Shadow Sands: A Kate Marshall Thriller – Book 2 by Robert Bryndza, published by Thomas & Mercer. @RobertBryndza @AmazonPub @kirsteenastor @NetGalley #thriller #review #bestsellers

Another knife-edge thriller that unfolds with cut-throat ferocity! This is the second book in the Kate Marshall series, an ultra-satisfying, seat-of-your-pants action mystery with a corkscrewing plot.

An Amazon Charts bestselling series.

THE UNMISSABLE NEW THRILLER FROM THE INTERNATIONALLY BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE GIRL IN THE ICE AND NINE ELMS ROBERT BRYNDZA

The moors are a perfect hiding place for a serial killer. And a chilling return to the past for nascent private investigator Kate Marshall in a pulse-racing thriller by the author of Nine Elms.

Criminology academic Kate Marshall is on a scuba jaunt with her son when they dive toward a shocking discovery: the body of a teenage boy entangled below the surface of the Shadow Sands reservoir. The detective chief inspector’s too-quick narrative of a tragic drowning doesn’t add up, and when Kate follows the evidence, it leads to a darker discovery.

The victim is only the latest in a series of mysterious deaths and disappearances linked to the moorlands—and a mythic phantom said to hide in the rolling fog. When a researcher of urban legends vanishes without a trace, Kate and her associate Tristan Harper must act fast and look deep if they hope to find her alive.

But the elusive serial killer they’re hunting isn’t the only one a step ahead of Kate and Tristan. Someone else is making dead certain that the secrets of Shadow Sands stay buried.

Review
The book opens with a UK regional swimming champion being attacked by an unknown assailant at Shadow Sands reservoir. Two days later, forty-two-year-old Kate Marshall and her teenage son, Jake, are swimming in the same waters, taking pictures of a sunken village — only to stumble on a gruesome find, something that Kate is rather good at.

SHADOW SANDSKate becomes embroiled in the case at the request of the victims mother. With the help of Tristen Harper and the mortician, it becomes clear the Kendal boys death was no accident. Geraint Jones’ melancholic statement and Alan Herman’s refusal to comment on time of death make this an eerie case—that and the police’s rapid decision to rule accidental death.

There’s clearly something much bigger going on with witnesses about to give statements and then winding up dead. The ending, as with all Bryndza’s books threw me for a loop. I’m loving the PI stance to Kate’s career and I’m hoping to see her getting up to all kinds of ticks without the oppressive rules of a police department to hinder her. Another ACE read.

This is one of those books that gives you goose pimples, a few sniffles and sniggers. Loved the cappuccino/Al Pacino comment. Oh, and Dylan and Thomas. It explores the darkest criminal minds and puts killers where you least expect to find them.

Bryndza’s writing is always clear, well researched. His understanding of forensics and police procedural always makes me feel I’m in reliable hands. His descriptions of the area: Kate’s two-storey house in Thurlow Bay and the edgy, dark imagery of the crime scene is sure to stay with you for a very long time.

This series is maddeningly addictive and soaks up every dark pleasure and every nail-biting terror and provides a protagonist you definitely want to root for.

Thank you to the author Robert Bryndza, Netgalley, the publisher Thomas & Mercer and Netgalley for an advanced copy of this book.

What people are saying:

‘Robert Bryndza knows how to keep the pages – and your stomach – turning’ – The Times

 ‘It is impossible not to root for the feisty, flawed Kate’ – Daily Mail

 ‘So chilling, with truly terrifying characters and a hard-hitting storyline that is gripping from start to finish’ – Rachel Abbott

About the Author

Robert Bryndza began his career training at the Guildford School of Acting in the U.K. He spent six years as an actor, doing all kinds of strange jobs in between, which was the perfect training for being an author. He began to write during a long period of unemployment, first comedy sketches, a show which he took to the Edinburgh Festival, and then four romantic comedy novels which he self-published, and they became Amazon charts bestsellers selling over 250,000 copies.

His debut crime thriller The Girl in the Ice was the first book in his Detective Erika Foster series. It has sold over 1 million copies in the English language, and won the Dead Good Reader Award for best kick-ass female character at the 2016 U.K Harrogate Crime Festival. Erika Foster has gone on to kick-ass in five further books; The Night Stalker, Dark Water, Last Breath, Cold Blood and Deadly Secrets. The series was twice nominated in Goodreads Choice Awards (Mystery and Thriller category) in 2016 for The Girl in the Ice, and in 2017 for Last Breath. Robert’s books have sold over 3 million copies in the English language, and have been translated into 29 languages.

Nine Elms, the first book in his new Kate Marshall private detective series was published late in 2019 and was an instant Amazon USA no.1 bestseller, an Amazon UK top 10 bestseller and topped bestselling charts around the world. The second book in the series, Shadow Sands, will be published in November 2020. Robert is British and lives in Slovakia.

You can find out more about Robert at http://www.robertbryndza.com and on Twitter and Instagram @RobertBryndza

Sign up to Robert’s new book release mailing List here: http://eepurl.com/UITxz

(Simply cut-and-paste that address into your browser. Your email will never be shared and you will only be contacted when a new book is out.)

Other books by Robert Bryndza

Robert Bryndza Book page

The Kingdom by JO NESBØ, published by Random House (Knopf) @randomhouse #JoNesbo #Blog #review #TheKingdom #NetGalley

What a fabulous book! All the trappings of an excellent thriller with a treasure trove of secrets you have to uncover. As always, Jo Nesbo delivers a deeply layered, intricate study of the human mind. It’s not surprising this book is a number one bestseller!

*A STUNNING NEW STANDALONE THRILLER FROM THE AUTHOR OF THE BESTSELLING HARRY HOLE SERIES*

In the mountains of Norway a man lives a peaceful existence. However one day his younger brother, always the more successful and charming of the two, turns up to visit, accompanied by his new wife. It soon turns out that the little brother is not quite as angelic as he seems.

Set in a small town filled with secrets, this is a compellingly atmospheric new thriller from the Sunday Times number one bestseller.

*JO NESBØ HAS SOLD OVER 45 MILLION BOOKS WORLDWIDE*

 

Review

This is a story of choices and courage, and about Roy against everyone else. A year older than Carl, it is clear he is the more robust of the two brothers. But the day Carl heads out with his father’s beloved dog changes everything.

Roy has always been Carl’s guardian, his protector and helper. ‘Nothing is as good as the sound of a little brother who is safe.’ He has lived in his wilderness kingdom for fifteen years alone with the oppressive ghosts of Opgard, while Carl studied finance and business administration in the USA. Now Carl is back home with a rather large agenda. A mountain hotel and the idea of selling the property that had been in their family’s possession for four generations. He returns with Shannon in tow and this time, the world is a little different.

The book has a great sense of community and rivalry, and the poetic descriptions that stay with you for days are, as always, stunning. A much slower pace than Nesbo’s Harry Hole series, it nevertheless delivers the same massive punch. It also delves deep into Roy’s and Carl’s pasts, a seemingly normal upbringing with the underpinnings of unresolved grief, infidelity and revenge. Is Carl’s sudden return simply to show off how well he’d done? And how will he build this ‘castle in the air’ and gain investors from a town built on skepticism?

From the outside, Carl’s relationship with Shannon appears tender and devoted, living in each other’s pockets. But there is underlying tension and you wonder what kind of straw will break the camel’s back. Accidents do happen, although Kurt Olsen has his own opinions. He’s a hunter. He won’t give up.

To say I couldn’t put it down is an understatement. I kept thinking I knew how it would end but I was far from it. Bruises, revenge affairs, fires, and Roy’s plan. What could possibly go wrong?

Strangely addictive and a keep-you-up-all-night story, it’s no wonder Scandinavian writers continue to dominate the thriller market. Intricate plotting and masterful characterization makes this one of my favorite books this year.

Thank you to Netgalley, Random House, and the author – Jo Nesbo, for an advance copy of this fabulous book!

About the author

JO NESBØ is a musician, songwriter, and economist, as well as a writer. His Harry Hole novels include The Redeemer, The Snowman, The Leopard and Phantom, and he is also the author of several stand-alone novels and the Doctor Proctor series of children’s books. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the Glass Key for best Nordic crime novel.

Other book covers of The Kingdom

Other books by JO NESBØ

Jo Nesbo

One By One by Ruth Ware, Published by Random House, Gallery/Scout Press, @RuthWareWriter @GalleryBooks @ScoutPressBooks #Review #blog

WOOHOO! One By One publishes today. I was thrilled to receive an advance copy and having loved all of Ruth Ware’s books to date, this was a real treat! You are bound to devour this locked-door mystery setup in one sitting and it will keep you guessing through the very last page.

“The Agatha Christie of our generation.” —David Baldacci, #1 New York Times bestselling author

“Diabolically clever.” —Riley Sager, author of Final Girls

The #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Turn of the Key and In a Dark Dark Wood returns with another suspenseful thriller set on a snow-covered mountain.

One by One by [Ruth Ware]

Getting snowed in at a luxurious, rustic ski chalet high in the French Alps doesn’t sound like the worst problem in the world. Especially when there’s a breathtaking vista, a full-service chef and housekeeper, a cozy fire to keep you warm, and others to keep you company. Unless that company happens to be eight coworkers…each with something to gain, something to lose, and something to hide.

When the cofounder of Snoop, a trendy London-based tech startup, organizes a weeklong trip for the team in the French Alps, it starts out as a corporate retreat like any other: PowerPoint presentations and strategy sessions broken up by mandatory bonding on the slopes. But as soon as one shareholder upends the agenda by pushing a lucrative but contentious buyout offer, tensions simmer and loyalties are tested. The storm brewing inside the chalet is no match for the one outside, however, and a devastating avalanche leaves the group cut off from all access to the outside world. Even worse, one Snooper hadn’t made it back from the slopes when the avalanche hit.

As each hour passes without any sign of rescue, panic mounts, the chalet grows colder, and the group dwindles further…one by one.

WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING:

“Especially timely, given that the terror of isolation is at its heart… This is And Then There Were None rendered for the twenty-first century.”
—Booklist (starred review)

“Tempestuous . . . [a] claustrophobic, adrenaline-fueled cat-and-mouse game.” —Publishers Weekly

“Hilarious, well plotted, and vintage Ware, this one is not to be missed.”
—CrimeReads

“Ruth Ware’s Hitchcockian thrillers have yet to disappoint.”
PopSugar

“Ware does what she does best: Gives us a familiar locked-door mystery setup and lets the tension and suspicion marinate until they reach fever pitch. Another win for Ware… Simply masterful.”
—Kirkus

The Turn of the Key was not her first book, but its sweep of starred reviews and awards sets up One by One to be a most anticipated thriller of 2020.”
Library Journal

Anything by Ruth Ware is a huge treat and this book certainly lives up to its hype. Told from dual points of view — Erin, the chalet girl and Liz, socially anxious, fish-out-of-water misfit, enables you to get both an inside and an outside perspective to the story.  Ware certainly lives with her imagined characters for a while, knows them inside and out before committing them to paper. These intricate layers for me are so necessary to fully enjoy a book.

The writing is fluid and hard to put down.  The format in the opening chapters is very different to her past books and begins by introducing nine colleagues of a tech company called Snoop; an app described as ‘voyeurism for your ears.’

The guests are staying in the luxury French ski resort of St Antoine with views to die for. But when a snow forecast threatens to become a snowpocalypse (Snowmaggedon) this desirable setting has the potential to become — yes, you’ve guessed it, a little hamlet with no way out and a group of people trapped together. The only access is via funicular railway or a blue run to the centre of the village. It might well be a beautiful place  with its peaks and pistes and great skiing, but not when inclement weather makes it inaccessible by helicopter. I’m already sensing tension and claustrophobia, especially in a low of minus 20.

After a meeting in the den where the employees have a difference of opinion over the future of Snoop, tempers begin to flare, giving us a reason to be on high alert. As the guests are picked off one by one you hope the characters you like survive and the ones you don’t get what’s coming to them. But it’s not quite as cut and dry as that. Each guest is either a have or a have not, sleek, witty, beautiful, born with a silver spoon in their mouths. Whereas one ‘unwraps secrets carried for three years,’ someone underestimated that you think might needs further examination. So much food for thought.

Ware has done a brilliant job of holding these guests hostage in freezing conditions, dwindling heating and food to add to the ever growing list of worries. A terrible sense of abandonment and being cut off from the outside world increases the threat, hostility and suspicion building tension. She always writes about ordinary people in frightening situations and has expert knowledge of the .com boom. Adding a character who allows toxic practices to take root within this company brings a clever variation to the archetype.

A fantabulous read! Highly recommended.

Thank you to Netgalley, the author Ruth Ware and the publisher Random House (Vintage Publishing) for the privilege of reading an advance copy.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Ruth Ware

Ruth Ware is an international number one bestseller. Her thrillers In a Dark, Dark Wood, The Woman in Cabin 10, The Lying Game and The Death of Mrs Westaway have appeared on bestseller lists around the world, including the Sunday Times and New York Times, and she is published in more than 40 languages. She lives on the south coast of England, with her family.

Visit http://www.ruthware.com to find out more, or find her on facebook or twitter as @RuthWareWriter

OTHER BOOKS BY RUTH WARE

The Night Swim by Megan Goldin, Published by St. Martin’s Press @StMartinsPress @MacmillanUSA @megangoldin

The Night Swim: A Novel by [Megan Goldin]

In The Night Swim, a new thriller from Megan Goldin, author of the “gripping and unforgettable” (Harlen Coben) The Escape Room, a true crime podcast host covering a controversial trial finds herself drawn deep into a small town’s dark past and a brutal crime that took place there years before.

Ever since her true-crime podcast became an overnight sensation and set an innocent man free, Rachel Krall has become a household name—and the last hope for people seeking justice. But she’s used to being recognized for her voice, not her face. Which makes it all the more unsettling when she finds a note on her car windshield, addressed to her, begging for help.

The new season of Rachel’s podcast has brought her to a small town being torn apart by a devastating rape trial. A local golden boy, a swimmer destined for Olympic greatness, has been accused of raping the beloved granddaughter of the police chief. Under pressure to make Season 3 a success, Rachel throws herself into her investigation—but the mysterious letters keep coming. Someone is following her, and she won’t stop until Rachel finds out what happened to her sister twenty-five years ago. Officially, Jenny Stills tragically drowned, but the letters insist she was murdered—and when Rachel starts asking questions, nobody in town wants to answer. The past and present start to collide as Rachel uncovers startling connections between the two cases—and a revelation that will change the course of the trial and the lives of everyone involved.

Electrifying and propulsive, The Night Swim asks: What is the price of a reputation? Can a small town ever right the wrongs of its past? And what really happened to Jenny?

The Night Swim by Megan Goldin is a first class read. Rachel Krall runs a true crime podcast, now in its third season. As an impartial observer, she takes viewers into the courtroom in real-time. Set in North Carolina’s coastal town of Neapolis, she follows the case of Scott Blair — an outstanding swimming star set for the Olympic team who allegedly raped a sixteen-year-old-girl. The victim has been prevented by the court to talk about the case and the bullying she suffers on social media will set your teeth on edge.

The narrative, which balances the past and present, is interwoven with letters from a woman recounting the events leading up to the death of her sister, Jenny, twenty-five years earlier. Letters left in prominent and personal places for only Rachel to find. Not only are they designed to provoke Rachel’s journalistic nature, but they bring to light moral issues disturbingly absent in such a heinous case. The more Rachel investigates, the more startling the parallels become. Especially because Jenny’s incident — said to be a tragic drowning — is slowly beginning to look more like murder. Some townsfolk insist Jenny was a down and out liar, although Hannah’s letters challenge that theory, making the reader root all the more for Jenny and for Rachel to dig deeper. As small town politics take control, you can’t help questioning who or what to believe.

The reliving of testimony on the witness stand is the part I found the most traumatic. As the defence continues to paint the victim known only as ‘K’ to be a liar and delves too deeply into every tiny detail, you know her life will never be the same. Whether or not the jury will be persuaded to believe her word against his remains to be seen. But you also know she is lamenting the day she ever met Scott. I know I would.

Having read The Escape Room, I knew Night Swim would be a smooth, twisty ride. Goldin writes poignantly and skilfully on the victimization of women in a rape trial. Warning to other abuse/rape survivors, the explicit content will leave you pretty raw. Goldin doesn’t sugar-coat any of the details of both these cases and for many this will not be a comfortable read. Sexual abuse and assaults that were once considered harmless are brought to the fore. None detract from the pacey and clever plot, and all controversial issues are delivered sensitively.

It’s an outstanding read, masterfully plotted with a unique premise. Will Rachel’s podcasts become a series? Who knows? I would definitely enjoy reading another of her cases.

Many thanks to author Megan Goldin, St. Martin’s Press/Macmillan and Netgalley for the privilege of reading this advance copy.

What everyone is saying:

  • Print Length: 348 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1250272777
  • Publisher: St. Martin’s Press (August 4, 2020)
  • Publication Date: August 4, 2020
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0818N4HC8

About the Author:

Megan Goldin

Megan Goldin is the author of The Escape Room, a 2019 thriller that Lee Child called “one of my favorite books of the year” and Harlan Coben called “thrilling and unforgettable”. Megan’s new novel The Night Swim will be released in August 2020. Before becoming a novelist, Megan worked as a reporter covering the Middle East and Asia for the Reuters news agency, the Associate Press and the ABC as well as other news outlets.

Other books by Megan Goldin

Left for Dead by Caroline Mitchell #LeftForDead #NetGalley @Caroline_writes @AmazonPub  @BOTBSPublicity #writingcommunity #blog #review

I was so excited to receive a copy of Caroline Mitchell’s new book. By far one of my favorite authors, this is a five star read that  leaves you chilled to the bone. Gripping and deliciously creepy, Left For Dead is the third installment in the DI Amy Winter Thriller book series.

Book description:

A victim on display. A detective on the rails.

Shopping with her sister, DI Amy Winter is admiring a Valentine’s Day window display of a perfect bride encrusted in diamonds and resplendent in lace—until she notices blood oozing from the mannequin’s mouth.

This is no stunt. A post-mortem reveals the victim was left to die on her macabre throne for all to see. When a second victim is found, it emerges that both women were ‘Sugar Babes’ arranging dates with older men online—and Amy finds herself hunting an accomplished psychopath.

As she tracks down the killer, Amy’s instincts go into overdrive when the charismatic head of the agency behind the display makes no attempt to hide his fascination with her serial-killer parents. What exactly does he want from Amy? With her own world in freefall as her biological mother, Lillian Grimes, appeals her conviction, Amy pushes the boundaries of police procedure when a third ‘Sugar Babe’ disappears…Is she as much at risk as the killer’s victims?

  • Print Length: 332 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (July 8, 2020)
  • Publication Date: July 8, 2020
  • ASIN: B082HT291W

 

Review

The book opens on a chilly February day in the office of Samuel Black who, after having scratched his way to the top, now lives in a large home in Notting Hill. Itching to release his hidden desires, he unlocks the second draw of his desk, and with the help of a little black notebook, he is thrust from his mundane life into the bowels of a secret society.

DCI Hazel Pike is retiring and Donovan, toned and muscular and without a tie, has been transferred from Essex Police to take over her role. Dubbed as the psychopath-whisperer and with fan-mail to boot, it’s a bitter pill for DI Amy Winter to swallow. But I love Donovan, in fact, I quite fancy him myself.

A shopping trip with her sister down London’s Oxford Street on a Saturday morning, starts the ball rolling on the most bizarre case yet. A widow display with the distinctive scent of death and a dummy, left on a throne, ice cold with blood dripping from her mouth. A small heart-shaped wound had been cut in her chest, reminiscent of Claire Lacey’s murder twenty years ago— nicknamed The Love Heart Killer.

With all the ingredients of a fabulous plot, this book definitely delivers on many counts. The antagonist is deliciously creepy (which I love) and the protagonist is a pitbull of a crime fighter, whose punchbag sessions in her basement gym make up a small part of her amazing strength. The word ‘no’ doesn’t exist in her vocabulary and wedging a boot in a closing a door demonstrates her prickly dedication. Reluctant to discuss the Beasts of Brentwood with the likes of Samuel Black, she will have to atone for Lillian’s crimes, the true reason why Amy does what she does. But with tainted blood running through her veins—or you could say a foot in both camps—I wonder if this makes her twice as intuitive. Her nemesis in this case may refer to her as ‘same dog, different fleas,’ but he doesn’t know what he’s dealing with.

On the final stretch of the crime, the twist in the tale had me reeling. I thought I might have it all worked out by about the three quarter mark, but I hadn’t. A twenty-year-old murder told from two perspectives, with a cruel and perverted outcome. What’s that Harper Lee saying? “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view… Until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it.”

I always have my go-to crime writers and I’m happy to say, Caroline Mitchell is one who never disappoints. Edgy, dark and showcasing one of the finest detective characters in modern fiction, it’s exciting to note that the series has been optioned and will soon be on our screens to watch.

Huge thanks to author Caroline Mitchell, publisher Thomas & Mercer (APub) and Sarah Hardy at Books on the Bright Side Publicity and Netgalley for an advance reader copy of this book.

About the author:

fullsizeoutput_1095A former police detective, Caroline Mitchell now writes full-time.

She has worked in CID and specialised in roles dealing with vulnerable victims—high-risk victims of domestic abuse and serious sexual offences. The mental strength shown by the victims of these crimes is a constant source of inspiration to her, and Mitchell combines their tenacity with her knowledge of police procedure to create tense psychological thrillers.

Originally from Ireland, she now lives in a pretty village on the coast of Essex with her husband and three children.

You can find out more about her at http://www.caroline-writes.com, or follow her on Twitter (@caroline_writes) or Facebook (www.facebook.com/CMitchellAuthor).

Other books by Caroline Mitchell:

caroline mitchell

Caroline Mitchell Left For Dead Banner (2)

 

The Other Passenger by Louise Candlish @louise_candlish @simonschusterUK #blog #review #Thrillers #Mysteries

I was so excited to get a copy of The Other Passenger by Louise Candlish who has quickly become one of my favourite authors to date. I couldn’t believe anything after Our House could be quite as good, but this might have topped my 2020 reading list. It’s a corker of a book, wonderfully plotted, and a compulsive page-turner. I defy you to read anything better!

Book Description:

FROM THE BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF OUR HOUSE, WINNER OF THE CRIME & THRILLER BOOK OF THE YEAR AWARD

The Other Passenger is just brilliant; gripping from the first page with an incredible first person narrative and a sense of place that pulls you through the pages fast enough to make your head spin. Louise Candlish just gets better and better, I love her’ Lisa Jewell, author of The Family Upstairs 

You’re feeling pretty smug about your commute to work by riverboat. No more traffic gridlock or getting stuck on the tube in tunnels (you’re claustrophobic). Now you’ve got fresh air, an iconic Thames view, a whole lifestyle upgrade. You’ve made new friends on board — led by your hedonistic young neighbour, Kit — and just had your first official ‘water rats’ get-together.

The day after the drinks, Kit isn’t on the morning boat. The river landmarks are all the same, but something’s off. When you disembark, the police are waiting. Kit’s wife, Melia, has reported him missing and another passenger saw you arguing on the last boat home after your drinks. Police say you had a reason to lash out at him. To threaten him.

You protest. You and Kit are friends — ask Melia, she’ll vouch for you. And who exactly is pointing the finger? What do they know about your private lives?

No, whatever coincidences might have occurred last night, you are innocent, totally innocent.

Aren’t you?

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster UK (25 Jun. 2020)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1471183440
  • ISBN-13: 978-1471183447

Advance Praise

Review

 

What a helter-skelter of a read! It doesn’t get twistier than this. It’s unusual to find such a deliciously well-plotted book with ‘real’ characters you actually care about. A book you can’t wait to dive into at the end of the day.

Jamie Buckby has been living with Clare for ten years rent free. His salary hardly compares to hers which creates its own set of problems from the start. After a dinner party with a younger couple, Kit and Melia, Jamie upgrades himself to a daily commute on the Thames riverboat. Probably a smart idea after his panic attack on a stifling and claustrophobic tube. Although the tube journey is familiar to me, taking a boat is something I’ve never done and the scenery and history of London buildings is beautifully illustrated.

Kit and Jamie hit it off from the start, although I found Kit’s flaky personality wearing at times. Certainly not off-putting but skilfully drawn to reveal his grating behaviour. When he disappeared, I was almost relieved. However, a disappearance requires a police investigation and Jamie is their number one man. He was the last person to have seen him and their parting was less than harmonious. With Clare playing a super-sleuth and Jamie digging himself deeper into a hole of his own making, the book keeps you hooked.

The story is told in dual timelines: Jamie’s interrogation later in the year with two detectives, and his initial meeting with Kit in January. It takes us on a capricious journey interspersed with so many misleading and cleverly disjointed paths, it left me breathless. Jamie is likeable, although easily-led, and I wasn’t surprised by his change of direction. The curiously seductive Melia has a turbulent relationship with Kit, although I found her the most interesting of them all. The police interviews, which confirm a high level of research for a book such as this, peel away the layers of an intricate plot. But in spite of everything, the gold nugget at the centre continues to evade us.

The ending was utterly shocking, and I have to say this is one of the best books I’ve read this year. If you like your books shaken and thoroughly stirred, with a twist of acerbic wit, then this is the book for you. Many thanks to Simon & Schuster for the ARC, and to Netgalley and the author for an intense and dazzling read!

About the Author

Louise CandlishWINNER of British Book Awards 2019 Book of the Year – Crime & Thriller for OUR HOUSE

Hello and welcome! I am the author of thirteen novels, a fact I can’t quite believe myself. My thriller OUR HOUSE has sold over 200,000 copies in the UK and won the 2019 British Book Awards Book of the Year – Crime & Thriller. It was shortlisted for the Goldsboro Books Glass Bell Award 2019, the Capital Crime Amazon Publishing Best Crime Novel of the Year Award​ 2019, and the Audible Sounds of Crime Award 2019, and longlisted for the Theakston Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year and the Specsavers National Book Awards 2018. A #1 bestseller in paperback, ebook and audiobook, it is now in development for a major TV series with Red Planet Pictures, makers of ‘Death in Paradise’.

THOSE PEOPLE, about the neighbours from hell, is also out now and is described by the Guardian as being ‘guaranteed to have you vibrating with impotent fury’. It recently reached #2 on the Sunday Times bestseller list and has also been optioned for TV.

Both books have been labelled ‘property noir’, ‘property porn lit’ and ‘crib lit’, but I prefer ‘suburban noir’ because it has that mood of longing, of broken dreams, that I love so much (but don’t let that put you off…)

I live in a South London neighbourhood not unlike the one in my books, with my husband, teenage daughter, cat and a fox-red Labrador puppy called Bertie.

Get up-to-date offers by clicking on the yellow ‘Follow’ button under my pic. For more bits and pieces, catch me on Twitter at @louise_candlish or find out more at louisecandlish.com or facebook.com/LouiseCandlishAuthor. I’d love to hear from you.

Author photos ©Jonny Ring; ©Joe Lord/Archant

Other books by Louise Candlish

Louise Candlish

DEAD WRONG by Noelle Holton @KillerReads @HarperCollins #bookreview #vigilantejustice #crime

WOW! Another fabulous read from Noelle Holten. Dead Wrong is the second book in the DC Maggie Jamieson series, a firecracker of a read and a solid page-turner.

Book Description:

Dead Wrong: A completely addictive and gripping serial killer thriller (Maggie Jamieson thriller, Book 2) by [Holten, Noelle]The serial killer is behind bars. But the murders are just beginning…

DC Maggie Jamieson’s past comes back to haunt her in this dark and gripping serial killer thriller.

Three missing women running out of time…

They were abducted years ago. Notorious serial killer Bill Raven admitted to killing them and was sentenced to life.

The case was closed – at least DC Maggie Jamieson thought it was…

But now one of them has been found, dismembered and dumped in a bin bag in town.

Forensics reveal that she died just two days ago, when Raven was behind bars, so Maggie has a second killer to find.

Because even if the other missing women are still alive, one thing’s for certain: they don’t have long left to live…

Book Links:

  British flag UK here  US flag  US here

Publisher: One More Chapter (March 14, 2020)

Publication Date: March 14, 2020

Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers

Review

In this second installment, the series starts with DC Maggie Jamieson’s new case involving a serial killer who has a penchant for drugging his victims and using dismemberment as a means to clean up his crime scene. Nicknamed “The Chopper,” his MO is strikingly similar to that of The Raven, someone Jamieson put behind bars a long time ago. But when another victim is found bearing his unforgettable hallmark, she doesn’t understand how he could be responsible.

There is so much wisdom in Holten’s writing. Her 18 years as a probation officer provide a good understanding of procedure and buffs up every twist and cliff hanger available. You feel as if you’re right there with Maggie and her team as she painstakingly pores through evidence, while The Raven, a monster and sadist, is appealing to be set free. You can’t help questioning whether Jamieson did, in fact, put away the right man. There are times when my brain started to work overtime, convinced that something wasn’t right. Who really is the master manipulator and who did commit these recent crimes?

Jamieson isn’t typecast. You can’t categorize her as a run-of-the-mill of crime fighter. She’s an independent, roll up your sleeves and get on with it type, even though there are small cracks in her armour. She is determined to crack a crime no matter what it takes, and with little home life to speak of, she is freer than most to achieve that goal. This characteristic is more common than people think for those working areas of justice and law enforcement. It require long hours and very little sleep, not something that pairs well with raising small children and nurturing a relationship. Without all that to clutter up the narrative, I found no distractions in the plot that other books of this type tend to use as fillers. Holten’s research and experience have given credence to the plot, giving the book the added depth most readers crave.

The support team working with Jamieson were invaluable. A special nod to Bethany, DI Rutherford, and DS Nathan. Although The Raven played Jamieson up to the bitter end, I was hoping with every page I turned that she’d have him in an arm-lock in the nick of time. Kudos to Holten for writing such convincing characters who don’t deviate from their distinctive and arresting personalities. (No pun intended.)

Overall tension is further enhanced by assertive writing, well-plotted twists and a few red herrings along the way. The ending will leaving you gasping for the next book.

Many thanks to the publisher, @KillerReads @HarperCollins and to Netgalley for the advance copy in exchange for an honest review. And thank you to @BOTBSPublicity for letting me be part of this fabulous Blog Tour.

About the Author:

Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at http://www.crimebookjunkie.co.uk. She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and a regular reviewer on the Two Crime Writers and a Microphone podcast. Noelle worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of cases including those involving serious domestic abuse. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, author-stalking and sharing the booklove via her blog.
Dead Inside is her debut novel with One More Chapter/Harper Collins UK, an international kindle bestseller and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.

Connect with Noelle on Social Media here:
Twitter: (@nholten40) https://twitter.com/nholten40
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/noelleholtenauthor/
Blog FB page: https://www.facebook.com/crimebookjunkie/
Instagram: @crimebookjunkie

Other books by Noelle Holten

Noelle Holten

Deep Dark Night by Steph Broadribb, published by Orenda Books #review #blog @OrendaBooks @crimethrillgirl, @Netgalley @AnneCater

WOW! Another white-knuckle read from this author. Unique premise, fast-paced, and easy-to-read makes this a fabulously memorable book. I finished it in one sitting. Sunday has always been my reading day, but today I was too engrossed to cook lunch! Sorry family.

Book Description:

Deep Dark Night (Lori Anderson Series Book 4) by [Broadribb, Steph]The fourth book in the award-winning Lori Anderson series, Deep Dark Night sees daring bounty hunter and single mother Lori Anderson journey from Florida to Chicago to take down a notorious crime family. Published to coincide with International Women’s Month, it will see the full series rebranded a fresh, contemporary new look.

Working off the books for FBI Special Agent Alex Monroe,

Florida bounty hunter Lori Anderson and her partner, JT, head to Chicago. Their mission: to entrap the head of the

Cabressa crime family. The bait: a priceless chess set that Cabressa is determined to add to his collection.

An exclusive high-stakes poker game is arranged in the penthouse suite of one of the city’s tallest buildings, with

Lori holding the cards in an agreed arrangement to hand over the pieces, one by one. But, as night falls and the game plays out, stakes rise and tempers flare.

When a power failure plunges the city into darkness, the building goes into lockdown. But this isn’t an ordinary

blackout, and the men around the poker table aren’t all who they say they are. Hostages are taken, old scores resurface and the players start to die.

And that’s just the beginning…

Links: US flag US here  British flag  UK here

Print Length: 320 pages

Publisher: Orenda Books (January 5, 2020)

Publication Date: January 12, 2020

Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC

ASIN: B07XW8SQL3

Review

Bounty-hunter and fierce in her pursuit of justice, Lori Anderson is no quitter. With her ‘use whatever you’ve got to get the job done’ attitude, she’s ready to play the game. With the Mob on one hand and the FBI on the other, it’s a very uncomfortable squeeze for Lori. She must survive, no matter what. But the assignment Munroe wants her to do is nothing short of frightening, and ramped-up by impossible odds.  Similar to the other books in the series, wiping the slate clean is all that Lori craves. If she fails, she loses Dakota and JT. I liked Lori instantly. Tough and resilient, she must think quickly on her feet. Improvising seems to be her gift. She’s definitely one to champion.

This time, a priceless chess set and a few tough opponents causes the adrenaline to run high. Lori must learn to play a high stakes game, but does she have enough time to prepare? What if Cabressa doesn’t fall for the plan? These were my questions as I read on. Lori’s best chance to keep Monroe off her back is to give him a watertight case against Cabressa. If she does exactly what he asks, then she’s free to live the life she’s always wanted to live. With her daughter and her man. What lady doesn’t have a few tricks of her own? Lori isn’t about to be cheated, after all, if things go south, she needs a fool-proof plan, even if it means withholding one tiny piece of it. With her type of street smarts, things could still get tricky.

Once past the security check, the penthouse is a quiet, intimate space, perfect for a small group. But as the game progresses, Lori is up against her worst fears. Having only played a few games prior to this, I’m amazed she can take on some experienced and hardened opponents. As the game draws closer to its end, Cabressa decides to up the stakes. A two week-old Rolls Royce worth over eight hundred grand for Lori’s chess pieces. The problem is, Lori has made an incomplete bet, and not only that, the whole of Chicago is suddenly engulfed in darkness. Nothing is going to plan and this is where the story takes a menacing turn. I’m not sure I’ve read a locked-room mystery quite like it. 10 people with loaded secrets and only one of them has a carefully guarded identity. It’s a guessing game that has tempers rising to record heights. But if they are to deactivate the lockdown protocols, someone had better guess right. When they do, there may be a price to pay.

I didn’t expect this author to allow her characters to have a clean run. But what I hadn’t expected was the level of skill she demonstrates with her plots. Taken from Lori’s point of view and written in first person, it’s easy to get into her head and understand what she’s going through. I don’t know how else to describe Lori except to say she’s genuine and extraordinary. I was very impressed at how Broadribb etched this character into my mind, so much so, it was hard to let her go after the last chapter.

It’s a definite five stars from me! I want to thank @crimethrillgirl, @OrendaBooks, @Netgalley and @AnneCater for an advance copy of this book and for inviting me to take part on this blog tour.

About the Author

Steph Broadribb Author Pic (2)

Steph Broadribb

Steph Broadribb was born in Birmingham and grew up in Buckinghamshire. Most of her working life has been spent between the UK and USA. As her alter ego – Crime Thriller Girl – she indulges her love of all things crime fiction by blogging at http://www.crimethrillergirl.com

Steph is an alumni of the MA in Creative Writing (Crime Fiction) at City University London, and she trained as a bounty hunter in California. She lives in Buckinghamshire surrounded by horses, cows and chickens.

Other books by Steph Broadribb

Steph Broadribb all books

Other links:

Agent: 

Facebook:

Goodreads:

Deep Dark Night BT Poster (2)

When Stars Will Shine: Helping Our Heroes One Page At A Time by Emma Mitchell (Editor) and Authors Graham Smith, Malcolm Hollingdrake, Louise Jensen, Alex Kane, Robert Scragg, Lucy Cameron, Mark Brownless #blog #Christmas @emmamitchellfpr

It is my absolute honour and pleasure to blog about this amazing book. Brought to us by freelance editor Emma Mitchell – and a whole host of fabulous authors – When Stars Will Shine is a must read at any time of year. Authentic detail and heart stopping narrative grips you from the outset, bringing stories from a host of bestselling authors at the top of their genres. A book for everyone and a solid five star read!

Amazon reviewers are quoted as saying:

The writing standard is superb and all the different styles and ‘ways’ seem to fit perfectly and flow even though all are different. Book Mark (Top 500 Reviewer)

Would I recommend this read? You bet your Christmas baubles I would! When Stars Will Shine is an anthology packed with twists, emotions and compelling tales to keep readers turning the pages – all the chills and Christmassy thrills to hook you in! Highly recommended!’  Noelle@Crimebookjunkie

What a truly AMAZING collection of stories. Welcome to When Stars Will Shine! 

Book Description

When Stars Will Shine is a collection of short stories from your favourite authors who have come together to deliver you a Christmas read with a twist. 

With true war tales that will break your heart, gritty Christmas crimes that will shake you to your core, and heart-warming tales of love lost and found, this anthology has something for everyone. And, with every penny made being sent to support our troops, you can rest assured that you’re helping our heroes, one page at a time. 

From authors such as Louise Jensen, Graham Smith, Malcolm Hollingdrake, Lucy Cameron, Val Portelli, and Alex Kane, you are in for one heck of a ride!

When Stars Will Shine is the perfect Christmas gift for the bookworms in your life!

 

When Stars Will Shine

Links:  US flag US here  British flag UK here

Print Length: 346 pages

Publication Date: December 9, 2019

Sold by: Amazon.com Services LLC

Contributing Authors:

(Story descriptions taken from author Kerry Parson’s Amazon Review)

Fredrick Snellgrove, Private 23208 by Rob Ashman
Heart-wrenching and heart-warming.

Four Seasons by Robert Scragg
A very clever tale of revenge.

A Close Encounter by Gordon Bickerstaff
Actually gave me goosebumps!

Believe by Mark Brownless
Creepy! I did not see that coming.

What Can Possibly Go Wrong? By Lucy Cameron
Quite amusing!

Mountain Dew by Paul T Campbell
Gave me goosebumps!

The Art of War and Peace by John Carson
A chilling mystery with a touch of romance.

A Gift for Christmas by Kris Egleton
Heart-warming. Sometimes the kindest people are those who don’t have much themselves.

Free Time by Stewart Giles
Hard hitting. A split-second decision with devastating consequences.

Died of Wounds by Malcolm Hollingdrake
A very powerful and emotional story, beautifully written.

The Christmas Killer by Louise Jenson
Made my blood run cold!

The Village Hotel by Alex Kane
Terrifying!

A Present of Presence by HR Kemp
So sad, but full of hope.

The Invitation by Billy McLaughlin
Heart-warming and heart-breaking.

Brothers Forever by Paul Moore
Spine tingling!

Girl in a Red Shirt by Owen Mullen
Captivating and thought provoking with a heart-breaking conclusion.

Pivotal Moments by Anna Osborne
So, so sad. I can’t imagine feeling so helpless, but there is always something, or someone, worth living for.

Uncle Christmas by Val Portelli
Just beautiful!

Time for a Barbecue by Carmen Radtke
Oooo, creepy!

Christmas Present by Lexi Rees
Lovely!

Inside Out by KA Richardson
So sad to think how much some people suffer from past traumas. This story is full of hope for a brighter future though and proof that just one person can make all the difference.

Penance by Jane Risdon
Oh my! Not what I was expecting at all. Very cleverly written,

New Year’s Resolution by Robert Scragg
Another thought provoking tale and an important message to us all.

Family Time by Graham Smith
A tale of sacrifice and truly being the bigger person. Beautifully written!

What people are saying:


‘WOW! When Stars Will Shine is an anthology packed with twists, emotions and chilling tales to keep readers turning the pages – all the chills and Christmassy thrills to hook you in! Highly recommended!’ Noelle Holten, author of the DC Maggie Jamieson series.

‘I intended to only pick out a few of the stories to read, but once I picked it up I read one, and then another, and then another……and before I knew it I had read the whole book!’ Lorraine Rugman, The Book Review Cafe

‘When Stars Will Shine is a wonderful collection of short stories that are very readable. I have to be honest I didn’t think I would enjoy them as I’m more a romance reader but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed each one I’ve read and I’m looking forward to continuing with the rest.’ Adele Blair, Kraftireader

‘If you are looking for a great collection of stories that will not only shock, cheer, chill and entertain, but give you that warm glow that comes from knowing you’ve helped a really worthy cause, this is the book for you.’ Jen Lucas, Jen Med’s Book Reviews

‘Frederick Snellgrove, Private 23208 by Rob Ashman was a really touching story especially when you realise that it is actually about members of his family. It’s not always easy to convey everything you want to in a short story but this one was very well written and effective.’ Mandie Griffiths, Jen Med’s Book Reviews

A Note from Emma Mitchell:

Photograph Provided by Telegraph & Argus – See article here

As the blurb tells us, When Stars Will Shine is a multi-genre collection of Christmas-themed short stories compiled to raise money for our armed forces and every penny made from the sales of both the digital and paperback copies will be donated to the charity.

Working closely with Kate Noble at Noble Owl Proofreading and Amanda Ni Odhrain from Let’s Get Booked, I’ve been able to pick the best of the submissions to bring you a thrilling book which is perfect for dipping into at lunchtime or snuggling up with on a cold winter’s night. I have been completely blown away by the support we’ve received from the writing and blogging community, especially the authors who submitted stories and Shell Baker from Baker’s Not So Secret Blog, who has organised the cover reveal and blog tour.

There isn’t a person in the country who hasn’t benefited from the sacrifices our troops, past and present, have made for us and they all deserve our thanks.

It has been an honour working on these stories, and I hope you enjoy reading them as much as I have.

Where to buy the book

When Stars Will Shine is available to in digital and paperback formats and on Kindle Unlimited.

For more information, please contact Emma Mitchell: emmamitchellfpr@gmail.com

 

 

Claire’s 10 FAVORITE books this year! #blog #review #books #simplythebest!

WOW! What a fabulous reading year! Thanks to authors and publishers who have allowed me to not only read their fabulous books, but have provided an advance reader copy before publication. I can’t tell you how lucky I feel!

In this list you’ll find slick psychological thrillers, deliciously dark that keep you guessing until the end. Police procedurals with flawed but completely relatable characters and heartbreaking women’s fiction with resolutions and twists you don’t see coming. All of them exceptional. Un-put-downable. Highly addictive and superbly written.

This list is by no means complete. I had to pick out ten that stuck out in my mind and wouldn’t let go. But there are others I would have gladly added. So next year, instead of blogging in December, I’ll be blogging in June too!

Books and Descriptions:

Oh, I just finished The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor. WOW, bloody WOW!  It blew my mind, and should also be added to this list. But there isn’t room, so I’ll cheat and add it here instead.

The Chalk Man: The Sunday Times bestseller. The most chilling book you'll read this year by [Tudor, C. J.]

It was only meant to be a game . . . None of us ever agreed on the exact beginning. Was it when we started drawing the chalk figures, or when they started to appear on their own? Was it the terrible accident? Or when they found the first body? Print Length: 342 pages. Publisher: Penguin (11 Jan. 2018).

After The End by Clare Mackintosh – From New York Times bestselling author Clare Mackintosh comes a deeply moving and page-turning novel about an impossible choice—and the two paths fate could take. Print Length: 400 pages. Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons (June 25, 2019)

Violet by SJI HollidayWhen two young women – strangers – end up sharing a cabin on the Trans-Siberian Express, a strange friendship develops, one that can only have one ending … a nerve-shattering psychological thriller from bestselling author SJI Holliday. Paperback: 276 pages. Publisher: Orenda Books (November 14, 2019)

The Marriage Trap by Sheryl Browne – My husband has been keeping secrets for a long time. He thinks I don’t know what he does outside of this house. But I know everything… Print Length: 300 pages. Publisher: Bookouture (July 30, 2019)

Nine Elms by Rober Bryndza – From the breakthrough international bestselling author of The Girl in the Ice, a breathtaking, page-turning novel about a disgraced female detective’s fight for redemption. And survival… Kate Marshall was a promising young police detective when she caught the notorious Nine Elms serial killer. But her greatest victory suddenly turned into a nightmare. Print Length: 392 pages. Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (December 1, 2019)

Our House by Louise Candlish – On a bright morning in the suburbs, a family moves into the house they’ve just bought on Trinity Avenue. Nothing strange about that. Except it’s your house. And you didn’t sell it. Print Length: 426 pages. Publisher: Berkley (August 7, 2018)

Cage by Lilja Sigurdardottir – The prison doors slam shut behind Agla when her sentence ends, but her lover Sonja is not there to meet her. As a group of foreign businessmen tries to draw Agla into an ingenious fraud that stretches from Iceland around the world, Agla and her former nemesis María find the stakes being raised at a terrifying speed.  Print Length: 276 pages. Publisher: Orenda Books; None edition (August 17, 2019)

Dead Inside by Noelle Holten – The killer is just getting started… When three wife beaters are themselves found beaten to death, DC Maggie Jamieson knows she is facing her toughest case yet. Print Length: 293 pages. Publisher: One More Chapter (May 31, 2019)

Nothing Important Happened Today by Will Carver – When strangers take part in a series of group suicides, everything suggests that a cult is to blame. How do you stop a cult when nobody knows they are a member? Print Length: 276 pages. Publisher: Orenda Books (September 14, 2019)

Dead Memories by Angela Marsons – She ruined their lives. Now they’re going to destroy hers. ‘Someone is recreating every traumatic point in your life. They are doing this to make you suffer, to make you hurt and the only possible end game can be death. Your death.’ Print Length: 400 pages. Publisher: Bookouture (February 22, 2019).

I Will Make You Pay by Teresa Driscoll – Every Wednesday, like clockwork, the terror returns. It seems like an ordinary Wednesday, until the phone rings. A mysterious caller with a chilling threat. Journalist Alice Henderson hangs up, ready to dismiss it as a hoax against the newspaper. But the next Wednesday, the stalker makes another move—and it becomes clear that this is all about Alice. Print Length: 317 pages. Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (October 10, 2019)

Top 10 Books 2019

My reviews on each of these amazing book are available on this blog under the book title. All of them are high star reads and highly recommended. I hope you enjoy them too!

Special thanks go to the Blog Tour Organizers, Sarah Hardy (@sarahhardy681) and Anne Cater, (@annecater) who have tirelessly and professionally given up their time to support writers, and @Netgalley for providing readers with a place to request copies to try out new authors.

Thank you!

And Happy Christmas to all.

Claire