Book Review: Cut-Throat Defence, by Olly Jarvis.

Book Review: Cut-Throat Defence, by Olly Jarvis.

You may have noticed last week, I posted about a brilliant new book just released by one of my favourite Authors Olly Jarvis. Last week, I published a short interview with the Author as part of his blog tour. You can read the interview HERE!

I mentioned in that post that this was my top book of 2016 so far, well today I’m sharing with you my review and why I loved Cut-Throat Defence so much. 



There is no man richer than a man without a price.

Jack Kowalski is a young and newly qualified barrister, who finds himself working on the biggest drugs importation trial ever played out on English soil. With the assistance of his equally inexperienced instructing solicitor, Lara Panassai, Jack argues a savage ‘cut-throat’ defence – a risky tactic where the defendants blame each other – and quickly embroils some of the most eminent QCs in the land.

As the son of Polish immigrants, the sensitive Kowalski has always found it hard to fit in, with a sense of inferiority and constant nervousness in Court. Now he must face his demons and fight not only for his clients, but for his very future at the Bar.

But when the defendant then unexpectedly absconds, Jack and Lara must fight on regardless, following a tip that leads them out of the courtroom and into Manchester’s seedy underworld – crime bosses, strip clubs, corrupt lawyers and all manner of hidden sins.

As the case grows darker with each new discovery, who in this viper pit of deception can Jack and Lara trust?

Ingeniously plotted and embellished with real-life insider expertise, Cut-Throat Defence is a story of rivalry, ruthlessness and – above all – survival.



Published October 3rd 2016 by Canelo


My Thoughts:

In Olly Jarvis’ interview last week, he told me that he wanted to show that a Barrister’s life is not an easy one. He said that the media can portray “Barrister’s as champagne quaffing oafs“. Olly wanted this book to portray what it is really like to work in a high pressured job i.e  no champagne, but maybe you will meet a few oafs along the way! Well, mixed in with Olly’s legal knowledge and experience, his amazing talent for fictional words and characters, we are lucky enough to enjoy his second fantastic novel Cut-Throat Defence. To put it simply, I loved it, I devoured all the pages, all the characters and it is ……….my top book of 2016 so far.

The characters were perfectly developed, especially the two main characters Jack and Lara. Jack being the Underdog that we root for, and Lara giving us that slightly mysterious hardened outside but soft hearted soul. Jarvis’ knowledge and experience of ‘people’ shines through, especially through Lara’s eyes:

“..Scared people behave unpredictably”.

One of my favourite side line characters was Jack’s father – Tata, he has a good mindset, is so positive and gives some great advice to Jack, but also advice we can take as a reader.

“Don’t worry, you have a lifetime to be a better man”.

As with Jarvis’ first book, I loved that it was a legal thriller set in Manchester. A lot of these types of books are based in America. For the British readers amongst us, you will know that when Jack enters the criminal underbelly of Moss Side, he is into hardened territory. 

This book is filled with excitement, anticipation, twists and tension. I read it with eagerness and thoroughly enjoyed it. 

Jarvis certainly showed us through this book that a barristers life does not include “being a champagne quaffing oaf”, most certainly these ones are not anyway. I wait in eager anticipation for the next book by Olly Jarvis. For all you lucky ones that have still to read it, I can’t recommend it highly enough. The links are below for you to get yourself a copy.







Posted by on October 17, 2016 in Books


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Cut Throat Defence by Olly Jarvis.

Cut Throat Defence by Olly Jarvis.

Today, I am very excited to bring you the newest book out from one of my very favourite Authors Olly Jarvis. Olly wrote ‘Death By Dangerous’ last year and it was one of my top books of the year. You can read my review of ‘Death By Dangerous’ – HERE!

I was so excited and pleased when I got the email asking me to read and review his latest book ‘Cut Throat Defence’  And, I was able to ask Olly a few questions. 

‘Cut Throat Defence’ is out now, so read below and prepare for another fantastic read from the very talented Olly Jarvis.

You can also follow the rest of this blog tour with these lovely bloggers below. 





There is no man richer than a man without a price
Jack Kowalski is a young and newly qualified barrister, who finds himself working on the biggest drugs importation trial ever played out on English soil. With the assistance of his equally inexperienced instructing solicitor, Lara Panassai, Jack argues a savage ‘cut-throat’ defence – a risky tactic where the defendants blame each other – and quickly embroils some of the most eminent QCs in the land.

As the son of Polish immigrants, the sensitive Kowalski has always found it hard to fit in, with a sense of inferiority and constant nervousness in Court. Now he must face his demons and fight not only for his clients, but for his very future at the Bar.

But when the defendant then unexpectedly absconds, Jack and Lara must fight on regardless, following a tip that leads them out of the courtroom and into Manchester’s seedy underworld – crime bosses, strip clubs, corrupt lawyers and all manner of hidden sins.

As the case grows darker with each new discovery, who in this viper pit of deception can Jack and Lara trust?

Ingeniously plotted and embellished with real-life insider expertise, Cut-Throat Defence is a story of rivalry, ruthlessness and – above all – survival.


Published: October 3rd 2016 by Canelo.

I have just finished this book and am giving it a great big 5 wonderful stars. I love Olly’s writing, his knowledge and this book is my top book of 2016 so far. My official review will be up at the weekend. But until then, have a look at what Olly says below. 


I was very pleased to be able to ask Olly a few questions for this post, and here is what he said.

Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I grew up in London and after scraping a law degree, travelled the world for a few years, teaching English to pay my way. When I came back to the UK, I qualified as a barrister and managed to find a pupillage in Manchester where I have lived for more than twenty years, defending clients in the crown courts across the north of England. Right from the start I specialised in criminal defence. Its been an incredible eye opening journey!

I started my writing career by doing a few things for Radio 4, before finally taking the plunge and penning my first novel.

What inspires your writing and characters?

My greatest driving force has been a desire to show readers what it’s really like working in the criminal justice system. There’s been so much government spin in recent times, portraying barristers as champagne quaffing oafs on huge incomes. Truth is those who choose a career today in this under funded area of law, see it as a vocation. Starting a career with an enormous student debt and expecting little financial reward, new recruits face eighteen hour days, unbearable stress and exhaustion.

This daily challenge and fear of failure was something I wanted to get across in this book. The two courageous central characters in Cut Throat Defence, a newly qualified barrister and a solicitor, are clinging onto their careers by their fingernails.

Conversely, these pressures can bring  fantastic highs, as well as lows, and just occasionally, a huge sense of pride in seeing justice done.

Tell us about your writing process? 

I like to map out the story first, the plot is key, and very detailed. Once I have the structure, I plan out the chapters. When I’ve finished the first draft, I go back again and again, weaving the story together and tightening the strands.

 Finding time to write is a constant battle, confined mostly to weekends and early mornings. Much of Cut-Throat Defence and Death By Dangerous were created on trains. I often defend in the courts of Bradford and Leeds – the one hour journey over the Pennines and back is a great time to write. A reviewer very kindly once said that my style of writing with short chapters has a pace and rhythm like a train rattling along the track. Maybe that’s why!


Here are the links if you want to get in touch with Olly Jarvis and want to get the amazing book. 








Posted by on October 4, 2016 in Books


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Book Review: Gamer Girl, by Glynis Astie.

Book Review: Gamer Girl, by Glynis Astie.

Thank you to Author Glynis Astie for inviting me to read and review her new book ‘Gamer Girl’. Glynis told me that another Author Tracie Bannister had recommended me as a good bookblogger, which I was very flattered by. So, thank you to both Tracie and Glynis. Now for the book….


Struck by tragedy at an early age, Meri Palmer escaped into the only world she understood. Within the virtual realm of online gaming, she lived a life filled with mythical creatures and thrilling adventures, where she was strong, powerful, clever, and beautiful—everything she believed she wasn’t in real life. As the years went by, her desire to cling to her cherished fantasyland only grew stronger.

But when Meri meets Morgan, equal parts gorgeous and goofball, she begins to wonder if the time has finally come to rejoin the so-called real world. Channeling the bravery of her fairy warrior alter ego, Meri slowly lets Morgan beyond the protective walls she’s built around her heart. Just as she finds a comfortable groove in an uncertain world, Morgan succumbs to insecurities of his own, leaving her lost and confused. Through her battle to regain her equilibrium, Meri will discover that even in reality, things aren’t always what they seem.

Will Meri win the battle raging in her heart and summon the will to rescue her knight in shining armor? Or will she give in to the fear and find her game over?


Tikinou Publishing (31 May 2016)

gamer girl


My Thoughts:

I liked the initial blurb when I was offered to read and review Gamer Girl. It actually reminded me a little of Sophie Kinsella’s ‘Finding Audrey’. I think that this idea of mine mixed up my thought processes of the book initially, as I was imaging Meri as a teenager. However, she is actually in her 20’s. So my ideas of what to expect were wrong. 

Once I got into the book, I grew to love the main character Meri. She has had a tough time growing up, and now living with her Grams. (brilliant character, funny, caring, the kind of Grams I’d like to have myself!). The story follows Meri as she alternates between her virtual fairy world and her reality of work, life and the struggles that it always brings.

I am not a gamer, I don’t know anything about the gaming world and don’t have an interest in it. It didn’t matter in this book. The gaming part of the book is the way that Meri is showing her fears and insecurities. It was very cleverly done.

I liked how it’s not only the female character that has insecurities. When we meet Morgan, he seems pretty perfect for Meri. He gets her Yoda obsession. (Something I think is close to the Author’s heart too, I suspect?!)  ;-)     But as Morgan’s character develops, we learn he is not so perfect, and he has secrets and insecurities too.

He is cute at the beginning when he comes to Meri’s birthday party, Morgan gives her a Yoda pendant necklace, and says:

“This Yoda can stay with you through all kinds of weather. Not just the bad stuff.” 

Meri as a character is so relate-able, she is insecure, but despite her insecurities she has a passion and as we read we see how Meri strives for her passions. She is stronger than she thinks. Meri is also very funny in a relate-able way too. Between Meri and her best friend Declan, there are certainly quite a few chuckle worthy moments in this book. Before an upcoming tennis match, Declan tells Meri:

“Besides the catastrophic danger you face in these situations – of injuring both your pride and your body – you do realise you’re going to sweat.”

Sometimes in a book its the small things that are not really hugely relevant in the story line, but these small things make the story so much more real and pull the reader in to the involvement of the characters lives. For the first half of the book, we don’t know what ‘Meri’ is short for. She doesn’t tell Morgan, as she thinks its a weird name. I didn’t guess the name, but it kept me wondering. That’s what I mean by the smallest parts of a story line. Her name is very fitting by the way. You will have to read to find out what it is!

I love how Authors can bring to live imaginary characters that you can’t help but fall in love with, and are so memorable and distinct that they stay with you, almost as friends you are waiting for your next catch up with. I really enjoyed Astie’s smooth writing style.She developed amazing characters in Meri, Declan, Grams and a couple of other brilliant sideline characters. I recommend this book, and I look forward to more from Glynis Astie.

Overall, this is an enjoyable book, with love, friendship, laughter and a good old bit of Gram’s ‘phelgm speak!’. This is funny not disgusting! You will need to read it to find out what I mean by this! 









Glynis never expected in her wildest dreams to be a writer. After thirteen years in the Human Resources Industry, she decided to stay at home with her two amazing sons. Ever in search of a project, she was inspired to write the story of how, in only six short months, she met and married her wonderfully romantic French husband, Sebastien. The end result became her first novel, French Twist. As this was just the beginning of their epic love story, Glynis continued to chronicle their adventures in the sequel, French Toast, and the final installment in the series, French Fry. After she finished milking her life story for all it was worth, she decided to write straight-up fiction with Gamer Girl, which infuses her beloved chick lit with a hint of fantasy. When Glynis is not writing, she is trying to keep the peace amongst the three men and two cats in her life, finding missing body parts (Lego pieces are small!), supervising a myriad of homework assignments and keeping a tenuous hold on her sanity by consuming whatever chocolate is in the vicinity.

waiting to read




Posted by on August 20, 2016 in Books


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Book Review: The Moment She Left, by Susan Lewis. #Giveaway

Book Review: The Moment She Left, by Susan Lewis. #Giveaway

I am very happy today to bring you my stop on the blog tour for the brilliant new Susan Lewis book ‘The Moment She Left’. Thank you to Louise Page for gifting me a copy of the book  which I very much enjoyed. Below I will tell you why I loved it and also I am thrilled to be able to offer one of my lovely readers a free copy of this wonderful book. See the rafflecopter section at the bottom of the post, and if you love the sound of this book then enter away.

The Moment She Left, by Susan Lewis.The Moment She Left hb jacket



Kesterly-on-Sea is full of secrets.

Some are darker than others; many are shameful. One is even deadly.

Andee is an ex-detective whose marriage is breaking up. So when a young female student disappears without trace, she throws herself into the search.

Meanwhile, the town’s beloved Rowzee Cayne has just discovered that she is terminally ill, and doesn’t want to burden her family and friends with the news.

Andee and Rowzee don’t know it yet, but their journeys are going to help them uncover a secret. One that is going to affect them more than they could ever imagine.



Published July 28th 2016 by Cornerstone Digital


My Thoughts:

This is actually the first Susan Lewis book that I have read, and now knowing that she has written over 30 novels, I am very happy to say that my ‘want to read pile’ has just grown a lot bigger! My Mum and my lovely bookblogger friend Irena both recommended Susan Lewis to me, so when the opportunity came up to take part in this blog tour, I jumped at the chance. (You can read Irena’s review of this book  HERE!

The first chapter is the setting of this book, where we hear about the girl who has gone missing Jessica. After that first chapter, we hear from all the other characters who all have their own separate stories but as the book continues, you see how they become linked up.

From the description on the front cover of this book, you read “Sometimes the truth is best kept secret”. This book is a lot about secrets and should we keep things to ourselves, is that the best way to protect others or protect ourselves. It is a book that makes you think. In a way the book kind of reminds a little bit like Jodi Picoult books. And I am a big fan of Picoult, so this is indeed a compliment to Lewis.

The book tells the story of Jessica’s family and those who love her, their grief and need to know what has happened to her. Then we have Andee, who is having family problems, but is the detective who has been asked to try to find Jessica. Then we have Rowzee and her sister Pamela. They both have secrets of their own. So with this big mix up of characters, secrets, lies and loss, Lewis has developed a brilliant novel which will keep you up late reading, and intrigued as to what happened to Jessica, what about the other secrets, will they come out or will they stay with the owner until death parts them?!!

Rowzee was definitely my very favourite character in this book, she is kind and generous to a fault. Even when she finds out terrible things about people she is still the person who says they should be given chances and understanding. Is she generous and caring to a fault? You will have to read and see for yourself. 

A quote that is quite prevalent to this whole story is said by one character who shall remain nameless until you read it yourself:

“It goes to show that you never know anyone as well as you think you do….”










Also published in paperback on July 28th was another of Susan Lewis’s best sellers, ‘The Girl Who Came Back’. This already has over 50 fantastic reviews on Goodreads, which you can read HERE!

The Girl Who Came Back pb jacket


But now for the much awaited giveaway! You know what to do, follow the rafflecopter link and do what it tells you too. Good luck, and I hope to hear your thoughts on this Susan Lewis book and any others of hers you have read and can recommend to me. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway



Susan Lewis was born in Bristol in 1956. Her father Eddie, was a Welsh miner, a poet, an engineer and an unashamed communist who loved to write. Her mother, Eddress, one of thirteen children, was a fiery, indomitable woman with great aspirations for her young family. Susan and her younger brother were brought up in a spanking new council house on the outskirts of town; money was tight, but they were a happy, lively family.

Susan was nine and her brother five when her mother died of breast cancer at thirty-three; Susan’s father was thirty-seven and he never married again. Sending Susan to boarding school was thought to be ‘for the best’ but Susan disagreed. No one listened to her pleas for freedom, so after a while she took it upon herself to get expelled. By the time she was thirteen, she was back in the little council house with her father and brother.

At eighteen, Susan got a job at HTV in Bristol and at twenty-two moved to London to work for Thames Television. She moved up the ranks; from a secretary in news and current affairs, to a production assistant in light entertainment and drama. It was whilst she was at Thames that she started writing fiction. Thirty-six novels later, Susan is one of the UK’s bestselling fiction writers. As well as fiction, Susan has written two moving memoirs about her childhood in Bristol: Just One More Day and the sequel One Day at a Time.

Losing her mother at such an early age had a profound effect on Susan’s life, which is why she is a long-term supporter of Breast Cancer Care, the only UK-wide charity providing specialist support and tailored information to anyone affected by breast cancer, and Winston’s Wish the charity for bereaved children.

After years living abroad in LA and France, Susan returned to England in 2009 and now lives in a beautiful converted barn in Gloucestershire with her husband and two dogs.

For further information about Susan Lewis visit www.susanlewis.comSusan Lewis is available for interview and feature writing. Contact Louise Page PR on 020 8741 5663 or email .



Posted by on August 12, 2016 in Books, Giveaways


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My Favourite BookBloggers.

My Favourite BookBloggers.

Today I am going to share with you some of my favourite bookbloggers. I started ChocolatePages after reading many other bookblogs, until I decided that I could and wanted to write one too. I love sharing my thoughts about what I’ve read, what I’m going to read and many other bookish thoughts. But I also love reading other people’s thoughts too. So, here are ten of my favourite bookbloggers. Not in any particular order, they are all amazing. 

book friend


So, lets get started:  

*Each picture belongs to the blogger I speak about.

Irena from is fantastic.


Irena and I did a buddy read when we first ‘met’, and I have been a firm fan of hers ever since. Irena enjoys the same kind of books as me, and I find her reviews brilliant. Irena is a blogger that I will easily take book recommendations from. Plus she regularly has excellent giveaways on her site. 


Kat from is a really charismatic blogger.


Kat tends to review more fantasy and YA books, but there is a variety of genres there too. Kat has a brilliant youtube channel, and I am subscribed so that I can watch all the vlogs that she makes. I love hearing about her travels to all the book conventions. Her youtube channel is kat TheBookNerd



Rayna from is so talented and imaginative.


Rayna has a fantastic blog, my favourite part of her blog is her many discussions. There is so much to read on Rayna’s blog, from her weekly meme’s to book hauls, to of course her fabulous reviews. Rayna has a wide variety of genres that she reviews, so there is always a good recommendation coming from her corner of the net.



Donna from  is brilliant.


I immediately knew I would love Donna’s site, when I read her name. Chocolate and waffles! Now she and I have a lot in common, chocolate and books, and I can always go a waffle or two. Her blog is so beautiful, and I love that she does ‘This Week in Books’ nearly every week, so there are always great books to learn about, and what Donna thinks of them. 



Claire from puts all my favourite things together, books, chocolate and cake!


I love Claire’s blog. There is a always a delicious new recipe to try, and a brilliant book review to read. Claire has also written her own novel which sounds like a great read to me, so publishers – look out for this talented lady! Claire’s blog is a fabulous place to go to enjoy some indulgent ‘me time’.


Rachel from is amazing.

Rachel’s site is brilliant. She has great bookish discussions always giving thoughtful points of view and welcoming conversational discussion points in her comment section. Rachel regularly gives us her ‘stacking the shelves’ round up of all her posts and reads, but she also tells us about lots of other blogger’s interesting posts she has read over the weeks. I always find new bloggers to follow and interesting posts through Rachel’s ‘Stacking the Shelves’ posts. And of course Rachel gives us great book reviews.


Suze and Anniek from are lovely girls.


WithLoveForBooks is an amazing site. Suze and Anniek can read so many books and write reviews at a fantastic speed. They have Author interviews and so many brilliant bookish giveaways. I was lucky enough to win a package of 8 amazing summer books a few months ago. They have new reviews and giveaways almost daily on their site. Plus the giveaways are usually international. 



Sharon from is inspiring.


Sharon has very similar taste in books to me. We both like chick lit and crime thrillers, so I am always keen to see what Sharon is reading and what she thinks of the books. Shaz reads way faster than me, so my ‘want to read’ pile grows ever bigger after reading her reviews. Shaz has just done a ‘food and drink in books’ month. I love foodie books, so I really enjoyed this theme.


Jo from always give a thrilling read.

jo chestnut

Jo’s blog is the blog that makes my ‘want to read’ pile grow daily! She mainly reviews psychological or crime thrillers, just the kind of books that I love. The way Jo writes her reviews is fantastic, she tells us how the books make her feel, along with all the other reviewing skills. She certainly knows how to make me want to read read read.


AJ from, I loved her from the very start.


AJ started her blog the same time as me, and ever since we have become firm bookblogging buddies. We love all the same books, I can always take great recommendations from her. Plus AJ does her unique #AJsCoolCoverChallenge, whereby each week she chooses a different topic of book, and a group of bloggers use her # to reveal what we are reading and their covers. I love AJ’s blog.


books and tea

So, be sure to check out these lovely bloggers, all their sites are linked into their names, so you can easily find them. Of course there are many many more fantastic bloggers out there, and I always like to hear great recommendations of new ones to read. So, if you can recommend some to me, or you know and agree with the bloggers I love, let me know in the comments below.





Posted by on August 7, 2016 in Books, Uncategorized


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Interview with Rico Lamoureux. Author of Riker’s Calling.

Interview with Rico Lamoureux. Author of Riker’s Calling.

 Today I am very happy to be able to share with you an Author interview with Rico Lamoureux, Author to fantastic new crime thriller ‘Riker’s Calling’.  Rico’s new book is available for pre-order now. His publication day is August 4th. I shared my book review of ‘Riker’s Calling’ here on ChocolatePages. If you read my review, book description and Rico’s thoughts here, I’m quite sure you will be interested in the 25% off price that you can get the book for if you pre order.

You can read my review of Riker’s Calling HERE!

rikers calling

Would you like to start by telling us a little about yourself?

Sure:) In a nutshell, I’m an American author who has been living in the Philippines for fourteen years now. Very long story short, I met the girl of my dreams and we fell in love. After knowing each other in person for only two weeks, (and a few letters over six months as pen pals) we got married. I was unable to acquire a marriage visa for her due to income restraints, and so unable to leave her for who knew how long, I decided to stay. 

My whole life ended up turning upside down, losing the comforts of a First World country and having to adapt to Third World harshness, but for true love, I did it. (Yeah, just as dramatic as one of my books, only this story is true!)

As an indie author I’m still trying to write my way back home. I don’t know if I’ll ever meet that income limit to reach such a goal, but I have no regrets, my main priority now being to at least be able to make enough as an author to where we can finally have the priceless gift of a child. I think after fourteen years of perseverance and patience we deserve such:)

I’ve read that you are classified as legally blind this must make writing much more difficult, but perhaps much more satisfying?

Yes, VERY difficult. And this is why I couldn’t get a ‘normal’ job back in 2002 to get that visa. I’m totally blind in my left eye and legally blind in the right due to Acute Retinal Necrosis. I just know that if I had 20/20 I’d feel like I had a super power, and be at least 100% more productive than I currently am capable of, but this was the card I was dealt, so I just have to make the best of it, pacing myself so as not to strain my remaining sight as I read and write with a magnifying glass held up to my eye. 

Riker’s Calling must have taken some imagination! to portray the mind of a serial killer. What was your inspiration or thought process for this novella?

With writing, as with anything else in life, I feel it’s important to be in alignment with truth, so as far as writing a serial killer, this means lots of research– to know their thought process, impulses, etc. And yes, then there’s the writer’s best friend– imagination. 

I believe a great story requires being true to all the characters. In other words, an author needs to care enough for each to understand them and do them justice. For example, an antagonist doesn’t see themselves as bad. In their mind they’re doing what’s right, so one has to capture such when writing. Walking that thin line between serving all involved and story is what’s crucial to great storytelling. 

I can imagine that ‘Riker’s Calling‘ would make a great film, would this be something you would be interested in?

I’m glad you were able to pick up on that! I have a number of publications out, but I believe the two most cinematic are Riker’s Calling and my dramatic horror story, The Mirrored Staircase. I studied screenwriting in film school, (one year before my eye condition affected my right eye, the left one having been affected eleven years prior and left totally blind.) 

I take an organic approach to writing, which is why each one of my novellas is truly different, the story idea of each telling me how it wants to unfold. So yeah, with Riker’s Calling, it really did come to life like a film, and if given the chance, I really believe it would do well up on the big screen.

Alex Cross…

Jason Bourne…

Riker could be next!

There is a nice quote from Riker’s ‘Niece’ Jaime in the story: 

“Treat your passion like a pastime, you’re a hobbyist. Treat it like it’s your life, you’re an artist.”

Is this how you see your writing, as an artist?

Absolutely! I studied a number of arts during my younger years, including a combat-oriented martial art, acting, and music. But the art of words is what I have been a practitioner of since childhood, and continue to be. Any artist knows that magical feeling of creation, and for me it’s writing. 

What’s next for you?

If Riker’s Calling does well out in the wide vastness of cyber space, which would be a feat in and of itself, I plan to release a companion book for it, revealing a lot of things behind the story, including a secret within the cover. 

I’ll also be releasing my autobiography soon, and maybe even a few more surprises no later than Christmas:) This will all be shared on my social media, and when it comes to twitter, I follow all who follow me, as I feel it’s the right thing to do. 

And whats next for Riker?

Riker has a natural instinct to protect, and with that kind of warrior’s heart he’s going to have to face The Ghostwriter, a disenfranchised writer who snapped and is now wreaking deadly havoc on the publishing industry. (His origin is told in the short story The Ghostwriter, which is now up on Amazon).

This is going to get really personal for Riker, because for the first time in a very long time he will open his heart to someone, The Ghostwriter a looming threat to such happiness.

 As a writer, I imagine that you enjoy reading too? Who are your favourite Authors?

I like to say that my four indirect literary teachers were Stephen King, Robert Cormier, Anne Rice, and Ken Follett. I’ve been trying to get King’s attention to see if he’d be a hero that would blurb The Mirrored Staircase, so if anyone out there knows him…LOL!

You’ve also been on another mission, haven’t you? One involving a tattoo?

Yep! If Riker’s Calling becomes my first bestseller, I’m going to get the cover of it tattooed to my forearm. (Prime real estate, as Jaime would say!) It’ll be my first, and I’m not a fan of needles, but such a milestone would be very important to me:)

Thanks for the great interview, Amanda!



Links for Rico Lamoureux and ‘Riker’s Calling.










Posted by on August 2, 2016 in author interviews


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Book Review: ‘Riker’s Calling’ by Rico Lamoureux

Book Review: ‘Riker’s Calling’ by Rico Lamoureux


Keep an eye on ChocolatePages as tomorrow, I have a brilliant Author interview whereby Rico tells us a bit more about his inspiration and imagination for Riker’s Calling.


Posted by on July 30, 2016 in Books


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Book Spotlight: Chasing What’s Already Gone by Michael Ross. (#GIVEAWAY)

Book Spotlight: Chasing What’s Already Gone by Michael Ross. (#GIVEAWAY)


Book Spot Light – Chasing What’s Already Gone – Michael Ross

Chasing What’s Already Gone is available on Amazon now!


You may remember last week, I did a cover reveal for Michael Ross’s new book. Well as of now, the book is now available to buy on Amazon, plus you can still enter the giveaway below to chance your luck on getting a copy!

New teaser3


Danny Pearson is cruising through life on the edge of contentment—even in his marriage…

His wife seems distant, yet perfectly happy. They work on different schedules and pass like ships in the night. But that’s how marriage is after so many years, right?

When Danny meets a mysterious girl, his idea of the meaning of love shatters at his feet…

She’s not extraordinary, but somehow she’s so much more than just another girl. When he catches her gaze, he knows deep in his gut that she’s the one—the love of his life. But being a decent guy, he holds his feelings in check, and there is no ulterior motive when he shares a coffee with her. As she leaves, she gives him a business card. That’s all there is to it.

Her name is Ella. And after that, she is nothing more than a fond memory.

Danny puts Ella out of his mind and moves on with his life—until his world falls apart…When his wife confesses to having an affair and demands a divorce, his life is thrown into chaos. It’s a challenge adjusting to the single life, but it’s not impossible. As time passes, he continues to reminisce of his brief encounter with the woman he’s sure was his chance at true happiness.

How far is Danny willing to go in the pursuit of love? How far would you when, in all probability, you are only…

Chasing what’s already gone?

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About The Author.

It was a strange and twisting road that led to the publishing of my second novel.

Born and raised in Bristol, England. I spent my adult life in business, the majority of that time marketing cars. I eventually owned the largest Saab specialist in the world, before a divorce put an end to that part of my life.

This led me to leave Bristol to live halfway up a mountain in the Welsh valleys, start a part time six year English Literature course at Bristol University, and attend creative writing classes in Cardiff.

My interest in English literature flourished and I have won several prizes for my short stories. My first book, ‘Twenty Short Stories –Settling a score, reached No 6 in the Short Stories Best Sellers and is stillavailable. My second novel, a romantic thriller entitled Hand Over Fist was released earlier this year

Chasing What’s Already Gone evolved from a short story Carpe Diem in my second anthology Twenty One Short Stories. I could not get the two main characters out of my head and I had to find out what happened to them after the end of the short story.

I now live very happily halfway up that mountain in the Welsh Valleys with my wonderful partner, Mari, and our rescue dog, Wolfie.




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Posted by on July 27, 2016 in Book Spotlights., Giveaways


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Book Review: Boyfriend by the Book, By Laura Briggs.

Book Review: Boyfriend by the Book, By Laura Briggs.

Posted by on July 24, 2016 in Books


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Top Ten Tuesday: Books Set Outside USA #TTT

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Set Outside USA #TTT



This weekly feature is hosted and originated from Broke and Bookish. I don’t usually participate, but as I have a little more time this month, I decided to write a post for this week. If you visit Broke and Bookish, you will see all the other topics for Top Ten Tuesdays. Today’s topic is……

Books Set Outside of America.

So, Books Set Outside USA. It is true, a lot of books are based in America, so this will be an interesting topic to find some books based in other countries. I look forward to getting some good recommendations from other bookbloggers on this topic. Please link your posts in the comments, so I can read yours too.  ♥

I have read all of the books I am recommending, and you can read my reviews from the links below.

I will begin with a few based in my own country – U.K.


1. Death by Dangerous.


This is one of my favourite books EVER! It is so gripping and page turning. It is a crime thriller based in England, which made it even better for me, because the legal system is the same in the book as where I live. (Not the case in American books). MY REVIEW!

2. A Strangers House

strangers house

This book is set in Cambridge. Its a tale of suspense, a little romance and a certain way to make you wary if you have ever decided to try house sitting! MY REVIEW!


3. A Death in the Valley

a death in the valley

Wales is where I grew up,so I was excited to read this book. It is a book of twists, turns and mystery. I loved it, and you can see why here with MY REVIEW.



4. The Sheep, The Haggis, The Sister in Law and The Drunken Trip to Glasgow.


Ok, so I was drawn to this one because of the weird title, but also because it was based in Scotland (where I live now). It is a short story and every part of the title has an inclusion in the book. It is a really strange read, but one I did enjoy. See why here in MY REVIEW.

One for the Caribbean (And a bit in the U.K).

5. Coffee tea the Caribbean and Me.

coffe tea carib

Caroline James is one of my favourite Authors. This book has a prequel ‘Coffee, Tea, The Gypsy and Me’. However, ‘Caribbean and Me’ can be read as a stand alone or after the first one. The scenes in the Caribbean are so idyllic and made me want to go on holiday the whole time I was reading it. Caroline starts this book with the strap line:

“The Time to be Happy is Now”

 I loved it, you can see why in MY REVIEW.



Japan Guide…less, Emails from Japan by Nicole D’Arcangelo

japan gr

This book is based on the Author’s travels in Japan while she was teaching there. It is written in a series of emails and journal entries, which I liked as you could read short bits at a time or longer if you had more time. I loved hearing about the different ways of life, the food, the habits, what they consider to be polite….and rude. It is a really interesting book. You can read MY REVIEW here.



7. Anne of Green Gables.


This is my favourite book ever, and surprisingly, I have no review for it! I do have an Anne of Green Gable Christmas haul, which you can see HERE.    Anne Shirley is an orphan girl, adopted by a brother and sister who live in Avonlea in Canada. Anne is so optimistic, inspiring and funny. This is a book I recommend to everyone.



8. Her Australian Summer

aust summer

 This is a cute little novella based in Australia. It is a lovely summer read, short, sweet and enjoyable. You can read MY REVIEW

General Travel Around the World.

9. Blue Sun Yellow Sky – based on travel


blue sun

 I found this book to be truly inspirational. The main character Aubrey is going blind, but decides to travel the world in the 6 weeks while she still has some sight. We read about her travels in China, India, Rome, Paris amongst many other places. One of my favourite quotes is:

“Just because you can’t see the stage, doesn’t mean you can’t dance on it!”

This book has a safe place in my heart as it is brilliantly written, allows the reader to see the world through Aubrey’s eyes and imagination, and is inspiring. Here is MY REVIEW.


10. The Sunshine and Biscotti Club

sunshine biscotti


This is a perfect summer read, where a group of friends are in Italy for the summer to revamp a Baking School Hotel. The book includes all things I love; friends, food and the sunshine. You can read MY REVIEW here.


So, there are my ten recommendations for books set outside of the USA. I hope you like the sound of them. If you have any good recommendations of books set outside America, or if you participated in this weeks Top Ten Tuesday, then let me know in the comments below.



Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday

Posted by on July 19, 2016 in Books


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