The Other Guest by Heidi Perks #NetGalley @centurybooksuk #mystery #thriller #murder #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Other Guest by Heidi Perks. I do enjoy this author’s books and I have read several of them. I would also like to wish the author a Happy Publication Day 🙂

My huge thanks to Century Books UK for accepting my request to review this title via NetGalley.

She thinks she knows the truth. But what if she’s wrong?

Laila and her husband arrive for a week’s holiday in Greece in desperate need of a reset.

As Laila sits by the pool she finds herself inexplicably drawn to the other family staying in their resort.

Em has no idea who Laila is, or that she has been watching her and her teenage sons and husband so intently.

Five days later their worlds will be blown apart by a horrifying event.

Laila thinks she knows the truth of what happened. But in telling Em what she’s seen, she stands to lose everything she holds dear.

And what if she’s got it wrong?

MY REVIEW

I do enjoy this author’s books and this one, The Other Guest has plenty of twists and turns to keep the reader on their toes.

Laila and her husband are having a getaway on a Greek island it is a chance for them to reconnect and try to get their marriage back on track. Things have been tough for them after several rounds of failed IVF, and Laila is distraught when she realises that there may be no more rounds to come.

At this luxury resort, they meet various couples and families, some they had seen on the journey to the hotel and they will inevitably bump into them at various points of their stay. What none of them expect is the death of one of the guests.

An inspector comes to ask and make inquiries about all those at the hotel, the author keeps her cast to a minimum. She does this by sticking to those that Laila has met or seen, this makes it easy to keep track of who is who.

While Laila has been dealing with her own inner turmoil she is aware of other things going on, she loves people-watching and while her husband thinks she can get obsessed, she has her own thoughts about things.

This is a great read and one that I found myself easily falling into and getting on with. There are plenty of twists and some red herrings and then there are some other much deeper and darker things that emerge.

While this is an engrossing book and one that I enjoyed, I did feel that the ending was dragged out a little too much, while there were still things that needed answering I just thought it could have been done sooner. It didn’t ruin the story for me but did take the edge off it a little.

An enjoyable read and one for fans of contemporary fiction and holiday crime and mystery readers. It is one I would happily recommend.

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Out For Revenge by Tony Bassett @tonybassett1 @rararesources #policeprocedural #crime #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Out For Revenge by Tony Bassett. This is the 4th book in the series and as is usual, it is the first one I have read. This a very good intro to this author and series and one I am looking forward to catching up on.

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of the book.

Out For Revenge
When notorious gangland boss Tadeusz Filipowski is released from prison, several people start looking over their shoulder.

A volatile character, not shy of picking fights, Filipowski plans to expand his drugs empire and put his competitors on a backfoot. That’s until he turns up dead. Very dead.

DS Sunita Roy of the Heart of England police is handed the case but it’s a challenge to find the killer of a man with so many enemies.

DCI Gavin Roscoe would lend more support but he is busy nailing down suspicions of corruption plaguing the force.

Soon, however, the investigations will bump into one another. And unless Roy and Roscoe can get to the bottom of the mystery, they could well become the next victims.

OUT FOR REVENGE is the fourth gripping standalone mystery in the Detectives Roy and Roscoe crime fiction series by Tony Bassett.

Purchase Links – Amazon UK or US

MY REVIEW

This is the 4th book in this series and the first one I have read. These books can be read as stand-alone, and the author does provide any background that is relevant.

This is a police procedural and one that I really enjoyed. Based around Birmingham and Midlands area, the Detectives are DS Sunita Roy and DCI Gavin Roscoe, they are looking at different cases that actually share similarities. Having two cases brought together and figuring out the answers makes for an intriguing story. This is added to when there is another murder and more danger for those who are involved in the investigations.

I really enjoyed this book, I did find it a little bit of a challenge initially to get up to speed with the characters, but the author does give details to help make them memorable, such as an officer being shot in a previous book, or a character helping in an investigation. These little details are the things that help when you come into a series midway. This does, however, work very well as a stand-alone and I liked how the author brings things very close to home and makes things personal. I am not going to say too much as I don’t want to give anything away.

Having a mix of murder, gangs and drugs is a great way of keeping a story going, but then this story has an extra scrummy plot in it! It is one that kept me on my toes and wanting to discover how this was going to pan out.

I do like police procedurals that have complex storylines and this one had, several things happening and woven in together to create a wonderful read. Plenty of tension and drama and also a glimpse into the home lives of the main characters.

If you are a fan of police procedurals and crime thrillers then I do think this is a book that you would enjoy. It is one I would happily recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

I am a semi-retired journalist who was born in West Kent. While growing up, I spent hours reading and writing, and, from an early age, nursed an ambition to become first a journalist and then a novelist. My theory was that, in order to write novels, one had to have life experiences to colour one’s writing and one could obtain those experiences through journalism.

I was fortunate enough to be named Time-Life Magazine Student Journalist of the Year in 1971 in a competition organised by the National Union of Students. At the time, I was editing the student newspaper at Hull University, where I gained a BA Honours degree in History and Political Studies.

After six years working on provincial newspapers in Sidcup, Worcester and Cardiff, I became a freelance journalist in London. For 24 years, I was a reporter on the staff of the Sunday People (now part of Reach plc, formerly Trinity Mirror). Over the years, I sold tens of thousands of stories to national newspapers, including the Daily Mirror, Daily Mail, The Sun, Daily Star, Daily Telegraph and London Evening Standard. I helped cover the Jeremy Thorpe trial at the Old Bailey for the Evening Standard. I broke the news in a Sun newspaper exclusive in April 1989 that Bill Wyman, the Rolling Stones guitarist aged 52, was to marry 18-year-old Mandy Smith. I bought 200 blank MOT forms to expose a trade in fake certificates.

My speciality was tracking people down. For instance, I found evidence about Rod Stewart’s secret love child Sarah Streeter by tracing a retired adoption agent through a library ticket. On one occasion, I took an escaped gangster back to prison. Some of my stories can be read on my website (see below); others are generally available online. For thirty years, I was also employed as a birth and marriage researcher mainly for the Mail on Sunday, Sunday Mirror, Sunday People and The Sun.

I have a grown-up son and four grown-up daughters who all live in South Wales.
Social Media Links – Website Twitter Facebook Instagram

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So Pretty by Ronnie Turner @Ronnie_Turner #SoPretty @RandomTTours @OrendaBooks #thriller #psychological #mystery #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for So Pretty by Ronnie Turner. I read this book before Christmas and adored its eerie atmosphere. This book also became one of my Top Reads of 2022! Also, I really have to mention the cover of this book 😱 it is insanely appropriate!

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this amazing book from Orenda Books.

The arrival of a young man in a small town sparks, hoping to leave his past behind him, but everything changes when he takes a job in a peculiar old shop, and meets a lonely single mother… A hypnotic gothic thriller and a mesmerising study of identity and obsession.

When Teddy Colne arrives in the small town of Rye, he believes he will be able to settle down and leave his past behind him. Little does he know that fear blisters through the streets like a fever. The locals tell him to stay away from an establishment known only as Berry & Vincent, that those who rub too closely to its proprietor risk a bad end.

Despite their warnings, Teddy is desperate to understand why Rye has come to fear this one man and to see what really hides behind the doors of his shop.

Ada moved to Rye with her young son to escape a damaged childhood and years of never fitting in, but she’s lonely and ostracised by the community. Ada is ripe for affection and friendship, and everyone knows it.

As old secrets bleed out into this town, so too will a mystery about a family who vanished fifty years earlier, and a community living on a knife edge.

Teddy looks for answers, thinking he is safe, but some truths are better left undisturbed, and his past will find him here, just as it has always found him before. And before long, it will find Ada too.

MY REVIEW

Oh My Goodness!!! What an amazing book this was. The author started with one thing then it gradually morphed into something so much darker than I ever expected, all in a very, very good way I must add.

This story is about two people and the chapters alternate between the two of them. Ada is a single mother and lives in Rye, never quite fitting into this small and clique-ridden village. She is always polite but always on the edge of things.

Teddy arrives and gets a job in an old curiosity/ knick-knack/ random things and objects shop. The owner is a bizarre man, to say the least, he doesn’t speak, he hasn’t interviewed Teddy and seems to lurk in the shadows.

It is natural that these two lonely people should meet and become friends. But there are warnings for Teddy about the shop and of things that may have happened in the past. Ada is aware that something has happened, she doesn’t know the full story though.

This is a remarkable book to read, it is a story that feels frantic at times with the emotions of the characters tumbling across the pages. Then there are quieter, more considered and slower breathing spaces where the author describes this sinister shop and the curios within its doors and behind the windows.

The shop is one of those weird and wonderful places full of things you would expect to see in one of those old museums that is hidden on a back street somewhere. In fact, this place sort of reminded me of a curious and wonderfully bizarre museum I visited on holiday in Ilfracombe in Devon. A place where there are drawers of insects, jars of animal parts and yes even shrunken heads! For me, this book brought memories of some of the objects I had seen, but then the author so brilliantly added a dark and atmospheric air to her story. This at times felt incredibly creepy, sinister and macabre.

The way emotions of the characters and also the way she has made the shop a character in its own right are fabulous. There is a wonderful, almost lyrical way to her writing at times and this almost lulls the reader into a false sense of security.

The storyline itself,m well that is something that I didn’t expect, well I say that, but I did have a feeling where things may go but definitely not to the extent they did.

This is a brilliant book and it is one that I adored from the first pages to the very last. A tense, mysterious thriller that had me hooked. An amazing book and one that I would absolutely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ronnie Turner grew up in Cornwall, the youngest in a large family. At an early age,
she discovered a love of literature and dreamed of being a published author.
Ronnie now lives in the South West with her family and three dogs. In her spare
time, she reviews books on her blog and enjoys long walks on the coast. Ronnie is
a Waterstones Senior Bookseller and a barista, and her youth belies her
exceptional, highly unusual talent.

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The Family Tree Mystery by Peter Bartram @PeterFBartram @RandomTTours #mystery #historicalfiction #crime #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Family Tree Mystery by Peter Bartram. I have been a fan of his Colin Crampton series for quite a while now and it is always a delight to be able to catch up with Colin and his girlfriend Shirley.

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My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours and to Peter for my spot on the Blog Tour and for my copy of this brilliant mystery book.

A FAMILY TREE… SKELETONS FROM THE PAST

Brighton crime reporter Colin Crampton gets on the trail of a big story when Hobart Birtwhistle, a distant relative of feisty model Shirley Goldsmith, is mysteriously murdered.

Colin and Shirley team up to investigate the case. Spiky history don, Victoria Nettlebed, suggests the mystery may lie a century earlier in the life of an Australian gold prospector… and the death of his partner.

But does Nettlebed know more than she’s telling? And why did cockney metals trader Lionel Bruce meet Birtwhistle days before his death?

Shirley wants Colin to track down her long-lost relatives. But more murders bring the threat closer to home. The pair tangle with London East End gangsters, an eccentric Scottish lord, and a team of women cricketers in their hunt for the truth.

There are laughs alongside the action as Colin and Shirley uncover the shocking secrets of the family tree. And Shirley has one last surprise for Colin.

Purchase Link HERE

MY REVIEW

It is always a pleasure to pick up the latest Crampton of The Chronicle book. Colin Crampton is a journalist for the Brighton newspaper The Chronicle. This series is set in the 60s and this particular one is in July 1967. Colin’s girlfriend Shirley has been contacted by a distant relative that wants to meet her, while Shirley is excited Colin is suspicious. I should mention that Shirley is a model and Australian.

For two people who seem so different I adore the combination of Colin and Shirley, they just rub along together so well and the author obviously has great fun writing some of their scenes. Not wanting Shirley to go alone, Colin accompanies her to what he thinks will be a suspicious relative, well suspicious is right as the relative is dead. Murdered!

This starts Colin on a search for how the dead man and Shirley could possibly be related. How this story gets to the end and a conclusion is a series of clues, red herrings, more bodies and a road trip or two.

I adore this series and the author has once again given some fabulous lines to his characters to make me snigger, there are bodies and danger but the author keeps the humour to make this a wonderful cosy mystery story. The story is one that will lead Colin up and down the country and while the newspaper budget doesn’t stretch to a trip to Oz, phone calls are made. I like the era of this book as there are no mobiles or internet, clues are sought the old fashioned way and with the odd back-hander. As Colin works on the paper he has quite a few people that he can call on for help, but some are seriously dangerous.

The story follows the search for the truth about Shirley’s family, she doesn’t know much and it is a chance for her to discover her roots. I can guarantee she never expected to discover what she did and it makes for fabulous reading. And, there is a wonderful ending for this book, it is one I have been waiting for!

Mixing in a women’s cricket team, some dodgy east-end characters, gold miners and the odd Lord makes this an entertaining read and one that throws up many surprises. It is one for those who love a detective-style story with all the jargon, the slang and the slightly off-the-books mystery. Not your usual characters but my goodness it makes for such an entertaining and surprising read. I adored this latest book and it soon became a book that I couldn’t put down. Another on-sitting read and one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Peter Bartram brings years of experience as a journalist to his Crampton of the Chronicle crime mystery series. His novels are fast-paced and humorous – the action is matched by the laughs. The books feature a host of colourful characters as befit stories set in Brighton, one of Britain’s most trend-setting towns.

You can download Murder in Capital Letters, a free book in the series, for your Kindle HERE.

Peter began his career as a reporter on a local weekly newspaper before editing newspapers and magazines in London, England and, finally, becoming freelance. He has done most things in journalism from door-stepping for quotes to writing serious editorials. He’s pursued stories in locations as diverse as 700-feet down a coal mine and a courtier’s chambers at Buckingham Palace. Peter is a member of the Society of Authors and the Crime Writers’ Association.

Follow Peter on FacebookTwitter

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The Lightning Rod by Tony Forder @TonyJForder @lilmissmorfett #crime #mystery# thriller #policeprocedrual #bliss10 #bookreview

It is a pleasure to share my review today for The Lightning Rod by Tony Forder. I have been a fan of this author’s books since reading y first Jimmy Bliss book a few years ago. Now we are onto book 10 and it is just getting better and better.

My huge thanks to Tony and also Donna at DLM Book Tours for arranging my e-copy of the book and also for my spot on the Blog Tour.

The Lightning Rod (DI Bliss #10)

When he strikes, nothing can protect you.

DI Bliss attends the aftermath of an apparent murder-suicide – but the scene tells him and his colleagues something very different occurred. Now the Peterborough Major Crimes Unit face an adversary like no other.

They have no idea why his victims had to die. They have no idea who he is. They have no idea where he might strike next – only that he will.

But while the killer is cunning, leaving no evidence for them to find, his biggest mistake might be in underestimating the team now hunting him. Because when Jimmy Bliss is on the case, all bets are off.

MY REVIEW

When you have been involved in a series from the beginning you become aware of the changes, for Jimmy Bliss, it is his age. He is coming to retirement and there are tentative conversations about what he wants to do next. He has been a copper for years, it’s what keeps him going, that and the team he works with. With all his years on the job, it is inevitable that there will be a blast from the past at some point. Then there is the current case, it is one that could have repercussions for some of the other officers in his team. It appears an old case is not what they initially thought it was.

Once again the author has put DI Jimmy Bliss right in the thick of things, he does have a habit of this, but then this is exactly what Bliss would do himself. Letting the main character of Bliss at the lead of an investigation and getting his hands dirty is what Bliss is all about. While he may lead, he also listens, well maybe not all the time, but when it is an idea from his team he does. He will need his team and other officers from around the country to help work this case out.

There is no indication that an old case may have been wrong until a similarity is spotted. This then goes through the chain of command and there are procedures in place that must be followed. Where there is one similarity there must be another somewhere surely! Where has this person been, how has he honed his skills and more importantly where is he going to strike next?

This is such an intriguing story as there is not much in the way of clues, there are very few red herrings either. This makes this story a huge mystery, but one that is still evolving as more is learnt. This will have a huge impact on several areas and when I mention The Met and Firearms Officers being involved then you know this one is serious.

While the author has kept on track with the investigation, he has allowed for some personal time for Bliss. It is something that the author knows his character needs as it is at this time his brain cells start to work a little better. But thinking a crime through does not mean it is right.

This is a tough one for the Peterborough team. Is it a suicide murder, murder or something else? It is an intense story and in the first few chapters, I was a bit worried as it wasn’t as easy to get the flow of the story as I normally would. This one took a few chapters to grow on me but when it did it was a belter. It does have a different feel to it, while there is violence, the odd beating up and chase, it also has something else lurking. What is Bliss going to do next, he can get an extension for another couple of years, and he could walk away and retire or is there something else?

A fabulous 10th book in the series and one that is addictive as the first one. This is a series that I am obviously going to recommend that you read in order, but I do think this one would work well as a standalone.

An intense, dangerous and life-threatening time is on the cards for Bliss. If you are a fan of police procedural and crime thrillers then this is definitely one for you. It is one I would also definitely recommend.

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The Angel’s Mark by S.W. Perry #partofaseries #historicalfiction #crime #mystery #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Angel’s Mark by S.W. Perry. I have had this book for a while and I am so glad I have finally got to reading it. This is the first book in the Nicholas Shelby series and I am looking forward to reading the rest.

LONDON, 1590. Queen Elizabeth I’s control over her kingdom is wavering. Amidst a tumultuous backdrop of Spanish plotters, Catholic heretics and foreign wars threatening the country’s fragile stability, the body of a small boy is found in the City of London, with strange marks that no one can explain.

When idealistic physician Nicholas Shelby finds another body displaying the same marks only days later, he becomes convinced that a killer is at work, preying on the weak and destitute of London.

Determined to find out who is behind these terrible murders, Nicholas is joined in his investigations by Bianca, a mysterious tavern keeper. As more bodies are discovered, the pair find themselves caught in the middle of a sinister plot. With the killer still at large, and Bianca in terrible danger, Nicholas’s choice seems impossible – to save Bianca, or save himself…

MY REVIEW

Set in Elizabethan England in 1590, the author creates a world around a physician. Dr Nicholas Shelby is a young doctor and one that doesn’t always believe in the old ways. New research is coming forward but this is a time when heretics, herbalists and witchcraft are not accepted. A licence is required to carry out basic medicine unless you are lucky enough to be one of the learned gentlemen.

Shelby suffers a dramatic event in his life, which leads him astray and towards the banks of the Thames. Here he discovers something unnatural at work when the body of a child is discovered with a dubious symbol cut into the leg. With the help of local tavern owner Bianca, they discover that London’s secrets are much deeper and more far-reaching than they ever imagined.

I do love good historical fiction that is full of murder and mayhem and this one is just the book to tick those boxes. The author doesn’t just focus on the characters and the story but also brings in relevant and very interesting medical procedures, thoughts, practices and observations of the time. This extra detail is wonderfully woven into the story and adds something special.

England does have a Queen in the form of Elizabeth I, but the country is still settling after Henry VIII and his dissolution of the Roman Catholic Church. It was Elizabeth that restored Catholicism with the Pope as its head, but she also established the Church of England with herself as the head. At this time religion is something that you are expected to take part in and if you do not attend the right Church it can hamper your future career. Shelby discovers that religion isn’t the only way your career can be ruined. Medicine had its own rules, regulations and thoughts and to rock that particular boat is to court trouble.

As well as Shelby’s story, there is another mysterious one. It is a troubled and hurt soul that the author uses in this instance, these passages are italicised and they tell of hardship and loss.

This is brilliantly researched and I loved the way the author brings in politics, religion, medicine and opinions of the time into the story. This is well-researched and the author obviously likes this era of history as he makes it exciting and so atmospheric. The different practices involved in medical practice are great, apothecary, witchcraft, herbalists, astrologers, divination and all manner of other tools used.

I really liked this and it is full of intrigue, suspicion, suspense, corruption and of course murder and mystery. Fabulous start to a series that I will definitely be keeping on with.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

S. W. Perry was a journalist and broadcaster before retraining as an airline pilot. He lives in Worcestershire, England with his wife.

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Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch #fantasy #crime #murder #mystery #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Rivers of London by Ben Aaronovitch. This is the first book in the Rivers of London series and I am so glad there are lots more to read since this one was first published in 2011.

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Probationary Constable Peter Grant dreams of being a detective in London’s Metropolitan Police. Too bad his superior plans to assign him to the Case Progression Unit, where the biggest threat he’ll face is a paper cut. But Peter’s prospects change in the aftermath of a puzzling murder, when he gains exclusive information from an eyewitness who happens to be a ghost. Peter’s ability to speak with the lingering dead brings him to the attention of Detective Chief Inspector Thomas Nightingale, who investigates crimes involving magic and other manifestations of the uncanny. Now, as a wave of brutal and bizarre murders engulfs the city, Peter is plunged into a world where gods and goddesses mingle with mortals and a long-dead evil is making a comeback on a rising tide of magic.

MY REVIEW

I have had this book on my kindle for far too long. (3rd August 2012 to be exact!) When I first saw this book I knew it was one I wanted to read but over time it has slipped down the list and now I have discovered it!

This is a police procedural of sorts, it does have police officers, and detectives and there is a chain of command and all that gumpf. But in with this, there are also ghosts, ghouls, auras, vampires and other things that lurk in the shadows.

Peter Grant is a probationary police officer, he has been given his first assignment. It isn’t to the detective department as his fellow officer is going to go, but to work alongside DCI Thomas Nightingale. He is a one-man department within the MET and he has decided to take on an apprentice. Yes, an apprentice!

Nightingale is the officer that is called when bizarre and other world events happen. River of London is a wonderful introduction to the Gods Goddesses and other creatures of the Thames and tributaries. Peter will have to tiptoe the shores and the politics of the river rulers as well as keep on the right side of other detectives who are reluctant to accept that Nightingale does in fact have his uses.

This was a brilliant story to sit down with and it soon became one that I knew I would not put down until I had finished it. A one-sitting read that has many twists, and unexpected occur5ance, with danger lurking around and within the walls.

At times this is quite funny and I love the writing style of the author. A mix of fantasy and mystery that have been warped or wrapped around a crime and police procedural genre. I can see now how this book has garnered so many great reviews and why it has become a popular series. I will definitely be reading the next book very soon and I would definitely recommend this to readers who like crime with a fantasy twist.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ben Aaronovitch’s career started with a bang writing for Doctor Who, subsided in the middle and then, as is traditional, a third act resurgence with the bestselling Rivers of London series.

Born and raised in London he says that he’ll leave his home when they prise his city out of his cold dead fingers.

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The Will by Rebecca Reid @RebeccaCNReid @RandomTTOurs #suspense #family #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The WIll by Rebecca Reid. This is a fabulous story that had me blind-sided a couple of times.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging for my e-copy of this book from the publisher –

The Mordaunts aren’t like most families…


For one, their family home is Roxborough Hall – a magnificent, centuries-old mansion in the Norfolk countryside. For another, the house isn’t passed down from parent to child – but rather to the family member deemed most worthy.


Cecily Mordaunt is dead. On the evening of her funeral, her family will gather for dinner and each will be given a letter, revealing who is the next custodian of Roxborough Hall.


The house is a burden, a millstone, a full-time job…but they all want it. And some are willing do anything to get it.


One family. Eight letters. Who will get what they deserve?

MY REVIEW

The synopsis is short but more than enough to convince me that I wanted to read this book. I mean, a death, a will, a large house and family, that in itself is a pot simmering waiting for the inevitable to happen.

The thought of owning a large house is great, but when you are one of several that want it then tensions arise. I will admit the Mordant family are not backstabbers, they come across as polite and civil, although not all of them are like that. There is some behind-the-scenes sniping and manipulating, but then it is what makes the story so interesting.

The author has set this story up brilliantly, the house is to be left to one of the family, and it is not passed down to the eldest son or anything as archaic as that. Instead, it is down to the wishes of the recently deceased Cecily.

The author swaps back and forth between the present family and Cecily’s life growing up. I enjoyed both of the timelines but the present-day one is the one that takes precedence. Gradually the author lets you know about each of the family members, introducing them as such. They are a mix of siblings and their children.

With a reasonably large family group, it was easy to keep p with who was who. They each want the house, each one has their own plans for what they would like to do with it. The author works some brilliant subplots into this and I was never sure who was going to be the best one to own the house.

This is a mystery wrapped around the family group and it makes for a wonderful story. the characters are likeable on the whole, with the odd exception. This is a mix of contemporary fiction and mystery. It is a wonderful read and one that I would definitely recommend .

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rebecca Reid is the author of the novels Perfect Liars, Truth Hurts and Two Wrongs, and the nonfiction book The Power of Rude. She is a freelance journalist and columnist for the Telegraph’s women’s section and a regular contributor to Telegraph culture. She is the former digital editor of Grazia magazine and has previously written for Stylist, the Independent, the Guardian, The Times, Marie Claire, the New Statesman and Glamour Magazine. She regularly contributes to Good Morning Britain, Sky News and various BBC radio programmes. She holds an MA in Creative Writing from Royal Holloway.

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The Cruise by Catherine Cooper @catherinecooper @RandomTTours @fictionpubteam #mystery #suspense #NetGalley #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Cruise by Catherine Cooper. I have read one of her other books, The Chalet and her latest one is fabulous as well.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley.

A glamorous ship. A mysterious cast of passengers. And a New Year’s Eve party that goes horribly wrong…

During a New Year’s Eve party on a large cruise ship in the Caribbean, the ship’s dancer, Lola, disappears. The ship is searched and the coastguard is called, but there is no sign of her, either dead or alive.

Lola was popular on the ship but secretive about her background, and as the mystery around her deepens, each passenger becomes a suspect. Who was she arguing with the night she vanished? Why did she come aboard the cruise in the first place? What was she running from?

Find out in the twisty new thriller from the queen of glamorous crime, Catherine Cooper.

MY REVIEW

The synopsis gives the basics for part of this novel, there is however another side to it that isn’t mentioned. So, I am going to focus on the part of the story that is mentioned in the synopsis.

The story has a brief intro with the death of a man, then there is a prologue then the story starts. The death of Lola a dancer on a large cruise ship is a shock. When she was last seen she was visibly upset, when she was last heard she was arguing. Why was she upset and who did she argue with?

The author has given a story that had me addicted as I discovered this was one that had a split timeline. The now part deals with Lola, the past is something else entirely. I didn’t work out the connections, yes not A connection, but several connections, until the author dropped the literal bombshells.

The idea of working on a cruise ship is one that has never appealed to me. Being close to people you work with and never having a moment to yourself, always being on call just never appeals to me. The author does give some great info about living aboard a cruise ship and also drops in some really interesting facts that I hadn’t even considered.

The story is one that flits between the timelines and it gradually builds up a picture but one that is not complete until much later in the book. There is a sense of distrust and when a certain few seem to be suspect in the death of Lola the suspicion and suspense of the story build.

There was a lot I didn’t see coming in this story, it is one that took me by surprise and had me eagerly turning the pages to discover the full truth. It soon became obvious to me that this would be a one-sitting read as I needed to know the answers to all the questions.

This is a fabulous story that I adored, full of mystery and intrigue, tension and suspense. It is one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Catherine Cooper is a freelance journalist writing for many national newspapers and magazines,
specialising in travel. She also makes regular appearances as a talking head on daytime TV. She lives
in France with her husband and two teenage children.
Her debut thriller THE CHALET was a top five Sunday Times bestseller and spent three weeks in the
Kindle top 100. THE CRUISE is her third novel

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The Carnelian Tree by Anne Pettigrew @pettigrew_anne @RandomTTours @ringwoodpublishing #murder #cosycrime #mystery #whodunnit #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Carnelian Tree by Anne Pettigrew. This 2was a wonderful murder mystery story that had a great whodunnit vibe to it.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy from the publisher Ringwood Publishing.

A dead body, a disappearance, and an epic lost in time. Unrelated incidents on the surface. Judith Fraser’s Oxford sabbatical quickly takes a sharp turn when she gets tangled in the mysterious murder of a colleague. With threads leading nowhere, conflicting impressions about people around her, and concern for increasing risk to her loved ones, whom can she trust? Her eccentric housemates? The CIA? Or, herself? Too many questions and insufficient answers.

A uniquely amusing and page-turning mystery novel set in 2003 on the eve of the Iraqi War, The Carnelian Tree follows the journey of Judith Fraser as she unravels mysteries of locked doors, missing computers, cat’s collars, and Reuter’s reports, with the help of DCI Keith Steadman, her potential love interest. Judith probes into people, power, politics, and sex, only to discover that some things remain unchanged. With a shady glimpse of the Oxford underbelly, this cross-genre novel will appeal to the full range of crime and mystery readers including Cosy Crime fans.

MY REVIEW

This is a murder mystery that is one that would have a certain Belgian Detective scratching his head I am sure. The story starts off as a professor is murdered, then a computer goes missing, along with a diary and the whereabouts of a manuscript and ancient relics are brought into the mix.

The main protagonist is Judith, she is already a teacher but is returning to Oxford to continue her studies. Judith lodges in one of the houses that is shared by various other people, one of which is the murdered professor. It is she who discovered his body and then finds that she is more interested in discovering what happened as there are a series of suspicious happenings, nothing she can particularly discover definitely evidence for but enough for her to voice her concerns to the Detective in charge, Keith Steadman.

In between drinks, studies, coursework, chats and getting together Judith along with some of the other house members and her friends, they start to piece together events themselves. This is a wonderful who-dun-it mystery and one that kept me on my toes as the author led me from one piece of information to another but kept the finishing line beyond my reach until she was ready.

At times this story felt almost like a comedy as some of the things did make me chuckle, it is a wonderful cosy crime and there is a good amount of tension but in a more friendly way. As I mostly read crime thrillers with more of a bloody or brutal aspect to them, it was really great to get rid of the macabre for something a bit lighter but still with a wonderful amount of suspense and tension.

I really enjoyed this one and if you like a more mysterious rather than bloody murder then this is definitely one for you. It is one I would happily recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Anne Pettigrew was a family doctor for 31 years and also has a degree in Medical Anthropology from Oxford. She wrote extensively in the national medical and lay press until retirement when she turned to penning novels about women doctors, discrimination, and crime. She was a Bloody Scotland Crime Fiction Festival 2019 Spotlight Author – ‘one to watch.’ Member of several writers’ groups and multiple short story competition winner, she lives in Ayrshire and enjoys good books, good wine, and good company.

Past novels: Apart from containing crime, Not The Life Imagined and Not The Deaths Imagined follow Dr Beth Slater’s career and challenges from the 1960s to the ‘80s. This latest stand-alone novel, The Carnelian Tree, charts the tribulations of Scots teacher Judith Fraser on sabbatical in Oxford at the time of the Iraq War.

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