Cruel Acts by Jane Casey

How can you spot a murderer?

Leo Stone is a ruthless killer – or the victim of a miscarriage of justice.  A year ago, he was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.  But now, he’s free, and according to him, he’s innocent.

DS Maeve Kerrigan and DI Josh Derwent are determined to put Stone back behind bars where he belongs, but the more Maeve finds out, the less convinced she is of his guilt.  

Then another woman disappears in similar circumstances.  Is there a copycat killer, or have they been wrong about Stone from the start?

cruel acts

I’m a bit sad I haven’t discovered Maeve Kerrigan before now.  Even from the press release, I had a feeling she and I would get along.  I’ve already ordered the first book in the series and can’t wait for it to arrive. For me, there’s nothing better than discovering a decent, gritty book series.

I didn’t feel any sense of loss because I’ve come along to this series on the 8th book.  It could very easily be read as a standalone novel, although I am very excited to get going on the rest of the series.

In the press release, there are many fabulous words used to describe this book, such as “compulsive, menacing and moving”, and they’re all true.  Every fabulous description of this book and Jane’s writing is true.

If you like crime fiction and strong female characters, you’ll love Cruel Acts.  Like I said above, I wish I’d come across Maeve Kerrigan much sooner than I did.  Maeve and DI Josh Derwent make for a great lead pair and there are some genuine interactions between the pair throughout the book that I really enjoyed.

Jane Casey’s writing is very believable, even if you have no experience of law, crime or dangerous offenders.  It’s everything you would hope for and expect it to be, especially from someone who has such an insight into the brutal underbelly of urban life.  Crime fiction isn’t something I’ve read a huge amount of over the years and there’s always been a reason for that – I haven’t found many female leads I have wanted to invest in.

I couldn’t give this book enough praise.  It’s dark, menacing and very believable.

Find it here for purchase from tomorrow, 18th April 2019.

I’m so glad to have discovered Maeve Kerrigan and I have no doubt you will be too!

Many thanks for the copy of this compulsive read go to Harper Collins Publishers.

 

 

 

Blog Tour – The Girl In The Pink Raincoat by Alrene Hughes

In wartime, it takes courage to follow your heart.

Manchester, 1939.

Everyone hated the heat and the deafening noise, but for Gracie the worst thing was the smell of the chemicals that turned her stomach every morning when she arrived at the Rosenberg Raincoats factory.

Gracie is a girl on the factory floor.  Jacob is the boss’s charismatic nephew.  When they fall in love, it seems as if the whole world is against them – especially Charlie Nuttall, who also works at the factory and has always wanted Gracie for himself.

But worse is to come when Jacob disappears and Gracie is devastated, vowing to find him.  Can she solve the mystery of his whereabouts?  Gracie will need all her strength and courage to find a happy ending.

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I found this book quite difficult to put down.  The characters really drew me in and I especially loved Gracie, who just seems to stand for everything it was to be a woman of that time – bashed around physically and emotionally by war and related events.

There were moments during reading that I felt I was right there in the thick of it all with Gracie.

It’s a very emotional read and, as I mentioned above, very tough to put down.  Sleep can sometimes be forgotten when I’m reading a good book and this was certainly one of those times.  I was so deeply engrossed in Gracie’s life that I didn’t want to miss out on one page.

I’m so honoured to be part of this blog tour today for such a beautiful book. Thank you so much Vicky at Head of Zeus for inviting me along. I would encourage you to check out the other blogs too!

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Alrene Hughes grew up in Belfast and has lived in Manchester for most of her adult life.  She worked for British Telecom and the BBC before training as an English teacher.  After teaching for twenty years, she retired and now writes full-time.

Find Alrene at:-

Facebook :  @alrenehugheswriter

Twitter:  @alrenehughes

Find Head of Zeus at:-

http://www.headofzeus.com

Twitter:  @HoZ_Books

Facebook:  @headofzeus

Buy The Girl In The Pink Raincoat:-

Amazon

Kobo

iBooks

Google Play

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Envy by Amanda Robson Blog Tour Review

She wants your life – and she’ll do anything to get it…

Erica has always wanted to be exactly like her neighbour, Faye: beautiful, thin, and a mother.  But Faye’s life isn’t as perfect as it seems – she has a terrible secret, and slowly but surely, it is threatening to destroy her and everything she holds dear.

When Faye’s daughter Tamsin goes missing after school, the police turn to Erica. But is Erica the only one who has been enviously watching Faye? Or is there another threat hiding in the shadows…?

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I read this in less than a day – no joke!  I was gripped from the first chapter.

It’s unsettling, it’s dark, it’s exciting, it’s absolutely a compulsive read.

I hadn’t read any of Amanda’s books before and when I was offered a place on the Blog Tour I stuck my hand up straightaway.  I just loved the idea of the book and the plot promised an exciting read.  It didn’t disappoint!

As mentioned above, I’m new to Amanda’s unique writing style.  It worked for me but I can understand why there may be some frustration from a readers point of view.  I’ve read other books quite recently, written in a similar style, and rather than getting frustrated by it, I’ve found it quite exciting.

The story is told through 4 people’s points of view.  It’s a book with short chapters that grip the reader.   There are secrets and there is intrigue in each of these chapters.

If you haven’t guessed by now – I’m suggesting you go read it.

I would not like to be friends with ANY of the characters, which – for me – is the sign of really great character writing by the author.  If I knew any of these people you can be guaranteed I’d want to be a fly on the wall of their lives – but from a safe distance!

Thanks, as ever, to Avon Books for including me on this Blog Tour.  I received a copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Happy Reading!

xoxo

 

Cruel Acts by Jane Casey

You would not believe how excited I still get by book post.

I’ve had the craziest day today – a trip to A&E, a boy on crutches! – so I only got to open this up about an hour ago.

As always, many thanks to the fab team at Harper Collins UK and to the author, Jane Casey.

The press release on this book reads like it was written especially for me!

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How can you spot a murderer?

Leo Stone is a ruthless killer – or the victim of a miscarriage of justice.  A year ago, he was convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.  But now he’s free, and according to him, he’s innocent.

DS Maeve Kerrigan and DI Josh Derwent are determined to put Stone back behind bars where he belongs, but the more Maeve finds out, the less convinced she is of his guilt.

Then another woman disappears in similar circumstances.  Is there a copycat killer, or have they been wrong about Stone from the start?

I really can’t wait to start this!  It may have already been bumped up a few spots in my TBR pile.  I’ll read and review it for you ASAP.

 

Out on 18th April 2019, Cruel Acts by Jane Casey can be pre-ordered now.

 

 

 

 

Cover Reveal – The Postcard by Zoë Folbigg

I love Friday, don’t you?  Can’t think of anything better to be doing than bringing you this exciting cover reveal today!

Thank you, as ever, to Aria Fiction and, of course, Zoë Folbigg for including me.

The Postcard

A bit about the book:

The sequel to the bestselling phenomenon The Note – based on the true story of one girl and her ‘train man’…A year after the kiss that brought them together in a snowy train-station doorway, Maya and James are embarking on another journey – this time around the world.

The trip starts promisingly, with an opulent and romantic Indian wedding. But as their travels continue, Maya fears that ‘love at first sight’ might not survive trains, planes and tuk tuks, especially when she realises that what she really wants is a baby. Trouble is, James doesn’t feel the same.

Meanwhile Maya’s best friend Nena is struggling with the reality of being a new parent, little knowing that her friend risks losing the love of her life over her dreams of motherhood.

Can Maya and James navigate their different hopes and dreams to stay together? Or is love at first sight just a myth after all…

Perfect for fans of Josie Silver and Marian Keyes, The Postcard continues the once-in-a-lifetime love story that readers so took to their hearts.

I don’t know about you – but I cannot wait to get my hands on The Postcard.

About the author:

Zoë Folbigg is a magazine journalist and digital editor, starting at Cosmopolitan in 2001 and since freelancing for titles including Glamour, Fabulous, Daily Mail, Healthy, LOOK, Top Santé, Mother & Baby, ELLE, Sunday Times Style, and Style.com. In 2008 she had a weekly column in Fabulous magazine documenting her year-long round-the-world trip with ‘Train Man’ – a man she had met on her daily commute. She since married Train Man and lives in Hertfordshire with him and their two young sons.

Follow Zoë :

Twitter: @zolington
Instagram: @zolington
To purchase The Postcard:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Clc60O
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2Cg55hG
Google Play: http://bit.ly/2Ck9KiD

Follow Aria:

Website: http://www.ariafiction.com
Twitter: @aria_fiction
Facebook: @ariafiction
Instagram: @ariafiction

Cover Reveal – Forget My Name by J.S. Monroe

Forget My Name (Paperback) – J.S. Monroe

About the book

You are outside your front door. There are strangers in your house. Then you realise… You can’t remember your name.

She arrived at the train station after a difficult week at work. Her bag had been stolen, and with it, her identity. Her whole life was in there – passport, wallet, house key. When she tried to report the theft, she couldn’t remember her own name. All she knew was her own address.

Now she’s outside Tony and Laura’s front door. She says she lives in their home. They say they have never met her before.

One of them is lying.
About the Author

J.S. Monroe read English at Cambridge, worked as a foreign correspondent in Delhi, and was Weekend editor of the Daily Telegraph in London before becoming a full-time writer. Monroe is the author of six novels, including the international bestseller, Find Me.

forget my name cover reveal

I’m very excited to say I’ll be reviewing this book on 13th June so watch out for that!  Thanks so much to Vicky at Head of Zeus for the opportunity to be part of this cover reveal.

Buy links:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2HyLFcc
iBooks: https://apple.co/2Fu8Wdb
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2OeS78y
GooglePlay: http://bit.ly/2FiksHd

Follow J.S. Monroe:

Twitter: @JSThrillers
Facebook: @JSMonroeFindMe

Follow Head of Zeus:

Twitter: @HoZ_Books
Facebook: @headofzeus

When All Is Said by Anne Griffin

Five toasts. Five people. One lifetime.

At the bar of a grand hotel in a small Irish town sits 84-year-old Maurice Hannigan. He’s alone, as usual -though tonight is anything but. Pull up a stool and charge your glass, because Maurice is finally ready to tell his story. Over the course of this evening, he will raise five toasts to the five people who have meant the most to him. Through these stories – of unspoken joy and regret, a secret tragedy kept hidden, a fierce love that never found its voice – the life of one man will be powerfully and poignantly laid bare. Heart-breaking and heart-warming all at once, the voice of Maurice Hannigan will stay with you long after all is said.

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Did I love this book?  No.  I liked it and it was an easy enough read. At one or two points, I won’t lie, there were a few tears shed but I guess it just didn’t blow me away even though I fully expected it to, based on reviews and testimonials I’ve read.  Maybe my expectations were too high.

Let me know what you thought though because I feel like this book will be the start of many discussions at book clubs everywhere over the next while.

 

xoxo

Blog Tour – The Age of Misadventure by Judy Leigh

Sometimes you just have to escape …

All Georgie Turner wants is to keep her family together.  But with her daughter growing up fast, her sister married to a man Georgie hates, and their aging aunt getting more and more outrageous, nothing’s simple.

So when her brother-in-law makes his biggest mistake yet, Georgie sees the chance to reunite the ladies in her life.  And after a little persuasion, three generations of Turner women head off on a very unusual road trip.  Georgie’s confident that some sun, sea and a bottle or two of prosecco will make this an adventure they’ll never forget.

What could possibly go wrong?

Well, a whole lot as it happens!!!

It is so refreshing to read a book where most of the main characters featured are women over the age of 45.  It feels so unusual and I felt needed a mention and a hat-tip.

First up, let me just tell you I love Georgie.  She’s an absolute hero to her family in their time of need and I’m not just talking about their road trip!  Her family is made up of strong women and she’s the one leading them (or trying to!) in the right direction.  I’ve heard her referred to as bitter once or twice but I disagree.  That’s not what I get from her at all – although there’s plenty for her to be bitter about, including the fact that her failed marriage is mentioned by her family more than once!

The first time Nan was mentioned, I hoped she would be a heavy hitter in the book and I’m so glad that happened.  As the story progressed and I found out more about her I was so glad.  She is a colourful and magnificent character and when you read the book you’ll love her too, I just know you will.  She has lived alone for many years after the death of her beloved husband, Wilf and the road trip seems to come along at a time when she really needs the distraction in her life.

I found it really difficult to enjoy Bonnie’s character and I wanted to shake her once or twice during the story.  She is so loved and has so many people in her corner and yet she just can’t see further than herself and her very miserable marriage.  Some of you will love her, of that I have no doubt.  Some of you will feel for her and even understand her life.  She’s just one character in a book full of amazing women that I couldn’t take to.

The last character I’m going to talk about is Georgie’s daughter, Jade.  Again, there will be divided opinions on her but take your time with her.  Don’t judge her too quickly.

This book shows how families can pull together in a time of crisis and support one another no matter what. The story will give you laugh out loud moments, some very tender moments as well as lots and lots of love. It’s a very enjoyable and easy read.

Thank you so much to Aria Fiction and Judy Leigh for including me on this blog tour.

They have also very kindly given me an extract to share with you, which is wonderful.

Happy Reading xoxo

 

As I walk through the park, the sound of a police car siren drifts from the road. I shiver and automatically check my phone. Still no messages – I’m worried. My heart’s started to squeeze itself tight like a soft rubber ball in my chest. I give in: I press buttons with my thumb to dial. After a few seconds, Jade’s voice is loud in my ear. ‘What is it, Mum?’ I wonder why I didn’t phone her before. Of course, I know why. I don’t want another Jade tirade, accusing me of being the embarrassing smothering mother. I hear a sharp intake of breath at the other end.

She says, ‘What’s the problem?’

‘I was just wondering where you are—’

She puffs out air. Her way of telling me I’m exasperating; my maternal concern has annoyed her. ‘I’m with friends. But last night I—’

‘Last night you what?’

‘Never mind, Mum. I’ll be home later.’ There’s a pause; I’m waiting for her to tell me more. ‘Is there anything the matter?’

‘No, Jade. I just wanted to make sure you …’ I’ve already said too much.

‘Fine, I’ll see you later, okay?’

The phone clicks before I have time to reply. I’m pleased she’s all right but there’s the sinking feeling that I’ve interfered where I shouldn’t. I play back the call in my head. She’s told me nothing, except that she’s not happy that I’ve phoned and that something may have happened last night. At least I know she’s all right. I try to infer something from her words: where she was, who she might have been with, and there are no answers. Just my imagination overloading me with worrying images: Jade drinking too much; in clubs with the wrong sort of people; the wrong sort of men; the wrong man. I remind myself she’s streetwise; she’s at a friend’s, staying over, celebrating or sleeping it off. But something wriggles, niggles: mother’s instinct, perhaps, or just plain worry. I put my phone back in my pocket and try to put my fears away with it. They stay in my mind, buzzing like flies on a hot day.

I pick up my pace. I’m not far from home and, in my mind, I already have the kettle on. Maybe I’ll cook something nice for Jade, for when she comes in. I’ve decided some nourishing soup will do her good after being out on the town all night. In our house, food has always been part of the family culture: something to share, to nourish, to make with love for those we care about. My grandmother’s recipe for Scouse was passed down to my mum and to Nan. There wasn’t much money in our house, but my parents would offer a good meal to anyone who came to the door. We’d all sit round the table, chattering and laughing, and I try to keep the tradition: the family who eats together stays together. Of course, that’s no longer true in my case with Terry gone, but I try to make sure everyone who sits at my table shares food and drink and feels welcome.

As I approach my house, I walk under a hazel tree. Little golden catkins are beginning to form. I turn into the drive, my boots crunching on gravel. My car’s parked outside and it’s comforting to see the sturdy profile, the 2010 black BMW X5. It was an extravagant buy but it always felt safer to be driving alone inside something solid and strong. Like driving inside Iron Man’s suit, protected and smart at the same time. A car with status for a woman with status, I told the handsome young assistant at the garage when I bought it second-hand five years ago. Having an ex who works in computers has had its uses although, in truth, once I’d paid the deposit on the house, there was nothing left of the divorce settlement. I struggle to make ends meet each month, but there’s always just enough to pay my assistant Amanda and Jade, to meet the mortgage and to put food on the table. I manage: I’m in control of my destiny, that’s what’s most important. On my own, living off my wits. Which is good, of course – I’m independent and I’m never short of wit.

The Mum Who Got Her Life Back by Fiona Gibson – Blog Tour

Welcome to my slot on the blog tour of this really fun read!  Thanks so much to Avon Books for the copy of the book in return for an honest review.

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I’d describe this as a real feel-good book.  There are some really hilarious moments in there but what’s really nice is that there are plenty of emotional and tender parts too.

In this book we meet Nadia, a hard-working and down-to-earth mother of two.  I liked her straightaway.  We meet her after her twins go to university and we follow her journey through that change and then again when they both come home for the summer.

She has had a successful and amicable separation from the twins’ father and Nadia has got her own life back and a budding romance with Jack.  She’s never felt more alive.

I love how the book is written in different parts so the narrative is different in each chapter.  This means we get to follow Jack’s journey too, who is a dad of one teenager and has gone through his own separation.

The highs and lows of the lives of the characters is told with humour and truth and I found many things to relate to even though my children are younger.  You can imagine everything happening in real life.  It’s very easy to find yourself walking in the characters’ shoes for periods of time too. I think that’s a sign of a really well written story.

This is a fast and easy read so if you’re looking for some light entertainment requiring little thought, this book is for you.

Twitter: @FionaGibson @AvonBooksUK

Facebook: FionaGibson AvonBooksUK

Happy Reading xoxo

 

Let’s talk about…TBR piles!

I know you’ve all got one.  Mine sits and silently judges me.

It is the last thing I see when I fall asleep and the first thing I see in the morning.

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Do you have tips for working your way through that pile of judgemental books?

Here are some of mine, if you’re interested!

I go through mine once a week.  Why?  Well, I often find there are books in there that I don’t really need or want to read right away.  Sometimes a book sneaks in there that I have read before and want to re-read.  Not necessary straightaway.  Take it out.

Sometimes there are books in there that I just want to have and read at some stage in my life.  (This one drives my husband mad – “Why buy it if you’re not going to read it?” – I’ll get to it, relax!) Those books don’t need to be in the pile.

That’s why there’s a second pile.  There’s always a second pile.

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Next, and I know this may sound daft to some of you – make an ACTUAL pile. I find myself sometimes having a TBR pile and an “in my head” TBR pile.  Guess which one works more successfully?

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Don’t just limit yourself to the heavy hitters and award winners.  As with everything in life, you’ll miss out on some marvels if you don’t open yourself up to the less obvious.

Always visit a new section each time you visit the bookshop.  You just don’t know what’s waiting there for you on the shelves.

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This one is a personal choice and I don’t expect you all to agree.  At crucial stages (when a review is due, a blog tour is coming up) I have to shut down my Kindle for a while.  I love my Kindle as much as I love a visit to the bookshop so this doesn’t come easy.  Needs must some days!

Tell me what books are silently judging you.

xoxo

 

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