Author Archives: lollyrugs

About lollyrugs

Hi and welcome to my blog, I love reading and always have a book or my kindle on the go. I love reading crime/psychological thrillers, but I will read most genres if a book takes my fancy. If you would like me to review a book for you please send me a email, although I cannot guarantee to review a book if it has a tight deadline due to work commitments. As a new blogger I would be grateful for any hints or tips established bloggers could give me, so feel free to email me. Thanks for calling in and hope you enjoy my reviews

#TheSilentDead by Graham Smith #Blogtour #BookReview @GrahamSmith1972 @Bookouture #CrimeReads

Today I’m thrilled to be one of the bloggers taking part in The Silent Dead by Graham Smith blog tour. It’s the first book in a new police procedure series and it’s a cracker of a start to the series. Before I share my review here’s the very intriguing book description……

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He’d found an angel for his collection. But one angel at a time was never enough…

Detective Beth Young has just joined the Cumbrian major crimes team when a body is found posed in a ritualistic manner – arms spread and graceful wings attached – at a crumbling castle in the hills of Lake District.

The entire police force are on red alert. But Beth begins to feel she’s the only one who can follow the disturbing clues left by the twisted killer. Because she doesn’t think like everyone else. To Beth, crimes are puzzles she can solve. Even if real life is a little harder.

As more bodies are discovered in derelict stately homes across the Lake District, she knows she’s in a race against time.

But the killer is looking for another darling to add to his collection… Will Beth be able to save her? Or will he get there first?

A gripping new detective series set in the Lake District

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The Silent Dead is the first book in a new crime police procedure series, written by Graham Smith,  and what a fantastic start to the series it turned out to be. From the opening chapter where a body is found posed in a ritualistic manner in a crumbling castle in the hills of the  Lake District the author draws you in with an atmospheric setting and a crime scene that is gristly to say the least. This book felt much darker and far more sinister than some crime thrillers I’ve read recently and personally that’s the way I like them. Graham Smith has written a crime thriller that has it all, red herrings misdirection, mystery, and bundles of suspense.

 A new crime series always has to put some emphasis on the team, how else are you going to get to know them? Like any regular team, there is friction and disharmony, but when the chips are down or in this case when the team is caught up in a frantic search to catch a killer they pull together, and I’m interested to see how there characters will evolve over the series. I especially found Beth Young an intriguing character, she’s the youngest member of the team so she finds herself constantly trying to prove to her superiors she’s a valuable and worthy addition to the team. 

It never fails to amaze me how authors come up with such ingenious methods of killing off their victims, and Graham Smith has created some very dark and macabre scenes, what a twisted mind this author must have, his methods and vivid description are enough to make the most hardened crime thriller lover have nightmares, me included! And a word of warning perhaps read the autopsy scenes on a empty stomach, there fascinating in there own right but very gory to say the least. 

The short chapters told from two unknown voices add tension to the overall read, the author gives a chilling insight into the Killers thoughts and motives, you get a sense of how disturbed the killer actually is as he experiments and refines his methods of killing with each victim he takes, spine chilling to say the least! The Silent Dead is a brilliant start to this new series it’s well written, with a gory, fast paced plot. I for one would buy the next book in the series without hesitation. 

  • Print Length: 362 pages
  • Publisher: Bookouture (30 Nov. 2018)

Buying links: Amazon UK 🇬🇧     IBookStore 📚     Kobo📚

Google Play 📚

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Graham Smith is the bestselling author of four explosive crime thrillers in the Jake Boulder series, Watching the Bodies, The Kindred Killers, Past Echoes and Die Cold. Watching the Bodies spent over two weeks at number one in the Amazon UK chart and Amazon CA charts. Graham is also the author of the popular DI Harry Evans series and has collections of short stories and novellas. His latest novel – The Silent Dead is published by Bookouture and set in Cumbria / the Lake District, featuring DC Beth Young.

He is the proud father of a young son. As a time served joiner he has built bridges, houses, dug drains and slated roofs to make ends meet. Since 2000 he has been manager of a busy hotel and wedding venue near Gretna Green, Scotland.

An avid fan of crime fiction since being given one of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five books at the age of eight, he has also been a regular reviewer for the well-respected review site Crimesquad.com since 2010.

When not working, his time is spent reading, writing and playing games with his son. He enjoys socialising and spending time with friends and family.

Author Social Media Links:

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/grahamnsmithauthor/

TWITTER:  https://twitter.com/GrahamSmith1972

WEBSITE: https://grahamsmithauthor.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5446655.Graham_Smith?from_search=true

Follow the blog tour…….

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The book review café’s book of the month **November 2018**

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WOW here we are in December, where did the rest of 2018 go? As it’s the beginning of December it’s time to share my book of the month, now you might just want to sit down for this one *shock,horror* I have finally got ONE book of the month, yes you read that right!

As anyone who follows my blog will know I choose a book  for the previous month, in this case November (and normally fail miserably in narrowing it down to one). It’s given to a book I feel is particularly outstanding, a book that covers every aspect of what I look for in a read, an original  plot, great characters and a storyline that draws me in from the first page and keeps me in its grips until I reach the very last page. So without further ado here’s my book of the month…….

The Liar’s Wife by Samantha Hayes

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Oh my freaking god! What a fabulous and compelling  read The Liar’s Wife by Samantha Hayes turned out to be.  I must be honest when I read the book description I wasn’t convinced it would be an original read, as I’ve read numerous psychological thrillers where the protagonist wakes up from a coma with no memory,  but what makes this one so different is in the telling of a very twisted and disturbing tale. Read on for my thoughts The Liar’s Wife by Samantha Hayes hayes

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Here are some of the books I read in November I would happily recommend

 

 

Full reviews can be found below…….

**Blog tour** #HushHush by Mel Sherratt @writermels @AvonBooksUk #BookReview

The Dream Daughter by Diane Chamberlain #BookReview @D_Chamberlain

#AndSoItBegins by Rachel Abbott #BlogTour @RachelAbbott @annecater

**Blog Tour** #TheHunted by Kerry Barnes #BookReview @KerryBarnes1 @HQDigitalUK

The Coco Pinchard Boxset by Robert Bryndza @RobertBryndza @CocoPinchard – Coco Pinchard’s Must Have Toy Story #BlogTour #bookreview #TeamBryndza #giveaway @BOTBSPublicity

#TheKey by Katherine Hughes#BookReview @headlinepg

Her Last Move by John Marrs #BookReview @johnmarrs1 @AmazonPub

Next month  I will be sharing my top reads of the 20018 which is going to be much easier than I thought. I came up with a plan of sorts which I will reveal next month when I share my post.

Books I’m hoping to read in December

The eagle eyed amongst you may notice some of these books were also on my November pile, which I never got around to reading #EpicFail 😂

 

 

 

**Perfect Christmas #gifts for a #bookworm**

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With Christmas fast approaching, 26 days to be exact (not that I’m counting!) I thought I would put together a post for those looking for gifts for a bookworm.  In the name of research and my own Christmas list (although I have a feeling I maybe on Santa’s naughty list 🤣) I spent hours trawling the Internet (no change there then) to find some amazing gifts that I’m sure every book worm would love to receive on Christmas Day 🎄 Here are some of my favourites.

I would like to point out although I’ve included links to the items I’ve mentioned, I did not receive any kind of payment for the products in this post and nor are the links affiliated to my blog 

Bath caddy and book holder

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RELAX IN COMFORT AND STYLE- This luxury Dark Wood bath caddy tray contains a specially designed drinks holder & Anti Slip shelf to hold your favourite book or iPad in place whilst you soak and unwind with a glass of wine.  Bath caddy

Jane Eyre gift hamper

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A sweet and lovely treat for Jane Eyre lovers, this hamper includes products with some of Jane’s most famous literary quotes.

Hampers are beautifully presented wrapped with a ribbon and filled with our own literary shred.

Contents:

* A stunning edition of the book, Jane Eyre, published by Vintage Classics.

* “Reader I married him,” book quote mug.

* Charlotte Bronte literary tea; white tea and Jasmine flowers, amazing for digestion after a long hard walk along the moors!

* A beautiful A5 print; you have an option to choose one of 2 prints.

1st Quote: “I am no bird; and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will”

2nd Quote: “Do you think, because I am poor, obscure, plain and little, I am soulless and heartless?

* A gorgeous candle inspired by Jane’s personality, this beautiful scented candle will leave you feeling sweet, sassy and courageous, just like our heroine.

Scent:

Pomegranate and mint, medium strength

Jane Eyre gift hamper

Go away I’m reading gift sets

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Now you can give the priceless gift of a bit of peace and quiet to the reader in your life. Not particularly polite, but sometimes people need to be told! Perfect for anyone who just needs to finish the next chapter.  And the one after that…

Now available as two different gift sets!  Boxed with matching coaster, metal bookmark and (in the larger set) chocolate bar.

  • Bone china.
  • Mug height 8cm.
  • Coaster 9cm x 9cm x 2.5 cm (in sets only)
  • Bookmark 13cm x 3.5cm x 0.5mm (in sets only)
  • Chocolate (in larger set only)

Go away I’m reading gift set

100 postcards from Penguin

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One hundred postcards in a gorgeous book-shaped box. Each one features a different iconic Penguin cover design from their huge archive spanning many decades. Perfect for stationery enthusiasts, this gift also functions as a potted history of book cover design.

100 postcards from Penguin

Bibliophile 2019 Engagement Diary

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This hardcover planner features book-related artwork by Jane Mount, author of Bibliophile and co-creator of My Ideal Bookshelf, on every page.  With lay-flat binding, plastic tabbed sections, two ribbon bookmarks, interior pocket and a sticker sheet, this is a wonderful gift for book-lovers or a luxury treat for oneself.

  • Hardcover, 176 pages
  • Week-to-a-page format
  • Size: 20 x 15 cm
  • Full-colour artwork throughout
  • Year-at-a-glance and month-at-a-glance pages

Engagement diary

Book-opoly

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Book-opoly allows players a glimpse inside the many worlds of classic literature. It’s a traditional property trading game where players buy, sell and trade their way to fun with family and friends. Interesting facts about the books and the authors are printed on the back of each property deed. Roll the dice and advance to Read. Collect Bookstores and trade them in for Libraries. Who knows! You may soon be elected President of the Book Club or you may be tossed out of the game for three turns and sent to WATCH TV!  Book-oploy

Kindle Paperwhite Case Classic Book Cover Compatible Paperwhite 2018 

 

 

  • Exclusively for Amazon Kindle Paperwhite Only (Any version).
  • Hard shell snap in case and naturally closed position offers security and protection in transit.
  • Made from high density durable card, woven paper and laminated making it hard wearing and splashproof.
  • Premium handmade product looks and feels like a hardback book but is ultra lightweight and slimline.
  • Excellent unique British brand, great gift idea and signed by the maker. Kindle book cover

Book blogger candle tin

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A great size 8oz tin with a triple wick for the perfect burn.

With scent notes of passion, reviews and nutty banana and has a gorgeous sweet banana walnut scent.  Book blogger candle tin

Pride and Prejudice tote bag

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  • Selected design printed on both sides
  • 1 inch wide super strong cotton shoulder strap (14 inch length)
  • Soft yet hard wearing 100% spun Polyester Poplin fabric
  • Dry or Spot Clean Only        Tote bag

Alice meets Dorothy mug

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Ever wondered what happened when the two leading ladies of literature first met? Based on a New Yorker cartoon by Edward Frascino.

  • Large porcelain mug with gift box.
  • Holds 15oz/420ml.
  • Dishwasher and microwave safe
  • Measures 12.7 x 10.8cm.      Alice meets Dorothy mug

Emma woman’s t-shirt

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Based on the lovely cover design from an 1898 edition of Jane Austen’s classic. This t-shirt features a distressed, softened print. Slim fit, runs a size small.

Care: machine wash warm. Tumble dry medium. Do not iron text/images.

  • 100% cotton.
  • Comes in sizes: S-XXL.
  • Color: midnight navy.         Emma t-shirt

My chronicle book box (subscription)

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Choose your genre! Cosy crime and gritty crime thrillers Or High fantasy to space opera, aliens and vampires.

♥ 4 boxes per year, February, May, August and November

♥ 3 newly released, gift wrapped books with author exclusives and luxury bookish items in every box

♥ £15 per month, or £45 per quarter, modify or cancel anytime, no commitment

♥ Free UK delivery, ships around the 1st

My Chronicle Book Box is a unique reading-focused subscription box perfect for book lovers, delivered direct to your doorstep four times a year. My chronicle book box

100 books scratch off bucket list poster

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This poster is an interactive challenge. Read and enjoy one hundred amazing books and each time you finish one you can scratch off the panel to reveal a hidden image. Featuring a range of fictional genres and some non-fiction, as well as a mix of modern and classic titles including The Odyssey, The Great Gatsby, Tell No One and Wild Swans. Perfect for showing-off how well-read you are, or a great gift for someone looking to broaden their reading horizons.

Dead book mark

 

Whodunnit? A criminally classic bookmark. These bookmarks are individually handmade from clay and hand painted.

  • Measures 17.5 cm x 4 cm.
  • Comes boxed.
  • Handmade from polymer clay and metal.  Book mark

Book themed Handbags

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Bookworms and book lovers can celebrate the world of books with a homage to literary classics. On this classic silhouette leather shoulder bag we have recreated books into leather appliques. This ladie’s leather shoulder handbag features twin shoulder straps and there is ample storage for all your belongings. So many different designs and colours to chose from. Book Handbag

Book buddy’s for books and ereaders

 

**These book buddy’s are  handmade to order – please allow up to 14 days for your order to be handmade and dispatched ***

If you love to throw your latest read or favourite book into your bag on your way out, so you can read on your commute or during your lunch break, you may have been disappointed to find your book slightly mangled in transit. Creased pages and bent covers are no way to treat any novel!

Protect your books with a Melvis Makes book buddy – a slightly padded book sleeve, perfect for your latest read to travel in.

Made from 100% cotton, with a festive navy and pastel Waiting for Santa design to outer, and a coordinating mint polka dot lining. This book sleeve is padded with a lightweight fleece.

Choose the perfect size for your favourite books –

Small book buddies are perfect for the average paperback and measures approximately 9″ x 7″.

Medium Book Buddies are great for larger, indie paperbacks and small hardbacks and measure approx 10″ x 8″.

Large Book Buddies are great for standard hardback books and measure approx 11″ x 8.5″.

XL Book Buddies are made to carry the biggest of books, or 2+ hardbacks at a time & measure approx 12″ x 9.5″.

Melaine at MelvisMakes has very kindly offered a 10% discount to your order if you add code BOOKREVIEWCAFE to the Etsy checkout, offer valid until 15 December.

MelvisMakes

Library of or Ex Libris book embossing press – personal name

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  • Only UK manufacturer on Amazon selling metal dies, not plastic.
  • INITIALS in centre would be changed to what you require
  • nice crisp impression / to emboss upto 100gsm paper
  • Library Book or Ex Libris Embosser
  • 1 Year Guarantee

Library Stamp

Which of the above gifts would you love to receive? I would love to know so please feel free to leave a comment in the post 🎄🎁

#TopFiveThusday with #BookBlogger Lynne at fictionophile @fictionophile

Today I’m thrilled to welcome Lynne to the book review café whose agreed to share her #TopFiveThursday. Lynne blogs over at Fictionophile And her site is a treasure trove for anyone who loves books, not only does she review a wealth of books but she also runs regular book features such as cover love and Wednesday’s Word. If you haven’t checked out Lynne’s blog it’s a must.

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Top 5 books read so far this year: (with links to my reviews)

Persons unknown” by Susie Steiner

Then she was gone” by Lisa Jewell

Beartown” by Fredrik Backman

Possible world” by Liese O’Halloran Schwarz

Dark game” by Rachel Lynch

Top five authors you think everyone should read?

Ruth Rendell

Fredrik Backman

Sharon Bolton

Peter May

Rachel Joyce

Top 5 books you want to read before this year is out?

“The Craftsman” by Sharon Bolton

“Salt Lane” by William Shaw

“The dry” by Jane Harper

“Us against you” by Fredrik Backman

“Snap” by Belinda Bauer

Top 5 tips I would give to new bloggers?

Write a review policy.  State up front what you will/will not review along with your preferred genres and reading format.

If you over-commit yourself it will seems like ‘work’. Learn to say NO – if you don’t you’ll get overwhelmed.

Support other bloggers, if you do you’ll be rewarded in spades

Always be considerate and fair when posting reviews.  You can let the world know a book is not for you without insulting the author or other reader’s choices.

You don’t HAVE to participate in every ‘tag’ or ‘meme’ that comes along.  It is YOUR blog, so do only the ones that really appeal to you.

Top 5 blogs you follow?   (I found this one really difficult as I follow a lot of wonderful book blogs)

Cleo’s Cleopatra loves books

Juliet’s Bookliterati Book Reviews

Jen’s Jen Med’s book reviews

Jo’s My Chestnut Reading Tree

Emma’s Damppebbles

A little about Lynne

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Before retirement I was the fiction cataloguer for Halifax Public Libraries in Nova Scotia, Canada.  So many wonderful books passed my desk that everyday felt a little bit like Christmas morning.

Since retirement, I enjoy spending quality time with my husband, enjoying a glass of wine with my friends, gardening, watching British television drama, doing word games, crocheting, and jigsaw puzzles.  Our summers are spent at our seaside cottage on the Northumberland Strait of Nova Scotia.  I love to read, and my favorite genre is mystery fiction. I also have a deep appreciation for classic literature and literary fiction.

I have been married for over 41 years and I am the proud mother of two adult children.

My thanks to Lynne for taking part in #TopFiveThursday its much appreciated and a HUGE thank you to all the bloggers who have taken part, without them this popular post wouldn’t have got off the ground. If you’ve missed any of the posts they can be found here….. #TopFiveThursday index.

All good things must come to an end and this is my last ever #TopFiveThursday post. I’m hoping to start a new feature early next year if I can come up with something original, (you might have a long wait 😂🙈).

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#TheRumour by Lesley Kara #BookReview @LesleyKara @TransworldBooks #MustReads2018

Today I’m thrilled to be sharing my review for The Rumour, the debut novel from Lesley Kara. This is definitely one of those books that’s going to be a huge hit with readers. You can read on for my thoughts but first the book description…………

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When single mum Joanna hears a rumour at the school gates, she never intends to pass it on. But one casual comment leads to another and now there’s no going back . . .

Rumour has it that a notorious child killer is living under a new identity, in their sleepy little town of Flinstead-on-Sea.

Sally McGowan was just ten years old when she stabbed little Robbie Harris to death forty-eight years ago – no photos of her exist since her release as a young woman.

So who is the supposedly reformed killer who now lives among them? How dangerous can one rumour become? And how far will Joanna go to protect her loved ones from harm, when she realises what it is she’s unleashed?

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OMG what a twisted and devious read The Rumour by Lesley Kara turned out to be, this maybe the author’s debut novel but it’s written like a pro.  There are so many novels that are written in the psychological thriller genre that I sometimes find they lack that element of surprise. If I read a psychological thriller I need to read one that stands out, a novel that leaves me thinking “what the frigging hell did I just read?” One I want everyone to read so I can discuss the devious plot, the characters, and the writing and The Rumour is one of those books! It’s a tale shrouded in suspicion, paranoia and accusations. 

The Rumour has an intriguing premise rumour has it that Sally McGowan a notorious child killer is living under a new identity, in the sleepy little town of Flinstead-on-Sea. one casual remark, one whispered confidence that’s all it takes and rumours spread like wild fire in the small insular town. As the reader you feel like you are one of the  towns people living there, amid the rumours and the speculation, which immediately makes you wary of every character you are introduced to,  which adds a high level of tension to the read.  Lesley Kara misdirects the reader at every possible turn, which was personally the reason I enjoyed this novel so much, I do love to be outwitted by an author. 

There’s something really disconcerting about this book I think it’s because you feel uncomfortable being privy to the rumours, you make assumptions and very much like the paranoid people of the town you find yourself putting each character under the microscope, looking for that clue will uncover infamous Sally McGowan. The sense of disgust and outrage from the towns people is evident, and it seems more so because this was a murder committed by a child.

As with many rumours, once whispered they take on a life of there own and things quickly began to escalate. Joanna tries to shy away from the gossip but she finds her self drawn into it, and on occasion, she’s even responsible for it. Joanne comes to realise she may have opened a can of worms, whilst placing her son in danger.  The author highlights the damage rumours and gossip can inflict on innocent individuals, but she also explores the privacy of someone in witness protection, and the feelings and emotions of someone hiding in plain sight. There’s an intensity within The Rumours pages,  it doesn’t come from a fast plot or dramatic scenes it comes from “the not knowing” the constant shifting of suspicion from one character to another.

The Rumour made for an intense and unfortunately a far to credible read, it’s one that will cause wide debate amongst its readers, I found myself contemplating the rights and wrongs of this complex story and whether someone who commits murder at a young age deserves anonymity. I’m really excited by Lesley Kara’s writing and considering this is her debut she has written an outstanding psychological thriller, that should stand proud on the book shelf next to the more established authors of this genre.  In case you haven’t already guessed I will definitely be recommending this novel to anyone  who love a psychological thriller that really does keep you guessing to the end. 

  • Print Length: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Transworld Digital (10 Dec. 2018)

Buying link:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Rumour-Lesley-Kara-ebook/dp/B07D313CT9/ 🇬🇧

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The Liar’s Wife by Samantha Hayes @samhayes @Bookouture #BlogBlitz #MustRead

Today I’m thrilled to be on the #BlogBlitz for The Liar’s Wife by Samantha Hayes. I have to say “blog blitz or no blog blitz”  I would still be raving about this book I absolutely loved this twisted tale. You can read on for my thoughts but first the book description……..

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Loving husband? Or total stranger?

When Ella wakes up in a hospital following a hit-and-run incident, she is scared and confused. Close to tears, her eyes fall on a get-well-soon card on the window sill and the nurse reassures her that her loving husband will be back soon…

But Ella has never been married.

In fact, she has lived alone her whole adult life; working hard, rarely socialising, quietly harbouring a terrible secret from her past.

Fear sweeps through Ella when she instantly recognises the man who enters the ward. He is not her husband, but she knows that she must do as he says and play the part of dutiful wife. What choice does she have? He was there the night of the fire, he knows her secret too…

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Oh my freaking god! What a fabulous and compelling  read The Liar’s Wife by Samantha Hayes turned out to be.  I must be honest when I read the book description I wasn’t convinced it would be an original read, as I’ve read numerous psychological thrillers where the protagonist wakes up from a coma with no memory,  but what makes this one so different is in the telling of a very twisted and disturbing tale. I must mention the author has surpassed herself and this is definitely the best book I’ve read by the author YET! As to Hayes imagination it’s twisted and very, very devious, but I absolutely loved this shocker of a book.  

When Ella wakes up in hospital following a hit-and-run incident, her loving and caring husband Jacob is there, eager for her to get well and move into their new home, there’s only one problem Ella has no recollection of marrying Jacob! Who is the man who claims to be married to Ella? And what hold does he have over Ella?  You immediately sense the tension between the the couple, there’s something off about their relationship that raises alarm bells, and I couldn’t wait to read on and find out what secrets this strange couple were hiding.  

Ella is a character I found mystifying,  a woman whose mantra is “home,work, sleep” keeps work colleagues at a arms length and appears to have no friends or family,  but Hayes deftly pulls back the layers of this complex character and you realise there maybe a very good reason for her odd behaviour. There are sporadic chapters that delve into Ella’s past and these were the ones I found the most disturbing, Hayes manages to inject a sense of foreboding into each chapter which made this read all the more compelling. As for Jacob, oh how I loathed him, this is a man with not one redeeming feature, he’s cruel, manipulative, he literally made my skin crawl, as for his backstory it’s a shocker and one that left me stunned, as to the why, well you are just going to have to read the book and find out for yourself.

If I had one small niggle it would be the fact that I thought Ella could have done more to save herself from a very dangerous situation  (vague I know but I would hate to give away spoilers) although the author does give a plausible reason for her behaviour so I was happy to push the boundaries of my own imagination. The Liar’s Wife has to be one of the most exciting psychological thrillers I’ve read this year, it incorporates all the elements I love in a read, mystery, suspense horror, and drama. Would I recommend this book? Definitely even if it means you have to beg, steal or borrow it (on second thoughts just buy it you won’t disappointed I promise).

This is going to come as no surprise but I’m giving  The Liar’s Wife the very prestigious Gold Star Award Rating. It’s given to a book I feel is particularly outstanding, a book that covers every aspect of what I look for in a read, an original  plot, great characters and a storyline that draws me in from the first page and kept me in its grips until I reached the very last page.

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  • Print Length: 361 pages
  • Publisher: Bookouture (22 Nov. 2018)

Buying links:   Amazon UK 🇬🇧         Amazon US🇺🇸

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Samantha Hayes grew up in Warwickshire, left school at sixteen, avoided university and took jobs ranging from private detective to barmaid to fruit picker and factory worker. She lived on a kibbutz, and spent time living in Australia and the USA, before finally becoming a crime-writer.

Her writing career began when she won a short story competition in 2003 and her ninth novel, THE REUNION, was published February 2018.  Her novels are family-based psychological thrillers, with the emphasis being on ‘real life fiction’. She focuses on current issues and sets out to make her readers ask, ‘What if this happened to me or my family?’ 

GOOD HOUSEKEEPING says “We’re big fans of Samantha Hayes. Her believable psychological thrillers are completely gripping…”

To find out more, visit her website www.samanthahayes.co.uk

Or connect with Samantha on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/SamanthaHayesAuthor

And she’s on Twitter @samhayes

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**Blog tour** #HushHush by Mel Sherratt @writermels @AvonBooksUk #BookReview

Today I’m thrilled to be on the blog tour for Hush Hush by Mel Sherratt. Hush Hush Is the first book in a exciting  new police procedural series featuring DS Grace Allendale. Before I share my review here’s the book description…..

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A killer is on the loose, attacking people in places they feel most safe: their workplaces, their homes. It’s up to DS Grace Allendale to stop the murders, and prove herself to her new team.

All clues lead to local crime family the Steeles, but that’s where things get complicated. Because the Steeles aren’t just any family, they’re Grace’s family. Two brothers and two sisters, connected by the violent father only Grace and her mother escaped.

To catch the killer, Grace will have to choose between her team and her blood. But who do you trust, when both sides are out to get you?

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I’ve long been a fan of Mel Sherratt’s writing, she is such a versatile writer, and proves it by writing books in a wide range of genres whether it be a psychological thriller, crime fiction or suspense you are always guaranteed a cracking read. When I picked up Hush Hush the first book in a new crime series featuring DS Grace Allendale I was hoping she would incorporate her trade mark “grit lit” into the story, something this author does so well. I’m thrilled to report I personally think this is the author’s best book to date and had so many aspects that made Hush Hush such a gripping read. 

DS Grace Allendale  has recently returned to her home town of Stoke-on-Trent. Grace’s early years were spent living with a violent and abusive father, which ended when Grace’ s mother left him. Now he’s been murdered and Grace newly promoted feels able to return to the town she grew up in. On her return she finds herself investigating a murder, which is complicated by the fact The Steele’s a family who are well known for their criminal activities also happen to be Grace’s half brothers and sisters. As the old proverb goes  “blood is thicker than water”, but there’s always an exception to any rule,  which is certainly the case for Grace and the Steele family, loyalty is tested and conflict arises.

Grace like many fictional detectives has baggage, she’s a loner, she’s reserved but Grace is also a strong character, the brutal and disturbing chapters that describe her abusive childhood help the reader to understand the complexities of the “grown up” Grace. Alongside the investigation and on going problems with her family, she also has difficulty fitting in with her new team, they still miss their old boss Allie Shenton (featured in previous books by the author) and they also have trust issues which is hardly surprising considering who she is, but all these issues add to the overall tension.

Hush Hush is a solid start to this new crime series, with misdirection, suspense, and a dysfunctional family at its core this is undoubtedly a not to be missed crime thriller. There’s a gritty realism within the author’s books that some crime thrillers can lack, I found the chapters that delved into Graces past very disturbing and heartbreaking to say the least, but Mel Sherratt isn’t afraid to tackle uncomfortable subjects head on and in doing so has written a crime thriller that is a worthy addition to any crime thriller lovers bookshelf. Highly recommended. 

  • Print Length: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Avon (18 Oct. 2018)

Buying link:   Amazon UK 🇬🇧

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My novels take you to the heart of the crime. I write police procedurals, psychological suspense and crime dramas – fiction with a punch. Shortlisted for the prestigious CWA (Crime Writer’s Association) Dagger in Library Award, my inspiration comes from authors such as Martina Cole, Lynda la Plante, Mandasue Heller and Elizabeth Haynes. 

Since 2012, I’ve sold over one million books. All eleven of my crime novels have been bestsellers, each one climbing into the Kindle UK top 10 and I’ve had several number ones. I’ve also had numerous Kindle All-star awards, for best read author and best titles.

My latest book, HUSH HUSH is the first in a new series featuring DS Grace Allendale. It’s a police procedural which finds Grace returning to her hometown of Stoke-on-Trent and coming face to face with her estranged family during her first murder investigation. It’s a story of ‘is blood thicker than water’ and being stuck between a rock and a hard place. And there’s a serial killer on the loose… 

SHE DID IT is a standalone psychological thriller, and my first novel set in London. I wanted to write about a character who was nice to everyone using one persona but out for revenge with another side to her that she tries to keep hidden away. The reader knows exactly what she is up to – but not the reason why. 

TAUNTING THE DEAD is my best selling book. It’s part police procedural/part psychological thriller. It was standalone for two years but I have now written two more books with Detective Sergeant Allie Shenton as the main character to create a trilogy. FOLLOW THE LEADER is book two and ONLY THE BRAVE is book three.

THE ESTATE SERIES is a mix of psychological suspense and family life with a sprinkling of grit and a dash of menace – where drama meets crime. There are four books, available individually or you can read the first three as a box set. 

DETECTIVE EDEN BERRISFORD works in a community intelligence team and helps to gather information and intel for investigations. THE GIRLS NEXT DOOR is the first book, followed by DON’T LOOK BEHIND YOU. 

WATCHING OVER YOU is another standalone psychological thriller. It’s dark in places, light in places, disturbing in places too – where obsession and friendship turn into murder.

I also write women’s fiction under the pen name of Marcie Steele. Stirred with Love, The Little Market Stall of Hope and Heartbreak and The Second Chance Shoe Shop are out now. 

I live in Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire, with my husband and terrier, Dexter (named after the TV serial killer) and make liberal use of my hometown as a backdrop for some of my books. You can find out more at my website http://www.melsherratt.co.uk or I’m on Twitter at @writermels 

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