Jun 062013

Taking a bite out of the Big Apple

Taking a bite out of the Big Apple

Reflecting on a great week in New York where we exhibited at BookExpo America for the first time. For several years we have had our own stands at the London and Frankfurt Book Fairs but this was new territory for us and, I have to confess, I was a little daunted. The BA flight out from Heathrow was fine – those Gordon’s miniatures they serve always help, as do a couple of funny movies! In the cab to the hotel I planned room service and an early night but then found the hotel was under renovation so there was no restaurant and the wifi wouldn’t connect – not a great start but my moaning paid off and I ended up getting free wifi for the week – saving $14.95 a day. I felt a bit like Alice in Wonderland in my room as everything was ridiculously big – you could have slept on the TV and I almost needed a ladder to climb into the bed.

The next day Peter Newsom, our Sales Director and I  set up the stand – there is always a moment of panic involved but we were both pleased with the end result although it was in a very dark part of the hall. More moaning eventually produced some free lights as we had bought a turnkey package and I was assured we’d just need to turn up – everything for the stand was provided. To be fair, the organisers couldn’t have been more helpful or welcoming.

And then the fun began – the atmosphere was totally different to the other shows. There was a tangible excitement and clear hunger to discover new books, publishers and authors. We had a steady stream of bloggers, librarians, booksellers and power readers who were all keen to learn more about us and our range. We talked and talked while handing out hundreds of free reading copies. Visitors carried huge swag bags which they regularly emptied into suitcases stored in the lobby – some may feel this was greedy but from a publisher’s perspective it was a delight to see that hunger for print format books.

Was it worth the time and expense? I think so – we certainly raised the profile of both Accent Press and Xcite Books. I have a stack of cards from bloggers and reviewers and a much better idea about the US book market. It was a big financial investment but potential rights sales should justify it so, in conclusion I’d say we were right to try and take a bite out of the Big Apple and will probably be back for another one next year!

 June 6, 2013  No Responses »
Apr 242013

 A Death in the Asylum (A Euphemia Martins Mystery)

Free on Kindle 24-28 April

Book three in the Euphemia Martins Murder Mystery series by Caroline Dunford.

Euphemia, the disowned granddaughter of an Earl, is working unhappily as a housekeeper for Bertram Stapleford at his ill advised new property, when the dramatic collapse of the kitchen floor sends her back to where it all began, Stapleford House. A visiting mystic disrupts the Staplefords unleasing old family rumours. Euphemia finds herself playing second fiddle to Bertram’s new love, Beatrice Wilton, as she launches a project to investigate the new aslyums.

It is not long before Euphemia realizes that not only does Beatrice have her unscrupulous sights set on Bertram, but that her enterprises may be about to put them all in very great danger. A besotted Bertram will not listen, so once more she turns to the handsome Butler, Rory for aid. Then a midnight attacker strikes at the heart of Stapleford Hall and the stakes are suddenly all too high.

As usual Euphemia only has her quick wits and that defence of all virtuous young ladies to defend herself, her scream.

 April 24, 2013  No Responses »
Mar 282013

Something in the Blood (A Honey Driver Murder Mystery) Something in the Blood (A Honey Driver Murder Mystery)

Free on Kindle 28th March – 1st April

‘The kick-off to Goodhind’s new mystery series – fast moving with a likeable heroine and an impeccably rendered Bath background…’ Kirkus Reviews

First title in the Honey Driver Murder Mystery series based in Bath, England.

Honey Driver runs a hotel in Bath. She also collects antique
underwear. As boss, she’s in charge one day and washing dishes the next,
resisting her mother’s match-making attempts and managing multiple
responsibilities – mundane, safe, and unexciting. Then one day things change.
Honey lands the job of liaising with the police on behalf of Bath Hotels
Association. No worries, she tells herself. Nothing will happen; then an
American tourist goes missing and Honey is called in to help.

Despite the on/off hostility of her police opposite number, D C I Steve Doherty, she
sticks to the task. In the process Honey finds out that there’s more to work
than washing dishes, and more to murder than malice aforethought.

Jean G. Goodhind is a popular writer of women’s fiction, romance and comedy. For many
years she owned and ran a haunted guest house on the outskirts of Bath and was
one of the founder members of the Bath Hotel and Restaurant Association. Her
experiences inspired the international bestselling Honey Driver series. She has
won a BBC Radio award for scriptwriting. She also writes women’s fiction as
Lizzie Lane and has writes a regular column for the Western Daily Press.

 March 28, 2013  No Responses »
Mar 202013

 A Death in the Highlands (A Euphemia Martins Mystery)

Free on Kindle 20-24th March

Book two in the The Euphemia Martins Mysteries is set a hunting lodge in the Scottish Highlands.

After dodging criminal charges, Richard returns as head of the household at Stapleford Hall. Changing fortunes find Euphemia temporarily promoted to housekeeper for the first trip to the family’s new hunting lodge in the Scottish Highlands, where she is fascinated by handsome, intelligent Rory Macleod, the new butler.
Taking on her new role, she encounters angry locals with a grudge against the Staplefords and thwarts what she believes to be an attempt on Bertram Stapleford’s life.
A strange group of house guests arrive for the Glorious Twelfth, but with disastrous consequences.
Euphemia finds herself caught in the midst of bitter rivalries, and evidence pointing to different murder suspects. Will she unravel the mystery?
How much danger is she in? Is the crime political or a revenge killing?
And how will her relationships with Bertram and the handsome Rory unfold?

 March 20, 2013  No Responses »
Mar 122013

Smile is our key motto!

Smile is our key motto!

Having outgrown our space at the Old School we have this week moved to our new offices. It is wonderful to have the space to take on new staff and to really take the company to the next level. Here we are beside our new inspiration wall!

Welcome to Claire Travers who joined us today – it’s great to have you here!

 March 12, 2013  No Responses »
Mar 062013

A Maxwell Profit (Laird of Lochandee) A Maxwell Profit (Laird of Lochandee)

Free on Kindle 6-10th March

Part Five of an historical romance saga set in the Scottish Borders.

Maxwell family tensions grow as Bridie wants to control her farming destiny, her modern ideas at odds with Ross’s traditional ways. Nick and Conan’s business partnership is strained as it becomes ever more successful. Meanwhile, Conan’s past indiscretion comes to light, and romance is born out of tragedy and an old rivalry. Emerging from the post-war tough times there is new hope for the future. What will the Maxwell legacy be?

 March 6, 2013  No Responses »
Mar 012013

 Vintage Babes

Carol is divorced, over 50 and a rather good journalist. When her boss on the local paper is retired, she hopes that she will get his job; but that is given to a hot shot editor from another paper. Add to that, she is trying to help out several friends, see her daughter get married and her father avoid getting married; and the stage is set for some very humorous action.

Although this is clearly one aimed at the female reader, I found that I couldn’t put the book down. It’s also aimed at what the book terms “ladies of a certain age”; think of “Calendar Girls” but just a bit raunchier. But I would suggest that most men would also find it just as enjoyable; possibly quite instructional.

In reality, age should not be a barrier, nor should it cubby hole people. It can be quite frustrating to see the way that this happens in certain parts of society, so this book is a breath of fresh air, showing that it’s more about the person and what they can do, rather than about a number.

The book is an easy read, with many bits that will raise a smile (or an eyebrow!).

 March 1, 2013  No Responses »
Mar 012013

 An Eye of Death

Amazon review:

Well presented on the Kindle in terms of layout and proofing.

I was attracted to the cover – it made me think of Ackroyd,

I generally do not like “historical” novels, they always seem so full of an acronyms, uncomfortable speech cadence and clearly ill judged sentiment. Mr Rees does not totally miss all of the pot-holes but does a darn good job avoiding 99% of them it feels.
That and the opening chapter, well the opening page actually, gives a nice slant of how the tale is going to be told.

There was (for me) a slight lull in events about half way through, almost as if there was a huge intake of breath ready for the final furlong. I may go re-read and see if it was me or the book.

 March 1, 2013  No Responses »