Saturday, June 25, 2016

Review of Wild Life by Liam Brown

I received a copy of Wild Life free via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
Not for the faint hearted, or weak stomached this  is a gripping, nightmarish tale of a man's nightmarish decent into an underground homeless community living hidden from society in an abandoned park. I found it to be a very readable, interesting and thought-provoking story. To me it lacks credibility in parts, and there are rather sudden leaps in the characters' psyches and behaviour which could have been developed and explained more thoroughly, but overall a good read.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

2. Bremain or Brexit? Depending on the result celebrate or relieve your sorrows with a great multicultural read! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons #Bremain

Tomorrow will see Britain vote to remain in the European Union or exit. As a supporter of multiculturalism, and a 'product' of Europe (I was among the first students to take part in an ERASMUS exchange), I would of course advise people to vote remain.
Whatever your political persuasion / level of insanity, and whatever the result, I hope you will celebrate / relieve your sorrows, by embarking on the multicultural adventure of The Witch's List!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Sunday, June 19, 2016

5. Recommended by reviewer Kristine! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Reviewer Kristine of A Cozy Booknook's Reviews had this to say about The Witch's List:

"This is the first book of a trilogy and I found it to be interesting... 

The more I think about this book, the more I like it. The author has taken great care to lay out the ground work for the next two books in the series... I am glad I finished, it's worth the journey. 

I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the series, I can't wait to read what happens next!..." 

Saturday, June 18, 2016

6. The libraries of Dundee - City of Discovery - are on board! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Dundee libraries are supporting The Witch's List! They are going to put copies on the shelves in several branches, and should also be organising an event during the summer. Watch this space for details...
Thanks a lot to Alistair Wilson for helping out with that!

Thursday, June 16, 2016

We have a winner! #thewitchslist

Congratulations to John W. from Milwaukie, who won my Goodreads giveaway competition. A signed copy of The Witch's List will soon be on it's way. 1398 people entered the competition - here's hoping quite a few of them will buy the book!
Otherwise you can still win a copy of the book on my Facebook competition: - open until 24th June.
Like the Facebook page, enter the competition, and share with your friends!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

8. Cliff Barrie fired through The Witch's List! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Reader Cliff Barrie fired through The Witch's List in record time. "A real page-turner," he said, "and this time that old cliché is actually true!"

Now on promotion at Booksetc! #thewitchslist

For people living in the UK, you can currently pick up a copy of The Witch's List on for just £6.07, delivery included! Get them while they're hot off the press!

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

9. Reminiscent of Hemingway! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Tom Cairns had this to say about The Witch's List:
"The Witch's List is a first novel by Andrew Cairns. It is a rights-of-passage fictional piece set in Dundee, Glasgow, Paris and the Ivory Coast (West Africa). 

The writing style is intimate, conversational and pacy, a bit reminiscent of some of Ernest Hemingway's work. 
The story starts by recording the events of the main character, Sandy Beech's, high school days in Dundee. There was a lot of bullying, and fights were common, with our hero usually coming out on top. 
The narrative then turns to student days in Glasgow. It describes a series of romantic encounters, none of them serious, until Sandy meets Rocky who comes from the Ivory Coast. He cohabits with her and they travel to visit her home in West Africa. There follows a turn of events which leaves Sandy encountering village life in the Ivory Coast and he is introduced to witchcraft - a part of which haunts him from his student days. Matters rise to a crescendo and there is a shock ending to the story which will surprise you! 
This novel is not for the prudish, but if you are, like me, a free spirit, you will enjoy it. Happy reading!"

10. So enthralled, she read it in one sitting! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Author Dawn Walton had this to say about The Witch's List in her 5-star review:

"This book engaged me from the start. The writing style reminds me of James Herbert in the way characters are built and you start in a normal setting, with elements being gradually added to make you doubt the normality. 

I read the book in one sitting because I couldn't put it down. 

Great book and I can't wait for his next ones!"

Monday, June 13, 2016

11. Recommended by author Annette Oppenlander! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Annette Oppenlander, author of the excellent 'Escape from the past' young adult series, had this to say about The Witch's List:
"Though he’s warned to stay away, Sandy Beech is magically and physically attracted to African women. From high school through college and married life, Sandy knows something isn’t quite right. Except he can’t put his finger on why bad things happen to him. Especially when he follows his estranged wife to the Ivory Coast.
Spanning three decades, Cairns takes you on a journey of black magic and witchcraft from Scotland via Paris to the Ivory Coast. Well-researched and fast paced, this fun read is packed with suspense and keeps you wondering until the end."

Sunday, June 12, 2016

12. Recommended by author Bruce Wilkerson

Author / English teacher, Bruce Wilkinson, had this to say about The Witch's List:

"The Witch's List caught me from the beginning and kept me fascinated until the last page. Sandy Beech's inclinations lead him down a dangerous path and into a world that he didn't believe existed before he meets Rocky, a seductive lady from the Ivory Coast. Andrew Cairns shows a remarkable knowledge of both French and African cultures as he weaves this beguiling story in an excellently worded style. This is definitely a book to read."

Saturday, June 11, 2016

13. Now obtaining interest from several bookshops and libraries! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Several bookshops and libraries have expressed interest in stocking The Witch's List and organising events, including Waterstones Dundee (event confirmed for 16th July, 12-2pm), Dundee libraries, Stonehaven and Portlethen libraries (events at 10 and 11 am on 22nd July), WH Smith Paris, and a mysterious location on the Black Isle...

Thursday, June 9, 2016

14. Recommended by Katy Monier! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Good reviews are starting to come in for The Witch's List.

Reviewer Katy Monier had this to say:

Just great! Interesting and ... captivating! 

It's full of stories, portraits, and details which allow you to imagine unknown places or rediscover places you know like Paris; a mixture of different cultures and places... 

You can now order The Witch's List online:

Please buy, read, review and spread the word!

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

One week remaining to enter the Goodreads giveaway competition to win a free signed copy of the novel!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Witch's List by Andrew Cairns

The Witch's List

by Andrew Cairns

Giveaway ends June 15, 2016.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

15. Recommended by author Murray Morison! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Author Murray Morison, excellent author specialising in mystery stories for young adults, had this to say about The Witch's List:

It's  not only Macbeth that has to confront witches in Scotland

We learn early on in Cairn’s exploration of modern day witches, that ‘once you are on a witch’s list, you are as good as dead’. This reminded me of an old Africa-hand telling VSO volunteers at a briefing before going to an East African posting, "JuJu is a joke in the green fields of England and deadly serious in the villages of Africa”. Sandy, the hero of this tale, has a brush with the dark forces early on, when a book on witches and warlocks, full of graphic descriptions and sultry with sex, appears to burst into flames in the hands of school-friends at a Scottish Roman Catholic school. 
Later, a passion for an Afro-Caribbean girl, results in both his initiation into sex and brings him abruptly face to face with what might just be a curse. Cairns draws us into Sandy’s world by deftly weaving the mundane elements of a coming of age narrative with events that have a flavour of the supernatural. Set initially in the ’80’s, he has a good ear for the slang of the time, which changes appropriately as university is reached. The story unfolds at a steady pace, with the threat of dark outcomes never far away; the prophetic warnings of a dying nun, suggest Sandy may be doomed if he follows his lusts. And that’s tough, when you are a full blooded Scots lad! 

16. Start local, go global! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

The book scene in Dundee is thriving, with writers in various genres achieving success: George Burton (my old French teacher from Saviour's) with his excellent memoirs about growing up in Dundee, Chris Longmuir and Wendy H Jones with their Dundee crime series, and Dawn Walton in non-fiction with her great psychology/subconscious self-help books - to name but a few. 

Help me make it on the local scene (attend my signing event in Waterstones Dundee on Saturday 16th July) and then go global! 

17. 4-star review on Readers' Favourite! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Independent reviews site Readers' Favourite gave The Witch's List a great 4* review:

Reviewed By Michelle Stanley for Readers’ Favorite

“Once you’re on the witch’s list, you’re as good as dead.” Andrew Cairns' novel, The Witch’s List, is a beguiling supernatural novel that follows Sandy Beech through childhood into his adult years. His attraction to exotic black women lures him into the dark world of witchcraft. Peculiar things happen when his girlfriend’s cousin casts a spell and he becomes ill. Sandy ignores the warning of a dying nun and marries Rocky, another woman from the Ivory Coast. They visit her homeland where Sandy learns about the nonconforming culture and witchcraft. He observes how a few people suddenly become ill, and the superstitious reactions of others who believe the sick were on the witch’s list. Sandy meets a strange old woman in the woods who warns him of danger, but the horrific truth remains obscure.

Andrew Cairns writes convincingly and The Witch’s List is a compelling dark story. Its protagonist, Sandy Beech, brings out his conflicting emotions through flowing narration. Although he is a nice person in general, Sandy’s character is weak, especially around women, and he can be manipulated into doing things he knows are wrong. The author’s writing is very detailed. I liked learning about the cultural differences that divide the Ivory Coast, as well as its intriguing black magic that still plays a dominant role in many Ivorian lives. I think the book’s cover is so appealing and appropriate. The Witch’s List by Andrew Cairns is an interesting story.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

18. A fascinating insight into the psychology of beliefs! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

If you, a sceptical person of western culture, were told you were on a Witch's List and it meant you were going to die, you might laugh it off as some superstitious African nonsense. But when  you find out about numerous other people who were on the supposed list and died under mysterious circumstances, doubts might begin to creep in. If you fell ill would you put it down to psychology or poisoning? And when mysterious events occur would you dismiss then as coincidences?
How long before your scepticism evaporates and you too start to believe?

19. Add me to the list of renowned literary Dundonians such as Mcgonagall! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

William Mcgonagall is Dundee's most infamous literary son. His unintentionally humorous poems are quoted throughout the world.

He described Dundee's river Tay as follows:
"Beautiful silvery Tay,
With your landscapes, so lovely and gay,
Along each side of your waters, to Perth all the way;
No other river in the world has got scenery more fine,
Only I am told the beautiful Rhine."

One of his favourite preachers received the following praise:
"He preaches in a plain straightforward way,
The people flock to hear him night and day,
And hundreds from the doors are often turn’d away,
Because he is the greatest preacher of the present day.
He has written the life of Sir Walter Scott,
And while he lives he will never be forgot,
Nor when he is dead,
Because by his admirers it will be often read;
And fill their minds with wonder and delight,
And wile away the tedious hours on a cold winter’s night."

Discover McGonagall, discover Dundee, discover "The Witch's List"!

Saturday, June 4, 2016

20. Recommended by YA author Mary Victoria Johnson! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

Mary Victoria Johnson is the author of the novel Boundaries which is taking the Young Adult fiction scene by storm. Here is what she had to say about my book:

Andrew Cairns' story sucks you into a dark, seductive world right off the bat. It's a topic I personally have never read much about, but he tackles it with the ease of someone who has clearly done his research. It's the kind of book where you don't realize how much you've read until your eyes begin to hurt, filled with suspense, intrigue, and chills. An intriguing premise that doesn't fall short!

Friday, June 3, 2016

Thursday, June 2, 2016

First book sold in Waterstones!

Waterstones Dundee have managed to obtain a few pre-release copies of my book and they just sold the first one yesterday! Awesome!
Hopefully the first of many!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

22. Help create some hype! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

With some word of mouth, we can create some buzz and some hype, and really make "The Witch's List" go places. Author Tahir Shah suggested it could even be made into a film! Thank you for your support.

Goodreads giveaway competition now open! Enter for a chance to win a free signed copy of the novel!

Competition now open on goodreads! Enter anytime from 1st to 15th June for a chance to win!

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Witch's List by Andrew Cairns

The Witch's List

by Andrew Cairns

Giveaway ends June 15, 2016.
See the giveaway details at Goodreads.
Enter Giveaway

23. Learn something about the beliefs and culture of the Ivory Coast! #thewitchslist #50days #50reasons

This novel describes some of the fascinating beliefs, traditions and practises of the Ivory Coast: from animism, to funeral dances... to The Witch's List.