Book Review – Act 1 Cirque By Ashleigh Giannoccaro

I ordered this copy to collect at a book signing which sadly the author could not attend however she did send the books signed to the organisers I mention this only as I am not sure if the Amazon cover will be the same as the one I have which has Cirque written in lovely gold foil.

Let us begin as always with the GoodReads blurb…

A boy looked in a window, to see a naughty show
Through the pane of pain, the master clown did blow
The circus is a holy tent, the keeper of my rhyme
Where I forged my chains, creating this pantomime
Pretending to be normal, I wait until after dark
Then I paint the frown on, get a whore from the park
At the bottom of that bed was a darling in a chest
She watched with big eyes, horror hooking her from rest
She dances for the maniac, twirling on her strings
I will make her mine, sharing damaged things
I will be her riddle, she will help me grin
So why does she run away, she has to let me in
No one loves the clown, not even the midget
We’ve gone too far, she will know my secret
Love can break the hardest mask, I know this to be true
Nightmares have hearts too, I only needed you

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this book, generally anything involving clowns tends to make me think of ‘It’ but this is very different.

The exploration of not only the dark recesses of the mind but also their origins set this up to be an intriguing tale. On the one hand this is a twisted love story but it is also an examination of social norms, kinks that are hidden and those deemed acceptable. The double standards of masculinity and sexuality that allows the guys to visit the strip club but makes a sister working there unacceptable. This book challenge taboo areas, sibling rivialry and family relationships as well as the sexual desires the main character has and the way he attempts to integrate them into his nrmal life while keeping them seperate.

The book is very well written and flows well but also makes you stop and think without losing momentum in the plot. I am looking forward to reading the sequel to find out what other secrets lie hidden beneath the skin.

I give this book a 5 out of 5 stars.

3d rendering of 5 gold stars
Advertisements

Three For One

I have been a little lax actually putting together the last three post, they have all sat in various stages of readiness so today you get them all…

Friday

Saturday

So, I have decided to bring back so it’s Saturday, but in this new year, it will be a round up of some of the things I have been enjoying the previous week that you might want to check out for yourselves, these will be divided up into categories…

Podcasts

This week I found and binge listened to a new podcast called Unobscured/History Revealed which is all about the Salem witch trials. I loved this because it looks at the whole event from beginning to end and analyses both court documents from the time as well as other texts available. It looks in depth not only into the what was happening but also the how, and why and even though I had a reasonable knowledge of the trials I also found information which I had believed that was incorrect. I really recommend this one.

Music

I don’t really listen to a lot of music but as part of my new year lans I decided I needed to start bringing things back into my life. This week I have listed to a couple of the 80’s and 90’s playlists on Prime Music however there are plenty of different sites out there to find the songs on, these decades are the ones where I went on girls holidays, went to nightclubs and danced around the living room doing the house work so they are the feel good songs for me. As one of my resloutions is to lose weight and to actually use my cross trainer more I will be listening to more music as I find as much as I love podcasts and audiobooks they just don’t have the same effect getting you going, so one track from the playlist I am listening to right now is….

Reading

I am currently reading Afterlife (Afterlife Saga #1) by Stephanie Hudson, now obviously I cannot give away too much about the book, because if I do, what would be the point in reviewing it when I finish it, but I will say, so far I am enjoying it. One interesting marketing point on this one was that I met the author at an event we were both signing at and she had booklets printed with what I assumed was the first chapter fro the book, now it did actually turn out to be an excerpt which did confuse me a little, I almost put the book down because I thought I had the wrong one but it certainly is a marketing ploy to consider possibly.

Watching – TV

This week I caught up on the last few Who Do You Think You Are from the last series, the one that I found most profound was the Ruby Wax one. It really was a heartwrenching journey she went on discovering her families past, dealing with deaths in concentration camps and mental illness seemingly inherited from one generation to the next. I know that the research is all done for the celebrities and most of us will never get quite the same levels of information if we do our own searches but the idea of knowing the lives those who go before endure to give you the advantages you have today are fascinating. Even when things seem hard in your life, looking at where your faily came from can often make you realise that we have a lot to be thankful for.

Watching – Film

This week we have not seen any new films however, I did settle down with my son the other evening and watch Fantastic Beasts & Where To Find Them. We had intended to try fitting in a trip to the cinema to watch the sequel over Christmas but we didn’t get there unfortunately but as with the music mentioned earlier I am determined to catch up on some films I have missed this year and get back into the habit of family viewing.

Watching – Netflix

My Netflix viewing this week has been an old favourite, the BBC version of Pride & Predjudice. although there are quite a few things I want to watch it was revisiting Love Actually over Christmas that inspired this rewatch, and one man in particular.

I promise by next week I will have watched something new, or at least new to me.

Sunday

WIP Wednesday – Week One 2019

Hello and welcome to the revamped WIP Wednesday, I used to do this when I first started but somewhere along the way I got rather lost. So I am taking this back to basics and each week I will fill you in on the projects I am working on though of course the amount of detail you get will depend on how far along I am.

Project 0ne

This is a short story for a charity anthology, this is in the final stages of editing and is a holiday romance. I have to say I found it quite difficult, as you will all know love and romance are not my normal main plots in a story so it was challenging resisting the urge to slaughter everyone.

Project Two

Another short story for a charity anthology, this again is for a charity anthology and is quite taxing, it has a dark, twisted undercurrant and deals woth disturbing subjects but is more realism than my usual fantasy which is making me push myself in different ways. The base plot for the story was one I wrote for a different anthology which was never published and fits very well with the required subject for this anthology.

Project Three

Is yet another short story, this is the first story for my Patreon, normally I will only have two projects running at once, however, because the first two have run over from last year I am having to work hard these first few weeks. I will confess that at this minute I am still undecided if all the stories will be a the same genre or just in a similar vein. I was initially thinking of making this double up as eventually eing the second volume of ghost stories but it may be that I make is more of a general horror genre, I would like to tie in some of the stories with the month they appear in so we shall see.

Project Four

This is the novel I am working on currently The Role Of The Dice, I am really loving this story and will elaborate on it more next week once I have at least one less project to tell you about but for this week I will share a graphic for it…

Happy New Year! Time for resolutions and reflection.

The last few years I have set out my resolutions in list form and failed miserably so this year I am going back to a general post at the end of each month rounding up how things have gone and my hopes going forward. So lets start with the new logo…

I am in love with this fabulous new author logo designed for me by Georgina Lambert you can find out more about her and her work here. She is incredibly talented I a hope to work with her again in the future, getting the right logo is such hard work, you want something that looks incredible, stands out but is also simple enough to be shrunk down or blown up depending on what you are putting it on, I am hoping to have badges with this on very soon.

Next up, the writing! This can be split into three different areas this year, first I intend to up my blog game here by preparing and scheduling blogs in advance and being a lot more consistant updating the website and getting the newsletters out quarterly.

Secondly, the number of books I am looking to put out in a year is going to go up, the last few years I have only dont one per year but this year I am looking to get at least four out, and to be fair three of them are half written.

The final writing aim is in the form of a Patreon page I am starting. on the 21st of each month subscribers to the Patreon page will get to read a short story that at that time will not be available anywhere else. at the end of the year they stories will be made into a book but those who have supported me for over six month will get a signed print copy of the book shipped to them. There are also other perks for different levels of suport and there will be extra giveaways exclusively on there. I am also hoping eventually to sort out some exclusive merchandise for those supporters. If you are interested in learning more or signing up to become a patreon supporter you can find out more here.

In my personal life we have the usual lose weight and get fitter, this is a definite must this year with a second grandchild due to chase round after and an already dodgy back. Plus I want to start planing to travel more and losing weight will certainly make that easier.

So, this is me, at the start of what I hope will be an incredibly exciting year full of fun, stories and craziness.

New Years Eve

I just want to take a minute to thank everyone who has made 2018 such a special year but to invite you to join me in making 2019 the most exciting year on my writing journey so far. This video contains some of the people I have met this year old friends and new =, if you are missing I love you just as much but we were probably to busy chatting for me to remember to get the camera out xxx