February 5

Two Nights – Kathy Reichs

Meet Sunnie Night a woman with physical and psychological scars, and a killer instinct . . .

Sunnie has spent years running from her past, burying secrets and building a life in which she needs no one and feels nothing.

But a girl has gone missing, lost in the chaos of a bomb explosion, and the family needs Sunnie’s help.

Is the girl dead?

Did someone take her?

If she is out there, why doesn’t she want to be found?

It’s time for Sunnie to face her own demons – because they might just lead her to the truth about what really happened all those years ago.

 

My thanks to Random House, Cornerstone for my review copy which I received through Netgalley

A stand alone thriller from Kathy Reichs, a break from the Tempe Brennan thrillers which I have enjoyed for many years now. As a fan of recurring characters and getting caught up in an ongoing series, I should be vexed when an author breaks from the familiar to introduce new heroes to follow. However, there is always that fascination to find out what they may come up with when “unshackled” and able to cause havoc on new characters with no responsibility to keep them all alive so they can appear in the next book.

I must admit that I was pleasantly surprised with Two Nights, it felt totally different from from a Brennan thriller (which I guess was the point). Sunnie Night is a complex character who is living a reclusive lifestyle until she is sought out and her services requested by a well-to-do client for whom money is no real object when it comes to tracing a missing member of her family.

A bomb explosion has robbed a family of precious lives, however, there remains some doubt that a teenage girl (related to Sunnie’s client) actually died in the blast.  Sunnie is engaged to find out if the girl may still be alive.  If she is to be successful Sunnie will need to understand why the girl may not have made herself known to her remaining family after surviving such an ordeal.

But Sunnie’s investigations will mean looking into why the bomb was placed and at those responsible. These are not people who will welcome snooping and Sunnie has put herself in the firing line – good job she is more than adept at outfoxing the tw0-bit thugs.

Something very different from Kathy Reichs but she knows how tell a good story and Two Nights is well worth hunting down.

 

Two Nights is currently available in Hardback and digital format with the paperback released scheduled for April 2018. You can order a copy here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Two-Nights-Kathy-Reichs-ebook/dp/B019CGXMCK/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1517871460&sr=1-1

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January 5

Dead Is Best – Jo Perry

 

Charlie and Rose are back in their much anticipated new adventure. Charlie’s step daughter lies dying on a beach. She needs help. Some serious help. But how did she get there and what can on earth can a dead guy and his dead dog do? Plenty as it turns out. As Charlie & Rose ride to the rescue in their own unique way it soon becomes clear that the body on the beach was only the beginning…

 

 

 

One of the most unusual (but enjoyable) partnerships I have encountered while blogging. Charlie is dead. Rose, a dog, is also dead. Together they can drift in and out of the real world and spectate but their capacity to interact is virtually nil.

Dead is Best opens with Charlie’s step-daughter Cali suffering a near-death experience. She sees Charlie and Rose and begs for their help before she is returned to her unhappy existence. Charlie and Rose return to the world to keep a watch over Cali and the full extent of her problems soon become clear.

I love how Jo Perry tackles events in Dead Is Best. While Charlie and Rose cannot intercede during events Charlie is a highly effective narrator.  He can travel to where Cali is but when necessary he can move to a different location, for example to see how Cali’s mother (Charie’s ex-wife and her new husband) are handling their “difficult” child.  Not Well it would appear.

Charlie begins to understand how tough life is for Cali – a troubled teen who appears to have fallen in with a bad crowd. As the story progresses and Cali finds herself in trouble with the law we see the true strength of her character come to the fore.

As non-corporeal entities Charlie and Rose can be anywhere they need to be and often witness the worst of people.  They see acts of violence and bullying which the protagonists would never let a “human” observe and Charlie’s frustration at his inability to intercede seeps through – brilliantly written by Jo Perry.

The Charlie and Rose stories are quite unlike anything else I read and I cannot recommend them highly enough.  Hunt them down…or use this handy link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jo-Perry/e/B00PEG4T9I/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

 

Dead is Best is published by Fahrenheit Press in digital and paperback format.

 

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January 5

Games With The Dead – James Nally

Irish runaway. Insomniac. Functioning alcoholic.
Life is about to get complicated for DC Donal Lynch.

When a young woman is kidnapped, Donal is brought in to deliver the ransom money. But the tightly-planned drop off goes wrong, Julie Draper is discovered dead, and Donal finds his job on the line – a scapegoat for the officers in charge.

But when Donal is delivered a cryptic message in the night, he learns that Julie was killed long before the botched rescue mission. As he digs further into the murder in a bid to clear his own name, dark revelations make one thing certain: the police are chasing the wrong man, and the killer has far more blood on his hands than they could even imagine.

 

My thanks to Sabah at Avon for my review copy and the chance to join the blog tour

 

The third novel in the Donal Lynch series but Games With The Dead can easily be read as a stand alone novel without the need to have read the earlier books.  I can confirm this with a degree of certainty as I had not read the first two books and still thoroughly enjoyed Games.

The description of the novel (as above) led me to believe this may be a kidnap/murder tale and it is…but it is so much more as well.  The story opens with the police attempt to recover a kidnapped woman: Julie Draper. DC Donal Lynch is the man tasked with delivering the ransom payment and “rescuing” Julie from the kidnappers. Regrettably all does not go to plan and Donal will be held liable by his bosses.

With his work life in a crisis there is no respite for Donal at home either.  His girlfriend has been distant and remote since the birth of her son and Donal is hitting the drink too hard.  Not helping matters is the fact Ireland are in the soccer World Cup Finals (it is Summer 1994) and all Irish footy fans are swelling the takings at pubs up and down the land as they cheer on their heroes in the USA.  With Donal being urged on by his brother to shake off his other half we see our hero’s emotions pulled every which way.

I am reluctant to share too much of what happens to Donal during Games With The Dead, but he is given the opportunity to work for a different team within the police and it will place him in more danger than he is accustomed to facing – it makes for gripping reading.

While reading Games With The Dead I got wholly drawn into the story and Donal’s perils kept me turning the pages well into the night. After the initial kidnap drama had reached its unexpected endgame I was not sure what may lie ahead for Donal – what James Nally had in store for DC Lynch was an absolute treat for this crime fiction fan.

Highly recommended, some 90’s nostalgia and a thumping great read.

 

Games With The Dead is published by Avon and is available in paperback and digital format.  You can order a copy here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Games-Dead-Donal-Lynch-Thriller-ebook/dp/B072S4QY15/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1515088897&sr=8-1

 

 

 

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January 4

Dark Pines – Will Dean

An isolated Swedish town.

A deaf reporter terrified of nature.

A dense spruce forest overdue for harvest.

A pair of eyeless hunters found murdered in the woods.

It’s week one of the Swedish elk hunt and the sound of gunfire is everywhere. When Tuva Moodyson investigates the story that could make her career she stumbles on a web of secrets that knit Gavrik town together. Are the latest murders connected to the Medusa killings twenty years ago? Is someone following her? Why take the eyes? Tuva must face her demons and venture deep into the woods to stop the killer and write the story. And then get the hell out of Gavrik.

 

My thanks to Margot at One World Publications for my review copy and the chance to join the blog tour.

 

I have been looking forward to sharing my review of Dark Pines, when I read I book which I absolutely adored I want to share my review immediately!

Dark Pines is an atmospheric murder tale which takes the readers to a remote Swedish town and sees much of the action taking place in the dark, claustrophobic woods. The lead character, Tuva Moodyson, is a reporter working at the small local paper but the murder deep in the woods (during hunting season) may give her the opportunity to report on one of the biggest stories the region has ever seen.

Tuva is a terrific character and I loved reading her story. Her deafness is depicted really well by Will Dean, it is an issue she deals with and ensures other characters adapt to her requirements. She has a strong personality and tenacious attitude and this serves her well as her reporting of the deaths in the woods will become problematic for the residents of her home town.

The murder story is chilling too.  Twenty years prior to events in Dark Pines a killer stalked the woods, removing the eyes of their victims. The killer became known as “Medusa” but was never caught and, without explanation, the murders ceased. Spinning forward to present day the latest murder is causing the townsfolk significant concern – when it become apparent that the victim has had his eyes removed their concern intensifies.

Dark Pines is a storming read. One of those books which can wholly consume your attention and pull you entirely into the story.  A five star review for a book which I will be recommending to everyone.

 

Dark Pines is published by Point Blank and can be ordered here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dark-Pines-Tuva-Moodyson-Mystery/dp/1786073854/ref=la_B0759QS537_1_1_twi_pap_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1515062614&sr=1-1

 

 

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January 2

The Night Stalker & Dark Water

In January my day job changes and my mega commute of the last 5 months will cease. Between July and December I would spent around 5 hours each day driving the same road, home to office and home again. To pass the time I would listen to talking books, but as I was seldom awake while I was home I fell behind on reviewing those listens…catch-up time.

 

Today I have reviews for two Robert Bryndza books. Huge thanks to Noelle and Kim at Bookouture for the Audible review copies.

 

The Night Stalker

If the Night Stalker is watching, you’re already dead…

In the dead of a swelteringly hot summer’s night, Detective Erika Foster is called to a murder scene. The victim, a doctor, is found suffocated in bed. His wrists are bound and his eyes bulging through a clear plastic bag tied tight over his head.

A few days later, another victim is found dead, in exactly the same circumstances. As Erika and her team start digging deeper, they discover a calculated serial killer – stalking their victims before choosing the right moment to strike.

The victims are all single men, with very private lives. Why are their pasts shrouded in secrecy? And what links them to the killer?

As a heat wave descends upon London, Erika will do everything to stop the Night Stalker before the body count rises, even if it means risking her job. But the victims might not be the only ones being watched… Erika’s own life could be on the line.

 

The second Erika Foster novel. A series which my fellow bloggers all seemed to love (and I thought had sounded fantastic) but I was late to the party.  The good thing about playing catch-up is that there are several books waiting for me and I don’t need to wait months for the next installment!

The Night Stalker is a serial killer tale – one I really, really enjoyed. The victims are found in their homes, bound and suffocated; murdered in the place where they should have been safe from harm. As Foster considers the first victim, tied to his bed with a bag over his head, she cannot discount the possibility that the man died as a result of a sexual encounter gone wrong. The investigation will be complicated as she tries to uncover the man’s private life and unearth any secrets he may have tried to keep.

When a second victim is discovered the stakes are raised as is the pressure on Erika and her team.  A prominent media personality is dead, the press are clamouring for information and her bosses are demanding significant progress in made on the investigations.  Erika needs to find a possible connection between the two men but she cannot know if there is one – perhaps the victims were selected at random.

For the reader there is the chilling bonus of being able to follow part of the story from the viewpoint of the The Night Stalker.  We see the killer watching the next target and follow them as they break into the victim’s home. When the Night Stalker becomes aware of Erika’s investigation the Stalker then focuses on her – unknown to Erika she is a target.

Robert Bryndza is great at pacing the action and there were some fabulous twists through the story. The Night Stalker is gripping reading (or listening in this instance) and it significantly builds on the character of Erika Foster and her colleagues – setting up the rest of the series nicely.

 

Dark Water

Beneath the water the body sank rapidly.  She would lie still and undisturbed for many years but above her on dry land, the nightmare was just beginning.

When Detective Erika Foster receives a tip off that key evidence for a major narcotics case was stashed in a disused quarry on the outskirts of London, she orders for it to be searched. From the thick sludge the drugs are recovered, but so is the skeleton of a young child.

The remains are quickly identified as eleven-year-old Jessica Collins.  The missing girl who made headline news when she vanished twenty-six years ago.

As Erika tries to piece together new evidence with the old, she discovers a family harbouring secrets, a detective plagued by her failure to find Jessica, and the mysterious death of a man living by the quarry.

Is the suspect someone close to home? Someone doesn’t want this case solved. And they’ll do anything to stop Erika from finding the truth.

 

Book 3 and a rather distressing cold case for Erika and her team to take on. Except her team are not her team any longer – she has been transferred to a new station and it seems we will be robbed of the company of Moss and Peterson. Fortunately resurrecting an old investigation (a missing girl who vanished from her street some 26 years earlier) merits extra staff numbers and the trio will soon be reunited.

Dark Water has a very different feel from the first two novels but not to the detriment of excellent storytelling.

Erika will need to wade through boxes of old investigative notes but she could always seek out the assistance of the original investigating officer. This may lead to problems as the officer she needs to consult left the force in disgrace and has drunk herself to oblivion in the intervening years.

When a girl has been missing for 26 years there will inevitably be someone who knows where she has been all this time, someone who may not wish the police to look too closely into the case again. Who can Erika trust to reveal the truth after all those years? Certainly not the alleged pedophile who was once the prime suspect but now holds the police over a barrel after someone (convinced of his guilt) took matters into their own hands.

Of the three Erika Foster books I listened to over the last 5 months I think Dark Water just edges it as my favourite, though that *may* be down to the ongoing development of the characters and my appreciation of the books growing!

Both the above books are narrated by Jan Cramer and she is absolutely marvellous. Having listened to the first three Erika Foster novels, and not actually reading any of the books first, my perception of all the characters has been defined by Jan Cramer’s depiction of them.

I have a dilemma now over whether to get book 4 on audio or pick up a Kindle copy – whatever I choose I already know I am looking forward to my next encounter with Erika Foster.

 

The Night Stalker and Dark Water are published by Bookouture and can be ordered here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Robert-Bryndza/e/B0089KJBVM/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

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December 17

Jacqueline Chadwick

When drawing up my list of favourite books of 2017 I knew that Jacqueline Chadwick was going to feature.  I knew that from half-way through her debut novel In The Still.

There was actually only one point where I contemplated not including In The Still in the list and that was when I finished her second book: Briefly Maiden (how to choose between two cracking reads?)

It has been far too long since I had the opportunity to chat with any of the authors who have featured on my blog so I was thrilled that Jackie agreed to join me for a natter about her writing and all things Ali Dalglish…

 

First Question is never a question — this is where I ask you to introduce yourself and give your books a plug.

Well, first and foremost, I’m a mother of two, wife of a firefighter and a dog lover. I’m originally from Stirling in Scotland and I grew up in Birmingham England. I was a child actor and during my career I played a couple of well known bitch roles on TV. I left acting when I was 25, homeschooled my kids and found some time for writing here and there. When I turned 40, I bought a secondhand desk and decided to write novels. I haven’t looked back since.

Published by Fahrenheit Press in July 2017, my debut novel is In The Still where we meet Ali Dalglish living a life she resents. Having stepped away from her career and having immigrated to Canada, Ali’s marriage is crumbling, she is lonely and depressed. When the body of a young woman is discovered on a trail near her home, Ali finds herself embroiled in the case and, given her expertise and experience, is left with no option but to embark upon the hunt for the killer alongside her accidental sidekick, the loveable Marlene McKean. It is a dark and twisted tale and I hope it entertains the reader from the first page to the last.

Briefly Maiden, the sequel to In The Still, is also published by Fahrenheit Press and finds Ali back in the role she loves. This time she is working alongside the Vancouver Island Integrated Major Incident Squad investigating a series of murders in the otherwise charming town of Cedar River. Ali and her partner, Inspector Rey Cuzzocrea, discover the victims are all linked to a paedophile ring and, as a result, the line dividing good and bad becomes blurred as they are tasked with apprehending a perpetrator they suspect to be a victim intent upon vigilante justice. There is a blossoming romance for recently divorced Ali, the introduction of a couple of key characters in the series and an ending that should leave the reader eager for book 3.

 

Tell us about Ali Dalglish – how would you describe her to someone yet to read In The Still and Briefly Maiden?

Ali Dalglish is bloody fantastic. She’s intelligent, funny, caring and driven by a need to protect the vulnerable. She’s Scottish, mouthy and not afraid to pepper her superior vocabulary with inventive swear words. Her marriage is a disaster, she frequently struggles to maintain a healthy work/life balance. She has fought — and continues to fight — a long, arduous battle with severe mental illness. Ali is the kind of woman we all either want to be or want by our side. She’s forthright and takes no shit, she refuses to be bracketed, objectified or intimidated and she is blessed with a mind that makes her a formidable foe to anyone daring enough to wander into her arena.

 

How much of Jacqueline Chadwick is mirrored in Ali?

Too much. I swear as much and fit into polite society just as well as she does. I suppose Ali is my way of ranting about everything that pisses me off. She’s a gazillion times more learned than I (I know that because of everything I have to research just to fit her wealth of knowledge as seamlessly as possible into her dialogue and also because I use words like gazillion).

 

We know that Ali had a very successful career in the UK prior to her decision to relocate to Canada – is there any chance we may one day see a story featuring a younger Ali – one based in the UK?

Ha! I’m writing book 4 in the series right now. It is set in Britain, but it’s not a prequel. Over the course of the series, I’m excited to drop in morsels of information about Ali’s past since it was less than functional and, perhaps, not dissimilar to the kind of childhood that could just as easily have set her on a darker path, the kind of path chosen by the predators she hunts. The great thing about having a character that had established herself professionally in Britain and then later in Canada, is that I am able to cross the pond to write and that is a satisfying and more affordable alternative to actually jumping on a flight myself whenever I’m homesick.

 

I need to ask about the old day jobs…how does appearing in two of the UK’s most watched TV shows prepare you for writing dark and gritty crime thrillers? 

I’m having a giggle as I answer that one because being in British soap was no preparation whatsoever for anything at all in life. Wow, that was a weird trip. I can’t imagine what it would take to stay sane in that industry longterm. I stuck it out for a decade and a half but I just wasn’t the kind of puppet an actor is expected to be. I’m not very good at shutting my mouth and being what someone else tells me to be. It’s simply not in my nature and I never did feel very comfortable with it all. Honestly, I barely remember that time now, it’s just something I did as a child and as a young woman. I would have nightmares — actual wake-up-sweating-and-shaking nightmares — for the first few years after I left because I’d dream of being back in front of the camera. Give me a quiet room, some paper and a pen and I’m me.

 

Can I ask about your “Path to Publication”? (it gets capitals). Does Chez Chadwick have a drawer crammed full of rejection letters or did you ace it and get picked up in record time?

I’ve had a few false starts in writing. It has always been my goal to write for a living and so I do have a healthy amount of rejection slips although I’d never keep the buggers so, no, there isn’t a drawer stuffed with them. Rejections get deleted or binned as soon as they are received so that I can go on deluding myself into thinking I have something to offer. I was lucky with Ali Dalglish, I wrote the first three novels in the series before I let anyone read them and I sent them off to the publisher who terrified me most and felt out of reach: Chris McVeigh at Fahrenheit Press. I knew that if my work was shit, he’d tell me. Thankfully, he liked the books (all except the original ending to In The Still which he told me, in his own inimitable way, to scrap) and I’ve been lucky enough to join the Fahrenheit Press family and get on that particular thrill ride.

 

Rumour has it that there may be a third Ali Dalglish book on the horizon — can you share any sneaky hints?

I Loooove book 3 in the series. It’s called Silent Sisters and it addresses a problem I care about very much. It takes place in and around an Aboriginal reserve on Vancouver Island and, I hope, will bring attention to the very real issue of missing and murdered Aboriginal women and girls and the indifference the subject seems to inspire in political leaders. But there are two major elements to the story and so it satisfies the insatiable itch that Briefly Maiden left me with. It is gruesome and dark, twisted and grim because, in my humble opinion, murder and abuse should be nothing but those things, we should feel sickened and touched by the telling of stories that, no matter how bleak, are nothing close to the horrors of the real world.

 

And to wrap up, some quickfire questions:

What was the last book you read?

I reread ‘It’ by Stephen King after I went to see the movie (I forgot how long that sucker is).

 

City Break or Beach Holiday?  (and where is the dream destination)

Definitely city, I would love to take my family on a European tour before they’re so grown that it would be sad to go away for a month with Mum and Dad.

 

Did you ever get “star-struck” when meeting someone famous?

I’ve been to two Billy Connelly concerts and finding myself in the same room as ‘the big yin’ takes some beating.

 

Favourite pizza topping (and be warned that answering ‘pineapple’ will probably spark some twitter carnage)

I’m like Kevin in Home Alone; I want a plain cheese just for me.

 

What do you miss most about the UK?

Irn Bru, tattie scones, square sausage, not having to explain my humour and Sunday lunch over a pint in a proper pub.

 

Huge thanks to Jackie for taking time to answer my questions. I don’t have the words to tell you how much I have enjoyed her books and it is a real thrill to be able to share our chat.

In The Still and Briefly Maiden are published by Fahrenheit Press and you can order both books here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jacqueline-Chadwick/e/B074JCXLRD/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1513554879&sr=8-1

 

 

 

 

 

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December 10

From The Cradle – Louise Voss & Mark Edwards

When Helen and Sean Philips go out for the evening, leaving their teenage daughter babysitting little Frankie, they have no idea that they are about to face every parent’s greatest fear.

Detective Inspector Patrick Lennon is hopeful that the three children who have been abducted in this patch of south-west London will be returned safe and well. But when a body is found in a local park, Lennon realizes that time is running out—and that nothing in this case is as it seems…

Blending police procedural with psychological thriller, From the Cradle will have every parent checking that their children are safe in their beds…then checking again.

 

From The Cradle is published by Thomas & Mercer – you can order a copy here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cradle-Detective-Lennon-Thriller-Book-ebook/dp/B00K8EM27C/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

This book has been on my TBR pile for far too long, so when the chance to listen to the audiobook arose I was delighted.

This is a kidnap tale – three toddlers have been stolen away from their families by person or persons unknown.  DI Patrick Lennon is leading the investigation and he has his own family problems bubbling in the background – his wife is (shockingly) out of the picture and he is reliant upon his retired parents to help look after his young daughter.

A quick look at these lines from the description of the book:

The first child was taken from her house.
The second from his mother’s car.
The third from her own bedroom…

The third kidnap is the point where the reader joins the story. Helen and Sean Phillips are enjoying a comfortable life but everything is about to come crashing down around them, returning home from a romantic dinner they find their young daughter’s bed empty. Her big sister is sleeping on the couch but she is unusually drowsy and the backdoor (which was to be kept locked) is very much unlocked.

Most of the narrative will follow either the kidnap investigation or events in the Phillips house where tensions are as high as you may expect.  There are some additional players who will play key roles in the hunt for the missing children – but their involvement represent spoilers so you will have to find out about the delightful extra details for yourself.

For the audiobook – James Clamp narrates brilliantly and his skills at presenting multiple characters gives From The Cradle a boost above other books I have listened to – easier to enjoy a listen when the narrator is so good.

 

 

 

 

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December 3

Just One Time – K.S. Hunter

Desire can have dire consequences 

Two years ago, David Madden made a mistake that almost cost him his marriage. His wife, Alison, gave him another chance, but she has not forgotten, nor has she forgiven.

She is irresistible

Then David meets the alluring Nina at a theatre in London. When he loses his phone in the dark, she helps him find it, and by giving her his number he unwittingly invites her into his life.

What David initially views as an innocent flirt turns into a dangerous game of deception. His increasingly suspicious wife thinks something is up, and each lie he tells pushes them further apart.

She is insatiable

Nina pursues David relentlessly, following him to New York where she gives him an ultimatum: sleep with her, just one time, and then she’ll get out of his life forever; or she’ll ruin everything he holds dear.

She is unstoppable

Of course, once won’t be enough for Nina, and what David hoped would be the end is merely the beginning.

A modern-day Fatal Attraction, Just One Time is a steamy psychological thriller that will have you hooked from the first page and holding your breath until its shocking conclusion.

If you liked Gone Girl and Maestra, you’ll love Just One Time.

 

Thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to join the tour.

 

I am glad the book’s blurb mentioned Fatal Attraction – I have not seen many films made after 1995 and I was worried that stating Just One Time had reminded me of Fatal Attraction would make me seem a bit out of touch!!!

But it did. Remind me of a film with an obsessive female and a man totally out of his depth.

Just One Time opens with David getting drunk and intimate (graphically) on a one night stand.  His wife finds out about his dalliance. We spin forward two years and David’s marriage is just holding together, his wife has not forgiven him but for the sake of their young daughter she has not kicked him out.  David is very much aware that he is on his last chance but his “moment of weakness” had been Just One Time.

But on a night at the theatre David meets Nina.  She gets his phone number and she wants him. Obsessively and Nina is not going to give up until she gets her man. So will begin David’s torment.  Shunned by his wife and desired by a gorgeous woman will David give in to his temptations?

Well there are spoilers in answering that so you will need to read to find out more.  However, I can share that Nina will stop at nothing to get what she wants and David will find it increasingly hard to escape her advances.

Just One Time was a quick read – Amazon showing 180 pages in length so I zipped through it.  But it held my attention well and it gave more than one instance of uncomfortable reading. I appreciate why the description used Gone Girl and Maestra, it did merge the more notorious elements of each book.

A wee change of page from my normal books and I did enjoy it, some nice wee twists along the way too.

 

Just One time is the first novel by K.S. Hunter, the alter ego of an international bestselling author, whose identity will remain a secret.

The book releases on Kindle on 7 December 2017 and you can order a copy here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Just-One-Time-K-S-Hunter-ebook/dp/B077CXFVK3/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1512246860&sr=8-1&keywords=just+one+time

 

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November 21

Hunger Moon – Alexandra Sokoloff

Revenge has no limits.

Special Agent Matthew Roarke has abandoned his rogue search for serial killer Cara Lindstrom. He’s returned to the FBI to head a task force with one mission: to rid society of its worst predators. But as the skeletal symbols of Santa Muerte, “Lady Death,” mysteriously appear at universities nationwide, threatening death to rapists, Roarke’s team is pressured to investigate. When a frat boy goes missing in Santa Barbara, Roarke realizes a bloodbath is coming—desperate teenagers are about to mete out personal, cold-blooded justice.

Hiding from the law, avenging angel Cara Lindstrom is on her own ruthless quest. She plans to stay as far away from Roarke as possible—until an old enemy comes after both her and the FBI, forcing her back into Roarke’s orbit. This time, the huntress has become the hunted…

 

My thanks to Giselle at Xpresso Book Tours for the opportunity to join the blog tour

 

If you have not been following the Cara Lindstrom “Huntress” books by Alexandra Sokoloff then you are missing out on some of the most powerful and important serial killer stories currently on release.

A pretty bold opening statement given the vast wealth of choice crime readers have. However in Cara Lindstrom we have a killer who is fighting back on behalf of the women who have fallen victim to men and suffered at their hands. She picks off the abusers and the rapists and she makes them pay on behalf of the silent victims. After years of working in silence she has become “famous” and now men are hunting her – not just the authorities (though FBI agent Roarke has been pursing her through 4 previous books) but men who would harm her and make an example of her are chasing Cara down.

Cara’s cause is taken up by a group calling themselves Bitch. They are also seeking justice against the men who have for so many years been able to get away with heinous crimes and assisted in covering for their counterparts.

The relationship (as it is) between Cara and Roarke has been tracked through Hunger Moon and the 4 books which precede it. It really does help to have read the earlier novels.  Previous books have also seen the growth of Bitch and some associated characters to Bitch who will enforce their own justice in the way they feel Cara would. Now take a powder-keg of revenge and drop it into 2017 America – the America of Trump “Making America Great Again” and of sexual scandals and the recent #metoo declarations. Hunger Moon is going to rip off the cover of all the bad behaviours and expose the evil within and it is done exceedingly well.

In Hunger Moon Alexandra Sokoloff slams the worst of society and shows a few good souls trying to do right by the victims against an overwhelming wall of secrets, lies and covering up. Roarke and his team are trying to investigate a college frat house – victim of an act of vandalism – but they suspect the vandals were also delivering a warning. The fraternity will close ranks to protect their own but Roarke needs to know why they were a target and if there is any potential that the vandal may return with a bigger “message” in mind. Reading of Roarke’s frustration at not being able to do a full investigation as powerful men tried to play political games was thoroughly engrossing and wholly believable.

Not one to shy away from the realities of the crimes being committed, readers are left in no doubt that the author finds no sympathy for the victims of Lindstrom and Bitch – their crimes are cast back to them and they will pay. This is not a book for the mild mannered or faint of heart. Hunger Moon shows the anger of the author at today’s society and it is guaranteed to elicit an extremely emotive response – anger, frustration, horror, regret, sympathy…they all get drawn out over the course of the book.

Powerful and unmissable – Hunger Moon…a must read.

 

Hunger Moon can be purchased via the link below – all the earlier books can be acquired on the second link

Purchase: Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/HungerMoon-Alexandra-Sokoloff-ebook/dp/B071L1NQJ2
Previous books in the series:
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B073FWYBPM/ref=series_rw_dp_sw

Throughout the Hunger Moon tour there is a an ongoing Giveaway offering the chance to win a $50 Amazon Gift Voucher.  Open to International applicants – access the competition via this link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/d04251232148/

 

Category: From The Bookshelf | Comments Off on Hunger Moon – Alexandra Sokoloff
November 4

Shadows – Paul Finch

As a female cop walking the mean streets of Manchester, life can be tough for PC Lucy Clayburn. But when one of the North West’s toughest gangsters is your father, things can be particularly difficult.

When Lucy’s patch is gripped by a spate of murder-robberies, the police are quick to action. Yet when it transpires that the targets are Manchester’s criminal underworld, attitudes change.

Lucy is soon faced with one of the toughest cases of her life – and one which will prove once and for all whether blood really is thicker than water…

 

My thanks to Sabah at Avon for my review copy and the chance to join the tour

 

A new Paul Finch book is always met with much excitement at Grab This Book so when Shadows hit my Kindle I could not wait to start reading.

Lucy Clayburn returns for a second outing following her debut in Strangers. Having read Strangers will help you better understand  a couple of the conversations in Shadows, however, Shadows can definitely be read as a stand alone novel. Both are great reads so you are not going to be unhappy whichever reading option you opt for!

Lucy had a terrible start to her police career and has been working hard to restore her credibility and prove her value to the department.  Events in Strangers has significantly helped and her stock is rising but now an old acquaintance is looking for help as one of his friends has been caught in possession of narcotics – if Lucy can have a lesser charge pursued he can provide information on a violent armed robber.

The possibility of catching a serial offender gives Lucy the opportunity to join the high profile team that work on capturing armed robbers.  She embraces the opportunity and tries to ensure she shines through careful planning and preparation. It is great to see Lucy getting the chance to step-up and her enthusiasm and determination make her an engaging a likeable character.

Away from Lucy’s case the reader gets to see what the “bad guys” are up to.  Established (and high profile) criminals are being attacked in places they believe to be safe.  It looks like there are new players in town and they are intent on disrupting the old guard and taking out the competition.  Their mission is deadly and the story takes a dark turn when they met out their unpleasant lessons and establish their authority. It makes for gripping story telling and I got completely caught up in events.

I have yet to read a Paul Finch book that I have not enjoyed – Shadows is another great read and I highly recommend it.

Shadows is published by Avon and can be ordered in paperback or digital format here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Shadows-gripping-thriller-bestseller-Clayburn/dp/0007551339/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1509788309&sr=1-1&keywords=paul+finch

 

Category: Blog Tours, From The Bookshelf | Comments Off on Shadows – Paul Finch