The Pact by Sharon Bolton #NetGalley @TrapezeBooks #20booksofsummer #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Pact by Sharon Bolton. This is the 5th book that I have chosen for my list in the #20booksofsummer reading challenge.

I requested this via NetGalley from Trapeze Books. My review is my own. I read The Craftsman by Sharon 3 years ago and it became my Top Read of 2018. You can read my full review of that book HERE

A golden summer, and six talented friends are looking forward to the brightest of futures – until a daredevil game goes horribly wrong, and a woman and two children are killed.

18-year-old Megan takes the blame, leaving the others free to get on with their lives. In return, they each agree to a ‘favour’, payable on her release from prison.

Twenty years later Megan is free.
Let the games begin . . .

Richard & Judy bestseller Sharon Bolton is back, with her twistiest thriller yet. 

My Review…


What an addictive and darkly twisted book this is. When the synopsis mentions Megan being released from prison and the line “Let the games begin” follows, well that is intriguing enough. After reading the book I now appreciate how important that line is!

Megan is part of a group of students that are top of their class. They are a small but compact group and they spend a lot of time in each others company. After a game of dare goes wrong it is Megan that takes the blame. The full reasons as to why are told later in the story. But as the synopsis says, the rest of the group now owe her a favour.

This was a brilliant story and one that I found myself getting hooked on pretty quickly. Starting the story when the friends were younger. At uni, they excel in their classes and do the usual evening partying.

When Megan is released after serving her sentence the author began to expand on her story. She manages to portray anxiety from the rest of the group as they are left to wonder what Megan will ask of each of them. On the whole, they are successful, they work, have nice houses and they all have a lot to lose.

I adored the way the author very subtle builds up tension, it starts early on and then as the stake get higher she then builds it up more openly. Wondering what will happen and if the group will agree to terms or demands is great. But, there is something else going on, it is dark and it caught me out.

I loved the tense psychological aspect of this story, it kept me on my toes and the story is so addictive. If you have read any of this author’s books before then you know you get amazing reads from her. This one is no exception it is a mix of crime, mystery and thriller with a brilliant psychological edge to it. It is one I would definitely recommend.

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

The Price by Kerry Kaya @KerryKayaWriter @rararesources #ThePrice @BoldwoodBooks #bookandtonic #crime #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Price by Kerry Kaya.

I do have a confession, I signed up for the Blog Tour with Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources as the book sounded good. When I went to read it I thought this sounds familiar! Kerry has signed a contract with Boldwood Books and her backlist is being re-issued.

It turns out I have already read this book, and I loved it. So, today I am re-sharing my review 🙂 and I do like the new cover for this fabulous book 🙂

Break the rules…

Harry Fletcher – Fletch to his friends – has spent his life surviving the tough streets of the East End. He knows working for notorious gangster Billy King is dangerous, and sleeping with Billy’s beautiful wife, Susan is deadly…but rules are meant to be broken.

Pay the price.

If Billy discovers the affair, Fletch is a dead man. But the closer he gets to Susan the more reckless Fletch becomes. And soon, Fletch realises that every one – even him – must pay the price for his actions.

But just what is Fletch prepared to lose…and will the cost be too high, even for him?

PURCHASE LINKHERE

My Review…

This is the first time I have read a book by this author and I absolutely loved it. The author starts her story in the past in the first chapter, it sets the scene for what is to follow. What followed was an addictive one sitting read for me as I followed the brothers of Fletch and Spence, they work for local gangland boss Billy.

I really liked how the author focused on the relationship of the brothers rather than violence in this story, although the main focus is Fletch. He has a bit more savvy and has more front to him. Although there are mentions of violence, it wasn’t that brutal in the reading.

The brothers are loyal to each other and their Mum, things in the past were tough and it is now that things seem to be working out. Only thing with being part of a gang is that there is always another gang that wants to make a move.

The story took various turns that I found really intriguing, not just a straight forward rival gangs read, but something with much more heart and human interest to it. Getting to know the brothers through the story was a good way to make a reader kind of connect to them, but even though I really liked them there was always that air of danger about them.

I have to say that I thoroughly enjoyed this story, a brilliant read that wasn’t what I expected and I found it really hard to put down. I think this book would suit various readers, especially those that want a crime read that has a slightly different angle top it. I am looking forward to reading some of the previous books by this author, and as for this book, well I would definitely recommend it.

About the Author…

Kerry Kaya is the hugely popular author of Essex-based gritty gangland thrillers with strong family dynamics. She grew up on one of the largest council estates in the UK, where she sets her novels. She also works full-time in a busy maternity department for the NHS. She has signed a nine-book deal with Boldwood for both new and backlist titles. Her first book The Price will be published in July 2021.

Social Media Links –  Facebook Twitter Instagram

Check out the other stops on the Tour…

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

Crossfire by RD Nixon @TerriNixon @RandomTTours @HobeckBooks #crime #mystery #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Crossfire by R.D. Nixon. This is a wonderful crime thriller read that kept me entertained for a couple of days. This is the first book in The Clifford-Mackenzie series.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for my paperback of this fab book from the publisher, Hobeck Books.

To what depths would you sink to protect your own?

Hogmanay 1987

A prank robbery has fatal consequences.

Five Years Later

Highlands town Abergarry is shaken by the seemingly gratuitous murder of a local man. The case is unsolved.

Present Day

Ten-year-old Jamie, while on holiday in Abergarry with his mum Charis, overhears a conversation. To him, it is all part of a game. But this is no game and the consequences are far more serious than Jamie ever imagined.

Old wounds are about to be reopened

Struggling PI team Maddy Clifford and Paul Mackenzie find themselves involved by a chance meeting. How deep into those wounds will they have to delve to unravel the mystery?

Purchase Link – Amazon

My Review…

This was such an interesting book full of much intrigue. Charis and her son Jamie are on holiday in Scotland, Jamie overhears a conversation and his curiosity gets the better of him. An old robbery, followed years later by a murder, now this random conversation overheard by a young boy! What is the connection and why are the Private Investigators Clifford and Mackenzie interested?

I will say that this story took me a while to get going with. There are a few characters to get to know and then there are the differing timelines. It was several chapters before I felt I got to grips with it. By then I was already more than intrigued and I wanted to know more, what the links were, what was hidden, why the crimes were committed and also what all the players were doing.

The author weaves quite a complex story, but as I mentioned, once I started to get an idea who was who then I was able to settle into the story much more and found a gripping mystery, crime and thriller. I found the pace picked up and so did the feeling of suspense.

The characters are a really interesting bunch, some you get a good feeling about, others definitely give off bad vibes and then there are those that you are not so sure about. This range of characters have their roles, there is a surprise or two in store and there is a feeling of something much bigger afoot as the story progresses.

Because the story flits across the timelines it adds a real air of mystery and towards the later stage of the book, there is a really tense atmosphere that you have been gradually been drawn towards. Part of the synopsis mentions what a person would do to protect their family, this is something that is really put to the test for a couple of the characters.

This is a story for those who like a more grittier mystery, it is a procedural in some respects but not police based as such. The Investigating team of Clifford and Mackenzie I really liked, and I am glad to see there is going to be more from them in future books.

A complex story to start with but then it soon became addictive and I needed to know how things would resolve. It is a crime, thriller, mystery and it is one I would definitely recommend.

About the Author…

Writing as R. D. Nixon. Terri Nixon was born in Plymouth, Devon, but during her childhood her family moved to the moorland village of North Hill in Cornwall. There, at the age of nine, Terri discovered a love of writing that has stayed with her ever since. She also discovered apple-scrumping, and how to jump out of a hayloft without breaking any bones, but no-one’s ever offered to pay her for doing those. Terri’s first commercially published novel was Maid of Oaklands Manor, in 2013, and since then she has published a further ten novels, with a twelfth due out December 2020. Terri also writes under the name T Nixon, and has contributed to anthologies under the names Terri Pine and Teresa Nixon. She has returned to Plymouth, and works in the Faculty of Arts, Humanities, and Business at Plymouth University… where she is constantly baffled by the number of students who don’t possess pens.

Twitter @TerriNixon

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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

Her White Lie by Jackie Walsh @JackieWalsh_ie #NetGalley @HeraBooks @BOTBSPublicity #crime #thriller #PublicationDay #bookreview

I am delighted to be one of the Book Bloggers opening the Blog Tour today and share my review today for Her White Lie by Jackie Walsh. This is a wonderful first for me by this author and I will be looking at reading more of her books.

My huge thanks to Sarah at Book ON The Brightside Publicity for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this book via NetGalley. Also a very Happy Publication Day to Jackie xx

Her dream wedding might become a nightmare

Tara Moore feels like the luckiest girl in the world. She’s finally found the man of her dreams, and after the fairytale wedding, she’s leaving Dublin to start a new life in Australia.

Until Avril Ryan’s body is discovered in a house that Tara lived in three years ago.

Tara doesn’t know Avril, so why was she the last person Avril called? How has she become the number one suspect?

But what the police don’t know is that Tara’s past conceals her own dangerous secrets. And as the detectives start digging and old friendships come to light, Tara begins to wonder who she can trust.

Will her wedding day become her last?

Purchase from Amazon UK

My Review…

This was a very enjoyable read and a first for me for this author. I did like the twisty and intriguing plot.

The story alternates between two main characters, Tara who is counting down the days until her marriage to Lucas. The other is Faye, a childhood friend of Tara’s. They had been inseparable from 8 years old, although in the past three years they had not been close at all.

The author alternates between the two women and this is a great way of getting both sides to a story. One problem is that one side isn’t very reliable. This doesn’t mean that one is good or one is bad, as the other has a secret that is niggling away. It is obvious that something happened in the past, but quite what and why is kept a mystery until much later in the story.

I have to say I wasn’t a fan of either of the women, but the storyline I really did like. The women come across as being very different. One appears strong and confident, the other a worrier. Needing reassurances.

The author gradually weaves her tale, she starts to sow seeds of doubt that had me hooked to what could possibly happen next. Whatever I thought may happen. didn’t, instead, the author sprang a few surprises.

I enjoyed this story a lot, there is a touch of psychological thriller and there is the obvious crime as there is a body. A very good introduction to this author for me and I will be looking at some of her earlier books. This is one for those that like their crime and thriller reads that are not blood, guts and gruesomeness, but more on the mysterious side. There is a police presence in this book but I would necessarily put this in a police pr0cedural. It is one I would happily recommend.

About the Author…

Jackie Walsh lives in Dublin with her husband Paul and dog Layla. She is a member of the Irish Writers Centre and The Irish Crime writer’s group. After years spent building her own business she decided to take time out and pursue her interest in writing. With a lot to learn, Jackie attended classes, writing groups and travelled to lots of festivals and launches. She secured a publishing deal with Hera Books who published Familiar Strangers and The Secrets He Kept in 2019, Five Little Words in 2020 and Her White Lie which will be published in July 2021.

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

Insider by Owen Mullen @OwenMullen6 @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks #ganglandcrime #boldwoodbloggers #NetGalley #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Insider by Owen Mullen. This is the second book in the Family series and it is a corker. I have read several book by this author and I am loving this latest series. You can read my full review of the first book Family HERE.

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this fabulous book From the publisher via NetGalley.

Someone’s playing both sides and now they have a score to settle…

When the family business is crime, you can never be sure who to trust. And when three of their businesses are hit in one night, the notorious Glass family close ranks. Either someone is sending them a message or a war is coming… 

With trouble coming from all sides, the heads of the Glass family have more than enough to deal with, but all bets are off when a stranger from the past enters the game, causing division and mistrust.

Crooked cops, rival gangs and old enemies are bad enough, but when the trouble comes from the inside, loyalties are tested, with deadly consequences.

Page-turning, gripping, gritty, Insider is perfect for fans of Martina Cole, Kimberley Chambers and Mandasue Heller.

Purchase Link – HERE

My Review…

I loved the first book in this series and this second book Insider continues the story of the Glass family. This is where I do recommend reading the first book, not only because there are details that help the relationships in the second book. And also because it is a brilliant read.

Danny Glass is gone, Luke Glass is now running the family business and Nina Glass is running her real estate business. Things seem to be going well until there are two robberies and a third on the LBC club. The club is the centre of the business, it is Luke’s baby and he feels this as an attack on him and his family. Good job that there is a security guard there who knows his business.

The author once again hit the reader with an amazing high impact crime thriller read. The Glass family are not, well, they’re not quite legitimate, actually, they are a lot not legitimate! But there is something quite likeable about them. I think it is the way the author portrays the importance of family. They never had the best childhood but they did what they did and it is the reason they are where they are today.

The author introduces some new characters, this keeps the storyline fresh and gives more for the reader to think about. Being a series that revolves around a crime family you know that there is going to be a large amount of mistrust. Adding new characters is enough to keep the reader kind of on the fence as they try to work out why the new characters are there.

This is a fabulous read and one that I adored from the very bringing to the end. Many twists and second-guessing moments, there are red-herrings as the author toys with the reader. The questions that start to build are eventually answered, the doubts are put to rest but there is something lingering on the horizon for the family and it has left me so eager to see what happens next.

This is one for readers who like gritty, gangland crime thrillers read. It is addictive, fast-paced and an absolute hard hitter. An excellent second book in this series and one I would definitely recommend.

About the Author…

Owen Mullen is a highly regarded crime author who splits his time between Scotland and the island of Crete.  In his earlier life he lived in London and worked as a musician and session singer. He has now written seven books and his first gangland thriller for Boldwood, Family was published in January 2021.

Social Media LinksFacebook Twitter Instagram Bookbub Newsletter

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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

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

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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

In Cold Blood by Adam Croft @adamcroft #crime #mystery #policeprocedural #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for the 3rd book in the Rutland Crime series. In Cold Blood by Adam Croft was published yesterday. I have read and reviewed several books by this author and I have always thoroughly enjoyed them.

Many thanks to Joanne Croft for sending me an advanced copy of this latest book in the series. My thoughts are my own.

Book three in a stunning new crime series from 2m+ international bestseller Adam Croft.

A body is found under Welland Viaduct on a bitterly cold winter morning. But this will be a murder investigation like no other.

As DI Caroline Hills and DS Dexter Antoine begin to unravel the dark secrets in the victim’s life, they find themselves sucked into a web of lies and betrayal.

Rutland Police need to find the killer before it’s too late. But with Caroline’s health failing and their main witness suspiciously missing, the stakes couldn’t be higher.

Dark histories, mysterious gifts and hidden secrets abound. But will they discover the truth before anyone else is killed in cold blood?

My Review…

This is the third book in the Rutland Crime series, Rutland is a small county bordering Northamptonshire, Leicestershire and Lincolnshire. The author uses this small county to great effect in this series.

A body is found frozen under a viaduct, Di Caroline Hills and her team are now trying to work out why he was murdered, Given the small size of the county, I do like how the author keeps his cast small. A handful of police and also potential witnesses or suspects keeps this 236-page police procedural crime story compact and to the point.

The murder of a local businessman is one hat doe shave the team working hard trying to make links. While there is a gut instinct about the people they question they find it difficult to get to the truth. Misleading information and false leads seem to be the order of play. Things are not straight forward and there are a couple of red herrings to catch the reader and of course some twists.

I do like how the author has given more into the personal life of Caroline, she has health issues that she is overcoming and this does make things tense at home. Even though she s dealing with her own problems she still manages to keep an eye out for her team. Long hours and hard work are a given in the job and the author does manage to get a lot into this story.

It is crime read that does have a good amount of mystery to it as well as a personal side to the team. It is another wonderful read in the series and one for those who like a quicker paced and snappy police procedural read. It is one I would recommend.

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

No Going Back by Robert Crouch @robertcrouchuk #mystery #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for one of my favourite authors. No Going Back by Robert Crouch is the latest in the Kent Fisher Mystery Series.

I would like to thank the author for my e-copy of his book and for a spot on his blog Tour.

No Going Back (Kent Fisher Mysteries #7)

When journalist Harry Lawson is pulled from a private swimming pool, his drowning looks like a tragic accident, but for one small detail – he knew someone was going to kill him.

The three text messages he fired off to an old flame the night before confirm he’s a troubled man. But former friend and sleuth, Kent Fisher, believes the messages hint at something deeper and more sinister – an investigation that cost Harry his life.

When a second reporter dies, it’s clear there’s a killer with unfinished business. As Kent inches towards a breakthrough he clashes with close friend Detective Inspector Ashley Goodman. She instructs him to stop investigating, knowing full well he won’t.

For Kent there’s no going back. He has to finish what he started, even though he risks losing a friend, and maybe his own life.

In the seventh murder mystery of the series, Kent Fisher digs deep to complete an investigation that’s far removed from the one he started. 

My Review…

Oh my goodness, this series is just getting better and better and I think this is my favourite one to date. Things in this series have happened and it does help to have read the previous books. I think this is more important for this particular one as there are various things that occur that have ties to previous stories. There is of course a new case for Kent to work on. Has he bitten off more than he or Columbo can chew though!

Kent is questioning his actions after events in his last book, leaving his team, losing people close to him and yet he still seems to walk into impossible situations. The restructuring of the agency means that Kent has a little more time to spend at his animal sanctuary, which he does plan on doing. Well, until the death of an old acquaintance gets his sleuthing senses tingling. Mysterious texts, limited truths, curious coincidences and a whole load of questions that Kent is struggling to find all the answers to.

This has to be one of Kent’s toughest cases as far as how deep and involved it is. Even though he plays his feelings close to his chest, there is a gap between Niamh and also from the loss of Mike. He is not the only one who is missing them! Once again Kent and his love life have made an appearance, he is a man who doesn’t know what he wants. I’m not sure he ever has. He definitely cannot see what is in front of his eyes!

As I said, this is a deeply problematic case for Kent, it involves several people but even he isn’t aware of all the players. This very much kept me on my toes and I loved the intriguing and mysterious nature of this story. It is a story of many parts, many clues, some misdirection and things that I didn’t see coming. I did think I had got it sussed, well I did guess a very small part but nowhere near close to the major parts.

In the previous books, Kent has worked his sleuthing side-line around his day job as an Environmental Health Officer. As the role has been scaled back then so has that part of life. It is a natural progression that still sees some mentions and so keeps the uniqueness of the series. It will be interesting what Kent, or should I say, the author has in mind for the next step in the series.

The ending is also quite different to what I am used to, a cliffhanger and something that is may get very personal for Kent. I am so curious to see what comes next for Kent. There are a few options that I can see and I imagine the author will once again surprise with his vision for the future of Kent. Another wonderful instalment and one that had me hooked. I thoroughly enjoyed this more in-depth sleuthing mystery and I would definitely recommend it to those who like their mysteries less gruesome and enjoy a whodunnit style murder mystery.

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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

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.

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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

Where Crows Land by Paul McCracken @PaulMcCracken_ @TheConradPress @RandomTTours #crime #thriller #mystery #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Where Crows Land by Paul McCracken. This is a a gritty urban crime thriller read that I really enjoyed.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Tings Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of this book.

This gripping thriller is set in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and chronicles the dramatic events when a former detective, Joseph Carter, sets out to gain redemption from the consequences of an old case that cost him everything.

Carter is still haunted by the murders of his niece and brother-in-law at the hands of a serial killer he was trying to track down. One year on, the killer has returned and Carter, now a disgraced detective gone private, launches a personal vendetta to catch him this time around.

My Review…

Life isn’t easy for Carter. A former detective who is now a Private Investigator after going rogue. Not without just cause though. Deciding not to call in back up a year ago leads to the death of his brother in law and niece.

Being a PI sort of keeps him in the loop, keeping his finger on the pulse of the streets of Belfast. It seems the past is coming at him once again, he is being targeted. A recent case may give him a way back into investigating the murder of his family. A case that haunts him still.

This is a tough and gritty crime thriller and I really like the way the author has twisted this storyline every day possible. Creating a novel that is a mix of various plots and characters to provide a roller coaster ride through the streets of Belfast. The characters are a mix of family, friends and colleagues.

The story is one that has a good deal of intrigue and I found myself second-guessing so many times and was nowhere near to being right. As I said it is full of twists and they definitely caught me out many times.

The characters are such a mix, I did like the main character of Carter. He does seem to have loyalties and integrity, a loner to a point but more that he still hangs on to the hope that he will find those responsible for the deaths of his family. I didn’t particularly like all the characters, there is a certain amount of mistrust that the author has given them. As I read I found my doubts, in some cases were justified, but not in all cases.

This is a gritty and intriguing urban crime thriller that has a good mystery and suspense to it. One for those who like a deep plot with red herrings and one I would recommend reading.

About the Author…

Northern Irish novelist, Paul McCracken was born 16th January 1991 in the Ulster hospital, Dundonald, just outside of Belfast. He grew up in the Castlereagh area of east Belfast where he also went to school. Ever since he could hold a pencil, he wanted to be an artist and no-one, not even the school career advisor could tell him otherwise. He left education with only three GCSE’s and an Art diploma. He tried to make it as a fine artist whilst also trying to find any work to support himself financially. However, the more he learned about the commercial art world, the more he wanted no part in it. In spring 2011, he enrolled in a five day film making course through the Prince’s Trust charity. He always had a passion for storytelling. During the course, he impressed the owner of the studio at which the course was being held, through the raw creativity he displayed. The studio owner was the first to encourage Paul to write his own material, that material being screenplays. After leaving the course with new found confidence and ambition, Paul started to learn the craft of screenwriting and got to work writing his very first feature film. After securing full time work later that year, he found a renewed inspiration to write again and wrote a full length film script in the space of a week. Paul kept on writing other projects as well as continually editing the first script, but he kept the fact he was writing close to himself as he didn’t want to face any negativity if he were to tell anyone. The script would go on to score highly in an international screenplay competition, based out of Los Angeles. It would then place in the quarter-finals of the same competition for the next two years in a row, accompanied by another screenplay that Paul wrote next. Years later, after entering competitions, pitching, submitting and doing some occasional freelance scriptwriting, Paul wanted to find a way to get his work into the public eye. Writing a novel was a challenge that seemed daunting but also exciting. Having first thought of converting his best script into a novel, he decided to come up with a completely original story. In 2018, he self published his debut novel, Layla’s Song. In 2020 he secured two book deals with two different English publishers. The Conrad Press and PM Books (Imprint of Holland House Books). The first of these books was Where Crows Land, a detective thriller set in Belfast and published by The Conrad Press. His other novel, The Last Rains Of Winter is due out early 2021 with PM Books.

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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