Find Me In The Dark (Detective Harlow Durant 1) by Dea Poirier @bookouture @deapoirierbooks #BooksOnTour #BookReview

Title: Find Me In The Dark (Detective Harlow Durant 1) by Dea Poirier

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 21st October 2021

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

She’d been running for so long, it felt like her legs were on fire. Her heart was pounding so hard, she was sure it would give out. Around her, the snow was falling, casting an eerie silence over the town. A crack behind her, a foot snapping a branch, it warned her that he was still coming. She whipped around and saw the knife gleaming in his hand…

As the snow begins to melt across Plattsburgh, New York, the body of a young woman is found buried in a snowbank. When Detective Harlow Durant arrives at the scene she discovers that the victim has lain there for months: her arresting beauty, brightly-coloured nails and a distinctive gold bracelet perfectly preserved in the ice.

Searching missing person reports, Harlow soon identifies the victim as college student Alyssa Trent. Her grieving family describe her as someone who had no enemies and was a dedicated student. But Alyssa’s tutor has a different view: they claim Alyssa had another life that she kept hidden. But who would want her dead?

Harlow knows all about secret lives. She has spent years running from her past and from her father, a convicted serial killer. As the only female detective at the Bureau of Criminal Investigation, Harlow has vowed to bring killers to justice. Now she needs to find justice for Alyssa.

When another female student is found in the thawing snow, Harlow knows that she is hunting a twisted killer. The victims knew each other but what dark secret connects them? With the small-town reeling in shock and more snow coming, Harlow knows she needs to stop a killer dead in their tracks before another innocent life is lost.

From the bestselling author of Next Girl To Die comes an addictive crime thriller perfect for fans of Melinda Leigh, Kendra Elliot and Robert Dugoni’s Tracy Crosswhite series.

You can buy your copy here: Amazon: https://amzn.to/3ax5vki

Review:

I want to thank Bookouture for providing me a copy of Find Me In The Dark in exchange for an honest review.

This is the first in the Harlow Durant series and my first book by Dea Poirier, but it certainly won’t be my last.

What an utterly compelling read Find Me In The Dark was! 

Harlow is a complex character. Raised by a serial killer and abusive mother, she’d used to people letting her down and moving from place to place, never feeling at home. She’s a bit standoffish, understandably, and doesn’t suffer fools gladly, which I enjoyed, especially when faced with the vile local officers she had to deal with.

Lucas made a nice foil for Harlow. New to the homicide department, he’s still a little inexperienced, but he’s loyal and determined. He also carries his own hurt from the past. It was also nice to see that there was any romance between him and Harlow, which made a pleasant change.

With all the buildup and tension in the story, I found the murderer reveal a little lacklustre, although at the end there is a little surprise that will lead nicely onto the next book.

Find Me In The Dark is a gripping serial killer thriller packed with action from the very beginning.

About The Author:

Author Dea (D.H) Poirier is the author of NEXT GIRL TO DIE, which hit #1 in the Amazon charts. She was raised in Edmond, Oklahoma, where she got her start writing in creative writing courses. She attended The University of Central Oklahoma for Computer Science and Political Science. Later, she spent time living on both coasts, and traveling the United States, before finally putting down roots in Central Florida. She now resides somewhere between Disney and the swamp. She spends her days at her day job as a President of Digital Marketing, and her nights writing manuscripts.

https://www.facebook.com/dhpoirier/

https://www.instagram.com/deapoirier/

Beyond the Veil Anthology (Edited by Mark Morris) @flametreepress @RandomTTours #RandomThingsTours #BookReview #Horror #FlameTreePress #BlogTour

Title: Beyond the Veil Anthology (Edited by Mark Morris).

Publisher: Flame Tree Press

Date Published: 19th October 2021

Genre: Horror/Short Story

Description:

Beyond the Veil is the second volume in an annual, non-themed horror series of entirely original stories, showcasing the very best short fiction that the genre has to offer, and edited by Mark Morris. This new anthology contains 20 original horror stories, 16 of which have been commissioned from some of the top names in the genre, and 4 of which have been selected from the 100s of stories sent to Flame Tree during a 2-week open submissions window.

Review:

I want to thank Anne Cater for inviting me on this tour and Flame Tree Press for providing me with a copy of Beyond The Veil in exchange for an honest review.

Last year I read and enjoyed the previous short story collection from Flame Tree Press, After Sundown, last year, so I was eager to see what was on offer this year.

Beyond The Veil is a collection of short horror stories with something for every type of horror fan, from classic monster tales to mind bending sci-fi to gruesome body horror. 

I will just put a trigger warning here before I go any further. This novel contains themes of grief, suicide, child abuse, and the death of an animal. 

In all honesty, most of the authors were unknown to me, so it was nice to find some new authors to add to my must read list.

Like most types of collections, I found it a good mix of styles. Of course, there were some stories I enjoyed more than others.

My standouts were:

God Bag. The story that followed a man and his dying mum who was in the last grips of dementia. She carried around a strange little God bag containing prayers that started off innocently enough until he started digging. It was both heartbreaking and creepy at the same time.

For All The Dead. A historical story about a young woman who lived in a small fishing village, where life and death were controlled by the sea. There was almost a fairytale-like quality to this one that I found magical. 

The Girl In The Pool. A thief breaks into a house planning to rob the place, instead finds a young girl dead in the pool. This was a gripping tale of monsters and morality.

A Mystery for Julie Chu. A young woman has a knack for finding strange artifacts, but when she picks up an old radio from a car boot sale, she gets more than she bargained for. I loved the mix of mystery and spookiness of this one.

The care and feeding of household gods. This is a story about a stay at home dad who makes household gods to help him get everything done. This one took me by surprise, starting off innocent enough, then got more and more sinister. I still can’t stop thinking about this one!

I would highly recommend Beyond The Veil if you’re looking for a variety of short, sharp and shocking stories.

About The Editor:

Mark Morris has written and edited almost forty novels, novellas, short story collections and anthologies. His recent work includes the official movie tie-in novelizations of The Great Wall and (co-written with Christopher Golden) The Predator, the Obsidian Heart trilogy (The Wolves of London, The Society of Blood and The Wraiths of War), the anthologies New Fears (winner of the British Fantasy Award for Best Anthology) and New Fears 2 and many more.

Murder in the Village (Belinda Penshurst 1) by Lisa Cutts @bookouture @LisaCuttsAuthor #BooksOnTour #BookReview

Title: Murder in the Village (Belinda Penshurst 1) by Lisa Cutts

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 21st August 2021

Genre: Cozy mystery

Description:

Meet Belinda Penshurst. Castle owner, dog lover… crime solver?

Belinda Penshurst loves her home village Little Challham, with its shady lanes, two pubs and weekly market, and she’s determined to keep it peaceful. She may live in Challham Castle but she knows almost everything that goes on under her nose. So when irritable pub landlord Tipper is found dead in his cellar, she’s perfectly placed to investigate.

Retired detective Harry Powell moved to Little Challham for a quiet life. He didn’t expect to be dragged into a murder investigation. But the police don’t seem half as enthusiastic as Belinda about the case, and there are strange things happening in the village. Particularly the number of dogs that have disappeared lately…

Is there a dognapper snaffling schnauzers and luring away Labradors? Is Belinda barking mad to be worried that her brother Marcus was arguing with Tipper on the day he died? Belinda and Harry track down the suspects: the rival landlord, the outraged barmaid, the mysterious man in the black car following dogwalkers around. But are the dogged detectives running out of time to sniff out the killer, before he starts hounding them?

A charming cozy mystery full of laughs and eccentric characters. Fans of M.C. Beaton, H.Y. Hanna and Emily Organ will love the first novel in the Belinda Penshurst series!

You can buy your copy here: 

Amazon: https://bit.ly/3mb60aM

Review:

I want to thank Bookouture for providing me with a copy of Murder in the Village in exchange for an honest review.

I’m a bit of a sucker for a cozy mystery, so I jumped at the chance to read Murder in the village.

I know Lisa Cutts has written other books before this one but this is actually the first I’ve read of hers, but it certainly won’t be the last!

Two cases run side by side in this novel. First off, the dog owners of Little Challam are being targeted by mysterious dognappers. The second mystery involves the murder of pub landlord Tipper, a man with no shortage of enemies, but who would want to kill him? Belinda joins forces with retired detective Harry Powell to solve both cases. 

Murder in the village has all the ingredients of a good cozy mystery, an idyllic sounding setting, a cast of interesting characters and a couple of determined amateur sleuths intent on getting to the bottom of the case.

Belinda and Harry made a fun pair together. Belinda is fairly bossy and stubborn, not afraid to say what she thinks, while Harry is a little more reserved and thoughtful. I enjoyed the back and forth between Belinda and Harry. I feel there’s some good potential between the pair and look forward to seeing what they get up to next.

At times, I found Belinda a tad annoying, but she grew on me as the story went along.

Both mysteries kept me guessing with plenty of suspects and red herrings along the way.

Murder in the village is a solid cozy mystery and a must for fans of this genre! 

About The Author:

Lisa Cutts is a full-time detective constable investigating murders for a living. When off duty she writes a fictitious version of her day job. She lives and works within the county of Kent with her husband and Labrador.

She is the author of the DC Nina Foster books, Never Forget and Remember, Remember. Never Forgot was longlisted for the Waverton Good Read Award 2013 and the winner of the Killer Nashville Silver Falchion Award 2014 for Best Thriller. She has also written four books in the East Rise Incident Room series, Mercy Killing, Buried Secrets, Lost Lives and Don’t Trust Him. All four centre around DI Harry Powell and his Major Crime Team battling to solve the latest murders within the county. Currently she is writing the Little Challham mysteries, cosy mysteries set in a fictional village in Kent.

She writes a monthly column, Behind the Tape, for Writing Magazine answering police procedural questions from other writers. In early 2016, she was honoured to become the Patron of Rochester Literature Festival and help establish Murderous Medway, an annual crime fiction festival packed full of amazing author panels. As well as being on BBC Radio 4’s Open Book, Lisa has twice appeared on This Morning to chat about TV crime dramas Broadchurch and Line of Duty.

https://www.facebook.com/lisa.cutts.505/

https://www.instagram.com/lisa_cutts/

#TheGreatSilence by Doug Johnstone @doug_johnstone @OrendaBooks @RandomTTours #BlogTour #BookReview #RandomThingsTours

Title: The Great Silence by Doug Johnstone

Date Published: 19th August 2021

Publisher: Orenda Books

Genre: Thriller

Description:

From the discovery of a human foot in a park, to the missing daughter of Jenny’s violent ex-husband… the stakes have never been higher for the Skelf family

Keeping on top of the family funeral directors’ and private investigation businesses is no easy task for the Skelf women, and when matriarch Dorothy discovers a human foot while walking the dog, a perplexing case presents itself.

Daughter Jenny and grand-daughter Hannah have their hands full too: the mysterious circumstances of a dying woman have led them into an unexpected family drama, Hannah’s new astrophysicist colleague claims he’s receiving messages from outer space, and the Skelfs’ teenaged lodger has a devastating experience.

Nothing is clear as the women are immersed ever deeper in their most challenging cases yet. But when the daughter of Jenny’s violent and fugitive ex-husband goes missing without trace and a wild animal is spotted roaming Edinburgh’s parks, real danger presents itself, and all three Skelfs are in peril.

Taut, dark, warmly funny and unafraid to ask big questions – of us all – The Great Silence is the much-anticipated third instalment in the addictive, unforgettable Skelfs series.

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

Mark Billingham on The Big Chill

Review:

I want to thank Anne Cater at Random Things Tours for inviting me on this book tour and Orenda books for providing me with a copy of The Great Silence.in exchange for an honest review.

Ah, it’s lovely to be back with the Skelfs again, it’s a bit like visiting old friends. Dysfunctional old friends, mind you, but highly entertaining at the same time. 

This is the third book in the series and I would highly recommend reading the previous books to get a better understanding of the characters and they just happen to be fantastic too!

You know when you read a book and think, where does the author come up with these amazing ideas from? That’s exactly how I felt while reading The Great Silence. 

As usual, there are several investigations going at once during the novel. Dorothy discovers a dismembered foot while out walking her dog Einstein. Jenny is busy looking for her ex-husband, who escaped police custody. Hannah is investigating a case where her colleague thinks he’s getting messages from outer space. This is all while running their funeral directing business and dealing with their usual family dramas along the way.

Like the previous books, the storylines are expertly woven together, grabbing you from the outset and making you want to read to the very last page.

Of course, like the other books in the series, there’s some dark themes, i.e. abuse and suicide, but they’re handled with sensitivity by the author.

I heard this might be the last we see of the Skelfs, which I hope is not the case! If it is, then I will say it was a satisfying ending for the trilogy, but I’m crossing my fingers for more stories featuring Dorothy, Jenny and Hannah.

The Great Silence is a captivating and original read that I honestly couldn’t get enough of.

About The Author:

Doug Johnstone is the author of twelve previous novels, most recently The Big Chill (2020). Several of his books have been bestsellers and three, A Dark Matter (2020), Breakers (2019) and The Jump (2015), were shortlisted for the McIlvanney Prize for Scottish Crime Novel of the Year. 

He’s taught creative writing and been writer in residence at various institutions over the last decade – including at a funeral parlour ahead of writing A Dark Matter – and has been an arts journalist for over twenty years. 

Doug is a songwriter and musician with five albums and three solo EPs released, and he plays drums for the Fun Lovin’ Crime Writers, a band of crime writers. He’s also player-manager of the Scotland Writers Football Club. He lives in Edinburgh. 

Follow Doug on Twitter @doug_johnstone and visit his website: dougjohnstone.com

#UltimateBlogTour #WickedLittleDeeds by Kat Ellis @The_WriteReads @WriteReadsTours @el_kat #TheWriteReads

Title: Wicked Little Deeds by Kat Ellis

Date Published: 5th August 2021

Publisher: Penguin

Genre: YA Mystery/Horror

Description:

From its creepy town mascot to the story of its cursed waterfall, Burden Falls is a small town dripping with superstition. Ava Thorn knows this well – since the horrific accident she witnessed a year ago, she’s been plagued by nightmares.

But when her school nemesis is brutally murdered and Ava is the primary suspect, she starts to wonder if the legends surrounding the town are more fact than fiction.

Whatever secrets Burden Falls is hiding, there’s a killer on the loose, and they have a vendetta against the Thorns…

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Wicked-Little-Deeds-Kat-Ellis-ebook/dp/B08L75VKPD

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55600867-wicked-little-deeds

Review:

I want to thank the lovely people at The Write Reads Tours for inviting me on this tour and the publisher for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

This is my first Kat Ellis novel, but the blurb intrigued me, so I thought I’d give it a go and I wasn’t disappointed.

Wicked Little Deeds is a brilliant mix of young adult mystery and horror, with a bit of romance in there, too.

The story follows Ava, who’s being forced to move from her childhood home after the death of her parents and the collapse of their business. If that wasn’t bad enough, she becomes the prime suspect in the murder of her high school nemesis, which is soon connected to the legend of Dead Eyed Sadie, a ghost associated with her family. Unable to leave it alone, she sets out to find the actual killer.

Ava and Dominic are intriguing and flawed characters. I have to say I usually get a little annoyed with teen characters for being a little self-involved, but I really enjoyed both of them and the way their chemistry really shines through the story.

Another thing I loved about the story was the urban legend of Dead Eyed Sadie that was woven throughout the mystery. It was creepy and captivating at the same time. There were some fantastic spooky scenes featuring Dead Eyed Sadie throughout that gave me goosebumps!

The mystery was also well done. It really kept me guessing even though I did eventually manage to figure it out.

I know this story is billed as a young adult story but honestly anyone of any age who loves both mysteries and urban legends would enjoy this story (says the woman who is probably too old to be reading young adult novels). 

Wicked Little Deeds is an atmospheric and creepy read that I honestly couldn’t put down. I’m looking forward to reading more from Kat Ellis!

About the Author  (from https://katelliswrites.blogspot.com/p/about-me.html)

Kat Ellis is a young adult author whose novels include Wicked Little Deeds/Burden Falls (August 2021), Harrow Lake (July 2020), Purge (September 2016), Breaker (May 2016), and Blackfin Sky (May 2014). She is a fan of all things horror and sci-fi, and a keen explorer of ruins, castles and cemeteries – all of which are plentiful in North Wales, where Kat lives with her husband.

You can find out more about Kat at http://www.katelliswrites.com or connect with her on social media. 

Email: katelliswrites@gmail.com

Website: katelliswrites.com

Facebook: facebook.com/katelliswrites

Instagram: @katelliswrites

Twitter: @el_kat

Little Girl Taken (Detective Madison Harper 3) by Wendy Dranfield @WendyDranfield @bookouture #BookReview #BooksOnTour

Title: Little Girl Taken (Detective Madison Harper 3) by Wendy Dranfield 

Date Published: 29th July 2021

Publisher: Bookouture

Genre: Crime Thriller

Description:

Rain rattles through the trees as she leans into the car, careful not to touch anything. Two pretty blue eyes stare back through the dark, wide with relief, or maybe fear. A baby girl, wrapped up in a pink snowsuit, reaches out a tiny hand. Her mother is nowhere to be found…

An abandoned baby is the last thing Detective Madison Harper expects to find as she drives to her first day back at work since the case that ripped her life apart. But as she cradles the shivering child close, all her instincts tell her there’s something more sinister at play. Then she finds a lone sneaker down a muddy trail nearby, the laces spattered with blood…

In a town as small as Lost Creek, Colorado, the baby and the shoe are quickly identified as belonging to Kacie Larson, a waitress at the local diner who quietly stashed away her tips to make a better life for her daughter. A mother herself, Madison can’t believe that Kacie would just abandon her child, but she also can’t convince her new team. Not for the first time, Madison feels she must go it alone to get the job done.

But when a body is pulled from a nearby lake, and it’s not Kacie, the case takes an agonizing turn. Is this missing mother really who she says she is? Is there a chance she’s still alive? Madison barely has time to think before the sweet little girl she rescued is snatched on a crowded street. Gone, in the blink of an eye.

To break this case and earn her place back on the force, Madison must learn to trust her team, and herself againand fast. If she doesn’t find this twisted individual in time, a little girl could die…

A pulse-pounding, absolutely gripping and totally addictive page-turner that will have you racing through the pages and reeling at the twists. Perfect for fans of Melinda Leigh, Lisa Regan and Kendra Elliot, you’ll be sleeping with the lights on!

You can buy your copy here: https://geni.us/B093C9HN79cover 

Review:

I want to thank Bookouture for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

I swear this series is getting better and better! It’s the third in the Detective Madison Harper series, while it can be read as a standalone I would suggest reading at least the previous book Cry For Help just to get more on the background on the characters.

Madison has got her job back as a detective but it will not be easy for her, after so many years away and suspicions about her still swirling. It doesn’t help that on her first day back she finds a crashed car with a baby in the back. Where is the baby’s mother and will Madison be able to find her alive? She enlists the help of her friend and PI Nate to help her crack the case.

As always with Wendy’s books, she puts her characters through it! It’s Nate’s turn in this book when his friend Rex turns up dead, bringing with him some revelations about his Father Connor, the man he’s been trying to track down for years.

This novel really hit me hard in the emotions and after I put it down, I honestly couldn’t stop thinking about the ending.

Little Girl Taken is a well written and fast-paced thriller full of plenty of shocks and surprises along the way to keep you guessing. I’m very much looking forward to the next book in this series!

About The Author:

Wendy is a former coroner’s assistant turned crime writer who lives in the UK with her husband and 3 cats.

Her first novel (The Girl Who Died) was longlisted for the Mslexia Novel Competition. Since then she has written two crime series – one follows Officer Dean Matheson on his quest to make detective, and the other is her current series which follows Detective Madison Harper as she tries to reclaim her life after spending six years in prison for a murder she didn’t commit.

As well as crime novels Wendy also has short stories published in various anthologies in the UK and the US, and she has been shortlisted and longlisted for various writing competitions.

Wendy’s social media:

Website: https://wendydranfield.co.uk/

Twitter: @WendyDranfield

Facebook: Wendy Dranfield Author

Pinterest: Wendy Dranfield

Instagram: Wendy Dranfield Author 

#OneMustDie by Mark Tilbury @MTilburyAuthor #BookReview

Title: One Must Die by Mark Tilbury

Date Published: 24th June 2021

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Description:

I have both your sons, Mr Levitt. One of them must die. You choose.

Widower Sean Levitt receives the ominous message in the post a few days after his teenage boys go missing on their way to army cadets. As time progresses, the abductor makes increasingly horrific demands of Sean by sending him DVDs, and telling him to post videos online of the shocking assignments he sets him.

One Must Die is the story of one man’s fight to keep his sons alive, and the terrible lengths he must go to in order to do so.

Can Sean do what the police have failed to do and find his sons?

Or will the abductor achieve his twisted aim of destroying his entire family?

Review:

I want to thank Mark Tilbury for inviting me on this blog tour and providing me with a copy of One Must Die in exchange for an honest review.

Mark ‘Twisted’ Tilbury certainly lives up to his nickname with One Must Die!

The story starts off with every parent’s worst nightmare, Sean’s sons go out but don’t come back. A DVD arrives asking Sean to do tasks to keep his sons alive. The tasks start out a minor, slowly getting more and more sinister. But why is he being targeted?

The story is told from several points of view, from Sean, to his son Peter, to the kidnapper. Getting inside the mind of the kidnapper was particularly entertaining, even if he was a deeply deranged individual.

Sean is a heating engineer and widower, who doesn’t seem to have a nasty bone in his body, which makes it even more shocking that he’s been targeted in such an irrational manner. His son Peter, was also a solid character who I really rooted for throughout. 

I will warn you that there are a few scenes which are fairly graphic/unsettling, meaning that it may not be for you if you like your crime fiction on the lighter side.

There were a few aspects of the story I found a little unbelievable, but of course that’s just my opinion.

One Must Die is a dark and disturbing read packed with tense moments that will keep you hooked throughout.

About The Author:

Mark lives in a small village in the lovely county of Cumbria, although his books are set in Oxfordshire where he was born and raised.

He’s always had a keen interest in writing and after being widowed and raising his two daughters, Mark finally took the plunge and began self-publishing. Mark’s writing has earned him the name #TwistedTilbury due to the dark and twisted nature of his books. He’s published 10 thrillers, and an 11th is due out 24th June 2021

When he’s not writing, Mark can be found playing guitar, reading and walking.

The Country Village Summer Fete by Cathy Lake @LakeAuthor @ZaffreBooks @Tr4cyF3nt0n #BookReview

Title: The Country Village Summer Fete by Cathy Lake

Date Published: 10th June 2021

Publisher: Zaffre 

Genre: Rom Com/Women’s Fiction

Description:

Take a trip back into Little Bramble…

Emma Patrick’s life is spiralling out of control. On the cusp of her 50th birthday, she suddenly realises that she doesn’t have many meaningful relationships in her life. She’s single, successful, living alone and thinks she’s loving it, but being so focussed on work and always online means she’s lost any real connection to people.

When Emma gets a call to say her ageing father is becoming increasingly confused, she decides that she should go back home to the countryside to spend some time with him. But returning to Little Bramble, the village she grew up in, after all these years is filled with complications of its own and people she’d rather avoid.

As Emma starts to settle into her childhood home, she finds herself loving village life – much to her surprise. When the opportunity to get involved in the running of the summer fete comes her way, before she knows it she’s embracing jam making, cake baking and bunting. And with romance brewing, Emma begins to doubt the glamorous life in London that she worked so hard to build . . .

Review:

I want to thank Tracy Fenton for inviting me on this tour and Zaffre for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The Country Village Summer Fete follows the story of Emma Patrick, who returns to the village of Little Bramble to look after her elderly father when he gets ill. She left the village behind years ago for a successful career in London and coming back is full of bittersweet memories, especially when it comes to an old flame of hers.

This story was just a delightful read with plenty of sweet and heartwarming moments. I also enjoyed the fact it was a second chance for romance novel, focusing on older characters who are proud to be older, as they should be!

This is the second in the Little Bramble series but works perfectly well as a standalone. I only noticed when I went looking for more books by Cathy Lake and found the first book.

The characters are all so likable and sweet, I really enjoyed meeting them. I felt for Emma, she’s burnt out and a bit isolated when we first meet her, trying to keep up with her freelance editing work and running herself into the ground. On top of all that, she gets the dreaded news about her father who might have dementia then having to face up to her old heartbreak… I just wanted to give her a hug!

The Country Village Summer Fete is a combination of gentle humour and sweet romance that is the perfect summer read. I’m looking forward to more books from Cathy Lake!

About The Author:

Cathy Lake is a women’s fiction writer who lives with her family and three dogs in beautiful South Wales. She writes uplifting stories about strong women, family, friendship, love, community and overcoming obstacles.

Murder At Elm House (Kitty Underhay 6) by Helena Dixon @bookouture @NellDixon #BookReview #Booksontour

Title: Murder At Elm House (Kitty Underhay 6) by Helena Dixon

Publisher: Bookouture

Date Published: 7th June 2021

Genre: Cozy Mystery

Description: 

Kitty Underhay feels the touch… of death.

1934. Accidental amateur sleuth Kitty Underhay is being escorted by ex-army captain Matthew Bryant on an errand of mercy, as she takes a basket of grapes to her nemesis Mrs Craven, who is recuperating from a recent operation. But their arrival at Elm House Nursing Home coincides with the mysterious death of Lady Wellings, a long-term resident.

The woman was known to be ill, so when the police turn a disinterested ear to Mrs Craven’s suspicion that Lady Wellings was poisoned, Kitty decides to look into the case herself. And when another invalid, the gentle Mrs Pearson, collapses fatally in the breakfast room, it seems her suspicions are well-founded. For an institution promising health and rejuvenation, there seems to be a very low survival rate amongst the guests!

When the nurse Eloise Hibbert hints at sinister goings on among the staff, Kitty arranges to meet her away from the home to uncover how deep the treachery lies. However, before she can make the rendezvous, Eloise meets an unfortunate end falling from the top of the building. Was she pushed by the hand of fate, or a cold-blooded killer?

Meanwhile, Matt has been following an entirely different trail of evidence, and what he finds out chills him to the bone. When Kitty fails to return from her unsuccessful meeting, it is clear she has stumbled onto a plot far more devious than they could have imagined, and into a trap laid by an unscrupulous killer…

An utterly sensational and addictive Golden Age murder mystery. Perfect for fans of Agatha Christie, T.E. Kinsey and Lee Strauss.

You can buy your copy here: https://geni.us/B08V1VY7TBsocial

Review:

I want to thank Bookouture for my copy of Murder at Elm House in exchange for an honest review.

Murder at Elm House is the sixth book in the Kitty Underhay mystery series, it can be read as a standalone but I would highly recommend reading at least the previous book Murder In The Bell Tower, as some of the storyline carries over.

Mrs Craven, a friend of Kitty’s grandmother, is recovering after a minor operation at Elm House. She calls in both Matthew and Kitty after she suspects that there’s something odd going on, resulting in the deaths of some of the patients. As they investigate, they become aware that there could be something bigger going on than just the death of patients.

If you don’t know this series, they’re set around the golden age of crime fiction in the 1930s and always give me classic crime vibes while remaining fresh and interesting to read.

I love sleuths Matthew and Kitty, they’re such a cute couple and compliment each other nicely. There was plenty of peril for both throughout the novel, with break-ins and attempts on their lives. Not to mention Kitty taking the leap to become a lady motorist, something that probably would have been frowned upon back in those days.

I usually have an inkling when it comes to cozy mysteries about the whodunnit quite early on but not with this novel, I can say I didn’t guess how it was going to end at all!

Murder at Elm House is a great addition to this series and I can’t wait to read more!

About The Author:

Nell Dixon was born and continues to live in the Black Country. Married to the same man for over thirty-five years she has three daughters, a cactus called Spike, a crazy cockapoo and a tank of tropical fish. She is allergic to adhesives, apples, tinsel and housework. Her addictions of choice are coffee and reality TV. She was winner of The Romance Prize in 2007 with her book Marrying Max, and winner of Love Story of the Year 2010 with her book, Animal Instincts. She also writes historical 1930’s set cozy crime as Helena Dixon.

Author Social Media Links:

Website: http://www.nelldixon.com

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/nell.dixon

Twitter:      https://twitter.com/NellDixon

#BlogTour #BookReview Small Bones by Kerry Buchanan @DabblinginCrime @JoffeBooks

Title: Small Bones by Kerry Buchanan

Publisher: Joffe Books

Date Published: 3rd June 2021

Genre: Mystery

Description:

DON’T MISS THE MUST-READ CRIME THRILLER OF SUMMER 2021

AN ABSOLUTELY JAW-DROPPING CRIME THRILLER FEATURING DETECTIVES ASHA HARVEY & AARON BIRCH
 
If you can’t trust your father and you can’t trust the police, who can you trust?
 
Sue Hearn is planting a herb garden on the site of her grandfather’s old greenhouse. She’s spent the morning digging up all sorts of odds and ends already. But she doesn’t expect this grisly find.
 
Could it be the remains of her mother, Monica, who went missing thirty years ago?
 
Sue’s father, in hospital with dementia, insinuates that a police officer was involved in her mother’s disappearance. But can he be trusted?
 
So now Detectives Asha Harvey and Aaron Birch might be looking for a bent copper.
 
As they dig deeper into the past, Sue and Asha find secrets so dangerous it will put all their lives in danger.
 
Fans of BBC’s Line of Duty, Lynda La Plante, Tana French, Patricia Gibney, Brian McGilloway, Ann Cleeves, Caro Ramsay and Helen H. Durrant will devour this electrifying crime thriller by one of Northern Ireland’s newest talents.
 
MEET THE DETECTIVES
DETECTIVE ASHA HARVEY
Asha Harvey has always had a powerful sense of right and wrong. She has wanted to be a detective since she was a child, and while she can be a little too trusting, her open manner makes people want to confide in her. She is especially driven to succeed as a woman of colour in a largely white, male police force in Northern Ireland. Her family support her and are ridiculously proud of her, which adds to her internal pressure to succeed.
 
DETECTIVE AARON BIRCH
Boyish and gangly, Aaron Birch entered the police force as a detective through a graduate recruitment scheme. This makes him the butt of snide remarks by fellow officers, so he always feels he has something to prove. He also has a tendency to stretch the rules to suit himself, which can lead to him getting into trouble.
 
THE SETTING
A city of contrasts, Belfast is filled with beautiful old relics dating back to a golden age of shipbuilding and wealth, as well as the scars of more recent wounds. The city has an exciting sense of newness and potential, but it can’t quite shed those who lurk in the darker shadows born of its turbulent past.
 
WHAT EVERYONE IS SAYING ABOUT KERRY BUCHANAN:
 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Oh my this book . . . so fast paced, I enjoyed chapter after chapter. It will send your heart pounding, it’s full of massive twists . . . this book will shock you to the core right till the very end.” Booklover Bev
 
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “Its not often a debut novel is as well written as this. I found myself utterly riveted from very early in the book, and when I wasn’t reading it, I was spending my time wishing I was . . . highly, highly, recommended.” Sean S.
 
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ “If you love an intense, creepy, and suspenseful psychological thriller that you cannot put down once you’ve started it, this book will absolutely thrill you.” L. M. Darter
 
DETECTIVES HARVEY & BIRCH MYSTERIES
Book 1: KNIFE EDGE
Book 2: SMALL BONES

Review:

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

Acting DI Asha Harvey, along with her partner Aaron Birch, are back to solve another mystery. This time when Sue Hearn finds the skeleton in her garden. As they dig further into the mystery, they find that Sue’s mother Monica went missing thirty years ago and was never heard of again. Are the two cases linked or is there something more going on?

This series is part psychological thriller, part police procedural with a whole heap of twists and turns along the way.

I enjoyed that we got to see a bit more of Asha and Aaron in this book than we did in the first, getting to know them a bit better. Asha is a kind and caring copper, trying to prove herself, which bumps up nicely next to the loyal and sweet Aaron. 

Sue was an interesting character, too. Looking after her dad, who had dementia, full time would be enough for anyone to cope with, but finding a body on top of all that? It amazed me to see she didn’t fall to pieces (I would have) and became integral to the case.

I would say that I found this story a little slower to start than the first in the series but of course that’s just my opinion. 

Also, it leaves a few unanswered questions, paving the way for the next in the series which I’m looking forward to.

Small Bones is a well written and action packed mystery that was both entertaining and intriguing in equal measure. 

About The Author:

Kerry Buchanan has had numerous short stories published internationally, including some prize-winners, but her heart lies with novel-writing. Her crime series is set in Belfast and in the rolling County Down hills she sees from her window as she writes. She is often invited to perform her work at literary events or to be a member of panels at conventions, and she loves to help new writers by facilitating writing groups and classes in her local community.

Although Kerry is disabled, her hobbies include sailing and attempting to outwit the slugs in her vegetable patch. Generally, the slugs win.

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