#BlogBlitz The Broken by Casey Kelleher #BookReview @caseykelleher @Bookouture

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Woohoo today I’m thrilled to be part of the #BlogBlitz for The Broken by the very awesome Casey Kelleher, which means I can finally share my review for this fabulous book. The Broken is published by Bookouture and the best news of all? You can get your copy today, it’s  just one “click” away. If like me you are a fan of an authentic, gritty crime series then look no further this ones definitely for you. Anyway enough of my ramblings first the book description………

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Book description

They took her dad, but she won’t let them take her.

Nancy Byrne was the apple of her daddy’s eye. He might have been one of the most-feared gangsters in London, yet Jimmy Byrne idolised his little Nancy. But now Jimmy is dead, gunned down in cold blood – and Nancy vows to avenge his death.

She’s only twenty years old, but as the new head of the ruthless Byrne gang, running a lucrative world of drugs, sex and violence, she’s in over her head. Keeping her family together all while Joanie, her beloved grandma, falls apart, and her brother Daniel goes off the rails forces Nancy to grow up – fast.

But while Nancy takes the men on at their own game, there’s a greater danger hiding on the dark streets. Jimmy’s killer is on her trail – and will stop at nothing to shut her up.

Blood might be thicker than water, but soon, Nancy realises she can’t trust anyone. Not even her own family.

Especially her own family.

 

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Ever since I read The Betrayed  I’ve been hoping and praying Casey Kelleher would write a follow up and lo and behold my book prayers were answered with The Broken, the second instalment in an explosive and gritty series. This book takes the reader into the dark belly of the criminal underworld where violence is par for the course and revenge is deadly. It’s a world I want no part of but my oh my I do love reading about it! The Broken is brutal and “heart thumping” thrilling, it’s one of those books you will be hard pressed NOT to read in one sitting. I would highly recommend you read The Betrayed first if you haven’t already, as the two books go hand in hand.

The most-feared gangsters in London, Jimmy Byrne is dead and Nancy his beloved daughter finds herself head of the ruthless Byrne gang, running a lucrative business involving drugs, sex and violence. If that isn’t enough to cope with, her fathers killer has never been caught and it looks like Nancy could be their next victim. Oh boy what a dysfunctional family the Byrne’s turned out to be, this is a family with HUGE issues, jealousy, deadly secrets and vengeance all have a part to play, but my god it certainly made for a gripping read. Casey Kelleher has a knack of creating vibrate character that come the end of The Broken you feel like you know them intimately. Some characters you will love and others you can’t help but loathe, as the reader I found myself hoping that certain characters got their comeuppance, which certainly added an overwhelming sense of tension to the plot.

From the opening chapter the reader is hurled into the sordid and brutal criminal world, as you can imagine there is plenty of violence and choice language but personally I felt it made for a more realistic read. Fast paced and jam packed with drama there is no let up in pace, my definition of the “perfect” crime thriller.  If I have one small gripe it’s that Casey Kelleher is compared to authors such as Martina Cole in my opinion I think this author has made this genre her own, with vibrant characters and gritty plot’s and her own unique style of writing, I personally believe Casey Kelleher is an extremely talented author in her own right. Highly, highly recommended. I’m thrilled to see there is going to be a third book in the series and personally I can’t wait.

Buying links:    Amazon UK 🇬🇧                         Amazon US 🇺🇸

Print Length: 336 pages
Publisher: Bookouture (22 Feb. 2018)

About the author

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Born in Cuckfield, West Sussex, Casey Kelleher grew up as an avid reader and a huge fan of author Martina Cole. 

Whilst working as a beauty therapist and bringing up her three children together with her husband, Casey penned her debut novel Rotten to the Core. Its success meant that she could give up her day job and concentrate on writing full time. 

She has since published Rise and Fall, Heartless, Bad Blood, The Taken, The Promise, The Betrayed and her latest release The Broken is due for publication on the 22nd February 2018.
For all news and updates:

www.caseykelleher.co.uk

www.facebook.com/officialcaseykelleher

http://caseykelleher.wordpress.com



Twitter: @caseykelleher

My thanks to Kim Nash and Noelle Holten for my ARC of The Broken in exchange for an honest review.

There are some awesome bloggers taking part in the #Blogblitz for The Broken so don’t forget to check out their fabulous reviews.

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A day with author Louise Jensen @Fab_fiction

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Today I’m thrilled to welcome author Louise Jensen to the book review cafe. I’m a huge fan of this authors psychological thrillers including my Favourite The Surrogate if you haven’t read any of her books yet, where have you been?  You need to buy them now! You won’t be disappointed I promise.

I so enjoy sharing these posts and I am so nosy that it’s a great opportunity to learn more about  some of my favourite authors and what they get up to in their “typical” day 😂. Hope you enjoy reading Louise Jensen’s post as much as I did.

A day with author Louise Jensen

I wrote my first novel, The Sister, while I was working full-time. Each night, when my youngest son had independent reading time I would sit, perched on the edge of my bed, laptop balanced on my knee, bashing out as many words as I could in half an hour.

Since then, I’ve been lucky enough to write full-time, although even with the extra hours, it often feels I don’t achieve many more words than I used to in that 30 minutes.

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Nowadays I write in the spare room. It was my eldest son’s bedroom, he now shares a lovely flat with his girlfriend, and although I was sad to see him go I soon stuck a desk in the corner of his room!

I’m generally quite structured with my days. I have a health condition which means I suffer with chronic pain and am easily fatigued. My most creative and alert times are in the morning so once I’m home after the school run I’m always at my desk by 8.30. By now, I have already caught up with social media and emails while eating breakfast so I’m ready to write. This is my time for new words. Often working on a novel, but sometimes, like today, I’m writing a short story for an anthology for one of my foreign publishers. I find writing a first draft of anything incredibly difficult, and I often find myself clock watching, my fingers twitching, desperate to check Twitter or browse Amazon.

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Hopefully by lunchtime I will have got some words down. I don’t set word count targets for myself, that’s added pressure I don’t need, for me it’s always the quality of the words not the quantity. Often I fiddle with sentences for ages before I’m happy with them. I know not everything I write will survive this stage, I don’t plan my stories so if I go off track with my plot there will be many cuts, but taking my time, getting a real feel for the scene, enables me to get to know my characters really well. Eventually, they will be the ones leading the story not me.

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Lunch is usually a quick sandwich or bowl of soup, usually eaten at my desk as I prefer to get as much done as I can in school hours. If I’m editing a manuscript I go back to it after lunch, but if I’m at first draft stage I won’t return to it in the afternoons as I know from experience my progress when I’m tired is slow and frustrating. Afternoons are often dedicated to blogging, social media, arranging events and interviews. My books have been translated into numerous languages and so I now have 18 publishers who can want various things publicity -wise. This can get incredibly busy and is a part of being a writer I had never considered before getting my book deal.

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I’m on the school run again at four, and then unless there’s anything pressing to finish it’s time precious time spent with the kids and cooking dinner. After we’ve eaten I do my physio exercises, piano practice and meditate. The rest of my evenings are spent either reading, watching a movie, or out with friends or, frequently, falling asleep on the sofa!

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I’m trying to cut down on working at weekends. As a new writer, this past year has been a real learning curve, but now I’m about to start writing book four I feel I’ve found my feet a little, and it’s all about finding a balance now. Sustaining a full-time career and spending quality time with my family. I absolutely adore what I do and I wouldn’t want to be doing anything else.

My thanks to Louise Jensen for taking time out of her busy schedule to write this post and also for the photographs from her personal collection.

About Louise Jensen

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Louise is a USA Today Bestselling Author, and lives in Northamptonshire with her husband, children, madcap dog and a rather naughty cat.

Louise’s first two novels, The Sister and The Gift, were both International No.1 Bestsellers, and have been sold for translation to sixteen countries. The Sister was nominated for The Goodreads Awards Debut of 2016. Louise’s third psychological thriller, The Surrogate, is out now.

Louise loves to hear from readers and writers and can be found at www.louisejensen.co.uk, where she regularly blogs flash fiction.

Learn more about Louise Jensen’s books here 

 

 

Kiss Me Kill Me by J. S. Carol #BookReview @JamesCarolBooks @BonnierZaffre

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Book description

She thought she could trust him. She was wrong . . . When Zoe meets Dan, he’s everything she is looking for in a man – intelligent, charming, supportive.It’s only after they’re married that she realises that he’s controlling, aggressive, paranoid.And there’s no way out.Or is there?

Zoe knows she has to escape, but Dan’s found her once before, and she knows he can find her again.But Dan has plans of his own. Plans that don’t necessarily include Zoe.Be careful who you trust . . .

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WOW, WOW and triple WOW! I loved Kiss Me Kill Me by J. S. Carol what a dark and twisted psychological thriller this one turned out to be. Any crime thriller lover will be familiar with James Carol and his crime books featuring Detective Jefferson Winter, which I’m a huge fan of by the way, the author has taken a step away from this series and written Kiss Me Kill Me a standalone psychological thriller.

From the book description I was expecting a “run of the mill” domestic noir kind of read, but how wrong I was! The author has written a gripping and highly compelling book that made it impossible to put down, cliched I know but in this case it’s very true. It’s one of those reads that unnerved me from the beginning with a constant sense of foreboding you just know this is one marriage that’s not going to end in a “happy ever after”.

Apologises for the vague review but this is definitely one of the less you know the more shocking the ride. What I loved about this book was the author’s ability to mislead the reader at every opportunity and he does it time after time, every time I thought I had it all worked out J. S. Carol hit me with another surprise. There are some uncomfortable scenes that deal with the ugly side of domestic abuse but they are fundamental to the plot and very much set the scene for the events that unfold.

J. S. Carol has taken the well used subject of domestic abuse and deftly turned it in to something much more than your garden variety psychological thriller. Kiss Me Kill Me is highly original, heart thumping and so very cleverly done, in case you haven’t already guessed I really, really enjoyed this book and would highly recommend it to anyone who is looking for a psychological thriller with more than twists than a roller coaster.

Paperback: 432 pages

Publisher: Zaffre (22 February 2018)

Buying link:    Amazon UK 🇬🇧

 

Gallery Of The Dead by Chris Carter #BookReview & #Giveaway @simonschusterUK

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Today I’m not only sharing my review for the latest book in the Robert Hunter series Gallery Of The Dead  by Chris Carter, but thanks to the lovely people at Simon & Schuster who sent me a hardback copy to review (I bought a copy in between this one arriving so now have two copies ) I’m giving you the chance to win a copy of the Gallery Of The Dead, it’s one of the best crime series on the market. Details on how to enter can be found after my  review

Book description

‘Thirty-seven years in the force, and if I was allowed to choose just one thing to erase from my mind, what’s inside that room would be it.’

That’s what a LAPD Lieutenant tells Detectives Hunter and Garcia of the Ultra Violent Crimes Unit as they arrive at one of the most shocking crime scenes they have ever attended.

In a completely unexpected turn of events, the detectives find themselves joining forces with the FBI to track down a serial killer whose hunting ground sees no borders; a psychopath who loves what he does because to him murder is much more than just killing – it’s an art form.

Welcome to The Gallery of the Dead.

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I have long been a fan of Chris Carter’s “Robert Hunter” crime series since I picked up The Crucifix Killer the first book in the series way back in 2009! I always look forward to reading his latest offering. If like me you are a fan of the darker crime thriller, the more gruesome the murder the better(I know I need professional help!) then you really need to buy a copy of Galley Of The Dead. If you haven’t read any of his books don’t be put off by the fact it’s the ninth book in the series because it can easily be read as a standalone without knowing the backstory.

Robert Hunter is one of my favourite fictional crime Detectives, he’s a complex character, but there’s no fictional crime detective or profiler who can read a crime scene or get inside the mind of a killer like Hunter can. Hunter’s partner Garcia has come into his own in this book and his humour adds some light relief to this dark and disturbing read. I did think Chris Carter had made a big mistake by making this book a dual investigation with the FBI, as each character tried to take centre stage I was worried Hunter and Garcia would feature less but my worries were unfounded I’m glad to say, in fact the shift in dynamics within the team actually added to the overall tension.

Chris Carter has an unique way of adding incredible detail to his descriptions of police procedures, crime scenes and profiling that it feels like you are very much part of the team, privy to all the clues, assisting in joining all the dots together to capture a psychopath before they kill again. The author is known for his graphic crime scenes and the ones in Gallery Of The Dead are no different, each murder is unique in concept and very gory, this is one author’s imagination that knows no bounds, he’s happy to tread where other authors daren’t so this a book I wouldn’t recommend to the faint hearted or the squeamish amongst you.

Gallery Of The Dead is definitely a page turner with a very intriguing serial killer at it’s heart but If I’m honest although I really enjoyed this book it’s not my favourite in the series, I think the personal dynamics within the team coupled with the time spent deciphering the clues left by the killer into feasible theories actually gave this book a different feel to others in the series. Don’t get me wrong it’s still a worthy addition to a cracking albeit gruesome crime series and well worth a read. After reading the last chapter of the book I’m excited to see what happens to Hunter in the next book as Chris Carter leaves the reader with a humdinger of a teaser.

Buying links:    Amazon UK 🇬🇧                    Amazon US 🇺🇸

Print Length: 512 pages

Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (8 Feb. 2018)

Books in series order

The Crucifix Killer
(2009)

The Executioner
(2010)

The Night Stalker
(2011)

The Death Sculptor
(2012)

The Hunter
(2013)

One by One
(2013)

An Evil Mind
(2014)

I Am Death
(2015)

The Caller
(2017)

The Gallery of the Dead

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First the boring stuff sorry this competition is open to UK residents only, the winner must be following my blog via Twitter, Facebook or my actual blog. The winner will be notified within 24 hours of the competition closing which will be midnight 23rd February 2017. Once you have sent me your postal address one hardback copy of Gallery Of The Dead will be winging its way to you all you need to do to enter is click on this link…….Click to enter Gallery Of The Dead #Giveaway

 

 

The Reunion by Samantha Hayes #BookReview @Bookouture @samhayes

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Book description

They were all there the day your sister went missing… 
Who is lying? Who is next?

THEN – In charge of her little sister at the beach, Claire allowed Eleanor to walk to the shop alone to buy an ice cream. Placing a coin into her hand, Claire told her to be quick, knowing how much she wanted the freedom.

Eleanor never came back.

NOW – The time has finally come to sell the family farm and Claire is organising a reunion of her dearest friends, the same friends who were present the day her sister went missing.

When another girl disappears, long-buried secrets begin to surface. One of the group hides the darkest secret of them all…

If you love Sue Fortin, Gillian Flynn and The Girl on the Train, this psychological thriller packed full of twists and turns will be impossible to put down.

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What a little cracker The Reunion turned out to be, when I first started reading this book I admit I had some reservations, there seems to be an abundance of children going missing crime/psychological thrillers on the market at the moment, and the pessimist in me wasn’t convinced that author Samantha Hayes would be able to put an original spin on a well used subject, but somehow she does.

The book begins with the disappearance of teenager Eleanor, whilst spending the day at the beach with her brother, sister and their friends. Fast forward twenty one years and her family are still no closer to knowing what happened to her all those years ago. Dad, Patrick is now suffering from Alzheimers, and daughter Claire decides that a reunion of friends and family could help her dad with his memory issues. As the group of friends are reunited they find themselves plunged into a further nightmare as shocking secrets are slowly revealed.

If I’m honest I thought the first half of the book was very slow, the time is spent introducing the reader to the array of characters and building on the mystery and suspense surrounding Eleanor’s disappearance. I can’t say I was a fan of any of the characters, some of them appeared shallow, others were just downright unlikable, and I did find myself questioning their behaviour and some of the choices they made at times, the only character I could summon up any sympathy for was Eleanor, but that said it did not stop me enjoying this book. The author manages to ramp up the tension by creating characters that are almost impossible to trust.

The Reunion has some great twists and red herrings to make this an intense and a heart pounding  read, yes I pretty much guessed one of the major twist early on in the book, but I would never have guessed the motive or some of the other devious sub plots, and I did have a couple of “OMG” moments towards the end where the author surprised me which always enhances my enjoyment of a book. If I had to say one thing it would be that a few things were left unanswered by the time I reached the end of The Reunion but never the less it still made for an intriguing read.

Buying links:  Amazon UK 🇬🇧     Amazon US 🇺🇸

Print Length: 410 pages

Publisher: Bookouture (9 Feb. 2018

 

 

#Bookblogger news The London Book Fair launches UK Book Blog Awards @LondonBookFair

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Firstly apologises for the late share unfortunately I took the week off from blogging for personal reasons.

In case you’ve missed this I thought I would share some exciting book news with you. The London Book Fair is launching The UK Book Blog Awards so get nominating for your favourite #Bloggers #Bookstagrammer or #Booktuber now! This isn’t a plea for votes as there are so many amazing book bloggers out there who deserve this award that I haven’t got a hells chance of being included, but I would love to see some of my favourite book bloggers get nominated so make sure you vote. 

The London Book Fair launches inaugural
UK Book Blog Awards

The hunt to find the most influential
book bloggers, bookstagrammers and booktubers is on

London, 14 February 2017: The London Book Fair (LBF) is delighted to announce the launch of the first ever UK Book Blog Awards @ LBF – a new initiative designed to celebrate social media influencers and their important contribution to the book industry.

A new feature for LBF 2018, this will be the first time this community has been officially recognised and rewarded by the British publishing industry.

Bloggers, social media influencers, members of the publishing industry, and the general public are invited to nominate the best book blogs, bookstagrammers and booktubers across three categories:

· Book Blogger of the Year
· Bookstagrammer of the Year
· BookTuber of the Year

Once the shortlist has been revealed, a panel of judges will select one winner in each category, who will be honoured at a special awards ceremony at The London Book Fair. In addition, the Fair will introduce new seminars and networking events aimed at bringing the social media influencer community closer to the publishing world.

Jacks Thomas, Director at The London Book Fair commented: “Book bloggers are an increasingly important part of the book world. Their passion for authors, genres and books is integral in reaching new audiences. We’re really excited to be launching the inaugural UK Book Blog Awards @ LBF and recognising the crucial role social influencers play in the promotion of books.”

The awards are open to any blogger, YouTuber or Instagrammer that features books published in the UK and/or UK authors. To put forward a nomination, or to nominate your own blog/Instagram account/YouTube channel visit: www.londonbookfair.co.uk/UKBookBlogAwards

For further information please contact Edwina Boyd-Gibbins at Midas Public Relations on 0207 361 7860 edwina.boyd-gibbins@midaspr.co.uk

www.londonbookfair.co.uk

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The Crime Writer’s CaseBook by StephenWade and Stuart Gibbon #Bookreview #StraightforwardPublishing

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Book description

A Straightforward Guide to The Crime Writer’s Casebook is an essential research companion for all writers of crime fiction and non-fiction. The Crime Writer’s Casebook is unique in that it presents first-hand explanations by Stuart Gibbon, a seasoned London Metropolitan Police detective with over 30 years’ experience on the force, with additional commentary from Stephen Wade, a crime historian who has published more than 60 books. The authors work as consultants for crime writers and writing groups.

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Let me assure you before I begin my review “no” I won’t be writing or even attempting to write a crime thriller any time soon, I have neither the patience or the imagination! But as a huge crime thriller lover of both fact and fiction this book piqued my interest. The Crime Writer’s Casebook contains fourteen very interesting chapters examples being The Murder Victim And Crime Scenes, Murder Or Manslaughter? and Forensic Pathology to name but a few. The glossaries also provides an abundance of useful material for both fiction and non-fiction authors and readers, including police ranks, legal terms, and a history of modern police work.

The Crime Writer’s Casebook is unique in that it presents first-hand explanations by Stuart Gibbon, a seasoned London Metropolitan Police detective with additional commentary from Stephen Wade, a crime historian. Each chapter gives you an explanation, for instance The Murder Investigation explains how evidence is collected, where it is stored and numerous other intriguing facts, alongside relevant case studies from real crimes. The chapters also go into the history of policing, techniques and the changes in the law, so this book really does have a little bit of everything. This book is idea research material especially if you are looking to write a book based on a crime committed in the UK.

The Crime Writer’s Casebook is ideal for dipping in to as you can check the A-Z index and find the subject you want to read more on, without trawling through copious chapters. For such a short book a 160 pages to be precise the authors manage to pack an abundance of useful and informative information,It’s written in a straight forward and easy to understand manner, and although I’m not an author it made for a very intriguing read never the less. If I was an author this would be definitely a book I would have sat alongside whilst I was writing to check facts or just to add detail to my novel.

My thanks to Straightforward Publishing for my copy of The Crime Writer’s Casebook. All opinions are my own and not biased in anyway.

Buying link:   Amazon UK 🇬🇧Print Length: 160 pages

Publisher: Straightforward Publishing (10 Dec. 2017)

About the authors

Stuart Gibbon is a former Metropolitan Police detective with 30 years experience in crime investigation. As a DCI he was in charge of murder cases and was an SIO on the East Midlands Special Operations Unit. He is now a writing consultant advising authors on police procedures.

Stephen Wade is the author of over 60 non-fiction books, many of them on crime history. His most recent works have included The Justice Women, No More Soldiering and The Girl who Lived on Air, all mainly concerned with legal issues in history. His book, Murder in Mind, was featured at the Ilkley Literature festival in 2017. Stuart and Stephen give talks to writing groups on crime past and present.