Sunday, 31 December 2017

Dark Skies (DCI Ryan #7)

Dark Skies: A DCI Ryan Mystery (The DCI Ryan Mysteries Book 7) by [Ross, LJ]

Dark Skies is the next instalment in the DCI Ryan series.  We join Ryan and the team as he returns from honeymoon with Anna and on returning to the force, notes that a new DCS has been appointed.  That woman is Jennifer Lucas, a woman who has a past with Ryan, a woman who Ryan had a relationship with and who he escaped to the North East to get away from, a woman who is determined to cause problems amongst the solid team.

Dark Skies is set in Kielder and you are immediately transported to the area and thrown into a mystery and the discovery of a body of a young boy by a couple who were diving, as Anna and her students arrive at Kielder.  The body discovered appears to be a boy who disappeared over 30 years ago and looks like his body has been well preserved. 

We see that Lucas has an issue with Ryan, and is set on disbanding the team, a team that appears to be solid.  McKenzie is sent to Cold Cases, Philips and Yates are tasked with investigating the murder at Kielder and Ryan is shoved back behind a desk, whilst it seems that Lucas has plans for Lowerson but what are they?

However, all is not as it seems and we see the usual Ryan determination is back, he’s not the desk type of guy and if he was well Lucas would not be there!  Ryan is a hands-on type of detective, happy to be out in the field doing the investigations and sorting things out as Ryan does in his usual manner.  McKenzie isn’t happy investigating cold cases but ends up with her team as the book progresses for a completely different reason and if you want to know what that reason is you will have to read the book.

Great book as usual from L J Ross and I look forward to seeing what 2018 has in store, which hopefully is more great books.  

Mother - S E Lynes

Mother: A dark psychological thriller with a breathtaking twist by [Lynes, S.E.]

This is the second book by S E Lynes I’ve read and after reading Valentina was itching to read the next book and when I knew it was being released was like a kid in a sweet shop!

Christopher is due to start University and on going into the loft for a suitcase to start packing to move, stumbles across information which leads him to find out he was adopted.  He always felt that something wasn’t right, he looked nothing like his parents and was treated so differently to his younger brother and sister.

Heading off to University in Leeds he makes it is mission to find his real parents.   

At this point we are treated to two different storylines, one where Jack the Ripper is around (and am sure many readers remember the news items that were around then, or if not have heard the reports) and the second story is Christopher’s story told from a third person perspective which took me a while to get to grips with.

Compared to Valentine (and I know I shouldn’t compare books) I found this a hard book to read and digest, many times having to put it down and try to work out the background story.  I did however continue to read this and WOW when I got about half way through I was hooked and things started to fall into place and I then found myself picking up the book whenever I had a few minutes spare to read and looking forward to my commute to work and lunch breaks. 

This was an excellent book and OMG what an ending.  Yet again S E Lynes had me doing an OMG OMG moment.   S E Lynes is an author who certainly knows how to get her readers hooked, drawn in and gripped.   
My thanks go to NetGalley, the author S E Lynes along with publishers Bookouture for allowing me to read and review this book

NYPD Red 4

NYPD Red 4 by [Patterson, James]

After reading NYPD Red books 1,2 and 3 I couldn’t wait to read the next instalment.

We are back with the Detective Zach Jordan and his partner Kylie MacDonald in NYPD Red 4.  NYPD is a special task force assigned to New York’s rich and well connected.  This time the duo is sent to investigate a murdered actress and a jewellery heist both of which are connected.

They are also tasked by the Mayor to investigate another case, however, this one is hush hush and therefore has to run side by side with the murder investigation with no one able to know what they are investigating.

As well as dealing with the two cases, we are also thrown head long into Kylie looking for her husband Spence who has disappeared again and Zach trying to please the two women in his life, his partner Kylie (who is also his ex) and his current girlfriend. 

We are treated to the usual short snappy chapters that James Patterson does which has me as a reader constantly saying one more chapter which turns into God knows how many! 😊

I read this book as a break from my review books and one of my personal list – which I vow to do more of next year and thoroughly enjoyed this book as I have all the other NYPD Red books.  Roll on the next one. 

The Girl Who Came Back

The Girl Who Came Back: A totally gripping psychological thriller with a twist you won't see coming by [Wilkinson, Kerry]

As most of you know will be aware I am a huge fan of Kerry Wilkinson’s book especially the Jessica Daniel’s series so was thrilled when I was asked did I want to review this book and immediately said YES!!!

Olivia disappeared from her garden when she was 6 years old, no one saw what happened and it appears she was in the garden one minute and gone the next.  Her mother never gave up hope she would come home and when it appears that the young lady that has returned states she is Olivia her mother is obviously extremely relieved and happy to see her and is convinced it is Olivia but not everyone else is and a few people are set on proving that Olivia isn’t the real Olivia. 

We are treated to alternating chapters which is the “now” and the “then” which pieces together the story and keeps us guessing as the pages turn.  It can draw you in and keep you hooked wanting to turn the pages quicker and quicker.  It was a great read and one that had me hooked, not as much as the Jessica Daniel’s series but keen to see where the story was going nonetheless. 

There are the usual twists and turns that Kerry puts in to his books, which has you thinking you know what is happening and then somehow the rug is pulled from under your feet with another twist.    

I did however figure out what was happening as I got about half way through the book but this didn’t stop my enjoyment of this and all in all was a great read by Kerry Wilkinson who is one of my favourite authors.

Thanks go to Kerry Wilkinson for allowing me to read and review this ARC as well as the publishers Bookouture.

This review is my honest, unbiased opinion.

Saturday, 30 December 2017

The Silver Wolf (James Ryker #3)

The Silver Wolf (James Ryker Book 3) by [Sinclair, Rob]
Silver Wolf is the next instalment following on from Red Cobra and Black Hornet and wow what a conclusion to the series (or is it?).

James Ryker is back, determined to find out what happened to Lisa and who is responsible for this.  He is tormented by the disappearance of his wife and sets out to seek out the truth. 

We are taken across to Mexico’s Caribbean coast and back to England (London to be precise).  I enjoyed this book and found the scenes set in London really enjoyable as I could relate to them and knew what and where they were on about.  I love books set in the UK and particularly books whose locations I know or would love to visit at some stage. 

As usual we are taken on a roller coaster ride with Ryker set on finding out what happened and yet still managing to get embroiled in the JIA!  We are aware of someone called the Silver Wolf, but who is he and why does he want to hurt Ryker.  Is he responsible for what happened to Lisa?    

The book is the usual faced paced rollercoaster of a read and one which kept me as a reader turning the pages faster and faster.  I loved these books and also the Carl Logan series and cannot wait to see what Rob Sinclair has in store next. 

My thanks go to Rob Sinclair and the publishers Bloodhound Books for allowing me read and review a copy.  This is my honest and unbiased opinion.

Seven Suspects

I found this book quite difficult to read not sure if it was because of the subject matter or the style of writing.
We meet Bobbi Logan a successful businesswoman who owns a hairdresser that deals with celebrities and the wealthy. She is a woman who has been through a lot, was raped, involved in a murder investigation and also has undergone a gender transition.
Bobbi is being stalked and is always looking over her shoulder through sheer paranoia or is it?  She’s made a number of enemies and at her last count she says it was 6. We follow Bobbi as she is being stalked and get to know the real Bobbi, what happened to her in the past and the relationship that she has with her best friend and ex wife from when she was male.  He mistakes she makes and has made.      
However, Bobbi has a theory and thinks that someone somewhere is her seventh stalker.  She believes in the law of sevens and is adamant it is someone else. She sets out to do her own investigation and we are taken on a roller coaster of a journey.
The story is told from the first person and is from Bobbi’s point of view. There are great details given about the violence and rape and I found these a struggle to read.
My thanks goes to NetGalley and the publishers Oceanview for allowing me to read an ARC of this book. This is my honest unbiased opinion. 

The Detriment

THE DETRIMENT: A compelling detective thriller based on true events (DI Jake Flannagan Book 2) (DETECTIVE INSPECTOR JAKE FLANNAGAN SERIES) by [Videcette, David]

DI Jake Flannagan is back in the Counter Terrorist Dept in Scotland Yard after a break following the last case.  This book sees up pick up some months later after The Theseus Paradox and if you haven’t read the first book, it would help you to read that before this if only to understand the characters.  With regards to the story it can be read as a standalone book.

We see ourselves 2 years after the 7/7 bombings with Jake having to take a bit of a side step and be under someone elses command, but still determined to be at the forefront of investigations and turning up as one of the first DI’s to the scene of a nail bomb planted outside a night club, a Jeep having been driven into Glasgow airport and a spy that has turned up dead.  Is there a connection between these incidents, will Jake be able to solve these incidents?

We meet the usual characters of Lenny (Jake’s sidekick) Claire (Jake’s on off girlfriend) and also get to meet a new DI called Mark Castle. Castle is a character that got under my skin and I wanted to grab him by the shoulder and shake some sense into him, which to me means the author has done a great job in describing him to annoy readers.   We also can’t have anyone upsetting Jake, can we?

Jake can see Castle isn’t all he cracks up to be and knows there is more to him than meets the eye and in usual Jake style becomes embroiled in investigating in the way and manner we know and love, setting out to annoy Castle and do what Jakes does best.

This was a page turner of a book and I can’t wait to see what’s next in store for our loveable DI Flanagan.
Thanks go to the author David Videcette for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book

Two Sisters

Two Sisters: A gripping psychological thriller with a twist by [Wilkinson, Kerry]    Two Sisters
Two sisters by Kerry Wilkinson is completely different form the Jessica Daniels series and as most people know I’m a huge fan of those books.
Two sisters is a story about, well I think you can guess really.
Megan and Chloe recently lost both of their parents and venture to the cottage their parents have in Whitecliff, a place they haven’t been for a number of years.  A place that holds memories good and bad.  Megan the eldest sister is very keen to return to the cottage after receiving a postcard with “Z” written on the back.  Who is Z?  Could it be from their older brother Zac who mysteriously disappeared whilst they were on holiday in their cottage?
We are told the story of Megan and Chloe through alternating chapters, about Megan’s search for the truth about Zac and what happened to him and if he is still alive.  We learn about the real Megan who has an eating disorder along with various other issues and about her Chloe and the issues she has.
In the village that their parent’s cottage is in, we get to know two sets of people, one set who live in the village all year round who Megan feels knows the truth about Zak and the other set who are holidaymakers who visit every summer, some of them being there when Zak disappeared.  Surely one set must know what happened!
I enjoyed this book and found it was completely different to Kerry’s other books. It had me gripped from the first few pages and was such a good thrilling read.
My thanks go to Kerry for allowing me to read and review this book.  My review is my own, honest unbiased opinion.     

Friday, 29 December 2017

The Frozen Woman - Jon Michelet

The Frozen Woman

A young unknown woman savagely murdered and her body dumped in a retired lawyers garden, left to freeze under some bushes.

The young woman does not appear to be native to Norway, but so far there are no clues to identify her, her nationality and her purpose for being in the country. The sticky tape residue on her body and her wounds, point the local police to look at her being a drug courier.

A local lad who is on the outskirts of a bike gang is killed in a motorcycle crash, but further investigation point to this being a deliberate sabotage.

Is the retired lawyer under suspicion for the murder of the unknow woman? What are his connections to the bike gang?

A good story with enough twist and turns / surprises to make the book a good read.

For me there was slightly too much background stories going on to take away from the main  why did he need to know the history of the statue that Stinbolt was looking at through the window? Why did he need to know exactly when Stinbolt was looking on his computer and how that tied him out with his essay from school?

I feel and know more about Norway history now but did it really add anything to the story.
My thanks go to the author and publisher No Exit Press for providing me with a copy of this book.

The above review is by Debbie Ramsden - guest blogger. 

Serenity Avenged (#3 - Shelby Alexander Thriller)

Serenity Avenged is the 3rd book in the Shelby Alexander series, but despite being book 3 can be read as a stand- alone book.
I’ve had this book in my to review pile for months, however, it had unfortunately got moved towards the bottom and was only on sorting my review list that I realised it had escaped me.  However, I soon sorted that out and can only kick myself for not reading this sooner!
Shelby visits his daughter who is due to have a baby, only to end up assisting his ex-wife Helen who has got into a bit of trouble with what seems to be a loan shark, trying to recoup the money that has been loaned to her, however, not all is as it seems, and the one who is chasing for the money is only a monkey, in the chain.
The henchman or leader of the pack is not as soft as we find out.  We follow Shelby and his friend Mack on a rollercoaster of events to save his ex-wife (who I think he still has feelings for).  As Shelby and Mack race against time they end up with help from an unlikely source.
My thanks and apologies go to the author Craig Hart for providing me a copy of this book to review, I’m only sorry it took me so long to read.
I have now however purchased the other books and once I’ve caught up on my reviews they will be moved to the top of my TBR pile.                       

Handcuffs, Truncheon and A Polyester Thong

Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong was a fantastically funny, highly entertaining and had so many laugh out loud moments which caused some strange looks when reading on public transport. Luckily for me I had a journey to Kent via car to enjoy this book with a hubby who was subjected to my laughing episodes and asking what I was laughing at and therefore I was reading bits to him to explain!
This book is about a single mum who has a dream to join the police and the trials and tribulations that happen whilst she pursues her dream. We follow the days leading up to police training, whilst at the academy and what happened afterwards.
This book has so many laugh out loud moments and to describe these would spoil the book. It therefore is definitely a book I would recommend and kept me wanting to read to the end in one continuous period.   It was just a pity that daily things got in the way.
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and will be keeping an eye on this author as I can’t wait to see what other book are lined up.            
Great laugh out loud book. 
My thanks go to Urbane Publications and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review this book.  My review is my honest and unbiased opinion. 

 Handcuffs, Truncheon and a Polyester Thong: The perfect laugh-out-loud comedy by [Kirkham, Gina]