Heartaches and Christmas Cakes by Amy Miller @bookouture #blogblitz

** advanced copy received via publisher **

It is my absolute pleasure to join the blog tour for Heartaches and Christmas Cakes by Amy Miller today! Many thanks to Kim Nash and Bookouture for the opportunity and the advanced copy!

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Author : Amy Miller
Title : Heartaches and Christmas Cakes
Series : Wartime Bakery #1
Pages : 259
Publisher : Bookouture
Publication date : October 20, 2017

aboutthebook

December, 1940: All that Audrey Barton wants is her family together for Christmas. But the war changes everything…

The Barton family bakery in Bournemouth has been at the heart of the town for generations: Audrey and Charlie Barton have never been rich, but their bread and cakes – and their love and advice – have enriched the lives of others in the town for many years.

When war breaks out, it doesn’t take long for trouble to arrive on the bakery doorstep. Audrey’s brother William has joined up to fight, and William’s fiancé Elsie fears she may lose him before their life together has even begun. Audrey’s stepsister Lily comes to stay, but Lily is clearly hiding a dark secret.

And a silent and strange little girl is evacuated to the town – will Audrey get to the heart of what is ailing her?

mythoughts

Once again, you find me reviewing a book I wouldn’t normally pick up but I was swayed by the words “bakery” and “wartime” because weird as it sounds, stories set in World War II always seem to intrigue me. If like me, the word “romance” gives you the heebie-jeebies, let me tell you that while there is some of that going on here, it’s not the be all and end all of this tale. So please don’t let that put you off!

Charlie and Audrey Barton run a bakery in Bournemouth when war breaks out in Europe. Charlie wants to sign up to fight but is rejected as his bakery plays an important part in the war effort and for some people bread is the only food they’ll get. I love that the story centres around this bakery and its status in the community as I admit, I never really realised its value.

Audrey wants nothing more than a child of her own and her family around her. But then her brother William goes off to fight and everything changes. When Audrey’s stepsister Lily arrives unexpectedly and Audrey takes in Mary, a young evacuee, life will change forever. Because Lily has a secret and Mary doesn’t seem to talk.

This is such a wonderful story that shows the other side of war. It offers everything you could possibly want. Love, loss, secrets, family and friendships. We get to know these characters who are desperately trying to survive with what little they have. I feel the author truly showed the community spirit that was so important in those days by, for instance, coming together and somehow managing to create a lovely wedding day, seemingly out of nothing.

Charlie and Audrey have to be incredibly inventive to keep coming up with cakes in the middle of rationing when products they’d normally use are suddenly unavailable. It also shows how the world changed when women stepped up and took over jobs that used to be for men only.

I felt all these characters were extremely likeable and I warmed to them all quite quickly.  With a war raging and family members away fighting for months, unable to send news, it’s hard to imagine that life must go on somehow. And in doing so, these people showed amazing strength and resilience. War doesn’t just change lives, it also changes people and some will realise they’re stronger than they thought.

This is the first book in the Wartime Bakery series and I absolutely loved every minute of it! Heartaches and Christmas Cakes is a sometimes heartbreaking, yet also truly heartwarming and uplifting story and I honestly can’t wait to read more about the Barton family and their friends.

Heartaches and Christmas Cakes is available now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

Amy Miller is the pseudonym of Amy Bratley, who started her writing life working on magazines and newspapers. She has previously written three women’s fiction novels published by Pan Macmillan, the first of which was a bestseller in Italy.

Her day job is being a freelance managing editor of both a vintage interiors magazine and a food magazine, two subjects she’s passionate about.

Amy lives in Dorset with her husband and two children.

***

Heartaches and Christmas cakes - Blog Tour

Yellow Room by Shelan Rodger @DomePress

** advanced copy received from publisher **

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Author : Shelan Rodger
Title : Yellow Room
Pages : 256
Publisher : The Dome Press
Publication date : October 5, 2017

aboutthebook

Haunted by a tragic childhood accident, Chala’s whole life has been moulded by guilt and secrets. After the death of the stepfather she adored, Chala is thrown into turmoil once again.

Volunteering in Kenya seems to offer an escape, and a way of re-evaluating her adult relationships, although violence and hardship simmer alongside its richness and beauty.

The secrets of the Yellow Room are still with her and she can’t run away forever.

mythoughts

The opening chapter of Yellow Room is one you won’t forget in a hurry. At the time, our main character Chala is only four years old but the events result in a family secret that will shape her life, her future and heavily influence her relationships.

When her stepfather dies, Chala feels completely adrift. She decides to go to Kenya to volunteer at an orphanage. The country is in turmoil, marred by violence and the orphans, most of which come from the streets, have a tough time leaving their old lives behind. The choices and mistakes they make will affect their lives. Ultimately, Chala will realise that no matter where she goes, the secrets will stay with her like scars and that maybe all the guilt she carries she with her could be misplaced.

Secrets are like scars that heal over a wound that never quite disappears.

I found it quite hard to warm to Chala and her husband Paul. Neither came across especially sympathetically. They are both utterly flawed, yet human and completely realistic. I sometimes struggle with a story if I don’t particularly like the characters but there’s something about the author’s writing that really drew me in, something haunting, something quite exquisite and I was eager to keep reading.

Having never been to Africa, it was easy to imagine what it might be like due to the wonderful descriptions and the incredible atmosphere Shelan Rodger was able to create. When election day causes violence to break out, the tension was utterly palpable and had me on the edge of my seat.

Yellow Room is a beautifully written and memorable story about family and secrets. It’s brilliantly perceptive and evocative and while so far removed from my usual genres, I’m pleased I was given the opportunity to read and enjoy this one.

Many thanks to Karen Bultiauw and The Dome Press for my advanced copy, which I chose to review honestly!

Yellow Room is available now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Bookdepository | Goodreads

Don’t Let Go – Harlan Coben

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Author : Harlan Coben
Title : Don’t Let Go
Pages : 368
Publisher : Century
Publication date : September 26, 2017

aboutthebook

Suburban New Jersey Detective Napoleon “Nap” Dumas hasn’t been the same since senior year of high school, when his twin brother Leo and Leo’s girlfriend Diana were found dead on the railroad tracks—and Maura, the girl Nap considered the love of his life, broke up with him and disappeared without explanation. For fifteen years, Nap has been searching, both for Maura and for the real reason behind his brother’s death. And now, it looks as though he may finally find what he’s been looking for.

When Maura’s fingerprints turn up in the rental car of a suspected murderer, Nap embarks on a quest for answers that only leads to more questions—about the woman he loved, about the childhood friends he thought he knew, about the abandoned military base near where he grew up, and mostly about Leo and Diana—whose deaths are darker and far more sinister than Nap ever dared imagine.

mythoughts

It’s always a treat to read a new Harlan Coben book so I was quite pleased when my request to view Don’t Let Go on Netgalley was approved. However, this one didn’t quite work for me.

Fifteen years ago, Nap’s brother Leo and his girlfriend were found dead on railroad tracks. That same night, Nap’s high school girlfriend Maura disappears. All these years, Nap has been trying to find out what really happened that night and it looks like he might finally get to the truth when Maura’s fingerprints turn up at the scene of a murder.  Are current events connected to those from fifteen years ago? Can Nap trust the people closest to him?

Don’t Let Go is quite a quick read with a rather likeable main character who plays by his own rules and it seemed to have oodles of potential. While I thought the story was entertaining and enjoyable with many witty chuckle-out-loud moments, I also felt it was trying just a little bit too hard at being funny and lacked the suspense it needed to be a truly gripping thriller and keep me hooked.

As always, Harlan Coben excels at naturally flowing conversations and fast dialogues. He also kept me guessing until the end as I tried, and failed, to figure out the connections and what really happened. It’s always a good thing when I can’t predict the outcome and this one completely took me by surprise. But overall, I feel things just fell flat. I’ve read and enjoyed quite a lot of this author’s previous work but I’m sorry to say that, while Don’t Let Go is entertaining, I just felt somewhat disappointed in this one. However, this will in no way stop me from reading another Harlan Coben book in future.

Many thanks to Random House for my advanced copy, which I received via Netgalley and chose to review honestly!

Don’t Let Go is available now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

This Week in Books (October 18)

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Hosted by Lipsy Lost and Found, my Wednesday post gives you a taste of what I’m reading this week. A similar meme is run by Taking on a World of Words.

Last book I finished reading :

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When child psychologist Imogen Reid takes on the case of 11-year-old Ellie Atkinson, she refuses to listen to warnings that the girl is dangerous.

Ellie was the only survivor of a fire that killed her family. Imogen is convinced she’s just a sad and angry child struggling to cope with her loss.

But Ellie’s foster parents and teachers are starting to fear her. When she gets upset, bad things seem to happen. And as Imogen gets closer to Ellie, she may be putting herself in danger.

The book I’m currently reading :

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Fresh from the palaces of Burgundy and France, Anne draws attention at the English court, embracing the play of courtly love.

But when the King commands, nothing is ever a game.

Anne has a spirit worthy of a crown – and the crown is what she seeks. At any price.

What I’m reading next :

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Mia Hamilton lived the perfect life with her husband, university teacher Zach, and their two-year-old daughter, Freya. But everything changed when Zach committed suicide on the same night one of his students, Josie Carpenter, vanished.

Five years later, and Josie is still missing but Mia has finally found some happiness with new boyfriend Will.

Until one day when stranger Alison walks into her life and tells Mia that her husband didn’t kill himself.

Desperate to find out what really happened to Zach, Mia is forced to put her trust in Alison. But she soon discovers that Alison has her own agenda behind exposing the details of Zach’s death. Can Mia really believe anything Alison says?

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Have you read any of these? Would you like to? What are you reading this week?

Happy reading! xx

The Detriment by David Videcette @DavidVidecette

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Author : David Videcette
Title : The Detriment
Series : Jake Flannagan #2
Pages : 358
Publisher : Videcette Limited
Publication date : June 29, 2017

aboutthebook

“The truth costs nothing, but a lie can cost you everything…”

June 2007: a barbaric nail bomb is planted outside a London nightclub, a spy is found dead in his garden, and a blazing Jeep is driven into Glasgow airport. Three events bound by an earth-shattering connection that should have remained buried forever.

From the author of ‘The Theseus Paradox’, the smash-hit 7/7 thriller based on true events, comes the sequel about a real-life mystery that threatens to destroy a nation. Detective Inspector Jake Flannagan must uncover how a series of astonishing events are inextricably linked, before the past closes in on him.

We all have secrets we say we’ll never tell.

mythoughts

Flippin’ heck! David Videcette is back with a vengeance! After having read and loved The Theseus Paradox, I knew it wouldn’t be long until I picked up this one. It was one of my most anticipated books and even though my expectations were sky high, I was not disappointed! David still can’t tell you the truth, but he can tell you a story and once again, it’s an absolute corker!

It’s June 2007 and a series of events are keeping law enforcement busy. A car with a nail bomb is found outside a nightclub, a spy is found dead in his garden and a Jeep is driven into Glasgow airport with one of the occupants setting himself on fire. Are these events in any connected and if so, how? Meanwhile, Claire, Jake Flannagan’s on/off girlfriend drags him into an investigation of her own.

After events from the previous book, which you should really read by the way if you don’t want to miss out on anything, Jake was suspended and has been sidelined in the office for the last six months. Eager to sink his teeth back into an investigation, he didn’t quite count on having to work with an old nemesis. Jake is still doing what he thinks is right, no matter the trouble it may land him in. But he’s also struggling and may finally admit to himself that he might possibly need some help.

David Videcette is quite the masterful storyteller. While this story is based on true events, I can never figure out where fact ends and fiction begins. And then I read the author’s notes and almost wish I hadn’t. Sometimes it’s better not to know.

The Detriment is action-packed from the very first page. There’s a lot going on and it’s one heck of a compelling, intense and thrilling ride! It left me utterly breathless, exhausted but oh so, satisfied. This is such an incredible series and it would make the most fantastic movie or TV series. (Richard Armitage would be perfect, by the way. Just saying’.)

With a flawed, yet highly likeable protagonist, various threads and a brilliantly executed and intelligent plot, this chilling thriller is a total must-read! I can’t wait to read the next Jake Flannigan book!

The Detriment is available now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Bookdepository | Goodreads

 

The Surrogate by Louise Jensen @Fab_fiction @bookouture

** advanced copy received via publisher **

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Author : Louise Jensen
Title : The Surrogate
Pages : 374
Publisher : Bookouture
Publication date : September 27, 2017

aboutthebook

Be careful what you wish for…

Kat and her husband Nick have tried everything to become parents, and are on the point of giving up. Then a chance encounter with Kat’s childhood friend Lisa gives Kat and Nick one last chance to achieve their dream.

But Kat and Lisa’s history hides dark secrets. And there is more to Lisa than meets the eye.

As dangerous cracks start to appear in Kat’s perfect picture of happily-ever-after, she realises that she must face her fear of the past to save her family.

mythoughts

Holy guacamole! This book is completely mental and I mean that in the best way possible!

All Kat wants is to be a mum but it just doesn’t seem to be happening for her. After two attempts to adopt a child fall through, a chance encounter with her old childhood friend Lisa may just make her dream come true. But there are a lot of dark secrets in their history.

The butterfly effect. A flutter is all it takes.

Prepare yourself for a ridiculous rollercoaster ride full of tension and suspense. There are so many twists and turns, I thought I’d end up with whiplash! This is one of those stories where I ended up not trusting anyone. With a cast of flawed and troubled characters, my sympathies shifted back and forth. I couldn’t decide where my loyalties were and almost ended up despising just about every single one of them.

The story starts out at the scene of what looks like a double murder and throughout, you just can’t help yourself trying to guess who the victims are. Every time I thought I had it figured out, Louise Jensen deftly put a stop to my ideas and led me in a completely, and usually wrong, direction. I absolutely love it when an author is able to keep me guessing until the very end. Speaking of endings, what? Let me say that again : WHAT?!

The Surrogate is the absolute perfect book to read in one sitting, which I would have done but contrary to popular belief I do actually sleep sometimes. But it was a tough decision as this really is an utterly unputdownable and mind-blowing page-turner! Absolutely brilliant psychological thriller and I can’t wait to read more by Louise Jensen!

Many thanks to Bookouture for the advanced copy, which I received via Netgalley and chose to review honestly!

The Surrogate is available now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

Weekly Wrap-Up (October 15)

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I have no idea where this week went. It feels like I did last week’s wrap-up yesterday. Nothing to report. My life is incredibly boring. Unless you count three-day migraines to mix things up a bit. I don’t, personally. 😄

Still, I did manage to read 6 books this week and since that’s three more than last week, I’ll take it.

Books I read this week :

 

Books I bought this week :

Obviously, the book buying monster feels it needs to catch up on the weeks it’s missed so I bought another 7 books this week. But! One is a pre-order though, two I’d already read before buying and three are kindle books so technically that means I just bought the one, right? 😄

ARC’s received via Netgalley :

I need these for blog tours so my logic tells me they don’t count either. 😉 There are more to come but I’m downloading in bits and pieces, all the while keeping an eye on my rating. I may be a tad obsessed with that. 😂

 

Bookpost that arrived this week :

None. I’ve started drawing up retirement plans. 😉


On the blog this past week :

Monday : One of my most popular blog posts since I started my blog and I’m not even surprised at that. My review for Cold Blood by Robert Bryndza

Tuesday : Joined the blog tour for The Fallen Agent by Oliver Tidy

Wednesday : This Week in Books and I’m happy to say that, for once, I did actually read them all AND in the order I posted them!

Thursday : Shared my review for Copycat by Alex Lake

Friday : Reviewed Verdict of Twelve by Raymond Postgate

Saturday : Bookouture Day on the blog! I joined the tour for Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances by Sue Watson and the blog blitz for Her Last Secret by Barbara Copperthwaite

Sunday : Weekly Wrap-Up

Next week on noveldeelights :

I’ll be on two more blog tours but not until the weekend. I’ll be reviewing Heartaches and Christmas Cakes on Saturday and I have a guest post by Lloyd Otis for the Dead Lands blog tour.

Speaking of the weekend, I’ll actually be away. I dare you to ask how much I’m looking forward to that. *grumble* Anyway, hopefully my scheduled posts go through and if someone could share for me in Facebook groups, that’d be really neat!

And that’s it for another week. I will have very little reading time in the upcoming week so it’s probably a good thing I won’t be around to do a wrap-up on Sunday anyway. 😂

Have a great one and I wish you lots of happy reading! xx

Her Last Secret by Barbara Copperthwaite @BCopperthwait @bookouture #blogblitz

** advanced copy received via publisher **

I am absolutely thrilled to be hosting a stop on the blog blitz for Her Last Secret by Barbara Copperthwaite today! Many thanks to Barbara and Noelle Holten for inviting me and for the advanced copy!

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Author : Barbara Copperthwaite
Title : Her Last Secret
Pages : 408
Publisher : Bookouture
Publication date : October 13, 2017

aboutthebook

Some secrets you can never tell.

Everyone thinks the Thomases are the perfect family : grand London house, gorgeous kids.

They don’t know wife Dominique is a paranoid wreck.

They don’t know husband Ben is trapped in a web of deceit.

They don’t know daughter Ruby lives in fear of the next abusive text.

But someone knows all their secrets.

Can the lies that bind them destroy them all?

mythoughts

Holy crap! Okay, it’s official. I’m going to stand up and say it loud and proud : I am a Barbara Copperthwaite fan! After loving The Darkest Lies and Flowers for the Dead, I couldn’t wait to start reading this latest one and the author once again delivered a most outstanding, twist-y tale that had me utterly gripped.

The story starts on Christmas Day when police is called to a house by a resident reporting the sound of a gunshot. It’s clear quite early on something bad has happened but the who or the why remains a mystery for a little longer.

The Thomas family seems to have it all. Father Benjamin is a successful accountant. He and his family live in a million pound house in a nice neighbourhood in London. But Benjamin is in trouble, his wife Dominique isn’t the cool cucumber people think she is and eldest daughter Ruby is the victim of horrendous bullying. Soon, a chain of events is set in motion that will have devastating consequences for the entire family.

Barbara Copperthwaite always manages to come up with realistic and believable characters in relatable situations. None of the characters in Her Last Secret are particularly likeable. They’re stressed and harassed, flawed and damaged, seemingly vying for the worst-parent-of-the-year award and regularly made me want to punch them in the face. Yet, I couldn’t help but be completely invested in them. There’s one exception though, wee Mouse, or Amber as she’s called. I thought she was a truly delightful little bookworm and I adored her from the minute I met her.

Her Last Secret very much deals with the way people portray themselves, how they often wear a mask and hide their innermost feelings and turmoil. And also, the effect a web of lies, deceit and secrets can have on a family.

This psychological thriller is taut with suspense and intrigue. It’s quite dark, often disturbing and at times also incredibly sad. There’s an excellent and compelling plot which I thought was brilliantly constructed as we discover what happened in the week leading up to Christmas. This also leads to a rather long list of potential suspects and conclusions that kept me guessing until the end.

If Barbara Copperthwaite hadn’t already been on my list of go-to authors, she most definitely would be now! I thoroughly enjoyed this and I can’t wait for whatever she comes up with next.

Her Last Secret is available for purchase now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

Barbara is the best-selling author of psychological thrillers INVISIBLE, FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD, THE DARKEST LIES, and HER LAST SECRET.

Much of her success is thanks to her twenty-odd years’ experience as a national newspaper and magazine journalist. She’s interviewed the real victims of crime – and also those who have carried those crimes out. Thanks to people sharing their stories with her, she knows the emotional impact of violence and wrong-doing. That’s why her novels are dark, realistic and tackle not just the crime but its repercussions.

When not writing feverishly, she is often found hiding behind a camera, taking wildlife photographs.

To find out more about Barbara, visit her website. You can also follow her on Twitter or her Facebook Author Page.

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Don’t forget to check out these other fabulous bloggers on their stops!

Her Last Secret - Blog Tour

Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances by Sue Watson @suewatsonwriter @bookouture #blogblitz

** advanced copy received via publisher **

I’m absolutely delighted to be hosting a stop on the blitz tour for Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances by Sue Watson! Many thanks to Kim Nash at Bookouture for the opportunity and the advanced copy!

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Author : Sue Watson
Title : Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances
Pages : 269
Publisher : Bookouture
Publication date : October 12, 2017

aboutthebook

A year after she separated from her husband, Gianni, on Christmas Day, Chloe’s heart is still in pieces as she unpacks the decorations for her first ever festive holiday alone. That is, until the phone rings…

It seems Gianni’s new seaside restaurant is in trouble and Chloe must go to Appledore to save the business – and him. Equally famous for his experimental culinary extravaganzas and his explosive temper, Gianni has been really stirring up a sensation with the locals – and not in a good way!

As pans fly and the temperature in the kitchen rises, Chloe’s calming influence and magic touch might just get critics back on side in time to save the restaurant from sinking like a sad soufflé. But will it be enough to save their marriage?

mythoughts

Some of you may know, this isn’t really my normal sort of read. I tend to shy away from romance things and pretty much anything to do with Christmas. Just call me Scrooge. But this is Sue Watson and her Ice-Cream Café series holds a special place in my heart so the decision to read and review this one was a lot easier than you’d think.

Sue Watson takes us back to the lovely town of Appledore but this time, Winter is coming. (Sorry!) Gianni, a fiery Italian, has opened a restaurant there but things aren’t going very well. Gianni isn’t exactly a people person and has an incredible temper which results in staff leaving, altercations with food critics and grumpy customers. He calls in the help of his estranged wife, Chloe, though he won’t admit the idea was his as he’s far too stubborn for that.

Chloe and Gianni started out having a wonderful relationship and marriage but after the sadness of three miscarriages, each tried to deal with their grief by throwing themselves into their work. A lack of communication, misunderstandings and too much time apart eventually leads Chloe to leave the marriage behind. Forced to spend time together in Appledore and make Gianni’s latest venture a success, could their marriage possibly get a second chance?

I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Appledore with Chloe and Gianni. Although I must admit to frequently feeling my temper rise at Gianni’s attitude and if I’d had a pan handy, it probably would have found its way to his head. Despite his character also delivering quite a few chuckle-worthy moments, he’s also utterly infuriating and Chloe, quite frankly, has the patience of a saint most of the time.

Throw in the delightful residents of Appledore we’ve all come to love, snow and the impending arrival of the holidays, and this does exactly what you’d expect. Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances is a feel-good Christmas romance that will definitely get you into the spirit and is as warm and comforting as a cosy fire or a blanket. Yes, there is a level of predictability but really, I couldn’t care less because this author always manages to come up with realistic characters you care about and root for. And she makes me laugh. It’s that simple, really!

If you’ve read any of this author’s previous books, you will absolutely adore this! If you haven’t, maybe now is the time to give them a go and kick-start the festive period (too soon?) with a giggle or two.

Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances was published on October 12th.

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

Sue Watson was a journalist then a TV Producer at the BBC until she realised that instead of working, she could stay at home, make stuff up and sell it!

So far Sue’s written ten books, and some have been translated into Italian and Portuguese (she’s big in Brazil!) Originally from Manchester, she now lives with her husband and teenage daughter in Worcestershire where her days are spent baking (and eating) lots of cake, while making big life decisions about whether to have Caramel Chew Chew or Salted Caramel ice cream while watching ‘The Biggest Loser USA,’ on TV.

You can contact Sue via her website, Twitter, Facebook Author Page or Instagram

***

Make sure to check out these brilliant bloggers on the tour!

Snowflakes, Iced Cakes and Second Chances - Blog Tour

Verdict of Twelve by Raymond Postgate @BL_Publishing

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Author : Raymond Postgate
Title : Verdict of Twelve
Pages : 256
Publisher : The British Library
Publication date : January 10, 2017 (first published in 1940)

aboutthebook

A woman is on trial for her life, accused of murder. Each of the 12 members of the jury has his or her own burden of guilt and prejudice which could effect the outcome. Hailed as one of the best mysteries of the year when it was first published in 1940, this book has become a classic of the genre.

mythoughts

This is the second book in the British Library Crime Classics series I’ve read and I’m now left with no doubt whatsoever that I’m thoroughly going to enjoy this journey through time. I find it truly impressive how these somehow manage to stand the test of time, despite the rather old fashioned and posh language. Personally, I quite enjoyed that which is a bonus.

Verdict of Twelve is told in various parts. Part one focuses on the twelve members of the jury. This results in a most fascinating character study and gives you the opportunity to try and figure out for yourself which way these jurors would vote at a trial. Because surely they are influenced by their own background, experiences, prejudices, religion even maybe and so they already have a preconceived notion of how this trial should end before it’s even started, no matter the evidence that will be presented to them.

Part two tells us about the woman who’s on trial for murder. I won’t delve into that bit as it will give away too much. I will however say that I absolutely loathed this character and based on that alone, I willed her to be guilty of the crime. Which clearly goes to show I should never be on a jury and I too, as a reader, fell prey to prejudice. I’d like to think that was the author’s intention though.

The rest of the story centres around the investigation and the trial. I was incredibly hooked on it all, despite maybe sometimes having a moment or two where a few sentences went a tad over my head. 😄 This just really combined so many of the things I like to read about. There’s a crime, there’s a trial and I adored the setting. It’s like a legal crime fiction thriller of the olden days. There’s an intriguing plot and a varied cast of interesting characters and there’s poison! How can you not love a book that has poison in it?

So not only do I find myself completely in love with those gorgeous covers, I’m also truly enjoying the stories and I very much look forward to adding more of them to my collection.

Verdict of Twelve was published in January.

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads