with its chief operative Ashday’s Child, uses the Timeshaft to correct mistakes of the past in an effort to extend the life of the planet.But the enigmatic Ashday’s Child has his own destiny to accomplish, and will do whatever it takes within a complicated web of paradoxes to do so. While his destiny—and very existence—is challenged from the beginning to the end of time, he must collect the key players through the ages to create the very Timeshaft itself.

“Do our actions as time travellers change what would otherwise have happened, or is everything already laid down in a predetermined plan?” he asks. Stewart Bint’s Timeshaft is an expertly synchronized saga of time travel, the irresistible force of destiny, and the responsibility of mankind as rulers of the world.

Stewart Bint  Stewart Bint is a novelist, magazine columnist and PR writer. He lives with his wife, Sue, in Leicestershire, in the UK, and has two grown-up children, Christopher and Charlotte.

He is a former radio presenter, newsreader and phone-in show host, but always wanted to become a fiction writer — a dream that came true when his first novel was published in 2012 at the age of 56. Now the author of five novels, a collection of short stories and a compilation of his early magazine columns, he was signed by Booktrope in 2015, who published a revised edition of his paranormal novel, In Shadows Waiting, in August.

They are publishing a revised and re-edited edition of Timeshaft shortly.

As a member of a local barefoot hiking group, when not writing he can often be found hiking in bare feet on woodland trails and urban streets.

Stewart Bint online:

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Amazon UK
Amazon USA

As the World Falls Down

Today David Bowie no longer walks among us. One of my facebook friends asked – rightly so – whether or not I was really sad about this or is it just people pouring their hearts out because they can? Her timeline feed showed almost nothing else and mine is showing pretty much the same. 

So it made me wonder, what does it mean to me? Does it really affect me? Does it have an impact on my life? 

I’d heard of David Bowie before I saw the movie Labyrinth in 1986 through my parents obviously, but after I saw that, I was hooked. He was the first man I had a major crush on. Jareth, the goblin king, was the epitome of romance to me and I could not understand why Sarah would ever want to go home. Save the bloody baby, sure, but why leave? Sigh. I watched that movie over a hundred times and could quote it by heart from beginning to end at one point. I kid you not.

I mean, could you leave him behind? Sigh

 
I loved them all, wanted to party with the Wild Gang, hug Hoggle, play a game of wits with Sir Didymus and his trusty Ambrosius and be friends with Ludo.

Let’s Dance was one of my favourite albums and yes, I do realise he’d released fourteen albums before that, but these were my teenager years, so obviously very important. 

China Girl – David Bowie

 
I’ve never seen him in concert and that makes me sad. I think it would have been a magical experience. Even now, not in his prime. That chance is gone now. With the release of his former album I had small hopes of him returning to the stage, and alas. 

So I’m left with my memories. Which are good, very good. No, it doesn’t shatter my world and it won’t affect my daily life as I did not know him personally, but it does leave me with a sad feeling. My first crush is no longer here. He was my inspiration when it came to the concept of romance and he will remain being just that. Safe travels, great beautiful man. You’ll be missed by many and loved by even more.

Labyrinth

Just around the corner – Ramblings of a modern druidess

Just a few more days and we’ll be leaving for my beloved Sweden. Two weeks of peaceful bliss in a breathtaking environment. Needless to say I’m counting the days.
  
Looking forward to see my mother-in-law, brother-in-law and my friends Marry, Rene and their two amazing boys. 

Packing is turning out to be a bit of a challenge. With Christmas and work, I haven’t had a lot of time to actually think what I should bring along. And think about it I should. Sweden can become cold quick. Very quick. So the trick is layers. Lots of layers. And my running gear. And my horse-riding gear. And my harp. I think I need a bigger suitcase.

My trusty laptop is coming along as well, of course. Good thing too, as I really need a good kick in the butt right about now. I need to make some serious progress on The Empath. Now The Bridge has been released, I can turn my full focus on my trilogy again. As my internt connection is kind of crap, I should be able to focus more easily. That’s the theory at least and I’m sticking with it!

 
I wish you all a loving and healthy 2016 and above all, a bit of magic in your life. So I’ll leave you with this slightly altered quote.

Without magic, life would be a mistake.

Nietzsche (on a magical day 😉)

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The Bridge Between Yesterday and Tomorrow – Release Day!

Today my first short story will see the light of day. The Bridge Between Yesterday and Tomorrow.

Pianist Donna Verdell kindly provided the music for this book trailer. When it’s Raining – from the collection Songs of Summer.

The Bridge is inspired on my time in Sweden. I visit regularly as my family-in-law lives there. The Dalarna area is just so beautiful, so magical, it’s not hard to imagine a world beyond our vision, our knowledge. A world of trolls. Not scary looking trolls, but different. From us, anyway.
Eydis is such a troll. She’s a girl who falls in love with a human boy. As we’re not supposed to know trolls exist, you can see how this is going to be a problem.

Writing a short-story has been a real challenge for me. How to create a whole world and fascinating characters with just a few words? Jack Croxall has been a true inspiration. His short stories X and Dylan blew me away! They are so well-written and captivating, you just want to know more!

I wanted to create that same feeling. Of wanting more. At least it worked for me. I got so sucked into the world of Eydis, I think there’s definitely a larger story to be told. I’m not done with her world. Not saying there’s a Lord of the Rings in there, but definitely more, yes.

I truly hope you will feel the same. A big thank you goes out to my editor for The Bridge, the amazing Pam Elise Harris, you totally rock! If you have a minute, be sure to check out her own works. 

This book is also something of a family effort. I’m very proud of the cover, which was drawn by my own cousin Trudy v/d Bosch-Veldkamp. The poem featuring in The Bridge was made by my other cousin Tom van der Vlies. He just nailed the feeling I wanted to describe in the book. What was really special is that he wrote about a heart-shaped emerald in his poem without even knowing I’d actually written something along those lines in the book! How’s that for magic! The poem in Midwinter under the Bridge was created by me. Last but not least, my own husband, Maarten Bastiaan – a goldsmith – created the ring Eydis receives from her father. The emerald ring.


You can order The Bridge here from Amazon. UK or US in paperback or e-book.

And without further ado, here’s the cover! Yule blessings, happy holidays and a magical new year! X

Blurb

“Hello human child. My name is Eydis. I’m a troll-girl who’s in big trouble. You see, I’ve fallen for one of your kind. A human boy. Talib. He’s just so nice – I can’t stay away from him. If my father finds out though, I don’t know what will happen. Humans are not supposed to know we exist and I just broke the rules. Oh, did I mention he’s also the king and I’m heir to the throne? Yes – like I said. Big trouble.” 

Deep in the woods, below the rocks and in the caves, there lies a world unknown to us. They are part of our stories though. Part of our heritage, our legends and myths. Trolls. However, they might not be what you expect them to be. What if you meet one of them? Would you believe your eyes? Would you be brave enough to follow them? To go on an adventure?

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The Phoenix Project – DM Cain

The brand new edition of dystopian, psychological thriller The Phoenix Project by D.M. Cain will be re-released on December 11th. Originally published in May 2014, this new Booktrope edition has had a complete editing overhaul plus a stunning new cover design.

The book will be available to buy from a wide range of digital and paperback distributors, including Amazon:

US or UK

Author: D.M. Cain
Title: The Phoenix Project
Genre: Psychological thriller/Dark thriller/Dystopian
Book Content: Occasional adult language, graphic violence, and mild sexual content.
Original Cover Design from the first edition:  

Synopsis:
How can you fight to the death, when you’ve given up on life?

A thought provoking and compelling dystopian world that will change the way you view justice…

A man fights for life—and redemption—in D. M. Cain’s riveting re-released novel, The Phoenix Project.

Britain has descended into chaos as violence and terrorist attacks seethe across this once-peaceful country. Outraged by the steady stream of lawlessness, citizens demand a harsher penal system, and the Phoenix Project is born.

In prisons across the country, inmates fight to the death in a weekly bloodbath while the nation cheers them on.

Raven Kennedy, a prisoner who has never forgiven himself for his unspeakable crime, struggles against his own guilt and self-loathing. But even as the real war wages on within himself, Raven is forced to battle some of the prison’s most ruthless killing machines. Can he survive long enough to unravel the anger and regret that shackle him—and one day find the forgiveness he seeks?

‘The Phoenix Project by D.M. Cain is a superbly written debut, soaked in tension and intrigue,’ Jack Croxall, author of the ‘Tethers’ trilogy.

An interesting fact about The Phoenix Project: The horrifying ‘dark room’ in The Phoenix Project (a pitch-black sensory deprivation cell) was inspired by D.M. Cain’s visit to the Terror Haza in Budapest—a museum dedicated to the fascistic and communistic regimes that operated from the building. In the cellar of the Terror Haza are the old cells used to imprison and torture inmates. D.M. crawled inside a very low cell and shut the door, casting herself into total darkness. It was terrifying and claustrophobic, and she only lasted five minutes in there!

Special treat!!!!! 
Listen to DM Cain as she reads from the first chapter of The Phoenix Project! D.M. Cain Biography
D.M. Cain is a dystopian and fantasy author working for US publisher Booktrope. She has released three novels: The Phoenix Project – a psychological thriller set in a dystopian future, Soren – a middle-grade fantasy, and A Chronicle of Chaos – the first in a dark fantasy series. She is currently working on the next novel in the series, ‘The Shield of Soren’, and a novella to accompany it.

D.M. Cain is also a member of the International Thriller Writers and is one of the creators and administrators of the online author group #Awethors. Her short story ‘The End’ was published in Awethology Dark – an anthology by the #Awethors.

Cain lives in Leicestershire, UK, with her husband and young son, and spends her time reading, writing and reviewing books, playing RPGs and listening to symphonic metal.  Links:
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Welcome to Bizarro World – Valentine in concert

Last night Robby Valentine performed in my own city and in one of my favourite places, the gorgeous Parktheater. One of the few gems Alphen has left. It was murder parking my car though. Last time it was this crowded was on Kingsday, it was complete madness! Fortunately for me I know the neighbourhood, so time for plan B and ditch my car somewhere nearby.

Like the name implies, Parktheater is a theatre, so it has sitting arrangements. This left me a bit doubtful, as I was in the mood to dance, but I have to say that overall it didn’t bother me.

Robby encouraged the audience to stand up whenever we felt like it and we felt like it quite a lot!

  
This was a doubly whammy so to speak. The first act (staying in theatre character) was Valentine’s own music. Mainly Bizarro World and some songs from Androgenius. For a very long time the third album, simply titled Valentine, was my favourite. I love the cultural mix and the use of instruments on that album, it’s so divers! However, having heard Bizarro World several times now, both on cd and live, I have to conclude I have a new favourite. Do I love each and every song? Well, I certainly have my preferences, but there are no fillers on this album. None. Each song adds something to the album and the build up is well thought of. I’m in love with Trip to the Moon, which he unfortunately didn’t play live, but he did play very close runner-up You’re Tearing Me Down and Black Rain (love that video by the way).

Personal highlight for me was this awesome version of No Turning Back with the V Rock Choir. I understand it must be an organisational nightmare to bring the choir along each and every time, but I really hope they’ll do this more often. It was truly magical. I filmed the last bit. Just from my iPhone, so please excuse the poor sound quality, but at least you’ll have an impression. Click here 

He also did Dear Dad (which always makes me cry, so thanks for that Robert) and I Believe in Music. That song does something to me every time. It’s just so pure. 

The second act was a tribute to Queen. I like Queen, though I wouldn’t consider myself a fan. Having said that, the version of Under Pressure by Robby and Maria Catharina is just magnificent! She raises so much energy each and every time, I often wonder how she’s still standing afterwards.

Both her vocals and that of the lovely Laura are a great asset to the Valentine show. 

Robby is a man of contradictions. He always struggles with his voice, yet he chooses to do almost all vocal arrangements himself. 

Being shy won’t help him on stage either and if you look closely and pay attention, you can see that feeling of awkwardness. Then someone from the audience sings along or shouts something at him and you see that smile. In that moment, he’s at perfect ease on that stage. 

Valentine has a very loyal fanbase who follow him around the country and even beyond. This album could broaden his fanbase though, I really believe that. You hear Muse, Placebo, Queen, but all combined, which makes it that unique sound of Valentine. That sound is not bizarro at all, it’s magical and it kicks ass! 

photo by Peter Boogaard