This Week in Books (December 5)

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

A woman and child are found locked in a basement room, barely alive.

No one knows who they are – the woman can’t speak, and there are no missing persons reports that match their profile. The elderly man who owns the house claims he has never seen them before.

The inhabitants of the quiet Oxford street are in shock. How could this happen right under their noses? But DI Adam Fawley knows that nothing is impossible.

And that no one is as innocent as they seem …

The book I’m currently reading

Two brothers meet at the remote fence line separating their cattle farms under the relenting sun of the remote outback. In an isolated part of Western Australia, they are each other’s nearest neighbour, their homes three hours’ drive apart.

They are at the stockman’s grave, a landmark so old that no one can remember who is buried there. But today, the scant shadow it casts was the last hope for their middle brother, Cameron, who lies dead at their feet. 

Something had been on Cam’s mind. Did he choose to walk to his death? Because if he didn’t, the isolation of the outback leaves few suspects…

What I’m (possibly) reading next

Orphans Clara and Jacob Marley live by their wits, scavenging for scraps in the poorest alleyways of London, in the shadow of the workhouse. Every night, Jake promises his little sister ‘tomorrow will be better’ and when the chance to escape poverty comes their way, he seizes it despite the terrible price.

And so Jacob Marley is set on a path that leads to his infamous partnership with Ebenezer Scrooge. As Jacob builds a fortress of wealth to keep the world out, only Clara can warn him of the hideous fate that awaits him if he refuses to let love and kindness into his heart…

Have you read any of these? Would you like to? What are you reading this week? Let me know! Happy reading! xx

Lies Between Us by Ronnie Turner @Ronnie__Turner @HQDigitalUK #blogtour #LiesBetweenUs #WhereIsBonnie #NetGalley

Such an exciting day today as I join the blog tour for Lies Between Us by our very own Ronnie Turner! My thanks to Ronnie and HQ for the invitation to join the tour and for my review copy!

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Author : Ronnie Turner
Title : Lies Between Us
Pages : 260
Publisher : HQ Digital
Publication date : October 1, 2018 (ebook) | December 13, 2018 (paperback)

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Three people, leading very different lives, are about to be brought together – with devastating consequences . . .

John has a perfect life, until the day his daughter goes missing.

Maisie cares for her patients, but hides her own traumatic past.

Miller should be an innocent child, but is obsessed with something he can’t have.

They all have something in common, though none of them know it – and the truth won’t stay hidden for long . . .

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If you’re looking for a story that will keep you guessing until the end and make your head hurt like you’ve been banging it against a brick wall for hours on end (in a totally good way), then look no further because this is it!

Three different storylines will at some point connect to make one great big whole but the journey to get there will tie your brain into knots in the most delightful way. Maisie is an ICU nurse dealing with a comatose patient. John and his wife Jules are going through the worst kind of nightmare when their daughter is kidnapped. And then there’s Miller, the creepiest child that ever creeped. What do these characters have in common? Well, obviously I won’t be telling you that. You’ll just have to pick this one up and find out for yourself.

I am absolutely blown away by the fact that this is a debut novel. Not only is Lies Between Us utterly compelling and gripping, it’s also amazingly intelligently structured. There are moments that’ll break your heart, some that will chill you to the bone and the brilliantly multi-layered, believable and complex characters will get under your skin, in a good and a bad way.

You may know I read a lot of books from the ever-popular psychological thriller genre. Often I figure things out before reaching the halfway mark. But not this time. In fact, Ronnie Turner has me wanting to read her book again in a desperate attempt to see what clues I missed. The different perspectives and timelines did require a bit more concentration at first but once I got the hang of it, I didn’t look back.

Lies Between Us is a dark and disturbing tale of obsession. Deeply engrossing, it kept me hooked from start to finish. A remarkable debut from Ronnie Turner and I absolutely can’t wait to see what’s in store next!

Lies Between Us is available to buy in ebook format now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Kobo | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

Ronnie Turner grew up in Cornwall, the youngest in a large family. At an early age, she discovered a love of literature and dreamed of being a published author. Ronnie now lives in Dorset with her family and three dogs. In her spare time, she reviews books on her blog and enjoys long walks on the coast. She is currently working on her second novel.

Author links : Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram | Twitter | Website

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Vox by Christina Dalcher @CVDalcher @HQstories @LilyCapewell #100words #VOX #WeWillNotBeSilenced

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Author : Christina Dalcher
Title : Vox
Pages : 384
Publisher : HQ
Publication date : August 21, 2018 (ebook)

aboutthebook

Silence can be deafening.

Jean McClellan spends her time in almost complete silence, limited to just one hundred words a day. Any more, and a thousand volts of electricity will course through her veins.

Now the new government is in power, everything has changed. But only if you’re a woman.

Almost overnight, bank accounts are frozen, passports are taken away and seventy million women lose their jobs. Even more terrifyingly, young girls are no longer taught to read or write.

For herself, her daughter, and for every woman silenced, Jean will reclaim her voice. This is only the beginning…

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100 words a day. Just sit and think for a minute how that would impact your life.

A life where you walk around with a counter bracelet, ticking down every time you utter a word until you reach your daily limit. Where an electric shock awaits you if you dare speak one word more. You can’t, can you? And things for Jean and all the women in her country are far worse than that. No sign language, no writing notes, no reading. No passports, no jobs, no bank accounts and each and every decision is made by the men.

Men who may not all agree with what’s going on but for various reasons don’t stand up to make a change. Young boys who are growing up in this environment, almost brainwashed to the point where they think this treatment of women is perfectly acceptable. Little girls who aren’t allowed to learn how to read or write, who have never been read a bedtime story and for whom remaining silent all day suddenly seems like a fun competition. And people who don’t fit the mould or break the rules are sent to camps for the rest of their lives.

This incredibly frightening scenario sadly sounds all too believable in this day and age. It made me angry and it saddened me. The whole thing may seem far-fetched and yet, parts of it are extremely plausible. You may think, just like Jean, this will never come to pass but before she and other women realise, there they are. There’s a lesson here. Stand up and make your voice count. Not only vocally but by voting. As the characters in the novel say, the time to act is always now.

This is quite a hard one to review. It evokes a lot of emotions but it’s one of those books you need to read for yourself to get the full impact of immersing yourself into these women’s circumstances and hoping you’ll never find yourself in that position.

Vox is immensely powerful and thought-provoking, leaving me with a massive feeling of claustrophobia and sheer dread. It’s disturbing, more terrifying than any gruesome thriller I’ve ever read or nightmare I’ve ever had. It’ll make you think and get under your skin and like me, I doubt you’ll ever forget it.

My thanks to Lily Capewell at HQ for my review copy!

Vox will be published in ebook format on August 21st.

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Kobo | Goodreads

This Week in Books (August 15)

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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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SOMEONE IS LIVING A LIE… BUT WHO?

Is it Lisa?
Haunted by a tragic past, all Lisa wants is a quiet life with her daughter, Ava. And when she meets a new man, things seem to be falling into place. But Lisa is hiding a secret so momentous it could shatter her entire world…

Is it Ava?
When sixteen-year-old Ava saves a young boy’s life, she becomes a local hero. But never in a million years could she have anticipated the fallout of her actions…

Is it Marilyn?
Marilyn has the perfect life. Her husband, her job, her house—she seems to have it all. But she could never admit to her best friend Lisa the lies she tells herself to get through the day…

One moment will change these three women’s lives forever. And the secrets they’ve been keeping could destroy them all.

The book I’m currently reading

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What if the person you thought you knew best turns out to be someone you never knew at all . . . ?

Andrea knows everything about her mother, Laura. She knows she’s spent her whole life in the small beachside town of Belle Isle; she knows she’s never wanted anything more than to live a quiet life as a pillar of the community; she knows she’s never kept a secret in her life. Because we all know our mothers, don’t we?

But all that changes when a trip to the mall explodes into violence and Andrea suddenly sees a completely different side to Laura. Because it turns out that before Laura was Laura, she was someone completely different. For nearly thirty years she’s been hiding from her previous identity, lying low in the hope that no one would ever find her. But now she’s been exposed, and nothing will ever be the same again.

The police want answers and Laura’s innocence is on the line, but she won’t speak to anyone, including her own daughter. Andrea is on a desperate journey following the breadcrumb trail of her mother’s past. And if she can’t uncover the secrets hidden there, there may be no future for either one of them. . .

What I’m (probably) reading next

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Set in an America where half the population has been silenced, VOX is the harrowing, unforgettable story of what one woman will do to protect herself and her daughter.

On the day the government decrees that women are no longer allowed more than 100 words daily, Dr. Jean McClellan is in denial–this can’t happen here. Not in America. Not to her.

This is just the beginning.

Soon women can no longer hold jobs. Girls are no longer taught to read or write. Females no longer have a voice. Before, the average person spoke sixteen thousand words a day, but now women only have one hundred to make themselves heard.

But this is not the end.

For herself, her daughter, and every woman silenced, Jean will reclaim her voice.

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Have you read any of these? Would you like to? What does your reading week look like? Let me know! Happy reading! xx

The Cliff House by Amanda Jennings #20BooksofSummer

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Author : Amanda Jennings
Title : The Cliff House
Pages : 384
Publisher : HQ
Publication date : May 17, 2018

aboutthebook

Cornwall, summer of 1986.

The Davenports, with their fast cars and glamorous clothes, living the dream in a breathtaking house overlooking the sea.

If only… thinks sixteen-year-old Tamsyn, her binoculars trained on the perfect family in their perfect home.

If only her life was as perfect as theirs.

If only Edie Davenport would be her friend.

If only she lived at The Cliff House…

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Set in 1980’s Cornwall and told from various perspectives, The Cliff House could quite possibly be one of the most unsettling novels I’ve ever read.

Sixteen year old Tamsyn is utterly obsessed with The Cliff House and the Davenport family. Tamsyn doesn’t have it easy. Her family is struggling but the Davenports seem to be living the dream with their stunning house, flashy cars and oozing glamour. Tamsyn has yet to learn that all the money in the world doesn’t buy you happiness. Striking up an unlikely friendship with Edie Davenport will give Tamsyn a glimpse into life at the Cliff House.

This exquisitely written character-study makes one heck of a psychological thriller. None of the characters are particularly likeable, yet it’s perfectly easy to understand where they’re coming from and why they act the way they do. The looming presence of the Cliff House itself gives this story a bit of a gothic feel and the house is almost a character on its own.

The Cliff House is a dark and disturbing tale of obsession. Rich in atmosphere and full of wonderful descriptions, this slow-burner had me completely captivated. There is a constant almost threatening sort of vibe, an impending feeling of doom. You know something is coming but you have no idea what it will be. I thought there might be clues in the present day chapters but I couldn’t at all figure out which of the girls was talking.

With a brilliant plot, this story about family, loss, grief and obsession slowly builds up to one of the most jaw-dropping endings I’ve ever read. A deliciously haunting tale by Amanda Jennings and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.

The Cliff House is available to buy!

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

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Book 8 from my 20 Books of Summer list

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Bring Me Back by B.A. Paris @BAParisAuthor @HQstories #ForgetSleep

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Author : B.A. Paris
Title : Bring Me Back
Pages : 384
Publisher : HQ
Publication date : March 8, 2018

aboutthebook

A young British couple are driving through France on holiday when they stop for gas. He runs in to pay, she stays in the car. When he returns her car door has been left open, but she’s not inside. No one ever sees her again.

Ten years later he’s engaged to be married; he’s happy, and his past is only a tiny part of his life now. Until he comes home from work and finds his new wife-to-be is sitting on their sofa. She’s turning something over in her fingers, holding it up to the light. Something that would have no worth to anyone else, something only he and she would know about because his wife is the sister of his missing first love.

As more and more questions are raised, their marriage becomes strained. Has his first love somehow come back to him after all this time? Or is the person who took her playing games with his mind?

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Finn and his girlfriend Layla are driving home from a trip to France when they stop at a service station. When Finn comes back from a bathroom break, Layla is gone. She’s never seen again. Years later, Finn is preparing to get married. Not just to anyone, but to Layla’s older sister, Ellen. And it is then that slightly weird things start to happen. Is someone messing with Finn? Is he losing his mind? Or could it be possible that Layla has been alive all this time and has come back?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, I’m sure you will have seen the hashtag #ForgetSleep on your travels around social media in the last few weeks and boy, is it an apt one. The pace of this story and the length of its chapters lend itself perfectly to wanting to squeeze in just one more page, … and another one and before you know it, you’re sitting on your sofa all zombie-like when the birds start their morning chorus and you realise you’ve not been to bed yet. Oops.

After having read B.A. Paris’ previous books, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on this one and once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down. Now, admittedly, I quite early on thought I’d figured the whole thing out but that didn’t bother me at all. Nor did I particularly like any of the characters. Except for Peggy. Who’s a dog. But seeing the threads come together as the tension builds up was hugely entertaining. Above all, I couldn’t for the life of me figure out where this tale would end but I must say, there is one delightfully satisfying conclusion.

As with her previous books, B.A. Paris delivers a gripping and compelling plot that makes you want to turn the pages faster. This highly addictive and disturbing tale had me utterly absorbed, almost made me miss dinner and yes, I did forget sleep but then I am a massive insomniac. Served me well on this occasion. I absolutely can’t wait to see what this author comes up with next!

Bring Me Back is available for purchase!

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