The Ringmaster by Vanda Symon (Audible)

This is the second instalment is the Sam Shepherd series from the absolutely brilliant pen of Vanda Symon.

I listened to this on Audible and it was just brilliant. I love Sam she’s sassy and bloody funny… Symon’s talent for writing a skillful, mystery with humor and realism is amazing in The Ringmaster. But be warned I cried tears at a certain point!….a true skill to reduce the reader to tears and then to make them laugh.

If you’ve not come across this series set in New Zealand I urge you to…you will not be disappointed.

5⭐️ Read for me! 

Vanda Symon Official Website –

The Girl Who Died by Ragnar Jonasson

I’m a huge fan of Nordic Noir and Ragnar Jonasson so I was extremely read The Girl Who Died. 

It is a creepy slow burning story about Una set in the 1980’s, in Iceland. I love the way Ragnar builds a story and the description of the cold dark days of the Icelandic winter really helped to make the story even more creepy and kinda jumpy!

I’m not going to give away any spoilers but I loved the crescendo and found the book very compelling, I finished it in 2 days so that tells you how good it is! 

For fans of claustrophobic dark spooky thrillers, this one’s for you.

Another 5 Star read

Far From The Tree by Rob Parker

OMG what a book!

Well Far From The Tree is my first read by author Rob Parker, and let me tell you it is definitely in my top ten of 2021!

Totally gripping and shockingly gruesome story of DI Brendan Foley and the discovery of 27 bodies all vacuum packed in plastic and buried in a shallow grave in a woodland trench in Warrington, UK.
I am not going to give any more of the story away but let me tell you this….you will be shocked, you will gasp, you will be gripped, you will be thrilled and above all you will be impressed with this book.

Fantastically well written with oodles of characters it reads like a movie. Dark and intense, I couldn’t get enough of it!

If you read one crime thriller this year please read FarFromTheTree, it’s a page turning masterpiece!

5⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ read!

Red Wolves by Adam Hamdy

I’m a huge fan girl of Adam Hamdy and loved The Pendulem Trilogy. When Black 13 came Adam kindly gifted me a copy and I was blown away (see in my reviews) so I’ve been waiting for what feels like years for the follow up… gum I was not disappointed!

This is set in the now and starts off with an absolutely gripping prison escape in Egypt, then very soon we, the reader, are caught up in the world of ex MI6 officer Scott Pearce and his team, in an utterly thrilling chase through different Countries to stop a deadly Toxin being spread around the world.

This is such an intensely researched and intelligent thriller, there’s so much for fans of Spy and Espionage books here, I would categorise it as James Bond on Speed! With every page you get deeper and deeper in this world, its immersive and just breathtaking! I really can’t find any fault in Red Wolves and think it’s Adams best work so far. The description of fights, of chases, of spy wear and spy equipment is just amazingly detailed and so realistic! The characters are truly human, and diverse, as well as being kick arse which makes the book really sing.

In summing up, This is my 47th book this year and it’s gone straight in at number 2 (only closely pipped by Will Dean’s The Last Thing To Burn.) Simply fantastic, an unputdownable thriller that would make a superb movie, if you’ve not read any of Adams books then I urge you to read Black 13 and Red Wolves, you will not be disappointed.

Once again thank you Adam for my copy and I hope you’re writing book 3 furiously! I can’t wait to read it!

#adamhamdy #panmacmillan #redwolves #scottpearce #thriller #spy #boysownadventures #gripping #unputdownable

The Abandoned House by Karen Louise Hollis

Firstly thank you so much Karen for gifting me a lovely physical copy, I love the cover!

Although this is a short red, I really enjoyed it, spooky and pretty gripping, the tale of Rebecca who has just come out of an abusive marriage and her bestest buddy Max. To take her mind of her troubles Max takes her On an Urban Explore and that’s where it all starts for Rebecca!

Good storyline, likeable characters and a good ending.

4 star read ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

The Abandoned House Karen Louise Hollis

The Creak On The Stairs by Eva Björg Ægisdóttir

I really liked this Icelandic thriller, a slow burn but such wonderful writing and the description’s of Iceland really stood out for me. A great outcome to the end of a deep and at times mystifying novel. For fans of Nordic Noir.

Great work and I look forward to reading many more of Eva’s books in future.

Eva Björg Ægisdóttir page on the Orenda Books website –

True Crime Story by Joseph Knox

So I stayed up into the early hours to finish True Crime Story and it really is such an inspired read, and the best work so far from Joseph Knoxy Knox!

No spoilers here…. The story is set out in such an original way that I was totally invested in it from the first page, I was making notes throughout (a first!) , there are plenty of twists and turns and the whole thing has a really dark and angry feeling to it, which i loved. The plot is really twisty and makes you question everything and everyone and I was pretty gobsmacked at the outcome!

A really unique crime thriller, it’s almost feels like a graphic novel which again, I love.

I’ve no idea where this idea came from Joe but it’s bloody brilliant and I love it, it’s is definitely in my top 5 books of the year and a must read for any crime or thriller fans.

5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 

Joseph Knox Website –

A Rising Man by Abir Mukherjee

My first read of the Captain Sam Wyndham and Sergeant ‘Surrender-Not’ Bannerjee was really a wonderful experience. 
Set in Calcutta India in 1919 this book is a thrilling jaunt thru Indian life and society when the British were its rulers. I’m not one for historical novels but I have to tell you, I loved it so much, Abir’s writing is poetic at times and so well described was the setting that I felt I was there! This book is the first in the series and we see the relationship between Sam and Surrender-Not blossom and grow as the book goes on. There’s political thrills, crime, heat, humidity and bad food in this book. 
I’m so glad I was recommended to read this series. I’m super impressed by this book as it has also taught me about a way of life I’d never known, but I’ve always had a fascination for India, and I will admit I’ve been Googling Indian history and learning as I was reading.
5 Star  ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Link to Abir Mukherjee website –

Containment by Vanda Symon (Audible)

Vanda Symon has done it again with Containment!

Another rollicking thrill ride thru Sam Shepherds car crash of a life in New Zealand as a Trainee Detective, it starts out with a bang….and ends with one!

Brilliantly written as always, hilariously funny, sometimes shocking, fantastic plot and realistic characters and setting….I am a real fan of the Sam Shepherd series and Vanda Symon is mighty talented at writing these. I can’t wait for the next one! 

5 Star read

Vanda Symon – Containment

Vanda Symon Official Website –

Nighthawking by Russ Thomas

Fantastic second book in the DI Adam Tyler series. Set in Sheffield involving a group of Detectorists, roman coins and murder! ( of course! ) I devoured this book in a matter of days, it was so good and gripping.
Brilliantly written with a great cast of characters and the settings are so well described that you feel you are there. I love the background storyline and the final page is gasp inducing!
I look forward to the third book in the series.
Fantastic work Russ. 👏💯❤

Here is the link to Russ’s website –