Tag Archives: novels

Interview with Lucy May Lennox, author of The Adventures of Tom Finch, Gentleman


Today we have another interview, this time with Lucy May Lennox, author of The Adventures of Tom Finch, Gentleman.

Please enjoy.


-Vincent Lowry



1) What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?

My name is Lucy May Lennox and I live in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, USA

2) What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?

The Adventures of Tom Finch, Gentleman, historical fiction

3) What is the book about?

The setting is London, 1735, the early Georgian era. Tom Finch, blind from childhood, works as an assistant conductor in a Covent Garden theater, and as a composer of popular tunes. He doesn’t let his blindness get in the way of living the high life with his low-class friends. If people condescend to him, that’s their problem. Tess Turnbridge is an aspiring opera star who auditions at Tom’s theater. She’s not about to let anything get in the way of her rising career, certainly not a lowly assistant conductor who keeps flirting with her.

This witty, lively novel is a picaresque romp through high and low Georgian society among rakes, rovers, thieving whores and demireps, highway robbers, bigamists, and duelists, bisexual opera divas, castrati, mollies, and cross-dressers, lecherous aristocrats, and headstrong ladies.

4) Where did you come up with the idea?

I was frustrated with the stereotypes and clichés about blindness and disability in historical fiction, particularly the 18th century. So often, the plot is about an impossibly wealthy man who is recently blinded, and is angry and bitter, until a self-sacrificing woman comes along and by passively loving him, helps him get over himself. Often the happy ending can only come after his sight is miraculously restored, as if people with disabilities can’t live full, rich lives.

If we look at real history, though, there were blind men who achieved great professional and social success in Georgian London, such as John Fielding, brother of Henry Fielding, and John Stanley, a composer and conductor who was an inspiration for Tom.

I wanted to write something that is the complete opposite of the usual stereotype: a man who has been blind all his life and is already fully independent and capable when the story begins, who doesn’t need a woman to be a nursemaid or carer; people at the fringes of polite society, rather than only the super rich; characters who are gay and bisexual, because they definitely existed back then. And I wanted it to be funny and exuberant. I dislike historical fiction that is grim and dark, or self-serious. It’s frustrating when characters with disabilities only exist to create angst. The 18th century was a peak of satirical, funny writing, and I wanted to reflect that.

5) How long did it take you to write it?

From start to finish it took me ten years! But I wasn’t working consistently the whole time. I wrote the first draft in 2010. In 2013, I published my first novel, Love in Touch, with a small indie press, although I actually wrote that novel second. The press very kindly had a professional editor look over the first draft of Tom Finch, which was tremendously helpful, but then the press went out of business and all the rights reverted back to me. For a while, I tried to get an agent interested but didn’t get anywhere, and I realized I didn’t want to be locked into producing a high volume series or creating a brand. Then I had children so it was many years before I got back to writing seriously. Finally in 2019 I decided to do the major revisions suggested by the editor. It took me almost a year to go through many rounds of revisions, with suggestions by other readers as well.

6) Did you learn anything from the project?

I did a lot of research, and I learned so much about the Georgian era. You can read my other blog posts about some of the research I did on disability and homosexuality in the eighteenth century, and about Baroque opera in London.

About the craft of writing in general, I learned how important it is to go through multiple rounds of editing with lots of feedback from different kinds of readers. The first draft was definitely not the best draft.

7) Do you have an author website and/or blog? How about a book video?

Follow me on Goodreads: Lucy May Lennox.

8) Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists?

Freelance professional editors are expensive but absolutely worth it. It’s also good to be part of an online community of writers who will read your work critically and give more detailed feedback than you might get from a friend.

9) What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?

I enjoy classics and literary historical fiction, but I also read a lot of comic books and graphic novels.

10) What is your favorite book of all time and why?

It’s hard to choose just one, but at the top of the list is Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susannah Clarke and the Master and Commander series by Patrick O’Brian. I love historical fiction that feels true to the time period, that is funny and fun to read.

11) Fun Question: Do you have any pets? If so, what kind?

No, taking care of small children is enough mess and chaos for now.

12) Fun Question 2: Do you own an electronic reading device? If so, what kind and how do you like it?

I use the Kindle app on an iPad. I love it because it’s so fast and efficient. I almost never buy hard copies of books anymore.


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All Because of Her by Gretta Curran Browne


Part love story, part thriller, readers will find it hard to resist turning the pages.” — TELEGRAPH

“Great touching story! — All I can say is you better have a box of tissues in close proximity while reading this book. It will tear at your heart strings over and over again, and it’s impossible to put down!

Gretta Curran Browne is one of my favorite authors. Her writing has been consistently good and always keeps me reading non-stop. Never melodramatic, just real and the characters very human as in this particular book.

This story covers three generations of a very interesting family dynamic. From WWII and the French resistance to the Vietnam War rock-and-roll era to the early 80’s and 90’s this story is based on the amazing and solid love of two people. The political eras are well covered as their effect on the lives of this couple drives the plot. The beauty of the love story and the deep sadness evoked by circumstances beyond control of the couple is brilliantly written.

Needless to add, I loved this book. And I readily recommend it to readers of romance and historical fiction. It is well worth the read. This is my second time!” — WOODSEVER Amazon Top Contributor: Historical Fiction Books

Wow, Wow, and More Wow!
Absolutely loved, loved, and loved this book! The storyline was outstanding, as it moved along, developing the characters. I felt like I knew each one myself. Many I loved, and a couple I despised. It’s very sad in places, and it turns you around hooraying the next chapter.
Usually, I only give five stars to thrillers with multiple story lines and underground cave systems and treasures. Danger at every turn, always thinking of amazing escape tactics and succeeding. But, this book did it by working on my feelings and emotions. Something new for me, and definitely worth the five stars.
If you’re browsing for a great read that will keep you intrigued for hours, this is the one! Even when I was not reading it, I was thinking about it. It was a part of my life for a couple of enjoyable days. Amazing creation, Gretta Curran Browne. Thank you so much for giving my life pleasure!” — Sylvia Banschbach

Revised edition: Previously published as ‘Ghosts in Sunlight’ but only the title has been changed due to many readers saying the title of “Ghosts” was misleading, and they were initially put off thinking it was “paranormal” which it is not.


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Interview with Andy Oppenheimer, Author of Fields of Orion – An Odyssey


Greetings! I’m pleased to bring you this interview with Andy Oppenheimer, author of Fields of Orion – An Odyssey.

It’s posted below. Please enjoy!


-Vincent Lowry


Author Interview:

1. What is your author name and in what state do you live (or country if not in the US)?

Andy Oppenheimer – UK


 2. What is the title of your newest book and what is the genre?

Fields of Orion: An Odyssey

Science fiction – first contact; science fiction – military

Espionage thriller


3. What is the book about? 


Fields of Orion is an explosive science-fiction thriller set in the near-future world of terrorism, espionage and first contact.


While in service in Iraq, charismatic, handsome British Army bomb-disposal operator Major Adam Armstrong develops telekinetic and extrasensory abilities and miraculous powers of recovery from injury. He is reluctantly recruited into a futuristic military project to create supersoldiers, headed up by the ice-cold Captain Sheena Maxwell, a spurned lover hell-bent on revenge.

Maverick bisexual counter-terror expert Dan Boland foresees the fourth London bomb attack in July 2005 after he sees furious waves of energy light up the sky above a north London park. When he meets Adam Armstrong at events he sees the decorated officer’s horrific PTSD flashbacks of battle carnage. He also sees his transmitted visions of a strange, beautiful desert, somewhere… Dan is mesmerised by Adam and they form an unusual connection. Dan is constantly drawn to the park at night to gaze up at the constellation Orion.


Dan’s powers of intuition get him recruited by the British Intelligence Service, MI5, as an undercover agent to sabotage Adrestia, a highly secretive group of highly placed, far-Right scientists planning acts of cataclysmic eco-terrorism. Dan’s previous association with the IRA (Irish Republican Army) means he can construct bombs. He desperately wants to stop the group’s plans, absolve his past and serve his country. He has sex with the group’s mastermind, Dr Carl Murrow, to advance his spying mission.

Dan falls in love with a vibrant geneticist, Dr Allison Hardy, who is also an MI5 agent working undercover in the Adrestia group. When Allison makes a shocking discovery about Adam Armstrong, she propels the most covert government project in history into unknown territory. As Murrow’s plans approach their climax in London, Sheena’s diabolical plot against Adam gathers pace as he takes the longest walk into unprecedented danger – while carrying the world’s most devastating secret.


Fields of Orion is a dizzying cocktail of James Bond, David Bowie and Greek myth and a journey of breath-taking mystery, crackling dialogue and heart-pounding action that hurtles headlong towards its Earth-shattering conclusion.


4.  Where did you come up with the idea?

Long before I became an author and consultant specialising in counter-terrorism, I worked for a futuristic American science and science fiction magazine.  I met science fiction writers and scientists and began following the music and imagery of David Bowie, as well as becoming a singer/songwriter of electro-pop music in the burgeoning London nightclub scene.


In this century I embarked on a totally different career, and had the amazing privilege to meet and work alongside army bomb disposal operators. They have inspired me beyond measure. These experiences, separated by several decades – with all their multifarious, totally disparate influences – brought me to write my first science-fiction novel.


I also got the idea for the plot while painting a picture to donate to Felix Fund, the Bomb Disposal Charity. Called ‘Nine Lives’, it features a bomb disposal operator about to dismantle an explosive device in a desert beneath a vast sun. Bowie’s lightning flash pierces the sky above two giant Schrödinger’s cats in the background. Felix the cat is the famous emblem of the bomb squads, as they have nine lives, according to legend. The hero in the picture is dead and alive at the same time, like Schrödinger’s cat. He is on his ninth life, and could be in any desert anywhere in the known Universe.


5. How long did it take you to write it?

Including several drafts after editing and proofing, 10 months from start to publication. I did take much of the summer off to finish it, however.


6. Did you learn anything from the project?

I’ve only written non-fiction so far, for many years, and for a living: hundreds of articles for defence & security journals (such as Jane’s), and conference presentations on counter-terrorism, WMD, bombs, explosives, and the means to stop them. My first book was about the bombing campaign and weapons of the IRA (IRA: The Bombs and the Bullets, Irish Academic Press, 2008).


My first novel was a big learning curve. Friends and colleagues, including one who has written novels, made me realise that it’s a totally different approach. When you write and present technical and instruction material, you tell, not hide – other than the top-secret stuff, that is! It’s the other way round with fiction. Also, self-publishing on Amazon requires all the skills, including online ones, which I’m short on, and which in a former life in publishing was done by other people in the production team. I think you need to be rich to be an author. Some successful authors I know have publicists, agents, etc. If you don’t have those, you have a big job ahead once the book is written. You also have to be good at networking in online communities. I still have a lot to learn and publishing the book is just the start.


7. Do you have an author website and/or blog?

I have a professional website which includes the book


and an Author Page on Amazon and Goodreads. But I really am clueless about all this online blog business. I have probably avoided having a blog as working freelance in counter-terrorism means I have been too busy, and also have to keep my electronic footprint to innocuous Facebook and Twitter posts and bits of promotion. I have avoided hosting a public forum that attracts trolls and people – and me – sounding off about crap. I have plenty of opinions and ideas but so far have kept them offline.


8. Do you have any success tips to pass on to fellow authors? How about any great editors/cover artists? 

I am yet to achieve success, so not yet. I wouldn’t be so presumptious to offer advice.


9. What genres do you like to read? Are you open to reading new authors and reviewing their work?

I have to read a lot for the day job – I am also Editor-in-Chief of  two magazines, and was working 24/7 until last year so haven’t had much time to read books. But my chosen genres, time permitting, are espionage/military thrillers, crime novels, some biography, books about Ireland, near-future/first contact/dystopian science fiction and vintage science fiction [Bradbury, Clarke, Wyndham, etc].  I would like to review books in these genres, having reviewed three in the past year.


10. What is your favorite book of all time and why?

I have to include two.

The Man Who Fell to Earth by Walter Tevis

The Good Soldier Schweik by Jaroslav Hasek



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Entangled Lives by Imran Omer!

Raza, a poor orphan trapped in the slums of Pakistan, is sent to a strict madrassah where he meets and falls in love with Perveen. They attempt to flee the city to escape their respective fates but fail. Perveen, pregnant, is sent back to her family, and Raza is sent to Afghanistan to fight as a Taliban solider. American journalist, Rachael Brown, travels to Afghanistan to cover the political unrest. When she meets Raza for a brief interview, she sees for the first time the true face of the Taliban: poor and desperate young men with nowhere else to go. As the war unfolds, their paths cross again, and each must decide what they owe the other.

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Carnival of Hate by Ed Bowie

A deadly secret lurks beneath the Vatican

An American general disobeys a direct order and sends his army in a desperate dash to liberate Rome from the retreating Germans.

Then, while the people of Rome are rejoicing in the streets, the Americans seal the city — even their allies are kept out.

Priest-turned-soldier Guy Wolfe is sent to investigate — but even before he reaches Rome he is sucked into a far darker mystery.





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The Lord Poet by Megan M. Franks

Meet Lord Edmund Troy, a carefree aristocrat and renowned poet in Victorian-era London. Idolized by the masses for his charisma and dashing good looks, he finds himself in the sights of wealthy socialite Agatha and her cousin Catrina.

Agatha appears to be the quintessential match for Lord Troy…until he becomes more acquainted with Catrina. Drawn to Catrina for her love of literature, Lord Troy finds himself in unusual territory as he yearns for her. A quiet and intelligent book lover, Catrina is thrust into the middle of their relationship despite her continued efforts to remain focused on following her dreams of becoming an author.

In a twist of events, Lord Troy and Catrina find each other in close contact when she is required to stay with him at his manor; their growing relationship stimulated by a series of truths and mistruths.

Complicating matters, Sam—Lord Troy’s most trustworthy longtime friend—and Imelda—his closest female confidante— weave themselves in the life of the Lord and end up intermingled in a web of sex, lies, and deceit.

Will Catrina unravel secrets too disastrous to rebury, or yet, will she be able to untangle herself from the deceptions and follow her dreams to success?




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The Secret Grievances by Vicente Monzon Ambou

Desiderio Vigil, a retired lieutenant from the force of the Havana’s Criminal Police, faces up to a conscience case: a former classmate and friend of his sons—absents because of the exile, but present because of his yearning—had become a serial killer, a sort of “social purifier”, a Vigilante which victimizes the dregs of society. The old officer decides to act by his own and channels his efforts into seeking him, accompanied by another former friend of those once-lads. It starts then a kind of three days’ pedestrian road-movie, through which, in two different narrative levels that are both interspersed and complemented, they walk up and down half capital city. It is that 1996’s Havana. The good old Faith in the future has already collapsed into a present of sad mists and uncertainties, as much for average people as for parasite lumpenproletariat. The old times of faith in the future are already water gone under the bridge and between nostalgia and sarcasms are knitted the atmospheres of this story. It is a novel in which either social and psychological elements demand its shares of police ingredient, but in which the suspense factor goes slithering underground, to burst on the surface, violent and unexpected, toward the end of the work.




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Philomena (Unloved) A Novel by Christene A. Browne

Born in the Caribbean, Philomena Jones is abandoned by her mother and left to the mercy of her grandmother, who, after raising eight children and grandchildren, is not capable of dedicating herself to another child. Love-starved, Philomena is easy prey for the island’s new pastor. She leaves home for America, hoping to find her mother, but ends up drifting and battling mental illness.
Relocated to a supportive housing facility, Philomena meets a diverse cast of women who, despite their wildly differing backgrounds and difficulties, share one common bond; their history of abuse. In this most unexpected of places, will Philomena finally find the family she has been longing for?






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The Last Seer King by S.J. Hartland



A rich tapestry of dark magic, obsession, dangerous prophecy, and the forgiveness found through friendship.

An ancient king returns…

For centuries, Roaran sought redemption. Now he can vanquish a tyrant and save a realm in chaos. But only if he cuts his last ties to humanity. Only if he returns to the one place that he swore he’d never dare go again…

A leader arises…

Slaver, raider, and warlord, Dannon wants to believe in something beyond killing. His yearning will take him on a deadly path to his destiny… that he’s fated to put aside all he believes in and fight a war he can’t win.

A warrior in chains…

A prisoner in the Icelands, about to be auctioned to the highest bidder, Val Arques has just one chance to escape and find Kaell before it’s too late—win at his captor’s dangerous psychological and sexual game or reveal the secret that will destroy him.

A prophecy unfolds…

As for Kaell… fate isn’t quite done with him yet.

For the darkness taking over the kingdom can’t be defeated by the sword, only with the heart.

In a world of poetry and song, but also treachery, betrayal, and bloodshed, the second volume in the raw and breathtaking Shadow Sword series will enthrall fans of Game of Thrones and Prince of Thorns.




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The Final Enemy by Dan Petrosini


In the face of a death-defying power, what’s the “new normal”?

Like all reporters, Jack longs for a breaking story but is stuck writing obituaries for a small-town rag. As his frustration mounts, it hits him that no one has died in over three days. Jack’s odd observation becomes something far stranger when he connects a meteorite to the bizarre phenomenon.

Seizing the opportunity, Jack breaks the story and after a struggle to control the meteorite’s power is resolved, a swelling population begins to create havoc. With the survival of the human race hanging in the balance, politicians enact increasingly horrific measures and desperate citizens take matters into their own hands.

Jack’s in a position to not just report the news, but change it, and his decisions and observations creates an epic thriller that pits the potential of human immortality against a force designed to change – or obliterate – humanity itself.

Only one man might stand in its way … the man buried in the obits department.

The Final Enemy is a story of social disintegration as well as a saga of survival. Secret plans, starvation, suicide, and a series of events that spiral the human race into a desperate survival mode evolve from a seemingly singular event and leads to a fast-paced action story that delights with its penchant for the unexpected.

In the Matthew Mather and A.G. Riddle tradition, The Final Enemy is a gripping blend of thriller and science fiction that will prove hard to put down.



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