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#BlogTour #Review ~ Lonely Hearts by @GwynGB @BrookCottageBks #Giveaway

Series: DI Falle

Genre: Crime Thriller

Release Date: 15th July 2017

Publisher: Chalky Dog Publishing

Brings a whole new meaning to killing with kindness.

Meet Rachel. She loves animals and works at a dating agency bringing lonely people together – only somebody is watching her every move and she’s scared…

Neil didn’t see who killed him – but his murder brings DI Claire Falle on the case. What she uncovers leads her to discover that a serial killer is preying on the clients of the dating agency where Rachel works.

Can Claire work out the connection between all the deaths before Rachel becomes the next victim?

And what is it in Rachel’s past that haunts her?

As DI Claire Falle investigates the lives of the dating agency staff and clients, she is pulled into a tangled web of loneliness and deceit which will have devastating consequences for someone.

Buy link: Here

About the Author

Gwyn GB is a writer living in Jersey, Channel Islands. A native of the UK she moved to the island with her Jersey-born husband, geriatric dog, two boys and goldfish. Gwyn is a former national and international newsreader for BBC TV and ITN in London and Jersey. She’s also freelanced for national newspapers and magazines in the UK, once had her own magazine publishing business and has a PR diploma. She is currently working in the digital industry while writing in her spare time. Gwyn is also the author of ‘Islands’.

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My Review

Gwyn GB is a new author to me but I was suckered in by the striking cover and the blurb. It took me a while to slide in comfortably so that I knew who was who or  who was doing what but all of a sudden the plot line just clicks and from there I was eager to continue with Lonely Hearts.

I liked DI Claire Falle she just gets on with the situation in hand, doesn’t always make the right decision but that makes her human. It’s no secret there is murder involved and the past/present timeline works quite well. I’m not a huge fan of flitting backwards and forwards yet this managed to provide just enough detail to keep it flowing.

It’s certainly a thought provoking concept involving a dating agency. I enjoyed this page turner and flew through it in my keenness to see what happened and THEN … that ending aaaaaarghhhhh! I kept looking at it, reading back, flicking ahead just to make sure I wasn’t missing a section somewhere. Initially I was so cross to be left dangling like that, but it’s a sure fire way to make certain the reader comes back for the second book!

Thanks to the author and Brook Cottage Books for my copy which I read and reviewed voluntarily.

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#BlogBlitz #Review ~ A Time to Change by Callie Langridge @CLangridgeWrite @bombshellpub

A Time to Change: A heart-wrenching love story

“I would rather love passionately for an hour than benignly for a lifetime.”

In a house full of history and secrets, the past will not stay where it belongs…

Lou has always loved Hill House, the derelict manor on the abandoned land near her home. As a child, the tragic history of its owners, the Mandevilles, inspired her dream to become a history teacher. But in her late twenties, and working in a shop to pay off student debts, life is passing her by.

That changes when a family disaster sends Lou’s life into a downward spiral and she seeks comfort in the ruined corridors of Hill House. The house transforms around her and Lou is transported back to Christmas 1913. Convinced she has been in an accident and is in a coma, Lou immerses herself in her Edwardian dream. With the Mandevilles oblivious to her true identity, Lou becomes their houseguest and befriends the eldest son, Captain Thomas Mandeville, a man she knows is destined to die in the First World War.

Lou feels more at home in the past than the present and when she realises the experience is real she sets out to do everything in her power to save her new friends.

Lou passes between 1913 and 2013, unearthing plots of murder and blackmail, which she must stop no matter the cost.

On her quest to save the Mandevilles by saving Thomas, Lou will face the hardest decision of her life. She will learn that love cannot be separated by a century.

A Time to Change is a beautifully written and utterly compelling time slip romance novel

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About the Author

Callie was born and brought up in Berkshire. After a brief teenage spell in the depths of Lancashire, she moved back to London.

Having left school at 16, she studied drama before embarking on a career in marketing. This saw her work in music marketing in the heady days of Britpop in the late ‘90s. She unleashed her creativity in the design of window displays and marketing campaigns for the leading music retailer. More recently she has followed her passion for social history and currently works in marketing for a national historical institution, promoting projects and running events.

On hitting her thirtieth birthday, she decided finally to take her A levels and gained A’s in English Literature and Language, and Film Studies – not bad when working full time – and this spurred her on to take the first of many creative writing course. A few years later and she has had a number of short stories published and plays performed at theatres and venues across London.

Callie lives in London with her long-term partner and an ever-growing collection of antique curiosities.

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My Review

I honestly had no idea what to expect from this book before I started it. While I enjoy historical fiction I’m always a bit dubious about time-slips (as I have said previously) some enhance a novel while others frankly make them impossible to connect with.

Well I’m delighted to say Callie Langridge has produced an absolute gem in the form of A Time to Change. It is so beautifully written, you ease into it and then realise a few hours have passed such is the magnetism of the story. 

I adored Lou, her character made the book for me. She opens herself up to such heartbreak. When tragedy strikes in present day Lou is drawn back to an old house she used to visit as a child. The desolate building gives her comfort, as the building encompasses her she finds herself amidst the Mandeville family and it is 1913. I really enjoyed the ‘older’ sections and the descriptive insights into family and daily life.

The overwhelming magical existence in that era captured my imagination and I was instantly transported into this magnificent house. Of course in those circumstances there has to be secrets, mysteries lurking so what damage may befall her? 

This is a remarkable tale of love and sacrifice all played out in a dreamlike fashion. I was rooting for Lou and wanted to wrap her in my arms to take care of her for a change instead of everyone leeching compassion from her.

A stunning portrayal of history, love and life from start to finish. I was spellbound. 

Thanks to the author and Bombshell books for my copy which I read and reviewed voluntarily. 

 

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#BlogTour #Review ~ The Sinking Chef Pot Love 2 by Sylvia Ashby @bysylvia_a @NeverlandBT #Giveaway

 

“Bridget Jones meets Burnt in this delightful comedy novel about a talented YouTuber and the guy who keeps trying to bring her down. Although part of a series this book is completely standalone, as are all other novels in the Pot Love Series. In Belsize Park, London, Ashley works hard on her daily YouTube channel “The Sinking Chef”. It’s filmed right in her kitchen, so she doesn’t go out much. James is a gruff British TV director, turned publisher, who Ashley had a crush on ages ago. She has moved on but when he calls with an offer to take her out to lunch she doesn’t say no. It’s only lunch – what can go wrong? The day Ashley meets James for lunch and he promises her a book deal, she makes the worse decision in her life – to hide the book deal from her boyfriend, Giacomo. As things progress Ashley’s secrets mount up and other things in her life unravel. Is there a connection? And how is she going to get out of this without losing Giacomo and the life she loves? Set in the heart of fast-paced London, The Sinking Chef is a charming story of love, recipes, secrets, and the determination to do thinks right by those you love most in your life.”

AMAZON LINKS

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About the Author 

Sylvia Ashby is fond of the written word: books, blog posts, recipes, even an explanation to the HM Revenue & Customs as to why she thinks skirts should be exempt from VAT – she’s written it all! She likes travelling and has lived all over Europe – London, Brussels, Amsterdam and Sofia, Bulgaria. Currently, she lives in Leuven, Belgium with her husband, daughter, son and a sparrow called Jack, who comes occasionally to peck the seeds she leaves for him on top of the garden shed.

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My Review

I haven’t read the first in this series but figured it would be reasonably easy to slide into a rom-com. The Sinking Chef Pot Love 2 begins with a fairly yummy looking recipe. So far so good. Then we meet Ashley, as soon as I spotted her loitering on the ‘mumsnet’ web forum I knew she was in trouble. A dedicated mix of mums and mum’s to be don’t take kindly to someone not in the same situation. Ashley must have been completely dense to get involved and from there on in my opinion of her didn’t rise much! When she is contacted by her ex James her spidey senses should really have kicked in that her ideal life was about to escalate out of control.

There are moments of humour that did detract from the annoyance of the pair. Giacomo her hot Italian lover is a sweetie, he really cares about her but she is intent on spinning a web of lies that could push him away. Why does Ashley think James will do anything to enrich her life .. once bitten, twice shy etc.

This is ideal for a light read, on the beach or public transport, entertaining enough to pass the time and if you like cooking there are some delicious recipes to tempt even the most basic of chef’s. I’m not sure if I just had a personality clash with Ashley or if she was intended to be loathed! A quick read that will appeal to many I’m sure but it didn’t quite hit the right spot for me.

Thanks to the author and Neverland Blog Tours for my copy which I read and reviewed voluntarily. 

The Sinking Chef Giveaway

1st prize: £25 Amazon voucher and an eCopy of the book

2nd and 3rd prize: ecopy of the book

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#BlogTour #Review ~ The Daughter by Billy Mclaughlin @bilbob20 @emmamitchellfpr

Sometimes a killer comes along who will make your blood run cold… When the body of a young woman is found with her hands and teeth missing, Detective Inspector Phil Morris struggles to identify her. The evidence initially suggests she is local missing girl, Alex Waters, whose mother, Tricia, comes armed with a psychic gift she would rather not possess. As Phil and his partner, Detective Donna Barclay, try to untangle the web of mystery surrounding the body, it appears that Alex had more secrets than even her psychic mother knew. As the hour glass empties, Phil and Donna are pushed to their limits trying to unravel the disturbed mind behind the sick game playing out around them. Welcome to a new chapter in domestic noir.

Purchase Here

About the Author

Billy McLaughlin is a Glasgow born author who released his first novelette Invisible in March 2016. Receiving glowing customer reviews, he followed up with the gritty novel Lost Girl which introduces readers to the mainstay characters Phil & Kate. In September 2016, his third book In the Wake of Death was released, re-uniting audiences with Phil & Kate as well as throwing a brand-new mystery that has been praised for its unique twist. McLaughlin welcomed 2017 in celebrating that Lost Girl peaked at number 2 in the crime thriller charts the previous August and gained the coveted number 1 slot in the Scottish crime charts with In the Wake of Death. His fourth book The Dead of Winter arrived in March 2017 to glowing reviews. One reviewer likened the novel to a series of Broadchurch. Kate and Phil returned for a brand-new mystery in The Daughter which also sees the return of Donna Barclay. Work has now begun on the sixth book which will be a new stand-alone project. More information coming soon.

Keep your eyes peeled for more news at the following social media platforms:

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You can also contact Mr McLaughlin directly at billymclaughlinbooks@gmail.com

My Review

I have had the pleasure of reading books by this author before so I knew I was in for a dark, gritty delight. The Daughter follows the same style of writing which I find refreshingly down to earth. 

There are grisly finds, an old man discovers a body in the woods bordering his allotment. I could sense his horror and shock purely by the writing and this is how the book continues. Detective Inspector Phil Morris and his partner Detective Donna Barclay are on the hunt to identify the body, the only clues initially are her teeth and hands are missing.

After many years of silence Donna’s cousin Tricia makes frantic attempts to contact her, her daughter Alex has gone missing. Tricia is of psychic persuasion can she fathom where she is, or if there is a link to the murder? All she seems to get are vivid images of flames.

Another mother and daughter seem to be harbouring secrets and a web of deceit is forming. There is a race against time to solve this case. 

Both Phil and Donna are realistic coppers, there is a good balance between their work and personal life. The reader gets plenty of glimpses into their family and relationships while they remain good old fashioned professional platonic colleagues.

The Daughter is chilling, atmospheric and absorbing. It’s a quick read, but don’t be fooled by the speed it can be read, because it contains a well paced crime mystery.

My thanks to Billy and Emma Mitchell for inviting me onto the tour. I read and reviewed voluntarily.

 

#BookReview ~ Love Unlimited: Anthology @AnneHamilton7 @geralyncorcillo #BookBoost

Explore the unlimited nature of love and its many incarnations in Love Unlimited, an anthology featuring eleven short stories and novellas by women authors that cross generations, cultural backgrounds, and borders.

Some of the stories will warm your heart, tickle your funny bone, and make you reflect on the complex nature of love.

LOVE LETTERS TO THE UNIVERSE by Bryana Beecham
When Ursula aims her cupid’s arrow at an office colleague, the drama begins with a series of handwritten letters. Penned to charm and disarm, the one-sided letters take on a life of their own… until one day Ursula decides it’s time to take their relationship to the next level. What could possibly go wrong?

IN HER SPACE by Geralyn Corcillo
A sixty-four-year-old woman lives quietly, content with all she has survived in life. But things change when she discovers a homeless young man living under her small house.

SMYTH SAVES THE DATE by Laura Chapman
While clashing with his stern but swoon-worthy producer, George, about the show’s direction—and trying to plan his best friend’s wedding—Smyth will have to choose what he needs more: fame or love.

SUMMER HEALING by Kelly Cain
A contemporary enemies to lovers romance about a poly-sci major home for the summer from college. While visiting her ailing grandfather in the hospital, she meets a hot RN with strong political opinions, completely opposite of her own.

SUPERMOM by Katie Leonard
When her mother-in-law is injured, Lauren is forced to bring her wife’s son (okay, he’s her son, too) to a comic book convention. As she navigates a world of masked heroes, flirty villains, and a giant gorilla, she learns unexpected lessons about empathy and love.

THE SHINING GIRL by Anne Hamilton
Surviving a cyclone, Caroline travels from India to London and back again, to find – maybe – the man she once loved but shouldn’t have. En route, a surreal encounter with her would-be guardian angel helps her redefine love, life, and what she really wants from both.

KANEEZ’S BULBUL: THE SONGBIRD by Zainab Muhammad Shahid
Set in Lahore, the capital city of the Pakistani province of Punjab, this love story features a young couple whose marriage of convenience reveals dark family secrets from the pre-Partition era. If love gives life, it certainly has the power to take it away.

FLYGIRL’S SECOND CHANCE by Samantha Bryant
Jessica “Flygirl” Roark has no problem with flying headlong into danger to save the citizens of Springfield, but that doesn’t mean she’s immune to nerves on the eve of her wedding. Sure, she’s survived ovarian cancer and learned to control her new powers of flight, but is she ready for her second chance at romance?

STARTING OVER by Lizbeth Durano
When her flight is delayed due to a snowstorm, a young painter, recently betrayed by her boyfriend and best friend, finds herself stuck overnight at Gate 27. But she’s not alone for she finds a new friend in a carefree young man who just might be the perfect friend for the duration of the wait… maybe even longer.

PARIS IN APRIL by Therese Giraldi
An American woman has her life upended on an April day in Paris.

KISS MY SWEET SKULL by Amy Gettinger
Is Indiana sugar cream pie seriously the only answer for Betty, an anthropology professor with a daunting forensic task and suffocating skull dreams that haunt her nightly? Or could a perfectly timed, yummy kiss be just the thing she needs to see her through this Halloween?

Purchase Here

My Thoughts

It’s always nice to have a book you can pick up and read in segments. This anthology of short stories is absolutely ideal for that. Eleven very different authors all giving their take on the unlimited nature of love. Some I have read their work before while others are completely new to me so that makes it interesting. What is love? What does it mean to the individuals? How is it expressed? Each form of love is unique and I’m sure there will be one if not more stories in here that will capture your heart. A nicely produced book that holds a variety of enjoyment.

I’m just going to highlight two that particularly held my attention, I enjoyed and will remember.

IN HER SPACE by Geralyn Corcillo 

A lady increasing in years, with secrets in her past has her reasons for never marrying or having children. She lives alone and is very wary about letting anyone get close to her, even a friend who she has known for years. There is an underlying sensation of fear, but what of?

Eventually this lady becomes aware of something under her house .. can she possibly be brave enough to investigate or let anyone get close to her heart .. this is a lovely story of overcoming emotions in a very innocent way. This tale left me full of hope that there can still be good in the world. 

THE SHINING GIRL by Anne Hamilton

I was immediately captivated from the beginning of The Shining Girl when a young lady, Caroline is sitting on a plane, scribbling her life choices on a sick bag. I could identify with that! I loved her thought process, am I ‘Plane-Crazy or Plain-Crazy!? 

She is running from a cyclone to a destination in India where there is someone she may/may-not want to meet in room 921. Her dilemma of whether there are actually voices in her head telling her what to do or if she is in fact thinking clearly adds to the suspense. Who is it she feels she should see?

When she meets a young man working at the hotel there is a connection between them, he possibly understands her better than she does herself. Or it could be pori rahka kora…..

This is a beautiful story with so much atmosphere the visuals and scents lift off the page and enrich the reading experience. Sometimes love arrives in mysterious ways and this tale shows we should open our hearts to accept it.

There is an author bio and contact details at the end of each story.

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#BlogTour #Review ~ Dangerous Crossing by Rachel Rhys @MsTamarCohen @TransworldBooks

A stunning, atmospheric novel in the great tradition of Death on the Nile and Patricia Highsmith, which tells of a young girl’s terrifying journey trapped on a cruise liner to Australia at the brink of the Second World War.

England, September 1939
Lily Shepherd boards a cruise liner for a new life in Australia and is plunged into a world of cocktails, jazz and glamorous friends. But as the sun beats down, poisonous secrets begin to surface. Suddenly Lily finds herself trapped with nowhere to go …

Australia, six-weeks later
The world is at war, the cruise liner docks, and a beautiful young woman is escorted onto dry land in handcuffs.

What has she done?

Purchase Here

About the Author

I was born in Ibadan, Nigeria where my anthropologist father happened to be doing fieldwork at the time. Sabbatical years in far-flung places were a feature of my childhood and I attended school in both Sierra Leone and California. Otherwise, I mostly grew up in the suburbs of London where my adolescence was spent either in the local library or waiting for the last tube home.

After taking an American Studies degree at Manchester University I taught English in Madrid. While working as a secretary back in London, I started writing features and hand-delivering them to the magazine publishing house around the corner. The day the first one got accepted, I packed in my job and declared myself a freelance journalist, which is basically what I remained for the next twenty years, writing features for national magazines and newspapers, such as Marie Claire, The Times and The Telegraph, and then moving on to non fiction books. My dream was always to write fiction but it wasn’t until I was forty-seven that I finally conquered the self doubt and my first novel, The Mistress’s Revenge was published.

These days I live in North London with my partner and three (nearly) grown children and one very badly behaved dog. Together with my family I spent four happy years living in Spain from 2004 to 2008 and I live in fear of people finding this out and asking me something in Spanish at which I remain shamefully inept.

My first novel, The Mistress’s Revenge, was followed by three more contemporary fiction titles under the name Tamar Cohen – The War of the WivesSomeone Else’s Wedding and The Broken.

In November 2014, my first crime novel, Dying For Christmas was published under the name Tammy Cohen, followed by First One Missing a year later, and When She Was Bad in April 2016. My latest, They All Fall Down is published in July 2017.

Writing as Rachel RhysDangerous Crossing, my first foray into historical mystery was published in March 2017.

I am a member of the Killer Women collective of London-based female UK crime writers.

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My Review

The charming cover of Dangerous Crossing is enough to make me want to pick it up. The era in which it is set, just pre-war 1939 always fascinates me and the endless possibilities that could arise on board a cruise to Australia sealed the deal.

This is not a book to be read quickly, it is fairly complex with a large cast of characters who all draw you into their lives. Lily is travelling on the Orontes as part of the Government’s assisted-passage scheme to Australia. Her plan is to seek employment in a large house when she arrives. 

She is sharing a cabin with two lowly chambermaids, and they don’t always get on. Lily soon finds herself mixing with the higher ‘class’ glamorous Eliza, surely her intentions can’t be innocent? In a time where ‘class’ was so divided having somebody lend designer, expensive clothing would ring a few bells. She also befriends a brother and sister who seem rather secretive which piques Lily’s curiosity about Edward.

This is an atmospheric book, slow burn tension which I would call a mystery not thriller. The journey allows for some wonderful descriptions of the scenery and ports of call. Each person has something they are hiding or running from so the reader is left to untangle the web. Just imagine the thrills of romance, murder, secrets and lies all taking place in the middle of the sea where you can’t escape!

I liked Lily, she desperately wanted to travel but the realities of being homesick as well as seasick and then getting caught up in all kinds of random actions from a bunch of strangers tested her emotions and maturity.

Take the time to savour this novel, enjoy the moment, go back in time and immerse yourself into a very different world from today. It reminded me a lot of Agatha Christie. 

A good solid read. Thanks to the author, publisher and Anne Cater for inviting me onto the tour. I read and reviewed voluntarily.

#BlogTour #Review ~ The Boardwalk by the Sea by @GeorginaTroy @BrookCottageBks

Series: The Boardwalk by the Sea, Book 1

Author name: Georgina Troy

Genre: Contemporary Fiction/Romance

Release Date: 15 July 2017

Publisher: Green Shutter Books

Wipe off your flip flops, it’s going to be a bumpy ride…

When Sacha Collins, cafe owner and sundae-maker extraordinaire, meets Italian archaeologist, Alessandro Salvatore in Rome, she’s grateful to him for being her tour guide. Now he’s turned up in the seaside village where she lives, known locally as, The Boardwalk by the Sea and is setting up a gelateria in direct competition to her retro Summer Sundaes Café.

She’s only been running her café for two years since taking over from her father. Until now the only other shops on the boardwalk have been a wool shop, an antique shop and a second-hand

book shop. These have helped rather than hindered her custom. How will her creative sundaes made from fresh Jersey ice cream compete with his delicious Italian gelato?

Sacha is worried. Is there enough custom for both businesses to thrive? Who is behind the strange changes being made on the boardwalk? And when the oldest resident on the boardwalk is threatened with eviction can Sacha and Alessandro come together and find a way of helping her?

For a peaceful little boardwalk overlooking one of the quieter beaches on the island, there’s an awful lot going on and some of it is going to lead to big changes.

BUY LINKS

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About the Author

Georgina Troy is the pseudonym of author Deborah Carr. Her first book, A Jersey Kiss was a finalist in the Contemporary Romance Category of the Romantic Novel of the Year Awards 2016 (RoNAs) and finalist in the Joan Hessayon Award for New Writers 2015.

Her WW1 historical romance, Broken Faces, written in her own name, Deborah Carr, was runner-up in the Good Housekeeping Novel Writing Competition 2012. She lives on the island of Jersey with her husband, two children and three rescue dogs. Her books are published by Accent Press and Green Shutter Books. Georgina is a member of The Blonde Plotters.

Georgina’s new series, The Boardwalk by the Sea, includes four standalone novels about friends, Sacha, Bella, Lexi and Jools. Each book is set in a different season. The girls live on or near a small seaside village known locally as The Boardwalk by the Sea and all of them make an appearance in the books throughout the series but each book will focus on one of the friends.

Summer Sundaes (Book 1)

Autumn Antics (Book 2) – due Spring 2018

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My Review

I read this book at a time where the summer in the UK was just dwindling into autumn, constant rain, wind and chilly! The Boardwalk by the Sea the first in the Summer Sundaes series was the perfect antidote. Not only was I whisked away to the stunning city of Rome where I could visualise the tourist attractions that I remember fondly from my visit. We then were transported to Jersey, which sounds absolutely idyllic. So the travelling alone took my mind off the weather!

Then we meet Sacha, a young lady who is in Rome with her Aunt, when Aunt has a migraine she nattily arranges for the hunky Allessandro (family friend) to act as tour guide. There is an instant zing between them. I loved the way they reacted to each other and he was a charismatic delight.

Back home the tables are turned, Allessandro comes to Jersey on business so Sacha has opportunity to show him around and introduce him to her family and friends. She works hard in the little cafe on the boardwalk which sells the perfectly glorious sundaes. Trouble arrives in town though when it appears there may be some competition to win the gelato buying crowd.

A lovely tale of a community puling together, all the characters are well placed and likeable. Plenty of fun and romance, I’m looking forward to catching up with some of the others in the next book. Some yummy recipes are included as well which is always a bonus!

Thanks to the author, publisher and Brook Cottage Books for my copy which I read and reviewed voluntarily. 

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What a fabulous prize .. become a character in Autumn Antics (Book 2) named after someone the winner nominates, i.e themself/family member.

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#BlogBlitz #Review ~ Cold Blood by @RobertBryndza @bookouture #PublicationDay

I’m delighted to be able to participate in the blog blitz on publication day for number five in the Detective Erika Foster series. Have a fabulous day Robert and thanks for keeping us entertained with these amazing stories! 🙂 x

Title: Cold Blood

Author: Robert Bryndza

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She fell in love with a killer, now she’s one too.

The suitcase was badly rusted, and took Erika several attempts, but it yielded and sagged open as she unzipped it. Nothing could prepare her for what she would find inside… When a battered suitcase containing the dismembered body of a young man washes up on the shore of the river Thames, Detective Erika Foster is shocked. She’s worked on some terrifying cases but never seen anything like this before. As Erika and her team set to work, she makes the link with another victim – the body of a young woman dumped in an identical suitcase two weeks ago. Erika quickly realises she’s on the trail of a serial killer who’s already made their next move. Yet just as Erika starts to make headway with the investigation, she is the victim of a brutal attack. But nothing will stop Erika. As the body count rises, the twin daughters of her colleague Commander Marsh are abducted, and the stakes are higher than ever before. Can Erika save the lives of two innocent children before it’s too late? She’s running out of time and about to make a disturbing discovery…there’s more than one killer. Brilliantly gripping, Cold Blood will have you hooked from the first page and holding your breath to the heart-stopping and shocking ending.

About the Author

Robert Bryndza is the author of the international #1 bestseller The Girl in the Ice. The Wall Street Journal and USA Today bestseller is the first book in the Detective Erika Foster series. The Night Stalker, Dark Water and Last Breath are the second, third, and fourth books in the series, and the fifth book, Cold Blood is now available. Robert’s books have sold over 2 million copies, and have been translated into 27 languages. In addition to writing crime fiction, Robert has published a bestselling series of romantic comedy novels. He is British and lives in Slovakia.

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My Review

It’s always exciting when a new Robert Bryndza book arrives, once you have met Detective Erika Foster you will be hooked. This is a strong police procedural series full of murder mayhem, grisly forensics and psychopaths as a norm. If you like your books tense, exciting and a thrill a minute then these are for you.

I like Erika, she is pretty kick-ass, she never has it easy though whether it’s in her personal life or involving her team of investigators. I sometimes wonder if such situations really do arise or they are all stored up to dump on her! 

This time we have bodies in suitcases which can only be described as macabre, add in abduction, drugs, lack of police funds a vicious attack and complications in team relationships and Cold Blood turns out to be a fast paced action story. There is so much going on that it’s difficult to turn the pages fast enough to keep up. 

I found the scenes with Nina and Max intriguing as well as disturbing, I did however look forward to the chapters based around them. It won’t necessarily be to everyone’s taste but adds an edge to the circumstances.

A highly enjoyable read that had me riveted from the first page. Full of stifling atmospheric fear for the characters welfare.

Thanks Robert you have done it again! Bravo!

My thanks to the author, publisher and netgalley for my copy which I read and reviewed voluntarily. 

 

#BlogBlitz #Review ~ Degrees Of Darkness by @TonyJForder @Bloodhoundbook

Pre-teen girls are being abducted from their homes and their families murdered. When Frank Rogers, once a DI with the Met and now running his own debt collection agency, is told that his own daughter is missing, his son murdered, he naturally wants to become involved with the case.

Soon Frank’s face is all over the news. In an unexpected turn of events, the killer contacts the police and says he is willing to talk, but only to Frank.

When the body of the first abducted girl is discovered, Frank realises it is a race against time to save his daughter.

In order to solve the case, Frank must work out how the killer is picking his victims.

But how do you catch a murderer who is hiding in plain sight? And can Frank solve the mystery, when he has so much to lose?

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About the Author

On 1st February 2017, Tony signed to Bloodhound Books, who published his edgy crime thriller Bad to the Bone in spring. It is the first in a series.

Later this year, Tony’s second novel for Bloodhound Books, Degrees of Darkness, featuring ex-detective Frank Rogers, will be published.

Tony has been writing stories since childhood, but it was only when he won a short story competition judged by an editor from Pan Books, that he realised he might actually be half decent at this writing business.

The story, Gino’s Bar and Grille, went on to be published in Dark Voices 2, part of the celebrated Pan Book of Horror series. Three further short story sales followed: Book End, published in Dark Voices 4, Character Role, in FEAR magazine, and finally A Grim Story, which featured in A Rattler’s Tale.

During a book singing for Dark Voices 2, Tony was seated next to author Brian Lumley. At one point, Tony revealed to Brian that he felt out of place alongside all the proper writers. Brian then told Tony something he has never forgotten: “The moment you sat down and pulled a story out of your imagination and put it to paper, you became a proper writer.”

Subsequently, Tony began to focus on novel writing. He admits that his initial attempts were exploratory and somewhat derivative, although there was some interest from an agent – who oddly enough turned out to be Brian Lumley’s wife, Dorothy.

Tony wrote Degrees of Darkness, which he was happy with. He wasn’t so happy with a follow-up, so that never saw the light of day.

As a part-time writer with a full-time job, plus some ill-health, life got in the way and, although Tony continued writing, it took a back seat to making a living.

This year, however, Tony has been inspired by new ideas, and has been working hard on two new books, both of which should be completed in 2017.

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My Review

Degrees of Darkness certainly took me on a journey to the dark-side and beyond! This is an intensely chilling book. The author suckered me in from the beginning and never really let go. My heart was in my mouth a lot of the time.

The characters are all brilliantly real, flawed and wrung out. The descriptive writing sends chills down your spine while at the same time it’s memorising.

Frank Rogers has left the police force and is running a fairly dubious debt collection agency. Nevertheless he is making a living following his failed marriage and life plods on.

Until the ghastly news comes in about his ex-wife, son and daughter .. there is a killer on the loose who has a penchant for young girls.

Things are beginning to become a bit personal for Frank as he finds himself caught up in a race against time. Can he figure out who is responsible before his daughter Laura comes to any harm?

This is a gritty police crime thriller and is definitely not for the faint-hearted. There are several gruesome situations played out but the seemingly innocent ‘milk’ incident has put me off for life! The utter repulsion stayed with me for days such was the quality of the writing!

This will keep you on the edge of your seat and the drama doesn’t relent at all. A tremendous roller-coaster ride through hell.

Thanks to the author, publisher and Sarah for inviting me onto the tour. I read and reviewed voluntarily. 

 

#BlogBlitz #Review ~ The Missing Girls by @carolewyer @bookouture

One girl found dead. Another girl gone… Long shadows danced on the tin walls. Inside the trunk lay Carrie Miller, wrapped in plastic, arms folded across her ribcage, lips sealed tight forever… When a girl’s body is found at a Midlands storage unit, it is too decomposed for Detective Robyn Carter to read the signs left by the killer. No one knows the woman in blue who rented the unit; her hire van can’t be traced. But as the leads run dry another body is uncovered. This time the killer’s distinctive mark is plain to see, and matching scratches on the first victim’s skeleton make Robyn suspect she’s searching for a serial-killer. As Robyn closes in on the killer’s shocking hunting ground, another girl goes missing, and this time it’s someone close to her own heart. Robyn can’t lose another loved one. Can she find the sickest individual she has ever faced, before it’s too late?

An utterly gripping and darkly compelling detective thriller that will have fans of Robert Dugoni, Angela Marsons and James Patterson hooked from the very start. You will not guess the ending!

Amazon Links:

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Amazon US

About the Author

 

As a child Carol Wyer was always moving, and relied on humour to fit in at new schools. A funny short story won her popularity, planting the seed of becoming a writer. Her career spans dry cleaning, running a language teaching company, and boxercise coaching. Now writing full-time, Carol has several books published by Safkhet and journalism in many magazines.

Carol won The People’s Book Prize Award for non-fiction (2015), and can sometimes be found performing her stand-up comedy routine Laugh While You Still Have Teeth.

Little Girl Lost, the first book in the Detective Robyn Carter crime thriller series came out in January 2017.

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My Review

I can honestly say it took me about a week after finishing The Missing Girls to get my head into a space where I felt I could comment enough on it to do it justice. I think I even left a tweet to Carol saying ‘OMG’. I simply devoured books one and two in this series so I was almost hyperventilating when I finally got my hands on book three. Thankfully as a blogger/reviewer I didn’t have to wait as long as some readers!

I am full of admiration for DI Robyn Carter she has wormed her way into my heart with her passion for the job, her interactions within the force and the love and loss she has shown dealing with her personal life.

Each case she embarks on becomes her entire focus whereby she puts her soul into finding the criminals. This time young girls are the victims. As the team race against the clock it becomes a bit too close to home when a girl known to Robyn becomes the next target.

Carol’s ability to create such creepy, crazy people is scary. So much evil seeps from her pen. These stories are filled with dark, twisty, bizarre, grisly awesomeness! The intricacies of the forensics along with the gritty details from the pathologists are achingly real, not for the squeamish but such an enormous addition to the book.

I love the way the characters that surround Robyn in the team are all so realistic you can sense the tension as they work late into the night but there is an underlying layer of concern for each other. Her developing relationship with Amelie (nearly step-daughter) is poignant but brings a freshness and a sense of light relief at just the right times when the action becomes so intense the reader really needs a breather!

I wont go into the details of the crimes, they need to be discovered and savoured by the reader to gain momentum on this ride towards hell. I never doubted Carol’s move to the ‘Darkside’ but she has exceeded all my expectations for this book, I didn’t really think 1 & 2 could be improved upon. And as for that ending, Carol what are you trying to do to me aaaaaargh, now I need book four pronto.

To sum up The Missing Girls all I have to say is I freakin’ adore Robyn she is one of my favourite detectives. This book will obviously be on my 2017 top books list but I suspect the next one will surpass it.

Thanks so much to the author, publisher and netgalley for my copy which I read and reviewed voluntarily.