Category Archives: Shadows in Sunshine

A MAJOR EVENT ENJOYED.

A MAJOR EVENT ENJOYED.

Back at my desk I now have time to reflect upon my recent trip to that little paradise in the Atlantic, Madeira. ‘Shadows in Sunshine’ gave me the excuse to visit the island again to launch the book in its actual setting, and with the help of Bruno Silva’s team at the Real Canoa, Livraria Esperanca bookshop and the Pestana Hotel Group the week long event proved to be the most memorable in my writing career.

The event coincided with the Madeira Literary festival where I spent long periods on five of the days at the Livraria Esperanca stand. Thanks to their organisation the books had arrived from the UK in time and were displayed in pride of place.

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A celebration of the launch was held at the Real Canoa restaurant slightly out of the centre of Funchal at Ponta Cruz and hosted by Bruno Silva and Alicia Gomes who laid on a remarkable buffet for the guests. Thanks to photographer Thomas Taylor and Alicia Gomes the event was well recorded on camera. The lovely Agnese Alde provided delightful background music throughout the event.7061d1be181c4912b39e33f5651cd30c

 

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It was thanks to Paula Severino’s hard work and organisation that the four talks at the Pestana Group hotels went well, as did the talk arranged by Carla Camacho at the Vidamar Resorts hotel and the staff of the Girassol hotel who hastily organised an extra venue for me. As usual my memory failed me regarding having photographs taken of the talks.

Like most hectic events that seem to pass in a blur, it is only now as I sit calmly at my desk that I recall my conversations with the many delightful people that I had the pleasure of meeting during my stay. I am always amazed at the interest people have in the way an author works and invariably find fresh questions to answer once the formal talk is over.

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The dark parts of ‘Shadows in Sunshine’ draw on the politics of North Africa and the Euro crisis and its effect upon the people of Madeira. That I hope will not disturb the tourists’ enjoyment of the island!

 

MOORLAND RADIO

Mervyn Gamage at Moorland Radio

Mervyn Gamage at Moorland Radio

This morning I enjoyed a special event, that of being interviewed by Moorland Radio’s Mervyn Gamage on the Breakfast Show. To my delight I discovered that Mervyn was a great fan of the Vaughan Thrillers after having read ‘A Cast of Hawks’ during a holiday in Madeira. Hooked, he has followed my books and the Ian Vaughan story from that day to this.

As a regular visitor to Madeira it was fortuitous that his last visit coincided with his reading of ‘Shadows in Sunshine’ that is actually set in Madeira and a scene from which takes place in a similar hotel suite to his. It was in a way nice to learn that the scene was good enough to have him searching on the carpet for blood stains.

It was great being on the show of such a popular local radio station. For readers of this page who live in the Staffordshire area but who have not yet found Moorland Radio, tune in on 103.7 FM to keep in touch with local news and events. The Breakfast Show presented by Tony Mullins and Mervyn Gamage goes out every Saturday between 7am and 10 am. Enjoy, I know I do.

A Big Thank You

Thank you‘ has got to be my most favourite phrase, as it implies that something nice has been done or a service provided. I know that it can also be used in a sarcastic vein, but keeping with the positive, I will keep it at the top of my favourite phrases list.

The reason for my rambling on this subject is my own awareness of the need to  say A BIG THANK YOU to those readers who have taken the trouble to write reviews of my books

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A Cast of Hawks CoverBATSU COVER

Having written several reviews of other author’s work, I appreciate the time in consideration and the actual phasing required by the writer. It is, however, a way for the reader to say thank you, and like the tip given to a waiter for good service, is highly appreciated by the receiving author, and this author in particular. It is only by this method that we know that our writings have met the reader’s expectations. If you are puzzled as to where to send them, may I suggest the ‘Good Reads’ or ‘Waterstones’ websites or of course ‘Amazon’. THANK YOU.

Shadows in Sunshine out on Kindle

As of the 14th October, Kindle readers will be able to download copies of ‘Shadows in Sunshine’.

This ‘stand alone’ Ian Vaughan thriller has had some great reader reviews so far, so I hope those downloading the Kindle version will find equal enjoyment in reading it.

 

 

 

 

Ian Vaughan. Family man… once. Now recruited to the SIS and fresh out of training, his first field op looks to be almost a breeze. His assignment sounds highly achievable – a mission to befriend a charismatic Tunisian politician, who, in the wake of the failed ‘Arab Spring’ has conceived a unification plan for the North African oil and gas producing nations. Western governments welcome the plan, but other forces are at work…9781843869689
A conference to present the plan is to be held on the beautiful island of Madeira, and Vaughan, using the cover of a maritime author, is dispatched to the island, assisted by the Royal Navy. En route Vaughan rescues a boy adrift on a sailboard and comes in contact with his widowed mother who is host to her Brazilian uncle, unaware that his ambitions could destroy the entire European economy.
Greed and death lay in the shadows, as Vaughan finds himself embroiled in conspiracy and danger, challenging both his judgement and his courage.

NEW RELEASE – SHADOWS IN SUNSHINE

Shadows in Sunshine will be out there on Thursday 22nd January, available from all good bookshops and available in paperback and on kindle from Amazon. For those wanting a signed copy, the book’s launch is to take place at The Bookshop Lee-on-the-Solent on Saturday the 31st January between 11am and 2pm then following that I will be doing a book-signing event at Waterstones Fareham on Saturday the 21st February between 1pm and 2pm. Price £10.99.

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Back Cover Synopsis

Ian Vaughan. Family man… once. Now recruited to the SIS and fresh out of training, his first field op looks to be almost a breeze. His assignment sounds highly achievable – a mission to befriend a charismatic Tunisian politician, who, in the wake of the failed ‘Arab Spring’ has conceived a unification plan for the North African oil and gas producing nations. Western governments welcome the plan, but other forces are at work…

A conference to present the plan is to be held on the beautiful island of Madeira, and Vaughan, using the cover of a maritime author, is dispatched to the island, assisted by the Royal Navy. En route Vaughan rescues a boy adrift on a sailboard and comes in contact with his widowed mother who is host to her Brazilian uncle, unaware that his ambitions could destroy the entire European economy.

Greed and death lay in the shadows, as Vaughan finds himself embroiled in conspiracy and danger, challenging both his judgement and his courage.

 

Unquote.

 

Patricia Coughlan who has read a pre-publication copy of the book marked it as the best Ian Vaughan thriller so far, enthusing over the plot and characters portrayed. Such comments, from someone who is an avid reader, makes the two years of work really worthwhile. Hopefully many others will share her opinion.

 

The Assassins Arrival ( Shadows in Sunshine)

Takkal stood looking at the maze of shore lights in front of him. “How you know your way into this harbour?” he asked the younger brother who was helming the boat.

“I look for light,” came the answer.

“Yes, but which light?” asked Takkal, not trusting in the will of Allah for guidance.

The Scene in Daylight

The Scene in Daylight

“You see red flashing light, little bit high over there?”

Takkal looked along the line of the man’s arm. “Ah, yes I see.”

“We keep this side of that until we see low down flashing green light, then we follow that in. If we lose sight of it we go little side to side until we pick it up again.”

The green light he was referring to was set three metres up on the wall of a restaurant in the street leading into the village from the slipways. The street, being narrow, restricted the view of the light from the sea, thus giving sure guidance into the approach channel.

“There, there is the green light you see?”

“Yes I see. Do not lose sight of it,” Takkal replied sternly, inwardly, and for the first time in many years, sending a silent prayer of thanks, as his eyes picked out the ragged rocks either side of the entrance lit by the glow of the village lights.

Further into the harbour entrance the helmsman closed the throttle of the engine and pointed to his brother, then to the dinghy. In two quick moves the little craft was launched over the side as the fishing boat slowed.

“We cannot land you at fish quay, too many people to see you. You go in dinghy over there towards where you see green light. Try to be relaxed, we come soon.”

Takkal shook his head in disgust and reluctantly made his way to the side of the boat.

A typical fishing boat of Madeira.

A typical fishing boat of Madeira.

The brother helped them over the side and lowered their bags to them. Then the fishing boat moved away and in a few yards turned to port and headed for the quay, whilst Takkal took up the oars again and rowed them ashore.

At one o’clock in the morning the slipways were deserted and their arrival passed unnoticed, much to the relief of both men. Though their jackets and trousers were crumpled and stained they did not stand out, in fact they blended in so well with the few working fishermen about in the streets that their hosts had trouble finding them an hour later, only identifying them by their baggage.

 

A Last Goodbye

In my latest book, ‘Shadow in Sunshine’ I write of my hero leaving Portsmouth Harbour aboard the commando carrier ‘HMS Illustrious’. His feelings are of self-doubt, countered by excitement regarding the future, which appears on the surface to be a simple diplomatic mission. He stands high up on the superstructure looking down at the helicopters lining the flight deck and the small groups of sailors staring at the shore, like many thousands before them. In times of peace these farewell moments are probably tinged with regret at leaving a loved one or the thrill of seeing new horizons, but in times of war must be the thought that it could be the last time they see that view of the ships home port. Ashore there are people with similar feelings, most for individuals onboard, but some seeing the ship as whole, both men and machine of war. The inhabitants of naval towns have endured the loss of many fine ships over the centuries, it is something that they accept, but never without a sense of loss, and in this age of rapidly moving political tensions, what appears to be a peaceful mission can easily escalate at the flick of a switch.