Saturday, March 14, 2015

Book Spotlight and Review: The Threshing Circle by Neil Grimmett. #Thriller #Excerpt #Amazon #Island of Crete


Book Description

Publication Date: February 19, 2014
A young couple arrive on the Greek island of Crete and begin prying into the execution of a beautiful English woman during the German occupation sixty years before. They enter a labyrinth of forbidden love, betrayals, murder, greed and vendettas, old and new.
Then they disappear.
A feisty Scottish woman and an irascible, Zorba-like Greek form a reluctant allegiance in a desperate attempt to find and rescue them. They both have very different motives for their involvement. Their search will take them to hidden rituals, ceremonies, remote gatherings, famous monasteries and villages abandoned after decades of vendettas. To the remote island of Gavdos and finally back to a place that, “Even God does not know exists”.
They will encounter characters good and evil; some modern and pragmatic, others ancient and magical.
All the time they are being stalked by the sons of man who seeks to complete the crimes of his father and sate his own greed and insane desire for vengeance. These men are more animal than human and have been raised in the remote mountains for the sole purpose of carrying out the brutal will of their father.
The mystery of the real, hidden Crete runs deep, and THE THRESHING CIRCLE explores some of the myths and romance while not shying away from its often violent nature.
By the end choices will have to be made. If such actions are really possible on an island where many Cretans still believe that: “The Cycle of Blood”, can never stop flowing. 

About the author

Neil Grimmett has had over eighty five short stories published. In the UK by among others: London Magazine, Stand, Panurge, Iron, Ambit, Postscripts Magazine, Pretext etc. Australia, Quadrant, South Africa, New Contrast. Plus stories in the leading journals of Singapore, India, France, Canada, and the USA, where he has appeared in Fiction, The Yale Review, DoubleTake, The southern Humanities Review, Green Mountains Review, Descant, The Southern Review, West Branch and Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine. He has appeared online in Blackbird, Plum Ruby Review, Tatlin's Tower, Web Del Sol, In Posse Review, m.a.g., Word Riot, Blue Moon Review, 3AM, Gangway, Eclectica, The Cortland Review, Segue, The Dublin Quarterly , Ducts, Sugar Mule, Mysterical E, Thuglit and over thirty others.

His stories have also appeared in the anthologies: ENGLAND CALLING, BOOK OF VOICES and Italy’s ISBN’s Top International Stories. He has made the story South Million Writers Notable Short Story list for the last three years. In addition, he has won the Write On poetry award, 7 Oppenheim John Downes Awards, 5 major British Arts Council Awards, a Royal Society of Authors award and has been awarded two major grants from the Royal Literary Fund.  He has been signed over the last ten years by twelve of the leading literary agents in both the UK and USA. His current agent is Jon Elek at United Agents.

His first thriller, THE THRESHING CIRCLE, has just been bought by Amazon Publishing to be re-released on 12th May. The Hoard has also been optioned.


5 Star Book Review 

I received the book from the author for an honest review. 

This was absolutely a fantastic read. From the beginning the author drew you into this plot; tailored to hold you captive till the very last page. His ability to paint pictures with words making it alive and believable is simply outstanding. Every character, every place and every scene had your interest as this mystery / thriller reveals more of the human frailty, the greed, betrayal and their way of seeing things. The island of Crete lives according to their own rules where no law has a say.

The story begins in 1942, introducing you to a young woman who wanted to love her husband, see her baby grew and gain the respect and acceptance of the village. A simple thing that every person wants. But jealousy, hate and betrayal had its effect long after the tragic death of this woman. Sixty years later it still had its influence on the main characters: Barba Yiorgos and Diomidis; two elderly men that had their own experiences, was doing well and taking it easy. For 60 years people lived with revenge in their hearts, a misguided form of family honor as they ruined other people, shame and guilt. The vendetta coiling like an fat octopus around the sons and the entire community. 

When a young woman found herself in the midst of this vendetta she had to go and find the truth, knowing it may cost her more than just her dead puppy and kitten. Kristy McIntyre, a divorced Scottish woman thought she could escape from her own life and troubles, buying a kafenion on the picturesque Island of Crete, not knowing that meeting these two elderly men the problems she would gain. Her tenacity and will power as well as strong ethics held her firm while sorting through the clues left by another young English couple: Eleni and Patrick.  The moment Eleni stepped into the village it caused all sorts of reactions and when they disappear it caused more questions than answers.

The characters are colorfully painted with  so much flair that you could not help but admire or even fell in love with them. From all the characters, Barba Yiorgos, was definitely my favorite. His larger than life persona made you believe that there is really men like this, filled with passion and not afraid to live as he pleases. He was boisterous, rough around the edges that loved his wine and olives, but with a heart of gold. Kristy's reluctance to fall for him could be seen throughout but even she had to bow her knee at the end. 

All elements of a good thriller were evident in the book. Murder, mystery, abduction, romance, love, brutality, frailty, secrets and even a witch as you get to know the people, the Island and all the villages we visited on our tour. You are taken to many different  places, meeting interesting characters: from the priest with one eye to Kyria. Enjoying them equally as the plot unfolds in every scene. The easy flow from one scene to the next made this a quick, fast paced book that will definitely take you deep into the emotional state of each person as you unravel the mystery so long buried.  

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