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Land of Hope Blog Tour – Book Blurb and Review

So… here is my stop on Junying’s wondrous blog tour to celebrate the release of her newest book ‘Land of Hope’.


Land of Hope Blurb

Every year, millions of illegal immigrants cross borders in search of wealth, happiness and a life of ease in the Land of Hope. Some succeed. Others suffer unimaginable hardships.

When Jack Gordon, Inspector in the SCS (Serious Crime Squad) hires Pearl Zhang, a professional Chinese interpreter, they join forces to fight injustice in the corrupt underworld of international crime, human trafficking and sexual exploitation.

Pearl is the voice of broken dreams, translating raw, deranged, and colourful tales of those who cannot speak for themselves. As Pearl gets more and more tangled in the lives of strangers, Jack becomes a welcome diversion, complicated by the fact that both are married. Their trans-continental roller-coaster ride derails when Pearl tumbles into the sinister world of her clients, a world full of secrets, lies, and unspeakable violence – only this time, it’s directed at her.

Can she depend on Jack? Find out in this third and final book of Junying Kirk’s “Journey to the West” trilogy.

Does it sound tantalising enough just by reading that? Here is my review of the book 🙂


A Close Dose of Reality

Having not read the first two books, I went into this with a fresh head and without any idea about the recurring characters featured, such as Pearl and Andrew. Needless to say I was a virgin to this trilogy!

Land of Hope delves into a cruel, sinister and very much darkened world of human trafficking and prostitution. Dr Pearl Church meets a variety of characters from her native China along the way, in her interpreting role, and finds out things about their lives that would make anybody’s skin crawl… it certainly did with me!

Junying’s masterful use of the English language sucks you into the lives of these unfortunate people, giving you a raw insight into the world of international crime as well as the hardships that they face. To them their only hope is to do whatever they can to escape the cruel and tough life they have left behind and seek out new lives in the ‘Land of Hope’ that is the United Kingdom.

I went into this book with knowledge that there was a dark and gritty back drop but I was still shocked at what I discovered as I went from one page to another. Regardless of such gloom, I never had an issue with reading about such things or neither did I feel that it was too much. A genre such as this is something I have never read before and to find myself immersed in this world with such ease is, in my opinion, the sign of a top quality writer – Junying can pull anyone into this world and guarantee a worthwhile experience.

The book mixes all these harsh reality checks with a passionate love affair that is more than enough to please any reader. Pearl and Inspector Jack Gordon venture into realms of forbidden pleasure when their paths cross when her talents of interpretation are required. The speed at which these two characters become entwined conjured up three apt words in my mind – ‘Spontaneous Sexual Combustion’. The instantaneous heat between them was such a hook for me to be caught up on.

The entire book took me on one journey to the next with deep and insightful views into the pasts and backgrounds of every character, all of whom interlace to make a dark, yet satisfying tapestry that is no doubt the crowning achievement of the trilogy. It all spirals towards an ending that is undeniably bittersweet, but to find out why you will have to venture forth and read the book for yourselves. *Hint hint*


I have thoroughly enjoyed participating in this blog tour and reading and reviewing Junying’s book. All I hope now is that she honours me with another culinary delight hehe.

Tomorrow’s stop will be at for an interview of the lady herself as well as an exciting give-away! Make sure you do not miss it, people!

Thanks for stopping by!


Review of ‘A Thirty-Something Girl’ by L.M.Stull

A splendid first book by a splendid woman!

It is not too complex or too simple. Lisa Stull brilliantly fuses raw emotions through the power of her words to bring forth a cavalcade of deeper meanings and thoughts.

A Thirty-Something Girl is an easy read and, at the same time, a real treat to have on the bookshelf. You will find that this book is an effective page turner and is on par with those ‘unputdownable’ novels that so many accomplished authors have produced.

To say that this was a great book is an understatement – I smiled, laughed and cried, which just goes to show that there is something to Lisa’s words that words themselves cannot express!


Lisa Stull is a lovely friend of mine and I was ever-so grateful to receive a copy of her book through the post (Good old Fed-Ex!). If you wish to know more about Lisa you should check her out. These are just a few of the places you can find her lurking about:

Facebook Author Page:

Facebook Fellow Writers Group:

WordPress Websites: and



Everyone should get to know her 🙂

Review of Paul Hoffman’s ‘Left Hand of God’

Here is the review of the debut novel of Paul Hoffman:

‘Hoffman’s use of language, pace and vision hooks you right from the start and keeps you turning the pages wanting more and more. He has a set of interesting characters who interact with one another so convincingly that you are completely in their world with them.

The book follows the path of Thomas Cale – a teenage boy who, along with his friends Kleist and Henri, escape from a sanctuary, where they have been brought up to abide by a set of religiously fueled rules, and take refuge in the city of Memphis. The three of them were trained in various specialist techniques, along with the thousands of other boys, which were to be used for war. But Cale is different – he will change the course of history.

Hoffman grips us with well-paced fight scenes, in-depth romances, and a style of drama that is tantalising and suspenseful. A great final battle rounds off the book along with a cliffhanger ending. This book will certainly make you want to read the next in the series and hopefully further on!’

Review of Mark Charan Newton’s ‘City of Ruin’

I wrote this a while ago and forgot to post it up, but it is better late than never…

‘Mark Charan Newton builds upon the success of his first book and gives us a much more in-depth perspective of characters and settings alike. He mixes suspenseful action with an intricately thought out cast of characters giving the reader a real connection with each and every one of them and allowing empathic feelings to enhance the reading experience.

This gripping tale about the defence of Villiren against the invading Okun and red-skinned Rumel armies will have everyone on the edge of their seats, their brains humming with complex images, and their desire for more of the story will grow with each turn of the page.

The main characters are expertly built upon from Nights of Villjamur and the transition is so smooth you will feel as if you never stopped reading when you open up City of Ruin.

The atmosphere is incredibly immense and immersive giving no end to imaginative stimulation and creative influences.

Mark Charan Newton is the pinnacle of new-age fantasy writing; with his combination of setting, storyline and characters teasing our pallets, pulling the strings of our imagination, and twisting plot lines when we least expect it.

City of Ruin is a fantastic advancement to Nights of Villjamur and this reviewer is sure that the third installment will be even more mind-blowing.’

Review of Mark Charan Newton’s ‘Nights of Villjamur’

This is a review of a very good book I read not so long ago by the author Mark Charan Newton –

“Mark Charan Newton’s first ‘Legends of The Red Sun’ book offers a greatly immense new world for the reader to explore. Set in a world where a new ice-age is looming and people are desperately striving to survive the cold.

The array of races in the book brings a new life to fantasy writing as we know it and creates that extra air of interest for the reader. Charan Newton delves deeply into each of his characters, bringing them to life in a whole different light. The reader gets to feel as if they are in the world themselves, connect with the characters and experience what they experience in the story. The pivotal characters come to life and keep the reader immersed from start to finish!

The novel thrives with a mixed cauldron of story lines, from political subterfuge to unseen romance. The book picks up pace as it goes along and unwraps the plot in an ever quickening movement that is unstoppable right up to the last page.

An all-round superb read and is a definite ‘must read’ for any fantasy lover.. Mark Charan Newton’s grasp of words, imagination and character depth will always leave the reader salivating and wanting more!”

I was very pleased to meet Mark back in November 2010, at the alt. fiction event in Derby, where I purchased his second book ‘City of Ruin’. His work is definitely worth reading!