Looking towards 2018
Firstly I can not believe this is a debut novel!
Sam Blake has created a hard, powerful kickass character in Detective Cat Connelly, not scared or frightened of getting her hands dirty in the force, but lives life on the edge with her boss *wink
This story starts of really dark with a hidden secret of the 'Little bones' discovered when the Garda are called to a break in.
Set in several parts of the world From Ireland to Las Vegas, this story has a plethora of alleyways for investigation, leading to dark dark places with family secrets filled with suspense, murder and totally full of mysterious people.
The characters were mixed , in their infancy to full and 'out there', pure nasty, not afraid to speak and be part of the evil webs that have been spinning, as their lives spiral in and out of the story.
A fabulous piece of procedural police work , easy to follow, sometimes books tend to go a bit far fetched and become drawn out , but not this one, spot on! Very detailed and explained really well, without having to go back and re read.
I love Mary ! Bobbing and weaving in and out here and there, like some sort of odd Angel (imo) I found myself looking for her where I knew she really ought not have been! :)
This read for me was perfect pace, fast paced where I REALLY NEEDED to read fast , there was no other choice, but then in places i had to slow my pace down to bring my heart rate down. It felt like i was reading it aloud to someone! And it was so spooky that when I finished certain pages I had to look round and check!
I look forward to more from Sam Blake , don’t lose the pace
The Lonely Life of Biddy Weir
by Lesley Allen
This is a painfully excellent story of a young child who loses here family and it's made obvious nobody wants her.
If you haven't read this yet I urge you do! If you are a teacher or teaching assistant read it please!
If you have suffered or have children who are or have suffered bullying read it to them or if they are older LET THEM READ IT!
At first I thought this was just high jinx but as it went on I totally changed mood and mind.
My heart was so broken reading this. I won't give any spoilers but Lesley Allen (author) has totally captured the parallel lives of the bully and the bulllied the sore raw emotion that goes with it and has portrayed the characters brilliantly.
The characters are strong and well established and won't be leaving my head for a very long time. I have been in the position of being a "Miss Jordan" helping, thankfully without her consequences!
This life tale has been split into three different parts an amazing idea so we readers can make life gaps for Biddy.
Biddy has lived the most difficult, different, heartbreaking,realisation-moment finding,feelings-explosiveness life so far .
I do hope we hear how she moves on?
This book has grabbed me right in the pit of my stomach, really guttural some points I knew how she felt.
This IS my number 2 book for 2016
5* from me and Thanks to Emily for introducing me to Biddy.
All that man is
by David Szalay
I struggled with this book, the continuity was difficult.
Yes it was a collection of short stories, and I understand they are all different in their own way, but it felt like a book of failures? if you know what I mean. All men being set up to fail. Which is really sad. thats it I felt really sad reading each story, and I suppose thats what made them stick in my mind.
I tried to make the continuity fit as if it was man going through changes but i got a 'men behaving badly' crossed with 'Benidorm feel. Desperate and shallow , not a great portrayal of men in general sadly.
Kudos to the author for being shortlisted for a booker prize though.
thank you to NetGalley for a copy in exchange for an honest review.
By Helen Callahan
I can't rate this , another book in a class of its own .
If you want a psychological read to fiddle with your brain , this is it ! This book is exciting , its characters are bold , hard , and sometimes just down right dirty. Missing is one thing, Abduction is another totally different thing. The Author certainly did her homework.
It makes your heart beat fast,
It makes you angry
It makes you want to ^%%$^$&^ and get to the B***t***s .
It stirred feelings in me I never knew I had
You sit down thinking "I will just start this book, then you realise you are carrying it round with you. It will have you hook line and sinker , you better believe it !
Fantastic read and will definitely read it again.
Definitely in my top 5 of the year so far.
By Angela Marsons
Read on Audible
Bloody amazing! I had to re start this a few times as I was listening at night time and that was a mistake.
I listened through completely last night to the end.
WOW it was awesome I wanted the narrator to read faster !
The characters were fantastically bedded in in early which is important especially in an audiobook.
Bodies keep appearing in the same place all with the same 'MO' in varying degrees of decomposition .
Kim Stone's team take it on in they're totally awesome way, I love the way the comedy is shown throughout the case and maybe even a little breakdown of Kim's hard wall surface?
I didn't solve who the perpetrator was which is kick ass because I like it when I ' believe' I have everything that fits and I don't. A maze of tunnels to investigate down and follow leads.
This book is an awesome addition book 4 to the series but also a stand alone like the others.
Can you tell I love the Kim Stone series? '
Solid 5⭐️ from me and roll on the next one '
This is not a book to rate its just a book to read and take in.
I have my own little piece in here that mentions Tanya Bullock, Caroline Mitchell and Amanda Jennings just to say thanks you 🌹
First of all thank you David for writing this and putting this together. To some of the bravest people I applaud you for not being ashamed :) #imnotashamed I myself wrote a chapter for this book and found it very very difficult, to talk about me. in fact I was on the wire the deadline was a Wednesday and I got mine to him on Tuesday 11:56 pm ! I nearly wasn't brave enough.
This book is about the struggles people face, real life struggles , real people. it was released to coincide with the Mental Health Awareness Month of May
SANE was the mental health group David chose to work with.
After I handed over my section I was almost ready to snatch it back scared ,anxious and everything i couldn't write about. But I have been writing more since the book.
This book looks into lives and possibly will open some wounds for some people but will hopefully help some of you who recognise yourselves to speak out to someone, write something . It has been written as a Q&A style and been written with sometimes shocking honesty, but then thats what the truth usually is😊
There is always hope, whether is comes by having Faith in God or yourself or whatever gives you that hope. I found that it really is nice when you find/read about someone who has had the same happen to/with them. You are NOT alone.
This is the second book and account of some of the parts of David Perlmutter's life I have read. It is as honest and open as his first account. It's right down to the bone honest and heart wrenchingly sad for some of things he has been through. It's tough enough when your stuff goes wrong but for it to go wrong in a different country is awful.Especially if it's through decisions you have consciously made. There is a part where he was returning to Uk and all of a sudden I felt the situation become mine. By that it felt like I was looking up and in a spin for him , all alone and desperately in love and having had to make the hardest decision ever.
Thank you David , you have had some 'adventures' and thank you for sharing them
Easy 5⭐️from me I look forward to more of your life in print.
Clara and Finn have been together some time and kind of got ‘comfortable’ and in a little bit of a monotonous routine
A getaway in Wales is planned and they go to an auction, after looking at several properties just casually without even thinking they look at each other and without speaking ….they bid! This could be just what they need to make a new home and a project they can do together.
They win the auction and get it for THE cheapest price and it isn’t long before Finn starts to understand why.
The villagers start to tell Finn about the goings on and the upset that seems to envelope the house and whoever lives there.What has happened? Who is there? who isn’t there?
This is a must read which you will almost will want to set aside time for two sitting or one if you can.(don’t leave your brew on the arm of the chair !)
I have said before, I love being scared, the kind of controlled scared and Coal House certainly did this for me, it sucked me right in and I just couldn’t wait to find out what was on the next page. I felt flutters in my chest at some parts , this could be real? is it? possibly?. I would love it to be :).
Coal house was everything i like in a book, for a Debut Book that is very impressive. It is compelling, heart racy, chilling, well written,the characters are well developed. i could go on.
Don’t miss out on this author. this book is more than a ghost story/horror story , it’s a life tale 5* from me and I look forward to more from W.S Barton a wordsmith to be reckoned with and followed closely .
I can't put a rate on this book it has taken a spot in my heart and that is priceless/unrateable. when I think of it, I remember it and thats everything in a book for me.
Rosie and Tom belong together.
For too long, war and its devastating aftermath have kept them apart.
Now that Tom has finally returned home, Rosie hopes that they will be able to put the past behind them.But when a mysterious sequence of events unfolds, their love is put to the test once more.With a shocking secret hanging heavily over their relationship...
With circumstances conspiring against them at every turn...
Rosie and Tom find themselves caught up in the biggest battle of their lives.Will their demons ultimately consume them?
Or will love conquer all in the end?
Rosie and Tom belong together no matter what comes between them .
You can't imagine the things they go through and you certainly can not guess the end so please don't try.
Just read the book until it reaches your heart. I sobbed through many parts of this.
If I try to tell you any of this story it will spoil it and I'm not just saying that it will but it really really will, every page You turn ,there is something new but very unusual.
You will read this in one sitting ,this book took me quite by suprise, !
Tanya Bullock is a new author I will be looking out for more but I think 'Homecoming' is a hit already for me in 2016 definitely in my to 3 already.
You love your family. They make you feel safe. You trust them. Or do you…?
When fifteen-year-old Billy Wilkinson goes missing in the middle of the night, his mother, Claire Wilkinson, blames herself. She’s not the only one. There isn’t a single member of Billy’s family that doesn’t feel guilty. But the Wilkinson’s are so used to keeping secrets from one another that it isn’t until six months later, after an appeal for information goes horribly wrong, that the truth begins to surface.
Claire is sure of two things – that Billy is still alive and that her friends and family had nothing to do with his disappearance.
A mother’s instinct is never wrong. Or is it?
was so excited to read this book and was thankful to have a review copy sent to me thank you and my request was accepted on Netgalley for a digital copy.
When Billy goes missing all of the family feel their own sense of guilt. After six months there was an appeal that went horribly wrong and at that point the whole family started to crumble. Each member of the family as a character are outlined and deal with the trauma in different ways, this is expertly done by CL.Taylor.
As a parent of a child having gone missing the author absolutely captured the fears thoughts, tears, helplessness obsession and frustration that goes with it. It brought some memories flooding back, but that’s a good thing, it shows how well she has researched the material. I do believe my heart stopped to take a breath on more than one occasion
Claire starts the long slippery slope of blame, wonder, self blame and suffering all the psychological problems that can’t be answered.
Sadly, the family are so used to lying to one another that no one knows who they can trust so it will just keep you guessing as to how Billy actually comes to disappear. Claire questions all of her family and in all ways.
The Missing is one of the recent books that I have seen using social media in the plot, very clever in this case a messaging service. The messages are coming through and are used in chapters so someone somewhere is winding up the situation.
Thankfully I as a reader could see this and I put myself into that situation years back and it would have driven me nuts!
I had looked forward to The Missing, I had gotten excited about it and knew what it was about but as I read it, it suddenly hit me ‘what it was about’ it wasn’t just a book for me it was a bit of a chapter of my life’ and will remain so.
5/5 stars for me for this work of art
Who Needs Mr Willoughby
Marianne and her sister Elinor and their Mother are forced to move to a smaller house in Northumberland. Marianne doesn't quite see herself living in a sleepy town village , until she meets Mr Willoughby,
Phew does it get hot in that treehouse or was it just me? Theres history between the Vet Matthew Brandon and Kit Willoughby all about a girl? Which girl?
Marianne encounters all sorts of issues in her first days at Lady Violet's, where she is staying until the others arrive and they don't stop.
Poor Mrs Fenwick the housekeeper has to listen cook and carry on as it all happens, but giving her own learned information as she goes being a full fountain of knowledge.
Marianne settles into village and vetenary life and falls head over heels
Elinor is desperately in love with Edward and he drags his heels......will he pop the question?.
The truth will out with this lovely third in the trilogy by Katie Oliver.
I have loved these three books immensly, romance isn't usually a genre I read but I have been totally smitten with them, link with Jayne Eyre and modern day, I will be searching out Katie Oliver's books . The characters are well rounded and very well established quite quickly. the settings ar just well enough described not 'over the top' so there is room for you to use your ow imagination too.
I didn't like it....I LOVED it 5* from me
A Mothers Secret By
After the first couple of 'Getting to know you chapters' of this book I was hooked, I just wanted to know what was going to happen next. There are so many things that happen to Jaya and she decides to look for the truth. I simply sat at each chapter and allowed it to swirl me into the different lifestyles and cultures that were thrown at me. The differences between the westernised and cultural roots is massive and for me like a dream of sorts. I took my time reading this book and devoured it ,no digested it in chapters of unknowing. I imagine it was like this for Jaya. There were so many ways and angles for her to turn. Her mothers belongings give her clues and hold secrets that she simply has to find out and upon arrival at the 'mansion' and the meeting of 'the mad old lady' she begins to unravel the truths of herself that she never knew. Starting all over again ? what an ask! A totally lovely book one that kept me every chapter, I was whisked and had to be 'hellooooed' every time I was reading it. I read it in sections as there was so much to soak up , smells emotions , dilemmas,pain,anguish. So many things that can cause one to stop in an instant and think 'oh no...not something else' but these things do happen to people. I absolutely adored this book , I was thinking about 4* but that was half way through and this won my heart as a mother and gets my 5+* Totally deserved, I will buy this for my daughter and my mother :-)
Wrong Place Wrong Time.
WOW You want reality in a book? This is the book for you.
Starting off with a change of job from being a real estate agent who lost his job, car and everything that wet with it, including the money.
A change of life was called for and started as a light hearted ‘wander’ into Marbella, sea, sand and sex being the only thing to worry about. It is a down right gritty autobiographical account of making some wrong choices in a different country.
Its fast, its gut wrenching and almost makes you puke at the though of what he went through.
The lies he had to endure the betrayal and violence he had to just manage through were appalling along with some of the conditions he had to live in.
Knowing he had the love and help of his family was the only thing that kept him going, a lot of us don’t have that.
“it’s only a mirror”
This might be a guy just telling his story but to be able to recall as much detail as he has in this book, it must be burnt into his mind for him to remember it as clearly and concisely as this.
Thank you for sharing this bold, scary part of your life.
Your mum was right you brought shame on her family but you went through more punishment than they would have ever given you. :)
Shona and Mikey and their baby move to an idyllic cottage in Aberdeenshire so that Mikey can come home and its closer to the shore. Shona is oh so lonely and not so much the confident girl she was back home. She found a friend who was down to earth and though was just like her.
Valentina what a wierdo!
OK this book was tense right the way through, quite early on you get a 'feeling' that there is something isn't quite right .When I say tense its a long build up, it starts "why would she do that" kind of thing.I worked out what was going on but it didn't stop me reading.
Reading on it becomes apparent that Valentina is not who or what she claims to be. Shona gets sucked in and and she too is turned into someone she usually isn't. Psychologically disturbing when you gather all the evidence and dirty tricks that happen. Definitely gives you chills up your spine !
A really good read with sturdy characters and a very cool labyrinth of twists to put you off the scent of the truth. I think Mikey was my favourite character , such as he wasn't right, he was very clever.
The book is 'interrupted' with paragraphs , that put me off a little and made me feel I was reading a different book but I got used to it.
Its a book I really HAD to read , keep going over for my own knowledge making sure I'd read right, making me read properly :-)
Thank you to the Author SE.Lynes and the publisher Blackbird Books for a preview copy in return for an honest review.
Valentina is released on 1st July 2016
The body on the Doorstep
A J Mackenzie
A historical murder set in a small village in the 18th Century England
The Reverend Hardcastle discovers a dying man on his doorstep The dying man whispers something to him, shall he keep it to himself? or shall he inform someone?
Reverend Hardcastle is a bit of a lush and gets together with toff nose widow Amelia, he couldn’t do it without her intelligence, given his love of the old Claret in a tankard!
Who is the dying man?
Off they go together to solve the mysteries of which there are many.
Smugglers murderers and spies all crossing the countries From around Europe to France so as to confuse Customs and excise?
I found this a little difficult to get into in the beginning for two reasons one I was just coming out of a reading slump when I began it and the other I couldn’t get myself ‘into’ the time period. Both reasons to do with me not the book.
I finally ‘got it' and began to really enjoy the plots twists and turns this book threw at me. I kind of felt like Nancy from Oliver looking on as part of the cast. a great book for getting you and making you feel involved.
A great read from A.J.Mackenzie sorry it took me a while but once I got reading i couldn’t put it down.
WOW, THIS is the reason why you should read a book before you watch the film. You can put your character into the characters by using the authors creative flair.
Murders are happening and people are disappearing, DS Imogen Grey and DS Adrian Miles must solve the case and make their city safe again. Is anybody safe? This book was awesome it had me hooked from the beginning and i just couldn't read it fast enough, I would like to have it on audio so it can go at a faster pace ! I love to be scared, the controlled kind of scared where your heartbeat is fast and your legs shift from side to side as if you are he one in the book. it is fast paced in all the right places, The Teacher definitely gave me that fast breathing adrenalin rush. I haven't felt in a book for ages. it is gruesome and hooked up with my great imagination at times I felt physically nauseous. This is not a book you can categorise or 'label' it is unique in a class all of it's own in the literary world (IMHO).It is NOT for the faint hearted at all! i actually felt the emotion , I cried at the frustration of Miley and Grey as they discovered the things they should never have had to see. I think my favourite character was Parker cool ,calm and calculating . I truly loved this book and I stopped lots of things to read it but it was so so worth it . Katerina Diamond, what a skill I am seriously looking forward to more of your work. I was accepted by @netgalley to read a pre release copy for an honest review thank you.
A home in Sunset Bay
Mia Chapman happily runs a diner left to her by her grandmother. From out of the blue her estranged sister Laurie turns up hoping to find out why they are estranged Laurie lives a stressful London life and tries to run everything perfect.She becomes tired that's when she asks her boss for some time off. Poor Laurie suffers!I don't swear but I had few "what a bad¿%©&¥*$ moments . The sisters decide to talk Mia allows Laurie to work in the diner..........
I daren't tell you any more it will spoil it. A second book from Rebbecca Pugh that I wanted to finish in one go ,and managed it in two. The characters were really easy to follow, not too many plots at once. As you come to expect of Rebecca Pugh this was a fairy tale waiting to happen, her youth and innocence shines . It is so refreshing to know and read that there is still real romance out there.
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Looking towards 2018