**Weekly Wrap Up**

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Oh dear oh dear! I have only managed one book this week, the good news…. my neck is much better so I’m back to work, but the bad news is it means I have little time to read. So after much consideration I’ve come up with a solution which will hopefully give me more time to read, no im not retiring! I’ve decided I spend too much time browsing social media so for one day a week I’m not going to log in to Twitter, Facebook etc or share posts. I love to support fellow bloggers but some evenings I spend much of the evening sharing posts, RT, liking, and commenting. I’m  sure every blogger on the planet knows what I mean here, so I’m going to use this one day a week to use as reading time only. I’m sure I will be itching to turn on my IPad but I’m going to give it a go. I’m not scheduling any posts next Tuesday so if you see me pop up on social media I’ve failed miserably 😂

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what I read this week

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Book description

Babs had all the world ahead of her, until she got pregnant and the father did a runner. Salvation comes in the form of a man who’ll look after her. Or so she thinks. Stan Miller is really the devil in disguise… and over the next twenty years, Babs will have reason to regret she ever met him.

Starting in the 70s, BLOOD MOTHER is the second thrilling installment in the Flesh and Blood series, capturing a London that was very different from today but where some things still hold true: be careful what you wish for, and watch out for who you trust…

Book post I received this week

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Book description

She Loves Me
A woman’s body lies in the road. At first it looks like a tragic accident. But when Helen Grace arrives on the scene it’s clear she’s looking at a coldblooded killing. But why would anyone target a much loved wife and mother?

She Loves Me Not
Across town, a shopkeeper is killed while his customers are left unharmed. But what lies behind the killer’s choices?

She Loves Me
Who lives? Who dies? Who’s next? The clock is ticking.

She Loves Me Not
If Helen can’t solve this deadly puzzle then more blood will be shed. But any mistake and it might be her own …

This weeks ARC’s

Method 15/33 by Shannon Kirk

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Book description

Imagine a helpless, pregnant 16-year-old who’s just been yanked from the serenity of her home and shoved into a dirty van. Kidnapped…Alone…Terrified.

Now forget her…

Picture instead a pregnant, 16-year-old, manipulative prodigy. She is shoved into a dirty van and, from the first moment of her kidnapping, feels a calm desire for two things: to save her unborn child and to exact merciless revenge.

She is methodical—calculating— scientific in her plotting. A clinical sociopath? Leaving nothing to chance, secure in her timing and practice, she waits—for the perfect moment to strike. Method 15/33 is what happens when the victim is just as cold as her abductors.
The agents searching for a kidnapped girl have their own frustrations and desires wrapped into this chilling drama. In the twists of intersecting stories, one is left to ponder. Who is the victim? Who is the aggressor?

The Quiet Man by James Carol

I love this series and Faber & Faber granted my wish over on the dreaded NetGalley, so how could I refuse 🙈

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Book description
The hugely popular Jefferson Winter series returns in a gripping new thriller.

In Vancouver, the wife of a millionaire is dead following an explosion in her own home. Everyone thinks her husband is responsible, but former FBI profiler Jefferson Winter isn’t so sure.

The method is too perfect; the lack of mistakes, uncanny. He’s seen a series of carefully orchestrated murders – once a year, on exactly the same day, a woman dies in a situation just like this one.

That date is fast approaching and Winter knows another victim has been selected. Can he identify the quiet man before he strikes again?

Books I’ve bought

I haven’t bought any book this week, Shock! Horror! But I treated myself to a year’s subscription of True Crime Magazine. Going back a few years ago I only ever read true crime books, I like to think they give me insight in to why people do such terrible things, I’m not sure they answer all my questions by any means but I do find them an intriguing read.

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Last week on the book review café

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2017/03/06/blog-tourthe-good-daughter-by-alexandra-burt-extract-giveaway/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2017/03/07/the-promise-by-casey-kelleher-bookreview-caseykelleher-bookouture/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2017/03/08/blog-tour-dead-embers-by-matt-brolly-guestpost-matthewbrolly-fayerogersuk/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2017/03/09/evies-year-of-taking-chances-by-christie-barlow-review-christiejbarlow-bookouture/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2017/03/10/top-five-friday-with-the-book-review-cafe-thewowfactor/

Next week on the book review café

Rupture by Ragnar Jónasson – review

Never Let You Go by Chevy Stevens

#TopFiveThursday

Top Five Friday- Crime books stand-alones

**Blog tour** Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski

 

 

**Top Five Friday** With The Book Review Café #CrimeSeries

 

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Today I’m starting a brand new feature on my blog, I got the idea from the very popular #TopFiveThurday that I runI’ve decided to share my top five with you it will be book related and this week I’m choosing my best five top crime series 

Robert Bryndza

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I’m a huge fan of Robert Bryndza’s as anyone who follows my blog will know, I love the  DI Erika Forster series. I would urge everyone to read the series, fabulously written they make for a gripping read. What I like about Robert Bryndza’s writing is his ability to describe scenes with such conviction that you feel like your there along side Erika and her team. Each book is very original and personally found them to be a gripping read.

James Carol

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Again this is a series that I  would highly recommend I just adore Ex-FBI star profiler Jefferson Winter he  is no ordinary investigator. An eccentric genius and self-described geek with a passion for Mozart, he is haunted by the legacy of his notorious serial killer father…and not likely to admit this may be why he has such a phenomenal insight into the psychology that drives the criminals he hunts. I especially like the profiling element in this series and they make for a thrilling read.

Peter James

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Despite reaching the 13th book in the series I’m still a huge fan of Detective Roy Grace each book has been very different and the back story concerning his missing wife Sandy adds an extra layer of mystery to these well written crime thrillers.

Angela Marsons

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Strangely enough as I was compiling my list I realised Angela is the only lady in my top five crime series. In my opinion Angela Marsons goes from strength to strength with this series and despite reaching the fifth book they show no signs of getting tiresome or repetitive. As for Detective Kim Stone she’s one complex character with  many secrets which make her a fascinating character to read about.

Michael Wood

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The DCI Matilda Darke series is another of my favourites in my opinion Michael Wood’s writing goes from strength to strength with each book he writes. His books are getting much darker and definitely more disturbing as this series develops, and again Matilda Darke is another intriguing character.

Crime series to watch out for

I know I said top five but it’s my blog, my rules Remember?

Love You To Death by Caroline Mitchell deserves a special mention, but I couldn’t really include it as there is only one book in the series at the moment .The Detective Ruby Preston series is shaping up to be a cracker, this first book was dark and disturbing so of course I loved it.

Caroline Mitchell

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If you can think of any book themes I could feature, please feel free to leave them in the comments. If I use your theme I will happily link it to your blog. Would these be on your list? What crime series would you recommend? I hope you enjoyed this feature and your comments and feedback would be greatly appreciated.

 

**End Of The Year Wrap Up **

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Well I for one will be glad to see the back of 2016, for many reasons this hasn’t been the best year I’ve ever had. I’m going to embrace 2017 though and make it my year to take on new challenges.

Now I’m not one for New Years resolutions I always fail at the first hurdle (usually the 2nd of January 😂), but I am hoping to do a couple of things regarding my reading and my blog

  • Read some books from my TBR pile, which I’m desperate to get through
  • cut down on blog tours, as there’s too much pressure to read a book in a limited time
  • Only request one book at a time on NetGalley (this ones going to be hard)
  • if I’m not enjoying a book, I DON’T have to finish it, after all there are far too many amazing books out there to waste time on a duff one!
  • learn to say “no” it’s ok NOT to agree to read and review every book that comes my way (my new mantra😂)
  • Read more books by authors that are new to me, I’ve already got a couple lined up…..so watch this space!

Although I haven’t compiled a list of my top reads, here are just some of the books I really enjoyed this year and would highly recommend.

My top five most read posts

You can read the reviews here……

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2016/02/11/author-interview-behind-closed-doors-by-b-a-paris/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2016/02/08/behind-closed-doors-by-b-a-paris/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2016/01/26/tainted-love-by-kimberley-chambers/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2016/02/26/between-you-and-me-by-lisa-hall/

https://thebookreviewcafe.com/2016/06/10/the-sister-by-louise-jenson/

My First read of 2017

My first read of 2017 is Snatched From Home by Graham Smith, this is a book that has been sat on my TBR pile for a while, it’s also by an author I haven’t read yet which means I’ve already started on my goals for 2017

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Books I’ve read to watch out for in 2017
As the end of the year approaches I would like to say a huge thank you to each and everyone of you who follows my blog and wish you all a fabulous New Year and hope all your dreams come true.
Lorraine x x x

 

 

**Christmas With Bookouture** James Carol @bookouture @JamesCarolBooks

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Another day closer to Christmas 🎄 and personally I can’t wait, I’m one of those people who just love to give presents. If you are still frantically running around looking for gifts, sorry I can’t help you there! but I can encourage you to put your feet up, grab a mince pie and see what the awesome James Carol had to say when I put my Christmassy questions to him.

What is your favourite Christmas memory?

The first Christmas I spent with my wife has to be right up there at the top of the list. The weather was gorgeous so we spent most of the day at the stables. Mid-morning we went for a long ride on the horses, and because everyone else was indoors, it was like we had the whole world to ourselves. That was pretty magical.

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Where will you be spending Christmas?

At home with my wife and two children. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Do you have any Christmas traditions?

Like every family we’ve build up our own traditions over the years. Christmas morning starts with pancakes, presents and overexcited children. For the last couple of years we’ve staggered dinner – something I definitely recommend. We have our starter for lunch, the main meal mid-afternoon, and pudding in the evening while watching a film. This way you can eat more, but you don’t end up feeling overfull. A win/win if ever there was one.

What was your best ever Christmas present?

A Vic 20 computer. What you’ve got to remember is that this was back in the eighties when hardly anyone owned a home computer, so this was a really big deal. And yes, I was a computer geek. Guilty as charged.

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What was your worst ever Christmas present?

My gran used to get me and brothers these horrible jumpers each year. We eventually persuaded her to give us money to buy our own presents instead.

Favourite Christmas tipple?

Sparkling elderflower juice – I’m teetotal these days.

What are you hoping for this Christmas?

Two happy children!

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Have you got a Christmas message you would like to share with readers and bloggers?

I’m truly blessed to do a job I love, but I’m also aware that I wouldn’t be able to this without the support of readers and bloggers … so thank you! Other than that, I’d just like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas. I truly hope that 2017 is everything you want it to be.

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James Carol is the bestselling author of BROKEN DOLLS, the first in a series featuring former FBI profiler Jefferson Winter. The novel was released in the UK in January 2014 to rave reviews and reached number 1 on the Amazon fiction and thriller charts. In addition James is writing a series of eBooks set during Winter’s FBI days. PRESUMED GUILTY is the first of these. Under the pseudonym J.S. Carol, he has also written THE KILLING GAME.

James was born in Scotland and moved to England in the early-eighties. At various times he has worked as a guitarist, sound engineer, guitar tutor, journalist, and a horse riding instructor. 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.

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http://www.james-carol.com     Twitter: @JamesCarolBooks

J. S. Carol books published by Bookouture 

Book description

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Imagine you are having lunch at an exclusive restaurant, filled with Hollywood’s hottest stars.

And a masked gunman walks in and takes everyone hostage.
You must bargain for your life against a twisted individual who knows everything about you.
He also has a bomb set to detonate if his heart rate changes.
If he dies. You die.
You have four hours to stay alive.
What would you do?

‘THIS BOOK IS SIMPLY OUTSTANDING, and completely blew me away … one of the most tense novels I have read in a long time.’ The Book Review Café

‘A brilliantly compelling read. A nail-biting 5 stars from me.’ Jen Med’s Book Reviews (5*)

‘If any thriller deserves to be called unputdownable it’s this one.’For Winter Nights (5*)

‘Wow! Just, wow! … a fantastic, heart stopping, adrenaline rush of a read! … so many twists and turns that you really can’t imagine how the book will end … I was gripped until the very last page.’ Brew and Books Review (5*)

’Incredibly difficult to put down and it hurtles along at breakneck speed, to the point I almost felt travel sick! … a cracking thriller and if you are after a read that gets your heart pounding and makes your blood pressure rise look no further than this book.’ Bloomin’ Brilliant Books

Amazon UK 🇬🇧   Amazon US 🇺🇸

My thanks to James Carol for taking time out of his busy schedule to answer my Christmassy questions 🎄🎁

***Blog Tour*** The Killing Game by J. S Carol @jamescarolbooks #Review @bookouture

Book description

Imagine you are having lunch at an exclusive restaurant, filled with Hollywood’s hottest stars.
And a masked gunman walks in and takes everyone hostage.
You must bargain for your life against a twisted individual who knows everything about you.
He also has a bomb set to detonate if his heart rate changes.
If he dies. You die.
You have four hours to stay alive.
What would you do?

**A word of warning** you may want to clear your schedule before you start reading this book, because once you pick it up there’s no way you will be able to put it down until you reach the explosive ending. The Killing Game is a standalone thriller written under the pseudonym JS Carol, now anyone whose a huge crime thriller fan will know J.S Carol is in fact James Carol the number 1 best selling author of Broken Dolls, the first in a series of thrillers featuring former FBI profiler Jefferson Winter, who I just happen to be a huge fan of. So when I was asked to review an exclusive early copy of The Killing Game I literally jumped at the chance to read this standalone thriller. When I enjoy an authors writing I’m always concerned that a change in direction in their work will be a let down, BUT I’M ABSOLUTELY THRILLED TO SAY THIS BOOK IS SIMPLY OUTSTANDING, and completely blew me away.

The Killing Game is a ‘real-time’ adrenaline fuelled thriller, and covers events over a four hour period. When a masked, armed bomber walks into Alfie’s restaurant, the most exclusive spot in Hollywood, the A-listers within find themselves caught up in a terrifying siege, one in which not everyone will live through, as lives are threatened the A-listers soon realise they are up against against an individual who is not afraid to kill to get what he wants. That’s all I’m going to say about the plot as I want readers to enjoy every heart pumping page of this masterfully plotted action thriller as much as I did.

From the off this has to be one of the most tense novels I have read in a long time, the pace is relentless. The chapters are delivered in half hour slots which add a sense of urgency to the plot as the FBI attempt to bring the hostage situation to a safe conclusion. The Killing Game feels like “time bomb” ticking you are constantly waiting for the next explosion, which certainly added to my own anxiety and trepidation as I turned the pages, in fact I found my heart pounding constantly as I read this book. The author describes the scene and atmosphere of the hostages situation so vividly I felt like I was there living their nightmare, the anxiety and fear the victims felt were tangible throughout.

There are numerous characters in The Killing Game some of them less likeable than others, but they all have a part to play, the A listers being held hostage are an interesting bunch and the gravity of their situation seemed very real, their fear and overwhelming urge “to get out alive” added to my own heart racing tenfold. Adding to the suspense is the Unknown identity of the armed bomber and their motives, believe me when I say the bomber is one of most complex, cold and calculated killers I have ever come across. As he plays chilling games with his hostages, I’m sure I was having palpitations as my fear and anxiety for the hostages safety grew the further on I read, as the bomber is so unpredictable you are never quite sure who his next victim is going to be or what he’s going to do next, which added a whole new level of suspense to the story. J.S Carol maintains the pace throughout, and each chapter leaves you wondering “what the hell can happen next?” you hardly get time to catch your breath before the author hits you with his next twist. This is certainly an adrenaline fuelled read, I’m convinced my heart never stopped racing as I read this book.

The Killing Game is a highly addictive read, in fact I felt I needed therapy after finishing it, as this book left me with a hell of a book hangover! I couldn’t bear to put it down. In my humble opinion The Killing Games has the hallmarks of a Hollywood blockbuster, with a highly original plot, action a plenty, and bucketfuls of suspense this is the perfect action thriller novel. If you only read one book this year make sure it’s The Killing Game.

I won’t be giving The Killing Games 5 stars, but I will be giving it the very prestigious GOLD STAR AWARD. I give this award to a book I feel covers every aspect of what I look for in a good read, fantastic plot, great characters and a storyline that drew me in from the first page and kept me in its grip until I reached the very last page.

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I must give a mention to publishers Bookouture who I can honestly say are my favourite publishers at the moment they go from strength to strength. Their authors (who just happen to be some of my favourites) are producing such a high standard of crime and thriller books I might have to adjust my top 10 books at the end of the year to at least 15 🙈and as for the covers they are simply amazing don’t you think?

So a HUGE thank you to Kim Nash and Bookouture for giving me the opportunity to read and review so many fabulous books x

Amazon U.K.
James Carol is the bestselling author of BROKEN DOLLS, the first in a series featuring former FBI profiler Jefferson Winter. The novel was released in the UK in January 2014 to rave reviews and reached number 1 on the Amazon fiction and thriller charts. In addition James is writing a series of eBooks set during Winter’s FBI days. PRESUMED GUILTY is the first of these. Under the pseudonym J.S. Carol, he has also written THE KILLING GAME.

 

Website     Goodreads     Bookouture     Facebook     Twitter: @jamescarolbooks

 

 

Open Your Eyes by James Carol #Review

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Book description

Jefferson Winter returns in a gripping ebook story from bestselling author James Carol.

Jefferson Winter is at the beginning of his FBI career. He’s young and unpredictable, but he has a gift – he can understand the mind of a murderer like no one else.

Winter is in Las Vegas with Yoko Tanaka, a tough agent with the unenviable task of showing him the ropes. The bodies of three young women have been found and each of them is missing a limb.

Winter is in Las Vegas with Yoko Tanaka, a tough agent with the unenviable task of showing him the ropes. The bodies of three young women have been found and each of them is missing a limb.

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I’m a huge fan of James Carol and the Jefferson Winter’s series so when I saw Open Your Eyes was available as an ARC I just had to grab myself a copy, even though it was a novella which if I’m honest I’m not a big fan of, as they often feel rushed or lack the depth both in the characters and the plot. Fortunately this wasn’t the case in fact for such a short book it packed a punch, which made for a taut read.

It was interesting to see how Jefferson Winter has evolved from an eager and unpredictable young FBI agent to the polished and guarded Detective we meet in the series. In Open Your Eyes Winter’s hasn’t yet grown into his personality he’s glib, abrasive and he’s definitely not a team player or predictable. Fellow agent and mentor Yoko has her work cut out trying to keep Winter’s in line throughout the investigation. I found their relationship a very interesting one as sometimes it felt like Jefferson was the teacher, where as Yoko helps him to hone his less endearing personality traits, dialogue between the pair is often full of humour which makes their relationship appear more authentic.

The plot is delivered in true James Carol style, three women murdered each of them missing a limb, it’s up to Yoko and Winter’s to find the killer before he strikes again. Considering this is a sort story it felt longer than 120 pages as it didn’t feel rushed, the reader learns enough about a younger Winter, and his relationship with Yoko to add a new dimension to his character I felt like I knew him a lot better after reading this novella. Open Your Eyes is a MUST read for fans of the Jefferson Winter series it’s fairly tense and moves along at a fair pace, but what I enjoyed the most was learning more about one of my favourite detectives in the crime genre. I shall certainly be looking forward to reading The Quiet Man a full length novel, unfortunately for lovers of Jefferson Winter me included it isn’t  published until May 2017.

5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️out of 5

Print Length: 120 pages

Publisher: Faber & Faber (6 Oct. 2016)

Amazon UK

**My A-Z Books Tag**

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I’ve seen numerous book bloggers use My A-Z Books tag, so I figured I’d take part as well!

Author you’ve read the most books from:

It’s got to be Kimberley chambers I’ve read every book she’s written so if my memory serves me correct that’s 12 books, Peter James is a close second I’ve read everyone of the Dead series featuring Roy Grace so that’s 11 books plus I have his new one Love You Dead to read.

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Best Sequel Ever:

Hmmm this is a difficult one but it’s got to be Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator by Roald Dahl, I loved Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, and I use to read both books to my son when he was growing up.

Currently reading:

The Safe Word by Karen Long, as I’m on the blog tour for it in June

Drink of choice while reading:

More often than not coffee and my husband Andy makes a mean caramel sticky toffee coffee which I’m addicted to, who needs Starbucks?, or if I’m pushing the boat out I might have a Pepsi Max….I’m so rock and roll 😂

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E-reader or physical book:

I love both an E-reader is convenient for carrying around and it’s great to get ARCs delivered to your device straightaway, but you can’t beat the smell and feel of a real book (and no I don’t crack the spines!)

Fictional character you probably would have actually dated in high school:

I dated my husband in high school, and we’re still together 36 years later, so I wouldn’t have wanted to date anyone else 💞💕💞💕

Glad you gave this book a chance:

Hot House Flower by Lucinda Riley, as I usually crime/psychological thrillers this book was right out of my comfort zone but I loved it and when I finished it I bought all her books. I love how her books are written and they go between the past and present day, and she weaves such an intricate plot

Hidden Gem book:

Hmmm this is a hard one I would probably say Go Ask Alice by Anon, I read it at school (OMG30 years + ago), it’s about a young girl who starts taking drugs and it’s very sad and has always stuck with me

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Important moment in your reading life:

It has to be when I started blogging, when I started I expected a few people to look at my reviews, but it has gone from strength to strength, and I’m still amazed when publishers/authors get in touch with me, asking me if I would like to review their book. I’ve also come across lots of fellow book bloggers who are a very friendly bunch and feel like friends.

Just finished:

Chosen Child by Linda Huber, which I really enjoyed.

Kind of book you won’t read

I’m not a fan of erotica although I did read 50 Shades, and then wondered what all the fuss was about.

Longest book you’ve ever read:

The Storm Sister by Lucinda Riley at 702, but I get so wrapped up in her books it seems much less

Major book hangover:

The Twighlight series by Stephenie Meyer, I read the books back to back and felt bereft when I finished them

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Number of bookcases you own:

NONE… Yes you read that right, at the moment my books are all over the place, in cupboards, the spare bedroom, on my coffee table, but I’m hoping to rectify that soon and get a bookcase, so I can have all my books in one place.

One book you’ve read multiple times:

I don’t reread books as there are so many books I want to read, and there’s not enough time to read them, let alone go back and read a book I’ve read

Preferred place to read:

In my lounge sat in my recliner, I can’t read in bed as I can never get comfy

Quote that inspired you/ Gives you all the feels from a book you’ve read:

“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies, said Jojen. The man who never reads lives only one.”

― George R.R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons

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Reading regret:

Like a lot of book bloggers and readers it’s got to be spending time reading books that I didn’t enjoy when I could have been reading a book I loved would be a reading regret, and also not having enough time to read the books I want to read.

Series you started and need to finish:

I really can’t think of a series I need to finish, as if I love a book enough to read a series then I tend to binge read the whole series

Three of your all time favourite books:

This is a hard question! I’ve loved so many books that it’s impossible to choose three so I’m afraid I’ll have to skip this question!

Unapologetic fangirl for:

Ohhhh another hard one but I would have to say Kimberley Chambers I absolutely love her books, she has such a unique way of writing that makes her characters come to life, her books are very entertaining and I always learn a few new swear words from them 😂😂

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Very excited for this release more than all others:

I’m a huge fan of James Carol and the thrillers featuring former FBI profiler Jefferson Winter, he’s written a standalone thriller under the pseudonym JS Carol for one of my favourite publishers Bookouture . The first of these is Tick Tick Boom, which is being published in July 2016, so I’m really looking forward to reading it

Worst bookish habit:

Spending to much time reading, when I should be doing something else

X marks the spot- start on the top left of your bookshelf and pick the 27th book:

Criminal Shadows: Inside the Mind of the Serial Killer Paperback – by David Canter

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Your latest purchase:

Love You Dead by Peter James
Willow Walk by SJI Holliday
Outside Looking In by Michael Wood
Anything For Her by Jack Jordan

Zzzzz Snatcher book (the book that kept you up way too late):

The Night Stalker by Robert Bryndza

I hope you have enjoyed reading my A-Z of books tag and please feel free to leave me a book related comment