Monday, 19 March 2018

Meet A Writer Monday Presents...

...Victoria Cooke

1. Tell me about your book, The Secret to Falling in Love, and where you got your inspiration for it?

The inspiration came from my own observations of people being absorbed by technology. I’m a social media addict myself and am guilty of checking my phone every few seconds but since having children, I’ve become really aware of it and make a conscious effort to be involved with the people around me rather than those on social media. I wanted to have a little fun with the issue – what if our technology was ripped away? Would life be better or worse? And so on.

2. If your book was made into a film, who would you like to see play the lead?

I think Emily Blunt would make a fab Mel and Sam Clafin would make a perfect Scott.

3. What are the top three books in you TBR pile? 

1) Everything Everything
2) The Girlfriend
3) Behind Closed Doors

4. You’ve just been kidnapped and the people from the last TV Show/Movie you watched have to save you. Who is it?

Oh no, I wouldn’t stand a chance! I don’t think the people on Love Island would manage!

5. How important to you view maintaining your twitter account?

I believe all social media is important for maintaining a presence and a relationship with readers.

6. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go and why?

It’s a bit of a cliché for a writer but a house by the beach on Martha’s Vineyard would be perfect!

7. If you could fight anyone in history, who would it be?

I think the teenager in me would love to live in Beverley Hills 90210

8. How would you survive a Zombie apocalypse?

I watch The Walking Dead and I can tell you, I’d die of fear before a zombie got within 20 metres of me!

9. Do you think the cover plays an important part in the buying process?

Definitely – I shouldn’t, but I do judge a book by its cover. It’s the reason I recently bought Sarah Morgan’s Holiday in the Hamptons, the cover is gorgeous.

10. What do you find are the most effective way of marketing your book?

Interacting with readers and getting involved with online reading communities.

11. What are your thoughts on good/bad reviews?

I love honest reviews, good or bad. The good ones give me confidence to continue writing and the negative ones provide food for thought, and even enable me to improve on my next piece.

12. Are your characters based off real people or did they all come entirely from your imagination?

I base many of my characters on a type of person, rather than an actual person, or I mix and match traits that I notice in different people.

13. What character in your book are you least likely to get along with?

Dee Myers, she’s a bitch and thinks she can treat people like crap. I’ve worked for people like her in the past and don’t have any time for them.


Status Update: I’m going offline for a while… Wish me luck! xx

Lifestyle journalist and thirty-something singleton Melissa hashtags, insta's and snapchats her supposedly fabulous life on every social media platform there is.
That is until she wakes up on her birthday, another year older and still alone, wondering if for all her internet dates, love really can be found online? The challenge: go technology free for a whole month!
Forced to confront the reality of her life without its perfect filters, Melissa knows she needs to make some changes. But when she bumps into not one, but two gorgeous men, without the use of an app, she believes there could be hope for love offline!
If only there was a way to choose the right guy for her… 

About Victoria

Victoria grew up in the city of Manchester before crossing the Pennines in pursuit of her career in education. She now lives in Huddersfield with her husband and two young daughters and when she’s not at home writing by the fire with a cup of coffee in hand, she loves working out in the gym and travelling. Victoria was first published at the tender age of eight by her classroom teacher in year three who saw potential in a six page story about an invisible man. Since then she’s always had a passion for reading and writing, undertaking several writers’ courses before completing her first novel in 2016.

Friday, 16 March 2018

Going on Tour

A book tour? No, sadly not. I wish :) However, it is the trip of a life time. If the flag above isn't a clue as to destination, then here is a big one - I'm going to JAPAN! I am super excited. In just 13 short days I will be on a plane.

Stops on the trip include Tokyo, Kyoto, Nara, Osaka, & Hiroshima. I am an amateur photographer so I will be taking my camera with me, hoping to get some really nice pictures.

Its spring. So hopefully the cherry blossom trees will be in bloom and I'll get some truly magical images. Many of which I will share when I get back. I love Japanese culture and am looking forward to seeing a blend of beauty, nature and technology.

It also means that this blog will a little light on interesting things, though I am planning to program in several things so your regular favourites will still go live for the time I am away.

Bon Voyage!

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

Dusty Pages Review: The Vampire of Highgate

Kathy Bilic is adopted. Until now, she's had only a vague memory of her real family. But terrifying dreams and visions of her sister Amber are waking her in the night. When Amber starts giving her messages, Kathy gets a sickening sense that her sister is in danger - from a deadly, inhuman source. Kathy hits London to find her sister - but when she arrives at her aunt's house in Highgate, she is actively dissuaded from pursuing the mystery. Undeterred, Kathy's trail leads her through a bloody murder in the British Museum to a charged meeting with the mysterious, hypnoptic Antwain and a final confronation with her sinister father. Before long, Kathy uncovers the full horror of her heritage and her sister's fate at the hands of the Vampire of Highgate.

 I had really high hopes for this book as it had a lot of things I love, a mystery, vampires, an English setting but after reading it, I felt a little let down. The story has a really good build up, scary in places, funny in others and over all it was shaping up to be a four or five star read.

However, having made it through almost the entirety of the book, the last bit remaining when I put it down for the night, didn't seem to be thick enough to contain an ending that would round it all off nicely...and it didn't. I felt the ending fell flat, there was all this build up about Kathy being the girl in some prophecy but that turned out to be unimportant in the end. Forgettable...and anyone who has read it will understand what I mean by that.

I did spot on Goodreads that this book was listed as book one in a series and Asa Baileys Amazon author page does say he is writing a second book. With that said I checked the publication date of my copy and I know its been sitting on my shelf for years, so the sequel...well he is giving George R. R. Martin a run for his money in this department. I would like to read a sequel because I felt cheated by the ending of this book. There were also plenty of characters that were under utilized I think in the first one and deserve greater exploration.

I give it