Lizzie’s new novel – Harper’s Highland Fling

HIP HIP HOORAY – IT’S PUBLICATION DAY

my gorgeous cover courtesy of Gail Bradley and Stuart McIntyre

Light the blue touch paper and stand well back

I’m really thrilled to be able to share Harper’s Highland Fling with you. Within a day of publication it reached #1 spot in ‘hot new releases’ and (briefly) #1 in Scottish Historical Romance – happy days.

It’s been a tough year for all of us with the pandemic breathing down our necks and to make things worse, my home town of Leicester has been in lockdown since the beginning of June. Seriously. So it was a blessed relief to be able to lose myself in my novel and join Harper and Rocco on their road trip as they set out to track down Pen and Ariel and bring them home. This is my sixth novel and I hope, by the time you reach the end of this post, you’ll be tempted to download it.

Here’s the BLURB

I wanted to incorporate the notion of a road trip featuring the uptight head of a federation of failing primary schools, a bohemian garage owner with a tragic past and a couple of teenagers who couldn’t understand why going AWOL might upset their responsible adults. Sound familiar? I take them on a road trip from the toe of Cornwall to Plockton in the beautiful west highlands of Scotland – stopping off at Bristol, Leicester (where else?), Penrith, and Gretna Green. I’ve travelled that route many times so I was able to get out all my old photos and have my own private road trip. As for the uptight headmistress – I wonder who she was based on ?

I made a note of this in case I decide to return to the teaching profession
This garage in the Cairngorms was the inspiration behind AULD BAXTER’S garage in Plockton.

Click on this link to be taken straight to my Amazon page where you can read an extract/share/buy a copy. Or, if you prefer to order a signed copy click here. Above all, enjoy your trip to Scotland and please leave a review on Amazon. A review really helps an indie author to stand out on the ‘Zon.

To celebrate the launch of Harper’s Highland Fling I’ve organised a GIVEAWAY for newsletter subscribers. All you have to do is subscribe to my newsletter and follow the instructions there for a chance to win a signed copy of Harper’s Highland Fling and magnetic bookmark, a FREE kindle download of Harper’s Highland Fling, a gorgeous notebook, shortbread Scottie dogs (!) or Emma Hope notelets. The newsletter will be sent out on Monday 30th November – St Andrew’s Day, of course.

See what you could win – subscribe to my newsletter today

In my newsletter I will also share how the beautiful cover for this book came about. It’s quite a romantic story so do open my newsletter when you receive it to learn more.

An appreciation of book bloggers @Williams13Anne @MarkEWest @Mick859 @karensbookbag

Great to see bloggers getting a shout out on Sue’s blog today. Without bloggers, where would authors be? I hope you find time to read this . . .

Sue Moorcroft blog

I doubt the collective noun for book bloggers is ‘an appreciation of’ but I feel as if it ought to be. How can I fail to be appreciative of a body of people who like books enough to make reviewing them a big part of their lives? In the book blogging community I’ve made friends with people who don’t glaze over no matter how much I talk about books. (Any book, not just mine.) Through following their blogs I’ve found new authors to read.

And oh, to return to blogger-author meet-ups in crowded pubs, usually on a Saturday afternoon, or meeting book bloggers at book shop and library events!

To make up, even if in a small way, I decided to ask some book bloggers to tell me about what they do.

Mark West, author of chillers and thrillers, blogger, member of Team Sue Moorcroft:

Mark West

Blog:

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Boot Camp Bride – Book Birthday Blitz and Giveaway

Boot Camp Bride is about to celebrate its birthday and, before lockdown, I re-visited Norfolk and the sites which inspired the novel. I’d love to share them and take this opportunity to remind you of what a great romcom Boot Camp Bride is. Of all my novels I think that Boot Camp Bride is the one which would most easily translate onto the silver screen. To find out if you agree, I’m making Boot Camp Bride FREE to download over the weekend – so let your fingers do the walking and follow Charlie and Rafa’s adventures on the Norfolk Marshes. 

my bookshelf – making room for #6

There’s also a chance to win a signed paperback copy (UK only) – details at the end of this blog. Join in the fun and you could be a winner.

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Blurb? I’ll allow one of my reviews to do the talking for me –

“Charlee is forced to attend a boot camp to get a scoop for the magazine she works for. I adored the situation set up for this story – such fun! The author is very clever at painting her characters and adding poignant brushstrokes of humour and vulnerability. Oh my, Charlee’s anecdotes will chase away the winter blues! Charlee guided me through her adventure, and I could not stop laughing. How does Lizzie Lamb manage to combine humour, adventure and romance? Charlee was feisty, fun, intelligent and clumsy – perfect. Undeterred by the alpha male, she managed to fight him with wit and stubbornness. Lizzie Lamb’s characters and style of writing sparkle in Boot Camp Bride. This romantic comedy is classic gold: it is the equivalent of comfort food and a good night out with friends.” 

As the tagline says – meet Charlee Montague – your new best friendThis is how I imagined her and delicious alpha hero, Raphael Fonseca Ffinch (aka Rafa)  . . .

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Awfully flat, Norfolk?

Noel Coward famously quipped: awfully flat, Norfolk. That’s what I thought the first couple of times I visited Thornham where the novel is set. But I soon learned to appreciate the beauty of the this beautiful landscape. Here’s what Charlee thinks as she looks out across the marshes for the first time, Rafa at her side.  

windmills on the fens
The windmills at Skegness seen across the marshes from Thornham

Now she was out of the wind and the sun had come out, the marshes didn’t look so grim after all. There was a stripped back beauty to them, she could see that, and the flocks of birds heading for the feeding grounds down by the shoreline ensured the view was ever changing. And she had to admit, just sitting there, eyes closed, face soaking up the weak January sun, was the perfect antidote to the last couple of manic weeks. When she glanced at Ffinch he was scanning the marshes through his binoculars, his cup of hot chocolate untouched on the bench beside him. Why did she get the impression it wasn’t the birds he was watching so intently? ‘What’s out there?’ Charlee asked, slipping on her sunglasses against the almost overwhelming expanse of bright blue sky that filled three quarters of the landscape. ‘The Wash. And over there you can see the wind turbines on the shoreline at Skegness.’ Charlee followed his pointing finger and squinted at the distant shore where almost a hundred huge turbines were turning like quiet ghosts.

the lifeboat inn
lifeboat stairs.jpg

Boot Camp Bride is set in Thornham, near Hunstanton. The Lifeboat Inn, an alleged haunt of smugglers, doubles for The Ship in the novel. This is where Rafa and Charlee  spend their first night together – strictly business, natch – very much aware of a growing physical attraction.  

“Charlee and Ffinch climbed the stairs to their respective bedrooms. Charlee was rather unsteady, a combination of vertiginous heels and the quantity of wine she’d consumed. She pulled a face and groaned, thinking of the hangover she would wake up with and the windswept salt marshes dashing ice-cold rain and sleet into her face. Ffinch walked up the stairs behind her, his hand resting lightly on her waist as if keeping a loving eye on her, whereas in reality he was holding her upright. Bidding the other guests goodnight, he whispered in her ear. ‘Smile, for goodness sake. You look as if you’re going to your doom, not a night of passion in The Ship’s best room. Stay in role.’ ‘I’m concentrating on my balance, if you must know, and,’ Charlee whipped round as his words sank in, almost falling backwards into his arms. ‘A night of passion, now hold it right there, mate. It’d take more than two glasses of champagne -’ ‘Half a bottle of Rioja, a sticky with your pudding and cognac with coffee – to do what? Make the thought of sleeping with me more palatable?’ Although he kept a straight face, Charlee detected banked down humour there.”

My friend Joan and I sitting in the hall of The Lifeboat Inn on MY birthday. It was while staying at her and husband Roger’s place in Thornham that the idea of Boot Camp Bride came to me. 

It was easy to imagine Thornham Manor as the phoney Boot Camp for Brides – the front for drug smuggling on the marshes. At high tide it would be easy to land contraband on the nearby quay without arousing suspicion. 
You can read an extract HERE

Boot Camp Bride is also available as a paperback and would make an ideal present for someone who enjoys reading romance laced with humour and quick fire dialogue. Oh, and there’s a classic VW Camper Van featured in it, too. What’s not to like?

If you’d like to enter Boot Camp Bride’s Birthday Competition and win a signed paperback , all you have to do it FOLLOW my blog and/or share this post on any of the links below. Take a screenshot and send it to me via email. The winner will be notified once the competition has ended. 

And, finally – If you’d like to read more  download  a copy of Boot Camp Bride while it’s FREE (Friday 2nd October to Wednesday 7th). If you enjoy Boot Camp please consisted leaving a review. It’s one of the best things a reader can do to help a writer . . . apart from downloading more of their novels, obvs. 

Armchair Travels #1 – Leicester to Fort William

Me – wondering if I can swim over to Castle Stalker

Most of January 2020 was spent planning a six week writing/research trip to Scotland. Then Covid-19 struck and it became clear that we’d have to put our plans on hold. The first casualty was the Braemar Highland Games organised for the day before Dave’s 70th birthday. They refunded our money without a quibble. Sadly, our lunch at the Fife Arms, Braemar celebrating Dave’s BIG BIRTHDAY had to be cancelled, too.

our caravan wearing its ‘bra to protect from stone chips en route

The master plan had been to set off for Kendal on August 8th and wake up on the shores of Loch Lomond at Malarochy on August 11th – our 47th wedding anniversary. However, to quote Rabbie Burns – the well laid plans of mice and men gang aff a gley. Everything went pear/shaped and we had to cancel all our bookings. So, rather than put all that planning to waste, I thought I’d take you on a virtual tour of Scotland. In this post we’ll be travelling from Lockdown Leicester via Kendal to Loch Lomond.

So, make yourself comfortable and journey to Bonnie Scotland without leaving your favourite armchair.

I always know I’m home when I see this sign
Fancy spending the night in an old gunpowder quarry?

First stop – the Caravan and Motorhome Club site in Kendal built on the site of a 19th century gunpowder mill. Sounds horrendous, right? Wrong. It is a haven of peace and tranquility with a river running through it. There are lots of parking bays surrounded by woodland and you hardly notice the other campers because there is so much space and you park in tree-covered bays. I’d love to spend a week there writing and visiting the surrounding towns but, inevitably, Kendal is a stopping off point on the way north.

Two years ago we unexpectedly met Sharyn Farnaby and husband Rod on the campsite. Sharyn was one of the proofreaders of Take Me, I’m Yours so I was able to share the cover with her. (I’ve since changed the cover but you can read an extract of Take Me, I’m Yours/share and download here.

Although we weren’t able to wake up to a view of Bonnie Loch Lomond on August 11th, we derived great pleasure from reading the 200+ comments from friends and followers on Facebook. Forty seven years together – how did that happen? Loving’ the hairstyle, Dave, by the way.

Much as we love Loch Lomond it is another stopping off point on the way to the highlands and our all-time favourite campsite -Bioran Dhub- overlooking Castle Stalker. The thrill of waking up to a view of the castle every morning (see below) is spine chilling. If you ever rock up in Fort William check out Castle Stalker’s website and book yourself on a guided tour. Monty Python fans might recognise Stalker which featured as Castle Argh in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

Visiting Castle Stalker a few years ago inspired me to write Girl in the Castle which is one of my best selling novels. Check it out here to read an extract/share/buy.

Over recent years, while staying near Fort William, we’d been keen to discover the exact location where some of SKYFALL had been filmed. Previously, it had been a closely guarded secret and we’d travelled the length of Glen Etive trying the find where the iconic shots had been taken. Last summer we found the GPS coordinates and set off bright and early to get ahead of the crowds.

Here is Dave standing by THE VERY STONE where Bond and M had posed a couple of years earlier. Dave has an electric screwdriver for raising and lowering the caravan wheels, not a Walther PPK. But a boy can dream, can’t he?

If you ever find yourself staying near Fort William, consider taking the Scotrail train to Mallaig. It crosses the iconic Glenfinnan Viaduct (aka the Harry Potter Bridge) and follows the same route at the Jacobite Express for a fraction of the price. The train is only in Mallaig for a couple hours, so buy the best fish and chips you’ll ever taste and eat them sitting on the harbour wall as you watch the boats going in and out.

What next from Lizzie Lamb?

I’ve finished my sixth romance – Penhaligon”s Highland Bride – and I hope to publish it very soon. You’ll be the first to know when I do.

The one where Making Wishes at Bay View has been nominated for the Not The Booker Prize and needs your votes

Best wishes to fellow RNA chum Jessica Redland who’s been long listed for NOTTHEBOOKERRPIZE. I don’t know who will win but its nice to see lots of romantic fiction included this year. Go Jessica.

Jessica Redland Author

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I’ve been nominated for the Not The Booker Prize. Eek!!!!!!

What is it?

You’ve probably heard of The Booker Prize but were you aware of the existence of the Not The Booker Prize?

It was launched by The Guardian in 2009 so this year is its twelfth year. Whereas The Booker Prize is judged by a panel of experts, the Not The Booker Prize invites public participation and the aim is therefore to have a wider commercial appeal.

The longlist is derived purely from public nominations. Launched on 20th July, the public had until 1st August to nominate a book which met certain eligibility criteria (e.g. had to be written in English and published between certain dates). You can read about this stage here.

Making Wishes at Bay ViewWhich book was nominated?

Yesterday, the longlist was announced (you can read the article here) and I am thrilled to say that one of…

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Lizzie’s BEST EVER Summer Promo

Hi everyone, I hope you’re having a good summer in spite of ‘everything’. Here in Leicester we’re still on lockdown and seem set to remain so until the situation is reviewed on July 31st. One positive outcome is that I have finished my new novel – hurray – and have written the synopsis for the one after that. Number Seven? How did that happen?

My five romance novels will soon be joined by number six.

To celebrate this milestone I’m offering my ‘Scottish’ novels at below the usual price. Normally, I don’t put my books up for FREE, in fact the last time I did so was December 2012 (!) So make the most of this promo and get them while they’re hot. 

Want to know what my novels are about? Click on each the link to be whisked over to Amazon where you can READ AN EXTRACT/SHARE/BUY.

Do check out my reviews while you’re over there

Tall, Dark and Kilted

Can Fliss tame the Monarch of the Glen ?

Scotch on the Rocks

Romance, family secrets and second chance love in the highlands of Scotland

Girl in the Castle

A Girl, a Castle and a Ghost

Like many of you, we’ve had to put our holiday plans on hold for 2020. Sadly, Bonnie Scotland will have to wait another year before our caravan rolls across the border. So, if you are visiting Scotland from your armchair do consider downloading on of my novels at this very special price – The promo only lasts FIVE DAYS from Tuesday July 28th until Saturday 1st of August.

Should you enjoy reading my work please consider leaving a review, they are an author’s life blood. 

And, just in case you wondered what next novel is all about, here’s the blurb . . . 

PENHALIGON’S HIGHLAND BRIDE 

Head teacher Eilidh MacDonald is looking forward to a much needed summer holiday. However, her wayward niece Ariel upsets her plans, leaving a letter announcing she’s run away with a boy called Pen. Cue a case of mistaken identity when Eilidh confronts the boy’s father – Rocco Penhaligon, and accuses him of cradle snatching her niece and encouraging her to abandon a bright future. At loggerheads, Eilidh and Rocco set off in hot pursuit of the teenagers to the highlands of Scotland, but the canny youngsters are always one step ahead. Cupid has his work cut out to convince these two commitment phobes they have found their soul mates. And, in a neat twist, it is the adults who end up in trouble – not the savvy teenagers. 

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White sands at Morar – David Crocker / The Sands at Morar / CC BY-SA 2.0

Just one last word – my novels are also available in paperback via my website at WAYYY below Amazon prices. Each paperback will be dedicated to YOU and arrive through your door via Royal Mail delivery. For more information click here.   

So, I’ll say goodbye for now and hope to be in touch soon via social media,

Lizzie   

 

Publication Day for #SummerOnASunnyIsland @AvonBooksUK @BFLAgency

Another great romance from Sue Moorcroft.

Sue Moorcroft blog

Here it is at last! Publication day has arrived for Summer on a Sunny Island!

subtle pink

My thanks, as ever, to the fab team at Avon Books UK and Blake Friedmann Literary, Flim and TV Agency for their fantastic support.

The idea for Summer on a Sunny Island was sparked by a service kids’ reunion in Malta, where I was brought up for several years. My brothers, my sister-in-law and I managed to convert one lunch into a ten-day holiday so I didn’t see why such a reunion shouldn’t for part of a novel too. It’s about Rosa, who’s supporting her celeb-cook mum Dory in Malta and Zach, who’s looking after his Maltese grandmother’s property. They’ve both left tricky situations behind them in England but, of course, those situations don’t just go away.

I really hope that you enjoy the opportunity to travel to Malta by book, even if you…

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Publication Day for To Catch a Witch by Sharon Booth @Sharon_Booth1 #WitchesofCastleClair

The double whammy today – first Jan Brigden’s new book and now SAharon Booth leaps on to my kindle. Both great authors and lovely people to boot. Get downloading BOTH straight away.

Jill's Book Cafe

Happy Publication Day to Sharon Booth with To Catch a Wish, the third in The Witches of St Clair series.

TO CATCH A witch for JillTo Catch a Witch (The Witches of St Clair 3)

It’s three hundred and fifty years since the famous witch’s leap happened in the North Yorkshire town. Riverside Walk is swarming with eager tourists, wanting to pay tribute to the legendary Blaise St Clair. It’s also Christmas Eve, and the family has gathered to celebrate an eventful year, and to look forward to even better times ahead.

But a shock event changes everything, bringing a whole lot of trouble to the door of Castle Lodge.

For something big is happening in Castle Clair. Strangers are arriving, a prophecy is unfolding, a mystery is deepening, a reckoning is coming … and someone’s getting rather too fond of Mrs Greenwood’s baking.

The past is colliding with the present, and the future is…

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#GuestPost IF I EVER DOUBT YOU by JAN BRIGDEN #PublicationDay @ChocLituk @JanBrigden

So pleased to congratulate wonderful friend and author Jan Brigden on the publication of her sequel to AS WEEKENDS GO. If oyu love football, the world of WAGS and a great story, download it today. https://amzn.to/2ScspEU

Books and Me!

Happy Tuesday to you all! And Happy Publication Day to Jan Brigden for the release of IF I EVER DOUBT YOU!! Hopefully you’ll all be downloading this later to enjoy!

Jan has been kind enough to write a guest post for me to share with you all today to give you a bit more of an insight into the book and the characters within the story!! Over to you Jan….

Challenging the celebrity footballer stereotype: If I Ever Doubt You by Jan Brigden

My main characters Rebecca and Alex first encountered one another in my debut As Weekends Go. Family-oriented small-town woman meets big league professional footballer. We saw the huge impact on their lives during and after that eventful summer weekend.

If I Ever Doubt You continues their story, charting each cheer, dip, drama and dilemma their relationship throws up: how Rebecca adapts to and copes with the reality…

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Calling all romantic fiction fans – new Facebook Book Group and 60 book #giveaway! @RNATweets @0neMoreChapter_ #RNA60 #RomanticFictionBookClub #RomFicBookClub

What a competition- to be part of it.
Check it out – you’d be mad not to!

Portobello Book Blog

I’m so pleased to be taking part in the official launch celebrations for the Romantic Fiction Book Club Facebook group. Their aim is to create a warm and cosy place for members to engage with readers, bloggers and authors of romantic fiction.

This is a Facebook group supported by the Romantic Novelists’ Association but membership is open to all authors of novels with a romantic element, as well as readers who love romantic fiction and bloggers.

Clickheretogoto the group page

And what better way to start off than with a competition? This will be run in conjunction with the publisher 0ne More Chapter and will be open to all members of the group. 0MC have donated a first prize of 60 romantic novels. There will be 60 runners up prizes of one book from a selection…

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