Blog Tour: The Fighter by Michael Farris Smith

Today, I’m super excited to be hosting the next stop on the blog tour for The Fighter by Michael Farris Smith, published by No Exit Press.

Blurb:

The Fighter Cover

From the author of Desperation Road, longlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger Award 2017

The acres and acres of fertile soil, the two-hundred year old antebellum house, all gone. And so is the woman who gave it to him. The foster mother who saved Jack Boucher from a childhood of abandonmnet now rests in a hospice. Her mind mind eroded by dementia, the family legacy she entrusted to Jack is now owned by banks and strangers. And Jack’s mind has begun to fail, too, as concussion after concussion forces him to carry around a notebook of names that separate friend from foe.

But in a single twisted night Jack is derailed. Losing the money that will clear his debt with the queen of Delta vice, and forcing Jack into the fighting pit one last time the stakes nothing less than life or death.

What I say:

Wow, what can I say to do this book justice?

This is the second book I have read from this author and my what an emotive and character-filled story.

Jack is a fighter, he always has been since he was abandoned as a baby through to his adult life. After many concussions in the ring, Jack is losing his memory and his foster mother, the only mother he has known, is in a care home after succumbing to dementia. Up to his eyeballs in debt and unable to pay them off he steps into the cage once again. Possibly for thee last time – but is this one fight too far?

I loved Jack’s character, a twisted, tormented soul trying to fight for his life who is slowly losing control and all he holds dear. He’s sometimes erratic thoughts which was told from both the past and present point of view made this an intriguing and tension-filled story, full of anguish and despair.

The author manages to inject the same depth of emotion and desperation in this novel as he did in Desperation Road. The pain and raw heartache of the characters infiltrates every part of this story, this made me feel not only sympathetic but also made me want to fight beside Jack – willing him on.

This is a compelling, rich story full of raw emotion and despair – I would highly recommend!

About the Author:

Michael Farris Smith

Michael Farris Smith is the award-winning author of several novels, including Desperation Road (Amazon Best Books, Barnes & Noble Discover pick, Indie Next selection), Rivers (for which he received the 2014 Mississippi Author Award for Fiction), and The Hands of Strangers. He has been awarded the Mississippi Arts Commission Literary Arts Fellowship, the Transatlantic Review Award for Fiction, and the Alabama Arts Council Fellowship Award for Literature. His short fiction has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, and his essays have appeared in the New York Times, Catfish Alley, Deep South magazine, and more. He lives in Oxford, Mississippi, with his wife and two daughters.

To find out more about Michael Farris Smith follow him on twitter @michael_f_smith.

The Fighter is not out yet and will be released on 29th March. It be preordered from Amazon here.

Big thanks to Anne Cater and No Exit Press for allowing me to be a part of this tour.

Don’t forget to check out all the other stops on this blog tour!

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Blog Tour: Class Murder by Leigh Russell

Today, I’m super excited to be kicking off the blog tour for Class Murder by Leigh Russell, published by No Exit Press.

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Blurb:

With so many potential victims to choose from, there would be many deaths. He was spoiled for choice, really, but he was determined to take his time and select his targets carefully. Only by controlling his feelings could he maintain his success. He smiled to himself. If he was clever, he would never have to stop. And he was clever. He was very clever. Far too clever to be caught.

Geraldine Steel is back for her tenth case. Reunited in York with her former sergeant, Ian Peterson, she discovers that her tendency to bend the rules has consequences. The tables have turned, and now he’s the boss.

When two people are murdered, their only connection lies buried in the past. As police search for the elusive killer, another body is discovered. Pursuing her first investigation in York, Geraldine Steel struggles to solve the confusing case. How can she expose the killer, and rescue her shattered reputation, when all the witnesses are being murdered?

What I say:

This is the tenth novel in the Geraldine Steel series, I’m ashamed to admit I have never read any of Geraldine’s previous outings, but this was such a great introduction into the series!

Geraldine Steel has recently moved to York, after being disgraced and forced to relocate by the Met police after the events from the last novel. Geraldine is struggling with her recent demotion to DS while trying to fit into her new life, but undeterred Geraldine Steel throws herself into the investigation of a young woman’s murder.

It is mainly told from the point of view of Geraldine as she tries to unravel who the killer is while trying to stop the body count rising, but also follows the killer’s point of view as they plan who their next victim would be and plot their kills – which I weirdly enjoyed. I loved how warped the killer’s mind was and thought the author cleverly managed to drip feed this into the story.

I also loved Geraldine Steel – she is such an amazing character who just has so much gumption! Another thing which I loved was the opening of the story which kicked off with an absolute bang and didn’t let up.

Even though I haven’t read any of the other stories, I was still able to follow Geraldine’s backstory and the investigation itself is very self-contained, drawing both new and old readers into this story.

If you love a good action-packed crime novel, full of complex characters and unexpected twists this is one for you

About the Author:

Leigh Russell Author Picture

Leigh Russell is the author of the internationally bestselling Geraldine Steel
series: Cut Short, Road Closed, Dead End, Death Bed, Stop Dead, Fatal Act, Killer
Plan, Murder Ring, Deadly Alibi and Class Murder. The series has sold over a million
copies worldwide. Cut Short was shortlisted for the Crime Writers Association (CWA)
John Creasey New Blood Dagger Award, and Leigh has been longlisted for the CWA
Dagger in the Library Award. Her books have been #1 on Amazon Kindle and iTunes
with Stop Dead and Murder Ring selected as finalists for The People’s Book Prize.
Leigh is chair of the CWA’s Debut Dagger Award judging panel and is a Royal
Literary Fellow. Leigh studied at the University of Kent, gaining a Masters degree in
English and American Literature. She is married with two daughters and a
granddaughter, and lives in London.

To find out more about Leigh Russell follow her on twitter @LeighRussell.

Class Murder is out now on Ebook or released on 29th March in paperback and can be preordered from Amazon here.

Big thanks to Anne Cater and No Exit Press for allowing me to be a part of this tour.

Don’t forget to check out all the other stops on this blog tour!

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Blog Tour: Desperation Road by Michael Farris Smith

I’m thrilled to be on the next stop for the Desperation Road Blog Tour by Michael Farris Smith. Desperation Road is published by No Exit Press on 23rd February 2017. As always don’t forget to check out all the other fab stops on this tour!

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First up is the Blurb:

A novel set in a rough- and-tumble Mississippi town where drugs, whiskey, guns, and the desire for revenge violently intersect

For eleven years the clock has been ticking for Russell Gaines as he sat in Parchman penitentiary in the Mississippi Delta. His time now up, and believing his debt paid, he returns home only to discover that revenge lives and breathes all around.

On the day of his release, a woman named Maben and her young daughter trudge along the side of the interstate under the punishing summer sun. Desperate and exhausted, the pair spend their last dollar on a motel room for the night, a night that ends with Maben running through the darkness holding a pistol, and a dead deputy sprawled across the road in the glow of his own headlights.

With dawn, destinies collide, and Russell is forced to decide whose life he will save his own or that of the woman and child?

This is the thrilling story of two apparently unconnected, but broken people who are down on their luck just trying to make their way in the world, despite the inexplicable odds.

Russell has just been released after an eleven-year stretch inside for a crime he feels he has finally been punished for. As he steps off the bus in his hometown he is set upon by two brothers out for revenge.

On the same day, a desperate woman named Maben,  with nothing left of her former life but a black sack and a young daughter, seeks refuge for the night at a truckers pit stop. But when she makes the decision to try and make ends meet, she ends up risking her own life and that of a local deputy’s life.

When their paths cross Russell is forced to step up to the plate and save the lives of Maben and her daughter, Annalee, if he has only hope of salvation.

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Wow – I literally read this in two sittings!

What can I say without giving too much away? The narrative is compelling and seamlessly blends the parallel stories of Maben and Russell together, taking the reader on a heartbreaking story of regret, revenge and hope.

I loved both these characters and couldn’t help but sympathise with their plights. This just showed the skill of the writer who manages to weave compassion and action into the narrative without it ever becoming too overpowering.

I also loved the setting of this novel within a run-down Mississippi town full of booze, woman and lawlessness.I thought the author’s beautiful descriptions evoked a lot of imagery for me as the reader, which in turn pulled me into the story and felt like I was right there with the characters.

This is a novel I wouldn’t have necessarily picked up to read on first glance, but I am really glad I did. I would highly recommend this – it is a fantastic and compelling crime novel set in a small American town with a cast of characters you cannot help but empathise with.

I would like to say a big thanks to No Exit Press and Anne Cater for my advanced review copy.

About the author:

catfish-alley-porch

 

Michael Farris Smith is the award-winning author of Rivers and The Hands of Strangers. Rivers was named in numerous Best Books of the Year lists, and garnered the 2014 Mississippi Author Award for Fiction. His short fiction has twice been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and his essays have appeared with The New York Times, Catfish Alley, Writer’s Bone, and more. Two novels are forthcoming, Desperation Road (Feb 2017) and The Fighter (2018) with Lee Boudreaux Books, a specialty fiction imprint with Little, Brown. He lives in Columbus, Mississippi, with his wife and daughters.

To preorder this from Amazon just click here

To find out more about Michael Farris Smith follow him on Twitter @michael_f_smith.