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Monday, 8 February 2016

Everyone loves a special offer

Granny Smith and the Deadly Frogs currently on special offer on Amazon worlwide...remember please support this author by leaving a review.

Currently at a special promotion price for the eBook at Amazon.
'As usual, Granny is deep in trouble again. The pipe smoking Welsh granny is trying to help the conservationists save a pond, that may have a rare species of frog from becoming extinct. I thought I had the "perp" figured out, but at the end was surprised that it wasn't who I thought it was. I liked the book and the characters.' Five Star Review

'Writer Gary Dobbs has created a modern day cozy series that can stand alongside some of those series by British Isles authors that I devoured in my early years. He has a great mystery here and brings that style of cozy forward into the twenty-first century, touching on modern subjects that wouldn't have been tolerated back then, Hell, not even thought of back then.' Amazon five star review

Sunday, 7 February 2016

Tainted Stats

Weekly Stats Report: 1 Feb - 7 Feb 2016


  Mon Tues Wed Thur Fri Sat Sun Total Avg
Unique Visits8688114140117129160834119
First Time Visits7985109138111126154802115
Returning Visits7352636325

Audiobooks, Miss Marple on steroids and a deadly frog or two.....

Granny Smith Investigates has been a great success for me, and kicked off the Granny Smith series - so I am especially excited to sign up with Audible for the book to be turned into an eBook. The title is currently in the early stages of production, - this means that voice actresses are currently  being auditioned to the read the story, and I anticipate having some big news within the next few weeks. There are two other books currently available in the series, though the third title, The Welsh Connection is actually a short story, and a fourth book, Murder Plot will see publication this March.

I am hoping that the audiobook release coinicides with the next Granny Smith book, Murder Plot which is due for publication at the end of this coming March - it will certainly be nice if it works out that way, but the audiobook production is the resonsibility of the experts at Audible, and this is a new venture for me so I'm not sure how long the process actually takes. All I know is that voice actresses are currently being auditioned to read the title.

The Granny Smith series are what you would call cozy crimes, though I prefer the description, comedic capers. Ah well, I'm funny that way. And if you haven't read any of the books, and you fancy catching up on this senior detective then why not check out the books. The easiest way of getting hold of titles is to pop over to Amazon where there are some great offers on the Kindle versions, though they are available for other eBook platforms as well, and can be found at most eBook sales websites. 
A delightful story with an unpredictable plot, remarkable characters, unrealistic happenings that combine for an engaging lighthearted read. Granny Smith, named after the apple convincingly morphs into "Miss Marple on steroids". Amazon Review

The Welsh elements, the humour, the familiar characters and a well-developed plot combine to produce a better than average cozy mystery. What more could you ask for? Apart from the next in the series? Amazon Review

The first title in the series, Granny Smith Investigates sees the intrepid slueth, Miss Marple on steroids, Batman with dentures, trying to solve the murder of her next door neighbour, while the second, The Deadly Frogs finds Granny up to her neck in murder and mayhem when she gets herself involved with a group of enviromentalists who are trying to save a pond containing rare frogs from property developers. The third title, The Welsh Connection is a short story that proves that no matter where  Granny goes murder is not far behind and terror comes to Eurodisney.

I downloaded this book and couldnt put it down its brilliant granny smith is a no nonsense lady that has an way of getting to the truth which is sheer brilliance she really is miss marple on steroids cant wait for the next book in the series. Amazon Review

Monday, 1 February 2016

The Welsh Ripper Killings

" Buffalo Bill and Jack the Ripper in Wales around the turn of the twentieth century, kind of catches the imagination doesn't it. Lots of action with intriguing characters, a very good read. I have to admit the ending left me hanging but I understood the logic of it. Read it it and see what you think "   Five Star Amazon Review

The process of producing an eBook is obviously quite different to that of a physical book, but the editing process for The Welsh Ripper Killings has been just as strenuous .  I've written about many aspects of the novel in previous posts and so I thought I'd tell you all a little about Police Inspector Frank Parade's town of Pontypridd.

Parade's beat is the Welsh town of Pontypridd - "Pontypridd was a vibrant cosmopolitan town and had all the attendant problems that went with such prosperity. Alongside the great wealth there existed extreme poverty and the streets were often lawless – river traders, gypsies, pickpockets, drifters, even escaped convicts ranging from petty thieves to crazed killers would come up the canals and make for the alehouses and taverns of which there were plenty. There they would mingle and lose themselves among the sea of faces. Though it had not always been so and the town, once a rural backwater, had been born out of the industrialisation of the surrounding areas and had benefited from its close proximity to the Glamorganshire Canal, which allowed access from Merthyr’s coalfields to the docks in Cardiff and from there the world beyond."

One area of Pontypridd featured heavily in the book is The Tumble - the modern day Tumble is pictured left and the pic above is the same area as it was in Parade's day. Note the trams that ran the length of the town during the days that Frank Parade walked the cobbled streets.
Today the Tumble is made up of a busy main road but sadly the town is no longer the thriving attraction it once was. The main building in the picture is today known as The Soul Suite but in Parade's day it was The White Hart and behind that is the River Taff and the beautiful Ponty Park.
I have tried to remain accurate with Ponty's georgraphy in The Welsh Ripper KIllings although I have taken some artistic licence in the name of telling a story. For instance in the novel the fictional alehouse, The Butcher's Arms is situated opposite the White Hart and it is here that much of the action takes place. The landlord is one Eli Jenkins, a small wiry man who is always on the lookout to make money, legal or otherwise.
"Eventually the Taff Vale railway had linked Pontypridd to the Rhondda creating a fast and efficient artery into the coal scarred hills. Each year would see over 57 million tons of steam coal shipped down from The Black Klondike, as the valleys were
now known. The coal would then be transported down to Cardiff and Barry and once again sent around the world. Fires, the industrialised world over burned bright with Rhondda coal."
The Welsh Ripper Killings is available now from Amazon, Smashwords and anywhere eBooks are sold.

Sunday, 24 January 2016

Tainted Stats

Weekly Stats Report: 18 Jan - 24 Jan 2016


  Mon Tues Wed Thur Fri Sat Sun Total Avg
Unique Visits892791069111310264844121
First Time Visits84271102841119563810116
Returning Visits5847271345

Monday, 11 January 2016

David Bowie: Never gonna get old

Two days ago I reviewed David Bowie's new album, Blackstar - that was Saturday and today,

Monday I'm writing about his death.

Where the fuck did Monday go? Bowie asks on one of the songs on his new album, which seems to be a seven track meditation on mortality. It's an amazingly good album, but very bleak, black even and no doubt, Bowie, knowing the end was close, designed it to be his last word.

Something happened on the day he died, spirits rose a meter and stepped aside - Blackstar

Look up here, I'm in heaven
I've got scars that can't be seen
I've got drama, can't be stolen
Everybody knows me now -
Lazarus, the second track on the new album.

Bowie was, without any doubt, one of the most influential artists of the rock era. He is truly immortal like only a select few - John lennon, Kurt Cobain, Jimi Hendrix, Johnny Cash and  Elvis Presely all come to mind and Bowie's name will take rightful place besides these true icons, for each of them have left an imprint on music that has become a part of rock's DNA and not just in musical terms but in their very persona. There was something about these people that made them stand out, made them truly great. And Bowie was definitely a great.

Bowie lived the rock and roll lifestyle to the full - drink, drugs, bisexuality all played a large part in his life. It can be argued that the 1970's was his most creative decade with albums like Low, Ziggy Stardust, Station to Station, Hunky Dory and Diamond Dogs all cementing his position as rock's greatest innovator but albums that came after his golden decade were pretty damn good, in fact for Bowie it seemed as if his golden years never really ended. Scary Monsters and Super Creeps kicked off Bowie's 1980's  and although he entered a fallow period following this record, his 1983 album, Let's Dance was his most commercially successful - Let's Dance, to my mind, was too poppy and had none of the brilliance of his 1970's work, but it did yield several hugely successful singles in Let's Dance, China Girl and Modern Love.

In the early 1990's Bowie seemed to turn his back on his solo career and instead became a member of Tin Machine, but although he intended the band to be a democracy it was the Bowie name that dominated. Bowie constantly shifted styles in the following years, scoring many successes but to my mind his next truly great album was 2002's Heathen, which was followed a year later by the even better (to my mind) Reality. One track on the album, Never Get Old just rocks as Bowie screams out, 'never gonna be enough money, never gonna be enough sex, never gonna be enough drugs.Never ever gonna get old.' But you know what - Bowie had gotten old and it suited him.

 Then Bowie seemed to fade away and official word was that he had retired, while rumours did the rounds that he was seriously ill, dying even - He surprised fans in 2013 when he released a new album, the Next Day which sounded both fresh and at the same time a rollback to Ziggy era Bowie. His final album, Blackstar came out last weekend, released on Bowie's 69th birthday, and then he once again took fans by surprise by dying after secretly battling cancer for more than 18 months. NO doubt Bowie had planned for the last album to be released on his 69th birthday, all too aware that his own end was imminent. Bowie, it seemed, had died the way he had lived...on his own terms.

Bless you gave so much and we carry you in our hearts.