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Book Reviews

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Life's a Bag of Laughs
Life's a Bag of Laughs
Review by Angela
Recommended by a friend and I am so glad she did. Very funny anecdotes which you can totally relate to. Easy to read and highly recommended holiday reading. Looking forward to the next book...


Life's a Bag of Laughs
Life's a Bag of Laughs
Review by Emma
a fantastic, funny book packed with short tales of embarrassing moments, to laugh out loud stories of disaster. I read it in the bath, on the train but I think the best place to read this would be on the beach!! ...


Batsu
Batsu
Review by Richard Hardie
My reasons for buying a book vary from the fact that one of my favourite authors, Terry Pratchett, or Bernard Cornwell has a new release, to the need to buy research material for my own writing projects. In the case of Batsu, I met Richard Frankland at a book signing and was intrigued enough both by him and by what he had to say to break the habit of a lifetime and buy a book by an author I’d never heard of and in a genre I don’t normally read. A decision I didn’t regret. Batsu is Japanese for “retribution” and is a sequel to the first in the series of books about Ian Vaughan. In the first of the series, Vaughan and his family are kidnapped by the Japanese Red Brigade terrorist group, although Vaughan manages to foil the terror gang’s plot and rescue his family, killing a couple of the terrorists in the process including the sister of one of the terror group leaders. The whole episode does irreparable harm to his marriage, which is where “Batsu” starts. Two of the Japanese terror gang have been released from prison and sent under cover to the UK with other terrorists, via Canada. Once in the UK they rescue the leader of their terror group and having joined up with agents from North Korea, they put their plans into effect for a major coup against the West. You’ll have to read “Batsu” to find out what the coup is and Richard Frankland keeps you guessing until the end with numerous satisfying red herrings. I mentioned that this isn’t a genre I normally enjoy, but “Batsu” is superbly written and crafted and I would put it on a par with Fredrick Forsyth at his best. Frankland’s Japanese terrorists are chillingly ruthless as killers, and yet have the perfect manners and humility that is inherent is the Japanese psyche. Frankland’s hero, Ian Vaughan, is a likeable character and one that you have sympathy for both initially and more so as the book progresses. His wife has left him and taken his children, allowing him the absolute minimum of visiting rights and one of the terrorists is determined to take revenge on Vaughan for the killing of his sister. Ian tries to stay out of trouble and let the secret services deal with the situation, but when the terrorists arrive in the West Country very near to where he’s staying Ian decides he needs to act. “Batsu” or “Retribution” is aptly titled. Is it Vaughan’s retribution for the destruction of his marriage and family, or is it the vengeance of one of the terrorists for the death of his sister? Is it the retribution of a violent Japanese terrorist group against Western capitalism, or the revenge of the terrorist leader whose plans Vaughan wrecked in Richard Frankland’s first book. “Batsu” is highly satisfying as a thriller on every level. The twists and turns are not there to annoy the reader, as they are in so many books, they’re logical and intrinsic to the plot. None of the characters are superfluous and are all well structured. Most importantly the ending is fist-pumpingly good. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and would highly recommend it to anyone. ...


Escaped From Syria
Escaped From Syria
Review by Uma Khan
It is a Heart touching book. The author has kept it simple, clear and gripping throughout the whole book, just didn't want to put it down. After reading the book it made me reflect on my own life. It just gave me slightly closer glimpse of truly horrifying events that actually taking place in Syria. I would highly recommend the book it is amazing read!...


Escaped From Syria
Escaped From Syria
Review by Anne
The novel gives an insight into the struggles which the Syrians are facing. Not only does it explore the issues surrounding what is going on in Syria, but it further elaborates on the difficulties the refugees face when fleeing their country. I hear that the author is supporting charities in Syria. Wow. An inspirational woman! Definitely one to look out for. Full five stars from me!...


Damaged Cargoes
Damaged Cargoes
Review by Kevin Murphy
David Turri’s first published novel, Damaged Cargoes seems to emanate directly from a dark recess of nineteenth-century Japan. The story takes place in the enclave inhabited by foreigners in Kobe. Turri’s impeccable eye for the details of treaty port life—the phaetons in which the merchants rode, the long bars where they drank with their consular protectors, the Bund where they walked, the appearance of their warehouses—give his story the kind of texture that reminds the reader of Michener. But it is the way he brings his characters to life that makes the book truly appealing. In the dark, seedy world of the Kobe treaty port, Turri’s characters come alive as they speak. His gift for crisp dialog illuminates the contours of their often tortured conflicts with each other and the outside world with extraordinary texture; the reader feels like a privileged eavesdropper as they reveal their attitudes toward native Japanese and the peculiar pecking order of a society straining to replicate the class hierarchies of the contemporary West. This world is where his themes gestate--redemption’s possibilities, the consequences of greed, the ambivalence of human motivation, all at the complex intersection of Japanese and Western culture. At the end of the book, one cannot help but wonder if these men’s moral corruption is due to their lawless environment or if, a darker possibility, each carries with him a spark of evil, waiting to be fanned. Turri is no mere writer-explainer; this first novel establishes him as a new and compelling voice, a true storyteller. He has given us a marvelous tale, we hope the first of many. ...


Damaged Cargoes
Damaged Cargoes
Review by Ian Box
David Turri’s recently released novel, “Damaged Cargoes” is a wonderful story set in 1870's Japan and China. The reader is drawn into the story from the first page - taken into the sinister world of child trafficking and drugs. A world where the wealthy and the corrupt make the rules and those who refuse to follow are dealt with. The protagonist, Father Thaddeus Galt, is on a quest to fight the evil that controls all. The story is, indeed, a excellent read; full of action and intrigue. The story is paced well and the descriptions truly place the reader right in the 1870's. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys a story that plays with your imagination and keeps you turning the pages. ...


Escaped From Syria
Escaped From Syria
Review by Optimistic!
The book is inspired by real events, which gives resonance to the truth behind the Syrian regime. Dramatic embellishments aside, the hard hitting truth surrounding Syria is explored through the eyes of a middle class Syrian women called Latifa. The extents of what the regime is doing to innocent Syrian civilians is to say the least emotional and completely wrong. From gassed children littering the floor like musical statues to women being raped without remorse. The compelling truth behind what many Syrians have gone through just to survive. A really emotional rollercoaster as you read through the chapters hoping within yourself that the next chapter will bring happiness to these people. Once you begin to read you are fixed to the story line as it explores real life events. For all the bookworms this is a great read! ...


Escaped From Syria
Escaped From Syria
Review by meemz
This is an excellent read! From the moment I picked up the book I couldn't put it down! Its SO gripping from beginning to end! I loved the suspence building throughout! It gives you a insight into the lives of those going through these events. A brilliant book, most definitely recommend! ...


Behind the Game
Behind the Game
Review by bookGeeks
PLOT: 4/5 ,CHARACTERS: 4/5, WRITING STYLE: 3.5/5, CLIMAX: 4/5, ENTERTAINMENT QUOTIENT: 4/5 In India, cricket is a religion. When team India plays, one billion pairs of eyes watch. Even when the game ends, it is discussed for days in village centres, office cubicles, college canteens, school buses and even in kitty parties. We consider ourselves the biggest experts of the game, and have a hundred opinions on why the team lost, and a thousand strategies to win the next game. But very few of us actually know about the rot which hides behind all this dazzle and glitter; there is a ton of money involved, many big egos fight to rule the limited space, and thousands have their dreams shattered every year which, if exposed, will bust the allure surrounding the game. John Sealey’s “Behind the Game” is all about this, and more. It is the story which revolves around the game of cricket, and exposes the envy, pride, back-stabbing, politics, and addiction which goes together with the game. Tony de Silva, India’s greatest cricketer India, retires at the height of his career. All he plans to do is settle down and relax, that is until he meets Leya Raman, a strikingly beautiful woman, and the owner of a successful financial management company. Leya falls in love with Tony, but he has eyes only for her sister, Karma. Dejected and distraught, she swears revenge. Unable to stay away from the game, Tony starts a sports management company where he ropes in promising young cricketers and coaches them. Leya does all she can to destroy him and his company with the help of a wily lawyer and a local gangster. Will Tony fight back to keep his dream company alive? Will Leya fall prey to her own misdeeds? Who will Karma support – her love or her family? “In the changing rooms the adrenaline was beginning to build, for like all those about to enter the arena, there was a feeling of trepidation, as in ancient times when gladiators walked out into the arena, not knowing whether it would be for the last time. Tony de Silva would not be walking out into the arena to die, but he would certainly be walking out for the last time. He was about to retire, and this would be his last match.” The plot of “Behind the Game” is simple yet captivating; it progresses steadily and is an easy read. It gives a detailed account of what actually happens behind the game of cricket. The nitty-gritties of the betting and match fixing industry is explained in detail. The manner in which name and fame changes the character of a person is well brought out. A minor disappointment while reading was that most of the characters have English names though they are Indian, which is a bit conflicting. A few Indian names peppered in would have done the job. But the character build-up and their portrayal does justice to the sound plot. Cricket fan or not, this book can be read just for the sheer brilliance of Sealey’s storytelling ability. He makes sure that you are glued to the pages, as you are glued to the television during an India-Pakistan match. ...


Stanning Brae
Stanning Brae
Review by Michael Loske
This author is one to watch! Good read for someone on the go, excellent detail and description, although short this book satisfied my senses. My only complaint is that it could be a bit longer so I could continue to read this captivating story. It’s a must have!!!!!...


The Queens of Cornwall
The Queens of Cornwall
Review by Melody
An intelligent and witty story that will appeal to primary-aged school children, aspiring vets and grown-ups alike. Refreshing to read about magic from the perspective of animals, the funny one-liners, and a special cat colony's adventures and misadventures in the wilderness of the English countryside. This book will restore your faith in animal and human nature, and make cat-lovers of all who read it. Loved the cliff-hangar ... when's the next instalment due out...


Bodies, Birds and Michael Wild
Bodies, Birds and Michael Wild
Review by Nigel Francis
This tale grabs you very quickly and pulls you into the twists and turns of the main characters. The speed soon picks up and carries you along with an ever increasing grin on your face. The nymphomaniac, stereotypical American, mad wife, nutty step-father and other comical characters all support the story around the 2 arch enemies and builds a story that leaves you wanting a sequel to follow ASAP. ...


The Gift of Life
The Gift of Life
Review by Miscarriage Association
I found the book was very factual and very informative and the diaries were very emotional and detailed, although I found some of the language inappropriate e.g swearing, I didn't think that it was necessary and may upset some people. I understand that miscarriage is a very awful experience to go through as I have experienced it myself, and I think the book will definitely help others. It was a fantastic book to read and I found it hard to put down, and it proves that anything is possible. I was inspired by the author's journey and for what her and her husband went through and I am really pleased for them. I liked how the author was blunt, honest and straight to the point. I think it would give others the strength, determination and encouragement to carry on with their fight to have children and not give up. I though it was easy to read, and it gives you hope and encouragement that all is not lost, and I found it to be a positive experience and a great book to read and would recommend it to others. Thank you...


By Their Rules
By Their Rules
Review by christine wells
I have thoroughly enjoyed this thriller book it keeps ypu on your toes from start to finish with twists and turns that keep you glued to the book. What a great read, can't wait for his next book ...


The Truth
The Truth
Review by Melanie Maxwell
Fantastic book and compelling book about one man's life changing experience !!! It had me griped from start to finish. ...


The Wonder of Growing Old
The Wonder of Growing Old
Review by Decortsi
It's like a kaleidoscope of little reflections of little memories in which I recognize my own frail humanity. Funny yet humanly profound....


The Clown is Loose
The Clown is Loose
Review by Frederick Parson
I have just read this exciting thriller, a very easy page turner that grips from the first few pages. A novel full of twists and turns, with a very topical subject. For the first successful attempt from this Author, I look forward to lots more encounters with Cade Thomas. I love Lee Child and Tom Wood, now there is another man in town. Well done Darran....


The Gift of Life
The Gift of Life
Review by Miscarriage Association
I found the book was very factual and very informative and the diaries were very emotional and detailed, although I found some of the language inappropriate e.g swearing, I didn't think that it was necessary and may upset some people. I understand that miscarriage is a very awful experience to go through as I have experienced it myself, and I think the book will definitely help others. It was a fantastic book to read and I found it hard to put down, and it proves that anything is possible. I was inspired by the author's journey and for what her and her husband went through and I am really pleased for them. I liked how the author was blunt, honest and straight to the point. I think it would give others the strength, determination and encouragement to carry on with their fight to have children and not give up. I though it was easy to read, and it gives you hope and encouragement that all is not lost, and I found it to be a positive experience and a great book to read and would recommend it to others. Thank you...


Giselle and the Fate of Wahine
Giselle and the Fate of Wahine
Review by Dominic Sneddon
Giselle and the Fate of Wahine is a great first book by Marty Walpole. There isn't much information floating around about the Wahine disaster, so I was surprised to find this on Amazon. I'd never heard of Marty Walpole, but decided to grab this and have a read anyway. After reading this it's clear he did his research and wrote a decent book. A good mix of fact and fiction with a little humor mixed in. A lot of first books that I've read have been hard to get through, but most of this book was engaging and I got through it quite quickly because of this. I recommend this for anyone as a light enjoyable and educational read, but especially for people interested in maritime disasters, natural disaster stories, or New Zealand history. I read a lot and am always on the look out for new authors and I'm definitely looking forward to more from this author....


Book of month
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I have just received my box full of complimentary copies of my book and marketing items.  This being my first published book, the professional help and expertise given by Pegasus throughout the whole process has been invaluable and second to none.  Many Thanks.

Chris Bardsley (Tom Cotton)

Many thanks to my publisher, Pegasus Elliot Mackenzie. For all their professional work and guidance, from editorial, production, publication and marketing. The book could not have been in better hands.

Roger Price

Just wanted to say THANK YOU it's my birthday tomorrow so to receive books on my birthday is so special. I've waited a long time for my first non-fiction book.

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Just wanted to thank you again for the flyer for schools. You’ve really done me proud.

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Just a note to say how delighted I was to receive the books and promotion material and also I am very impressed with the high quality of the products.

Jeremy Mills

Just to let you know that I am very, very happy with the production of Galaxy Rising. And I think the cover art is outstanding.

John Otto

It is very exciting for me to have a publication date and I continue to be thrilled by the whole process.

Barbara Morris

I received the parcel today with my complimentary book, thanks very much. It’d the best Christmas present I could have expected! I have just been perusing a copy and everything looks to be in order and very well produced, so thanks once again to you and your team for doing such a professional job.

Michael Hrycyszyn