Three Little Girls by Jane Badrock @janebadrock @ZooloosBT @QuestionPress  #ThreeLittleGirls #QuestionMarkPress #ZooloosBookTours #bookreview

I am delighted to be one of the Book Bloggers opening the Tour today and to share my review today for Three Little Girls by Jane Badrock. This is the second book in the Karen Thorpe series, and while it is good to read a series in order, I do think it would work well as a stand-alone.

My huge thanks to Zoe at Zooloo’s Book Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of this book from the publisher Question Mark Press.

THREE COLD CASES ONE DETERMINED COP
Someone’s playing tricks on Karen at home and at work. When two cold case files about missing girls turn up on her desk, she’s fuming. When a third file arrives…
she blows a fuse.
Her boss demands she take a holiday leave just as Karen discovers her late father was involved in one of the cases. Now she’s compelled to investigate them.
Karen’s accompanied by sometime boyfriend John- but can she trust him or his friend and map keeper Mr Binks?
She has formidable detective skills but will they work in places where old-world magic is still powerful?
Karen’s life is in serious danger… but from whom…. or what?

MY REVIEW

This is the 2nd book in the Karen Thorpe series, and I have read the first book. I can say that they do work well as stand-alone. As I had read the previous book I immediately wanted to read this one, I didn’t read the synopsis so it was a very pleasant surprise to see the story that the author had in mind for our detective.

As I started reading this I remembered the main protagonist, Karen Thorpe, not particularly likeable. She is abrupt, short with people and very, very work-focused. She is a character that thrives on her work, it is all she thinks about and in her job she has no time for fools. It’s a good job that her on/off/maybe-boyfriend John understands her and the work, and his role plays out so well in this story.

When case files randomly start turning up on her desk, Karen is sure someone is taking the mick out of her. Then she starts to see something in them, something that reminds her of her Dad. The more she tries to work out the more bizarre things become, even the level headed John is puzzled. The three cases are from 50 years ago, unsolved and opened by various people over the years but never resolved. Karen and John team up to try and sort through the mysteries and the clues that will lead them to several cities.

This is the second time I have read a book by this author, so I am not familiar with her style yet. Given how much I enjoyed the first book in the series I was a little bewildered at how this story was going. There are definitely more sides to this author and I believe she may like to enjoy swapping genres and mixing things up. It was only when I finished the book that I actually read the synopsis, yeah I know it’s the wrong way around, but it has made this book a really interesting and unexpected read.

I am aware of this being a bit of a vague review, and now I have read the synopsis I do see that there is a mention of what this story was going to be. I am in fact rather glad that I came to this one blind, it made for a really interesting police procedural with a strong mysterious vibe to it. For me, it worked well and I did enjoy the journey.

One for those who like a crime and mystery read that is a little different but also very addictive reading. It is one I would happily recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jane writes novels, short stories and poems, usually with a good dose of humour in them. She probably owes it all to her late grandmother who, she’s just found out, also wrote short stories and poems. She tends to get an idea and then run with it whether it be a 100-word short story or an 80 thousand word novel. It all depends on the voices in her head at the time…

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The Lost by Simon Beckett @BeckettSimon @Tr4cyF3nt0n @orionbooks #compulsivereaders #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Lost by Simon Beckett. This is the first time I have read anything by this author, so what better way to start than with this #1 Jonah Colley

My thanks to Tracy at Compulsive Readers for arranging my copy of this book and for my spot on the Blog Tour.

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A MISSING CHILD

Ten years ago, the disappearance of firearms police officer Jonah Colley’s young son almost destroyed him.

A GRUESOME DISCOVERY

A plea for help from an old friend leads Jonah to Slaughter Quay and the discovery of four bodies. Brutally attacked and left for dead, he is the only survivor.

A SEARCH FOR THE TRUTH


Under suspicion himself, he uncovers a network of secrets and lies about the people he thought he knew – forcing him to question what really happened all those years ago…

MY REVIEW

10 years separate two crimes, but what and is there a link is a question that Jonah Colley and other detectives want to know.

An old friend calls Jonah for help. Little does Jonah know what is to come. It will open old wounds and put him in the firing line as far as an investigation is concerned. How innocent is Jonah and what happened all those years ago?

This is the first time I have read a book by this author but I knew when I read the synopsis it was one I wanted to read. I do love a short synopsis and the one for this story is short, it is also very intriguing.

The author doesn’t hang about with this story and it progresses at such a good pace, it works so well with the story where time is something that is important. As the main investigation gets going it feels as if Jonah has to try and stay one step ahead.

I like how the author has woven the two timelines together so well, it has helped build a larger picture and it is also a way to gradually learn more details. The major details are trickled out and rather than being one large eureka moment, there are a series of realisations, that is until you get towards the end of the story and the final piece of the puzzle is placed.

This is a story that is quite complex as I now start to try and write my review, but while reading it there wasn’t a point where I felt lost or out of my depth. Instead, the author carefully laid the story out and it was full of double-crossing, lies, secrets and twists.

The story of Jonah is a heartbreaking one, it has tormented him for years and it gives such a brutal backstory which the author has used to build his character. There are dark and emotional themes in this story, there is cruelty that gradually unearths itself and it gives this a grittier edge.

This is one for those who like an intense, edgy, dark and atmospheric story. I thought it was an excellent read with some fabulously sneaky characters and also one that I found extremely addictive, so much so that this was a one-sitting read. I would definitely recommend it.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Simon Beckett is the No.1 International Bestselling author of the David Hunter series. His books have been translated into 29 languages, appeared in the Sunday Times Top 10 bestseller lists and sold over 10 million copies worldwide. A former freelance journalist who has written for The Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Independent on Sunday and The Observer, the inspiration for the first David Hunter novel came after a visit to the world-renowned Body Farm in Tennessee introduced him to the work of forensic anthropologists.

As well as co-winning the Ripper Award in 2018/19, the largest European crime prize, Simon has won the Raymond Chandler Society’s ‘Marlowe’ Award and been short-listed for the CWA Gold Dagger, CWA Dagger in the Library and Theakston’s Crime Novel of the Year.

In addition to the six David Hunter titles, the most recent of which is The Scent of Death, he has written five standalone novels, one of which, Where There’s Smoke, was adapted into a major ITV two-part drama.

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The Huntsmen by Tony J Forder @TonyJForder #TheHuntsmen #DSChase #crime #thriller #newseries #bookreview

Any regular visitors to my blog will probably be aware that Tony Forder is one of my favourite authors. I am always eager to read any of his new books, but more so when it is the start of a new series. So I am delighted to join with other Book Bloggers to open the Blog tour and to share my review.

The Huntsmen is the first book in the DS Royston Chase series and what a start to a series this one is!!!

ABOUT THE BOOK…

The Huntsmen, by Tony J Forder, is the first book in a new UK crime series, based in Wiltshire.

The opener introduces the reader to DS Royston Chase and his new partner, DC Claire Laney. Chase is a family man and good at his job, but his lack of filter when speaking (caused by a brain injury sustained on the job) can cause problems. Laney is winding down towards her retirement, is bitter about having risen to the rank of DI only to see herself demoted back down again. She presents as a copper who no longer cares, but we find out otherwise. The two are supported by PCSO Alison May, who is ambitious and keen to join the force as a PC or preferably a DC.

Multiple deaths following a road collision are hard enough to deal with. That the man responsible was the ex-Chief Constable of Wiltshire Police and a Knight of the Realm is worse still for those tasked to investigate the incident. But the real question they have to answer is: who was the now deceased naked female minor alongside him at the time?

DS Royston Chase is living life as an outcast in a small Wiltshire village, and is called to the scene. Paired with the bold and strident DC Claire Laney, Chase is given the task of closing the case quickly and quietly.

But when the minor’s DNA provides a familial link to a girl who vanished from her home twenty years earlier at the age of eight, Chase and Laney refuse to accept the coincidence. The pair start looking harder at the ex-cop’s life, at which point they encounter serious opposition. Perhaps deadly serious.

Because the establishment looks after its own, and soon it’s not only their bosses getting in the way of a thorough investigation. Chase and Laney find themselves seemingly at odds with everyone, fighting to save their own reputations as well as the case. But neither will rest until they identify their young victim, no matter what the cost…

MY REVIEW…

So when one of my favourite authors decides to write a new police procedural series, I automatically want to read it. I was nervous because I wondered if I would like DS Royston Chase as much as I do the character of DI Jimmy Bliss. I have to say right from the off that I do like this character and he is very different.

When DS Chase is called to attend a road accident, it is unusual. This is not the usual and the accident is not one anyone would want to attend. As the synopsis suggests the accident is just the start of a complex case. A case that reaches far, further than Chase would ever have believed.

Chase is a DS, he has been pushed sideways, into a rural station, he runs the show with help from PCSO May. As he is first on the scene as far as detectives go, and that he has already started the ball rolling by starting interviewing, his superiors decide that he will lead. This is not something they are too happy about, as a compromise they give him a partner.

Oh my days, DC Claire Laney has Chase wondering what planet she has just arrived from. Talk about opposites, bolshy, loud, blunt, borderline obnoxious or what! This first meeting of two people who are supposed to work together is not, well, is not how first meetings should go. This is a fabulous meeting that had me absolutely stunned and highly amused. Making an entrance or an impact is definitely what happened here. It is actually also quite clever because even though it should be a bit of a volatile combination, it really becomes an ice-breaker.

As for the case they are about to start out on, well they and I for that matter never imagined for one moment what the author had in store for us. This story is brutal, it is dark and it shows human depravity and how people think they have a right to do what they want. It was like going down a rabbit hole, the further I went the darker it got, and believe me there is no wonderland at the bottom of this rabbit hole.

I know the author can go into dark places with his writing, but this one takes it to a whole other level. The story introduces various characters, on the whole, they are not the nicest bunch, some are rich, powerful or successful and therefore believe they are above the likes of Chase and Laney and their investigation. Calling in expensive solicitors, trying to dodge questions or name dropping. This does not stop the investigation, it may hinder them, but Chase and Laney are too involved to let this get away from them. It seems they have more obstacles and doors closing in from of them, but tenacity and sheer bloody-mindedness from both of them keep it going forward.

Given that the case is one that is very hard reading at times, and also one that is heartbreaking and emotional, the author has managed to find a balance with some well-timed humour. It doesn’t detract from the case but does give the reader a chance for a pause, before getting right back into it.

This is a hard story, it is brutal and it is also very well written. Addictive and well-paced. If you are looking for a new crime series to start that is definitely on the darker side then this is one you really need to consider. A brilliant start to a new police procedural series and one that I am very excited about. It is definitely recommended. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR…

Tony J. Forder

Tony J Forder is the author of the bestselling DI Bliss crime thriller series. The first seven books, Bad to the Bone, The Scent of Guilt, If Fear Wins, The Reach of Shadows, The Death of Justice, Endless Silent Scream, and Slow Slicing, were joined in December 2020 by a prequel novella, Bliss Uncovered. The series continued with The Autumn Tree in May 2021.

Tony’s other early series – two action-adventure novels featuring Mike Lynch – comprises both Scream Blue Murder and Cold Winter Sun. These books were republished in April 2021, and will be joined in 2022 by The Dark Division.

In addition, Tony has written two standalone novels: a dark, psychological crime thriller, Degrees of Darkness, and a suspense thriller set in California, called Fifteen Coffins.

The Huntsmen, released on 4 October 2022, is the first book in a new crime series, set in Wiltshire. It features DS Royston Chase, DC Claire Laney, and PCSO Alison May.

Tony lives with his wife in Peterborough, UK, and is now a full-time author. He is currently working on the first book of an intended new crime series, whose working title is The Huntsmen.

Links
All of Tony’s links can be found on Linktree

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The Doll by Yrsa Sigurdardottir #NeyGalley #20booksofsummer #PublicationDay @HodderBooks #suspense #bookreview

Firstly, Happy Publication Day to Yrsa Sigurdardottir on her latest novel The Doll. This is my 6th book choice that I am delighted to share my review for as part of for #20booksof summer reading challenge.

My thanks to the publisher Hodder & Stoughton for my e-copy request via NetGalley. My review is my own. I still get the creeps when I see this cover!!!

It was meant to be a quiet family fishing trip, a chance for mother and daughter to talk. But it changes the course of their lives forever.

They catch nothing except a broken doll that gets tangled in the net. After years in the ocean, the doll a terrifying sight and the mother’s first instinct is to throw it back, but she relents when her daughter pleads to keep it. This simple act of kindness proves fatal. That evening, the mother posts a picture of the doll on social media. By the morning, she is dead and the doll has disappeared.

Several years later and Detective Huldar is in his least favourite place – on a boat in rough waters, searching for possible human remains. However, identifying the skeleton they find on the seabed proves harder than initially thought, and Huldar must draw on psychologist Freyja’s experience to help him. As the mystery of the unidentified body deepens, Huldar is also drawn into an investigation of a homeless drug addict’s murder, and Freyja investigates a suspected case of child abuse at a foster care home.

What swiftly becomes clear is that the cases are linked through a single, missing, vulnerable witness: the young girl who wanted the doll all those years ago.

My Review…

I am so glad I had a digital copy of this book rather than a physical copy. I mean, that cover! It so creepy and unsettling.

The doll is discovered during a fishing trip by a young girl out with her mum and a family friend. Later that night the mother dies, the police agree that is was an accident. Rosa is adamant that she wasn’t and that her mum was murdered. She is ignored and her pleas fall on deaf ears.

This is a slower paced police procedural that is set in Iceland. It is a book in the Children’s House series but can easily be read as a stand alone. It did take me a while to get my head around the characters as initially a few were introduced over a short period. I did soon however remember who was who.

The plot of the story is one that is interesting and I was intrigued as to why the doll was so important. It wasn’t until the latter stages that I eventually got the answers. There is several plots going on in this story and it was complex but it did make sense during the reading.

It looks s heavier on the descriptions and details and even though I did like this it did slow the pace down considerably. Fine is you like a more in-depth procedural. It does add a tension and suspense aspect to the story as you have to wait longer for the clues to connect.

I enjoyed this story, a complex and intriguing crime thriller that I would recommend. 

AND JUST IN CASE YOU WANT TO SEE THAT COVER AGAIN…

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A Cut for a Cut (Detective Kate Young #2) by Carol Wyer #ACutForACut #DetectiveKateYoung @carolewyer @AmazonPub @damppebbles #damppebblesblogtours #PublicationDay #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to be one of the Book Bloggers to be opening the Blog Tour today and to share my review for A Cut for a Cut by Carol Wyer. This is the second book in the Detective Kate Young series. I read and loved the first book, An Eye for an Eye (full review HERE)and this second is also totally brilliant.

My thanks to Emma at damppebbles blog tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of this fabulous book via NetGalley.

I also want to take the opportunity to wish Carol a very Happy Publication Day xx

DI Kate Young can’t trust anybody. Not even herself.

In the bleak countryside around Blithfield Reservoir, a serial murderer and rapist is leaving a trail of bloodshed. His savage calling card: the word ‘MINE’ carved into each of his victims.

DI Kate Young struggles to get the case moving—even when one of the team’s own investigators is found dead in a dumpster. But Kate is battling her own demons. Obsessed with exposing Superintendent John Dickson and convinced there’s a conspiracy running deep in the force, she no longer knows who to trust. Kate’s crusade has already cost her dearly. What will she lose next?

When her stepsister spills a long-buried secret, Kate realises she’s found the missing link—now she must prove it before the killer strikes again. With enemies closing in on all sides, she’s prepared to do whatever it takes to bring them down. But time is running out, and Kate’s past has pushed her to the very edge. Can she stop herself from falling?

Purchase Links – Amazon – UK or US

My Review…

Having read and loved the first book in this series, An Eye For An Eye I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the second Detective Kate Young book. And Wow! what a story!

The author does fill in details about Kate and her life from the first book, but in all honesty, I would recommend reading the first book to get a proper idea of what Kate has been and is currently dealing with.

It is often the case that the lead detectives in fiction do have some trouble or scarring from their pasts. With Kate, however, this is something that she is not over dealing with, she is constantly reminded of her loss. I am not going to delve into this too much, but what the author did with this thread at the end of the book left me with goosebumps and also worried about Kate! Such a subtle sentence!

The case itself is brutal. A woman found dead with the word MINE carved into her skin is only the start of the investigation. Having only a small team at her disposal keeps Kate on the back foot to a certain extent. Lacking the resources but still having the pressure from those above doesn’t help her but her tenacity is something that keeps her going.

As the case intensifies the intrigue is built upon. Occasional italicised chapters add a very tense edge giving a more brutal, chilling psychological side to the story.

There is so much I want to say about the case, Kate’s personal life and the story in general. It is a brilliantly woven story and I am only just touching the edge of what happens. Fear of leaving spoilers and ruining it for those who have not yet read this is keeping this review vague.

With a personal story, a family reunion, pressure from the hierarchy it is a wonder Kate holds everything together. Is she holding it together or is she just hanging on? This is where the author has worked some magic, keeping Kate juggling so many things.

This is a brilliantly worked second book in the series and one that had me gripped. It is brutal, chilling, carefully worked and just amazing reading. One for those who like a gritty, crime, thriller and one I would very definitely recommend.

About the Author…

USA Today bestselling author and winner of The People’s Book Prize Award, Carol Wyer writes feel-good comedies and gripping crime fiction.

A move from humour to the ‘dark side’ in 2017, saw the introduction of popular DI Robyn Carter in LITTLE GIRL LOST and demonstrated that stand-up comedian Carol had found her true niche.

To date, her crime novels have sold over 750,000 copies and been translated for various overseas markets.

Carol has been interviewed on numerous radio shows discussing ”Irritable Male Syndrome’ and ‘Ageing Disgracefully’ and on BBC Breakfast television. She has had articles published in national magazines ‘Woman’s Weekly’, featured in ‘Take A Break’, ‘Choice’, ‘Yours’ and ‘Woman’s Own’ magazines and the Huffington Post.

She currently lives on a windy hill in rural Staffordshire with her husband Mr Grumpy… who is very, very grumpy.

When she is not plotting devious murders, she can be found performing her comedy routine, Smile While You Still Have Teeth.

Social Media:

WebsiteBlogFacebookTwitterInstagramPinterestLinkedinGoodreadsYouTube

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The Autumn Tree by Tony Forder @TonyJForder #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for the latest book from one of may favourite authors. The Autumn Tree by Tony Forder is the latest in the DI Bliss series and boy oh boy is it a good one!

My thanks to Tony for my e-copy of this book and for a spot on his Blog Tour.

When dark desires have no limitations, anything is fair game.

After a young woman is found strangled to death, Bliss is called to the scene. When he learns that one of his business cards was found among the victim’s clothing, and he is told what was written on the back of it, Bliss is immediately troubled. The card was one of five he handed out to trafficked young women he and his team had previously rescued from a shipping container.

When he sees the victim, Bliss realises she was not one of those saved that day. So whose card does she have? Any why? And is it connected to her murder?

The murder investigation proves to be more complex and challenging than the team could possibly have imagined. But just as they think they have it figured out, they learn that depravity has no boundaries…

My Review…

Oh! I am a little speechless after reading the 8th book in the DI Bliss series. Wow! I never read the synopsis for these Bliss books as I have read every single book in the series. So I went into this one completely blind.

The author didn’t hold any punches with this story, it does have a theme that continues from a previous book, that being said you could, I suppose, read this latest instalment as a stand-alone. You would however be missing out on an outstanding series.

DI Jimmy Bliss is currently DS Bliss due to being demoted. This kind of gives the story an additional twist. Rather than being the team’s figurehead, he is now one of the floor guys is you like. The thing with Bliss and the rest of the team is the huge respect they have for each other and the closeness that has come with working together. The roles may have changed but the players are still the same, and there is an additional player who comes with strings!

A case is taken over by Bliss, this is due to a past case and why there are strings. The past involves people trafficking and the author has run further with the story in this latest book. This is one of the tougher stories I have read by this author, tougher because of the nature and content of the crimes involved. While the author does go into some detail, he does it in the context of the story.

The story involves such a complex case that has clues coming in left right and centre, all random and with no sort of order or focus. This is then made more complex when another case is also added to the pot. Realising that they have not got time on their side adds pressure.

The author has taken several threads and wonderfully woven them to create a very dark case for the team. Due to the closeness of the team, there is some banter and humour that does break the tension, not only for the characters but also the reader. It gave me a chance to take a big breath before continuing on several times.

The author absolutely knows the bones of his characters. As a reader I have to remind myself that they are not real people, they are characters. The author has given Bliss such a lot to deal with, but deal with it he has. Being an older character I was interested to see poor Bliss feeling his age, and dare I say contemplating his future.

This is one of the darker stories from this author and one that has a gritty and intense feel to it. Not for those who are looking for a cosy crime but one for the hard, crime thriller readers. A fabulous addition to the series and once again the author has left me wondering what will come next! One I would very definitely recommend, it was brilliant.

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Comatose by Jane Badrock @janebadrock @QuestionPress @zooloo2008 #ZooloosBookTours #crime #mystery #bookreview

I am delighted to be one of the Book Bloggers opening the the Blog Tour today and to share my review for Comatose by Jane Badrock. This is a police procedural and it was a very addictive and well plotted one.

My huge thanks to Zoe at Zooloo Books Tours for my spot on the Blog tour and for arranging my e-copy of the book.

COMATOSE…and her nightmare is just beginning.

Two car crashes, one location, one survivor.

Newly promoted DS Karen Thorpe is determined to prove these are no accidents. But the only witness is in a coma.

Now there’s a rapist on the loose.

Karen’s in the fight of her life… and her boss isn’t on her side.

My Review…

I do like a good twisted police procedural and Comatose is just that. The synopsis gives very little away and therefore my review is going to be quite vague!

A crash is just the start of things for newly appointed DS Karen Thorpe, what looks like a road traffic accident maybe something more, at least this is what Thorpe thinks. When she hints at the accident maybe something else, she finds herself limited, hitting brick walls that have no right being there. She is kept out of something but doesn’t know why.

One of the victims survives and is left in a coma, Thorpe wants to get to the bottom of the case but it is nigh on impossible when your only witness is unresponsive. This is a case that will involve a lot of head-scratching, legwork and a certain amount of gut instinct.

Thorpe is not the most likeable character I have come across in a police procedural, but boy is she tenacious. She works ridiculously long hours, often taking work home and never letting up. She works hard and therefore so should everyone else. She is abrupt, snappy and demanding. She is also very good at her job.

During the course of this story, the author does explore Thorpe’s character and adds some useful personal details, it gives a slight idea as to her nature. To be honest, the way the author has approached this character makes sense, as someone who isn’t as committed would not get anywhere near discovering the truth of what turns out to be a complex case.

There are quite a few characters in this novel and I did find myself wrong-footed with them occasionally, but as I got to know them and their roles they became more cemented in my memory. A complex case does require a certain amount of characters and especially one that has some interesting sub-plots as well.

I really enjoyed this book and I did like the full-on intense investigation. police procedural with a strong mystery to it and one that I found very difficult to put down. It is one I would recommend.

About the Author…

Jane writes novels, short stories and poems, usually with a good dose of humour in them. She’s probably owes it all to her late grandmother who, she’s just found out, also wrote short stories and poems. She tends to get an idea and then run with it whether it be a 100 word short story or an 80 thousand word novel. It all depends on the voices in her head at the time…

Follow her at – Facebook Instagram Twitter Amazon Goodreads

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The Jigsaw Man by Nadine Matheson @HQstories #NetGalley #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review for The Jigsaw Man by Nadine Matheson. This is one for crime thriller fans who like their reads to be on the gritty side.

My thanks to HQ Stories for accepting my request to read this title via NetGalley.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery…

When body parts are found on the banks of the River Thames in Deptford, DI Angelica Henley is tasked with finding the killer. Eerie echoes of previous crimes lead Henley to question Peter Olivier, aka The Jigsaw Killer, who is currently serving a life sentence for a series of horrific murders.

When a severed head is delivered to Henley’s home, she realises that the copycat is taking a personal interest in her and that the victims have not been chosen at random.

To catch the killer, Henley must confront her own demons – – and when Olivier escapes from prison, she finds herself up against not one serial killer, but two. 

My Review…

If you like gritty crime thrillers then this is a book that should be on your radar. Not for the faint-hearted as there are some pretty brutal murders. If, however, you do like your crime to be a bit more bloody then give this a go.

This is the first book in the Inspector Anjelica Henley series and I loved it. The story begins really well and has a strong hook to it. The main character is Anjelica, aka Anj or Helnely. She has been on office duty after the brutal case of Peter Olivier, a man that she helped hunt down and resulted in injuries to herself.

There is a new wave of murders and body parts are being discovered around the London area. This looks to be the same sort of modus operandi as Olivier, but with some slight differences. Some of the similarities were only known to a select few people. How to catch the copy cat of an already incarcerated killer? Well, you go to see the incarcerated one!

This is a very addictive crime thriller that starts the series but gives a background to its main characters. There is a good amount of detail on the main players and they soon become very recognisable. Given this is the start, there is already a nice vibe going on between some of the characters and their backstories and working relationships are filled in to give a bigger picture.

This story also has a psychological edge to it in respect to Henley and her previous run-in with Olivier. I do like how the author did play on this a little but not too much. Trying to juggle work, family and having a trainee detective with her, she has a full plate, to say the least.

This novel has a good amount of twists, when you think things are going in one direction the author deftly turns and takes you on another route. This is a great intro for a new series and also for me to this author. I will be keeping an eye out for more Henley books in the future.

This is one for crime fans who love a good, gritty and at times brutal police procedural thriller. I thoroughly enjoyed this one and I would definitely recommend it.

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

Dead Secret by Noelle Holten @nholten40 #dcimaggiejamieson @BOTBSPublicity #NetGalley #DeadSecret #Crime #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review for Dead Secret by Noelle Holten today. This is the 4th book in this fabulous DCI Maggie Jamieson series and boy is it a good one!

My huge thanks to Sarah at Book On The Bright Side Publicity for my spot on the Blog Tour and for my e-copy via NetGalley.

Psychopaths can take root in the unlikeliest soil…

DC Maggie Jamieson crosses paths once again with Probation Officer Lucy Sherwood when a domestic violence survivor stumbles into her new refuge, unable to speak, desperate for help.

Then another case hits Maggie’s desk. A young man has been murdered, and a curious constellation of black dots has been inked onto his cheek.

That’s when DCI Hastings goes missing and Maggie uncovers a shocking connection that turns the case on its head.

Every family may hide secrets, but not every family buries them…

My Review…

This is the 4th book in the DC Maggie Jamieson series, and while it could be read as a standalone you would get a better idea of the team dynamics if you have read the series.

This is was a really riveting read and one that I feel the author really got to grips with the plot lines. It feels much bolder and more intense as the main characters have quite a lot to deal with. A body is found beaten up, quite a grisly murder with very little to go on, but possibly a robbery.

While this murder investigation is going on a report that a fellow officer and his family have been abducted comes in. Definitely a full workload for Maggie and the rest of the team to deal with.

Lucy runs a refuge that is due to open, a stranger in need of help turns up on her doorstep. Reluctant to speak about themselves or the reason behind their wounds, she is an enigma.

I did mention this story had several plot lines, so along with the cases, there is also additional threads that delve into the more personal lives of some of the key characters. With various threads, the author very craftily weaves her story and gradually gathers the loose ends over the course of the story. I loved how it wasn’t just about the cases, but also included personal stuff as well. It adds realism to the characters as they struggle with home and work life.

This is a story that I really, really enjoyed and I loved getting back up to speed with the characters again. The author draws on her knowledge of interagency investigations and her work with the Probation Service and Domestic Abuse cases, it does show as you read the story. It’s the little details that are included that make this a riveting read.

This is a tense crime thriller that I read over a couple of days. It has various threads that have been twisted and worked throughout giving a wonderful read. It is one for fans of crime, thriller and procedural genres and one I would definitely recommend.

About the Author…

Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at www.crimebookjunkie.co.uk. She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of risk cases as well as working in a multi agency setting. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, attending as many book festivals as she can afford and sharing the booklove via her blog. Dead Inside – her debut novel with One More Chapter/Harper Collins UK is an international kindle bestseller and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.

Connect with Noelle on Social Media here: Twitter Instagram Facebook WebsiteBookbub Newsletter

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The April Dead by Alan Parks @AlanJParks @blackthornbks @RandomTTours #HarryMcCoy #crime #bookreview

I am delighted to share my thoughts today on The April Dead by Alan Parks. I read and reviewed his previous book earlier this month and this 4th book in the series is just as brilliant. My thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of the book from the publisher Black Thorn Books.

The fourth dark and gripping Harry McCoy thriller from the most exciting new voice in Scottish noir

NO ONE WILL FORGET . . .


In a grimy flat in Glasgow, a homemade bomb explodes, leaving few remains to identify its maker. Detective Harry McCoy knows in his gut that there’ll be more to follow. The hunt for a missing sailor from the local US naval base leads him to the secretive group behind the bomb, and their disturbing, dominating leader.


On top of that, McCoy thinks he’s doing an old friend a favour when he passes on a warning, but instead he’s pulled into a vicious gang feud. And in the meantime, there’s word another bigger explosion is coming Glasgow’s way – so if the city is to survive, it’ll take everything McCoy’s got . . .

My Review…

What a fabulously gritty crime thriller book The April Dead is. I haven’t read the first two books in the series but I did read the third and loved it.

Set in 1974 Glasgow, the author transports the reader back to a time where not all police are on the right side of the law. Some are corrupt and some walk a very fine line. One fine line walker is Harry McCoy, he isn’t exactly a dirty copper taking backhanders, but he does stray into grey areas.

A missing American man and bombs exploding is just the tip of the iceberg for McCoy. His colleague Wattie is trying to juggle fatherhood and the pressure of leading a case. While McCoy doesn’t exactly have the time to help out Wattie, he does manage to pep-talk him.

The author really does keep the reader in the era of the story, with mentions of music and also the fact that smoking is done in every and all buildings. Add to this the murky underworld and a new threat with the bombs, McCoy really does have his work cut out.

This story is one that has a really dark side to it. Historic crimes and atrocities are explained with enough detail to make your skin crawl. I do think the author got the balance right with his descriptions and explanations.

This is a tough gritty inner-city crime thriller read, it dips its toes into gangland and touches on the historic. One for readers who like their crime to be more thriller than mystery, although the mysteries of the subplots are eventually solved. Another brilliant read and it confirms that this is an author who I will definitely be reading in the future. I would definitely recommend this one.

About the Author…

Alan Parks has worked in the music industry for over twenty years. His debut novel Bloody January was shortlisted for the Grand Prix de Littérature Policière. He lives and works in Glasgow.

Bloody January (Book 1)
February’s Son (Book 2)
Bobby March Will Live Forever (Book 3)
The April Dead (Book 4 )

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