Never say goodbye – Richard Jay Parker

Detective Tom Fabian must follow a sinister map of murders through the city – but where does it lead? And who is next?

Detective Tom Fabian – forty-three and divorced – has fallen on hard times. Since catching infamous killer Christopher Wisher two years ago, his record has been less than stellar. The word around the department is that his days are numbered – and he can already feel the pressure from aggressive younger talent.

So when Tom is put on a dead-in-the-water investigation into a series of seemingly random stabbings, it feels like the beginning of the end. But there’s something the others haven’t noticed: all of the victims’ surnames are city streets. The killer is tracing a sinister map of murder through the capital – but where does it lead, and who is next? Can Tom catch the killer before more innocents are targeted?

 

 

 

My review

Sometimes your brain makes the wrong conclusion. This can take you on a very dark path…

This story was so fast paced that I was expecting to get a ticket for speeding any minute. I really like it that way. It felt like an invisible hand popped out of the book, picked me up by the collar and immersed me into it.

it was simply unputdownable and when you thought it was all over, the epilogue makes the little hairs on your neck stand on end … 5 stars

Thank you, Richard Parker, Bookouture and Netgalley

 

About the author

Richard Parker is an ex TV script writer, script editor and producer who now writes dark, stand alone thrillers. His first novel, Stop Me, was nominated for a Dagger Award.  The movie rights to his second, Scare Me, have been bought by Hollywood studio Relativity Media with screenplay completed by Wentworth ‘PRISON BREAK’ Miller and his third, Stalk Me, rode high in the US and UK Amazon charts

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The Affair – Sheryl Browne

You trusted her. You shouldn’t have.

Alicia’s been telling lies. And now they’ve come back to haunt her.

When an old colleague turns up at a party, Alicia comes face to face with the man who has the potential to ruin her perfect family life. He wouldn’t, would he?

In order to keep her secrets, Alicia has to tell yet more lies and when a devastating car accident makes the situation even more dangerous, it’s only a matter of time before everything falls apart. Can secrets really stay hidden forever?

 

 

My review

You think you know someone well. Maybe it’s time to think again …

I already have read some books by this author and that is a sign that I absolutely love what she puts on paper.
Apart from messing with your head (which I totally adore as long as it’s in a book lol) she has a truely wonderful way of describing emotions that bring tears to your eyes and break your heart. You so want to jump into the book and step in.
It’s an enthralling story that keeps your attention all the way through with an interesting twist to add even more spice. 5 stars.
So, dear Sheryl, I am looking forward to your next book.

Thank you Sheryl Browne, Bookourture and Netgalley.

 

About the author

Sheryl Browne writes psychological thriller and edgy contemporary fiction. A member of the Crime Writers’ Association, Romantic Novelists’ Association and awarded a Red Ribbon by The Wishing Shelf Book Awards, Sheryl has several books published and two short stories in Birmingham City University anthologies, where she completed her MA in Creative Writing.

 

www.sherylbrowne.com

 

The Forgotten – Casey Kelleher

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?

 

 

My review

Don’t ever rely on the ones you trust the most …

This book is an absolute gem. I have read it in one go! It was just unputdownable.

From the first page, you are dragged into the story and it feels like you are on a raft in a white water stream. You are not allowed to get off until the bitter end and honestly, you don’t want to get off! You simply want to immersed …

I love it when there are different storylines and, little by little, they come together perfectly.

I have not read the two other parts, but they are defintely added to my list.

Overall, I can say : this is a book that won’t be easily forgotten. 5 stars.

Thank you, Casey Kelleher, Bookouture and Netgalley

 

About the author

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.

www.caseykelleher.co.uk

 

The Year of the Snake by M.J. Trow, Maryanne Coleman

Sometimes, a snake is just a snake. And sometimes…

First-century Rome.

Senator Gaius Lucius Nerva is taken ill at a dinner party and dies a few days later. His heartbroken wife, Flavia, is told it was a natural death. Calidus, Nerva’s recently freed slave, suspects otherwise.

As he embarks upon the funeral ceremonies, Calidus becomes more and more convinced that his master was murdered and begins an investigation, seeking out everyone who had attended the dinner party.

His enquiries lead him to rub shoulders with the ‘great and good’ of Rome; senators, soldiers, even the ruthless and mercurial Emperor Nero. And his former lover, Julia Eusabia, who seems intent on rekindling their romance and luring him away from his wife and daughter.

Calidus’ quest is by no means easy or safe as he encounters the darkest and most dangerous people in Rome. But he knows he must keep searching for the person responsible, to bring justice to the master he had loved.

 

My review

Sometimes a snake is not just an animal …

A good old whodunnit, who does not like that? I was really looking forward to reading this. I have to admit, history is not my cup of tea, but I promised myself to keep an open mind.

It started certainly well. There was already a corpse on the first page, but soon after I felt more like I was reading a history book. There was not enough balance between the murder investigation and the rest.

Was it a bad book? No, not at all. If you like ancient Rome combined with some suspense, you would feel like a fish to water.
I was pleasantly surprised by the revelation at the end and the humour. Unfortunately, I felt more like a fish out of water. 3 stars.

Thank you, M.J. Trow, Maryanne Coleman and Endeavour Media

 

About the authors

M.J. Trow

M. J. Trow is a full-time teacher of history who has been doubling as a crime writer for seventeen years. Originally from Rhonda in South Wales he now lives on the Isle of Wight. His interests include collecting militaria, film, the supernatural and true crime. Maxwell’s Match is his 24th crime novel.

Maryanne Coleman

Maryanne Coleman is the pen name of Carol Trow, wife of M J Trow and mother of Tali Trow. Her own books are fantasy, two so far in a projected trilogy – Goblin Market and Pandemonium – with a third (working title Saturnalia) in the pipeline. As well as writing her own fantasy novels, she co-writes the Marlowe series with her husband – somehow, they never argue and scarily enough when proofing they can never remember who wrote what, which must be a good sign. They have recently completed the first of a series, featuring Victorian detectives Grand and Batchelor – this was a change of pace from the Tudor Marlowes and the timelessness of fantasy, with the gritty back streets of Victorian London and the muddy lanes of Washington DC being the background for this exciting new series.

The Sleepwalker Legacy – Christopher Hepworth

In 1814, Britain’s foremost scientist, George Napier witnesses a drug-fuelled massacre on a US battlefield. The drug, Berserker, has a deadly side effect known as the Sleepwalker Legacy, which destroys the life of his Native American lover. After the War, Napier dedicates himself to the eradication of Berserker.

Two hundred years later, Napier’s global pharmaceutical company has fallen into the hands of the ruthless Beckett family. They are determined to produce and leverage Berserker for profit, as the US government seeks to exploit the drug for military advantage.

Sam Jardine is a direct descendant of Napier. When he discovers that Berserker could change the nature of humanity forever, he sets out to fulfil his ancestor’s destiny by destroying the drug from within, using his extraordinary powers of negotiation. Sam finds himself battling demons from his past as he becomes entangled in a dangerous game of corporate espionage and a battle of wits with the beautiful heiress, Rachael Beckett. He resolves to help his lover, Cassie, who inherited the Sleepwalker Legacy and is becoming increasingly unstable. But Sam is in a race against time…

 

 

My review

A battle in the present that had it’s roots in the past. Will the promise made a few hundred years ago be kept by the descendants? Will Sam be able to untangle the web spun by intrigues …

I like thrillers that take place in the medical world so this one was certainly bull’s eye. It shows that people are not as important as winning and earning money.
Although I don’t like to read about any kind of war, but it was needed to explain why certain things were happening. I was intrigued by the love story that started amongst all the cruelty.

The book is full of twists and turns and you don’t know who to believe any more. Every time a little part is revealed, it’s leaves you with your mouth open. 4 stars.

Thank you, Christopher Hepworth.

 

About the author

Author Christopher Hepworth has been a professional negotiator for over thirty years, with some of the largest and best-known companies in the world. He has won numerous prestigious awards in his chosen profession of procurement and developed many of the strategies and techniques that are now widely used across the industry. He has spent half a lifetime working for an array of colourful captains of industry, some inspirational; others downright terrifying. He often wonders how these desk warriors would cope if they were confronted with real-life, world threatening global emergencies rather than plotting their own narrow-minded corporate agendas. With the magic of fiction, Christopher Hepworth has created a wonderful set of characters he hopes will put the fear of God into his readers, adding to the list of threats already facing humanity.

Born in the UK in 1961 and raised in Zambia in central Africa like his hero, Wilbur Smith, Christopher Hepworth now lives in Sydney, Australia with his wife, Anne and four children. Much of the spare time he finds for writing comes while watching his children play representative cricket. It’s amazing how many sentences can be written in between the fall of wickets.

The exotic characters in his books reflect his fascination with the charismatic and proud, but often maligned warrior nations around the world, whose stories are screaming to be told. In his books, Christopher Hepworth’s desk-bound corporate warriors come face to face with those proud peoples, who have suffered the misfortunes of fate and history but their dignity and aspirations remain intact.

Christopher Hepworth has created a new brand of hero for the twenty-first century. Like James Bond, or the lawyers of John Grisham’s thrillers, Sam Jardine must use his occupational skills to thwart the ambitions of ruthless villains who seek to subordinate the world with their depraved sense of moral values. Armed only with a sense of justice, respect for ancient warrior cultures and an extraordinary talent for negotiation, can he win the day or will he be engulfed in the cesspit of corporate politics? For the sake of world peace, let’s hope Sam Jardine is up to the task.

My Very Italian Holiday – Sue Roberts

A beautiful guesthouse, a fresh start and a hunky Italian. Does it sound too good to be true?

When Gina arrives in Lake Como, thousands of miles away from her life in the Lake District, she wonders if she’s bitten off more than she can chew. Working for Fabio, running his lakeside hotel, seemed like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. After her world was tragically turned upside down, breaking her heart in the process, she was in desperate need of a fresh start. Plus, it didn’t hurt that Fabio was easy on the eyes…

But it’s not all picturesque mountains, pizza and prosecco. The crumbling guesthouse that Fabio has inherited from his family needs some serious TLC. Is she up to the challenge?

As Gina and Fabio work in close quarters, sparks start to fly. But Fabio has a secret he is scared to share, and Gina has her past to come to terms with. Does her heart belong back home or is a life in the sun – with a very handsome Italian – just the change of scenery she needs?

 

 

My review

When life treats you badly, you have two choices : you can keep on wallowing in your sorrows or you can take some time to grief and move on. You never know what the future has in store for you and sometimes you have to take a plunge …

This is such a gorgeous cover. I can almost feel the sun on my skin by just watching it. The story takes us to Italy and I felt like I was travelling with Gina. I saw the streets and shops, I smelt the delicious food that was being described and when she was at home in England, I enjoyed the love of her family and friends.

It a very nice feel good story where everybody’s path of life goes towards a happy ending. This is why the book results a fabulous (Italian) beach read.  5 stars.

Thank you, Sue Roberts, Bookouture and Netgalley

 

About the author

I live in Lancashire with my long term partner Derek and have had a lifelong love of writing, encouraged by winning a school writing competition at the age of 11.

I always assumed that ‘one day’ I would write a book, always having a busy household and a job, the idea remained firmly on the back burner but never forgotten.

The inspiration for my first novel came to me on a holiday to a Greek village. My daughters had left home and suddenly the time had come to write that book!

Murder on the Marshes – Clare Chase

As the sun rises, a young woman – Samantha Seabrook – is found drowned in the ornamental fountain of a deserted Cambridge courtyard, the only clue – an antique silver chain wound tightly around her throat.

It’s Tara Thorpe’s job to discover what happened to Miss Seabrook – but the case becomes personal when she learns that Samantha had been receiving death threats… rather like the one that landed on Tara’s doorstep the night the woman died.

Together with Detective Inspector Garstin Blake, Tara tracks the killer to the dank and dangerous fens on the outskirts of the city. But there’s something Tara can’t quite admit to Blake about her past – and it could make all the difference to whether they live… or die.

 

 

My review

Money might not give you everything you crave the most, but it sure helps you finding your way in the world. This does not necessarily mean a happy ending, does it …

What I love about this kind of books is that you can awaken your inner cop and try and solve the mystery. Little by little, with the help of each interview, the case becomes clearer. I had to conclude,once again, that I would make a lousy DI …
That means praise to the author for keeping the culprit hidden until the end.

The point of view was refreshing. The police and a journalist investigating the same case and revealing different kinds of information using different techniques. It’s up to the police though to put one and one together but they seem to come up with three. When, finally, all the pieces fit together, it’s all hands on deck …

The story is fluently written and slow paced in the beginning, but you are swept up by a whirlwind towards the end.

I am looking forward to a sequel. 4 stars.

Thank you, Clare Chase, Bookouture and Netgalley.

 

About the author

Clare Chase writes mysteries set in her home city of Cambridge and is fascinated by the location’s contrasts and contradictions. She’s worked in diverse settings – from the 800-year-old University to one of the local prisons – and lived everywhere from the house of a Lord to a slug-infested flat. The terrace she now occupies presents a good happy medium.

As well as writing, Clare loves family time, art and architecture, cooking, and of course, reading other people’s books. She lives with her husband and teenage children, and currently works at the Royal Society of Chemistry.

www.clarechase.com

The Getaway Girls – Dee MacDonald

One morning, Connie McColl wakes up and decides to swap her ordinary life, for an extraordinary adventure…

Connie McColl is finally free to make her own decisions for the first time in decades. And when she meets glamorous Gill and downtrodden Maggie, at a rather dull flower arranging class, it seems that she’s not the only one dreaming of adventure. The three very different women all agree it’s about time they had a holiday to remember.

So they make a pact for this summer to be their best yet – and drive off into the sunset together…

As they meander their way along the beautiful beaches of France and onto the glorious delights of Italy in their luxury campervan, the new friends have plenty of fun and frolics in the sunshine. But the vacation isn’t quite what they expected…

Gill will do anything to have one last holiday romance, Connie has a surprise inheritance awaiting her in Italy, and Maggie has a secret that is going to catch up with them all…

In the end, all three women discover that the journey they thought would be their last really is just the beginning…

 

 

My review

You are never to old to have fun or to change course …

I have not read the first book, but I did not have any problems picking up the story in this one. They can easily be seen as stand alones, but I have to admit this one makes you want to read the other one as well.

The author takes us on a lovely trip through France and Italy. She has written the story in a way that, at the end of the book, you feel like doing the exact same journey.

It’s a beautiful story about three women who, not only get to know each other, but learn a lot about themselves too. It’s filled with laughter and happiness but some sadness and suspense are added to the mix. 4 stars.

Thank you, Dee MacDonald, Bookouture and Netgalley.

 

About the author

Aged 18, Dee arrived in London from Scotland and typed her way round the West End for a couple of years before joining BOAC (forerunner of British Airways) in Passenger Services for 2 years and then as a stewardess for 8 years.

She has worked in Market Research, Sales and at the Thames TV Studios when they had the franchise.

Dee has since relocated to Cornwall, where she spent 10 years running B&Bs, and only began writing when she was over 70!

Married twice, she has one son and two grandsons.

The Secret – K.L. Slater

You turn your back for a minute. And now your son is in terrible danger …

Louise is struggling to cope.  As a busy working mum, she often has to leave her eight-year-old son Archie at her sister Alice’s flat.

Alice and Louise used to be close.  But there’s a lot they don’t know about each other now – like the bottle of vodka Louise hides in her handbag, Alice’s handsome new friend and the odd behaviour of her next-door neighbour.

Archie is a curious little boy. He likes to play on his own at his auntie’s flat until one day when he sees something he shouldn’t. Now he has a secret of his own.  One he can’t tell his mum. One that could put him and his family in terrible danger.

 

 

My review

Be carefull when you pick someone to believe …

My first K.L. Slater and I thoroughly enjoyed it. The first page already gives you the creeps but when you read on, it feels a bit like a love story. BUT don’t let yourself be fooled by this!! You will soon find out that there is a lot more going on.

It refreshing the way the story was built. You went back and forth in time but not in the usual way. The present was a fluent line, but you were thrown back to different events in the past happening at different ages of the main characters. Was it confusing? No, never! It made your brain work a bit harder (which I love) but it was always mentioned how many years the author took us back.

And then there was Archie … I wish I could have crept into the book and put my arms around him.

When you think you have discovered everything you need to know, there is still that one more secret … 5 stars.

Thank you, K.L. Slater, Bookouture and Netgalley.

 

About the author

For many years, Kim sent her work out to literary agents but never made it off the slush pile. At the age of 40 she went back to Nottingham Trent University and now has an MA in Creative Writing.

Before graduating, she received five offers of representation from London literary agents which was, as Kim says, ‘a fairytale … at the end of a very long road!’

Kim is a full-time writer and lives in Nottingham with her husband, Mac.

www.KLSlaterAuthor.com

The Death and Life of Eleanor Parker – Kerry Wilkinson

‘I will never forget the night I drowned…’

A village with something to hide.

Seventeen-year-old Eleanor Parker wakes up cold and alone in the river that twists through her quiet village. She has no memory of how she got there. But she does know that another girl was drowned in the same river the summer before, held under the water by an unknown killer…

A community torn apart.

Eleanor is a normal, every day teenager. She argues with her mum, spends her days with her best friend, and is looking forward to a carefree summer of sunshine and music. Who would want to hurt her?

A shocking secret.

Determined to unlock the mystery of what really happened to her, Eleanor can’t escape the feeling that something awful links her to the previous summer’s murder. But will she find out the truth before it’s too late?

 

 

My review

You can trust everybody in your small village, can’t you …?

This is a very good coming of age book, but it can be perfectly read by adults as well. I liked the point of view from which the story was written. It was original and weird (I mean that in a very positive way) and the atmosphere reminded me of Twin Peaks. You always felt that bit of creepiness and you kept on wondering who was responsible.
When you get further along in the story, the pace picks up as well and then it’s time to give to it that twist, like the cherry on the cake. 4,5 stars.

Thank you, Kerry Wilkinson, Bookouture and Netgalley.

 

About the author

Kerry Wilkinson is from the English county of Somerset but has spent far too long living in the north. It’s there that he’s picked up possibly made-up regional words like ‘barm’ and ‘ginnel’. He pretends to know what they mean.

He’s also been busy since turning thirty: his Jessica Daniel crime series has sold more than a million copies in the UK; he has written a fantasy-adventure trilogy for young adults; a second crime series featuring private investigator Andrew Hunter and the standalone thriller, Down Among The Dead Men.

www.kerrywilkinson.com