Oh Baby – Epic Plot Twist

Life has some amazing plot twists!

Back in the summer I completed my English Literature degree and achieved a 2:1. I had just started a new job after being out of work for over a decade raising my daughter. I fully intended to work on my blogging and writing, eventually releasing more self-published books.

Plot Twist!

In July I started to feel a little ‘odd’. Not unwell, but definitely not quite right at the same time. I knew the feeling from 11 years before. A test confirmed it… surprise pregnancy.

For those of you who know me this was happy news, but caused me a lot of anxiety at the same time. Past pregnancies usually ended very badly and we had been told that it was unlikely I would ever carry to term again. I spent most of 2017 anxiously questioning every twinge and pull. The midwives doubled the number of regular check-ups and I was signed off work to rest. No risks were to be taken. It wasn’t a fun time and I can honestly say that writing was as far from my mind as possible.

It wasn’t until Christmas that I finally began to relax. The baby was moving regularly (she has been nicknamed ‘wriggles’) and we had received a string of healthy scans. We found out that baby is a girl and bought a stack of pink. The house looks like a nursery!

She will be arriving by elective c-section (to reduce risk) towards the end of February.

Of course, now I’m more relaxed my mind has turned back to writing. So, here I am. I cannot guarantee any regularity, nor what form it will be in. But I do plan to write some writing tips, articles and of course reviews. If there’s anything at all you would like to see let me know in the comments.

I’m so glad to be back on the blog and would like to raise a glass of juice to those random, amazing plot twists. Without them, life wouldn’t be half as interesting.

Bout of Books 20 – The sign up post.

Bout of Books


I’ve been really lax at reading recently. I have an excuse. I’m pregnant and the minute I sit down with a book I fall asleep. Bout of Books is here to save the day.

For those that don’t know what Bout of Books is… here you go:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 21st and runs through Sunday, August 27th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 20 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

Basically I’m relying on the fun challenges to get me back to normal, book in hand (with my eyes open) and reading.

I’m not setting a strict challenge for myself but I do want to read every day during the bout. Even if it’s just a page. I’ll update this post with progress as I go. Join us. I promise it’s fun.


Sneak Peek: TS901 by Stacey Rourke and Tish Thawer

Stacey Rourke & Tish Thawer
Publication date: August 1st 2017
Genres: Dystopian, New Adult

Tainted water for the good of the people. Fluoride and vitamins to sustain the health of the human race. Added ingredients to extend and elevate the quality of life. All good things, right?


Thia Kelly has been changed by the TS901 chemical in the world’s water supply. Now, forced into hiding with the other inflicted outcasts, she struggles to survive as her powers emerge.

Evan Daniels hunted for others like himself, and finding Thia suddenly brought meaning back into his life. Love blossomed between the strange couple while they searched for a way to reverse the effects. Unfortunately, the Government had something else in mind.

Super-soldier creation on a mass scale was their end goal, and thanks to an unfortunate family tie, Evan became Patient #1.

Good-guy? Bad-guy? The world isn’t sure, but Thia is left with only one choice––save the ass of the world’s first Anomaly who just happens to be her boyfriend.

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Can’t wait to read it? Here’s a sneak peek courtesy of my friends over at Xpresso Book Tours! Enjoy.


 Evan roared into the barely lit sky, one bowling ball-sized fist slamming a divot into the wall.

“How could you let Thia leave?” he spat in Lance’s direction as the beat-up metal table sitting next to him went flying across the room thanks to his anger and engorged muscles.

“Because,” Mrs. Baker piped in, “she is our only hope, and it had to be this way, Evan. The Maly community needed to see her on her own, ready to take a stand and fight for what she believes in. Now, we need to get moving so we can be in place to help her along.”

“Bullshit!” he bellowed. “All you had to do was keep your mouth shut for just a few more hours, then we could have all gone together, as a team. To keep each other safe …” His words trailed off as he sank to the floor, dropping his head into his hands. Nostrils flaring, he glowered to the floorboards. “How do we know you’re even on our side? All that time being experimented on could have swayed your motives.”

Chest puffing, Lance tapped his index finger against the holster at his hip. “The same could be said for you. After all, she was abducted from her home. You turned your back on your people just to make Daddy proud.”

In a blink, Evan was on his feet. Towering over Lance, his chest heaved in outrage barely held in check. “I thought I was doing what was right.”

“Oh, yeah?” Eyes flashing with challenge, Lance’s head tilted to the side. “How’d that work out for you?”

Boys, there isn’t time for this.” Mama tried to inject common sense into their blatant show of testosterone poisoning.

Ignoring her, Evan’s hands balled into white-knuckled fists at his sides. With the serum pumping through his veins, he knew from grisly past experience that one well-delivered strike could snap the human spine. Still, he held back. “You know the biggest difference between you and I, Nary? I know what it’s like to make the tough choices.”

“Should I go?” Eugene asked, jamming his thumb toward the door. “I feel my talents could be better utilized away from the pissing contest.”

“Tough choices?” Lance snorted, squaring his shoulders in preparation to beat a little respect into Evan. “Like being a puffed-up dickhead when your girlfriend needs you?”

Sucking air through his teeth, Eugene inched to the door. “Yeah. I’m definitely going to go before there’s bloodshed.”

“We’re all going to go!” With a hand on Lance’s tensed shoulder, Mama Baker shuffled in between the two steaming men. Positioning herself in front of Evan, Mrs. Baker reached out to him. “If you don’t trust me, you should learn to trust your woman, soldier. She’s tougher than you think, but she still needs our help.”

Evan hesitantly reached for Mama Baker’s wrinkled hand, jerking as electrical impulses and images shot into his mind. There stood Thia, tall and proud above a restless Maly crowd, her wings expanded and her arms splayed wide. Her face beamed with pride, her posture radiating a confidence Evan had never seen.

When tinges of black crept in around the edges of the vision, Mrs. Baker yanked her hand away. “No. Oh no. Outside, now!”

Jaw clenched, Evan bolted for the door with the rest of the motley crew trailing close behind. The water tower that landmarked The Hive could be seen in the distance, a thick cloud of black smoke licking the sky beside it.

“If you two are over your male drama, we need to get to Thia before it’s too late,” Mrs. Baker commanded through gritted teeth, her cloudy eyes flicking from side to side as she scanned a scene only she could see.

“Let’s go.” Before the words even left Evan’s lips he was plowing through the brush, blazing a trail for them. The others fell in step behind him, doing their best to match his stride. The second wave had moved out, hopeful they weren’t too late.


And of course… THE GIVEAWAY!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Book to movie adaptations

Don’t you just hate it when you wait forever for something and it ends up being nothing like you expected?

Book to movie adaptations have a nasty habit of doing just that. Fallen was the first for me this year, Before I Fall the second. Neither of them were what I thought they could be. Neither were as good as the books. Both left me feeling as though something was missing.

Now, I am not saying that the movies were terrible. They truly weren’t. As stand alone movies they were really good. But as an adaptation they were missing that little… something.

Before I Fall is one of my top ten books of the last few years. It is one of the very few that I had to put down to take a breath and it is one of even fewer that had me sobbing real tears. That is some power as I am not an easily tearful person when it comes to books. I am, however, easily brought to tears by the big screen so I expected my heartstrings to take a beating. I didn’t get even that.

You see, for me at least, the movie seemed very rushed. I didn’t find that I cared enough about the characters in real time to give a care for them when they died. The mean girls were just mean, the bullied just… dull. It was missing the backstory and the time that was given in the book to completely engross the reader. For some reason it didn’t translate into a ninety minute movie.

This is becoming a regular issue with adaptations. Maybe it’s time for popular books to be left on paper and for the big screen to get it’s own stories? What do you think?

Book Blitz: Pink Lock Picks and Sequined Witch Hats GIVEAWAY!

Pink Lock Picks and Sequined Witch Hats
Carla Rehse
Publication date: July 24th 2017
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Young Adult

Seventeen-year-old Gracie Mason is homecoming queen, co-captain of the cheerleading squad, and a member of the student council. She’s also a budding burglar. While attempting her inaugural break-in, Gracie blacks out and wakes up far away from the scene. It turns out she accidentally intruded on a male witch’s “circle of power,” and now she’s bonded to him for life. To break the bond, Gracie must delve deeper into a society of witches that involves a secret club, a shadowy council, and all sorts of magical mischief.

Gracie quickly learns that dissolving the bond with Asher, admittedly a very handsome and charming witch, is more complicated than she initially thought. And right when it seems things can’t get any worse, witches start turning up dead. It’s clear that Gracie is out of her depth as her quest to sever the bond magically turns into a murder investigation.

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New Hobbies

Daddy told me years ago that to succeed in life I need a strong plan, the right tools, and the gumption to follow through. His words of wisdom helped me get elected homecoming queen, become co-captain of the cheerleading squad, and voted on the student council. Now I plan to use them to help me pull off my first burglary.

My plan is solid. I’ve also never backed down from a challenge, not even last year when Brittany Thomas became overly friendly with the entire football team in a sad attempt to deprive me of my crown. People say I started the rumor about the rash of STD cases spreading through the boys’ locker room faster than a brush fire. I didn’t, of course. Why start gossip when the squad of doctors from the local Health Department did it for me?

I take a deep breath as I enter the Trinity Building. At almost four o’clock on a Friday before a three-day weekend, the place is deader than a PTA meeting. It helps that today is the hottest July first on record for Central Texas and the air conditioning in this building is dismally subpar. The Trinity Corporation may claim to have the most upscale rental space in town, but one look at the gold leopard granite floor paired with peach-painted walls shows that’s a downright fib.

The only guard on duty leans back in his chair and sucks down a Sonic Route 44 Coke like his life depends on it. I wave as I pass the security desk, wearing a megawatt smile and fully confident in the strength of my lavender-scented Lavanila deodorant—vegan, of course. Deputy Dawg gives me his usual perv stare before returning to the comic book balanced on his knee.

Centex Therapy, LPC occupies most of the first floor office space. A small bell tinkles when I open the frosted glass door. What decorum the overall building lacks, the waiting room has in spades. Brown leather chairs sit on a bamboo rug and pastel paintings from local artists brighten the walls. A tall grandfather clock in the corner softly chimes four times. This late on a Friday means the room is empty of other patients. Perfect.

Jane, the receptionist, fans herself with a copy of Country Living. “Cutting it awfully close, Gracie. Go on in.”

Dr. McDozzle gives me a pained smile as I enter the room.

“Good afternoon, Miss Mason. Have a seat.” For a head shrinker, he’s incredibly formal. And a non-Texan, who hates football and sweet tea. I haven’t learned much more about him in the last month, but that’s enough to get him tarred and feathered if word got out.

The leather recliner squeaks when I sit down. “Thanks for seeing me on a Friday, Doc.” I twirl a strand of newly highlighted platinum hair around my finger. It goes wonderful with my bubblegum pink manicure. “Mr. Anderson, Daddy’s new lawyer, is now insisting I have two sessions a month with you. Of course, Mama’s lawyer says once a month is just fine, seeing how I’m such a well-adjusted high school senior and all. Almost a senior, I guess, since school’s not started.”

Dr. McDozzle straightens his glasses. “Yes, well, your parents do seem to have quite the barrage of attorneys involved in their divorce. Have you worked on the homework I gave you during our last session?”

This is such a waste of time. My parents have spent the last five years embroiled in a divorce dirtier than a greased pig-wrestling contest. Both sides of the family have more money than sense, much to the delight of every lawyer in the tri-county area. Not that I want my parents to get back together. Anytime they’re within spitting distance of each other, the tension between them gives me a migraine. Besides, if they hadn’t split up, I never would’ve met Ben.

Ben’s the son of Daddy’s ex-girlfriend. Until four months ago, they all lived together in Daddy’s condo. Ben is a sophomore at the local college and is truly hot, in a geeky, stud muffin, save-the-world, kinda way. Crushing on my almost stepbrother might seem a bit sketchy, but it’s legal—I Googled it twice.

Which means it’s time to start step one in my Get Ben Plan.

I toss my hair over my shoulder before pulling out a pink glitter notebook from my Eiffel Tower-shaped mini-purse.

“You wanted me to write down my feelings about my parents’ shared custody thing. Honestly, I don’t understand why the lawyers are so panty twisted about me spending a week with Mama and the next with Daddy. It means I get double the wardrobe. Hello? What girl would say no to that? It’s way better than Heather’s situation. I told you about her last time, I think. The girl with the hideous frizzed-out curls but drives a cute BMW Z4 roadster? Anyway, her parents are insane.” I continue a steady stream of babble until Dr. McDozzle’s eyes glaze over.

There’s no clocks in the room, but Dr. McDozzle keeps checking his watch. I’m sure the poor man created a nice therapy plan for me, but I’ve completely derailed it. Mama always says a girl has many tools to choose from in her arsenal—perfectly curled hair, well-placed boobs, and endless chatter are my faves. Besides, Daddy’s been paying therapists a fortune for years to show the divorce court how concerned he is about me. Dr. McDozzle’s earning his car payment today.

Author Bio:

Although not a native Texan, Carla prides herself on having mastered the correct usage of “y’all” and “bless your heart.”

Carla is owned by a persnickety kitty, who rules the computer keyboard and only allows Carla to write when demands for cat treats are met.

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