Some of my most anticipated books of 2019

At the end of last year, I mentioned doing a post focusing on some of my most anticipated releases for the new year. Since then, it seems everyone and their dog has done a post like that so obviously my idea wasn’t as original as I thought it was. Anyway, I decided to share this list regardless and hopefully you’ll find something that will pique your interest.

Listed by publication date for digital and hardcover copies.

| JANUARY |

Steve Cavanagh – Twisted
Matt Wesolowski – Changeling
Will Dean – Red Snow
Steph Broadribb – Deep Dirty Truth
Diane Setterfield – Once Upon A River

| FEBRUARY |

Angela Marsons – Dead Memories
Jo Spain – Dirty Little Secrets
Stacey Halls – The Familiars
Louise Beech – Call Me Star Girl
C.J. Tudor – The Taking of Annie Thorne
Alex Michaelides – The Silent Patient

| APRIL |

Gillian McAllister – The Evidence Against You

| MAY |

Stuart MacBride – All That’s Dead
Alison Weir – Anna of Kleve : Queen of Secrets
Sarah Hilary – Never Be Broken
Melanie Golding – Little Darlings

| JUNE |

Karin Slaughter – The Last Widow
Alex North – The Whisper Man

| JULY |

Riley Sager – Lock Every Door

| UNKNOWN |

Sharon Bolton – The Poisoner

This is a weird one but I’ve included it anyway. I could have sworn the original publication date was May but Amazon now lists it as December 2020, which quite frankly I refuse to believe because I WANT IT NOW!

Honourable mention to Johana Gustawsson and the third book in the Roy & Castells series.

I have a feeling it’s going to be a great bookish year once again! Which book(s) are you looking forward to the most? Do let me know and I hope you’ve found something in this list that caught your eye. Happy reading! xx

My Top 20 Favourite Reads of 2018

What an absolutely amazing year for books it has been! 

Just like last year, I thought splitting things up between series and stand-alones would help narrow down the list but nope. A Top 10 was never going to happen here. Despite the fact that my reading mojo was up and down like a bloody yo-yo all year, I still managed to read 250 books. Sure, that’s 50 less than last year but do I care? Clue : no, I don’t 😉

Anyway, I present to you My Top 20 Favourite (stand-alone) Reads of 2018. With apologies to the authors/books I had to drop from the list.

In no particular order, except for the Top 5, here we go!

Phoebe Locke – The Tall Man [my review]
Louise Voss – The Old You [my review]
Linwood Barclay – A Noise Downstairs [my review]
Mark Edwards – The Retreat [my review]

Ane Riel – Resin [no review]
Joanna Cannon – Three Things About Elsie [no review]
Gillian McAllister – No Further Questions [my review]
Shari Lapena – An Unwanted Guest [my review]

Lesley Kara – The Rumour [review to follow]
Karin Slaughter – Pieces of Her [my review]
SJI Holliday – The Lingering [my review]
Elly Griffiths – The Stranger Diaries [review to follow]

Gill Paul – The Lost Daughter [my review]
Louise Beech – The Lion Tamer Who Lost [my review]
Rachel Rhys – Fatal Inheritance [my review]

Top 5

5. C.J. Tudor – The Chalk Man [my review]
4. Ruth Ware – The Death of Mrs Westaway [my review]
3. Liz Nugent – Skin Deep [my review]
2. Elizabeth Haynes – The Murder of Harriet Monckton [my review]

My favourite book of the year is …

I don’t think this comes as a huge surprise. When I read this back in February, I said it would take something insanely special to knock this off the top spot. Skin Deep and Harriet Monckton came awfully close but in the end, “Agatha Christie on crack” won out. [my review]

A massive thank you to all the authors, publishers and Netgalley for making 2018 so spectacular! And to you, my fellow bloggers and readers, huge thanks for the support, for visiting and for commenting! ❤️

The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor @cjtudor @MichaelJBooks #blogtour

Thrilled to bits to host a stop on the blog tour for The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor today! Many thanks to Jenny at Michael Joseph for the opportunity to join and the review copy!

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Author : C.J. Tudor
Title : The Chalk Man
Pages : 352
Publisher : Michael Joseph
Publication date : January 11, 2018

aboutthebook

In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence. They spend their days biking around their sleepy little English village and looking for any taste of excitement they can get. The chalk men are their secret code; little chalk stick figures they leave for each other as messages only they can understand. But then a mysterious chalk man leads them right to a dismembered body, and nothing will ever be the same.

In 2016, Eddie is fully grown, and thinks he’s put his past behind him. But then he gets a letter in the mail, containing a single chalk stick figure. When it turns out his other friends got the same messages, they think it could be a prank… until one of them turns up dead. That’s when Eddie realizes that saving himself means finally figuring out what really happened all those years ago.

mythoughts

I may have said this before but I’ll gladly say it again. Sometimes you pick up a book and before you’ve even reached the end of the first page, you sink that little bit deeper, get that little bit more comfortable because you just know you’re holding something special in your hands and you’re going to love every second of it. That’s what happened to me when I started reading The Chalk Man. Putting into words why I love this book so much is a whole different matter but I can tell you that it propelled itself straight onto my list of favourite books of the year.

In 1986, a mysterious chalk man figure leads Eddie and his friends to find a dismembered body. Thirty years later, they receive a letter containing that same chalk man figure. At first, the friends decide this must be some kind of prank. But then one of them turns up dead and Eddie decides it’s time to figure out what really happened all those years ago.

As someone who was a teenager in the eighties, I absolutely love it when a story is set in that era. Things seemed so simple back then. No social media, just hanging out with your friends, looking for adventures, being imaginative and creative, especially if you were growing up in a place where nothing ever happened. In that way, I was reminded of films like The Goonies. No sending text messages either but leaving coded messages written in chalk on each other’s driveways. How cool is that? (Bonus points for mentioning Bon Jovi. I was such a fan.) I thoroughly enjoyed the entire atmosphere of those chapters but equally relished the chapters set in 2016 and switching back between the two eras was always done at exactly the right time.

Like I said at the start, I was completely immersed in this story from the very first page. This is such a delightful mystery, hugely suspenseful, slightly creepy and so intensely gripping that I couldn’t put it down. The characters are all truly well crafted and believable and even include an oddball or two. I couldn’t figure things out at all, suspected everyone and got things wrong pretty much at every turn. I have no qualms admitting that I wasn’t at all sorry when plans with friends fell through so I could keep reading. Upon reaching the end, I even felt a bit sad, desperately wanting much, much more!

The Chalk Man is a fantastic story. Brilliantly written with some fabulous references and even a few chuckle moments, it’s mind-blowing to think this is the author’s debut novel. There’s quite a lot of buzz around this one and I personally feel it’s absolutely deserved. I can see why this author’s name is mentioned in the same sentence as Stephen King. C.J. Tudor is a fantastic new voice and without a doubt an author to keep your eye on. I for one absolutely can’t wait for whatever she comes up with next!

Did I mentioned I loved it? 😉

The Chalk Man is available for purchase!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Bookdepository | Kobo | Wordery | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

C. J. Tudor was born in Salisbury and grew up in Nottingham, where she still lives with her partner and young daughter.

She left school at sixteen and has had a variety of jobs over the years, including trainee reporter, radio scriptwriter, shop assistant, ad agency copywriter and voiceover.

In the early nineties, she fell into a job as a television presenter for a show on Channel 4 called Moviewatch. Although a terrible presenter, she got to interview acting legends such as Sigourney Weaver, Michael Douglas, Emma Thompson and Robin Williams. She also annoyed Tim Robbins by asking a question about Susan Sarandon’s breasts and was extremely flattered when Robert Downey Junior showed her his chest.

While writing the Chalk Man she ran a dog-walking business, walking over twenty dogs a week as well as looking after her little girl.

The Chalk Man was inspired by a tub of chalks a friend bought for her daughter’s second birthday. One afternoon they drew chalk figures all over the driveway. Later that night she opened the back door to be confronted by weird stick men everywhere. In the dark, they looked incredibly sinister. She called to her partner: ‘These chalk men look really creepy in the dark . . .’ 

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