Dirty Little Secrets by Jo Spain | @SpainJoanne @QuercusBooks

Author : Jo Spain
Title : Dirty Little Secrets
Pages : 400
Publisher : Quercus
Publication date : February 7, 2019

| ABOUT THE BOOK |

Six neighbours, six secrets, six reasons to want Olive Collins dead.

In the exclusive gated community of Withered Vale, people’s lives appear as perfect as their beautifully manicured lawns. Money, success, privilege – the residents have it all. Life is good.

There’s just one problem.

Olive Collins’ dead body has been rotting inside number four for the last three months. Her neighbours say they’re shocked at the discovery but nobody thought to check on her when she vanished from sight.

The police start to ask questions and the seemingly flawless facade begins to crack. Because, when it comes to Olive’s neighbours, it seems each of them has something to hide, something to lose and everything to gain from her death.

| MY THOUGHTS |

Welcome to the gated community of Withered Vale; where the grass is green, life is good and everyone is happy. Or are they? When Olive Collin’s body is discovered at number four, cracks begin to show and Withered Vale will not quite be the same ever again.

What an absolutely delightful surprise this one was. Think along the lines of Big Little Lies but deliciously darker. There’s a whole cast of not particularly likeable characters, not even Olive and she’s dead. It’s a bit weird when you can’t even find it in yourself to sympathise with a dead person. And yet, dead as she may be, Olive also provides the chuckles and sometimes that was much needed because the issues the residents of this community are dealing with are often quite serious. From manipulation to addiction to infidelity; the amount of skeletons in the closet is pretty impressive.

What happened to Olive though and why was her body left undiscovered for so long? The police start asking questions and it soon becomes apparent Olive wasn’t exactly well liked in the community. She seemed to have a nose for sniffing out secrets and there are lot of them around. Pretty much each and every one of her neighbours has something to hide. So which one felt Olive should be silenced before their secret was revealed? I definitely learned that the whole “fly on the wall” thing is massively overrated. My neighbours need not worry about me watching them like a hawk. I’d much rather not know at all what they get up to behind closed doors, thank you very much.

Dirty Little Secrets was another buddy read with Janel at Keeper of Pages and it’s by far the fastest one we’ve done. We absolutely devoured the pages. Talk about an addictive page-turner! While we did have an inkling as to what had happened, it didn’t ruin our reading experience at all. With such a clever plot and so brilliantly written, Jo Spain kept me enthralled until the very last page.

Dirty Little Secrets is quite different from Jo Spain’s previous book, The Confession and I love that. It’s always a pleasure to know an author can keep surprising you. Immensely engrossing, hugely entertaining and absolutely unputdownable, Dirty Little Secrets shoots right up the list of my favourite books of the year and Jo Spain has found herself a spot on my list of go-to authors. I absolutely can’t wait to see what she comes up with next.

Dirty Little Secrets will be published on February 7th.

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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

This Week in Books (November 28)

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

People always notice my daughter, Isobel. How could they not? Extraordinarily beautiful… until she speaks. 

An unsettling, little-girl voice, exactly like a child’s, but from the mouth of a full-grown woman. 

Izzie might look grown-up, but inside she’s trapped. Caught in the day it happened… the day that broke her from within. Our family fell apart that day, and we never could pick up the pieces.

The book I’m currently reading

When single mum Joanna hears a rumour at the school gates, she never intends to pass it on. But one casual comment leads to another and now there’s no going back.

Rumour has it that a notorious child killer is living under a new identity, in their sleepy little town of Flinstead-on-Sea.

Sally McGowan was just ten years old when she stabbed little Robbie Harris to death forty-eight years ago – no photos of her exist since her release as a young woman.

So who is the supposedly reformed killer who now lives among them? How dangerous can one rumour become? And how far will Joanna go to protect her loved ones from harm, when she realizes what it is she’s unleashed?

What I’m (possibly) reading next

It’s true what they say . . . revenge is sweet. 

1975 
A baby, minutes old, is forcibly taken from its devastated mother. 

2010 
The body of an elderly woman is found in a Dublin public park in the depths of winter.

Detective Inspector Tom Reynolds is on the case. He’s convinced the murder is linked to historical events that took place in the notorious Magdalene Laundries. Reynolds and his team follow the trail to an isolated convent in the Irish countryside. But once inside, it becomes disturbingly clear that the killer is amongst them . . . and is determined to exact further vengeance for the sins of the past.

The Rumour marks the end of my blog tour commitments for the year. Woohoo! Time to delve into my own TBR and Jo Spain’s Tom Reynolds series is the first one I’ve decided to catch up on. 

What are you reading this week? Let me know! Happy reading! xx

The Confession by Jo Spain @SpainJoanne @QuercusBooks @ellakroftpatel #PaperbackPublicationDay #TheConfession

Happy paperback publication day to Jo Spain for her fab psychological thriller The Confession! To celebrate the launch, I’m reposting my review from January.

confession

Author : Jo Spain
Title : The Confession
Pages : 416
Publisher : Quercus
Publication date : January 25, 2018 (ebook) | August 9, 2018 (paperback)

aboutthebook

Late one night a man walks into the luxurious home of disgraced banker Harry McNamara and his wife Julie. The man launches an unspeakably brutal attack on Harry as a horror-struck Julie watches, frozen by fear.

Just an hour later the attacker, JP Carney, has handed himself in to the police. He confesses to beating Harry to death, but JP claims that the assault was not premeditated and that he didn’t know the identity of his victim. With a man as notorious as Harry McNamara, the detectives cannot help wondering, was this really a random act of violence or is it linked to one of Harry’s many sins: corruption, greed, betrayal?

This gripping psychological thriller will have you questioning, who – of Harry, Julie and JP – is really the guilty one? And is Carney’s surrender driven by a guilty conscience or is his confession a calculated move in a deadly game?

mythoughts

Here’s a refreshing way to tackle a psychological thriller! Never mind wracking your brain about the who, as that’s revealed from the start. It’s the why that will keep you utterly enthralled until the last page. And if you think that ruins half the suspense, you’d be awfully wrong.

Late one night, banker Harry McNamara is the victim of an incredibly brutal attack. Oddly enough, hours later, his attacker Joe simply walks into the police station and confesses although he claims not to know his victim and that the assault wasn’t premeditated. But surely there’s more to the story? Well, yes, of course there is or this would be one short book. But I’m not going to tell you anything about it.

Obviously I’m not in favour of violence but I must admit that I would quite happily have clobbered Harry to pulp myself. I found him to be highly unlikeable and I also had a hard time mustering up any kind of sympathy for his wife, Julie. We do get an incredible insight into a remarkably flawed marriage which I found every bit as compelling as the investigation into the actual attack.

The Confession has a brilliantly executed and well-paced plot. Full of intrigue, it had me absolutely gripped until the end, not having an inkling what the likely outcome would be. Numerous times I thought I had it all figured out when Jo Spain whacked me in the face with another curveball that left me spinning. This is a complex and thoroughly entertaining psychological thriller with a truly satisfying conclusion. I understand this is Jo Spain’s first foray into this genre and that sounds most promising for the future. I look forward to more!

The Confession is available for purchase now!

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

IMG_0358

The Confession by Jo Spain @SpainJoanne @QuercusBooks

** advanced copy received via Netgalley **

35478764

Author : Jo Spain
Title : The Confession
Pages : 416
Publisher : Quercus
Publication date : January 25, 2018

aboutthebook

Late one night a man walks into the luxurious home of disgraced banker Harry McNamara and his wife Julie. The man launches an unspeakably brutal attack on Harry as a horror-struck Julie watches, frozen by fear.

Just an hour later the attacker, JP Carney, has handed himself in to the police. He confesses to beating Harry to death, but JP claims that the assault was not premeditated and that he didn’t know the identity of his victim. With a man as notorious as Harry McNamara, the detectives cannot help wondering, was this really a random act of violence or is it linked to one of Harry’s many sins: corruption, greed, betrayal?

This gripping psychological thriller will have you questioning, who – of Harry, Julie and JP – is really the guilty one? And is Carney’s surrender driven by a guilty conscience or is his confession a calculated move in a deadly game?

mythoughts

Here’s a refreshing way to tackle a psychological thriller! Never mind wracking your brain about the who, as that’s revealed from the start. It’s the why that will keep you utterly enthralled until the last page. And if you think that ruins half the suspense, you’d be awfully wrong.

Late one night, banker Harry McNamara is the victim of an incredibly brutal attack. Oddly enough, hours later, his attacker Joe simply walks into the police station and confesses although he claims not to know his victim and that the assault wasn’t premeditated. But surely there’s more to the story? Well, yes, of course there is or this would be one short book. But I’m not going to tell you anything about it.

Obviously I’m not in favour of violence but I must admit that I would quite happily have clobbered Harry to pulp myself. I found him to be highly unlikeable and I also had a hard time mustering up any kind of sympathy for his wife, Julie. We do get an incredible insight into a remarkably flawed marriage which I found every bit as compelling as the investigation into the actual attack.

The Confession has a brilliantly executed and well-paced plot. Full of intrigue, it had me absolutely gripped until the end, not having an inkling what the likely outcome would be. Numerous times I thought I had it all figured out when Jo Spain whacked me in the face with another curveball that left me spinning. This is a complex and thoroughly entertaining psychological thriller with a truly satisfying conclusion. I understand this is Jo Spain’s first foray into this genre and that sounds most promising for the future. I look forward to more!

The Confession is available for purchase now!

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