#BlogTour #Review The Proposal by S.E. Lynes @Bookouture @SELynesAuthor

Happy Publication day to S.E Lynes for her latest book The Proposal and I want to thank Kim and Noelle at Bookouture for inviting me on this blog tour! I will be reviewing it in a second but first a little bit about the book:

Title: The Proposal by S.E. Lynes

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 21st September 2018

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Description:

The first thing you should know, dear reader, is that I am dead…

Teacher Pippa wants a second chance. Recently divorced and unhappy at work, she uproots her life and moves to the countryside, determined to make a fresh start. But Pippa soon realises: your troubles are never far behind.

When Pippa meets blue-eyed Ryan Marks, he is funny and charming. He is haunted by his past – but insists he is a changed man. 

He might just be the answer to all of her problems. And Pippa can tell the truth from lies. She’d know if she were in danger. Wouldn’t she?

From Amazon chart bestseller S.E. Lynes, The Proposal is a page-turning and utterly gripping thriller about the lengths we will go to for someone we love. Perfect for fans of Gone Girl, The Woman in the Window and The Wife Between Us.

You can pick up your copy here:

Amazon: http://geni.us/B07DZSKMB3Social

iBookstore: http://ow.ly/cc1S30lQtpw

Kobo: http://ow.ly/qWDr30lQtsl

Googleplay: http://ow.ly/UEXg30lQtuj

Review:

The story starts with Pippa dreaming of writing a bestseller and escaping her boring life as a teacher, after her previous book bombed but the problem? She has no idea what to write about and with a deadline looming she’s desperate for inspiration.

Then there’s a knock at the door.

She finds Ryan Marks on her doorstep, an ex-prisoner, selling cleaning products in a bid to make some money. She knows she shouldn’t but Pippa invites him, offering to pay money for his life story. Then her nightmare really begins…

So this is my first S.E Lynes, and I probably sound like a broken record, because I say this so often when I discover a new author, but this certainly won’t be the last book I read of hers!

I genuinely don’t know where to start with this unique and creepy novel. It’s told in diary format, like the protagonist Pippa is talking directly to you, interspersed with cheery blog posts about her life in the country and unsettling recordings from Ryan.

The characterisation is this novel is so good, they almost feel like real people. There’s something almost like watching a car crash (you know you should look away but you can’t) about Pippa. If you imagine a more sarcastic Bridget Jones, with impossibly high standards, a love of dodgy puns and putting herself in danger plus a whole heap of abandonment issues.

I did feel sorry for her best and seemingly only friend Marlena, a busy mum who would rush over to Pippa, worry about her and generally be there for her. Although she did feel a little more like her mum than her friend.

Then there’s Ryan. The less I say about him the better, because frankly he creeped me out so much! I’ve just shivered a little writing this and thinking about him.

I have to be honest though, the first 30% or so I had absolutely no clue what was going on, I did only persist because the character of Pippa was so realistic and there was that sense of wanting to know how her story ends. She also had a tendency to go on slightly philosophical rants that I found a little tedious at times.

The Proposal is a unique story about loneliness, twisted love and obsession that will make you doubt your own sanity.

Want to find out what other readers think? Follow the rest of the blog tour here:

s.e lynes blog tour

About the Author:

After graduating from Leeds University, S E Lynes lived in London before moving to Aberdeens.e lynes to be with her husband. In Aberdeen, she worked as a producer at BBC Radio Scotland before moving with her husband and two young children to Rome. There, she began to write while her children attended nursery. After the birth of her third child and upon her return to the UK, she gained an MA in Creative Writing from Kingston University. She now combines writing with lecturing at Richmond Adult Community College and bringing up her three children. She lives in Teddington. 

https://www.facebook.com/susie.lynes

https://twitter.com/SELynesAuthor

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#BlogTour #GuestPost Almost An Author by Susan Tarr.

Today I have a guest post by Susan Tarr all about character but first a little bit about the book:

Title: Almost An Author by Susan Tarr

Publisher: Junction Publishing

Date Published: 18th September 2018

Genre: Romantic Comedy

Description:

When a chance meeting with a local publisher outside a small bookshop results in all three of her manuscripts being signed, Ruby Wright thinks she has it made. Already she sees images of herself wearing dark glasses, being mobbed by fans clamouring for her latest blockbuster…

Little does Ruby know, but her ditsy publisher is a charlatan who has no more idea about publishing than Ruby does. Pretty soon Ruby is broke.
She has no IT experience so depends heavily on her nerdy flatmate, Hunter, whenever her computer fails her. He has enough of his own issues to deal with—he is studying for his final law exams. She bribes him with a dog she found on the side of the road, then Panforte, which chips his tooth, and a couple of Axolotls until he finally gives in and helps her. But Ruby’s life is filled with disaster…

What follows is excitement, disappointment, heartache, love and loss as we follow Ruby’s hilarious struggles to maintain her trust and focus in the ever-shifting publishing industry and in people in general.

Guest Post – About The Character:

Ruby Wright:

In part, or in main, Ruby is me. Her name is a family name and why would she not be a writer with a name like Ruby Wright? Most of my main book characters are me, at a much younger age, of course, or my daughter, who is just the right mix of age and personality. Who else could they be if I want to get into their hearts and minds, and show how they really think and operate? Of course, there are parts of Ruby I am not altogether thrilled with, but we all have flaws. Ruby has hers.

I wrote her story from a series of diaries, and added an element of fiction to make it worth reading. Other authors have also contributed their stories, so basically it is the journey of many young or naive writers out there who just want to give it their all.

And life is not always about landing on our feet. No, it’s not. But with the right friends around you, you can do anything you set your heart to.

Ruby did.

Follow the rest of the blog tour here:

BLOG TOUR Banner - Almost an Author

About The Author:

Susan Tarr has been writing for 25 years, drawing on her international travels, work within the NZ tourism industry, and her work in various psychiatric hospitals within New Zealand.Author photo (3)

She lived in Kenya, East Africa, for some years where she began her family.
Although she writes from personal experience, she also uses anecdotal information from conversations and other peoples’ stories, resulting in her characters taking on a life of their own and becoming larger than life. She enjoys a wide variety of personalities.

Susan says, “As I write their stories, my characters will often lead me to places I couldn’t imagine. So I relax and let them form as they will. I am passionate about my writing and I usually have three books on the go at any one time.”

#BlogTour #Review The Fake Date by Lynda Stacey @rararesources @LyndaStacey @RubyFiction

Happy Publication Day to Lynda Stacey! I want to thank Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on this tour and I’ll be sharing my thoughts in a moment but first a little about the book…

The Fake Date

Title: The Fake Date by Lynda Stacey

Publisher: Ruby Fiction

Date Published: 18th September 2018

Genre: Romantic Suspense.

Description:

Nine hours and eleven minutes…

That’s how long it’s been since Ella Hope was beaten to within an inch of life and left for dead.

She lies, unable to move and praying for somebody to find her, as she counts down the minutes and wonders who could have hated her so much to have hurt her so badly.

Was it the man she went on a date with the previous evening, the man linked to the deaths of two other women? Or somebody else, somebody who wants her out of the picture so much they’re willing to kill?

Whoever it is, they will pay … all she has to do first is survive..!

Purchase Link https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fake-Date-gripping-thriller-that-ebook/dp/B07FM915Q2/

Review:

The story opens with journalist Ella Hope, beaten, clinging on to life after a brutal attack. She can’t remember how she got there or why but is convinced it’s Rick Greaves who attacked her. She been investigating him after the supposed accidental deaths of his two wives. She’s so convinced he’s guilty but when it comes to trial everything falls apart, it forces her further into her shell.

Another ‘accident’ befalls a romantic conquest of Rick’s but it brings up a lot of questions for Ella. If Rick isn’t guilty of attacking her or the other women, then who is?

So on the cover of this book it says it’s a psychological thriller but, this is a pet peeve of mine lately, I feel it has been mislabelled. I personally think it’s romance with a side of murder mystery but don’t get that little bit of negativity wrong I still really enjoyed The Fake Date.

I really felt for Ella, the formerly fierce journalist who seemed to go the extra mile for her stories but after the attack. She’s a shell of her former self, jumping at the slightest thing especially when it comes to men. Being the other side of story has also opened her eyes to her fellow reporters and just what they will do to get a story which makes her hate them.

Then in walks Will Taylor, a journalist with a heart of gold and a tragic past (who also happens to be Ella’s neighbour) who tries to convince her that not all reporters are bad by digging into her case and putting himself in danger.

It’s told mostly from Ella and Will’s perspective but there’s also some bits where we get an insight into the killers mind too which I loved. These were sort of tacked onto the end of some of the chapters but I think they may have been better as their own chapters but I don’t know whether this has been changed in the final published novel.

I did manage to guess who did it but I do enjoy following the clues and being right, (that sounded a little more big headed than I intended!). I also liked the fact the romance aspect of the story wasn’t too cheesy, which can be a danger with this type of novel.

The Fake Date mixes the brutal with the sweetness of romance to create an emotional and captivating story.

Rating: 4/5

The Fake Date Full Banner

Author Bio –

Lynda grew up in the mining village of Bentley, Doncaster, in South Yorkshire,

Her own chaotic life story, along with varied career choices helps Lynda to create stories ofL (1) copy 2 psychological / romantic suspense, with challenging and unpredictable plots, along with (as in all romances) very happy endings.

Lynda joined the Romantic Novelist Association in 2014 under the umbrella of the New Writers Scheme and in 2015, her debut novel House of Secrets won the Choc Lit Search for a Star competition.

She lives in a small rural hamlet near Doncaster, with her husband, Haydn, whom she’s been happily married to for over 20 years.

Social Media Links –

Facebook: www.facebook.com/lyndastaceyauthor

Twitter @Lyndastacey

Website: www.Lyndastacey.co.uk


#CoverReveal The Stepsister by Jenny O’Brien @ScribblerJB @rararesources

I’m very excited to be part of the cover reveal for Jenny O’Brien’s novel The Stepsister, (which I will be reviewing in November) I even have a sneak peek at the novel further down but first a little about the novel:

Title: The Stepsister by Jenny O’Brien

Publication Date: 29th October 2018

Genre: Thriller

Description:

When a stranger leaves step-sisters, Victoria and Ness, a half-share in a house in Holland, they think it must be a mistake.

But there’s no mistake when Ness goes missing.

Desperate for the truth, Victoria heads to Holland to find out what happened to her. Has she, as her texts show, embarked on a whirlwind romance? Has someone abducted her or even worse?

But there’s someone watching, and that person wants her dead. 

Can Victoria find out the truth before it’s too late?

Pre-order on Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07H3TH4HT

And now for the cover:

stepsister cover

As promised too, a sneak peek of the novel:

Prologue:

I died yesterday, or so I’ve been told.

Yesterday is the day my life changed but how or why is still a mystery. There are things I know and there are things that they’ve told me but I can’t seem to trust any of it.

I know I’m a woman but I don’t know my age. I know how to hold a cup in the same way I know it’s rude to stick the end of a knife in my mouth. So, somewhere along the way, someone cared enough to drill manners into me. Those are the things I know, the things I can trust but as for the rest…

They tell me I’m in Holland but can I believe them? I don’t remember if I’m Dutch but I also don’t remember if I’m not. I can’t speak Dutch. I’ve been trying all morning but can one lose a language overnight? I seem to have lost everything else. Who knows? Maybe I took the wrong train or something and just rolled up in the wrong city. That would make sense except that it’s not just my sense of place that’s missing. It’s my sense of everything. I have no name, no age and no identity. Yesterday I died and today I’m still here.

They’ve left me alone now while they try to puzzle out what to do and in the meantime I’m going to try to remember stuff. I don’t know how long they’ll leave me alone but I need to take this opportunity to come up with some answers to all the questions they’ve been throwing at me like who the hell I am.

Slipping out of bed I recoil as bare feet meets cold tiles, but that’s not going to stop me. Pulling the back of the hospital gown closed in an effort to retain some degree of dignity, I shuffle over to the bathroom and then the mirror only to stare into the face of a stranger.

It doesn’t matter what I look like or that I’m suffering from the worst case of bed-head known to man. It doesn’t matter that my eyes are green or that my hair is that shade of nondescript mouse that keeps colourists in business. The only thing that matters is my reflection, which holds no clues as to my identity. I’m a stranger to them. I’m a stranger to me.

My body holds a clue though – just one.

I push up my sleeve again to stare at the tattoo on my arm. The tattoo puzzles me. It’s not me, or part of me or who I think I am and yet it’s there, a large indelible letter V.

I have no idea what it stands for. Oh, I’m not stupid or anything or, at least I don’t think I am. I can’t quote which exams I’ve passed or if indeed I’ve ever attended school but I do know V stands for victory. But what does it mean to me? Am I victorious? Am I making a statement about something? It must be important because it’s the only tattoo I have. It’s also the only clue.

I’m tired now. My eyelids collapse over my eyes even as I struggle to shift them upwards as I remember the cocktail the nurse told me to swallow like a good girl. I want everything to go away. I want to hide under the blankets and forget. I’ve already forgotten…

About The Author:

Jenny O’Brien was born in Ireland and, after a brief sojourn in Wales, now resides in Guernsey.
She’s an avid reader and book reviewer for NetGalley in addition to being a RoNA judge.
8715CB6B-8F86-4241-9D71-D504CE5E13A4
She writes for both children and adults with a new book coming out every six months or so. She’s also an avid collector of cats, broken laptops, dust and happy endings – two of which you’ll always find in her books.

In her spare time she can be found frowning at her wonky cakes and even wonkier breads. You’ll be pleased to note she won’t be entering Bake-Off.

Readers can find out more about Jenny from her blog: https://jennyobrienwriter.wordpress.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JennyOBrienWriter/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ScribblerJB


#BlogTour #Review Buried Lies by Chris Collett @JoffeBooks @crime_crow

Title: Buried Lies (DI Tom Mariner #6) by Chris Collett

Publisher: Joffe Books

Date Published: 3rd September 2018

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

Do you love gripping mysteries with great characters?

Discover Detective Tom Mariner in this critically acclaimed series.

‘Collett is a wonderful writer, subtle, clever, strong on atmosphere and character.’ Yorkshire Post

Detective Inspector Tom Mariner goes to the beautiful Welsh countryside to recover. But he finds himself caught up in a murder investigation . . . with him as the prime suspect.

Grieving the death of his former lover, all Mariner wants is some peace and quiet. But his walking holiday is ruined by the discovery of a body in the woods.

The remote stone farmhouses of this beautiful valley hide many buried secrets.

As more bodies are discovered, can Mariner clear his name and avoid becoming the next victim?

Discover an absorbing crime mystery with an action-packed conclusion.

Perfect for fans of Peter James, Ian Rankin and Peter Robinson. This is the sixth book in the DI MARINER SERIES, more books coming soon!

THE SETTING

Birmingham is a city of stark contrasts with a rich cultural and historical heritage. Playing a key role in the industrial revolution, it helped shape the nation’s manufacturing industry

But with its many green spaces, Birmingham also borders on the beautiful countryside of Worcestershire and Warwickshire, is just a few miles from Stratford on Avon and a short drive from the wild country of mid-Wales.

Birmingham’s population is large and ethnically diverse, and while urban regeneration has forged a modern and culturally vibrant city, the decaying remnants of the industrial past and 1960s concrete jungle give it a unique and gritty character; the dark underbelly policed by DI Tom Mariner and his team.

THE DETECTIVE
Detective Inspector Tom Mariner is, on the surface, an average dedicated policeman, but his experiences as a younger man have given him an insight into life on the dark side, and a clear sense of right and wrong. Mariner has little interest in material things. He lives in a modest canal-side cottage, enjoys the occasional (real) beer and game of dominoes and drives an old car. He is most at home in the outdoors, with an OS map and a compass, and in times of crisis, will take off and walk for miles in any weather.

THIS IS A REVISED EDITION OF A BOOK FIRST PUBLISHED AS “BLOOD AND STONE.”

DI MARINER SERIES

Book 1: Deadly Lies
Book 2: Innocent Lies
Book 3: Killer Lies
Book 4: Baby Lies
Book 5: Married Lies
Book 6: Buried Lies
Books 7 coming soon

BLOG TOUR BANNER - Buried Lies

Review:

DI Tom Mariner wants a break from it all, after the death of his former lover Anna, so he journeys to the Welsh countryside, a place he visited in his youth. Far from finding peace and quiet, he finds the body of a young farm hand leads him to getting involved in the case.

Another body turns up this time, a fellow walker Tom befriended on his trip and he soon becomes a prime suspect. Can Tom clear his name and find a killer?

This is another series I’ve been dipping in and out of for a while. I will say this can be read as a standalone but I would probably recommend that you read a few of the previous books just so you don’t feel like you’re playing catch up with the different story lines and characters.

Buried Lies did start out as quite a slow burn but soon ratchets up the tension until I got so caught up in the story that time just flew by. Poor Tom has to deal with the deal of Anna, the woman who he was still in love with and to make matters worse, her killer is still out there. He journeys to the rugged wilderness of Wales but as usual trouble is not far behind.

The setting is slightly different in this book, instead of focusing on Birmingham, there guest appearance from Kirby (a suburb of Knowsley near Liverpool) and even Cheshire. But the main one is the rugged Welsh countryside was almost felt like another character in itself, giving the whole book a sort of moody and tense atmosphere.

There is a few subplots too, which are a little distracting, with Tony Knox (a member of Mariner’s team), dealing with the overdose of a teen and a missing woman but I still very much enjoyed them.

Tom has also now been appointed guardian for Anna’s autistic brother Jaime and I’m looking forward to the next book to see how he deals with that complication.

Buried Lies is an atmospheric and complex police procedural that draws you in and won’t let you go.

Rating: 3.5/5

Author Bio:

Chris Collett grew up in a Norfolk seaside town where she worked in a boarding house (nowChris Collett author photo jpg defunct) a local bakery (closed down) and a crisp factory (razed to the ground). Graduating in Liverpool, Chris has since taught children and adults with varying degrees of learning disability, including autism. She is now a university lecturer, with two grown up children, and lives in Birmingham; DI Tom Mariner’s ‘patch’. She has published short stories, teaches creative and crime writing and is a manuscript assessor for the Crime Writers Association.

The first five DI Tom Mariner books will be released in revised editions by Joffe Books in 2017/2018.

Links:
Website:
www.chriscollettcrime.co.uk

Twitter: @crime_crow

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/chris.collett.5477

#BlogTour Q&A The Kithseeker by M.K. Wiseman @rararesources @FaublesFables

The Kithseeker-front-cover

Today I’d to welcome M.K Wiseman to my blog and I want to thank Rachel from Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on this blog tour. I have an exclusive Q&A with M.K. but first a little about her new book:

Title: The Kithseeker by M.K Wiseman

Date Published: 21st August 2018

Genre: YA Historical Fantasy

Description:

France, 1680

Liara’s defense of the Wizard Nagarath has rendered Anisthe incantate–bereft of magick–but even this cannot guarantee her safety. Because the death of her father-in-magick would seal the girl’s fate, necessity demands she and her wizard maintain a watchful eye on the war mage, while protecting her from his dark designs.

Anisthe has embarked on a journey across Europe, aided by his half-fey manservant with an agenda all his own. They search for a legendary mirror that contains the world’s most powerful magick. Although the stuff of fairytales, the possibility of its existence compels Nagarath and Liara to seek the artifact themselves. Both know that should Anisthe lay claim to that power, Liara would be at his mercy and not even Nagarath could save her.

Thus, the pair find themselves at Versailles, surrounded by agents who ferret out magick users and destroy them. Uncertain who is friend and who is foe, with their rival on their heels, they must discover the mirror before Anisthe releases its evil, or worse, it lays claim to Liara’s magick and brings doom upon them all.

You Can Buy Your Copy Here:

https://smile.amazon.com/Kithseeker-Bookminder-Book-2-ebook/dp/B07FMSMHW8/

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Kithseeker-Bookminder-Book-2-ebook/dp/B07FMSMHW8/

The Kithseeker Banner

Now for my Q&A with M.K. Wiseman:

Can you tell me a little bit about your book?

Sure thing, The Kithseeker is the second in the Bookminder series. Continuing the story of Liara and Nagarath (and their enemy, the now incantate war mage, Anisthe of Vrsar) the stakes are raised and the world established in book 1 widens.

Where did the inspiration for your book come from?

Bookminders inspiration is three-fold. The “guts” of the plot-driving magick system came from a combination of a dream in 2004 and my job in the book assessment department of the main campus library. Add to that my Croatian heritage and, poof!, historical fantasy. (It was, of course, not that easy to develop from there. But the origins of the story are essentially as simple as that.)

If you could describe your book in one sentence what would it be?

17th century wizards fighting amongst themselves and causing chaos.

What is a typical writing day like for you?

Honestly, for me, a typical writing day is often punctuated and uneven. My dedicated writing time may grind to a halt under the siren call of emails or lawn mowing. (The perils of working from home.) That said, I don’t suffer from as much “Internet distraction” as others. Sure, I positively live on Twitter but I actually try to do my drafts on little yellow legal pads. No muss, no fuss, no stopping to watch cat videos. (Of course, I may someday be crushed to death by the stack of filled notebooks that live in my office closet.) For variety—and practicality, as I am a lefty with atrocious handwriting—I also have a 1937 Royal on my desk and a well-travelled laptop. Sort of depends on the scene and the deadline. If I’m thick in edits, I’ll usually jump right into a fresh document on my computer, just to save myself the extra work of transcription.

If you could recommend just one book to read what would it be and why?

Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul by Douglas Adams

What. A. Ride.

Seriously, if I can recommend just one book, just one, I’d have to say this one because you’ll get the most milage with it. It’s just . . . beautiful, hilarious, poignant, and exceptionally weird. It will stick with you. It will keep you up at night. And if you’re like me, you will return to it every few years and it will always bring a smile to your face.

Who are your favourite authors?

Laurie R. King; Orson Scott Card (his earlier work, specifically); Carol Kendall; Ursula LeGuin; Madeline L’Engle; J.R.R. Tolkien; Douglas Adams; Sir Arthur Conan Doyle; & Adrian Conan Doyle

Tell me something interesting about yourself (that’s not in your author bio!)

I can’t swim/I sink in water. (Yes, I have been called to demonstrate this fact to the disbelieving. It is a bit of an Issue in my life, considering my love of sailing and fishing. No, I have not yet found a solution other than floaties and generally avoiding swimming pools.)

What are you currently working on?

Am currently working on Fatewreaker, book 3 of Bookminder, interspersed with a bit of work on other ‘back burner’ projects. I tend to work straight through a draft so as to not dawdle along the way or lose the voice of the particular project. But sometimes, my brain needs a break and so I dive into something else with unmatched fury, giving myself whatever it is I need to then go back to the actual task (with actual deadlines!) at hand.

Thank you M.K Wiseman for your great answers! I love that you recommend Long Dark Tea Time of the Soul by Douglas Adams, I haven’t read it years but I agree it is a great book!

Author Bio –

M. K. Wiseman has degrees in animation/video and library science – both from the University ofThe Kithseeker - MKWiseman_pic Wisconsin-Madison. Today, her office is a clutter of storyboards and half-catalogued collections of too, too many books. (But, really, is there such a thing as too many books?) When she’s not mucking about with stories, she’s off playing brač or lying in a hammock in the backyard of her Cedarburg home that she shares with her endlessly patient husband.

Social Media Links –

https://twitter.com/FaublesFables

https://www.facebook.com/FaublesFables/

https://www.instagram.com/faublesfables/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7073540.M_K_Wiseman

http://mkwisemanauthor.com

#BlogTour #Review Ladybird by Stewart Giles @Books_n_all @stewartgiles

Title: Ladybird (DS Jason Smith #3) by Stewart Giles

Date Published: 29th October 2014

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

From #1 best-selling author: Stewart Giles comes a new addition to the popular Detective Jason Smith series.

The Ghoul is arrested for Murder and Jason Smith is on sick leave.

Detective Sergeant Jason Smith is days away from the end of his sick leave after a case that almost cost him his life when he gets a call from an old friend. His friend has been arrested for the murder of a student. He wants Smith to investigate the murder and prove his innocence. Smith is persuaded return to work. The student was killed with a bread knife. Ladybirds were scattered on his dead body.

When another man is found dead with ladybirds on his body, Smith enlists the help of an insect doctor, the enigmatic DR Karen Wood, to try and understand the significance of the ladybirds. As Smith gets drawn closer to this mysterious woman and more and more men wind up dead with ladybirds on their bodies Smith quickly realises that Dr Wood is not who she seems to be.

Smith and his team unearth a terrible secret from twenty years earlier; somebody wants justice and, as more and more men die, Smith realises he is running out of time to find out who.

This is a fast-paced page-turner with twists and turns all the way to an ending you won’t see coming.

If you like Police Procedurals, then this is a series you won’t want to miss.

THE SETTING

York is a historic walled city in North Yorkshire, England.

At the confluence of the River Ouse and Foss, York is the traditional county town of the historic county of Yorkshire. York Minster and a variety of cultural and sporting activities make it a popular tourist destination.

THE DETECTIVES

DS Jason Smith is an Australian who was sent to York to live with his Grandmother when his sister disappeared from a beach. He has suffered many losses in his short life and is now a dedicated detective. He is a bit of a loose cannon he has his own way of doing things and that doesn’t always mean following orders and procedures.

DS Thompson is of the same rank as Jason, but he doesn’t have the same support or success. He and Jason have a love/hate relationship which brings a bit of humour to the series. Thompson is old school and thinks his age should give him respect and privileges, but life doesn’t work that way for him.

DC Erica Witton is Jason’s preferred partner they work well together and share a bond. She isn’t always appreciated by Jason, but they care about each other and that brings a different dimension to the series.

What readers are saying about Ladybird:

This book was gripping from the first page to the last. The characters are all well written, believable and sympathetic.’ – Mrs Christine H Clark

Superb book left you guessing to the end. Sends you up so many alleys and you still can’t see the outcome.’ – Mike

A well paced story that will have you hooked very quickly and then drag you along for the ride in such a way as to not want to stop reading..’ – Hisboss

Another gripping book by this Author well written lots going on could not put this book down.’ – Kindle Customer

What a good book had you wandering all the time would read his books again I haven’t read his before.’ – Dora Gibbons

BOOKS BY STEWART GILES

DS JASON SMITH SERIES

Book 0.5 – Phobia

Book 1 – Smith

Book 2 – Boomerang

Book 3 – Ladybird

Book 4 – Occam’s Razor

Book 5 – Harlequin

Book 6 – Selene

Book 7 – Horsemen

Book 8 – Unworthy

DC HARRIET TAYLOR SERIES

Book 1 – The Beekeeper

Book 2 – The Perfect Murder

Book 3 – The Backpacker

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Review:

DS Jason Smith is on sick leave, he doesn’t know whether he wants to return to the police force after the events of the previous book Boomerang. He gets a call out of the blue from his friend The Ghoul, a pathologist and friend, saying he’s been arrested for murder. The victim, a young student, has had his throat cut and ladybirds scattered around him.

Unable to leave it alone Smith returns and launches into an investigation. A second body turns up with the same M.O. it’s clear that The Ghoul didn’t do this but who did?

So I’m continuing on my journey through the back catalogue of DS Smith novels. While this could be read as a stand alone I would suggest reading Boomerang first (you can read my review here) just because this book does contain a few spoilers.

Ladybird is a really quick and compelling read which kept me guessing who the killer was almost until it was revealed.

I was a little wary when I first started reading this because I love ladybirds (the only insect I don’t scream and run away from) and they’ve always represented summer and childhood to me but them being used in a murder? I wasn’t quite sure but as I read on I saw they were cleverly used as symbolism for a very deranged killer. This book has also really opened my eyes to how creepy the nursery rhyme ‘ladybird, ladybird fly away home’, actually is!

I do feel like Smith is growing on me, I didn’t find him quite so irksome with his whole ‘the world’s gone soft’ attitude. I felt like he’s really developed as a character too, don’t get me wrong he still drinks too much and questions authority but he seems a little less brash than he has been in the past.

My only complaint was the addition of the cash machine robberies storyline, frankly I didn’t think it really added much to the overall story.

Ladybird is a fast paced, gripping read full of murder and mayhem with an action packed ending.

Rating: 4/5

Stewart Giles – Author Bio

After reading English at 3 Universities and graduating from none of them, I set off travelling around the world with my wife, Ann, finally settling in South Africa, where we still live. After AnnSG Author photo (4) dropped a rather large speaker on my head I came up with the idea for a detective series. DS Jason Smith was born. Smith, the first in the series was finished a few months later. 3 years and 8 DS Smith books later, Joffe Books wondered if I would be interested in working with them. As a self-published author, I agreed. However, we decided on a new series – the DC Harriet Taylor Cornwall series. The Beekeeper hit the shelves and hit the number one spot in Australia. The second in the series, The Perfect Murder did just as well. The third in the series, The Backpacker I have self-published and is now available.

Links:

Website:www.stewartgiles.com

Twitter: @stewartgiles

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/stewart.giles.33

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