#Review by Lou – The Serial Killer’s Wife by Alice Hunter- Happy Pubication Day @Alice_Hunter_1 @AvonBooksUK #Thriller #PsychologicalThriller

The Serial Killer’s Wife
By Alice Hunter

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Seeringly intense with the bone-chilling factor and a great twist, it may leave you just a bit stunned for awhile after. Take a look at the blurb and my full review of what else I think of this book.
Thanks to the publisher, Avon Books for gifting me this book.

Blurb

The Serial Killer's WifeThey’re saying he’s a monster. And they’re saying she knew.

Beth and Tom Hardcastle are the envy of their neighbourhood – they have the perfect marriage, the perfect house, the perfect family.

When the police knock on their door one evening, Beth panics. Tom should be back from work by now – what if he’s crashed his car? She fears the worst.

But the worst is beyond imagining.

As the interrogation begins, Beth will find herself questioning everything she believed about her husband.

They’re husband and wife – till death do them part…

The Serial Killer's Wife

Review

DI Manning is on the case in The Serial Killer’s Wife. Chapters seemlessly flip from Beth to Tom to Katie and you can see the story build up through the years and how they all become linked and where Tom and Katie met and got to know each other 8 years ago, and how Tom is now married to Beth in the present time. It’s easy to get caught in the romantic entanglements, especially between Tom and Katie, all those years ago.

There is beauty and intensity and suspicion to be found throughout. It makes you question and wonder about Tom that gives an uneasiness. The juxtopositions of the beauty in the writing and the horror of what is actually going on comes from adept storytelling and very adept writing.

The ending is quite a twist and it’s a good one…

The book has some gritty, gripping, chilling themes that show that no one really knows what goes on behind closed doors.

Take a look at the acknowledgements too as there’s a little note within that saying when the book was written and a bit more that could be interesting for readers.

#Review by Lou The Whole Truth by Cara Hunter @CaraHunterBooks @EllieeHud @PenguinRandom #CrimeFiction #BlogTour

  The Whole Truth
By Cara Hunter

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Full of twists in an unpredictable. The Whole Truth is unpredictable, gritty and intense. Find the blurb and review below.

Imagine my excitement when I was lucky enough to receive The Whole Truth, written by Sunday Bestseller author – Cara Hunter, thanks to Ellie Hudson, Olivia Mead and Chloe Davies at Penguin Randomhouse publishers for inviting me onto the blog tour and for sending me a copy of the book

The Whole Truth cover

Blurb

The Whole Truth coverShe has everything at stake; he has everything to lose. But one of them is lying, all the same.

When an Oxford student accuses one of the university’s professors of sexual assault, DI Adam Fawley’s team think they’ve heard it all before. But they couldn’t be more wrong.

Because this time, the predator is a woman and the shining star of the department, and the student a six-foot male rugby player.

Soon DI Fawley and his team are up against the clock to figure out the truth. What they don’t realise is that someone is watching.

And they have a plan to put Fawley out of action for good…

 

Review

The book’s layout is great as narrative, newspaper cuttings, text messages and statements, police reports, transcripts of interviews, podcast episodes (written out as if readers were listening in), all intertwine to tell this story of this crime, set in hot temperatures in Oxford, where DI Fawley and DC Gareth Quinn are on a case. It feels a rather unique way of telling the story. It’s deep and gritty and highly immersive. The intensity increases as the book goes on.

Lady Launceleve College – or EL near where the Banbury and Woodstock roads are) and where Hillary Reynolds is Head of House is the setting. It’s relevant and feels vital as this is about feeling unsafe in colleges and universities; this is about when someone may have been sexually assaulted and discovering just what the truth actually is in what happened between the victim and the accuser. What makes this story so different is that the plot is far from what is expected. It turns everything you may think it would be, entirely on its head. This is far from a predicatable story with its tightly written twists and the detectives are up against it, to discover the whole truth, which isn’t always as straight forward as one would perhaps imagine and with someone watching, there is also an added thriller element. It’s gritty and intense right to the very end!

There is an ingenious layout of  a “previously in the Fawley Files”, so it is absolutely fine if you’ve never read any before, it gives enough detail to catch-up on the key characters and also refreshes the mind well for those who have read the other 4 books in the series.

The Whole Truth

In The Blood by Margaret Kirk @HighlandWriter @orionbooks @lovebooksgroup @lovebookstours

In The Blood
By Margaret Kirk 

Today I am so pleased to show you a bit about In The Blood and its dark, brooding cover and intriguing blurb. Go ahead and take a look and discover more about the book and about this ‘Highland Noir’ author.

in the blood cover

 

Blurb 

in the blood cover‘Ritual murder and ghosts from a chilling past haunt DCI Lukas Mahler in his latest case, set on the ancient Orkney Islands.’Tied to a derelict pier on Orkney, the bloated remains of a man bob in the waves, under the shadow of forbidding Sandisquoy House. The locals know him as William Spencer.

But DCI Luke as Mahler identifies him as Alex Fleming – his former boss.

Unable to step away from the case, Mahler tries to piece together why Fleming would retire to such a remote location. But the deeper he digs, the more disturbing the investigation becomes.

Seal bones, witches’ salve, and runic symbols appear everywhere he looks, ushering Mahler towards Fleming’s most notorious unsolved case: the ‘Witchfinder’ murders. And towards a dark and uncomfortable truth someone has gone to great lengths to bury…

About The Author

Margaret Kirk writes ‘Highland Noir’ Scottish crime fiction, set in and around her home town of Inverness.

Her debut novel, Shadow Man, won the Good Housekeeping First Novel Competition in 2016. Described as ‘a harrowing and horrific game of consequences’ by Val McDermid, it was published in 2017 by Orion. Book 2 in the DI Lukas Mahler series, What Lies Buried, was published on 13th June 2019. Book 3, In The Blood, will be released by Orion on 29th April 2021.

Margaret is also the writer of several award-winning short stories, including The Seal Singers, which has been published in translation in Germany. She has contributed a short story, Still Life, to the Noir From The Bar anthology, which has been compiled to raise funds for NHS charities.

#BookReview by Lou Crackle and Fire by Russ Colchamero @AuthorDudeRuss @HenryRoiPR #CrimeFiction #SciFi

Crackle and Fire
by Russ Colchamiro

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Review written by Louise (Lou) @Lou_Bookmarks

Crackle and Fire is an intergalactic mystery with Private Investigator – Angela Hardwicke on the case in Eternal. It isn’t often my preference, but the Sci-Fi mixed in with mystery makes this a book for both sets of fans and is intriguing in its originality and  pretty gripping and more so than I had thought, so I am glad I took a chance on it.
Find out more in the blurb and the rest of my review of this curious book that will grip many readers and allow  them to escape to another dimension.
Thanks to Henry Roi for gifting me the book and for inviting me to review.

Blurb

Crackle and Fire picAngela Hardwicke isn’t just any private eye. She’s a PI from Eternity, the cosmic realm responsible for the design, creation, and maintenance of the Universe.

When accountant Gil Haberseau hires her to find an intern with stolen corporate files, Hardwicke soon finds herself embroiled in a deadly case of lies, intrigue, and murder, clashing with vengeful gangsters, MinderNot rallies, and a madman who’s come a long way to get what he wants.

In Russ Colchamiro’s thrilling Sci-Fi mystery Crackle and Fire, Angela Hardwicke learns once and for all that when it comes to being an intergalactic private eye, there’s no telling what threats she may face on-realm and off… including the demons that lurk deep within her soul.

Crackle and Fire pic

Review

Pure escapism from what is happening on planet earth. Crackle and Fire does contain some fizz about it, that combines Sci-Fi and Mystery together with the main star of the book being an Intergalactic PI, Angela Hardwicke who is on the case of missing files. It’s certainly eye-catchingly different and is set on a dimension called Eternal. This is where the appeal would lie to both Sci-Fi and fans of Crime Fiction.
There are clues to be found and not where you may expect them and intergalactic gangsters that are encountered in the underworld, where there are drugs and a pace that will make you race through the pages.

The oligarchy of rich and powerful beings, “The Minders” who live in the dimension called – Eternal. Things aren’t so perfect. They have governance issues and secrets, but they try their best. Then a character with narcissitic tendencies blows in and he hates “The Minders” and he seeks vengence out of jealousy and having a complex because he can’t stand anyone who is better than him, which “The Minders” are, and wreaks havoc and the adventure and action is on…

PI Angela Hardewicke suddely has a lot more than meets the eye to deal with, she is a tough, streetwise woman, who takes no prisoners. She also however, has her own issues to deal with.

The mystery is well written and as the story progresses, has more and more elements to surprise readers and to entertain.

Buy Link:  Amazon
 
 

 

#Review by Lou – Catch as Catch Can by Malcolm Hollingdrake – Happy Publication Day @MHollingdrake @HobeckBooks #CrimeFiction #Merseyside

Catch As Catch Can
By Malcolm Hollingdrake

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Review written by Louise (Lou) @Lou_Bookmarks

Catch As Catch Can is an excellent first crime fiction novel set in Liverpool by Malcolm Hollingdrake. There is atmosphere and a terrific rhythm in the artistic writing that gives it an edge, on the backdrop of noteable landmarks and the streets of Liverpool.

Published by Hobeck Books, I thank them as a member of their Advanced Reading Team for gifting me a copy.

FInd out more in the blurb and short review below. Discover what book is coming soon by Malcolm Hollingdrake. I can tell you, it’s a good second book to Catch as Catch Can.

Catch As Catch Can

Blurb

A mutilated body apparently washed up on a windswept beach…

A violent criminal gang preys on moped riders across the area…

A teenage girl is desperate to escape sexual exploitation…

It’s a tough introduction to Merseyside for Detective Inspector April Decent, who’s just arrived from her native Yorkshire. Together with new colleague Skeeter Warlock, Decent quickly discovers there’s a sinister link between them all, one that will bring them face-to-face with some uncomfortable home truths.

Catch as Catch Can is the first in the Merseyside Crime Series from Malcolm Hollingdrake – bestselling author of the Harrogate Crime Series.

Review

Catch As Catch CanCheck out the mysterious cover and the abstractness of it as it reflects the Mersey in Liverpool. The book has great artistic qualities, such as the rich, imaginative descriptions. that hooked me in. It feeds into the imagination in a curious way. A flip of a coin and the book becomes darker and more intense as a tattoo parlour needs investigating, once the right one with a particular design is found. Readers are plunged into a dark world in Liverpool of exploitation of women. Detective Decent is on the case with her team to investigate. There are many great new characters to get to know in this debut novel and they have a definite northern feel and are really interesting to get to know how they work together and who they are.
It’s sinister and gripping as it goes on into delving into the crimes. Piercing through bits of the darkness here and there are subtle shades of lightness in some of the conversations that transpire from the investigation.

The book, set in Liverpool, highlights some of the landmarks of the city and the author uses the sprawling city well, so those familiar or unfamiliar with the city will get a sense of place and enjoyment out of it.

It is part of a series set in Liverpool. The next book is Syn and publishes soon.

#Review Vera Kelly Is Not A Mystery by Rosalie Knecht @rosalieknecht @verve_books @holliemcdevitt @OldCastleBooks #CrimeFiction #BlogTour #BookReview #FemaleSpyBook

Vera Kelly Is Not A Mystery
By Rosalie Knecht

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

This series is getting better. It started with Who Is Vera Kelly? Now she is back with Vera Kelly Is Not A Mystery. It is a fun, easy-going spy story, asy to get into and stay with and soak up that film noir atmosphere it creates some of within its entertaining plot.

Thanks to Hollie McDevitt for inviting me to review Vera Kelly Is Not A Mystery and for sending me a copy of the book.

Vera Kelly is not a mystery

Blurb

Recently out-of-the-spy-game heroine Vera Kelly finds herself travelling from Brooklyn to a sprawling
countryside estate in the Caribbean in her first case as a private investigator. When ex-CIA agent Vera Kelly loses her job and her girlfriend in a single day, she reluctantly goes into business as a private detective. Heartbroken and cash-strapped, she takes a case that dredges up dark
memories and attracts dangerous characters from across the Cold War landscape.
Before it’s over, she’ll chase a lost child through foster care and follow a trail of Dominican exiles to the
Caribbean. Forever looking over her shoulder, she nearly misses what’s right in front of her: her own desire for home, connection, and a new romance at the local bar.
In this exciting second instalment of the ‘splendid genre-pushing’ (People) Vera Kelly series, Rosalie Knecht
challenges and deepens the Vera we love: a woman of sparkling wit, deep moral fibre, and martini-dry humour who knows how to follow a case even as she struggles to follow her heart.

Review

Vera Kelly Is Not A Mystery is the second in this P.I. series. It’s a bad day when you lose your job in the CIA and girlfriend in a single day, but this is what happened to Vera and so she joined a Private Investigator business. Vera Kelly is essentially a female detective series that has a bit of that 1960’s film noir feel to it, which is all encompassing and can almost be breathed in as if that were possible. There are some of the uphill struggles to be recognised as a strong contender in detective work and yet she gives as good as she gets to prove herself and to get the job done in, sometimes a lively manner.

There is a child who was taken away by the state welfare system because of the death of his gran and this propmts a search to find out what happened to him. From Brooklyn to Dominican Republic and back to New York, she must travel if she is to resolve the case. Amongst this is also the personal life of Vera that creeps in and it isn’t always plain-sailing and she does at times show her softer side as her unfortunate failed love-life affects her here and there.

Pages glide by when reading this series as it is so succinct and is mysterious enough to want to know what happened to the 14 year old boy. The writing is also atmospheric and the details add to this and feel right for this genre. The humour carries it a long too, even though it is as dry as it gets. It’s a gem of a read that can be “got into” very quickly and I read it in one sitting.

The book is all set up and ready to go for Book Clubs. It has a few insightful questions that groups can discuss and debate to do with the book, the era it is set in and more…

Vera Kelly is not a Mystery - BLOG TOUR POSTER