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Tuesday, 30 June 2015

I Do Not Sleep by Judy Finnigan

I Do Not SleepI Do Not Sleep by Judy Finnigan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I would like to thank Little, Brown Book Group UK for my copy of I Do Not Sleep by Judy Finnigan.

As soon as I finished the last page I had to text my book buddy I had finished it with a huge lump in my throat, it brought tears to my eyes and I was really moved by this story.

After reading Judy's first book Eloise, which I loved, I knew from this she had hidden talents from her TV work. A great story teller, however, I wondered if her second book would live up to the 'high' hopes I had for her.

Well let me tell you it did, more than did in fact.

I was blown away by the mystical atmospheric awesomeness that this was written in at times.

The fact that its based around Cornwall which I remember as one of our holidaying places when I was younger added to the lure.

Can you imagine this.

You have two sons.
One son is reported missing and after a time, said to be dead. But his body is never found. It happened in a place in Cornwall where the family liked to stay for a break/vacation. What would it be like revisiting that place years later?

Could you accept your son dead? Would you wonder where his body lays?

Hard to accept I would imagine, and I have just followed such a Mother on her journey. I just followed a Mother and the Father. I just followed the Mother, Father and the grown son who now is a Father of his own. The havoc it can cause.

Everyone Grieves, "deals with it" "moves on" at their own pace.

Father was moving on [so he thought] son was moving on, he had a wife and child of his own. But Mom, she couldn't move on.

We see the effects on the relationships.

We also "hear" her son's voice calling out to be saved.
What does it all mean.

I was so impressed and moved by this story because it was so heart rending, and so emotionally written that you couldn't help getting involved.

I have to say, this book threw me, I enjoyed it much much more than I thought I would.

I just can't wait to see what Judy comes up with next.

Do not stand at my grave and weep;

I am not there. I do not sleep.

There is nothing more powerful than a mother's love

Five years ago, Molly Gabriel lost her twenty-year-old son, Joey, to a terrible sailing accident. His empty boat was washed ashore on the rocks - but his body was never found.

Now, Molly has returned to the sands of Cornwall haunted by his disappearance, unable to accept he is gone. Joey was an experienced sailor and died on a calm sea - things just don't add up and Molly cannot let it go. Desperate for answers, she turns to Joey's best friend, Ben, to go back to what really happened that day...

Intensely emotional and relentlessly suspenseful, I Do Not Sleep is the latest bestseller from broadcaster, journalist and Book Club champion, Judy Finnigan.

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Wrong Place by M A Comley

Wrong Place by M A Comley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Mel Comley is a very good story teller, I have read her books on and off for years and this is an author that long ago had talent, she is still in there holding her own and there is no wondering why, its because, she is not a writer, she is an author, someone who can make a story live, someone who can bring the crime right into your sitting room along with the cast of characters.

DI Sally Parker is the new female lead in this series. I loved this DI, she was human, she had her own personal problems and made her own errors. But she is a formidable woman and will not lie down and take it, she stands up and finds even if she wonders where her personal life is heading.

Right from the start of this book I loved it. It opens with a crime scene that suddenly turns from what I thought was romance.......then the crime took place.

Of course, the 'whodunnit' is always a hard struggle to find out with this author as she keeps you guessing throughout.

Most serial criminals do not leave things behind if they can help it, no clues, but this one wants to leave DNA in each crime he commits. I wonders....why? Isn't he/she going to be easy to find?
I kid you!

We meet several characters in this book, and I am so sure that the author is going to expand on lots of them, which I am really looking forward to.

I always feel honored reading Mel Comley's new book and its a pleasure as we go way back to the Amazon discussion forums.

If you are reading this and not read one of this authors books before.....why not?

*Thank you Mel Comley for my advanced copy, as always, a thoroughly impressive read with hours of entertainment*

The first book in a new series by M A Comley New York Times bestselling author of the Justice series. Calculated Justice now available as a pre-order also for 99c/99p.

DI Sally Parker has a serial killer on her patch. One thing that sets this killer apart from the others she's hunted before: his willingness to leave DNA at each of the crime scenes. It's up to Sally and her partner DS Jack Blackman to find out why before the body count rises to double figures.

While Sally is engrossed in the investigation, her ex-husband, Darryl, pays a surprise visit to her new home. His actions not only threaten Sally's new-found confidence, but they also force the DCI to give Sally an ultimatum concerning the case.

Can Sally overcome all the obstacles fate has placed in her path and arrest the brazen killer?

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Sunday, 28 June 2015

Taunting the Dead by Mel Sherratt

Taunting the Dead (DS Allie Shenton, #1)Taunting the Dead by Mel Sherratt
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love Mel Sherratt's style of writing. Plus she is a Brit like me!

We meet Steph, she is married to a gangster. He is good looking, and he knows it. They have a 17 year old daughter who seems grown up before her time. Brash and uncouth to boot.

Steph is murdered, but who done it?

We see many things unfolding as Mel Sherratt writes the last movements that Steph undertakes before she is murdered. You think you might suss it, well, I didn't. I thought I had at one stage, but I was wrong.

I remember reading somewhere that the murder victim is usually killed by someone they know. So keeping that in mind I tried to be an Investigator along the way. I don't think I made a good one, because I went off the beaten track.

The author had me screaming in frustration at times, but I just wanted to be right. There are lots in here that have things to hide. It got uncovered though bit by bit.

Thoroughly enjoyable 'whodunnit' mystery with other things thrown in.

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Next of Kin by Sue Welfare

Next of KinNext of Kin by Sue Welfare
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I never know what to expect when I read an authors book that I have never come across before, but this book took my attention, not only with the title, the cover but the blurb.

After reading and reviewing for so many years I have learnt a lot and one thing is, I choose to read my books wisely, as wisely as I can so that my reviews are no less that 3 stars, and its not often now that I am wrong, I am pleased to say. I stick to the genre that I like too.

Next of Kin

Here we have an author that has well thought out this story and it never ceases to amaze me where they get their ideas from, truly, remarkable.

We meet Sarah and Ryan, they are brother and sister.

Sarah and Ryan have inherited the home their parents left them, but it comes with a clause, so until that clause is reached they cannot sell the house and half to proceeds. But its not long to wait now.

Sarah is the responsible one, the practical one, she knows bills have to paid, the gas, the electric, food on the table etc and she works hard. Still its a struggle when you have a brother who cannot keep a job, who doesn't pay his way in full. She is always bailing him out and sometimes comes across more like a Mother than a sister. He needs to "man" up.

By "manning" up, he gets himself into all sorts of muddles and in the end, the muddle is not straight forward, this time he gets a kick in and its serious.

Ryan has a friend, he later becomes the lodger, but not all is what it seems.

I am not going to give any spoilers away as its a story that needs to be read by you, yep you, my fellow book friends.

The page turner events that seem to develop on each page is brilliant.

I can see why things can go along the way you don't want them to, but you must because you have to, because you have other way out.

I see why you need to push others aside for their safety or because of their involvement or reactions that can end up going badly wrong.

Sarah was a good person. Sarah wanted what was right for her brother, she wanted to see him 'do the right things' but he always got it wrong.

Brilliantly crafted piece of work.

I do hope this author Sue Welfare writes more books like this, I'd be first in line to read them.

He seemed like the perfect tenant . . . 

Home should be where the heart is, but for Sarah, it becomes a place of fear, menace and terrifying choices. 
Her new lodger seems like the dream tenant for the rambling Cambridge town house that Sarah shares with her brother, Ryan. 
But before long it’s clear that their guest has his own chilling plans for all of them. 

When Ryan finds himself in deep water, Sarah faces losing all her hopes, dreams and any chance of a happy ever after. 

Just how far will she go to protect the people she loves? And will even the ultimate sacrifice be enough to save them… 

Dark, gripping and utterly compelling, Next of Kin is guaranteed to thrill fans of The Girl on the Train, Gone Girl or Before I go to Sleep.

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Those We Left Behind by Stuart Neville

Those We Left Behind (DCI Serena Flanagan 1)Those We Left Behind by Stuart Neville
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

We have a lot going on in this book which only stresses and enhances the book itself.

This is the first book in a new crime series and its a brilliant start. I can't wait for me now.

DCI Serena Flanagan has been having treatment for her breast cancer, she is now well enough to return to work. Her first case is not something she wanted but its been passed to her as they feel she has the more "expertise" to handle it, plus she knew about it years ago when this crime came to light.

Its one of the old cases she was involved in, this conclusion was not what she thought was a right one.

There were two brothers, one named Ciaran Devine and the other Thomas. It was Ciaran who confessed to murdering his foster father.

Serena always thought it wasn't as straight forward as that.

Ciaran is about to be released and its her job to help him to fit into society.

We have one time where he goes into a shop and doesn't know the value of money, feeling embarrassed he leaves far more than what he should pay. There are a lot of instances that we can see what we take for granted as its a daily learning process, someone out of daily life would find it very hard to fit in, we see that.

Serena comes across a very sensitive person wanting to help, she is dedicated, but she has flaws along with personal things going on.

This is not a straight forward case, it wasn't in the past and it isn't now.
With another persons help, Paula, then can unravel what went on before.

The scenes between the past with the murder of the foster father is a bit graphic but needs to be. Its all part of setting the scene.

This is a fab book one, and I can't wait for book 2

When twelve-year-old Ciaran Devine confessed to killing his foster carer it sent shock waves through the nation. He said his older brother Thomas had tried to stop him, but the killing rage had burned too brightly. Seven years later, Ciaran’s release will set a new and even more deadly chain of events in motion.

DCI Serena Flanagan, then an ambitious Detective Sergeant, took the boy’s confession after days and weeks spent earning his trust. He hasn't forgotten the kindness she showed him – in fact, she hasn’t left his thoughts in all the years he’s been locked away.

Probation officer Paula Cunningham, reluctantly tasked with helping Ciaran re-enter society, suspects there was more to this case than the police or the prosecutors uncovered. Soon she wonders if Ciaran really committed the murder at all. His confession saved his brother Thomas from a lengthier sentence, and Cunningham sees the unnatural hold Thomas has over Ciaran.

When she brings her concerns to DCI Flanagan, the years of lies begin to unravel, leading to a truth stranger than anyone could have imagined.

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You, Me and Other People by Fionnuala Kearney

You, Me and Other PeopleYou, Me and Other People by Fionnuala Kearney
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is one hell of a read. Its truly one you will not want to leave alone until you read it until the end.

Marital breakdown is never easy I guess. I personally have not gone through this, but close to, and don't anyone ever tell me, that no matter how long you are married for you never had a cross word because I won't believe you, nor will I believe that at some stage, no matter how small, no matter how tiny no matter how minute.....the thought hasn't crossed your mind to put your coat on and walk out......OK, if only you came back again, or just put your coat on.

Here is a woman who is broken from her marriage. Her husband not only had an affair once, but twice.

OK I hear you say, what a "b" he must be.

But this author delves into the depths of things, the emotions behind it all. NO EXCUSES. NO one should have an affair or go off and have a one stand stand with someone, but its not that easy and straight forward there are always two sides to everything. I truly believe that. And I truly believe it more so now that I have read this.

NO EXCUSES to do this, NO EXCUSES to go off with someone else, OF COURSE NOT. But sometimes, its not always black and white and we are so easy to judge.

Meg their daughter is grown.
She has thoughts of their split of her own. Her own feelings her own emotions.

Mom is saying to her that its not about her, its between her Father and herself, their relationship, not the relationship she has with her Father.

However, when her Father rings her to have a chat, she is quite curt with him and asks if he is still with "her" he hesitates, and of course, says "yea" that was the instant put down of the phone.

This adds another dimension to this great story.

There are hidden secrets that come out, there are things you just wouldn't imagine that creeps from under the locked doors where family seem to think they can hide them, but the cupboard is bursting at the seams and eventually explodes. BANG with a lot of mess to clear up.

Absolutely awesome read.
** I would like to thank HarperCollins UK, HarperFiction/Blue Door for my copy to read/review and enjoy **

You, Me and Other People is the life-affirming, heartbreaking and ultimately stunning debut novel from Fionnuala Kearney.


But what happens when you open the door and they won’t stop tumbling out?

For Adam and Beth the first secret wasn’t the last, it was just the beginning.

You think you can imagine the worst thing that could happen to your family, but there are some secrets that change everything.

And then the question is, how can you piece together a future when your past is being rewritten?

For fans of Liane Moriarty, Jojo Moyes and David Nicholls.

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Summer Secrets by Jane Green

Summer SecretsSummer Secrets by Jane Green
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Jane Green is an outstanding story teller that keeps my attention throughout and many times I have read one of her books in just one sitting if possible as its like pausing a film part way through. So this was the same, I had to settle down and read this from beginning to end.

And What a powerful book this was to read.

This story deals with Alcohol abuse, Adultery, Unhappy marriage, and family

Anyone reading or going to read this book will relate to something in this book as it deals with the heart and soul of society and real life issues.

Its sensitive, its an honest account and as true as anyone could make it.

Cat has been more comfortable with a bottle of Vodka than she's been with people for many a time now. Like many who succumb to drink, they drink to numb themselves from the pain. They know its always going to come back, but for now...........lets send it to the background under a bottle of something.

And like most with an addiction, it brings paranoia and depression, this didn't escape Cat. She was continually in a downward spiral.

She lost her man, she lost her daughter for a time, and she was at rock bottom.

Did Cat ever want to do something about it?

Yes many times she tried rehab, she tried getting off the "sauce" that she knew was ruining her life.

Its a very heartwarming and sometimes heart rending tale to tell. But it was superbly done as only Jane Green can do.

*My sincere thanks to St. Martin's Press for allowing me my copy to read/review and enjoy*

Jane Green delivers her second blockbuster novel of 2015, a story of one woman struggling to right the wrongs of her past, with even more complications in the present.

June, 1998: At twenty seven, Catherine Coombs, also known as Cat, is struggling. She lives in London, works as a journalist, and parties hard. Her lunchtimes consist of several glasses of wine at the bar downstairs in the office, her evenings much the same, swigging the free booze and eating the free food at a different launch or party every night. When she discovers the identity of the father she never knew she had, it sends her into a spiral. She makes mistakes that cost her the budding friendship of the only women who have ever welcomed her. And nothing is ever the same after that.

June, 2014: Cat has finally come to the end of herself. She no longer drinks. She wants to make amends to those she has hurt. Her quest takes her to Nantucket, to the gorgeous summer community where the women she once called family still live. Despite her sins, will they welcome her again? What Cat doesn’t realize is that these women, her real father’s daughters, have secrets of their own. As the past collides with the present, Cat must confront the darkest things in her own life and uncover the depths of someone’s need for revenge

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Friday, 26 June 2015

Time of Death by Mark Billingham

Time of Death (Tom Thorne,#13)Time of Death by Mark Billingham
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This has a lot of subject matter in here that I like reading about.

Abduction, missing people/children, and when someone bounces along and interferes in the investigation, always a treat to read, things just not going to plan.

This book has quite a lot of love in it, the characters are very close and very connected, They care about each other.

There is intrigue and there are nosy characters.

It is a fast paced read, fast plot and will keep you on your toes too because there are lots of suspects that you will be thinking "yes, its him"
"oh no, it can't be"

I thoroughly enjoyed this read and would like to say a special thank you to the author and to Little, Brown Book Group UK via Net Galley.

This really did keep me guessing until the very end.

The astonishing thirteenth Tom Thorne novel is a story of kidnapping, the tabloid press, and a frightening case of mistaken identity.Tom Thorne is on holiday with his girlfriend DS Helen Weeks, when two girls are abducted in Helen’s home town. When a body is discovered and a man is arrested, Helen recognizes the suspect’s wife as an old school-friend and returns home for the first time in twenty-five years to lend her support. As his partner faces up to a past she has tried desperately to forget and a media storm engulfs the town, Thorne becomes convinced that, despite overwhelming evidence of his guilt, the police have got the wrong man. There is still an extremely clever and killer on the loose and a missing girl who Thorne believes might still be alive.

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Pulling Her Trigger by Alexa Riley

Pulling Her Trigger (Ghost Riders MC, #1)Pulling Her Trigger by Alexa Riley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Sometimes, just sometimes I just want to get away from it all and read something romance, smutty and not have to use my brain at all and read.

I found just that book in this. I haven't read a book by this author before so I can't compare to her others, but I can say this, its a short story with a lot of action.

The romance bit in it happened fast, too fast and just not sensible at all, but you know what? This fitted my mood today, sometimes spot on, sometimes unrealistic and sometimes I was gob smacked, but I still read it until the end, it was great have a FEMALE at the lead of it all.

If you are looking for a read hot sexy read with an Italian stud, look not further.

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Tuesday, 23 June 2015

The Secrets She Keeps by Deb Caletti

The Secrets She KeepsThe Secrets She Keeps by Deb Caletti
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I have to be fair and honest, I was really looking forward to reading this, it ended up a decent enough read. BUT I really did struggle taking off. It was like a plane trying to take off but with the elements against it or something drastic holding it back.
I got confused too. I really had to concentrate to get my head around all the chopping and changing.

Once I did that, it became more open to me enjoying it. I would have just given up, but I like this authors work, I wanted it to take me in and enjoy it.

Well, I did in the end. I liked it.

But phew was it tedious in places and hard going.

I have to tell it honestly, its no good me trying to say WOW when I didn't feel that way.

It won't stop me reading this authors books though, sometimes you just can't connect, and this was one of those times.

I need to thank Random House Publishing Group - Bantam Dell for allowing me to read and review this honest and open with my opinions of how the book made me feel.

From Deb Caletti, the bestselling and National Book Award finalist, comes a novel about the immutable, enduring and ever-present conflicts of love, marriage and breaking apart. Perfect for readers of Kristin Hannah, Liane Moriarty, and Anna Quindlen.

A trio of women gather at their aunt’s once famous Nevada “divorce ranch,” where in the 1950’s, high-society women and Hollywood elite gathered to obtain quickie divorces. As they tackle their own conflicts of love and marriage, past and present collide when secrets of the ranch’s tumultuous history are revealed.

Here is a story of the pull of stability versus the inevitability of change, the therapeutic power of female friendship, and the astonishment of finding yourself just when you’ve convinced yourself that you’re lost. More than anything, it’s about love’s most timeless struggle—losing your heart while keeping your head.

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