My name is ***** ***** I am a US lawyer.
While not a scam in the strictest sense of the word, this business's reputation in the industry is not a good one. You can read its history here.
The most recent alerts about it are here.
It would appear that the company did publish your book. You need to look to the terms of your contract with them and determine whether they did what they said they would do for you or if they breached their contract and/or made false or deceptive promises on which they never delivered.
From there, you'd need to contact the company and see if you can get them to address your concerns. You don't indicate whether you've done that.
If they refuse to work with you, the next step would be to contact a Texas lawyer to write a strong letter to the company, listing the various ways they have breached their contract with you and misrepresented their services and telling them that if they are not willing to resolve your problem or refund your money then you will have no choice but to take the to court and sue them for breach of the contract and for their fraudulent and deceptive trade practices.
You can do this for yourself without a lawyer, though it has more teeth when the letter is on a lawyer's letterhead. This company already has a spotty reputation in Texas, and something like this might be all you would need to do to get them to work with you. A successful suit involving fraudulent and deceptive trade practices would entitle you to an award and damages that should make them think twice.
Meanwhile, you can file complaints with the US consumer protection agencies we have, as they are free. Go to the Better Business Bureau's site and lodge a consumer complaint against them. You can do that right on the BBB's website.
As a non-profit organization committed to protecting consumers, the BBB will try to intervene on your behalf and to resolve your problem if they can locate the company and the company is willing to work with them.
From there, you want to file one with the Texas State ATtorney General's Office
. Again, you want to emphasize that the company has breached its contract with you and engaged in fraudulent, unfair and deceptive marketing practices.
Finally, you can involve our Federal consumer protection regulatory agency, the Federal Trade Commission
by filing a similar consumer complaint with them also. These government agencies will not usually intervene on any one person's individual situation. But when they get enough complaints to see a pattern and practice of unethical or fraudulent business dealings they can, and do step in. They haul the company into Federal court where the companies usually settle for enormous fines and heavy government sanctions. The money the government collects is distributed among those defrauded by the company. So even if it takes a while for you to recover, you want to be file these complaints.
You also can hire a Texas consumer right's lawyer and sue for fraud and/or breach of contract, and one might be willing to take the case on contingency, meaning that you would only pay the lawyer if he wins your case or gets a settlement you approve of. Then he gets about 40% of your award. If you were in the US you can sue in Texas Small Claims court for up to $10,000 and do it yourself without a lawyer. Unfortunately, however, that would not be something you could do from overseas.
Alternatively, in your own country, you can, of course, contact a local solicitor and see what you can do from the UK, though if you bring suit from there and get the judgment, you still would need to take legal action in the US to ensure that the US courts would enforce your winning judgment. That the court would do that is not always a foregone conclusion.
You can also report the business to Trading Standards.
I will be the first to recognize that none of the above provides a perfect solution, as I am sure you want your money back sooner rather than later, and this is going to be a slow head-banging-against-the -wall process before you can get anything back even under the best of circumstances.