My #Review of #ByWayOfSorrow by #RobynGigl @robyngigl @VERVE_Books

Erin McCabe is a New Jersey criminal defense attorney doing her best to live quietly in the wake of a profound personal change – until a newsworthy case puts her whole life at risk…

Erin McCabe has been referred the biggest case of her career. Four months ago, the son of a New Jersey state senator was found fatally stabbed in a rundown motel near Atlantic City. Sharise Barnes, a nineteen-year-old transgender sex worker, is in custody, and, based on the evidence against her, there seems little doubt of a guilty verdict.

As a transgender woman herself, Erin knows that defending Sharise will blow her own private life wide open and doubtless deepen her estrangement from her family. Yet she feels uniquely qualified to help Sharise and duty-bound to protect her from the possibility of a death sentence.

While Erin works with her law partner, former-FBI-agent Duane Swisher, to show Sharise acted in self-defense, the senator begins using the full force of his influence to publicly discredit them and their efforts to mount a defense for Sharise. And behind the scenes, his tactics are even more dangerous. For his son had secrets that could destroy the senator’s own political aspirations – secrets worth killing for…

Firstly I must thank Sarah at Verve Books for gifting me a proof of By Way Of Sorrow.

This is an absolutely bloody brilliant book! I’m not sure what I was expecting but it wasn’t this!! It’s an immensely well-written, groundbreaker of a book!

I’ve not read any American novels that are set in their criminal justice system, but it is written with what feels like a totally realistic and authentic edge. Our heroine is Erin McCabe and she is a criminal defense attorney in New Jersey. Working with her partner, Duane Swisher who is a former FBI agent, they get referred to a case that will be the biggest of both their careers.

Now I really do not want to give any of the plotlines or story away so I’m going to try not to! The case involves Sharise Barnes a teenage transgender sex worker who was arrested and seems guilty, based on the evidence, of murdering the son of a prominent New Jersey senator. And that’s where things start, this novel is so gritty and dark yet also laced with humor and compassion.

The narration of each of the characters is brilliantly written, and so emotionally charged and intense in parts, but so authentic! I really was amazed at the quality of the writing by Robyn Gigl, the handling of several sensitive scenes was thrilling and also emotive! And had me on the edge of my seat and anxious which is always the sign of a good writer!

I loved Erin McCabe’s character, she is a bloody sassy lady, and when things get tough she does not cower in the corner she fights and gets results in the courtroom and in life, and against the daily prejudice that she faces. She is such a wonderful fictional character, and so memorable, I totally see this being a long-running series and indeed it so needs to be made into a film!

The legal terms are written in such a way that anyone can understand what they mean and in fact, it’s a good insight into the American Justice system. I’ve always thought that legal thrillers can be a bit too staid and boring, but not By Way Of Sorrow, there are no down chapters, or page fillers here this is just a thrilling gripping page-turner from the start, in fact, I was gutted when it finished!

I really want to tell you the storyline, but I don’t want to spoil it for you, but if you want to read a legal thriller for the here and now, dealing with transgender issues, racism, misogyny, family issues, the American legal system, and corruption, then By Way Of Sorrow is the book for you.

If you are interested in transgender characters this is a must-read. I cannot wait for the next installment, if it’s as good as By Way Of Sorrow I will be so pleased! Thank you Robyn Gigl for your talented writing!

A super 5-star read and one that’s also important for today’s society, and has to be one of the thrillers of the year!.

Robyn Gigl (pronounced Guy-gull), the author of BY WAY OF SORROW and SURVIVOR’S GUILT, is an attorney, speaker, and activist who has been honored by the ACLU-NJ and the NJ Pride Network for her work on behalf of the LGBTQ+ community. Robyn is a partner at Gluck Walrath, LLP in Freehold, NJ, where she handles complex commercial and employment litigation. She has been selected as an NJ Super Lawyer since 2010 and as one of the Top 50 Women Lawyers in NJ in 2020 & 2021. Robyn is a member of the Board of Directors of Garden State Equality, NJ’s largest LGBTQ+ Civil Rights Organization. She is a graduate of Stonehill College and Villanova University School of Law. A frequent lecturer on diversity issues, she lives in New Jersey where she continues to practice law by day, and work on her next novel by night. Fortunately, she has a very boring social life. 

You can follow Robyn Giglon TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK

Robyn Gigl has her own website HERE

You can buy By Way Of Sorrow HERE

My #review of the #TheBrutalTide by #KateRhodes @K_RhodesWriter published by @simonschusterUK #DIBenKitto #6 #ALockedIslandMystery

REVENGE
DI Ben Kitto made many enemies in his time working as an undercover officer for the Met police, none more ruthless and calculating than gang leader Craig Travis.
IS WORTH
Travis has longed to make Kitto pay for his role in getting him convicted – and that day has finally arrived. Now, a dark and twisted killer is heading for the Scilly Isles, one who has waited a long time for revenge.
WAITING FOR . . .
With Kitto busy investigating the discovery of a body on the islands and distracted by the imminent arrival of his first child, his defences are down. He has so much to lose.

And Travis will stop at nothing to take it all from him.

I’m a huge fan of Kate Rhodes Isles of Scilly, DI Ben Kitto series and always wait eagerly for the next installment. So as soon as The brutal Tide was published it was in my basket!

Now if you’ve never read the Ben Kitto Locked Island Mysteries, then, where have you been!? Seriously they are simply tremendous. Kate Rhodes is an absolutely accomplished and fabulous writer. She has created a wonderful cast of characters that live on the small island of Bryher one of the Scilly Isles off the coast of Cornwall, UK. You really need to read the series in order as there is a back story with Ben Kitto that’s been running throughout the series and it impacts on The Brutal Tide.

Kate Rhodes says that the Isles of Scilly are one of her favorite places in the world, having spent many holidays there when she was a child. And the thing is that love comes out in the writing, the books are so visceral in their descriptions of the Islands and they come with a map! I’m a massive fan of maps in books, it always helps me to visualize where the story and action are taking place, please keep putting maps in your books authors!

I always find Kate’s books super easy to read, which means i whizz through them ( which is so annoying!) but having now read all 6 I can safely say that each one is different and each one has a brilliantly scripted plot. the brutal Tide kicks off with someone from the past and is told from two points of view, but it works extremely well, and with each page the tension starts to get bigger and bigger.

The plot is gripping, slick, and tense, and made me scream “Oh No” several times at the climactic ending sequences! But the ending of The Brutal Tide was fantastic and awesome but I’m not telling you why…Buy the book!!

As always another 5-star read from an author who seemingly cannot put a foot wrong!

Kate Rhodes is a crime novelist and award winning poet. Kate was born in south London but now lives in Cambridge with her family. She studied English at university and did a wide range of jobs including working in bars, being a theatre usherette, and teaching at a liberal arts college in Florida, before focusing on her writing.

Her latest crime novels are the acclaimed HELL BAY series set in the Isles of Scilly. Kate has been passionate about the islands since holidaying there as a child and still returns for regular visits. Books in the series include HELL BAY, RUIN BEACH, and BURNT ISLAND.

Kate’s bestselling ALICE QUENTIN series includes CROSSBONES YARD, A KILLING OF ANGELS, THE WINTER FOUNDLINGS, RIVER OF SOULS, BLOOD SYMMETRY, and FATAL HARMONY.

You can follow Kate Rhodes on TWITTER & FACEBOOK

You can buy Kate Rhodes’s books HERE

My #Review of #TheStoning by #PeterPapathanasiou @peteplastic @maclehosepress

A small town in outback Australia wakes to an appalling crime.

A local schoolteacher is found taped to a tree and stoned to death. Suspicion instantly falls on the refugees at the new detention center on Cobb’s northern outskirts. Tensions are high, between whites and the local indigenous community, and between immigrants and the townies.

Still mourning the recent death of his father, Detective Sergeant George Manolis returns to his childhood hometown to investigate. Within minutes of his arrival, it’s clear that Cobb is not the same place he left. Once it thrived, but now it’s a poor and derelict dusthole, with the local police chief it deserves. And as Manolis negotiates his new colleagues’ antagonism, and the simmering anger of a community destroyed by alcohol and drugs, the ghosts of his past begin to flicker to life.

Vivid, pacy and almost dangerously atmospheric, The Stoning is the first in a new series of outback noir featuring DS Manolis, himself an outsider, and a good man in a world gone to hell.

The Stoning by Peter Papathanasiou had been on my bookshelf for quite a while, but I finally managed to pick it up last week and make a start.

As a huge lover of Australian Crime Fiction Noir (think Chris Hammer or Jane Harper), I was eager to see what Mr. Papathanaious could bring to the table.

Well, he really hits it out of the park with The Stoning, it’s a sumptuously described novel set in the tiny hamlet of Cobb, in the outback of Australia, once a fine thriving town, now a dead-end place full of dustballs, kangaroos and drunks, and druggies plus The Immigration Centre, a stark square building plonked in the middle of nowhere. that’s a political time bomb within the community.

And this is what our novel revolves around, a woman is found apparently Stoned to death, and this has a huge impact on the fractured society of Cobb. We follow Detective George Manolis, and his quest to find the truth amongst rumors, racism, hate, bigotry, and the simmering anger of the inhabitants of Cobb.

The story was bloody gripping and I instantly loved several of the characters including George Manolis and Andrew Sparrow a local Gay Aboriginal Copper. The language is authentic, the descriptions of the setting are utterly engaging and on fire, and you can feel the heat and the flies. The dialogue between the characters is just stunning, it reads like a movie it is so vivid and gritty.

It’s a tense, medium-paced thriller that is dark and littered with Political references that make it an outstanding debut.

I look forward to the follow-up once it arrives, suffice to say this is a 5-star read, and Peter Papathanaious is on my favorite author’s list!

Peter Papathanasiou was born in northern Greece in 1974 and adopted as a baby to an Australian family. His debut book, a memoir, was published in 2019 as “Son of Mine” by Salt Publishing (UK) and “Little One” by Allen & Unwin (Australia). His debut novel, a work of crime fiction, was published in 2021 as “The Stoning” by MacLehose Press (UK) and Transit Lounge (Australia), and in 2022 by Polar Verlag (Germany). Peter’s writing has otherwise been published by The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, The Seattle Times, The Guardian UK, The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age, Good Weekend, ABC and SBS. He holds a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from City, University of London; a Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Sciences from The Australian National University (ANU); and a Bachelor of Laws from ANU specializing in criminal law.

You can follow Peter Papathanasiou on TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK

You can BUY Peter’s books HERE

Todays #Author answering Questions is #Guest #JohanaGustawsson @JoGustawsson #TheBleeding @OrendaBooks

JW; How much research did you have to do for The Bleeding? Especially the settings as they are so visceral!

JW; I’d like to start by asking, have you always wanted to be a writer? And where did the idea of The Bleeding come from?

JG: No, I didn’t know yet! At the time I was answering: an actress! Hahaha! I studied in Paris at a famous acting school at the same time as working as a journalist for the press and TV, and I dreamt of becoming an actress. I was on stage in Paris and had an agent, but I really didn’t like this business. I didn’t like learning the texts, or going to auditions, which was problematic, as you can imagine! It took me a while to realize that what I liked was the text itself! I have always been an avid reader and was very fond of crime novels so, years after that, I started writing and that, I tremendously enjoyed!

The idea of The Bleeding was a mix of crazy and completely different desires: writing about La Belle Epoque, Maxine, and Lina, who came first in my mind and had to be fleshed, setting up my characters in Québec, which I fell in love with thanks to Roxanne Bouchard a friend and fellow writer at Orenda Books.

JW; How much research did you have to do for The Bleeding? Especially the settings as they are so visceral!

JG; It was a lot of research, about the Belle Epoque and witchcraft, but it was fun and I spent a few phenomenal months! I started researching something that had nothing to do with what The Bleeding ended up talking about: I wanted to write about the secret society of the Golden Dawn, and with this terrible habit I have to research more and more and some more with every detail which I find thrilling, I ended up in the caldron of quite a few witches!

JW; The 3 women in The Bleeding are all strong characters, was it important to you to portray them in this way even during the eras?

JG; It was key to me. I wanted to showcase the battles we, women, go through. Battles that can become wars. And some of those battles haven’t changed, despite changing centuries. We have still so much to fight for and against.

JW; As a child growing up, were you an avid reader or watcher of television? Did any part of your childhood make you the writer you are?

JG; I became an avid reader after plunging into my first Agatha Christie, around the age of 7. It was The Mysterious Affair at Styles that made me one. Then I devoured books. I don’t know how I became the writer I am today, but reading, from poetry to dark gritty crimes, surely played its role.

JW; As we’re now in September, which books that you’ve read this year have been your favorite? OR which are you most looking forward to?

JG; I have been reading quite a few but mostly for research for a project I cannot yet talk about. Reading about neurology mostly and memory. And I really found fascinating “Livewired” by David Eagleman, a neuroscientist explains how our brains work.

JW; Do you have a favorite Author or favorite book of all time?

JG: Agatha Christie and French poet Charles Baudelaire. French writer Marguerite Duras is too… “Murder on The Orient Express” and “Les Fleurs du Mal” (Flowers of Evil) are two of my favorites. And actually, traveling on the Orient Express train is still on our dream list with my father, who is also a big fan!

JW; Have you ever been starstruck by meeting one of your heroes in real life?

JG; As a journalist, I met Samuel L. Jackson with whom I shared breakfast (well, I did not eat a thing). I was interviewing him for the movie Snakes on the plane, and he welcomed me saying: “that was a shit movie, don’t you think? Let’s talk about something else. Where are you from?” And we ended up talking about Provence and golf, and god knows what else, whilst he ate his eggs and bacon! And I met Harlan Coben, in 2019 at the Harrogate festival, and there too: starstruck!

JW; What is something you are passionate about aside from writing?

JG; Oh yes! Dancing! I used to be a ballet dancer, and I would love to go back to some sort of dancing: flamenco being my top choice, but I have absolutely no time to dive into anything but writing, which is also my passion, as my three boys take up all my time!

JW; If you could go back in time, to one historical event, to witness it, what would it be and why?

JG; Oh god. There are so many. But I’d chose Paris during La Belle Epoque, like in The Bleeding. The international fair. Another era. The Beauty of Paris in the making.

JW; Can you share a shelfie (photo of your bookshelf) with us?

JW: You can pick 4 famous people, dead or alive, for a dinner party, who would you pick and why?

JG: Agatha Christie. Almodóvar. Poirot (David Suchet will do if I’m not allowed to have a fictionalized character). Dalí. I think the night would be completely mad!

JW; What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?

JG: That hard work is the key. Consistency and hard work always pay off. It was, of course, my parents. They taught me it is not over when you lose, it only is when you quit. And of course, they were right!

JW; What’s next? Are you writing a new novel?

JG; I just handed in my next novel to my French publisher, called The Island of Yule, which Karen Sullivan, my UK and US publisher Called “Christmas Island”, on the spot. The novel is taking place on the island of Storholmen, just in front of the one I live on, in Sweden, where a young girl is found hanged close to a manor said to be haunted. It is out in France in January 2023.

You can buy The Bleeding HERE from Orenda Books

You can follow Johana on TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK

Johana Gustawsson has her own website HERE

My #reviews of #TheCrossingPlaces & #TheJanusStone by @ellygriffiths @QuercusBooks

Dr Ruth Galloway is called in when a child’s bones are discovered near the site of a pre-historic henge on the north Norfolk salt marshes. Are they the remains of a local girl who disappeared ten years earlier – or are the bones much older?

DCI Harry Nelson refuses to give up the hunt for the missing girl. Since she vanished, someone has been sending him bizarre anonymous notes about ritual sacrifice, quoting Shakespeare and the Bible. He knows that Ruth’s expertise and experience could help him finally to put this case to rest.

But when a second child goes missing, Ruth finds herself in danger from a killer who knows she’s getting ever closer to the truth…

It amazes me how sometimes we, as readers, miss some amazingly good book series, and the Dr. Ruth Galloway series by Elly Griffiths is one of those for me.

I had seen the books on social media and years ago when I used to use a library but had never read them, then finally at the beginning of the year I saw a set of the first 9 books and I thought I must buy them to read, well they’ve been sat looking lovey in my bookshelf ever since! (I’m sure we are all guilty of this!)

So I started the first book with an open mind, and The Crossing Places did not disappoint.

It’s a fabulous opener to the series which I now know is loved by fans all over the world. Dr. Ruth Galloway is a slightly overweight Forensic archaeologist who loves nothing more than to find bones and search out what happened to the person they were, she also loves Bruce Springsteen and her cottage on The Saltmarsh. In the first book, we follow her on a hunt to find out whether the bones discovered on the site of a pre-historic henge are those of a missing local girl.

We meet the excellent cast of characters that surround Ruth in the series, the huge and intense DCI Harry Nelson, the slightly odd but lovely Cathbad, a druid and laboratory assistant at The University of Norfolk, (Ruth works here as a Lecturer), and Shona, Ruth’s better looking, lover of married men girlfriend.

The story is brilliant with a huge input of historical fact, folklore, and suspense. I loved the way the story climbs to a climactic ending and was really gripped all the way thru.

As an opening book to a series, it’s fabulous and I suspect the series and stories surrounding Dr. Ruth Galloway will get even better as I binge-read the books in order!

A Great 4 star read.

Dr Ruth Galloway’s forensic skills are called upon when builders, demolishing an old house in Norwich, uncover the bones of a child – minus the skull – beneath a doorway. Is it some ritual sacrifice or just plain straightforward murder? Ruth links up with DCI Harry Nelson to investigate.

The house was once a children’s home. Nelson traces the Catholic priest who used to run the place. He tells him that two children did go missing forty years before – a boy and a girl. They were never found.

When carbon dating proves that the child’s bones predate the home and relate to a time when the house was privately owned, Ruth is drawn ever more deeply into the case. But as spring turns into summer it becomes clear that someone is desperate to put her off the scent by frightening her to death…

My Collection of Dr Ruth Galloway books

I was really ready to find out what would be happening in Dr. Ruth Galloway’s life after reading the first book.

In the Janus Stone, we find out lots more about Ruth and her life ( I’m not going to give anything away here!), enough that her storyline is keeping me gripped alongside the latest case of old bones that are found in an ex children’s home.

The usual cast of characters is here and they are now starting to evolve which I just adore!

The storyline and plot are gripping and I raced through The Janus Stone, the plot builds to a brilliant ending and I thought it was really well written.

I find Elly Griffith’s style of writing really easy to read and almost dare I say it cozy ( I’m not a great lover of cozy crime I prefer gritty), but I think the skill involved in writing the great cast of characters and involving a good Police procedural around Ruth’ life is really clever.

Again I was not at all disappointed, indeed it took me 2 days to read! A 5-star read.

 Elly Griffiths is the author of the Dr. Ruth Galloway books and the Brighton Mysteries. Last year I also published a stand-alone, The Stranger Diaries, and a children’s book, A Girl Called Justice. I have previously written books under my real name, Domenica de Rosa (I know it sounds made up).

The Ruth books are set in Norfolk, a place I know well since childhood. It was a chance remark of my husband’s that gave me the idea for the first in the series, The Crossing Places. We were crossing Titchwell Marsh in North Norfolk when Andy (an archaeologist) mentioned that prehistoric people thought that marshland was sacred ground. Because it’s neither land nor sea, but something in-between, they saw it as a bridge to the afterlife; neither land nor sea, neither life nor death. In that moment, I saw Dr. Ruth Galloway walking towards me out of the mist…

I live near Brighton with Andy. We have two grown-up children. I write in a garden shed accompanied by my cat, Gus.

You can follow Elly Griffiths on TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK

Elly Griffiths’s website is HERE

You can BUY all of Ruth Griffiths’s books HERE

My #Review of #TheBleeding by @JoGustawsson @OrendaBooks

Three women
Three eras
One extraordinary mystery…
 
1899, Belle Époque Paris. Lucienne’s two daughters are believed dead when her mansion burns to the ground, but she is certain that her girls are still alive and embarks on a journey into the depths of the spiritualist community to find them.

1949, Post-War Québec. Teenager Lina’s father has died in the French Resistance, and as she struggles to fit in at school, her mother introduces her to an elderly woman at the asylum where she works, changing Lina’s life in the darkest way imaginable.

2002, Quebec. A former schoolteacher is accused of brutally stabbing her husband – a famous university professor – to death. Detective Maxine Grant, who has recently lost her own husband and is parenting a teenager and a new baby single-handedly, takes on the investigation.

Under enormous personal pressure, Maxine makes a series of macabre discoveries that link directly to historical cases involving black magic and murder, secret societies and spiritism … and women at breaking point, who will stop at nothing to protect the ones they love…

The Bleeding is the first novel I have read by Johana Gustawsson, and after reading it, it won’t be my last!

Firstly a word about the actual hardback published by Orenda Books, it is a divine little beauty, the size of a paperback but in hardback form, with a glorious cover (Those who know me well, know I LOVE cover art) and beautiful sprayed edges…it almost had the feel of an old fashioned book, and it works SO well with the story! Such a keeper!

Now the novel is set in 3 time zones and we hear from 3 women who each tell us their story, at first I was unsure about this and how it would work but let me tell you it is absolutely sublime the way Johana Gustawsson has managed to weave the timezones and characters together. And the feel of this book is gothic, its gritty, and so vivid, there’s so much to the storyline but as you know I never give away spoilers (it’s SO hard with The Bleeding as I want to shout from the rooftops about it!) but if you like a bit of history, maybe some magic and witchcraft mixed with a modern murder and Police Investigation, then this is the book for you.

The Bleeding is an absolute little gem of a book, I couldnt put it down and it really got into my head. I loved the way it was written with such aplomb by Johana Gustawsson, in fact ive gone straight to order her previous books! A final word to the translation by David Warriner, who has again managed to make it read like it was written in English, trust me there is nothing lost in translation here! And the ending was utterly shocking and i had not guessed it would end like that at all!!!

So I am giving The Bleeding a rapturous 5 stars (if I could give it more I would), a bloody wonderful book! You must read it!!!

Born in Marseille, France, and with degrees in Law and Political Science, Johana Gustawsson has worked as a journalist for the French and Spanish press and television. Her critically acclaimed Roy & Castells series, including Block 46, Keeper and Blood Song, has won the Plume d’Argent, Balai de la découverte, Balai d’Or and Prix Marseillais du Polar awards, and is now published in twenty countries. A TV adaptation is currently underway in a French, Swedish and UK co-production. Johana lives in London with her Swedish husband and their three sons.

You can follow Johana on TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK

Johana Gustawsson has her own WEBSITE

You can buy The Bleeding HERE

#Review of #TheSkeletonKey by @mserinkelly @HodderBooks

THIS REUNION WILL TEAR A FAMILY APART …

Summer, 2021.
 Nell has come home at her family’s insistence to celebrate an anniversary. Fifty years ago, her father wrote The Golden Bones. Part picture book, part treasure hunt, Sir Frank Churcher created a fairy story about Elinore, a murdered woman whose skeleton was scattered all over England. Clues and puzzles in the pages of The Golden Bones led readers to seven sites where jewels were buried – gold and precious stones, each a different part of a skeleton. One by one, the tiny golden bones were dug up until only Elinore’s pelvis remained hidden.

The book was a sensation. A community of treasure hunters called the Bonehunters formed, in frenzied competition, obsessed to a dangerous degree. People sold their homes to travel to England and search for Elinore. Marriages broke down as the quest consumed people. A man died. The book made Frank a rich man. Stalked by fans who could not tell fantasy from reality, his daughter, Nell, became a recluse.

But now the Churchers must be reunited. The book is being reissued along with a new treasure hunt and a documentary crew are charting everything that follows. Nell is appalled, and terrified. During the filming, Frank finally reveals the whereabouts of the missing golden bone. And then all hell breaks loose.

Inspired by the author’s love for Masquerade, this is a taut, mesmerising novel of danger and obsession.

This is the first book I’ve read by Erin Kelly, and I actually was drawn to it by the excellent cover art.

Once I started, I was absolutely hooked and obsessed! It is a fantastic Bookbanger and within the first chapters, I just knew this would become one of my favourite books of the year!

If like me you are old, then you will remember the book that was the spark of inspiration for Erin Kelly, and what made her write The Skeleton Key. It is such a different story/novel from any others I’ve read for a long time.

A crime within a dysfunctional couple of families, and a book about power, love, fear, and obsession.

I ADORED our main protagonist Nell and her child Billie, and I must say ALL the cast absolutely jumped out from the pages at me. You could feel their fears, their hate, their lust, their obsession so much and to be honest although this is quite a big book of nearly 500 pages, I really didn’t want it to end!

The setting is London, and it is exquisitely described! The story takes us in the past as well as the recent present, it does not stop, it’s relentless in its shocks and twists and turns! I don’t want to give you any spoilers but it was such a magical book for me, I feel like I’m in love with it! But I’m also feeling better now I’ve finished The Skeleton Key, I just can’t think I will find another book like it!

If you like books about art, families, and the intricacies that can happen when power shifts and obsessions enter relationships, then you will love The Skeleton Key. I dare you to read it and not be left with a sad feeling, it was just so magical!

A fantastic 5-star read from me!

What if? To a suspense writer, these are the most powerful words in the English language. My job is to imagine a strange situation and ask the question that will make it stranger still. My new book, Stone Mothers, is set a former Victorian mental hospital. I got the idea when a friend who’s an urban explorer was in an abandoned asylum and found old patient records. She’s a nurse, and knew what to do with this sensitive documents. But I thought: what if they had got into the wrong hands? And my story was born.
I’m best known for He Said/She Said, about a young couple who witness a rape and, after the trial, begin to wonder if they believed the right person. My first novel, The Poison Tree, was a Richard and Judy bestseller and a major ITV drama starring Myanna Buring, Ophelia Lovibond and Matthew Goode. I’ve written four more original psychological thrillers – The Sick Rose, The Burning Air, The Ties That Bind.
I had read scores of psychological thrillers before I heard the term: the books that inspired me to write my own included Endless Night by Agatha Christie, The Secret History by Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier and A Fatal Inversion by Barbara Vine. My books are atmospheric thrillers, always about people trying to atone for, escape, or uncover a past crime. I’m more interested in what happens before the police arrive – if arrive they ever do – than how murder is solved.

You can follow Erin Kelly on TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK

Erin Kelly has her own WEBSITE

You can buy The Skeleton Key HERE plus Erin’s other books

#Review of #TheGirlsWhoDisappeared by @Dougieclaire @MichaelJBooks

THREE GIRLS MISSING……..Twenty years ago: One rainy night, Olivia Rutherford is driving three friends home when a figure in the road causes her to swerve and crash. Regaining consciousness, she finds herself alone in the car – her friends have vanished.

THEY ARE NEVER SEEN AGAIN…….Now: Journalist Jenna Halliday visits the close-knit community of Stafferbury to persuade Olivia to talk and solve the mystery of the girl’s disappearance. But Olivia won’t speak.

What happened?……….. Is Olivia hiding something?
Why are the people of Stafferbury so frightened?
How many secrets can one small town hide?

I loved The Girls That Disappeared by Claire Douglas, a totally gripping read from page one.

The start of this book had me hooked and I could not put it down, a very creepy feel to this story which I found made my anxiety rise whilst reading!!

The plot is intelligent and the cast of characters is easy to follow and identify with, the story builds and builds to a crescendo of an ending! A truly great gripping read for spooky October!

Claire Douglas is the award-winning author of seven stand-alone thrillers, THE SISTERS, LOCAL GIRL MISSING, LAST SEEN ALIVE, DO NOT DISTURB, THEN SHE VANISHES, JUST LIKE THE OTHER GIRLS and her most recent, THE COUPLE AT NO. 9, which is a number one Amazon bestseller and reached number three on the Sunday Times bestsellers list. Her books have sold over 500,000 copies in the UK and have been translated into twenty languages.
You can find Claire on Twitter at @DougieClaire, on Instagram as clairedouglasauthor, or visit her Facebook page clairedouglasauthor

You can Follow Claire on TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK

You can buy The Girls Who Disappeared HERE

#BlogTour #Wolfpack by @willrdean @PointBlankCrime @RandomTTours

When there’s a pack on the hunt, nobody’s safe…

After the traumatic events of the past year, Tuva is back as deputy editor reporting for the Gavrik Posten, but her world will never be the same.

A closed community

Rose Farm is home to a group of survivalists, heavily armed and completely cut off from the outside world.

A missing person

A young woman, Elsa Nyberg, goes missing within the perimeter of the farm compound. Can Tuva talk her way inside the tight-knit group to find her?

A frantic search

As Tuva attempts to unmask the culprit, she gains unique access to the residents. But soon she herself is in danger of the pack turning against her. Can she make her way back to safety and expose the truth?

Will Dean’s most heart-pounding Tuva Moodyson thriller yet takes Tuva to her limits, both professionally and in her personal life. Can she, and will she, make the right choice?

Firstly I would like to thank Point Blank Crime and Anne Cater for letting me have a copy of Wolf Pack to review.

So, Wolf Pack is the 5th instalment in Will Dean’s absolutely brilliant Tuva Moodyson series, set in a remote town in Sweden. the previous books being Dark Pines, Red Snow, Black River and Bad Apples.

The first thing to mention if you haven’t read any of this series is Tuva Moodyson is a profoundly deaf lesbian in a small town and a reporter for the town’s newspaper The Gavrik Posten. If you haven’t read the series, I would recommend you do as events in the previous novels do link into Wolf Pack.

The plot of Wolf pack is really quite exceptional, Tuva stumbles upon an injured dog and ends up taking him and his owner to the Gavrik vets, and from then on events just slowly and mysteriously rumble on like a snowball down a hill and Tuva is slap bang in the middle of it.

I really don’t want to give any of the plots away but I must say that due to what has happened to Tuva in the previous book Bad Apples, she is in a dark place personally which leads her to act perhaps more recklessly than we’ve seen before. Will Dean’s use of the two small towns of Visberg and Gavrik and their cast of characters which again pop up in the series, means that we have a claustrophobic mystery involving a missing woman and a group of survivalists. It’s a fabulous study into how easy it is for a group of people to become cut off from society and how that paranoia can affect how people behave.

As I’ve said I’m not going to spoil the plot, but what I will say is the list of characters and their descriptive personalities are so well written, Will dean is so amazingly clever at writing how people think and conveying that to the reader, Wolf Pack is full of unease and suspense. And in one particular scene, I was sweating and my heart was palpitating because it was so descriptive I felt like I was there!

I’ve no idea how Will Dean manages to write book after book with such aplomb, and Wolf Pack is really excellent, I was gripped and could not put it down. I’m such a huge fan of Tuva because I can identify with her in so many ways, I am in awe of male writers who can so easily write from the female perspective too, and Will Dean is a master at this.

So Wolf Pack of course gets 5 stars from me. Another triumph from an author who seemingly cannot put a foot wrong! And now I have to await the next instalment of Tuva Moodyson, and that is the only downside!

WILL DEAN lives in the middle of a vast elk forest in Sweden, where the Tuva Moodyson novels are set. He grew up in the East Midlands. After studying Law at the LSE, and working in London, he settled in rural Sweden and built a wooden house in a boggy clearing, where he lives with his wife and son, and it’s from this base that he reads and writes. Will Dean is the author of Dark Pines, Red Snow, Black River and Bad Apples in the Tuva Moodyson series. His debut novel in the series, Dark Pines, was selected for Zoe Ball’s Book Club and shortlisted for the Guardian Not the Booker prize. The second, Red Snow, won Best Independent Voice at the Amazon Publishing Readers’ Awards and was longlisted for the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2020, as was his third novel, Black River.

The series is in development for television. Will is also the author of two stand-alone novels, The Last Thing to Burn, shortlisted for the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year 2022, and First Born, both published by Hodder.

Will Dean posts regularly about reading and writing on YouTube and you can find him on Twitter, TikTok and Instagram. @willrdean TikTok: will_dean_author YouTube: Will Dean – Forest Author

#BlogTour #TheMooseParadox by @antti_tuomainen @Orendabooks #TheRabbitFactor Published 27/10/2022

Insurance mathematician Henri Koskinen has finally restored order both to his life and to YouMeFun, the adventure park he now owns, when a man from the past appears – and turns everything upside down again. More problems arise when the park’s equipment supplier is taken over by a shady trio, with confusing demands. Why won’t Toy of Finland Ltd sell the new Moose Chute to Henri when he needs it as the park’s main attraction?

Meanwhile, Henri’s relationship with artist Laura has reached breaking point, and, in order to survive this new chaotic world, he must push every calculation to its limits, before it’s too late…

Absurdly funny, heart-stoppingly poignant and full of nail-biting suspense, The Moose Paradox is the second instalment in the critically acclaimed, pitch-perfect Rabbit Factor Trilogy and things are messier than ever…

Thank you to Orenda books and Anne Cater for allowing me to be on this Blog Tour.

Well, I was so excited to meet Henri again after his adventures in The Rabbit Factor, he is the most unlikely hero but he is so loveable.

We start The Moose Paradox with a real shock and then the story continues along this vein – catastrophe, confusion, and almost old-fashioned slapstick black comedy really make The Moose Paradox a great follow-up to The Rabbit Factor. However I SO want Henri to succeed with the YouMeFun Adventure Park, I will admit to getting a bit cross at the storyline in some parts! But surely that’s what writers want to hear that books are visceral and make you feel something, good or bad!

As always I’m not going to give you any spoilers, you need to read the books I review to find your own enjoyment in the storylines! But as always I adore the cast of characters in The Moose Paradox, they are so real and jump off the page! There is so much humour in Antti’s writing and it’s also juxtaposed with sadness but then Herni is as complicated a character as you can find, with his mathematical brain the way he views the world is so unique. The Moose Paradox is again a gritty crime thriller packed with twists and turns and black comedy. This is part 2 of the Rabbit Factor trilogy and i can’t wait to read the finale!

Finnish Antti Tuomainen was an award-winning copywriter when he made his
literary debut in 2007 as a suspense author Iin 2013, the Finnish press crowned
Tuomainen the ‘King of Helsinki Noir’ when Dark as My Heart was published.
With a piercing and evocative style, Tuomainen was one of the first to challenge
the Scandinavian crime genre formula, and his poignant, dark and hilarious The
Man Who Died became an international bestseller, shortlisting for the Petrona
and Last Laugh Awards. Palm Beach Finland was an immense success, with
Marcel Berlins (The Times) calling Tuomainen ‘the funniest writer in Europe’. Little
Siberia (2020), was shortlisted for the CWA International Dagger, the Amazon
Publishing/Capital Crime Awards and the CrimeFest Last Laugh Award, and won
the Petrona Award for Best Scandinavian Crime Novel of the Year. The Rabbit
Factor (2021), the first book in Antti’s first ever series, is in production by Amazon
Studios with Steve Carell starring. The Moose Paradox, book two in the series is
out in 2022

You can follow Antti tuomainen on TWITTER INSTAGRAM FACEBOOK