READALONG: The Shadow Friend by Alex North

“There were good memories here too. Moments that, looking back on them objectively, had been filled with light. The problem was that what happened later cast such a shadow they were hard to see.”

Originally published in 2020, The Shadow Friend by Alex North follows lecturer Paul who has never forgiven himself for his part in what happened twenty-five years ago. During their school years, Paul’s friend Charlie Crabtree brutally killed their classmate – and then vanished without a trace. Paul hasn’t been back home since. But when his elderly mother has a fall, it’s finally time for him to stop running. It’s not long before things start to go wrong, though. His mother claims there’s someone in the house, and Paul soon realises someone is following him, too. And, in a town many miles away, a copycat killer has struck. Which makes him wonder – what really happened to Charlie the day of the murder? And can anyone stop it from happening again?

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Book Review: This Nowhere Place by Natasha Bell

“That’s the thing about our town: people only come here if they’re going somewhere else.”

Set to be released on 18th March, This Nowhere Place by Natasha Bell tells the story of one grey afternoon, high on the cliffs of Dover, when two girls agree to help a stranger. Within months, two of the three girls are dead. In the years that follow, local legend grows around the events of that summer – and, with the one survivor refusing to speak, it seems the truth will never emerge. Until a documentary-maker arrives, determined to solve the mystery of the Dover Girls. But some will stop at nothing to keep this town’s secrets…

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Book Review: The Burning Girls by CJ Tudor

“500 years ago: eight martyrs were burnt to death. 30 years ago: two teenagers vanished without trace. Two months ago: the vicar committed suicide.”

Set to be released on 21st January, The Burning Girls by CJ Tudor follows the new Reverand of Chapel Croft, Jack Brooks, and her teenage daughter Flo, who are hoping to make a fresh start with a new job and a new home. But, as Jack knows, the past isn’t easily forgotten. And in a close-knit community where the residents seem as proud as they are haunted by Chapel Croft’s history, Jack must tread carefully. Ancient superstitions as well as a mistrust of outsiders will be hard to overcome. Yet right away, Jack has more frightening concerns. Why is Flo plagued by visions of burning girls? Who’s sending them sinister, threatening messages? And why did no one mention that the last vicar killed himself? Chapel Croft’s secrets lie deep and dark as the tomb. Jack wouldn’t touch them if not for Flo – anything to protect Flo. But the past is catching up with Chapel Croft – and with Jack. For old ghosts with scores to settle will never rest…

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