The Hidden Secrets of Bumblebee Cottage by Christie Barlow #contemporaryfiction #romance #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Hidden Secrets of Bumblebee Cottage by Christie Barlow. This is the 10th book in the Love Heart Lane series and it is just a fabulous series to read.

Love Heart Lane – where friends are there for you no matter what

A new start…

When Jinny Birdwhistle is pushed over the edge one time too many times and quits her job as a tabloid journalist, an impromptu – and rather unconventional – job search leads her to a new house, car, and career making honey and chutney in the small Scottish village of Heartcross. And with handsome beekeeper Gabe Warner to help her learn the ropes, she’s ready to embrace ‘country girl life’ and leave the past behind her.

…uncovers an old secret

Yet there’s more to strong and silent Gabe than meets the eye and though Jinny planned to leave her journalistic instincts in London, she can’t help doing a little digging. Now, as she uncovers a mystery that links to her own history, Jinny realises that you can’t outrun the truth and the only way to move forward is to face the past. But now that she’s at home in Heartcross, she won’t have to do it alone…

MY REVIEW

I adore this series and it is great to meet another character who is due to become the next resident of Heartcross in the Love Heart Lane series.

Jinny is a journalist in London, he father owns the paper and she wants nothing. It is her father’s attitude that makes her stop and want to evaluate what she is doing. After an exchange of words, Jinny leaves London, her flat and her job to try to get a job in the adorable Scottish village.

Bumblebee Cottage used to belong to Dixie and George, it is now empty and waiting for the next chapter in its history. Jinny has big boots to follow but the gorgeous Gabe will be around to help her when she needs it. Did I mention that Gabe has a secret? No! Oh, he isn’t the only one who does though…

This is another gorgeous read and one that I really enjoyed from the outset. Jinny is a character who I liked, while she has had everything handed to her, including her job, flat and car, she has not had much in the way of choice. It is when her father wants her to intrude on someone’s private life that she realises that she doesn’t want this life, that people have rights and that her father has no moral boundaries.

Coming to Heartcross is a step away from everything she knows. Luckily the community is supportive and amazing, if you have read any of this series then you will already know this. If you haven’t then go to the beginning of the series and dread them, you will get to know the area, and the community and they are all amazing books.

Anyway, where was I? Yes, supportive community… and they do look out for visitors and guests. It turns out that Gabe has a few secrets and this is something that the journo in Jinny just has to delve into. Apart from that, if you knew you liked someone and wanted to know a bit more you would do the same thing. Before you sit there and shake your head and deny it, have you looked people up on Facebook, Instagram or other social media sites? Yep, I knew you had!

So the secrets, are good and they are also heartbreaking. But this is not a sad book, it is one about making fresh starts and Bumblebee Cottage is just the place for that. Once a thriving business makes chutneys and honey, it needs a new occupier to breathe fresh air into the jars and recipes. Will Jinny be the one to do that and can Gabe help her or is there too much hurt for them?

This is a fabulous book and one fan of cosy, heartwarming, contemporary fiction and romance will adore it. I have loved every book in the series and this is another that hits all the right spots and I would definitely recommend it.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Christie Barlow is the international bestselling author of twelve romantic comedies including the iconic Love Heart Lane Series, A Home at Honeysuckle Farm and Kitty’s Countryside Dream. She lives in a ramshackle cottage in a quaint village in the heart of Staffordshire with her four children and two dogs.
Her writing career has come as a lovely surprise when Christie decided to write a book to teach her children a valuable life lesson and show them that they are capable of achieving their dreams. Christie’s dream was to become a writer and the book she wrote to prove a point went on to become a #1 international bestseller in the UK, USA, Canada and Australia.
When Christie isn’t writing she enjoys playing the piano, is a keen gardener and loves to paint and upcycle furniture.
Christie is an ambassador for the @ZuriProject alongside Patron of the charity, Emmerdale’s Bhasker Patel. They raise money and awareness for communities in Uganda.
Christie loves to hear from her readers and you can get in touch via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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

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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The Potter’s House by Hannah Ellis @BooksEllis @Rararesources #romance #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Potter’s House by Hannah Ellis. This is the 4th book in this series and I adored this one as much as the previous ones. It is a series that is best read in order as you get to meet the characters as they arrive on the Isles of Scilly.

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.

The Potter’s House
Sometimes facing up to the past is the only way to create a better future…

Since the tragic death of his father, Lowen Treneary has kept to himself in his pottery studio on the remote island of Bryher.

His quiet life is just the way he likes it.

Until Pippa comes along.

The local café owner plunges his peaceful existence into chaos and brightens his days while she’s at it.

Soon, he has an employee livening up his workplace with her determination to make his studio more profitable… and a growing attraction to Pippa which he’s trying hard to ignore.

Just as he starts to warm to the idea of letting people into his life again, a crisis hits the island, causing old memories to crash to the surface.

Can the events of the present help to heal wounds from the past? And will Pippa still accept Lowen when she learns the secrets he’s been keeping from everyone around him?


Purchase Link – HERE

MY REVIEW

Back again on the Isles of Scilly with the Treneary family. This is the 4th book in the series and each book has focused on one of the siblings. This time it is the turn of Lowen. He has been a character in the books but keeps his distance, which has made him a little bit of an enigma and I couldn’t wait for the author to get to him.

Lowen lives on Bryher, runs a pottery and supplies pots to Pippa who runs the cafe on the main island.

Lowen’s story is a little different to the others in the family and I will let you discover for yourself what the author has to tell you. He is a bit of a grumpy recluse, this is very different to the friendly and almost overbearing siblings. He delivers his pottery to Pippa but there is always a comment or a sarcastic comment between them. Neither really knows why, but it takes the blunt force of Pippa’s niece, Mia, to get past his gruff exterior.

Mia is like a breath of fresh air for Pippa. She has just finished uni and taking the summer to work in the cafe to save money for a year of travelling. The thing is that there isn’t really much for Mia to do in the cafe, but she has her eyes set on a different place to work.

The author doesn’t give much away in the synopsis, but if you have read the series then you are aware of the grief that this family went through. It has left a sort of rift, and anger that seems to simmer. Even though the islands are a lovely and wonderful place they are dangerous, it is something that the Trenearys know all too well.

While the author focuses on one particular member of the family, she doesn’t forget to keep up to date with the goings on of the others that have already had their turn in the spotlight. This for me is an essential part of the book as the family bonds are shown in each book and show how the family work together.

This is another gorgeous story that gives the reader a chance to step away and visit the islands, a chance to wander around the Potters House and discover more about living and working on the Isles of Scilly.

This is one for those who love to read contemporary fiction and romance novels where family and friendships are strong. Another wonderful book in the series and one that I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hannah spent many years working in childcare before deciding she’d like to write books. When she’s not busy writing she likes to read, drink tea and eat chocolate. She also enjoys yoga and jogging.


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Snowflakes Over Muddleford Cove by Kim Nash @KimTheBookworm #romcom #festivefiction #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Snowflakes Over Muddleford Cove by Kim Nash. This is a gorgeous book that I read book mid-December and adored it. My Mum and I are big fans of this author and we look forward to getting her books.

Love is in the air and the festive season is just around the corner at the seaside town of Muddleford.

Nellie is happily settled in her gorgeous clifftop home. Her favourite evenings are those spent at her beach hut, cosying up under a blanket with her fiancé. There’s nothing quite like spending time together under the twinkly stars – complete with a delicious hot chocolate and her dog Norman sprawled on their feet.

But she can’t help feeling that there’s still something missing.

When Nellie meets Esme, a mysterious visitor to Muddleford, the pair of them come up with a plan to raise money for the local animal shelter, leading to the grand finale – a Christmas Ball.

But Esme’s keeping a secret about Nellie’s past that promises to throw her whole world upside down.

Will this be Nellie’s perfect Christmas for the first time in forever? Or will it turn into her worst nightmare – one that she’ll never forget?

Sometimes you have to go back to go forward.

MY REVIEW

This is the 2nd book this author has set in Muddleford Cove and focuses again on Nellie. Nellie and Jack are a busy couple, he is a vet and she is involved in many aspects of village life such as WI, animal shelter and helping friends and family.

A new visitor to the shelter is proving to be really useful and she loves living in the village even though it is only temporary. Then there is Dinky, everyone should have a Dinky in their lives, she is a unique and hilarious character I adore. Shivani has her eyes set on the vicar, who is definitely making an impression with the ladies of the WI.

From the opening pages, this author had me chuckling, in fact, my mum was reading this at the same time as I was and it was great as I knew exactly where my mum would be chuckling. The humour is risque and full of innuendo and it really was a joy to read.

This isn’t all WI, comments and humour, this author does more than that. The story is one of finding out what is important in life and learning to trust those around you. Giving things a second chance even though you may have been burnt before.

The author has created a wonderful community and it has some wonderful characters, some fabulous sounding events and of course, there is the storyline as well. If you are after a gorgeous heartwarming story that has chuckles then this is one for you. It is a wonderful book and one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sign up to Kim’s newsletter HERE

Kim Nash is an author of uplifting, funny, heartwarming, romantic, feel-good fiction and has wanted to write books since she was a little girl.

She lives in Staffordshire with her son Ollie and English Setter rescue dog Roni, is Digital Publicity Director for publisher Bookouture (a division of Hachette UK) and is a book blogger at http://www.kimthebookworm.co.uk.

When she’s not working or writing, Kim can be found walking her dog at Cannock Chase, reading, writing and binge-watching box sets on the TV. She’s also quite partial to a spa day and a gin and tonic (not at the same time!) Kim also runs a book club in Staffordshire and organises local and national reader/author events.

Amazing Grace was her debut novel which came out in April 2019.

Escape to Giddywell Grange is Kim’s second novel and was published in September 2019.

Sunshine and Second Chances is Kim’s third novel and was published in June 2020.

Moonlight Over Muddleford Cove is her fourth book and was published in March 2021.

Connect with Kim on Social Media – Twitter Facebook Instagram TikTok

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

Lost by Leona Deakin #psychologicalthriller #thriller #crime #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Lost by Leona Deakin. This is the 2nd book in the Dr Bloom series and if you are a fan of intriguing crime and psychological thriller then this is a series that you will want to have a look at.

HOW CAN YOU SOLVE A CRIME IF YOU CAN’T REMEMBER THE CLUES?

There is an explosion at a military ball. The casualties are rushed to hospital in eight ambulances, but only seven vehicles arrive. Captain Harry Peterson is missing.

His girlfriend calls upon her old friend Dr Augusta Bloom, who rushes to support the investigation. But no one can work out what connects the bomb and the disappearance.

When Harry is eventually discovered three days later, they hope he holds the answers to their questions. But he can’t remember a single thing.

MY REVIEW

This is the 2nd book in this author’s Dr Bloom, series, I have read the 1st one and the 4th one. Nothing new for me to read out of order.

After a rough start in the first book, Marcus Jameson decides to come back to help Augusta Bloom. She is asked to investigate the disappearance of the boyfriend of one of her old friends. The friend Kerena is concerned about her boyfriend after a bomb exploded at a military ball. Captain Harry Peterson was at the ball and caught up in the explosion, Kerena had seen him just after but went to help someone more seriously wounded. It is when she tries to visit him that she discovers that he is missing, not at the hospital where the other injured were taken. Randomly he turns up at a different hospital, looking far worse than he did when she had last seen him.

What follows is such an intriguing and devious thriller that takes Augusta and Marcus around the country and also steps back into the clutches of a certain psychopath.

If you have read the first book then you will realise some of the back stories of the main characters. If not you will start to get an idea of what has happened but you would also be missing out on an amazing twisted and devious plot.

With the disappearance of a military man, you would imagine the military to be all over it. The thing is there is an interest but not one that has an urgency to it. This is something for Augusta and Marcus to try and work their way through. There are also some strange messages and it does have a cat-and-mouse feel to the plot, but one that doesn’t make sense to the characters until much later in the story.

The story isn’t straight forward and the authors stretches out the storyline to include others. This gives a dangerous predicament and one that has implications for Harry.

This is a brilliantly plotted story and it is one that I couldn’t see what was coming. I do love it when an author does this and twists things like this. By the end of the story, there are a lot more surprises that were unexpected but felt very right for this style of this book. Nothing is as it seems and there are some wonderful revelations.

This is another fabulous book in this series and I will be reading the 3rd one soon. This is great for fans who love a crime thriller plot with a strong psychological feel to it. It is one I would definitely recommend. 

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The Nazi’s Son by Andrew Turpin @AndrewTurpin #historicalfiction #thriller #espionage #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Nazi’s Son by Andrew Turpin. I have got a little behind with this series which is a real shame as it is brilliant. This is the 5th book in the Joe Johnson series, a series that gets better and better.

A deadly legacy of the Cold War. A mysterious Nazi source. A desperate escape bid through northern Russia. And life-threatening secrets being leaked by a mole at the heart of Western intelligence.

In the fifth book of this thriller series, ex-CIA war crimes investigator Joe Johnson heads to Berlin to assist with the supposedly straightforward debriefing of a Russian defector. The defector knows the background to the terrorist bombing of the city’s famous La Belle nightclub in the 1980s as well as the identity of a Russian agent who is funneling American and British military secrets to Moscow.

But things go wrong. Johnson is pursued by his nemesis, the vengeful Russian oligarch Yuri Severinov. And subsequent events turn out to be vastly more complex and terrifying than he expected.

Why are ex-KGB and Stasi intelligence chiefs so anxious to prevent Johnson from getting to the heart of what really happened? And what are the Kremlin connections that suck him into a life-or-death chase in St. Petersburg?
Johnson and his ex-MI6 colleague Jayne Robinson find themselves battling against the odds to dig out truths that have been concealed for almost thirty years.

At the same time, the pair find themselves inexorably drawn toward resuming the brief love affair they once had in Islamabad.

The key to solving the conundrum around the Berlin bombing comes from an unlikely direction, and the identity of the Russian mole who is wreaking havoc in the West turns out to be equally surprising.

The story works its way to a climax in London and Leipzig as Johnson battles against overwhelming odds to outwit the forces arrayed against him.

The Nazi’s Son is a thriller with many unexpected twists that will keep the reader guessing right to the end.

MY REVIEW

On 5th April 1986, the German nightclub la belle was bombed. 3 died, two of which were American and a further 79 Americans were injured of the 200+ that were in the club and vicinity. At the time tensions between the US and Libya were tense, and it gave US President Reagan the opportunity to take things further. The club was one that American service people used regularly. An enquiry later found that there was no evidence of this being a Libyan attack.

The author uses his character Joe Johnson, an ex CIA War Investigator to look into this matter further. Having read all the previous books in this series I am aware of how Joe works and how he manages to discover information, often at considerable risk to himself. Teaming up once again with Jayne Robinson, ex-MI6, they find that there is far more at stake than they first realised.

Joe is brought in to look at the bombing, this is a ruse as such as the bombing is a historical crime and therefore fits his resume to a tee. The initial role of Joe is to discover why a Russian is defecting and has information about the bombing. This link, although a little tenuous is one that gives reason for him being there. But Joe’s attendance sets alarm bells off in other agencies, such as Stasi and KGB. What ensues is a fast and addictive game of cat and mouse that is dangerous and thrilling.

I do like a good spy, espionage and thriller read and this one ticks those boxes brilliantly. I have an interest in this series and it is one that delivers every time. There is action from the start and it continues pretty much throughout the story. Pitting agencies against each other and mixing in foreign politics and agendas make for a great edge-of-the-seat book.

While the investigation is the main focus, the author does bring the past and personal lives of Joe and Jayne into this story. It is something that I felt has been on the cards for a while and I am curious as to how the author will deal with this in future books.

The author uses past events and historical figures to help jog the memory, so mentioning Medvedev, Reagan, and Gorbachev is ideal for remembering who was around. As I read this it felt odd as it mentioned the annexation of Crimea and Putin’s role. This is now at a time when Putin’s war against Ukraine is still ongoing, so in an odd sense, it feels like the right time to have picked this book up. At the time of writing this review, it has been just over 9 months since it started.

I should mention that Jayne Robinson has her own series of books and I must get to these.

If you are a fan of spy thrillers then this is one that you should have a good look at. In fact, all of the books are excellent and are good action-packed stories. This is a fabulously aced story, and there is action and danger all the way. This is one for fans of spy thrillers, crime, espionage, action and historical thrillers. It is a book and series I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Andrew is a former journalist who has always had a love of writing and a passion for reading good thrillers. Now he has finally put the two interests together.

His first book in the Joe Johnson thriller series, The Last Nazi, was published in August 2017, and the second, The Old Bridge, in January 2018. The third, Bandit Country, followed in February 2018. In January 2019 the fourth, Stalin’s Final Sting, was published along with a prequel to the series, entitled The Afghan. Book #5 in the series, The Nazi’s Son, appeared in November 2019, followed by book 6, The Black Sea, published in May 2020.

The themes behind these thrillers also pull together some of Andrew’s other interests, particularly history, world news, and travel. They explore the ways in which events and human behaviours deep into the past continue to impact on modern society, politics and business.

All of Andrew’s books draw strongly on these themes. They feature Joe Johnson, an ex-CIA officer and former U.S. Nazi hunter with the Office of Special Investigations, part of the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.
Johnson has a passion for justice and a drive to investigate unsolved war crimes in different parts of the world.

Andrew studied history at Loughborough University and worked for many years as a business and financial journalist before becoming a corporate and financial communications adviser with several large energy companies.

He originally came from Grantham, Lincolnshire, and lives with his family in St. Albans in Hertfordshire, U.K.

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

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.

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Queen of Diamonds by Gillian Godden @GGodden @rararesources @Boldwoodbooks #crime #thriller #gangland #bookreview

I am, delighted to share my review today for Queen of Diamonds by Gillian Godden. I have read the previous books in the series and I am thoroughly enjoying them.

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and arranging my e-copy from the publisher Boldwood Books.

Is the Diamond reign over?


Head of the Diamond family, Patsy is determined to make a success of husband Nick’s gangland empire – whatever the cost. Nick was ruthless and cold-blooded, but he built a legacy that Patsy wants to protect.


So when a mysterious woman from Nick’s past turns up claiming to be Patsy’s new business partner, she senses trouble. Karen Duret demands Patsy’s help, but it comes with a catch. If Patsy refuses, Karen threatens to expose the Diamond family’s darkest secrets…


Patsy needs the help of her trusted allies more than ever, but when a rival gang start a turf war, the stakes suddenly become deadly.
Torn between loyalties, Patsy knows that blood will be spilled. And as battle commences, the question on everyone’s lips is – who will be crowned the queen of diamonds?


Purchase Link – AMAZON

MY REVIEW

This is the 3rd book in the Diamonds series; they are all fabulous reads. This latest one see’s Patsy Diamond take a step further into her role as the head of the Diamond family and taking on the role of her late husband, Nick. He was ruthless and his work ethic was based on fear. Patsy, however, believes there is a better way of gaining trust and respect. Has she got what it takes though?

This is a brilliant book and sometimes quite hardcore as Patsy makes her mark in the gangland area of Glasgow. In previous books, she has had a lot to deal with, but now she wants to make changes and this means making deals with some of the worst of the worst. As Patsy comes across as quite aloof, the rich bitch, the well-dressed and manicured lady. It gives her a cold and uncaring persona, but she has a few surprises for people and I think she surprises herself with how much she now enjoys this challenge. She has to prove herself.

This one is a gritty and complex story and I adored it. There have always been things that have sprung up out of the woodwork in this series, and before you think there are no more surprises to come, you would be way off the mark. Yet again there are more surprises for the Diamonds and it could jeopardise the family business.

In a world of secrets, death, drugs, prostitution, money laundering and murder you need to be sure of those who are closest to you, a right-hand man is essential to help keep the day-to-day running of the business. There is an awful lot for Patsy to organise and with new deals and alliances to be forged, she really does have her work but out for her. If this isn’t enough there is also something far closer to home that requires her attention, if she gets this wrong it will destroy her.

The author has once again written an amazing book that I devoured in one sitting. It shows the strong woman that Patsy needs to be and it was a side that I didn’t expect to see. While she is strong she is also vulnerable and this brings out a nice balance to her character. Yes, she is naive, but she is also analytical in how she thinks things through and she will not be duped or made a fool of. I have really enjoyed seeing how the author has brought Pasty, the wife of Nick Diamond into the forefront and she is now beginning to stand on her own feet. She is not someone’s wife, she is Patsy or Mrs Diamond and she doesn’t take fools lightly.

Yet again the author has created a fabulous and dangerous story for her characters. This one speeds along at a great pace and there is a real sense of things potentially going very wrong. This is a book for those who love their gangland crime and it is one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Gillian Godden is a brilliantly reviewed writer of gangland fiction as well as a full-time NHS Key Worker in Hull. She lived in London for over thirty years, where she sets her thrillers, and during this time worked in various stripper pubs and venues which have inspired her stories.

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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 Orphanage Girls Reunited by Mary Wood @Authormary @RandomTTours @panmacmillan #historicalfiction #hisotricalromance #publicationday #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Orphanage Girls Reunited by Mary Wood. This is part of a series and it is a fabulous one at that. I would also like to wish Mary a very Happy Publication Day 🙂

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for arranging my PB copy of this book and my spot on the Blog Tour. This is published by Pan MacMillan.

“The Orphanage Girls reunite in the second installment of a moving saga series about an orphanage in London’s East End, from the bestselling author of The Jam Factory Girls, Mary Wood.

Ellen
  Abandoned by her father for the second time, left scarred from the orphanage, Ellen finally finds happiness and hope – reunited with her long-lost gran. But it cannot compensate for being torn apart from her beloved friends Ruth and Amy. When a devastating encounter leaves Ellen broken and desperate, she is forced to fight her past demons.

  Ruth 
  Ruth has found peace, building a new life as an actress surrounded by new friends. But still, she longs to be with Ellen and Amy after everything they endured together in the orphanage. Amy was shipped to Canada with hundreds of other orphans, what hope have they of finding her?


  One wish comes true when Ruth’s acting career leads her to Ellen. No sooner has the dust settled, war is on the horizon. Friendship locked them into each other’s her hearts forever. 

  Will they find Amy? Can The Orphanage Girls ever unite?

MY REVIEW

This is such a wonderful book and as always, the author has created a heartbreaking story for her main characters.

Ruth and Ellen had been at the orphanage, been through some awful times and then they are split up. Ruth stayed in London with her friend and started to make hats. Ellen got taken away by her father and left with her grandmother. Their lives are very different and they have not seen each other for quite a while.

It is a shock when Ellen sees Ruth in a newspaper, Ruth works in a theatre and is quite successful. She still makes her hats and is part of the Red Cross. Ellen who is younger has had a private tutor and after an awful event needs help.

The author has created a heartbreaking story for Ellen, it is one that is making her struggle with her emotions and it is having a drastic effect on her mental health. This is the turn of the 1900s and it while there have been advances in medicine, there is still a large stigma. The route the author took for Ellen was a great one and it saw a different aspect of how mental health conditions would be treated.

When the girls eventually do meet up they become closer again, but the threat of WWI is looming and the girls want to do their part in helping.

This is such a wonderful story and although it is full of tragedy and heartbreak for both of them. there is also a huge amount of love, support and respect between these girls. They have been through a lot together and they are now going to have to deal with more as the war begins to impact their personal lives.

The author does a wonderful job of creating a storyline that weaves through the lives of the girls and those they meet. People from their past are even that far from their thoughts. This at times makes creates a wobble in their emotions, but it shows them how far they have come, what they can achieve and how they are going to deal with the future.

This is one for fans of women being strong in the face of adversity, of women helping their country and also each other. A story of compassion, loyalty and bravery. It is part of a series, but it would work well as a stand-alone book, but in all honesty, the previous book gives so much about the characters that you will be missing out. This is a story I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Born the thirteenth child of fifteen to a middle-class mother and an East End barrow boy, Mary
Wood’s childhood was a mixture of love and poverty. Throughout her life Mary has held various
posts in office roles, working in the probation services, and brought up her four children and
numerous grandchildren, step-grandchildren and great-grandchildren. An avid reader, she first
put pen to paper in 1989 while nursing her mother through her last months, but didn’t become
successful until she began self-publishing her novels in 2011.


Her novels include All I Have to Give, An Unbreakable Bond, In Their Mother’s Footsteps and the
Breckton novels.

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