#R3COMM3ND3D2018 with #Author Russell Day (@rfdaze) @fahrenheitpress #InkToAshes #damppebbles

Happy Friday! It’s nearly the weekend, phew.  Welcome to damppebbles and to another cracking #R3COMM3ND3D2018 post. Today I am delighted to welcome author Russell Day to the blog.  I read and reviewed Russell’s debut novel, Needle Song, last year and thoroughly enjoyed it.  The fabulous folk at Fahrenheit Press have recently published the second book in Russell’s Doc Slidesmith series, Ink to Ashes, and I can’t wait to get my mitts on a copy.  I’ll tell you a little about it later.

But first, if you’re new to damppebbles or you’ve not heard of #R3COMM3ND3D before, then allow me to explain.  #R3COMM3ND3D is a chance for bookish types to share the book love.  Three amazing books all published in the same year.  We’re currently working our way through 2018s recommendations but make sure you look out for #R3COMM3ND3D2019 which will start in November.

Without further ado, here are Russell’s 2018 picks…

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Stoned Love by Ian Patrick
I don’t like my heroes squeaky clean and Ian Patrick’s protagonist is anything but. Batford’s a dirty cop and a man wearing his welcome thin on both sides of the law; I love characters like that. Another factor in choosing this book was the authenticity of its voice. Ian Patrick’s an ex-cop with almost three decades of service under his belt. It shows in his writing, you don’t so much read his novels as experience them. I defy anyone to put this book down once they’ve opened it.

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A Dead American in Paris (Salazar Mysteries #2) by Seth Lynch
This novel’s set in Paris, in 1931, which makes it an odd choice for me to recommend. I generally like to read stories set in contemporary times. The trick Seth Lynch pulls off so well is building the setting around the reader so thoroughly that Europe between the wars feels like home. Not a happy home exactly, but you can’t have it all. Something about the tone of this book puts me in mind of J G Ballard’s novel High Rise; everything is familiar and alien at the same time. This is one of the most evocative books I’ve read this year.

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Chainsaw by John Bender
Some books are meant to be read totally at face value. Chainsaw is one of them. It’s pure pulp from start to finish, proud and unashamed. Blood soaked, gore splattered and mad as a box of frogs, it follows the misadventures of two redneck scumbags and a stolen chainsaw. What you see is exactly what you get. You will love it or hate it; John Bender doesn’t write for the middle ground.

I love your choices, Russell.  I’ve read the first of Ian Patrick’s Sam Batford books and loved it. I have Seth Lynch’s Salazar books on my TBR and Chainsaw is going straight onto the wishlist!

If Russell has managed to tempt you, or if you would like to find out more information about the books he recommends, please see the following links:

Stoned Love by Ian PatrickA Dead American in Paris by Seth LynchChainsaw by John Bender |

About Ink to Ashes:
ink to ashes.jpgDoc Slidesmith & Yakky return in a brand new adventure. Dago, president of The Handsome London Boys Motorcycle Club and one of Doc’s oldest friends, has died in an apparent accident. Before he can be laid to rest though, his wife makes an unusual request, one which Yakky fulfils with characteristic stoicism. The funeral is a particularly tense affair and it becomes clear to Doc that there’s more going on than initially meets the eye. All is clearly not well within the ranks of The Handsome London Boys and when Doc starts asking questions about the circumstances of Dago’s accident and the disappearance of a young pledger, he and Yakky find themselves being dragged into the secretive and potentially dangerous world of the ‘one-percenters’. Doc & Yakky need to tread very carefully if they’re going to ensure the truth is revealed, justice is served – and they both get out of this alive.

Fahrenheit Pressamazon.co.ukamazon.com |

About Russell Day:
Scruffy, hairy-arsed biker. I occasionally take time out from getting tattooed, eating curry and falling off motorcycles, to write crime fiction. Author of NEEDLE SONG and INK TO ASHES (both published by Fahrenheit Press). Winner of the 2018 Crime Writer’s Association Margery Allingham Short Story Competition.

Russell’s Social Media Links:
Twitter @rfdaze |

If you’re a book blogger, author or you work in publishing and have three books published this year that you want to shout about then please complete the following form (or click this link: https://forms.gle/PE483qCyrKEgV5Uq6)

#BlogTour | #BookReview: Needle Song by Russell Day (@rfdaze) @fahrenheitpress #NeedleSongBook

needle song“Spending the night with a beautiful woman would be a good alibi, if the body in the next room wasn’t her husband. 

Doc Slidesmith has a habit of knowing things he shouldn’t. He knows the woman Chris Rudjer meets online is married. He knows the adult fun she’s looking for is likely to be short lived. And when her husband’s killed, he knows Chris Rudjer didn’t do it. 

Only trouble is the police disagree and no one wants to waste time investigating an open and shut case.

No one except Doc.

Using lies, blackmail and a loaded pack of Tarot cards, Doc sets about looking for the truth – but the more truth he finds, the less he thinks his friend is going to like it.”

It is my great pleasure to be one of two blogs closing down the Needle Song blog tour today.  Needle Song is the first full novel from debut author Russell Day and is available to purchase now having been published by Fahrenheit Press in April 2018.

Needle Song is something quite special.  What you see isn’t quite what you get but it’s done in such a glorious way that it really doesn’t matter.  What struck me the most about this book is the quality of the characters.  Now I’m a reader who loves a story that centres around its characters, so Needle Song was a real pleasure for me to read.  I also like those characters to be different, a little odd maybe and with appealing quirks.  Once again, Needle Song ticks all the boxes.

When Chris Rudjer is arrested for the murder of his new girlfriend’s husband, tattoo shop owner and psychology graduate Doc Slidesmith and his somewhat unenthusiastic sidekick, Yakky, leap to his aide.  Armed with a love of Agatha Christie’s Miss Marple and a loaded deck of tarot cards, Doc and Yakky poke where the police fear to tread – all in the name of saving their mate from a life in prison.  After all, Chris looks the most likely suspect in the murder.  But Doc knows better.  Doc knows that man mountain Chris would never hurt a fly (unless provoked!) and it’s down to him (and the slightly dubious Yakky) to prove it!

I loved Doc Slidemsith, but Yakky stole my heart.  The story is told from his perspective so the reader gets to see and feel what he’s experiencing.  The moments when Doc suddenly pronounced his latest theory and Yakky’s obvious underwhelmed reaction to the reveal was just wonderful.  Very reminiscent in a lot of ways to one of my favourite movies ‘Without a Clue’.  Just brilliant!

I was compelled to keep turning the pages and was engrossed in the investigation from start to finish.  I admit that I was a little disappointed with the ‘whodunit’ but I was delighted that Doc was able to uncover the mystery in such a dramatic and flamboyant style.  Miss Marple would have been proud of him!

Would I recommend this book?  I would.  I don’t want to say this book is delightful as that makes it sound twee (it’s not twee; voodoo, tattoos, bikers, blood spill, murder, suicide and shotguns under the floorboards…) but that’s the first word I think of when I think of Needle Song.  It was a joy to read, a delight!  It breaks down genre barriers with the wonderful Christie-esque mystery but the modern day, darker setting makes it so different to everything else.  Needle Song blurs the lines and I really enjoyed it.

Four out of five stars.

I chose to read and review a copy of Needle Song.  The above review is my own unbiased opinion.

Needle Song by Russell Day was published in the UK by Fahrenheit Press on 28th April 2018 and is available in paperback and eBook formats (please note, some of the following links are affiliate links): | amazon.co.uk | amazon.com | Fahrenheit Press online shop | Goodreads |

about the author3

Russell Day (1)Russell Day was born in 1966 and grew up in Harlesden, NW10 – a geographic region searching for an alibi. From an early age it was clear the only things he cared about were motorcycles, tattoos and writing. At a later stage he added family life to his list of interests and now lives with his wife and two children. He’s still in London, but has moved south of the river for the milder climate.

Although he only writes crime fiction Russ doesn’t consider his work restricted. ‘As long as there have been people there has been crime, as long as there are people there will be crime.’ That attitude leaves a lot of scope for settings and characters. One of the first short stories he had published, The Second Rat and the Automatic Nun, was a double-cross story set in a world where the church had taken over policing. In his first novel, Needle Song, an amateur detective employs logic, psychology and a loaded pack of tarot cards to investigate a death.

Russ often tells people he seldom smiles due to nerve damage, sustained when his jaw was broken. In fact, this is a total fabrication and his family will tell you he’s always been a miserable bastard.

Author Links: | Twitter | Website |

#CoverReveal: Needle Song by Russell Day (@rfdaze) @fahrenheitpress #NeedleSongBook #FahrenheitPress #FREEShortStory

It is my great pleasure to welcome you to damppebbles today and to a rather special cover reveal.

Back in 2017 Fahrenheit Press, the utterly awesome independent crime fiction publisher launched a competition for new and established writers from around the world. They wanted to create a short story anthology and asked for submissions.

They were inundated with entries and a panel of six intelligent and highly esteemed crime fiction fanatics (I wasn’t on the panel but it sounds like I should have been!) whittled the anonymous entries down to 15. The result? NOIRVILLE, Fahrenheit Press’ very own crime anthology, was born! You may wonder why I’m telling you this but stick with it…

The winner of the competition and the writer whose story was awarded first place by the judges was Russell Day. In second place was….well, Russell Day. Yup, you read that right. Russell Day entered two stories in the competition and placed first and second. (And for the sake of clarification, yes, Russell did enter two stories into the competition!)

Obviously, Fahrenheit Press HAD to sign Russell Day and today’s cover reveal is for NEEDLE SONG, the first novel from this exciting debut author. But only one of Russell’s stories made it into NOIRVILLE. How do you fancy reading the other one? You do? Then read on…

FREE RUSSELL DAY SHORT STORY IN EXCHANGE FOR A TWEET:
To receive a copy of Russell Day’s award-winning story, make sure you’re following @damppebbles (so you can receive the DM with the download links) and then tweet the following (copy and paste):

NEEDLE SONG by Russell Day (@rfdaze) published by @fahrenheitpress in eBook on Monday 30th April! #NeedleSongBook | @damppebbles
https://fahrenheit-press.myshopify.com/products/russell-day-needle-song-ebook-kindle-version

No retweets, it has to be a shiny new tweet otherwise it won’t count! Any problems then please contact me on Twitter (@damppebbles).

And now for the cover reveal. Here’s the blurb to whet your appetite…

Spending the night with a beautiful woman would be a good alibi, if the body in the next room wasn’t her husband.

Doc Slidesmith has a habit of knowing things he shouldn’t. He knows the woman Chris Rudjer meets online is married. He knows the adult fun she’s looking for is likely to be short lived. And when her husband’s killed, he knows Chris Rudjer didn’t do it.

Only trouble is the police disagree and no one wants to waste time investigating an open and shut case.

No one except Doc.

Using lies, blackmail and a loaded pack of Tarot cards, Doc sets about looking for the truth – but the more truth he finds, the less he thinks his friend is going to like it.

I won’t keep you waiting any longer. Here’s the cover…

needle song.jpg

I love that cover (those arms and tattoos belong to the author himself!) and I cannot wait for the blog tour which will be coming your way soon.

If you would like to get your mitts on a copy of Needle Song then you won’t have long to wait. Needle Song will be published in eBook on Monday 30th April 2018 with the paperback to follow a week later.  If you fancy being quick off the mark and pre-ordering, then click HERE.

about the author3

Russell Day (1).jpg

Russell Day was born in 1966 and grew up in Harlesden, NW10 – a geographic region searching for an alibi. From an early age it was clear the only things he cared about were motorcycles, tattoos and writing. At a later stage he added family life to his list of interests and now lives with his wife and two children. He’s still in London, but has moved south of the river for the milder climate.

Although he only writes crime fiction Russ doesn’t consider his work restricted. ‘As long as there have been people there has been crime, as long as there are people there will be crime.’ That attitude leaves a lot of scope for settings and characters. One of the first short stories he had published, The Second Rat and the Automatic Nun, was a double-cross story set in a world where the church had taken over policing. In his first novel, Needle Song, an amateur detective employs logic, psychology and a loaded pack of tarot cards to investigate a death.

Russ often tells people he seldom smiles due to nerve damage, sustained when his jaw was broken. In fact, this is a total fabrication and his family will tell you he’s always been a miserable bastard.

Author Links: | Twitter |