Break The Silence by D K Hood

4 Stars from me

This is a fast paced, classic thriller which will keep you turning the pages late into the night on your quest to see the bad guy(s) caught.

I thought the descriptive intro and scene setting were excellent and hugely atmospheric. Chrissie was wonderfully described.

The relationship between the two main detectives was added a nice frisson rather then overshadowing the whole story, which I liked.

This is a really SOLID 4 stars – I have to be honest and say I dropped a star for a couple of reasons. One because it was super obvious to me who the killer was and two because I felt things got slightly (and I do mean slightly) muddled towards the end.

But that does not detract from the fact that this is a good solid thriller and I will definitely look out for more books by this author.

Blurb: Her head throbbed as she stumbles up the stairs. Music vibrating and the sound of partygoers fill her head as she walks into one of the dark, empty rooms. As she sits on the bed, she hears the unmistakable sound of the door locking behind her. She is not alone.

The body of college student Chrissie Lowe lies curled into a ball – long red cuts along her arms suggesting how she had met her death. Detective Jenna Alton is called in to investigate.

Purplish bruising on Chrissie’s upper arms make Jenna believe there is more to Chrissie’s death than others suspected, and she soon finds herself following the trail of the student’s last few moments, leading her to the scene of a party that had ended just hours before Chrissie’s body was found.

When Jenna hears reports that Chrissie was seen going into the bedroom of a college football star, she knows that finding out what went on behind that closed door could be the key to finding out how Chrissie ended up dead. But then another partygoer dies in an apparent accident at the campus gym just hours later, and Jenna is convinced the deaths are connected.

Facing a wall of silence from the student population, Jenna has to act fast to find the killer, but soon another student is found dead on the campus. As Jenna sends in one of her deputies undercover, she prays that she hasn’t just sealed his fate. Can she find the killer before any more lives are taken? 

I Made A Mistake by Jane Corry

4 Stars from me

This is an utterly charming domestic thriller, which follows the lives of one family albeit from the view of two different woman at two different times.

Both threads were equally engaging and I liked the feeling almost of a trainer being laced up as the two stories began to converge.

Poppy Page is our main lead – she feels that she is unnoticed by her husband in a semi loveless marriage. Nothing overtly wrong, just no passion. They live with his mother and their two daughters – the picture of domestic harmony. He is a successful dentist. She is a successful acting agent. Why would you rock the boat?

Bumping into an old flame – her first love – reignites old feelings and Poppy suddenly resents her steady and reliable husband and hankers after passion.

We’ve all read enough books to know how that will pan out, right?

Betty, Stuart’s mum, is the second narrator and her voice describes the early days of her life and marriage in a different era and describes another whole loveless marriage and brief dalliance with tragic circumstances.

As so many other reviews have said, this book is classic Corry, it is a slow and winding burn that suddenly gathers paces and races towards whallop of a finish.

Blurb: In Poppy Page’s mind, there are two types of women in this world: those who are faithful to their husbands, and those who are not. Until now, Poppy has never questioned which she was.

But when handsome, charming Matthew Gordon walks back into her life after almost two decades, that changes. Poppy makes a single mistake – and that mistake will be far more dangerous than she could imagine.

Someone is going to pay for it with their life…

Paper Soldiers by Mark Pettinger

4 Stars from me

Opening with the dramatic discovery of a dead body, Paper Soldiers offers an exciting trip into the dark and murky underworld of Greater Manchester as DCI Priest tries to establish the murderer of known Yardie gang leader.

This is a scary and unpredictable world and one which Pettinger seems to effortlessly bring to life on the page.

Once the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA) get involved it soon becomes apparent that that there is a lot more at stack than getting a collar.

The storyline is good and not the usual run of the mill – race to find the killer – in Paper Soldiers there is more of a battle to stay alive amid the gangland antics.

Great tension and brutally descriptive!

#PaperSoliders #DCIPriest My thanks to @m_pettinger and @damppebbles for letting me be a part of this #damppebblesblogtours

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book Blurb: The streets of Greater Manchester are awash with drugs and weapons, and the gangs that control this multi-million pound business will stop at nothing to protect and grow their business. The Dolsen family are one such gang.

When the head of a rival Yardie gang is found brutally murdered, revenge attacks were always likely to follow, and gang members were unlikely to be the only ones hurt.

DCI Priest teams up with the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA); but they soon admit to conflicting objectives which may unravel their alliance, and prove to it be more of a hindrance than a help.

Was DCI Priest was about to undertake his most challenging investigation to date?

So Many Lies by Paul J Teague

5 stars from me

Oh my word what an unlikeable bunch of people!

So Many Lies is a book that most certainly lives up to its name! The story follows the somewhat screwed up life (all his own doing) of Ben Harrington who seems to have taken a life long path of least effort and least resistance.

Even he can see that his little affair and weak nature mean that he has lost a wife, family and beautiful house in exchange for a woman he isn’t even sure he likes, a starter home, a baby he isn’t sure he wants and a whole heap of debt!

Ben Harrington isn’t a man who can be accused of learning from his mistakes so he blunders on, ignoring good advice and offers of help and digs himself further into debt in order to attend his Dad’s 70th birthday.

The story flicks between past and present day as it builds up towards the conclusion with lies scattering in the air like old confetti – it’s a humdinger – hold on to your hat!

My thanks to BOTBS Publicity and Paul J Teague for letting me be a part of this blog tour.

 

 

 

 

 

Blurb: It began with a family gathering – it ended in a bloodbath.

When the Harrington family rent a private island to celebrate their dad’s 70th birthday, old lies resurface, resulting in a murderous revenge.

Ben Harrington is stuck.

He’s recently separated from his wife of over twenty years, leaving his almost adult son and daughter feeling angry and betrayed.

What’s more, his daughter Alice has cerebral palsy and he can’t forgive himself for letting her down when she needed him most.

Ben left the family house due to an ill-advised fling with Laura resulting in an unplanned pregnancy.

But all that is the least of Ben’s troubles.

It’s his dad Tony’s 70th birthday and he and his wife Susan have invited the family over to a remote tropical island in order to mark the occasion.

That should be cause for celebration, but there are terrible secrets lurking in the Harrington family which are about to burst out into the open – siblings Steve, Ben, Gaby and Richard are all caught up in this web of deceit.

So Many Lies follows the story of the Harringtons through a series of life-changing lies, dating back to 1979, and as the story builds towards the big celebration, so does the gravity of the lies which brought the family to where they are when we meet them in the book.

Thought your family was screwed up? Wait until you meet the Harringtons…  

The Patience of a Dead Man by Michael Clark

5 Stars from me

I can’t remember the last ‘proper’ ghost story that I read and losing my self in ‘The Patience of a Dead Man’ was reminiscent of my first times as a child reading the words of authors like James Herbert and Dean Koontz…

I truly believe this is the perfect lockdown book, it is so utterly engaging and you simply HAVE to keep turning those pages to see if Tim and Holly win against ‘Millie’ and co.

The writing style was enchanting and very atmospheric – it was easy to picture the scenes being described and I am glad that I wasn’t reading this story on my own, in an old house, on a dark winters night…

Overall, The Patience of a Dead Man has brilliant characterisation, a great storyline and makes for an engrossing read.

My thanks to Michael Clark and Damp Pebbles for letting me be a part of this blog tour.

 

 

 

 

 

Blurb: He just spent everything on a house in disrepair, but he didn’t know someone was waiting inside.

Tim Russell just put his last dollar on a handyman’s dream; a quaint but dilapidated farmhouse in New Hampshire. Newly single after a messy divorce, his plan is to live in the house as he restores it for resale.

To his horror, as soon as the papers are signed and his work starts, ghosts begin to appear. A bone-white little boy. A woman covered in flies. Tim can’t afford to leave and lose it all, so he turns to his real estate agent Holly Burns to help him decide whether he has any shot at solving his haunted problem. Can they solve the mystery before he loses his investment…or maybe his life?

Someone is Lying by Jenny Blackhurst

4 Stars from me

I have loved reading this book – particularly so during our period of lockdown – as it is just like indulging in the juiciest, most fabulous, gossip-fest with your best friends!

Focusing around Erica Spencer who died a year ago – did she fall, was she murdered? – and set in a posh gated community in Cheshire, this story is sublime distraction from all that is going on in the world right now.

Instead, lose yourself in the drama of the Kaplans and their ‘friends’ in the posh streets of Severn Oaks… In fact, buckle up as you will be hooked within a couple of paragraphs – I know I was!

Someone is Lying is a fun and salacious whodunnit which pokes fun at all of the little stereotypes which exist within most groups of friends. It has affairs, secrets, murder, jealousy, wild parties and misdemeanours and I loved it!

Blurb: One year after Erica Spencer trips and falls down a flight of stairs at a lavish Halloween party, the residents of the exclusive gated community where she lived have comes to terms with her death and moved on with their lives.

Until one day, a post on the school’s website announces there will be a podcast to expose what really happened on the night of the accident. Six suspects are named, with the podcaster promising to reveal the murderer by the end of the series.

Everyone in this community has secrets to keep, and one of them is already a killer…

Breakers by Doug Johnstone

5 Stars from me

Based purely upon the recommendation of Michael Wood (author of fabulous books) on twitter – I downloaded a copy of Breakers.

I’m so glad I did as I absolutely loved it. Tyler is a wonderful character who I couldn’t help but feel sorry for and I desperately wanted him to be ok – him and Bean – ok ok and the dog – and her puppies!

What an awful, awful home life poor Tyler had. Breakers is a soft but brutal glimpse into the troubled homelife of so many young people in this country. I would suggest also reading Who’s There if you find this to be an interesting subject.

The drugs theme throughout Breakers was well handled and no doubt uncomfortably close to the truth – particularly the matter of fact way that Tyler dealt with it.

Flick was a fab character too, she didn’t go the way I thought she would which was great to read.

As for the rest of Tyler’s family, I’m not going to pass comment on his mum, his brother and sister (pass the sick bag) what a pair! Barry was brilliantly portrayed as a thoroughly unpleasant human being.

I enjoyed the brief but frequent touches of humanity and would very much recommend Breakers.

Blurb: Seventeen-year-old Tyler lives in one of Edinburgh’s most deprived areas. Coerced into robbing rich people’s homes by his bullying older siblings, he’s also trying to care for his little sister and his drug-addict mum. On a job, his brother Barry stabs a homeowner and leaves her for dead, but that’s just the beginning of their nightmare, because the woman is the wife of Edinburgh’s biggest crime lord, Deke Holt. With the police and the Holts closing in, and his shattered family in devastating danger, Tyler meets posh girl Flick in another stranger’s house, and he thinks she may just be his salvation . . . unless he drags her down, too. A pulsating, tense psychological thriller, Breakers is also a breathtakingly brutal, beautiful, and deeply moving story of a good kid in the wrong family, from one of Scotland’s finest crime writers.

Roses Are Red by Miranda Rijks

5 Stars from me

I did a LOT of internal screaming while reading this book!

Oh Lydia Palmer, I could literally shake you!

Miranda Rijks creates a sublime mix of tension in her books and always love reading them. In Roses Are Red we follow the unfortunate Lydia Palmer who – despite being a strong woman and a hard working entrepreneur – falls down a virtual rabbit hole of bad decisions.

I took advantage of the current Lockdown and devoted the vast majority of the day to reading Roses Are Red, I didn’t intend to but I couldn’t but the damn book down… I just had to keep turning the pages!

I warn you, you will need a comfy chair, several cups of tea and a good few clear hours for when you start this book you won’t be stopping until the bitter end.

My thanks to @MirandaRijks #InkubatorBooks @damppebbles #damppebblesblogtours for letting me be a part of this blog tour.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book Blurb: She wanted a second chance at happiness. She got a first-class ticket to hell.

Lydia Palmer seems to have it all – a thriving business, a beautiful house, a picture-perfect husband and two wonderful kids. But things are different behind closed doors – Lydia is desperately unhappy and wants a divorce.  Then, shockingly, her husband Adam dies.

When her grief eases, Lydia starts online dating and almost immediately meets Patrick. Handsome, successful, loving, he’ll make the perfect second husband.

But is Patrick too good to be true? Can you really find prince charming online?

These are questions Lydia is forced to ask when her world begins to collapse. First, the police say Adam may have been murdered. Then her daughter turns against her, her business disintegrates…

Lydia is convinced that someone is trying to destroy her happiness. She’s wrong. They want so much more than that…

Roses are Red is a gripping psychological thriller that will keep you up until the early hours. Perfect for fans of K. L. Slater, Teresa Driscoll, and Andrew Hart.

Social Media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/MirandaRijks

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MirandaRijksAuthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mirandarijksauthor/

The Storm by Amanda Jennings

5 Stars from me

How do I even begin to do this book justice?

I absolutely adore the way that Amanda Jennings writes, I have loved all of her books and, although I expected The Storm to be good, I was utterly blown away by this one.

An author like no other, Amanda creates characters that feel so real it is as if you are truly following their lives rather than reading a novel. She has a way of verbalising emotions that hits home, an example:

‘Cam visited. Once. He sat on the chair in my room holding the mug of tea that my mother made him. We didn’t talk. Instead we sat in silence and stared at nothing, our tentacles of guilt wriggling outwards, knotting together, snarling up at the space between us.’

If that doesn’t sum up the gut wrenching feeling of a moment going wrong, of that disconnect that you can only feel with someone you love then I don’t know what does. I hope that after writing that little paragraph she danced around the room and high-fived the dog safe in the knowledge that she is a genius.

The story is a different take on the subject of coercive control, it is also a love story, it also celebrates family bonds, the emotional trauma of the relationships with ones children and ones parents, and sea fishing in Cornwall… How can one person be so adept and skilled when writing about all of these somewhat varied subjects?

My favourite character was the son, Alex, what a top lad. Nathan, awful obviously, but I couldn’t help but feel a teensy but sorry for him too. Cam and Hannah – ahhh I actually have a tonne I could say about Hannah’s marriage, about ‘that night’, about the decisions made but I don’t want to spoil the story for anyone else.

Do yourself a favour and read The Storm to find out.

Huge thanks to NetGalley, HQ Stories and the gorgeous Amanda Jennings for the chance to read an advance copy of this breathtaking story.

Blurb: Hannah and Nathan appear to have the perfect marriage.
A beautiful Cornish house with heritage, a son, a dog. Every evening, Hannah awaits her husband’s return, with a home-cooked meal, soothing conversation and, ultimately, sex. But Nathan control Hannah’s every move – counting her change from her shopping, checking her receipts, the mileage on the car. And Hannah seems happy to let him, being a prisoner in a gilded cage.

Because Hannah has a secret. She dreams of someone else, someone who once made her heart sing… But that was a long time ago, before everything went wrong. And ever since that night on the docks, when blood splashed in the rain, Hannah has been paying the price, keeping Nathan happy, keeping the peace…

But her past is going to catch up with her…

Set against the brutal backdrop of a Cornish fishing port in the 90s, where trips to sea were long and heartbreaking, fraught with danger and horrific accidents, this is devastating exploration of the power of coercive control…

 

Into Darkness by T J Brearton

4 Stars from me

The books starts with a bang and a steady and solid race against time to find a murderer – who initially appears to be a twisted serial killer, until the MO suddenly deviates.

Into Darkness has a nice neat storyline with a really well plotted route through as the story unfolds. Once it becomes clear who the killer is you can kinda understand the thought processes behind the crimes.

I really enjoyed this introduction to FBI special agent Shannon Ames, she was a tough cookie albeit a little unbelievably so at times! Her burgeoning relationship with Caldoza was a nice touch and I can imagine they will be working together again.

The plot builds nicely, has a fistful of red herrings and a satisfying conclusion; what’s not to like?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blurb: They have been judged. The verdict – guilty. The sentence – death.

Two beautiful young women are found strangled, their bodies meticulously washed and groomed. The only thing they have in common – both worked as reporters for local TV stations.

A coincidence? Or something more sinister?  

Rookie Special Agent Shannon Ames is assigned to the case and soon impresses with her brilliant intuition and startling ability to think outside the box.

But as Shannon takes a more prominent role in the investigation, she finds herself drawn into a deadly dance with a master of deception, a serial killer whose victims all work in media – journalists, influencers, reporters.

Shannon’s superiors are convinced it’s part of some grand attack on the free press, but she has a hunch these killings are much more targeted. And she follows that hunch – straight into the heart of darkness…

Into Darkness is a gripping mystery thriller that will keep you up all night as it races towards its shocking conclusion. Perfect for fans of David Baldacci, Robert Dugoni and Lisa Regan.

Social Media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/BreartonTJ

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tjbreartonauthor/

Website: http://tjbrearton.net/