Image

GUEST POST: Anthem of the Sea by Thom Collins

Thanks for having me here today to talk about my new release, Anthem of the Sea, the first book in The Anthem Trilogy. I’ve been working on the trilogy for two years and am very excited to have the first book coming out. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous too. This book is a huge deal for me.

Anthem of the Sea is a contemporary thriller set on board a massive cruise ship called the Atlantic Anthem. The Anthem has everything: luxury accomodation, restaurants, bars, spas, shops and a theatre. It’s a five star hotel at sea. Daniel Blake, a successful singer, comes aboard to perform on the final few days of the ships maiden season. He soon meets Elijah Mann, a handsome comedian, who’ll shares the entertainment bill with him on the return voyage to England. The guys hit it off straight away. Both talented and good-looking, they’re a perfect match. But not everybody thinks so. Also on board is Oliver Gill, a man from Daniel’s pass who bears a long and bitter grudge against him. As the ship sets sail, two days from next port, the scene is set for romance, passion and revenge.

I loved writing and researching this book. The Atlantic Anthem is a fictional ship but based on my own experiences as a traveller and from doing researching into modern super-ships. There’s something about the sea that is inherently romantic which makes a cruise ship the perfect location to set a story. Not just romantic, but exciting, dramatic, exhilarating and sometimes even a little scary. I grew up in a coastal town and my father was a fisherman, so I’ve spent my whole life in love with the sea.

Without giving too much away, readers can look forward to learning a lot more about these characters in the next two books. How events in this story shape and colour their future. Although Anthem of the Sea is book one in a trilogy, I’d like to assure everyone that this also works as a standalone read. I don’t like series books that read as one continuous novel, often leaving the reader hanging mid-scene. Although part of an on-going story, this is a novel in it’s own right, reaching an exciting climax in the middle of an Atlantic storm.

I hope everyone has as much fun reading as I did writing it.

Blurb

An ocean of possibility. For love, revenge and murder.

Daniel Blake, a handsome young singer, boards the Atlantic Anthem in Portugal for the final voyage of her maiden season. The state-of-the-art ship is the jewel in the Royal Atlantic cruise fleet. For Daniel, a one-time boy band member and TV talent show winner, it’s an honor to perform aboard such a vessel. Daniel loves the freedom and adventure of the sea. He began his solo career as a cruise ship entertainer and returning to the ocean as a headline act brings him full circle. He isn’t looking for love.

Neither is comedian Elijah Mann. Working at sea has given Elijah’s career the boost it desperately needed. Often considered too good-looking and sexy to be funny, work has been hard to come by since his TV show was canceled. With a potential new career opening up, he must remain focused. But when Elijah meets Daniel the attraction is mutual and instant. As the ship sets sail for England they have three days to get to know each other. Elijah can’t let that opportunity pass.

The voyage home is far from smooth. Also on board is a figure from Daniel’s past. A man who’s been holding a grudge for years, waiting for his moment. As a storm builds in the North Atlantic, Daniel and Elijah discover that the trip of a lifetime could be their last.

Buy Links

Pride Publishing: https://www.pride-publishing.com/book/anthem-of-the-sea

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Anthem-Sea-Thom-Collins-ebook/dp/B0725JDM29/

Amazon USA: https://www.amazon.com/Anthem-Sea-Thom-Collins-ebook/dp/B0725JDM29

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/anthem-of-the-sea

Barnes and Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/anthem-of-the-sea-thom-collins/1126384702?ean=9781786515681

About the Author

Thom Collins is the author of the novel Closer by Morning, with Pride Publishing. His love of page turning thrillers began at an early age when his mother caught him reading the latest Jackie Collins book and promptly confiscated it, sparking a life-long love of raunchy novels.

The novellas Gods of Vengeance and Silent Voices were published by Pride in early 2017, followed by the novel Anthem of the Sea, the first book in the Anthem Trilogy. He has recently finished writing the second book in a series and is working on the third.

Thom has lived in the North East of England his whole life. He grew up in Northumberland and now lives in County Durham with his husband and two cats. He loves all kinds of genre fiction, especially bonk-busters, thrillers, romance and horror. He is also a cookery book addict with far too many titles cluttering his shelves. When not writing he can be found in the kitchen trying out new recipes. He’s a keen traveler but with a fear of flying that gets worse with age. Since taking his first cruise in 2013 he realized that sailing is the way to go.

Links

Blog: www. thomcollinsauthor.blogspot.co.uk/

Twitter:   @thomwolf     and  @realthomcollins

Email: thomcollinsauthor@aol.com

Image

GUEST POST: Silent Voice by Thom Collins

Thanks for having me here today to talk about my new release Silent Voices. This story was a lot of fun to write but the inspiration for it came about in the most mundane fashion. I was so bored with my daily commute one morning last autumn that I veered off onto a completely unknown road, knowing that it would eventually lead me in the direction I needed to be for work. The road itself was twisty with hair pin bends, deep woods and isolated farm houses. So much more interesting than my usual route. I began to take this journey every morning. It was sometime during the second week that I noticed a large manor house set back from the road behind a gated wall. Each day I paid more attention to the old house as I passed and ask myself the kind of “what if” questions that kick start so many good stories. On arrival at the office, I would quickly scribble down the latest round of ideas my morning commute had provided. Being the kind of author I am, I didn’t imagine tea parties and happy families behind those gates, but something far darker and sinister. In this way Winterstone Grange, the black heart of the story, began to take shape.

Silent Voices is set in the North East of England, in a combination of real and fictional locations. My lead character Josh Jackson is a restaurateur in the centre of Durham. While his restaurant The Cellar Steps is fictitious, the street where it’s located is very real. It’s one of my favourite parts of the city, full of secret corners, alcoves and hidden court yards. Silent Voices is essentially a thriller as Josh is drawn into a dark web of secrets and cover-ups while searching for his young cousin. It’s also a love story. Josh’s search for his cousin leads him to Ed, a journalist, researching Winterstone Grange for reasons of his own. Both characters were great fun to write – modern, sexy, intelligent guys – and their attraction for each other is seriously hot.

This is my third release with Pride Publishing and my first novella. My previous releases where Closer by Morning, a novel, and Gods of Vengeance, a short story. I love the novella format, as both a writer and a reader. I like the balance of action, drama and character, delivered at great pace, in a story that can be enjoyed in one or two sittings.  I can’t wait to write more like this.

Blurb

A desire for justice as strong as their passion for each other.

Concerned about the welfare of his young cousin, Josh Jackson, a restaurant owner, traces the boy to Winterstone Grange, a gated manor deep in the country. Miles from anywhere, the protected walls of this stately house conceal dark secrets. Josh’s search brings him into contact with Ed Brolin, a handsome journalist who has spent weeks investigating the secrets of the Grange and its owner. Ray Armstrong is a wealthy business man with influential connections in Parliament and the police. Ed knows exactly what goes on at the Grange but without evidence, he hasn’t got a story.

Drawn together by instant attraction and a powerful hunger for justice, Josh and Ed are determined to expose the sordid secrets of the grange despite the risks it poses. Josh has never met a man like Ed before—so strong, determined and masculine. Falling in love is easy. But they’ll have to put their emotions aside if they’re going to give a voice to all the silent victims of Winterstone Grange.

EXTRACT

Josh Jackson didn’t worry when his cousin failed to come home. It was Saturday night and Kevin was eighteen. Josh wasn’t about to impose a curfew on the kid. Neither was he going to babysit. Kevin was old enough to take care of himself.

Josh checked Kevin’s room when he came home from work at one o’clock. The spare bed hadn’t been made since Kevin had gotten out of it that morning and yesterday’s clothes were all over the floor—discarded jeans with his boxers still inside them, a scruffy T-shirt and a pair of dirty socks. The smell of the socks hit him from the doorway. Despite the reek of cheap deodorant and aftershave filling the room, the socks were pungent. Teenagers. Josh wasn’t about to tidy up after him so he left things as they were, including the damp towel draped over the foot of the bed. The kid was only staying a few nights. If he wanted to live in a mess like that, so be it, so long as he left the place as he’d found it when he moved on.

Josh shut the door and went to bed. He wished his cousin luck. If the boy wanted to get laid, he’d rather he did it somewhere else. It was bad enough that Josh’s lodger, Bobby, regarded the place as a Grindr pit stop, without his cousin treating it like a knocking shop, too.

Josh read for a while and half-listened for the sound of Kevin coming home, but eventually fell asleep.

He wasn’t overly concerned in the morning to find Kevin’s room just as he’d left it, though by now it smelled considerably worse. The fancy fragrances had worn off and all that remained was the fetid odor of teenage sweat and damp towel. So, he stayed out all night. Good on him. Josh had been a teenager once, a horny one at that, so he could totally relate. Kevin wouldn’t get the chance to fuck around much when he was at home. His mother had very rigid views on that. It wouldn’t have mattered whether Kevin had turned out straight or gay. His mother had raised a good boy and intended to keep him that way.

Kevin will be going back to her in a couple of days. He might as well have fun while the leash is off.

He was a good-looking lad. Josh knew he’d be popular in town. A little baby-faced for his age, but with the family features of blue eyes and blond hair, his fresh twinkie image would attract plenty of attention. He looked a lot like Josh had at that age. Josh had been a slim-looking twink until well into his twenties. It was only in the last few years he’d filled out with muscle and looked more like a man. The beard helped. How grateful he’d been when the ability to grow more than a few wisps of pale chin-fluff finally occurred. He kept it neat with a regular trim, but now that he had grown a beard, he couldn’t ever see himself being without one.

Josh called Kevin’s mobile while waiting for his morning coffee to brew. It rang a few times before going to voicemail. “Hi, it’s me,” he said. “Not checking up on you, I just want to know you’re okay. Give me a ring back, or a text when you get this message. Just to say you’re alive… Otherwise I’ll have to call your mother,” he added jokingly and hung up.

He had bigger concerns than a randy teenager. His restaurant, The Cellar Steps, was short on staff today and fully booked for both lunch and dinner. He’d asked all his remaining staff to come in early to help with the prep and service, which meant getting in even earlier himself. As the owner, it wasn’t necessary, since he employed a manager for the day-to-day running, but Josh believed in setting an example from the top down. That meant rolling up his sleeves when things got tight. He thought about putting a little cash Kevin’s way to help out, if he arrived home in decent time and wasn’t too hung over.

He heard the heavy thud of the newspapers landing in the hall. Perfect timing. A little news and some freshly brewed coffee. A relaxing start to an otherwise hectic day.

Josh sat at the kitchen table with multiple Sunday supplements spread all around him when Bobby stumbled out of his bedroom in just his boxers and a T-shirt, yawning and scratching his belly and balls at the same time. His semi-hard dick waggled in the front of his shorts. Bobby lurched into the bathroom and returned a few minutes later, looking fractionally more awake, minus morning wood.

“Coffee?” Bobby asked. “Okay if I help myself?”

“You know where it is,” Josh said, drawing back from the stench of alcohol that came off him in stale waves. “Jesus, your blood must be one hundred proof.”

“I think I’m still drunk,” Bobby observed. “The hangover hasn’t kicked in yet.”

“I don’t envy you when it does.”

“One cup of this and I’m crawling back beneath the duvet.”

Josh looked at him uncertainly. An idea had just occurred to him. He hoped he was wrong. “I don’t suppose my cousin is under that duvet with you?”

Bobby chuckled, his dark eyes crinkling. “Wouldn’t that be something? He is kinda hot. But little blond cupcakes are not my thing. In Kevin’s case, I could make an exception. Maybe.”

“But did you?”

“Too close to home, bro. The kid’s a cutie but he ain’t worth the earache. I’d never hear the last of it.”

It was some relief. Josh didn’t have a problem with his young cousin fucking around—but with Bobby, no way. His lodger was a good friend but a total slut. Kevin would need a lot more experience under his belt before he was ready for that old hound. “I don’t suppose you do know where he is? He hasn’t been home.”

“He’s between somebody’s sheets, all right. I walked into town with him last night, had a drink and showed him where to go.”

“You left him on his own?”

“No, he left me. I guess I cramped his style. He headed off toward Gala Square with a group of studenty types. He didn’t know how fast to ditch me once he got to talking to people his own age.”

Josh loosened up again. He’d been right about Kevin. He knew what he was doing. A young man in a new city making friends fast. There was nothing to worry about.

BUY LINKS

Pride Publishing: https://www.pride-publishing.com/book/silent-voices

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B06XXH9T1N/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1491562233&sr=8-3&keywords=thom+collins

Amazon USA: https://www.amazon.com/Silent-Voices-Thom-Collins-ebook/dp/B06XXH9T1N/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1491562407&sr=8-3&keywords=thom+collins

KOBO: https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/silent-voices-15

Barnes and Noble: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/silent-voices-thom-collins/1126168330;jsessionid=5F7489723C6FD83BD2A1910F02E6693C.prodny_store02-atgap09?ean=9781786515605

Thom Collins Bio

Thom Collins is the author of the novel Closer by Morning, with Pride Publishing. His love of page turning thrillers began at an early age when his mother caught him reading the latest Jackie Collins book and promptly confiscated it, sparking a life-long love of raunchy novels.

His novella Silent Voices will be published by Pride in May, followed by the novel Anthem of the Sea, the first book in the Anthem Trilogy. He has recently finished writing the second book in a series and is making plans for the third.

Thom has lived in the North East of England his whole life. He grew up in Northumberland and now lives in County Durham with his husband and two cats. He loves all kinds of genre fiction, especially bonk-busters, thrillers, romance and horror. He is also a cookery book addict with far too many titles cluttering his shelves. When not writing he can be found in the kitchen trying out new recipes. He’s a keen traveler but with a fear of flying that gets worse with age. Since taking his first cruise in 2013 he realized that sailing is the way to go.

Links:

Blog: www. thomcollinsauthor.blogspot.co.uk/

Twitter:   @thomwolf     and  @realthomcollins

Email: thomcollinsauthor@aol.com

 

 

Image

INTERVIEW: Thom Collins, author of Gods of Vengeance

 Thom Collins stops by as he celebrates the release of his new book, Gods of Vengeance.

Tell us about Gods of Vengeance

This is a contemporary romantic thriller. Following the murder of his best friend Owen, Riley joins forces with his brother Mark, a Naval Captain, to seek revenge on the men who killed him. It’s set in a small rural community with problems of its own. Mark hates the place and has avoided it for years until personal tragedy brings him home. It’s a quick, exciting read. I saw it in my head as one-off BBC drama, a hard-hitting story for a cold night.

So, what else have you written?

I’ve written under a couple of different pen names since my early 20s. My first publishing credits were for gay porn mags in the 1990s. It seems strange now, but that was a big market back then and pretty good money. $200 for a 2,000 word story. No one offers those kinds of fees anymore. My first romance novel was Closer by Morning, another contemporary thriller, published last summer by Pride Publishing. It was a great start to a new era in my career. My next release after Gods of Vengeance, is a novella called Silent Voices, due out in May.

What are you working on at the minute?

I’m currently writing the Anthem Trilogy. The first novel Anthem of the Sea, is scheduled for a June release from Pride Publishing. I’ve just finished writing the second book in the series and am about to start the third. The Anthem Trilogy is about a couple, Daniel and Elijah, who meet under difficult circumstances. We follow the development of their relationship across three books, each set about a year apart. Readers can look forward to danger, intrigue, revenge, romance and lots of hot sex. All my favourite things.

When did you write your first book and how old were you?

I think I was around 12 or 13 when I attempted my first book. It was a Jackie Collins inspired saga, using people from school as the basis for my characters. I can’t remember much about it but it was very bitchy and OTT. I wrote in a hardback note book with a wrap around jacket I designed myself.

What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

I’m quite a geek, so when I’m not writing I love watching TV and movies. I love horror films, especially from the 70s and 80s. I love binge watching TV series on Netflix. I’m currently hooked on Teen Wolf, mainly because of a massive crush I’ve developed on Tyler Heochlin. I also like collecting vinyl records, both new and old. The more outlandish the sleeve art, the better. I also love to cook and try new recipes. I’m a nightmare when it comes to eating out and usually moan “I cook better stuff than this at home.” I don’t know how my husband puts up with me but thank God he does.

Thanks for visiting us today and happy release day!

Blurb

United in passion. Driven by vengeance.

Owen Hazard, a young farmer is dead. Murdered while he tried to prevent a robbery on his land. His older brother, Captain Mark Hazard, returns home for the funeral. Owen’s best friend, Riley runs the local pub. He has information about the night Owen was killed – he knows who was responsible. The police are doing nothing. Vengeance is their only option.

United in their passion for each other and a thirst for revenge, Riley and Mark must take the law into their own hands if there’s to be any justice for Owen.

General Release: 21st March 2017

BUY LINKS

Pride Publishing

Amazon UK

Amazon USA

About the author

Thom Collins is the author of the novel Closer by Morning, with Pride Publishing. His love of page turning thrillers began at an early age when his mother caught him reading the latest Jackie Collins book and promptly confiscated it, sparking a life-long love of raunchy novels.

His novella Silent Voices will be published by Pride in May, followed by the novel Anthem of the Sea, the first book in the Anthem Trilogy. He has recently finished writing the second book in a series and is making plans for the third.

Thom has lived in the North East of England his whole life. He grew up in Northumberland and now lives in County Durham with his husband and two cats. He loves all kinds of genre fiction, especially bonk-busters, thrillers, romance and horror. He is also a cookery book addict with far too many titles cluttering his shelves. When not writing he can be found in the kitchen trying out new recipes. He’s a keen traveler but with a fear of flying that gets worse with age. Since taking his first cruise in 2013 he realized that sailing is the way to go.

Social Media Links:

Blog: www. thomcollinsauthor.blogspot.co.uk/

Twitter:   @thomwolf     and  @realthomcollins

Email: thomcollinsauthor@aol.com