Book reviews, Psychlogical thriller

The Devil Upstairs by Anthony O’Neill – Book Review

81F2196F-8B3B-42CC-84AE-72AA6654EB79

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Rosemary’s Baby meets Ambrose Parry’s The Way of All Flesh in this macabre thriller – a devilishly brilliant allegory set in modern day Edinburgh by the author of the highly acclaimed Dr Jekyll & Mr Seek.

Cat Thomas relocated to Edinburgh, fleeing death threats related to her job as a fraud investigator in Florida, her 18th century Dean Village flat is utterly idyllic except for one thing- The Devil Upstairs.

Cat lies awake, delirious from lack of sleep, dreaming of ways in which to get rid of the utterly inconsiderate neighbour who keeps her awake every night with loud music and wild parties, desperate for a solution, she joins a work friend at a witches conclave and is blissfully surprised when the noise suddenly stops.

But when the Devil upstairs is found dead and Cat’s seemingly perfect man arrived in his place, the problems she thought were solved come back to haunt her in new and unexpected ways.

Impeccably plotted, intricately nuanced and shot through with darkly wicked humour, The Devil Upstairs perfectly captures the shadowy beauty and mystery of Edinburgh’s architecture, atmosphere and history, giving literary voice to its well renowned status as a “haunted” city.

THEDEVILUPSTAIRS_JKT.indd

MY REVIEW

Cat Thomas has moved to Edinburgh, from Florida. She has found the perfect flat and for a while it is an idyll. But then her neighbour comes home and Dylan Moyle or Tur-Moyle as he is known, makes her life hell. Constant noise all night to the extent she spends some nights in a nearby hotel, just to get some sleep.

She’s started her new job, as a fraud investigator for ABC bank and is befriended by Agnes, a fiery Scot with a penchant for the Goth. Chatting about witches and general spooky stuff, Agnes invites Cat to a get together of her group, the conclave, for a game. 

Tired and stressed, Cat agrees….takes part in a weird aptitude test, while drinking Irn-Bru and breathing in sulphurous air…….just who is sitting in the velvety blackness?

She wakes up in her own bed, not really knowing what’s going on…Agnes says she was just drunk! But then Tur-Moyle is found dead in the flat upstairs, torn apart! There are more murders, anyone who upsets or threatens Cat, seems to end up dead.

What follows is a clever mix of Ira Levin and Dennis Wheatley, with strange violent events, a charming, mysterious new neighbour and creepy, whispering ‘tourists’…..

This captures the damp, foggy atmosphere of a chilly Edinburgh, and the general inconsiderate nature of some people in general……a chilling reminder of Be Careful What You Wish For and its consequences…utterly brilliant.

My thanks to Jaz at Black & White Publishing for the opportunity to read this for free. This is my honest and unbiased review.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

 

Anthony O’Neill was born in Melbourne and lives in Edinburgh. He is the author of Dr Jekyll & Mr Seek, his sequel to Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde; Scheherazade, an Arabian Nights homage; The Lamplighter, a psychological horror; The Empire of Eternity, a history-mystery involving Napoleon and Egyptology; The Unscratchables, a satire featuring dog and cat detectives and the Dark Side, a crime novel set on the far side of the moon, Film rights to The Dark Side have been sold to 20th Century Fox.

Book reviews, Uncategorised

The Introvert by Michael Paul Michaud – Book Review

A1BFDAEF-F40D-460D-BBC6-84BAC5F586A3

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

A vacuum salesman by day, the introvert lives a quiet life alone with his dog until a work relationship and a dark secret from his past team up to create an uncomfortable imbalance in his otherwise ordered life, one that soon finds him squarely at the center of a murder investigation. 

With his thoughts continually urging him to make people “red and open” and to “achieve it” with his girlfriend Donna, what follows is a sometimes brutal, oftentimes hilarious, and absurdist account of the life of one very anti-social and unexpected anti-hero.  

70E0F8BD-19C0-4D03-AFF0-467C76D8F9BD

MY REVIEW 

Our unnamed protagonist, The Introvert, is a vacuum cleaner salesman, good at his job due to his direct manner on the telephone. 

Donna, the admin assistant likes him as he’s quiet and doesn’t babble……little does she know he doesn’t really understand people and uses the company manual, The Company Culture Handbook as his reference guide…..following the rules such as ‘always diffuse discomfort ‘….

He lives with his dog, Molly……he gets angry sometimes and wants to make people red and open……but he has breathing exercises his counsellors taught him, that helps…..until his landlord mistreats a dog!

This has humour at its darkest, to make you cringe at the same time as laugh, you know you shouldn’t!….and animal rights at its heart….weird and wonderful.

Thank you to Sarah at Book On The Bright Side for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review. 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

AD7F6DA6-2392-45AC-82B8-496F1DD2C6C8

I am an American-Canadian citizen, a criminal prosecutor, and author of BILLY TABBS (& THE GLORIOUS DARROW) (bitingduckpress) and THE INTROVERT series (Black Opal Books). I have a B.A. in English from McMaster University, an Honors B.A. in Political Science (summa cum laude) from McMaster University, a J.D. from The University of Western Ontario (with an international exchange completed at Washington & Lee). I have won awards for both my community service and my work as a criminal prosecutor. I am a member of Crime Writers of Canada and International Thriller Writers. I also strive to maintain a strong social media author presence, including at facebook.com/michaelpaulmichaud, and have made regular appearances on SiriusXM’s Canada Talks. I am an unabashed and unapologetic zealot of Twin Peaks. Literary influences are primarily Orwell, Dickens, Vonnegut, Dostoevsky.

 

I was inspired to write The Introvert after reading Crime and Punishment (Dostoevsky) and The Stranger (Camus). It has been likened to Dexter and American Psycho meeting Office Space and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime. I also consider it the most unorthodox of animals rights books. Every dog lover should read them.

 

Facebook author page https://www.facebook.com/MichaelPaulMichaud/

The Introvert Book Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/TheIntrovertBook/

The Introvert Confounds Innocence Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/TheIntrovertBook2

Twitter: MichaelPMichaud

Instagram: MichaelPMichaud

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-michaud-04439311/

Goodreads page for The Introvert:https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32808811-the-introvert

Goodreads page for The Introvert Confounds Innocence: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/44490433-the-introvert-confounds-innocence

Book reviews, Womens fiction

Reunion by R V Biggs – Book Review

A53BEBB9-285C-48FF-A347-CB8F6B8592A9

PUBLISHERS BLURB

One random, violent act is enough to change Sarah Macintyre’s life forever.

Left unsettled, and yearning for a new beginning, Sarah is unsure of what to do with her life. But one day she discovers an anonymous letter hidden amidst a pile of unopened mail.

The note, however, contains nothing more than a confusing riddle.

Intrigued and excited, Sarah’s hunger for a new life compels her to search for the author to understand the puzzle and solve the mystery.

Embarking on a journey that will shape the rest of her life and that of her family, Sarah uncovers a past of which she had no knowledge, a present she must find a path through, and a future filled with intense grief and utmost joy.
85696095-A280-44AD-AF35-D46348A7EDDB

MY REVIEW 

Reunion is the follow up novel to Song of the Robin by R V Biggs and follows the life of Sarah Macintyre.

This tells of Sarah’s journey after leaving the hospital, but due to some slightly odd experiences, she doubting her own sanity and she wonders if she’s dreaming.

She then receives a letter, in amongst Christmas post, but the brown envelope gives her a feeling that something is about to happen. As she reaches for it, the letter moves…maybe these odd events are real after all.

The tale is about Sarah’s search for the letter writer and the meaning of the letters contents…..

Can Sarah come to terms with her new life and her abilities ?

An absorbing tale of love, tragedy, Faith and the supernatural. Not a quick read, but one to slow down and savour. Thought provoking.

Thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the book. This is my honest, unbiased review

 

C824B985-29A9-444A-81EF-2780BFB9541C

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

R V Biggs lives in a small ex-mining village near Wolverhampton, England, with his wife Julie, and Mags the black lab. He has four grown up children and six grandchildren.

Walking with the dog is a favorite pastime and much of the story line for his first novel was developed during these lengthy outings.

Robert worked for 35 years in telecommunications but changed career paths to a managerial supporting role within a local Mental Health NHS trust. It was during the period between these roles that the concept for Song of the Robin was born.

Robert is a firm believer that destiny and co-incidence exist hand in hand and this conviction extends to his writing. He has a passion for holistic well-being and after first-hand experience of the potential healing powers of Reiki, a form of energy therapy, took a Reiki level 1 training course to heighten his spiritual awareness. Robert’s experiences in these areas helped conceive the ideas that led to Song of the Robin and its sequel Reunion, novels with central themes of fate, love and the strength of family. His writing however is not fantasy but is set in modern times involving real people living real lives.

 

Twitter @RVBiggs