Tag Archives: Book Series

Freefall by Adam Hamdy @adamhamdy @headlinepg #randomthingstour #guestpost #blogtour

2EA4FE8A-86C2-4C78-AA3E-48A0838F4818

Today I am thrilled to be on the blog tour for Adam Hamdy’s second novel Freefall.  This fabulous thriller is out now in paperback and I’ve got a guest post from the man himself Adam Hamdy.

Before I share the author’s guest post here’s the book description to whet your appetite

Book description 

ONE RULE. TRUST NO-ONE.

This explosive, pulse-racing thriller is perfect for fans of Jack Reacher and Orphan X, with a story as unexpected as a sniper’s bullet. Adam Hamdy’s first Pendulum novel was called ‘one of the best thrillers of the year’ by James Patterson.

JOHN WALLACE IS A TARGET
Hiding off-grid after exposing the shadowy Pendulum conspiracy, Wallace is horrified to discover he is still marked for death.

THERE ARE ONLY TWO PEOPLE HE CAN TRUST
DI Patrick Bailey is still reeling from the murder investigation that nearly cost him his life.

FBI Agent Christine Ash is hunting a serial killer with a link to an unfinished case

HE MUST FIND THE TRUTH
The death of a London journalist triggers an investigation that brings them back together, hurling them into the path of an unknown enemy.

BEFORE THE KILLER FINDS HIM
Hunted across the world, they are plunged into a nightmare deadlier than they could have ever imagined.

TOP TEN TIPS FOR READERS

The Internet is chock full of advice for writers, but what about readers?  Here are ten tips that should help readers get the most from a life with books, by Adam Hamdy, author of Freefall (out in paperback on 16 May).

  1. READ WHATEVER YOU LIKE

One of the many beautiful things about books is that they offer tremendous choice.  There are millions of books available on just about any subject imaginable, but one can experience a bit of snobbery about what one ‘should’ read.  Don’t feel obliged to read a book because it’s been deemed worthy or has received critical acclaim.  Find the genres, subjects or authors you enjoy and build from there.  I believe readers should actively enjoy the experience of reading and if they’re not, the chances are they’re holding a book that isn’t right for them.   

773791E6-006A-4A7D-ADD6-7987E6596657

  1. FIND YOUR FAVOURITE BLOGGERS

This is something you can do from the comfort of home.  Go online and find bloggers who read and review the types of books that interest you.  Book bloggers form one of the most informative and generous online communities.  The support they give authors and each other is wonderful and they provide a free and informative way to discover new books.  Unconstrained by physical page space or publication schedules, bloggers will often review a wider range of books than national newspapers or magazines and can offer true expertise in their chosen genres.  If you find a blogger’s review interesting or discover a new book thanks to their recommendation, reach out and let them know.  It only takes a moment to show your appreciation for what they do.

3 VISIT YOUR LOCAL BOOKSHOP

Yikes!  This one involves going outside.  Don’t worry, bookshops are generally the friendliest places on the high street.  Few people are more informed about books than booksellers and I’ve had some great recommendations from my local bookshops.  Booksellers can quickly tailor suggestions to your specific reading tastes and usually like talking to readers.  Another fantastic thing about bookshops is the access they can provide to authors.  Your local cinema has little hope of persuading Steven Spielberg to come for a visit, but your bookshop can bring Lee Child to town.  I can think of few creative fields where you can sit down with talent and interact in such an informal way.  Most bookshops host events that take place in the evening and don’t cost much, if anything at all.  It’s low cost, fascinating entertainment and provides an opportunity to meet your literary heroes as well as discover new authors.  Get down to your local bookshop and find out what they’ve got going on.  You might be pleasantly surprised.

3E41892A-D499-4B0E-93F1-8A5E47FC99EE

  1. GO TO YOUR LOCAL LIBRARY

It’s a magical place where people will give you free books and advice.  Libraries rival bookshops for friendliness and accessibility and are general staffed by helpful, informative people who will put you on the right track, introducing you to books or authors you’ll like.  Libraries will often host events and can order in almost any book ever published.  Authors get a small royalty every time a book is borrowed from a library, so never feel awkward about telling an author you borrowed rather than bought a book.

  1. JOIN A BOOK CLUB

A few months ago, I went to a book club in London and had a fantastic time with a group of readers who grilled me about Pendulum.  The wine flowed and the conversation was fun and entertaining.  Book clubs are a great way to meet people and forge friendships and if you can’t find a real world book club in your area, you can get together with a few friends and start one, or you can seek out one of the many book clubs that are run online.  

  1. EXPLORE NEW WRITING

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut and keep reading the same genre or small selection of authors.  Somewhere in the kerfuffle of book bloggers, newspaper and magazine reviews, booksellers, librarians and book clubs, you should get lots of new book or author recommendations.  Read what you like, but also look around every so often and reach for something new, so the list of what you like keeps growing.

7 CONTACT AUTHORS

My youngest son is a big fan of Swapna Haddow’s Dave Pigeon series and wrote to her to express his admiration.  Swapna wrote back and sent him some Dave Pigeon gear, which absolutely made his day.  As an author, I know how much it will have meant to Swapna to have positive feedback from a fan.  If an author has written something you like, reach out and let him or her know.  Leave a positive review, ask a question, send a note.  Most authors are very accessible and love hearing from readers, particularly if they have something nice to say.

Fountain pen writing

  1. DON’T HATE A BOOK

Argggghhhhhh!  I’ve read a book and I hate it more than cancer.  That’s the only reason I’d ever give a book a 1-star review.  In my opinion, 1-star is the equivalent of an ‘F’ and means the author has failed to do anything at all that redeems the book.  If you’re not enjoying a book, stop reading and put it down.  Move on to another that engages you.  If you really hated a book and feel the need to share your opinion, remember that all art is subjective and that many readers will find positives in a book you disliked.  Also remember that many authors read their Amazon and Goodreads reviews and that there’s a human being at the receiving end of any tirade.  I never read reviews of my books, but I know many authors who do and I’ve seen the emotional impact they have.  Authors are just human beings striving to produce the best work they can and make a living, and when someone goes to town with a bad review, it’s upsetting.  If you have to throw some shade on a book, try to keep it civil.

     9 GO TO FESTIVALS

Many big towns have their own literary festival or an arts festival that features authors.  These single or multi-day events often feature a wide range of authors speaking on a variety of topics and are fantastic low cost entertainment.  Most people will find something to interest them in a typical festival program and if you can’t afford to travel to the bigger literary festivals, go to your local one.  Admission is usually inexpensive if not free.  If you do go to a festival, set aside some time for the hotel or venue bar, where you can often get chatting to authors in an informal environment.  Lee Child, Peter James and Val McDermid were among the many big names circulating in the bar during my first ever Harrogate and I’m not ashamed to say that I got a little star struck.

A13F551E-45FC-400B-A556-9F697D75D8EC

  1. SUBSCRIBE TO MAILING LISTS

Many authors operate email lists via their websites and give subscribers exclusive news, offers and competitions.  I recently offered subscribers the chance to win a £100 Book Token and the opportunity to name a character in my next book.  In addition to giving readers the opportunity to win unusual or unique prizes, most authors are keen to build a rapport with their readers, and mailing lists are a great way to get inside the worlds of authors you love and learn more about them.

Who Is Adam Hamdy

874617B7-E92D-4B46-8A9B-802B6D7A1AEF

Identified as an Amazon Rising Star, British author and screenwriter Adam Hamdy works with studios and production companies on both sides of the Atlantic.

He is the author of the Pendulum trilogy, an epic series of conspiracy thriller novels. James Patterson described Pendulum as ‘one of the best thrillers of the year’, and the novel was a finalist for the Glass Bell Award for contemporary fiction. Pendulum was chosen as book of the month by Goldsboro Books and was selected for BBC Radio 2 Book Club.

Prior to embarking on his writing career, Adam was a strategy consultant and advised global businesses in the medical systems, robotics, technology and financial services sectors.

Buying links for Adam Hamdy books

 

My thanks to Anne Cater of Random Things Tours for inviting me to join the tour!! and Adam Hamdy for the guest post.  

Unwrapping the #BookPost with the book review café

4E8894BC-4A65-4864-AE82-B34F2FE2C43A

Here I am again sharing some of the lovely #BookPost I’ve received over the last week. Some have come direct from the publishers but I’ve also included some of my, (ok lots) of my Birthday #BookPost that I personally bought for myself. 😂🙈

Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh

6E71FE8E-B4E2-4E49-A2D3-77243C109A2F

Book description

‘To your knowledge, is there anything that would preclude you from serving on this jury?’

Murder wasn’t the hard part. It was just the start of the game.

Joshua Kane has been preparing for this moment his whole life. He’s done it before. But this is the big one.

This is the murder trial of the century. And Kane has killed to get the best seat in the house.

But there’s someone on his tail. Someone who suspects that the killer isn’t the man on trial.

Kane knows time is running out – he just needs to get to the conviction without being discovered.

My thanks to Orion Publishing for my ARC 

The Adversary by Emmanuel Carrére

A4B2D10F-EB9D-4177-8430-1F70AF8FF120

Book description

ON THE SATURDAY MORNING OF JANUARY 9, 1993, WHILE JEAN CLAUDE ROMAND WAS KILLING HIS WIFE AND CHILDREN, I WAS WITH MINE IN A PARENT-TEACHER MEETING…

With these chilling first words, acclaimed master of psychological suspense, Emmanuel Carrère, begins his exploration of the double life of a respectable doctor, eighteen years of lies, five murders, and the extremes to which ordinary people can go.

Jamaica Inn by Daphne Du Maurier

2D31191A-B30B-4D04-957D-C03153EB43A7

Book description

After the death of her mother, Mary Yellan crosses the windswept Cornish moors to Jamaica Inn, the home of her Aunt Patience. There she finds Patience a changed woman, downtrodden by her domineering, vicious husband Joss Merlyn. The inn is a front for a lawless gang of criminals, and Mary is unwillingly dragged into their dangerous world of smuggling and murder. Before long she will be forced to cross her own moral line to save herself.

Anything For Her by G.J.Minett

0B4F75FE-6BB3-4D88-B703-392E3551E5D3

Book description

You’d do anything for the one that got away . . . wouldn’t you?

When Billy Orr returns home to spend time with his dying sister, he bumps into his ex-girlfriend Aimi, the love of his life. He might not have seen her in eleven years, but Billy’s never forgotten her. He’d do anything for her then, and he’d do anything for her now.

When Aimi tells him that she wants to escape her abusive husband, Billy agrees to help her fake her own death. But is she still the Aimi that Billy remembers from all those years ago?

Once Aimi disappears, Billy has to face the possibility that perhaps she had different reasons for disappearing – reasons that might be more dangerous than she’s led him to believe . . .

Sometimes trusting the one you love is the wrong thing to do.

My thanks to Bonnier Zaffre for my ARC  

Murderabilia by Craig Robertson

CD66BCB2-27B8-498B-AF2D-3A96EBE2AB8C

Book description

The first commuter train of the morning slowly rumbles away from platform seven of Queen St station. And then, as the train emerges from a tunnel, the screaming starts. Hanging from the bridge ahead of them is a body. Placed neatly on the ground below him are the victim’s clothes. Why?

Detective Inspector Narey is assigned the case and then just as quickly taken off it again. Winter, now a journalist, must pursue the case for her. The line of questioning centres around the victim’s clothes – why leave them in full view? And what did the killer not leave, and where might it appear again?

Everyone has a hobby. Some people collect death. To find this evil, Narey must go on to the dark web, and into immense danger …

I Found You by Lisa Jewell

78D9DE6D-ACC9-4EE8-B927-68D4EAADA7F8

Book description

Everyone has secrets. What if you can’t remember yours?

‘How long have you been sitting out here?’
‘I got here yesterday.’
‘Where did you come from?’
‘I have no idea.’

Lily has only been married for three weeks. When her new husband fails to come home from work one night, she is left stranded in a new country where she knows no one.

Alice finds a man on the beach outside her house. He has no name, no jacket, no idea what he is doing there. Against her better judgement, she invites him into her home.

But who is he, and how can she trust a man who has lost his memory?

29 Seconds by T.M. Logan

A2EB9C5B-8B4B-4D2D-BC53-1D403A622F1A

Book description

What if a single 29 second phonecall could change your life forever? ‘Give me one name. One person. And I will make them disappear . . .’

When Sarah rescues a young girl in trouble, she expects nothing in return. But her act of bravery puts a powerful and dangerous man in her debt. He lives by his own brutal code, and all debts must be repaid – in the only way he knows how.

He offers Sarah a way to solve a desperate situation with her intolerable boss. A once-in-a-lifetime deal that will make all her problems disappear.

No consequences. No comeback. No chance of being found out.

All it takes is a 29 second phone call.

Blood Feud Anna Smith

4D1EECF4-3139-4622-B1D0-FD353D86DCF3

Book description

Kerry Casey thought she’d made a life away from the dirty dealings of her gangster family. Her father wanted to make them legit – her brother Mickey had other ideas, and now it’s got him killed. When Mickey’s funeral turns into a bloodbath at the hands of a group of anonymous shooters and Kerry’s mother is killed in the crossfire, Kerry finds herself at the head of the Casey family, and desperate for revenge.

Running a crime empire is not a job she ever asked for, and not one she wants, but Kerry is determined to fulfil her father’s wishes and make the Caseys go straight. First, though, she will find the men who murdered her mother, and she will take them down, no matter what it costs.

A Tapping At My Door by David Jackson

0BE52C26-D9D3-4DFD-980D-6BFE043B624A

Book description

When police are called to a murder scene in the Liverpool suburbs, even the most jaded officers are disturbed by what they find.

DS Nathan Cody, still bearing the scars of an undercover mission that went horrifyingly wrong, is put on the case. But the police have no leads, except the body of the bird – and the victim’s missing eyes.

And then the killer strikes again, and Cody realises the threat isn’t to the people of Liverpool after all – it’s to the police.

Hope To Die by David Jackson

D4B37721-1E8E-47F7-915B-552DE0D7D8F8

Book descrption

There was a hate in this killer. A thirst for obliteration rather than a mere desire to end a life . . .

A brutal murder takes place in the grounds of a Liverpool cathedral. A killer is on the loose, driven by a chilling rage. The victim: the last person you’d expect to be subjected to such terrible violence. Can DS Nathan Cody crack the case before another innocent is chosen?

The Defence by Steve Cavanagh

95C2C8BF-B985-47F1-AF47-49E69E2DC4C3

Book description

Eddie Flynn used to be a con artist. Then he became a lawyer. Turned out the two weren’t that different.

It’s been over a year since Eddie vowed never to set foot in a courtroom again. But now he doesn’t have a choice. Olek Volchek, the infamous head of the Russian mafia in New York, has strapped a bomb to Eddie’s back and kidnapped his ten-year-old daughter, Amy. Eddie only has forty-eight hours to defend Volchek in an impossible murder trial – and win – if he wants to save his daughter.

Under the scrutiny of the media and the FBI, Eddie must use his razor-sharp wit and every con-artist trick in the book to defend his ‘client’ and ensure Amy’s safety. With the timer on his back ticking away, can Eddie convince the jury of the impossible?

The Plea by Steve Cavanagh

B5DF0A6B-5030-4E8A-9B26-7AE1AB0C017E

Book description

When David Child, a major client of a corrupt New York law firm, is arrested for murder, the FBI ask con artist-turned-lawyer Eddie Flynn to persuade him to testify against the firm.

Eddie is not someone who is easily coerced, but when the FBI reveal that they have incriminating files on his wife, he knows he has no choice.

But Eddie is convinced the man is innocent, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. With the FBI putting pressure on him to secure the deal, Eddie must find a way to prove his client’s innocence.

But the stakes are high – his wife is in danger. And not just from the FBI . . .

The Liar by Steve Cavanagh

DE366445-A48C-4138-AE64-CB5149906CC4

Book description

When David Child, a major client of a corrupt New York law firm, is arrested for murder, the FBI ask con artist-turned-lawyer Eddie Flynn to persuade him to testify against the firm.

Eddie is not someone who is easily coerced, but when the FBI reveal that they have incriminating files on his wife, he knows he has no choice.

But Eddie is convinced the man is innocent, despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary. With the FBI putting pressure on him to secure the deal, Eddie must find a way to prove his client’s innocence.

But the stakes are high – his wife is in danger. And not just from the FBI . . .

That’s it for this week I’m really looking forward to reading all these books, my dilemma will be choosing which one to read first.  I’m off now to sit in the sunshine with a coffee and a book, and a delicious slice of birthday cake that my lovely hubby bought me.

440D2F19-B77A-4871-88E3-23BA19635526

#BlogBlitz When Evil Calls Your Name by John Nicholl @nicholl06 @BloodhoundBook

 

43686775-39A6-40EF-85A6-C4AA459C781F

Today I’m thrilled to be one of the stops on the #BlogBlitz tour for When Evil Calls Your Name by John Nicholl. Published by the awesome Bloodhound Books this is one series you don’t want to miss, especially if like me you enjoy a darker more sinister psychological  thriller.

Book description

Even the darkest secrets can’t stay hidden forever…

When twenty-nine-year-old Cynthia Galbraith struggles to come to terms with her traumatic past and the realities of prison life, a prison counsellor persuades her to write a diary exploring the events that led to a life sentence for murder.

Although unconvinced at first, Cynthia finally decides she has all the time in the world and very little, if anything, to lose. As she begins writing she holds back nothing: sharing the thoughts she hadn’t dare vocalise, the things that keep her awake at night and haunt her waking hours.

Will the truth finally be revealed?

8ECAEFD2-0923-4546-A2E8-C5A2349B4D11

 White Is The Coldest Colour by John Nicholl introduced the reader to Dr David Galbraith, a highly trusted and respected child psychiatrist, but in reality Galbraith was a sadistic predatory paedophile. We were also introduced to Galbraith’s wife Cynthia. When Evil Calls Your Name is very much about Cynthia who is now serving a prison sentence and struggling to come to terms with her traumatic past and the realities of prison life. I should mention I really don’t think you will be able to appreciate the full impact of Cynthia’s story without reading would White Is The Coldest Colour first. 

This is a book that is very much character driven, the author certainly gets inside the head of Cynthia and he doesn’t skimp on the gritty or troubling details of her life. When Evil Calls Your Name answers many of the questions I had about Cynthia. In the previous book I wanted to shake her and tell her “to get a grip”, she appeared weak and in awe of her psychopath husband, but after reading her story it all makes sense.

Through Cynthia’s writing we learn so much more about her, how she went from a confident carefree student to a shadow of herself. Galbraith is a master in manipulation,  and John Nicholl explores his behaviour with a chilling sense of realism.  By the the end of the book my views on Cynthia had completely changed, I could empathise with her and appreciate what she went through. When Evil Calls your name is a disturbing read,  as you can’t help  but imagine the awful things Cynthia had to put up with living with such an evil and controlling husband. You feel her anxiety, despair and fear.

John  Nicholls has once again written an intense and dark read, that kept me reading late into the night, (hence the dark circles under my eyes!). A solid conclusion to the Galbraith series and although not fast paced, it’s an intriguing read that explores abusive relationships with an incredible insight into a difficult and disturbing subject.

About the author

IMG_3835

John Nicholl, an ex-police officer, child protection social worker and lecturer, writes popular dark psychological suspense thrillers, each of which has been an Amazon international bestseller, reaching # 1 in multiple categories in the United Kingdom, France, Spain, Australia, Canada and the USA. John is happily married, lives in rural west Wales, and has three adult children and one grandchild. He began writing after leaving his job heading up child protection services for Carmarthenshire. A Cold Cold Heart, John’s sixth book, is published by Bloodhound Books in January 2018. John is represented by Toby Mundy – Literary agent at TMA.

Links:

Author website

http://www.johnnicholl.com

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/john. nicholl.988

Goodreads

Twitter: @nicholl06

Agent

http://tma-agency.com

Thanks go to Bloodhound Books, John Nicholl and Sarah Hardy for an advanced readers copy of When Evil Calls Your Name to read in exchange for an honest review

6EBB3DA9-DC64-4373-AB46-13910E942DEA

 

Deadly Secrets by Robert Bryndza #MustReads2018 @RobertBryndza @Bookouture

 

744BA999-CE58-446A-8331-3CFABC7B5CF9

Anyone who follows my blog will know I’m a HUGE fan of crime author Robert Bryndza, and that my reviews for his Erika Foster series can be a tad over enthusiastic to say the least 😂. So you can imagine my excitement when I received an ARC of Deadly Secrets the sixth book in this series. Before I share my review here’s the book description….

Book description

To commit the perfect murder, you need the perfect cover.

On an icy morning, a mother wakes to find her daughter’s blood-soaked body frozen to the road. Who would carry out such a killing on the victim’s doorstep?

Straight off her last harrowing case, Detective Erika Foster is feeling fragile but determined to lead the investigation. As she sets to work, she finds reports of assaults in the same quiet South London suburb where the woman was killed. One chilling detail links them to the murder victim – they were all attacked by a figure in black wearing a gas mask.

Erika is on the hunt for a killer with a terrifying calling card. The case gets more complicated when she uncovers a tangled web of secrets surrounding the death of the beautiful young woman.

Yet just as Erika begins to piece the clues together, she is forced to confront painful memories of her past. Erika must dig deep, stay focused and find the killer. Only this time, one of her own is in terrible danger…

ED631E44-026D-4A94-9C7A-26D56E5AA9D0

8ECAEFD2-0923-4546-A2E8-C5A2349B4D11

Deadly Secrets by Robert Bryndza is the sixth book in the Erika Foster crime series, at this point in a crime series I find it’s sometimes the pivotal book, in other words the book where my love affair with a series ends. I read so many books that I just haven’t got the time to invest in a series that’s lost it’s lustre, but fortunately once again Robert Bryndza has written another fabulous and worthy addition to the Detective Erika Foster series, and yes I loved every damn page of this unmissable crime thriller.

One thing I will say for Robert Bryndza he certainly knows how to write an opening chapter that is guaranteed to pull the reader in, if I mention a blood-soaked body frozen to the ground you will get my drift. From the off you enter the dark and disturbing world of a chilling killer, whose MO is unusual to say the least! But then I expected nothing less, the author has such a vivid imagination I just knew he would come up with something disturbing and spine chilling.

Deadly Secrets isn’t as fast paced as some of the previous books in the series, but don’t let that put you off, as the author still manages to deliver a cracking crime thriller that is both gripping and multi layered. Erika Foster is probably one of my favourite fictional Detectives and her character has grown as the series has progressed, but this book delves more into Erika’s character than ever before, the reader is privy to her struggles as a detective, family member and as a woman of a certain age, which give her character an air of credibility very often lacking in fictional detectives.

Delivered in short snappy chapters Deadly Secrets is one you need to read with no interruptions, not because the plot is so complex that you need to concentrate, it’s just so darn good you just want to read it in one “do not interrupt” deliciously satisfying sitting. Deadly Secrets is layered in lies, deception, and obsession, and as always Robert Bryndza writes in such away you are lured into his stories with a devilishly twisted plot and writing that engages the reader from the start.

I must congratulate the author I can pretty much sniff out a twist before it happens, but no not this time, I’m sure my jaw hit the ground when I reached this point in the book, it was definitely an “OMG” moment but so cleverly done. I may have mentioned this before but the reason I love this series so much is the author’s ability to make each book completely different, so the series doesn’t feel like “the same old”, and just in case you haven’t already guessed I would highly recommend Deadly Secrets to anyone and everyone who enjoys a dark and suspense filled read.

Pre-order links:       Amazon UK 🇬🇧        Amazon US 🇺🇸

Print Length: 270 pages

Publisher: Bookouture (13 April 2018)

Link to other books in this series

 

Into The Black Nowhere by Meg Gardiner #Unsub2 @DuttonBooks @MegGardiner1 #MustReads

123193B0-7F0B-47C9-8B9A-C1D341FCA464

Into The Black Nowhere by Meg Gardiner has been one of my most anticipated reads of 2018, especially after reading the first book in this crime series Unsub, which by the way is already on my top reads of 2018. Before I share my review I would like to say thank you to fellow book blogger Janel who blogs over at the fabulous https://keeperofpages.wordpress.com/ (if you don’t already follow her blog it’s a MUST) for her overwhelming generosity in sending me her copy of Into The Black Nowhere, just because she knew how much I loved Unsub. Before I share my review here’s the book description to whet your appetite…….

Book description

Inspired by real-life serial killer Ted Bundy, an exhilarating thriller in which FBI profiler Caitlin Hendrix faces off against a charming, merciless serial killer

In southern Texas, on Saturday nights, women are disappearing. One vanishes from a movie theater. Another is ripped from her car at a stoplight. Another vanishes from her home while checking on her baby. Rookie FBI agent Caitlin Hendrix, newly assigned to the FBI’s elite Behavioral Analysis Unit, fears that a serial killer is roaming the dark roads outside Austin.

Caitlin and the FBI’s serial crime unit discover the first victim’s body in the woods. She’s laid out in a bloodstained, white baby-doll nightgown. A second victim in a white nightie lies deeper in the forest’s darkness. Both bodies are surrounded by Polaroid photos, stuck in the earth like headstones. Each photo pictures a woman in a white negligee, wrists slashed, suicide-style–posed like Snow White awaiting her prince’s kiss.

To track the UNSUB, Caitlin must get inside his mind. How is he selecting these women? Working with a legendary FBI profiler, Caitlin searches for a homology–that elusive point where character and action come together. She profiles a confident, meticulous killer who convinces his victims to lower their guard until he can overpower and take them in plain sight. He then reduces them to objects in a twisted fantasy–dolls for him to possess, control, and ultimately destroy. Caitlin’s profile leads the FBI to focus on one man: a charismatic, successful professional who easily gains people’s trust. But with only circumstantial evidence linking him to the murders, the police allow him to escape. As Saturday night approaches, Caitlin and the FBI enter a desperate game of cat and mouse, racing to capture the cunning predator before he claims more victims.

8ECAEFD2-0923-4546-A2E8-C5A2349B4D11

Into The Black Nowhere opens with the chilling and shocking disappearance of mother Shana, and from there on in Meg Gardiner keeps the reader in her clutches. Into The Black Nowhere is the second book in the Unsub and although it could be read as a standalone I would urge you to start at the beginning as it has all the hallmarks of an unmissable crime series. I’m not going to rehash the plot as pretty much all you need to know is in the detailed book description, suffice to say Caitlin Hendrix is back and now working as an FBI Profiler tracking the Saturday Night Killer in Austin, Texas, where women keep disappearing. Caitlin with the help of a legendary FBI profiler piece together a profile that will lead them to focus on one particular suspect.

Inspired by real-life serial killer Ted Bundy, Meg Gardiner manages to create a serial killer who is charming, confident, and yet is merciless when it comes to his victims, very much in keeping with Ted Bundy’s MO this fact alone makes the killer all the more credible which in turn made this book all the more chilling to read. Caitlin is a character who intrigues me, a character with many sides she’s committed to her job, but you sense a darker side to her character which I hope the author explores further at some point.

Although not as fast paced or as heart pounding as Unsub, which is partly due to the fact the killers identity is revealed fairly early on in the book, Into The Black Nowhere has its own merits the author ramps up the tension tenfold with a game of cat and mouse between Caitlin and the killer, making this a very worthy addition to the series. If anything the change in pace and direction actually make you more excited about the Unsub series, as you aren’t sure which direction the author will take with the next book in the series.

Unlike most crime thrillers Into The Black Nowhere stands out because the focus is on profiling rather than police procedures. It’s a subject that really intrigues me, and Meg Gardiner’s impeccable detailed explanations regarding profiling integrated with a suspense filled plot with believable characters make this one of the best crime thriller books I’ve read this year, and I’m already excited to see where the author takes the Unsub series next. Highly recommended.

Buying links :   Amazon UK 🇬🇧        Amazon US 🇺🇸

Hardcover: 368 pages

Publisher: Dutton Books (30 Jan. 2018)

 

**Blog tour** Force Of Nature by Jane Harper #BookReview @Janeharperautho @LittleBrownUK

IMG_3603

Today I’m thrilled to be part of the blog tour for the Force Of Nature by Jane Harper. I was a huge fan of the first book in the series THE DRY and it’s a book I would highly recommend. If you are looking for a different type of crime thriller that doesn’t involve a serial killer or gruesome scenes that you are going to love The Force Of Nature, so what’s it about? Read on to find out

Book description

FIVE WENT OUT. FOUR CAME BACK…

Is Alice here? Did she make it? Is she safe? In the chaos, in the night, it was impossible to say which of the four had asked after Alice’s welfare. Later, when everything got worse, each would insist it had been them.
Five women reluctantly pick up their backpacks and start walking along the muddy track. Only four come out the other side.

The hike through the rugged landscape is meant to take the office colleagues out of their air-conditioned comfort zone and teach resilience and team building. At least that is what the corporate retreat website advertises.
Federal Police Agent Aaron Falk has a particularly keen interest in the whereabouts of the missing bushwalker. Alice Russell is the whistleblower in his latest case – and Alice knew secrets. About the company she worked for and the people she worked with.

Far from the hike encouraging teamwork, the women tell Falk a tale of suspicion, violence and disintegrating trust. And as he delves into the disappearance, it seems some dangers may run far deeper than anyone knew.

IMG_3785

IMG_3605

Force Of Nature by Jane Harper is the second book in a series featuring Federal Police Agent Aaron Falk, yes it can be read as a standalone but if like me you prefer to start a series at the beginning I would highly recommend you read The Dry first. From the start this book has such a different feel to it, we leave the blistering heat and claustrophobic setting of a small town in the outback and move to the cold, wet and hostile environment of the remote Giralang Range. The author has a flair for describing her settings in great detail, so much so that you feel you are there amid the harsh terrain, the howling winds and the torrential rain, the sense of isolation the author evokes is palatable from the start.

Can you imagine trekking through the wilderness with your work colleagues? Putting your trust in them? Reliant on each other to survive? All in the name of “team building” no? well that’s pretty much the premise for this book. Aaron Falk and his partner Carmen are called to the Giralang Range, when Alice one of the team members goes missing. Force Of Nature is told in alternating timelines, you have chapters that take the reader back in time to follow the women on their hike, and then you have chapters featuring Aaron and Carmen in the present assisting the search and slowly revealing the details of Alice’s disappearance.

Force Of Nature reminds me very much of the traditional “whodunnit”, where the focus is more on the characters and guessing whose behind the skullduggery and the why, rather than the fast paced, gruesome crime thrillers many of us are use to reading. Jane Harper focuses her time on building on the tension and suspense, which some readers may find off putting, but personally I enjoyed the more sedate pace.

As Jane Harper reveals more details of the five women life’s I found myself scrutinising everyone of them with suspicion. The author very realistically portrays the woman’s behaviour and emotions set against the backdrop of an isolated environment where their instinct to survive far outweighs their allegiance to their work colleagues. Force Of Nature is a complex tale that explores themes such as grudges, bullying and family ties, shrouded in mystery and secrets, that draw the reader in making for an engrossing read. Force Of Nature is a book I would recommend to those who enjoy a crime thriller with a heart and aren’t a fan of the more gruesome crime thrillers that are on the market.

Buying links: Amazon UK 🇬🇧         Amazon US 🇺🇸

Print Length: 400 pages

Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group (26 Sept. 2017)

My thanks to the publishers for an ARC in exchange for an unbiased review.

About the author

Jane Harper is the author of The Dry, winner of various awards including the 2015 Victorian Premier’s Literary Award for an Unpublished Manuscript, the 2017 Indie Award Book of the Year, the 2017 Australian Book Industry Awards Book of the Year Award and the CWA Gold Dagger Award for the best crime novel of 2017.

Rights have been sold in 27 territories worldwide, and film rights optioned to Reese Witherspoon and Bruna Papandrea. Jane worked as a print journalist for thirteen years both in Australia and the UK and lives in Melbourne.

IMG_3794.JPG

UNSUB by Meg Gardiner #BookReview @DuttonBooks @MegGardiner1 #MustReads

IMG_3732

Book description

A riveting psychological thriller inspired by the never-caught Zodiac Killer, about a young detective determined to apprehend the serial murderer who destroyed her family and terrorized a city twenty years earlier.

Caitlin Hendrix has been a Narcotics detective for six months when the killer at the heart of all her childhood nightmares reemerges: the Prophet. An UNSUB—what the FBI calls an unknown subject—the Prophet terrorized the Bay Area in the 1990s and nearly destroyed her father, the lead investigator on the case.

The Prophet’s cryptic messages and mind games drove Detective Mack Hendrix to the brink of madness, and Mack’s failure to solve the series of ritualized murders—eleven seemingly unconnected victims left with the ancient sign for Mercury etched into their flesh—was the final nail in the coffin for a once promising career.

Twenty years later, two bodies are found bearing the haunting signature of the Prophet. Caitlin Hendrix has never escaped the shadow of her father’s failure to protect their city. But now the ruthless madman is killing again and has set his sights on her, threatening to undermine the fragile barrier she rigidly maintains for her own protection, between relentless pursuit and dangerous obsession.

Determined to decipher his twisted messages and stop the carnage, Caitlin ignores her father’s warnings as she draws closer to the killer with each new gruesome murder. Is it a copycat, or can this really be the same Prophet who haunted her childhood? Will Caitlin avoid repeating her father’s mistakes and redeem her family name, or will chasing the Prophet drag her and everyone she loves into the depths of the abyss?

IMG_3777

IMG_3605

First of a huge thank you to Janel over at Keeperofpages, whose fabulous review convinced me I needed to read UNSUB ASAP!

Hells bells if you consider yourself to be a crime thriller lover then you MUST read Unsub by Meg Gardiner, it’s not just good it’s a flipping fantastic book and I would go as far to say it’s probably one of the best crime books I’ve read EVER. I read so many crime thrillers it takes a lot to scare me but this book unnerved me to the extent I had to keep checking that the doors were locked and the lights were on. Unsub caused my heart to thump and my pulse to race pretty much throughout. Drawing inspiration from the Zodiac Killer, and likened to Se7en, and Silence of the Lambs this is one book you don’t want to miss if you like your crime thrillers graphic and disturbing.

As you can see this book comes with a pretty lengthy book description, so I don’t feel the need to rehash the plot in my review. I do enjoy a crime thriller with an intriguing serial killer at the heart of the plot, and Meg Gardiner has created a fascinating one, the Unsub aka The Prophet taunts law enforcement with his gruesome murders and his cryptic messages, he thrives on mind games and generating fear in a city where people are advised to be vigilant, no one knows who his next victim will be or why. I think The Prophet makes a very credible character I feel this is because as the reader you are aware the author drew inspiration from the very real Zodiac Killer, making him that much more terrifying and convincing.

IMG_3736

Meg Gardiner has done a superb job with character development, building her grisly psychological thriller around detective Caitlin Hendrix, whose father failed to catch the killer decades earlier. Caitlin Hendrix is probably one of the most exciting protagonists I’ve come across in a long time the author has breathed life into her, you feel her frustration, her empathy for the victims and her complex relationship with her father make her someone that I WANT to know so much more about. Unsub is an unforgettable book, fast paced, chilling and downright frightening but I loved every page of this gripping crime thriller. Every scene, every word written is pivotal to the plot and the tension that radiates throughout definitely make this one of my top reads of 2018. Now I really can’t wait to read the sequel Into The Black Nowhere. In case you haven’t already guessed I would highly, highly recommended Unsub.

Buying links:     Amazon UK 🇬🇧      Amazon US 🇺🇸

Paperback: 420 pages

Publisher: Dutton Books; Reprint edition (2 Jan. 2018)

I’m sure it will come as no surprise to see I’m giving UNSUB 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 fabulous read, fantastic 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 and plus this one gave me a #Major #BookHangover something I don’t suffer with very often!

IMG_3573