Monday, 13 August 2018

#BlogTour: Do No Harm by L V Hay @LucyVHayAuthor @OrendaBooks #DoNoHarm

Do No Harm was published on 15th June 2018 by Orenda Books. My thanks to the author and the publisher for the review copy and Anne Cater for inviting me on to the blog tour.


Till death do us part…

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.

My Thoughts:

First of all I have to say what a talented writer Lucy V. Hay is. It was a privilege to read her debut novel The Other Twin last year and have long wondered what would follow that up. I can safely say that the author has absolutely surpassed herself with Do No Harm, it is quite simply sublime and has every element that I like in a novel. 

Lily and Sebastian are getting married and this is where the book opens. Lily was at one time married to Maxwell. Sebastian and Maxwell couldn't be more different if they tried. Maxwell couldn't let go of the control during the marriage and he can't let go of it after the marriage. 

The author has written a dark and claustrophobic read that had me on the edge of my seat, the tension is palpable as it sprawls across the pages and the lives of all concerned. I really enjoyed the way that the story was told from different points of view and I had my mind changed at several junctures. 

A host of unreliable narrators add to the eeriness that pervades this writing. I can't fault this book and will be thinking of it for many days to come. 

Brilliant, brilliant stuff for so many reasons. 

About the Author:
Lucy V. Hay is a novelist, script editor and blogger who helps writers via her Bang2write consultancy. She is the associate producer of Brit Thrillers Deviation (2012) andAssassin(2015), both starring Danny Dyer. Lucy is also head reader for the London Screenwriters' Festival and has written two non-fiction books, Writing & Selling Thriller Screenplays, plus its follow-up Drama Screenplays. Her critically acclaimed debut thriller The Other Twin was published in 2017.

You can find her on Twitter: @LucyVHayAuthor

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#BlogTour: Bone Deep by Sandra Ireland @22_Ireland @PolygonBooks #BoneDeep #Lovebooksgrouptours

Published by Polygon Books on 5th July 2018. My thanks to the author and the publisher for the review copy and Kelly Lacey of Love Books Group Tours for offering me the opportunity to take part. 

What happens when you fall in love with the wrong person? The consequences threaten to be far-reaching and potentially deadly. Bone Deep is a contemporary novel of sibling rivalry, love, betrayal and murder. This is the story of two women: Mac, who is bent on keeping the secrets of the past from her only son, and the enigmatic Lucie, whose past is something of a closed book. Their story is underpinned by the creaking presence of an abandoned water mill, and haunted by the local legend of two long-dead sisters, themselves rivals in love, and ready to point an accusing finger from the pages of history.

My Thoughts:

Bone Deep is a gothic tale with characters that I found memorable and entrancing and a little bit creepy. Mac is a historian that is writing about siblings based on myth and folklore. Lucie is somewhat of a difficult character to get to know. She is a bit of an assistant to Mac. 

This is a difficult book to write too much about without giving it all away, suffice to say I was absolutely drawn in by the brilliant characterisations and sense of place, particularly the mill. 

The author writes in a way that is intriguing and she has done a tremendous job of writing flawed characters that the reader is itching to find out more about. 

There are parallels drawn between folklore and real life and a story of families and secrets. There was enough here to draw me in and captivate my imagination. 

I really enjoyed this one. 

About the Author:
Sandra Ireland was born in Yorkshire, lived for many years in Limerick, and is now based in Scotland. She began her writing career as a correspondent on a local newspaper but quickly realised that fiction is much more intriguing than fact. She returned to higher education her 40s, to study for undergraduate and postgraduate degrees at Dundee University. In 2016 she won Creative Scotland funding for a residency at Barry Mill, a National Trust for Scotland property. Her debut novel was Beneath the Skin (Polygon, 2016). She lives in Carnoustie and is available for interview.

You can find her on Twitter: @22_Ireland

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Friday, 10 August 2018

#BlogBlitz: Blood Ribbon by Roger Bray @rogerbray22 @rararesources #BloodRibbon

I am delighted to be taking part in the Publication Day celebrations for Blood Ribbon by Roger Bray. My thanks to the author for the review copy and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for inviting me to take part. You can get your copy of the book here.


When there’s more than secrets buried, where do you start digging?
When Brooke Adams is found battered, bleeding, and barely conscious, the police are at a loss as to who her attacker is or why she was targeted.
Then, PI Rod Morgan turns up convinced that Brooke’s attack is the latest in a string of unsolved disappearances dating back twenty-five years.
The police, however, aren’t convinced, so Brooke and Rod must investigate the cases themselves.
As secrets from the past start unravelling, will they find Brooke’s attacker before he strikes again, or is that one secret that will stay buried forever?

My Thoughts:

Roger Bray is fast becoming one of my favourite authors and Blood Ribbon is no exception to his excellent stable of reads. It is utterly gripping and I was transfixed throughout. 

Told mainly from the perspective of Brooke Adams, what ensues is a lightening paced read with plenty of twists and turns that had me turning the pages at super speed just to find out what would happen next. 

Brooke Adams is attacked and in hospital, police don't believe that it is the work of a serial killer on the loose as claimed by a private investigator. So boldly Brooke and said investigator Rod decide to do some digging for themselves to get to the bottom of what exactly has gone on. 

The characters that Roger Bray writes about are always well thought out and multi dimensional. Characters that draw the reader in and makes them feel emotionally invested.

Another cracker from this talented author.



About the Author:
I have always loved writing; putting words onto a page and bringing characters to life. I can almost feel myself becoming immersed into their lives, living with their fears and triumphs. Thus, my writing process becomes an endless series of questions. What would she or he do, how would they react, is this in keeping with their character? Strange as it sounds, I don’t like leaving characters in cliffhanging situations without giving them an ending, whichever way it develops.
My life to date is what compels me to seek a just outcome, the good will overcome and the bad will be punished. More though, I tend to see my characters as everyday people in extraordinary circumstances, but in which we may all find our selves if the planets align wrongly or for whatever reason you might consider.

Of course, most novels are autobiographical in some way. You must draw on your own experiences of life and from events you have experienced to get the inspiration. My life has been an endless adventure. Serving in the Navy, fighting in wars, serving as a Police officer and the experiences each one of those have brought have all drawn me to this point, but it was a downside to my police service that was the catalyst for my writing.

Medically retired after being seriously injured while protecting a woman in a domestic violence situation I then experienced the other side of life. Depression and rejection. Giving truth to the oft said saying that when one door closes another opens I pulled myself up and enrolled in college gaining bachelor and master degrees, for my own development rather than any professional need. The process of learning, of getting words down onto the page again relit my passion for writing in a way that I hadn’t felt since high school.

So here we are, two books published and another on track.

Where it will take me I have no idea but I am going to enjoy getting there and if my writing can bring some small pleasure into people’s lives along the way, then I consider that I will have succeeded in life.

Social Media Links –  https://twitter.com/rogerbray22
                             https://www.facebook.com/rogerbraybooks/
                             https://rogerbraybooks.com/


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Tuesday, 7 August 2018

#BlogTour: Duck Egg Blues by Martin Ungless @UnglessM @rararesources #DuckEggBlues

Duck Egg Blues by Martin Ungless is available now. My thanks to the author for the review copy and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for inviting me on to the blog tour. You can get your copy of the book here. For the duration of this blog tour, Duck Egg Blues will be on a Kindle Countdown Deal, so if you are tempted, purchase before the price rises.



Duck Egg Blues is funny, sad, mysterious and thrilling. "A robot butler detective, what’s not to love?"
Martin Ungless is a WCN Escalator Prize winning author who has twice been shortlisted by the Crime Writers’ Association for their Debut Dagger Award.
What the CWA Judges said about his work:
‘A clever and ambitious story’
‘I was laughing and crying and hugging the sheets to my chest’

This perfect slice of 'cozy crime' is narrated in the voice of a pre-war English butler and concerns a rich and powerful businesswoman whose daughter goes missing from their country house estate. That the story- teller is a robot belonging to an impoverished detective brings a fresh and original take on 'cozy', and as for 'crime'... well, it does begin to escalate, what with MI6, criminal gangs, corrupt police, and that’s not to mention international cybercrime!
As the plot strands weave together, we discover that behind one mystery lurks a greater threat. No one is safe, not even PArdew...

This is without doubt the robot-butler-detective thriller you have been waiting for! 
My Thoughts:
Duck Egg Blues is one of the most original books that a have read, particularly in the crime fiction genre. 
A robot butler is central to the story here forming one half of a detective duo in the Holmes and Watson sense of the word. I loved the robot character so much, it was so memorable. This book is littered with an overwhelming dry sense of humour which I really did enjoy. 
The plot was interesting and engaging and as the pages turned the pace ramped up and I enjoyed the ending. The narrative was great and I can't help but admire the pairing of Don and PArdew.
An individual and memorable take on the crime novel. I would love to read more from these characters in the future if there was a sequel. 

About the Author:
Following this year’s success, Martin Ungless had now been shortlisted three times by the Crime Writers’ Association for their Debut Dagger. He has won a WCN Escalator Award, and been successful in a number short-story competitions. Martin started life as an architect though now lives in the Norfolk countryside and writes full time. Martin is currently studying for the prestigious MA in Fiction (Crime) at UEA.

Social Media Links https://twitter.com/UnglessM

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Monday, 30 July 2018

#BlogTour: Death Rope by Leigh Russell @LeighRussell @noexitpress #DeathRope

Death Rope was published on 26th July 2018 in ebook by No Exit Press. My thanks to the author and the publisher for the review copy and to Katherine for inviting me on to the blog tour. 

THEY SAY SUICIDE. SHE SAYS MURDER.

Mark Abbott is dead. His sister refuses to believe it was suicide, but only Detective Sergeant Geraldine Steel will listen.
When other members of Mark’s family disappear, Geraldine’s suspicions are confirmed.
Taking a risk, Geraldine finds herself confronted by an adversary deadlier than any she has faced before… Her boss Ian is close, but will he arrive in time to save her, or is this the end for Geraldine Steel?
My Thoughts:
Death Rope is the latest release in the Geraldine Steel series and shock horror confession time here, this is the first book I have read by author Leigh Russell. I have no idea why as it certainly won't be my last. This book can be read as a standalone although I would liked to have read the others so I could have the background and development of the characters. I am converted and will be going back to read the others. 
When Mark Abbott is found dead seemingly in suicide by hanging the police suspect no foul play but Mark's sister feels differently this is just not something Mark would have done, he approaches Detective Sergeant Geraldine Steel who starts to quietly investigate, she has recently undergone a demotion and moved house. Her personal and professional life seem chaotic to say the least. 
There are plenty of twists and turns that kept me completely absorbed and invested in the outcome. The pages just flew by until the final denouement that I just did not see coming. This was the perfect crime novel and I am kicking myself for not discovering the series sooner.
The characterisations were well rounded and interesting. The writing was engaging and thrilling. This is police procedural at its very best. Lies and being thrown off the scent seem standard fare here. Whilst I haven't read the others this book still seemed very fresh and actually a breath of fresh air in the genre. 
Absolutely superb stuff!
About the Author:
Leigh Russell is the author of the internationally bestselling Geraldine Steel series: Cut Short, Road Closed, Dead End, Death Bed, Stop DeadFatal ActKiller Plan, Murder Ring, Deadly Alibi and Class Murder. The series has sold over a million copies worldwide. Cut Short was shortlisted for the Crime Writers Association (CWA) John Creasey New Blood Dagger Award, and Leigh has been longlisted for the CWA Dagger in the Library Award. Her books have been #1 on Amazon Kindle and iTunes with Stop Dead and Murder Ring selected as finalists for The People’s Book Prize. Leigh is chair of the CWA’s Debut Dagger Award judging panel and is a Royal Literary Fellow. Leigh studied at the University of Kent, gaining a Masters degree in English and American Literature. She is married with two daughters and a granddaughter, and lives in London.

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Saturday, 28 July 2018

#BlogBlitz: The Invisible Case by Isabella Muir @SussexMysteries @rararesources #TheInvisibleCase

Published on 30th June 2018. My thanks to the author/publisher for the review copy and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for inviting me on the blog blitz. Should you be interested you can get your own copy here, alternatively there is a giveaway running which is at the bottom of this post.



A shocking death turns a homecoming into a nightmare. 


It's Easter 1970 in the seaside town of Tamarisk Bay, and for one family the first Easter of a new decade brings a shocking tragedy. Amateur sleuth and professional librarian, Janie Juke, is settling into motherhood and looking forward to spending time with her family. When her Aunt Jessica is due back from Rome after nine years travelling around Europe, she arrives back in town with a new Italian friend, Luigi, and the whole family soon get embroiled in a tangle of mystery and suspicion, with death and passion at the heart of the story.



As time runs out on Luigi as prime suspect for murder, Janie has to use all of her powers of deduction in the footsteps of her hero, Hercule Poirot, to uncover the facts. Why did Luigi come to Tamarisk Bay? What is the truth about his family?
As Luigi's story unfolds, tragedy seems to haunt the past, present and unless Janie acts fast, possibly what is yet to come.

My Thoughts:

The Invisible Case is the third book in Janie Juke series of crime mysteries. It is the first I have read and it certainly reads well as a standalone. I was initially drawn in by the mention of Poirot in the blurb as I am certainly a big fan. This description is accurate. The Janie Juke series would appeal to fans of Agatha Christie and Hercule Poirot. There is somewhat of a cozy mystery feel about it. The crime fiction I normally read has a lot more grit so I am afraid I don't have much to compare this book to but I can say that I did enjoy the change of pace and found myself embroiled in the writing and the mystery. 

The Invisible Case is set in Italy and Sussex in the fictional town of Tamarisk Bay, the author has used a good sense of place and the journey between Italy and Sussex was exciting. As it is the first time of meeting the character of Janie Juke I really liked her and her amateur sleuthing. 

Luigi is a character that was more difficult to like, he finds himself in the UK as the prime suspect of a murder. I won't be telling you anymore about the mystery as that needs to be discovered by the reader alone.

Overall I found The Invisible Case to be well written and highly readable. Arguably I do prefer my crime and mysteries to have a lot more grit and pace to them but that is purely personal preference and no discredit to this book. 

I would recommend this as a solid piece of fiction to add to the stable of cozy mysteries so if you a fan of those then I can recommend this book to you. 

About the Author:

Isabella Muir is the author of Janie Juke series of crime mysteries - all set in Sussex.

'The Tapestry Bag' is the first in the series, followed by ‘Lost Property’. Now - 'The Invisible Case' - the latest in the series is available for pre-order from Amazon.

The 'Janie Juke mysteries' are set in Sussex in the sixties and seventies and feature a young librarian with a passion for Agatha Christie. All that Janie has learned from her hero, Hercule Poirot, she is able to put into action as she sets off to solve a series of crimes and mysteries.

Isabella has also published 'Ivory Vellum' - a collection of short stories.

She has been surrounded by books her whole life and – after working for twenty years as a technical editor and having successfully completed her MA in Professional Writing - she was inspired to focus on fiction writing.
Aside from books, Isabella has a love of all things caravan-like. She has spent many winters caravanning in Europe and now, together with her husband, she runs a small caravan site in Sussex. They are ably assisted by their much-loved Scottie, Hamish.

Social Media Links –
TWITTER  @SussexMysteries

Giveaway – Win a signed copy of The Invisible Case (Open Internationally)
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.



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Tuesday, 24 July 2018

#BlogTour: The Vanished Child by M J Lee @WriterMJLee @rararesources #TheVanishedChild

The Vanished Child is available now. My thanks to the author for the review copy and to Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for inviting me to read a copy. Today I have a spotlight for you with my review following later this week. Apologies to all for the scheduling error as this post and review was supposed to go out yesterday. It turns out that I am human after all. 


What would you do if you discovered you had a brother you never knew existed?
On her deathbed, Freda Duckworth confesses to giving birth to an illegitimate child in 1944 and temporarily placing him in a children's home. She returned later but he had vanished. 
What happened to the child? Why did he disappear? Where did he go? 
Jayne Sinclair, genealogical investigator, is faced with lies, secrets, and one of the most shameful episodes in recent history as she attempts to uncover the truth.
Can she find the vanished child?
This book is the fourth in the Jayne Sinclair Genealogical Mystery series, but can be read as a standalone novel.
Every childhood lasts a lifetime.

If I can tempt you in to getting your own copy, you can do so here: Purchase Link - myBook.to/vanishedchild

About the Author:

Martin has spent most of his adult life writing in one form or another. As a University researcher in history, he wrote pages of notes on reams of obscure topics. As a social worker with Vietnamese refugees, he wrote memoranda. And, as the creative director of an advertising agency, he has written print and press ads, tv commercials, short films and innumerable backs of cornflake packets and hotel websites.
He has spent 25 years of his life working outside the North of England. In London, Hong Kong, Taipei, Singapore, Bangkok and Shanghai, winning awards from Cannes, One Show, D&AD, New York and London Festivals, and the United Nations.
When he's not writing, he splits his time between the UK and Asia, taking pleasure in playing with his daughter, researching his family history, single-handedly solving the problem of the French wine lake and wishing he were George Clooney.
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