Book reviews, Crime thriller, Psychlogical thriller

What She Saw Last Night by MJ Cross – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

A killer premise combined with page-turning, pulse-pounding suspense – this brilliant psychological thriller is a real must read! – Stephanie Marland 

A taut, emotional thriller that rolls along at speed before derailing you several times – this is gut-punchingly good. – SJI Holliday 

Jenny Bowen is going home. Boarding the Caledonian Sleeper, all she wants to do is forget about her upcoming divorce and relax on the ten-hour journey through the night.

In her search for her cabin, Jenny helps a panicked woman with a young girl she assumes to be her daughter. Then she finds her compartment and falls straight to sleep. 

Waking in the night, Jenny discovers the woman dead in her cabin … but there’s no sign of the little girl. The train company have no record of a child being booked on the train, and CCTV shows the dead woman boarding alone.

The police don’t believe Jenny, and soon she tries to put the incident out of her head and tells herself that everyone else is right: she must have imagined the little girl.

But deep down, she knows that isn’t the truth.

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MY REVIEW 

Jenny is travelling to her childhood home in Scotland, her marriage has broken up after husband, Eric, was cheating on her, and her father has died after a stroke. So she’s taken the sleeper train to have some quiet time before she has to deal with her life.

She sees a woman struggling with a suitcase and glimpses a little girl, but the next morning the woman is found dead and no sign of the little girl.

The British Transport Police arrive and the DI believes it to be an easy case of a junkie OD and feels Jenny was seeing things as no girl found on the train and not on the passenger manifest.

But, DS Mike Fletcher is uneasy and feels something is off. Jenny gets a little obsessed and does her own investigation and finds some surprising information, that puts her, her soon to be ex husband Eric and Mike in danger…..

Was there a little girl on the train? If there was, where is she?

I really enjoyed this fast paced thriller, I felt Jenny’s frustration at being dismissed as a grieving woman who imagined a child!!! (Reminded me a little of the old film, Bunny Lake is Missing)….And the tension builds making this a real nail biter of a thriller. Brilliant.

Thank you to Tracy and Compulsive Readers for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

 

You can buy a copy here:

 

https://amzn.to/34uag9R

 

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

MJ Cross was born in Glasgow in 1979. He studied English at the University of Stirling and currently works in the voluntary sector. He has written a number of short stories, including ‘A Living’, which was shortlisted for the Quick Reads ‘Get Britain Reading’ Award. He lives in Glasgow with his wife and three children.

Book reviews, Police procedural, Psychlogical thriller

The Sound Of Her Voice by Nathan Blackwell – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Some murder cases you can’t forget. 

No matter how hard you try.

The body of a woman has been found on a pristine New Zealand beach – over a decade after she was murdered.

Detective Matt Buchanan of the Auckland Police is certain it carries all the hallmarks of an unsolved crime he investigated 12 years ago: when Samantha Coates walked out one day and never came home.

Re-opening the case, Buchanan begins to piece the terrible crimes together, setting into motion a chain of events that will force him to the darkest corners of society – and back into his deepest obsession…
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MY REVIEW 

In 1995, rookie cop, Matt Buchanan sees his colleague, Gabby, die after being shot.

Jumping to 2011, Matt is now an experienced detective investigating a murder after a young woman’s remains are found. It brings back memories of a case he worked on many years before of a missing young woman, Sam, but it’s not her,

This is the story of Matt’s experiences, the horrific crimes he’s investigated, rape, child abuse, murder and many more violent crimes against women. The courts seem to be ineffectual at putting those responsible behind bars and he wonders if it’s all worth the effort, he feels useless and depressed. He puts on a positive front for his daughter’s sake, but he’s a mess.

As this continues, Matt starts to believe some of these cases could be linked and something truly evil is going on. 

Can Matt finally solve these crimes? Will he be able to recover?

This is a unique read. A story of the effects of seeing traumatic, violent events on those who deal with them day in and day out. It’s dark, brutal and haunting, one that is going to stay with me for a long time. 

Thank you to Tracy and Compulsive Readers for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

You can buy a copy here:    https://amzn.to/2OuWgal

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Nathan Blackwell was raised on Auckland’s North Shore and attended Westlake Boys’ High School before commencing a ten-year career in the New Zealand Police. Seven of those years were spent as a Detective in the Criminal Investigation Branch, where he was exposed to human nature at its strongest and bravest, but also at its most depraved and horrific. He investigated a wide range of cases including drug manufacture, child abuse, corruption, serious violence, rape and murder. Because some of his work was conducted covertly, Nathan chooses to hide his true identity 

Book reviews, Psychlogical thriller, Thriller

The Pact by Amy Heydenrych – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

When your dream job turns into a nightmare, who can you turn to? A gripping and chilling suspense novel about the deadly intentions of office life, for fans of The Rumour and Michelle Frances’ The Temp.

What if a prank leads to murder?

When Freya arrives at her dream job with the city’s hottest start-up, she can’t wait to begin a new and exciting life, including dating her new colleague Jay. However, Nicole, Jay’s ex and fellow employee, seems intent on making her life a misery.

After a big deadline, where Nicole continually picks on her, Freya snaps and tells Jay about the bullying and together they concoct a revenge prank. The next morning, Nicole is found dead in her apartment . . .

Is this just a prank gone wrong? Or does Freya know someone who is capable of murder – and could she be next?
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MY REVIEW 

Freya starts a new job in a fast paced tech company as a data scientist, a coder. She quickly excels at her job, finds romance with a colleague, Jay, but then Nicole, another colleague starts picking fault with her work, her appearance and everything in between. 

She reports the bullying to her boss, But nothing seems to be done. After a drunken evening Jay suggests a prank on Nicole, but when Nicole’s body is found in her flat, they wonder if things went too far. Now Freya is receiving upsetting text messages, someone is watching her……is it Nicole’s killler?

Told in chapters set in the past and present, and from Freya’s and the journalist’s, Isla’s perspectives, showing how events built and how Freya’s health suffered due to the constant stress at work and the investigation into Nicole’s death. A tale of bullying and sexual harassment in the workplace. Tense, twisty and with some real surprises in this gripping psychological thriller.

Thank you to Tracy and Compulsive Readers for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

 

You can buy a copy here

 

https://amzn.to/2OnZNXL

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Amy Heydenrych is a writer and book blogger based in South Africa. She has been shortlisted twice for the acclaimed Miles Morland African Writing Scholarship. Her short stories and poems have been published in multiple anthologies including Brittle Paper, The Kalahari Review and the Short Sharp Stories anthologies. When she is not writing her own fiction, she ghost-writes books and columns for global tech and financial companies.

  

Book reviews, Thriller

Law And Addiction by Mike Papantonio – Book Review

PUBLISHERS BLURB 

MIKE PAPANTONIO PULLS BACK THE CURTAIN ON AMERICA’S DEADLY OPIOID EPIDEMIC IN THIS SPELLBINDING THRILLER ABOUT GREED, CORRUPTION AND THE POWER OF PERSONAL CONVICTION. 

One week before his law school graduation, Jake Rutledge is shattered. His fraternal twin, Blake, has died of a drug overdose. When Jake returns to his hometown of Oakley, West Virginia, he discovers that his brother was not the only person hooked on opioid painkillers. The entire region has been ravaged by an epidemic insidiously planned and carried out by one of America’s most powerful pharmaceutical companies. 

Still wet behind the ears, Jake is determined to seek justice for all the victims of Big Pharma’s greed. He soon learns that the drug companies’ tentacles reach far and deep. His only hope is to get Nicholas “Deke” Deketomis to help. A partner at one of the country’s most powerful law firms, Deke’s “as tough as a two-dollar steak” and well-known for his winning tactics against corporate wrongdoers. With just enough persistence, Jake coaxes Deke to see Oakley’s devastation firsthand. Overwhelmed, Deke agrees to join forces with Jake. 

And that’s when the real heat begins. Death threats, bribes, unlawful property seizure schemes – all are connected to the massive distribution of both legal and illegal drugs. Everyone is impacted, from the highest levels of corporate America to corrupt local officials to their lackeys and hapless victims. The complexity of the schemes is overwhelming. 

Working tirelessly, the lawyers begin to uncover the truth. Along the way, Jake falls in love with Anna Fowler, a former homecoming queen who has succumbed to the power of opioids. With his support, she weans herself off the drugs. Hope begins to bloom — when suddenly, Jake disappears. As Deke undertakes a desperate search to find him, questions swirl. Has Jake abandoned Anna and his crusade? Can the case against the evildoers move forward without him? Will Oakley and its residents survive? Law and Addiction is real-life drama at its finest — a book that clears away the darkness page by page, spotlighting a profound truth about our society through expert storytelling. 

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MY REVIEW

I have to say the publishers blurb really says it all so that makes it a bit difficult to review.

However, here goes……Jake is a lawyer who’s brother was addicted to opioid medication and dies as a result. Jake decides to sue two pharma companies who market the drugs to highlight the extent of the problem ravaging the country.

Obviously they are not happy with this and do everything they can to ‘persuade’ him to drop the case.

This is a truly chilling legal thriller due to its subject matter, the opioid crisis is not going away…..so who should be brought to account?. This is a tale of greed, corruption and heartbreak. Gripping and scary in its reality.

Thank you to Michelle at FSB Associates for the opportunity to read this for free. This is my honest and unbiased review.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mike Papantonio is a truth-teller, a crusader who uses fiction to entertain and inform his readers about some of the most pressing issues of our time. In each of his thrillers, from Law And Disorder to Law And Vengeance, and now Law And Addiction, he lays bare the conspiracies and white-collar crimes that hurt ordinary Americans — and that are rarely covered by the national media. 

A senior partner of Levin Papantonio, one of the country’s largest plaintiffs’ law firms, Papantonio uses his own cases as springboards for his novels. He has aggressively taken on Big Pharma, tobacco, weapon manufacturer, and the automobile industry, among other bastions of corporate greed. 

One of the youngest inductees into the Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame, Papantonio is also a well- known media presence as host of America’s Lawyer on the RT America television network and co-host of the syndicated radio show Ring of Fire. A skilled musician and athlete, he is based in Pensacola,

Book reviews, Domestic noir, Family drama

Unprotected by Sophie Jonas-Hill – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

She’s fighting to save everyone else, but will she have anything left to save herself?

Witty, sharp and sarcastic tattoo artist Lydia’s life is imploding. Her long-term relationship has broken down after several miscarriages and she’s hiding from her hurt in loss and rage. After a big night out she wakes beside a much younger man who brings complications she could really do without. 

As her grief about her lost babies and failed relationships spirals out of control, she obsesses about rescuing a wayward teenage girl she watches from her window and gets more involved than she should with her charming but unstable young lover.

Unprotected is a raw and punchy story of love, family and accepting yourself for who you really are.

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MY REVIEW 

Well, when the publishers say this is raw and punchy they are not kidding. Lydia and Max have been trying for a baby, but after 5 miscarriages their relationship is troubled. When Max moves out, Lydia is a mess and she’s angry, hurt and when friend Cassie invites her out, she goes all out, drink, drugs and wakes up with a much younger man in her bed.

But, Martin is as troubled as she is.

Lydia also sees a young girl in trouble and tries to help.

When her sister gets pregnant, all sorts of family secrets come out.

Lydia, a tattooed tattooist tries to help everyone, but it’s her that needs the help really. 

This is an incredibly emotional tale, the heartbreak and trauma of miscarriage, the secrets in families and some gritty truths around neglected, abused and abandoned children. Not always an easy read, but there is also hope and love. A remarkable, thoughtful and utterly engrossing read. 

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.

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

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Sophie has had what might be politely described as a varied career, which has seen her be a black-smith, silver-smith, jewellery designer, pattern-cutter and wedding dress designer, home help, teacher, extreme knitter, burlesque performer, artist and various combinations of the above. Her one abiding passion alongside drawing has always been writing, from her early work in year four producing hand bound novellas mostly written in crayon, to the inevitable fantasy epic which pushed 500 pages and, thank goodness, has never seen the light of day. She began focusing on her writing after the birth of her first child, and has been working on it ever since, losing hands down to the publishing industry’s gatekeepers and Gorgons, until she met fellow traveller Amanda Saint, who as the name suggests, was something of a shining light on the path. 

She is currently studying an MA in illustration and discovering how much she hates academic writing, and what a wise move it was to give someone else the task of designing the cover for her first book with Retreat West, Unprotected. She lives in Kent with her long suffering husband, two children and a very handsome cat. 

Book reviews, Psychlogical thriller

In The Wake by Helen Trevorrow – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

In the Wake is a crime thriller set in contemporary London with dark ‘me too’ themes and a distorted vision of who is good and who is bad. Kay Christie, a successful career woman, navigates a professional catastrophe under the shadow of an old traumatic event that resurfaces violently and refuses to leave. When a body is found in the Royal Albert Dock, Kay is sent to quiet the media, but things get complicated when it emerges that she knew the victim.

As events spiral out of control, Kay discovers that those close to her may be harbouring another secret – the story of a missing girl. Kay needs to discover the truth before her life unravels and she loses everything. It questions whether we can ever truly leave our pasts behind and explores the lengths that we will go to please the people that we love.

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MY REVIEW 

This is a thriller, but not just a thriller. The writing is so descriptive at times you really can picture the scene and feel the chaos that surrounds Kay. 

Told in the present, with some chapters that look to the past, to build the overall picture.

There has been a murder and Kay knows the victim and she decides to discover why they’ve ended up dead. But at what cost? As events start to affect her own life, should she leave this well alone.?

I found this to be a slow burn of a read, one to take your time over as you enjoy the murder mystery, tension, secrets and lots of intrigue to make this an engaging and entertaining read.

Thank you to Kelly At Love Books Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour, for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review. 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Helen Trevorrow is a graduate of the 2016 Faber Academy creative writing programme. She studied at Leeds University and has worked in marketing and public relations in London. She is a specialist food and drink PR.

Helen’s debut novel IN THE WAKE is a feminist crime thriller about family, unrealised trauma and alcoholism. Helen has ghost-written many articles for newspapers, magazines and websites. She lives in Brighton, Sussex with her wife and child.

 

Book reviews, Thriller

An Air That Kills by Christine Poulson – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

The atmosphere in the lab is toxic. It is only a matter of time before there is a flu pandemic with the potential to kill billions. Or so wealthy entrepreneur Lyle Lynstrum believes. That is why he is funding research into transgenics – the mechanism by which viruses can jump the species barrier – at a high security lab on a tidal island off the North Devon coast.

A suspiciously rapid turnover of staff has him worried. He sends in scientist Katie Flanagan as an undercover lab technician. Something is clearly very wrong, but before Katie can get to the bottom of what is going on, a colleague is struck down by a mysterious illness. Has the safety of the facility been compromised, allowing a deadly virus to escape? Katie begins to suspect that the scientists are as deadly as the diseases – and that her cover has been blown. Then the island is cut off by high seas and a terrifying game of cat-and-mouse begins.

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MY REVIEW 

Katie has returned to the UK after many months on a project in Antarctica. She is looking for a job, when a friend mentions problems at a research facility, Debussy Point. So she goes to work there under a new identity to see what she can find out.

But then a colleague contracts ‘flu……or is it something else?

There’s a lot of details into how a research facility operates, which I found fascinating and disturbing at the same time…..just what is floating around in these places?

This is a thriller, but that really doesn’t give it credit. This is the tale of what could happen, if something escaped or was purposely let out…a potential pandemic? Or just a clever murder?

Can Katie find the culprit?

Gripping and scarily realistic…..I read this in one sitting. Great characters and a clever, believable plot, what more could you ask for. I can thoroughly recommend it.

Thank you to Amber at Midas PR for the opportunity to take part in this blog tour, for the promotional material and a free copy of the book. This is my honest and unbiased review.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 

Christine Poulson was born and brought up in North Yorkshire, England. She is now a research fellow at the Centre for Nineteenth-Century Studies at Sheffield University and chair of the William Morris Society. She has written widely on 19th-century art and literature, and her most recent work of non-fiction was a book on Arthurian legend in British art from 1840 to 1920. She lives with her family in a water mill in Derbyshire, England. 

Book reviews, Domestic noir, Science fiction, Thriller

17 Church Row by James Carol – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

For fans of J. P. Delaney’s The Girl Before comes a thriller that makes us question our relationship with technology and the lengths we would go to, to keep our family safe.

Three years ago, Ethan and Nikki Rhodes suffered a devastating loss. Their four-year-old daughter Grace was tragically killed when she ran from their garden into the path of a car. Ethan, a radio personality, escapes into work, while Nikki quits her job to care for their remaining child, Grace’s twin sister, Bella, who hasn’t spoken since that night.

Trying to give the family a fresh start, Ethan moves them to a revolutionary house designed by the world-famous architect, Catriona Fisher. For the Rhodes’, this is a life-changing move because a key feature of the house is the state of the art security system that allows them to be completely safe from the outside world within their own home.

But what if what they fear most is actually inside the house? What if 17 Church Row isn’t the safe haven that they think it is?

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MY REVIEW 

Nikki and Ethan had twin girls, but after a tragic accident, little Grace died. Bella who saw the accident has been mute ever since. Nikki has anxiety and doesn’t really feel safe among the memories in their home, so Ethan thinks they should move home for a fresh start for them all.

They find a fantastic house with state of the art security and an AI system that really makes life easy. Bella loves the house and so they move in…..but someone is watching. Is Bella safe? Are any of them?

Oh my, this is a marvellous mix of a family drama, thriller and Sci-fi that has moments of heart pounding tension and Oh the tears too…..a clever plot, which I can’t say much about for fear of spoiling it…….but if you like a claustrophobic thriller, this is a must read. 

Thank you to Tracy and Compulsive Readers for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour,  for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

James Carol was born in Scotland in 1969, where he spent his early years. He moved to England in the eighties and has lived there ever since. At various times he has worked as a guitarist, sound engineer, guitar tutor, journalist, and a horse riding instructor.

The character of Jefferson Winter came about because he wanted to write a series of books that gave him as much freedom as possible. He figured that the more interesting he kept things for himself, the more interesting it would be for the reader.

Although the novels are written as a series, James approaches each book as a stand-alone. Each story is set in a different location, and has a different cast of characters. The beauty of this approach is that the novels can be read out of order.

Broken Dolls, the first Jefferson Winter thriller, will be published in January 2014. This will be followed in the Spring by Presumed Guilty, the first in a series of eBooks set during Winter’s FBI days. Watch Me, the second Jefferson Winter thriller, is scheduled for publication in September 2014.

When he’s not writing, James spends his time training horses and riders. An accomplished guitarist, he relaxes by writing and recording music. He lives in Hertfordshire with his wife and two children.

 

Book reviews, Thriller

No Turning Back by Freddie P Peters – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

A LIFE FOR A LIFE…HIS ONLY CHOICE

A whistle-blower targeted by a car bomb, A new terror cell in London,

A former IRA operative seeking redemption…

The gruesome execution of a notorious thief and an assassination attempt on a high-finance executive turned whistle-blower throw former QC Nancy Wu and Inspector Jonathan Pole into a race to defuse the threat of a new terror group. The stakes are considerable and they need help…

Can Henry Crowne, disgraced financier and past IRA operative find redemption in lending his expertise to the case or will he have to give much more…his life perhaps?

NO TURNING BACK is a financial and espionage thriller, the third book in the ‘Henry Crowne: Paying the Price’ series. If you liked Dance with the Enemy, Deep State or the TV series Informer, and McMafia you will enjoy the twists and turns of Freddie P. Peters’ latest fast-paced thriller. Discover it now…

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MY REVIEW

#3 in the Henry Crowne, Paying The Price series.

This time, someone has tried to kill Nancy Wu, ex Qc and Inspector Pole is investigating why? Who would want her dead?

He finds evidence of an emerging new terror group, but who would gain by Nancy’s death?

Again, Henry, Nancy and Pole join forces to thwart the plans……Can they ? before anyone else dies?

This is another compelling,exciting financial crime and espionage thriller that will leave you breathless. A truly captivating series.

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 copies of the books. This is my honest, unbiased review.5272FCF4-2FC8-4CBB-9B66-24FBEC07802D

 

Book reviews, Thriller

Breaking Point by Freddie P Peters – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB

They may break his body, never his spirit

One financial terrorist in prison 

Two City bankers dead

And … a $350 trillion banking scandal called LIBOR

 The suspicious suicide of two high-profile City bankers brings former QC Nancy Wu and Inspector Jonathan Pole together again in an investigation that implicates the UK government, the Bank of England, and London’s top banking executives.

As the true motive for the deaths continues to elude them, Nancy persuades a reluctant Inspector Pole to involve Henry Crowne. Once a brilliant financier, Henry is now serving a 30-year sentence in the obscure High Security Unit of HMP Belmarsh for financial terrorism.  A $350 trillion scandal is about to explode, rocking the fragile beginnings of the global recovery. Can the unlikely team unravel this complex puzzle before a dark plan destroys it all? 

BREAKING PO!NT is a financial and espionage thriller, the second book in the ‘Henry Crowne: Paying the Price’ trilogy. If you liked The Big Short, The Fear Index, or the TV series The Bodyguard, you will enjoy the twists and turns of Freddie P. Peters’ latest fast-paced thriller. Discover it now…

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MY REVIEW

#2 in the Henry Crown, Paying The Price Series.

We see the return of Henry. Nancy and Inspector Pole, but in this, Henry has been jailed for 30 years for his part in financial terrorism.

But, due to his expertise, Inspector Pole reluctantly needs his help on a new case.

Just as the financial crisis is easing there’s the threat of a new global financial catastrophe. Can Crowne, Nancy and Inspector Pole put a stop to it, or is someone more determined to stop them?

Another intense, gripping financial thriller from Freddie P Peters. Brilliant and very clever.

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.

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Book reviews, Crime thriller, Thriller

Collap$e by Freddie. P. Peters – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

COLLAPSE (Surviving is a skill – Killing another)

He is a secret IRA operative.

He is one of the most successful City banker in London

…then the 2008 Financial Crisis happens.

Nancy Wu, former eminent Queen’s Counsel, now prominent patron of the arts, receives the most unexpected call for help. Henry Crowne is accused of murder in a case that seems decided from the very beginning. His Irish background, financial terrorist connections and investment banking success inexorably tilt the scales against him. Nancy’s own lingering darker past calls for her to mount Henry’s defence but her client is the biggest obstacle. Will she manage to unpick the devious manipulations of a most twisted mind?

Collapse is a financial and espionage thriller, the first book in the Henry Crowne: Paying the Price trilogy. If you like The Big Short, The Fear Index and A Week in December you will enjoy the twists and turns of Freddie P Peters’ latest fast-paced thriller. Discover it now…

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MY REVIEW 

#1 in the Henry Crown, Paying The Price series.

Set in the City of London in 2008. It really captures the atmosphere at the time of the financial collapse and those responsible for it….

It has great characters in Henry Crowne, a not very likeable, at times, protagonist, former QC,  Nancy Wu and the rather wonderful Inspector Pole. He really could have a series of his own. There’s a fizzing chemistry between all three of them too.

A tale of the dark side of the financial world and all its shenanigans. Gripping, tense and a real page turner…

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.

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Book reviews, Cover reveal

COVER REVEAL for When The Time Comes by Adele O’Neill

Welcome to the cover reveal for When The Time Comes by Adele O’Neill

 

But first, here’s a little about the actual book…..

 

Her husband says it’s suicide. The police say it’s murder. 

Liam Buckley was a married man with two teenage children when he moved out of the family home to start a new life with his lover. His wife Jennifer never forgave him, but now she needs him to come back: she’s been diagnosed with a terminal illness, and the kids can’t cope alone.

One day after Liam moves home, Jennifer is found dead. Liam thinks it’s suicide. But the police, led by DS Louise Kennedy, are convinced it’s murder.

Liam hires a retired detective to help prove his innocence, but it’s no easy task. The children are distraught, and Jennifer’s best friend, Sarah, is waging a campaign against Liam, determined to expose him for a liar and a cheat.

As secrets surface from the complex web of Buckley family life, DS Kennedy must decide. Did Jennifer Buckley end her own life, or did Liam take it from her? The answer, when it comes, will shock them all…

 

Sounds so good……and Now a little about the Author 

Adele is a writer from Co. Wicklow who lives with her husband Alan and her two teenage daughters. Influenced by writers across all genres she has a particular fondness for fiction that is relatable and realistic. Her debut novel was awarded The Annie McHale Debut Novel Award for 2017 and is a character driven story of survival, dark family secrets and sibling loyalty, just like life. Her second novel Behind A Closed Door is another emotionally harrowing tale of impossible choices, loyalty and friendship. Adele writes overlooking the Irish Sea, which she credits for the tumultuous dynamics in the relationships and lives of her unsuspecting characters in her third novel, When The Time Comes, another dark tale that tests the lengths we go to protect the ones we love.

 

Follow Adele:

 

Twitter: @adelesbooks

Facebook: @adeleoneillbooks

 

AND Finally here’s the stunning COVER…..Gorgeous to say the least !
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Buy links:

 

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2nNr5w4

iBooks: https://apple.co/2ozav3m

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2oz9MPG

Google Play: https://bit.ly/2mffAwP

 

 

Follow Aria

 

Website: http://www.ariafiction.com

Twitter: @aria_fiction

Facebook: @ariafiction

Instagram: @ariafiction

 

Book reviews, Feminist, Thriller

Stay Mad, Sweetheart by Heleen Kist – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

THERE’S A FINE LINE BETWEEN INNOCENCE AND GUILT. AN EVEN FINER LINE BETWEEN JUSTICE AND REVENGE.

Data scientist Laura prefers the company of her books to the real world – let alone that cesspit online. But when her best friend Emily becomes the victim of horrific cyberbullying, she makes it her all-engulfing mission to track down the worst culprits.

Petite corporate financier Suki is about to outshine the stupid boys at her firm: she’s leading the acquisition of Edinburgh’s most exciting start-up. If only she could get its brilliant, but distracted, co-founder Laura to engage.

Event planner Claire is left to salvage the start-up’s annual conference after her colleague Emily fails to return to work. She’s determined to get a promotion out of it, but her boss isn’t playing ball.

As the women’s paths intertwine, the insidious discrimination they each face comes to light. Emboldened by Emily’s tragic experience, they join forces to plot the downfall of all those who’ve wronged them.

But with emotions running high, will the punishments fit the crimes?

A pacy and suspenseful novel with its feet firmly in the #MeToo era. 9 to 5 meets Suits with a dash of Black Mirror

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MY REVIEW 

This really is a must read, it’s very relevant for the time we live in.

This is Laura’s story, her friend Emily is vilified online after she posts her sexual assault by a Hollywood star online. It was meant to be anonymous but she was identified and out came the trolls…making her life unliveable.

Laura wants to get justice for her friend, at the same time dealing with the potential sale of her company. She was the co-founder with her friend Justin and the sale could bring them millions. 

As a data scientist, Laura finds information that could help the police but they are not really interested, so she decides to investigate herself…..

She becomes friends with two women, and together they highlight and expose the sexism and discrimination they experience every day. These three women plot revenge on those responsible.

This has a bit of everything, there’s sexual assault, cyber bullying, corporate misdoings and toxic everyday sexism, all wrapped up in an amazingly compelling plot..I was invested in these characters and really couldn’t wait to see how their plans unfolded. I was cheering them along….all credit to Heleen Kist’s immersive, emotional writing. Gripping and utterly compelling.

Thank you to Red Dog Press for the opportunity to take part in this blog tour and for a free ecopy of the book. This is my honest and unbiased review.

 

Links

website: https://www.reddogpress.co.uk/product-page/stay-mad-sweetheart 

Twitter:

We are @RedDogTweets and Heleen Kist is @hkist

 

Facebook:

 

https://www.facebook.com/reddogassociates

 

https://www.facebook.com/heleenkistauthor

 

Instagram:

 

@Red_Dog_Press

 

Book reviews, Cosy mystery, LGBTQ

Killer Queen by T.S. Hunter – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

THE SHOW MUST GO ON 

It’s 1988. A mild summer after a turbulent political year for LGBT rights. While working as an assistant to a successful Theatre Director, Joe Stone finds himself unwittingly embroiled in another murder investigation. 

Lexi Goode, a young, up and coming actress has her bright future cut short when she is found murdered in her exclusive top floor apartment in the posh end of Soho. Knowing that the police are as racist as they are homophobic, Joe and Russell inevitably take it on themselves to investigate what happened to the young woman. 

Along the way they discover illicit liaisons, a string of admirers, a secret life that was helping to pay for the glamorous lifestyle no young actress should have been able to afford. But who would want to kill Lexi? 

Finding the answer to that question puts Joe in mortal danger and a young police officer in an awkward position. 

KILLER QUEEN IS THE FIFTH IN THE SOHO NOIR SERIES.

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MY REVIEW 

#5 in the Soho Noir series and can be read as a stand-alone, but you will be missing out on a fantastic series.

Set in 80’s Soho, young Lexi Goode has finished her performance on stage. Usually the understudy, she got her chance at the main role when lead actress, Hattie Duval was indisposed. 

Lexi also has a second job, one she has kept secret.

When Lexi doesn’t arrive at the theatre for work. the director, Cameron sends Joe to find her. But he finds her body, she had been murdered.

So, Joe and his friend Russell, an unofficial private detective, start their investigation. Can they find the killer before the corrupt, homophobic detective Skinner locks up the wrong man?

This may be a relatively short novella, but it packs so much in. There’s the clever plot, the descriptive writing that brings the 80’s Soho alive. The characters are so well developed, I really care for them and forever they are not real people. Russell now in a settled relationship with Freddie, and Joe, OH, I was so pleased there may actually be a romance for him with Mark. All mixed with a cosy, murder mystery in a wonderfully entertaining read. Brilliant as always.

Thank you to Red Dog Press for the opportunity to take part in this blog tour and for a free ecopy of this fabulous book. This is my honest and unbiased review.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

Claiming to be at least half-Welsh, T.S. Hunter lived in South Wales for much of his latter teens, moving to London as soon as confidence and finances allowed. He never looked back.

He has variously been a teacher, a cocktail waiter, a podium dancer and a removal man, but his passion for writing has been the only constant.

He’s a confident and engaging speaker and guest, who is as passionate about writing and storytelling as he is about promoting mainstream LGBT fiction.

He now lives with his husband in the country, and is active on social media. 

Book reviews, Fantasy

Sorcery Reborn by Steve McHugh – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB

He doesn’t need a weapon. He is the weapon.

After losing his powers in an epic battle between good and evil, former sorcerer Nate Garrett finds himself living as a humble human in Clockwork, Oregon. While the world thinks Nate is dead, his friends continue to fight against Avalon and the evil it’s intent on spreading.

Avalon’s forces turn up in Clockwork, and Nate’s frustration grows with every passing day his magic doesn’t return. He finds himself trying to stop Avalon’s plans while hiding from enemies who would destroy everything in their path to see him dead.

Avalon’s darkness begins to threaten the people Nate cares about, and an old nemesis returns; magic or no magic, he has no choice but to fight. But will Nate see his magical powers reborn before the entire town—and everyone he loves—is destroyed?

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MY REVIEW 

Humans, Norse gods, Hades, Giants and Asgard all mixed with magic and war. 

Nate is human, his magic lost in an earlier battle and believed dead…..but the battles against evil are still ongoing. So, Nate tries to find another way to stop Avalon. But will his magic return? 

Wow, what an incredible world Steve McHugh has created, it has everything you could wish for in a tale of war between good and evil. Heroes, Gods, Magic and enough fights to make Nate the Jason Bourne of the fantasy world …..there’s even a werewolf. Great, likeable well developed characters with a detailed plot and some emotional moments too. A fantastic, action packed read.

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.

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AUTHOR BIO:  

 

Steve’s been writing from an early age, his first completed story was done in an English lesson. Unfortunately, after the teacher read it, he had to have a chat with the head of the year about the violent content and bad language. The follow up ‘One boy and his frog’ was less concerning to his teachers and got him an A.

It wasn’t for another decade that he would start work on a full length novel, the result of which is Crimes Against Magic.

He was born in a small village called Mexborough, South Yorkshire, but now lives with his wife and three young daughters in Southampton.

 

Twitter @StevejMchugh

 Website: http://www.stevejmchugh.wordpress.com/

 

Amazon UK : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sorcery-Reborn-Rebellion-Chronicles-McHugh/dp/1542093120

 

Book reviews, Psychlogical thriller

Buried Sins by Louise Mullins – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Introducing Welsh Detective Inspector Emma Locke who appears in her very own upcoming procedural series.

Readers who enjoy books by C.L. Taylor, K.L. Slater, and Rachel Abbott will love this gritty, addictive, standalone psychological thriller.

When Carys returns to her childhood home, inherited after the death of her father, she is shocked to discover the bones of an infant buried in the paddock. Days later, DI Locke’s team uncover the remains of a missing girl, sparking vivid memories of the day Carys was abducted by The Shadow Man.

While the evidence against her father mounts, Carys recalls more of her past. And each new revelation provides DI Locke with the proof she needs to close the cases of several girls’ disappearances.

Sometimes the past refuses to stay buried.

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MY REVIEW 

Set in Wales, Carys has returned to her childhood home after the death of her estranged father, Bryn. She’d not had any contact with him for many years and only found out about his death from his home help, Gwenda.

She is clearing the farm so that it can be sold, but she trips over something and finds it to be a child’s skull. The police are called, they search the farm and find more remains. Did her father have anything to do with these?

Carys starts having flashbacks to her childhood on the farm, her father’s punishments and a nightmare of abduction by the Shadow Man starts to recur. What secrets has she kept hidden for all these years? Was her father responsible for the missing girls and the remains buried on his land?

The story is told in chapters by various characters, with Carys in the present and past, as these progress there are some truly dark moments,  where child abuse had taken part (nothing graphic) as the story and events all falls into place.

Incredibly atmospheric with a gradually building, almost smothering tension that will leave you gasping at the last chapters. A dark, twisty, utterly compelling psychological thriller. 

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.

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

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Dubbed the Queen of Domestic Noir, Louise Mullins’ titles often delve into the darker aspects of the human psyche where more often than not somebody a little close to home knows more than they’re willing to admit. So far her novels involve the murky world of addiction, child abuse, serial killers, missing women, rape, kidnapping, murder, domestic violence, drug smuggling, human trafficking, and arms dealing.

Louise Mullins is a critically acclaimed, international best-selling author whose latest title, Love You Gone, previously published as The Woman in the Woods has been reissued by Dark Edge Press and is available to pre-order now!

Louise Mullins writes full-time using the experience she gained in a prior life working in the field of forensic mental health and psychological therapy, working with offenders and survivors of serious crimes.

You can contact Louise Mullins on GoodReads, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to keep updated with her latest releases using the following links:

 

Website:

https://www.louisemullinsauthor.com/

 

Instagram:

https://www.instagram.com/mullinsauthor/

 

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/LouiseMullinsAuthor/

 

Twitter:

https://twitter.com/MullinsAuthor

 

Format: Kindle Edition

  • File Size: 3197 KB
  • Print Length: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Dark Edge Press, an imprint of Usk River Publishing. (1 Oct. 2019)

 

Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07W4RR6K2

 

Book reviews

Tears Of Fire by Gordon Bickerstaff – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Conspiracy. Espionage. Spy Story. 

Two serial killers have been getting away with murder for years. For them, it’s a well-paid hobby while they bide their time. It’s about to stop when everything slots into place for them to leap to the next level. Payback for the people who killed their parents.

Lambeth Group investigator, Gavin Shawlens, is on their trail. But all is not as it seems and he is pushed way out of his depth when the killers turn on his family. Gavin’s Lambeth Group partner, Zoe Tampsin, is cut off from him and fighting her own battle to stay alive.

They need to connect but Zoe will face an impossible choice. Stop the killers before they pull off the most audacious murder that will shock the world and change it forever. Or, rescue Gavin’s family from the jaws of evil.  
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MY REVIEW 

This is the latest chapter in the Lambeth Group thriller series by Gordon Bickerstaff. 

As always the action starts from the off, so you are totally gripped straight away.

Gavin and Zoe are back! I love the relationship between these two, it really adds depth to their characters, also makes you care for them and I do sometimes worry about their safety!!!

There’s fraud, intrigue involving Korean assassins and lots of action in this great addition to the series…..plenty to keep even hardened ‘spy’ fiction readers thoroughly entertained.

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

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

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I was born and brought up in Glasgow, Scotland. I studied biochemistry, and I’ve worked in several Scottish Universities where I did research on enzymes and taught biochemistry. After thirty years of teaching and research I retired my academic pen and took of a fiction pen.

I write medical-themed thrillers. Deadly Secrets was published in 2013, and was followed by Everything To Lose in 2014, The Black Fox in 2015, Toxic Minds in 2016, Tabula Rasa in 2017 and Tears of Fire in 2018. I live in central Scotland with my wife and we enjoy reading, writing, and walking in the hills.

 

Links:

 

Bookbub:  https://www.bookbub.com/profile/gordon-bickerstaff  

 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100012357701552     

 

Twitter:  @GFBickerstaff

 

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5776209.Gordon_Bickerstaff

 

Website: http://bit.ly/1g4gEoa

 

Book reviews, Classic Fiction, Classic style whodunnit, Cosy mystery

Blind Witness by Vicki Goldie – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

In 1922 a blind WW1 veteran and former intelligence officer attends a weekend with his aristocratic wife and her family at a country house in the New Forest, Hampshire, England. Fourteen people sit down to dinner on the Friday night; by the end of the weekend there are two murders, an attempted murder and a suicide.

This is book one in a series of humorous murder mysteries and introduces young sleuths The Hon Melissa Charters and her war veteran husband Major Alastair Charters.

The pair collaborate using Melissa’s powers of observation and Alasdair’s old skills gained in the Secret Intelligence Service to investigate the events unfolding over the weekend. A murder mystery with a spy plot told from many different points of view in the tradition of Simon Brett, M C Beaton and Kerry Greenwood.

Will our investigators discover who is behind the murders?

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MY REVIEW 

Book 1 of the Charters’ mystery series.

Set in the 1920’s U.K., this is a classic style whodunnit. 

Melissa and her husband, Major Alisdair Charters are at a family event, when a body is found. 

Major Charters was blinded by injuries he sustained at war, but his other senses have become enhanced and he is able to listen to those around him, who seem to pretty much disregard him.  But he learns so much.

Can he and Melissa discover the killer before any more deaths?

This is a fast paced, easy to read, fun and glitzy whodunnit, all set among the privileged classes. It has plenty of twists and surprises to make this an immensely enjoyable read. 

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.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

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Vicki worked as a Chartered Librarian for the Royal National Institute of Blind People and then for the past 19 years in public libraries in Bournemouth and Poole. There she enjoyed arranging and attending writing courses and author events, including such luminaries as Fay Weldon and Peter James. With the Reading Agency and other librarians round the country she reviewed and selected books for The Radio Two Book Club. All the time writing away in her spare time.

Born in California but brought up in England she was introduced to the Golden Age of crime authors at an early age by her mother. She is married to a blind physiotherapist, and it is from his mother, born in a large country house in Devon (now a hotel), educated by governess and with a cut glass voice like the Queen, that she absorbed real life stories about the twenties and thirties.

She has always had a fascination with the Art Deco period and the Golden Age of crime writing. She has been filling her house with Art Deco inspired artefacts and clothing for 40 years.

Blind Witness is her debut novel and is the beginning of the Charters Mysteries Series featuring Major Alasdair Charters and The Honourable Melissa Charters.

Book reviews, Crime thriller

Into The Dark by Karen Rose – Book review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Sunday Times bestselling author Karen Rose is back with the gripping fifth instalment of the Cincinnati series. Fans of James Patterson, Karin Slaughter and Tess Gerritsen will love this unputdownable race to stop a serial killer out for revenge.

When Michael Rowland saves his younger brother Joshua from the clutches of his stepfather, he runs for his life with his brother in his arms. From his hiding place he sees the man who has made their lives a misery taken away in the trunk of a stranger’s car, never to be seen again.

Doctor Dani Novak has been keeping soccer coach Diesel Kennedy at arm’s length to protect him from her dark secrets. When they are brought together by the two young brothers who desperately need their help, it seems they might finally be able to leave their damaged pasts behind them.

But as the only witness to the man who kidnapped and murdered his stepfather, Michael is in danger. As Diesel and Dani do all that they can to protect him, their own investigation into the murder uncovers a much darker web of secrets than they could have imagined.

As more bodies start to appear it’s clear that this killer wants vengeance. And will wipe out anything that gets in his way…

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MY REVIEW 

#5 in the Cincinnati series but can easily be read as a stand-alone.

Young Michael saves his little brother from an abduction by his stepfather, only then to witness a murder.  

Micheal has been injured, not only during the rescue of his brother, but by the abuse by his stepdad and his mother’s violence. 

The killer is on a mission to stop abusers, to make them suffer before they die, but he knows Michael can identify him.

When Michael’s mother ‘forgets’ to pick up Joshua from soccer, Michael ruses to pick him up and meets Diesel, the coach, who sees his injuries and so takes the boys to Dani, a doctor at the local free clinic. Here the abuse is seen and the authorities get involved. As Michael is deaf, Dani, who is also hearing impaired, can sign with him and a close bond forms.

There’s also a bit of romance between Dani and Diesel, one of the most endearing, yet tough couples. I love their interactions and the gradually growing feelings they have for each other.

This is an emotional, yet dark and compelling thriller. The heartbreaking abuse alongside a murder mystery is so gripping, it made me angry, tearful and tense over and over. An astounding, thoroughly entertaining read. 

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.
You can buy a copy here 

https://amzn.to/2puIg6N

 

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

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KAREN ROSE was introduced to suspense and horror at the tender age of eight when she accidentally read Poe’s The Pit and The Pendulum and was afraid to go to sleep for years. She now enjoys writing books that make other people afraid to go to sleep.

Karen lives in Florida with her family, their cat, Bella, and two dogs, Loki and Freya. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, and her new hobby – knitting.

 

PRAISE FOR KAREN ROSE:

‘Intense, complex and unforgettable’

James Patterson

‘Karen rose writes the kind of high-wire suspense that keeps you riveted’

Lisa Gardner

 

   ‘Fast and furious’

The Sun

 

Book reviews, Family drama, Non fiction

Free Lunch by Rex Ogle – Book Review

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PUBLISHERS BLURB 

Rex Ogle’s story of starting middle school on the free lunch programme is timely, heart-breaking and true.

Free Lunch is the story of Rex Ogle’s first term at High School. Rex and his baby brother often went hungry, wore second-hand clothes and were short of school supplies and Rex was on his school’s free lunch programme. Grounded in the immediacy of physical hunger and the humiliation of having to announce it every day in the school lunch line, Rex’s is a compelling story of a more profound hunger—that of a child for his parents’ love and care. Compulsively readable, beautifully crafted and authentically told with the voice and point of view of an eleven year-old child, Free Lunch is a remarkable debut by a gifted storyteller.
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MY REVIEW 

This is the true story of Rex Ogle’s life as a young boy living in a low income family.

Rex spends a lot of his time caring for his younger brother, Ford, and trying to protect him from the violence in this broken, desperate family.

Starting 6th grade, his mother tells him he’s on the free lunch programme and his first thought is of shame. He tries his best to hide this from his friends at every lunch time.

At home he is often hungry, his mother’s boyfriend beats her, she in turn beats Rex, leaving him with bruises and black eyes. My heart broke for this boy who just wanted a little love.

This memoir is brutal and brutally honest, told from a kids’ view of the world and the shame he felt at the situation he was existing in. 

It’s well written, packed with emotion and really should be on every school reading list. It gives an insight to a world some kids have no choice but to live in.

Heartbreaking and utterly compelling. A MUST read.

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.

You can buy a copy here 

https://amzn.to/2prRG2X

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR 

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REX OGLE is a former children’s book editor. “This is my middle school experience” he says, “but I think it’s an important story to tell, with nearly one in five children in America living in poverty

 

More about the book

 

In FREE LUNCH (Norton Young Readers; on-sale 9/10/19), debut author Rex Ogle vividly conveys the immediacy of physical hunger and the humiliation of revealing it every day in the school lunch line, along with a more profound hunger: that of a child for love and care from his parent. This story rings so true in its portrayal of poverty and the familial strains that can result from living in the economic margins, because it is. This is Rex’s story.

 

But this is not Rex’s story alone; 43.1 million people are living in a state of poverty, 14.5 million of them are under the age of 18. But when he was embarking on his sixth-grade year in Texas, Rex had no idea that there were also other children, let alone millions of others, in such need.

 

“The worst part of living like this is thinking as I did—that I was alone, that I was shameful, and that I had less worth because of the situation into which I was born,” explained Rex. “But that couldn’t be further from the truth. No child should feel alone. Or ashamed. Or worthless. They need to know that their circumstances are not their fault.”

 

This moving memoir covers Rex’s journey through his first semester of middle-school as he navigates the inherent physical and emotional growth pains that come with this phase of life, along with the societal pressures he feels showing up at school in worn clothes that don’t fit properly and with the occasional black eye he receives from speaking his mind at home —all in addition to requesting free lunch. Rex is now an adult who traversed middle school and found his way out of poverty, but the struggles of his youth have shaped who is as a man today, and how he views the world around him.

 

“One day, when I was riding on the subway in New York City, I saw a little girl tug on her mom’s sleeve and heard her say, ‘I’m hungry.’ Her mom hugged her, but didn’t say anything,” explained Rex when asked why he decided to write Free Lunch. “I didn’t know their situation, but it struck me that my story needed to be shared. I wanted other kids to know that it’s okay to be hungry. That they are not alone. And there is hope.”

Rex is a former book editor who now lives in Los Angeles with his partner. He enjoys hiking with friends and his dog, devouring books, and cooking.

Free Lunch is unsparing and harshly realistic. It is also frequently funny, and threaded with hope and moments of grace. Free Lunch is a welcome addition to the growing cannon of youth memoirs, and Rex’s powerful, lyrical storytelling shines a light on those living in the shadows.

 

FACTS ABOUT CHILDHOOD HUNGER:

  • 12 million children in the United States live in food “insecure homes”
  • 1 in 6 children in the United States lives with hunger
  • Children who come from food insecure homes often experiences learning disabilities and other cognitive impairments
  • Children who suffer from hunger often face emotional and social road blocks

 

PRAISE FOR FREE LUNCH:

★ “With candor and vivid detail, Ogle captures the experience of chronic poverty in the United States. …Ogle doesn’t shy away from the circumstances (he and his toddler stepbrother are sometimes left alone for days at a time), but there is no shortage of humor, human kindness, and kid hijinks. Though the story is an intense middle grade read, Ogle’s emotional honesty pays off in the form of complex characterization and a bold, compassionate thesis: “Maybe being poor broke her…. and she can’t get well as long as this is her life.” The book ends on a hopeful if precarious note that underscores the importance of dismantling the shame surrounding poverty. In a country where 43% of children live in low-income families, Ogle’s memoir is all too relatable.” –Publishers Weekly, starred review

 

★ “[Ogle’s] painful home life proffers little sanctuary thanks to his mom, who swings from occasional caregiver to violent tyrant at the slightest provocation, and his white stepdad, an abusive racist whose aggression outrivals that of Rex’s mom. Balancing the persistent flashes of brutality, Ogle magnificently includes sprouts of hope, whether it’s the beginnings of a friendship with a “weird” schoolmate, joyful moments with his younger brother, or lessons of perseverance from Abuela. These slivers of relative levity counteract the toxic relationship between young Rex, a boy prone to heated outbursts and suppressed feelings, and his mother, a fully three-dimensional character who’s viciously thrashing against the burden of poverty. It’s a fine balance carried by the author’s outstanding, gracious writing and a clear eye for the penetrating truth. A mighty portrait of poverty amid cruelty and optimism.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred