Saturday, 21 February 2015

New Releases of the paranormal variety - An Unquiet Past, Ruminations and Silent Woods

An Unquiet Past (Terry Kerr)

Released: 30th January, 2015

Four hundred years ago, in the Cotswold village of Willow, a young woman was hanged for a series of terrible child murders. Now, in the present day, she reaches out from beyond death to a writer with a terrible secret in order to prove her innocence, and finally reveal the identity of the true murderer - with terrifying consequences.

* * * * *

This is a full-length novel, and it's brilliant.

It's the story of an author with an unquiet past of his own, who rents a house in the Cotswolds in order to get on with his work. From there, strange, frightening and often violent happenings occur.

Steven Vaughn is an intriguing main character, with facets to his personality and behaviour that won't sit well with some (possibly even most) readers. The narrative is first-person and it's 'stream of consciousness', so we are given insights into how he feels about his appalling treatment of his ex-wife, but this is not done to titillate, or glorify domestic abuse. Rather, it is the context to what happens to him in this story.

Without giving anything else away, there are past crimes to be solved, and an innocent person to absolve. The conclusion is not 'happy ending' but all of the loose ends are tied in a more than satisfactory fashion.

This is an outstanding piece of writing. Terry Kerr's style is fluent and colourful with a beautiful rhythm. The story itself is full of suspense.

A great read - recommended for anyone who enjoys horror / supernatural thrillers, or even those of us who just love great writing.


Available as both a paperback and ebook edition: beatentrackpublishing.com/anunquietpast


Ruminations (Debbie McGowan)

Released: 14th February, 2015

Seventeen-year-old Josh Sandison has waited his whole life to go to university. Gifted—and bullied for being different—he hopes it will be a change for the better. Instead he encounters the unexpected, when strange things start happening in his room. 

When Sean Tierney arrives at university, three days late and broke, the two strike up an unlikely friendship.

But can they solve the spooky mystery of the third floor?

 * * * * *

(taken from Raine O'Tierney's review)
This was my very first jaunt into the great wide world of the Hiding Behind the Couch Series, though not my first Debbie McGowan book. (Obviously!) I'm a huge (and unabashed) fan of Debbie's and have decided she is my author of the year. (Y'know, when you latch onto a new author and read everything they've written!)

In the past, McGowan has had the power to paint settings so beautiful that I'm lulled into a false sense of "all is right"-ness which gives the author the ability to then rip the still beating heart from my chest! (More often than not, she gives it back, though.)

This said, "Ruminations" trends on the lighter side, following two *very different* young college students--Josh and Sean--one straight, one ambiguous, and their unlikely friendship. I lost myself so completely in their friendship and in the ways they changed each other... Plus there's a ghost story with a big reveal that despite CONSTANT GUESSING on my part, I did not see the big reveal coming. ;)

I REALLY wanted to know more about Josh's friend George who is attending a different University... (There's some later books that I'm going to have to read now that deal with them!
)

Available as both a paperback and ebook edition: beatentrackpublishing.com/ruminations


Silent Woods (Ofelia Gränd)

Released: 21st February, 2015

When Daniel's husband Anders takes the family camping in the woods, Daniel can't shake the feeling that something isn't right.

He almost dismisses his fears as nothing more than his dislike of the great outdoors, but when the couple's five-year-old son Axel goes missing, his worst fears are confirmed.

A search party reveals something more sinister than either man could ever have dreamed of encountering in the woods. Can they find Axel and save him before it's too late?


* * * * *

This is such an intriguing story. I'm not a fan of paranormal / thriller type stuff usually, but one of the things I found fascinating about Silent Woods was the way it lured me in, much like the location of the story and the supernatural forces at play there.

Daniel's husband Anders is the outdoorsy type and maybe a little bit mocking of Daniel's loathing of camping and outdoor adventures, but, as is usually the way with family life, the minority relents for the good of the many, and so the family head out for a couple of days camping in the woods.

The woods are quiet - not just in an out-of-town, at-one-with-nature kind of way - but unnaturally so. But before it all goes to hell, Daniel and Anders manage a bit of smoochy (in the usual way parents do when their kids are sleeping nearby - after all, this is primarily paranormal fiction) and even then Daniel is sensitive to the strangeness of the woods.

From there? Well son Axel goes missing and it all gets very spooky.

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water... is very much something that will play on my mind after reading this.

A great short read for one of those nights when the wind howls and a distant owl hoots. You just need to start worrying when it stops.





Available as both a paperback and ebook edition: beatentrackpublishing.com/silentwoods

Friday, 12 December 2014

Old and New Experiences Help Youths Coming Out - a Boughs of Evergreen added extra brought to you by Amelia Mann




*Disclaimer: this article is a bonus feature to accompany "Always Have, Always Will", by Amelia Mann. The issues discussed within it reflect real issues experienced by LGBTQ people; the information about The Trevor Project is factual. However, the characters, the magazine and the journalist are fictional and exist only in the article, the story and the author's imagination.

* * * * *

Boughs of Evergreen is a two-volume collection of short stories celebrating the holiday season in all its diversity.

Penned by authors from the UK, the USA, Scandinavia and Eastern Europe, these are tales of the young and the not-so-young from many different walks of life.

Themes of family, friendship and romance take readers on a journey through some of the major holidays, both past and present, including Thanksgiving, Advent, St. Lucia Day, Hanukkah, Eid, Saturnalia, Winter Solstice, Yule, Christmas and New Year. In each we find at the very least hope, and often love, peace and happiness.

Available in paperback and ebook editions.

Stories are also available individually (ebooks). 

Proceeds from sales of this anthology will be donated to The Trevor Project.

The Trevor Project is the leading national organization [USA] providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24.

For more information, visit: www.thetrevorproject.org.

Visit Our Trevor Project Fundraising Page: stayclassy.org/beatentrackpublishing.


Friday, 21 November 2014

Hans Hirschi - Boughs of Evergreen, his story and The Trevor Project

Hans Hirschi, author of "A Christmas Tale" (Boughs of Evergreen, Volume Two) tells you why he wrote his story and why he supports The Trevor Project. He's also giving away books!

It doesn't get much better than that!

Read Hans' blog post here: http://blog.hirschi.se/2014/11/releaseday-boughs-of-evergreen-holiday.html

“A Christmas Tale” - Hans M Hirschi

Imagine meeting Santa Claus for real and being granted a wish on Christmas Eve... This sweet little story will take you back to a time, not all that long ago, when life for gays was quite different from how it is today—a time when it seemed easier to believe in Santa Claus than believing it would ever be possible to build a family of one's own.

Boughs of Evergreen: A Holiday Anthology
November 21st, 2014


Boughs of Evergreen is a two-volume collection of short stories
celebrating the holiday season in all its diversity.


** Buy a Copy (Paperback / eBook) **


Don't want to buy the whole anthology?

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Boughs of Evergreen: a holiday anthology with a difference

Boughs of Evergreen A Holiday Anthology

November 21st, 2014

Boughs of Evergreen is a two-volume collection of short stories celebrating the holiday season in all its diversity.

** Preorder a Copy (Paperback / eBook) **

Penned by authors from the UK, the USA, Scandinavia and Eastern Europe, these are tales of the young and the not-so-young from many different walks of life. 

Themes of family, friendship and romance take readers on a journey through some of the major holidays, both past and present, including Thanksgiving, Advent, St. Lucia Day, Hanukkah, Eid, Saturnalia, Winter Solstice, Yule, Christmas and New Year. In each we find at the very least hope, and often love, peace and happiness.

Available in paperback and ebook editions.

To preorder your copy, visit www.beatentrackpublishing.com/BoughsofEvergreen.
Each story is also being published individually as an ebook (December 1st, 2014).

Proceeds from sales of this anthology will be donated to The Trevor Project.
The Trevor Project is the leading national organization [USA] providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) young people ages 13-24.

For more information, visit: www.thetrevorproject.org. 

Visit Our Trevor Project Fundraising Page: stayclassy.org/beatentrackpublishing.

Coming Up...

  • Blog posts from our authors
  • Character Interviews
  • Added extras
  • AND A BONUS RECIPE BOOK... more on this soon! 
Over the coming weeks, we'll be posting links to reviews, bonus content, giveaways, blog posts from our authors, interviews with their characters and all kinds of things. So you should probably...

1. Buy our amazing anthology!!
2. Pop back regularly so you don't miss out on all this holiday fun!!!
3. Donate to The Trevor Project (or your local LGBTQ support network, if you prefer) 

 Exclamation mark epidemic in progress...I blame Raine O'Tierney. The ellipses...they're Jonathan's. As for the emdash—what? Read the stories and you'll see. ;)

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

Rainbow Book Awards 2014 finalists: Unbroken and It's Like This

We are delighted to announce that two titles published by Beaten Track Publishing are finalists in the Rainbow Book Award, 2014.

Unbroken, by Larry Benjamin, and It's Like This, by Anne O'Gleadra were two of more than 500 books submitted for consideration for the annual award, celebrating LGBTQ literature.

You can view the full list of finalists here: http://reviews-and-ramblings.dreamwidth.org/4452585.html

Unbroken (Gay Contemporary Romance)

Winner of a Gold IPPY and a Lammy finalist, Larry Benjamin's extraordinary third book, Unbroken is already well-decorated (we're running out of cover space).

Published in September, 2013, Unbroken tells the story of Lincoln de Chabert and how his crush of fellow schoolboy Jose Calderon follows him to college, where Lincoln and Jose become room mates.

 My parents, unable to change me, had instead, silenced me. When they'd stilled my hands, they'd taken my words, made me lower my voice to a whisper. Later, I remained silent in defense, refusing to acknowledge the hateful words: Brainiac. Sissy. Antiman. Faggot.

Lincoln de Chabert's life is pretty unremarkable until he comes home from kindergarten and announces he will marry his best friend, Orlando, when he grows up.


His parents spring into immediate action, determined to fix him, igniting an epic battle of wills as Lincoln is determined to remain himself, and marry whom he chooses, at all costs.


Unbroken  is available as both a paperback and ebook (various formats) from all major online retailers:

 

It's Like This (Gay Erotic Romance)

Published in July, 2014, It's Like This tells the story of a young couple, as they learn to communicate in the shadow of a life-changing illness.

Niles and Rylan have been together a long time. They have great sex, they are deeply intimate, and Rylan never holds back on displaying his affection. As far as their family and friends are concerned, they're an established couple, and yet, after three years of being "together", Niles is still unsure if they're actually in a relationship.

As their sexual intensity reaches a dangerous tipping point, Niles must find the courage to articulate how he feels in order to try and keep the only thing he has ever wanted. Emotional and compelling, It's Like This is a must-read for true romantics.


It's Like This is available as both a paperback from all major online retailers, and a Kindle ebook:


Congratulations to both Larry and Anne - it's truly an honour working with you both!



Monday, 8 September 2014

Tim on Broadway and Between the Tides - two new releases PLUS a Giveaway!

I had a conversation with someone last week, who looked at the Beaten Track catalogue, and said, "You're all over the place!"

It's true. Three years ago, Beaten Track was formed, not with the intention of setting up specific imprints, or publishing specific genres, but to help independent authors polish their work and get it out there. As such, we have fiction, non-fiction, for adults, young adults and children, fantasy, romance, contemporary fiction, mystery/thrillers, memoirs...

It was, and still is (to paraphrase Larry Benjamin a little) about giving voice to the unheard. We make no apologies for that.

However, what is happening, organically perhaps, is that our publications for "grown-ups" (used loosely and not in the same way as "adult" fiction) are by and large one of two "genres":
  1. Relationships and Romance
  2. Memoirs
Within Relationships and Romance there is diversity, and potentially an argument for further sub-dividing this into LGBTQ and...anything that is not LGBTQ, or LGBTQIAP. Perhaps we could just ditch the letter-adding and call it non-H.

If this seems silly, it's because we think it is. Relationships and Romance are what they are, so you won't find them in their own little corner of our website, and this distinction will become even less appparent when our redesigned site goes live. For ease of searching, we'll let you know if the stories have a specific focus, or include adult content. Otherwise we don't segregate. We think segregation is bad.

That's the preamble. Here are our current new releases, and there's one of each of the above.

NEW PUBLICATIONS


Tim on Broadway - Season One (The Full Season)
by Rick Bettencourt
(15th September, 2014)

See box below for giveaway details - ends 15th September!

Carolyn Sohier, the Greta Garbo of divas, is giving a once in a lifetime concert that Tim can't afford to attend. Tim - an overweight, twenty-something virgin - regrets lending the hunky bag boy at the grocery store money that could have bought him a ticket. Tim needs to call in his debts, but money isn't the only thing holding him back.

The first time Tim met Javier, he was blown away by the attention. As an overweight, twenty-something virgin, he didn't often - actually ever - get a guy, let alone a hot one, pay attention to him. The problem, Javier is straight; yet he gives Tim mixed messages. Tim can't get Javier off his mind, unless he is pursuing his love for theater - or talking with his best friend, Julia, about the "unattainable" crushes they share on some of the guys back home.

With the Carolyn Sohier concert fasting approaching, Tim struggles to get tickets. If he hadn't lent Javier the money to, well, have his way with him in the beer cooler at the store they worked at together, maybe Tim wouldn't have lost his job, and would be able to see Carolyn perform. But Tim's learned his lesson from all this…or so he thinks.

NOTE: this is an 18+ publication, and contains sexual content between consenting male adults.



Goodreads Book Giveaway

Tim on Broadway by Rick Bettencourt

Tim on Broadway

by Rick Bettencourt

Giveaway ends September 15, 2014.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter to win



Between the Tides: A Lancashire Youth
by Charles Moseley
(1st September, 2014

This moving, thoughtful, wry book is memoir, social history, and elegy for an almost forgotten world. It looks steadily and honestly at the varied texture of that world, from gutting fish off Iceland to working on the buses, from having formal high tea with the Great Aunts to delivering meat on a bicycle, from sharp memories of a fifty-in-a-class primary school to trying for a scholarship to Cambridge University – and leaving that lost world for ever.

"A compelling memoir...fascinating."
Clive Wilmer

"A beautifully observed portrait of a lost world...a voice that is wise, engaging, and humane."
Dr Fred Parker

"...a tender elegy for a vanished England and a moving evocation of boyhood..."
S. J. Parris

"...an enthralling book about the magic of the ordinary, the author's recalling of his young life in a world so close to and so different from ours. It's wise, and funny, and sad, and beautifully written."
Professor Helen Cooper

"Writing that matters, about what matters – the mystery of our being human."
Nicole Jouve Ward

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Pinkeens to Diddies - Interview with author David R. McCabe

We're delighted to have taken on the publishing of David R. McCabe's delightfully humorous "faction", Pinkeens to Diddies, available as a paperback and Kindle ebook from Monday 11th August.

To celebrate and officially launch the book, David and I sat down for a little chat. He's got a wonderful rich voice, with a lyrical accent that rests easy on the ears. You can find out what that sounds like by visiting his website and following the links to his radio interviews.

Pinkeens to Diddies (info and purchase links): http://www.beatentrackpublishing.com/pinkeenstodiddies

David's website: http://davidrmccabe.wordpress.com/

The Interview

Today I'm very lucky to be interviewing David McCabe author of Pinkeens to Diddies.

Hi David, thank you for agreeing to this interview. Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

Hello Debbie, I'm retired now. I was born way back in 1940 in Southern Ireland, when Ireland was still in the British Commonwealth. I was brought up as a Protestant in a predominately Catholic country and lived in a large country cottage on the outskirts of Dunlaoghaire. I went to a small private school, formed to cater for the Protestants in the area, had a marvellous childhood, made lots of school friends. In 1957, I took an apprenticeship with the BP Tanker Company to start a career as a Navigating Deck Officer.

A road accident in 1961 put paid to my sea-going days. I then started a career in sales, working for various international firms. I left retail sales in the mid eighties and started a career in insurance, eventually running the sales branch of a large UK Insurance company in Liverpool. In the nineties I opened a company recruiting sales management for insurance companies in the UK. I now live in Lancashire, England with my partner Joan, play the keyboard, paint, write and fly fish.

So, what have you written? And what in the world is a Pinkeen and what are Diddies?

Debbie, I have written many short stories and poems in my time and of course my first book Pinkeens to Diddies. What are pinkeens? They are pink-bellied tiddlers found in streams, whilst Diddies are the attractive pointy upper parts of a female body.

My book is written in a gentle humorous style and tells the story of Brendan Harris, the hero in my book, as a young boy awakening to the delights that surround him in his semi-rural village, he stumbles through confusion and embarrassment as he is introduced to some of life's tough realities: social differences, sexual development, and a mother whose good intentions often lead to disaster and humiliation. This book is sure to appeal to everyone who is interested in self-discovery, and the perils and pleasures of growing up.

Where can we buy or see them?

Pinkeens to Diddies can be purchased anywhere in the world on the internet and is delivered in soft cover or on Kindle. In Google or any well known server just enter the words Pinkeen and Diddie and this will provide you with all the information you require. Sales price on Amazon is £9.95 (£4.99 for the Kindle edition) or the equivalent in Euros or US Dollars.

If this book is part of a series, tell us about it?

From my first answer, you will see I went to sea as an Apprentice Deck Officer with the BP Tanker Company. This was the time when the shipment of oil was really only beginning. I travelled through the Suez Canal on one of the first tankers to traverse the canal after it was closed in 1956 by Nasser. Visited many ports throughout the world. Ran aground off the port of Takoradi in the Gold Coast now Ghana. Was frozen in in the Baltic and had many shore-going adventures in ports around the world. My second book is the continuing adventures of Brendan Harris as a seaman and I should have it on sale by December 2014. Book three will then start, fingers crossed.

What are you working on at the minute?

As a member of a very successful writing group in my home town, here in Formby Lancashire we are preparing a collection of short stories and poems for our second anthology, for production by the end of 2014. I am also working hard on the final chapters of my second book, where Brendan Harris goes to sea.

Did you do a press release or anything else to promote your work and did it work?

My first release of Pinkeens to Diddies was with a large publisher in the USA and immediately had sales in the States, with interest from Australia, South African and numerous countries in the EU. I have now contracted  with Beaten Track to concentrate on expansion in the UK and Irish market.

Did you get interviewed by local press/radio for your book launch?

I had great support from the local media and did many book signings, with interviews on Radio Merseyside, New Zealand Radio and Irish Radio.

How can readers discover more about you and you work?

With the advent  of the wonderful  world wide web, all you have to do is input these magic words into your search engine:  'Pinkeens to Diddies' and you have all the information you need. Of course don't forget my name: David R McCabe.

About Pinkeens to Diddies

In this gently humorous story, young, sensitive Brendan Harris learns much about life, family and the need to fit in while growing up during the 1940s in semi-rural Southern Ireland. Raised in a Protestant household and attending a private school in this predominantly Catholic country, Brendan stumbles his way through the confusion of social differences and sexual maturity while his mother, Alice, often embarrasses him with her good intentions among the local "poor"...which, all too often, end in total disaster.

Life brings the typical surprises for young boys turning into young men, as Brendan grows up fishing for "pinkeens" and later learns his fair share about the opposite sex, and the delights and disappointments of coming of age.

Pinkeens to Diddies (info and purchase links): http://www.beatentrackpublishing.com/pinkeenstodiddies

David's website: http://davidrmccabe.wordpress.com/