GuestPost by @pgronane_author ~ Catch 52 ~ Surviving #Brexit #TuesdayBookBlog @authorightUKPR

Catch 52: One Man’s Tale of Surviving in a Post-Brexit World 

What do you do when your love affair with Europe comes to an undignified end?

On 24th June 2016, Mike McCarthy wakes up to the news that Britain has voted to leave the EU. A committed European, he is shattered. Over the coming weeks and months, he takes a long, hard look at himself, determined to uncover the reasons why this travesty has occurred, scrutinising the faces of everyone he meets for those he believes may have voted in or out.

As he tries to cope with the looming horror of Brexit, Mike fondly recalls his visits to Europe as a young man, the relationships he formed and how these have moulded his pan-European outlook.

Digging too deeply into issues has always been his problem. Mike begins to question the views he holds so dear and discovers new things about those closest to him. As McCarthy staggers on from The Referendum to the unthinkable triggering of Article 50, he finds himself plunged himself into a different world of social comment and political media. As the strategy for Brexit emerges, he wonders where his future lies and questions his commitment to a cause that may yet plunge his and Britain’s hopes and dreams into the abyss.

The book is available from Amazon UK and Amazon US

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Brexit has been called ‘one of the great issues of our times.’ I would go further and say it is the single most important issue of our times for the United Kingdom. Its influence has spread across the Atlantic where it influenced the outcome of last year’s presidential election, Europe, where it has influenced national elections in Austria, The Netherlands and France and across the world where the overriding sentiment is shock. It counts among its victims one Prime Minister and as I write, perhaps another. At the present time, much academic research is being undertaken across the world into the reasons, effects and outcomes of Britain voting to leave the European Union. ‘Brexit’ is the most searched for word on social media and hardly a day goes by when I do not hear the word in some context or other. Brexit is quite simply, a phenomenon.

For several years I had wanted to write a book about British culture. Plenty of words had been written on the subject, the clear majority, academic works. This determined me to write a novel. The problem with writing a ‘cultural’ novel was having a catalyst, a central tent-pole to hang a narrative from. Without a major, central theme a cultural novel could fall flat. It wouldn’t be an impossible task, but I felt I needed a catalyst to be able to complete the work to my satisfaction. Brexit gave me my chance. One such novel of the 20th Century that I had admired was George Orwell’s 1939 book Coming Up for Air. Considered today to be a major cultural achievement and by many critics the writer’s finest novel the work centres around one man, his family, relationships, politics and life history. Although nostalgia is a significant theme the overriding force in the work is the pending Second World War.

Coming Up for Air is a work of its time, a time for most people long gone; a time superseded by several diverse cultural shifts and social earthquakes. Catch 52: An everyman’s tale of surviving in a post-brexit world is also a work of its time and like Orwell’s book it revolves around one man (McCarthy) his family, relationships, politics and life history. Nostalgia is an important theme and Brexit is the central issue that the narrative is built upon. At that point, any further influence is quickly dissipated.

I didn’t wake up on 24th June last year and decide to write a book about Brexit. However, the idea evolved over the next couple of months. Ideas floated around in my mind and finally came to fruition in late August whilst on holiday in Greece. I have always been inspired by travel and may well look back to that family holiday as the spark to a different career. The ideas and themes were starting to overflow so I bought a notebook, a couple of pens and got started. I had previously kept logs and journals whilst travelling but never written a work of fiction before. In the small Greek resort, there were many different nationalities and British Ex-Pats and I sought their opinions and comments. Most people I spoke to thought it the most natural thing in the world to write a book about Brexit. 

What makes Brexit controversial has been its ability to divide and polarise a country. The final voting figures in the referendum 52-48 (Which inspired the book’s title) was an early pointer to something that divided families, friends, colleagues and the different generations. It shocked because the result was unexpected by most and one year on our country is once again going through another shock. A General Election, called in the name of Brexit has back-fired spectacularly on the sitting Prime Minister and could lead to her political downfall. I’m wondering how many more scalps this phenomenon will take over the next few years.

I have mentioned the fact that much serious academic work is currently being undertaken about Brexit and this is clearly understandable. I expect that other writers will also embark upon works of Brexit fiction. Who knows… Perhaps a new literary genre, Brexit Fiction will come into being.  I suppose the timing of the writing is important here. My book deals with a period from June 24th, 2016, the day the result of the Referendum was announced to Easter 2017 and the triggering of Article 50. In the brief period since Easter 2017 we have had a ground-breaking French General Election, won by a candidate that a year ago was largely unheard of on a pro-European, ant-Brexit ticket and now, a British ‘Brexit’ election that one senior political journalist has called ‘The Revenge of the Remainers.’ What we are seeing is the commencement of the backlash against Brexit. How things develop will no-doubt continue to send shock-waves around the planet.  

Brexit and all its political, cultural and social fallout will be with us for many years to come. It should provide fertile ground for writers of all persuasion.

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After three decades of serving as a police officer in the inner-city areas of Liverpool, P.G. Ronane retired and decided to go back to school, run for office and travel the European continent. Now 61, he is an education manager living in Wirral with his family. This is his first book.

Follow P.G. Ronane on Twitter – https://twitter.com/pgronane_author

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Book Tour ~ The After House by Michael Phillip Cash #GuestPost #Giveaway @michaelpcash @ebookreviewgal

Welcome to the book tour for The After House. Today we have a guest post from the author, Michael Phillip Cash, and the chance to win a copy of the book.

Continue reading

#Guest Post by @lee_leecockburn #author of Porcelain: Flesh of Innocents @AuthorightUKPR #SpringReads

Welcome, Lee, and thank you for this thought provoking post. I’m sure I’m not the only one who forgets sometimes what police officers deal with on a daily basis.

Experiences in the police which have influenced my life.

The police has influenced my life in many ways, I am far more aware of my surroundings and who is standing in my company.  I serve proudly and I respect the job we do, it is hard and very busy, sometimes dangerous, sometimes sad, frightening and sometimes very rewarding.

I have had my eyes opened to how other people live their lives, those less fortunate than myself and many others.  Children, unloved, uncared for, never taught to respect, to love, to achieve, to believe that they are worth something, living close to squalor due to alcoholism and drug abuse by their parents, underfed, living in poverty.  They finally find their place amongst like individuals, where they are accepted and wanted, ready to anything for the group to fit in, this usually ends up in crime, going out and taking what they don’t have themselves, with no remorse and a sense of righteousness, because they have never had.  How can we, that have lived our lives, loved and well cared for, ever understand what these people have had to endure, just to get by and why they now do what they do now.  We still have our job to do, which is to prevent crime and solve crime that has been committed and bring those to justice, but we have to work to try and break the cycle of crime itself. Continue reading

#GuestPost by Laura Gascoigne #author ~ The Horse’s Arse #Excerpt @gilbster1000 #SundayBlogShare

 Welcome to my stop of the blog tour for The Horse’s Arse with a guest post from the author and an excerpt from the book.

Birth of the hero of The Horse’s Arse

If you’ve ever edited a specialist magazine you’ll know it’s a hamster wheel you can never get off. Round and round it goes – planning, commissioning, writing, editing, designing – often leaving the editor no time to pursue the specialism that got them the job in the first place. From 1994-99 I edited Artists & Illustrators magazine, and during those five years I went to fewer exhibitions and private views than at any other time in my life, being usually chained to my desk at private view time. But one exhibition I made an exception for. An invitation card arrived with a painting of the Thames at Wapping that I had to see. No other artist I knew of was painting like this, and I decided to go along and ask him for an interview. Continue reading

Guest Post by Robert Germaux @RGermaux #Author of Grammar Sex and Other Stuff #Giveaway @ebookreviewgal

Welcome to this blog tour stop for Grammar Sex (and other stuff) We have a guest post from the author, Robert Germaux and a chance to win a copy of the book.

“Davy Crockett, Jesus and The Beatles”

By Robert Germaux

I’ve always loved to sing, and when I was younger, my voice was good enough that I sang in both my church and school choirs. The main memories I have of my church singing are of two very different situations. For two or three years when I was around ten or eleven, I soloed in front of the congregation on Easter Sunday, singing There is a Green Hill Far Away. I didn’t particularly enjoy those performances, mostly because I didn’t like the heavy robe everyone in the choir had to wear. However, my other church-singing experience involved an entirely different ensemble, one that I definitely enjoyed wearing. When I was nine years old, our church held a father and son banquet, and I got up and sang The Ballad of Davy Crockett. I went full frontiersman on that occasion, including, of course, the coonskin cap. A couple of my siblings claim to be in possession of photographic evidence of that event, which explains why I’ve played the role of victim in a number of family blackmail schemes over the years. Continue reading

Blog Tour #Guest post by #Author Richard Daniel Curtis @AuthorightUKPR @thekidcalmer

Welcome to my stop on The Kid Calmer blog tour, with a guest post from the author, Richard Daniel Curtis.

Too Cool for You – How to deal with your teenage child wanting to separate from you

By Richard Daniel Curtis

The Kid Calmer and author of The Parent’s Guide to the Modern World

It was bound to happen sooner or later, but you weren’t expecting it this soon, your child is about to reject you because you’re not cool enough.  You may think they’re growing up too fast, but in their mind you are holding them back.  It’s something that happens to most parents and carers of teenagers at some time or another, but it’s not your fault…

Let me tell you a bit about what’s happening in the brain to begin with.  Prior to puberty the brain develops millions of new neurons in the grey matter surrounding the brain.  During puberty, the wiring of these means that the frontal lobes are shut down.  This is important, as this region of the brain, particularly the prefrontal cortex, is the part that holds your personality, your judgement skills, your behaviour, your social skills, ability to use expressive language – the things you see many teenagers lacking.  That’s all down to this rewiring, but in terms of personality you may notice the same loss, some teenagers respond to everything as threats during this time and withdraw from those around them.  Very often they’re desperate to belong to groups and so do what they can to survive and be part of the social circle – this will often result in a pulling away from parents. Continue reading

Character #Spotlight & #Extract from The Frog Theory by Fiona Mordaunt @AuthorightUKPR #TuesdayBookBlog

Character Spotlight on Kim

When I was younger, the pub become a huge part of my life because I realised that I had a talent for playing pool and it was the only place I could play. I was under age but I looked older than I was and regulations were not so strict then, so I got away with it.

All sorts of people would participate – students, business people, cab drivers – many from the surrounding council estates. I made many friends.

Two guys stood slightly apart from the crowd and all the girls just loved them, including me! I was too young for them even to glance in my direction (their radar was better than the landlord’s). Kim and Flow are loosely based on them. Continue reading

Guest Post by J.C. Norman #author of Sphere’s Divide #Fantasy @AuthorightUKPR @gilbster1000

Story telling in the 21st century

by J.C. Norman

As far as I can remember, I have always loved a good story. I think even one of my earliest memories was watching films such as Conan the Barbarian with my dad. Also as a 90s child I was also subject to many different kinds of animations and so have given myself a very open mind when it comes to stories and have always found time to explore as many as I could. That being said I wanted to point out the sad truth the many of the great stories will never be seen and appreciated by people who love fiction and stories, all because of the format of how the story is told. Many people I know do not read books and a few more have never read a book in their lives. Other stories again will never be shared because they are now told on a pc or console. It’s not anybody’s fault however, only that most people either simply do not have the time nor expenses to buy into such things or are dissuaded by the stigma that comes with most games. For that is what they are after all, only games. But I always like to try and point out to people outside the community that there is a very large difference in the games that separate the players from the online, competitive players, to the shut in, story based campaigners. Continue reading

Guest Post from Sam Taylor-Pye #author of Goldsmith Jones ~ plus #Extract #BlogTour @authorightUKPR @gilbster1000

The anxious manic novelist: doing an MA 

by Sam Taylor-Pye

I started writing my novel the summer before starting an MA in creative writing. I had my main character pretty fleshed out. The storyline was chugging along nicely. And some of the dialogue scenes I felt were sounding impressive. I figured the degree was where I’d hone my already amazing skills and by the end I’d have, not only a certificate, but also a NYT bestseller, and possibly a lucrative deal with Netflix.

So when October came around, and classes started, I was feeling fairly confident and eager to get going. 

The first thing we had to do was submit a novel synopsis, and a couple of first chapters for something called a ‘critique’. I wasn’t worried. In fact I was elated. 

Euphoric even.  Continue reading

Gilding The Lily by @JustineCJohn ~ #Blog Tour ~ Guest Post #TuesdayBookBlog @authorightUKPR @gilbster1000

gilding-the-lilyA gripping mystery of jealousy, murder and lies.

An invitation to her estranged, wealthy father’s surprise 75th birthday party in New York sees Amelia and her husband, Jack, set off across the pond to meet a whole new world of family politics.

Amelia, now a successful businesswoman, feels guilty about never liking her father’s women, so does her upmost to give his new socialite partner, Evelyn, the benefit of the doubt. Wouldn’t it be nice if they could just all get along? But there’s something very dark, determined and dangerous about her…

When Amelia’s father, Roger, becomes ill, Jack grows suspicious that there is more to it. Amelia understands why, but no one else will believe them. They travel back to America to piece together the puzzle, but when Roger goes missing, the couple are driven to their wits’ end. It takes a DEA officer and a secret assassin to bring them answers, but the ruthless truth is something no one expected…

Book links ~ Amazon UK | US

Justine’s insight into the character of Amelia. 

Amelia is a tall, intelligent and elegant lady in her mid-40s.  She has dark blonde hair and loves to travel.  She runs a small recruitment agency in London which she is, and always has been determined to make successful.  She has high hopes for her company and hopes to expand it.   Continue reading