My #Review of #TheShadowsOfMen by @radiomukhers @HarvillSecker

When Abir Mukherjee’s latest book arrived from the Postman, I spent 10 minutes jumping around the lounge in joy!

Set at a time of heightened political tension, beginning in atmospheric Calcutta and taking the detectives all the way to bustling Bombay, the latest instalment in this ‘unmissable’ (The Times) series presents Wyndham and Banerjee with an unprecedented challenge. Will this be the case that finally drives them apart?

‘An engaging, evocative thriller that captures the heat of Indian nights and heady days of a bygone era, without being sentimental or simplistic’ Janice Hallett, bestselling author of The Appeal

The Shadows of Menfinds the always reliable Crime Writers’ Association Dagger Award-winner Abir Mukherjee on fine form
‘ Financial Times

When Abir Mukherjee’s latest book arrived from the Postman, I spent 10 minutes jumping around the lounge in joy! I have been hooked on the wonderful adventures of Captain Sam Wyndham and Sergeant Surrendranath Banerjee from reading the first book in the series, A Rising Man (see an earlier blog post).

We are now in 1923 Calcutta, and times are changing for the British Rulers, there’s an undercurrent of the uprising and amongst this, we find Suren in dire straits! I’m not going to give away the plot, but suffice to say that the book revolves around this event and the chaps trying to stop an all-out Religious war! Which affects Suren, Sam and all the usual characters who readers will know, the gorgeous and daring Miss Annie Grant and Lord Taggart among them.

I have read a lot of books in my life, but never have I read such a brilliant (that word isn’t really enough for how I feel!) series of books, that have taught me SO much about a historical period, as these books do. In The Shadows Of Men, Abir’s talent at taking the reader right there, right into the time, right into the fray, to feel what it must have been like and almost to experience it, is just frankly amazing and beyond my comprehension of how he can write like HE was there! I have always been fascinated with India, and wish I could have travelled there, the books take you there, you can smell the smells, taste the food, feel the oppressive heat or the steaming rain, Abir’s writing is poetic at times in describing the settings of 1920’s India. And to be able to write, with authority on the different faiths, and their peculiarities with such knowledge makes Abir, a once in lifetime Author, that rare mix of talent of a fantastic storyteller and a knowledgable historian.

However it’s not all seriousness, there are laughs, mixed in, Sam’s traditional British black humour to note! And I loved the introduction of another new Character, Miss Ooravis Colah, a fantastic and I’m sure ahead of her time woman.

In summing up, I must say that The Shadows Of Men is Abir’s best work so far, and to be fair, that’s high praise as the other 4 books were bloody amazing! As always I love the relationship between Sam and Suren and in this book we see their relationship start to shift, because of events and because of the times, but we are left with a cliffhanger that means that book 6 will undoubtedly move us into a different phase of their lives. I cannot wait… let’s hope Abir is writing away furiously now!! Thank you for your sublime talent Sir!

About Abir Mukherjee

Abir Mukherjee is the Times bestselling author of the Wyndham & Banerjee series of crime novels set in Raj-era India which have sold over 250,000 copies and been translated into 15 languages. His books have won numerous awards including the CWA Dagger for best Historical Novel, the Prix du Polar Européen, the Wilbur Smith Award for Adventure Writing and the Amazon Publishing Readers Award for E-book for the Year.
Alongside fellow author, Vaseem Khan, he also hosts the popular Red Hot Chilli Writers podcast, where every fortnight, joined by special guests from the media and literature, he takes a wry look at the world of books, writing, and the creative arts, tackling everything from bestsellers to pop culture.

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My #Review of the brilliant and gripping #DevilsTable by @K_RhodesWriter @simonshusterUK

THE GRIPPING LOCKED-ISLAND MYSTERY # 5

‘An absolute master of pace, plotting and character’ ELLY GRIFFITHS

A MISSING CHILD
St Martin’s is shrouded in bitterly cold fog when Jade Minear and her twin brother, Ethan, are attacked in a field, late at night. Ethan manages to return home but the shocking events of Jade’s disappearance have rendered him mute.

A LONG-HELD GRUDGE
On a small island where there are few places a child can hide, DI Ben Kitto must battle the elements to search for Jade. When his investigation reveals that the Minear family have many enemies on the island, Kitto grows increasingly worried that Jade is in danger.

A KILLER HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT . . .
Meanwhile, someone on the island knows exactly where the girl is. Someone with a deep-seated hatred of Jade’s family. To find the truth, Kitto must investigate the lives of the people he has known all of his life. Because one of them is lying – and it isn’t long until a body is found . . .

Having read all 4 of the other Hell Bay DI Ben Kitto series, I was so looking forward to finding out more about Ben and the next adventure in the Scilly Isles, I was not to be disappointed!

Firstly let’s talk about Maps in Books! I personally love a map in the beginning of a book, it really makes the story so much more tangible when you can see where it’s based. Kates books in this series are all based on the Isles of Scilly just off the coast of Cornwall, and her maps are always brilliantly illustrated. More maps in books please Authors!

Taken from Devils Table

The beginning of the book is a brilliant depiction of something bad happening in a beautiful setting, and from the first page I was totally gripped by Devils Table, devouring it in 2 days and reading deep into the night!

Imagine a locked room mystery but on a small Island and you have the premise of the story. The setting is just sublime and the way Kate writes, I could feel the oppressive setting with the fog pressing down on me! Kates writing about the Scilly Isles is almost poetic at times and her love of them shines thru with each chapter!

The lead character DI Ben Kitto is brilliant, he is a gentle giant with a complex personality due to a tragedy in his youth, but above all he is a fearless Police Detective, who is fair minded and won’t give up the hunt for a killer until he has caught them! His trusty sidekick Shadow the dog, just adds to his story and I love Ben as a written character so much!

As always I never give the plot away, that’s for you to find out by reading the book! But I will say that it kept me invested with every page and I did not guess who the perpetrator was! Thats a great book right there when the reader is kept in the dark! Kate Rhodes is a master of writing a genuinely great storyline and her characters just jump off the page at you!

So I must give Devils Table a 5⭐️ read, as it was everything I hoped it would be! I’m so looking forward to finding out what’s in store for Ben in the next book!

Kate Rhodes

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

Kates Simon & Schuster profile is HERE

Kate is on Twitter @K_RhodesWriter

Instagram @katerhodeswriter

#Review of #WhenTheGuiltyCry by @WriterMJLee published by @CaneloCrime

Three severed hands. No clues. A race against time.

Three embalmed hands are discovered in a disused Victorian house. Is it a gangland ritual? The work of a cult? Or just a prank played by Medical Students? And what happened to the bodies?

Meanwhile the Coroner needs to issue a Presumption of Death certificate on a teenage girl who vanished eleven years ago in mysterious circumstances.

As hints emerge the two cases are connected, DI Ridpath pushes himself to the limit to find out what really happened. It soon emerges the house is a former children’s home. When another woman, a local social worker, disappears, he is under immense pressure to find answers. What really happened at Daisy House Children’s Home all those years ago?

He has just one week to discover the truth…

The latest in the #1 bestselling DI Ridpath crime thriller series, perfect for fans of Mark Billingham and Peter James.

I will try not to be too biased with my review of the latest DI Ridpath thriller, When The Guilty Cry by the superbly talented MJ Lee, but I LOVE this book series!

From the opening chapter I just knew I was hooked, I’m trying to pinpoint why I love these books so much….I think it’s in the way MJ writes, every time I pick up one of the DI Ridpath books, it’s like Im being given a virtual hug, being wrapped in a warm blanket….I just know what to expect and I love it!

As with ever story and plot, this one is twisty and engaging, I personally love the Police procedural side and also the Coroner’s Office side…I’m thinking because I’m a frustrated Cop!, anything that details the procedures ticks my boxes! And I think learning about the Coroner’s office is really useful, I would love to have worked in a Coroner’s office, it’s seems so interesting and to be able to give the dead a voice is so powerful! The writing from both these points of view is really sublime, and with each Ridpath book it just gets better and better!

I’m not going to give anything away, but I will say this is a superb book and I also love the personal story that carries thru the books with Ridpath and his Daughter….as always I read this book in 2 days, now I will have to wait another year before I get a another fix of DI Thomas Ridpath!

A solid 5 ⭐️ read.

Martin spent 25 years of his life working for advertising companies in London, Hong Kong, Taipei, Singapore, Bangkok and Shanghai. As a copywriter and a creative director, he has won awards from Cannes, One Show, D&AD, New York, the LIAA, and the United Nations.
He’s written four historical crime novels. The latest, ‘The Irish Inheritance’, a Jayne Sinclair, Genealogical Mystery, will be published on June 15, 2016.
When he’s not writing, he splits his time between the UK and Asia, dancing with his three year-old daughter, researching his family histrory, practicing downhill ironing, single-handedly solving the problem of the French wine lake and wishing he were George Clooney.

You can follow Martin HERE on his Website

Buy the DI Ridpath books HERE

#Review of #LethalGame by @Gloriouscharlie @AvonBooksUK

This fast paced, electric thriller races from page to page and keeps you guessing until the very end’ NetGalley review ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

He knows your name. Where you live. The car you drive.

If you don’t play, your family will die. If you lose, you will.

When DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose begin investigating the death of a young woman, murdered on a quiet country lane, they can’t imagine what lies ahead.

This killer uses his victims like chess pieces in a life-sized contest, with the highest stakes imaginable.

Now Norris and Rose are pawns at the mercy of a twisted rulebook.

Can they beat him at his own game before the next round begins and more innocent lives are taken?

A totally addictive, edge-of-your-seat, crime-thriller that will leave you breathless. Perfect for fans of Cara Hunter, Ian Rankin and Stuart MacBride

Once again thank you so much to Avon Books UK for gifting me a print copy of Lethal Game, and may I say it’s another brilliant book from Avon, they just find the best authors!

My first foray into a book by Charlie Gallagher, and let me tell you I was hooked from the first chapter!

A gritty, violent opening to a brilliant hard-boiled thriller and Police procedural! I found the lead characters of DI Joel Norris and DS Lucy Rose really easy to like, although both are complex cops ( aren’t they all?)

The plot surrounding a board game called Escape, is really quite unique, involving a deranged but highly intelligent killer who is seeking revenge, by playing with peoples lives!

Although this is book 2 in the series, the first being The Friend, it is easy enough to read as a stand-alone. I loved the realistic Police Procedural side ( Charlie being an ex Cop means it’s spot on ) but again found it easy enough for all non-Police readers to grasp. I was gripped from the outset and didn’t want the book to end!

A brilliant and engrossing crime fiction novel from an accomplished author, a 5 ⭐️ star read from me, and I’m looking forward to the next instalment!

Lethal Game is released by Avon Books UK on the 11/11/2021

Charlie Gallagher

Charlie Gallagher has been writing for twenty years, most of that time as a hobby but with the dream of one day ‘doing it properly.’ Alongside this hobby it was necessary to have a day job which, for thirteen years, was as a serving U.K. police officer. This career in policing opened up a whole new world of experiences and opportunities and he is now fortunate enough to be able to channel those experiences into stories on a full time basis.

Whilst a police officer, Charlie worked as a response officer, a member of a specialist tactical team, a detective and in a regional counter terrorism unit.

His books are thrillers and, rather unsurprisingly, policing and crime are central to the stories. 

Charlie lives on the south coast of the U.K with his wife and two daughters, a springer spaniel, a tortoise and a cat with a far higher number of twitter followers. Charlie is published by Joffe Books and Avon, Harper Collins.

The Joel Norris Series:

Book 1: The Friend

Book 2: Lethal Game Released 11/11/2021

The Maddie Ives Series:

Book 1 – He Is Watching You

Book 2 – He Will Kill You

Book 3 – He Will Find You

Book 4 – He Knows Your Secrets

Book 5 – He Will Get You 

Book 6 – The Deadly Houses

The George Elms Series:

Book 1 – Bodily Harm

Book 2 – Panic Button

Book 3 – Blood Money

Book 4 – End Game

Book 5 – Missing

Book 6 – Then She Ran

Book 7 – Her Last Breath

Standalone books:

Ruthless

You can buy Lethal Game HERE

You can follow Charlie on Twitter @Gloriouscharlie

You can follow Charlie on Facebook @Charliegallagherwriter

Charlie’s website is HERE

My #Review of #BadApples 🍏 by @willrdean published by @PointBlackCrime


It only takes one…

A murder

A resident of small-town Visberg is found decapitated

A festival

A grim celebration in a cultish hilltop community after the apple harvest

A race against time

As Visberg closes ranks to keep its deadly secrets, there could not be a worse time for Tuva Moodyson to arrive as deputy editor of the local newspaper. Powerful forces are at play and no one dares speak out. But Tuva senses the story of her career, unaware that perhaps she is the story

I am so in Love with Will Deans character Tuva Moodyson for so many reasons, she’s deaf, she’s fearless, she’s gutsy, she’s got a fit girlfriend and she’s funny, so I was really excited to start reading Bad Apples, Tuva Book 4

Tuva has returned to Gavrik ( Toy Town as she calls it! ) and is back in her old job, as a crime reporter, at the local paper. In the smaller Town of Visberg, high on the hill, the old Reporter has retired and Tuva has taken over the patch. To get used to the place and to start to get to know the locals she starts spending time up there, but on her first visit she encounters a headless corpse!

I’ve devoured everything Will has written and I have to say that this is the best Tuva book so far, the setting is SO atmospheric, so claustrophobic and so easy to picture in your minds eye.

The cast of Visberg locals that Tuva meets are so ethnically mixed and a lot are weird to be fair, BUT that only adds to the plot and frankly what a bloody explosive plot it is!

The build up had me feeling like I was on edge and had me thinking of that classic movie The Wicker Man, the descriptive prose of Pan Night is just absolutely stunning, it sets Tuva in the spooky Visberg during October, to a treat! Swedish Folklore and Will Deans devious mind work SO well together, and will have you gripped!

I am not going to give anything away, as normal BUT it’s a brilliant book…another 3 day read for me! And the ending!!!!!! Will please dont leave me hanging for too long I must read Tuvas book 5 soon!!

Any book that makes you have visceral feelings means it’s a brilliantly written one, this will have you anxious, gripped, over-thinking and downright scared shitless!

5 Star Read ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Will Dean grew up in the East Midlands, living in nine different villages before the age of eighteen. After studying law at the LSE, and working many varied jobs in London, he settled in rural Sweden with his wife, and Bernie the St Bernard. He built a wooden house in a boggy forest clearing and it’s from this base that he compulsively reads and writes.

Book Review Be Sure Your Sins by Harry Fisher

Be Sure Your Sins

Six people
Six events
Six lives destroyed

What is the connection?

Detective Sergeant Melissa (Mel) Cooper has two major investigations on the go. The first involves six apparently unrelated individuals who all suffer inexplicable life-altering events.
Mel is also pursuing a serial blackmailer but just as she’s about to prove the link between this man and the six bizarre events, she’s ordered to back off.   
So why are her bosses interfering with her investigations? Who are they trying to protect? And how far will they go to stop her?

The answers come from a totally unexpected source.

Firstly thank you to Rebecca at Hobeck Books for my copy of Be Sure Your Sins.

I loved this book, at first I couldn’t understand how the six events that occurred were going to make a story…but as I continued to read, it became a complex and weaving plot that had me gripped.

DS Mel Cooper leads the team investigating these crimes, in Edinburgh. She’s a feisty and clever Detective and with her team they uncover plots of blackmail and hate, which hits her close to home!

Fantastically well written, with wonderful descriptions of Edinburgh and some really clever plots, an intelligent and unputdownable thriller of a book.

A 5 ⭐️ read.

I’m Harry Fisher, I write crime thrillers.

I live in Aberdeen with my wife, Shiona and our dog, Harry. And there it is – the lie exposed. Harry Fisher (the writer) is a pseudonym and here’s why. Despite the fact that in my entire life I’ve never met anyone with the same name as me, when I came to publish WBAL I discovered a namesake down south who writes crime thrillers. Honestly, what are the chances? (Mutter mutter.)

I’m a native of Edinburgh and that’s where Way Beyond A Lie is (partly) set. Write about what you know, and all that. It’s also set in Prague. We went there for a long weekend in 2000 so you can see a theme developing. We’ve been to Ballachulish a couple of times too but I couldn’t fit it into the story. Sorry about that, folks.

My second book Be Sure Your Sins will be published 5 October 2021. Six events happen to Six people that destroy Six lives. It’s not a sequel but DS Mel Cooper from Way Beyond A Lieis the central character. Lots of readers told me they loved her and her sidekick Andrew Young so it was an easy decision to give them their own show.

Things I’m into apart from walking the canine Harry every day: travel, outdoor stuff, wine and food, and if all four can be aligned then so much the better.

STOP PRESS: Harry has recently signed with indie publisher Hobeck Books (Trad Values – Indie Spirit). More news to follow.

Find Harry at his website here https://harryfisherwriter.com/

#CoverReveal #TheCaseOfTheMissingFirefly #StonbridgeMysteries4 @cmacwritescrime @RedDogTweets via @judefire33

Chris MacDonald – The Case Of The Missing Firefly

The Case Of The Missing Firefly (The Stonebridge Mysteries 4) by Chris MacDonald

The notoriously hard-drinking, backstabbing Stonebridge Radio crew are having their Hallowe’en party on Winkle Island, rumoured to be the most haunted place in Northern Ireland. Unfortunately, Adam and Colin are there too, having accepted an easy payday from Colin’s event organising mother.

At dinner, a shocking announcement is followed by an even more shocking murder, and the theft of a priceless Firefly necklace. To top it all, thanks to a raging storm, everyone is trapped on the island.

Faced with devious radio presenters, a strange tour guide, and a rampaging murderer, Adam and Colin are back in business. The Case of the Missing Firefly is the fourth in the Stonebridge Mysteries series of cosy crime novellas.

Pre-Order in paperback, hardback or eBook, NOW from Red Dog Press https://www.reddogpress.co.uk/product-page/the-case-of-the-missing-firefly

Chris is also the author of the fantastic DI Erika Piper Series

You can buy them here from Red Dog Press here – https://www.reddogpress.co.uk/product-page/a-wash-of-black-hardback

ChrisMacDonald_edited.png

Chris McDonald grew up in Northern Ireland before settling in Manchester via Lancaster and London.

He is the author the DI Erika Piper series A Wash of Black, Whispers In The Dark and Roses for the Dead. He has also recently dabbled in writing cosy crimes, in the shape of The Stonebridge Mysteries, as a remedy for the darkness. 

He is a full time teacher, husband, father to two beautiful girls and a regular voice on The Blood Brothers Podcast. He is a fan of 5-a-side football, heavy metal and dogs.

Find him on twitter @cmacwritescrime

1979 by Val McDermid (Allie Burns 1)

The shadows hide a deadly story . . .

1979. It is the winter of discontent, and reporter Allie Burns is chasing her first big scoop. There are few women in the newsroom and she needs something explosive for the boys’ club to take her seriously.

Soon Allie and fellow journalist Danny Sullivan are exposing the criminal underbelly of respectable Scotland. They risk making powerful enemies – and Allie won’t stop there.

When she discovers a home-grown terrorist threat, Allie comes up with a plan to infiltrate the group and make her name. But she’s a woman in a man’s world . . . and putting a foot wrong could be fatal.

Now I’m a massive fan of Val McDermid (should be DAME Val McDermid in my option!) , so I was hugely looking forward to reading 1979…. And boy, I was not to be disappointed!

The first in a brand new series, Allie Burns budding Journalist at the Clarion newspaper in Glasgow, sets a great pace from the first chapter!

A train journey on a cold snowy January day brings the first in a series of exciting events, that start a thrilling journey through births, deaths, gangsters, terrorists and drunken journalists, that gripped me from page one!

Setting a book in 1979, seems not so far in our past, but the attention to detail in explaining why it’s now a world away from today’s technological advances, was written so well, I actually felt I was there and it bought up some great memories for me. I always love that a writer can take us places in our own memory, whilst, at the same time, we travel with the fictional heroine! From Showaddywaddy to terrorist threats to strikes, the historical part of this novel has it all….it felt extremely genuine, and the reader can see how much effort was taken in researching this.

The storyline is brilliant, as always from Val McDermid, I was fully engaged and loved the fact that it was set in the world of journalism, especially because in 1979 (when I was 12, I wanted to be a journalist or a Police Officer…both of which never happened sadly) and it’s so authentic, or it felt that way to me!

In summing up, a fantastic start to a great new series, with some genuine OH NO moments! Immersive, thrilling, gripping, authentic with a hearty dash of Watney’s Party 7!

5 Stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Val McDermid Official Website – https://www.valmcdermid.com/

Evaders by E.C Scullion (Tom Holt 2)

A crime has been uncovered. Clare Buchanan has been missing for almost twelve years.

Former security manager Tom Holt knows that the man responsible for her disappearance goes by the name of Capricorn.

On the run in South America, Holt’s life is in danger.

In London, journalist Nash Akinyemi discovers the story that could make her career; a chance to finally step out of her mother’s shadow.

Talented thief Becca Wylde has worked for Capricorn her whole life; now it’s time to break free.

Together, Holt, Nash and Becca must risk everything to expose Capricorn’s secrets to the world. Yet Capricorn has his own weapon. Anton Merrick has a dark past, and he will stop at nothing to keep them all silent…

From the streets of London, to the shores of Chile, to the tropical islands of Panama, the race is on to expose the truth, before the truth gets buried. The second novel from the author of the bestselling Intruders.

Phew I am totally breathless after finishing Evaders the second in the Tom Holt series by the super talented Emma Scullion.

Following on from Intruders we are on another exciting thrill ride thru South America on the hunt for justice with Tom Holt and some trusty sidekicks.

This second book almost reads like a family saga, with all the characters and connections, I loved this as Intruders had left me with many questions and in Evaders we get the answers to those. The underlying romance between Tom and Becca is so compelling, and both these characters are now fully rounded and extremely likable….I really want them to get together 🤣🤣!

As usual the descriptions of the places Evaders takes us on out thrilling journey are impeccable, and again left me googling to see where they were and some real photos. In fact my only suggestion would be to include a map in the beginning of each book ( because who doesn’t love maps in books!), the tension and storyline just grows and grows as the book continues, and several times I was on the edge of my seat holding my breath in anticipation!

In short, Evaders is a fantastic follow up to Intruders, I am really looking forward to Book 3 ….hurry up and write it please Emma!

5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Read.

You can buy Intruders and Evaders from https://www.reddoorpress.co.uk/products/evaders

Born in a Burial Gown by M.W Craven

Well after the fantastic Washington Poe series, I decided to give the Avison Fluke series a go. I wondered if they would be as gripping? Would the characters be as memorable as Washington and Tilly? I was not to be disappointed!

I really loved this book and my main reason was that it took me back to when i was a civvy with Surrey Police. The attention to detail in describing Police procedures and daily life of the Police and CID was amazing, I really love books like this and I know some dont, but for me it rings true which is always a bone of contention with me when reading crime fiction. So if youre an ex-cop or civvy, or indeed you work for a Police Force now then i highly recommend the Avison Fluke series! One of the finest and truest works of the Police Procedural genre.

Avison Fluke is a great character and with the story we find out something about him in drips and drabs, and it is an astonishing secret…! His side kick, Towler is a great big personality and strangely enough reminded me of one of my old Sargeant’s! I also liked the way it was set in Cumbria and the way Mr Craven is able to transport you there, fantastically describing the scenery and crime scenes within it!

I dont like spoilers so i’m not going to give you a breakdown of the story, BUT it grabbed me from the first page and I found it hard to put down, theres no dodgy filler chapters here. Its terrific front start to finish.

And i didnt guess who the perp was!

Im looking forward to reading the second book in the series Body Breaker.