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One week published. What have I learnt?

One week traditionally published.

Well that was a mad week. I still don’t know whether I’m coming or going but I do know that I’m a traditionally published author as well as an Indie (hybrid). In truth, it was a label I never thought I’d be able to hold in the palm of my hand and squeeze but there it is.

So, what have I learnt?

  • I’ve learnt that fellow writers are an amazing supportive bunch, but I already knew that as an Indie.
  • I’ve also been reminded what a selfless bunch of people book bloggers are. To firstly take the time to read a book by a nobody and then write a review is truly awesome. So, thank you.
  • But I’ve also learnt that it’s hard to let go of the reins. As an Indie I have complete control of the process from idea to print. Having someone taking the strain when I’d been so used to doing it all is strange and has taken a lot of getting used to. I know my book cover, blurb and book are better because of it but still…
  • I’ve also learnt that I don’t feel any different but people’s perceptions of me have changed. I’m still me. I still spend most of my time either nursing, writing or avoiding housework. As an Indie, I got that it wasn’t a big deal to self-publish my books. it was just something I did. I suppose a label of respect is attributed to traditionally published authors. But to write a book is awesome enough in its own right. And it is 12 years since I started to take my scribbles seriously. I suppose what I’m really trying to say is that whatever the future holds I still intend to stay true to my roots – I’ll never forget all those rejection letters. There’s more than enough to keep me grounded.
  • Carrying on from the last point, I’ve also learnt that I’m not scared of the future. Publishing is going through very difficult times currently and who knows if my book series will take or not. But if it doesn’t so be it. There are a whole lot more important things happening in the world right now.

Stay safe

Jenny x

SILENT CRY

A MISSING BABY. A MOTHER’S NIGHTMARE.

When Izzy Grant’s newborn daughter Alys disappears, her world shatters around her. Despite an extensive search the police find no trace of the missing girl, but Izzy refuses to give up hope that her daughter will be found.

Then a note is pushed through her letterbox, warning her off.

For Izzy it’s a ray of hope, another lead for the police to follow. For DC Gaby Darin it’s another piece of the puzzle that just won’t fit. But as a long-lost friend returns to Izzy’s life with a shocking secret, Gaby realises the truth of who took Izzy’s daughter from her might lie in the past – and far closer to home than anyone could have imagined… Available here

About Jenny O’Brien

Jenny O’Brien is an Irish, Welsh, Guernsey writer. She’s also a nurse.

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Katie’s Cornish Kitchen. Cover reveal

Cover reveal

Today I’m delighted to be part of the cover reveal for Rosie Chambers latest book, Katie’s Cornish Kitchen, and what a cover. Here’s the blurb and buying links below. Enjoy x

Blurb

Kindness, community and cake are all on the menu at Katie’s Cornish Kitchen

Pre-order the new feel good romance from Rosie Chambers

After the heartbreak of being jilted by her fiancé, Katie Campbell has been mending her broken heart in Bali. She has local restaurant owner and new friend Agatha to thank for providing a listening ear in her moment of need. When Katie confides she’s worried about going back to what’s left of her life in London, Agatha has just the opportunity for Katie – to manage her old café in the beautiful, picturesque village of Perrinby in Cornwall.

Although reopening the café and making it profitable won’t be easy, Katie is determined to make the most of her fresh start. She quickly makes new friends in florist Jay, waitress Talia and handsome neighbour Oscar, and focuses on making the café a welcoming place for the community – from hosting floristry workshops to pizza-making nights and even the local knit-and-natter group. But, with the café under threat from the local property developers circulating just as she’s starting to grow closer to Oscar and finally feeling at home, can Katie find the recipe to make her Cornish Kitchen a success?

Available here.

Escape to Cornwall in this heartwarming romance – perfect for fans of Julie Caplin, Phillipa Ashley and Debbie Johnson

About Jenny O’Brien

Jenny is a hybrid writer. Her latest book, SILENT CRY, is out with HQ Digital. She’s also a hospital nurse.

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The Other Passenger by Louise Candlish

Book Review

Book Blurb

You’re feeling pretty smug about your commute to work by riverboat. No more traffic gridlock or getting stuck on the tube in tunnels (you’re claustrophobic). Now you’ve got fresh air, an iconic Thames view, a whole lifestyle upgrade. You’ve made new friends on board — led by your hedonistic young neighbour, Kit — and just had your first official ‘water rats’ get-together.

The day after the drinks, Kit isn’t on the morning boat. The river landmarks are all the same, but something’s off. When you disembark, the police are waiting. Kit’s wife, Melia, has reported him missing and another passenger saw you arguing on the last boat home after your drinks. Police say you had a reason to lash out at him. To threaten him.

You protest. You and Kit are friends — ask Melia, she’ll vouch for you. And who exactly is pointing the finger? What do they know about your private lives?

No, whatever coincidences might have occurred last night, you are innocent, totally innocent.

Aren’t you?

To buy, click here

My Review

This is my first book by Candlish but I can tell you it won’t be my last, a phrase I’m sure the writer has heard before many times. It’s unlike me not to read a book straight after I get my grubby hands on it but, just like a kid savouring that last bite of chocolate, I saved the best book until last.

Four characters: 2 couples, (one middle-aged, the other young), strike up an unusual friendship with devastating consequences. A high-level intricate plot that will keep you, the reader, on their toes and with the explosive ending we expect from this genre.

The writing is strong, the characterisations a little too close to comfort to be truly likeable. Here Candlish deals with flawed personalities but who, looking in that mirror, isn’t flawed?

A brilliantly crafted novel, both in technique and descriptive characterisations. I’ll be back for more…soon.

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About Jenny O’Brien

Jenny is a hybrid writer. Her latest book, SILENT CRY, comes out on the 17th April with HQ Digital. She’s also a hospital nurse.

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SILENT CRY BOOK LAUNCH

With everything as it is, the book launch for SILENT CRY, has been downgraded and that’s exactly how it should be. My book will succeed, or not, all on it’s own despite the #lockdown. However there are still some things happening that I’d like to tell you about. People have put time and effort to help my little slice of crime fiction and I need to thank them. 

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Firstly Abi Fenton, from HQ Digital at Harper Collins for making all this happen. It’s taken years to be where I am today and I couldn’t be more grateful for the faith she’s put into my writing. HQ Digital have arranged a Blog Tour (Whoop), which kicks off Friday 17th, book launch day. Thanks to both them and the bloggers taking part.

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  I’ve also got a competition to win a KINDLE over on Facebook happening. I know! right!. To enter just tell me what helps during lockdown, that’s it. No purchase necessary. Click here to enter

And there’s more…

thestepsister-final8242817266307479128.jpgI also have a free book.  THE STEPSISTER, which was last year’s top read in the spring, (staying in the top 100 psychological thrillers over on Amazon). Free until the 17th April.  

 That’s it, folks. Read. Enjoy but most importantly stay safe and stay indoors. Some of you will know I’m also a frontline nurse. It’s scary times for all of us. Books are important but family, friendships and good health are far more important,  

Jenny x

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March Reading Highlights

I know this is a few days late but you’ll have to bear with me. Whilst books are important I have to prioritise. In a world that’s gone mad I’m pretty busy at the minute.

Strangers CL Taylor

Blurb

Ursula, Gareth and Alice have never met before.

Ursula thinks she killed the love of her life.
Gareth’s been receiving strange postcards.

And Alice is being stalked.

None of them are used to relying on others – but when the three strangers’ lives unexpectedly collide, there’s only one thing for it: they have to stick together. Otherwise, one of them will die.

Three strangers, two secrets, one terrifying evening.Available here

My review

Astounding and yet, as the writer of Sleep, I didn’t expect any less. Sleep was wonderful. This is different and, IMHO, has the edge on Taylor’s previous work. There’s something about the structure that I haven’t come across before in writing, something that’s brave but Taylor’s writing pulls it off. Three main characters, all very different but, as the story unfolds, not so very different. Alice who’s in fashion. Gareth in security and finally Ursula,, a bit of a misfit. All good in their own way. Told from each characters unique viewpoint, the story unfolds to a dramatic ending. Magnificent storyline. super writing. Believable characters. 10 stars.

Family for Beginners Sarah Morgan

Blurb

Who says you can’t choose your family?

When Flora falls in love with Jack, suddenly she’s not only handling a very cranky teenager, but she’s also living in the shadow of Jack’s perfect, immortalised wife, Becca. Every summer, Becca and Jack would holiday with Becca’s oldest friends and Jack wants to continue the tradition, so now Flora must face a summer trying to live up to Becca’s memory, with not only Jack’s daughter looking on, but with Becca’s best friends judging her every move…

The more Flora tries to impress everyone, the more things go horribly wrong…but as the summer unfolds, Flora begins pushing her own boundaries, and finding herself in a way that she never thought she needed to.

And she soon learns that families come in all shapes and sizes. Available here

My review

I make no apology, in a world that turns its nose up at romantic books, that Sarah Morgan is one of my favourite writers. There’s just something about how she manages words that sends her right to the top of the class. In this her latest she doesn’t disappoint. Flora is a little lost amongst all those flowers until handsome widower strolls into the shop. He has a daughter. There are fireworks. Lots and lots of fireworks. There is a happy ending. What more do you want?

Can You See Here? Susie Lynes

Blurb

Rachel Ryder doesn’t understand how her life has changed so completely. When she was younger, heads would turn when she walked into a room. Her children needed her; her husband adored her.

But somehow the years wore that all away. She was so busy raising her children, looking after her parents… She can barely remember the woman she used to be, the one whose husband told her she was out of his league. The woman she is now just does the laundry and makes the dinner, and can walk into a room without anyone knowing she’s there.

She knows that she hated feeling invisible. She knows that she thought: what would it take for you to see me again?

And now she’s worried that she did something terrible. Because she’s sitting in a room, being asked whether she killed someone.

When no-one is watching, you can get away with anything…
Available here

My review

A haunting depiction of what it’s like to grow old in a media-filled world full of beautiful people and a warning of what might happen as a result if things aren’t allowed to change. I felt this was a bit of a shift for Susie, I’ve read a couple of her previous books but, that said. I loved it. This had the edge but for the life of me I can’t put that into words. IMHO her best yet

The Secret Admirer Carol Wyer

Blurb

Sasha’s eighteen-year-old daughter Gemma was all she had in the world. Sasha fell pregnant with Gemma when she was still at school, and the two are as close as sisters. So when Gemma’s burned and broken body is found, Sasha’s world ends. What kind of person would want her beautiful daughter dead?
Leading the case is Detective Natalie Ward, scarred by her own recent tragedy. When she finds a note in Gemma’s diary from ‘a secret admirer’, she moves quickly, determined to un-mask them. But interviews with Gemma’s devastated ex-boyfriend, and her charismatic teacher, who has been seen embracing his student far away from the classroom, don’t give Natalie the answers she’d hoped for…
And then the case takes a devastating, personal twist. CCTV footage reveals Natalie’s estranged husband David followed Gemma home every evening the week before she died.
Natalie is forced to put personal feelings aside and follow procedure, even though she can’t believe David could be guilty. But when Gemma’s housemate is found murdered, Natalie thinks the killer could still be at large. Is she right to trust her instincts about David and can she discover the truth before another precious life is taken?

Available here

My Review

This, the second book that I’ve read by this writer, continues to explore DI Natalie’s complex personal life while she struggles with her work one. Gemma, a Uni student, gets acid thrown and subsequently dies. But all is not as it seems with her tender life. Another stonking read from a great crime writer. The characters are spot on. The plot and twist gasp worthy.

Shalini Boland One of Us is Lying

Book blurb

Tia is walking home with her children, along the lakeside of their quiet, safe town, when she realises something is wrong with her five-year-old daughter, Rosie. She seems troubled, not at all her usual happy self.

But when Tia finally coaxes Rosie to open up, she wishes she hadn’t. Because her sweet daughter asks a question Tia never thought she’d hear.

‘Why did you kill someone?’

Tia knows how rumours spread around her small town. She just can’t understand who would have shared such a horrible story. Or why.

It can’t have anything to do with what happened. Only her two best friends really remember that…

Tia thought she could trust Fiona and Kelly with her life. They’ve been through so much together. But when she’s sent photos of herself that could tear her whole world apart, she starts to wonder. Someone is determined to punish her. But who? And will her friends stand by her, or will the past destroy all of their lives? Available here

My Review

So I seem to have arrived late to the Boland party, something I regret (you’ll be pleased to know that I intend to rectify my tardiness post haste). This is a densely plotted book and very cleverly written. The start drew me in with the biggest hook. Out of the mouths of babes, the truth or a version of it – but which one? Boland = Breath-taking.

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About Jenny O’Brien

Jenny is a hybrid writer. Her latest book, SILENT CRY, comes out on the 17th April with HQ Digital. She’s also a frontline nurse.