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Blog tour roundup: Million Eyes II is a “madcap romp through time” that’s “scarily plausible” – plus my speech from the launch

I hope you all had a fab Christmas. Katherine and I hosted my family in our new house and it went without a hitch! (Lucky, really, considering ‘without a hitch’ has NOT been the theme for this year.)

With the New Year approaching, I thought it was high time I gathered together all the rest of the stops on my blog tour for Million Eyes II: The Unraveller.

Technically this is part 2 of my blog tour roundup. I covered the first five days of the tour here. Big thank you to fellow Elsewhen author Mark Iles for organising this. 😀

So, let’s start with the rest of the reviews. Here are some of my favourite comments:

The excellent characterisation ensures we care about some characters and are deeply suspicious of others but this is a fiendishly surprising storyline and things are unlikely to pan out as you’d predict! I’d describe Million Eyes II as Doctor Who and Back to the Future meets The Da Vinci Code. The intelligent, fast-paced plot is packed with shocks and surprises and despite obviously being a far-fetched scenario, C.R. Berry manages to make it all seem scarily plausible.

HAIR PAST A FRECKLE – READ THE FULL REVIEW

From the dinosaurs to Jesus of Nazareth, characters from the first book are thrust into new settings. Heaven knows how much research was needed to give this story the credibility it has. Linking the past with the present, and even the future, the story occupies so many timelines you’d think it impossible to keep up. But that’s not so.”

JUST 4 MY BOOKS – READ THE FULL REVIEW

Million Eyes II is slightly longer than the first book of the series, which I enjoyed. The added page count allows the book to explore a more in-depth narrative, but equally it’s still very approachable to pick up for any reader. It also builds nicely upon the foundations set up in the first book. It’s been nearly two years since I read Million Eyes, but picking up this sequel novel wasn’t a challenge at all.

REVIEWSFEED – READ THE FULL REVIEW

As other time periods are featured, the immense research into the daily life of a medieval woman living in a village, for example, makes that section a vivid portrait of the times… This is an incredible and sometimes astonishing book which reminded me of some of the more advanced themes and stories of Doctor Who.

NORTHERN READER – READ THE FULL REVIEW

Welcome to another madcap romp through time! C.R. Berry makes a brilliant job once more of looking at events from history in a whole new, and darkly comic way, weaving them beautifully into an adventure that will appeal to lovers of both time travel and conspiracy novels, and Berry is even more ambitious in the scope of the events that he puts down to the intervention of interfering time travellers than ever before in this second adventure… I am really looking forward to where Berry goes with this in book three as there are some delicious possibilities ahead.

BROWN FLOPSY’S BOOK BURROW – READ THE FULL REVIEW

This book has its moments where it packs a punch. It makes you think. It triggers a curiosity and need for more.

JAZZY BOOK REVIEWS – READ THE FULL REVIEW

C.R. Berry has written a book full of surprises and imagination and will keep you turning the pages furiously and hope you are rooting for the right side.

BERTYBOY123 – READ THE FULL REVIEW

One of my other favourite comments was this, also from Brown Flopsy’s Book Burrow:

I am undecided about the usefulness of the scattered sex scenes, which are a little cringeworthy, but even these weirdly fit with the quirky style of the book.

The reason I love this one is that it’s interesting how much readers (and viewers) notice sex. While there is more sex in Million Eyes II than the first book, these scenes probably amount to about four pages in a 390-page book. I guess that’s the power of sex to stand out from everything else. Why? I’m not sure. I’ll leave that to the psychologists. But I remember people saying that Game of Thrones was “full” of sex, yet over the course of 73 episodes, the total runtime on those sex scenes would’ve been less than one episode. (I haven’t counted, but I remember there was a video on YouTube that collected together all the sex scenes from the first three or four seasons and it came to only 19 minutes.)

Interviews

I also participated in a bunch more interviews during the tour, which offer behind-the-scenes insights on Million Eyes II, my writing methods, inspirations etc.

I spoke to “The Scribe” about R.L. Stine’s influence on my writing, why I’m a plotter not a pantser, and why I don’t agree with Stephen King’s aversion to adverbs.

I also talked to Sarah Udoh-Grossfurthner about how my time as a criminal defence lawyer has influenced my writing (actually more than I realised), and whether I would ever go back to it.

One of my favourite interviews was with author Elizabeth Hirst, in which I talked about why I prefer writing women, both good and bad. I also talked about my favourite films, TV series and books and how they’ve influenced me, how I approach action scenes and, in Million Eyes II, how I wrote my first car chase!

I spoke with fellow Elsewhen Press author Ira Nayman about the allure of conspiracies, the controversial retellings of the story of Jesus and Princess Diana’s death in my books, and the grandfather paradox. And finally I talked to Maighread MacKay more generally about the Million Eyes series, why I’m writing it, and what I hope readers take from it.

My speech from the launch

I’ve already talked about how much I enjoyed the book launch at Chandlers cafe and bar. Once again it came at just the right time, before all this Omicron madness, which could well have put a number of people off coming. During the launch I gave a speech about Million Eyes II and the point of it being to make conspiracy theories fun again. I also read an extract from the book in which a character called Keiko Hamasaki has her driverless van hacked whilst transporting an important discovery.

Other reviews on Goodreads

I want to thank all those who have posted reviews on Goodreads. I want to single out author and journalist Nacho A. Llorente in particular, whose enthusiasm for the entire Million Eyes series is lovely and (hopefully) infectious.

With Million Eyes: Extra Time collection of shorts and #1 Million Eyes before, working as the series bait/prologue and act 1, this Million Eyes II: The Unraveller is a superb act 2 in the overall story… Not only the intricacies of the time travel chronology element gets even deeper and re-re-reconnected up and down and through but also the plot gets more dense and thicker and stickier, new layers of background story are unveiled and weaved into the stream of the narrative, surprising events happen unexpectedly, previously support-or-secondary characters are main-ified and forefronted, already forgotten characters from #1 suddenly pop up.

Nacho goes on to say how desperate he is for the third book, Million Eyes III: Ouroboros. Fortunately I’m working on this right now. I’m two thirds of the way through and making good progress. I’m hoping to be finished with the first draft a couple of months into the new year.

So I best get back to it!

Happy New Year to my readers and followers, and I hope 2022 is a better one for all!

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