The Cold Years by Joel Hames | @joel_hames @Tr4cyF3nt0n | #blogtour #bookreview

I’m delighted to be kicking off the blog tour for The Cold Years by Joel Hames today! My thanks to Tracy Fenton for the invitation to join!

Author : Joel Hames
Title : The Cold Years
Series : Sam Williams #3
Pages : 314
Publisher : Mainsail Books
Publication date : November 26, 2018

Everyone needs to be heard: if there’s one thing Sam Williams has learned it’s that. Which is why he finds himself defending Richard Fothergill against accusations that date back decades.

But Sam’s real problems are closer to home. His nemesis, Trawden, is finally dead, but so are those he once called friends. The people he used to count on, the ones who aren’t in the ground, aren’t what they once were, either. DI Martins is on his back again, and she’s got company. And Sam’s girlfriend Claire might be recovering from her breakdown, but she’s not telling him everything.

Life would be so much easier if Sam knew the answers. Instead, all he’s got are questions.

Who is following him, and what do they want?

What did Fothergill really do to the children he taught?

And where was Claire the day Edward Trawden was killed? 

Everyone has a secret to hide, but some secrets are too close to home.

The Cold Years is the third instalment in the Sam Williams series but there’s no need to worry as this can be read quite well as a stand-alone. If you have read the previous books but need some help, the author has very kindly added a link at the beginning of the book to refresh your memory. 

For those who don’t know, Sam Williams is a lawyer but not a really successful one. While events in this instalment do connect to those from the previous books, there is enough background story for a new reader not to feel like they’re missing out on too much. However, for me personally, I’m glad I did read the previous ones though as it’s been incredibly fun to watch Joel Hames manage to keep a truckload of balls juggling in the air. So if you have the time, I’d definitely recommend reading all three books in order to give you a better understanding of the characters and their various relationships.

Surprisingly, Sam does actually manage to get hold of a case, defending Richard Fothergill against decades old accusations. But his real problems are a lot closer to home. His girlfriend, Claire, is acting weird. She may very well be recovering from a breakdown but it’s also becoming increasingly apparent that she’s keeping secrets. Friends have died and others aren’t what they used to be, leaving Sam with lots of questions and very little answers.

Sam’s world remains as complicated as ever and there are quite a few players to keep track of but I never found myself at a loss or utterly confused. Although there are various threads to sink your teeth into, the one that stood out for me and really held my attention was the one involving Claire. Just like Sam, I became increasingly suspicious of her behaviour but I couldn’t at all figure out whether or not it was justified, and if she was up to something, what that could possibly be.

The Cold Years is another thrilling addition to the Sam Williams series. It’s intricately plotted, with some delightful twists and will keep you guessing until the end. Sam remains a remarkably likeable character, someone to get behind and root for and solving mysteries alongside a lawyer makes a nice change from all the detective stories out there. I’m not sure if there will be more from Sam in the future. If there is, that’d be wonderful, but if not, it’s been a fabulous adventure!

The Cold Years is out now!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

Joel Hames lives in rural Lancashire, England, with his wife and two daughters, where he works hard at looking serious and pretending to be a proper novelist.

After a varied career in London which involved City law firms, a picture frame warehouse, an investment bank and a number of market stalls (he has been known to cry out “Belgian chocolates going cheap over ‘ere” in his sleep), Joel relocated from the Big Smoke to be his own boss. As a result, he now writes what he wants, when he wants to (which by coincidence is when the rest of the family choose to let him).

Joel’s first novel, Bankers Town, was published in 2014, and The Art of Staying Dead followed in 2015. The novellas Brexecution (written and published in the space of ten days following the UK’s Brexit referendum, with half of the profits going to charity) and Victims were published in 2016 and 2017 respectively.

Joel’s website can be found at http://www.joelhamesauthor.com/, where you can find out more about the writer and the books, and sign up to his email newsletter. If you want to know what Joel has planned for the future, what he thinks right now, or just stalk him a little, you can find him on Facebook at facebook.com/joelhamesauthor or Twitter at @joel_hames.

Joel has never seen the word “Joel” appear as frequently as it does right here, and wholeheartedly approves.

No One Will Hear by Joel Hames @joel_hames @MainsailBooks @Tr4cyF3nt0n #blogtour #NoOneWillHear

Delighted to join the blog tour for No One Will Hear by Joel Hames today! My thanks to Tracy Fenton for the invitation to join and to the author/publisher for my review copy!

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Author : Joel Hames
Title : No One Will Hear
Series : Sam Williams #2
Pages : 321
Publisher : Mainsail Books
Publication date : July 23, 2018

aboutthebook

Four murders
Four messages
One chance to catch a killer.

Renowned human rights lawyer Elizabeth Maurier lies dead, her body mutilated, her killer unknown. For DI Olivia Martins and her team, it’s a mystery. For the victim’s daughter Lizzy, a poet and academic with a shaky grasp on reality, it’s a tragedy. But for Sam Williams, the man she fired a decade ago and hasn’t spoken to since, it’s a whole new world of pain.

Elizabeth’s death has stirred a sleeping past back to life. Former clients are darkening Sam’s door, old enemies returning, ancient cases reopening. It doesn’t help that DI Martins is on his case, the press are dogging his every step, and his girlfriend’s behaviour is increasingly erratic.

But Elizabeth’s murder is just the start. As Sam reluctantly digs his way back into the past, more truths will crumble into lies.

More certainties will shade to doubt.

And more innocent people will die.

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Sam Williams is back and within the first few pages I was reminded of how much I like this character. Not a lot of time has passed since events from the previous book Dead North but if Sam thought he’d have some time to recover from all that has happened, he’s sorely mistaken.

It all begins with the murder of his former boss, renowned lawyer Elizabeth Maurier. To Sam’s surprise, he finds out he’s mentioned in Elizabeth’s will. But this is just the start of a whole can of worms about to be opened and to find out the truth, Sam will have to work with his nemesis, David Brooks-Powell.

On top of that, Sam’s girlfriend Claire is acting very, very strangely. As a journalist, she’s caught up in her own investigation centred around someone smuggling young girls into the country, who are subsequently sold and the victims of unspeakable crimes. But her story is going nowhere as her editor thwarts her at every turn and she’s becoming increasingly morose.

Sam is just such an incredibly likeable character. For a lawyer, he’s not at all what you’d expect him to be. Not the stuffy suit and tie kind of man but a tad on the quirky side. He’s determined, has great instincts and is quite perceptive. Although maybe not so much where his girlfriend is concerned. Taking on the job of helping out with Elizabeth’s memoirs is really just an excuse to give himself something to do. His lawyer career isn’t exactly blossoming and there are only so many hours in the day when he can pretend to be working on something important.

The past is coming back to haunt Sam. Someone seems to have been pulling strings for years and there are some seriously murky waters to wade through with old enemies resurfacing, skeletons in closets and a case that has haunted Sam for ages. Full of intrigue and suspense but also some chuckles, this story had me absolutely hooked. Honourable mention to Vicki Coleman. I do so hope we’ll see more from her in future.

No One Will Hear is a well-paced story full of twists and turns and with a multitude of secrets to uncover. Some I figured out myself, some I didn’t see coming at all. But it all ends in a race to an immensely unexpected finish that made me yell the words “Why would you do that?!” at my Kindle. In a perverse sort of way, I really quite like it when an author manages to pull the rug from under my feet like that.

This is a fantastic addition to the series and I’m so glad joining the blog tour for the previous instalment allowed me to be introduced to these books and to Sam Williams. I’m incredibly excited to see where Joel Hames takes this series next!

No One Will Hear is available to buy!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

Joel Hames lives in rural Lancashire, England, with his wife and two daughters, where he works hard at looking serious and pretending to be a proper novelist.
After a varied career in London which involved City law firms, a picture frame warehouse, an investment bank and a number of market stalls (he has been known to cry out “Belgian chocolates going cheap over ‘ere” in his sleep), Joel relocated from the Big Smoke to be his own boss. As a result, he now writes what he wants, when he wants to (which by coincidence is when the rest of the family choose to let him).
Joel’s first novel, Bankers Town, was published in 2014, and The Art of Staying Dead followed in 2015. The novellas Brexecution (written and published in the space of ten days following the UK’s Brexit referendum, with half of the profits going to charity) and Victims were published in 2016 and 2017 respectively.

Joel’s website can be found at http://www.joelhamesauthor.com/, where you can find out more about the writer and the books, and sign up to his email newsletter. If you want to know what Joel has planned for the future, what he thinks right now, or just stalk him a little, you can find him on Facebook at facebook.com/joelhamesauthor or Twitter at @joel_hames. Joel has never seen the word “Joel” appear as frequently as it does right here, and wholeheartedly approves.

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