Tag Archive | Humour

Saturday Spotlight

saturday spotlight

Fog by Michael Wombat

17344256You know how it is. We’ve all experienced it while driving. You suddenly realise that you have no idea where you are, or what your destination is. After a few seconds light dawns and you remember where you are going.

But what if light didn’t dawn? What if you continued to know nothing before that moment? You have no idea where you are, who you are, or why a bunch of nutters is trying to kill you. The only thing you know is that you have to run for your life…

Sexy, funny, violent and thrilling, Fog is not so much a Whodunnit as a Whatthehellsgoingon.

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My Review:

This is the first book I’ve read by Michael Wombat and I will be reading more, I loved his writing style and really enjoyed the fantastic adventure within the pages of this book.

The mystery and excitement begin on page one when we meet the main character driving alone in the fog. He has amnesia and a boot (trunk) full of body parts. The book is written from this character’s point of view and it feels like you are sitting next to him while he regales you with tales of his adventure.

I won’t say anything more about the story… no spoilers… but if you enjoy a rip-roaring thriller with great twists and turns, brilliant characters and some humour thrown into the mix… then read this one.

 

About The Author:

6524212A Yorkshireman living in the rural green hills of Lancashire, Michael Wombat is a man of huge beard. He has a penchant for good single-malts, inept football teams, big daft dogs and the diary of Mr. Samuel Pepys. Abducted by pirates at the age of twelve he quickly rose to captain the feared privateer ‘The Mrs. Nesbitt’ and terrorised the Skull Coast throughout his early twenties. Narrowly escaping the Revenue men by dressing as a burlesque dancer, he went on to work successively and successfully as a burlesque dancer, a forester, a busker, and a magic carpet salesman.

The fact that he was once one of that forgotten company, the bus conductors, will immediately tell you that he is as old as the hills in which he lives. Nowadays he spends his time writing, telling tall tales in his bio, and pretending to take good photographs.

You can have a good laugh at his blog or his photographs, but most of all please go and mock him mercilessly on Twitter or Facebook. Michael Wombat has published over one book. Other authors are available.

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Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. The weekly Meme wants you to add books to your TBR, or just share what you are currently reading.

  • Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
    -BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

FogThe appalling shrieks continued, and I heard footsteps clatter loudly down the footbridge steps, closely followed by another person bursting into the foyer.
Between my fingers I rubbed at the ichor that had once been inside a person’s head, and gazed mindlessly into the welcoming blackness.

~Fog by Michael Wombat

Teaser Tuesday

Teaser Tuesday

 
Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by The Purple Booker. The weekly Meme wants you to add books to your TBR, or just share what you are currently reading.

  • Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
    -BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

 

43601384Anyway, according to the ancient records, that was the first step. The next ingredient was five drops of essence from the Martian Snapitus Crapitus flower, then 1/4 cup of carbonated goat drool, a thimble-full of ectoplasm from the ghosts of three Tibetan circus clowns; and lastly, an incantation, never uttered, from a philosopher that never lived.

~Uncle Billy’s Chicken Hut and Salvation Emporium by Jeffrey G. Roberts

 

The Hairy Hand by Robin Bennett

the hairy hand

 

the hairy hand coverA scary adventure for 8 – 12 year olds, full of jokes, magical familiars and a Dickensian cast.

When Septimus inherits a magical, treasure-finding Hairy Hand from his uncle, life suddenly becomes a lot more exciting – and dangerous!

Amazon

Excerpt:

Chapter One

Introducing Sept, the awful Plogs, the Village of Nowhere and the letter that changed everything

When Septimus Plog was small he liked to play in puddles outside his house. Sometimes he would look up and see his mother watching him from the kitchen window. He would stop and wave at her with all his little might … then wait; but she never waved back. Not once.

He always knew he was very different from everyone else in the village and Septimus often wondered if that was why his mother seemed not to like him very much.

For starters, he had this name. Septimus (Sept, for short). Everyone else his age was called Garp, Darg or Dorgk or Blaarg. Good, honest names that sounded like you were sneezing into custard or you had swallowed something pointy.

Secondly, he read books – by the sack, when he could get his hands on them. As far as he knew, no-one else in his village read anything except graffiti. And quite how Sept knew how to read was a mystery: there were no schools for a hundred miles, no teachers and, more to the point, Sept couldn’t remember ever not being able to read. Printed words in books just popped into his head, as if someone was telling the story out loud.

Unfortunately, in the Plog household there were only two books: the one he kept secret from his parents; and the one they kept a secret from him. Sept had only ever glimpsed it when he’d come home once and caught his mother staring at the cover as if she dared not open it. It was a small book with a black cover, like dead bats’ wings, and no title. Something about the book scared Sept very much indeed. His mother kept the Black Book in her apron pocket.

The other one – his secret book – he had read so many times he knew it almost by heart. It was called, How to be Happy, and it had twelve chapters, each with a simple idea for looking on the bright side of life. It was Sept’s most treasured possession, one that was just his. He hid it away in his room under a floorboard – because where he came from, possessions were just things other people hadn’t got around to stealing yet.

 

My Review:

I enjoyed this humorous and moderately gruesome read which, I think, will appeal to its target audience.

Septimus Plog, or Sept for short, doesn’t have the best upbringing and doesn’t fit in in his village. An unexpected inheritance from his uncle, a powerful magician, changes that.

Sept embarks on a journey, not only to find his late uncles home, but also to find himself and to stand up for what is right.

There’s an amazing cast of ghastly characters, including Sept’s parents, Plog the Sneaker and Gertrude!

A fun and adventurous fantasy story of good versus bad, determination and resisting temptation.

 

Author Information:

7020809Robin Bennett is an author and entrepreneur who has written several books for children, sometimes under the nom de plume R.S Harding, and a few more on the swashbuckling world of business: How to Make a Good Living Running Your Own Business, Kicking the Property Ladder and Start up Smart, all published by Harriman House.

In 1997, Monster Books was founded as a way for Robin to sound moderately respectable when he was selling his books and also to allow full control over his work.

Robin has spoken at conferences on fantasy literature. His first book for young adults, Picus the Thief, won the Writer’s News Indie Published Book of the Year Award in 2012.

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A Stranger on the Train by Karen J Mossman

Originally posted on The Magic of Stories -October 20, 2018

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Jenna heard the song on the radio and the sweet rawness of the words transported her back two years when she met a stranger on a train.

She was travelling to London to visit Aunt Ivy and running late. She pulled open a carriage door just as the whistle blew. Too late, she realised she was in a first-class compartment and there was a lone occupant inside. He looked up with surprise. “Sorry,” she said, not meaning to invade his privacy. The train lurched forward throwing her into the seat and almost into his lap. “I’m so sorry,” she said again.

He was very handsome with the deepest brown eyes she had ever seen.

“It’s okay, as you’re here,” he said. She hadn’t expected to hear an American voice in the heart of England.

Jenna sat down in the seat opposite. The train carriage was small. Outside it was hot and clammy and not a day for travelling. The open window made little difference to the humidity and trying to draw him into a conversation was proving difficult. Giving up, Jenna settled back to rest and fell asleep.

Waking up, she found the train stationery and Nino, as she later learnt, was nowhere in sight. Pulling out a magazine she read the problem page and was part way through someone’s acne breakout when he opened the door. He looked like an Adonis dressed black.

“Hi,” he drawled. “It’s so damned hot in here, I thought we could use a drink.” He was carrying two cans of cola.

“Oh, thank you,” she said. “Just what I needed.”
“I don’t think the British have heard of air conditioning,” he said as he sat down he pulled the ring off the can.

“Well this weather is unusual,” she replied taking in his square solid chin and small nose. Those deep-set eyes set her heart racing when he looked at her.

“Sure as hell is,” he said taking a long swig.

“Are you on holiday?” she asked.

“I’m working. You?”

“I’m visiting my aunt. I erm…” For a moment she contemplated telling him and then thought, what the heck, he was just a stranger. “I’m escaping a broken romance and my aunt says she has just the remedy for a broken heart.”

For the first time Nino looked interested. “Why would anyone break your heart, honey?”

His eyes softened and the way he called her honey made her pulse quicken.

“Because Pete found someone else who was more exciting and prettier than me, the bastard. We’d only been together two years.” She shrugged. She still couldn’t believe she had meant so little to him. Feeling the familiar lump in her throat, she grinned as if she had said something funny.

“I’m sorry,” he replied sympathetically.

“So,” she said with exaggerated brightness. “My aunt is going to take me out and has promised me a good time. In fact,” she knew she was babbling now, “tomorrow she’s taking me to a concert at the Lords Hall.”

Nino raised his eyebrows, “Lord’s Hall, no kidding?”

“Yeah, you know it?”

“I’m going too.”

“Well, that’s a coincidence! I’ve never heard of the singer which isn’t surprising as my aunt has weird taste in music sometimes but hey, if it gets me out…”

“Sure does. And you never know you might enjoy it.”

“Yeah, bloody singing Eyetie who probably thinks he’s God’s gift to women.” Nino looked amused. “He’s got a foreign sounding name, so I hope he sings in English.”

“He does. His name’s Santario and he’s all right.”

“Thank goodness for that. We have front row seats, so I can hardly sneak out if he is rubbish!”

The journey flew by as they chatted, and Jenna felt a fleeting disappointment when he didn’t suggest they meet up at the concert.

***

Surprisingly, Lord’s Hall was packed. Jenna wondered how so many people had heard of him when she hadn’t.

“You’ll love him, I promise.” Aunt Ivy gushed at Jenna’s scepticism.

“Ladies and Gentlemen.” A disembodied voice announced as the show began. “Please welcome on stage Mr Nino Santario!”

The auditorium erupted into a standing applause as the singer appeared. The only person still seated and not clapping was Jenna. Shocked, she stared at the stranger from the train.

He was wearing all black again, jeans, tee-shirt and a leather jacket with tassels that swayed as he moved. He had talent and Jenna was soon up with the rest of them applauding, dancing and enjoying the performance.

Back in the present, the song on the radio ended. Jenna let the memories wash over her. After three encores, she and Aunt Ivy had been invited back stage. Everyone was vying for his attention, but he only had eyes for her.

Later they had dinner, Aunt Ivy smiled, declining his offer to join them, she had to go home and feed the cat. She didn’t have a cat. After they had eaten Nino asked if she had ever been to a casino, she hadn’t, and it was a great experience.

For his next concert, Jenna had sat in the wings and he was even better close up, especially when every time he came off stage, he kissed her!

She followed him around various interviews and photo shoots. She was even with him when he recorded the songs for his debut album.

Everyone treated him like royalty. They all believed this up-and-coming star would be the next big thing. They treated him with such reverence that even he thought he was royalty at times.

Jenna remembered one radio interview where she sat facing Nino, but behind the interviewer. She decided to give him direction

“And when did you discover you could sing?” asked the man.

Jenna rocked her arms and Nino said. “When I was a baby.”

“Really? That young?”

Jenna put her fingers to her eyes pretending to wipe away the tears and Nino said: “I used to cry in tune.”

“Really?” he said again appearing to believe every word.

Nino looked at Jenna who put her hands together in prayer. “I used to cry in church.” She shook her head and Nino said, “I mean sing, I used to sing in church.”

The man nodded, “When you were older, of course?” She held up her fingers and Nino said, “Three, when I was three.”

They had laughed so much and as more interviews came, it got sillier. Jenna tried to put him off whenever he was trying to be too serious.

One day, things went too far, and they ordered Jenna out of the recording studio. Nino was up in arms and walked out too. Everyone was in a flurry about wasted recording time and who was footing the bill.

One night in the hotel room after they had laughed about the day’s antics, Nino said. “I love you, Jen.”

She caught her breath, “But you don’t even know me.”

“Honey, I’ve had the best time. That Pete must have been mad.” He kissed her neck and her skin turned to fire. “I knew you were different the moment you walked onto the train.”

“You mean fell on,” she laughed. “And, you didn’t really want to talk.”

His kisses travelling down her shoulders and she groaned.

“I just wanted to look at you,” he said, his hot breath caressing her.

Sighing and unable to resist him anymore, she found his mouth and drew him in. “Oh Nino, Nino,” she cried, wanting him more than ever.

Picking her up, Nino carried her to the bed where they fell into each other’s arms. Making love to him was an amazing experience, and she didn’t know it then, but it was to be the last time.

***

Now, Jenna stared out of the kitchen window. Their relationship really had been that good. The song faded, and the DJ said, “Nino Santario there, with Broken Dreams, dedicated, he says, to a girl he loved and lost.”

Jenna’s legs went weak, as she felt for the chair. Her heart was still broken for what she’d lost. After all this time, he still loved her!

“And if you want to catch Nino, he will be in Manchester on the 8th and 9th next month. Next we have….”

“Poor Nino,” she whispered out loud. Their affair was all too brief. He had kissed her and said he would see her later. She left his hotel and never saw him again. Later she realised she hadn’t told him anything about herself. All he knew was her first name and that wasn’t even her given name.

Going into town was a daunting task. The bus driver called out her stop and she disembarked. It wasn’t difficult finding where he was staying.

“Can I help you Miss?” a voice beside her asked.

She jumped and turned to him, “Is this The Imperial?”

“It is. Shall I escort you to reception?”

“If you don’t mind,” she said, mounting the steps with him.

“May I help you?” asked the girl at reception as Jenna approached.

“I believe Mr Santario is staying here?” Her heart was pounding making her sound breathless.

“I’m sorry but I can’t give out that information.”

“I’m an old friend of his, you see. Will you to pass this note to him? Would you do that?”

“Well I…”

“I assure you I’m not some crazy fan trying to get near him.”

“Well, all right then, but it doesn’t mean he is staying here.”

Jenna smiled. “I understand. I’ll just wait, is there a seat?”

“Yes, I’ll show you.”

Jenna waited for what seemed like an eternity, her heart thumping wildly. She formed the words in her mind. “Aunt Ivy and I were in a car crash, she died, and it left me like this.”

Then she heard his voice call her name and could imagine his face. She picked up her white stick and went to him.

The end

 

MagicofStories

 

This story is taken from Karen’s book The Magic of Stories. It contains a collection of short stories and poetry. Karen is a multi genre author and this book is divided up into different categories, from romance to paranormal, from stories in poetry to short five-line tails.

Dear Mr Pop Star by Derek & Dave Philpott

mrpopstarbanner

 
Title: Dear Mr Pop Star
Author: Derek & Dave Philpott
Publisher: Unbound (September 20, 2018)
Publication Date: September 20, 2018

 
28767798_10155291090256546_1208899743_oA collection of hilarious letters to iconic pop and rock stars with fantastic in-on-the-joke replies from the artists themselves: Eurythmics, Heaven 17, Deep Purple, Devo, Dr. Hook and many, many more…

For more than a decade, Derek Philpott and his son, Dave, have been writing deliberately deranged letters to pop stars from the 1960s to the 90s to take issue with the lyrics of some of their best-known songs. They miss the point as often as they hit it.

But then, to their great surprise, the pop stars started writing back…

Dear Mr Pop Star contains 100 of Derek and Dave’s greatest hits, including correspondence with Katrina and the Waves, Tears for Fears, Squeeze, The Housemartins, Suzi Quatro, Devo, Deep Purple, Nik Kershaw, T’Pau, Human League, Eurythmics, Wang Chung, EMF, Mott the Hoople, Heaven 17, Jesus Jones, Johnny Hates Jazz, Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine, Chesney Hawkes and many, many more.

“If you don’t like this book, then you’re no friend of mine.” Ivan Doroschuk, Men Without Hats

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My Review:

A fabulous, laugh-out-loud book!

Have you ever wanted to write to a pop star to find out the meaning behind their lyrics, or tell them the lyrics don’t make sense? That’s exactly what ‘The Philpotts’ did, and a lot of the stars wrote back!
The letters Derek and Dave wrote are funny and some of the replies are even funnier.

The book kicks off with a letter to the Doctor, from Doctor and the Medics questioning the band name and the difference between a doctor and a medic and the awesome reply from ‘Duck Tour’.

This is a humorous collection of those letters and replies. a must read for any music fan!

 

Derek and Dave Philpott are the noms de plume of two ordinary members of the public, working with help from a worldwide social networking community.

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Time Will Tell by Les Lynam

TimeWillTell

 

…Before You Leap

Before You LeapBook 1

Two teens from two centuries apart, one the direct descendant of the other. Einstein’s Theory didn’t cover THIS relativity.

Sean Kelly considered himself an average 16-year-old, living in an average neighborhood in a small University town. Nothing too exciting ever happened in Grover’s Corners, Missouri; some might even label it boring. His ordinary life was disrupted when a distant relative dropped by at the beginning of his Junior year in high-school. A distant relative from the 23rd Century.

Two 16-year-olds in a time machine. What could possibly go wrong?

Amazon

 
My Review:

A well-written and humorous read.

The characters were brilliantly described, completely believable and come alive as you read.

I loved Sean’s reaction to the science behind time travel, which was interesting and not overly complicated.

Ther was no great cliffhanger at the end, but it was left open for another book, which I’ll be more than happy to read

This book was so much more than your typical sci-fi/time-travel novel.

 

…Saves Nine

Saves NineBook 2

Sean Kelly and LX travel back one more generation to the year 1969. The question is: will either teen know how to ‘make the scene’ in the sixties? Can they blend in with the other teens in tiny Mercer, Iowa; including Sean’s dad? When they return to 1995, both of them have regrets about the past.

Amazon

 
My Review:

Wow! Amazing! I loved this book!

If you read and enjoyed …Before You Leap read this! In my opinion, it’s even better.

The plot is fascinating and the writing outstanding.

The characters from book one continue to develop, and the characters new to this book are well fleshed out.

How the author keeps all the toing and froing between different times straight in his mind while writing it so that it’s completely understandable for the reader is beyond me.

I can only hope that Les Lynam can also travel through time so that the next book in the series will be waiting for me when I finish this book yesterday!
(He couldn’t – I had to wait)

 

…In One Basket

In One BasketBook 3

After her relocation from 1969, Jane joins LX and Sean in an attempt to kidnap a clone from the Schattenwelt space station in the year 2169. Sean is shocked to find that he has already been there twice, but even more surprised by the team leader.

Amazon

 
My Review:

Another great, fun-filled book from Les Lynam !

Having read the first two books of the series I was looking forward to reading …In One Basket, and I was not disappointed.

The book follows on from where the second book ended and I was pulled straight back into the story.

My old friends Sean, Jane/Kate and LX are back and better than ever, and I loved the surprising development of Steffi’s character.

It was an exciting and enjoyable read, filled with non-stop action and unexpected twists!

 

Meet The Author:

Les LynamLes Lynam (1954- ) was born in Creston, Iowa, into a farming family which also included an older brother and two older sisters. The family farm was near the tiny community of Corning, Iowa, (birthplace of Johnny Carson).

After graduating from Corning High School, he attended Central Missouri State University (renamed University of Central Missouri in 2006), graduating in 1976 with a Bachelor’s degree in Mass Communications.

After a short, mostly unsuccessful, attempt at running a print shop, he refocused and returned to a life of studies at the University of Missouri. He received an M.A./M.L.S in 1986 and began a new career as a librarian at Ward Edwards / James C. Kirkpatrick libraries at UCM. He took an early retirement on December 31, 2012 to pursue his lifelong dream of writing Science Fiction.

His premier novel, “…Saves Nine”, was first published in 2014 with hopes and dreams of many more to come. His favorite sub-genre of Science Fiction is Time-Travel, with Martian Colonies a close second.

He has one son and three grandchildren.

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