The French Escape by Suzie Tullett @SuzieTullett @bombshellpub #BookReview

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I am delighted today to be sharing my thoughts on The French Escape by Suzie Tullett as part of the blog blitzby Bombshell Books. My thanks to Emma Welton for the invite to join and Bombshell for my ebook. You can buy a copy from AMAZON UK in either paperback or e-book format.

Synopsis:

It’s fair to say that Flick has had a terrible year. Her beloved father died, she had the wedding of her dreams and only hours after the ceremony her husband ran out on her.

Brenda, fed up with her daughter living like a hermit, decides to drag Flick off to France to stay in a chateau. What could be better than an idyllic escape?

But when they arrive Flick discovers the chateau is all but abandoned.

The only upside of her French escape is the handsome and mysterious neighbour, Nate.

Nate loves his life living in the cottage on the grounds of the abandoned chateau but that is about to be put in jeopardy…

Can Nate and Flick ever learn to come to terms with the past and find love again?

My Thoughts:

Flick and her Mum Brenda, are on their way to France. Flick has no idea where she is going as Mum has made all the plans, and Flick also has no idea what Mum has planned until they arrive at a slightly run down chateau. Nate is a neighbour who seems to be a little moody, maybe secretive even… Flick has her own problems and Mum thinks this is the break her daughter needs to help her get her life sorted.

I love Brenda, the way she keeps her daughter in the dark about various things is great, I can see she has Flick’s best interests at heart. Brenda is concerned that Flick has lost her spark and is becoming lifeless and lost, as the story unfolds I got to discover why. As much as I had sympathy for Flick, I had to agree with Brenda, Flick needed a kick up the backside to get her life going again.

Now throw into the mysterious neighbour Nate. Well he has some interesting skeletons that he tried to keep hidden, though not hidden from everyone it seems. Yet another character I really liked, he has an interesting story and one that I didn’t quite expect.

As well as these three, there are also some other characters from the surrounding area that have an interest in the chateau and its new visitors, there reasons why soon become obvious. As do various other developments that the author has cleverly woven in.

This is a really great read and I soon found myself caught up in this story, the descriptions of the area were vivid, I could easily imagine the chateau in its surroundings. As much as I liked Flick’s story I found it was Nate’s story that really caught my interest, a little bit different and also sad.

This is a story about starting over, moving on from the past, making the decision to try things and also there is a bit of romance. The story has a great mix of personalities that compliment the main cast and also each other as well. It is an uplifting story that is captivating, idyllic and one that I would definitely recommend xx

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

#BlogBlitz : Godsend by J.A. Marley @jamarleybooks : @Bloodhoundbook @sarahhardy681 : #NetGalley #BookReview

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Delighted to be sharing my thoughts today for Godsend by J.A Marley. Published by Bloodhound Books and available for purchase from Amazon UK in paperback or eBook format. My thanks to Sarah Hardy for my spot on the tour and for my copy of the book via NetGalley.

Synopsis:

Looking for page-turning action and well-placed suspense? Then you’ll love the unmissable Godsend.

It has been eighteen months since Danny Felix pulled off the robbery of his life.  His plan brought London to a standstill, but at a heavy price. 

Now, living a quiet life running a charter fishing business in the Florida Keys, Danny is trying to come to terms with the death and destruction he had unwittingly unleashed. However, the low profile is beginning to wear thin and he soon starts to crave the adrenalin rush of his former criminal ways.  

Little does he know that three very different women are about to enter his life and turn it upside-down. Soon Danny finds himself right back in the action. 

But why has he been chosen? And does he have the appetite to pull off another job where the stakes are so lethally high?

My Thoughts:

Danny Felix is back! He is trying to keep his head down at his Miami bolt hole. A loveable criminal who just seems to attract trouble.  Even in the US he is not immune and it is not long before a blast from his past comes a calling.  A chance to confront his demons and a rather intriguing offer entices him out again.

I really like Danny’s character and was glad to catch up with him again after reading the first book “Standstill” (my thoughts here). With his British humour in an American setting the author really appears to have had fun and plays the British humour card well.  Danny has problems that haunt him and they crop up at the most inopportune moments and give a glimpse into the previous story.

I was expecting a “nothing will be straightforward” plot with this book and I was not disappointed. The author plays his cards close to his chest as the angles are played out with a variety of twists and turns along the way. Using an interesting starting point for this story and then, introducing new characters and bringing in the odd old face to gradually start picking up the tempo as the story unfolds. It has an imaginative plot line that twists and turn until the grand finale is reached and all the questions are answered as the author pulls all the threads together.

I really enjoyed this book and it could be read as a stand alone, but for a better idea into who Danny Felix is I would recommend reading the books in order. This is a book I would definitely recommend to readers who like a twisted plot, action and thrills with a pinch of British humour added in their crime, mystery and thriller reads.

About the Author:

John Marley, 27April2016, photographer Bronac McNeillJohn A. Marley’s writing career started with a poem about two brothers who both liked sausages…their names were Butch and Dutch and his Primary School teacher Mr. Murray liked it so much it made the main noticeboard at the entrance to Holy Child Primary School in West Belfast. A little older but none the wiser, he ended up as a film journalist in his native Northern Ireland, contributing to local newspapers, BBC Radio Ulster and latterly writing as the main film critic for the glossy magazine, Northern Woman.

John’s love of good stories came from the Irish predilection for telling a good yarn and the fact that there was nothing quite like sneaking away his Dad’s battered paperbacks to read even though he knew they were meant for adults and not kids. And so pulp fiction such as The Edge Westerns by George G. Gilman, the adventure novels of Alistair MacLean and the thrillers of Jack Higgins all served to whet his appetite for a good story told at pace.

These days, his reading tastes still focus on thrills, spills and good plot and he can’t walk by a James Lee Burke or an Elmore Leonard without pausing to read a few pages…even if it is in a busy bookshop.

Follow John on Twitter or his Website.

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

#BookBlitz | Manipulated Lives by H.A.Leuschel | #Giveaway (open Int’lly) @HALeuschel @rararesources | #Bookreview

Manipulated lives“Manipulated Lives” by H.A.Leuschel.  A series of five stories that have a psychological aspect to them.  I am delighted to be on the blog tour for this wonderful book.  My thanks to Helene for my ecopy and also to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the tour. You can get a copy of this book via  Books 2 Read.

Synopsis:

Five stories – Five Lives

Have you ever felt confused or at a loss for words in front of a spouse, colleague or parent, to the extent that you have felt inadequate or, worse, a failure? Do you ever wonder why someone close to you seems to endure humiliation without resistance?

Manipulators are everywhere. At first these devious and calculating people can be hard to spot, because that is their way. They are often masters of disguise: witty, disarming, even charming in public – tricks to snare their prey – but then they revert to their true self of being controlling and angry in private. Their main aim: to dominate and use others to satisfy their needs, with a complete lack of compassion and empathy for their victim. 

In this collection of short novellas, you meet people like you and me, intent on living happy lives, yet each of them, in one way or another, is caught up and damaged by a manipulative individual. First you meet Tess, whose past is haunted by a wrong decision, then young, successful and well balanced Sophie, who is drawn into the life of a little boy and his troubled father. Next, there is teenage Holly, who is intent on making a better life for herself, followed by a manipulator himself, trying to make sense of his irreversible incarceration. Lastly, there is Lisa, who has to face a parent’s biggest regret. All stories highlight to what extent abusive manipulation can distort lives and threaten our very feeling of self-worth.

My Thoughts:

Manipulated Lives is a collection of five stories.  Tess and Tattoos. The Spell. Runaway Girl. The Narcissist. My Perfect Child. Each story takes a look at the different ways people can manipulate and be manipulated.

The stories read individually like a collection of novellas.  Each one is unique, but at their core is the psychological impact that makes its presence felt.  Each story drew me in quickly and held my attention.  I soon saw a pattern emerging with each one, what I thought was happening and what actually happened were two different things.  Helene has managed to create subtle twists, this leads the reader to challenge their initial thoughts.  They contain strong characters, often I didn’t see the strength until I was further into the story.  There are many characters and some have very unique traits that will leave you with a range of emotions, love, like or despise them.

This isn’t an action packed, race through the story book.  It is more subtle than that and I was led gently into each story and then was able to watch them unfold.  First perceptions are not always the true indication of someones life.  At times it felt like the author was manipulating me  as I read, leading me to one thought then showing me I was wrong.

This is a captivating read, very cleverly crafted and made me think.  I like stories like this and I think it will appeal to many readers, I Highly Recommend Manipulated Lives for those who are looking for a quiet and more subtle psychological look at how people lives can be affected.

About the Author:

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Helene Andrea Leuschel grew up in Belgium where she gained a Licentiate in Journalism & Communication, which led to a career in radio and television in Brussels, London and Edinburgh. She now lives with her husband and two children in Portugal and recently acquired a Master of Philosophy with the OU, deepening her passion for the study of the mind. When she is not writing, Helene works as a freelance journalist and teaches Yoga.

Social Media Links – Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Goodreads ~ Website

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

#BlogBlitz : Found Drowned by BK Duncan @BKDuncanwriter @BloodhoundBook @sarahhardy681 #NetGalley #BookReview

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Today I have “Found Drowned” by BK Duncan.  This is the 3rd in the “May Keaps” series and I think this may be my favourite one to date.  Published by Bloodhound Books and available in eBook and paperback and available for purchase HERE my thanks to Sarah and Bloodhound Books for my spot on the blog blitz, also to BK Duncan and NetGalley for my copy of the book.

Synopsis:

Smuggling. Prostitution. Murder.

London. 1920 and coroner’s officer May Keaps is tasked with solving the mystery that surrounds the death of a young boy, found drowned in The Thames.

But was it murder or an accident? 

May knows that when children go missing, the reason is often linked to money but she is in danger of underestimating the corrupting influence of power . . .

On streets where poverty and exploitation walk hand-in-hand everyone has a price. And some are more valuable dead than alive. But who is pulling the strings?

May must journey into the dark underbelly of London to find the answers.

My Thoughts:

May Keaps works for Poplar Coroners Office and finds herself in a whole heap of trouble.  The body of a young boy turns up in the Thames in 1920’s London.  May is desperate to find out the identity of the boy, what she finds is far more than what she bargained for.

As I said this is my favourite May Keaps story to date, it is grittier, puts her in more danger and catches her off guard a little more.  May is a very dependant and strong character and she does have a more feminine side that makes an appearance on occasion.  In this story she finds herself in the dark and murky world of prostitution and from the synopsis you get a good idea of what sort of thing you are going to come across.  Duncan gives a very good description of various activities without getting too graphic, enough to give a picture without going for show.  She has created a very dark and wonderfully described sense of time and setting.  The setting of 1920’s London is based around the wharves, docks and back alleys, along with smuggling, poverty, workhouses and Poor Law.  She has included a lot of detail relevant for the time and that gives the story a real believable feel to it.

Familiar faces from previous books make a welcome return and we learn a little more about some of them and more about May and her family.  This is a book that could be read as a stand alone, but as with all series it is better to read earlier books to get a sense of the characters and their stories.  May for me seems to be getting a little more bolder as the series has continued and also a little more reckless. She is a wonderful character and I look forward to seeing what her future in fiction holds.

This is a book I would definitely recommend to readers of historical fiction, crime, mystery and murder.  It is a great read with really good atmospheric historical content and a great story line.

About the Author:

BK Duncan and Foul TradeBorn on a steam railway and brought up on the South Coast of England, such beginnings were destined to leave BK Duncan with a love of vintage transport, crashing seas, and Art Deco architecture.

Following a career encompassing developmental learning and management consultancy (specialising in personal and organisational change) she made the switch to full time writer, combining producing her own work with lecturing in creative writing in colleges and academies in Hertfordshire and Cambridge. Her summers are spent on two never-ending tasks – re-pointing the walls of her flint cottage and reclaiming the wilderness of her meadow garden. For relaxation she reads, goes to the theatre, and explores the local countryside but her two great passions are longbow archery and the Argentine Tango. Sadly, she is not nearly as accomplished at either as she’d like.

Her proudest moment was when she overcame her fear of deep water to go potholing in the Yorkshire Pennines.

BK Duncan also writes as Ruth Wade. Read her Amazon #1 best-seller A Fatal Rhythm on Kindle.

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