Perfect Crime by Helen Fields @AvonBooksUK #NetGalley #review

Today I am delighted and excited to be sharing my review for Perfect Crime by Helen Fields. This is Book #5 in the DI Callanch Crime Thriller series. My huge thanks to Avon Books UK for approving my request on NetGalley for an e-copy. I read this book wayyyyy back in January and finally, I can share my thoughts 🙂

Anyone who reads my blog may be aware that I am a huge fan of this author and the Perfect series. I think I may have just found my favourite one…

so far…

Let’s see what it’s all about…

Synopsis:

Your darkest moment is your most vulnerable…

Stephen Berry is about to jump off a bridge until a suicide prevention counsellor stops him. A week later, Stephen is dead. Found at the bottom of a cliff, DI Luc Callanach and DCI Ava Turner are drafted in to investigate whether he jumped or whether he was pushed…

As they dig deeper, more would-be suicides roll in: a woman found dead in a bath; a man violently electrocuted. But these are carefully curated deaths – nothing like the impulsive suicide attempts they’ve been made out to be.

Little do Callanach and Turner know how close their perpetrator is as, across Edinburgh, a violent and psychopathic killer gains more confidence with every life he takes…

An unstoppable crime thriller from the #1 bestseller. The perfect read for fans of Karin Slaughter and M. J. Arlidge.

My Thoughts:

Di Luc Callanch and DCI Ava Turner are investigating murders, that at the beginning look like suicides. They seem unconnected and random. I have learnt from experience, that this author does not do unconnected and she does not do random. What she does do is clever, devious and intriguing.

As I have read every one of the books in this series I have got to know the various characters and their traits. It was great to get to know a little more about them and see the ways in which they work together as a team. Working as a team has, in the past been a little tense as the pecking order is established and trust is gradually built on. Perfect Crime sees the old faces again as well as a couple of newcomers. One has made a previous appearance, I am reserving judgment on this one at the moment. The other definitely goes out on a limb…

The one thing I really like about this series is the way friendships and past stories have been built up over time. Luc and Ava… well I could seriously bash their heads together. Their friendship has always hovered on a precarious tightrope of emotion. This story shows a more personal side to each of them as the investigations take precedence over “normal life”. Luc delves into his past, he is trying to quash his demons that have had a way of always hanging around, but in doing so he leaves himself vulnerable and open to trouble that also threatens Ava.

The investigation is wonderful and well paced. I really enjoyed the false leads and was wrong-footed in a spectacular way when I finally discovered who was responsible. The author really does have a knack for leading the reader down blind alleys and leaving a trail of red herrings.

There are so many things I want to say about this book, and all are good. It has a twisted and devious plot with details about suicide and the help that can be sought. It plays on the vulnerability of those who are the lowest point in their lives. Adding in sinister characters who exploit perceived weakness in others makes this a deceptively dark read.

I adore this series and would recommend it to anyone who has not yet read any. This is a police procedural series that also incorporates personal life details of the main characters. It is something that is expanded on with each book and builds up a relationship with the reader.

If you love crime, thriller books and have not yet read this series then Why the hell not? If you have read the series, then you are in for a real treat with this one. It is deceptive, sinister and devious making for a cracking read. It gets a Highly Recommended from me.

And… I cannot wait for the next one PERFECT DARK 🙂

About the Author:

Helen can be found on Twitter @Helen_Fields for up to date news and information. A former barrister, Helen now writes a Scottish set crime series – D.I.Callanach and D.I. Ava Turner. Her debut novel Perfect Remains and the second in the series Perfect Prey are Amazon best sellers. Her next book ‘Perfect Death’ is due out on 25 January 2018. She currently commutes between Hampshire, Scotland and California, and lives with her husband and three children.

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

Perfect Silence by Helen Fields @Helen_Fields @AvonBooksUK #NetGalley #BookReview

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I am delighted to be sharing my thoughts with you all for Perfect Silence by Helen Fields. I admit to be being a huge fan of this series and I was so delighted to get approval from Avon Book UK for my copy from NetGalley. You can purchase this book from 23rd August from Amazon UK and it is available in various formats.

Synopsis:

When silence falls, who will hear their cries?

The body of a young girl is found dumped on the roadside on the outskirts of Edinburgh. When pathologists examine the remains, they make a gruesome discovery: the silhouette of a doll carved in the victim’s skin.

DCI Ava Turner and DI Luc Callanach are struggling to find leads in the case, until a doll made of skin is found nestled beside an abandoned baby.

After another young woman is found butchered, Luc and Ava realise the babydoll killer is playing a horrifying game. And it’s only a matter of time before he strikes again. Can they stop another victim from being silenced forever – or is it already too late?

My Thoughts:

So in this latest instalment there are two crimes, both as brutal as the other but in different ways and for ultimately different reasons. A young woman found dead with skin removed from her stomach and back. The second is the use of new drug Spice that leaves users zombified and open for attack.

I have read all the ‘Perfect’ books and always eagerly await the next in the series. This is where I say, yes each could be read as a stand alone but, in my heart of hearts I know that a series read in order works so much better for getting to know the characters and their dynamics within the group settings.

Perfect Silence for me had a slightly different feel to it in the respect that Ava seemed to take more of a lead in the story itself. She had been promoted, she is feeling her way in her new role and finding her feet. She also discovers that protocol and procedure falls directly to her to deal with. She is no longer part of the group as such because she is answerable to her own boss and responsible for the actions of her team. This actually made a lot of sense to me as far as her character development goes and in someway helps to stamp her authority.

So not only is Ava having to deal with a change in role she is also in the firing line from the powers that be, Overbeck in particular has been the proverbial ‘pain in the rear’ and it is a chance to get to know this one a little better. Good old, borderline cheeky / rude Lively is back and is another one I got to see a bit more of. There is a newcomer in the form of DS Graham, and what a nice form he has.

The story or should I say stories are of a bloody and gruesome nature, the authors descriptions does a great job of giving enough information to let your imagination do the rest. The cases are very different in the reasons for the attacks, they are not straightforward and the tension and frustration definitely start to mount.

As I mentioned earlier this for me was more about Ava rather the luscious Luc Callanch, I do have such a spot for him and as much as love his character I was more drawn to Ava. Don’t panic though he is still around and is as supportive as ever. But also he has his only little story going on, it is something I am not going to delve into as I am not as sure about this development in his character yet, but I’m interested to see where that part of his life will go.

So to kind of sum up a little, it is a fantastic next instalment in the Perfect books. If you have not read this series then you need to if you like dark, gritty, compulsive and addictive twisted story-lines. Ideal for crime, thriller, murder, mystery and tension filled suspense readers, it’s not all about the crime as there are things within some of the characters lives that are being brought out more as well, but the crime part is blooming brilliant 🙂

A book and series I would highly recommend.
My Reviews for the previous books:

My review for Perfect RemainsBuy from AmazonUK

My review for Perfect PreyBuy from AmazonUK

My review for Perfect Death Buy from AmazonUK

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About the Author:

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Helen Fields studied law at the University of East Anglia, then went on to the Inns of Court School of Law in London. After completing her pupillage, she joined chambers in Middle Temple where she practised criminal and family law for thirteen years. After her second child was born, Helen left the Bar.

Together with her husband David, she runs a film production company, acting as script writer and producer. Perfect Remains is set in Scotland, where Helen feels most at one with the world. Helen and her husband now live in Hampshire with their three children and two dogs.

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

#BookReview : The Trial by John Mayer @johnmayerauthor

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Today I have an urban legal crime read on my blog The Trial by John Mayer. It is self published by John and available in paperback and also eBook, you can get your copy at Amazon UK.  I would like to thank Lizzie (John’s wife) and John for sending me a copy of this book.

Synopsis:

An urban legal/crime novel set in the beautiful Scottish city of Edinburgh. 
Part I of The Parliament House book series 

When Glaswegian Brogan McLane completes many years of university education and legal training he crosses that great divide from Glasgow to Edinburgh. ‘Called’ to the Bar of the Scottish Supreme Court, he becomes a member of the most prestigious club in Scotland; The Faculty of Advocates in Parliament House.

When High Court Judge, Lord Aldounhill, is found dead after a transvestite party in his sumptuous home, those who know the killer close ranks and need a scapegoat – who better than ‘outsider’ Brogan McLane?

Out on bail with his career on hold, McLane and his band of blood brothers in the Calton Bar in Glasgow need to get ahead of their enemies or McLane will go down for life after Trial. But every time they discover a piece of evidence, it seems there is a mirror image to contradict it.

Through the murky world of Russian controlled transvestite hotels and with some unexpected police and judicial help, McLane battles against ‘Low Life in High Places in the Old Town’ until the killer is found.

But well protected and knowing all the tricks, will the killer ever stand trial in Parliament House

My thoughts:

Brogan McLane is not your usual Advocate, he is from the tenements of Glasgow and has worked hard to get where he is today in Edinburgh, The Scottish Supreme Court and become a member of  “The Faculty of Advocates” in Parliament House.  When the death of a Judge threatens his career and his marriage, Brogan will do what he can to prove his innocence.  He is not part of “the old boys” or “hooray Henry’s” and the family tradition that goes back over the generations,and he knows that he is being persecuted.  There are some who automatically point the finger as he is not of the same social status as them seeing Brogan as “Dirt with a Degree”. The ones who know or know of Brogan know he is being set up.  Just a matter of time before things sort themselves out, but who will come out on top?

With very little knowledge of the Scottish Legal system and terminology, I was very pleased to find a glossary of terms at the beginning of the book, a great way to get up to speed before the story starts.  From the off there are quite a few characters and their roles mentioned, it did take a minute or two to get my head around them, but when I did it became plain sailing when met them again further in the book.  The character of Brogan I have to say was good, but I also really liked Jimmy and Big Joe.  Jimmy has a very trusted and important role with insider knowledge.  Big Joe, best friend of Brogan is a wonderful lovable rogue, a true and loyal friend.  There are many others but these three are my favourites.  At this point I would like to mention that Brogan is married, and there is a story about them that I would have liked to read more about.

The story is set out in short quick chapters and you are soon led into a story of corruption, greed and the struggle for power in the halls of the Scottish Judiciary system.  There are great snippets of historical interest and also how the system works, this was a something I enjoyed and I like the fact that I can learn things as I read a story.  The  main plot focuses on the murder of the judge and also unearths some secretive behaviour and also more serious issues.

Once you get the names and terminology under your belt, the story really starts to get going.  It has a plot that takes you through the underhanded and murky world of those in power and think they are above the law, and can pretty much do as they please.  The voice of corruption is strong within the story and has been well-balanced with the justifiable ( though not completely legal) actions of those that are seeking the truth.    There are wonderful atmospheric court room scenes, that help build up the suspense and also the severity of what is happening.  That suspense is continued as you accompany Brogan’s supporters on their information and evidence gathering escapades, not completely by the book of course but, playing the game in a way that hampers the disinformation that those on the other side are compiling is all part of it. A case of who can manipulate who and get to the truth before it disappears first.  The descriptions of the buildings and also the inclusion of photographs aids the reader in seeing the story as well as feeling it, an interesting and very useful addition.

This is a book I definitely enjoyed as I got to meet new characters in the start of a new series.  I would definitely recommend this to readers who like a court room based story that incorporates a crime investigation and secret lives themes.  It is well laid out, written with a good pace and a multilayered plot.  A Definitely Recommend this book from me, once I started it I didn’t put it down until I had finished it, at 2am in the morning !!! That kind of says it all really 🙂

About the Author:

13694916John Mayer would love to be a top-flight blues guitar player and have dated Jennifer Aniston. But what he did achieve, amongst other things was to be a 1970s Indie Record Producer before becoming a top-flight Advocate in the Supreme Court of Scotland where he specialised in international child abduction: rescuing the children, not abducting them, of course.

In his youth, John was shot! Twice! Once in Glasgow, Scotland and once in New York City. John attacks everything he does with passion. And that’s what he brings to his writing.

Follow John on Facebook ~ Twitter ~ Website

Many thanks for reading my post, if you liked it please give a share.  Get your copy of the book  HERE  🙂 xx

#BookReview : Hiding by Jenny Morton Potts @jmortonpotts #PublicationDay

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Wow what a cover!  I am delighted to be sharing my thoughts on “Hiding” by Jenny Morton Potts.  It is due to be published today, so

“Happy Publication Day Jenny xxxx”

Synopsis:

A gripping psychological thriller with chilling twists, from a unique new voice.

Keller Baye and Rebecca Brown live on different sides of the Atlantic. Until she falls in love with him, Rebecca knows nothing of Keller. But he’s known about her for a very long time, and now he wants to destroy her.

This is the story of two families. One living under the threat of execution in North Carolina. The other caught up in a dark mystery in the Scottish Highlands. The families’ paths are destined to cross. But why? And can anything save them when that happens?

My Thoughts:

Set as a sort of time slip and as a transatlantic thriller we meet Keller Baye from America and Rebecca Brown from Scotland.  There is a connection that links these two people, well, more their parents actually, but not everyone knows what this link is.  As the story unfolds we are taken deeper into the two family’s histories and are given details on Keller and Rebecca, their upbringing within their families, education and friends.

The story starts off at an unhurried stroll and gradually picks up pace as this reader got more engrossed in it.  There are several threads have been woven and are gradually twisted and brought together. Jenny has done a brilliant job of giving little snippets and morsels of information and elusive details about the characters at just the right moments, giving hints at what is to come.  A little about the plot, and it will be a little as I really do not want to give anything away.  An incident occurs, it is very much a wrong place wrong time moment, but the resulting consequences have far-reaching implications, and that is all I am prepared to say, I just don’t want to hint at anything and spoil it for another reader.  Just grab yourself a copy and read it, you won’t be disappointed.

As for the characters, they are a wonderful varied mixed bunch that have a whole host of traits that seem to fit really well, you will meet  good, bad, ugly, funny, sly, strict and lovable rogue types.  Some you will like, others you will not and I also like the ones that make me change my mind on how I feel about them. A great look at the differences within the family dynamics as well, how they interact with each other, or don’t in some cases.  The descriptions of the sandstone house that is Taransay I loved, a bleak, grim, cold draughty mansion and the isolation of it gave me a real image as I read.

So in case you had not realised, I really loved this book, I liked the way it grabbed my attention from the very beginning and did not let me go until the very last words.  I wasn’t sure of where this book was going to take me, but as it had piqued my interest early on I was quite willing to be led and greedily kept turning the pages.

This is a book that is ideal for those who like a slow burner that then starts to increase in pace as the story evolves and then has you racing to the end. A brilliant read, with well-developed characters, a great pace, very good setting descriptions and plot lines.  A definite must read recommendation from this reader to others who like a good thriller.

Now I have to mention the cover, it is intriguing and after you have read the book, take another look at it ! I went from liking it originally, to now loving it, it makes a lot of sense.

I would like to send my thanks to Jenny for sending me a eARC of this book.  My views expressed here are my unbiased and are my own.

About the Author:

hiding  Jenny Morton Potts was born in a smart, dull suburb of Glasgow where the only regular excitement was burglary. Attended a smart, dull school where the only regular excitement was the strap. Worked in smart, dull sales and marketing jobs until realising she was living someone else’s life.

Escaped to Gascony to make gîtes. Knee deep in cement and pregnant, Jenny was happy. Then autism and a distracted spine surgeon who wanted to talk about The Da Vinci Code, wiped out the order. Returned to wonderful England – and unlikely ever to leave again – Jenny, with assistance from loyal hound, walked and swam her way back to manageable health.

Jenny would like to see the Northern Lights but worries that’s the best bit and should be saved till last. Very happily, and gratefully, partnered for 28 years, she ought to mention, and living with inspirational child in Derbyshire.

Follow Jenny on her Website ~ Twitter

Many thanks for reading my post, if you  liked it give it a share.  Better still, go and buy this incredible book xx