Blood Red City by Rod Reynolds @OrendaBooks @Rod_WR #crimeactionfiction #review #blog @annecater

Once again, I find myself praising Orenda Books for introducing me to another fabulous writer. I’m blown away by this compelling thriller that dishes out cliff-edge tension. A pacey read with so many blind alleys you feel dizzy with excitement. It’s the kind of story you could inhale in a leisurely few hours.

Book Description:

When crusading journalist Lydia Wright is sent a video of an apparent murder on a London train, she thinks she’s found the story to revive her career. But she can’t find a victim, much less the killers, and the only witness has disappeared. Wary she’s fallen for fake news, she begins to doubt her instincts—until a sinister call suggests that she’s not the only one interested in the crime. Michael Stringer deals in information—and doesn’t care on which side of the law he finds himself. But the murder on the train has left him exposed, and now he’ll stop at nothing to discover what Lydia knows. When their paths collide, Lydia finds the story leads through a nightmare world, where money, power and politics intersect, and information is the only thing more dangerous than a bullet. Blood Red City twists and feints to a superb, unexpected ending that will leave you breathless.

 

  • File Size: 639 KB
  • Print Length: 300 pages
  • Publisher: Orenda Books (April 11, 2020)
  • Publication Date: April 11, 2020
  • ASIN: B082P734LB

Review

Journalist Lydia Wright works the graveyard shift on the showbiz desk. She has only been with the company twelve months and receives a video of an assault on the Northern line of the London Underground. An empty carriage and a man struggling for his life, a slowly unfurling nightmare that had me biting my nails down to the quick. There is no indication of who’d sent it, or any reason why Lydia had been targeted to receive it. Fake news? Maybe not.

With no indication of who the killers might be, gutsy Lydia meets her friend Tammy Hodgson, a former investigative journalist at the same paper, who’s brief meeting with the victim ‘Joe the banker’ has left her nervous. A money laundering scheme begins to unravel, while at the same time, promising a story worthy of a comeback. But will Lydia jump on the same bandwagon if her life is at risk? Working on the 13th floor could be seen as unlucky in some cultures, but maybe her luck is about to change.

To me Lydia is someone you care about. Her die-hard mentality gives a reason to keep going when everything tells her to give up. Following every lead, her tenacity never fails and I suppose you could put it down to a journo’s unmistakable determination to see it through to the end. The visceral prose draws you right in and with one revelation after another, it’s hard to put the book down. This is what kept me hooked.

Written in Reynold’s unique descriptive style, this is not an offering to be missed. There’s just the right amount of backstory not to bog you down and I enjoyed the way he toys with your expectations right up until the packs-a-punch ending. The dialogue is top-notch. I’m not sure I’ve seen it done better. As befits a crime action book of this nature, it’s the twists that make this novel such an exciting and surprising reading experience, and I enjoyed keeping company with these exceptional characters. It wouldn’t surprise me if someone is working on a screen play to bring Blood Red City out as a film sometime soon. Highly recommended.

Huge thanks to Karen Sullivan at Orenda Books, Anne Cater for including me on this blog tour, and author Rod Reynolds for an advance copy of this fabulous book.

About the Author:

www.davidhigham.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/ybtpde...Rod Reynolds is the author of four novels, including the Charlie Yates series. His 2015 debut, The Dark Inside, was longlisted for the CWA New Blood Dagger, and was followed by Black Night Falling (2016) and Cold Desert Sky (2018); the Guardian have called the books ‘Pitch-perfect American noir.’ A lifelong Londoner, in 2020 Orenda Books will publish his first novel set in his hometown, Blood Red City. Rod previously worked in advertising as a media buyer, and holds an MA in novel writing from City University London. Rod lives with his wife and spends most of his time trying to keep up with his two young daughters. Contact him:

twitter: @Rod_WR
email: rodreynoldsauthor@gmail.com

What people are saying:

‘Brutal, brilliant and razor sharp. Blood Red City is pure adrenaline rush from the first page to the last’ Chris Whitaker

‘A searing, white-hot journey through the dark underbelly of modern London. Bristling with tension, danger and seamed with the constant threat of violence … Blood Red City confirms Rod Reynolds status as one of the greatest crime talents of his generation’ Tim Baker

‘An outstanding page-turner that ratchets up the tension as it builds via a labyrinthine plot towards a satisfying and well-crafted climax … relevant and at times alarming, Blood Red City slaloms its way through the world of social media, geopolitics and hi-tech innovation with compelling conviction’ G.J. Minett

‘A well-researched, complex and fully realised story with three-dimensional lead characters. The creeping tension and mistrust is palpable and there’s an absolutely cracking end reveal’ Shots Magazine

More Books By Rod Reynolds

Rod Reynolds

Blood Red City BT Poster (2)

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

The Perfect Mother by Caroline Mitchell @AmazonPub @Caroline_writes #BookReview #BlogTour #thriller #NewRelease #NetGalley

WOOOHOOO! My first blog of 2020 and it’s a WINNER! I’m so excited to be on the blog tour for The Perfect Mother by Caroline Mitchell. For the readers who are panting to get their paws on a copy, it’s OUT NOW!

Get your copy:   British flag   UK here  US flag  US here

Book description:

She thought they wanted her baby. But they won’t stop there.

Roz is young, penniless and pregnant. All she wants is to be the perfect mother to her child, but the more she thinks about her own chaotic upbringing, the more certain she is that the best life for her baby is as far away as possible from her hometown in Ireland.

Determined to do the right thing, Roz joins an elite adoption service and can’t believe her luck. Within days she is jetting to New York to meet a celebrity power couple desperate for a child of their own. Sheridan and Daniel are wealthy and glamorous—everything Roz isn’t. Her baby will never go hungry, and will have every opportunity for the perfect life. But soon after Roz moves into their plush basement suite, she starts to suspect that something darker lurks beneath the glossy surface of their home.

When Roz discovers she isn’t the first person to move in with the couple, and that the previous woman has never been seen since, alarm bells start ringing. As the clock ticks down to her due date, Roz realises her unborn baby may be the only thing keeping her alive, and that despite her best intentions, she has walked them both into the perfect nightmare…

Paperback: 367 pages

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (14 Jan. 2020)

ISBN-10: 1542016649

ISBN-13: 978-1542016643

Thrillers (Books)

Psychological Thrillers (Books)

 Psychological Fiction (Books)

Links:   British flag   UK here  US flag  US here

Review

The book opens with a young pregnant woman fighting for her life. Roz Foley, fatherless and a mother who was an alcoholic, is having a baby. But who’s baby? Even her best friend Dympna doesn’t know. Nobody knows. The lifestyles of these two girls couldn’t be further apart. Dympna with her trendy parents: Father a police officer and mother an event planner. But they are inseparable. A bond of sisterhood that cannot be broken. But will Roz’s secret drive a wedge between them?

Roz has her own reasons for not keeping her child and answers an ad for an adoption site in America. Plunged into the US glamour scene via Celeb Goss Magazine, we meet the couple who are desperate for a second child. Blonde bombshell Sheridan Sinclair (44) and Daniel Watson (38). A couple hoping for a quiet life are bombarded with paparazzi. It’s touch and go if they can keep their private life out of the papers. Daniel, on the other hand, is generally good-natured and has oodles of compassion. But is he too busy on set, and is seen to be public property. Is he eye candy or is there more to Daniel than meets the eye.

Hollywood starlet Sheridan Smith is the most interesting character for me. Even her staff stand to attention. She is curiously frail, but at the same time equipped with an excessive sense of self-importance. But throw in a serious lack of empathy and you get a ticking time bomb. There is the manic side to her and the depressing side. To be honest, she made my skin crawl. Taming Daniel with a new baby belonging to a complete stranger is a risk. But Sheridan is a risk-taker and she’s not about to be upstaged by other hot-blooded Hollywood starlets. I love the mention of Daniel appearing in a blockbuster movie called ‘Murder Game’ — which also happens to be a book written by the author.

As Roz embarks on her adventure to America, the tension begins to escalate. Her baby is going to the best possible couple and — according to an article in Celeb Goss Magazine — a luxury apartment equipped with a doctor’s surgery and served by the best OBGYN in NY. Somehow, you can hear the ‘but’ a mile away and questions begin to arise when another girl is reported missing with similar circumstances. When Roz is given quarters in a basement without windows, the overall mood darkens. But that’s not all. She is kept on a strict diet, and a routine that would make me chew my fingernails down to the quick. She is chaperoned everywhere because she’s precious to Sheridan; a walking incubator.

This is a story to savor. Although I read it in a day (YES! It’s that un-put-downable) you need to take in the detail. The plot is complex and the characters are fascinating and well thought out. Mitchell is skillful in cutting through the layers to get to the darkest planes of her characters’ minds. This book is cunning, unpredictable, subtly layered and populated by characters so deliciously immoral they’re hard to part with. Five fat stars for another brilliant book!

Many thanks to author Caroline Mitchell (@Caroline_writes), to Sarah Hardy, blog tour organizer extraordinaire (@sarahhardy681) and the publisher @AmazonPub for the enormous privilege of reading an advance copy before the book’s publication date in January.

About the Author:

fullsizeoutput_1094New York Times, USA Today, Washington Post and International #1 Bestselling Author. Shortlisted by the International Thriller Awards for best ebook 2017 and the Killer Nashville Best Police Procedural 2018. Over a million books sold.

Caroline originates from Ireland and now lives with her family in a village on the coast of Essex. A former police detective, she has worked in CID and specialised in roles dealing with vulnerable victims, high-risk victims of domestic abuse, and serious sexual offences. She now writes full time.

Caroline writes psychological and crime thrillers. The most recent, Silent Victim reached No.1 in the Amazon charts in the UK, USA and Australia and was the winner of the Reader’s Favourite Awards in the psychological thriller category. It has been described as ‘brilliantly gripping and deliciously creepy’.

Set in Notting Hill, London, her new DI Amy Winter thriller series, Truth and Lies and The Secret Child are published by Thomas & Mercer.

wp-1577717104454.jpg

You can follow Caroline on Twitter at @Caroline_Writes and http://www.Facebook.com/CMitchellAuthor or http://www.caroline-writes.com

Sign up to join her Reader’s club for access to news, updates and exclusive competitions and giveaways. http://eepurl.com/IxsTj

Other books by Caroline Mitchell

Caroline Mitchell author

 

All His Pretty Girls by Charly Cox @HeraBooks @Charlylynncox #blogtour #review

Happy Publication day to author Charly Cox! 
I was delighted to be given an advance copy of All His Pretty Girls by Charly Cox. A strong first chapter which catapulted me into the story. I really enjoyed this book from beginning to end — an easy read that keeps you up half the night!

Book Description

Detective Alyssa Wyatt is hunting a serial killer. She doesn’t know that he’s hunting her.

AllHisPrettyGirlsA woman is found naked, badly beaten and barely alive in the New Mexico mountains. The shocking discovery plunges Albuquerque Detective Alyssa Wyatt into a case that will test her to the limit.

It appears that Callie McCormick is the latest plaything of a shadowy psychopath that leaves a long shadow on the streets of New Mexico – an individual linked to a string of deaths but leaving no evidence.

But when Alyssa makes a breakthrough that just might reveal the killer, she unknowingly puts herself in the crosshairs of a brutal maniac – one with an old score to settle.

Because the killer knows Alyssa very well, even if she doesn’t know him. And he’s determined that she’ll know his name – even if he has to extract his deadly revenge on her and everything she loves.

The launch of a dark, gripping, completely unputdownable crime thriller series, All His Pretty Girls introduces Albuquerque detective Alyssa Wyatt.

Publisher: Hera (October 23, 2019)

Publication Date: October 23, 2019

ASIN: B07VV281J3

Categories: Noir Crime, Serial Killers, Fiction Urban Life

Review

Alyssa, with her partner Cord, are investigating a missing person. But when they find what they’re looking for, Alyssa realizes there are unwelcome commonalities. Still haunted and blaming herself for the disappearance of her brother Timmy, she has a few skeletons in her own closet with which to contend. I liked how the author gave us glimpses into the killer’s actions and thoughts. It added indispensable creepiness crime fiction fans will enjoy. Without adding any spoilers, I did wonder about the perp and why his chosen target was so significant. I think that’s when it became clear to me what had happened. I think his motive and how he could gain from it cleverly drips a few tidbits along the way. I was a little concerned that the perp was able to gain access to the house and take things personal to the homeowner, (especially that homeowner) and I was wondering if Alyssa would have been more suspicious of Isaac’s report of someone in the Zeller house.

Subjective comments: All crime is extremely dark, especially in Albuquerque which has one of the highest crime rates in the US. So I liked the case itself and found it authentic to the area. However, I didn’t sense the Hispanic flavor, except in foods and a few place names, and I felt it needed more to drop the reader into the heart of Albuquerque and her extraordinary people. A sentence of description here and there would have been a welcome tug back into such a magical southwestern dust bowl. In APD, female officers often remark on the ‘male dominated society’ within the ranks and I’d like to see how Alyssa tackles this in her next case. I hadn’t heard the word ‘precinct’ mentioned much, rather more area commands and their specific functions within APD. So this book had a different feel for me than other detective books written by local authors. Also, too much mention of coffee and snapping rubber bands became a little distracting.

Overall, the book is tense, fast-paced, not so much a mystery with twists and turns but one that follows a more traditional style which I prefer in police procedural. Rather than getting entangled in Alyssa’s home life, I was more interested in how she and Cord would catch the criminal and bring him to justice. But I could see, early on, this was bound to provide complexity and emotion to Alyssa’s struggles as we see at the end. Lies are so damaging, especially to a child and this case hits close to home. It’s a solid storyline with a little humor to break the tension. I recommend All His Pretty Girls to anyone who enjoys a good, dark procedural.

Author Bio:

 

Charly Cox photoBorn in the South, raised in the Midwest, Charly now resides in the Southwest in the Land of Enchantment where she enjoys eating copious amounts of green chile and other spicy foods. When she’s not reading, writing, or plotting sinister evils with her antagonists, she enjoys doing jigsaw and crossword puzzles, hanging out with her husband and her spoiled Siberian Husky, visiting her son in Arizona, and traveling, preferably to places surrounded by sun, sand, and warm uncrowded beaches.

Twitter

https://www.facebook.com/charlycoxauthor/

https://www.clcox-author.com/

https://www.amazon.com/Charly-Cox/e/B07WGQN19Q

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19490745.Charly_Cox

 

Cage by Lilja Sigurdardottir @OrendaBooks #review #blog #crime #thriller

Cage by Lilja Sigurdardottir is a crime thriller, published by Orenda Books. With a quote by Val McDermid, I knew I was in for a treat! Told in multiple points of view, it’s an easy read with complex underpinnings that give the book that extra oomph!

About the book

Cage book coverDrugs, smuggling, big money and political intrigue in Iceland rally with love, passion, murder and betrayal until the winner takes all … in the masterful, explosive conclusion to the award-winning Reykjavík Noir trilogy…

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.

Ruthless drug baron Ingimar will stop at nothing to protect his empire, but he has no idea about the powder keg he is sitting on in his own home. At the same time, a deadly threat to Sonya and her family brings her from London back to Iceland, where she needs to settle scores with longstanding adversaries if she wants to stay alive.

With a shocking crescendo, the lives of these characters collide, as drugs, smuggling, big money and political intrigue rally with love, passion, murder and betrayal until the winner takes all … in the masterful, explosive conclusion to the award-winning Reykjavík Noir trilogy. 

Book details:

Series: Reykjavik Noir trilogy

Paperback: 276 pages

Publisher: Orenda Books; None edition (April 1, 2020)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1912374498

ISBN-13: 978-1912374496

Book links:  British flag UK here  US flag  US here

 

Review

Agla is restless and sitting out a sentence for financial crimes. Unable to get over why her girlfriend Sonja left her, life on the inside offers plenty of distractions. An Islandic smelter scheme for one. With Maria nosing around on the outside, Agla soon realises she gets the information she’s looking for and Maria gets one hell of a scoop.

Agla comes across as brusque and rigid. With her history in an unforgiving financial environment, you can’t expect her to be anything else. Her kindness to pill-popping Elísa builds as the relationship deepens but life outside comes at a cost. Breaching probation conditions for one.

María Gunnhildur Jónudóttir, who was a former investigator at the special prosecutor’s office where Agla Margeirsdóttir had been a person of interest, now runs an online news outlet. But when she goes to see Agla in prison to ask about her links to Ingimar Magnússon and William Tedd — the Paris-based markets guru — she is denied visitation. But she doesn’t have to wait long. With the tenacity of a bloodhound, she is determined to get to the bottom of a conspiracy where a few greedy men could push their profit margins through the roof. But this settling of scores is detrimental.

Ingimar Magnússon, closely connected to Iceland’s business and politics, likes to play dangerous games. With a natural cold, ruthless streak, he’s rather good at it. He’s also good at infringing international regulations while staying just within the legal limits. Dirty tricks, blackmail and willing to hold a gun at anyone who stands in his way, this is a man you’d want Agla and María to steer well clear of.

And then we have Anton, a creative and dynamic individual, who has a project simmering in the cellar. Too much listening to Radio Edda makes him feel it’s time for action.  If he takes matters into his own hands, his plan could blow a hole in the stratosphere. But will such a rash decision be a hit with his beloved Júlía? I have to say I was floored by the outcome.

Including Sonja, all of these people are in a cage of their own making, and each with their own axe to grind. The chapters are compact and the pace, even when weaving from character to character, is rapid and full of intrigue. You can’t get enough. It’s one of those books that if you have to put down, you’ll still have each scene fresh in your mind, frantic to know what happens next. When all stories converge, it’s a thrill to learn who belongs where and how their lives might or might not be intertwined. About three quarters of the way through, I guessed a small portion of how the ending might play out. But certainly not all.

All in all, I gave it five big fat stars. The story-line shifted effortlessly between each point of view and spun a complex tale of murder, revenge and betrayal. Flawlessly paced and painfully gripping.

Bonuses:

A map: Found in the front matter to show us the region and setting. Major plus!

Book cover: One that will definitely stand out on bookshelves.

Writing style: Relaxed and comfortable, with visceral descriptions.

About the Author

lilja+webphoto+2+f+liljawriter.jpgIcelandic crime-writer Lilja Sigurdardóttir is an award-winning playwright who has written four crime novels. The previous titles in the Reykjavik Noir series are Snare and Trap, which was a Guardian Book of the Year. The film rights for the series have been bought by Palomar Pictures. Quentin Bates is the author of a series of Icelandic crime novels that include Frozen Assets and Cold Comfort. He has translated all of Ragnar Jónasson’s Dark Iceland series.

More books by Lilja Sigurdardóttir

Lilja Sigurdardottir

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The Marsh King’s Daughter by Karen Dionne @Sphere @PutnamBooks @penguinusa ‏#bookreview #psychological #thrillers

I”m so excited to feature author Karen Dionne on my blog today, and in particular her masterpiece The Marsh King’s Daughter. A gripping story set in a remote location of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, Helena Pelletier races against time to find her father. A dark and scary tale and so very well written, it drove me full-throttle to the end in one sitting. I especially enjoyed the inclusion of a few paragraphs from the Hans Christian Andersen tale of the same name, which headed the chapters of Helena’s past.

Book Description:

THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER
 
“Brilliant….About as good as a thriller can be.”—The New York Times Book Review

“[A] nail-biter perfect for Room fans.”—Cosmopolitan

“Sensationally good psychological suspense.”—Lee Child

Praised by Karin Slaughter and Megan Abbott, The Marsh King’s Daughter is the mesmerizing tale of a woman who must risk everything to hunt down the dangerous man who shaped her past and threatens to steal her future: her father. 

The Marsh King's Daughter by [Dionne, Karen]Helena Pelletier has a loving husband, two beautiful daughters, and a business that fills her days. But she also has a secret: she is the product of an abduction. Her mother was kidnapped as a teenager by her father and kept in a remote cabin in the marshlands of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Helena, born two years after the abduction, loved her home in nature, and despite her father’s sometimes brutal behavior, she loved him, too…until she learned precisely how savage he could be.

More than twenty years later, she has buried her past so soundly that even her husband doesn’t know the truth. But now her father has killed two guards, escaped from prison, and disappeared into the marsh. The police begin a manhunt, but Helena knows they don’t stand a chance. Knows that only one person has the skills to find the survivalist the world calls the Marsh King—because only one person was ever trained by him: his daughter.

A Michigan Notable Book!

Book links:  US flag US here  British flag UK here

Print Length: 314 pages

Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0735213003

Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons (June 13, 2017)

Publication Date: June 13, 2017

Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC

Review

WOW! Another fabulous and unique read. The Marsh King’s Daughter is suspenseful thriller set in the remote swamps of the Upper Peninsula in Michigan. It is the story of Helena Pelletier, born to a woman who was kidnapped at the age of 14 by a sociopath. Taking the reader back in time to an isolated setting; a cabin with no electricity or running water, and where the sun is the only light to live by, Helena’s connection to the outside world is a National Geographic magazine and the occasional drone of a plane.

The book alternates between two time frames. The present, where Helena is married with two daughters and the past where we learn how Helena came to be. In the present, her father escapes from prison, having killed two correctional officers, and Helena is the only one who can bring him to justice. As she tracks him through her old stamping ground in the UP, she recalls her childhood living in a dilapidated cabin in the swamp. Here, we learn about the abuse and confinement both she and her mother suffer, which makes this story so utterly heart-breaking. Helena grows up tough, learning the survival skills necessary for wilderness life—tracking, hunting, shooting—while at the same time being unaware of her mother’s past. Somewhat insensitive to her mother’s dilemma, she idolizes her father while enduring his torture and becoming more able to predict his punishments.

The descriptions of the UP are vivid and well researched. I felt I was right there with Helena, surviving the elements and searching for tracks in the terrain. She’s a strong protagonist, one you definitely want to root for. The survival techniques the author describes are top-notch. There aren’t many books with this much explanation that didn’t leave you feeling exhausted from a history lesson. They were cleverly drip-fed throughout the book, and left you wanting more.

I found it hard to stomach Helena’s indifference towards her mother at the beginning, but I realise her mother was too weak to stop the abuse, and the sheer isolation made it impossible to run for help. Every effort would no doubt be hampered by the father’s brutal nature. I did question Helena’s hesitation when she had a clean shot of her father at the beginning, and wondered why she didn’t just pop him. Or disable him, at the very least.

The general ‘feel’ after finishing this book is of a stolen childhood. One that wouldn’t have provided the young Helena with any social skills since she had no interaction with other children of her age. Same as her mother who would have compared her life before she was kidnapped to the cruelty she experienced afterwards. It was desolate and moody, characteristics I enjoy in a novel.

I would definitely recommend this book to readers who enjoy spine-tingling, adventure suspense.

About The Author:

Karen DionneKaren Dionne is the author of The Marsh King’s Daughter, also titled HOME in the UK, a dark, psychological suspense novel published by G.P. Putnam’s Sons in the US and in 25 other countries.

Karen is co-founder of the online writers community Backspace, and organizes the Salt Cay Writers Retreat held every other year on a private island in the Bahamas. She is a member of the International Thriller Writers, where she served on the board of directors as Vice President, Technology.

Other books by Karen Dionne

Karen Dionne

 

The Dare by Carol Wyer @Bookouture @CarolWyer @Bonniesbooktalk #bookreview #psychological #thrillers

Don’t you just love it when one of your favourite authors comes out with a new book? If you like your books tightly paced with good character development and a plausible storyline, then this is the book for you. Carol Wyer is a phenomenal writer with an excellent list of books under her belt. Not only does she write gripping edge-of-your-seat thrillers, but she’s a dab hand at writing romantic comedy. (Suddenly Single, published by Canelo Escape, April 2019.) Let’s dive in to this new offering which has received so many great reviews already.

Genre:

Noir Crime, Serial Killers, Murder.

The Dare: An absolutely gripping crime thriller (Detective Natalie Ward Book 3) by [Wyer, Carol]

Book Links:  US flag  US here  British flag   UK here

Publisher Details:

  • Print Length: 378 pages
  • Publisher: Bookouture (April 25, 2019)
  • Publication Date: April 25, 2019

Book description:

Jane’s daughter is a good girl. But what is she hiding?

When thirteen-year-old Savannah Hopkins doesn’t come straight home from school as she always does, her mother Jane immediately raises the alarm. With her blonde ponytail and red school jumper, someone must have spotted Savannah.

Detective Natalie Ward is determined to help the distraught mother – her own daughter is the same age as Savannah. But before Natalie and her team can get started, their worst fears are confirmed when the teenager’s broken body is found in nearby shrubland.

Evidence points towards a local recluse, but just as Natalie closes the net around him, one of Savannah’s friends, Harriet, is reported missing. Harriet might look grown up and sophisticated but she is only fourteen…

As Natalie delves into the lives of both girls, she soon discovers a sinister video on both their phones, daring the girls to disappear from their families for 48 hours. She’s sure this is the key to the case, but before she can act, Harriet’s body is found discarded on a roadside.

Natalie’s superiors don’t have to put any extra pressure on Natalie. Devastated, she and her team work without sleep, watching that video over and over. But just as she thinks they’re getting close, the person Natalie loves more than anything goes missing.

Natalie is no stranger to loss. She is terrified and the clock is ticking. Can she push through her fear to catch this depraved killer, before her loved one becomes the next victim?

This gripping rollercoaster of a read will have you up in the small hours turning the pages. Fans of Angela Marsons, Rachel Caine and Robert Dugoni will love The Dare. 

Review

Another great read by Carol Wyer. THE DARE starts out with a chilling first chapter and quickly segues into a mother looking for a missing daughter. Natalie Ward is assigned to the case of a killer very much at large; one who could potentially be a threat to her family. There are short chapter points of view which are cleverly woven throughout the plot, adding a chilling dimension to the story.

When a missing girl turns into a homicide, Natalie’s ‘copper sense’ is put to the test. She sifts through evidence and conducts interviews where things aren’t what they seem. I particularly enjoyed the chapter where Natalie first meets Jane. The dialogue is sensitive and well written, especially given the circumstances. There are plenty of suspects to chew over; builders, creepy boyfriends and school friends, not to mention those trying to muddy the waters and perverting the course of justice. When you think things are looking up and David breaks open an expensive bottle of wine in celebration, another young girl goes missing.

Natalie pulls more suspects who continue to withhold nuggets of information. But when she stumbles across a twisted website—a dare for people to go missing for a few days—it begins to look like a trap. Wyer tackles the danger of social media head on and makes no bones about the twisted dangers that lurk within. The washing machine chapter was so terrifying—a disturbing image of humiliation and the survival of the fittest—I had to have a stiff walk in the snow after reading it. I’m not kidding when I say this really is one of those books you can’t put down. You can’t. And yes, it did have me leaving the lights on at night!

Many thanks to the publisher, Bookouture, and Netgalley for this advanced copy for an honest review. Love it!

Readers are going crazy for The Dare:

‘Just wow! This book was absolutely amazing I loved it. I was hanging on to every wordit was thrilling straight out of the gate and kept going with the punches right to the end. It had me totally captivated. Carol Wyer sure knows how to write a story that sucks you in and makes you feel like you are there living it. It’s tense, emotional and deeply disturbing in places. And boy that ending! …I’m giving it a very well deserved 5 stars.’ Bonnie’s Book Talk, 5 stars

‘I’m buzzing from this book. I LOVED it. I don’t think I have been this gripped by a book, ever. …Totally terrifying, this addictive read will keep you gasping, guessing and on the edge of your seat throughout …You won’t be disappointed!’Booked Up Girl, 5 stars

‘OMG OMG OMG! Fantastic these just keep on getting better and better. Fabulous sorry kept me guessing …Can’t wait for the next one’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars

‘BOOM!!!! Carol Wyer does it again! I can’t even express how much I love the Detective Natalie Ward series… OMG!… I simply can’t get enough of this series. Carol Wyer can’t write fast enough for me!’It’s All About The Thrill, 5 stars

Other Books by Carol Wyer:

Carol Wyer

About Carol Wyer

Carol Wyer is an award-winning author and stand up comedian who writes feel-good comedies and gripping thrillers.

Her book, GRUMPY OLD MENOPAUSE won The People’s Book Prize Award for non-fiction 2015.

Carol moved to the ‘dark side’ in 2017 with as series of thrillers. LITTLE GIRL LOST became the #2 best-selling book on Amazon, #9 best-selling audiobook on Audible and a Top 150 USA Today best-seller.

The DI Robyn Carter and DI Natalie Ward series have sold over half a million copies, earning her acclaim as a crime writer.

2019 sees the release of two romantic comedies and three DI Natalie Ward novels, including the much anticipated THE DARE, due out in April.
Carol has been interviewed on numerous radio shows discussing ”Irritable Male Syndrome’ and ‘Ageing Disgracefully’ and on BBC Breakfast television. She has had articles published in national magazines ‘Woman’s Weekly’ featured in ‘Take A Break’, ‘Choice’, ‘Yours’ and ‘Woman’s Own’ magazines and the Huffington Post.To learn more about Carol, go to http://www.carolwyer.co.uk or follow Carol on Twitter: @carolewyer.

Carol also blogs at http://www.carolwyer.com

Dead Memories by Angela Marsons (Detective Kim Stone Crime Thriller Book 10) @bookouture @LittleBrownUK

I can’t tell you how much I enjoy reading all the Detective Kim Stone books. Each one keeps getting better and better, and all of them have been un-put-down-able police procedurals.

This story begins with the discovery of a young man and woman tied to a radiator in the same tower block DI Kim Stone was found when she was six. Is this a coincidence or something far more sinister? During the investigation, a second gruesome crime occurs—a copycat perhaps?—sent to torment Kim and throw her off her stroke. My review follows after a brief description of the book.

I was lucky to grab a copy of Angela Marson’s newest book Dead Memories—out on February 22, 2019—from Netgalley.

Book Description

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.’

On the fourth floor of Chaucer House, two teenagers are found chained to a radiator. The boy is dead but the girl is alive. For Detective Kim Stone every detail of the scene mirrors her own terrifying experience with her brother Mikey, when they lived in the same tower block thirty years ago.

When the bodies of a middle-aged couple are discovered in a burnt-out car, Kim can’t ignore the chilling similarity to the death of Erica and Keith – the only loving parents Kim had ever known.

Faced with a killer who is recreating traumatic events from her past, Kim must face the brutal truth that someone wants to hurt her in the worst way possible. Desperate to stay on the case, she is forced to work with profiler Alison Lowe who has been called in to observe and monitor Kim’s behaviour.

Kim has spent years catching dangerous criminals and protecting the innocent. But with a killer firmly fixed on destroying Kim, can she solve this complex case and save her own life or will she become the final victim?

The heart-stopping and totally addictive new crime thriller from multi-million copy number one bestseller Angela Marsons will have you completely hooked.

Dead Memories: An addictive and gripping crime thriller (Detective Kim Stone Crime Thriller Book 10) by [Marsons, Angela]

Buy Links:    US flag  US: https://amzn.to/2SP8WfW    British flag  UK: https://amzn.to/2U08Bn2

Read what everyone is saying about Dead Memories:

‘The book I’ve been waiting for without even knowing that I was… A great starting point for anyone new to the series… I couldn’t put the book down…It is completely addictive and easily my new favourite in this series, I have a feeling I’ve said that before, but what can I say Angela Marsons seems to outdo herself each and every time.’ Rachel’s Random Reads, 5 stars

‘As always, another brilliant book by Angela Marsons featuring Detective Kim Stone and her team… Fast-paced and dark it kept me gripped from the first page to the last. Utterly superb.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars

‘The author writes to such a consistently high level. Yet again, gripping plot line, strong characters and a well-paced story that builds to a crescendo. If you haven’t already tried this author do yourself a favour and start reading now.’ Worcester Source, 5 stars

Review

I was thrilled to be approved by NetGalley and the publisher for a copy of Angela Marson’s latest book. The past ties in with the present in this one and Kim is faced with a decision. To either accept the truth or deny it.

A young couple found chained to a radiator bring back a host of memories, mirroring a dark time in Kim’s childhood. Although the case has startling similarities, it becomes very clear that someone wants her to relive the pain she once suffered, Kim is not unduly phased overall. The traumatic events of her childhood—a haunting theme throughout the series—has been summarized in this tenth instalment. But even though someone is ‘picking at the closed boxes in her mind,’ she is one of those exceptional people who takes strength in weakness. Tough, hard-wearing and deliciously assertive, she’s certainly not immune to emotion.

There are former felons stoking hatred from behind prison walls and other cases to be investigated. With seamlessly thick, complex plots and a crime team to die for, you can’t help loving these books for the way they’re written. I like Alison for her bottle, Woody, who appears to get more devious by the minute and, of course, tolerant and unflappable Bryant. With a cast of capable characters returning with every ‘episode’, the uber-sharp Kim Stone has to be one of the best detectives out there. A twisty, fast-paced plot stocked with red herrings, Marsons aficionados will be very happy to add this book to their bookshelves alongside other Kim Stone novels.

This is a story with superior twists and turns, and a cast of excellent suspects, designed to keep the reader on their toes right up until the final page. It’s a heart-stopping finale and goes to show how Marsons has become the Queen of Scream in her genre.

I do recommend reading these books in order to get the impact and flavor of Kim’s life, but each book is a stand-alone and you’ll definitely enjoy this one!

BIG thanks to Netgalley and Bookouture for the ARC. This is an honest review for a thoroughly enjoyable read.

About The Author

Angela Marsons

Angela Marsons is the Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestselling author of the DI Kim Stone series and her books have sold more than 3 million in 3 years.

She lives in the Black Country with her partner, their cheeky Golden Retriever and a swearing parrot.

She first discovered her love of writing at Junior School when actual lessons came second to watching other people and quietly making up her own stories about them. Her report card invariably read “Angela would do well if she minded her own business as well as she minds other people’s”.

After years of writing relationship based stories (The Forgotten Woman and Dear Mother) Angela turned to Crime, fictionally speaking of course, and developed a character that refused to go away.

She is signed to Bookouture.com for a total of 16 books in the Kim Stone series and her books have been translated into more than 27 languages.

Many of her books, including Blood Lines, Dead Souls, Broken Bones, Fatal Promise and Dead Memories reached the #1 spot on Amazon on pre-orders alone.

 

 

The Drowning Game by L.S. Hawker (Witness Impulse, Kindle $1.99, Paperback $10.79, 352 pages) @HarperCollins #bookreview #bookblogger

The Drowning Game: A Novel by [Hawker, LS]

I’m really excited to have read L.S. Hawker’s The Drowning Game. Being a mystery, thriller, suspense novel, I knew this was a must-read for me! Below is a brief description, and don’t you just love the fabulous cover!

Description:

They said she was armed.
They said she was dangerous.
They were right.

Petty Moshen spent eighteen years of her life as a prisoner in her own home, training with military precision for everything, ready for anything. She can disarm, dismember, and kill—and now, for the first time ever, she is free.

Her paranoid father is dead, his extreme dominance and rules a thing of the past, but his influence remains as strong as ever. When his final will reveals a future more terrible than her captive past, Petty knows she must escape—by whatever means necessary.

But when Petty learns the truth behind her father’s madness—and her own family—the reality is worse than anything she could have imagined. On the road and in over her head, Petty’s fight for her life has just begun.

Fans of female-powered thrillers will love debut author LS Hawker and her suspenseful tale of a young woman on the run for her future…and from the nightmares of her past.

Editorial:

“Unique, quirky and suspenseful The Drowning Game was the perfect audio listen. Both Amanda Dolan and Paul Woodson did an excellent job in capturing the character’s personalities and setting the tone of their story.” —Caffeinated Book Reviewer

Review

Petty Moshen is a captive in her father’s house, but when he dies, she is finally free. Or is she?

Her father’s will may seem unusual, if not downright cruel, as well as his choice of protector. But Petty is no ordinary girl. I would put her in the survival category, when you consider how primitive her upbringing, how ‘animal’ her senses. Well taught. Well prepared. Nothing could possibly go wrong.  Armed and dangerous, she runs from the place she has called home, leaving behind her beloved dogs (incidentally, what did happen to them?) and the familiarity of the ‘inside’.

The chase scenes are well written, tense and page-turning. It’s not a book you can easily put down. Petty is naïve – a trait beautifully drawn – but carries a spark of toughness that kept me rooting for her.

Dekker, an unwilling ride-along, has her back with his internal struggles which are real and heartrending. As are hers. I reveled in the intricate twists, the nearly-there plots which I thought I had worked out until the surprising denouement.

All in all, it was the pace that made me want to take a look at other books by this author. Definitely one to watch.

Buying links:

British flag   UK:  https://amzn.to/2R29OMr         US flag  US:  https://amzn.to/2f6yNeG

LS HawkerLS Hawker grew up in suburban Denver, indulging her worrisome obsession with true-crime books, and writing stories about anthropomorphic fruit and juvenile delinquents. She wrote her first novel at 14.

Armed with a B.S. in journalism from the University of Kansas, she had a radio show called “People Are So Stupid,” produced fitness videos, and outfitted airports with computer equipment for a major airline, but never lost her passion for fiction writing.

Her extensive media background includes everything from public affairs director at a Denver radio station to television sports intern to website designer.

Her debut novel, THE DROWNING GAME (2015), was a Best First Novel finalist in the International Thriller Writers Thriller Awards and a USA TODAY bestseller. It’s been translated into eight languages and is also available as an audiobook. Her second novel, BODY AND BONE (2016), has been translated into seven languages. Her third, END OF THE ROAD, was released at the beginning of 2017. Number four, THE THROWAWAYS, will be released by The Vanishing Point Press on January 22, 2019.

Other Book by L.S. Hawker:

 

Right Behind You – an FBI Profiler Novel.

Right Behind You is a great follow-up thriller by Lisa Gardner. Not quite as dark at the others, but still dark enough. In this, FBI profilers Quincy & Raine try to piece together the past abuse suffered by their thirteen-year-old foster daughter, Sharlah. Her brother Telly has not been seen for many years and whose past is so bleak, I couldn’t help feeling wound up and totally wrung out. On the run and wanted for questioning, there’s an underlying menace and nightmarish melancholy you would expect from a book like this, especially when the main goal for Quincy and Raine is to keep Sharlah safe.

What I liked about it was the deep and meaningful characters we have come to expect in Gardner’s novels. Sheriff Atkins was my favorite in this one. Authentic backstory, much of which is narrated from Telly’s point of view, reads in a fast and furious pace which is impossible to put down. Told in alternating viewpoints, the story created enough suspense for me to read it in two days – afternoon and evening of the first day and morning of the second – leaving an after flavor I didn’t expect.

The research, as always, is excellent, although I did feel some of it weighed down the plot for me. I’m referring to the gun chapters involving Telly and Frank, and some of the descriptions of criminal personalities and tracking. I could have done with less of the processes which, although perfect for the setting were a little long-winded.

Overall, the writing is first rate. Characters are complex, plot was riveting and extremely compelling with its backstory of childhood abuse, foster care, trauma and corruption.

Although this book is part of a series, you won’t need to read the previous books to enjoy this one. Plenty of twists and turns to keep you up all night.

Right Behind You

Book Description:

THE #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!

Lisa Gardner’s latest thriller following her runaway hit Find Her takes her wildly popular brand of suspense to new heights.

Eight years ago, Sharlah May Nash’s older brother beat their drunken father to death with a baseball bat in order to save both of their lives. Now thirteen years old, Sharlah has finally moved on. About to be adopted by retired FBI profiler Pierce Quincy and his partner, Rainie Conner, Sharlah loves one thing best about her new family: They are all experts on monsters.

Then the call comes in. A double murder at a local gas station, followed by reports of an armed suspect shooting his way through the wilds of Oregon. As Quincy and Rainie race to assist, they are forced to confront mounting evidence: The shooter may very well be Sharlah’s older brother, Telly Ray Nash, and it appears his killing spree has only just begun.

As the clock winds down on a massive hunt for Telly, Quincy and Rainie must answer two critical questions: Why after eight years has this young man started killing again? And what does this mean for Sharlah? Once upon a time, Sharlah’s big brother saved her life. Now, she has two questions of her own: Is her brother a hero or a killer? And how much will it cost her new family before they learn the final, shattering truth? Because as Sharlah knows all too well, the biggest danger is the one standing right behind you.

Lisa Gardener

New York Times #1 bestselling crime novelist Lisa Gardner began her career in food service, but after catching her hair on fire numerous times, she took the hint and focused on writing instead. A self-described research junkie, she has parlayed her interest in police procedure, criminal minds and twisted plots into a streak of bestselling suspense novels. Her 2010 novel, THE NEIGHBOR, won Best Thriller from the International Thriller Writers. Most recently, she was honored with the Silver Bullet Award for her work with at-risk kids and homeless animals. Lisa loves to hike, travel the world, and yes, read, read, read!

Readers are invited to enter the annual “Kill a Friend, Maim a Buddy” Sweepstakes, where they can nominate the person of their choice to die in Lisa’s latest novel. People have nominated themselves, spouses, bosses. It’s cheaper than therapy and twice as much fun! For more details, visit Lisa’s website.

Lisa lives in the mountains of New England with her family, as well as two highly spoiled dogs. Her latest novel is LOOK FOR ME, where Boston Detective D.D. Warren must join forces with victim-turned-vigilante Flora Dane to find a missing sixteen-year-old girl, who may be the next victim…or the perfect killer.

More Books by Lisa Gardner:

Lisa G Pix