Perfect Crime by Helen Fields | @Helen_Fields @AvonBooksUK @Sabah_K | #blogtour #bookreview #PerfectCrime

Delighted to join the blog tour for Perfect Crime by Helen Fields today! My thanks to Sabah at Avon for the opportunity to join and for the review copy!

Author : Helen Fields
Title : Perfect Crime
Series : DI Luc Callanach #5
Pages : 400
Publisher : Avon UK
Publication date : April 18, 2019

| ABOUT THE BOOK |

Stephen Berry is about to jump off a bridge until a suicide prevention counsellor stops him. A week later, Stephen is dead. Found at the bottom of a cliff, DI Luc Callanach and DCI Ava Turner are drafted in to investigate whether he jumped or whether he was pushed…

As they dig deeper, more would-be suicides roll in: a woman found dead in a bath; a man violently electrocuted. But these are carefully curated deaths – nothing like the impulsive suicide attempts they’ve been made out to be.

Little do Callanach and Turner know how close their perpetrator is as, across Edinburgh, a violent and psychopathic killer gains more confidence with every life he takes…

| MY THOUGHTS |

Let me just start my review by saying that if you’re not reading this series, I am judging you like a big, bad judging thing! This is one of the best crime fiction series out there and you are sorely missing out!

Perfect Crime is the fifth instalment in the DI Luc Callanach series and by now, these characters feel like family and I am always excited about spending more time with them. Before you ask, no, you really shouldn’t treat these as stand-alones. Start from the beginning. I promise you won’t regret it!

Things kick off when Stephen Berry is getting ready to jump off a bridge. Luckily, a suicide prevention counsellor manages to talk him down but a week later, Stephen is found dead at the bottom of a cliff. DI Luc Callanach and DCI Ava Turner are called in to investigate whether Stephen killed himself or was murdered. But the deaths do not stop there …

Meanwhile, Callanach is finding himself in hot water when he visits someone in a care home who is later found dead. I won’t say anything else about that so I don’t spoil things for those who haven’t read the previous books (shame on you! 😂) but I will say I really enjoyed this second thread of the story. Switching back and forth between the two investigations really held my attention.

I mentioned these characters feel like family by now so when they hurt, I hurt. And there is a lot of “hurt” going on in this one. Relationships shift, some characters managed to surprise me, others infuriated me and through it all are original, frightening and gruesome deaths as I’ve come to expect from this series.

I very early on figured out what was going on but that didn’t ruin things for me at all. I became so absorbed in the investigation that I almost forgot about my suspect. Helen Fields always delivers gripping, compelling, thrilling and tense stories full of intriguing (and sometimes totally crazy) characters. This is one of those series that just keeps getting better and better and I can’t wait to see what Helen Fields comes up with next but I know it will be awesome once again. Highly recommended!

Perfect Crime is available to buy!

Affiliate link : Bookdepository
Other retailers : Amazon US | Amazon UK | Kobo | Waterstones | Wordery

While you’re there, why not grab yourself copies of the previous books in the series 😉

| ABOUT THE AUTHOR |

Helen Fields studied law at the University of East Anglia, then went on to the Inns of Court School of Law in London. After completing her pupillage, she joined chambers in Middle Temple where she practised criminal and family law for thirteen years. After her second child was born, Helen left the Bar.

Together with her husband David, she runs a film production company, acting as script writer and producer. Helen and her husband now live in Los Angeles with their three children and two dogs.

My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing | @MichaelJBooks

Author : Samantha Downing
Title : My Lovely Wife
Pages : 377
Publisher : Michael Joseph
Publication date : March 26, 2019 (ebook)

| ABOUT THE BOOK |

Every marriage has secrets. Everyone has flaws. Your wife isn’t perfect – you know that – but then again nor are you.

But now a serial killer is on the loose in your small town, preying on young women. Fear is driving your well-behaved young daughter off the rails, and you find yourself in bed late at night, looking at the woman who lies asleep beside you.

Because you thought you knew the worst about her. The truth is you know nothing at all.

| MY THOUGHTS |

It is not easy to stand out from the crowd in the domestic thriller genre but Samantha Downing manages it with flying colours. My Lovely Wife is incredibly refreshing and also insanely hard to review without giving anything away so this will be relatively short.

Simon and his wife Millicent seem to be living the average suburban life. They both have jobs, two children and while money may be a little tight sometimes, they seem perfectly happy. But as we all know by now, things are never truly what they seem. And then the body of a young woman is found in an abandoned hotel. For one teeny-tiny nanosecond, I thought I knew exactly what was going on but I was proven wrong quickly and not at all prepared for the devious plot that was coming my way.

There’s quite a lot going on in this story. Not only is there a serial killer on the loose but there’s also the impact this has on children, the relentless media and, through it all, is the the most dysfunctional marriage ever. All these things combined make this an addictive read that I just couldn’t put down. I realised early on there was no way I’d figure out where this was heading or how it would end.

Dark, disturbing and hugely compelling The Lovely Wife took me completely by surprise. There are plenty of twists to keep you hooked until the final page. This is one of those books you definitely should not start reading if you’re short of time. What a fantastic debut by Samantha Downing and I can’t wait to see what she comes up with next!

My Lovely Wife is available in ebook format now!

Affiliate link : Bookdepository
Other retailers : Amazon US | Amazon UK | Kobo | Waterstones | Wordery

The Blameless Dead by Gary Haynes | @EndeavourQuill

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Blameless Dead by Gary Haynes! My thanks to Hannah at Endeavour for the invitation to join and the review copy.

Author : Gary Haynes
Title : The Blameless Dead
Pages : n/a
Publisher : Endeavour Quill
Publication date : March 18, 2019

| ABOUT THE BOOK |

In the dying days of World War Two, Pavel Romasko and his Red Army colleagues pick their way through the carnage and detritus of a dying Berlin. Stumbling upon the smoking remains of a Nazi bunker, they find something inside that eclipses the horror of even the worst excesses in the city above them…

As the war ends, retribution begins. But some revenge cannot be taken at once. Some revenge takes years.

And so it is, as post-war Europe tries desperately to drag itself back onto its feet, and soldiers attempt a return to normality, that retribution continues to ferment in the Gulags of the Soviet Union and beneath the surface of apparently ordinary lives.

Which is how, seventy years later, FBI agent Carla Romero and New York lawyer Gabriel Hall are enlisted to investigate a series of blood-chilling crimes that seem to have their roots in the distant past — even though the suffering they cause is all too present. And for one of them, the disappearance of young women is a particularly personal matter.

| MY THOUGHTS |

The Blameless Dead begins with what looks like a home invasion, when a husband and wife are found murdered in their apartment in New York. The FBI quite quickly zero in on a suspect but while this person may not be talking, it soon becomes obvious there is something far more sinister going on. Something which has its roots firmly planted at the end of the second World War.

Thus begins a journey through the ages. This is quite a complex storyline that requires a fair bit of concentration. There are a number of characters to keep track of, spread out over various countries and decades. There’s also a rather high body count with plenty of murders along the way, none of which are pleasant.

The Blameless Dead brings to light the horrors of war and how someone is after revenge, even after seventy years. Because some things just can’t be forgotten and events from the past have, shall we say, “inspired” a serial killer throughout the years. And this character is going to great lengths to make sure his secrets remain hidden.

What we have here is an incredibly dark and disturbing topic with a few pretty graphic scenes thrown in, which may not appeal to everyone. I found it quite unsettling at times. The plot is well executed though and is full of historical details. It took me quite a while to figure out how the pieces of the puzzle fit together and I felt rather smug when I put two and two together, only to have Gary Haynes throw in a delicious sting in the tale.

Part murder mystery and part historical fiction, Gary Haynes takes us from the ashes of late war Berlin to the modern setting of New York, showing the impact the atrocities of war can have on a person and while the war may have been over a long time ago, its legacy lasts forever.

Affiliate link : Bookdepository
Other retailers : Amazon US | Amazon UK | Wordery

| ABOUT THE AUTHOR |

Gary Haynes studied law at university before becoming a commercial litigator. He is interested in history, philosophy and international relations. When he’s not writing or reading, he enjoys watching European films, travelling, hillwalking and spending time with his family. He is a member of the International Thriller Writers Organization. 

Good Samaritans by Will Carver | @will_carver @OrendaBooks @annecater | #blogtour #GoodSamaritans #SixBottlesofBleach #bookreview #RandomThingsTours

Delighted to join the blog tour for Good Samaritans by Will Carver today! My thanks to Anne Cater for the invitation to join and to Karen Sullivan at Orenda for my fab review copy!

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Author : Will Carver
Title : Good Samaritans
Pages : 320
Publisher : Orenda Books
Publication date : September 27, 2018 (ebook) | November 15, 2018 (paperback)

aboutthebook

One crossed wire, three dead bodies and six bottles of bleach

Seth Beauman can’t sleep. He stays up late, calling strangers from his phonebook, hoping to make a connection, while his wife, Maeve, sleeps upstairs.

A crossed wire finds a suicidal Hadley Serf on the phone to Seth, thinking she is talking to The Samaritans.

But a seemingly harmless, late-night hobby turns into something more for Seth and for Hadley, and soon their late-night talks are turning into day-time meet-ups.

And then this dysfunctional love story turns into something altogether darker, when Seth brings Hadley home…

And someone is watching…

mythoughts

Have you ever finished the last page of a book and thought to yourself “what the heck did I just read?”.

Meet the weirdly wonderful brain of author Will Carver and his book Good Samaritans. Boy, oh boy, this one will mess with your head like no other.

It’s also quite a hard one to review without giving anything away. The story is mainly told via four different characters. All flawed, all carrying tons of baggage, all lonely in their own little ways and all trying to find ways to cope.

Ant works for the Samaritans hotline. Maeve drinks. (I approve 😂) Seth struggles with insomnia and has the oddest hobby ever as every night, he picks up the phone and randomly calls a stranger asking them if they’d like to talk. Most don’t. Some do. Note to self : never answer the phone again. But Hadley does. Uh oh.

The short chapters urge you to keep on reading, making Good Samaritans incredibly hard to put down. There’s a tense vibe throughout, a threat of something dark and disturbing that oozes from the pages. It’s edgy, original, bit dirty (think the kind of thing that would have made you blush fiercely if your parents had walked in on you reading this) and brings the word “dysfunctional” to a whole other level.

Good Samaritans is a belter of a crime thriller / serial killer / domestic noir kind of combination and the characterisation is immensely engrossing. It’s one of those stories I can’t stop thinking about, going over things in my head, wondering what I missed and I’m obviously struggling to put it into words as well. It’s unlike anything else I’ve ever read and you just really need to experience this one for yourselves.

This is my first time reading a book by Will Carver, whose brain must quite frankly be the most scary place ever, but I’m pretty sure it won’t be the last time.

Good Samaritans is available to buy!

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

abouttheauthor

Will Carver is the international bestselling author of the January David series (Arrow). He spent his early years in Germany, but returned to the UK at age 11, when his sporting career took off. He turned down a professional rugby contract to study theatre and television at King Alfred’s, Winchester, where he set up a successful theatre company.
He currently runs his own fitness and nutrition company, while working on his next thriller. He lives in Reading with his two children.

Author links :  Twitter

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The Fifth To Die by J.D. Barker @jdbarker @HMHbooks #mustread #TheFifthToDie #NetGalley #20BooksOfSummer

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Author : J.D. Barker
Title : The Fifth To Die
Series : 4MK Thriller #2
Pages : 416
Publisher : Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date : July 10, 2018

aboutthebook

Detective Porter and the team have been pulled from the hunt for Anson Bishop, the Four Monkey Killer, by the feds. When the body of a young girl is found beneath the frozen waters of Jackson Park Lagoon, she is quickly identified as Ella Reynolds, missing three weeks. But how did she get there? The lagoon froze months earlier. More baffling? She’s found wearing the clothes of another girl, missing less than two days.

While the detectives of Chicago Metro try to make sense of the quickly developing case, Porter secretly continues his pursuit of 4MK, knowing the best way to find Bishop is to track down his mother. When the captain finds out about Porter’s activities, he’s suspended, leaving his partners Clair and Nash to continue the search for the new killer alone.

Obsessed with catching Bishop, Porter follows a single grainy photograph from Chicago to the streets of New Orleans and stumbles into a world darker than he could have possibly imagined, where he quickly realizes that the only place more frightening than the mind of a serial killer is the mind of the mother from which he came.

mythoughts

Bloody hell, what a ride! I don’t even know what to say. This series is CRAZY!

The Fifth To Die is the second book in the 4MK Thriller series and no, I’ll tell you right now, you absolutely cannot read this as a stand-alone. Do yourself a favour and read The Fourth Monkey first, not only for the necessary background information but so you can read this second one and fully appreciate the incredibly masterful way J.D. Barker has crafted this series.

There is so much going on in this second instalment. The FBI has taken over the 4MK investigation but Sam Porter is in too deep to let things go and sets out on his own search for Bishop. Meanwhile his colleagues, Nash, Clair and Kloz are investigating the murder of Ella Reynolds, who after having been missing for three weeks, is found under the ice in a lagoon. However, she’s wearing someone else’s clothes, those of a young girl who recently went missing.

I’m not saying any more than that because I’m seriously in danger of giving away something vital. As far as serial killer series go, this is by far one of the best ones out there right now. With chapters switching between the various threads, you’re often struck with the most fabulous cliffhangers that just make you want to flip the pages faster. The tension hit me from the very first page and built up to almost unbearable levels. If this was a movie (which it bloody well should be, to be honest), my non-reader of an other half would be on the edge of his seat. As was I, until the last word.

I absolutely devoured this book. The Fifth To Die is an incredibly addictive page-turner that had me utterly engrossed from start to finish. Brilliantly plotted, expertly crafted, with intriguing and fabulous characters, deliciously disturbing murders and a chilling but genius killer, it firmly stands out in the serial killer genre. I’m not sure how I’ll survive the long wait for the next one but I have no doubt it will be worth it. I can’t recommend this series enough so add it to your TBR right now! I promise you won’t regret it! Be prepared for a deliciously thrilling ride! J.D. Barker is quite frankly one of the best crime thriller writers out there who should be on everyone’s radar!

My thanks to the publisher for my review copy, which I received via Netgalley.

The Fifth To Die is available to buy!

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

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Book 5 from my 20 Books of Summer list.

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Throwback Thursday : The Fourth Monkey by J.D. Barker

Throwback Thursday is a weekly meme originally created by Renee at It’s Book Talk. It’s designed as an opportunity to share old favourites as well as books that we’ve finally got around to reading that were published over a year ago.

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Author : J.D. Barker
Title : The Fourth Monkey
Pages : 416
Publisher : Mariner Books
Publication date : June 27, 2017

aboutthebook

For over five years, the Four Monkey Killer has terrorized the residents of Chicago. When his body is found, the police quickly realize he was on his way to deliver one final message, one which proves he has taken another victim who may still be alive.

As the lead investigator on the 4MK task force, Detective Sam Porter knows even in death, the killer is far from finished. When he discovers a personal diary in the jacket pocket of the body, Porter finds himself caught up in the mind of a psychopath, unraveling a twisted history in hopes of finding one last girl, all while struggling with personal demons of his own.

With only a handful of clues, the elusive killer’s identity remains a mystery. Time is running out and the Four Monkey Killer taunts from beyond the grave in this masterfully written fast-paced thriller.

mythoughts

I actually read The Fourth Monkey back in January after succumbing to some blogger peer pressure but never got around to reviewing it. I was soon kicking myself for not picking this one up sooner because it’s a serial killer story at its best.

The Fourth Monkey is utterly gripping from the very beginning. With a tense game of cat and mouse and a fast-paced race to catch the killer and attempt to save his latest target, I dare you not go get completely hooked. There were incredibly harrowing chapters taken from a diary and curveballs that left me spinning

This first instalment in the 4MK Thriller series is intense, suspenseful and immensely exciting! I’ve been rather impatiently awaiting the second book but it’s almost here. So if you haven’t yet read this one, now is your chance to do so before The Fifth To Die is published in July.

The Fourth Monkey is available to buy!

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

Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh @SSCav @orion_crime @Tr4cyF3nt0n #blogtour #ThatBookThatHook

Thrilled to bits to have the opportunity to repost my review for Thirteen by Steve Cavanagh today on the blog tour to celebrate the paperback launch! Huge thanks to the publisher and Tracy Fention for the invitation to join!

If you missed it, I bought and enjoyed the ebook back in January which is when this review was originally written. I still stand by every word and Thirteen is still waaaay at the top of my list of books of the year!

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Author : Steve Cavanagh
Title : Thirteen
Series : Eddie Flynn #4
Pages : 320
Publisher : Orion
Publication date : January 25, 2018 (ebook) | June 14, 2018 (UK paperback)

aboutthebook

They were Hollywood’s hottest power couple. They had the world at their feet. Now one of them is dead and Hollywood star Robert Solomon is charged with the brutal murder of his beautiful wife.

This is the celebrity murder trial of the century and the defence want one man on their team: con artist turned lawyer Eddie Flynn.

All the evidence points to Robert’s guilt, but as the trial begins a series of sinister incidents in the court room start to raise doubts in Eddie’s mind.

What if there’s more than one actor in the courtroom?

What if the killer isn’t on trial? What if the killer is on the jury?

mythoughts

The serial killer isn’t on trial. He’s on the jury.

Okay, seriously? Best tagline ever!!! Ever since I saw it, I had my eye on this book and just like that it shot up my list of most anticipated books of the year. How could it not? How can anyone resist? It’s safe to say my anticipations were incredibly high.

Now, I didn’t know this is actually the fourth book in a series since I’d never heard of Steve Cavanagh before, so I accidentally broke my own rule of never ever starting a series anywhere else but at the beginning. Luckily for me, this reads perfectly well as a stand-alone. There’s enough information to get to grips with the character of Eddie Flynn and where he comes from. Yet it’s also intriguing enough to make you want to pick up the previous books. Which I’ve already bought, in case you wondered.

Actor Robert Solomon is charged with the murder of his wife and his security guard. All the evidence points to Robert being guilty as sin but then things start to happen that don’t seem all too coincidental anymore and Eddie Flynn feels there may be something far more sinister going on.

I am a huge fan of legal thrillers and court drama. For the longest time, I got my fix by way of John Grisham. But well, let’s just say, I’ve felt like he’s been losing his touch for quite a while now. Enter Steve Cavanagh and all is well again in my legal thriller world. Especially as Thirteen combines all the things I love in a story. A great hook, crime fiction, fabulous characters, a serial killer and a bunch of murders, lawyers and their shenanigans, involving the FBI … I could go on.

This original premise makes for one insanely gripping and addictive tale. Not only is the court case fabulously compelling but the serial killer is one of the most fascinating and intriguing characters I’ve ever met. He’s meticulous, organised, adapts easily to various circumstances. Quite frankly, a bit of a genius, but in the psycho kind of way. And as for our main character, Eddie Flynn, I warmed to him from the start.

What more can I say? I absolutely loved this one and I can’t recommend it enough. Another one to add to my list of top books of the year and I can’t wait to get stuck into the other books in this series.

Thirteen is available to buy! Run! Don’t walk!

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

abouttheauthor

Steve Cavanagh was born and raised in Belfast before leaving for Dublin at the age of eighteen to study Law. He currently practices civil rights law and has been involved in several high profile cases. Selected for the Amazon Rising Stars programme 2015. ACES award winner 2015 from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland. The Defence is his debut novel.

Author link : Twitter

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Body Heat by Candy Denman @CrimeCandy @CrimeSceneBooks @annecater #blogtour #RandomThingsTours #BodyHeat

Such a pleasure to host a stop on the blog tour for Body Heat by Candy Denman today. My thanks to Anne Cater for the invitation to join and to the publisher for my review copy!

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Author : Candy Denman
Title : Body Heat
Series : Jocasta Hughes Mysteries #2
Pages : 262
Publisher : Crime Scene Books
Publication date : May 24, 2018

aboutthebook

The second in the Dr Jocasta Hughes sees the Hastings Forensic Medical Practitioner faced with a gruesome series of murders which leave the remains of the victims twisted and charred. The hunt heats up for the arsonist, and so does Jo’s relationship with the exasperating DI Miller. A chilling mystery with lead characters you will want to spend more time with, and a murderer you would definitely want to avoid.

mythoughts

Body Heat is the second book in the Jocasta Hughes series, which I didn’t realise but it doesn’t matter as I had no problem at all getting immersed and following along.

Dr Jocasta Hughes, or Jo, is a part-time GP and part-time Forensic Consultant for the Hastings police department. This includes confirming a person is dead, for instance, or making sure someone held in a police cell is fit to be interviewed. I took to Jo right away. She’s an intelligent and determined woman, who’s always looking out for the people around her.

The action starts pretty much on the first page which is one sure-fire way to hook your readers from the get-go. When the body of a woman is found burned to death in an abandoned car, Dr Hughes is called out to the scene to confirm the woman is indeed dead. Little does she know this victim will not be the last one as the killer is most definitely on a mission.

During the investigation, one suspect is a young man who clearly has a learning disability. It was this part of the story that really grabbed me. The relentlessness of detectives as they go out of their way to get a confession made for quite an emotional read at times. This is also where Jo gets involved, as an appropriate adult and making sure her patient is as well as he can be.

Having the main character be a doctor and not an investigator is both incredibly refreshing and also slightly frustrating as I felt I was increasingly left out of the excitement of a murder case since Jo is rather on the fringes of it all. Sure, she has her sources and people willing to partake in a bit of gossip but it’s a bit different from being right there in the middle of the action of an investigation.

As for the killer, I was convinced I had it all figured out quite early on. I was wrong. Again. I’d make a horrible detective. It wasn’t until the final pages that the pieces of the puzzle came together. This is one seriously chilling killer and his choice of murder is quite horrendous.

Body Heat is a gripping and compelling serial killer mystery. I thoroughly enjoyed the balance between a murder investigation, Jo’s work at the GP surgery and her personal life including her parents, her best friend and the “will-they, won’t-they” relationship with Steve Miller. I feel this would make quite a fabulous tv series, as it goes. It was a delight meeting the entire cast of characters, even Jeffries, and I look forward to reading more about them in future. Might be a while until I have me some crispy bacon again, though.

Body Heat is available to buy!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

Candy Denman trained as a nurse, and worked in the NHS almost all her life, until recently managing to disengage herself in order to become a full-time crime writer. She has also written a number of scripts for such highly-acclaimed TV series as The Bill and Heartbeat.

Author links : Twitter

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Carpenter Road by N.M. Brown @normthewriter @Bloodhoundbook #blogblitz

It’s a real pleasure to be hosting one of the stops on the blog blitz for Carpenter Road by N.M. Brown today! My thanks to Sarah Hardy at Bloodhound Books for the invitation and the review copy, which I received via Netgalley.

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Author : N.M. Brown
Title : Carpenter Road
Pages : n/a
Publisher : Bloodhound Books
Publication date : June 7, 2018

aboutthebook

When a young woman swaps coats with a prostitute then vanishes, it marks the start of a mystifying case for Leighton Jones.

After traffic officer Leighton is called to an altercation in a used car lot he is confronted by a prostitute rambling on about a girl who stole her coat. He thinks nothing off it. That is until the body of a Jane Doe shows up, matching the prostitute’s description.

What is the link between the fight in the car lot and the dead woman?

Leighton proceeds to gather evidence, which he attempts to pass onto the lead Homicide detective, Slater. However, Slater tells Leighton to back off, and that a suspect has been arrested.

Fearing there is more to the case than he first thought, Leighton is driven to keep digging and soon ends up on the trail of a serial killer.

But Leighton might be out of his depth this time..

mythoughts

If you read N.M. Brown’s previous book, The Girl on the Bus, then you will no doubt remember Leighton Jones. In this story, the reader is taken ten years back into the past so it really doesn’t matter if you’ve not read the previous book. Leighton is working in the Traffic department, a job which quite frankly sounds incredibly boring to me.

Leighton is called out to a used car lot where he is confronted by a prostitute who’s making a big deal about her coat being stolen by a girl outside a diner. Leighton doesn’t make much of it until a girl, who matches the description of the “thief” perfectly, is found dead. Is there a connection?

Technically, it’s not at all up to Leighton to figure this out but his colleagues in the murder division don’t seem to take many things seriously. The investigation moves at a snail’s place. These are “only” working girls after all.  The captain is far more interested in giving Leighton a hard time.

But Leighton just can’t help himself. This says so much about him. It’s not about taking the credit, getting his face in the papers for solving a big case. Leighton genuinely cares about people, wants to help them in any way he can, even if it means putting himself in danger. He is just such a wonderful and likeable character with a heart of gold.

Meanwhile he’s also dealing with an increasingly declining relationship with his seventeen year old daughter. Again, if you read the previous book, you’ll know more about this but to be able to have a look back and be witness to how things developed is really intriguing.

Carpenter Road is a gripping and compelling serial killer mystery. It has a well-executed plot with great characters to root for and sympathise with. At times, the story even pulled at my heartstrings when the author delved into the background of some of the working girls. There was a surprise or two for me, which is always a bonus and the investigation into the murder spree was captivating,

There was a bit of a wait between the previous book and this one but it was well worth it. I thoroughly enjoyed learning more about Leighton Jones and I hope there’s more to come from him and N.M. Brown.

Carpenter Road is out today!

Amazon US | Amazon UK | Goodreads

abouttheauthor

Norman has enjoyed writing for more than two decades. He has always believed a combination of decent fiction and good coffee provides the best way to unwind and slip out of ordinary life for a while.

Having grown up Central Scotland, he studied English at Stirling University, where he began penning poetry, drama scripts and short stories. However, his real commitment to writing resulted from spending a snowy winter attending a series of fireside writing workshops in Perth.

More recently, Norman’s love of crime fiction led him to create the weary detective Leighton Jones. Having based his debut novel – The Girl on the Bus -around this character, Norman felt so intrigued by him that he decided to give Jonesy at least two more outings. Carpenter Road is the second novel to feature this protagonist.

Aside from his family, and travelling, Norman’s other passion is cooking, which may explain why many culinary elements always seem to creep out of his kitchen and into his fiction.

Author links : Facebook | Twitter | Website

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The Craftsman by Sharon Bolton #MustRead

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Author : Sharon Bolton
Title : The Craftsman
Pages : 432
Publisher :  Trapeze Books / Orion
Publication date : May 3, 2018

aboutthebook

August, 1999
On the hottest day of the year, Assistant Commissioner Florence Lovelady attends the funeral of Larry Glassbrook, the convicted murderer she arrested thirty years earlier. A master carpenter and funeral director, Larry imprisoned his victims, alive, in the caskets he made himself. Clay effigies found entombed with their bodies suggested a motive beyond the worst human depravity.

June, 1969
13-year- old Patsy Wood has been missing for two days, the third teenager to disappear in as many months. New to the Lancashire police force and struggling to fit in, WPC Lovelady is sent to investigate an unlikely report from school children claiming to have heard a voice calling for help. A voice from deep within a recent grave.

August, 1999
As she tries to lay her ghosts to rest, Florence is drawn back to the Glassbrooks’ old house, in the shadow of Pendle Hill, where she once lodged with the family. She is chilled by the discovery of another effigy – one bearing a remarkable resemblance to herself. Is the killer still at large? Is Florence once again in terrible danger? Or, this time, could the fate in store be worse than even her darkest imaginings?

mythoughts

Drop everything and pick up a copy of this one right now! You can thank me later!

Sharon Bolton has been on my list of go-to authors for as long as I can remember. As a massive fan of her work, The Craftsman was one of my most anticipated books of the year. So much so that I pre-ordered it the second that was possible, without even knowing what it would be about. Would the unthinkable happen and would I be left disappointed? Ha! Of course not!

The proof that I’d be hooked as always was right there on the first page. It is a rare feat to find yourself so utterly gripped by just the author’s foreword alone. It even took me a second to realise this wasn’t actually part of the story.

I read this one a bit slower than I normally read. Even when it seems there’s very little happening, Sharon Bolton’s writing is so intensely captivating that it has me focusing on every single word, soaking it all up, enjoying it to the fullest. Sometimes even taking the time to read a sentence twice because it’s just that good!

I read The Craftsman together with Janel at Keeper of Pages. This is the perfect choice for a buddy read. We came up with theories like crazy. Some so ridiculously far removed from what actually happened, it was almost embarrassing. Sharon Bolton definitely kept us guessing until the very end. And what an ending it is too! I stayed up way past my bed time to finish this and was left gasping and reeling.

Set in the 1960’s and 1990’s, this story flows effortlessly and seamlessly between the two timelines, oozing atmosphere all the time. I was so utterly engrossed, it almost felt as if the author had put a spell on me. The Craftsman is incredibly well-plotted, surprising, intriguing and impossible to put down. It is original, creepy, chilling and immensely addictive.

This review has been such a struggle. I’ve been messing around with it for weeks and I’m not at all happy with it but I just can’t find the words to say how much I loved it. You will undoubtedly be seeing this title when I compile my “books of the year” list in December and it’s fair to say that no matter where Sharon Bolton goes, I will follow. Not in the stalker kind of way. This is an author who should be on everyone’s go-to list and bookshelves.

So I’m sure you have no problems imagining my sheer delight and excitement when I realised this is actually the first book in a trilogy! I absolutely can’t wait for The Cunning Wife to arrive! Is it May yet? How about now?

The Craftsman is available to buy!

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