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 Searcher by Tana French, published by Penguin #review #blog @PenguinBooks @VikingBooks #TheSearcher #NetGalley

Another fabulous book from Tana French. I almost pulled an all-nighter with this one! If you want a book that transports you to another land, then this is it. Beautiful descriptions of rural Ireland, the brogue and deep characterisation that drops you there.

Book Description:

‘One of the most compulsive psychological mysteries since Donna Tartt’s The Secret History‘ THE TIMES
The Searcher by [Tana French]
UK link

Cal Hooper thought a fixer-upper in a remote Irish village would be the perfect escape. After twenty-five years in the Chicago police force, and a bruising divorce, he just wants to build a new life in a pretty spot with a good pub where nothing much happens.

But then a local kid comes looking for his help. His brother has gone missing, and no one, least of all the police, seems to care. Cal wants nothing to do with any kind of investigation, but somehow he can’t make himself walk away.

Soon Cal will discover that even in the most idyllic small town, secrets lie hidden, people aren’t always what they seem, and trouble can come calling at his door.

Our greatest living mystery writer weaves a masterful tale of breath-taking beauty and suspense, asking how we decide what’s right and wrong in a world where neither is simple, and what we risk if we fail.

Seen through the eyes of a former Chicago police officer, Cal Hooper buys an old shack and attempts to rebuild his life. Peace does not come easily and a young visitor makes it near impossible for Cal to enjoy his retirement. A missing sibling must be found and the mystery takes time to solve. He must tackle getting the information he needs both sensitively and skilfully, and tiptoe around the nuances and eccentricities of local customs.

There is much meandering around conversation, getting to know the villagers and their customs. In essence the book is a slow burn with undercurrents of graver things and threats that would keep a normal person at home. No so with Cal. He is detailed oriented with patience that would put a nun to shame. He needs to get the lie of the land before making decisions and he’s remarkably adept at winning most of the locals around. He also has a life in the US, whether or not he’s trying to forge a new one in a foreign land. He has worries. His daughter for one and an ex-wife who is on his mind and on his nerves.

The locals, equipped with their secrets and foibles are handled realistically and you can’t help liking and disliking a few. Cal might have appeared to have missed a few tricks, but he is persistent in a somewhat leisurely way. Trey is an enigma and the more we learn the more chilling the story becomes. The book is not terrifying, nor is it challenging. I would put it at the comfortable and evocative end of the spectrum. But that’s me. For those who have issues with animal cruelty, there are scenes that may be hard to read.

The writing style, as with all French novels, is impeccable with an easy poetic flow I’ve come to enjoy. The only issue I had with this one is it was a little slow getting off the ground. But what I find a tad tedious — champing to get to the action — others will find fascinating. I don’t take off stars for this. Authors have their own way of drawing out the plot of which French is an absolute master.

The Searcher: A Novel by [Tana French]
US link
  • Print Length: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Viking (October 6, 2020)
  • Publication Date: October 6, 2020
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B08681BNKV

WHAT EVERYONE IS SAYING ABOUT TANA FRENCH

‘An engrossing, unpredictable, beautifully written mystery’ SOPHIE HANNAH

‘To say Tana French is one of the great thriller writers is really too limiting. Rather she’s simply this: a truly great writer‘ GILLIAN FLYNN

‘French offers a masterclass in unreliability‘ SUNDAY TIMES

‘I’m a big fan of Tana French‘ IAN RANKIN

The Wych Elm should cement French’s place in the first rank of great literary novelists‘ OBSERVER

‘This book confirms Tana French as [crime fiction’s] biggest contemporary star‘ GUARDIAN

Terrific – terrifying, amazing, and the prose is incandescent‘ STEPHEN KING

‘Another one of her rich psychological thrillers that will work its way under your skin’ LUCY MANGAN, STYLIST

‘This mystery about family, memory and the cracks in both will haunt you for a long, long time‘ ERIN KELLY

‘A tale of flawed characters, complex relationships and elusive loyalties. Subtle and powerful‘ CHRIS HAMMER

About the Author

Tana French

French grew up in Ireland, Italy, the US and Malawi, and has lived in Dublin since 1990. She trained as an actress at Trinity College Dublin and worked in theatre, film and voiceover. She is the author of IN THE WOODS (winner of the Edgar, Anthony, Barry, Macavity and IVCA Clarion awards), THE LIKENESS, FAITHFUL PLACE, BROKEN HARBOUR (winner of the LA Times Book Prize for Best Mystery/Thriller and the Irish Book Award for Best Crime Fiction) and THE SECRET PLACE. She lives in Dublin with her husband and two children.

Other books by Tana French

The Wicked Sister by Karen Dionne, published by Little, Brown Book Group UK, G.P. Putnam’s Sons #TheWickedSister #NetGalley @sphere

Having read the Marsh King’s Daughter, I knew I was in for a treat. The Wicked Sister —rich in descriptions, paired with deep research into psychology, made this a must read for me. Evocative settings and complex characters are Dionne’s hallmark, that and powerful drama, twists and tension galore.

Description

Review

Set in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula wilderness and told in dual narratives, The Wicked Sister flips from past to present in this compulsive tale of manipulation and deception. Rachael Cunningham is locked up in the Newberry Regional Mental Health Centre, believing she has committed an unspeakable crime. Subjected to horrific torment and having only a spider for company since the age of eleven, she has surely paid her dues. But when a discrepancy in the police report is discovered, no matter how Rachael looks at it, the crime could not have been committed by her. Discharging herself from the facility, she is free to investigate on her own terms.

Jenny, a wildlife biologist, must escape the neighbourhood after a tragic accident. Leaving behind a trail of devastation, the family travels to the wilderness to research bears. But Jenny’s young daughter Diana is precocious, manipulative and decidedly psychotic. I found it frustrating to watch a parent cave to such outrageous demands, but as disturbing as these scenes are, Dionne writes them so well. I found myself as uneasy and as traumatised as Jenny, with little or no solution to offer. A child with callous-unemotional traits is not everyone’s cup of tea. She certainly isn’t mine. The pillow incident made me want to throw something at someone and there were other cruelties that sadly fit the criteria. As these devastated parents endeavour to keep Diana’s condition a secret, I wonder how long it will take for another life-threatening accident to happen.

The massive hunting lodge made of Oregon pine is sadly the scene of a murder. Two ravens, nesting outside Rachel’s old bedroom may have answers to what really happened. As Trevor leaves Rachel alone in the house there is a spark of something in the air. I was excited by this chapter because of Rachel’s ingenuity and I wanted to know how she could possibly pull off keeping herself hidden from her sisters for the reasons she chose.

There are so many things to like about this book; the rapid pace and robust setting, and an exceptionally powerful conclusion. It’s not often you find a book with so many psychological layers, drip-fed a morsel at a time—an unnerving psychological thriller with enough suspense and action to hold you spellbound to the very end. Absolutely sensational!

Many thanks to the publisher, Little, Brown Book Group, UK, Netgalley and to the author, Karen Dionne for the privilege of receiving an advance reader copy of this book.

About the author:

Karen DionneKaren Dionne is the #1 internationally bestselling author of the award-winning psychological suspense novel The Marsh King’s Daughter. She is the co-founder of the online writers’ community Backspace, and a member of the International Thriller Writers, where she served on the board of directors. She enjoys nature photography and lives with her husband in Detroit’s northern suburbs.

 

What people are saying:

Review

“A gut-clenching wilderness thriller.”–Minneapolis Star Tribune

“Dionne paints a haunting portrait of a family hurtling toward the tragic destiny they can foresee but are powerless to stop.”–Publishers Weekly (starred review) The Wicked Sister is massively thrilling and altogether unputdownable. Dionne is proving to be one of the finest suspense writers working today.”–Karin Slaughter, author of 20 International Bestselling Books

“A terrifying thrill-ride of psychological suspense. Karen Dionne is wickedly good at deception, deceit and misdirection and The Wicked Sister is seductively compelling. You will not stop reading.”
Robert Dugoni, New York Times Best-Selling Author of My Sister’s Grave

“In Karen Dionne’s wilderness, humans are the most dangerous animals of all. The Wicked Sister is enthralling and terrifying, and I couldn’t put it down.  A terrific novel.”–Joseph Finder, New York Times bestselling author of House on Fire

“A chilling portrait of a psychopath that will shock and fascinate you. Dionne is a master storyteller who has crafted a terrifying thriller that will haunt you long after the last page is read.” –Liv Constantine,  bestselling author of The Last Mrs. Parrish

“Chilling and captivating, The Wicked Sister explores the complex layers of family bonds, guilt, and redemption. A beautifully written, haunting psychological thriller.”—Megan Miranda, author of All the Missing Girls

“Karen Dionne is back with a dark, atmospheric and chilling tale set in the deep woods of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Beautifully written, The Wicked Sister moves seamlessly between past and present, unraveling the truth behind a family tragedy. From her insightful depiction of both the grace and bitter cruelty of humanity, to her command of the plot and pacing, Dionne’s brilliance shines through on every single page. Prepare to be blown away!”–Wendy Walker, bestselling author of The Night Before

“Fresh, truly original, and utterly unpredictable, Karen Dionne is at the top of her game with the gorgeously told The Wicked Sister. I devoured this book in one sitting! It’s hard to balance complex and heartrending familial relationships with pulse-pounding suspense, but somehow this book does exactly that. Propulsive and terrifying to the very shocking end!”–Kate Moretti, New York Times bestselling author of The Vanishing Year

 

Other books by Karen Dionne

Karen Dionne

LITTLE GIRLS SLEEPING by Jennifer Chase @Bookouture #Review #Crime #SerialKillerThriller

I was absolutely thrilled to be invited to join the Blog Tour for Jennifer Chase’s first police procedural series staring Detective Katie Scott. What can I say – but a BIG WHOPPING WOW! For those who love a meaty police procedural series, you’ll love Little Girls Sleeping.

Description:

Little Girls Sleeping: An absolutely gripping crime thriller (Detective Katie Scott Book 1) by [Chase, Jennifer]He looked down at the little girl, sleeping peacefully, her arms wrapped around a teddy bear. He knew he was the only one who could save her. He could let her sleep forever…

An eight-year-old girl, Chelsea Compton, is missing in Pine Valley, California and for Detective Katie Scott it’s a cruel reminder of the friend who disappeared from summer camp twenty years ago. Unable to shake the memories, Katie vows she won’t rest until she discovers what happened to Chelsea.

But as Katie starts to investigate – her PTSD flashbacks kept at bay with the help of her loyal ex-military dog, Cisco – the case reveals itself to be much bigger and more shocking than she feared. Deep in the forest, she unearths a makeshift cemetery: a row of graves, each with a brightly coloured teddy bear.

Tracing the silk lining the coffins, Katie links the graves to a stack of missing-persons cases involving young girls – finding a pattern no one else has managed to see. Someone in Pine Valley has been taking the town’s daughters for years, and Katie is the only one who can stop them.

And then another little girl goes missing, snatched from the park near her home…

Compulsive and gripping crime fiction for fans of Lisa Regan, Rachel Caine and Melinda Leigh. Katie Scott’s first case will have you on the edge of your seat and gasping with shock.

Print Length: 335 pages

Publisher: Bookouture (May 31, 2019)

Publication Date: May 31, 2019

Book Links:  British flag  UK here   US flag  US here

Review

What’s the book’s about:

If Little Girls Sleeping is the first book in a new series by Jennifer Chase, I’m definitely looking forward to the second. Katie Scott arrives home to Pine Valley, having returned from Afghanistan. Suffering from PTSD and anxiety, she is fighting her own internal battles and is fortunate to have a service dog call Cisco. A trusted friend and faithful companion. Her uncle Wayne, who is the sheriff in Pine Valley offers her a job in his department filing cold cases, when she stumbles across the case of Chelsea Compton, an 8-year old girl who went missing over four years ago. Knowing from personal experience what it must be like to lose a school friend in this way, she can’t help secretly investigating the case of a brutal serial killer, which unsurprisingly makes for a few enemies along the way.

My thoughts:

Although I torpedoed through this book a little too fast, I was able to pick up plenty of detail. There are some wonderfully well drawn characters in this police procedural book. Cisco, of course, being my favorite. All dog-lovers will look forward to meeting such a faithful and resourceful explosives K9 and the bond between the two is palpable. Templeton is such a jerk but you always get one, don’t you? Our protagonist, Katie – ex military and now a detective – comes with all the flaws we tend to see in Detective novels, severe anxiety being one of them. But she’s got the right background when you consider law enforcement to be one step away from the paramilitary with all the training that goes with it. So she’s a natural. The antagonist, on the other hand, is clearly threatened by her expertise and gut and these chapters are cleverly woven through the story adding pace and a deeper context to the narrative. There is a plethora of forensic language to beef up the overall ‘feel’ of the book – and twists and turns that will leave you shuddering in your boots. With the author’s background in criminology, it adds an extra layer to the plot which I appreciated at the outset.

Summary:

You always struggle watching determined female detectives being picked on in such a male dominated environment, especially those who feel she’s a threat. I always place my bets with the underdog and so it was a relief to see Katie finally getting the recognition she deserved. I thought the writing was strong and I will look forward to seeing the development of the character arc in future episodes. Highly recommended if you enjoy the Detectives Kane and Alton series by D.K. Hood also published by Bookouture.

Special thanks to:

I want to thank the author Jennifer Chase, the publisher Bookouture and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this terrific ARC.

About the Author:

Jennifer ChaseJennifer Chase holds a bachelor degree in police forensics and a master’s degree in criminology. Her intense curiosity in the psychological aspect of crime is what drives her to write crime fiction. She lives in California, where she’s currently at work on her next book in the series.

For more information about Jennifer Chase, books, forensics, and criminology, please visit http://www.authorjenniferchase.com

What people are saying:

THERE WAS NO WAY I WAS PUTTING THIS BOOK DOWN!!!!!… I was literally holding my breath… I HAD TO KNOW!!!!! As for the explosive ending WOW definitely not what or who I was expecting.’ Goodreads Reviewer, 5 stars

I was really wowed by it… I couldn’t put the book down and was trying to read as fast as I couldso I could find out who the killer was. The ending took me by surprise… I was literally gasping for air… I would definitely recommend.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Wow what an absolutely amazing fantastic read. I was hooked almost as soon as I started this book.I am still trying to pick my chin off the floor. I loved it from page one and couldn’t read the pages quick enough. I did not see the end coming… Awesome.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

If you read one police thriller this year make sure that it is this one… it will grip you from the start and will drag you into the story trying desperately to work out who the killer is but I promise you that you will not be able to figure it out.’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

‘A great way to start a new series! It’s a wonderfully written roller-coaster ride. A must read!’ Book Obsessed Introverts, 5 stars

Believe me when I say that you are in for a thrilling read!… I could not put it away. Can highly recommend!’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

Wow!… The hairs on my head stood up with this one!’ Goodreads reviewer, 5 stars

A nail-biting thriller… I was gripped from page one, through each twist and turn… until I reached the climax which was shocking and totally unexpected.’ Netgalley reviewer, 5 stars

Other Books by this Author:

Jennifer Chase

The Death of Mrs Westaway by Ruth Ware @PutnamBooks @Penguin @simonschuster @RuthWareWriter

I’m always excited when a great author comes out with a new book. I’ve been a Ruth Ware fan for several years now and love the crisp, clean prose and unique plots. The tension and intrigue is unlike other books in this genre and a book that’s bound to keep you flipping the pages well past bedtime.

Book Description:

INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of In a Dark, Dark WoodThe Woman in Cabin 10, and The Lying Game comes Ruth Ware’s fourth novel, “her best yet” (Library Journal, starred review).

The Death of Mrs. Westaway by [Ware, Ruth]On a day that begins like any other, Hal receives a mysterious letter bequeathing her a substantial inheritance. She realizes very quickly that the letter was sent to the wrong person—but also that the cold-reading skills she’s honed as a tarot card reader might help her claim the money.

Soon, Hal finds herself at the funeral of the deceased…where it dawns on her that there is something very, very wrong about this strange situation and the inheritance at the center of it.

Full of spellbinding menace and told in Ruth Ware’s signature suspenseful style, this is an unputdownable thriller from the Agatha Christie of our time.

 

  • Print Length: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Gallery/Scout Press (May 29, 2018)
  • Publication Date: May 29, 2018
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Book links:  US here    UK here

Review

I’ve enjoyed several of Ruth Ware’s books and decided to give this one a whirl. I liked Hal from the very beginning because she’s a realistic character trying to make ends meet. Living in the cold and damp with hardly a penny to rub together, you find yourself inside Hal’s world, running away from a crooked money lender. It’s hardly surprising then that when she receives a letter that may be the answer to prayer, she chooses the only way out. But there is a slight hitch and you’re never entirely sure whether she can pull it off. The funeral, the family and the old house are full of lies and secrets that are sure to turn her world upside down.

I agree Ware’s novels are somewhat Christie-esque. Everybody is a suspect and the books carry that British cozy mystery mood despite the modern setting. The prose is straightforward with a focus on plot and dialogue and where hints and suspicions are assembled from conversations and plot twists. Every character abounds with secrets and resentments so you’re never quite sure who’s done what. The protagonist, in this case Hal, stumbles into an adventure where she must solve a crime putting many of Ware’s books into the super sleuth category: One I absolutely love.

We see a large house, a little worse for wear, and a housekeeper and family reminiscent of Daphne Du Maurier’s Rebecca. The pace, in parts, is wild and unwavering, and I couldn’t help feeling as if I was inside the brooding house—another character in the book with its stairs and attic room—but also inside Hal’s anxious and curious mind. Why is she given such a claustrophobic room? Why is it so cold and dark? The effect is almost palpable and I could feel goose bumps near the end when the snow is falling and there is no way out but back. But where Christie’s characters often get picked off one by one, in The Murder of Mrs. Westaway, Ware’s characters disperse and return to their normal lives, leaving Hal to the mercy of the lake and the boathouse where it all began.

If you haven’t sampled any Ruth Ware, I would start with Woman in Cabin 10 to get a ‘feel’ for fine writing and unique plots. All her books are strong and surefooted with tons of thrills along the way. Crime novel and psychological suspense fans will love this creepy puzzler of a mystery. Five fat stars for another marvellous read.

About the Author

Ruth WareRuth 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. Ruth lives near Brighton 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: Order here

Ruth Ware books

The Perfect Girlfriend by Karen Hamilton ( HARLEQUIN – Graydon House Books, (U.S. & Canada) Paperback $13.41, Hardcover $13.82 @NetGalley @HarlequinBooks #bookreview #bookblogger

I was delighted to receive an ARC from Netgalley and Harlequin for The Perfect Girlfriend by Karen Hamilton. When I read that this book was THE MUST-READ THRILLER OF 2019… Perfect for fans of THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW, ANATOMY OF A SCANDAL, and THE GIRL BEFORE – I knew I had to read it.

All I can say is, What a stunning debut!

Description

Review

Juliette is the perfect girlfriend and she’ll stop at nothing to get what she wants. Psychotic and twisted, she has a clever plan to win Nate back. After a few months ‘giving Nate the space he needs’ she reinserts herself back into his life. He’s an airline pilot and she becomes a flight attendant with the same airline. The first half portrayed the training of a flight attendant where we see snippets of Juliette’s obsessive behavior. Her love for Nate is not reciprocated and her intrusion into his life and other family events were fanciful and somewhat hectic.

But with a background of traumatic events ranging back to her school years, she is delusional and disturbed. Just enough to give us a taste of crazy.

After reading the blurb, I was expecting a wilder ride. Instead, I was surprised to find this book to be a much slower burn; a tamer version of psychotic than ‘You’ by Caroline Kepnes. But it still makes for a compelling read. There were a few distracting features. One: the draft copy was hard to read due to unedited sections and formatting. Two: the ending was a little unsatisfying in the same way Gone Girl left a few lose ends. But overall, it was a well written, engaging book.

Very many thanks to Netgally, Karen Hamilton and Harlequin for the Arc.

British flag   UK:  https://amzn.to/2Aus0Fg         US flag  US:  https://amzn.to/2ReQYCY

Karen HamiltonAbout Karen Hamilton

I caught the travel bug after an early childhood spent abroad (Angola, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Belgium and Italy) and have worked as cabin crew for a major airline. In 2006, my husband and I put down roots in Hampshire and four years ago, I gave up flying to raise our three sons and concentrate on my writing. Now that they are a little older, I’ve begun travelling again (as and when it’s possible) and enjoy exploring places through their fresh eyes.

The Perfect Girlfriend is my first novel (released March 2018). It is a psychological thriller about a sociopathic flight attendant, Juliette Price. The book is rooted in my work experience, but not autobiographical! I realised early on in my flying career, that the moment I changed out of uniform, I became anonymous. It made me think about the identities behind uniforms and work personas and became an idea that would later help create my protagonist.

When Juliette is dumped by her pilot boyfriend, Nate, her dreams of a ‘happy ever after’ are thrown into jeopardy. She vows to win him back, whatever it takes. She surreptitiously embeds herself into his life by adopting a new persona and securing a position as a flight attendant with the same airline. However, these are only the first steps in her master plan as she reveals just how far one woman will go to achieve her dreams.

The novel explores themes of guilt, envy and revenge.

Find Karen Hamilton on Amazon here

The Perfect Girlfriend Hardcover

 

Bookpreneur *Kindle Monthly deal picks* #BookReview, THE GIFT and GOLD MEDAL winner news. #Book #SALE! Just *99p/99cents* in the US and UK – EASY PREY by Claire Stibbe 5* – Two best friends. One deadly secret. . .

I have just finished Louise Jensen’s The Gift and I have to say this is a definite five star read from me. I hadn’t heard of this author before so I decided to give it whirl. I’m really glad I did.

Jenna works at a vet clinic, but she is also a heart transplant patient, living on her own after a break up with her boyfriend, Sam. If that’s not trauma enough, read on. After the surgery, she begins to feel different. She’s forgetful and anxious, has dreams and memories she can’t explain, all of which are putting her career at risk. But worse, she is obsessed with her donor’s life. After meeting the family to pay respects and to thank them, not only do unfamiliar sights and sounds become familiar but there’s a noticeable personality shift, culminating in questions as to what really happened that night when Callie was killed in an accident.

After splitting with her long-term partner, Jenna digs deep to get to the truth of Callie’s death despite the danger in which she suddenly finds herself. Living alone and not knowing who to trust, readers will empathize with Jenna, a character with scars on her body and in her mind, where her emotions are raw and so are her struggles. The author gives a powerful and intrusive idea of what it must be like to experience such a serious operation, compounded with her obsession with Callie. I think this is what made the book so unputdownable for me and also perhaps a certain cinematic vibe that transports you into the many layers of Jenna’s life.

Once I started this book, I couldn’t put it down. Jensen has definitely done her homework; Cellular Muscle Memory – an interesting case in hand. I always appreciate the research authors put into their work and this is no exception. The ending was as satisfying as the rest of the book and delivered well beyond my expectations. You can’t help being stirred by Jenna’s story and where a certain residue will remain with you for weeks to come. Definitely another author to watch.

The GiftSynopsis:

The perfect daughter is dead. And a secret is eating her family alive…

Jenna is given another shot at life when she receives a donor heart from a girl called Callie. Eternally grateful to Callie and her family, Jenna gets closer to them, but she soon discovers that Callie’s perfect family is hiding some very dark secrets…

Callie’s parents are grieving, yet Jenna knows they’re only telling her half the story. Where is Callie’s sister Sophie? She’s been ‘abroad’ since her sister’s death but something about her absence doesn’t add up. And when Jenna meets Callie’s boyfriend Nathan, she makes a shocking discovery.

Jenna knows that Callie didn’t die in an accident. But how did she die? Jenna is determined to discover the truth but it could cost her everything; her loved ones, her sanity, even her life.

A compelling, gripping psychological thriller with a killer twist from the author of the Number One bestseller The Sister.

Publisher: Bookouture

Pages: 354

Links:    US https://amzn.to/2NJNp1C     UK  https://amzn.to/2NHWRme

BOOK SALE UPDATE!

Easy Prey by Claire Stibbe is on SALE this week – and on Bookbub – for only 99 cents / 99p. This is an excellent time to grab your copy.

Easy Prey SALE

Synopsis: Two best friends. One deadly secret.

Something dark and brooding stalks the mysterious Bosque nature reserve. Bird watchers fall prey to the menace and thefts of rare falcons are on the rise. But it is the body of a murdered girl discovered on the banks of The Rio Grande River that eventually brings Detectives Temeke and Santiago onto the trail.

During a camping weekend, Jessie Bowman’s best friend, Bree, has disappeared. Guilt ridden, yet determined to do the right thing, she tracks the man she believes is responsible and begins to unravel a mystery that tests every ounce of her resilience. She has only two choices – fight or flight. And Jessie is done with running.

Now Detectives Temeke and Santiago must locate Jessie before the madman snares his final prey.

‘Stibbe handles the latest mystery in the Detective Temeke series with the dexterity of a master falconer. The climax will swoop down and seize you when you least expect it, leaving you feeling as if you too have become ‘easy prey’. Dr Maurice Singleton, PhD in Narrative Theory, Author and Lecturer

‘A gripping story with some of the most vivid writing I’ve read this year. Unpredictable and absorbing, it was one of those books that hooked me right from the start.’ Bonnie’s Books

‘If there is a crime fan who hasn’t discovered the Detective Temeke series yet, go and read them all immediately. I love books with that extra-special something, where the author puts you at every scene and doesn’t let go until the last heart-pumping chapter.’ 23rd Avenue Book Club.

Publisher: Bookpreneur

Page: 348

Links:    🇺🇸 US      🇬🇧 UK 

BLOG NEWS:

Last, but by no means least, is a GOLD MEDAL from Feedspot. Bookpreneur has been selected as one of the Top 25 Thriller Book Blogs on the web. How cool is that! Why not head on over and take a look.

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Excerpt from Top 25 Thriller Book Blogs:

The Best Thriller Book Blogs from thousands of Thriller Book blogs on the web using search and social metrics. Subscribe to these websites because they are actively working to educate, inspire, and empower their readers with frequent updates and high-quality information.

These blogs are ranked based on following criteria

  • Google reputation and Google search ranking
  • Influence and popularity on Facebook, twitter and other social media sites
  • Quality and consistency of posts.
  • Feedspot’s editorial team and expert review

Review Tour – Stolen Gypsy by Elizabeth Horton-Newton

Whoo-hoo, I’m thrilled to have just read Stolen Gypsy by Elizabeth Horton-Newton. Some of you may know her other books, Riddle, Carved Wooden Heart and View From The Sixth Floor: An Oswald Tale.  Her books have garnered five star reviews on Amazon and Goodreads – definitely an author to watch!

About the Author

Elizabeth HOrton NewtonElizabeth Horton-Newton was born in New York City and was 10 years old when President John Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. As she watched the events unfold on television she became fascinated. This lifelong interest resulted in her first novel, “View From the Sixth Floor: An Oswald Tale”.

With the release of her novel “Riddle” she once again tackled a social issue; the illegal adoption of First Nations babies separated from their families. Small town prejudices against people of color and “outsiders” result in a unique friendship between two young people. Weaving a romantic thriller around the issues she creates rich characters in all her writing that draw the reader into their lives.

Her first erotic romance novel, “Carved Wooden Heart”, was written with new author Starla Hartless. The story follows a young journalist as she experiences joys and sorrows but never gives up on her dreams. Dani Stone deals with the pain of loss, panic attacks, and life challenges. Recently released “Stolen Gypsy” is an action packed tale revolving around a young gypsy girl and her search for her true identity. Elizabeth did extensive research on the Rom culture and the Witness Protection Program when writing this suspenseful mystery.

With her education in Criminal Psychology, Sociology, and Media Communications she has a unique insight into how criminals think and how society responds to their crimes. Volunteering in local Domestic Violence groups in her hometown she likes to confront social problems in her stories.

Book Description

“Her parents are dead. The government has failed her. Now she doesn’t even know who she is. Terza Blackstone is rescued by handsome Irishman Tristan Devlin and that begins the search for her true identity. When everything you thought was yours has been stolen from you, there’s only one thing to do. Steal it all back.

What do gypsies, the Witness Protection Program, a drug cartel, and a young girl running for her life have in common?”

Stolen Gypsy
Buy Links:  US  https://amzn.to/2HMQufk   UK  https://amzn.to/2Hho37S

 Advanced Reviews for “Stolen Gypsy”

“A real page-turner. I couldn’t put it down. Imagine waking up to find out you weren’t who you thought you were. ” Kathy Broggy

“Fascinating. Mind-blowing plot twists. I was up all night reading, unable to set the book down” Michelle Martin

“I learned so much about gypsies and their traditions. Best part was the action scenes and the Feds. The part when the drug cartel shows up was so well written I could smell the smoking guns.” Nick LeBlanc

“…it’s fantastic! I totally loved it! So much was stolen from her, but… she stole her life back again! Terza’s life starts to peel away, and an array of shattering truths rise up from a past, she hardly realised she’d had. With the help of a handsome Irish hunk Tristan, Terza faces off with ruthless drug cartels, mysterious Romany gypsy gangs, the local police and the FBI, all the time fighting to get back the life that was stolen from her. ” Michelle Medhat, Author “Connected: The Calling” and “The Shift.”

Amazon Review

With a tragic accident that involves her parents, seventeen-year-old Terza Blackstone is catapulted rapidly from the steady routine of family life into the unknown. Having been questioned at the police station, she is taken home by her hard-nosed attorney, Vanessa Duffy, who wants to petition for guardianship. Judging by the aggressive activity of reporters at the scene, there is something very sinister about this case.

There is some interesting back story involving secret pasts and I wanted to know more. Someone wants Terza out of the way and the action and tension begins to climb. There are lots of suspects and few clues, a complex story that has more twists and turns than a pretzel.

Once in a while a character like Terza comes along that gets under your skin and refuses to let go. I liked her at the outset; smart, stubborn and quirky, not to mention a fan of Lindsey Stirling. I think she and I would get along. As Vanessa takes Terza back to childhood, memories begin to surface of an unsettled background where she has never spent more than one year in any school.

As the plot moves forward, Terza comes face-to-face with the stark realization that nothing in her past life adds up. Even with new-found friends to help her, she is never far from the agencies of law enforcement or from those who might want to harm her. When the truth unfolds, the tragic thing about this book is the choices Terza must make. Her tale at the end of the book brings a fresh perspective on abandonment and how there is only one person who can set her free.

elizabeth books

Elizabeths books

Elizabeth currently lives with her husband, writer Neil Douglas Newton, along with a collection of rescued cats and dogs in a 100-year-old house. Mother of 4, grandmother of 6, and great-grandmother of one, she is already working on her fifth book, “Blood on Murder Highway”, where she returns to her fascination with serial killers and the indigenous populations of the Pacific Northwest. The story is loosely based on the unsolved murders of indigenous women in British Columbia. In addition, she has novelettes through Electric Eclectic Books. These short stories range from horror to crime noir, domestic violence to slice of life mystery.

Crime, One Book at a Time

I’m absolutely thrilled to share NEW BOOK NEWS about my fourth book, Dead Cold, which will be published on June 16th, 2017. I will be providing a cover reveal nearer the time on my Facebook page and Twitter page, so feel free to check in regularly at the following links.

Facebook

Twitter

Not only is there a new Detective Temeke book to add to the collection but book 2, Night Eyes, is on a special deal at the moment of only 99 cents.  If you haven’t grabbed your copy yet, don’t delay. Its a short promotion and will finish at the end of this week.

Night Eyes-new (2) FINAL FINALBookBub

If you are a BookBub member, feel free to follow me here for updates on all new books and special deals which we usually run three times a year.

Researching the books

The research for the Temeke books just keeps getting better. At the end of this month I will be graduating from the Bernalillo Sheriff’s Department CPA where we learned all about laws of arrest, search and seizure, property crimes, gang unit, active shooter, defensive driving, traffic unit and my personal favorite, dispatch. After completing three ride-alongs with Sheriff’s deputies we are now able to do a fly-along with Metro 1 and 2, two helicopters that serve the county.

Having graduating from the 50th Albuquerque Citizen Police Academy last year made all these classes possible. A big thank you to the boys and girls in blue who have taught us so much and who continue to teach me every time I see them.

As a member for Stand True For Blue, an organization that helps the families of fallen police officers, I will be helping with their newsletter. This includes officer interviews, taking pictures of events and writing up after event articles. I am excited to be a journalist in the community after being buried for three solid months in my writing cave. Even as I type this, I have just completed chapter 1 of Book 5.

Claire Helicopter

On a different note, I would like to thank author Jean Gill who very kindly took a few of the Temeke books with her on a tour to Wales this year. Selling some of her sumptuous historical fiction novels (and other genres) at the Llandeilo Lit Fest, she was rubbing shoulders with great writers such as Christoph Fischer, author of the World War II bestseller, Ludwika. Thank you Jean for allowing Detective Temeke to take a seat at your table.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Books.

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For those who have bought book 3, Past Rites, we would like to let you know there is a new and improved cover out now.  We felt this one added the right amount of ‘mood’ to the story without crossing over into another genre. I hope you like it too.

Past Rites (2) FINALFor All New Book News

For all New Book News Sign up to Claire Stibbe’s New Release Mailing List here

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

Thank you so much for reading my blog. I’ll be back with more news soon.

 

 

 

Description of Past Rites

Lies hurt. Truth kills.

Four years after the tragic suicide of Alice Delgado, eldest daughter of Albuquerque’s top racing driver, her younger sister, Lily, is reported missing and two of her peers are found dead. Detective Temeke’s investigation leads him to a private boarding school on the Rio Grande where the discovery of occult practices and an ancient book ignite a chain reaction of heartbreaking truths and demonic attacks.

What madness connects these girls to a ruthless killer? Against a background of simmering police tension and mounting victims, detectives Temeke and Santiago are in a desperate race to learn the truth before it’s too late.

Past Rites is a dark and gripping novel that challenges heartache and reveals the truths about our hidden demons.

Spread thick with winter chill, Stibbe delivers a richly textured, breathtaking novel that gives us an insight into the dark places of the psyche. Some secrets can never be buried. Litouture Café.

Excellent third novel. Fans of psychological fiction will enjoy Claire Stibbe’s original and unnerving portrayal of the darker side of human nature. Dr. Marco Storey, PhD in Narrative Theory & Criticism.

Vividly and believably drawn characters that are the series hallmark. It should be put at the top of every “to be read” pile! Paul Henderson, Crime Fiction New Mexico.

Watch out for more from Detective Temeke and Malin Santiago

 

 

A Warm Welcome to author Angela Wren

AEWBlackWhite (2)I’m really excited to welcome author Angela Wren today who is here to talk about her favorite scene from a book called ‘In this House of Brede’ by Rumer Godden.

Angela has written her own book Messandrierre – the first in a new crime series featuring investigator, Jacques Forêt.

Messandrierre was published by Crooked Cat Publishing in December, 2015 and is currently available in Kindle format.

For background information on Angela, see her bio and book blurb below.

Author Bio

Having followed a career in Project and Business Change Management, I now work as an Actor and Director at a local theatre. I’ve been writing, in a serious way, for about 5 years. My work in project management has always involved drafting, so writing, in its various forms, has been a significant feature throughout my adult life.

I particularly enjoy the challenge of plotting and planning different genres of work. My short stories vary between contemporary romance, memoir, mystery and historical. I also write comic flash-fiction and have drafted two one-act plays that have been recorded for local radio. The majority of my stories are set in France where I like to spend as much time as possible each year.

Favorite Scene

I’d be hard pressed to say that the scene I want to talk about is my favorite because it is so very sad. Read on and you’ll understand why.

The book is ‘In this House of Brede’ by Rumer Godden. Published in 1969, it is one of around 60 that Godden wrote in her long career, which ended at the age of 91 in 1998. She is perhaps best known for her novels, ‘The Greengage Summer’, ‘Black Narcissus’ and ‘An Episode of Sparrows’. All of which, along with ‘In this House of Brede’ were adapted for film, although not all of the original titles were used.

Philippa Talbot is a successful businesswoman when the story begins in London in 1954. She has a history and a torn heart but, at this point in the novel, the reader does not know why. She gives up her job to join the sisters at Brede Abbey and the story of her new life unfolds gradually along side the very clever drip-feed of what happened to her son, Keith. In chapter 12 Philippa finally explains herself to Abbess Catherine.

Pic01BkCover‘It began with a nugget…’ she says. The nugget being gold and her son Keith and Darrell, a young friend, seeking adventure in an old mine whilst the adults were enjoying a lunch party in the garden. The ensuing description of Darrell’s return to the adults without Keith, the rush of grown-ups to find the missing boy, the realization in Philippa’s mind of what might have happened, the desperate search in the mine and the recognition of voices between separated mother and son is one of the most moving pieces of writing that I ever come across.

Keith was trapped at the bottom of a short shaft and over the three days that he was there with the local men who were trying to rescue him, Philippa never once moved from her spot at the top of the shaft and never stopped calling and speaking to her son. By the end of the chapter you know the child suffered greatly as he waited. And there is one very simple sentence, which I believe, absolutely no one can read without being brought to tears. It is at this point the Philippa admits that she should have left the mine and let the men recover the body out of her sight.

I have read this book several times and I have never been able to get through those seven pages in Chapter 12 without a hanky. However, the final outcome of the book is happier and Philippa had to exorcise her grief and this particular scene is a masterpiece despite the sadness of the content.

As you can probably work out from the cover, my copy is a first edition. I it picked up in an old bookshop for a fraction of its true value. But, if you want to read the book, you can get a paperback copy for as little as 1p on Amazon. A seriously insulting price, in my view, when you consider the artistry and word-smithing evident in chapter 12 alone!

I can only aspire to write as well as Godden, but my current novel is also available on Amazon!

Book Blurb

Sacrificing his job in investigation following an incident in Paris, Jacques Forêt has only a matter of weeks to solve a series of mysterious disappearances as a Gendarme in the rural French village of Messandrierre.

If, like me, you are a fan of great detective stories, do yourself a favor and pick up this book, it’s that good! Amazon 5 Star Reviewer

But, as the number of missing persons rises, his difficult and hectoring boss puts obstacles in his way. Steely and determined, Jacques won’t give up and, when a new Investigating Magistrate is appointed, he becomes the go-to local policeman for all the work on the case.

CoverArt (2)Will he find the perpetrators before his lover, Beth, becomes a victim?

Messandrierre – the first in a new crime series featuring investigator, Jacques Forêt.

There are many twists and turns before the book ends … The author keeps us guessing throughout. Five Star Amazon reviewer

Why not visit Angela at her links below:

Book Links

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Smashwords

Goodreads