#CoverReveal Withholding The Key by T. L. Mahrt @tlmahrt @rararesources

Today I have a fabulous cover reveal for Withholding the Key, the third and final book of the With Emma Trilogy by T. L. Mahrt due for publication on 31st January 2021. Now first a little about the book:

Will Emma unlock her heart and truly allow herself the happiness she deserves?

Emma Andrews finds herself and everyone she cares about within the walls of the penthouse. Only, this time, it was her who locked the door and threw away the key. Emma finds herself not only planning to take Jarret out for good, but trying to destroy his empire and all who are within it.

Jarret won’t know what hit him…

What Emma doesn’t expect is to see a face that before had only appeared in her dreams.

With Chance’s life holding on by a thread, Emma is pulled to him. Will he prove his love to her, allowing Emma to completely unlock her heart to him? Or, will the man that has taught her to accept her strength, be the man Emma finds her true-self in the bounds of his love…

There is one thing for certain, in order to take Jarret out, Emma will need to rely upon the bond formed from an unexpected friendship.

Now for the cover:

You can pre-order your copy here – https://www.tlmahrt.com

About the Author:

T. L. Mahrt is a former business owner, where she utilized her education in cosmetology, barbering and massage therapy for several years. She was raised on and is currently living on a farm in Nebraska, where you can find her running barefoot in the country side with her loving husband and inspiring children and massive dogs. 

After having her son, who was born with Cerebral Palsy and DYRK1A, she made the life altering decision to stay home to care for her two children and pursue her love for writing. She has a love for romance and poetry where, her overactive imagination, along with her adventures and up beat lifestyle drives her inspiration for her writing. 

T. L. Mahrt has a thirst for knowledge, and is currently working on her Bachelor of Applied Science in Communication Studies degree.

Social Media Links – 

Social Media:

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/tlmahrt/

Twitter

https://mobile.twitter.com/tlmahrt

Instagram

https://www.instagram.com/tlmahrt/

Tumblr

https://www.tumblr.com/blog/tlmahrt

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19755994.T_L_Mahrt

Facebook readers Group https://m.facebook.com/groups/527890547837793/?ref=share

#BookReivew Murder In G Major (Gethsemane Brown 1) by Alexia Gordon #CozyMystery

Title: Murder In G Major (Gethsemane Brown 1) by Alexia Gordon

Date Published: 13th September 2016

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Description:

With few other options, African-American classical musician Gethsemane Brown accepts a less-than-ideal position turning a group of rowdy schoolboys into an award-winning orchestra. Stranded without luggage or money in the Irish countryside, she figures any job is better than none. 

The perk? Housesitting a lovely cliffside cottage. 

The catch? The ghost of the cottage’s murdered owner haunts the place. 

Falsely accused of killing his wife (and himself), he begs Gethsemane to clear his name so he can rest in peace. 

Gethsemane’s reluctant investigation provokes a dormant killer and she soon finds herself in grave danger. As Gethsemane races to prevent a deadly encore, will she uncover the truth or star in her own farewell performance?

Review:

I got this book for my birthday after hearing good things about it, and I finally got around to reading it!

Gethsemane Brown is a talented musician, but because of some bad luck she ends up stuck in a small Irish town, landing a job at a local boys’ school. She is trying to make the most of it but it turns out the cottage she’s staying in is haunted by Eamon McCarthy, who was accused of killing his wife then himself. He begs her to investigate but Gethsemane ends up stirring up more trouble. It’s a race against time to stop the killer before they do any more damage.

I have to say I was in a bit of a reading funk before I picked this up and it knocked that right out of me.

Murder In G Major is a fantastically fun cozy mystery with a nice supernatural twist.

I usually find that most cozy mysteries tend to be a little slower paced, but that is not the case with this book, it’s got a snappy pace with plenty of shocks and surprises along the way.

I really liked Gethsemane, she is a successful musician, but she’s down to earth, straight talking, you know a character you can really root for. Eamon was her opposite, a bit arrogant but still likeable all the same. I really loved how Gethsemane and Eamon played off each other, with plenty of snarky comments!

I also appreciate there was a bit of Irish lingo thrown in there, and the book wasn’t overrun by Americanisms.

I kind of guessed early on who the killer would be, but it didn’t spoil my fun as I love to play detective as I read.

Murder In G Major is a must if you love cozy mysteries. Even if you’re not a fan of the supernatural ghostly aspect, I would still urge you to pick it up. I’m looking forward to getting my hands on a copy of the next in the series.

About The Author (taken from Goodreads):

A writer since childhood, I continued writing through college but put literary endeavors on hold to finish medical school and Family Medicine residency training. My medical career established, I returned to writing fiction.

I won a Lefty Award, was nominated for an Agatha Award and a Silver Falchion Award, and was chosen one of Suspense Magazine’s best debuts of 2016.

Raised in the southeast and schooled in the northeast, I migrated to the southwest after a three-year stint in Alaska reminded me how much I needed sunlight and warm weather. After a time in the desert, I missed deciduous trees so I headed northeast to the Chicago area. I completed Southern Methodist University’s Writer’s Path program in Dallas, Texas. If pushed, I will admit Texas brisket is as good as Carolina pulled pork. I enjoy classical music, fine whiskey, art, travel, embroidery, and a good ghost story.

I am a member of Sisters in Crime, Mystery Writers of America, International Thriller Writers, and Crime Writers of Color. I am represented by Paula Munier of Talcott Notch Literary Services, LLC and published by Henery Press.

You can find me on:

Facebook: @AlexiaGordon.Writer

Twitter: @AlexiaGordon

Instagram: @drlex1995

Goodreads: Alexia_Gordon

Pinterest: alexia_gordon

#BlogTour The Guilty Man (Lennox & Wilde 1) by Helen H. Durrant @JoffeBooks @hhdurrant

Title: The Guilty Man (Lennox & Wilde 1) by Helen H. Durrant

Publisher. Joffe Books

Date Published: 29th October 2020

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

MEET DETECTIVE HARRY LENNOX AND JESS WILDE IN THIS BRILLIANT NEW CRIME SERIES.

A BRAND NEW MYSTERY FROM #1 BEST-SELLING AUTHOR HELEN H. DURRANT THAT WILL HAVE YOU ON THE EDGE OF YOUR SEAT FROM PAGE ONE. FAST-PACED AND FULL OF SURPRISES.

A little girl, presumed dead, turns up playing happily in the park. She is barefoot but otherwise unharmed. The child’s mother, who lives on a notorious local estate, doesn’t seem bothered that her daughter has returned alive.

Meanwhile, a man is tortured by a ruthless criminal. The victim’s severed hand is left on his wife’s doorstep.

Detective Harry Lennox and DI Jess Wilde investigate. How do the cases connect and who is using threats to drive people out of their homes?

Harry Lennox is battling his own demons, trying to bury a secret from his past with alcohol. He stays in a rundown campervan on a friend’s driveway. Jess wants to know why he’s living like this, but he refuses to tell her anything. What’s he hiding?

A MYSTERY FULL OF STUNNING TWISTS WHICH YOU WON’T WANT TO PUT DOWN. WILL HARRY’S PAST TEAR THE DETECTIVES APART?

Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Kimberley Chambers, Damien Boyd, Rachel Abbott, Patricia Gibney or Mark Billingham.

What readers are saying about HELEN H. DURRANT

“I couldn’t put it down.” Barbara

“This new series by Helen H. Durrant certainly has got off to a thrilling start.” Viv

“If you want a book to get your teeth into, this is the one. A massive 5*” Greta

“Another fast-paced murder mystery” Aileen

“The writing was top notch and the characters were very real.” Kat

THE DETECTIVES

DI HARRY LENNOX began his career in Glasgow, but due to a traumatic incident, transferred to West Yorkshire and then Ryebridge. He blames a local villain for what happened and is afraid that he’ll catch up with him. Harry is single, thirty-five and has a chaotic lifestyle. Currently living on a mate’s drive in a campervan. This is down to his girlfriend throwing him out.

DS JESS WILDE is thirty and still lives with her parents. She is unattached and keen to progress in her career. She gets on well with Harry. He doesn’t have much time for protocol, and this suits her. She is critical of how he lives. She is about to buy her first property locally.

ALSO BY HELEN H. DURRANT

RACHEL KING

Book 1: Next Victim

Book 2: Two Victims

Book 3: Wrong Victim

Book 4: Forgotten Victim

THE CALLADINE & BAYLISS MYSTERY SERIES

Book 1: DEAD WRONG

Book 2: DEAD SILENT

Book 3: DEAD LIST

Book 4: DEAD LOST

Book 5: DEAD & BURIED

Book 6: DEAD NASTY

Book 7: DEAD JEALOUS

Book 8: DEAD BAD

Book 9: DEAD GUILTY

Book 10: DEAD WICKED

THE DCI GRECO BOOKS

Book 1: DARK MURDER

Book 2: DARK HOUSES

Book 3: DARK TRADE

Book 4: DARK ANGEL

Review:

I want to thank Jill Burkinshaw for inviting me on this tour and Joffe Books for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

I’ve read several of Helen Durrant’s books now, so it intrigued me when I heard she was releasing a new series with new detectives.

A little girl who they thought was dead is found alive and well. A local dodgy businessman has gone missing, his severed hand turns up on his doorstep. Can detective’s Harry Lennox and Jess Wilde find out what is going on in their small town before someone else gets hurt?

The Guilty Man is a tense and intricately plotted police procedural that pulls you in with a steady pace and realistic characters.

Harry is a heavy drinker with a past which he’s keeping to himself. This annoys Jess a lot, and I mean a lot, and she’s determined to figure it out, which causes them to butt heads a fair few times through the story. I have to be honest I’m not too struck on these new detectives yet, but as this is the first in the series there’s plenty of room for them to grow. I will say that I’m very intrigued by the character of Harry and I’ll be interested to see him develop. 

The Guilty Man is a fairly quick and gripping read and a good start to this series. I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next for these detectives.

About The Author:

OVER 750,000 books sold of her Calladine & Bayliss and DI Greco Series

I’m one of the ‘baby boomer’ generation. I was born in Edinburgh to an English father and Scottish mother. My father was from the North West of England and this was where the family settled.

I know the area well, both the good and the bad, and so I set my books here. Sitting between two counties, Lancashire and Yorkshire, and between the city and the hills, it offers a rich mix of the industrial and the countryside and all the character therein. I always planned to write crime novels — to create the characters in my books. Since my retirement from a busy teaching job in FE, this is what I’ve done — almost to exclusion of anything else!

I have a grown-up family and five grandchildren. They see me as something of an eccentric — always on my laptop writing away. Writing is something of a second career and, despite having a bus pass, keeps me busy, young and tuned in the world as it currently is.

Twitter @hhdurrant

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/helen.durrant.12

Facebook Page https://www.facebook.com/pages/Calladine-Bayliss-Detective-Novels/614047648616619?ref=hl

Website  https://www.helenhdurrant.co.uk/

#BlogTour #Excerpt Eucalyptus Street: Green Curse by Sherrill Joseph @MysteryAuthor7 @RRBookTours1 #EucalptusStreet #RRBookTours #MG #Mystery

To celebrate the release of the next exciting book in the Botanic Hill Detectives mystery series, Eucalyptus Street: Green Curse is going on tour!

We have an excerpt for you to read and a chance to win a signed, personalized paperback copy of the book, and some matching book swag (US ONLY)!

Title: Eucalyptus Street: Green Curse by Sherrill Joseph

Publication Date:20th October 2020

Genre: MG Mystery/ Middle Grade – 9 to 12 years old (For fans of Nancy Drew type mysteries)

In 1945, Isabela de Cordoba’s great-grandfather, the famous silent movie actor Lorenzo de Cordoba, mysteriously hid a legendary, multimillion-dollar emerald somewhere on the family’s sprawling Eucalyptus Street estate. Seventy years later, the gem remains concealed. Nicknamed the “Green Curse,” the emerald is blamed for the Southern California familia’s numerous, untimely deaths.

On her twenty-first birthday, Isabela receives a secret letter with a cryptic poem. These documents from the long-deceased Lorenzo invite her to hunt for the gemstone. But first, she must decipher the poem’s eight stanzas for clues.

To assist, Isabela hires her thirteen-year-old neighbors, the four Botanic Hill Detectives—twins Lanny and Lexi Wyatt, and their best friends, Moki Kalani and Rani Kumar. Eerie footsteps inside the mansion, unexplained occurrences in the adjacent cemetery, and the mysterious tenant in the backyard casita challenge them. But they ingeniously make progress on the poem’s meaning with startling discoveries. Sliding wall panels, a secret room, and hidden passages reveal much. The detectives aren’t the only ones looking for the emerald. The perilous race for the de Cordoba treasure is on!

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/53981734-eucalyptus-street?ac=1&from_search=true&qid=IGJ784Nx8x&rank=3

Here is an exclusive excerpt:

Lanny is awakened at four a.m. by the sound of footsteps coming from the room overhead. He and Moki head to the third floor to explore:

Their eyes had adjusted to the darkness. Lanny pointed to the door of the suspected room and flashed Moki an A-OK sign. They turned off their flashlights, noticing the room’s door was slightly ajar, and listened for any sounds. Nothing but the mournful “who-who” sound of the resident barn owl in the old magnolia tree outside. They waited two more minutes, shivering and wishing they hadn’t forgotten their bathrobes and slippers. Still no sounds came from the room. Even the owl became silent. Moki felt the hair on the back of his neck stand up.  

Finally, Lanny pushed the door open slightly and slipped into the room. Moki followed. 

You can buy your copy here:

Paperback https://amzn.to/3d0iyLv

eBook https://amzn.to/30AXuGq

Giveaway: US ONLY 

Signed, personalized paperback copy of the book, and some matching book swag (x2). Click the link below:

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/0e7c6a8f198/?

About the Author

Sherrill Joseph will be forever inspired by her beautiful students in the San Diego public schools where she taught for thirty-five years before retiring and becoming a published author. 

She has peopled and themed the Botanic Hill Detectives Mysteries with children and adult characters of various abilities, races, cultures, and interests. Sherrill strongly believes that children need to find not only themselves in books but others from different races and social situations if all are to become tolerant, anti-racist world citizens. She also feels that kids are amazing human beings who don’t tend to get enough credit from some adults for their blossoming insights and intelligence.  

The author created her detectives—patterned after her own fifth-grade students and twelve-year-old twin cousins—to be mature, smart, polite role models that will appeal to parents, teachers, but especially to kids who seek the courage and self-respect needed to realize their greatest potential.

Sherrill is the recent recipient of the Gold Award from Mom’s Choice Awards, and the Gold Award for Children’s Fiction in Mystery from Moonbeams Children’s Book Awards, both for Nutmeg Street: Egyptian Secrets, Book 1 in her Botanic Hill Detectives Mysteries series. She is a member of SCBWI and the Authors Guild and promises many more adventures with the squad to come.

Author Links

Sherrill Joseph http://sherrilljoseph.com/

Newsletter https://mailchi.mp/d194b6687f2b/sherrilljoseph

Twitter https://twitter.com/MysteryAuthor7

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

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/sherrilljosephauthor/

Blog Tour Schedule

October 26th

Reads & Reels (Spotlight) http://readsandreels.com

@the.b00kreader (Review) https://www.instagram.com/the.b00kreader

The Faerie Review (Review) http://www.thefaeriereview.com

Jennifer Mitchell, Bibliolater (Spotlight) https://www.jennifermitchellbooks.com

October 27th

Breakeven Books (Spotlight) https://breakevenbooks.com

Didi Oviatt (Spotlight) https://didioviatt.wordpress.com 

On the Shelf Reviews (Spotlight)  https://ontheshelfreviews.wordpress.com

Rambling Mads (Spotlight) http://ramblingmads.com

Sophril Reads (Spotlight) http://sophrilreads.wordpress.com

October 28th

LauraLoopyLou (Review) https://www.loopyloulaura.com/

Stine Writing (Review) https://christinebialczak.com/

Banshee Irish Horror Blog (Spotlight) www.bansheeirishhorrorblog.com

October 29th

The Consulting Writer (Spotlight) https://theconsultingwriter.wordpress.com

Tsarina Press (Spotlight) https://www.tsarinapress.com

Book Dragons Not Worms (Spotlight) https://bookdragonsnotworms.blogspot.com/?m=1

October 30th

Lunarian Press (Interview) https://www.lunarianpress.com/

Meli’s Book Reviews (Review) https://melisbokreviews.wordpress.com/

Rosie Writes (Spotlight) http://rosemariecawkwell.wordpress.com

Book Blitz Organised By:

R&R Book Tours (http://rrbooktours.com)

#BookReview The Big Chill by Doug Johnstone @OrendaBooks

Title: The Big Chill by Doug Johnstone

Publisher: Orenda Books

Date Published: 20th August 2020

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

Running private investigator and funeral home businesses means trouble is never far away, and the Skelf women take on their most perplexing, chilling cases yet in book two of the darkly funny, devastatingly tense and addictive new Skelfs series!

‘Compelling, compassionate … just brilliant. This series gets better with every book. I cannot get enough of the Skelfs’ Mark Billingham

‘Confirms the Skelfs as a classic crime clan. I can’t wait for the next one’ Erin Kelly

‘I LOVE the Skelfs … The only problem with The Big Chill is that you’ll devour it so fast you’ll feel as bereft as one of the Skelfs’ clients … Doug Johnstone has murdered sleep’ Val McDermid

Haunted by their past, the Skelf women are hoping for a quieter life. But running both a funeral directors’ and a private investigation business means trouble is never far away, and when a car crashes into the open grave at a funeral that matriarch Dorothy is conducting, she can’t help looking into the dead driver’s shadowy life. 

While Dorothy uncovers a dark truth at the heart of Edinburgh society, her daughter Jenny and granddaughter Hannah have their own struggles. Jenny’s ex-husband Craig is making plans that could shatter the Skelf women’s lives, and the increasingly obsessive Hannah has formed a friendship with an elderly professor that is fast turning deadly.

 But something even more sinister emerges when a drumming student of Dorothy’s disappears and suspicion falls on her parents. The Skelf women find themselves sucked into an unbearable darkness – but could the real threat be to themselves?

Following three women as they deal with the dead, help the living and find out who they are in the process, The Big Chill follows A Dark Matter, book one in the Skelfs series, which reboots the classic PI novel while asking the big existential questions, all with a big dose of pitch-black humour.

Review:

I want to thank THE Book club Reviewer group and Orenda books for my copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I read the first book in this series, A Dark Matter, at the beginning of the year and is still one of my top reads in 2020 so far, so I was very excited for The Big Chill! I can safely say it lived up to my expectations.

I will say before I get too far into this review, that you should definitely read the first book before reading this one as events from the first have a knock on effect in this one.

This story starts off six months after the first book. The Skelf women are still struggling with what happened at the end of the last book but they’re trying to push through it and carry on as normal, or as normal as their lives are as funeral directing private investigators. 

Dorothy is pulled into an investigation after a car chase ends in tragedy in the midst of a funeral she’s conducting. Jenny is still trying to put the pieces of her life together. Hannah seems to be suffering the most, shutting out her girlfriend Indy and becoming obsessed with the suicide of one of her professors.

What I love about this series is the way there’s several different storylines/cases that are woven together expertly, so they’re easy to follow without confusion and not one overshadows the other too much. Honestly, like the first there’s never a dull moment in this book.

The story is also strengthened by the relationships between the three generations of the Skelf family, Dorothy, Jenny and Hannah. They’re complex and just so compelling, I genuinely love these characters!

The Big Chill is a fantastic piece of fiction that kept me glued to those pages. I can’t wait for more! 

About The Author:

Doug Johnstone is a writer, musician and journalist based in Edinburgh. His tenth novel, Breakers, was published by Orenda Books in May 2019, and was shortlisted for the McIlvanney Prize for Scottish Crime Novel of the Year. His previous books include The Jump, shortlisted for the McIlvanney Prize, Gone Again, an Amazon bestseller, and Hit & Run, which was an Amazon #1 as well as being selected as a prestigious Fiction Uncovered winner. His work has received praise from the likes of Irvine Welsh, Ian Rankin, Val McDermid, William McIlvanney, Megan Abbott and Christopher Brookmyre.

Doug has been Writer in Residence with William Purves Funeral Directors. He is also a Royal Literary Fund Consultant Fellow, and was RLF Fellow at Queen Margaret University in Edinburgh 2014-2016. Doug was also Writer in Residence at the University of Strathclyde 2010-2012 and before that worked as a lecturer in creative writing there. He’s had short stories appear in various publications and anthologies, and since 1999 he has worked as a freelance arts journalist, primarily covering music and literature. He is also a manuscript assessor for The Literary Consultancy and Emergents in the Scottish Highlands. He has taught creative writing at festivals and conferences and regularly at Moniack Mhor, and he has mentored aspiring writers for New Writing North and Scottish Book Trust.

Doug is one of the co-founders of the Scotland Writers Football Club, for whom he also puts in a shift in midfield as player-manager. He is also a singer, musician and songwriter in several bands, including Northern Alliance, who have released four albums to critical acclaim, as well as recording an album as a fictional band called The Ossians. Doug has also released three solo EPs. He plays drums for the Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers, a crime writing supergroup featuring Val McDermid, Mark Billingham, Chris Brookmyre, Stuart Neville and Luca Veste.

Doug has a degree in physics, a PhD in nuclear physics and a diploma in journalism, and worked for four years designing radars. He grew up in Arbroath and lives in Portobello, Edinburgh with his wife and two children.

Hinton Hollow Death Trip by Will Carver #BookReview

Title: Hinton Hollow Death Trip by Will Carver

Date Published: 12th June 2020

Publisher: Orenda Books

Genre: Literary Thriller

Description:

Five days in the history of a small rural town, visited and infected by darkness, are recounted by Evil itself. A stunning high-concept thriller from the bestselling author of Good Samaritans and Nothing Important Happened Today.

It’s a small story. A small town with small lives that you would never have heard about if none of this had happened.

Hinton Hollow. Population 5,120.

Little Henry Wallace was eight years old and one hundred miles from home before anyone talked to him. His mother placed him on a train with a label around his neck, asking for him to be kept safe for a week, kept away from Hinton Hollow.

Because something was coming.

Narrated by Evil itself, Hinton Hollow Death Trip recounts five days in the history of this small rural town, when darkness paid a visit and infected its residents. A visit that made them act in unnatural ways. Prodding at their insecurities. Nudging at their secrets and desires. Coaxing out the malevolence suppressed within them. Showing their true selves.

Making them cheat.

Making them steal.

Making them kill.

Detective Sergeant Pace had returned to his childhood home. To escape the things he had done in the city. To go back to something simple. But he was not alone.

Evil had a plan.

Review:

I want to thank the The Book Club Reviewer group and Orenda books for my copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

So I read Nothing Important Happened Today back in March and I was absolutely blown away by Will Carver’s writing so I was very excited when I got my copy of Hinton Hollow Death Trip.

What I didn’t realise while reading the previous book and this one, it’s actually part of a series but it’s easily read as a standalone. 

Hinton Hollow Death Trip is, well, a head trip a half! I mean I can’t think of another novel that’s narrated by evil itself.

The story follows Detective Sergeant Pace as he heads back to his hometown of Hinton Hollow, a small village of just over five thousand people. The story is set over just five days and my goodness what a terrifying ride it was! 

Beware before you going into this book, much like the previous book it’s dark and could prove upsetting as there’s some sensitive subjects like suicide, child deaths and animal creulty covered.

I have to be honest I didn’t find the style of this book a little choppy at times. Plus there were a couple of more minor storylines that I found a little distracting from the main story but of course that’s just my opinion.

Hinton Hollow Death Trip is an original yet shocking read, perfect if you like your thrillers on the darker side. 

About The Author:

Will Carver is the international bestselling author of the January David series. He spent his early years in Germany, but returned to the UK at age 11, when his sporting career took off. He turned down a professional rugby contract to study theatre and television at King Alfred’s, Winchester, where he set up a successful theatre company. He currently runs his own fitness and nutrition company, while working on his next thriller. He lives in Reading with his two children.

Follow Will on Twitter @will_carver

#BookReview The Curator (Washington Poe 3) by M.W. Craven

Title: The Curator by MW Craven

Published: Constable

Date Published: 4th June 2020

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

It’s Christmas and a serial killer is leaving displayed body parts all over Cumbria. A strange message is left at each scene: #BSC6. Called in to investigate, the National Crime Agency’s Washington Poe and Tilly Bradshaw are faced with a case that makes no sense. Why were some victims anaesthetized, while others died in appalling agony? Why is their only suspect denying what they can irrefutably prove but admitting to things they weren’t even aware of? And why did the victims all take the same two weeks off work three years earlier?

And when a disgraced FBI agent gets in touch things take an even darker turn. Because she doesn’t think Poe is dealing with a serial killer at all; she thinks he’s dealing with someone far, far worse – a man who calls himself the Curator.

And nothing will ever be the same again…

Review:

Ever since I picked up the Puppet Master a few years back this series has always been a must read for me and the third is no different.

Fingers are being displayed around Cumbria at Christmas, so Poe and Tilly are brought in to investigate. What seems to be a serial killer case takes an stranger turn when they discover a sinister figure, The Curator, is involved. Will they be able to find him before more people die?

The Curator is what I’ve come to expect with this series, a complex mystery, coupled with a few gruesome scenes and nail biting moments.

For me what makes the series a standout is Poe and Tilly. Their relationship is sweet, they’re very loyal to each other and always look out for one another, which makes the perfect contrast to the gruesome/upsetting murder cases they investigate. 

Truthfully, it kind of lost my attention a bit in the middle but the tense and emotional ending really made up for it.

The Curator is a good addition to this great series, I’m looking forward to Tilly and Poe’s next adventure!

About The Author:

M. W. Craven was born in Carlisle but grew up in Newcastle, running away to join the army at the tender age of sixteen. He spent the next ten years travelling the world having fun, leaving in 1995 to complete a degree in social work with specialisms in criminology and substance misuse. Thirty-one years after leaving Cumbria, he returned to take up a probation officer position in Whitehaven, eventually working his way up to chief officer grade. Sixteen years later he took the plunge, accepted redundancy and became a full-time author. He now has entirely different motivations for trying to get inside the minds of criminals . . .

M. W. Craven is married and lives in Carlisle with his wife, Joanne. When he isn’t out with his springer spaniel, or talking nonsense in the pub, he can usually be found at punk gigs and writing festivals up and down the country.

Grubane (Lost Tales of Solace 2) by Karl Drinkwater @karldrinkwater @rararesources #BlogTour #BookReview #SciFi

Title: Grubane (Lost Tales of Solace 2) by Karl Drinkwater

Date Published: 13th June 2020

Genre: Sci-Fi/ Novella

Description:

Major Grubane is commander of the Aurikaa, the most feared cruiser in the UFS arsenal.

His crew is handpicked and fiercely loyal. Together, they have never failed a mission, and their reputation precedes them.

But this time he’s been sent to a key planet that is caught up in political tensions at the centre of the freedom debate. What he thought was a simple diplomatic mission turns out to be the hardest choice of his career. His orders: eliminate one million inhabitants of the planet, and ensure their compliance.

Grubane has also rediscovered an ancient game called chess, and plays it against the ship AI as a form of mental training. But maybe it could be more than that as he finds himself asking questions. Can orders be reinterpreted? How many moves ahead is it possible for one man to plan? And how many players are involved in this game?

Purchase Link – https://books2read.com/b/Grubane

Review:

I want to thank Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on this tour and the author for providing me with a copy of Grubane in exchange for an honest review.

This is actually the second novella in the Lost Tales of Solace series but each story is written as a standalone so you don’t need to have read the other book in the series to read this one. Each of the novellas also tie into the author’s Lost Solace series there’s plenty to read for sci-fi lovers out there.

I read and enjoyed  the first book in the series Helene, a couple of months ago so I was eager to see what Karl Drinkwater had in store for me this time.

Grubane is a major in the UFS (they basically run most of the colonies in space and pretty much want to take over everything). He’s been sent on a mission that quickly turns ugly and we see the fearsome major in action. 

What I love about these books is the unique perspective the author uses to tell the story, this time it was mostly from the AI Aurikaa 12’s POV. As the story goes on, you can see it becoming more self aware, trying to interpret the world around it, particularly Grubane himself.

For me, this book lacked a little of the humour of the first book Helene but that was a minor thing overall.

Grubane is a slick sci-fi story and a perfect way to escape reality for a while. 

About The Author: 

Karl Drinkwater is originally from Manchester but lived in Wales for twenty years, and now calls Scotland his home. He’s a full-time author, edits fiction for other writers, and was a professional librarian for over twenty-five years. He has degrees in English, Classics, and Information Science.

He writes in multiple genres: his aim is always just to tell a good story. Among his books you’ll find elements of literary and contemporary fiction, gritty urban, horror, suspense, paranormal, thriller, sci-fi, romance, social commentary, and more. The end result is interesting and authentic characters, clever and compelling plots, and believable worlds.

When he isn’t writing he loves exercise, guitars, computer and board games, the natural environment, animals, social justice, cake, and zombies. Not necessarily in that order.

Social Media Links – 

Website https://karldrinkwater.uk 

Twitter http://twitter.com/karldrinkwater 

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

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/authorkdrinkwater/ 

Newsletter http://bit.ly/newsletterkd 

#BlogTour This Side Of Death by Andrew Barrett @AndrewBarrettUK @rararesources #BookReview #Giveaway

Today, as part of the blog tour, I not only have my review of This Side of death by Andrew Barrett but I have a UK giveaway to win a paperback copy of the book (see bottom of the post) but first a little about the novel:

Title: This Side Of Death by Andrew Barrett

Date Published: 14th August 2020

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

This Side of Death. When the past comes back to hunt you. 

Alex Sheridan believes the only way she can be free of her demons is to kill the men in her life. She has a list, and Crime Scene Investigator Eddie Collins is on it. 


Death misses Eddie by inches, and Alex is locked away in Juniper Hill high-security hospital.

Everything is fine for Eddie until one day four years later, when Alex escapes. This time she’s better prepared.

The week that follows ruptures Eddie’s life and shatters the belief he had in his own past, leaving him wondering what really happened, and facing one stark choice: who to kill and who to save.
 
This Side of Death is the most revealing CSI Eddie Collins novel to date. Prepare to see inside his past and understand what makes him the angriest, most feared, and yet most respected CSI in England.

If you like fast-paced and gripping crime thrillers with a strong forensic element, you’ll love Andrew Barrett’s This Side of Death. It will appeal to fans of Kathy Reichs, Robert Bryndza and Angela Marsons.

Purchase Links 

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/This-Side-Death-comes-Collins-ebook/dp/B08C4MC5J7

US – https://www.amazon.com/This-Side-Death-comes-Collins-ebook/dp/B08C4MC5J7

Review:

I want to thank Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on this tour and the author for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

So this is the sixth in the Eddie Collins series and can easily be read as a standalone, something I can attest to having not read the previous books in the series.

Eddie’s ex-girlfriend Alex has escaped from a mental hospital and she has one goal in mind, kill Eddie. She failed once but will she succeed a second time?

This side of death is a story about your past not only coming back to haunt you but hunt you down and make you suffer.

What really drew me to this book was the fact it was like a police procedural but told from a CSI perspective, which having loved the TV show CSI, I could help being intrigued.

The story is told mostly from Eddie and Alex’s POVs, really getting inside the character’s minds. I’m still not entirely sure whether I like Eddie all that much, he’s rude, grumpy and genuinely unpleasant most of the time but we do find out why he behaves like that through his history and there are a few occasions throughout the story where you do see his kinder side.

I will warn you there’s a few gruesome scenes/murders that are definitely not for the faint of heart.

This side of death is dark, at times a little twisted, with a good few shocks and surprises along the way.

About The Author:

Andrew Barrett became a CSI in 1996, and finished his first crime thriller, A Long Time Dead in 1997. Two more books completed the SOCO Roger Conniston trilogy.

Andrew still produces authentic crime thrillers with a forensic flavour. He’s known for his lead character, CSI Eddie Collins, and the acerbic way in which he roots out criminals. Eddie’s series is five books and three novellas in length.

Andrew is a proud Yorkshireman and sets all of his novels in Leeds.

You can find out more about him and his writing at www.andrewbarrett.co.uk

Twitter: https://www.twitter.com/AndrewBarrettUK

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AndrewBarrett.author

Exclusive Readers Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/BarrettERG/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/andrewbarrettauthor

Amazon.co.uk: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Andrew-Barrett/e/B0055888Q0/

Amazon.com: https://www.amazon.com/Andrew-Barrett/e/B0055888Q0/

YouTube: Andrew Barrett on YouTube

Giveaway to Win 5 x Paperback copies of This Side of Death (UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c69494383/?

#BookReview Vanilla Bean Vengeance (Claire’s Candles 1) by Agatha Frost #Cozymystery

Title: Vanilla Bean Vengeance (Claire’s Candles 1) by Agatha Frost

Date Published: 28th February 2020

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Description:

 Claire Harris loves nothing more than crafting homemade candles. She has always dreamed of one day opening a quaint candle shop in her home village of Northash, but at thirty-five, she still can’t afford to take the risk. Stuck in a dead-end job at the local candle factory, and back living with her parents, Claire knows her life needs a shakeup.

The last place she expected change to come from was the factory itself, but when the owner is shockingly pushed to her death, Claire’s life is flipped upside down. She isn’t the only person in the village depending on the factory, so when the murder plunges the business’s future into uncertainty, Claire feels compelled to solve the crime.

With the help of her retired-detective father and closest friends, Claire uncovers a tangled web of conspiracies, cover-ups, secrets, and lies, but can she uncover the truth before her candle shop dream slips through her fingers forever?

Review:

Before I get into my review, I want to show the cover of Vanilla Bean Vengeance some love. I don’t usually go on about the covers, because you know you should judge a book by its cover and all that, but it’s so cute and fits the book perfectly.

So I read the first in Agatha Frost’s Peridale Cafe series a few months ago, so when I saw Vanilla Bean Vengeance, the first in the Claire’s candle series, I want to see what that’s all about. I’m always on the lookout for a new twist on the whole cozy mystery tropes, .i.e. Bakeries, witches, bookshops etc and I thought, I haven’t come across candles before, so I’ll admit I was intrigued on how the two would mesh. 

Vanilla Bean Vengeance has all the typical cozy ingredients, a village setting, a determined amateur sleuth with a hint of potential romance. 

My issue with Agatha Frost’s other series is I felt the characters were a little flat but I really liked Claire, she’s a character I really found myself rooting for. Plus a fab array of quirky back up characters, although Claire’s pushy mother who’s obsessed with her daughter getting married and having kids kind of got on my nerves.

The story kept me guessing to the end and I’ve already put the second in the series, Black Cherry Betrayal on my tbr list.

If you love a cozy mystery, I’d highly recommend this book!

About The Author:

Agatha Frost is a lover of all things cozy. She is a crime fiction fanatic and enjoys nothing more than sinking her teeth into a good murder mystery with a cup of peppermint and liquorice tea, and a cat curled up in her knee.

She lives in a quaint village in a sleepy corner of England, which provides more than ample inspiration for her bestselling Peridale Cafe Cozy Mystery series!

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www.agathafrost.com