#BlogBlitz #Review The Scent Of Guilt by Tony J Forder @Bloodhoundbook @TonyJForder

Title: The Scent Of Guilt by Tony J Forder

Publisher: Bloodhound Books

Date Published: 17th February 2018

Genre: Mystery/Thriller.

Description:

Twelve years after he left Peterborough under a cloud, DI Bliss returns to the city and the major crimes team. Having spent years policing organised crime, Bliss is plunged straight into the heart of a serial murder investigation.

Meanwhile, Penny Chandler has been promoted to DS and has been working in London on the Met’s sexual crimes team. But when two rapes are reported on her old patch in Peterborough, Chandler volunteers to interview the victims.

Chandler joins the hunt for the attacker and soon notices a possible link between the rapes and Bliss’s murder investigation. Could the same man be responsible?

Just as both cases seem to stall, a call comes in from an ex-policeman who knows of unsolved cases in the USA with a similar MO. Bliss finds himself travelling to California to hunt for a killer whose reach may have stretched further than anyone could possibly imagine.

But in order to catch the murderer, Bliss must discover the killer’s motive. A motive which should have remained buried in the past…

B L O G B L I T Z

Review:

This is the second in the Bliss and Chandler series, but can easily be read as a stand alone without missing much. I would recommend reading the first Bad To The Bone just because it is such a good book, you can read my review of it here.

This book is set twelve years after the first, with DI Bliss accepting a job back in Peterborough. He is thrown in the deep end with a triple murder case, much to his superior’s annoyance. His former partner, Penny Chandler has been promoted to DS and is working down in London for the sexual crimes division. She’s sent back to Peterborough to investigate a series of rapes but she notices the timing of the cases seems to link with Bliss’s case. Are they connected?

It is nice to be reading another book by Tony J Forder, I’ve read a couple by him now and he doesn’t disappoint! Another engrossing police procedural that build to a heart pounding ending.

Now a little warning, this book takes on the particularly difficult subject of rape, but I feel the author and handles it with care and consideration which I appreciate.

Even though twelve year have passed Bliss still has the same issue with authority and ability to beat himself up for things he can’t control. Chandler is still hard working, intelligent officer from the first book and the only person who can make Bliss see sense (most of the time anyway). I love the two them working together, and I don’t know whether it’s just me but I think they’d make a good couple too.

My only issue is the fact they go to America. Yes, LA was a nice change from Peterborough but in the age of a cash strapped police force, it seems a bit unbelievable that they would send two officers in the middle of a serious investigation to the US. I mean couldn’t they have posted the files over? Did an interview via Skype? Although that probably would have been a lot less interesting.

Overall a fantastic read and I’ve heard there may even be a third in the pipeline, I hope so!

Rating: 4/5
Author Bio:

Tony J Forder is the author of the critically acclaimed crime thriller Bad to the Bone, the first in a series featuring DI Jimmy Bliss and DC Penny Chandler. The sequel, The Scent of Guilt, is available from 17 February 2018. A third book in the series is currently in progress.22365495_499399223774817_4544080396425244912_n

Tony’s dark, psychological crime thriller, Degrees of Darkness, featuring ex-detective Frank Rogers, was also published by Bloodhound Books. This was intended to be a stand-alone novel, but Tony is now considering the possibility of a follow-up.

One book that will definitely see a sequel is Scream Blue Murder. This was published in November 2017, and received praise from many, including fellow authors Mason Cross and Matt Hilton.

Some years ago, Tony won a short story competition judged by an editor from Pan Books. The story, Gino’s Bar and Grille, went on to be published in Dark Voices 2, part of the celebrated Pan Book of Horror series. Three further short story sales followed: Book End, published in Dark Voices 4, Character Role, in FEAR magazine, and finally A Grim Story, which featured in A Rattler’s Tale. It was the start of Tony’s publishing journey.

Links:

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Tony-J-Forder/e/B01N4BPT65/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1490529612&sr=8-1-spell
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tonyjforder/?fref=ts
Twitter: https://twitter.com/TonyJForder?lang=en-gb

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#BookReview Her Best Friend by Sarah Wray @bookouture @NetGalley

Title: Her Best Friend by Sarah Wray

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 28th November 2017

Genre: Psychological Thriller.

Description:

Two girls. A murder. And a secret that binds them forever.
As a teenager, Sylvie Armstrongs life was shattered when her best friend, Victoria Bland, was murdered. The killer has never been caught – and Sylvie has never spoken about what happened that day.

Now, two decades have gone by and after the death of her mother, Sylvie is forced to return to her home town, along with her newborn daughter – only to be confronted by the secrets that she has been running from for twenty years.

But then Sylvie receives the locket Victoria was wearing on the night she died – and it becomes clear that somebody knows what really happened to Victoria.

As Sylvie struggles to discover the truth behind the lies, she finds herself in increasing danger from those who will stop at nothing to keep their secrets. Someone who threatens not only Sylvie, but everything she loves…

Review:

Another book down from my extensive tbr list!  I might be able to get it under control sometime soon *laughs manically*

Sylvie has not been back to her home town of Conley since her best friend Victoria was murdered, until her mother’s death. With her newborn daughter in tow she begins to clear her mum’s house out. She runs into Victoria’s parents who tell her there’s a documentary being made trying to shine some light on Victoria’s murderer.

What really happened to Victoria that night?

The story is told from Sylvie and Sam’s view points, with chapter interspersed with flashbacks from 1995. I think this is third book I’ve read lately that has some aspect of ‘true crime’ in it. Sam, a former journalist, is looking for Victoria’s murderer and making a documentary in the process. It’s classic amateur detective trying to solve a murder stuff, I didn’t really get a psychological thriller vibe from it although it’s still an enjoyable read.

The characters were well rounded and individual from Sylvie, the neurotic new mum, to her old friend Michelle who was a little weird and creepy at times.

I really enjoyed the flashbacks. I liked getting to know a young Sylvie and Victoria who frankly was not that nice a person, but she really reminded me of girls from when I was a teenager.

Unfortunately even though the story started off so promising, the ending fell a bit flat and predictable.

Rating: 4/5

I received a copy of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

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#BlogTour #Review Flashpoint by Derek Thompson @DerekWriteLines @JoffeBooks

Title: Flashpoint by Derek Thompson.

Publisher: Joffe Books

Date Published: 31st January 2018

Genre: Thriller, action, espionage.

Description:

Do you love gripping espionage thrillers full of great twists and plenty of action?

Meet Thomas Bladen. Smart, sardonic, and in mortal danger.

LONDON COMES UNDER ATTACK AND BLADEN’S LIFE IS FALLING APART.

As the security services scramble to deal with the aftermath of a coordinated terror attack, undercover operative Thomas Bladen is in deep trouble. His department is taken over by MI5, his girlfriend’s gone, and he’s “lost” a handgun during surveillance of a politician.

Then two of his senior colleagues disappear. Who’s taken them and why? Bladen’s search for answers is blocked at every turn. Is there a double agent in his team?

In a thrilling conclusion, Bladen must face his doubts and put his life at risk against forces whose allegiance is unclear. This is the reckoning.

If you like Mark Dawson, Rob Sinclair, Lee Child, or Vince Flynn you’ll enjoy these fast-paced thrillers.

What people are saying about Derek Thompson’s books

“Complex and full of twists and turns, this is a very good thriller which keeps the reader on tenterhooks throughout.” Ann Stanmore

“Kept me up far too late at night.” Gemma Donnelly

“Gripping and unputdownable.” Bsms585

“One of the best spy thrillers I’ve read in a long time.” Lacancan

“Good read for anyone who enjoys a thriller that will keep them hooked from start to finish.” Jfaulknercourt

“Couldn’t put the book down ….brilliant characters…storyline excellent.” Kay Broome

“Very good, gripping story.” Yorkypud

THOMAS BLADEN SERIES
Book 1: STANDPOINT
Book 2: LINE OF SIGHT
Book 3: CAUSE & EFFECT
Book 4: SHADOW STATE
Book 5: FLASHPOINT

BLOG TOUR BANNER - flashpoint

Review:

I want to thank Joffe Books for the advanced copy of Flashpoint and Jill Burkinshaw for organising this blog tour.

Thomas Balden works for the Surveillance Support Unit otherwise known as the SSU, who are used by other agencies and called the unkind nickname of ‘floaters’. After the 7/7 London attacks his unit is taken over by MI5, then suddenly his boss Christine, disappears along with Sir Peter Carroll the Director General of the SSU.

Thomas thinks foul play is involved, he desperately works to find them both, while dealing with other problems closer to home.

I didn’t realise when I started reading this it was the fifth in the series (this is why you should always read the blurbs fully). It took me a while in this book to grasp who was who, and understand their relationships etc. I would recommend to read the earlier books to have a better understanding, although as with most Joffe books, there was a handy character guide at the back to help.

The book is set against the backdrop of 7/7 and really captures the feel of paranoia and fear that surrounded the country at that time. I also really got a good sense of London while reading it, which I think is a difficult thing to do!

Thomas Balden is how I would imagine an actual spy to be, not running around sipping martinis and driving flash cars like James Bond, but running surveillance operations and generally hiding in the shadows.

This is a very action packed and tense read but I feel after the build up, the ending was a little bit of a let down, but of course that might be me just being picky.

Rating: 3/5

Author Bio:

Derek Thompson grew up in London and started writing fiction in his teens. After spending a year in the US, he returned to London and subsequently moved to the West Country.Derek+Thompson

He wrote a commissioned piece for The Guardian in 2008 and entered the world of freelance writing in 2009. His short fiction has featured in both British and American anthologies, and can be found online. He has also written comedy material for live performance and radio.

His love of film noir and thrillers began with The Big Sleep, and has never left him. Much of his fiction involves death, loss or secrets. As the saying goes: write about what you know.

He writes about Thomas Bladen and his role in the Surveillance Support Unit.

Links:

www.alongthewritelines.blogspot.co.uk

Twitter: @DerekWriteLines

#BlogTour #Review Captor by Anita Waller @anitamayw @Bloodhoundbook #NewRelease

Title: Captor by Anita Waller

Publisher: Bloodhound Books

Date Published: 13th February 2018

Genre: Mystery/thriller, psychological thriller

Description:

Liz Chambers is a devoted mother who works for a successful law firm. She has two children, a husband and a blossoming career. But behind closed doors, Liz is harbouring a secret that could destroy her life.

Then the unthinkable happens, and in a frenzied attack her young son is snatched from the home of the nanny charged with looking after him.

As Liz’s life unfolds, it becomes clear that someone is out for revenge.

Desperate to get her baby boy back, Liz must work out who is responsible for his kidnap, and why.

But as the body count begins to mount, Liz’s concern grows for the safety of her child.

Who has taken her baby?

And why is Captor so determined on revenge?

BLOG BLITZ

Review:

I’m so happy to be sharing my review on the release day of Captor, I want to thank Bloodhound Books for my ARC copy of this fabulous book and Sarah Hardy for organising this blog tour.

At the beginning of the story we see Liz going back to work and having the issues every working mother does leaving her baby with someone who isn’t them, but it starts to become much more sinister. Someone called ‘the captor’ has her in their sights and won’t stop until she has nothing left.

At first this story a bit of a hard read for me, I have a son myself and it is one of my worst fears, (actually I think it’s every parents worst fear), that something should happen to him but I got pulled in by the interesting characters. I went on a real rollercoaster of emotions, hoping that Liz would find her son.

There is so much more this book and I don’t want to reveal too much as I feel it might spoil other people’s enjoyment of this great story. I will say, to me, it started off a little slowly, building up to a tense, drama packed read. I was literally biting my nails by the end.

My only real complaints were I kind of figured out who ‘the captor’ quite early on.  I also at found Liz a little bit hard to like at times and her older son Dan, who’s about sixteen, a little too perfect and well behaved, but of course that’s just my opinion.

Overall a tense read and be prepared to have the tissues at the ready!

Rating: 4/5

Author Bio:

Anita Waller was born in Sheffield, South Yorkshire in 1946. She married Dave in 1967 and they have three adult children.

She began writing when she was around 8 years of age, writing ‘compositions’ at junior school that became books with chapters.

In 1995 she sent Beautiful to a publisher and as they reached the contract stage the publisherimage1 (1) went into liquidation.

As a result, the book was consigned to the attic in dejected disgust but in 2013 it was dragged out again for an enforced complete re-type. The original was written on an Amstrad 8256 and the only thing that remained was one hard copy.

Anita is not a typist and it was painfully reworked over two years, submitted to Bloodhound Books who, within three days of reading it, offered her a contract. 31 August 2015 saw its release into the wide world.

Following the outstanding success of Beautiful, she began a sequel on 27 December 2015, finishing it on 19 March 2016. The new novel, Angel, was launched on 7 May 2016.

34 Days followed, with its launch in October 2016. This was a huge success, particularly in the United States. While this, her third book in the psychological thriller genre, was flying out in all directions, she began work on her fourth book.

Winterscroft was a change in genre. It is a supernatural tale, set in Castleton, Derbyshire, and its release date was February 2017.

While she was writing Winterscroft, it became very clear from reading reviews that a sequel to 34 days was needed, and she began work on that. Bloodhound Books launched Strategy, on 10 August, 2017.

So where next? Her new book, launching February 2018 and titled Captor, is a psychological thriller.


In her life away from the computer in the corner of her kitchen, she is a Sheffield Wednesday supporter with blue blood in her veins! The club was particularly helpful during the writing of 34 Days, as a couple of matches feature in the novel, along with Ross Wallace. Information was needed and they provided it.

Her genre is murder – necessary murder.

Links:

Amazon page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=anita+waller

Facebook page: @anitawaller2015

Website: www.anitamayw.wixsite.com/anitawaller

Twitter: @anitamayw

Beautiful:

www.amazon.co.uk/Beautiful-Anita-Waller-ebook/dp/B014RCH5WM/

Angel:

www.amazon.co.uk/Angel-Anita-Waller-ebook/dp/B01DR4USZC/

34 Days:

www.amazon.co.uk/34-Days-Anita-Waller-ebook/dp/B01IP6YE0M/

Winterscroft:

www.amazon.co.uk/Winterscroft-Anita-Waller-ebook/dp/B06XMY3JD3/

Strategy:

www.amazon.co.uk/Strategy-Anita-Waller-ebook/dp/B0748MRBT2/

#BlogTour #Review Locked In by G.B Williams @GailBWilliams @Bloodhoundbook #NewRelease

Title: Locked In by G.B Williams

Publisher: Bloodhound Books

Date Published: 10th February 2018

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

Ariadne Teddington is having a bad day. Then she finds herself staring down the barrel of a gun.

Stuck in a bank robbery turned hostage situation, Ariadne keeps her head down and her mouth shut; because if there is one thing criminals hate more than the police it’s prison guards.

Trapped with a child, a policeman, and a robber on the edge, Ariadne desperately searches for a way out for them.

Can they all escape unharmed?

And when everyone is locked in, will anyone get out alive?

BLOG BLITZ (4)

Review:

It’s set around six months after the end of the last book. Ariadne Teddington had just popped into her local bank when she ends up being held hostage. Unfortunately one of the robbers recognises her as a prison guard and potential threat. Trying to protect her fellow captives she puts her life on the line.

The first book in this series, Locked Up was one of my favourite reads of last year, (you can read my review of it here), so when I found out there was going to be a sequel I jumped at the chance to read it! I would recommend reading Locked Up before you read this, to get a better feel for the characters.

This story was a fast paced, nail biting, with several moments that made me gasp out loud.

The story is told from three points of view, Ariadne, Charlie Bell and DCI Piper who we met briefly in the last book. It nice to get to know DCI Piper a bit better.

Ariadne, just can’t seem to catch a break! She’s caught up in a prison riot now she’s been held hostage. I feel like she attracts trouble like a magnet. She’s still one of my favourite female characters, brave, headstrong and facing down robbers all while wearing a corset.

I have to be honest it took me a little longer to get into this book than the last one. I can’t say why exactly, maybe it’s because I’ve read and seen quite a few hostage situations in books and TV and it’s just become a little cliched to me or the fact I may have been suffering from the dreaded ‘book hangover’.

Also I felt like a lot of the book was just a set up for the next in the series Locked Down but there was a big revelation at the end which makes me excited for the next book.

Rating: 4/5

Author Bio:

After being made redundant in 2012, GB started taking her life-long passion for writing more seriously and looking to sell her work. Specialising in complex, fast-paced crime novels. Her Colour Portrait 10debut novel, Locked Up, was released in September 2017, Locked In follows in February 2018, and Locked Down in September 2018.

GB was shortlisted for the 2014 CWA Margery Allingham Short Story Competition with the story Last Shakes, now available in Last Cut Casebook. She is also a
feature writer and occasional comic book reviewer. Crime novels are her stock in trade, but she has had success with short stories in various genres
including steampunk, horror, erotica and general fiction.

With bills to pay, she’s back working as a systems architect by day, a freelance fiction editor and keen writer of an evening and weekend. GB really needs to
learn to sleep.

Originally from Kent, GB moved to South Wales as a supposed first step on a year around the world. Then she met a guy. Kept the guy, kissed the travel goodbye. Knowing that the best way to travel is by book anyway, she has always read, always written. GB now has two grown-up children, the world’s most imperious
cat, a house full of books and a hard drive full of manuscripts (though some will never be allowed out of a locked basement).

Links:

Twitter: @GailBWilliams

Facebook: @GBWilliamsCrimeWriter

Blog: thewriteroute.wordpress.com

Website: www.gailbwilliams.co.uk

#Review The Memory Agent by Matthew B.J. Delaney @NetGalley

Title: The Memory Agent by Matthew B.J. Delaney

Publisher: 47North

Date Published: 18th July 2017

Genre: Sci-fi

Description:

Crime never changes. Punishment does.

In a time when prisons no longer contain inmates behind concrete and steel, the convicted serve their time while asleep, rehabilitating in virtual reality while blissfully unaware of their crimes.

Roger Parker is a professional prison breaker, skilled at navigating these strange penal dream worlds and extracting those imprisoned there—for a price. Parker wants out of the game, but a powerful senator, desperate to save his son, convinces Parker to pull one last job. The clincher? An opportunity for Parker to find his wife, herself interned, lost somewhere in a treacherous, time-shifting Manhattan cyberscape.

As Parker and his team make their hallucinatory journey between worlds, memory and motive lose coherence and integrity, and the clock begins to run out: internal security detects the breaker, and sets out to remove him—permanently.

Unable to rely on his perceptions, unsure of the truth or even his very identity, will Parker break out…or be broken?

Review:

The story begins in Cairo in the year 1933. Roger Parker thinks that he and his team are about to unearth an ancient Egyptian tomb but instead they find an underground city, New York City to be exact but not from 1933 but far into the future.

But there’s something lurking in the city, something that doesn’t want them there. Memories start to come back to Roger. He’s not an archaeologist but a prison breaker trapped inside a high tech prison, a prison of the mind, and he’s about to attempt the most dangerous mission of his life, to save his wife.

Wow there’s a lot crammed into this novel! Different eras in history, monsters, gun fights and at the beginning a little bit of Indiana Jones action in the desert. It also had a slightly creepy uneasy feeling to it at times, I genuinely never knew what was going to happen next.

The story has quite a lot of layers and the time line does go backwards and forwards as Roger discovers his memories, it is a little hard to keep up sometimes! I was very intrigued though, I had to know what happened at the end of the book.

But this is not a quick read, in fact at times it felt like a bit of a chore to get through. I think the author should have divided it up better, it’s only eight chapters but a couple of the chapter took me over an hour to read. I think it could have benefited from shorter sharper chapters. I also felt a little disconnected from the characters, like I never really got to know them properly or invested in them emotionally.

Overall I very intriguing novel but the slow pace of the story lets it down.

Rating: 3/5

Author Bio:

Matthew B.J. Delaney published his first novel, Jinn, in 2003. Winner of the International Horror Guild Award, the novel was optioned for film by Touchstone Pictures, was featured as People magazine’s “Page-Turner of the Week,” and received a Publishers Weekly Starred Review.

Following the attacks of September 11, 2001, he left a career in finance and moved from Boston to New York City to join the New York City Police Department. He has been a member of the NYPD for twelve years, and he continues to write in his spare time.

#BookReview Ballad For A Mad Girl by Vicki Wakefield @text_publishing

Title: Ballad For A Mad Girl by Vicki Wakefield.

Publisher: Text Publishing

Date Published: 29th May 2017

Genre: Young Adult.

Source: NetGalley

Description:

Everyone knows seventeen-year-old Grace Foley is a bit mad. She’s a prankster and a risk-taker, and she’s not afraid of anything—except losing. As part of the long-running feud between two local schools in Swanston, Grace accepts a challenge to walk the pipe. That night she experiences something she can’t explain.

The funny girl isn’t laughing any more. She’s haunted by voices and visions—but nobody believes a girl who cries wolf.

As she’s drawn deeper into a twenty-year-old mystery surrounding missing girl Hannah Holt, the thin veil between this world and the next begins to slip. She can no longer tell what’s real or imagined—all she knows is the ghosts of Swanston, including that of her own mother, are restless. It seems one of them has granted her an extraordinary gift at a terrible price.

Everything about her is changing—her body, her thoughts, even her actions seem to belong to a stranger. Grace is losing herself, and her friends don’t understand. Is she moving closer to the truth? Or is she heading for madness?

I trace the word with my finger. It shimmers. A sharp impact near my ribs knocks me sideways and the pipe seems to buckle and twist. My legs lose grip. Close by, someone is sobbing as if their heart could break.

Review:

On the surface Grace Foley is a risk-taker, a prankster, a troublemaker but in reality she’s struggling. Her dad moved them from the farm she grew up on to a ‘cardboard house’ after the death of her mum, while her friends seem to be moving on without her.

She accepts a challenge to walk across a pipe, something she’s done several times before but something strange happens. Slowly her grip on reality seems to be fading, she’s seeing things, experiencing things she could never have known about and it’s all linked to the mysterious disappearance of Hannah Holt twenty-three years ago.

I can’t tell you how much I loved this book, I’ve been looking for a good spooky story for ages. It’s part mystery, part ghost story, set against the back drop of high school.

At first I was a little confused, I thought it was set in the US, as most YA books seem to be nowadays, but they used words like bloody, pub and they wore school uniforms, it turns out it’s set in Australia which made a welcome change.

Then we have Grace. The whole book is written in the first person, from Grace’s perspective, which usual I’m not a fan of, they are usually slightly whiny, but I thought she was a fantastic character. Okay she’s moody, grumpy and a little self centred but to me she felt like a real teenager and I really liked her.

The book was creepy, atmospheric and very realistic, it even made me feel a little emotional at times. There’s also some wonderful description, one of my favourite is:

He’s got a long line running through the middle of his forehead, as if somebody ironed a perfect crease there.’

And even a harden fan of crime fiction like myself, didn’t see any of the twists in the story coming! I will definitely be reading more from this author in the future.

Rating: 5/5

Author Bio:

Vikki Wakefield’s first YA novel, All I Ever Wanted, won the 2012 Adelaide Festival Literary Award for YA Fiction, as did her second novel, Friday Brown, in 2014. Friday Brown was also an Honour Book at the Children’s Book Council of Australia, in 2013, and was shortlisted for the prestigious Prime Minister’s Awards. Vikki’s third novel, Inbetween Days, was Highly Commended in the 2016 Barbara Jefferis Award, was a 2016 CBCA Honour Book and was shortlisted for the 2016 Prime Minister’s Awards. Vikki lives in the Adelaide foothills with her family.