Archive | March, 2016

News roundup: Ultimate Planet Awards, upcoming titles, a bit of blogging and a pussy thriller

26 Mar

It’s Easter weekend and time to eat hide the chocolate eggs for the kids’ Easter trail. But before that, here are a few tasty morsels of news and some tempting books for the holiday weekend.

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kikiUPAwardWinners of the Ultimate Planet Awards were announced at the weekend at a fancy ceremony in London. The awards were started a couple of years ago to recognise and promote event organisers and businesses who improve the queer women’s scene.

There were three fiction-related awards and Kiki Archer was the big winner on the night. She took home the award for Best Independent Author and for Best Book with Too Late… I Love You. Sarah Waters won the Best Publishing House Author Award. Both were there to collect the awards and were reportedly jolly chuffed indeed.

You can read about the evening and other awards on Diva.

Looking ahead a bit now:

AQuietDeathCari Hunter revealed the cover and blurb for book three of the Dark Peak series. Book one, No Good Reason, was recently short-listed for a Lammy and book two,  A Cold Death, is already available. Watch out for mild spoilers in the blurb below. A Quiet Death is due out January 2017.

In book three in the Dark Peak series, things are looking up for Detective Sanne Jensen and Dr. Meg Fielding. Dating each other seems to be working, their families are behaving themselves, and the worst of the post-Christmas crime wave is over.

The discovery of a Pakistani girl’s body out on the moors changes all that. No one knows who she is, who hurt her, or how she came to be there. As pressure mounts on East Derbyshire Special Ops for a quick resolution, it becomes ever more apparent that the case won’t provide one.

With the Pakistani community closing ranks, and threads of suspicion reaching farther than anyone could have predicted, the investigation leaves Sanne facing an ordeal she may not survive.

Jenny Frame has just signed a contract for her fourth book with Bold Strokes. Royal Rebel – A Royal Romance Story will be published in 2017 (cover when we see it). Also, her first novel, A Royal Romance, will be released on audio book this year.

GallowsDropMari Hannah is onto book six of the Kate Daniels novels. Gallows Drop will be out in November and here’s the blurb:

At dawn on a lonely stretch of road, a body is found hanging from an ancient gallws the morning after a country show. Hours earlier, DCI Kate Daniels had seen the victim alive. With her leave period imminent, she’s forced to step aside when DCI James Atkins is called in to investigate. There’s bad blood between them.

When Kate discovers that Atkins’ daughter was an eyewitness to a fight involving the victim, the two detectives lock horns and he’s bumped off the case. It’s the trigger for a vicious attack on Kate, exposing a secret she’s kept hidden for years and unearthing an even darker one.

Shaken but undeterred, Kate sets out to solve a case that has shocked a close-knit village community. As suspects emerge, she uncovers a curious historical connection with a hangman, a culture of systematic bullying, a web of deceit and a deep-seated psychosis, any one of which could be motive for murder.

On to blogs and reviews:

Anna LarnerNew author Anna Larner has been writing about her first experience of reading lesbian romances as a teenager back in the 80s, and in particular Annie on My Mind. It’s a rather nice piece about the climate at that time and a book that is cherished by many:

Let’s begin, where I began, in the UK in the 1980’s, as a geeky teenager, standing awkwardly at the reception desk of my local library. I had secretively ordered a copy of the lesbian romance novel, Annie on My Mind, through inter-library loan. To this day I cannot decide whether it was indigestion or disgust betrayed on the librarian’s face, as she reluctantly handed the book over to me.

You can read the full post here.

carved_final (1)Jen Silver‘s Carved in Stone was reviewed over on Rainbow Book Reviews. This is the third book in the Starling Hill Trilogy and has “romance, adventure, a treasure hunt, and happy endings.” Here’s what they had to say about the book:

This book concludes a very enjoyable and illuminating collection by tying up several loose ends and bringing up to date all the pairs that have previously been introduced. I do recommend you read the first two publications (‘Starting Over’ and ‘Arc Over Time’) for the best possibly enjoyment of ‘Carved in Stone’. This trilogy most certainly allowed me to not only become enchanted and familiar with Northern England, but also to immerse me in everything the current environs present. The tantalizingly rich presentation of rural, small town life and an appreciation of current-day archaeology is more than great fun. This three-volume assemblage is a consummate treat. Applause!

circle_finalJen‘s also been talking about her novel The Circle Dance over on Women and Words and her problems writing that third novel:

As well as having to get to know new characters, I think I’m now more self-conscious about my writing. Before the publication of my first book, Starting Over, I just wrote stories for my own consumption. The best analogy I can come up with relates to playing golf. When you stand over the ball and start thinking of all the things you’ve been told about stance, swing, distance from the ball, not moving your head, rotating your hips – chances are you’re either going to nob it off the tee… (nob is a common technical term here in the UK) or shank it into the woods….So the trick is to let go, try to let it flow – but even thinking that can inhibit the process. I have to find that one pre-shot thought that will keep me out of the trees when I sit down to write. I just need to remember that I’m writing for myself, writing the stories I enjoy reading.
proofofevidence
And finally, Jade Winters has been quiet of late, but she’s just published a short story in the genres: Cozy Animal Thrillers and Lesbian Fiction. Here’s the blurb for this tongue-in-cheek tale of murder mystery.

In Godalming, home of astute and spoilt house cat Kitty, something is brewing in the feline community. After a string of robberies at the local butchery, Kitty’s human is fired after being accused of the crime. But when Tiddles, Kitty’s best friend from next door, comes to her for help, the tension in both human and feline worlds mount.

The budgie with which Tiddles shares her home has been killed in a brutal attack, and Tiddles is blamed for the murder. Soon to be collected by the shelter and losing her home, Tiddles begs Kitty to help her find the real killer and prove her innocence before she is lost forever for a crime she did not commit.

Kitty, addicted to catnip and Sherlock Holmes mysteries, fancies herself a feline version of her hero and embarks on her own investigation of the puzzling circumstances surrounding the budgie’s demise.

Will she solve the murder in time to redeem her friend or will she be too late to save Tiddles?

You can buy Proof of Evidence on Amazon now.

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Toodle pip.

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News Roundup: Lambda Finalists Announced, New Bold Strokes Authors, New Books From Clare Lydon & Gill McKnight, and More…

14 Mar

It’s been an up and down couple of weeks in LesFic land: quiet for a while and then bang, the news came a-rollin’ in. Given the current dearth of decent biscuits on the shop shelves – hurry up and get unflooded, McVitie’s! – I heartily recommend that you cut yourselves a nice piece of cake, fetch a brew, and settle in for a few minutes.

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lambda-literary-awards_s345x230The big news this week was the announcement of the 2016 Lambda Literary Award finalists. There’s no warning as to when these bad boys come out, they just sneak online and the LGBTQ book-reading world goes a bit nuts for a while. The Brits didn’t do at all badly this year, with four very familiar names included amongst this year’s finalists:

Bisexual Literature: The Gap of Time by Jeanette Winterson

Lesbian Mystery: No Good Reason by Cari Hunter

Lesbian Romance: The Chameleon’s Tale by Andrea Bramhall & The Renegade by Amy Dunne.

The awards will be announced on June 6th, and you can find a full run down of the contenders here. Congrats to everyone who made it through 🙂

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The 2015 Indiefab Book of the Year finalists were also announced this week, with Crin Claxton‘s second Supernatural Detective novel, Death’s Doorway, listed amongst those in the LGBT (Adult Fiction) category. The winners will be announced in June, and you can read all about the awards, and find a full list of those finalists here.

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Moving on to new authors now, and Bold Strokes Books have recently added two Brits to their listing, both of whom will be appearing at the annual UK BSB bash, to be held in Nottingham the weekend of June 4th & 5th.

bold books logoAnna Larner has a degree in English literature and master’s degrees in word and visual imagination, and museum studies. She has written and curated a permanent exhibition of LGBT voices and memorabilia, based at Leicester’s LGBT Centre, one of the first permanent exhibitions in the UK. As a member of the steering committee for the Leicester, Leicestershire, and Rutland LGBT History Project, Anna is passionate about preserving LGBT history and ensuring that LGBT voices are heard. When she’s not writing or reading, she loves lazy Sunday lunches and all things Scandinavian. Anna lives in Leicestershire with her partner Ang.

Her début novel, Highland Fling, will be released in 2017:

Eve Eddison describes her ideal woman to her best friend, Roxanne, over pints in their local pub a few days before she travels to the Scottish Highlands. There she falls head over heels for an enigmatic local, Moira Burns, and the usually reticent Eve wants more than a holiday romance. Forestry officer Moira Burns has no intention of letting go—either of past pain or for present pleasure. If that means she misses out on her chance at happiness, so be it. Convinced Eve is headed for heartbreak, Roxanne advises her to let Moira go…but has Eve found her ideal woman at last?

From the breathtaking Highlands of Scotland to the buzz of a Leicester gay bar, family and friendship are tested to breaking point, as letting go proves painfully hard.

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Robyn Nyx is an avid shutterbug and lover of all things fast and physical. Her writing often reflects both of those passions. She writes lesbian fiction when she isn’t busy being the chief executive of a UK charity. She lives with her soul mate and fellow scribe. They have no kids or kittens, which allows them to travel to exotic places at the drop of a never-enoughhat for “research.” She works hard to find writing time, when she’s not being distracted by blue skies and motorbike rides. You can read more about Robyn over on her blog, and her début novel, Never Enough, is scheduled for a November, 2016 release:

Award-winning journalist Madison Ford is taking a well-deserved break from covering foreign wars. That break is cut short when she receives a mysterious package, full of incriminating information on a human trafficking ring. When she’s asked to do an interview with an actress and humanitarian, it seems like a welcome distraction. Little does she know how distracting it will become.

Elodie Fontaine is in demand. She chooses the movies she wants to work on and the women she wants in her bed. Humanitarian work takes up the rest of her time. Love isn’t an option. When Madison walks into her life, she’s faced with a dilemma: pursue Madison and lose her heart, or avoid the risk and lose her chance at happiness. When Madison’s life is in danger, will love pull them through? Or will it be too late?

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Celesbrian TV, a new LGBTQI lifestyle magazine channel – has recently interviewed Scott Campbell (formerly Karen Campbell). Scott discusses his creative processes, writing to music, and choosing character names. The feature also includes a review of his novel, Diary of a Broken Heart. You can watch the interview here.

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All-I-Want-For-Spring-400On to new books now, and Clare Lydon‘s second novella in her I Want… series, All I Want for Spring, will be released on March 18th. The follow-up to All I Want for Christmas, and All I Want for Valentine’s, takes the action to Rome…

Never mind spring: will Tori & Holly’s relationship survive the weekend?

Two women in love, and all they want for spring is a romantic break in sunny Rome. But what happens when they don’t spell romance the same way? What happens when their long-held beliefs are challenged? Will Tori & Holly be willing to compromise to get home unscathed?

Welcome back to the world of London’s No.1 lesbians, chock-full of love, heart and desire. Will Tori & Holly come back from their weekend away stronger than ever, or bruised by love?

If you want to find out more about Tori and Holly’s year of romance, Clare has written a brand new piece for the Women & Words blog, which also features a chance to win a copy of All I Want For Spring. Winners will be selected on March 18th, so get yer skates on.

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Welcome to the Wallops.1Gill McKnight‘s new novel, Welcome to the Wallops (The Wallops Book #1), will be published in May 2016:

The villages of High Wallop and Lesser Wallop have graced either end of the Wallop valley since medieval times. And competition between the two has never ceased since, especially over the famous Cheese and Beer festival.

As head Judge of Show, Jane Swallow has always struggled to keep peace, friendship, and equanimity within the community she loves, but this year everything is wrong. Her father has just been released from prison and is on his way to Lesser Wallop with the rest of her travelling family and their caravans.

Her job is on the line, and her ex-girlfriend from a million years ago has just moved in next door.

Her life is going down the drain unless she can pull off some sort of miracle.

You can read more about the inspiration behind the book in this blog post.

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Hopefully that little lot will tide you over for the next fortnight. We’ll see you back here around about Easter, eh?