My Week In Books (w/e 15th sept) #MeAndMyBooks #BookNews

Another week has come and gone, time is absolutely flying by and it only seems a couple of days ago when I last wrote up a weekly book update!

This week has been a good week, we managed to rearrange our kitchen after taking out the old fire. It’s amazing how much space this took up! It was also an opportunity to go through the cupboards and get rid of all the crap that we seem to have accumulated.

So to the books I read this week…

I finished reading…

KULT by Stefan Malmstrom

This is a dark crime fiction book. It is atmospheric, insightful and poignant. As the title suggests this is a story that spends some of its time in a cult. The author uses his own experiences from when he was lured into one, and boy you can tell he knows what he is on about. This is a fabulous read and I am so glad I signed up for the blog tour for this book. My review will be at the end of the month.


Next up was…

Coming Home to Glendale Hall by Victoria Walters

Anyone that knows me knows I don’t do Christmas until December, but this was a an author I recognised from other Book Bloggers reviews and I wanted to read one her books.

So even though it is not officially winter, the evenings are feeling a little chilly and this worked really well for me. It is a lovely heartwarming read that I loved. It had various threads weaving through it that gave it such a good depth, there were wonderful characters who had to work through dilemmas. A great read and another Blog Tour book that I will review at the beginning of october, yes you read that right October!


Then I read…

The Demons Beneath by WD Jackson-Smart

This is a creepy crime thriller and the synopsis really intrigued me. It is a really good crime thriller that has a bit of something else… This is a new author for me and after reading this one it will not be the last time, and I have just discovered the 2nd book in the series is available ๐Ÿ™‚ Look out for my review in, yep you guessed it October.


Currently Reading…

The Secret Life of Books by Tom Mole

This is a book for a Blog Tour in September, its a book about…well…books or rather how books can transform and evolve. It is about innovations and errors and people defacing books, burning books and books that create. I am really looking forward to this one. It has been a while since I have read a non fiction and this looks good.


Well that’s the Book stuff done… now for the Non Bookish stuff…

It has been another day today (sunday) of cooking again. Its all well and good growing food but then I have to deal with it. Now you know how homegrown and home cooked food is supposed to be healthier? Well not in our house in ‘aint, I was brought up proper and that means puddings, cakes, jams and chutney ๐Ÿ˜‚

So this week saw me finally making a start on the raspberry jam, I have been picking these for weeks and bunging them striaght in the freezer until I had a good stock for a proper jam making session. So 12 jars of my “Almost Seedless Raspberry Jam” was made along with 2 jars of runner bean chutney, some coffee and walnut buns because the eggs needing using up and finally another crumble, this time a plain apple one, I say plain but a good dollop of maple syrup and also some cinnamon adds a nice bit of mmmmmm to it.

Well that’s the lot!

I wish everyone a great week ahead

Yvonne xx

A Boy And His Dog At The End Of The World by C. A. Fletcher #Bookreview

I am delighted to be sharing my thoughts with you today for A Boy And His Dog At The End Of The World by C.A. Fletcher. This is a wonderful dystopian story that I absolutely loved. I seem to have had a little bit of a run on Dystopian novels just lately and I have to say I have I have thoroughly enjoyed every one of them.

Let me show you what it is all about…

When a beloved family dog is stolen, her owner sets out on a life-changing journey through the ruins of our world to bring her back in this fiercely compelling tale of survival, courage, and hope. Perfect for readers of Station Eleven and The Girl With All the Gifts.

My name’s Griz. My childhood wasn’t like yours. I’ve never had friends, and in my whole life I’ve not met enough people to play a game of football.

My parents told me how crowded the world used to be, but we were never lonely on our remote island. We had each other, and our dogs.

Then the thief came.

There may be no law left except what you make of it. But if you steal my dog, you can at least expect me to come after you.

Because if we aren’t loyal to the things we love, what’s the point?

This is the story of Griz, he has never known enough people to play a game of football with. He lives with his family on a remote Scottish island and they don’t get many visitors because… well there are not many people alive in the world. However, one visitor does come to the island and when he leaves again he takes Griz’s dog with him.

I am going to keep within the authors wishes for this book. The author has requested that no spoilers should be given by anyone writing a review. I completely agree with this, so you will find no spoilers!

This novel is told all the way through from the persepctive of Griz. Through Griz I learnt about his life, his role in the family, a little of how populations diminished, it is told in the present and the past as he relates his experiences. It gives reason for chasing after his dog.

The author has done an absolutely fabulous job with the settings that are mentioned through the book, using a futuristic UK to provide a backdrop that I am familiar with and yet it is totally different. The successful portrayal of the lack of people is great and I did think that isolation and loneliness may leave a depressing after-taste, but it didn’t. Instead I felt uplifted at some points as loneliness and isolation felt more like a way of life and therefore it was normal. I rather like the idea of having spaces for being completely alone, but I don’t think I would want it as a permanent thing.

The author has things from the news, weather, environment and taken them to a reasonable and also realistic feeling future.This relevance to our present day gave me a lot to think about, things we take for granted and use or dispose and often without really thinking about it, though we are making steps towards a greener society. It does make me wonder will it be enough!

This is a book that I savoured, I took my time with it and made myself read it slower than I normally would. There was just something about this book that warranted doing this, as not only is it a cracking read, with a fabulous story and style but it also has a message to it. This message is not preached at all and could be seen as an observation. By the time I got to the end I felt a little lost, and also I have to mention that I loved the ending.

This is a quieter style of story in someways, it has a slower pace but it is not a slow story… does that even make sense! It has drama and tension when the story requires it and it was one I immediately fell for within a few pages. When I wasn’t reading it I was thinking about it as I was sat in my home surrounded by all my necessary things!!!!!

This would make an ideal book for a Book Club as there are so many things that could be discussed about this book.

This is a cracking read and one I would Absolutely Recommend!


Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be fabulous ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

Letters To My Daughters by Emma Hannigan #20booksofsummer #bookreview

I am delighted to welcome you to my thoughts on Letters To My Daughters by Emma Hannigan. This book is another read for the Readin Challenge #20 Books Of Summer that I took part in this summer.

Let me show you what this book is all about…

Her three girls were her world. It was time to let them know. 

To sisters Bea, Jeannie and Rose, the death of their beloved childhood nanny is a devastating loss. As the girls grew up, Nanny May had become so much more to them all: confidant, advocate, comforter, friend. In whom will they confide their hopes, fears and failures now she has gone? Especially now each sister needs a mother’s wisdom more than ever…

Martha cannot understand why her daughters are so upset about losing their childhood nanny. Yes, Martha was always in demand as a busy midwife, but that doesn’t mean she loved her own children any less. But why don’t the girls realise that? And has she left it too late to let them know…?

I think this is such a nice title for a book. The daughters are Bea, Jeannie and Rose, their parents are Jim and Martha. As both parents worked it fell to Nanny May to help raise the girls. Nanny May was an invaluable part of the household and they all kept in touch over the years as the girls grew up and left home to begin their own lives. The death of Nanny May hit the girls and Jim hard, but Martha isn’t quite affected in the same way by the death as the others.

Over the course of the story the author built up and developed a story that delves into all their pasts. It is told in the Now, with glimpses back in time. The author has created a story about a family that appears perfect from the outside, I say appears because there are cracks and some of those cracks are widening.

The story weaves its way at a pleasant pace and it was quite suprising how time just simply passed by as I was immersed in the book. I gradually got to know each of the main characters and found myself warming to them as I discovered more about them as a family as well as individuals. I discovered their secrets, their dreams and their wishes, what made them scared and what made them anxious.

It’s a story of a family, and with that came so many emotions as I read, anger, frustration, joy, hope, exasperation and doubt. As it progressed I did wonder how this family could stop the cracks from widening, if they could find compromises and if they could pull things back. By the end of the story I was surprised at the ending, I did not expect that, but at the same time it did feel right and so worked well.

It is one of those stories that I want to say is a delightful and lovely read. It has some tense moments that lead to distrust and dismay but also has a solid glimmer of hope and is heartwarming.

Letters to My Daughters is a book I would happily Recommend!


Book #18 of 20

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

Blindsighted by Karin Slaughter #20booksofsummer #bookreview

I am delighted to welcome you to my thoughts on Blindsighted by Karin Slaughter. I own several books by this author and this is the first I have read. This is book #1 in the Grant County series and it was a cracking read. It is #17 in my reading challenge for #20 Books Of Summer.

Let me show you what it is all about…

The first book in Karin Slaughter’s #1 bestselling GRANT COUNTY series.

She was found in the local diner. Brutally murdered. Ritually mutilated.
And she won’t be the last.
___________________

The sleepy town of Heartsdale, Georgia, is jolted into panic when Sara Linton, paediatrician and medical examiner, finds Sibyl Adams dead in the local diner. As well as being viciously raped, Sibyl has been cut: two deep knife wounds form a lethal cross over her stomach. But it’s only once Sara starts to perform the post-mortem that the full extent of the killer’s brutality becomes clear.

Police chief Jeffrey Tolliver – Sara’s ex-husband – is in charge of the investigation, and when a second victim is found, crucified, only a few days later, both Jeffrey and Sara have to face the fact that Sibyl’s murder wasn’t a one-off attack. What they’re dealing with is a seasoned sexual predator. A violent serial killer…

I have to say right from the off that I really, really enjoyed this book and what a fabulous introduction to a “new to me” author!

The synopsis is one that gives a great idea as to what the story is about, not that I read the synopsis until I have finished reading the book! It does give an indication that this story is going to be a bit on the brutal side, and yes it and in such a brilliant way.

Dr. Sara Linton is the medical examiner/ coroner whose main job is a paediatrician. She works for her ex-husband while doing her role as coroner, not ideal but they do still talk to each other. Oh I should mention that her ex is Police Chief Jeffrey Tolliver.

Sara stumbles on the victim in a toilet booth. Sybil has been brutally murdered, and I must add it is quite a bloody affair and as wrong as this sounds… it was so good. It meant that straight away I wanted to know more, the how’s, the why’s and the who’s, it made me impatient and I was addicted straight away.

So with a beginning like that, I knew this was going to be a good book. A great opening with blood, guts, murder and a character I was going to get on with and like. Over the course of the story I got to know Sara a little better, her family, her past and also her relationship with her ex.

The author builds up the story and gradually adds more intrigue and never was I close to working out who was responsible, though I did have the odd idea floating around. The characters fall into various categories, those you will like, those you won’t and those that don’t quite sit right but you don’t know why! I like the way the author littered this story with seeds of doubt, it kept me on my toes and my fingers turning the pages.

Having a main character as a coroner meant I was able to see inside the examination room so to speak, and it was not pleasant but at the same time it was again very good. The descriptions of the bodies and what had happened to them made me shudder and curl my toes up. The investigation was brilliantly paced and move along nicely.

This book could just as easily been called Blindsided rather than Blindsighted and I was the former for most of the story. This author got the balance right with regards to the case, the drama of the personal lives and also the tension and stress in trying to track down the killer.

So as I mentioned, this is the first time of reading anything by this author and what a brilliant book I chose to read. I can definitely see why she is so popular. I am looking forward to reading more in the series as well as the others that she has written. It’s great to find a new author who has lots of already published books out there.

And, as if you really needed me to mention this…. I would Absolutely Recommend Blindsighted!


Book #17 of 20


Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be brilliant ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

The Death of Justice by Tony J Forder @TonyJForder @Bloodhoundbook #bookreview

I am absolutely delighted to welcome you to read my thoughts on The Death of Justice by Tony J Forder. This is #5 in the DI Bliss series and I want to say a huge thank you to Heather at Bloodhound Books for arranging for an e-copy of Tony’s latest book.

I am a huge fan of this series and the author, and this latest book is bloody brilliant!

Let me show you what it is all about…

To keep a secret hidden you must bury the truth

One night. Two shootings. Two victims.

When DI Bliss arrives at the scene of the second murder, he recognises the same three-shot pattern as the first. But there is one major difference: the second victim has been decapitated, the head nowhere to be found. When a second headless corpse is discovered the following day, Bliss and his team realise the killer is on a spree โ€“ and heโ€™s not done yet.

After Bliss links the killings and forms a task force with officers from Lincolnshire, they uncover further disturbing news: the murders are not the first in the series โ€“ there are four more headless victims, and the Lincolnshire team believe they know why. Not only that, they are also convinced that more potential victims are on the killerโ€™s list.

In a race against time to save further loss of life, Bliss constantly finds himself one step behind and chasing shadows. In order to flush out the hired assassin, he and his team have no choice but to put their own lives at risk. But will everyone survive? 

This is the latest in the DI Bliss series, and you know I am going to say that Yes you should read this series in order. There are smaller personal stories that are running through the series, and they are mentioned in the books but obviously are much better when read in order.

Oh Wow, what a book! This for me see’s a real step up for this author, I have always been a fan of his books, but this one just knocks the socks off what I have read by him… so far! This author always provides a good solid read and I have enjoyed reading the developments with the characters and the addictive story lines. For me, The Death of Justice sees this author step things up big time.

The case begins with a shooting, it is then followed by a decapitation. This is only the beginning! Bliss and his team realise that this could be the start of something much bigger and things could spectacularly spiral out of control. There is a sense of not having much time as Bliss and his department have to cross into another county and co-operation is required across the county borders. Bliss has never really been one for tact and diplomacy and is often found stamping on toes within the hierarchy, but this time he is going to have to hold back, well to a certain extent!

The author has definitely ramped up the complexity in the case as Bliss finds himself in an investigation that has him pulled from pillar to post and is struggling to be everywhere he wants to be. Yet while the case is complex for Bliss, it is not for the reader. I found it easy to follow and I like the logical progress the author uses for Bliss.

Bliss is old school and knows about grey areas and experienced in reading people. He is one of those characters that does interact well with his team, they are valued and respected by Bliss and they have a bond that has been built up over time. This is where I back up my statement about reading in order.

As well as the complex case , the author has injected a great pace to this story. There is definitely a “race against time” aspect to the investigation. It adds to the dramatic and tense that is present throughout. The unusual nature of the case means Bliss is given a little more leeway than usual, he has this with the blessing of his superiors. This is the grey area that Bliss seems to thrive in, and he is definitely well placed to think outside the box as far as protocol and procedure is concerned.

This story starts dramatically and ends spectacularly dramatically. I was able to get up to date with the smaller personal stories in the lives of the regular characters, while they are not major storylines and they do fade during the investigation, they make an appearance again at the end. They are poignant and I like them a lot.

In between the main story there is also some chapters from the perspective of another character. Oh my goodness are they chilling and creepy or what! This adds a great psychological suspense to the story and definitely gets the spine tingling as I read these particular chapters.

Emotions… well… Yes Mr Forder you broke me! That means you got it absolutely right! The author mentions in a note at the end of the story about the balance of this story, my floods of tears meant that for me it was right. Yes it was balanced, the investigation is obviously the main focus, but in with that there was drama, suspicion, tension, emotion and complexity and they all have an important part to play.

This is without doubt THE best book I have read by this author. So many things I loved about it and even though there is a sadness it also made sense because not everything is finite and there are things that happen in daily life that is life itself. I also feel that this is a huge step forward in a series I already love and has left me with such a feeling of “WOW that was bloody good!”

I would have happily read this book in one sitting, instead I had to read it over a couple of days, it’s so annoying when you have to work a night shift ad you would rather be sat at home with your head in a book!

This is a book that , as if you need telling at this point, that I would absolutely would Highly Recommend!

Tony J Forder is the author of the critically acclaimed and international bestselling crime thriller series featuring Peterborough based detectives Jimmy Bliss and Penny Chandler. The first four books, Bad to the Bone, The Scent of Guilt, If Fear Wins, and The Reach of Shadows, will be joined on 9 September by The Death of Justice.

Tonyโ€™s dark, psychological crime thriller, Degrees of Darkness, featuring ex-detective Frank Rogers, was also published by Bloodhound Books.

Scream Blue Murder was written as a standalone, but even before it was published back in November 2017, he had decided to write the sequel, Cold Winter Sun, which was released on 1 November 2018.

Tony lives with his wife in Peterborough, UK, and is busy working on book six in the DI Bliss series, as well as another novel, Fifteen Coffins. 

Follow tony on his – Website Twitter

See what other Book Bloggers think and check out their stops on the Blog Blitz xx

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be fabulous ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

My Week in Books (w/e 8th Sept) #MeAndMyBooks #BookNews

Oh my goodness has the weather turned chillier or what. I am still wearing my shorts and refusing to put them away yet! Though wearing them to work when I am on a night shift makes me think twice!!!!

First up is the Non-Bookish stuff…

I had a good week in the garden and kitchen this week. I finally got round to dealing with my beetroot, this resulted in 12 jars of beetroot chutney and 4 jars of pickled beetroot. The chutney was a first make for me and nice and simple – home grown beetroot and onions, some donated cooking apples, ginger, vinegar and sugar! and it tastes great and is tasty in a cheese sandwich ๐Ÿ˜‹๐Ÿ˜

I was given enough apples to make a couple of crumbles as well, I still had some of last years blackberries in the freezer so they were added as well…

I think you could say that Tuesday in our house should have been called “Purpleday” and that Wednesday was definitely “FeelingFatday” ๐Ÿ˜‚


Now for the books I read this week…

First up was…

Bird Box by Josh Malerman

WOW! I loved this so much. I was a little dubious about starting this at night after the OH had gone to bed and I was sat reading in a room by myself!

This is tense and just awesome. Not everything is explained as such in regards to all the why’s of the catastrophe that led to people having to wear blindfolds, but taking a step back from the book and thinking about things logically, if there was a phenomenon that led to an end of days event… would anyone know the real truth anyway?


Then I read…

The Death Of Justice by Tony J Forder

This author is a favourite of mine and I always look forward to reading any of his books. This is the 5th in the DI Bliss series and I have to say it his his best book for me to date.

This is a real step up for me by this author with this latest publication. It is emotional, has a complex case and has so much drama and tension to it. It is simply fabulous and it also broke me, tears galore for me for this book.

As I was reading this on my ipad I saw a message come up from the very same author asking me if I had got this, his latest book! Very twilight zone or what!!!! So yes I took a photo and sent that saying… “Yep I am currently reading it” ๐Ÿ˜ฎ๐Ÿ˜‚

Keep your eye out for my review on tomorrow (tues 10th)


Then I read…

Guest by SJ Bradley

I read this book as part of the upcoming Morecombe & Vice Crime Festival Blog Tour that has been organised by Sarah Hardy at Book On The Bright Side Publications. This Blog Tour teams up 41 Book Bloggers and Authors for daily Blog Posts that see Book Reviews and Question & Answers posts. I am really looking forward to this. It runs from 18th to 27th September. There are some fabulous Authors and also festival organisers involved, so make sure you check out all the Blog Posts.

Guest by S.J. Bradley is a story about Samhain and how he has reached a crossroads in his life. He has to decide what he wants to do when revelations from the past suddenly arrive at the same time. This is a literary fiction story that has been beautifully written and was a lovely read.


Currently Reading… not sure yet, I will probably choose a book later today (Sunday as I write this) ๐Ÿค”๐Ÿ˜

Escape to Giddywell Grange

UPDATE – Just read Escape to Giddywell Grange by Kim Nash – a fabulous and heartwarming story that I adored. This is the 2nd book by this author and the 2nd time she has delivered a fabulous read that I devoured in one sitting. Keep an eye out for my review at the end of the month as part of the Blog Tour with Rachel Gilbey.

And…

My next read is going to be Kult by Stefan Malmstrom ๐Ÿ˜Š


Well that me done for yet another week. I will catch up with you all next week ๐Ÿ™‚

Take care and all the best

Yvonne xx

False Flag by Rachel Churcher @ @rararesources #bookreview

I am delighted to share my thoughts for False Flag by Rachel Churcher. This is #2 in the Battleground series. My thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and also to Rachel Churcher for my e-copy of the book.

Let’s see what is is about…

Ketty Smith is an instructor with the Recruit Training Service, turning sixteen-year-old conscripts into government fighters. She’s determined to win the job of lead instructor at Camp Bishop, but the arrival of Bex and her friends brings challenges she’s not ready to handle. Running from her own traumatic past, Ketty faces a choice: to make a stand, and expose a government conspiracy, or keep herself safe, and hope she’s working for the winning side.

The Battle Ground series is set in a dystopian near-future UK, after Brexit and Scottish independence.

Purchase Link: HERE

I really enjoyed the first book in this series, so I was looking forward to seeing what happened next. I started reading and thought ‘hang on, this sounds familiar and yet different!’. It is the same timeline as the previous book but from a different perspective and it worked really well for me.

This is a Young Adult dystopian book that is set in the near future, post-Brexit. The series pits ‘terrorists’ against the government, but it is not as basic as that, nothing is black and white in the series.

In False Flag I discovered, as I have mentioned, a similar story to the first book. The timeline and the people are the same, but it is from the perspective of the trainers in the Training Camp. The camps are for 16 year olds recruited from schools, the trainers are basically there to kick the newcomers into shape.

I liked the perspective reversal a lot as it challenged my thoughts that I had built up from the first book. Originally I thought Ketty was a glory hunting bully, and yes while she is a bully there is something more to her. I started to reassess her cold hearted persona and discovered reasons and motives in her.

Reading this book was a retelling of the first and it gives the reader a chance to sit on the proverbial fence and see things from both sides. For a book aimed a YA Readers it gives definite food for thought and is a way to challenge preconceptions and that there is always two sides to a story.

This is again a fast paced book that is full of action conspiracy and has a challenging reader dilemma. I liked the way Kitty his put on the spot on several occasions and has to not only think on her feet, but also think about herself.

Another great read that had me thinking about how I originally saw and thought of the characters. Can’t wait to see what the author has lined up next, or which way she is going to go. It gets a Definitely Recommended from Me.


If you want to see my review of Battleground #1, then please click HERE.

Rachel Churcher was born between the last manned moon landing, and the first orbital Space Shuttle mission. She remembers watching the launch of STS-1, and falling in love with space flight, at the age of five. She fell in love with science fiction shortly after that, and in her teens she discovered dystopian fiction. In an effort to find out what she wanted to do with her life, she collected degrees and other qualifications in Geography, Science Fiction Studies, Architectural Technology, Childminding, and Writing for Radio.

She has worked as an editor on national and in-house magazines; as an IT trainer; and as a freelance writer and artist. She has renovated several properties, and has plenty of horror stories to tell about dangerous electrics and nightmare plumbers. She enjoys reading, travelling, stargazing, and eating good food with good friends โ€“ but nothing makes her as happy as writing fiction.

Her first published short story appeared in an anthology in 2014, and the Battle Ground series is her first long-form work. Rachel lives in East Anglia, in a house with a large library and a conservatory full of house plants. She would love to live on Mars, but only if sheโ€™s allowed to bring her books.

Follow Rachel on – TwitterInstagramGoodreadsBlog

See what other Book Bloggers think by following the Tour…

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be great ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

Boxer Boys Collection by Nick Rippington @nickripp #bookreview @BOTBSPublicity

I am delighted to welcome you to read my thoughts as I help to kick off the Blog Tour for Boxer Boys Collection by Nick Rippington. My huge thanks to Nick for sending me the 3 e-book set and to Sarah Hardy at BOTBSPublicity for the invite onto the Blog Tour. This collection is a series of 3 books and I will try by best to give you a mini review for each book…

But first how about I let you know what the Boxer Boys Collection is all about…

Some Family feuds just wonโ€™t go awayโ€ฆ For 40 years the Dolans and the Marshalls have lived side by side on the same rundown housing estate in east London. While teens Gary Marshall and Arnie Dolan forge a close friendship, fighting constant battles to survive both on the streets and closer to home, the relationship between their parents is complicated and, at times, toxic. Gradually family secrets emerge which have their roots in the early 80sโ€ฆ and Gary and Arnie realise their entire upbringing was built on lies.  

So first up is Crossing the White

Gary Marshall is being bullied on the rundown London estate he lives on, local lad Arnie (Arnold) Dolan steps in and saves Gary from a beating. This is the start of a friendship that see’s the boys through their teens and is the start of the Boxer Boys.

It is a story of family, friendship, changing from kids into adults and watching each others backs. Over the course of the story it becomes apparent that Gary is drawn into the murkier side than he really wants to. Things go awry for Gary and his chances at living his dream in a career he is passionate about, instead he takes different route.

This is a gritty read that deals with teens in the sprawling and gang ruled estates of London. There are various things that have been dealt with and it adds to the authentic feel of the story.

A great first book in the collection and it made me want to know exactly what was going to happen next. So much so that I went straight onto the 2nd in the set.

Spark Out

This is a book that goes back to the era of Gary and Arnies parents, mainly the Dolans, but the Marshall’s do have a part to play. The Dolan family is made up of Big Mo & Beryl and, Chuck their eldest, it is also about Clive, Big Mo’s brother.

This has a different feel to it and it was nice to get to know more about the family of the boys I had met in the first book. Big Mo is, well tough to say the least. He has a fiery temper and is the sort that hits first and then asks questions later and he is the leader of a shady small group of friends. The Dolan’s have a reputation not to be messed with.

Clive and Mo are very different in what they want out of their lives. Mo is about power, reputation and money. Clive is about wanting more from his life and this is why he joins the Scots Guards. This is the time of Maggie Thatcher in the 80’s and the Falklands conflict. Nobody thought that would come to anything and so off Clive goes. History tells us that this was something and Clive is not the same person he was when he left.

This is a more emotional read as well as having more violence. It gives a great insight into the families, their priorities and loyalty. It’s all about the family and who they are.

Once again as soon as I had finished this one I was straight onto the next…

Dying Seconds

Back again with Gary and Arnie, or should I say Gareth and Arnie. The previous books were extensive in their groundwork and this is brought to a fabulous conclusion in Dying Seconds. It is 2016 and while Garth is dealing with a job in Wales, Rugby and Football matches, Arnie is having to come to terms with his new lifestyle.

He has had his role in the Boxer Boys changed and the families are fracturing with tension and suspicions are running at an all time high.

There is a lot for the two men to deal with and their responsibilities and loyalties have changed. Gareth’s past is brought up to date and he can finally deal with things that have been hanging over him for the past few years.

This is a tense 3rd book and it is where all the threads are finally pulled together and things slot into their proper places. It is a story full of doubt, suspicion and fear and it is full of pace.


OVERALL – this has been a great series and I really do apologise for being so vague, but I was aware that if I wasn’t careful then spoilers would slip out.

The three stories combine to give a fabulous insight in two main families and the trials and tribulations that go with them. There are so many things that happen along the way for not only the families but also the boys as well.

The style of the story is gritty and it fits so well with the gangland setting. As much as there is violence with the story as you would expect, there is also much more than that. It is a story that show the dynamics of family and society of the respective times the stories are set in. It is about loyalty and friendship and how long they can be stretched before something gives.

This has been a really good collection of 3 stories that are intertwined and linked and that span the years. They each have a connection to each other and yet at the same time each have a different feel in the way they read. After reading Nick’s Bio I can see that he brings his own knowledge and experiences to his writing. This is a collection that I thoroughly enjoyed each one of the books and I would suggest that they are definitely read in order, you could argue that they could be read as stand alone books but for me they worked perfectly as they were set out.

It is one of those collections that falls into several categories. I add my own tags and the ones I have chosen for this is, Urban Fiction, Family Drama, Family & Lifestyle and Contemporary Fiction as well as General Fiction. I think it is one would interest many readers.

A fabulous collection and one I would Definitely Recommend.

NICK RIPPINGTON is one of the victims of the News of the World phone-hacking scandal you never hear about. 

As the newspaperโ€™s Welsh Sports Editor, he was made redundant with two days notice when Rupert Murdoch closed down Europeโ€™s biggest-selling tabloid in 2011. 

On holiday at the time, Nick was never allowed back into the building, investigators sealed off the area with crime scene tape and seized his computer, which contained all the secrets to his Fantasy Football selections.

Handed the contents of his desk in a black bin bag in a murky car park, deep throat style, Nick was at a crossroads โ€“ married just two years earlier and with a wife and 9-month-old baby to support. Options were limited but self-publishing was booming. Having hit on an idea for a UK gangland thriller taking place against the backdrop of the Rugby World Cup, in 2015 he produced Crossing The Whitewash.

The book was praised by many, received an honourable mention in the genre category of the Writersโ€™ Digest self-published eBook awards and more than 25 five-star reviews on both sides of the pond. 

Almost two years after Crossing The Whitewash came the second in the Boxer Boys series, a prequel called Spark Out, which was released in paperback on July 1 and for Kindle on July 10, 2017. The book received an award for best cover of 2017 with the Chill With A Book website, along with a readers award, before receiving the IndieBRAG medallion from a prestigious site covering Independent writers and publishers throughout the world.

The third book in the Boxer Boys series Dying Seconds, a sequel to Crossing the Whitewash, was released in December 2018.

Married to Liz, Nick is now a full-time back bench designer on the Daily Star sports desk and has two daughters โ€“ Jemma, 36, and Olivia, 8. A Bristolian at heart, he lives near Ilford, Essex. In the past he has worked for the Sunday Mirror, Wales on Sunday and Media Wales in Cardiff as an executive editor.

You can follow Nick on…

FacebookTwitterGoodreads Author PageWebsiteAmazon Author Page in the UK

See what other Book Bloggers thought of The Boxer Boys books by following the Blog Tour


Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share is always appreciated ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

Silent Scream by Angela Marsons #20booksofsummer #bookreview

I am delighted to share my thoughts on Silent Scream by Angela Marsons. This is a series I have been seeing and hearing good things about from other readers. It has taken me a while but I have finally started the series.

Let me show you what it is all about…

Even the darkest secrets can’t stay buried forever …

Five figures gather round a shallow grave. They had all taken turns to dig. An adult sized hole would have taken longer. An innocent life had been taken but the pact had been made. Their secrets would be buried, bound in blood …

Years later, a headmistress is found brutally murdered, the first in a spate of gruesome killings which shock the Black Country.

But when human remains are discovered at a former children’s home, disturbing secrets are also unearthed. D.I. Kim Stone fast realises she’s on the hunt for a twisted individual whose killing spree spans decades.

As the body count rises, Kim needs to stop the murderer before they strike again. But to catch the killer, can Kim confront the demons of her own past before it’s too late?

This author has created a fabulous and feisty character in the form of DI Kim Stone. Along with Stone, there is a brilliant team supporting her. Her main sidekick is Bryant and seems to be a “voice of reason” to Stone’s abrupt, “bull in a china shop” approach. The banter between these two is so good and there is a strong sense of friendship and respect between them. There are strong characters in this story and with this strength there is going to be the odd clash, especially with her superior. Luckily for Stone she delivers results so she does have a bit of leeway.

The case itself is that of the discovery of a body that has been found on a local dig site. These requires a different skill set and a specialist team are called in. I love the way the author has used Bates, one of those brought in, and almost painted a bulls-eye on him for Stone’s sarcasm. It is actually something that is a good thing as this sarcasm is usually when a discussion about a body is due to be dealt with. It kind of breaks the tension before the nitty gritty details about the body takes place.

During the case I was able to learn some interesting stuff about Stone, they came in little snippets that were scattered through the story. I have a feeling she is a complex character from what I have learnt about her so far and I think there is a lot more to come.

This story was one that once I started I had problems putting down. It was immediately engaging and really did keep my attention. There is a good amount of detail in the various aspects of the investigation that for me worked really well and these were balanced wonderfully with the more personal side of Stone’s life-history.

This is a series I am so happy about finally beginning, and the best bit is… there are several more books in the series for me to catch up on.

Silent Scream is a book I would Definitely Recommend!


Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be fabulous ๐Ÿ™‚ xx

Jennifer Brown Moving On by Angie Langley #BookReview

I am delighted to welcome you to my thoughts on Jennifer Brown by Angie Langley. This is the 2nd book in this series, even though you could read it as a stand alone I would suggest reading in order as it gives you more insight into it’s main character. The first is Jennifer Brown’s Journey ๐Ÿ˜Š

Let me show you what it is all about…

Sheโ€™s back! 
Five feet one and full of fizz, Jennifer Brown has learned to roll with the punches and adapt to whatever life throws at her. Itโ€™s thrown plenty in the past and sheโ€™s had to use her steely core to reinvent herself, first as cook and housekeeper to a saucy sexagenarian, then as manager of a tumbledown country estate with sensitive secrets.

In Jennifer Brown On The Move, this Bridget Jones with knobs on is taking charge of her life again, showing the world she can move in the most exalted, high-power circles and lose not an ounce of her gutsy, down-to-earth charm. Her hilarious cross-dressing confidant Will is on hand once again, with pearls of caustic widsom, and her old boss Jonathan Dashwood-Silk breezes in and out of her life, still dripping charisma but still needing our heroine to dig him out of the odd hole. As she crosses continents and breaks bread with the worldโ€™s movers and shakers, Jennifer Brown finds her mind still troubled by thoughts of the quiet man with the warm eyes and the velvet vowels. Then that daydream is torpedoed when sheโ€™s invited to his wedding. 


But you know Jennifer. She never gives up! 

Oh it is so good to catch up again with Jennifer and see what she is going to get up to again. After her last job she moves into a different area as far as her career goes. This time she is all about the wine. How it’s made, the industry, the growing and most importantly the selling. Unlike me who see’s wine as something to be bought and drunk, there are those who will spend vast amounts on a bottle just to have it in a collection…. what a waste! But then I am someone who thinks that buying a ยฃ10 bottle for Christmas is a treat…๐Ÿ˜ What do I know! ๐Ÿ˜‚

So, Jennifer is a fabulous character, bubbly, blond and larger than her 5ft 1″ belies. She has to think on her feet as she makes her way through life and deals with whatever comes her way regardless of the up’s or down’s that may lay ahead.

This story also see’s the return of some characters from the previous book as well as some new ones. There are a few characters in the story but to be honest they are easy to get to know and remember.

The author has taken a terrific route for Jennifer and the story and by the time I had got to the end I think I was as surprised as Jennifer, and also so very pleased for her.

Jennifer has time for others, never mind what she needs to get done herself. This means the story itself has a nice feel about it. But not everything is sunshine and luscious grapes, and there are dark clouds that add a nice balance to the story.

On the outside Jennifer is bubbly, warm and appears to be in control, however she has her worries and concerns about her abilities. I had faith in her, as did others, but it is always what’s going on on the inside that upskittles a person. This lack of confidence leads to some hilarious faux pax moments for poor Jennifer and they definitely had me chuckling. These little stumbles for me were good as it meant that I saw Jennifer as a normal person rather than the wonder woman she may comes across as.

By the end of the book, well what can I say… hmmm not too much actually… apart from, there are things from the first that make a grand entrance and not only did it blow my socks off I was so happy. This is why I would suggest reading the first book before this one. Talk about having the hugest grin on my face or what! I know Jennifer is fictional, but the author has created a character and story that I would love to know in reality.

This is such a wonderful story that is lighthearted and one that leaves you feeling “aahhh!” if you know what I mean. It is one I quite happily read in an afternoon as the storyline was one that held my attention. I cannot wait to see what happens next to Jennifer Brown, I am sure it will be wonderful with the odd stumble.

Jennifer Brown Moving On get a Definitely Recommended from Me!


Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share is always appreciated ๐Ÿ™‚ xx