#BookReviews By Lou of The Patient and The Politician By Tim Sullivan @TimJRSullivan @HoZ_Books #ThePatient #ThePolitician #Thrillers #BlogTour

The Patient
The Politician

By Tim Sullivan

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Today, at a time of day a bit later than normal due to personal circumstance, I am on the blog tour to review both The Patient and The Politician. Some dark humour going on here as I find myself being an actual patient, although very different from that of the book, thankfully, and the fractured bones I have will heal. Sense of humour is still intact, so I see the unintended black humour and irony in being laid up and reviewing a thriller called The Patient first. Really first of all I thank the publisher – Head of Zeus and Tim Sullivan for contacting me to request I reviewed the books and what a pleasure it was. I have reviewed them both together. First discover the blurbs and then my reviews.

No fingerprints. No weapon. No witnesses. Can DS Cross prove it was murder?

THE DETECTIVE

DS George Cross doesn’t rely on guesswork and he has no time for false assumptions. He is a detective who goes off the evidence in front of him, not ‘hunches’ or ‘gut feelings’. He does not know what these are.

THE CLOSED CASE

When a young woman is found dead, the Bristol Crime Unit is quick to rule it a suicide as the woman had a long history of drug abuse. But her mother is convinced it was murder, saying that her daughter had been clean for years and had been making strides in a new therapy programme.

THE ANSWER

As an outsider himself, DS Cross is drawn to cases involving the voiceless and dispossessed and, here, the evidence states that this woman was murdered – Cross just has to prove it. But under pressure from his boss to shut down the case, and with numerous potential suspects, time is rapidly running out to get the answers that this grieving family deserve.

Perfect for fans of M.W. Craven, Peter James and Joy Ellis, The Patient is part of the DS George Cross thriller series, which can be read in any order.

A ransacked room. A dead politician. A burglary gone wrong – or a staged murder?

THE DETECTIVE

DS George Cross loves puzzles – he’s good at them – and he immediately spots one when he begins investigating the death of former mayor Peggy Frampton. It looks like a burglary that went horribly wrong to most but George can see what others can’t – that this was murder.

THE PUZZLE

After her political career ended, Peggy became a controversial blogger whose forthright opinions attracted a battalion of online trolls. And then there’s her family: an unfaithful husband and a gambling-addicted son. With yet more enemies in her past, the potential suspects are unending.

THE SUSPECTS

Cross must unpick the never-ending list of seedy connections to find her killer – but the sheer number of suspects is clouding his usually impeccable logic. He’s a relentlessly methodical detective, but no case can last forever. And politics can be a dangerous game – especially for people who don’t know the rules . . .

Perfect for fans of M.W. Craven, Peter James and Joy Ellis, The Politician is part of the DS George Cross thriller series, which can be read in any order.

Reviews


DS George Cross is on the case in both The Patient and The Politician, which can be read as stand alone and in any order.

The Patient is the first book I read. skills are not his fortè. It soon becomes apparent that D.S. Cross is on the autistic spectrum and is quite high functioning. It makes for some interesting and different interactions around the office as banter is not his thing but he gets fairly fixated on crime solving.
He works for the Major Crime Unit (MCU) in Bristol. The death of Sandra’s daughter looks like suicide or an accident, but Sandra believes it was murder. DI Campbell, meanwhile isn’t happy about Cross re-opening the Felicity Wilson case. This in itself poses questions as to why and causes some tensions between those two and Carson, that then increases the compelling nature to continue to read on. There is the themes of suicide and assisted suicide, which is interesting and also the fact that it was assumed the victim had indeed committed suicide, but D.S. Cross and her mother, especially the mother, are adamant to look again to uncover the murderous truth.

The Politician is Tim Sullivan’s latest book is also compelling and rather intriguing. There is the death of former local politician and ex-mayor Peggy Frampton that is the next case for DS George Cross to solve. In retirement she had some strong opinions about construction companies that resulted in her being trolled (shows the state of society and truly highlights the issue surrounding how people choose to (mis)behave). What a life Peggy lived, so much in the limelight, but all was not rosy. She had her enemies, which are uncovered as the police dig deep into the corners of her life, even her husband was unfaithful to her.

In both books, the further the surface is removed, the darker the under-layers become!

Both books have their red herrings to successfully throw readers off the scent a bit and to cast doubt in their minds when trying to figure out who the perpetrators are. The lack of obvious evidence in both books adds intrigue as all the signs initially point to a suicide (The Patient), a burglary gone wrong (The Politician), which even though, given the nature of the type of crime books they are, adds exceptionally well to the thriller as it is more pieces of the puzzle, of people’s lives the police (and reader), needs to piece together and the more taut it becomes, the deeper the investigations are dug into.

Tim Sullivan writes intriguing plots and complex characters with thought provoking themes in a way that makes them compelling. The endings could possibly be stronger, but these are books worth investing time in what fast becomes engaging storytelling in both The Patient and The Politician. These are the 3rd and 4th in the series. I have not read the first two, but that doesn’t detract from the 2 I have read as I felt I got a good grasp of the recurring characters and the mysteries are complete by the end of the books.

 

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#BloodyScotland #Writeup and #Reviews By Lou of The Party’s Over Panel – @claremackint0sh @cbrookmyre @Lin_Anderson #Thrillers #TheLastParty #TheCliffHouse #ThePartyHouse

The Party’s Over

Each book on this panel had murderous books set at parties. The talk was fascinating on many different levels as the authors talked about some of their books content and their influences. It was all very entertaining too. Before I knew it, an hour was up and this part of the party was well and truly over. All books mentioned are available now.

Panel: Clare Mackintosh, Chris Brookmyre, Lin Anderson

There are links after my write up to reviews I wrote previously on books by Chris Brookmyre and Lin Anderson. There will be one on Clare MacIntosh’s book in the near future.

 

Clare Mackintosh is the author of 5 bestsellers.

The Last Party, she says is set at a New Year’s Day party, held in a luxury resort on the border between England and Wales. She talked of bridges being built and all is going well, until someone is murdered…

Clare MacIntosh talked about not mentioning Covid as she doesn’t ever refer to current affairs or fixes a time in her books because she wants her books to be timeless, but she does fix a place. What was interesting, however, was the angle she chose to allow to feed into her book, that was Covid related, and that was her fascination of how people were crossing borders into different parts of the UK. She also touched upon Air B n B homes popping up in Wales and the “incomers” and how, I’m a way she is an “incomer”, so talked about how anyone moving, tries to fit in and how important that is to blend into the community.

She was asked about her police background and whether it a blessing or a curse.  The blessing seems to be that it is useful for research, but the curse is knowing too much and remembering to fictionalise it. It was also fascinating hearing about how she fell into writing by accident in a way and how demanding working in the police was, especially the impact on her family life. 
 
 

Chris Brookmyre talked about it being set on a fictional luxury island, that he has put people on, who you perhaps wouldn’t normally put together and how they have secrets to hide. He also says it’s about friendship and forgiveness.

She’s rented a luxury getaway on its own private island. The helicopter won’t be back for seventy-two hours. They are alone. They think.

He talked about how he thought writers were influenced by lockdown parties going on for those not abiding by the rules (politics was mentioned, because I guess, how could they not, by all of the authors), and how they created their own parties on a written page and virtual parties.

Chris Brookmyre also talked about creating tension between groups of people and his writing style and influence in a way of knowing you’re at the end of a chapter is fascinating and may remain in my mind. It turns out the end of Eastenders, with those drums and the end of a chapter have something in common – they both want you to tune into more, so it sounds like those dramatic Eastenders drums at the end of each episode and thinking of this, can help when knowing if the tension or dramatic effect of a chapter is there, or whether it is finished or has more to be written.

He talked about the island he set his book on and wanting a sense of isolation and also to portray the different levels of friendship you have with different people. He also talked about how he was conscious of the links between this book and Agatha Christie’s ‘And Then There Were None’ being made, but talked about how that was retribution and how his book is about having secrets and having to forgive.

It’s a stand alone psychological thriller, set in Blackrig in the Scottish Highlands and the outrage villagers have of a party house going to open.

Someone went missing 5 years ago and was never found, until now, creating all sorts of suspicion in the small village.


Lin Anderson talked about The Party House and how there is one bottom of a road she knows and how her friend had lots of highly entertaining stories to tell.

She talked about lockdown and the time where people were trying to flea to remote places to try and ‘escape’ Covid. It was interesting to hear what a sudden influx of people from all over felt like to locals, which features a bit.

The book is written with 2 view points, both with secrets and lies. She talked about small villages and how people talk and think they know everything about you (so true) and how this features.

Lin Anderson also divulged how her dad worked in the police force and ‘interrogated’ her in her childhood, much to the audience’s amusement, which then led onto some hilarious stories about real criminals being caught time and time again – one continually drew smiley faces after committing a crime, thinking this was clever, but of course was caught.

So, all in all, an enjoyable and entertaining talk is given by these 3 authors, so if you ever get an opportunity to watch them, I highly recommend you do so.

Now, I have mentioned how I have read and reviewed The Cliff House By Chris Brookmyre and The Party House by Lin Anderson, both of which are absorbing and enthralling thrillers, which I rated 5 stars. Here are links to those reviews and also a previous talk I saw with Chris Brookmyre.

The Cliff House Review      The Cliff House Talk              The Party House

 

#BookReview By Lou of The Homes By J.B. Mylet @JamesMylet @ViperBooks #CrimeFiction #Thriller #FictionBasedOnTrueStory #Lesley #Jonesy #TheHomes #mustread

The Homes
By J.B. Mylet

Rating: 5 out of 5.

The Homes, J B Mylet, crime books, thriller books, Scottish book, murder mystery, book club read

The Homes – fiction based on a true story, is a Must Read, breath-taking phenomenal thriller. It’s a fabulous Scottish Crime book that is hard to put down, and I don’t use that term lightly. Find out more in the blurb and more of my thoughts in my full below. Thanks firstly to Viper Books for sending me a lovely hardback copy to review from. Chris Brookmyre reckons it’s ‘Set to be one of the Scottish crime books of the year’. I can totally see that happening with its original story-telling and setting.

Blurb

The Homes, J B Mylet, crime books, thriller books, Scottish book, murder mystery, book club read

There were good people in The Homes. But there were also some very, very bad ones…

The HomesA thousand unwanted children live in The Homes, a village of orphans in the Scottish Lowlands on the outskirts of Glasgow. Lesley was six before she learned that most children live with their parents. Now Lesley is twelve, and she and her best friend Jonesy live in Cottage 5, Jonesy the irrepressible spirit to Lesley’s quiet thoughtfulness.

Life is often cruel at The Homes, and suddenly it becomes much crueller. A child is found murdered. Then another. With the police unable to catch the killer, Lesley and Jonesy decide to take the matter into their own hands. But unwanted children are easy victims, and they are both in terrible danger…

Inspired by a true story, and introducing readers to the unforgettable voice of young orphan Lesley, The Homes is a moving and lyrical thriller, perfect for readers of Val McDermid, Chris Whitaker, Jane Casey and Denise Mina.

The Homes, J B Mylet, crime books, thriller books, Scottish book, murder mystery, book club read

Review

The Homes is an orphanage village in Glasgow called The Homes. The book immerses you into this with its fast-paced chapters. I read this in a couple of days. Chapter after chapter went by. I was utterly hooked. It would have been one day, but the need for sleep eventually defeated me. The characters within The Homes are great to know as you follow their daily lives, especially Lesley, Jonesy and Eadie. Then murder strikes and then there’s a mysterious disappearance and everyone is in danger, and could there be someone else who is next? Everything changes!
How safe are the people in The Homes?
Detective Walker is then deployed to be on the case.
It’s told from the children’s point of view, which is perfectly and exquisitely executed as their personalities shine through, right to the way they speak and interact with each other, especially the main characters – Lesley and Jonesy as they try to guess who the murderer is, so off Lesley trots to The Homes Library, which sounds great in this complex of homes, to see what they could find out. This also reveals more about their differing personalities, but also their connections to each other.

Readers will get the feel of what it is like to be in an orphanage through Lesley and Jonesy and also the friendship that’s developed between them. In this sense, it is heartwarming, but there are emotional elements that would break your heart too, apart from the murder, there’s a gran who is pivotal to their story too and some real questions are asked as there’s much pondering from Lesley about grown-ups in general and why her mum didn’t want her, or how this is percieved. The gran is simply wonderful and also brings a heartwarming element to this story that has the darkest of undertones. It’s a thought-provoking crime book as well as absolutely all encompassing and enthralling. Read the Postscript at the back too. It’s utterly fascinating about how this story needed to be told and how it came about.

This is a book I absolutely highly recommend!

 

 

#BookReview By Lou of The Chemist By Lewis Hastings @istheauthor @HobeckBooks #TeamHobeck #CrimeFiction #Thriller #JackCade #BookRecommendation

The Chemist
By Lewis Hastings

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Today I am on the blog tour for The Chemist, thanks to the publisher, Hobeck Books for inviting me to review.

The Chemist is Lewis Hasting’s best action-packed, darkly twisted book yet!
Discover more in the blurb and my review below.

The Chemist cover

Blurb

Fans of Line of Duty will be utterly gripped by Lewis Hastings’ Jack Cade novels. The eagerly awaited follow up to the Seventh Wave Trilogy and The Angel of Whitehall, The Chemist sees the return of Jack Cade and his team to fight a deadly nemesis, one who will stop at nothing to get what he wants. This time, it really is personal.

“Then, with his wrist trembling under pressure, he carved the names of two men into the paper, ripping the surface…

Jack…

The Seventh Wave organised crime gang is long defeated, its members dead or jailed. Their London-wide campaign of terror a fading memory.

Jason…

Or is it? An old foe is released from his maximum-security prison cell, with dreams of revenge and a score to settle.

…You. Just. Watch.”

He calls himself, The Chemist, and he’s determined to make anyone who’s crossed him pay. To him, death is just a game of chance, and he’s stacked the odds in his favour. Can Jack Cade save those closest to him from the twisted plans of The Chemist?

Review

The Chemist brings Jack Cade to a dark, thriller of a case, that has great descriptions with added historical and architectural descriptions, creating interest, as does what is happening in the rest of the force and the stakes are high. 

The intrigue is really surrounded by The Chemist himself and the threat he poses creates a chilling atmosphere pretty early on. Unusually, there are classical music references, adding a bit of class in the creepiest of sense that this book generally inhabits.
Cutting through the darkness is some well-placed humour, adding to the entertainment, amongst also the class and speed of the roulette tables.

 The difference (letters instead of numbers) on the roulette table then adds puzzlement and curiosity to want to know more and what’s going to happen next. It creates a darker and less typical use of the roulette table, making it more of an important item in itself and puts a twist on the norm for its usage.

There is high trepidation as to who really committed the crimes. The police are certain they know who it is, but the issue is, there is a lack of evidence to prove it and who is to say they are right. It poses many questions throughout that keeps you guessing.

#BookReview By Lou – Mummy’s Little Secret By M.A. Hunter @Writer_MAHunter @0neMoreChapter_ @HarperCollinsUK #MummysLittleSecret #Thriller #PsychologicalThriller

Mummy’s Little Secret
By M.A. Hunter 

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Mummy’s Little Secret is a gripping thriller. Discover more in the blurb and my review below. Thanks to One More Chapter – Harper Collins for gifting me a copy of the book for review purposes.

Mummy's LIttle Secret

Blurb

Four little words can ruin a life.

When Jess meets five-year-old Daisy and her mum, Morag, in a local London park, they seem a perfectly happy and loving pair. Until Daisy whispers four little words that send ice seeping down Jess’s spine…

She’s not my mum.

Determined to save Daisy, Jess becomes obsessed with unearthing Morag’s secrets. As she digs ever deeper, her friends and family start to question her own increasingly paranoid behaviour…

Four little words can end a life.

But Jess knows what she heard and she’s certain the fear in Daisy’s eyes was real. Of course she isn’t imagining things… Or is she?

Mummy’s Little Secret is a nerve-shredding new psychological thriller from the author of The Missing Children Case Files – perfect for fans of Karin Slaughter and C.L. Taylor.

Review

Mummy’s Little Secret is a page-turning psychological thriller. It has a real spine-chilling quality that may well have you involuntarily taking a sharp intake of breath.

The story goes between reality and delusion and is told between Jess and Morag and throws many twists as you try to work out what is real and what’s not.

Jess is a highly emotional character, plus has depression and is in a wheelchair, but has dug deep to find some determination to discover something within Daisy’s family (which Morag belongs to), that she believes doesn’t ring true with her. Her husband, Charlie thinks she is wrong and her obsession in this has impact. It also creates much mystery.

There is, subsequently, a detective who arrives on the scene, who gives further perspective and insight into what’s really going on and who is telling the truth and who is not as lives are dramatically changed.

The climax is as rivetting as the rest of the book, which is pretty fast-paced once it gets going.

#Reviews etc By Lou – Happy 1st Anniversary to Hobeck Books @HobeckBooks #CrimeFiction #Thrillers #PsychologicalThriller #ScottishNoir and more @HobeckBooks @RobertDaws @mark_wightman @istheauthor @KerenaSwan @AliMorgan2304 @antony_dunford @MHollingdrake

Hobeck Books is a publishing company run by husband and wife team – Adrian Hobart and Rebecca Collins. Today is the first anniversary of this team who are passionate about super crime fiction in all its forms and cats. I am also proud to be on their Advanced Readers Team and read through as many books as I can, to submit feedback, before I write a blog review.
Please note that I have not been asked to write a blog post or anything about it being their first anniversary, so, what I am writing is completely unbiased. I’ve felt I’ve wanted to put something together for awhile and now seems an appropriate time to do so to celebrate such an achievement from afar.
I have included some links to Hobeck Books and some of my reviews and you should check out the eye-catching covers too. There have so many books and authors that I just want to give you a taste of some here and bundle up a small selection of my reviews and also find out a bit more about this Indy publisher.

Hobeck Books have published police procedurals, thrillers, psychological thrillers, political thillers, quirky crime, Scottish Noir and more…There really is something for everyone who likes crime within fiction that also has a wider scope into people’s lives and so much more. Their authors are writing more than one book with them and they are often signing up authors from all over the UK.
They publish Paperbacks, Audiobooks and E-books, sometimes free E-books too. They also have their own Podcast (Hobcast), details can be found on their website. It has been quite a year from them.

Hobeck:  Website  www.hobeck.net   Twitter: @HobeckBooks Instagram: @hobeckbooks 
Facebook: www.facebook.com/hobeckbooks10

Hobeck Books is doing tremendously well for year 1. Not only have they learned about publishing (before Hobeck was official of course, as there’s always a lot going on in the background to businesses etc) and made connections with various people from authors to bloggers to other readers, but they have a book in the Shortlist for Crime Book Festival – Bloody Scotland – Waking The Tiger by Mark Wightman. It’s no mean feat as there are hugely popular authors on that list and yet, they’ve found and published a great debut that’s reached (so far), these heady heights. Luckily they all leave the killing to just being on the page. They’re all nicer than their culprits.

Their Flagship Author is the ever popular and hugely successful actor, podcaster and author – Robert Daws, who transferred all his books in his excellent Broderick and Sullivan Murder Mystery series to them and has another being released soon.
All are set in Gibraltar, may well make you want to go there and are twisty and compelling to read. They are also 99p over on Amazon to celebrate this magnificent achievement is such climes.

Links to Reviews
The Rock and Poisoned Rock Reviews
Killing Rock Review  

Waking the TigerWaking The Tiger by Mark Wightman has made it to Shortlist at Bloody Scotland, a prestigious and ever growing festival in Stirling, Scotland.

Waking The Tiger Review

The Angel of WhitehallLewis Hastings has a trilogy of books – the increasingly popular Se7en series.
Here is a book with Jack Cade returning, but more standalone and works well with its twists and big plotlines to be gripped by.

The Angel of Whitehall Review

Blood Loss


Blood Loss is the first in the DI Paton Investigates series. It’s twisty and hard to put down.

Blood Loss Review

Hobeck Throttled

Throttled is humourous, with some big themes and is part of The Quirk Files. This is book two. Book one is Over Her Dead Body.

                             Throttled Review

Hobeck Hunted

Hunted takes readers to the heart of nature and the dark world of wildlife crime. It’s books like these that also bring something different to crime fiction.

                                                                                                            Hunted Review

Catch As Can Catch As Catch Can by Malcolm Hollingdrake is in the dark and brooding underworld and has quite a hook to it, that then makes you want to read the next book -Syn.
Catch As Catch Can Review

That was just a few, keep a look out for more and also keep an eye out on the Hobeck Books media and bloggers posts for more… Check out their website for what’s coming and for free books too and more info.
Hobeck:  Website  www.hobeck.net   Twitter: @HobeckBooks Instagram: @hobeckbooks 
Facebook: www.facebook.com/hobeckbooks10