UNCOVERED INTERVIEWS: Jennifer Allan

The Red House: Twilight's Edge is the new supernatural novel by Jennifer Allan, in which a family living the dream in Ibiza have their lives changed when a tragic accident leaves Maddie Davis living an almost separate existence. Jennifer joined us this week to tell us more about The Red House and the inspiration behind it.

Tell us about your latest novel in 15 words or less.
A chick lit adventure with a ghostly, supernatural twist set in Ibiza.

What inspired you to write The Red House?
Two things inspired me. I wanted to bring a new twist to the chick lit market after reading Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella and thoroughly enjoying the novelty there. Secondly I was standing in my pool in Ibiza at twilight one evening and noticed the peculiarities that form the opening lines of the book. The possibilities were endless then.

Where do you do most of your writing?
In bed. I always write in bed. I tried a desk once but it wasn't for me.

What is your favourite book?
I really couldn't decide between anything by the dear departed James Herbert and all of the novels of Barbara Erskine.

Which part of The Red House did you enjoy writing the most?
The nightmare sequences and the scenes where the heroine's husband is wrestling with his wayward emotions.

Who is your favourite literary heroine?
Rachel in Marian Keyes' Rachel's Holiday.

Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published writers?
Set yourself a goal to write at least 300 words a day. Do it every single day even if you think it will be rubbish.

Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?
The sequel to The Red House - Twilight's Edge which is provisionally titled The Red House - Nightfall.

Thanks, Jennifer!

The Red House: Twilight's Edge

Maddie and Robert Davis are living the dream. Ensconced in a beautiful converted Spanish farmhouse and working in luxury real estate on the exclusive Mediterranean island of Ibiza, they are providing their two young daughters with an idyllic lifestyle. Their life is almost perfect and they are happier than they have ever been. But all is not as it seems in The Red House. Following a series of mysterious events centered around Maddie, she becomes the victim of a tragic accident at the villas pool. With a severe head injury she fades into unconsciousness only to find herself awakening in the care of people she has never met, in a place that seems at the same time strange but vaguely familiar. Where is she and why are her family nowhere to be found? 

In a blind panic and with no recollection of the accident Maddie persuades herself she must be in the midst of a lucid nightmare. It is only when she is presented with incontrovertible evidence that she realises she is further from her home and loved ones than she could possibly imagine. So begins a nerve wracking and emotional journey as she tries desperately to find her way back to her beloved family and the life she misses so much. But this new world has a purpose for her which she is yet to understand. Can she unearth the secrets of the Red House and so return to her family, or is she already too late?

COVER REVEAL: Reader, I Dumped Him by Lorelei Mathias

Lorelei Mathias is the author of romantic comedies Step On It Cupid and Lost for Words, and her latest novel - Reader, I Dumped Him - will be published in February. The 'anti-Valentines' novel follows a group of pals in their late twenties, all members of The Break-Up Club, as they each deal with their rather different relationship woes.

This story is a celebration of the people that bring you back to life when your world closes in: your mates. Relationships come and go, but the Break-up Club membership never truly expires.

Meet Holly, Olivia, Harry and Bella. Four Londoners at the fag-end of their twenties, thrown together by their different break-ups. Its unwitting founders are Olivia (a dumper) and Bella (a dumpee).

Wedged in the middle, Holly is in an increasingly dysfunctional relationship of her own with lovable loser, Lawrence. Soon the obvious cracks in their relationship can no longer be ignored and Holly finds herself saying ‘it’s not you, it’s me.’

In the shock aftermath of their break up, Holly finds unlikely companions in Olivia, Harry and Bella. Together, they form the Break-up Club, as they support each other through their mutual melancholy and find ways to love, laugh and function as human beings again.

Break-up Club meets every Sunday. Each week, as the comedy and drama unfolds, they discover a new BUC ‘rule’. And, one by one, the rules become vital markers on their journey to recovery...
Part romantic comedy, part self-help, this is a warm novel about friendship, for anyone who has ever had a break-up.

‘BREAK-UP CLUB’
To our members, we’re the first emergency service.

NEW RELEASES: The Big Lead by Libby Kirsch

Mystery fans are very likely to enjoy the new novel by Libby Kirsch! The Big Lead follows Montana TV reporter Stella Reynolds as she uncovers a story that could lead to a lot of potential trouble...

Stella Reynolds is new to the job, new to the state, and new to making mistakes in front of thousands of people, but that’s exactly what she signs up for when she takes a job as a TV reporter in the mountains of Bozeman, Montana. Being on live TV in a small town has never been so funny, until Stella covers the town’s first murders in years. 

When the prime suspect’s girlfriend enlists Stella to help clear his name, she uncovers another shocking crime that could expose a handful of powerful insiders. 

Who is honest, who can’t be trusted, and who committed the murders? Stella is on a tight deadline to find out. Can she help free an innocent man, or will the real culprit get away with murder? 

BOOK NEWS: The Bucket List to Mend a Broken Heart by Anna Bell

The latest novel from Anna Bell (author of Don't Tell the Groom and Millie and the American Wedding) will be out in March. The Bucket List to Mend a Broken Heart follows Abi, whose broken relationship leads her to try a whole host of new and daring things...

Abseiling, wind-surfing, climbing a mountain - the things the terrified Abi Martin will do for love.

Abi's barely left her bed since Joseph, the love of her life, dumped her, saying they were incompatible.

When Joseph leaves a box of her possessions on her doorstep, she finds a bucket list of ten things she never knew he wanted to do. What better way to win him back than by completing the list, and proving they're a perfect match? But there's just one problem - or rather, ten. Abi's not exactly the outdoorsy type, and she's absolutely terrified of heights - not ideal for a list that includes climbing a mountain, cycling around the Isle of Wight and, last but not least, abseiling down the tallest building in town.

Completing the list is going to need all Abi's courage - and a lot of help from her friends. But as she heals her broken heart one task at a time, the newly confident Abi might just have a surprise in store.

FRIDAY PICKS: The Lonely Hearts Travel Club by Katy Colins

It might still be winter, but if you're looking for a sunny and adventurous tale to read, then look no further than the new series by Katy Colins, entitled The Lonely Hearts Travel Club. 

The first in the series, Destination: Thailand, will be released at the end of January by Carina, followed by Destination: India in March and Destination Chile in May!

Destination: Thailand

What if you had a second chance...to find yourself?

Instead of slipping on her something borrowed and tripping up the aisle to wedded bliss, Georgia spends her big day crying into a warm Sex-on-the-Beach, wondering where it all went wrong.

Forced to make a bucket list of her new life goals by best friend Marie, it’s not long before travel-virgin Georgia’s packing her bags for a long-haul adventure to Thailand.

Yet, Georgia’s big adventure doesn’t seem to be going to plan. From strange sights, smells and falling for every rookie traveller scam in the book Georgia has never felt more alone.

But the good thing about falling apart is that you can put yourself back together any way you please. And new Georgia might just be someone she can finally be proud of...


CUTE COVERS: She Just Can't Help Herself by Ollie Quain

Ollie Quain's 2014 novel How to Lose Weight and Alienate People was a fantastic, fun read that I could hardly put down, so hearing about this year's offering from Ollie made my day. (And to top it off, the cover of this novel is absolutely gorgeous.) She Just Can't Help Herself, in which two very different women reunite, is out in April.

Ashley lives in London and writes for a leading fashion magazine. Her life is sorted. Or at least, that's what it looks like to Tanya, who started out on as an intern with Ashley on a regional newspaper…and has remained there.

Tanya – who wears her heart on her sleeve - is panicky and frustrated. The man of her dreams is backtracking with her baby plans, she can do her job in her sleep.

But Ashley's life isn’t as sorted as it appears. She's dissatisfied at work and is dealing with a double whammy of death and divorce. Or rather, thanks to the mental barbed wire fence she constantly has up, not dealing with it.

The two women haven't seen one another for years, but a chance meeting at a party brings their worlds together. They both discover that while neither can help being themselves, they might be able to help each other.

THRILLERS: Viral by Helen Fitzgerald

With so many new and upcoming thrillers this year, it's difficult not to report on them, right? Exactly. As a fan of thrillers, I'll be including more on Uncovered over the coming months. One that has particularly caught my attention this week is Viral by Helen Fitzgerald, which will be published in early February. What if the worst thing you did went viral? Helen explores the darker side to social media, a side in which a drunken mistake can be viewed by everyone within minutes...

So far, twenty-three thousand and ninety six people have seen me online. They include my mother, my father, my little sister, my grandmother, my other grandmother, my grandfather, my boss, my sixth year Biology teacher and my boyfriend James.

When Leah Doyle and her adopted sister Su go on holiday together to Magaluf to celebrate their A-levels, only Leah returns home. Her successful, swotty sister remains abroad, humiliated and afraid: there is an online video of her, drunkenly performing a sex act in a nightclub. And everyone has seen it.

Jennifer Doyle, mother of the girls, successful court judge, is furious. How could this have happened? How can she bring justice to these men who took advantage of her dutiful, virginal daughter? What role has Leah played in all this? And can Jennifer find Su and bring her back home when Su doesn't want to be found?

BOOK NEWS: Making Headlines by Jennifer Hansen

Real-life TV journalist Jennifer Hansen's experience in television news has seemingly inspired her upcoming book, Making Headlines. The novel, published by Harper Impulse and due for release in February, follows determined reporter Rachael Bentley as she tries to balance her often harsh new job with her messy personal life...

Working as a TV reporter has its challenges, but when Rachael Bentley decides to aim high and become a newsreader, she faces a whole new minefield of explosive scenarios.

Rachel's path sees her pitched against egos in the newsroom, office politics and corrupt politicians, not to mention rampant sexism, and a mystery stalker. Juggling a messy personal life doesn't help, nor does the emotional impact of reporting on life's tragedies and when it all takes a toll and Rachel starts partying too hard, she finds herself making the headlines instead of reading them.

Will she survive a world where dreams are shattered daily and will she find the man who can help her keep her soul?

NEW RELEASES: What Would Lizzy Bennet Do? by Katie Oliver

The latest novel from Katie Oliver (author of Prada and Prejudice) is due for release next week. What Would Lizzy Bennet Do? is the first of a series of three Jane Austen-inspired novels, and focuses on Lizzy, whose new love interest just so happens to be already engaged.

When your name is Lizzy Bennet, and the object of your affections just happens to have the surname Darcy, it seems fitting that life should imitate art, and you should end up together – right?

So when a film crew arrive to shoot Pride and Prejudice’ at the Darcy estate next door to the Bennet home, and Hugh Darcy arrives home after 8 years away, Lizzy knows that their time has finally come. Until, that is, he introduces her to Holly – his fiancĂ©e…

What is Lizzy to do? It can’t hurt that Holly knows nothing about country life, and that her ex-boyfriend and film star Ciaran Duncan just happens to be the main star of the new movie. And it’s clear that Lady Darcy does not approve of Holly either. Lizzy knows Holly isn’t right for Hugh, but can she make him see that and get her Austen ending after all?

The next novel in the series - The Trouble With Emma - will be out in February, followed by Who Needs Mr Willoughby? in March.

BOOK NEWS: The Glittering Art of Falling Apart by Ilana Fox

Given that I'm already a fan of Ilana Fox (author of Spotlight, The Making of Mia and All That Glitters), it was exciting to hear the news of her next novel, The Glittering Art of Falling Apart. Released in February, the novel is set in the 1980s and follows glamorous party girl Eliza, and Cassie, who is looking into an abandoned family home...

1980s Soho is electric. For Eliza, the heady pull of its nightclubs and free-spirited people leads her into the life she has craved - all glamour, late nights and excitement. But it comes at a heavy cost.

Cassie is fascinated by her family's history and the abandoned Beaufont Hall. Why won't her mother talk about it? Offered the chance to restore Beaufont to its former glory, Cassie jumps at the opportunity to learn more about her past. Separated by a generation, but linked by a forgotten diary, these two women have more in common than they know...

UNCOVERED PICKS: Five January Releases - 2016!

It's a brand new year, which means brand new books - and there will be plenty to choose from in January! Here's our selection of five, including new reads from Julie Cohen, Michele Gorman and Carole Matthews...

The Day of Second Chances by Julie Cohen
Can you imagine keeping a secret so devastating, you couldn't even tell the people you love? Honor's secret threatens to rob her of the independence she's guarded ferociously for eighty years. Jo's secret could smash apart the 'normal' family life she's fought so hard to build. Lydia's secret could bring her love - or the loss of everything that matters to her. One summer's day, grandmother, mother and daughter's secrets will collide in a single dramatic moment. Is it too late for second chances? 

Match Me if You Can by Michele Gorman
What if Mr Right was just a click away?. Ever thought about recycling your ex? Best friends Catherine, Rachel & Sarah are fun, smart, successful and single - just like millions of women with a low tolerance for idiocy in their dates. Mr. Right hasn't turned up yet, and Mr Right-Now isn't worth booking a wax appointment for. So when Catherine, London's finest matchmaker, gets Rachel and Sarah to join her dating site where they can recycle their ex-boyfriends in exchange for an upgrade, they soon realise that anything could happen ...Three best friends, proving that sometimes it really isn't you...it's him.

The Chocolate Lovers' Wedding by Carole Matthews
The ladies of The Chocolate Lovers' Club should be gearing up for the wedding of the year but life keeps getting in the way ...Lucy is worried about her financial situation and it keeps distracting her. Should she accept an offer of help from an untrustworthy source? Nadia may have a real chance at finding love but other areas of her life aren't so rosy. Something needs to change - but what? Autumn can't wait to meet someone she hasn't seen in a very long time. She's full of hope for the future but then things don't exactly go to plan ...Chantal has been through so much and she's finally starting to feel settled. The last thing she needs is the kind of bad news that could change her life all over again. And yet, despite all the ups and downs, the Chocolate Lovers' ladies know they can get through it all as long as they have each other. They're not going to let anything get in the way of their happy-ever-afters in ...The Chocolate Lovers' Wedding.

Holding Out for a Hero by Victoria Van Tiem
The problem with first love is that it never truly dies...

Libby London fell in love with the eighties, came of age in the nineties, and now the twenty-first century is baffling her. Her New York City style is more, erm, vintage tragedy than retro babe, and her penchant for All Things Eighties might just be what's holding her back in matters of life and love...

At least that's what her well-meaning friends think. They've staged a #80sIntervention in an effort to bring Libby bang up to date. What with her dreaded birthday party, friends' madcap ambush, and being forced to relocate her vintage shop, Libby's nearing breaking point!

Will she ever be able to move on when the one she loves keeps her in the past?

Strictly Between Us by Jane Fallon
Rumours, secrets and lies. It's all in a day's work. Tamsin and her best friend Michelle have been inseparable since they were teenagers. Even now they spend all their time together, along with Patrick, Michelle's handsome husband. So when Tamsin hears a rumour that Patrick is having an affair, she is furious. Unwilling to ignore it, Tamsin plots a scheme to catch Patrick in the act, using her assistant Bea as live-bait. It should be fool proof. After all, Tamsin can trust Bea with anything. From her daily coffee order to fetching her dry-cleaning, writing reports and doing all the filing - Bea does everything with a smile on her face. Except Tamsin never considered Bea might have her own agenda. And if she does, then Tamsin really needs to watch her back...

Happy New Year!

Happy new year to all! Hope everyone had a rather lovely Christmas full of fun and festivities and of course, reading! Uncovered is officially back, with news and reviews of new and  upcoming books coming very shortly.

What will you be reading in 2016?