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07/07/2020

Trust Me, I'm Dead by Sherryl Clark @sherrylwriter @Verve_Books #Review

 Published by Verve Books on 25th July 2019. I purchased this to read alongside the review copy I received  of Dead and Gone as I prefer to read series in order. Although they can certainly be read as standalones with no problem. 

SHORTLISTED FOR THE 2018 CWA DEBUT DAGGER FOR UNPUBLISHED FIRST NOVEL
She hasn't seen her brother in years. Now, he's dead.
When Judi Westerholme finds out her estranged brother has been murdered, she assumes it's connected to his long term drug addiction. Returning home, she is shocked to discover he had been clean for years, had a wife – now missing – a child and led a respectable life. But if he had turned his life around, why was he killed in a drug deal shooting? And where is his wife?
Desperate to know what really happened, Judi sets out to uncover the truth, even though it means confronting her own traumatic past. But she's not the only one looking for answers...
With a gutsy, unapologetic protagonist, Trust Me, I'm Dead is a gritty and bold crime thriller that explores the sacrifices people will make for their families.
'Gripping and disturbing, Clark delves into dark places close to home. Trust Me, I’m Dead will linger in your mind after you have read it' - Leigh Russell, author of the bestselling Geraldine Steel series

My Thoughts:

I love it when I discover a new to me author and I particularly like it when I discover a new series to delve in to. Trust Me, I'm Dead is just the right number of parts mystery and thriller and kept me turning the pages and reading just one more chapter. 

Judi Westerholme finds out that her brother is dead and the police are saying that he has been murdered. Nothing is is making sense. Judi thought her brother was clean and respectable after drug addiction.  Judi had not seen him for a while but even so, she can't believe what has happened and the only way she can see to find out what really happened is to take matters into her hands. At times dangerous, the many twists and turns kept me on the edge of my seat until the final pages turned. 

I really liked Judi's character. I found her to be warm and likeable but with a no nonsense attitude, I certainly wouldn't want to cross her. Her and her brother did not have the easiest of upbringings and there is a certain melancholy surrounding this throughout the book that seemed to denote that Judi wishes things had been different. I got the impression that was why she threw herself so fully into the murder investigation. 

I found this to be a great mystery that I found somewhat addictive. The pace and setting were spot on and I really relished looking forward to the next in the series. 

Join me back here tomorrow (8th July 2020) when I will be discussing Dead and Gone the second book to feature Judi Westerholme. 




About the Author: 
Sherryl Clark has had 40 children’s and YA books published in Australia, and several in the US and UK, plus collections of poetry and four verse novels. She has taught writing at Holmesglen TAFE and Victoria University. She recently completed a Master of Fine Arts program at Hamline University, Minnesota, and is now studying for a PhD in creative writing.

Find out more about Sherryl Clark: 

Twitter: @sherrylwriter

20/06/2020

I Am Dust by Louise Beech @LouiseWriter @OrendaBooks #Review #IAmDust


Published by Orenda Books on 16th April 2020. I read my copy in Ebook format that I purchased. 


A haunted theatre

A murdered actress
Three cursed teenagers
A secret that devastates them all…



The Dean Wilson Theatre is believed to be haunted by a long-dead actress, singing her last song, waiting for her final cue, looking for her killer…


Now Dust, the iconic musical, is returning after twenty years. But who will be brave enough to take on the role of ghostly goddess Esme Black, last played by Morgan Miller, who was murdered in her dressing room?


Theatre usher Chloe Dee is caught up in the spectacle. As the new actors arrive, including an unexpected face from her past, everything changes. Are the eerie sounds and sightings backstage real or just her imagination? Is someone playing games?


Is the role of Esme Black cursed? Could witchcraft be at the heart of the tragedy? And are dark deeds from Chloe’s past about to catch up with her?
Not all the drama takes place onstage. Sometimes murder, magic, obsession and the biggest of betrayals are real life. When you’re in the theatre shadows, you see everything.


And Chloe has been watching…

My Thoughts:

I have never made a secret about the fact that Louise Beech is one of my favourite writers. She writes with a sublime originality and refuses to be pigeon-holed. Her novels defy boundaries and genres and she has a spectacular ability to make the reader feel that she is just sitting across the room telling the story and including the reader in the journey. I have reviewed some of the authors other books and you can read my reviews of those by clicking the titles; How To Be Brave, The Mountain in My Shoe, Maria in the Moon and The Lion Tamer Who Lost.    

I Am Dust is a story of the supernatural and an ode to all things theatre. Part thriller and part play, this was a cleverly told story that keeps the reader on their toes never knowing what was quite real and what was imagined for the stage. The authors knowlege of theatre really comes into its own in creating a realistic and absorbing setting. 

08/06/2020

Season of Second Chances by Aimee Alexander @aimeealexbooks @denisedeegan #Review

Season of Second Chances is available now. My thanks to the author for sending me a copy for review.


 When leaving is just the beginning... The long-awaited novel of family, love and learning to be kind to yourself by award-winning, bestselling Irish author, Aimee Alexander.



Grace Sullivan flees Dublin with her two teenage children, returning to the sleepy West Cork village where she grew up. No one in Killrowan knows what Grace is running from - or that she's even running. She'd like to keep it that way.




Taking over from her father, Des, as the village doctor offers a very real chance for Grace to begin again. But will she and the children adapt to life in a small rural community? Can she live up to the doctor her father was? And will she find the inner strength to face the past when it comes calling?




Season of Second Chances is Grace's story. It's also the story of a community that chooses the title "Young Doctor Sullivan" for her before she even arrives. It's the story of Des, who served the villagers all his life and now feels a failure for developing Parkinson's disease. And it's the story of struggling teens, an intimidating receptionist, a handsome American novelist escaping his past, and a dog called Benji who needs a fresh start of his own.




Season of Second Chances is a heart-warming story of friendship, love and finding the inner strength to face a future that may bring back the past.




Perfect for fans of Call The Midwife, Virgin River, Doc Martin, The Durrells and All Creatures Great and Small. The villagers of Killrowan will steal into your heart and make you want to stay with them forever.


My Thoughts: 

Season of Second Chances was a charming and enchanting read that I was fully absorbed in and read within two days, in amongst doing all the lockdown chores. I will forever remember it as a book I fully escaped into at this time.

Set in West Cork, I loved the village feel and setting. The pull of small town life, countryside and fresh air was ever prevalent. I have never visited Ireland but Season of Second Chances made me want to. Grace and her two children Jack and Holly used to live in Dublin. In Dublin they were a family of four but it is safer with just three and besides a new start is needed where nobody knows who they are.

06/06/2020

Blog Tour: The Light Keeper by Cole Moreton @colemoreton @rhodapr2013 @thelightkeeper1 @marylebonehouse #TheLightKeeper


The Light Keeper was published in paperback on the 21st of May 2020 by Marylebone House. My thanks to Rhoda Hardie and the publisher for the review copy and inviting me on the blog tour.

Sarah stands on the brink, arms open wide as if to let the wind carry her away.
She s come to the high cliffs to be alone, to face the truth about her life, to work out what to do.
Her lover Jack is searching, desperate to find her before it is too late. But Sarah doesn t want to be found. Not yet. Not by him.
And someone else is seeking answers up here where the seabirds soar a man known only as the Keeper, living in an old lighthouse right on the cusp of a four-hundred-foot drop. He is all too aware that sometimes love takes you to the edge . . .
‘Sarah Bramer, formerly Jones, reported missing March 27 at 10.13pm. Female, 30 years old, born in Birmingham, United Kingdom. Address 114a Orford Road, Walthamstow, London E17. Married to Jack Bramer, 30, of the same address. Ethnicity: M1, Scottish and Jamaican. Occupation: teacher at St Joseph’s Community School, Leyton. Height: 5ft, 10ins. Hair: reddish brown. Distinguishing features: birth mark on left breast, small tattoo of a soul bird on upper right buttock. Eyes: green like the sea on a hot day. Smile: intoxicating. Laugh: mesmerising. Brightness: dazzling. Beauty: silencing. Mood swings: infuriating. Sadness: heartbreaking. Whereabouts: unknown.’ 
My Thoughts:
The Light Keeper is Cole Moreton's first novel. It took a while for that to sink in, as the story here is as wide as it is deep and this allegorical tale sucked me in gently, then held me mesmerized, then allowed me to fall at the end. 
The setting is Beachy Head and The Seven Sisters. Both places I have heard of and both I have never visited. It wasn't difficult to imagine them in my head though by the evocative and often lyrical writing. The imagery is spectacular.

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