A Song for Bill Robinson by C.E. Atkins ~ #YoungAdult Fiction #BookReview @Chanatkins @rararesources #TuesdayBookBlog

Welcome to my stop on the 5 day mini blog blitz for A Song For Bill Robinson, courtesy of Rachel’s Random Resources.

My Thoughts

Bill Robinson is an angry, reckless sixteen year old, who manages to put most people’s backs up, with the beginnings of an alcohol problem. He lives on the run down Holds End estate with his father, older brother and younger sister. He and his father always seemed to clash, both of them short tempered and lacking in patience. His mother left home to pursue her dreams of being a singer and worked on the cruise ships. Her leaving had hit Bill hard but he kept those feelings of resentment, helplessness and betrayal buried, telling himself and everyone else he doesn’t care. 

Now Bill stared out at the night and knew everything had changed. That it had, in fact, been changing for a long time. His mother was gone, and a boy called Lewis Matthews was dead.

Shortly after the murder of Lewis Matthews, another 16 year old from the estate, Bill is in hospital after a severe beating from a gang of youths. He has his own idea of who was behind the attack and why, but can’t prove anything, even though someone has recorded the attack. Bill’s suspicions deepen about Lewis Matthews’ murder along with anger at the injustice. He can’t help feeling Charlie McDonnal, the local thug, has something to do with all the bad things that happen, and a growing hostility develops between them, each trying to outdo the other in counterstrokes.

There was trouble in the air. Something dark was rising out of the gutters and the shadows of the alleyways, with a glint in its eye and chaos in its mind. Everyone could feel it, and though they tried to shrug it off, it kept coming back to cloak them in uncertainty. Something new, yet as old as time.

Music and his love of singing plays a large part in Bill’s life, as does the local community centre where Bill and his friends hang out. The karaoke nights have been a huge success but now the community centre’s survival hangs in the balance, just as a singing competition is bringing in lots more people.

The story is written very well and life on the estate is depicted realistically with nicely developing characters, many of whom are struggling with personal issues and the emotions they evoke. There’s a definite sense of apprehension and impending trouble which builds as the story progresses and includes relevant themes such as violence, abuse and bullying and shows how easy it can be for young people to begin to become dependent on alcohol. Bill is a complex character with a complicated sense of family and with the added pressure of events around him, he uses alcohol as a prop. Sexuality and homophobia is also explored. Reading the story from the perspective of different characters allowed a good insight into their characters and feelings. Most story threads are resolved, but we’re left with a lead in to the next book in the series.

About the Book

Tensions are building on the notorious Holds End estate.

The local community centre is fighting for survival and the murder of 15-year-old Lewis Matthews remains unsolved…

Wannabe teenage singer, Bill Robinson, just got out of hospital after surviving a vicious attack. He thinks he knows who attacked him…and why. When a violent feud escalates between him and local thug Charlie McDonnal, Bill vows to find the killer and help save the community centre by taking part in the local singing contest. 

How can music bring a shattered community together? And can Bill keep his own demons at bay long enough to win the singing contest and find out who killed Lewis Matthews?    

Purchase Links ~ Amazon UK | Amazon US

About the Author

Chantelle Atkins was born and raised in Dorset, England and still resides there now with her husband, four children and multiple pets. She is addicted to reading, writing and music and writes for both the young adult and adult genres. Her fiction is described as gritty, edgy and compelling. Her debut Young Adult novel The Mess Of Me deals with eating disorders, self-harm, fractured families and first love. Her second novel, The Boy With The Thorn In His Side follows the musical journey of a young boy attempting to escape his brutal home life and has now been developed into a 6 book series. She is also the author of This Is Nowhere and award-winning dystopian, The Tree Of Rebels, plus a collection of short stories related to her novels called Bird People and Other Stories. The award-winning Elliot Pie’s Guide To Human Nature was released through Pict Publishing in October 2018. Her next YA novel A Song For Bill Robinson will be released in December 2019. Chantelle has had multiple articles about writing published by Author’s Publish magazine.

Social Media Links ~ Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram | Amazon | Newsletter 

Love Potions and Other Calamities by Charlie Laidlaw ~ A Comic Tale of #Love, #Mystery & Mayhem @claidlawauthor #BookReview

Author: Charlie Laidlaw

Published: November 2019 by Headline Accent

Category: Mystery, Humour, Romance, Herbalism, Drama, Book Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Rosie McLeod, pub proprietor and a gifted herbalist of local renown, is thirty-nine and holding, but only just. The talons of her fortieth birthday are in her back and her bloody, bloody husband hasn’t laid a lustful hand on her for months.

Readers can always expect something out of the ordinary with Charlie Laidlaw’s books. Love Potions and Other Calamities is no exception. Each chapter begins with a snippet from The Book of Secrets by Albertus Magnus, 13th century scientist, theologian and philosopher, which relates to the story. 

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ The Hollow Heart (The Heartfelt Series #1) by Adrienne Vaughan @adrienneauthor #Drama #Romance

This week’s Throwback Thursday choice is the first of a trilogy that I loved reading. Set initially in England, the story moves to Ireland and the island of Innishmahon. The Hollow Heart was published in 2012.

My Thoughts

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The Wayward Girls by Amanda Mason ~ When You Call, They Will Answer #Paranormal #NetGalley #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Amanda Mason

Published: September 2019 by Zaffre

Category: Dual Timeline, Paranormal, Drama, Book Review

THEN

1976. Loo and her sister Bee live in a run-down cottage in the middle of nowhere, with their artistic parents and wild siblings. Their mother, Cathy, had hoped to escape to a simpler life; instead the family find themselves isolated and shunned by their neighbours. At the height of the stifling summer, unexplained noises and occurrences in the house begin to disturb the family, until they intrude on every waking moment . . .

NOW

Loo, now Lucy, is called back to her childhood home. A group of strangers are looking to discover the truth about the house and the people who lived there. But is Lucy ready to confront what really happened all those years ago?

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#ThrowbackThursday ~ Irex by Carl Rackman ~ A novel based on fact #HistoricalFiction @c_rackman

For Throwback Thursday this week I’m looking back at a book that was published in 2016 and was one of the choices for my  top reads of 2017, after reading it for Rosie Amber’s Book Review Team.

My Thoughts

First of all, I have to say it’s hard to believe this is a debut novel. It’s so good and the quality of the writing is excellent throughout. The story is based in history, the ship, a couple of the main crew members, reason for the wreck and the attempts at rescue, are all fact. Carl Rackman has woven an incredibly imaginative and compelling tale around that tragic event.

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The Suspect (Kate Waters #3) by Fiona Barton #Audible Original ~ Drama in Thailand @figbarton #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Fiona Barton

Performed by Clare Corbett, Mark Meadows, Sian Thomas, Ria Zmitrowicz

Published ~ January 2019 by Audible Studios

Category: Drama, Crime, Thriller, Suspense, Audiobook Review

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

When two eighteen-year-old girls go missing on their gap year in Thailand, their families are thrust into the international spotlight: desperate, bereft and frantic with worry. 

Journalist Kate Waters always does everything she can to be first to the story, first with the exclusive, first to discover the truth – and this time is no exception. But she can’t help but think of her own son, who she hasn’t seen in two years since he left home to go traveling. This time it’s personal.

Lesley and Malcolm O’Connor are getting frantic, not having heard from their daughter, Alex, in over a week.

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Under Currents by Nora Roberts ~ Every Town Has It’s Ugly Little Secrets #FamilySaga #TuesdayBookBlog @NoraRobertsFans

Author: Nora Roberts

Performed by January LaVoy

Published: July 2019 by Hachette Audio UK

Category: Contemporary Fiction, Family Saga, Romance, Audiobook, Book Review

Zane Bigelow grew up in a beautiful, perfectly kept house in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains. Strangers and even Zane’s own aunt across the lake see his parents as a successful surgeon and his stylish wife, making appearances at their children’s ballet recitals and baseball games. Only Zane and his sister know the truth, until one brutal night finally reveals cracks in the facade, and Zane escapes for college without a thought of looking back…

Well respected chief of surgery Dr Graham Bigelow and his wife, Eliza lived in the small and exclusive community of Lakeview Terrace, overlooking the lake and the Blue Ridge Mountains, with their teenage children Zane and Britt. To outside appearances they have the perfect life and want for nothing.

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The Child (Kate Waters #2) by Fiona Barton ~ You Can’t Hide the Truth #ContemporaryFiction #FamilyDrama @figbarton

Author: Fiona Barton

Narrated by Clare Corbett, Adjoa Andoh, Finty Williams, Fenella Woolgar, Steven Pacey

Release Date: June 2017. Published by Transworld Digital

Category: Crime, Drama, Audiobook, Contemporary Fiction, Book Review

When a paragraph in an evening newspaper reveals a decades-old tragedy, most readers barely give it a glance. But for three strangers it’s impossible to ignore.

For one woman, it’s a reminder of the worst thing that ever happened to her.

For another, it reveals the dangerous possibility that her darkest secret is about to be discovered. And for the third, a journalist, it’s the first clue in a hunt to uncover the truth.

The Child’s story will be told.

Told from four perspectives—Angela, Kate, Jude and Emma—The Child is an intriguing tale.

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The Space Between Time by Charlie Laidlaw ~ Second Chances are Often in Unexpected Places @claidlawauthor @AccentPress

Author: Charlie Laidlaw

Due to be published on 20th June 2019 by Accent Press

Category: Contemporary, Fiction, Family Drama, Book Review

There are more stars in the universe than there are grains of sand on Earth…

Emma Maria Rossini appears to be the luckiest girl in the world. She’s the daughter of a beautiful and loving mother, and her father is one of the most famous film actors of his generation. She’s also the granddaughter of a rather eccentric and obscure Italian astrophysicist.

Emma Rossini lives what most people would consider a charmed life. However, appearances can be deceptive. When Emma’s actor father Paul Ross, becomes, as Emma herself puts it, ‘properly famous’ he moves the family out of their familiar, large flat in Edinburgh to a run down mansion in North Berwick, a seaside town just outside Edinburgh. 

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The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter by @HazelGaynor ~ #HistoricalFiction based on fact #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Hazel Gaynor

Published: September 2018 by Harper Collins

Category: Historical Fiction, Book Review

“They call me a heroine, but I am not deserving of such accolades. I am just an ordinary young woman who did her duty.”

1838: when a terrible storm blows up off the Northumberland coast, Grace Darling, the lighthouse-keeper’s daughter, knows there is little chance of survival for the passengers on the small ship battling the waves.

1938: when nineteen-year-old Matilda Emmerson sails across the Atlantic to New England, she faces an uncertain future.

I love books that mix fact with fiction, giving a real authenticity to the story. The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter incorporates the true story of Grace Darling.

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