Sunday, March 25, 2012

March Madness: March24th...Author Sheila Mary Taylor. "Pinpont" & "Count To Ten"

March Madness for March 24th Welcomes Author 'Sheila Mary Taylor'

Sheila Mary Taylor was born in Cape Town into a highly intellectual family, but felt inhibited by the fact that she did not have a degree in English, a qualification she mistakenly thought was necessary to emulate her Scottish mother and father in becoming a published author. So she was a very late starter, only galvanised into wielding her creative pen when she heard the horrific diagnosis that her youngest son had teenage bone cancer. The scribbles she produced during this dramatic time were not well enough honed to be published, but with her pen at last triggered, and now realising that writing was what she had always wanted to do, she had four romances published and only then did she polish those earlier scribblings. These were published in 1999 as ‘Fly With a Miracle’ – a dramatic memoir of how her son Andrew fought against the cancer that threatened his life and his dream to become a pilot.  Another romance followed, and Sheila then embarked on a work of love – to resurrect and edit her mother’s three unpublished novels and have them published by Penguin, for which Dora Taylor received the South African Literary Posthumous Award in 2009. With these successes under her belt Sheila returned to her own writing. Pinpoint – a psychological legal crime thriller - was published by Night Publishing in April 2011, followed in December 2011 by a re-written, revised and updated edition of ‘Fly With a Miracle’, with the title of ‘Count to Ten’. She is now working on her new novel – ‘Entangled’.


PINPOINT  -  by Sheila Mary Taylor

A lawyer, a murderer and a policeman – caught in a tangled web of love, loss, terror and intrigue

When criminal lawyer Julia Grant interviews Sam Smith who has been charged with a vicious murder, she feels a strange connection to him.
Has she met him before? Does he hold a key to her lost childhood memories?
He feels a connection too. “Julia, you are the only one who can help me,” he pleads.
Is it the same connection? Does he know something she cannot recall?

When he is duly convicted despite her best efforts, he suddenly turns on her in the courtroom and threatens that one day he will make sure to wreak his revenge on her.
But why?
What has she ever done to him?

And then, on his way to prison, he escapes . . .

Review on

5.0 out of 5 stars "Pinpoint" -- an extraordinary novel by an a remarkable new writer, May 7, 2011
This review is from: Pinpoint (Paperback)
Strangeways Prison, Manchester, England (September 1994). "I've represented many murderers and am often surprised at how normal they appear. But this one is different. As he walks into the interview room he stops dead. His mouth drops open. His eyes bulge. His elbows clamp to his sides as though a knife has plunged into his back. And he looks straight at me unlike most who bow their heads until I say something to make them feel at east, and who look past me when they tell me their stories. Not this one."

Sam Smith is the name of this psychopathic killer, or is it? Could he be ...? "There's an almost imperceptible smile on his face. That smile. And those eyes. I grip the desk. I can't breathe. My skin turns cold, clammy. My fingers tingle. A fragment of long forgotten memory skitters through my head then vanishes ..." Who is he? No, it can't be ... but can it? Is he?

So begins this haunting, magnificently written tale of murder, intrigue, mystery, childhood sexual abuse, loss, survival and love. Solicitor Julia Grant's job is to defend this psychopathic killer of young women. And she must find out who he really is because she is haunted. A widow with a six year old daughter, she has a busy, complicated life. Detective Chief Inspector Paul Moxon is there to help her. But she has to go it alone.

Pinpoint is one wonderful book, Julia Grant is one of the most memorable characters I've encountered, and Sheila Mary Taylor is one fine writer. I'm sure we'll be enjoying her books for many years to come. She has the kind of story-telling talent that not only has wide appeal; it lasts, like a good Agatha Christie tale. Even the title "Pinpoint" is shrouded in mystery.

This one is a clear five star book.


COUNT TO TEN by Sheila Mary Taylor

Few things worse can happen to a mother than for her child to be diagnosed with cancer.
It started as a pain. It became an irritation. It grew to be a lump. Ultimately it threatened Andrew's life.
At the very least, his leg would have to be amputated, and how would that affect his life, even if he survived to live it?
'Count to Ten' is the true story of how Andrew and his family coped with the days, weeks, months and years that followed his diagnosis, of the reliefs, the triumphs, the relapses and the outright screaming panics.
It is also a testament to the technological advances in the treatment of cancer and to the doctors who apply it with care, expertise and wisdom.
It is so easy to love your children. It is so hard to hang onto hope, especially onto their hope - the hope they need to carry on.

Review from

5.0 out of 5 stars A riveting and inspirational true story, January 24, 2012
This review is from: Count To Ten (Kindle Edition)
I found "Count to Ten" a riveting and emotional read. From the beginning, Sheila Taylor paints a deliciously vivid and colourful picture of life in Africa, and her travels to London and Menorca. These exotic descriptions give a real sense of an idyllic and carefree life, amplifying with stark contrast her powerful and heart-rending account of the development of Andrew's illness and his subsequent treatments.

There were times when I held my breath, filled with compassion for this mother and her son, anticipating each stage of his gruelling battle against the most dreaded of diseases. Despite its subject, which one would normally expect to be maudlin and depressing, this is an uplifting story that is told with a simple honesty that's quite breathtaking.

I'm so full of admiration for Andrew, and everyone involved in the trials he faced. It was quite a humbling experience to read what they all endured, and I thank the author for sharing it with us.


Count to Ten:

Please remember you MUST leave a comment on this post to have a chance at winning this book!
PLUS...Join this blog and be in the running to win not one but TWO books written by your host Soooz Burke under her pen name of Stacey Danson.."Empty Chairs" and "Faint Echoes of Laughter"


  1. These go on my TBR list for sure.

  2. I've read both these marvellous books, but that only makes me even more eager to comment and say, 'Everyone else, buy them and see how good they are!'

  3. Such an interesting lady! Sheila is next on my reading list (which means about October at the rate I'm going). Can't wait because I'm convinced I'm going to love her work.

  4. What an amazing lady she is, fair play.
    Hats off to you Sheila!

  5. I've had the privledge of reading Sheila's amazing book Count to Ten. A wonderful lady and author. I look forward to reading Pinpoint!

  6. I read Count to Ten some time ago. A well written and emotional experience for me. Only a mother knows all of it.
    A lovely lady and great writer.
    Must get Pinpoint.

    Ron S

  7. More books on my wish list for when I eventually get my Kindle!! I had the pleasure of reading some of Pinpoint on Authonomy.

  8. Thank you to all the lovely folks that commented on Sheila's promotion.

    Okay, names are in the hat!

    Congratulations.... Ron Sewell is the lucky winner of "Pinpoint" and "Count To Ten"

    Your e/books will be on the way very shortly, Ron.

  9. 'Count to Ten' was beautifully written, and I bought Pinpoint ages ago (so don't make me the winner here) But I did want to say that 'Count to Ten' was a great book, which I featured on my blog. Unfortunately, no-one ever visits my blog.
    The thought was there.


Please leave a comment/review on any of the stories/poems contributed.