Tag Archives: Mystery

**Blog Blitz** #TheForgotten by Casey Kelleher @CaseyKelleher @Bookouture

 

Today I’m thrilled to be one of the bloggers on the Blog Blitz for The Forgotten by Casey Kelleher. If you love a gritty crime series then I might just have found your next book. Read on for my thoughts but first the book description…….

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The more people you love, the more you have to lose…

Nancy Byrne might be the head of the notorious Byrne crime family, but she’s determined to give her little daughter, Scarlett, the best start possible.

After the death of her beloved father, the notorious gangster Jimmy Byrne, nothing’s stopping Nancy from making money on her own terms – even if she has to combine motherhood with providing for her entire family. But with enemies at their door, she’ll do whatever it takes to protect her loved ones.

But then comes the day when Scarlett goes missing, snatched by a stranger during a trip to the local park, and Nancy’s world is torn apart. Amidst the terror of losing her precious daughter, Nancy is sure of only two things. Someone has taken her daughter … and when she finds them, there’s going to be hell to pay.

Can she find Scarlett – before it’s too late? Or will Nancy’s life of crime come back to haunt her in the worst way possible. 

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Oh my what an explosive book The Forgotten turned out be, when it comes to writing hard hitting crime thrillers Casey Kelleher’s  up there with the best. Not only has she written a cracking story but she managed to incorporate all the elements I love in this type of read, a gritty storyline, dysfunctional characters, violence and treachery  all combined  together in one darkly wrapped package. I would recommend you read all three books in the series as each is a continuation of the last, but it wouldn’t be any hardship to start at the beginning as it’s such a brilliant series. 

Nancy as the head of the notorious Byrne crime family has gathered many enemies over the years, each one holds a grudge and it’s time for them to exact their revenge,  as the old adage says “revenge is a dish best served cold” and my god Nancy’s enemies are queuing up in droves to get theirs. The Byrne family are the definition of dysfunctional, each has their own secrets they would prefer to stay buried, the simmering anger between them causes tension and rather like car crash you can’t help but read on in horrified fascination, as you know things are going to get a lot worse!  

Nancy is one hell of a character ballsy, confident and doesn’t suffer fools gladly, even if their members of her own family, but now she has a daughter to protect you can actually see a chink in her armour, a softer side that wants to protect her daughter at any cost. There’s violence and swearing but that’s pretty much standard in a book that’s set around the criminal world, personally I think it gives the book an air of gritty realism. The author certainly knows how to keep the reader entertained with Nancy facing crisis after crisis I flew through the pages. The Forgotten is a story of treachery, loyalty and family ties and although these are familiar themes in the authors book, she still manages to write an exciting tale with surprises galore which make this a “must read” series for crime thriller lovers.

  • Print Length: 380 pages
  • Publisher: Bookouture (7 Aug. 2018)

Buying links:    Amazon UK 🇬🇧          Amazon US 🇺🇸

About the author 

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

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

She has since published 

Rise and Fall, 

Heartless, 

Bad Blood, 

The Taken, 

The Promise, 

The Byrne Trilogy

The Betrayed (Book 1 Byrne series) 

The Broken (Book 2 Byrne series) 

and her latest The Forgotten (Book 3 Byrne series) due for published on the 7th August 2018. 

For all news and updates:

www.caseykelleher.co.uk

 

 

 

To learn more about the series or buy the authors books….Casey Kelleher Books

My thanks to Kim Nash, Noelle Holten and Bookouture for my ARC in exchange for an unbiased review.

Don’t forget to check out my fellow book bloggers reviews……..

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**Blog tour** #DoNoHarm by L V Hay @LucyVHayAuthor @OrendaBooks @annecater

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Today I’m thrilled to be one of the many bloggers taking part in the blog tour for Do No Harm by L V Hay, published by Orenda books,  you don’t even have to wait to get a copy, one click and it’s yours, but a **word of warning** you may want to clear your schedule before starting this one As it’s such a compelling read. Before I share my thoughts here’s the book description……..

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After leaving her marriage to jealous, possessive oncologist Maxwell, Lily and her six-year-old son have a second chance at happiness with headteacher Sebastian. Kind but vulnerable, Sebastian is the polar opposite of Maxwell, and the perfect match for Lily. After a whirlwind romance, they marry, and that’s when things start to go wrong…

Maxwell returns to the scene, determined to win back his family, and events soon spiral out of control. Lily and Sebastian find themselves not only fighting for their relationship, but also their lives…

Chilling, dark and terrifying, Do No Harm is a taut psychological thriller and a study of obsession, from one of the most exciting new voices in crime fiction.

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What a fabulous and captivating  psychological thriller Do No Harm turned out to be. Deviously plotted the L V Hay delivers a story with sustained tension, surprises, and a constant sense of impending doom, definitely my kind of read. There is nothing  I find more satisfying than reading a book that heightens my feelings of anticipation, excitement and anxiety and this is one of those rare books that managed to evoke all these feelings and more.  

Lily is looking forward to starting a new life with Sebastian, she believes she can finally shut the door on her first marriage to Maxwell, a possessive control freak, but before the ink has even had time to dry on the marriage certificate, it soon becomes apparent  someone will do anything to break the couple up. Hay drags the reader into a compelling plot that’s claustrophobic and very tense, you very much feel like a “fly on the wall” as the couples life begins to unravel, you want to jump into the pages and warn them “to trust no one”. 

Do No Harm is an unsettling tale of obsession, Lucy Hay explores the persistent disturbing preoccupation someone appears to have with the couple through occasional chapters told from their POV, it’s these chapters that make you realise how obsession can turn into something much more dangerous and chilling.  The author has created a cast of characters who can only be described as untrustworthy, and that’s the thing I loved about this book as the reader your on high alert looking for inconsistencies in the characters dialogue, constantly second guessing and trying to work out who and why someone is manipulating the couples relationship, I think every character featured as a “suspect” at some point hence my constant feelings of anxiety.  Although I did guess the “culprit” correctly I still really enjoyed this book as I was stilll left wondering WHY? and the motive behind   their increasingly disturbing behaviour.  

Do No Harm has all the ingredients I’ve come to expect in a psychological thriller and then some,  with unstable characters, steeped in mystery and suspense.  I raced through this book, it’s satisfyingly twisted and made for a compelling read.  I should mention I loved the conclusion so satisfying and yet shocking. L V Hay is definitely an author to look out for and I’m excited to see what twisted plot she comes up with in her next book.  Highly recommended. 

  • Print Length: 300 pages
  • Publisher: ORENDA BOOKS (30 Jun. 2018)

Buying links:     Amazon UK 🇬🇧        Amazon US 🇺🇸

About the author

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Lucy V. Hay is a novelist, script editor and blogger who helps writers via her Bang2write consultancy. Lucy is the producer of two Brit Thrillers, DEVIATION (2012) and ASSASSIN (2015), as well as the script editor and advisor on numerous other features and shorts. Lucy’s the author of WRITING AND SELLING THRILLER SCREENPLAYS for Kamera Books’ “Creative Essentials” range, as well as its follow ups on DRAMA SCREENPLAYS and DIVERSE CHARACTERS for fiction as well as screenwriting. Her debut crime novel, THE OTHER TWIN,  published by  Orenda Books and has been featured in The Sun and Sunday Express Newspapers, plus Heatworld and Closer Magazine.

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**Blog tour** #NowYouSeeHer by Heidi Perks @HeidiPerksBooks @arrowpublishing #SummerReads

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Today I’m thrilled to be one of the bloggers taking part in the Blog tour for Now You See Her by Heidi Perks, I have a feeling this is going to be one of the most talked about reads this summer. Before I share my review here’s the book description……

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She’s playing at the school fete with your children. You pull out your phone, scroll through Facebook, and look up again.

NOW YOU DON’T

Charlotte is looking after her best friend’s daughter the day she disappears. She thought the little girl was playing with her own children. She swears she only took her eyes off them for a second.

Now, Charlotte must do the unthinkable, tell her best friend Harriet that her only child is missing. The child she was meant to be watching.

Devastated, Harriet can no longer bear to see Charlotte. No one could expect her to trust her friend again.

Only now she needs to. Because two weeks later Harriet and Charlotte are both being questioned separately by the police. And secrets are about to surface.

Someone is hiding the truth about what really happened to Alice.

E1F3660A-E5FA-4419-8451-16F1D13B7348Three year old Alice goes missing, hardly an original theme you might think and to some degree I would agree with you,  but then Heidi Perks comes along and turns what could have been another “run of the mill” psychological thriller into something very special. Imagine being asked to look after your best friends child and then you lose them, what would be worse losing  your own child or someone else’s? that’s pretty much the premise for Now You See Her. Friendships are tested, scrutinised And dissected, fingers of suspicion are pointed, making Now You See Her a suspense fuelled and very compelling read.  

Unusual in a book with this theme the main focus isn’t on the police investigation but centres around the two main characters Charlotte and her best friend Harriet, both flawed, with very different personalities. The author explores their unlikely friendship and as she scratches away at the surface she deftly pulls the threads of their friendship apart. I found my feelings towards both characters constantly shifting as more details about them were revealed, I found myself distrustful of both characters at different points of the story, which certainly added to my enjoyment of this book. There’s one character who deserves a mention without giving too much away, they made my skin crawl and my hackles rise,  definitely a testament to the author’s writing skills that a character could get under my skin and stir up emotions I wasn’t expecting.  

Now You See Her alternates in chapters between Charlotte and Harriet and move back and forth between events before and after Alice’s disappearance. Sometimes I can struggle with this format, but not this time this form of story telling actually made this book a more enjoyable read as I found myself constantly second guessing things. I did have a niggling feeling I knew where the plot was heading and although I guessed correctly the author still managed to surprise me on one or more occasions.  

I wouldn’t consider Now You See Her to be action packed, but like many psychological thrillers the emphasis is very much on the characters, you will find yourself doubting them, questioning their motives, and desperately turning the pages to get to the truth. With familiar themes of deception, manipulation and secrets Now You See Her is a book I would definitely recommend to those who enjoy a psychological thriller with intriguing characters. Personally I think this book is the perfect beach read,  and I can definitely see this being one of the most talked about books this summer.  

  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Century (26 July 2018)

Buying links :    Amazon UK 🇬🇧         Amazon US 🇺🇸

About the author

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Heidi Perks was born in 1973. She lives by the sea in Bournemouth with her husband and two children.

Heidi graduated from Bournemouth University in 1997 with a BA (Hons) in Retail Management, and then enjoyed a career in Marketing before leaving in 2012 to focus on both bringing up her family and writing.

Heidi successfully applied for a place on the inaugural Curtis Brown Creative online Novel Writing Course and after that dedicated her time to completing her first novel, Beneath The Surface.

She has a huge interest in what makes people tick and loves to write about family relationships, especially where some of the characters are slightly dysfunctional. 

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Her Name Was Rose By Claire Allan #SummerReads @AvonBooksUK

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Today I’m sharing my review for Her Name Was Rose Allan a psychological thriller, which I have a feeling is going to be a big hit this summer, read on for my thoughts  but first the book description…….

Book description 

Her name was Rose. You watched her die. And her death has created a vacancy.

When Emily lets a stranger step out in front of her, she never imagines that split second will change her life. But after Emily watches a car plough into the young mother – killing her instantly – she finds herself unable to move on.

And then she makes a decision she can never take back.

Because Rose had everything Emily had ever dreamed of. A beautiful, loving family, a great job and a stunning home. And now Rose’s husband misses his wife, and their son needs a mother. Why couldn’t Emily fill that space?

But as Emily is about to discover, no one’s life is perfect … and not everything is as it seems.

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The old adage “the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence” constantly sprung to mind whilst reading Her Name Was Rose by Claire Allan. Emily becomes obsessed with Rose’s life after witnessing a tragic hit and run accident which leaves Rose dead. Emily then spends every waking minute learning more about Rose’s life through her Facebook page, friends and work colleagues, she  realises she wants Rose’s “perfect” life for herself. As you can imagine as this is a psychological thriller nothing is as it first seems, with an unreliable narrator and untrustworthy characters it’s one that will keep you guessing and questioning your own assumptions. 

Emily is very much a “marmite” character I can see reader’s being divided, at first I felt some sympathy for her, but as the story progressed and she planted herself firmly into Rose’s old life I couldn’t help but become irritated by her choices, don’t get me wrong she’s not a bad person, misguided maybe, needy definitely,  and you can’t help questioning how reliable she is as a narrator. Never the less Emily’s story made for a compelling read and I pretty much read this book in a couple of sittings.  

Her Name Was Rose is a psychological thriller that’s predictable in parts, but in the author’s defence I should point out I do read a lot of books in this genre so where I guessed what was coming next plot wise, other readers may miss the signs and be surprised by the twists. Claire Allan tackles some difficult subjects, but she does so with sensitivity,  it never felt like she was exploiting uncomfortable subjects to make the story more thrilling. I’m sure Her Name Is Rose is going to be a very popular read this summer, and I can see why it has all the hallmarks of best seller with themes of jealousy, abuse, obsession and secrecy at its core. If you are a fan of psychological thrillers with a leaning towards domestic noir then Her Name Is Rose is definitely one to add to your TBR pile.  

  • Print Length: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Avon; edition edition (28 Jun. 2018)

 

Buying links:       Amazon UK 🇬🇧        Amazon US 🇺🇸

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**Blog tour** Some They Lie by M K Farrar @MarissaFarrar @damppebbles #International #Giveaway

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Today I’m thrilled to be one of the book bloggers taking part in a rather unusual Blog tour courtesy of damppebbles blog tours, for Some They Lie by MK Farrar, what’s unusual about it? I’m sure you’re wondering, well for a start you won’t find reviews, guest post or extracts, this tour is all about the book.  The very generous author is giving you the chance to win a £5.00 $5, €5 (depending on where the winner is based) Amazon Voucher on EVERY stop of the blog tour, how generous is that? Before I share details of how you can enter the #Giveaway here are some details about the book…..

Book description 

Everybody hides the monster inside…

When Olivia Midhurst meets Michael, she doesn’t fool herself that he’s the perfect guy. No one is perfect—she knows that better than most. Everyone has their secrets, their skeletons in the closet. 

But something about Michael’s behaviour sets alarm bells ringing, and, when people around her start to go missing, and then turn up dead, she’s forced to act.

Knowing the police will never believe what she’s witnessed, and terrified her accusations will only drag up the past she’s worked so hard to bury, Olivia has no choice but to take things into her own hands…

About M.K Farrar:

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M.K. Farrar is the pen name for a USA Today Bestselling author of more than thirty novels. ‘Some They Lie’ is her first psychological thriller, but won’t be her last. When she’s not writing, M.K. is rescuing animals from far off places, binge watching shows on Netflix, or reading. She lives in the English countryside with her husband, three daughters, and menagerie of pets. 

You can sign up to MK’s newsletter here – https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/m6v9h8

Or she can be emailed at mkfarrar@hotmail.com. She loves to hear from readers!

Social Media:

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/MarissaFarrar

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/marissa.farrar.author/

Website:  http://www.marissafarrar.com/

Instagram:  https://www.instagram.com/marissafarrar/

Amazon Author Page:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/M-K-Farrar/e/B07DRGPWF3/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Purchase Links:    Amazon UK 🇬🇧          Amazon US 🇺🇸

Some They Lie is published by Warwick House Press on 24th July 2018.

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The Prize is for one Amazon £5.00 $5, €5 (depending on where the winner is based) Voucher, please note I will passing the winner’s details on to the author as the prize will come direct from her.  The competition closes midnight Tuesday 24th July.  I will contact the winner within  24 hours of competition closin.  The Giveaway is international so anyone can enter. 

You can enter competition here…… #Giveaway £5.00 Amazon Voucher

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**Blog blitz** Portraits Of The Dead by John Nicholl @nicholl06 @BloodhoundBook

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As part of the Blog Blitz for Portraits Of The Dead by John Nicholl I’m thrilled to be sharing my review, but before I do here’s the book description…..

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Emma didn’t know how long he hid, silent and unmoving, in the large Victorian wardrobe to the side of her single bed. She didn’t know how long he peered out, salivating and drooling, between the two heavy dark oak doors, and watched, mesmerised, as she slowly drifted into fitful sleep. She didn’t know what time he pushed the doors open and crept towards her in the drab grey darkness of the night.

Detective Inspector Gravel finds himself floundering when a local nineteen-year-old university student is abducted and imprisoned by a sadistic serial killer, who has already tortured and killed five young women.

How far would you go to save your life?

img_1258Portraits Of The Dead completely freaked me out and that was just from looking at the  fantastic and very creepy cover! It’s the clown that did it, they absolutely terrify me! There is no doubt about it author John Nicholl certainly knows how to write a darkly disturbing and hair-raising tale, in my opinion this is the authors best book yet. The author pulls the reader in with a shocking and sinister opening chapter, it was so intense I just knew I was in for a hell of a read.

A young student is abducted and imprisoned by a sadistic serial killer, and my god he’s one deviant and twisted individual, devoid of empathy, incapable of sympathy or understanding he torments his victims in the cruellest possible ways. The author portrays the serial killer so well I felt I was looking into the darkest corners of the human mind. There is another shocking character who is just as evil and twisted, and shocked me to the core with their antics, but if you want to know more about them you will have to read the book (no spoilers here). The characters are well developed, and although not necessarily likeable they added depth to a very intriguing read.

Not only do we get to know the serial killer during Portraits Of The Dead, we also get to learn about the victim and her time as a captive, although the way she was treated at times made for an uncomfortable read, it wasn’t particularly graphic but chilling never the less. As the investigation intensifies and police appeals are made, we do get to see glimpses of the police side of the investigation, again there were some great characters who appeared very credible in their investigation to find Emma and bring a killer to justice.

Despite working out who the killer was half way through the book, this in no way spoilt the novel for me, in fact it heightened the tension as you weren’t entirely sure what the killer would do next. The plot moves along at a steady pace with some shocks along the way, some of which I never saw coming, so this certainly added to my enjoyment of Portraits Of The Dead Just as you thought the author could not possibly have any more shocks in store for the reader, he hits you with the biggest one of all! By the time I reached the end of the novel I was well and truly struck dumb, the author managed to tie up the plot in a very original way, which I loved (sorry that’s all you’re getting, no spoilers remember!)

I’m afraid there is no way to avoid the cliché: I could not put this novel down! Disturbing and compelling, an edge-of-the-seat story. I would certainly recommend this book to crime lovers and anyone else who is looking for a gripping and darkly disturbing read.

  • Print Length: 273 pages
  • Publisher: Bloodhound Books (16 July 2018)

Buying links:    Amazon UK 🇬🇧

About the author

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John Nicholl, an ex-police officer, child protection social worker and lecturer, has written six darkly psychological suspense thrillers, each of which has been an Amazon # 1 bestseller. John is happily married, lives in rural west Wales, and has three adult children and one grandchild, with a second expected in August 2018. He began writing after leaving his job heading up child protection services for Carmarthenshire.

John is represented by Toby Mundy – Literary agent at TMA.

You can find out more about John and his books at: http://www.johnnicholl.com

Links:

Facebook
 
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Into The Darkness by Sibel Hodge @sibelhodge #BookReview

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Today I’m delighted to be sharing my review for Into The Darkness by Sibel Hodge, but first the book description…

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Book description 

The Missing…

In a hidden basement, eighteen-year-old Toni is held captive and no one can hear her screams. She’s been abducted after investigating unspeakable things in the darkest corners of the Internet.

The Vigilante…

Fearing the worst, Toni’s mother turns to ex-SAS operative Mitchell to help find her missing daughter. And when Mitchell discovers Toni’s fate rests in the hands of pure evil, he races against the clock to find Toni and bring her out alive. But even that might not be enough to save her.

The Detective…

DS Warren Carter is looking forward to a new job and a simpler life. But when he’s called in to investigate the brutal murder of a seemingly normal couple, he becomes entangled in lives that are anything but simple. And as he digs deeper, he uncovers a crime more twisted than he could ever have imagined.

Into the Darkness is the chilling new thriller from the bestselling author of Duplicity and Beneath the Surface.

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Prepare yourself for a bumpy ride as Sibel Hodge takes the reader to the darkest places or rather the darkest corner of the dark web, it’s a place where evil people hide, the most abhorrent crimes are committed, and the most depraved people can partake in their darkest, sickest fantasies. As you can imagine Into The Darkness makes for a grim read in parts due to the very disturbing subject matter, but at the same time it’s one of those books you are desperate to continue reading, hoping for a positive outcome. 

Into The Darkness is told in alternating chapters titled The Missing, The Vigilante and The Detective to begin with I had reservations about the way the story was told, as the constant jumping from one character to another confused me (it doesn’t take much) but once I got to chapter eight everything clicked into place. Like the best illusions nothing about Into The Darkness is as it first seems, the author skilfully intertwines what appears to be three separate threads together creating a book filled with horror and brimming with tension.  

It’s evident the author has throughly researched the dark web in great detail making Into The Darkness a terrifying, yet plausible read. I’m sure most of us are aware of the dark web and some of what it contains, so I’m not going give away any spoilers. As you can imagine a book where the dark web is central to the plot isn’t necessarily going to be an easy read, but what makes this book all the more frightening is it actually made for a credible read, which in turn  made it all the more chilling. Sibel Hodge certainly knows how to hold the readers attention, with interesting characters and a terrifying yet credible plot, it’s one of those heart thumping reads that those who enjoy a darker crime thriller will relish.  

Print Length: 296 pages

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (3 July 2018)

Buying links:     Amazon UK        Amazon US 🇺🇸