Book Review: One For Sorrow (D.I. Callanach #7) by Helen Fields

“One for sorrow, two for joy
Three for a girl, four for a boy
Five for silver, six for gold
Seven for a secret never to be told…”

The seventh book in Helen FieldsD.I. Callanach series, One For Sorrow sees Edinburgh gripped by the greatest terror it has ever known. A lone bomber is targeting victims across the city and no one is safe.

DCI Ava Turner and DI Luc Callanach face death every day – and not just the deaths of the people being taken hostage by the killer. When it becomes clear that with every tip-off they are walking into a trap designed to kill them too, Ava and Luc know that finding the truth could mean paying the ultimate price. But with the threat – and body count – rising daily, and no clue as to who’s behind it, neither Ava nor Luc know whether they will live long enough to tell the tale…

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Book Review: The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time by Mark Haddon

“Prime numbers are what is left when you have taken all the patterns away. I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them.”

Published in 2003, The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night-Time by Mark Haddon is a murder mystery novel like no other. The detective, and narrator, is Christopher Boone. Christopher is fifteen and has Asperger’s Syndrome. He knows a very great deal about maths and very little about human beings. He loves lists, patterns and the truth. He hates the colours yellow and brown and being touched. He has never gone further than the end of the road on his own, but when he finds a neighbour’s dog murdered he sets out on a terrifying journey which will turn his whole world upside down.

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Book Review: Deep Water by Patricia Highsmith

“I don’t want you to think that I’m so good as you put it. I have a little evil side, too. I just keep it well hidden.”

Originally published in 1957 and written by Patricia Highsmith, Deep Water is set in the small town of Little Wesley, where Vic and Melinda Van Allen’s loveless marriage is held together only by a precarious arrangement. In order to avoid the messiness of divorce, Melinda is allowed to take any number of lovers as long as she does not desert her family. Eventually, Vic tries to win her back by asserting himself through a tall tale of murder, one that soon comes true.

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Book Review: Lock Every Door by Riley Sager

“You’ve been offered a luxury apartment, rent-free. The catch: you may not live long enough to enjoy it…”

Published in 2019, Lock Every Door by Riley Sager follows Jules as she moves into a luxury apartment as an apartment sitter at the elusive Bartholomew, one of Manhattan’s most high-profile private buildings and home to the super-rich and famous. The rules: No visitors. No nights spent away from the apartment. No disturbing the other residents.

Recently heartbroken and practically homeless, Jules accepts the terms, ready to leave her past life behind. But Bartholomew is not what it seems, and the dark history hidden beneath its gleaming facade is starting to frighten her. Jules brushes it off as a harmless ghost story – but the next day, her neighbour vanishes. And then Jules discovers that Ingrid is not the first temporary resident to go missing…

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Book Review: My Policeman by Bethan Roberts

“You were looking at Tom without smiling, with an expression of deep absorption. You considered him, in the same way that others in the room were considering the displays.”

Published in 2012, My Policeman by Bethan Roberts follows young Marion who, from the first time she lays eyes on Tom, is smitten. When he comes home from National Service to be a policeman, Marion, a newly qualified teacher, is determined to win him. Unable to acknowledge the signs that something is amiss, she plunges into marriage, sure that her love is enough for both of them…

But Tom has another life, another equally overpowering claim on his affections. Patrick, a curator at the Brighton Museum, is also besotted with his policeman, and opens Tom’s eyes to a world previously unknown to him. But in an age when those of ‘minority status’ were condemned by society and the law, it is safer for this policeman to marry his teacher. The two lovers must share him, until one of them breaks and three lives are destroyed.

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Book Review: The North Water by Ian McGuire

“A ship sets sail with a killer on board…”

Published in 2016, The North Water by Ian McGuire is set in 1859 as a man joins a whaling ship bound for the Arctic Circle. Having left the British Army with his reputation in tatters, Patrick Sumner has little option but to accept the position of ship’s surgeon on this ill-fated voyage. But when, deep into the journey, a cabin boy is discovered brutally killed, Sumner finds himself forced to act. Soon he will face an evil even greater than he had encountered at the siege of Delhi…

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Audiobook Review: Sweetpea (Sweetpea #1) by C.J. Skuse

“The last person who called me Sweetpea ended up dead…”

Published in 2017 and the first book in a trilogy, Sweetpea by C.J. Skuse follows Rhiannon, your average girl next door, settled with her boyfriend and little dog. But she’s got a killer secret.

Although her childhood was haunted by a famous crime, Rhiannon’s life is normal now that her celebrity has dwindled. By day, her job as an editorial assistant is demeaning and unsatisfying. By evening, she dutifully listens to her friends’ plans for marriage and babies while secretly making a list. A kill list.

From the man at the grocery checkout who always mishandles her apples, to the driver who cuts her off on her way to work, to the people who have it coming, Rhiannon is ready to get her revenge. Because the girl everyone overlooks might be able to get away with murder.

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Book Review: The Defence (Eddie Flynn #1) by Steve Cavanagh

“The truth has no place in a courtroom. The truth doesn’t matter in a trial. The only thing that matters is what the prosecution can prove.”

Published in 2016 and the first book in Steve Cavanagh‘s Eddie Flynn series, The Defence follows con artist turned lawyer Eddie Flynn who has no choice but set foot into a courtroom for the first time in over a year. Because now, Olek Volchek, the infamous head of the Russian mafia in New York, has strapped a bomb to Eddie’s back and kidnapped his ten-year-old daughter.

Eddie only has 48 hours to defend Volchek in an impossible murder trial – and win – if wants to save his daughter. Under the scrutiny of the media and the FBI, Eddie must use his razor-sharp wit and every con artist trick in the book to defend his ‘client’ and ensure Amy’s safety. With the timer on his back ticking away, can Eddie convince the jury of the impossible? Lose this case, and he loses everything.

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Book Review: The Death Sculptor (Robert Hunter #4) by Chris Carter

“Good job you didn’t turn on the lights…”

The fourth book in the Robert Hunter series and originally published in 2012, The Death Sculptor by Chris Carter follows Detective Robert Hunter and his partner Garcia as they investigate the death of prosecutor Derek Nicholson, who is found brutally murdered in his bed. The act seems senseless – Nicholson was terminally ill with only weeks to live. But what most shocks Hunter the most is the calling card the killer left behind.

For Hunter, there is no doubt that the killer is trying to communicate with the police, but the method is unlike anything he’s ever seen before. And what could the hidden message be? Just as they’ve found a lead, a new body is found, and a new calling card. But with no apparent link between the first and second victims, Hunter must race to put together the pieces of the investigation, before the Death Sculptor puts the final touches to his masterpiece.

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Book Review: A Court Of Thorns And Roses (ACOTAR #1) by Sarah J. Maas

“Be glad of your human heart, Feyre. Pity those who don’t feel anything at all.”

The first book in Sarah J. MaasACOTAR series, A Court Of Thorns And Roses follows nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre who kills a wolf in the woods, a terrifying creature arrives to demand retribution. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she knows about only from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not truly a beast, but one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled her world.

At least, he’s not a beast all the time. As she adapts to her new home, her feelings for the faerie, Tamlin, transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie she’s been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But something is not right in the faerie lands. An ancient, wicked shadow is growing, and Feyre must find a way to stop it, or doom Tamlin — and his world — forever.

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Book Review: Force Of Nature (Aaron Falk #2) by Jane Harper

Published in 2018 and the second book in the Aaron Falk series by Jane Harper, Force Of Nature sees five women reluctantly pick up their backpacks and start walking along a muddy track, but only four come out on the other side.

The hike through the rugged Giralang Ranges is meant to take the office colleagues out of their air-conditioned comfort zone and encourage teamwork and resilience. At least, that’s what the corporate retreat website advertises. Federal Police investigator Aaron Falk has a keen interest in the whereabouts of the missing hiker, Alice Russell. Because Alice knew secrets about the company she worked for and the people she worked with.

The four returning women tell Falk a tale of fear, violence and fractured trust during their days in the remote Australian bushland. And as Falk delves into the disappearance of Alice, he begins to suspect some dangers ran far deeper than anyone knew.

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Book Review: Happy New Year by Malin Stehn

“IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN THE PARTY OF THE SEASON –
BUT SHE NEVER CAME HOME”

Set to be published on 24th November, Happy New Year by Malin Stehn is set on New Year’s Eve, the best night of the year, as old friends the Wiksells and the Anderssons raise their glasses, and their teenage children host their own party across town, finally free to let loose. But the next morning, seventeen-year-old Jennifer Wiksell is missing. The hours tick by. The police get involved. And no one knows who to trust. These two families have a lot to hide. Could the answer to Jennifer’s disappearance lie close to home?

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Book Review: The House In The Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

“A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret.”

Published in 2020, The House In The Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune follows Linus Baker who leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management, he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

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Book Review: The Sanctuary by Emma Haughton

“Very few people get to stay here. And some don’t get to leave …”

Set to be published on 24th November, The Sanctuary by Emma Haughton follows Zoey who doesn’t remember anything about last night. But she knows something went badly wrong. For she is no longer in New York. She’s woken up in the desert, in a white building she doesn’t recognise, and she’s alone.

When she discovers she’s been admitted to The Sanctuary, a discreet, mysterious, isolated refuge from normal life, to avoid jail, she is stunned. She knows she has secrets, troubles, but she thought she had everything under control. But as she spends more time with other residents, she begins to open up about what she’s running from. Until she realises that not everyone in The Sanctuary has her best interests at heart, and someone might even be a killer . . .

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Book Review: The Family Remains (The Family Upstairs #2) by Lisa Jewell

“Their secrets can’t stay buried forever.”

A follow-up to The Family Upstairs and released in 2022, The Family Remains by Lisa Jewell follows DCI Samuel Owusu who, early one morning, is called to the scene of a gruesome discovery on the shore of the Thames. When Owusu sends the evidence for examination, he learns the bones are connected to a cold case that left three people dead on the kitchen floor in a Chelsea mansion thirty years ago.

Rachel Rimmer has also received a shock—news that her husband, Michael, has been found dead in the cellar of his house in France. All signs point to an intruder, and the French police need her to come urgently to answer questions about Michael and his past that she very much doesn’t want to answer.

After fleeing London thirty years ago in the wake of a horrific tragedy, Lucy Lamb is finally coming home. While she settles in with her children and is just about to purchase their first-ever house, her brother takes off to find the boy from their shared past whose memory haunts their present.

As they all race to discover answers to these convoluted mysteries, they will come to find that they’re connected in ways they could have never imagined.

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BLOG TOUR: The Cruise by Catherine Cooper

“A glamorous ship. A mysterious cast of passengers. And a New Year’s Eve party that goes horribly wrong…”

Published earlier this month, The Cruise by Catherine Cooper is set on New Year’s Eve at a luxurious party on a large cruise ship in the Caribbean, when the ship’s dancer, Lola, disappears. The ship is searched and the coastguard is called, but there is no sign of her, either dead or alive.

Lola was popular on the ship but secretive about her background, and as the mystery around her deepens, each passenger becomes a suspect. Who was she arguing with the night she vanished? Why did she come aboard the cruise in the first place? What was she running from?

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BLOG TOUR: Nobody But Us by Laure Van Rensburg

“HE’S NOT WHO HE SAYS HE IS. BUT THEN AGAIN, NEITHER IS SHE…”

Now released in paperback, Nobody But Us by Laure Van Rensburg follows Steven, a handsome, well-respected and Ellie, a young, wide-eyed student. Together, they are driving south from New York, for their first holiday together: three days in an isolated cabin, far from the city. Ahead of them, the promise of long, dark nights – and the chance to explore one another’s bodies, away from prying eyes. It should be a perfect, romantic trip for two. Except that he’s not who he says he is. But then again, neither is she…

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Book Review: It Starts With Us (It Ends With Us #2) by Colleen Hoover

“I can draw a seedling with two tiny branches. Yours and mine. We’ll be on our own brand-new, tiny family tree—one that starts with us.”

Published in 2022, It Starts With Us by Colleen Hoover is a follow-up to It Ends With Us, and follows Lily and her ex-husband, Ryle, who have just settled into a civil co-parenting rhythm when she suddenly bumps into her first love, Atlas, again. After nearly two years separated, she is elated that for once, time is on their side, and she immediately says yes when Atlas asks her on a date.

But her excitement is quickly hampered by the knowledge that, though they are no longer married, Ryle is still very much a part of her life, and Atlas Corrigan is the one man he will hate being in his ex-wife and daughter’s life.

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Book Review: Watch Her Fall by Erin Kelly

“The higher you rise, the further you fall.”

Published in 2021, Watch Her Fall by Erin Kelly follows Ava Kirilova who has reached the very top of her profession. After years and years of hard graft, pain and sacrifice as part of the London Russian Ballet Company, allowing nothing else to distract her, she is finally the poster girl for Swan Lake. Even Mr K – her father, and the intense, terrifying director of the company – can find no fault. Ava has pushed herself ahead of countless other talented, hardworking girls, and they are all watching her now.

Dancers would kill for the part. But there is someone who really wants to see Ava fall.

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Book Review: The Locked Attic by BP Walter

“There’s something in my neighbour’s attic.”

Set to be released on 24th November, The Locked Attic by BP Walter follows recently widowed Stephanie who lost both her husband and son in a car accident. Now, she knows there’s more to the story, as her neighbour stands by window, watching her. Her son is dead, by her neighbour is not, and Stephanie is determined to find out the truth.

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