blog tour, Book reviews, Murder mystery, Psychlogical thriller

The Favour by Laura Vaughan – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

When she was thirteen years old, Ada Howell lost not just her father, but the life she felt she was destined to lead. Now, at eighteen, Ada is given a second chance when her wealthy godmother giftsher with an extravagant art history trip to Italy.

In the palazzos of Venice, the cathedrals of Florence and the villas

of Rome, she finally finds herself among the kind of people she aspires to be: sophisticated, cultured, privileged. Ada does everything in her power to prove she is one of them. And when a member of the group dies in suspicious circumstances, she seizes the opportunity to permanently bind herself to this gilded set.

But everything hidden must eventually surface, and when it does, Ada discovers she’s been keeping a far darker secret than she could ever have imagined…

MY REVIEW 

The Favour is the tale of Ada, she wants to belong in high society with the ‘elite’ and she’ll do anything to be part of it.

This is a slow burn of story full of secrets and lies, oh and a death.

Beautifully written, full of detail and art history with wonderful descriptions of Italy and its architecture. There are some truly reprehensible characters and none of them are particularly likeable but you do feel for Ada as she searches for a place to belong. A captivating story to lose yourself in for a while. 

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of The Favour.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Laura Vaughan grew up in rural Wales and studied Art History in Italy and Classics at Bristol and Oxford. She got her first book deal aged twenty-two and went on to write eleven books for children and young adults. The Favour is her first novel for adults. She lives in South London with her husband and two children.

Guest post

*GUEST POST* from Luke Carter, author, with Anna Ametller, of The Gardener and other short stories..

Hello from the Bookwormery, today I am lucky to be hosting a guest post from Luke Carter, who along with Anna Ametller, is the author of The Gardener and other short stories. Enjoy!

The Gardener and Other Short Stories by Luke Carter and Anna Ametller

Where do you start when introducing The Gardener and Other Short Stories, the surreal collection of new stories by Luke Carter and Anna Ametller? With The Postman, busy opening and rewriting people’s letters? With Mr Hard-Luck, perhaps? The self-proclaimed Treasure Hunter in the town of Vanishing! Or is it with the story of how the lives of a thief, antique collector, artist and business man are all brought together by a cat with one eye!? 

Or maybe, it is best to begin with a huge thank you to the kind people of Bookwormery for the invitation to write here, along with an explanation on why I wrote the book? 

The Gardener and Other Short Stories, filled with surreal villages and suspicious characters, had two important aims. The first was to write a book that told beautiful and simple stories…but with perhaps a little more lurking just beneath the surface. (The abused metaphor of an iceberg comes to mind!) The second was much more fun! To create a world so full of characters and details that you could pluck any figure from a page in the book and they could effortlessly be turned into a short story of their own! Father Falcon, for example, with his dark hair that everyone knows is a wig; or Mrs Buttercup, 89 years old, deaf in one-and-a-half ears, and wearing prescription glasses that magnify her eyes into dinner plates. 

The weather had turned up at last. It was a sunny day. It was a gloriously sunny day with a sea blue sky where few clouds went swimming. It was palm tree weather. It was a day that brightened your garden as well as your soul.

Speaking of gardens, this one was flourishing. It had never looked so good. It was as green as a field of rice. Pea shoots coiled their way up the windows. Grapes tiptoed up the bendy banisters on the stairs to choke the chimneys above. The oven had become a glass house for exotic mangos. Young saplings were planted into old shoes and the vegetables growing in the fridge couldn’t be fresher. The garden had taken over the house.

Illustrations

I live in Spain and think I must have been missing England a little when I wrote the stories. They are full of English nostalgia, village gossip, and eccentric people and the illustrations match that feeling perfectly! With houses that have grown ears for listening and a gentleman in pyjamas ironing his Financial Times, the images, over thirty in total, add an extra layer of curiosity to the stories without distracting from the plot. They were drawn by the talented Anna Ametller, sculptor and artist who produces work from her little sailing boat in the Mediterranean. 

Why Self-Publish? 

The joy and difficulty of self-publishing come in equal measure! It is a great freedom and adventure to write, design, edit, print, promote and distribute a book all by yourself! Yet it goes without saying that this all takes time…a lot of it! 

To help fund the publication, we have spent this month crowdfunding on Kickstarter, a platform that allows people to pre-order a copy in order to finance the book. It has been an interesting process, especially as it has allowed for us to offer more than just a book. For example, we thought it would be great fun to bring one of the stories about a nosey postman to life, by offering hand written letters from different characters in that story! Not only that, but you also get the option to REPLY to these characters and begin a fictional pen-pal journey! 

It is currently available on pre-sale and will be printed in late April! You can to purchase your copy and find more information about the book here: http://kck.st/2Zpym4L

About the Author

Luke Carter has been making books for years. From history books to illustrated A-Z’s of English expressions, Luke has always searched for the story in everything. His style is deceptively simple and, as a lover of stories, his books are richly layered with bizarre characters in even stranger worlds!

When he is not writing books, he teaches English and watches birds on the tiny paradise of Formentera, Spain. More of his work can be found here: 

 www.llcarter.co.uk

blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller

Hotel Cartagena by Simone Bucholz – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Twenty floors above the shimmering lights of the Hamburg docks, Public Prosecutor Chastity Riley is celebrating a birthday with friends in a hotel bar when twelve heavily armed men pull out guns, and take everyone hostage. Among the hostages is Konrad Hoogsmart, the hotel owner, who is being targeted by a young man whose life – and family – have been destroyed by Hoogsmart’s actions.

With the police looking on from outside – their colleagues’ lives at stake – and Chastity on the inside, increasingly ill from an unexpected case of sepsis, the stage is set for a dramatic confrontation … and a devastating outcome for the team … all live streamed in a terrifying bid for revenge. Crackling with energy and populated by a cast of unforgettable characters, Hotel Cartagena is a searing, stunning thriller that will leave you breathless.

MY REVIEW 

Hotel Cartagena is #4 in the Chas Riley series to be published in the UK. It can also be read as a stand-alone.

Chastity Riley is a public prosecutor, she is at a party to celebrate her friend, Faller’s birthday. Surrounded by friends, lovers and ex-lovers this is going to be interesting, but then armed men arrive at the hotel and it becomes a hostage situation.

Why would they target the hotel?

Told from the present day and with flashbacks to the past, you gradually build a picture of events that have led to this moment from 

During the hours the hostages sit and wait, there’s time for reflection and Chastity has plenty to think about…..as does poor Ivo who is aching events from the outside.

This is a fast paced, stylish thriller that is Noir with a capital N, it has many layers with the crime, the hostages and the thoughts and emotions of those involved. It’s sharp, edgy and utterly gripping from start to finish. 

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Hotel Cartagena.

Purchase Link : https://amzn.to/3dTj9Bi

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Simone Buchholz was born in Hanau in 1972. At university, she studied Philosophy and Literature, worked as a waitress and a columnist, and trained to be a journalist at the prestigious Henri-Nannen-School in Hamburg. In 2016, Simone Buchholz was awarded the Crime Cologne Award as well as runner-up in the German Crime Fiction Prize for Blue Night, which was number one on the KrimiZEIT Best of Crime List for months. She lives in Sankt Pauli, in the heart of Hamburg, with her husband and son.

Book reviews, Cosy mystery, Crime thriller, Political thriller

Not In My Name by Michael Coolwood – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

What if the British people had been given a vote about invading Iraq in 2003. And the referendum split the nation with a 52% to 48% yes vote.

A young activist is beaten to death after an anti-war demonstration. The police say her murder was random.

It wasn’t. More activists will be murdered. The activists only trust each other. Maybe that trust has already been betrayed.

Witty, political and provocative, this New Adult mystery is based on real events, and keeps the reader guessing to the very end.

MY REVIEW 

Not In My Name is a Murder mystery and a political thriller that revolves around the Iraq war in 2003. However, here there has been a referendum so the people can decide (and we all know how the recent Brexit referendum went!)…..

There are clashes between the Yes and No voters and then Cassie is murdered.

Her friend Phoebe learns the police are no longer investigating and when another friend is killed, she begins to look into the deaths herself with the help of Sefu, they find the killer may be close to home. 

This is a clever thriller with the focus on politics and the protest movement (and is based on real events).  Phoebe is a well rounded character and the story is tense and compelling. If you like your political thrillers realistic and biting, then you will love Not In My Name. 

Thank you to Claret Press for an e ARC of Not In My Name. This is my honest and unbiased review.

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

What if the British people had been given a vote about invading Iraq in 2003. And the referendum split the nation with a 52% to 48% yes vote.

A young activist is beaten to death after an anti-war demonstration. The police say her murder was random.

It wasn’t. More activists will be murdered. The activists only trust each other. Maybe that trust has already been betrayed.

Witty, political and provocative, this New Adult mystery is based on real events, and keeps the reader guessing to the very end.

MY REVIEW 

Not In My Name is a Murder mystery and a political thriller that revolves around the Iraq war in 2003. However, here there has been a referendum so the people can decide (and we all know how the recent Brexit referendum went!)…..

There are clashes between the Yes and No voters and then Cassie is murdered.

Her friend Phoebe learns the police are no longer investigating and when another friend is killed, she begins to look into the deaths herself with the help of Sefu, they find the killer may be close to home. 

This is a clever thriller with the focus on politics and the protest movement (and is based on real events).  Phoebe is a well rounded character and the story is tense and compelling. If you like your political thrillers realistic and biting, then you will love Not In My Name. 

Thank you to Claret Press for an e ARC of Not In My Name. This is my honest and unbiased review.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Michael Coolwood writes feminist cosy mysteries. His work is deeply political and his characters are driven by a desire to make the world a better place. This is partly due to a respect for passionate, caring people, and partly because cuts to the health service in the UK have ensured he can barely leave the house due to his swamp of health problems.

Read about his books and ongoing crises at

coolwoodbooks.coms.

Michael Coolwood writes feminist cosy mysteries. His work is deeply political and his characters are driven by a desire to make the world a better place. This is partly due to a respect for passionate, caring people, and partly because cuts to the health service in the UK have ensured he can barely leave the house due to his swamp of health problems.

Read about his books and ongoing crises at

coolwoodbooks.coms.

blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller

The Foreign Girls by Sergio Olguín – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

When two European backpackers are found murdered after attending a high society party in northern Argentina, sacrificial offerings left near the bodies point to their involvement in a Macumba rite.

But for their friend Veronica Rosenthal, a courageous investigative journalist with a proclivity for sexual adventure, the story smacks of a cover-up. Sure enough, Veronica’s determination to get justice for the ‘foreign girls’ quickly reveals a political dimension to the murder and leads her into very dangerous territory, bringing her face to face with old enemies, as well as new ones.

MY REVIEW 

Veronica is an investigative journalist, she is travelling through north Argentin. One night in a bar she meets two young women, they get chatting and agree to go to a party together. After a bit of a falling out Veronica leaves.

But, she then finds out the two women were murdered that night, in what looks like a ritual killing.

So, Veronica begins an investigation.

The Foreign Girls is a fast paced and gripping thriller, it really has a sense of time and place and tells of power, corruption and femicide. There is also a feeling of menace round every corner. It has a tight, clever plot and a great character in Veronica. Compelling from the very start.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of The Foreign Girls.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

The Author and the Translator

Sergio Olguín was born in Buenos Aires in 1967 and was a journalist before turning to fiction. Olguín has won a number of awards, among others the Premio Tusquets 2009 for his novel Oscura monótona sangre (“Dark Monotonous Blood“) His books have been translated into German, French and Italian.

The translator Miranda France is the author of two acclaimed volumes of travel writing: Don Quixote’s Delusions and Bad Times in Buenos Aires. She has also written the novels Hill Farm and The Day Before the Fire and translated much Latin American fiction, including Claudia Piñeiro’s novels for Bitter Lemon Press.

blog tour, Book reviews, Fantasy

Holes In The Veil by Beth Overmyer – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Having killed his lifelong enemy, Aidan Ingledark finds himself in possession of a map to the Questing Goblet, one of the Goblets Immortal that gives the drinker luck beyond measure. Meraude seeks this Goblet to wipe out magic- kind. Aidan and his traveling companion are determined to find it first but they must battle through illusion and doubt.

Jinn’s a Sightful seeking the Summoner. She wants to kill her mother, but her foresight ends in darkness. Can she enlist Aidan’s help and change her fate?un

The threat of Meraude and her dominion are imminent in this sequel to The Goblets Immortal.

MY REVIEW 

Holes In The Veil is a fantasy tale, set in a new world of magic, friends and enemies.

Here, Aidan has teamed up with Jinn and Quick and they have a map showing where to find the Questing Goblet. But they are not the only ones looking for it as Meraude wants it too.

Something is following Aidan and his friends!

With its well developed characters, a tension packed plot and fantastic world building this is a marvellous adventure of magic and fantasy. I’m already looking forward to book 3.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an ARC of Holes In The Veil.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Beth Overmyer is the author of several works of genre fiction, the middle grade novella In a Pickle being among them. Fueled by tea, loved by cats everywhere, she balances her home life with writing novels and leading a creative writing group at her local library.

blog tour, Book reviews, scandi noir

The Last Snow by Stina Jackson – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Early spring has its icy grip on Ödesmark, a small village in northernmost Sweden, abandoned by many of its inhabitants. But Liv Björnlund never left. She lives in a derelict house together with her teenage son, Simon, and her ageing father, Vidar. They make for a peculiar family, and Liv knows that they are cause for gossip among their few remaining neighbours.

Just why has Liv stayed by her domineering father’s side all these years? And is it true that Vidar is sitting on a small fortune? His questionable business decisions have made him many enemies over the years, and in Ödesmark everyone knows everyone, and no one ever forgets.

Now someone wants back what is rightfully theirs. And they will stop at nothing to get it, no matter who stands in their way…

MY REVIEW 

The Last Snow is set in a remote part of Sweden, Ödesmark. Here, Liv and her son, Simon live with her father, Vidar. They are a close family, but there is an underlying tension in how they act around each other.

There are some flashbacks to Liv’s younger days as she grew up and this gives a little background into the family and the suspicions the other inhabitants of Ödesmark have of them.

Some in the village believe Vidar has money hidden in the house and so they set out to find it…..then there is a death.

The Last Snow is a beautifully written, slow burn of a thriller wIth a simmering tension that’s palpable at times,  it’s also about dysfunctional families and the claustrophobia of living in a small village. Wonderfully descriptive, chilling and so atmospheric. ScandiNoir at its best.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an ARC of The Last Snow.

Purchase Link: https://amzn.to/3anhm5i

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Stina Jackson was born in 1983 and raised in Skellefteå, northern Sweden. In 2006 she moved to Denver, Colorado, where she lives with her husband and small dog. Her debut novel, The Silver Road, was an international bestseller and won The Best Swedish Crime Novel Award in 2018. The Last Snow is her second novel.

blog tour, Book reviews, Horror, Noir, Thriller

Deity by Matt Wesolowski – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

When pop megastar Zach Crystal dies in a fire at his remote mansion, his mysterious demise rips open the bitter divide between those who adored his music and his endless charity work, and those who viewed him as a despicable predator, who manipulated and abused young and vulnerable girls.

Online journalist, Scott King, whose ‘Six Stories’ podcasts have become an internet sensation, investigates the accusations of sexual abuse and murder that were levelled at Crystal before he died. But as Scott begins to ask questions and rakes over old graves, some startling inconsistencies emerge. Was the fire at Crystal’s remote home really an accident? Why was he never officially charged? Are reports of a haunting really true?

Dark, chillingly topical and deeply thought-provoking, Deity is both an explosive, spine-chilling thriller and a startling look at how heroes can fall from grace and why we are willing to turn a blind eye to even the most heinous of crimes…y

MY REVIEW 

Deity is #5 in the fantastic Six Stories series and it can be read as a stand-alone (as can the previous 4)

Scott King is the master of the podcast and here he has a new case to discuss. He interviews six different people to get a picture of events.

Here the tale is about charismatic superstar, Zach Crystal. He had disappeared from his isolated forest property for a year, then he comes back as suddenly as he disappeared….he announces a new album, but then there is devastating fire at Crystal Forest and his remains are found in the ruin.

Then the rumours start, the young girls who were invited to party at the estate, the accidents and deaths, but the fans still worship him. None of these rumours could possibly be true, they know him……don’t they?

Deity is about the shield celebrity gives to those in its limelight and how that light of adulation blinds those who worship it. How fans believe he can’t have done those things he’s famous!. He wouldn’t have don’t that, I know him,  he’s a kind man, look what he does for charity…….sound familiar? 

Matt Wesolowski really is the master of a dark thriller. Deity is so well written with the tension slowly building chapter by chapter, drawing you along by a hand that won’t let go. It’s dark, haunting, thought provoking and utterly brilliant from start to finish. 

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Deity. 

Purchase link : https://amzn.to/2LRd9xj

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Matt Wesolowski is an author from Newcastle-upon-Tyne in the UK. He is an English tutor for young people in care. Matt started his writing career in horror, and his short horror fiction has been published in numerous UK- and US-based anthologies, such as Midnight Movie Creature, Selfies from the End of the World, Cold Iron and many more. His novella, The Black Land, a horror set on the Northumberland coast, was published in 2013. Matt was a winner of the Pitch Perfect competition at the Bloody Scotland Crime Writing Festival in 2015. His debut thriller, Six Stories, was an Amazon bestseller in the USA, Canada, the UK and Australia, and a WHSmith Fresh Talent pick, and film rights were sold to a major Hollywood studio. A prequel, Hydra, was published in 2018 and became an international bestseller. Changeling, the third book in the series, was published in 2019 and was longlisted for the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year. His fourth book, Beast, won the Amazon Publishing Readers’ Independent Voice Book of the Year award in 2020.

blog tour, Book reviews, Horror

The Children God Forgot by Graham Masterton – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Forsake the living. Forget the dead. Fear the children… The brand new chilling page-turner from the master of horror.

A TERRIFYING BIRTH

A young woman is rushed to the hospital with stabbing pains in her stomach. The chief surgeon delivers a living child with the face of an angel and the body of a tentacled monster. The doctors are unanimous that the baby must die.

AN ESCAPE FROM THE DARK

Engineer Gemma is plunged into darkness in a tunnel beneath London. Before she escapes, a strange green light illuminates a cluster of ghostly figures. Gemma is certain they were children.

A SUPERNATURAL THREAT

DC Jerry Pardoe and DS Jamila Patel, of Tooting Police, have investigated the occult before – but nothing as strange and horrible as what they must confront in the city sewers. Down here in the dark, where the dead come back to life, witchcraft is the only force strong enough to save you…

MY REVIEW

The Children God Forgot starts with a woman in pain. It turns out she is pregnant, even though she insists that’s impossible. The doctor decides this baby must be born for the safety of the mother and child due to its deformity.

When the baby is delivered, it is a monster with a cherubic face. It then disappears from the baby unit.

Meanwhile, Gemma is working in the sewers with colleagues, she sees what seems to be a small child in the midst of a fat berg……and things get dark and creepy.

DS Pardoe and DS Patel begin an investigation into recent events and what they find is the thing of nightmares.

This is a true, classic horror story with enough creepy moments to keep even a hardened horror fan happy. Yes, the way women are portrayed is a bit off putting at times, very heavy breasts and pouting lips, the police are homophobic and there is some casual racism too….it feels as if it’s set in the 70’s in that way. But overall this is a classic style horror story with dark sewers and creepy baby things and will certainly rattle your nerves.

Thank you to Vicky at Head of Zeus for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of The Children God Forgot. This is my honest and unbiased review.

About the author

Graham Masterton was born in Edinburgh in 1946, and at the age of 17 he joined his localnewspaper as a junior reporter. He was appointed deputy editor of Mayfair at the age of 21, and at24 he became executive editor of Penthouse. After leaving Penthouse, he wrote The Manitou, a horror novel that became his first bestseller and was adapted into a film starring Tony Curtis.

Graham spent twenty-five years as one of the world’s bestselling horror authors before he turned his talent to crime writing. Inspired by the five years in which he and his late wife lived in Cork, he created a series of novels featuring Katie Maguire, the first female superintendent in the Irish police force. The first book in the Katie Maguire series, White Bones, was published by Head of Zeus in 2012 and became a top-ten bestseller. Graham continues to write thrillers and horror novels alongside the Katie Maguire crime series, which has now sold over a million copies worldwide.

Follow Graham:

Facebook: @GrahamMasterton

Twitter: @GrahamMasterton

blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller, Nordic noir, Police procedural

Smoke Screen by Thomas Enger & Jørn Lier Horst – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Oslo, New Year’s Eve. The annual firework celebration is rocked by an explosion and the city is put on terrorist alert.

Police officer Alexander Blix and blogger Emma Ramm are on the scene, and when a severely injured survivor is pulled from the icy harbour, she is identified as the mother of two-year-old Patricia Semplass, who was kidnapped on her way home from kindergarten ten years earlier … and never found.

Blix and Ramm join forces to investigate the unsolved case, as public interest heightens, the terror threat is raised, and it becomes clear that Patricia’s disappearance is not all that it seems…

The second in the hard-boiled and furiously compelling Blix & Ramm series, created by Thomas Enger and Jørn Lier Horst, two of the biggest names in Nordic Noir.

MY REVIEW 

Smoke Screen is #2 in the series featuring Blix and Ramm, but can also be read as a stand-alone.

Emma Ramm is a crime reporter, she attends the New Years Eve firework display when there’s a large explosion.

One of the victims was the mother of Patricia, who had gone missing 10 years earlier. This case had been one of Alexander Blix’s…..and one that still bothers him.

Who caused the explosion and why?

As the investigation begins more questions are raised than answers.

This mix of police procedural and fast paced thriller has you hooked from the very start. With great characters and a twisty plot, all set against a beautifully atmospheric Norway, this is Nordic Noir at its very best. Utterly compelling from start to finish. 

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Smoke Screen.

Purchase Link: https://amzn.to/2YBZ2ii

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Jørn Lier Horst and Thomas Enger are the internationally bestselling Norwegian authors of the William Wisting and Henning Juul series respectively. Jørn Lier Horst first rose to literary fame with his No. 1 internationally bestselling William Wisting series. A former investigator in the Norwegian police, Horst imbues all his works with an unparalleled realism and suspense. Thomas Enger is the journalist-turned-author behind the internationally acclaimed and bestselling Henning Juul series. Enger’s trademark has become a darkly gritty voice paired with key social messages and tight plotting. Besides writing fiction for both adults and young adults, Enger also works as a music composer. Death Deserved was Jørn Lier Horst & Thomas Enger’s first co-written thriller. They are currently working on the third book in the Blix & Ramm series.

Audiobook, blog tour, Book reviews, True Crime

No Ceremony For The Dead by Shane Dunphy – Audiobook Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

‘I know I has special needs. So does Stanley and Francis and Billy and Josh. People don’t listen to us, ’cause they thinks we’re thick in our heads.’

Charlie works at St Patrick’s residential home, where the walls are so thick no one can hear you cry. He’s asking child protection expert Shane Dunphy for help, before someone gets murdered. Charlie tells him of mistreatment, brutality and random cruelty, and now Maisie, his girlfriend, a resident at the home, has gone missing. When Shane finds out what has happened to Maisie, he knows he’s uncovered a world of trouble.

Shane works his connections and, together with the ingenuity of the care home residents, attempts to subvert and infiltrate the system and bring the guilty to justice.

MY REVIEW 

No Ceremony For The Dead is #3 in the Stories from the Margins series.

It tells of Shane Dunphy’s real experiences as a child protection expert in Ireland. 

This is the story of St Patrick’s residential home. A home to care and protect vulnerable adults with complex needs. 

When young Charlie tells Shane of abuse at the home, he knows he needs to look into it further.

This is not an easy listen at times due to the subject matter, the systematic abuse of the vulnerable by people in positions of trust, it’s harrowing and anger inducing and is still being kept quiet…..an utterly compelling listen.

Shane narrates his story himself, with occasional looks at historic crimes and even folk tales which give a real sense of place. I have listened to the two previous books in this series and this is a great addition to the series. A heartbreaking look into the dark past of Ireland’s care of the vulnerable. 

Thank you to Ben at Midas PR for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an audio copy of No Ceremony For The Dead.

Available exclusively at Audible.co.uk

blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller, Police procedural

Evil Impulse by Leigh Russell – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Living with her colleague and long time love interest, Detective Inspector Ian Peterson, it seems that Geraldine Steel has finally found happiness. But life is never that simple.

As a psychopath starts killing random women on the streets of York, Geraldine is abducted by a drugs syndicate who have been threatening her sister. Geraldine has everything to fight for, and her life is on the line…

MY REVIEW 

Evil Impulse is #15 in the Geraldine Steel series and finally Geraldine and Ian are a couple….but only they know.

As always there’s a spanner in the works….

Here, York police are investigating a spate of women being murdered, all the while Geraldine is dealing with her sister and her problems,

This is a police procedural with a strong central character in Geraldine Steel, she’s committed to her job, but also to her family and personal life, so you get crime fiction and a family drama. It’s well paced with marvellously well rounded characters and a clever plot that make this another thriller of a read from Leigh Russell. 

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Evil Impulse.

Purchase Link: https://amzn.to/3py90wK

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Leigh Russell is the author of the internationally bestselling Geraldine Steel series: Cut Short, Road Closed, Dead End, Death Bed, Stop Dead, Fatal Act, Killer Plan, Murder Ring, Deadly Alibi, Class Murder, Death Rope, Rogue Killer, Deathly Affair and Deadly Revenge. The series has sold over a million copies worldwide. Cut Short was shortlisted for the Crime Writers Association (CWA) John Creasey New Blood Dagger Award, and Leigh has been longlisted for the CWA Dagger in the Library Award. Her books have been #1 on Amazon Kindle and iTunes with Stop Dead and Murder Ring selected as finalists for The People’s Book Prize. Leigh is chair of the CWA’s Debut Dagger Award judging panel and is a Royal Literary Fellow. Leigh studied at the University of Kent, gaining a Masters degree in English and American Literature. She is married with two daughters and a granddaughter, and lives in London.

blog tour, Book reviews, Psychlogical thriller

The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

An imposing, isolated hotel, high up in the Swiss Alps, is the last place Elin Warner wants to be. But she’s taken time off from her job as a detective, so when she receives an invitation out of the blue to celebrate her estranged brother’s recent engagement, she has no choice but to accept.

Arriving in the midst of a threatening storm, Elin immediately feels on edge. Though it’s beautiful, something about the hotel, recently converted from an abandoned sanatorium, makes her nervous – as does her brother, Isaac.

And when they wake the following morning to discover his fiancée Laure has vanished without a trace, Elin’s unease grows. With the storm cutting off access to and from the hotel, the longer Laure stays missing, the more the remaining guests start to panic.

But no-one has realized yet that another woman has gone missing. And she’s the only one who could have warned them just how much danger they’re all in…

MY REVIEW 

Set in the Swiss Alps, Elin and her boyfriend Will are staying in the newly opened and luxury hotel, Le Sommet. Isolated, this hotel has been converted from an old sanatorium. It has an eerie feel to it which sets Elin on edge.

Elin’s brother Issac works there and has just got engaged to Laure. Then one night Laure goes missing. Issac is frantic but Elin believes he knows more than he is saying due to events in their past.

Then a body is found.

Now in the midst of a snowstorm and an avalanche has blocked the road, the police are unable to reach them and so Elin, a police officer in the UK begins an investigation. All the while dealing with PTSD and problems of her own,

This really is a chilling, psychological thriller with a sense of tension and foreboding from the very start. The descriptions of the hotel alone give it a real sense of an almost claustrophobic menace and the cold seems to seep off the very pages.

The characters are well rounded and engaging, with its twisty, clever plot this really is unputdownable. Any fan of psychological thrillers is going to love this, a definite must read. Just brilliant and I loved every minute.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an ARC of The Sanatorium.

PREORDER HERE :  https://amzn.to/3iO4kAB

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Sarah Pearse lives by the sea in South Devon with her husband and two daughters. She studied English and Creative Writing at the University of Warwick and worked in Brand PR for a variety of household brands. After moving to Switzerland in her twenties, she spent every spare moment exploring the mountains and still has a home in the Swiss Alpine town of Crans Montana, the dramatic setting that inspired her novel. Sarah has always been drawn to the dark and creepy – remote spaces and abandoned places – so when she read an article in a local Swiss magazine about the history of sanatoriums in the area, she knew she’d found the spark of the idea for her debut novel, The Sanatorium. Her short fiction has been published in a wide variety of magazines and has been shortlisted for several prizes.

blog tour, Book reviews, Historical fiction

Crow Court by Andy Charman – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Spring, 1840. In the Dorset market town of Wimborne Minster, a young choirboy drowns himself. Soon after, the choirmaster—a belligerent man with a vicious reputation—is found murdered, in a discovery tainted as much by relief as it is by suspicion. The gaze of the magistrates falls on four local men, whose decisions will reverberate through the community for years to come.

So begins the chronicle of Crow Court, unravelling over fourteen delicately interwoven episodes, the town of Wimborne their backdrop: a young gentleman and his groom run off to join the army; a sleepwalking cordwainer wakes on his wife’s grave; desperate farmhands emigrate. We meet the composer with writer’s block; the smuggler; a troupe of actors down from London; and old Art Pugh, whose impoverished life has made him hard to amuse.

Meanwhile, justice waits…

MY REVIEW 

Crow Court is set in 1840’s Wimborne, Dorset. A choirboy has taken his own life by jumping into the local river.

Then the abusive choirmaster is murdered. This small community feels justice has been done, but the effects ripple through for a long time.

The four men who found the man’s body have suspicion fall on them, some believe they were responsible.

So, the story begins.

This is told in fourteen chapters, each one a separate tale involving different members of the community. It builds such a sense of time and place….you feel you know the area and the people of Wimborne.

You get to know these people, their lives, loves and struggles as the effects of these deaths trickle through everyone.

This is a beautifully written, almost poetic piece of historical fiction with a love of Dorset clearly coming through. A stunning and compelling read.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an ARC of Crow Court.

Purchase link : https://amzn.to/367hnrK

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Andy Charman was born in Dorset and grew up near Wimborne Minster, where Crow Court is set. His short stories have appeared in various anthologies and magazines, including Pangea and Cadenza. Crow Court is his first novel, which he worked on at the Arvon course at The Hurst in Shropshire in 2018. Andy lives in Surrey and is available for interview, comment and events.

blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller

Danger by Robin Nye – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Danger’ is a riveting, fast-paced thriller that ranges from the leafy countryside of Kent to the windswept shores of the Black Sea and to the dramatic coastline of Cornwall. At its heart, ‘Danger’ is a compelling story depicting the hopelessness, desolation and suffering of those caught up in people-trafficking across Europe. A guest goes missing from a five-star country hotel, sparking an investigation which leads DI Sarah Hunter and DS Ted Selitto of Kent Police to the discovery that young girls are being trafficked from Eastern Europe to the UK for exploitation in the sex industry. As the body count rises, Hunter and Selitto find themselves caught up in a ferocious war between gangs of and ruthless traffickers, each vying for supremacy in this sordid world. But will Hunter and Selitto be able to identify the mastermind who controls the UK operation before he can be silenced forever?

MY REVIEW 

When a hotel guest goes missing, Di Sarah Hunter and DS Ted Selitto begin the investigation. From a simple missing person this turns into a delve into people trafficking where young girls and women are moved from Europe to the UK to be put to ‘work’ in the sex industry.

Can Hunter and Selitto find the person who controls this despicable trade before someone else does?

Danger is a dark, gritty thriller which takes a look into this seedy, dangerous world. It’s not always an easy read, but there’s no sensationalism, just a thoughtful look at the effect this ‘industry’ has on the girls and women, their suffering and sheer despair at the hands of these trafficking gangs.

A fast paced, gripping and thought provoking thriller. I hope to read more of Hunter and Selitto in the future.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Danger.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Robin Nye has had a life-long interest in writing. ‘Danger’ is his first full-length novel. Leading a busy life in the commercial and voluntary sectors, he has plotted numerous stories over the years when travelling the world but has never had the time to write in earnest until now. He’s already well advanced with his follow-up Hunter and Selitto novel.

blog tour, Book reviews, Historical fiction

The Shape Of Darkness by Laura Purcell – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Wicked deeds require the cover of darkness…

A struggling silhouette artist in Victorian Bath seeks out a renowned child spirit medium in order to speak to the dead – and to try and identify their killers – in this beguiling new tale from Laura Purcell.

Silhouette artist Agnes is struggling to keep her business afloat. Still recovering from a serious illness herself, making enough money to support her elderly mother and her orphaned nephew Cedric has never been easy, but then one of her clients is murdered shortly after sitting for Agnes, and then another, and another…

Desperately seeking an answer, Agnes approaches Pearl, a child spirit medium lodging in Bath with her older half-sister and her ailing father, hoping that if Pearl can make contact with those who died, they might reveal who killed them. But Agnes and Pearl quickly discover that instead they may have opened the door to something that they can never put back…

What secrets lie hidden in the darkness?

MY REVIEW 

Set in Bath in the 19th century and Agnes lives with her aged mother and nephew. She just about manages to support her family by being a silhouette artist.

But then her customers begin dying soon after she visits them, she believes someone is trying to ruin her and her business by murdering them. But who and why?

So, Agnes visits a medium to try and contact the victims and find out who the killer is…..things then get dark and creepy.

This is a marvellously dark gothic Murder mystery set against a poverty stricken Bath, it has enough chilling atmosphere to give you goosebumps. A clever plot and wonderful characters bring this to creepy life. Gripping, moody and I loved every spooky minute.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour and an eARC of The Shape Of Darkness.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Laura Purcell is a former bookseller and lives in Colchester with her husband and pet guinea pigs. Her first novel for Raven Books, The Silent Companions, was a Radio 2 and Zoe Ball ITV Book Club pick and was the winner of the WHSmith Thumping Good Read Award, while her subsequent books – The Corset and Bone China – established Laura as the queen of the sophisticated, and spooky, page-turner.

laurapurcell.com |@spookypurcell

blog tour, Book reviews, Contemporary fiction, Family drama

There’s Only One Danny Garvey by David F. Ross – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Danny Garvey was a sixteen-year old footballing prodigy. Professional clubs clamoured to sign him, and a glittering future beckoned. And yet, his early promise remained unfulfilled, and Danny is back home in the tiny village of Barshaw to manage the struggling junior team he once played for. What’s more, he’s hiding a secret about a tragic night, thirteen years earlier, that changed the course of several lives. There’s only one Danny Garvey, they once chanted … and that’s the problem.

A story of irrational hopes and fevered dreams – of unstoppable passion and unflinching commitment in the face of defeat – There’s Only One Danny Garvey is, above all, an unforgettable tale about finding hope and redemption in the most unexpected of places.

MY REVIEW

16 year old Danny Garvey had a promising career as a professional footballer ahead of him….but it ended too soon.

Years later he is drawn back to his small home village of Barshaw, to manage the struggling junior team…..he’s right back where he started.

This is a tale with the passion for football clearly evident, but that’s not all it is!.

It tells of violence, abuse, of poverty but also love, hopes, dreams and dark secrets too.

Narrated with the inner voice of Danny, who remembers events seemingly different to those around him, especially his big brother, Raymond.

Told in the Scottish dialect (it doesn’t take long to get used to it) it has a sense of tension, that somethings not quite right. The dark humour brings a little relief to this story of family, of life, loss and love, of football, a damaged man and a crime drama too. This is so beautifully written these fantastic characters bring a dark, gritty tale to an edgy life, they draw you in and break your heart. Utterly, utterly brilliant.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of There’s Only One Danny Garvey.

Purchase link : https://amzn.to/3nZFDlF

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

German Portraiture David F. Ross, architect and bookwriter from glasgow, scotland. shooting at the lovelace hotel in munich, may 24. 2018.

David F. Ross was born in Glasgow in 1964 and has lived in Kilmarnock for over 30 years. He is a graduate of the Mackintosh School of Architecture at Glasgow School of Art, an architect by day, and a hilarious social media commentator, author and enabler by night. His debut novel The Last Days of Discowas shortlisted for the Authors Club Best First Novel Award, and received exceptional critical acclaim, as did the other two books in the Disco Days Trilogy: The Rise & Fall of the Miraculous Vespasand The Man Who Loved Islands. David lives in Ayrshire.

Audiobook, Spotlight

*AUDIOBOOK SPOTLIGHT* for The Far Wild by Alex Knight

Welcome to The Bookwormery, today I have a SPOTLIGHT for the Audiobook of The Far Wild by Alex Knight…..

I am a big fan of audiobooks and listen to them regularly, this fantasy thriller sounds great.

Here is the publisher’s blurb:

The Far Wild

by Alex Knight and narrated by Peter Kenny, Stephanie Lane) and  Carlyss Peer and is available from Audible.co.uk.

An expedition gone awry.

Suni Koudounas is enamored with the wonders — and dangers — of the Far Wild. As a naturalist’s apprentice, she’s studied every book and expedition report about the miraculous wilderness. But when her mentor goes missing on expedition, Suni sets aside the Far Wild of ink and paper to venture after him into the primordial jungle.

A missing skyship.

As the empire’s most beloved adventurer — or most successful raconteur — Senesio Suleiman Nicolaou doesn’t want much. Wealth beyond measure, fame beyond reason, and a small kingdom somewhere warm should be about enough. When news of the rescue mission reaches him, Senesio knows there’s no better opportunity to add to his living legend.

The most dangerous wilderness known to man. 

With unexpected enemies above and monstrous predators in the jungles below, it’s up to Suni, Senesio, and their companions to uncover the truth of what’s happening in the Far Wild. It’s a revelation that will shake the empire to its core and reshape the lives of all involved — assuming, of course, they don’t all get eaten first.

This thrilling start to Alex Knight’s new fantasy series is perfect for fans of Michael Crichton’s Jurassic Park and Nicholas Eames’s Kings of the Wyld.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alex Knight is filling good books with bad jokes one sentence at a time.

As an author of LitRPG and Fantasy his work includes the Nova Online Trilogy and the forthcoming fantasy thriller The Far Wild. 

As an aspiring twin he’s not making much progress, but remains determined.

In the past Alex has worked as everything from a dish washer at Busch Gardens to the Communications Coordinator at the Florida Attractions Association. After deciding he didn’t like stability or predictable paychecks he made the jump to being a freelance writer. Soon that turned into ghostwriting romance novellas, then ghostwriting full-blown science fiction novels, and finally, writing his own novels.

Alex grew up a sunbaked, outdoorsy Floridian and has lived in several places around the world. These days he’s on the gulf coast of Texas, in a bayou outside Houston.

When Alex isn’t writing, he’s likely clawing his way through champion rank in Rocket league, hiking, or plotting his triumphant return to Florida.

blog tour, Book reviews, Crime thriller, Historical fiction

The Art Of Dying by Ambrose Parry – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

A gripping historical novel of medicine & murder from bestselling author 

Chris Brookmyre and consultant anaesthetist Dr Marisa Haetzman, 

set in nineteenth-century Edinburgh

Edinburgh, 1849. Hordes of patients are dying all across the city, with doctors finding their remedies powerless. And a campaign seeks to paint Dr James Simpson, pioneer of medical chloroform, as a murderer.

Determined to clear Simpson’s name, his protégé Will Raven and former housemaid Sarah Fisher must plunge into Edinburgh’s deadliest streets and find out who or what is behind the deaths. Soon they discover that the cause of the deaths has evaded detection purely because it is so unthinkable.

MY REVIEW 

The Art of Dying is the sequel to The Way Of All Flesh, it can be read as a stand-alone too, but I feel you miss out on the background to Will and Sarah.

Again set in Victorian Edinburgh, Will has returned from Europe, after gaining medical experience, and he is now a qualified medic. He becomes an assistant to Dr Simpson and Sarah, now married to another doctor, still has dreams of becoming a doctor herself, something unheard of at that time.

When people begin dying of an unknown illness, Sarah is the first to believe something darker is causing these deaths. She convinces Will and together they delve deeper and begin to hunt for a killer.

The Art Of Dying is historical crime fiction at its very best, superbly written and full of wonderfully atmospheric descriptions you really get a sense of time and place. It has a dark, twisty plot and well rounded, likeable characters that all add up to a thoroughly compelling read. Just brilliant.

Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an ARC of The Art Of Dying.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Ambrose Parry is a pseudonym for a collaboration between Chris Brookmyre and Marisa Haetzman. The couple are married and live in Scotland. Chris Brookmyre is the international bestselling and multi-award-winning author of over twenty novels. Dr Marisa Haetzman is a consultant anaesthetist of twenty years’ experience, whose research for her Master’s degree in the History of Medicine uncovered the material upon which this series, which began with The Way of All Flesh, is based. The Way of All Flesh was shortlisted for the McIlvanney Prize for Scottish Crime Book of the Year and longlisted for the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year Award.

The Art of Dying is the second book in the series.

@ambroseparry

blog tour, Book reviews, Spy thriller, Thriller

Primal Calling by Barry Eisenberg – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

While rummaging through the attic, high school senior Jack Davies is surprised to find his never-before-seen birth certificate, revealing a startling fact that changes his life. The story his mother told about his birth, he discovers, is a lie. 

Jack becomes obsessed with discovering the true identity of his father, forcing him to face and conquer obstacles – kidnapping, death threats, and a powerful family secret – most 20-year-olds would never even dream they would encounter. Faced with unanswered questions and confounding obstacles at every turn, Jack finds himself deeply enmeshed in an intricate world of national security and international intrigue. 

Relationships are tested as his every move is tracked by a group of mysterious people. Who are they? Whose side are they on? Who can he trust? And, most importantly, who will he ultimately become?

MY REVIEW 

Primal Calling is the tale of Jake and his search for his birth father, but that’s not all.

Jake hadn’t known who his father was until he accidentally finds his birth certificate. So, he decides to find him.

But, as he begins his search his attempts are flagged and things get dark and dangerous. Who was his father and who else is searching for a man who seemingly doesn’t exist?

Primal Calling is part family drama and part spy thriller. It’s well paced, full of tension and is an engrossing and compelling read.

Thank you to Michelle at FSB associates for an eARC of Primal Calling.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Barry Eisenberg is the author of Primal Calling, his debut novel. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, among others. An associate professor of health care management in the School for Graduate Studies at the State University of New York Empire State College, he is also a health care management consultant and a former hospital administrator. An avid bicycle rider, Eisenberg lives in New Jersey with his wife, Amy.