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News Roundup: Interview Kiki on Video, New Novel from Jade Winters, Lambda Reviews, Podcasts, WhoreStoricals, Festive frolics, and loads more…

12 Nov

Oh, I knew that setting this roundup to music wasn’t going to end well. One song in and I’ve written bugger-all. Still, it was a really good song… Right, this was one of those weeks where I had no news and then suddenly almost too much to cram in! So, grab yourself a brew and a packet of bourbons, and enjoy.

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Kiki-264Starting with a fun opportunity that’s on a bit of a deadline (hope I’m not too late with this, but it seemed too good to leave out), as LBTQA Culture are giving fans a chance to interview Kiki Archer on video. All you have to do is record a 10-15 second video clip of yourself on your phone asking Kiki a question, and send the clip to: lgbtqculture@sky.com Don’t forget to introduce yourself and ask something that’ll make her blush (actually the site says “interesting” – heh). The responses will be posted next week. See here for more details.

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caught by loveWe never get much warning of new releases from indie writers, so it’s always a nice surprise when a book pops out unexpectedly. This week it was Jade Winters, who published her new novel Caught by Love. I’ve added the synopsis to the New Releases page. In a bit of a rollercoasting last few days, Jade also briefly dallied with the idea of signing up with Bold Strokes Books, when they accepted one of her novels for publication, before she decided to remain a self-published author.

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VT_Davy_jpg_210x1000_q85Sticking with new releases, and VT Davy has a guest piece over at Francis James Franklin’s blog to tie in with her début novel, A Very Civil Wedding:

More interesting is the question of what Britain as a nation would do if the heir to the throne was gay or lesbian and wanted to marry, or make their relationship official. Britain has had gay and lesbian monarchs before (Edward II, James VI, and Anne), but in all cases they married a member of the opposite sex and kept their affairs out of the public eye. Partly this was due to the prevailing view of homosexuality, and partly it was due to the law not enabling the relationship to be recognised. There are no such barriers today.

You can read the full feature at the link. Personally, I’d be more tickled by what Prince Philip would say than the nation as a whole!

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91CYqVEe28L._SL1500_There’s been so much new stuff about Hild that Nicola Griffith has had to start compiling roundups not unlike this one. Hit Hild #1 and Hild #2 for reviews, interviews, and news about Whitby. The novel has been picking up some fantastic reviews, not least this one by Susan Stinson at the Lambda Literary Society:

Nicola Griffith is a brilliant, prolific, entertaining, risk-taking writer. Her new novel, Hild, about the most powerful woman in seventh century Britain, is magnificent. In it, a girl whose mother has dreamed her to be the light of the world finds out more about what that means than most human beings could bear. Hild–so young, sharp and tall–is very much a human being, and her story grabs a reader like a king’s gesith grabs a sword. Reading Hild is an urgent, expansive pleasure. 

You can read the full text of the review here, and we hope to have our own special feature with Nicola posted in the next week or so 🙂

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The-Daylight-GateJeanette Winterson‘s The Daylight Gate has also been reviewed by Lambda this week. The novel, which  has been out a while here, certainly impressed Sara Rauch:

The Daylight Gate is a show-stopper. A tour de force. It’s a dark dazzler, break-neck (literally, metaphorically), brutal and beautiful. Once you pick it up, you won’t put it down.

The full review is available at this link.

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BSB_Secret_LiesJust nipping in under the deadline are two brand spanking new podcast interviews. The first features Amy Dunne on the Liz McMullen Show where, in a podcast themed around mental health, Amy discusses her début novel Secret Lies and its issues of self harm and domestic violence. You can listen to the recording here.

Meanwhile, Cherry Potts has been chatting about Mosaic of Air with the ladies from the Cocktail Hour podcast. There’s also a short reading from the book. Listen or download here.

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emma-donoghue-illo_2373764bChanging the subject entirely now, with Emma Donoghue picking her favourite five whorestoricals (that’s historical novels about whores!) at the Daily Beast. In amongst Emma’s five choices is lesbian fave Tipping the Velvet:

Waters’s cheeky debut follows her oyster-girl protagonist through many adventures, but perhaps the most interesting and atmospheric is her stint as a rent-boy. This novel captures the fundamental fakery of prostitution—how, for the Victorian gentleman who thinks the trousered youth giving him a blow-job is male, what he’s buying is as much fantasy as flesh.

Find out what made the rest of the list at the link.

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Monument to Murder cover imageFor some reason, this coming weekend seems to be a busy one for our authors. First up is an event oop north, for those of us who live some distance from the Watford Gap. Crime authors Mari Hannah (author of the DCI Kate Daniels series) and David Jackson will be in conversation at the Bedlington (a town in Northumberland, about ten miles north of Newcastle – I do the Googling, so you don’t have to!) Community Centre on Saturday November 16th, 7.00 p.m. – 8.30 p.m. Tickets are £5 and can be purchased from this link.

Stella Duffy, writer, actorOn Sunday 17th November at 5 p.m.Stella Duffy will be appearing at Writeidea (Tower Hamlet’s free reading festival) in East London:

Stella Duffy will read from her novels, talk about her work as a writer in many genres and also as a theatre director. There is every chance she will also mention that not only posh people can be writers, that Equal Marriage is a very exciting thing, and how the Fun Palaces Project is taking over her life.

The event is free, tickets are available at this link, and more details about the festival can be found on its homepage.

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dyke the hallsMoving with frightening speed into the festive season, and December 1st and 2nd will see VG Lee and Rose Collis Dyking the Halls and hosting an evening of hardly festive fun, words, and music at the Emporium Theatre, Brighton.

Writer, performer Rose Collis will serve up a personally prepared party platter of songs and stories. VG Lee, author and comedian and generally non-festive person, will be reading, talking and musing on just when she first realised she preferred cheese and pickled onion sandwiches to a turkey with all the trimmings.

Both authors will be available for mince pies and a mingle at the book stall after the event. More details and tickets are available here.

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51Zch618BLL._SY445_And last but certainly not least, King’s College London are hosting a day of celebration for legendary lesbian novelist Maureen Duffy on Friday 6th December. You can join Maureen for a festive day of talks, readings, discussions, exhibitions, refreshments, and entertainment, which will also feature Ali Smith, Anne Sebba, Maggie Gee and more. Attendance is free but ticketed, and tickets are available here.

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Okay, that’s about yer lot! Apologies for any misspellings, grammar SNAFUs, or general incoherence, but singing (well, wailing) and typing is a notoriously tricky business, especially with songs as bloody fabulous as this one

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News Roundup: Two New Authors, Ylva Want You!, Jade Winters Giveaway, Amy Dunne Chats at the Bar, and Lots More…

26 Sep

Honestly, my Blog Buddy goes away for a week and everyone’s suddenly getting up to all sorts of mischief! So, pull up a comfy chair, dunk a biccie or two and settle in for a bumper news update…

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We’ll start this week by welcoming two new authors to the site.

denialcoverJackie Kennedy lives in Scotland and in her own words is “rubbish” at talking about herself, but her début novel, Denial, was published by Affinty eBooks in August and promptly hit the number one spot on Amazon UK’s lesbian book chart.  Terry Baker rather liked the book when she reviewed it last month:

This well written book is an absolute blockbuster. There is a little bit of everything in it. Humour, a touch of  the supernatural, heartbreak, angst, yes, a lot of angst, but at the same time as it’s heart aching, it’s heart warming and gives out hope. It is also hot and sexy, steaming hot in fact. It’s painful to read at times, but as soon as I thought, please, no more pain, I was actually laughing out loud. So, there is an excellent balance between the pain and the laughter.

We’re hoping to hear more about Jackie in the not too distant, but in the meantime you can read the full review of Denial here.

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GB-Cover1London-born author Vic Tanner Davy has also been in touch with the site to give us a heads-up about A Very Civil Wedding, a lesbian romance and Vic’s second novel, which will be published in November. For Vic’s bio, head to the Authors page where you can find a link to Vic’s blog.

Because I am nothing if not efficient (but mainly because I have little resembling a life!) the blurb and covers for Denial and A Very Civil Wedding can be found on the New & Upcoming Releases page.

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ylvaYlva Publishing are Looking For You! Well, your short stories at any rate, with an open call for submissions for a new anthology. So, if you don’t mind, I will hand you over to publisher, Astrid Ohletz, for this next section:

“Ylva Publishing wants to spread the love a bit. How? Well, we are seeking contemporary romance stories for an anthology we’d like to publish in January 2014. An anthology full of sinfully sweet romance and amazingly erotic fun. So, here’s what we’re looking for: We’re looking for lesbian fiction. All submissions should be either contemporary romance or erotica. We only accept short stories that haven’t been previously published.

Word count: We are looking for stories between 4,000 and 12,000 words in length.

Payment: Writers whose stories are selected for the anthology will receive a one-time payment of $40 (via PayPal) plus a free e-book of the anthology in each format (epub, mobi, pdf).

Deadline: The deadline is set for October 30, 2013.

Submissions: Electronic submissions only. Please send your story as an e-mail attachment (.doc, .docx, or .rtf) to info@ylva-verlag.de. Put “Spread the love” in the subject line of your e-mail. In the body of your e-mail, please include your name, the title and word count of your story, and a two-or-three-sentence summary of your story.It will take our editors about two weeks to review your submission; then we’ll get back to you.We are looking forward to receiving your stories.”

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Fabulous, thank you Astrid.

anthologyYlva already have one UK author in their pack (L.T. Smith), another with a novel pending “in a year or so”, and they sound very happy to add more, so good luck to anyone who chances their arm at a submission. Speaking of L.T., she has a short story (Batteries Not Included) in the upcoming When The Clock Strikes Thirteen, an anthology full of paranormal and fantastic stories which will be published by Ylva on October 18th. For more details, including a teaser for L.T.’s short, head over here.

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Amy_Dunne_lgFrom writing to listening now, and BSB’s newest YA author Amy Dunne has just recorded a Conversation at the Bar with Andy from The Cocktail Hour podcast:

I had a lovely time talking and laughing away, even though it was past 12am on a school night. For this reason, please excuse my inability to tell the time and say “self-publicity” not publication. Doh! Anyway, I really did enjoy it and kudos to Andy for making me feel so relaxed and welcome.

Amy chatted about her novel Secret Lies which will be published in December, and the podcast can be downloaded or listened to at the above link. I hope Andy was the perfect lady for their first date and picked up the tab!

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LadyfishSticking with ears and BSB authors for a moment, as Andrea Bramhall‘s novel Ladyfish has come out on audio book this very week. The title is unabridged and runs for 8 hours and 16 whole minutes! So, if you fancy someone taking the load off and reading you a story while you lie in a darkened room and pop chocolates into your mouth, go and treat yourself.

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awalkintodarknessAnd now a welcome return to one of our favourite things here at UK LesFic: Free Stuff! 

Jade Winters is holding a Goodreads Giveaway for her novel, A Walk Into Darkness. There’s one copy up for grabs, and the giveaway runs until December 1st, so it’ll be nicely timed for the festive season (did you know there are only 89 days, 10 hours, and 26 minutes to Christmas?) Head to the first link for the giveaway and the second if you’d like to make yourself rock in a corner and weep.

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glasgayI’m sure there’ll be no weeping at this year’s Glasgay! Festival which Suzanne Egerton wrote to tell us all about:

It’s the twentieth anniversary of Glasgay! this year, and although not strictly literary-themed, it does feature Jackie Kay reading at one event, and I’m sure some UK LesFic authors are interested in writing for the theatre. I’m looking forward to an event at Glasgow Women’s Library on The Gateways Club of Chelsea, an iconic gathering place for lesbians in the old days – even I went there a few times. The brochure says that there will also be a chance to look at some rare materials from the National Lesbian Archive Collection; the library is very lesbian-friendly. 

The Fest runs from October 9th to November 9th and for anyone interested in attending there’s loads more information at the official site.

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DSC_2985Closing out this update with another festival, but one that has recently been and gone. If you missed out on BooQfest, Crin Claxton has posted a handy link to a write-up of her session at the event, and a little detective work of mine also found a transcript of VG Lee‘s playwriting panel and hour-long chat/performance on the same blog (scroll down the page a little to find VG’s stuff.)

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Whew, I think that’s covered just about everything so, if no one has any objections, I think I’ll lie in a darkened room for a while and pop chocolates into my mouth…

News Roundup: In Which A Whole Host of Authors Are Doing Exciting Things!

24 Jun

If there’s anything sticky smeared on this update, worry not, it’s only marmalade. I dragged myself out of my pit good and early just to bring you the news. How’s that for commitment? And yes, it’s just taken me three attempts to spell commitment correctly, I fear this may not end well…

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divaFirst up this week, exciting times for two of our most popular authors, Kiki Archer and Clare Ashton, who have a swanky feature in this month’s Diva magazine. In the article, Kiki and Clare chat about the joys and pitfalls of Indie publishing, and give some pointers to authors who may be thinking of heading in that direction. The July issue of Diva is widely available right now.

Kiki’s novels have also been highlighted as great beach reads in the July-August Curve magazine. That issue should also be on the news stands as I type.

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rainWe’ve welcomed another new author to the site in the last couple of days. Rain McAlistair started writing in 2010 and has since published three Indie novels – DoveBridge, and Moonchaser. A fourth novel is currently in progress but, in her own words, “it’s early days yet.”  Born in Warwickshire, Rain has since settled in the West of Ireland. We’re looking forward to hearing more from Rain in the not too distant future. In the meantime, you can find out all about her on her website.

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Cherry PottsAfter an open call to UK authors on this site a few weeks ago, Cherry Potts has recorded a Bar Rag with the ladies from The Cocktail Hour podcast. Cherry chatted with hosts Andy and Cheri, and then read from her short story collection, Mosaic of Air. You can listen to the Bar Rag by hitting the above link, and anyone who leaves a comment on the page will be entered into a draw to win a copy of Cherry’s current release, Lover’s Lies.

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Some new and upcoming releases now…

Crin Claxton‘s début novel Scarlet Thirst has had a revamp (ha, no pun intended!) and has been reissuedBSB_Scarlet_Thirst by BSB as an e-book. You can buy it on Kindle or directly from the BSB website. You want a little teaser? Oh g’wan then:

One rainy February night, cool butch vampire Rob Perdoni is bowled over by Rani Shah and immediately wants to date her. Rani is tough and gorgeous, just the sort of woman Rob likes. Trouble is, she’s human. Rani, on the other hand, doesn’t believe vampires exist. But before she can say, “Bite me,” she’s taking a roller-coaster ride from femme on the streets to vampire between the sheets.

Meanwhile, Nicola Griffith‘s forthcoming novel Hild is available to pre-order (Kindle and hardcover) and has picked up its first review over at Publisher’s Weekly:

Griffith goes boldly into the territory, lingering over landscape, wallowing in language, indulging the senses, mixing historical fact with feminist fiction in a sweeping panorama of peasants working, women weaving, children at play, and soldiers in battle: the Dark Ages transformed into a fantasy world of skirt and sword.

Hild is due for release on November 12th.

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Rounding out the news this week with two authors who are keeping themselves good and busy.

admin-ajaxA guest blog by author and film maker Rachel Dax will be posted over at Kim Taylor Blakemore’s website tomorrow. In the feature, Rachel will be discussing  the portrayal of women prisoners in film, the reality of both the prisoners’ and the guards’ lives, and how the film Yield to the Night became the inspiration for her novel After the Night.

We are also hoping to bring you a feature from Rachel in the not too distant future (i.e. by the end of the week – fingers and toes crossed!)

Andrea Bramhall announced this week that she will be polishing off her passport (and possibly packing her thermals!) to head to Provincetown, USA for Women’s Week. The annual lesbian festival in this gayest of all American small towns will run from 14-20 October, and features a schedule cram-packed with well, a bit of everything really. You can read all about the event on their main website.

For anyone thinking of heading over for the week, I highly recommend the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream shop where the portions are so large I almost did myself a mischief trying to finish one. But before I allow myself to become distracted by peach-flavoured reminisces, Andrea has also participated in the Women & Words 1 Question, 10 Answers. Find out which of her characters she would like to take a road trip with, here.

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I’m sure there was something else I needed to…Mmmm…

b&J

News Roundup: Rachel Dax’s bedtime story, Diana Souhami’s bio of Radclyffe Hall, and Jane Fletcher in conversation

14 May

Rachel Dax has recorded a short story exclusively for the Liz McMullen show. Over on the site, you can listen to Rachel read How I admin-ajaxMet My True Love, or download the story as a PDF.

Rachel has written the most unusual story, exclusively for the show. This is the first bedtime story that would be perfectly all right to share with a general audience. Oh and there is a sweetener: she has an awesome British accent!

http://www.thelizmcmullenshow.com/lbs-episode6/

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6Diana Souhami has new paperback and Kindle editions of her biographies out this month with revised introductions, including LGBT titles Gluck, Natalie and Romaine, and the classic The Trials of Radclyffe Hall.  Diana Souhami is a winner of the Lambda Literary Award and the Whitbread Prize, and has been shortlisted for the James Tait Black Prize for Biography. Read more about the biographies here.

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On Friday, we will be the very happy hosts of  an ongoing Blog Conversation that is taking part betweenfletcher Bold Strokes authors Jane Fletcher and Nora Olsen, this week and early into next. Jane (author of the Celaeno series and the Lyremouth Chronicles) and Nora (whose second YA novel Swans and Klons is published this month) will be chatting about their writing processes, their love of their chosen genres, and the thrill of being published.

You can find the first part of their conversation here on the BSB blog. We will be posting the second part on Friday, and the whole thing wraps up over at Women and Words on Tuesday.

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News Roundup: Too Much Stuff to Fit in One Title!

10 May

Lots of snippets of good news this past week, so without further ado…

lfestartistL Fest (a “unique weekend celebration of lesbian culture and community“) has been expanding its line-up for this year’s event, which takes place July 19th-22nd. The Arts Section, which had already confirmed appearances by UK authors Jackie KayVG Lee and Crin Claxton, will now include Clare Ashton and Kiki Archer too. Clare and Kiki will be talking about indie publishing and their work, as well as reading from their latest novels. Everything you need to know about the festival can be found on the above link.

All we need now is for the sun to shine!

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Over at The Lesbrary, they have been catching up with some of the UK’s top lesbian writers.

whybehappyJeanette Winterson‘s memoir Why be Happy When You Could be Normal is favourably reviewed by Karelia Stetz-Waters:

Winterson can do what no one should attempt: two memoirs about the same story. I was lucky to get to read Oranges are not the Only Fruit and Why Be Happy as they should be read. One at fifteen when one needs heroes. One at nearly 40 when one knows what heroes really look like.”

Meanwhile, one of Emma Donoghue‘s older releases, Kissing The Witch, has been weaving its magic around Jordan:

“Often times the tales of old try to pit women against women, with the classic step mother and step sisters always being terrible to the girl in cinders, or the witch and queen that curses the young and fair girl that happens to be more beautiful. It is a common occurrence and one of the more unfortunate themes rampant in fairy tales. Instead, Emma Donoghue put the power back in women’s hands with these stories.”

Read the full text of each review at the links above.

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shandyCari Hunter has been busy fielding interviews about her new novel Desolation Point.  An in-depth Q&A has just been published at Hannah’s Nook, and she recently knocked back a shandy or two with Cheri and Andy for a Cocktail Hour podcast. To be in with a chance of winning a signed copy of Snowbound or Desolation Point just leave a comment on the podcast page.

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Niamh Murphy has uploaded the first two chapters of Is She?, a new short story to Wattpad. You can read chapter one here and chapter two here. She has also made Mask of the Highway Woman  – the short story upon which her full-length novel was based – available here.

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YouCan'tRunfromLoveS250Thanks to a heads up from Henriette Bookgeek (who is blessedly on the ball with these things!) we’ve added a new UK author to our listing. Kate Snowdon is an author with Bella Books, and her début novel You Can’t Run From Love was published in March, 2013. Information on Kate is a little thin on the ground but hopefully that’ll change in the not too distant future.

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News Round Up: New books from loads of Brit authors, The Cocktail Hour Needs You, and Gaze Magazine hits the Internet

25 Apr

We hung on to the news this week so we could post a bit of a bumper update! And bumper it certainly is! Deep breath, here we go…

Let’s kick off with what we’re all about on this site, which is new books by UK authors:

bold books logoBold Strokes Books updated their forthcoming schedule last week, providing details on all their new releases up to and including February, 2014, and there are loads of UK authors listed.  In June, Crin Claxton’s vampire thriller Scarlet Thirst will be getting an e-book rerelease, while July sees brand new works from I.Beacham and Ke Payne. Andrea Bramhall has Clean Slate out in September and the next instalment of Lesley Davis’ Wings Paranormal series Pale Wings Protecting is released in October. Rounding out 2013 and just in time for Christmas will be Secret Lies, the début from YA novelist Amy Dunne. The synopses and covers for all those novels can be found by clicking the above link.

See Right Through Me- Draft2LT Smith has a new novel pending with her new publisher Ylva. See Right Through Me is slated for an autumn release  (well, the site says Fall, so I’m translating that into Brit!) and the blurb goes a little like this:

Trust, respect, and love. Three little words—that’s all. But these words are powerful, and if we ignore any one of them, then three other little words take their place: jealousy, insecurity, and heartbreak.
Schoolteacher Gemma Hughes is an ordinary woman living an ordinary life. Disorganised and clumsy, she soon finds herself in the capable hands of the beautiful Dr Maria Moran. Everything goes wonderfully until Gemma starts doubting Maria’s intentions and begins listening to the wrong people.
But has Maria something to hide, or is it a case of swapping trust for insecurity, respect for jealousy and finishing with a world of heartbreak and deceit? Can Gemma stop her actions before it’s too late? Or will she ruin the best thing to happen in her life?
Given her track record, anything is possible …

Over on Val McDermid’s blog is the revelation that she is currently working on a new Tony and Carol thriller.

Val says: ‘I’m working on the new Tony & Carol book, Cross and Burn — the title comes from the saying, ‘the problem with bridges is knowing which ones to cross and which ones to burn.’ A killer is on the loose, a killer who threatens both Tony and Carol but in very different ways.’

Val is also busy with preliminaries on her reworking of Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey. Never let it be said that this is an author who doesn’t like a challenge.

perf6.000x9.000.inddLast but not least of our roundup of “new release” news this week is BSB’s UK editorial arm Victoria Oldham (an honorary Brit!) who has a short story (Love’s Horizon) published this month in the anthology Blood and Lipstick

In Love’s Horizon, yacht captain Jayne moonlights as a paranormal researcher, so she isn’t surprised when her newest client, Eleni, turns out to be a vampire. What does surprise her is that after making Eleni promise that she was permanently off the menu, she becomes increasingly frustrated when Eleni keeps it.

For more information on the anthology and the stories within, check out this link.

Moving on from reading to listening now, and the lovely ladies at The Cocktail Hour podcast have been in touch with UK LesFic to open up an invitation to any UK authors who might be interested in featuring on short recordings. Cheri – who regularly co-hosts the show – wrote to say:

Any authors looking for an audience for a short reading or would like to chat for a bit about their work and/or future projects canheader1 contact the folks over at Cocktail Hour and set something up. info@cocktailhour.us

The Cocktail Hour podcasts have  a large and enthusiastic fanbase and their focus is mainly on LesFic, whether that be interviewing authors, chatting about books or, on occasion, just getting a little bit tipsy. If you’ve never visited their archives before, you could probably get lost in them for a good few days! At the moment, they are holding a Best of 2012 poll where listeners can vote for their favourite show of the year. There are some huge LesFic names in the running, so go catch up on those you might have missed, and pick your winners!

GazeCoverA new gay culture review magazine, Gaze, has just hit the Internet. In a recent article for The Guardian, co-creator Paul Burston explained the thinking behind the publication which lists VG Lee as one of its contributors: “We didn’t want to write about gay lifestyle or pander to straight soap hunks who love their gay fans. We wanted to tackle issues one doesn’t generally read about in the lesbian and gay press.” Sounds like it might be well worth a peek. The magazine can be purchased here.

To round out on a lighter note, the best search term of the week resulting in a hit to this site simply has to go to: lesbian hunting hunting lesbian girls in shopping center

Whoever the hell was trolling for that, I hope you eventually got lucky. PS – you misspelled centre.