Book reviews

Addictive, well-written thriller

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The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

Book Review:  4 out of 5 star rating

Alicia Berenson is a famous painter.  Her husband, Gabriel, is a well-known fashion photographer.  They have it all and Alicia loves her husband.  That’s what makes it hard to understand why she would have shot him five times in the face.  Alicia hasn’t spoken a word in years and has never explained why she did this terrible act.  Theo Faber is a criminal psychotherapist who is determined to help heal Alicia and to get her to talk about the murder.

OK, I never saw THAT ending coming!  Quite an interesting book that moves along quickly.  I became very engaged in the story and liked the characters.  I can’t say it was very suspenseful because it’s one of those books that’s more interested in the “why” since we already know the “who” and the “what” but the…

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Book reviews

#BlogTour A Fatal Flaw by Faith Martin

Sounds good, I do like Faith Martin’s writing so one for my TBR

Cheryl M-M's Book Blog

Today it is my turn on theBlogTour A Fatal Flaw by Faith Martin.This is the third book in the Ryder and Loveday series, a cosy crime series with an unusual crime fighting duo.

About the Author

Faith Martin has been writing for 30 years. She signed a massive 3-book deal with the publishers Harper Collins/HQ, who have published her Ryder & Loveday novels. All three novels, A Fatal Obsession, A Fatal Mistake and A Fatal Flaw are available now.

Follow@FaithMartin_Nov@HQDigitalUK@HQStories

Buy A Fatal Flaw

About the book

1960, Oxford

As the city of Oxford prepares itself for the inaugural Miss Oxford Honey Beauty Pageant at The Old Swan Theatre, excitement is in the air. But when one of the leading contestants is found dead, suspicion hangs over the competition.

Poisoned, the authorities assume her death was suicide. But after a malicious series of pranks and…

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Book reviews

#BlogTour┃#BookReview: The Lost Man by Jane Harper (@LittleBrownUK) #TheLostManIsComing

A brilliant review from Damppebbles ….

damppebbles.com

the lost man.jpg“‘He had started to remove his clothes as logic had deserted him, and his skin was cracked. Whatever had been going through Cameron’s mind when he was alive, he didn’t look peaceful in death.’

Two brothers meet at the remote border of their vast cattle properties under the unrelenting sun of the outback. In an isolated part of Australia, they are each other’s nearest neighbour, their homes hours apart.

They are at the stockman’s grave, a landmark so old that no one can remember who is buried there. But today, the scant shadow it casts was the last hope for their middle brother, Cameron. The Bright family’s quiet existence is thrown into grief and anguish.

Something had been troubling Cameron. Did he choose to walk to his death? Because if he didn’t, the isolation of the outback leaves few suspects…”

Happy Monday! I am delighted to welcome you to my…

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Book reviews

BlackBerry and Wild Rose by Sonia Velton – Book Review

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BOOK BLURB 

For fans of Jessie Burton and Tracy Chevalier, a rich historical debut set among the Huguenot silk weavers of Spitalfields in the late 18th century.

WHEN Esther Thorel, the wife of a Huguenot silk-weaver, rescues Sara Kemp from a brothel she thinks she is doing God’s will. Sara is not convinced being a maid is better than being a whore, but the chance to escape her grasping ‘madam’ is too good to refuse.

Inside the  Thorels’ tall house in Spitalfields, where the strange cadence of the looms fills the attic, the two women forge an uneasy relationship. The physical intimacies of washing and dressing belie the reality: Sara despises her mistress’s blindness to the hypocrisy of her household, while Esther is too wrapped up in her own secrets to see Sara as anything more than another charitable cause.

It is silk that has Esther so distracted. For years she has painted her own designs, dreaming that one day her husband will weave them into reality. When he laughs at her ambition, she strikes up a relationship with one of the journeyman weavers in her attic who teaches her to weave and unwittingly sets in motion events that will change the fate of the whole Thorel household.

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MY REVIEW 

Blackberry and Wild Rose is Sonia Velton’s historical fiction debut and is based around the silk workers in 1860s Spitalfields in London. 

It is told from the points of view of Sara and Esther and illustrates the hardship and poverty at the time. 

It also covers the conflict between journeyman weavers and master weavers and the fact that women were unable to work in certain professions, including art. This is so beautifully written, an ethereal yet grounded tale of just what it must have been like to live and fight against the every day adversities of this age.

In my opinion, Sonia Velton has written a stunning and elegant tale which show the strengths of women who even when so downtrodden show such hope and determination to improve their lives, those of others and to follow a dream. Remarkable writing.

Buy a copy from Amazon here:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

image and bio from Goodreads

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Sonia Velton has been a solicitor in Hong Kong, a Robert Schuman Scholar in Luxembourg and spent eight years being a full-time Mum of three in Dubai. She now lives in Kent. Her first novel, BLACKBERRY AND WILD ROSE, tells the story of a fictional household of master silk weavers living in eighteenth century Spitalfields. The protagonist is loosely inspired by Anna Maria Garthwaite who was the foremost silk designer of the mid-eighteenth century and the title takes its name from an actual silk design. The novel was shortlisted as a work in progress for the Lucy Cavendish Fiction Prize 2015 and longlisted for the Myslexia Novel Competition.

Book reviews

The Binding by Bridget Collins – Book Review.

 

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Imagine you could erase grief.

Imagine you could remove pain.

Imagine you could hide the darkest, most horrifying secret.

Forever.

Young Emmett Farmer is working in the fields when a strange letter arrives summoning him away from his family. He is to begin an apprenticeship as a Bookbinder—a vocation that arouses fear, superstition, and prejudice among their small community but one neither he nor his parents can afford to refuse.

For as long as he can recall, Emmett has been drawn to books, even though they are strictly forbidden. Bookbinding is a sacred calling, Seredith informs her new apprentice, and he is a binder born. Under the old woman’s watchful eye, Emmett learns to hand-craft the elegant leather-bound volumes. Within each one they will capture something unique and extraordinary: a memory. If there’s something you want to forget, a binder can help. If there’s something you need to erase, they can assist. Within the pages of the books they create, secrets are concealed and the past is locked away. In a vault under his mentor’s workshop, rows upon rows of books are meticulously stored.

But while Seredith is an artisan, there are others of their kind, avaricious and amoral tradesman who use their talents for dark ends—and just as Emmett begins to settle into his new circumstances, he makes an astonishing discovery: one of the books has his name on it. Soon, everything he thought he understood about his life will be dramatically rewritten

 

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MY REVIEW 

Emmet Farmer is recovering from an illness, he’s still very weak but he’s back working on the farm with his sister Alta. But then a letter arrives and he is sent away to be an apprentice to Seredith, a binder.

Poor Emmet, a little naive has no idea why he isn’t allowed to read books, but Seredith explains that books hold memories, real memories taken from people willingly, so they can forget…

He starts to recover his health and is slowly learning how to make the books, but not yet the actual ‘binding’……

There is tragedy and fear as when he leaving the cottage to work for a commercial binder, he sees a book with his name on it….what has he forgotten? Why does he fear, on one hand yet on the other feel drawn to Lucian Darnay?

The story is told from the perspectives of Lucian and Emmet, switching between the present and the past to show what memories have been bound in this stunning, beautifully written tale of love and loss. 

The idea of binding sounds so wonderful, to have awful, tragic or maybe violent memories removed, put into a book to be kept safe, BUT as with all things, this could and would be abused by the morally corrupt for their own ends. The idea that people could also sell their memories for a ‘trade’ Binding for others enjoyment is just repugnant, but I’m sure it would happen. I loved the idea that novels are just made up memories and are therefore frowned upon. 

Bridget Collins has created a thought provoking tale, I wonder, if you could have bad memories removed, would you? Who would you trust to hold the book safe and not pass it to others to read……not a pleasant thought really is it ?

I loved the characters and Emmet and Lucian are just wonderful, I was so engrossed in their tale, and loved them both due to Bridget Collins captivating, spellbinding and emotive writing, I may have left a little of myself in The Binding with them….a beautiful, must read book. 

I would like to thank the Author/the Publishers/NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book for free in exchange for a fair and honest review. I have also purchased a hardback copy myself.

#TheBinding #NetGalley

Book reviews

The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides #BookReview

So good

The Belgian Reviewer

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I love him so totally, completely, sometimes it threatens to overwhelm me.
Sometimes I think-
No. I won’t write about that.

ALICIA
Alicia Berenson writes a diary as a release, an outlet – and to prove to her beloved husband that everything is fine. She can’t bear the thought of worrying Gabriel, or causing him pain.

Until, late one evening, Alicia shoots Gabriel five times and then never speaks another word.

THEO
Forensic psychotherapist Theo Faber is convinced he can successfully treat Alicia, where all others have failed. Obsessed with investigating her crime, his discoveries suggest Alicia’s silence goes far deeper than he first thought.

And if she speaks, would he want to hear the truth?

amazon uk amazon com

review-2

‘Grasping at vanashing snowflakes is like grasping at happiness; an act of possession which instantly gives way to nothing.’

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If you haven’t heard about this novel by now, I really don’t know where…

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Book reviews

Boss Girl – by Emma Tallon – Book Review. #blogtour #bookreview #crimethriller

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

If you love Martina Cole, Kimberley Chambers, Casey Kelleher and Jessie Keane, you’ll love Boss Girl.

You’ll do anything to save your family, even kill for them… 

Anna Davis is under pressure. With her West End nightclub packed full every night and the opening of another club just around the corner, she knows she can’t take her eye off the ball. 

Her boyfriend Freddie Tyler practically owns London’s West End and he’s got a big deal on – one that could make the Tylers the most powerful family in London. He’s going into business with crime boss Frank Gambino. But visiting Anna at work one night, Gambino tells her he’ll only sign the deal with Freddie on one condition – that she hands over Club Anya to him. 

With tension growing between Anna and Freddie, her mind is on other things. She doesn’t notice that someone is watching her every move. She doesn’t realise just how much danger she’s in. 

When one night she doesn’t return home, Freddie is beside himself with worry. And as he races to save Anna, one thing is for sure – he’ll get back the girl he loves. Even if it means taking down the whole of the London underworld to find her…

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MY REVIEW

Anna and Tanya run a couple of clubs in London, but someone feels one of the clubs should be theirs, due to an ‘administration’ error at the time of the original sale……this is where things get nasty !

Freddie, Anna’s boyfriend, is a well known London gangster, violent and not above murder and so much more!!!

Anna goes missing and Freddie will do anything to get her back….I won’t go into details as it would really spoil this and that just wouldn’t be fair.

While I appreciate this is part of a series, it really can be read as a stand-alone, but you will want to read the others afterwards, I’m certain…..

This is a fast paced, dark, violent insight into the seedy underworld of London or any major city really. I can’t say any of the characters are the nicest of people, but I did care what happened to them and this reflects the marvellous writing of Emma Tallon. I can thoroughly recommend it.

You can buy a copy here at Amazon

 

 

 

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Author Bio:

Emma Tallon is a British, gritty crime writer, adventurer, Londoner and mother to a young son. Starting her career a few years ago as a ghostwriter, Emma crafted some of the most adventurous, edgy and heart-wrenching stories you can find on the shelves today.

In March 2017 Emma stepped out of the literary shadows and self-published her first book, Life Game. The book was an instant success, the results far exceeding anything she had expected. As news of Life Games popularity spread, she joined forces with W.F.Howes and the audiobook was launched in October 2017.

In December 2017, Emma signed a three book deal with publishers Bookouture. This included Life Game which was changed, re-edited and re-released as Runaway Girl.

Drawing inspiration for her books from a mixture of her own observations and an active imagination, the characters Emma paints are colourful and larger than life. Her story lines are an interesting recipe of deep emotion and violent grit, that keep her readers engrossed.

With two more books in the works for this series already, Emma has many more stories planned out for the future.

Social Media Links:

For more information on Emma or to join her mailing list, please go to: www.emmatallon.com or alternatively, follow her on Facebook: www.facebook.com/emmatallonofficial or on Twitter: @EmmaEsj

Author:          Emma Tallon

Book:               BOSS GIRL

Publication Day:  Feb 1st 2019

Buy Link:

Amazon: http://geni.us/B07KG7V5F6Social

Apple Books: https://tinyurl.com/y754kgpe

Kobo: https://tinyurl.com/yaquhngy

Googleplay: https://tinyurl.com/y8f95c37

Thank you to Noelle Holten and Bookouture for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest, unbiased review. 

Book reviews

A Fractured Winter by Alison Baillie – Book Review #blogtour #bookreview

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

When someone is out to get you, is there anywhere you can hide?

From the outside, Olivia seems to lead an idyllic existence with her husband and children. But when she starts receiving notes, she knows her perfect life is under threat.

She thought she’d managed to put the past behind her, but someone seems determined to reveal her secret.

Meanwhile girls are vanishing in the area and Olivia fears for her family’s safety.

Has someone discovered the real reason she left Scotland all those years ago?

And does her secret have links to the recent disappearances?

When someone is out to get you, is there anywhere you can hide?

Alison Baillie - A Fractured Winter_cover

MY REVIEW

Olivia and her husband Christian live in Switzerland, with children Julian, Marc and Lara.

All is peaceful and happy until Olivia finds an anonymous note left for her. Someone knows her secret!

Then, Sandra, a local child and one of Lara’s friends goes missing after school. They are all distraught, but this affects Olivia badly and she worries about the safety of her own children, almost obsessively.

The story, flips back to Scarborough in 1984 and Marie is a sad little girl, with no friends and a volatile relationship with her father, due to his moods, her mother tries to keep the peace but life is fraught.

She’s an intelligent girl though and decides to go to university and when she plans to go overseas, her parents show her her birth certificate and her already fragile relationship with her parents is nearly broken.

We then travel to 1998 in Edinburgh and Lucy is attending university, but a little naive and a bit needy, Lucy finds herself pregnant after just one date. What links these girls?

Back to 2016, Switzerland and Olivia meets Aurelia, who is renovating the nearby Grand Wildenbach Hotel, Olivia is drawn to Aurelia and the hotel and the motherly comfort she receives.

But, always wondering what happened to little Sandra, Olivia begins to suspect everyone around her, becoming more and more tense and unhappy. 

Alison Baillie has written a marvellously descriptive tale with details of the Swiss culture, food and the landscape which helps add to the atmosphere and then to Olivia’s believable emotional tension.

I felt it showed how feelings of guilt and low self esteem can affect a persons life and the decisions they make and giving me, as the reader, a slightly unsettled feeling, which is a credit to Alison Baillie’s very clever writing.

There are a few ‘suspicious’ characters, and the creepiness is high right to the very end…. I would highly recommend this to anyone who loves a psychological thriller. A creepy, moody and atmospheric read.

buy a copy here :

 

About the Author

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Alison Baillie was born in Scarborough of Scottish parents and lived in County Durham, Somerset and the Yorkshire Dales before going to university in Scotland. She then taught English in several Edinburgh secondary schools before moving to Switzerland where she still lives now. She’s taught English as a Foreign Language in Finland and Switzerland.

When she stopped teaching full-time, she fulfilled a life-time ambition and wrote Sewing the Shadows Together, a psychological suspense novel inspired in part by events when she was teaching in Scotland. 

She is fascinated by the way we are influenced by the events of our past and has now written a second novel, A Fractured Winter, set in Switzerland, Scotland and Yorkshire.  

She has two sons and three grandchildren and is proud of their international roots, having a mixture of Scottish, Swiss, Polish and Finnish heritage. As well as spending time with them, she loves travelling, walking in the mountains and by the sea, reading and writing.

Social Media Links:

Website:  https://alisonbaillie.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/alisonbaillieauthor & https://www.facebook.com/alison.taylor.796774

Twitter: https://twitter.com/

Thank you to Bloodhound Books for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest review. 

 

Book reviews

A Bakery at the Little Duck Pond Cafe by Rosie Green…….COVER REVEAL. #coverreveal

 

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A little background first :

 

Book Blurb

A Bakery at the Little Duck Pond Cafe

Ellie’s dreams of opening a bakery in Sunnybrook are finally coming true and best friends Fen and Jaz are happily rallying round, helping her to plan a fabulous grand opening day. Everything in their garden seems to be rosy – until the arrival of a newcomer brings chaos to the village and tests relationships to the limit. Can the bakery succeed in the face of such upheaval? And more importantly, can firm friendships survive?

Pre-order Links

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bakery-Little-Duck-Pond-Cafe-ebook/dp/B07MLF2N6T

US – https://www.amazon.com/Bakery-Little-Duck-Pond-Cafe-ebook/dp/B07MLF2N6T

 

Wait for it…….

 

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Author Bio

Rosie Green has been scribbling stories ever since she was little. Back then they were rip-roaring adventure tales with a young heroine in perilous danger of falling off a cliff or being tied up by ‘the baddies’. Thankfully, Rosie has moved on somewhat, and now much prefers to write romantic comedies that melt your heart and make you smile, with really not much perilous danger involved at all, unless you count the heroine losing her heart in love.

Rosie’s brand new series of novellas is centred on life in a village café. The first two stories in the series are: Spring at The Little Duck Pond Cafe and Summer at The Little Duck Pond Café.

Twitter – https://twitter.com/Rosie_Green1988

 

AND HERE IT IS………SO PRETTY

 

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Book reviews

Blog Tour Review: Inborn – Thomas Enger

Brilliant review

Beverley Has Read

Inborn by Thomas Enger

About The Book

When the high school in the small Norwegian village of Fredheim becomes a murder scene, the finger is soon pointed at seventeen-year-old Even. As the investigation closes in, social media is ablaze with accusations, rumours and even threats, and Even finds himself the subject of an online trial as well as being in the dock … for murder?

Even pores over his memories of the months leading up to the crime, and it becomes clear that more than one villager was acting suspiciously … and secrets are simmering beneath the calm surface of this close-knit community.

As events from the past play tag with the present, he’s forced to question everything he thought he knew. Was the death of his father in a car crash a decade earlier really accidental? Has his relationship stirred up something that someone is prepared to kill to protect?

It seems that…

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Book reviews

‘A Fatal Flaw’ by Faith Martin

Lovely review

gingerbookgeek

A Fatal Flaw: A gripping, twisty murder mystery perfect for all crime fiction fans by [Martin, Faith]Synopsis

1960, Oxford

As the city of Oxford prepares itself for the inaugural Miss Oxford Honey Beauty Pageant at The Old Swan Theatre, excitement is in the air.

But when one of the leading contestants is found dead, suspicion hangs over the competition.

Poisoned, the authorities assume her death was suicide. But after a malicious series of pranks and blackmail attempts are reported, WPC Loveday and Coroner Clement Ryder are called upon to solve the case.

In an atmosphere of fierce competition, the list of suspects is endless. Could what have started as harmless fun become a deadly race to win the prize?

With time running out, the duo need to spot the killer before tragedy strikes again…

My Review

I have been a fan of Faith Martin’s books for quite a while now.  I absolutely loved the series featuring Hilary Greene, which is published by Joffe Books and I…

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Book reviews

A Review Longer Than 100 Words for “Vox” by Christina Dalcher

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Procurement

Audio book on Scribd


Stats

  • 4 out of 5 Stars
  • Hardcover
  • 336 pages
  • Published August 21st, 2018 by Berkley
  • Original Title – Vox
  • ISBN 0440000785(ISBN13:9780440000785)
  • Edition Language English
  • Characters Jean McClellan,Patrick McClellan,Sonia McClellan,Steven McClellan,Jackie Juarez…more
  • Setting Georgetown, Washington, D.C.(United States)


Awards

Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Science Fiction (2018)


About

From the publisher, “Set in an America where half the population has been silenced,VOXis the harrowing, unforgettable story of what one woman will do to protect herself and her daughter.

On the day the government decrees that women are no longer allowed more than 100 words daily, Dr. Jean McClellan is in denial—this can’t happen here. Not in America. Not to her.

This is just the beginning.

Soon women can no longer hold jobs. Girls are no longer taught to read or write. Females no longer have a voice. Before, the average person spoke sixteen thousand words a day…

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Book reviews

Book Review: The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides ~ #TheSilentPatient

Great review

Ronnie Turner ~ Author & Book Blogger

the silent patient

The Silent Patient

by

Alex Michaelides

ALICIA
Alicia Berenson writes a diary as a release, an outlet – and to prove to her beloved husband that everything is fine. She can’t bear the thought of worrying Gabriel, or causing him pain.

Until, late one evening, Alicia shoots Gabriel five times and then never speaks another word.

THEO
Forensic psychotherapist Theo Faber is convinced he can successfully treat Alicia, where all others have failed. Obsessed with investigating her crime, his discoveries suggest Alicia’s silence goes far deeper than he first thought.

And if she speaks, would he want to hear the truth?


review-picture

My Review

Alicia Berenson shoots her husband one evening. Five shots. A swift and brutal conclusion to his life. They were a loving couple. Caring, attentive, happy. Gabriel, a brilliant, sought-after fashion photographer, doted on her. Alicia, a successful yet troubled artist, adored him. Or so it seemed before…

View original post 527 more words

Book reviews

Spare Room by Dreda Say Mitchell #blogtour #bookreview

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BOOK BLURB

Home Is Where The Nightmare Is

Beautiful double room to let to single person

Lisa, a troubled young woman with a past, can’t believe her luck when she finds a beautiful room to rent in a large house. The live-in owners are a kind and welcoming couple. Everything is fine until she finds a suicide note hidden in her room. But when the couple insist this man didn’t exist and that Lisa is their first tenant, Lisa begins to doubt herself.

Compelled to undercover the secrets of the man who lived in the room before her, Lisa is alarmed when increasingly disturbing incidents start to happen. Someone doesn’t want Lisa to find out the truth.

As the four walls of this house and its secrets begin to capture close in on Lisa, she descends into a hellish hall of mirrors where she’s not sure what’s real and what’s not as she claws her way towards the truth… 

Dreda Say Mitchell - Spare Room_cover

MY REVIEW 

So here goes:

Lisa Kendal is a mess, she takes antidepressants ad hoc, she has night terrors, sleep walks and is a little paranoid to say the least.

Lisa rents the Spare Room in Martha and Jack’s beautiful home, there are very strict house rules, which seem a little over the top but she is determined to stay and find out what happened to the previous tenant. She has found a suicide note and writings on the wall and is certain something bad went on in that house…

Oh my…..what a story, Dreda Say Mitchell has created a taut tale that just bristles with tension. CLICHE ALERT…..but I really couldn’t put it down, I had to know, was Lisa having a breakdown ? Is Jack violent ? What terrible event happened in that house?

This truly gave me goosebumps, that shivery tingle down my spine with the final, marvellously horrific reveal. A masterpiece of tension, brilliant and a must read for lovers of psychological thrillers.

Thank you to Bloodhound Books for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest review. 

Buy a copy here :

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dreda Say Mitchell is an award-winning, bestselling crime writer, broadcaster, campaigner, and journalist. Since her sixth book she has been co-writing with Tony Mason. She is the author of eleven novels, with her debut awarded The CWA’s John Creasey Dagger. She has been a frequent guest on television and radio including Question Time, BBC Breakfast, Newsnight, Victoria Derbyshire, The Stephen Nolan Show, Front Row and Woman’s Hour and numerous others. She has presented Radio 4’s Open Book. Dreda was named one of Britain’s 50 Remarkable Women by Lady Geek in association with Nokia. She was the 2011 chair of the Harrogate Crime Fiction Festival. Dreda and Tony’s work is currently in development for TV. She was born and raised in the East End of London where she continues to live.

Social Media Links:

Website: www.dredasaymitchell.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/DredaMitchell

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DredaSayMitchell

Book reviews

Intention by C S Barnes – Book Review.

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BOOK BLURB :

When twenty-two year old Gillian Thompson returns from university for the summer, it is apparent there is tension at home. An irritant to her father and a concern to her mother, Gillian’s home life is less than ideal.

Geraldine, Gillian’s mother, has suffered abuse from Joe for years. 

However, it is not until Joe dies that the family dynamic shifts and Gillian starts out on her own dark journey…

When Gillian meets Paul and Daniel she starts to become the person she always knew she was. And as people around her start dying Gillian faces scrutiny from her mother.

But are the deaths accidents or is something more sinister at work?

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MY REVIEW

Well where do I start? What a disturbing, brilliant read that grabs you with both hands and won’t let go…..

Gillian’s father, Joe, is a brutal drunk, who regularly beats her mother. These injuries are hidden but Gillian is aware from a young age what is going on. While life plods along, Gillian is experimenting, putting bleach in the fish pond, breaking cats bones and more…this is the most disturbing part to me, a fledgling psychopath that no one seems to notice……….but do they?

Joe has a fatal accident, a fall down the stairs, ably assisted by Gillian, but her mother takes the blame as she ‘can’t lose both of you’. Due to his past brutality there is no prison sentence but she goes to visit her sister for a while, leaving Gillian at home alone with her box……!

There is a stint at university, where she carries on with experiments but while at home for the holidays she meets Daniel and his sick Aunt Emily. She has a relationship with Daniel and is upset when Emily dies peacefully…

Gillian is very clever at hiding her lack of social skills and learns what is acceptable and expected of her…..but someone is killing young men in her area. Her mother knows what and who Gillian is………..does Daniel?

This is an extraordinary book by C S Barnes, that shows the inner mind of a psychopath and the relationship she has with others close to her. 

It has some disturbing moments like….. “For my own curiosity then, tell me: what shocked you more, the animal with the broken neck or the patricide? Really take some time to consider that, and then tell me why I’m the only monster”…. 

My intention is making sure my windows are all shut tight !!! If you like a dark thriller then you’ll love this, it doesn’t come much darker. 

Thank you to Bloodhound Books for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest unbiased review.   

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About the Author:

C.S. Barnes (Charley to her long-time pals) is a Worcestershire-based writer and poet who has recently achieved her Doctorate degree in Creative Writing, and now spends a lot of her time wondering what to do with it. She is a lecturer, content writer, tea-drinker and book-reader with a passion for psychological thrillers that shines through her own work.

Barnes is the Managing Director of Sabotage Reviews and she also runs her own monthly open mic/spoken word event in Worcester City Centre, titled Dear Listener.

She published her debut short story collection in May 2017, titled The Women You Were Warned About (Black Pear Press), and her debut poetry pamphlet, A Z-hearted Guide to Heartache, was published be in July 2018 (V. Press). Intention is Barnes’ debut novel.

Social Media Links:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/charleyblogs @charleyblogs

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/charleyblogs/ @charleyblogs

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CharleyBarnesWriter/

Blog: http://charleyistyping.blogspot.com/

buy the book here :

Book reviews

Out Of The Silence by Owen Mullen – Book Review #blogtour #OutOfTheSilence

Out of the Silence by Owen Mullen

 

Owen Mullen - Out of the Silence_cover

Book Blurb:

Star investigative reporter Ralph Buchanan’s glory days are behind him. His newspaper has banished him to Pakistan, not knowing the greatest moment of his long career is waiting for him there.

When Simone Jasnin asks him to help expose a grave injustice, he finds himself embroiled in a harrowing tale that began in a dusty settlement in rural Punjab, setting in motion a chain of events that will change the lives of everyone involved.

Seven years later in the city of Lahore, members of a prominent family are being brutally murdered one by one. The only clue is a hand-carved wooden bangle left at the scene of each crime.

As the list of suspects grows and the tension mounts, Ralph realises the answers might be closer to home than he ever thought possible.

Solving the mystery will put him back on top but at what cost?

Only when the smoke clears will the killing stop and honour be satisfied…

 

 

 

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MY REVIEW:

This story is set in Lahore, Pakistan and starts with a young woman being admitted to a hospital after being the subject of an acid attack. While she can, she tells her story to Doctor Simone Jasnin and so the tale begins and we travel back to 1986…

It tells of Afra, a young girl in love with Jameel, a village boy, but her mother arranges her marriage to another man for the dowry.

Jameel leaves the village alone to make a life with his Great Uncle in Lahore, Afra’s life is one of brutality and slavery as is the case for many women in that area. Dr Jasnin and the reporter, Ralph Buchanan, try to highlight the dreadful treatment of women and help where they can.

Without giving away too much, this is one of the most gripping, heartbreaking and morbidly satisfying books I’ve read for a long while. 

It is, at its heart, a love story, tragic and moving, but also covers the abuse of women in Pakistan that appears to be the accepted norm, and a tale of retribution and revenge. The author, Owen Mullen’s excellent writing will make you angry at the injustices but then cry at the sheer heart rending emotion. I know this is a cliche, but I really could not put this down and read it in one (quite long) sitting. 

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, this is one of those books. I can thoroughly recommend it.

Thank you to Bloodhound Books for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest review. 

 

 

 

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About the Author:

Owen Mullen is a McIlvanney Crime Book Of The Year long-listed novelist.

Owen graduated from Strathclyde University, moved to London and worked as a rock musician, session singer and songwriter, and had a hit record in Japan with a band he refuses to name; he still loves to perform on occasion. His passion for travel has taken him on many adventures from the Amazon and Africa to the colourful continent of India and Nepal. A gregarious recluse, he and his wife, Christine, split their time between Glasgow, and their home in the Greek Islands where In Harm’s Way and the Charlie Cameron and Delaney series’ were created and written. His latest novel Out Of The Silence is a truly compelling thriller set in Pakistan.

 

Buy it here :

 

 

Social Media Links:

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bit.ly/FB-OwenMullen

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bit.ly/Goodreads-OwenMullen

bit.ly/BookBubOwenMullen

Book reviews

Go West by David Quantick – Book Review. #bookreview #GoWest

PUBLISHERS BLURB

GO WEST is a novel about Charlie Bread, self-styled Antiques Whisperer and forgery hunter. When Charlie is sent on the trail of a mysterious document that may have been written by the inventor of Peter Pan, his life becomes a road movie full of pursuit and intrigue, soundtracked by old John Peel shows, the beautiful Penelope, and a game of high road hide-and-seek all across the West Country.

In a world where nothing is what it seems, Bread has to find out the truth – before the truth finds him out. 

Go West is the second novel by David Quantick, Emmy-winning writer (Veep, The Thick Of It) and author of The Mule (“A Da Vinci Code with laughs – The Independent, “ingenious, likable, funny and above all entertaining” -Spectator, “accomplished and witty highbrow farce”

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MY REVIEW

Charlie Bread is a self styled ‘Antiques Whisperer’, who can spot a fake at 20 paces. He’s employed by Roger Armstrong of Prings Auction House to authenticate a notebook, which may have been written by JM Barrie of Peter Pan fame. This is where the madness begins……

The marvellous plot jumps about, with the wonderful Penelope, appearing and disappearing, with Cora and the fake Cora, vintage cars and tapes of John Peel’s radio shows……the star of the story for me was the Three in One Inn…..I haven’t laughed out loud while reading for a long time but this had me crying with laughter at points.

No it’s not great literature and doesn’t purport to be, but it does have great characters, twists and turns, music and some great humour. I can absolutely recommend it.

My thanks to The Pigeonhole and David Quantick for the opportunity to read this for free. My opinions are my own, honest and unbiased.

you can buy a copy here ar Amazon

Book reviews

#BlogTour #Review Life or Death by Chris Merritt @bookouture @DrCJMerritt

Lovely review

On The Shelf Reviews

Title: Life or Death by Chris Merritt

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 23rd January 2019

Genre: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural

Description:

Never forget. Never forgive.

As a detective in the Metropolitan police, Zac is no stranger to murder cases, but this one is different. This is his daughter’s murder.

Years after Amelia died, Zac is still trying to trace the police office involved in his daughter’s death.

And whilst Zac is prepared to break every rule to find the man responsible, his young and ambitious deputy, Kat, is working on a high profile case of her own. But she knows Zac is keeping secrets from his team so she’s following his every move.

When one of Zac’s informants is killed, he knows he’s close to catching his man, but before he can act, he receives a call about his son which blows his world apart… And this time, he knows he’ll…

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