UK Mother's Day is nearly here

UK Mother's Day is nearly here
Perfect gift, 12 books by 13 authors all about how great mothers are.

Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Mother's Day Magic...with Love by book: 6, Vision of the Heart by Mary Crawford

Hello All
Another busy week for me on the  Costa Valencia. After a very noisy Las Fallas Festival, it all went quite for a few days and then Easter arrived and so did everyone from the city. Our quiet little town, where are staying was suddenly packed and the beaches were busy. Luckily the weather also warmed up a little, so I managed to get some time on the beach as well.

We also have some visitors, my mum and my granddaughter have come to stay for a few weeks. It is nice to see them and we have had some fun, but the huge age difference 88yrs old and 12 yrs old does make entertainment difficult to arrange. And I refuse to say who is the hardest to please!

The best part is I bought my granddaughter a kindle her birthday in February and she has got it with her, so I am busy filling it up with books for her. Luckily she loves reading. My own kindle has been a life saver for my mum, who cannot read due to macular degeneration. I have enrolled in audible and she is happy listening to stories while nodding off in the sun.  It makes me realise how times have changed and how eBooks and new technology is embraced and accepted by all generations. I then start to wonder what it will be like when I am my mum's age. what new inventions in technology will enhance my life? 

Anyway, talking of Macular Degeneration brings me nicely onto the next book in the Mother's Day Magic...with Love anthology; Vision of the Heart by Mary Crawford.

I really liked this story as it bared Julia's inner soul and exposed her weaknesses as her loss of vision stripped her of all her confidence. The whole family struggled to come to terms with her new status and Mary uses this tale to show how each family member comes to terms with what is happening and grows stronger in support for the one they love.  Julia who worries she is letting everyone down, but comes to understand that love is stronger than any weakness.
Next blog is book 7, which just happens t be my book, An English Rose. See you then, Allyson.

Monday, 21 March 2016

Mother's Day Magic...with Love by book: 5: Maddie's Project by Anna Celeste Burke

Hello Everyone

Thank you for joining me again in another blog post about the Mother's Day Magic Anthology, and of course my adventures.

Over the last week in Valencia, Spain, which is the area we are staying in, they have been having the great celebrations for Las Fallas Festival, held annually in the Valencia region in honour of St Joseph. Spain, is know for its festivals, there seems to be a celebration very week for something and very often the shops are closed in honour of something.

Coming from the UK, where we celebrate Guy Fawkes Night on the 5th of November, I am used to a few fireworks and a bonfire. I am here to tell you that our simple firework night is nothing compared to the week long celebrations that end in the burning of the Fallas. Even now you are probably thinking firework display or a small bonfire.

But in Spain, it is not about the pretty colours, the ooohhhs and aarrhhs as the fireworks go up in the air. Here it is all about the noise. Their main firework is the firecracker, which range from small pops to eardrum popping, car alarm starting bangs, that start from 7am in the morning until late after midnight for a week.

People just walk down the street and randomly get a firecracker out of a bag or their pocket, light it and throw it in the road; even your children. the organised cracker throwing is joined by fantastic horn blowing and drum beating marching bands, that wind around the streets for an hour or more at a time.  All this accumulates during the week until at midnight on the last day of the festival when they have the biggest and loudest bangs ever and then they burn the Fallas.

The Fallas is a hand built (used to be wood and paper) statue that is a caricature depiction of a local politician. Every village, town and even the districts within the towns has a committee that designs and builds these thousand euro statues each year and then set fire to it.  In El Perello, where we are based, there were two and they were erected n the middle of the road, very near to houses.

The fire men are on standby at each burning.  I really do not have all the info or the space here to do justice the Las Fallas festival, but please follow this link to find out more and look at other websites, it really is a site and noise to hold and would be a great idea for a story in there somewhere!

Sorry Anna Celeste Burke, for the delay in talking about your book, but I just had to tell everyone about the festival. It seems so quiet here this week.  Maddie's Project, is the fourth book in the anthology, I really like the setting and the way Anna has used the daughters to discuss and dissect their mother's strength and weaknesses and capabilities of coping. My Review:
Maddie's project.  A well written story about the strength of a mother as seen through the eyes of her child. Even though the story is focusing on different ways of coping with illness, especially cancer, Anna Celeste has created a tale which makes you feel comfortable with the intrusion into a families reaction while being thrown into chaos. Who will step up to the mark?
The characters in this story have been borrowed from Anna's bestselling mystery series and there are cleverly placed hooks throughout the story to get you intrigued to read more of Anna's stories, which has worked on me....must download more of Anna's books.
Thanks for reading.
Apparently the paperback books look fabulous.  It will be a longtime before I get my hand on one.
Such good value. A perfect gift for any Mother at any time. 

Monday, 14 March 2016

A slight interruption to the scheduled Mother's Day Magic reviews...

Hello, she says with a bright chirpy voice.
You know when you are just pursuing something on the web and you see a link that looks interesting, so you follow it to see where it goes?  I know it usually heads to 'wasting time' or another reason for 'procrastination', but the other day, it was actually worthwhile, and for me I have been smiling ever since.
I followed a link in a retweeted retweet, and found a review of Mother's Day Magic. Not only had this (male) author/reviewer written a review, but he had actually read all the books...even I have not got through them all yet. He said some nice things about the whole anthology.

His review can be found at

But I need to just paste a bit in here, to show you why I am smiling:

Mother's Day Magic: With Love is a collection of twelve individual short stories and/or novellas, by twelve separate writers, of whom, eleven I think, are female. Every single one of the stories had something special about them and I wouldn't be overstating things to say that I enjoyed each and every one of them.

As always though there were some stories that touched me more than others. The first of these was An English Rose by Allyson R Abbott. I absolutely adored this story of a quintessential 85-year-old English woman who realizes before it is too late that maybe there is life left in the old girl yet. Maybe it's my colonial background, but the language and situations in this story absolutely resonated with me. I adored it.
What a great review! It makes writing all worth while, when you find someone who appreciates your work.  Thank you, Grant, you made my day, my week and probably the whole year.

FOOTNOTE: There are actually 13 authors, one of which is male.

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Mother's Day Magic...with Love by book. December Roses by Daisy Banks

Hello again,

Thanks for dropping in.

I am still in Spain and have discovered that it is not always sunny. WE have had some very cold and windy days recently, so much so that we are having second thoughts as to whether this is the right place for us to settle. We had planned on curbing our travels for a couple of years, to try and get a bit more organised with out belongings, writing and play catch up with family, but now we may look further south. We have been spoilt by the hot sunny weather on the west coast of the USA and in Cape Town...which is definitely looking more appealing. Today is a nice sunny day, but as we have power (lots of power cuts this week), the internet (no power mans no internet, but also it keeps dropping out...who moved the satellite?) and I am feeling better (been a bit poorly), I have forgone the sun and am sitting inside this very cold apartment blogging.  Must be crazy!

Anyway, the next book in the box is December Roses by my fellow British Author Daisy Banks. I really felt at home in this story, as I pictured the streets, countryside, houses and furnishings from the recalled memories of a true love relationship. The smell of roses triggers these memories and Daisy allows us privy to Jean's early courting days, in particular a day trip with her young fellow with whom she was deeply in love. Unfortunately, her strict parents, in particular her mother, did not share in her enthusiasm, and her special day trip was fraught worry as she tried to work out how to keep everyone happy.  I loved the contrast of Jean's vigorous youth with the frail old lady who nods off to sleep all through the day. A beautifully written story that captivates your imagination and heart as you really want Jean to win her mum over and to keep her beau.
This was a new genre for Daisy, and I understand a huge challenge and in contrast to her normally 'heated' relationships, but believe me, she has coped with it very well. A lovely read.
On my writing front.  Managing Ed is now at the editors, for the first run through, and I expect a lot of changes to be suggested as I don't really feel I had enough time to dedicate to it.  Luckily my chosen editor this time specialises in brainstorming, so I expect the next few weeks will see my pen with a red hot tip.  As I am publishing Managing Ed at the end of April, I will also need to be a bit more focused.  I am not sure how other writers cope, but I get distracted very easily. My best time to work is in the evenings, on my own, with no noise...never happens:)
If you get a minute pop to my other blog page I have just started.  I am going to talk about things that I have found out over my first year as an author, and share some great (and hopefully useful) information for new authors.

Sunday, 6 March 2016

Win a Paperback copy of Mother's Day Magic...with Love Anthology

Yes, you read it correctly.....I have set up a giveaway with Amazon (open to USA citizens only I am afraid) for some lucky person to win a paperback copy of this fabulous anthology.

****Would you like to WIN a paperback copy of the Mother's Day Magic Anthology? Just follow this link (open to USA residents only)
or you could buy the ebook for just 99c from

it has limited entries and a deadline, so which ever comes follow the link now to win this great I mean book, for your mother!

Friday, 4 March 2016

Mother's Day Magic...with Love by book. Two Hearts Unspoken by Tamara Ferguson

Hello there!

As the organiser of the Mother's Day Magic anthology, I have had the lucky experience of getting to know all the authors. In every team there is a 'crazy' who keeps everyone on their toes, makes motivational speeches, works hard and laughs a lot.  In this group of authors, I give that prize to Tamara Ferguson. I am sure she never sleeps. We are in completely different time zones, but she is always there urging me on, or telling what I need to do next. I am not all surprised that she is a best selling author, her energy is endless. She gets rave reviews for her books, which she churns out at an amazingly fast speed.  I am being to wonder if Tamara has found the secret of cloning. A lovely lady and a fantastic author. 

I have duly read her book, as it is number 3 in Mother's Day Magic...with love anthology, and loved her characters and premise of the situation. Beth, her main character, is the mother of Kyle (now in his early 20s), who is autistic . Beth has lived many years on her own, looking after her son. She has put her love for him in front of any chance of love for herself, Who would want to take on a mother with a disruptive son?

Tamara has a way of using people's fears and weaknesses and creates a tale of love and commitment. She brings together couples who are shying away from relationships, because of scars, mental and physical, and allows them to find their strength of character to build a future without fears.

Two Hearts Unspoken, carries a message to all mothers. People see you, not your child, if you will only look into their faces. Love comes from inside, so scarred bodies are not a barrier to a loving relationship.  Well done Tamara, another best seller I think!

As for me, I am still busy with promoting the anthology, but ''''drum roll please''' I have actually picked up a pen and started writing again. I am determined to finish Managing Ed, which is the second book in the Abby and Ed series.

I could do with some opinions on the cover though,  I am not sure it matches Touching Ed! what do you think?  The hat is part of the story:)

I have put myself under pressure, I seem to work better that way, by booking a Blog Tour for it's release in April/May.   Have to go now.....writing to do:)  Watch out for my book 4 review, December Roses by Daisy Banks.  Definitely have to go now, I have reading to do as well:)  Have a great weekend, Allyson

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Mother's Day Magic...with Love by book. I Love You More by Cornelia Amiri

Hello Everyone

Phew, I can now breathe a sigh of relief as Mother's Day Magic was published with out hitches. I am sure I held my breath for hours. For those of you who are new to my blog, Mother's Day Magic is an anthology of 12 stories written by 13 different authors. The tales are all about mothers. I am the organiser who has put it all together, but believe me when I say, I couldn't have done it without the authors all pooling their skill; and of course the help from my new hubby, the formatter and publisher.  I am also pleased to announce that the book is now available in print. Would make a great door is so big!  Treat your mother to a door stop for Mother's Day, two uses in one, read and keep the door open.

I mentioned the lead book in the box, in my last blog post, today it is time for the second book in the box; I love You More by Cornelia Amiri, who is known as the Celtic Romance Queen, is much more comfortable writing  Celtic Fantasy Romances, Celtic Historical Romance, Steampunk Romance and Sci-fi Romance. Although she is not bad at Literary Fiction either:)  I am making my way through the collection in Mother's Day Magic, and I read Cornelia's book last week.  Here is my take on it.

Mother's Day hold many memories Garland; good and bad. Not truly understanding the bond and a mother's love, until she gave birth to her son, she gradually allows the reader to learn about her past and why she positively glows with the love that surrounds her.  A tale that shows how strong a woman and a mother can be, when faced with danger. I like the way Cornelia tells Garland story.

I am now on book three and will post my review as soon as it's finished.

Don't forget if you can to support us on thunderclap, you have until the 3rd. It costs you nothing, but it will help raise money for MS research if a lot of the 750K social reach it has attained at the moment, buys a 99c copy of the anthology.  We are giving 10% to charity.

and just because I can, ...a link to the Mother's Day Magic Anthology

Bye, chat again in a few days.  Have a good week.  Allyson