Tag Archives: Book Series

The Missing Girls by Carol Wyer #BookReview @carolewyer @Bookouture

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Book description

One girl found dead. Another girl gone…

Long shadows danced on the tin walls. Inside the trunk lay Carrie Miller, wrapped in plastic, arms folded across her ribcage, lips sealed tight forever…

When, a girl’s body is found at a Midlands storage unit, it is too decomposed for Detective Robyn Carter to read the signs left by the killer.

No one knows the woman in blue who rented the unit; her hire van can’t be traced. But as the leads run dry another body is uncovered. This time the killer’s distinctive mark is plain to see, and matching scratches on the first victim’s skeleton make Robyn suspect she’s searching for a serial killer.

As Robyn closes in on the killer’s shocking hunting ground, another girl goes missing, and this time it’s someone close to her own heart.

Robyn can’t lose another loved one. Can she find the sickest individual she has ever faced, before it’s too late?

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My review

I lost my reading mojo this week and picked up two books unfortunately neither of them gripped me and I put them to one side. So as I loved the previous two books in the Detective Robyn Carter series I decided to read The Missing Girls. Although I wasn’t even sure if Carol Wyer could help me find my missing mojo (huge apologies to the author for doubting her) but OMG after reading one very disturbing and chilling chapter I was hooked, so after I kicking myself a few times for not reading this book before now I literally dived in and I wouldn’t have put The Missing Girls down for love or money.

I’m not going to go to rehash the plot details as all you need to know is in the book description, but I will say it’s a hell of a read and a gripping one to boot.
Carol Wyer writes in such away you feel you are there amid the investigation from the pathologist investigation where you learn more about the forensics to DI Robyn Carter and her team piecing the pieces of an intricate puzzle together, you can’t but help but look for clues alongside the team. By becoming so involved in the plot I felt a sense of urgency to find the answers before another girl went missing.

DI Robyn Carter is part of the reason I love this series so much, unlike many fictionally Detectives she’s relatively normal and not your typical stereotype she’s not brash and reckless, doesn’t appear to personality problems, or constantly have issues with her superiors, but all the same she’s an intriguing character. Very much like a real life investigation The Missing Girls is fast paced, with plenty to keep the reader engaged. The chapters told from The Missing Girls sent shivers down my spine, there is a constant undertone of foreboding that radiates from these pages, you sense their fear, distress and confusion as their captor toils with them.

Carol Wyers writing goes from strength to strength as does the DI Robyn Carter series. So many crime book series start off so well, but loose there way after the first couple of books, but that’s not the case here in fact each book in this series leaves you desperate for more, especially this one but I’m not going to say why and spoil the read for others. The Missing Girls is a crime thriller that will keep you reading long into the night, as I pretty much found I just had to read “one my chapter” and a dozen chapters later I was still reading. It sounds cliched but this is undoubtedly the best book in the series yet, and a crime book/series I would highly recommend.

Buying links:  Amazon UK 🇬🇧     Amazon US 🇺🇸

Print Length: 392 pages

Publisher: Bookouture (14 Sept. 2017)

 

Blood Daughter by Dreda Say Mitchell #BookReview @DredaMitchell @HodderBooks

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Book description

BLOOD DAUGHTER sees the Miller sisters’ loyalties put to the ultimate test in a gripping thriller, perfect for fans of Kimberley Chambers and Mandasue Heller.

They say blood is thicker than water.

That’s not going to stop it being spilled.

Life hasn’t been easy for the Miller family. Finally, mum Babs has had one bit of luck. She plans to share the profits with her daughters. She thought they’d be pleased…
But money always causes trouble, especially when it’s desperately needed. Jen wants to make a better life for her kids. Tiff owes a lot of bad men a lot of money. And Dee is worried that her husband is getting back into the criminal life.

As the sisters fall out, a gold bullion heist brings more opportunities – and many more dangers. None of them are giving up without a fight…

IMG_2357I know when I pick up a book by Dreda Say Mitchell I’m in for a real treat, Blood Daughter takes the reader on a journey through the seedier side of life, the criminal underworld, dysfunctional families, a world where violence is an every day occurrence. Although you could probably read this book as a standalone I would recommend you read the first two books in the series first, Blood Sister and Blood Mother, not only because it’s such a fabulous series but there’s a hell of a back story to the Miller family.

In many ways the characters are the typical stereotypes I have come to expect in this type of crime book, but the author has expertly created an array of characters with big personalities that make them unforgettable. I thought things couldn’t get any worse for the miller’s but boy was I wrong. Mum Bab’s and daughters Dee, Jen and Tiff have all had their fair share of life throwing them a duff hand, things appear to be on the up when Bab’s comes into some money and tells her daughters she’s going to share it with them, you would think all their problems would be over, but hell no, as the saying goes “money is the root of all evil” and it’s not long before the once close family are at war.

Blood Daughter won’t be to everyone’s taste as it’s punctuated with choice language, but it’s very much in keeping with the characters, some of the subjects touched on may make some readers feel uncomfortable, prostitution, violence and debt are just a few that come to mind. In the author’s defence Blood Daughters is a very gritty and entertaining read and if like me you enjoy what I personally call “grit lit” authentic characters, settings and story lines that depict the shadier side of life, then I would highly recommend this book.

Buying links:   Amazon UK 🇬🇧        Amazon US 🇬🇧

Print Length: 448 pages

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton (24 Aug. 2017)

**Blog Tour** Dead To Me by Stephen Edger @StephenEdger @Bookouture 

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Today I’m thrilled to be one of the two stops on the Dead To Me by Stephen Edger blog tour, you can read my partner in crime (excuse the rubbish pun) Amy’s review over at http://novelgossip.com. Stephen Edger has been on my #ToRead authors for a while now so when I was asked to take part in the blog tour for Dead To Me I literally jumped at the chance.

Dead To Me is published by one of my favourite publishers on the planet Bookouture and they never fail to amaze me with their fabulous books, authors and covers and Dead To Me is a worthy addition to the Bookouture family along with Stephen Edger of course! You don’t even have to wait to get a copy of this thrilling read as it’s already been published, but before you pop over to Amazon and click the “buy” button you may like to read my review first or maybe not 😂

Book description

How do you catch a killer who knows your every move?

The woman lay flat on the table, her face to one side, her wrists bound with thick tape. Deep scratches marked the wood beneath her fingers, now resting cold and still…

When a woman’s body is found in an abandoned bar near the Southampton docks, Detective Kate Matthews is called in to lead the investigation. She must solve this case to prove she is coping with the death of a close colleague.

Kate knows a pile of ripped up newspaper cuttings discovered at the victim’s house must be a piece of the puzzle, but her team keep hitting dead-ends… Until she finds a disturbing clue that convinces her of three things: The murder is linked to the body of a man found hanging in a warehouse, she is on the hunt for a calculated serial killer, and the killer is watching her every move.

Kate realises there will be another victim soon, and that her own life is in grave danger, but no one else believes her theory. Can she find and stop the most twisted killer of her career, before another life is lost?

An absolutely NAIL-BITING thriller that will keep you guessing to the very last page. Perfect for fans of Robert Dugoni, James Patterson and MJ Arlidge.

 

IMG_2357Dead To Me  is the first book in a new crime series featuring Detective Kate Matthews, I throughly enjoyed reading this book although for some reason I did expect it to be darker and possibly far more gruesome. I’m not sure if that’s because most of the books I read from Bookouture veer towards the darker side of crime, but although there were a couple of fairly grim scenes there werent any truly shocking scenes, so if you dislike to much “gruesome” in your crime thrillers I may have found just the book for you. Dead To Me has a compelling plot, with plenty of twists and turns, a MUST in a crime book.

When a torso turns up in a burned down warehouse Detective Kate Matthews is assigned the case, but it’s not long before she releases someone is watching her and taunting her, invading both her home and personal life, what follows is a suspense filled read. Stephen Edger has written a well plotted story that’s keeps the reader guessing right up until the last couple of “heart in your mouth” chapters. The author does a brilliant job in keeping the Serial Killers identity hidden, I thought I had the killer “sussed” about halfway through, but I got it spectacularly wrong I’m glad to say, I love it when an author misdirects you at every turn as it helps to maintain the tension.

Detective Kate Matthews now here’s an interesting but very flawed character, I’m sure many readers will struggle to “gel” with her, to be fair she doesn’t have very many likeable qualities, here’s a woman who abandoned her child to put her career first, although on the plus side she’s driven, feisty and reckless, that said I’m intrigued to see how Kate will develop as the series progresses. I think the author has taken a bold step in producing a character that has so many flaws, but it works as Kate’s a character I certainly won’t forget in a hurry, the author proves to me you don’t have to feel a measure of affinity towards a character to still enjoy a book.

Dead To Me is a promising start to a new crime series, it certainly made for an exciting and intensely twisted read. I’m sure crime thriller lovers who don’t like their books to be too dark or gruesome will really enjoy this one. Personally I found it a refreshing change to read a crime thriller that didn’t add gruesome scenes just for the shock value. I think the author has written a book that promises to be the first in a great crime series and I would happily pick up the next book in the series by the very talented Stephen Edger.

Buying links:   Amazon UK 🇬🇧        Amazon US 🇺🇸

Print Length: 353 pages

Publisher: Bookouture (17 Aug. 2017)

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Stephen Edger is a British crime writer, who has been writing since 2010. In that time he has written and published eleven novels, and five short stories. He writes mysteries and thrillers focused on crime.

Stephen was born in the north-east of England, grew up in London, but has lived in Southampton since attending university in the year 2000. Stephen works in the financial industry, and uses his insider knowledge to create the plots of his books. He also has a law degree, which gives him a good understanding of the inner workings of the UK justice system.

Stephen is married, and has two children, and two dogs. He is passionate about reading and writing, and cites Simon Kernick and John Grisham as major influences on his writing style.

My thanks to Kim and Noelle over at Bookouture for my ARC, and allowing me to be part of this fabulous blog tour. 

You can follow the rest of the tour and catch up on other bloggers reviews….

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Pay The Penance by Rob Ashman #BookReview @RobAshmanAuthor @Bloodhoundbook

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Book description

A stunning serial killer thriller from The Mechanic Trilogy
Murder. Corruption. Revenge.
Lucas has been tracking a killer, known as Mechanic, when his world is shattered. Unable to continue his hunt for the murderer he is forced to rely on his friend and colleague Dick Harper. But Harper has a knack for not playing by the rules. And he doesn’t disappoint.

Meanwhile Detective Moran is trying to piece her life back together. The police stumble upon new evidence without grasping its significance and she must divert the investigation if she is to survive.
The police are closer to Mechanic than they realise which puts Moran right in the firing line.

Mechanic, as usual, has other plans and the consequences for Lucas and Harper are terrifying…
Pay The Penance can be read as a gripping stand alone or as part of the thrilling Mechanic Trilogy

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Hallelujah The Mechanic is back! this is one serial killer I can’t get enough of, and once again author Rob Ashman’s imagination runs riot, making the third book in the Mechanic series a heart thumping read. I’ve been eagerly waiting for Pay The Penance the last book in the Mechanic series to be published, I was so desperate to read this book I got up extra early to download it, and then made the fatal mistake of reading the opening chapter, and I was well and truly hooked, if work hadn’t got in the way I would have read it in one sitting and that’s a fact! As I mentioned this is the third book in the series and it’s definitely a series where you need to read the trilogy to truly appreciate them, fully as the previous books leading up to Pay The Penance very much lay the foundations to this final and throughly gripping instalment.

Rob Ashman has created some incredible characters, Lucas and his side kick Harper are back along with Moran , and what a combination they make. Author Rob Ashman hasn’t made life easy for poor old Lucas, he’s hit rock bottom, but there’s one thing that’s keeping him going, he wants vengeance for all the terrible things the Mechanic has done, and nothing’s going to get in his way. I just love Lucas and Harper the humour and banter between the pair add some light relief to this dark read. They aren’t your typical heroes by any means, but they are refreshingly original, and I found myself cheering them on as the mechanic plays a deadly game of “cat and mouse with our unlikely heroes.

I have to mention the Mechanic what a complex and intriguing character the author has created, their a monster of the worse kind, but as in previous books in this series I did find I had some empathy for this very troubled soul as more of their past was revealed, at times I almost felt sorry for them, but this never lasted long, I much prefer a serial killer to be unlikable, but that’s the great thing about Rob Ashman’s writing he is able to evoke conflicting emotions and feelings towards his characters.

Pay The Penance made for another intense and a throughly enthralling read, I really couldn’t turn the pages on my kindle fast enough! Taut with tension the author manages to maintain the suspense to the last heart stopping chapter. Although I’m sorry this is the last book in the Mechanic series, I thought Rob Ashman bought the series to a very satisfying and fitting conclusion, at this point I was holding my breath, as the suspense reached fever pitch. This has really been a fantastic series, each book has made for an entertaining and utterly gripping read, without a doubt ALL three books in the series will be in my top reads of 2017 list.

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Buying links:    Amazon UK 🇬🇧     Amazon US 🇺🇸

 Print Length: 314 pages

Publisher: Bloodhound Books (8 Aug. 2017)

 

#GuestPost by David Videcette @DavidVidecette

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Today I’m thrilled to have David Videcette author of the highly gripping crime thrillers, The Theseus Paradox and The Detriment appear on the book review café, both books are based on true events, and are books I would highly recommend if you are looking for a highly original crime thriller

David Videcette has very kindly written a special guest post for me to share with you all, and what an intriguing post it is too. So without further ado…….

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CRIME FICTION: SHOW ME THE BODIES

I’ve been in the book writing world for two years now, having come from life as a detective. I really enjoy it and I’ve met some truly fantastic people. But, standing in a room with readers, book bloggers, other authors and publishers, as I often do, I always have the same uneasy question buzzing around in my head: Why are all these people obsessed with murder and killing?

When you pick up pretty much any crime fiction novel, it’s full of death and murder. Crime fiction authors are obsessed with body count – the more cadavers and the more gruesome the death, the better.

Watch the average detective series on TV or pick up one of the hottest new paperbacks and you’d be forgiven for thinking that slaughtered corpses of murder victims were as numerous as pigeons in Trafalgar Square.
I have often wondered whether we should just rename it murder fiction. Why bother with the ‘crime’ prefix at all?

Murder capital of the UK?
 

One of my old favourites is the television series, ‘Midsomer Murders,’ based on Caroline Graham’s novels. Tally up the show’s total body count and it’s currently running at around 265. That’s almost four-and-a-half murders per episode in one tiny, rural area. And that’s not even including the twelve accidental deaths, eleven suicides and eight deaths from natural causes…

I write Crime thrillers based on truth events, so it got me thinking – do we ever stop to wonder how common these incidents are in real life? Or do we simply want to be entertained in a fantasy world of murder fiction?
 
Let’s start with some basics. (I’ll use the UK crime figures from 2015 for this bit.)

Murder is extremely rare – there were six and a half million crimes recorded in the UK in 2015 – just 573 of those were murders; that’s less than 0.01% of the overall total. 

If we delve further into those figures, we find that crime fiction not only over-represents murder, it also blurs the reality of who the victims are and how they are killed.

Who gets it?


In real life, most murder victims are men (64%) – and 2015 was an unusual year for male homicides, they normally make up nearly 70% of a year’s overall total. Men are mostly either stabbed or beaten to death. They are as likely to be killed by a stranger, as they are to be killed by someone they know. I think this underscores how lots of men end up dead. It’s mainly spontaneous violence by other men that kills them. Unplanned, messy, screaming, beating-each-other-up violence. In 2015, just five men were shot dead in the UK.

Women always make up the minority of homicide victims. They represent around 30% of the victims normally, but in 2015, this figure was running slightly higher at 36%. And if you’re a woman, again, in real life, the most common form of murder is to be stabbed. You are very unlikely to be beaten to death, unlike your male counterparts. Asphyxiation also features highly amongst female murder victims, perhaps demonstrating that many women are most likely to be killed by their partners in fits of rage following years of domestic abuse.
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So crime fiction tends to major on women being the victims, which is far from the truth – as you can see from the figures. A juicy murder yarn also tends to depict women being killed by strangers. But in real life this is very unlikely – just twelve of the 186 victims that year were killed by strangers. Just 6.5% of all female murders are by strangers, a tiny proportion.

When we look at crime fiction books published over recent years, many of the most high-profile releases were big on serial killings perpetrated by one individual, but how many of these feature in the year’s crime stats? None. You’d have to go backwards some way to find statistics on any real life serial killers – male or female.

And here we find another difference between real life and ‘murder fiction’. The terms serial killer and mass murderer are often used interchangeably in fiction, but in real life, they are two distinct, separate things.

Mass murder is when the killing of more than one person takes place at the same time, with little or no passage of time between the killings. This might be an act of terrorism or people killing their own family all in one place.

A serial killer is someone who repeatedly kills, normally three or more people, and there is space between the killings. The space might be several hours, days, months or years, but it is often multi-site, rather than all in one place – and the case will often hinge on premeditation, rather than a split-second act in a mist of rage.

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If we compare our 2015 real life stats with fictional events in Midsomer during 2015, sadly there were only four episodes of the show made that year. But don’t let that disappoint you, because in just those four episodes, we saw 12 locals strangled, 13 poisoned, 16 drowned – including one in a vat of soup – four killed by bow and arrow attack, and six decapitated. That’s 52 gruesome deaths in four episodes!

So, why the obsession with death and killing in crime fiction? Why is it that screenwriters and authors keep churning out book-after-book that doesn’t represent what is actually happening in real life? 

Maybe we see murder as the ultimate crime? It does after all have the most serious penalties. Perhaps as readers, we want to escape, to explore our darkest fears in a safe and secure environment?

Supply and demand

Perhaps it is easier to ask: Who creates the market for killing, in the world of crime fiction? Is it what the reader wants, or is it that there is nothing else on offer?

One thing I’ve found since being in the book business, is that it is dominated by women. The agents are mainly women, the editors are mainly women, the publishers are mainly women and the book buyers and bloggers are mainly women. And as authors, many of us are bound to write what our agents and publishers tell us that they believe the market wants.

As any large publisher will tell you, as many told me – ‘Most of our readers are middle-aged women who are married with children. Remember that’s who you’re writing books for.’

Industry figures back this up, showing that around 70 to 80 per cent of crime fiction readers are women, and 80 per cent of those signing up for writing workshops to become aspiring crime writers are also women.

So why is it that mainly middle-aged women with children who love to read and write about murder and serial killers – the blood thirstier the better?
 
Various people have hypothesised that women, many of whom see themselves as vulnerable, want to explore the darkest depths of the human mind, and that crime fiction is a metaphor through which they see themselves.

So, how do we explain the rise in novels which depict women as the killers themselves? And how likely is that?

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Women do kill, of course, but again it’s rare. Female serial killers are even rarer. There are currently just three women in the UK who have been given life imprisonment without parole for this crime.

When women do kill, it’s mostly domestic-related killing of partners.

Women adore murder


Germaine Greer once wrote that, ‘Women have very little idea how much men hate them.’ Although I do not agree with her, I do wonder if this rise in the popularity of the female killer in crime fiction, is down to women seeing the world as male dominated and wanting to explore ways of killing the men that they hate and that they believe hate them – metaphorically speaking? Or are there just a whole bunch of women who do secretly hate men and want to kill as many of them as possible?

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I don’t have the answers. But you can see why I worry at these book events, surrounded by these women, hungry for blood…

Perhaps for both women and men, crime fiction gives us all an outlet for our hidden sides; the vindictive avengers within us who hold angry and bitter grudges against those who’ve wronged us in the past.

In real life, murder is rare, most often perpetrated by a partner and over in an instant. But because of its rarity and shock factor – murder in fiction is a simple hook to cling to. In other words, it’s an ‘easy sell’.

But when I look at some of the most harrowing crimes I’ve investigated as a detective in real life, murder has featured very little. Where are the books about getting into the depraved mind of a serial male rapist who drugs and rapes other men?

How many books have you read that look at the effects of serious fraud perpetrated on a female victim who then has to turn to a haunting and tragic life of prostitution to survive? How many books look at drug addiction and what twisted and degenerate acts mothers will do in front of their children, just to be sure of their next fix. 

But these would be far harder to write, and far harder to sell.

So maybe we should just stick with the slaughter.

After all… everybody loves a good body count?

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IMG_2187David Videcette is a former Scotland Yard investigator with twenty years’ policing experience, including counter-terror operations and organised crime.

He is the author of detective thrillers The Theseus Paradox and The Detriment. Based on true events, David’s books are perfect for readers who like their crime fiction as close to real crime as it gets.

He loves to interact with fans of all crime fiction genres. Readers can chat to him on FacebookTwitter or Instagram. For the chance to win a signed copy of David’s latest thriller, pop in your Email address here

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My thanks to David Videcette for the fabulous guest post and the images shown on this post.

**Blog Tour** Unforgivable by Mike Thomas #Review & #GuestPost @ItDaFiveOh @BonnierZaffre

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Today I’m thrilled to be the next stop on the Unforgivable by Mike Thomas blog tour. Not only do I get to share my review for this thrilling book, but I also have a fabulous guest post from the author about the places that inspired the locations in Unforgivable. Interestingly enough my son and his wife had their wedding photographs taken in Roath Park one of the settings the author mentions.

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My Cardiff: the places that inspired locations in ‘Unforgivable’

It’s safe to say I know Cardiff like the back of my hand.
The nice regions and the dodgy areas, the best route to take to avoid rush hour traffic, the lanes and parks and alleys where gangs from rival estates used to meet for a rumble on a Friday night (Birdies Lane, if you must know). Where you can get stolen electrical equipment for a very low price. Where you can get a good kicking just for walking into the wrong pub.

I worked the city for twenty years, first as a uniformed officer then with stints on CID before moving on to drugs teams and other plain clothes work where I’d follow heroin dealers to Bristol and not see my own bed for three days. Finally – when my first novel was published and I knew I was on my way out of The Job and the hierarchy didn’t really know what to do with me – I found myself in the Operations Room working as an – haha – Intelligence Officer.

If you want a guided tour – warts and all – of the Welsh capital, I’m your man. And that knowledge was one of the reasons I decided to set the MacReady novels in the city. Also, London has its fair share of fictional cops and I felt Cardiff, bar a few novels, wasn’t really getting a look in. I wanted to redress the balance a little.
So what are the locations that appear in ‘Unforgivable’?

St. David’s – huge, sprawling and full of Shiny Things You Will Want, this shopping centre – or mall, if you must – has grown and been added to and modified extensively over the decades, and has become a colossal ode to commerce. Everything you want – and quite a lot you don’t – can be found under its roofs, and its food court is where things take a sudden, nasty turn in the book. I used to work here as a late-teenager at John Menzies (remember those stores?) where I would lump myself behind the counter of the music section, rolling my eyes at customers’ terrible purchases – Duran Duran, heaven forfend! – and making sure Depeche Mode’s output was at the forefront of every display. They are the greatest band in the world, after all.

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Fairwater – tucked just west of the city centre is this sprawling, leafy suburb where MacReady and the team carry out a property search after they’ve arrested their bad guy. In real life I worked in the building adjacent to the police station – that aforementioned Intel Officer role – until I quit for good. A busy ‘nick’, Fairwater Police Station is also uglier than ugly, and I describe it in the novel as ‘a mixed orange-brick and prefab square lump that resembled a hideous layer cake, and which MacReady assumed had cut the value of the surrounding properties by at least half when it was built.’ This is entirely correct and I refuse to describe it otherwise. So there.

Park Place – when I were a lad, and when Cardiff’ had pretty limited places to go of an evening, Park Place just off the main pedestrianised shopping drag was the epicentre of all the fun for a few good years. ‘Brannigans’ bar (now ‘Jongleurs’ comedy club), and around the corner the superclub ‘Zeus’ attracted thousands of punters from all around South Wales, where we revelled in this new-fangled tunesmithery of ‘Britpop’ (and, of course, ‘Cool Cymru’). ‘Zeus’ is replicated in ‘Unforgivable’ for an important scene, and it was lovely to dredge up all those memories. Apart from the time I accidentally set fire to a girl’s leggings while I was trying to impress her with my cigarette lighter-wielding skills. Turns out polyester is really flammable. Who knew?

City Hall – the heart of the capital’s bureaucratic and judicial area, a place of ornate gardens and Portland Stone edifices and the imposing Crown Court, and a prime choice for weddings and University graduation ceremonies. It’s also the scene of several foot chases in my career, one of which ended up with me falling in a very nice pond. My protagonist, MacReady, has a similar chase at one point in ‘Unforgivable’ but manages to avoid the watery mishap…

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Roath Park – locally famous, this pretty sliver of water and greenery just north of the city centre has a boating lake, clock tower, enormo-conservatory and ornamental gardens, and is something of a rite of passage for children who descend here en masse in school holidays to slide down its notoriously bumpy slide and get chased by irate swans. It features briefly in ‘Unforgivable’ during a vehicle pursuit. It is also where, as a five year old bored of her whining, I threw my infant sister into the water while we were out in a rowing boat. Fun times!

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The UHW – the University Hospital of Wales, or ‘The Heath’ to Cardiffians. As a copper you spend an inordinate amount of time in hospitals – sitting with injured prisoners, dealing with sudden deaths, removing brawling drunks from A&E – and the UHW was my home from home at certain points in my career. MacReady and his colleagues have to deal with the terrible aftermath of the bombings at the market and mosque in The Heath – but it is a nameless, injured young woman who leads him to discover there is more going on in the city than the police first realised. Woo, excitement!

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Book description

Bombs detonate in a busy souk, causing massive devastation.
An explosion rips apart a mosque, killing and injuring those inside.
But this isn’t the Middle East – this is Cardiff . . .

In a city where tensions are already running high, DC Will MacReady and his colleagues begin the desperate hunt for the attacker. If they knew the ‘why’, then surely they can find the ‘who’? But that isn’t so easy, and time is fast running out . . .

MacReady is still trying to prove himself after the horrific events of the previous year, which left his sergeant injured and his job in jeopardy, so he feels sidelined when he’s asked to investigate a vicious knife attack on a young woman.

But all is not as it seems with his new case, and soon MacReady must put everything on the line in order to do what is right.

IMG_2357 I didn’t realise Unforgettable was the second book in the MacReady series, if I’m honest I’m not one for jumping ahead in a series as I fear I might have missed something, and although it’s obvious that DC Will MacReady has issues that pertain to the previous book I still think Unforgettable made for an extremely gripping standalone. It’s pretty standard to have a detective in a crime thriller with issues and MacReady is no different, his personal life is one huge disaster but I still found him to be an interesting character. The commaradie amongst his fellow work colleagues added just the right amount of “gallows” humour to add.

Unforgettable begins with a “bang” literally when a bomb detonated in a busy Souk in the middle of Cardiff causes massive devastation as you can well imagine. We only have to pick up a newspaper or turn on the news to see events like this are very sadly part of our times, so the opening chapters were terrifyingly credible and shocking. What at first appears to be a racially motivated attack soon becomes something much more complex and Unforgettable made for a gritty fast paced read.

There are numerous strands to Unforgettable the bombings, a vicious knife attack, a group of Asians on trial for the vicious assault and murder of a young white male, all these events appear to be unrelated but are they? Well here’s where the author deftly leads the reader through the police investigation, revealing clues and red herrings aplenty.

Mike Thomas own career as a policeman adds authenticity to Unforgettable, the investigation, the dynamics within the team all give the reader insight into the workers of an investigation. You can help but feel the same frustrations that MacReady and his team have to endure on a daily basis. Fast paced and fraught with tension I found Unforgivable to be a “white knuckle” read, covering a very frighteningly credible topic. Action packed and filled with intrigue Unforgivable combines police procedure with a powerful and thrilling plot making for a throughly gripping read.

Buying link: Amazon UK 🇬🇧Print Length: 400 pages

Publisher: Zaffre (27 July 2017)

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Mike Thomas was born in 1971 in the Welsh town of Caerphilly, famed for being the birthplace of comedian Tommy Cooper, its ‘deliciously’ salty cheese, and its castle with a tower which allegedly leans at a sharper angle than the more celebrated one in Pisa.

His teenage years were spent breakdancing, spraying graffiti around the town’s walls and office blocks and just about staying on the right side of the law, until his early twenties when, inexplicably, he joined the local constabulary and began locking people up for spraying graffiti around the town’s walls and office blocks.

“…inexplicably, he joined the local constabulary and began locking people up for spraying graffiti around the town’s walls and office blocks…”

While working as a plod in Wales’ capital city of Cardiff, Thomas continued with his childhood passion: writing. As a freelance he produced articles for local newspapers, various websites and national travel magazines, while in 2007 he was one of the winners in the annual Rhys Davies Short Story Competition organised by Literature Wales. After completing a Master’s degree in Creative Writing at the University of Wales between 2007 and 2009, Thomas published his debut novel, Pocket Notebook, in 2010 with William Heinemann/Penguin Random House.

The author was on the prestigious list of Waterstones’ ‘New Voices’ for that year, while Pocket Notebook was longlisted for the Wales Book of the Year and optioned for television by Carnival Films, the producers of Downton Abbey. His second novel, Ugly Bus, was released by Heinemann in 2014 and is currently in development as a six part television series with the BBC. Both novels deal with the uglier side of policing.

“…He currently lives in the wilds of Portugal with his wife and children…”

Thomas left the police in the spring of 2015 and grew his hair and a pathetic attempt at a beard. He currently lives in the wilds of Portugal with his wife and children. Alongside chopping wood, cementing crumbling house walls and trying to find somewhere that sells his beloved Marmite, he continues to write articles and web pieces for a variety of sites and publications, and is contracted to London’s Bonnier Publishing for three new novels, the first of which – Ash and Bones – was released August 2016. The second in the series, Unforgivable, is due for publication in the summer of 2017.

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Links to author: Website Twitter Facebook

Follow the Unforgivable blog tour ………..

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**Cover Reveal** Murder Game by Caroline Mitchell @Bookouture @Caroline_Writes

Eeek I’m absolutely thrilled to be part of the big cover reveal for the awesome Caroline Mitchell and her latest book Murder Game. I love, love the Detective Ruby Preston crime series and I can’t wait to read the third book in this highly gripping series. Murder Game is published by the fabulous Bookouture and will be published on October 31st 2017 – and will be available for pre order from 3rd August 2017.

Before I share the cover I’m sure you will want to know more about Murder Game.

Book description

To catch a killer, you must first think like one …

A killer is playing a twisted game of life or death with his victims. After he captures them, a countdown begins. He marks the time by sending clues to the whereabouts of the women he has taken in three disturbing images: alive, tortured, dead.

In a race against the clock, East London Detective Ruby Preston must play the killer’s terrifying murder game and decipher the clues before more women die.

But this isn’t the first time the police have seen such a sickening crime. The notorious Lonely Hearts Killer, Mason Gatley, was put behind bars ten years ago for murdering six women in exactly the same chilling way. Desperate for more information, Ruby asks her gangster boyfriend, Nathan Crosby, to set up a dangerous meeting to allow her to see into the twisted mind of a murderer.

But the closer Ruby grows to the dark and charming Mason Gatley, the more worried her team becomes. Is he really helping her catch the killer? Or is he lining her up to be his next victim?

And here’s the cover……

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I’m really excited about Murder Game now I’ve seen the cover and read the book description and I hope you are too. If you haven’t read this series it’s one that I would highly recommend, and you still have time to read the first two in the series before Murder Game’s publication in October.

Buying links:

Here are the amazon links for the cover reveal this evening 🙂

🇬🇧  UK: http://amzn.to/2v1l8v5

🇺🇸  US: http://amzn.to/2umrDqp

 

IMG_2187USA Today Bestselling Thriller Author.

Originally from Ireland, Caroline lives with her family, parrot and two dogs in a pretty village on the coast of Essex. A former police detective, Caroline has worked in CID and specialised in roles dealing with vulnerable victims, high-risk victims of domestic abuse, and serious sexual offences. Published by Bookouture and Thomas & Mercer, she now writes full time and all her books have become number 1 best sellers in their categories.

Her fast-paced DC Jennifer Knight thrillers carry a hint of the supernatural and are weaved from Caroline’s personal experiences in the police and paranormal.

Set in Shoreditch, London, her DS Ruby Preston series is described as “terrifying, addictive serial killer thrillers”. 

Caroline also writes psychological thrillers, the most recent, Witness, has been described as “thrilling, tense, exciting, dark and twisted in the best possible way”.

Sign up to join her Reader’s club for access to news, updates and exclusive competitions and giveaways. http://eepurl.com/IxsTj

Connect with Caroline:

www.caroline-writes.com
https://plus.google.com/+CarolineMitchell/posts
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/3076677.Caroline_Mitchell
Twitter: @Caroline_writes
www.pinterest.com/Writeparanormal

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