Archive for June 2014

Fly or Fall by Gilli Allan - Review

When her fortune changes, and money is no issue for a change,Nell's husband is keen to move away from their hectic lifestyle in London and put down roots in a country village. Nell isn't really keen but is railroaded into the decision. Nell feels like she didn't really have a choice to move away from all that is familiar to her. Apart from the change of scenery there appears to be a change in Nell's husband too. He soon becomes a different person, and not the person Nell married. Nell becomes lonely and isolated but makes new friends who seem to revel in stories of their open marriages and are the most materialistic people Nell has come across. Nell's life is soon complicated further when an encounter with a young man at a nightclub and a friendship struck up with a local builder soon have Nell questioning everything in her life.

Fly or Fall is one of those books that draws you in right from the start. Immediately I felt sympathy for Nell and how everyone else seems so in charge of her life and she is merely a bystander. She initially is a woman who feels uncertain about her place in the world and is so desperate to blend into the background that she becomes invisible to the very people who should care about her. Nell's life and marriage are typical of many. She married young with very little choice in the matter and simply accepted her fate. She is constantly taken for granted by her children and manipulating husband Trevor. Kept in blissful ignorance about all aspects of her marriage and accepting of the loveless sex life, Nell simply just gets on with things and accepts her lot in life.

Initially, Nell appears to be an older woman and I found it shocking that as I read on I realised that she was in fact a much younger woman with all the regrets of someone who has lived a life full of regret and broken promises. Her outlook on life was jaded and her self esteem was in her boots. There are many underlying stories throughout the course of the book and Nell becomes embroiled in each of them. She struggles to understand the strange feelings that Patrick the builder evokes in her and David, the man she encounters at a nightclub. 

Fly or Fall is a book about love, life and a desire to change, despite the fear of failure. In this story we see Nell change into someone that even she struggles to recognise. It is a story of regret too. Regret for those things not done, those adventures never embarked on and those feelings never given in to. However, soon Nell begins to wake up from the life she has sleepwalked through and a change is awakened in her. However, not everyone in her life is happy about it and Nell herself struggles with the range of emotions she feels and the desire to be a different person that suddenly appears from nowhere! Coupled with an attraction to two new men in her life, Nell struggles as her moral compass is unsure which direction it should be pointing.

Fly or Fall is a grown up book. It is a book about having the courage to fly when you are so afraid of falling. Highly recommended.


Nicky Wells - Author Interview!

Brook Cottage Books is thrilled to welcome back a great friend and fantastic supporter of the blog. Please give a big cheer for Nicky Wells who has agreed to be interrogated interviewed!!

JB: You write amazing Rock star romances. Tell us why you choose this particular theme?

NICKY: Aw JB, that’s such a nice thing to say. Thank you so much! D’you know, even after five releases, I still get flustered at compliments?

Anyway. Why romance with rock stars? Well. *coughs* I have an incurable ‘thing’ for rock musicians. I can’t help it. They just ‘do it’ for me. Red rag to a bull is nothing like a rock star is to Nicky Wells! (My lovely husband is quite indulgent of this affliction of mine, bless him. We even had a rock band we know play at our wedding, but that’s a story for a different day.). That’s why I write the books I do. Particular faves include Jon Bon Jovi and Joey Tempest. I’ve recently discovered Myles Kennedy too! Bad boys and golden voices, tough men with long hair and soft hearts…. *swoon*

JB: In 3 words, describe your latest book FALLEN FOR ROCK.

NICKY: Naughty—romantic—loud

JB: In 3 words describe the sexy hero in the book.

NICKY: Mike Loud, lead singer of rock band MonX, is: talented—swoonworthy—caring

JB: Because you obviously love music, do you listen to music when you write?

NICKY: Errr… I feel like I’m letting the side down, but no, I don’t listen to music while I write. Planning, yes. Editing, sometimes. Proofing, absolutely. But not while I actually write. The reason is simple. Every song, every album has a certain ‘mood’ for me, and it’s hard to line up enough songs to suit the mood of what I’m writing. Not to mention that given my love for sharp twists and turns, the mood of what I’m writing my change quite dramatically in the space of five minutes, and no play list could cater for that. So I find music a distraction while I write, but I certainly use it to inspire me and to relax during my writing breaks.

JB: Give us your writing playlist!

NICKY:  Not so much a writing playlist as the general soundtrack to my life… are you ready? Here are a few of my favourites, in no particular order:

Living On A Prayer (Bon Jovi); Enter Sandman (Metallica); Rock The Night (Europe); Hells Bells (AC/DC); Jump (Van Halen); Here I Go Again (Whitesnake); Rock Star (Nickelback); Tough It Out (FM); Cold As Ice (Foreigner); Bohemian Rhapsody (Queen); We Will Rock You (Queen); Runaway (Bon Jovi); Wake Me up When September Ends (Greenday); Who Will You Run To (Heart); Bring me to life (Evanescence); Sweet Child o’ Mine (Guns ‘n’ Roses); Stairway To Heaven (Led Zeppelin); Nothing Else Matters (Metallica); Other Side Of Midnight (FM).

Shall I go on? Because it might take a few hours…

JB: Did the book develop as you had planned or did it take you on a completely different journey?

NICKY: That’s such a great question! You have to know that I’m an obsessive compulsive planner. For one, it’s in my nature (blast that A-Type personality) and for another it’s a requirement if I am to write successfully around all the other demands on my time, notably family and radio shows!

So for each book, I have a rigorous plan, a skeleton if you will, that outlines the story arc, motivation, character development and all that good stuff. I know where the story is headed before I start typing ‘Chapter One,’ and I have signposted all the major twists and turns.

Most of the time, the writing flows from there, and I follow the plan. Most of the time, but not always. To give you an example, Sophie’s Turn was meant to end after one book with the ending that I eventually deliver in Sophie’s Encore. I had that all planned out for Sophie and Dan, but Sophie didn’t cooperate. I got her to the hotel room in Paris mulling over Dan’s proposal, and I was shouting, ‘yes, yes, do it woman, do it,’ and she goes… ‘nah. Sorry. Can’t do that. Not my style.’ That was a real huh moment. My character hijacked the story and rewrote the ending!

Likewise, there’s a similar scene in Fallen for Rock when Emily showed me quite forcefully just how much she’d grown and changed. I send her to a pub talent scouting with Mike, and she’s spotted a big shot manager. My plan was that she would approach him and beg an audience because, you know, that’s what I would do. Imagine the scene: you’re having an innocent drink and (INSERT FAMOUS ROCK MANAGERS NAME HERE) walks in. You’re desperate to talk to him. So you go up and somehow start a conversation, making a complete fool of yourself in the process. Cringe! That would be me. But not Emily! Oh no. Emily turns the whole thing around and has Iron Dave approach her. I so did not see that coming, and I can tell you, JB, I was hanging on for dear life, wondering what the heck Emily would say next!

JB: Do you fall in love with your characters as much as your readers do? 

NICKY: Absolutely 100 percent. I cried when I finished the third and final book in the Rock Star Romance Trilogy (aka Sophie’s Encore, and yes Pattie Walker, if you’re reading this, I haven’t forgotten my promise to you, just give me time!). I felt like I was waving goobye to my best friends, and I felt seriously bereft.

I got very emotional at the end of Fallen for Rock too, partly because I know this is a standalone, and partly because it ends on an emotional note. I wasn’t as cut up about saying goodbye here, probably because I hadn’t spend so much time living with the characters, but my, I do love Mike!

JB: What’s next for Nicky Wells?

NICKY: JB, I have two books in the works that I can tell you about. My next Christmas novella, Fairy Tale in New York, is fully written and due for publication in October or November of this year. It’s what I call a ‘standalone sequel’ to Spirits of Christmas. It’s a sequel in the sense that it picks up the story of Jude and Carrie, but it’s a standalone story in that you categorically, absolutely do not have to have read Spirits of Christmas to enjoy Fairy Tale in New York. Here’s the blurb:

Fairy Tale in New York

When rock star Jude gets stranded in New York with his family on Christmas Eve, he has no idea that he is setting in motion a chain of events that will turn their Christmas into the most magical one yet…

No good deed goes unpunished, or so it seems to Jude and Carrie on the morning of the twenty-fourth of December. The previous day, they gave up their return flights to London to enable a distressed passenger to make a swift journey home in their stead. Today, when they present themselves at the airport for their rescheduled flight, a spectacular whiteout is grounding all planes, and Jude, Carrie and baby Maya are stuck.

Tired, hungry and just a little panicked, Jude loads his family into a cab and returns to their hotel. His hopes of refuge are dashed when the hotel turns out to be fully booked and not even a platinum credit card will make a difference. Snow is falling heavily, and the family is facing a very bleak night indeed.

How do you celebrate Christmas far from home, with no place to stay, no food, and no presents? Join Jude, Carrie and Maya and a cast of colourful characters in this fairy tale story of Yuletide in New York.

After ‘Fairy Tale’, I’m going to bring you another full-length novel, probably in the late spring of 2015. This one will tell the story of young rock star couple on their honeymoon who experience a relationship crisis of epic proportions. And I mean epic! But that’s all I can say at this point….

NICKY: JB, thanks so much for having me on your blog and for all your fabulous support with my work, especially Fallen for Rock. J You’re an angel and a rock star and your enthusiasm means the world. Loveya!


A thrilling and delicious story of love and self-discovery woven around a broken romance that will make you turn page after page and cheer to the end.’

Love, life, loyalties. Nothing stays the same when Emily gets drawn into the world of rock.

Glossy and sophisticated professional high-flyer Emily has no time for nonsense such as the rock music her ex-boyfriend Nate adored so much. Yet when she unexpectedly comes into possession of VIP tickets—access all areas—for new rock band phenomenon, MonX, she can’t resist the temptation.

The fateful gig turns into more than one night, and Emily finds herself strangely drawn to this new and unfamiliar glittery world. However, only weeks later, MonX and her own universe fall apart with devastating consequences for all. When MonX lead singer Mike appeals for her help, she reluctantly embraces a new opportunity. But she soon discovers that while she may be a rock chick after all, a groupie she is not… Or is she?

Just exactly where do her loyalties lie? And what direction will her life take now that she’s left behind everything she treasured?

Warning! Fallen For Rock contains some explicit content and strong language that may not be suitable for readers under eighteen years of age.


About Nicky Wells: Romance that Rocks Your World!

Ultimate rock chick author Nicky Wells writes romance with rock stars—because there’s no better romantic hero than a golden-voiced bad boy with a secret soft heart and a magical stage presence!

Nicky’s books offer glitzy, glamorous romance with rock stars—imagine Bridget Jones ROCKS Notting Hill! If you’ve ever had a crush on any kind of celebrity, you’ll connect with Nicky’s heroes and their leading ladies.

Born in Germany, Nicky moved to the United Kingdom in 1993 and currently lives in Lincoln with her husband and their two boys. Nicky loves listening to rock music, dancing, and eating lobsters. When she’s not writing, she’s a wife, mother, occasional knitter, and regular contributor at Siren 107.3 FM with her own monthly show. Rock on!

***Fallen for Rock—SALES LINK TO COME!!!***

Did you know? There’s a single out now by Nicky’s fictional rock band Tuscq come to life! “Love Me Better” is available for download from Amazon, iTunes and many other places.

Author in the Spotlight - Thomas Duder

Hello!   Meet Thomas Duder, Author of the Things.

A citizen of Bellingham, WA by way of Southern California, Thomas Duder is a firm believer that a writer should write.  "Forget the drama of writing, forget the politics of writing, forget even the rest of the industry.  Writers should write, period."
An independent publisher and author, working in close collaboration with a fierce team assembled and hand-picked by he himself, Thomas Duder is a seasoned general of various projects beforehand, bringing those skills to the fore as The Crew plunges directly into the world of action-adventure literature!

His vanguard series, "The Generalist," is an action-adventure extravaganza, a veritable rollercoaster ride through a Neo-Los Angeles of the near future.  Loaded with witty dialogue, fast-paced action and sequences of brilliant violence, you're sure to find plenty to keep you entertained for hours on end!

And if you'd rather your violence short and poignant, then do be on the lookout for the upcoming short-story saga, "Killer XIII."  Follow the brutal misadventures of the malevolent, marauding murderer in a desert wasteland filled with killers, cannibals, and Daemonkinder and the general malcontent of all sorts and types.  Revel in the absolute loss of logic and sanity, of a world gone inexplicably and completely wrong, and the harsh wanderers of the hungry wastes teeming with madness, death, and the strange quest known only to 13, the man named after the brand and his ever present Meat Cleaver, the blade named after itself.
Outside of writing, he is also a man of other artistic endeavors - a lyricist and blogger as well as a fierce orator and vocalist, using these skills to deliver the thirty to forty-five minute program "Haymakers and Hellhounds."

Enjoy this excerpt from The Generalist - Taboo 1: Where's the Beef? 

Frank screamed as his gloved hands scrabbled for purchase, attempting to drag himself away from the booted feet that stomped on him for a moment before one particularly strong one kicked at his ribs, nearly busting one if not for his tough jacket.

Grunting, one of the Monster-gened, this one a wereape, hauled on his leg and slightly lifted him in the air, his fingers once again scrabbling for the street before his body slammed back down to the ground on it's own in a power lift. As the pinstripe-suited wereape and his two equally snazzily-dressed hyena-headed henchmen continued to put the boots to Frank, behind him several of the bigger goons worked Dash over, two more of the hyena-heads on each arm and another wereape holding him with both hands on the back of his head, the ape's arms looped under his, a business-suited werewolf worked his face over with powerful right and left hooks before tenderizing the troll's tough trunk with underhanded blows.

Growling, the wereape stomped, signaling that the hyenas should let go before tentspiking Dash into the street with a powerful, full-moon strengthened belly-to-back suplex, his back bridging with unnatural (for either human or ape) flexibility as he slammed Dash's skull into the pavement.

Getting up and laughing, the werewolf walked over to Frank and kicked him once in the face, forcing him to his back before leaning over and spitting on him.

"You tell Vitto we're comin' for him, tonight. He's dead. His family's dead. His goons are dead. We're going to kick his f*****g dogs. We're going to eat his f*****g children's hearts in front of him. Everyone he loves is f****** dead," the werewolf opened up his semi-muzzle, hawking up phlegm before spitting it at Frank's face again, causing the smaller man to groan and try and curl up, "And you Shop freaks are next."

Laughing, the group walked back into the Bantam Club, bringing the guards in for a round of drinks in celebration of the ass-whooping they had just dished out.

Waiting a moment Frank coughed, reaching up to wipe away at his face with a grunt before groaning out, "Hey Dash?"

Dash's body finally came down, catching itself on his knees as his skull and neck reformed again. Shaking his head with a shotgun-sound of crackling, he groaned aloud, slipping to his chest for a moment before answering, "Frank?"

"You okay, chief?"

"Yeah boss," Dash shook his head again, coming up to his knees and beginning to dust his torn and bruised clothes off, "Just gimme a few. Maybe an hour."

Frank slowly got to his feet, his own energies turned inward beginning to limber his stiff and bruised muscles, groaning as he felt every abused inch of him beginning to heal a little, "Hey. Dash?"

Dash blinked, craning his neck this way and that, about to bemoan the destruction of his good clothes until Frank got his attention, "Yeah, Frank?"

"I hope you realize...," Frank glowered darkly as Dash's face lit up with an inhuman grin, finishing their most favorite declaration, "This means war!!!!"

The Crew Information

Jaded Shots - Cover artwork (contact by request)
Adele Symonds - Editing
Massive Entertainment - Publishing

Contact Information

Care to invite Thomas Duder, Author of the Things as a speaker or guest to YOUR convention or event?


Main Website:
The Pen Is My Sword -


- Copyright © 2013-2014 Brook Cottage Books - Powered by Blogger - Graphics & Blog Customization by JellydogDesign