BOOKS, BOOKS, BOOKS and a bit of Life and living with stg 4 Melanoma
I am not a professional book reviewer, just an avid reader. I have a lot of ‘down’ time, due to my various treatments for Metatastic Malignant Melanoma (Stage 4). So I read.
Books are my escape and relaxation and my reviews are my honest opinion. If it’s tripe, I’ll say so and alternately if it’s excellent I may gush a bit. Many books are a good read, but are a bit forgettable, others, however, touch your soul a little and stay with you bringing a little magic to life.
I am 56 and I have stage 4 Malignant Melanoma and have been having various treatments and surgery over the past four years to help prolong my stay on this planet. Currently on Pembrolizumab..every three weeks....Good days and bad days and at times a lot of Scanxiety....
When Bergen PI Varg Veum finds himself at the funeral of a former
classmate on a sleet-grey December afternoon, he’s unexpectedly reunited with his old friend Jakob – guitarist of the once-famous 1960s rock band The Harpers – and his estranged wife, Rebecca, Veum’s first love.
Their rekindled friendship is thrown into jeopardy by the discovery of a horrific murder, and Veum is forced to dig deep into his own adolescence and his darkest memories, to find a motive … and a killer. Tense, vivid and deeply unsettling, Fallen Angels is the spellbinding, award-winning thriller that secured Gunnar Staalesen’s reputation as one of the world’s foremost crime writers.
Varg Veum is a PI, attending the funeral of a friend, memories of the past are recalled.
There is a murder to solve in the present day, but Varg’s past keeps coming to the fore.
This is a tale of Varg’s past, his friendships, love and secrets that have made him the person he is now.
There is an underlying feeling of tension which gives this an unsettling edge as we peer into the darker side of human behaviour.
At times quite harrowing, this emotion packed thriller is a look into the dark underbelly of society, those that live in it and the effect this has on those who deal with the aftermath. Both brutal and melancholy, this dark thriller is utterly compelling.
Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Fallen Angels.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
One of the fathers of Nordic Noir, Gunnar Staalesen was born in
Bergen, Norway, in 1947. He made his debut at the age of twenty-two with Seasons of Innocence and in 1977 he published the first book in the Varg Veum series. He is the author of over twenty titles, which have been published in twenty-four countries and sold over four million copies. Twelve film adaptations of his Varg Veum crime novels have appeared since 2007, starring the popular Norwegian actor Trond Espen Seim. Staalesen has won three Golden Pistols (including the Prize of Honour) and Where Roses Never Die won the 2017 Petrona Award for Nordic Crime Fiction, and Big Sister was shortlisted in 2019. He lives with his wife in Bergen.
From the bestselling author of the DI Bliss series comes an enthralling mystery thriller.
The truth can set you free – or bury you.
When FBI Agent Sydney Merlot returns to her home town in northern California to wind down her late father’s PI business, she soon finds herself on the wrong side of the aftermath of a high school shooting.
Sydney’s childhood friend – who is now county sheriff – plus the local PD, the mayor’s office, and most of the town’s inhabitants, are convinced the horror ended when the gunman was killed. Now they just want to be left alone to mourn. But Sydney has other ideas – and she is not alone.
While having to work through her own personal grief, Sydney is openly intimidated and receives anonymous threats. After discovering she is under surveillance, she begins to fear for her life. During her investigation she gains several allies, but as the days pass, Sydney doesn’t know who to trust, and which new friends might actually turn out to be foes…
From the creator of the DI Bliss series comes a new protagonist, Sydney Merlot.
Sydney’s father has died in a road accident and she has returned to her childhood home in California to settle his affairs. This includes hismdetective agency.
As she is an FBI agent, Sydney decides to work the outstanding cases, then a man arrives asking for help. Her friends will help, won’t they?
A tale of lies, secrets and betrayal.
Wow, as ever Mr Forder has created a marvellously complex plot, with several seemingly unrelated threads running through it, until slowly they all come together in this tension packed thriller that has an underlying sense of foreboding throughout. Just brilliant.
Thank you to Book On The Bright for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Fifteen Coffins.
Tony J Forder is the author of the bestselling DI Bliss crime thriller series. The first seven books, Bad to the Bone, The Scent of Guilt, If Fear Wins, The Reach of Shadows, The Death of Justice,Endless Silent Scream, and Slow Slicing, were joined in December 2020 by a prequel novella, Bliss Uncovered.
Tony’s other series – two action-adventure novels featuring Mike Lynch – comprises both Scream Blue Murder, and Cold Winter Sun.
In addition, Tony has written two standalone novels: a dark, psychological crime thriller, Degrees of Darkness, and a suspense thriller set in California, called Fifteen Coffins which was released just last November.
Tony lives with his wife in Peterborough, UK, and is now a full-time author. He is currently working on Bliss #8, The Autumn Tree.
Welcome to the Bookwormery for a SPOTLIGHT featuring C. J. Daughterty’s new novel, Number 10.
One of the UK’s most critically acclaimed teen authors returns with a new novel set in the world of her hugely popular Night School series.
Number 10 tells the spinetingling story of 16-year-old Gray Langtry, the daughter of the UK’s female prime minister, who is about to get in way over her head.
After a wild night with friends is splashed across the tabloids, Gray is grounded for two weeks at Number 10 Downing Street, no ifs no buts.
Left alone one night, with her mother at an important meeting, Gray discovers a secret network of government tunnels leading from 10 Downing Street to the Houses of Parliament and beyond. What starts as a bit of fun, suddenly gets serious, when Gray stumbles across a secret late night cabinet meeting and overhears what sounds like a Russian-led plot to kill her mother.
Wasting no time, she rushes back to inform her mother’s security detail, but with no proof of what she heard, no-one will believe a wayward teenager. Now, it’s up to Gray to break out of Number 10 and warn her mother before it’s too late.
With the help of her best friend Chloe and love interest Jake McIntyre – who just happens to be the son of the leader of the opposition – will she make it in time to save her mother? And what will she have to sacrifice in the process?
Number 10 is a Night School spin off series that sees CJ Daugherty back at her spine tingling best. Gripping, thrilling, and filled with intrigue, Number 10 explores the nexus of power in the UK from a teenager’s point of view.
CJ Daugherty’s bestselling Night School books have sold over 1.5 million copies
• Translated into 25 languages worldwide
• Number 10 launches in the UK, USA, France, Germany, Spain, Israel, Latin America
• For fans of Suzanne Collins, Cassandra Clare and, Holly Black.
About C.J. Daugherty
A former crime reporter and accidental civil servant, C.J. Daugherty began writing the Night School series while working as a communications consultant for the Home Office. The young adult series was published by Little Brown and went on to sell over a million and a half copies worldwide. A web series inspired by the books clocked up well over a million views. In 2020, the books were optioned for television. She later wrote The Echo Killing series, published by St Martin’s Press, and co-wrote the fantasy series, The Secret Fire, with French author Carina Rosenfeld.
While working as a civil servant, she had meetings at Number 10 Downing Street, and saw people disappearing through a small door leading to a staircase heading below ground level. This visit became the inspiration for Number 10. FYI: She still doesn’t know if there are tunnels below Number 10. But she hopes there are.
Her books have been translated into 25 languages and been bestsellers in multiple countries. She lives with her husband, the BAFTA nominated filmmaker, Jack Jewers.
‘I’m perfectly happy lying to myself…If it means getting to stay with you.’
Jasper is ready to surprise his brother; Holly is ready to celebrate their engagement.
Anne tags along for fear of missing out, and John might just be going for another drink.
But Edmund and Ovidia had other plans for their Saturday.
Over the course of one day, these couples must own up to the secrets they’ve been hiding from one another and the lies they’ve been telling themselves. And face the devastating consequences.
Three couples. Two exes. One day. One reckoning.
In her debut novel, Agatha Zaza crafts a modern domestic tragedy simmering with betrayal and deceit.
The Pretenders is the tale of secrets and the consequences when they come to light.
To celebrate their engagement, Holly and Jasper arrange a little celebration with a few friends and Jasper’s brother.
All set during one Saturday, with flashbacks to each character’s background and how they have reached this point. As secrets begin to come to light the tension builds and you wonder what will happen next.
This is a dark thriller that will keep you turning the pages as more shocks and secrets are discovered. It has a fresh, sharp writing style and some real shocks along the way. A dark and compelling thriller.
Thank you to Peyton at Agora Books for the opportunity to be part of the blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of The Pretenders.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Agatha Zaza is a Zambian and Finn at present living in Auckland, New Zealand. Her writing is a departure from her work in fundraising and international development.
The Pretenders was born in Singapore, where she spent three years as a trailing spouse, where she rekindled a long-dormant love of writing. Aside from Singapore, Agatha has worked and lived several countries, among them Uganda and the then Soviet Union. While in Ireland, she earned a Master’s in Equality Studies from University College Dublin and worked in a genuine Irish pub.
Agatha’s work can be seen in the Johannesburg Review of Books and in a PEN International special edition on African writers. She has also published three short books on Amazon. She’s been a passionate slow runner for two and half decades and has recently taken up composting and staring at her new sewing machine.
New Fiction from Slant Books Coyote Fork: A Thriller by James Wilson
British journalist Robert Lovelace travels to California to report on the social media giant Global Village. He’s horrified by what he finds: a company—guided by the ruthless vision of its founder, Evan Bone—that seems to be making journalism itself redundant. Appalled, he decides to abandon the project and return home.
But as he leaves he has a disconcerting encounter that sends him off in a totally different direction. Soon he finds himself embarking on an increasingly fraught and dangerous mission. The aim: to uncover the murky truth about Evan Bone’s past and his pathological disregard for the human cost of the behemoth he has created.
Robert’s quest takes him from San Francisco to a small college town in the Midwest, to the site of a former hippie commune in northern California, introducing us to a range of vivid characters and confronting us with the price we pay—online trolling, the loss of privacy, professional ruin—for living in an “interconnected” world. Finally, he makes a startling discovery—and is thrown into a completely unforeseen existential dilemma.
A timely, stylishly written, and brilliantly conceived metaphysical thriller, Coyote Fork carries us on an unforgettable journey, before bringing us face to face with the darkness at the heart of Silicon Valley itself.
Coyote Fork Is the tale of Robert Lovelace and his journey to find the truth behind social media giant, Evan Bone.
This is a thriller so in tune with the present day it feels like it could be happening right now. There is the ever present need for instant news to the extent traditional journalism is disappearing.
How lives are spent permanently connected to the online world, some in search of fame and validation from invisible voices, who can and do turn suddenly vicious and ruin reputations and lives in keystroke.
It’s also about culture, insidious technology and a murder.
Beautifully written and utterly compelling from start to finish. A unique and timely thriller.
Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Coyote Fork.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
James Wilson is a London-based writer. His previous novels include The Dark Clue, The Bastard Boy, The Woman in the Picture, Consolation, and The Summer of Broken Stories. He has written BBC TV and radio documentaries, and is the author of a work of narrative nonfiction, The Earth Shall Weep: A History of Native America, which won a Myers Outstanding Book Award.
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A bold, thought provoking and high-concept feminist dystopian thriller
Ravaged by environmental disaster, greed and oppression, our planet is in crisis. The future of humanity hangs in the balance – and one woman can tip it over.
Despite increasing restrictions on the freedoms of women on Earth, Valerie Black is spearheading the first all-female mission to a planet in the Goldilocks Zone, where conditions are just right for human habitation.
It’s humanity’s last hope for survival, and Naomi, Valerie’s surrogate daughter and the ship’s botanist, has been waiting her whole life for an opportunity like this – to step out of Valerie’s shadow and really make a difference.
But when things start going wrong on the ship, Naomi starts to suspect that someone on board is concealing a terrible secret – and realises time for life on Earth may be running out faster than they feared…
Goldilocks is science fiction that feels a bit too close to home for comfort.
The human race has ruined Earth, the ice caps have melted, temperatures rising and some areas of this glorious planet are now uninhabitable. So there are plans to move to a new planet.
Women are now no longer welcome to work in the space industry, or anywhere for that matter, so a group of 5 women, all trained astronauts, medics and scientists decide to take matters in their own hands and steal a rocket. They head to th new planet, Cavendish, via Mars with great plans to set up a utopian world and save humankind.
But, someone has a secret, one that changes everything.
I loved this, from the atmosphere, the world building plans and life on the ship as they travel for many months. The twists and tension keep building in this tale of hope, of love and betrayal and of the dangers of fanaticism. Scarily prescient at times and definitely a cautionary tale. Thought provoking and utterly gripping from start to finish.
Thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour, for the promotional materials and a free copy of the book. This is my honest, unbiased review.
Laura Lam is the author of several science fiction books, including Radio 2 Book Club selection False Hearts. Her short fiction and essays have appeared in anthologies such as Nasty Women, Solaris Rising 3, Cranky Ladies of History, Scotland in Space, and more.
Originally from California, she now lives in Scotland with her husband, and teaches Creative Writing at Edinburgh Napier University.
Jared Keaton, chef to the stars. Charming. Charismatic. Psychopath . . . He’s currently serving a life sentence for the brutal murder of his daughter, Elizabeth. Her body was never found and Keaton was convicted largely on the testimony of Detective Sergeant Washington Poe.
So when a young woman staggers into a remote police station with irrefutable evidence that she is Elizabeth Keaton, Poe finds himself on the wrong end of an investigation, one that could cost him much more than his career.
Helped by the only person he trusts, the brilliant but socially awkward Tilly Bradshaw, Poe races to answer the only question that matters: how can someone be both dead and alive at the same time?
And then Elizabeth goes missing again – and all paths of investigation lead back to Poe.
Cynical and ruthless, he has always teetered on the edge. Has Poe finally crossed that line and embraced his darkness?
Black Summer is #2 in the Washington Poe series, but can also be read as a stand-alone.
In a small village in Cumbria, Police Officer Alsop holds a monthly surgery in the local library. Here village residents can voice their concerns and worries they have.
At one of these sessions a young woman arrives, all dishevelled and tells him she had been kidnapped 6 years ago and has just managed to escape.
DS Poe is called back from London to help with the investigation, as he had been involved in the original case. Is this woman Elizabeth who had disappeared 6 years ago? DNA says it is, but Poe has doubts……had he put an innocent man behind bars?
Black Summer is an utterly compelling crime thriller. Poe and Tilly are great characters and the clever, twisty plot keeps you on tenterhooks. A fantastic, original and gripping read.
Thank you to the publishers and NetGalley for an eARC of Black Summer.
When the body of a young woman is found in a local park, DC Maggie Jamieson knows she’s dealing with no ordinary killer. The murder victim has been disfigured; her outfit changed to resemble someone else. Someone Maggie knows all too well…her close friend Dr Kate Moloney.
A determined detective…
Maggie is determined to keep her friend safe, but with Kate already struggling with a threatening stalker, Maggie now fears Kate’s life is in real danger. Who else would want to harm Kate and why else would the killer be turning his victims into exact replicas – his living dolls?
Can Maggie find the depraved killer? Or will Kate become his next living doll?
Maggie Jamieson is back!
When Kate Maloney finds out a killer is dressing his victims to look like her, she’s worried to say the least. When she starts to receive letters and gifts, her friend, Maggie, insists she stays with her….until they catch the perpetrator.
Who is Kate’s stalker and can Maggie keep her friend safe?
Dead Perfect is a proper thriller, with twists and turns to keep your heart racing. A police procedural with a creepy edge. A Perfect read.
Thank you to Book On The Bright Side for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Dead Perfect.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at http://www.crimebookjunkie.co.uk. She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of risk cases as well as working in a multi agency setting. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, attending as many book festivals as she can afford and sharing the booklove via her blog.
Dead Inside – her debut novel with One More Chapter/Harper Collins UK is an international kindle bestseller and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.
The Bad Place sees Shane Dunphy contacted by an old friend seeking advice about children who went missing in the 1980s. The call forces him to revisit a dark time in his early career as a child protection officer, when a young girl described children in care being taken to a residence known as the Bad Place. As a conspiracy emerges that goes to the top of the Irish police and Government, Dunphy recognises the MO of the alleged killer as The Dark Man, a terrifying figure he encountered over thirty years ago, who nearly ended his career before it had even begun.
Determined to confront his past, Dunphy decides to investigate, uncovering a vast international child trafficking ring involving cases of historical child disappearances, unsolved abductions, collusion with the Catholic church and its culture of secrets, lies and cover up and more.
The Bad Place is the harrowing tale of missing children in Ireland.
When Shane is approached by a journalist friend for some background information in regards to a missing child, he mentions the dark man. This immediately scares Shane, as he had met the dark man once when he was a young man just starting his career in child protection. The nightmares still haunt him.
But, he feels he owes to those children to put aside his fears and investigate what really went on in the Bad Place.
This audiobook is read by Shane Dunphy himself and this really brings alive the terrible atmosphere, it has a real sense of time and place and the fear Shane felt about the dark man is palpable. Just think of the fear those children felt !
This is not an easy listen as it deals with child abuse, child trafficking and the dark history of Ireland in relation to children. An interesting, gripping read that’s heartbreaking and anger inducing at the same time.
Thank you to Ben at Midas PR for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and a copy of the audiobook, The Bad Place.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Shane Dunphy is the million-selling author of non-fiction titles relating the years he spent as a child protection worker. He is an accomplished musician and has composed soundtracks for television and radio. Dunphy is an award-winning documentary maker and he writes regularly for Independent newspapers. He also writes a series of crime novels under the pseudonym S.A. Dunphy.
The grieving widower. The motherless daughters. A beautiful house in the woods. And a nanny came to save the day….
So what if Lexi isn’t telling the truth about who she is? Escaping to the remote snows of Norway was her lifeline. And all she wanted was to be a part of their lives.
But soon, isolated in that cold, creaking house in the middle of ancient, whispering woods, Lexi’s fairytale starts to turn into a nightmare.
With darkness creeping in from the outside, Lexi’s fears are deepening. Lexi knows she needs to protect the children in her care.
But protect them from what?
This starts with the death of Aurelia. Was it suicide?
Then Lexi attempts to take her life, but is saved by a friend. Her boyfriend then leaves her.
She hears of a job opportunity in Norway, so she steals the identity of another woman and applies to be a Nanny.
She gets the job and travels to Norway to be Nanny to Tom’s children. Tom was Aurelias husband.
Lexi feels she is living a fairytale, but then the sad lady begins to appear and things get dark and creepy.
I found The Nesting to be an atmospheric and downright creepy gothic thriller with some really scary moments…..one to read with the lights on! ……a thoroughly entertaining read.
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 Nesting.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
C.J. Cooke is an acclaimed, award-winning poet, novelist and academic with numerous other publications under the name of Carolyn Jess-Cooke. Born in Belfast, she has a PhD in Literature from Queen’s University, Belfast, and is currently Lecturer in Creative Writing at the University of Glasgow, where she researches creative writing interventions for mental health.
A family trapped. A psychopath on the loose. Let the game begin…
What could be more innocent than going on holiday?
As a family drive along a quiet country lane on their way to the airport, they meet a stranger standing alone in the middle of the road.
Steering them along another path, he tells the driver, Ben, that a tree has fallen and there’s no way through.
But as they make their way along the diverted route, they come across a coach blocking the road.
Getting out of the car Ben goes to investigate and is horrified to find the passengers tied to their seats.
Then a discarded phone starts to ring…
If Ben calls the police, everyone on board will die.
Let the horrific game begin…
Stranded is a nightmare!
When Ben and Laura are stopped on their way to the airport the tension begins to soar. A man tells them the road ahead is blocked and tells them there is a diversion. So,with no reason not to believe him they set off, only to find this road blocked by a coach.
Inside they find passengers tied to seats…….and then a phone rings and the game begins.
What follows is an incredibly tense, creepy and nerve wracking horror of a story, with twists and turns to keep you thoroughly hooked.
Why would anyone feel they had the right to punish wrongdoers?
A true page Turner as you just cannot put it down, you have to know what’s going to happen next. Just brilliant and a perfect read for Halloween.
Thank you to Book On a the Bright Side Publicity for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Stranded.
I have always loved scary stories, especially ones that shocked me, left me terrified, looking under my bed or in the wardrobe before going to sleep.
There was just a fantastic buzz whenever I watched or read something that took my breathe away.
I remember going to my nan’s house in Ireland as a youngster with my mother and sister, on the West Coast, staying in a cottage, surrounded by miles of fields and my family sitting around the table in the kitchen at night telling ghost stories. Going out and exploring derelict farmhouses in the middle of nowhere. I remember clearly the field at the end of the road was supposed to be haunted by headless nuns.
My cousins often remind me of the great times we had, frightening each other and running for our lives whenever we’d see something that didn’t look right.
This is why I love nothing more than to tell a story.
I started writing three years ago, penning The House On Rectory Lane which has just won The International Book Award in horror fiction. I got the idea from something that has often seemed scary to me. I know that a terrifying story has to be something that you’re frightened of doing, something that makes the hairs stand on the back of your neck, something that fills you with dread, yet also with excitement.
To me, the thought of going to a house in the middle of nowhere, upping and leaving a busy town and moving to the country is something that scares lots of people and me: the seclusion, the quiet, the darkness. That’s what inspired me to write my first novel.
My second thriller is called Turn The Other Way, which was a world wide number 1 best seller and stayed at number 1 for 19 weeks in the US.
I have multiple stories running, past and present. A family who want answers from the surgeon responsible for their daughter’s death. A young woman looking for her parents after they go missing from a party. A couple driving home and hearing screams for help from the back of the van in front of them. A serial killer on the loose in North London, dragging victims off the street.
I’m so grateful when people not only read my thrillers but also take the time to get in touch and leave a review. To me, that is the greatest feeling, hearing from people that have enjoyed my work. I know then that I’m doing something right.
My third thriller, Apartment Six, was published in January of this year and was a number 1 hot new release on Amazon for 4 weeks.
Stranded goes on pre-order Monday October 12th on Amazon and is released October 19th.
I’m 47, married and have two beautiful children. Currently, I’m a full-time plumber but would love nothing more than to make a living from my writing. I hope I write stories and people continue to enjoy them for years to come. That would be completely amazing and a dream come true.
When Helen Oddfellow starts work as a lecturer in English literature, she’s hoping for a quiet life. But trouble knows where to find her.
There’s something wrong with her new students. Their unhappiness seems to be linked to their flamboyant former tutor, Professor Petrarch Greenwood, who holds decadent parties in his beautiful Bloomsbury apartment.
When Helen is asked to take over his course on the Romantic poet William Blake, life and art start to show uncomfortable parallels. Disturbing poison pen letters lead down dark paths, until Helen is the only person standing between a lone gunman and a massacre.
THE PEACOCK ROOM is the intriguing follow-up to the acclaimed thriller UNLAWFUL THINGS, which introduced the literary sleuth Helen Oddfellow.
#2 in the Helen Oddfellow mystery series, but can also be read as a stand-alone.
Here, Helen Oddfellow is asked to take over a class who are studying the romantic poets. This is not her usual area of expertise, but she is soon drawn into the world of William Blake. When some dark art surfaces, all using Blake’s imagery things take a dark and dangerous turn for Helen.
Can Helen stop a planned massacre?
This is a clever, slow burn of a thriller that builds the tension gradually up to a nail biting end. Full of great characters and lots of interesting detail, especially the life and works of William Blake, all of which make this a very engrossing and entertaining read.
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 Peacock Room.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Anna Sayburn Lane is a novelist, short story writer and storyteller, inspired by the history and contemporary life of London. Unlawful Things is her first novel.
She has published award-winning short stories in a number of magazines, including Mslexia, Scribble and One Eye Grey.
Her Mslexia award-winning story Conservation was described by judge and Booker-longlisted author Alison MacLeod as “a powerful and profound contemporary piece in which one man’s story stands for an entire nation’s… it’s a punch to the heart, a story that will haunt and touch its readers deeply”.
She has told stories at London club The Story Party and One Eye Grey’s Halloween event, Moon Over the Lido.
Burned out and traumatised by her horrifying experiences around the world, aid worker Úrsula has returned to Iceland. Unable to settle, she accepts a high-profile government role in which she hopes to make a difference again.
But on her first day in the post, Úrsula promises to help a mother seeking justice for her daughter, who had been raped by a policeman, and life in high office soon becomes much more harrowing than Úrsula could ever have imagined. A homeless man is stalking her – but is he hounding her, or warning her of some danger? And the death of her father in police custody so many years rears its head once again.
As Úrsula is drawn into dirty politics, facing increasingly deadly threats, the lives of her stalker, her bodyguard and even a witch- like cleaning lady intertwine. Small betrayals become large ones, and the stakes are raised ever higher…
The award-winning internationally bestselling author Lilja Sigurðardóttir returns with Betrayal, a relevant, powerful, fast- paced thriller about the worlds of politics, police corruption and misogyny that feels just a little bit too real…
Úrsula is the Minister of the Interior in Iceland, her new role is putting more strain on her already troubled marriage, not less as she expected.
She is asked to look into a rape case, which has a police officer involved. As she investigates she sees into the darker side of politics and corruption.
Betrayal is a twisty thriller, so compelling from the very start. The incredibly well developed characters all slowly link to build the story, it’s complex plot keeps you turning the pages, you just have to know what’s coming next.
It also deals with contemporary issues such as social media, misogyny and homelessness, which all add to the sense of reality. 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 eARC of Betrayal.
Icelandic crime-writer Lilja Sigurdardóttir was born in the town of Akranes in 1972 and raised in Mexico, Sweden, Spain and Iceland. An award-winning playwright, Lilja has written four crime novels, including Snare, Trap and Cage, making up the Reykjavik Noir trilogy, which have hit bestseller lists worldwide. The film rights have been bought by Palomar Pictures in California. She lives in Reykjavík with her partner.
When you look in an empty pool, you don’t usually expect to see a body at the bottom but in a a small town in eastern Pennsylvania called Pikesville one summer, that is exactly what happens. Pikesville is a quaint community that is faced with the disappearance of a local teenager Jenna Hayes and the town is turned upside down. When Jenna is found brutally murdered at the bottom of the town’s abandoned pool, the town is devastated, but to Sarah Moore, Jenna was just a girl whose name she heard around sometimes, in some circles. What does this have to do with her? She is dealing with her own issues, anyway. But when Sarah’s sister, Chloe, goes missing, Sarah must uncover a murderer before he gets to her, too, or before it’s too late.
Sarah and Chloe are sisters, both have eating disorders and they support each other through them. Sarah starves and Chloe binges and purges. They attend the funeral of Jenna, a friend of Chloe’s, but end up having a row on the way home. So, Chloe goes for a drive to clear her head. She doesn’t come home.
The police arrived as they had found her abandoned car. Chloe has disappeared.
As Sarah feels the police are not working hard enough on the case, she begins her own investigation……..
Forgotten Toys is compelling from the first page. As Sarah and Chloe have been so well developed from the start, you worry with and for them, especially Sarah as she searches for her sister.
With its clever plot, great characters, twist and turns, this atmospheric thriller is a true page turner.
Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of Forgotten Toys.
Ashley Laino has currently resides in Bangor, Pennsylvania with her husband and two adorable cats. Her other works include the psychological thriller “Forgotten Toys.” When she is not writing, she enjoys running, reading, and watching weird documentaries on Netflix.
In 1893, there’s no such thing as witches. There used to be, in the wild, dark days before the burnings began, but now witching is nothing but tidy charms and nursery rhymes. If the modern woman wants any measure of power, she must find it at the ballot box.
But when the three Eastwood sisters join the suffragists of New Salem, they begin to pursue the forgotten ways that might turn the women’s movement into the witch’s movement. Stalked by shadows and sickness, hunted by forces who will not suffer a witch to vote – and perhaps not even to live – the sisters must delve into the oldest magics, draw new alliances, and heal the bond between them if they want to survive.
There’s no such thing as witches. But there will be.
Set in 1893, in the town of New Salem,
Women are fighting for the right to vote and suffragist rallies are being arranged.
Three sisters, Juniper, Agnes and Beatrice find themselves meeting up in New Salem. Drawn together after many years apart. Here they see a dark tower appear with strange symbols on the door. It seems witching has disappeared after all.
The Once and Future Witches is a feminist tale about the fight for equality, it’s also about diversity, acceptance and family all set in a marvellously witching world. Part historical fiction and part fantasy, with great characters and a clever, witchy plot. Compelling from start to finish.
Thank you to Compulsive Readers for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an ARC of The Once And Future Witches.
A thrillingly dark novel that shows the rare magic that can happen when two dazzlingly original imaginations come together to make a book. Bestselling author Cornelia Funke has written a novel inspired by Guillermo del Toro’s captivating 2006 film. Beautiful, haunting, visceral, gutsy, it’s a vastly inventive, grown-up modern fairytale, pulsing with power of stories to shape lives, hearts and minds.
Ofelia has been sent to stay with her new stepfather, a ruthless captain of the Spanish army. For him, the dark and eerie forest in which they live is a cage, serving only to hide resistance fighters in the drawn-out and bloody civil war – those he has made it his aim to destroy.
But with her mother bedridden, Ofelia is left unchecked and becomes enchanted by their magical home. Obsessed with fairytales, she is drawn deeper and deeper into a mythical world which is both cruel and kind, benign and deadly. For Ofelia, too, must endure violence if she is to complete the tasks that will win her place at the centre of the labyrinth: the palace of the Faun…
Pan’s Labyrinth: The Labyrinth of the Faun is a fairy tale for adults. It’s a dark, gothic fantasy that draws you into a magical world.
Here, Ophelia discovers the labyrinth and fairies help and support her as she meets Pan himself. He tells her a secret, her birthright that she must fight to reclaim….
Full of war, magic and marvellously dark beasts and monsters as Ophelia begins her fight. Beautifully written, almost poetic at times, with a creepy atmosphere throughout. A perfect Halloween read.
Thank you to the publishers and NetGalley for for an eARC of Pan’s Labyrinth: The Labyrinth of The Faun.
None of them are used to relying on others – but when the three strangers’ lives unexpectedly collide, there’s only one thing for it: they have to stick together. Otherwise, one of them will die.
Three strangers, two secrets, one terrifying evening.
Strangers is the story of three lonely and alone people, Gareth, Alice and Ursula. It starts with these three strangers standing over a dead body, the tale then begins with flashbacks to each of their lives and how they have ended up here.
But, how are the disappearances of young men in the Bristol area linked to these three strangers?
This is a truly compelling tale beautifully narrated by Clare Corbett who brings each character to life, she captures the atmosphere so well you really get caught up in the story. With its clever, twisty plot to keep you guessing this is an exciting and tension packed read.
Thank you to Ellie at Avon books for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and a copy of the Strangers audiobook.
Available from Audible.co.uk and is 9hours and 30mins long.