#BlogTour #Review Harlequin (DS Jason Smith 5) by Stewart Giles @stewartgiles @books_n_all

Title: Harlequin (DS Jason Smith #5) by Stewart Giles

Date Published: 5th September 2015

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

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

The circus comes to town and children start to disappear.

Detective Sergeant Jason Smith is persuaded to return to work after three weeks of a marijuana induced haze. Forced to endure the leadership of a new DI, the fulsome Bryony Brownhill, Smith is faced with the most difficult investigation of his colourful career.

When the children who vanished are found murdered in various parts of the city, all clues lead to the circus grounds, but Smith and his team are met with a sinister silence everywhere they turn. Smith digs deeper and discovers the cause of this silence; the chain of events that led up to the vile murders that have shattered the hearts of the people of York. 

This is an edge-of-your-seat thriller with an ending that you won’t expect.

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 Occam’s Razor:

Excellent and truly chilling murder mystery.’ – Maggie May

Another compelling detective thriller in the DS Jason Smith series.’ – Kindle Customer

A great writer and a great cast of characters inhabit these books. Well worth the time taken to read them.’Amazon Customer

What a fantastic book as the ending was not expected. This book is very hard to put down, really good storyline’Helen Green

What a great book had to keep reading it could not put it down I would look forward to read some more.’Peter Goulding

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


Review:

Jason Smith has been off work for three weeks after the events in the previous book, Occam’s Razor but is drawn back by the kidnapping of a young boy from his house under the watchful eyes of his parents. When his body turns up and yet another child goes missing, the clues lead to the circus but the people there refuse to talk. Can Smith get to the bottom of the case?

So I’m carrying on my binge read of the Smith series with the fifth one, Harlequin, (you can read my review of the previous book Occam’s Razor here) and I would highly recommend to read a couple of the previous books just because you may miss out on a bit of the story.

Can I just take a moment to just say how creepy the cover of Harlequin is? I’m so glad now I’ve finished it, it will no longer be glaring at me from my kindle!

Like all the Smith books, there’s plenty of action packed into it’s pages and never a dull moment. This one stands out a little from the rest as I found it a little disturbing and after reading it, I’ll probably never look at clowns the same way again (a bit like when I watched IT earlier in the year).

Have you ever read a book that you just want to give the character a good shake? I feel that way about Jason Smith. In some ways he’s matured, like not arguing for the sake of it but in other ways he’s still the same self destructive person he always was. Like smoking marijuana on duty, I don’t care if he’s a great detective, I wouldn’t want anyone who was high as a kite being anywhere near a murder case!

I enjoyed the new edition of DI Bryonny Brownhill after the promotion of Smith’s friend and long time supporter DI Chalmers. She’s tough as nails and seems to be trying to rein in his behaviour, which is a bit like trying to herd cats to me, but it makes an interesting dynamic within the book.

Harlequin is a fast paced police procedural, that may at time bend the rules of believability but is a really entertaining read.

BLOG TOUR banner - Harlequin

About The Author:

After reading English at 3 Universities and graduating from none of them, I set off travelling SG Author photo (4)around the world with my wife, Ann, finally settling in South Africa, where we still live. After Ann 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

You can join the Stewart Giles reader club by completing this form https://mailchi.mp/a64f6de4c541/sgreadersclub

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#BlogTour Burning Secrets by Ruth Sutton @ruthsutton @fahrenheitpress #damppebblesblogtours

Title: Burning Secrets by Ruth Sutton

Publisher: Fahrenheit Press

Date Published: 19th July 2018

Genre: Police Procedural, Mystery/Thriller

Description:

It’s the spring of 2001 and Foot & Mouth disease is raging across Cumbria.

Twelve-year-old Helen Heslop is forced to leave her family farm and move in with relatives in a nearby town because the strict quarantine means she can’t travel back and forth to school in case she inadvertently helps spread the disease.

As the authorities and the local farming communities try desperately to contain the outbreak, tensions run high and everyone’s emotions are close to the surface.

And then Helen disappears.

The police search expands all over the northwest coast where farms are barricaded and farming families have been plunged into chaos – not least the Hislop family, where potentially explosive fault lines are exposed.

Under the strain tensions build inside the police team too, where local DC Maureen Pritchard is caught between old school DI Bell and new broom DS Anna Penrose.

Will Helen survive? And can life for the Heslop family ever be the same, once burning secrets are discovered and old scores settled?

You Can Get Your Copy Here:

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Burning-Secrets-Ruth-Sutton-ebook/dp/B07F1GD8VX/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1535918224&sr=1-2&keywords=burning+secrets

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Burning-Secrets-Ruth-Sutton-ebook/dp/B07F1GD8VX/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1535918289&sr=8-1&keywords=burning+secrets+ruth

Waterstones: https://www.waterstones.com/book/burning-secrets/ruth-sutton/9780992931438

Burning-secrets banner

Review:

Twelve-year-old Helen Heslop disappears on her way home from school. There’s no ransom demand and as time goes on the more worried they are especially as she has asthma but has forgotten her inhaler.

DC Maureen Pritchard has been on the force for twenty years and her local knowledge is second to none but she has been passed over for promotion by DS Anna Penrose, an outsider who used to be in the army’s police service. To top that off their boss DI Bell doesn’t like the fact that there are now two women on his team. They both believe that there’s something the family aren’t telling them and they must put aside their difference to find the little girl.

Burning Secrets is a gripping police procedural that had me biting my nails on several occasions. It is set back in 2001 at the height of the Foot and Mouth epidemic where thousands of cows were slaughtered. It created a rather bleak and desolate backdrop for the story, adding to the tension, showing the devastating effect on both farmers and the landscape, the burning pyres of animals and vans that were leaking fluids gave it a particularly visceral feel.

I liked Maureen, I felt her frustrations as she passed over for promotion, again and again. She’s a really instinctive copper, relying on gut instincts which usually turn out to be right. I also warmed to Anna through the book. She’s really in a tough spot, she’s an outsider and a woman to boot who a lot of people believe is just there to show how progressive the force are putting women in more senior positions. She’s the opposite to Maureen, as she wants evidence rather than intuition, and they play off against one another quite well. Then there’s DI Bell, who puts the Bell in bell end and that’s all I’m going to say on that one.

My only complaint was the ending was quite as satisfying as I’d hoped but I’m not going to say too much more on that for fear of spoilers.

Overall Burning Secrets is vivid drama, full of secrets and suspense that will keep you turning those pages.

About Ruth Sutton:

Ruth is a very independent person, which – like many things – is good up to a point, but can getruth sutton tricky sometimes. She lives in a very beautiful place, but it’s a long way to a cinema, or a big supermarket, and if the time comes when she can’t or doesn’t want to drive, she’ll have to move as there’s no public transport. She qualifies for a bus pass, but there aren’t any buses. Her daughter and her family live quite close by, and she loves to see her two grandchildren. After decades on her own, she has a partner whom she loves. They each have their own house, 40 minutes apart, and this life style suits them both. Ruth wrote her first novel after she was 60.

In addition, Ruth has self-published a trilogy entitled Between the Mountains and the Sea; A Good Liar tells the story of Jessie who risks career and independence with a love affair, whilst her secret past draws ever closer. Forgiven is set among the coal mines and fells of the Cumberland coast. Jessie’s struggle for happiness continues. Fallout features the nuclear disaster at Windscale, which brings a compelling stranger into Jessie’s world.

Social Media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ruthsutton

Website: http://ruthsutton.co.uk/wordpress/

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=dp_byline_sr_ebooks_1?ie=UTF8&text=Ruth+Sutton&search-alias=digital-text&field-author=Ruth+Sutton&sort=relevancerank

#BlogTour #Review Their Final Act (DI Alec McKay 3) by Alex Walters @Bloodhoundbook @mikewalters60

Title: Their Final Act (DI Alec McKay #3) by Alex Walters

Publisher: Bloodhound Books

Date Published: 25th September 2018

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

Jimmy McGuire, a washed-up comic, is found dead on the streets of Inverness, his body garroted. Back in the 1990s, McGuire had been half of a promising double-act until his partner, Jack Dingwall, was convicted of rape.

Soon after, a second corpse is found in an abandoned industrial site on the edge of the Moray Firth. The body has been there for some days and has also been garroted. The victim turns out to be a former musician turned record producer, who had also been the subject of rape allegations.

Meanwhile, DI Alec McKay and DCI Helena Grant are still wrestling with the fallout from one of their recent cases following an acquittal.

As the body count rises, the police think they have the killer in their sights. But McKay is concerned that the evidence is too neat so when he realises there will be a final victim, he fears that time is running out…

Review:

So I’m back with DI Alec McKay and his team, this time they’re dealing with the death of a washed up comedian Jimmy McGuire who was garrotted and dumped on the street in Inverness. They think it’s random until a second body turns up…

I discovered this series last year with the book Death Parts Us (you can read my review here) so I jumped at the chance to read this one. This is the third in series, while it can be read as a stand alone, I would highly recommend that you read the first book Candles and Roses, which I personally haven’t, because it is heavily referenced throughout after the acquittal of main suspect in the case.

The story is split between Alec’s investigation and a young woman named Jane who has escaped domestic abuse and is now trying to move on with her life. Jane is offered a place on a farm to help her rehabilitate but it seems too good to be true. Her host Netty Munro seems friendly and a gracious host but Jane can’t help feeling something is off especially with the addition of Elizabeth another woman sent from the abuse centre.

Alec is still his same grumpy, sarcastic self who enjoys putting himself in danger but in the book there’s the nice edition of a possible reconciliation with his wife Chrissie (we’ll have to see how that goes in the next book!).

What else I loved about this book is the beautifully described Scottish countryside, combining that with brutal murder makes an interesting dynamic and also says that no matter how lovely a place looks you never know what horrors are lurking underneath!

I will also give a trigger warning as it does cover the harrowing subjects of rape and abuse but it is handled by the author very sensitively.

Now I have to be honest, it did take me a little bit of time to actually get into the book, just because I had not read Candles and Roses and didn’t quite understand what they were going on about but it didn’t spoil my overall experience of the book.

Their Final Act is a gritty police procedural, with plenty of intriguing characters which kept me guessing until the end.

B L O G B L I T Z (1) (2)

About The Author:

Alex Walters is the author of Candles and Roses, Death Parts Us and Their Final Act, all

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featuring DI Alec McKay and set in and around the Black Isle in the Scottish Highlands. He has also written four books set in and around Manchester – Trust No-One and Nowhere to Hide featuring the undercover officer, Marie Donovan, and Late Checkout and Dark Corners, featuring DCI Kenny Murrain – and three crime novels set in modern-day Mongolia, The Shadow Walker, The Adversary and The Outcast. Alex has previously worked in the oil industry, broadcasting and banking and as a consultant working mainly in the criminal justice sector. He now runs the Solus Or Writing Retreat in the Black Isle with his wife, occasional sons and too many cats.

Links:

Website: https://www.alexwaltersauthor.com/

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

Twitter: @mikewalters60

#BlogTour Occam’s Razor (DS Jason Smith 4) by Stewart Giles

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Title: Occam’s Razor (DS Jason Smith #4) by Stewart Giles

Date Published: 6th April 2015

Genre: Police Procedural, Mystery/Thriller

Description:

A football player is shot dead in front of a packed crowd of people.

DS Jason Smith is put in charge of the investigation. The murder weapon is found in a house across the road from the football ground. It is a rare Russian army issue sniper rifle. As the investigation hits dead end after dead end, two government agents arrive and take over, pushing Smith and his colleagues to the side. As more people die Smith quickly realises these agents are not who they claim to be. He is forced into the dark world of these phantoms and he finds himself at the mercy of his old nemesis; the man who kidnapped his sister years earlier.

This is a gripping thriller with twists and turns all the way to the stunning ending.

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 Occam’s Razor:

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

0.5 – Phobia (5 early Jason Smith cases)

1….-.Smith

2….-.Boomerang

3….-.Ladybird

4….-.Occam’s Razor

5….-.Harlequin

6….-.Selene

7….-.Horseman

8….-.Unworthy

DC HARRIET TAYLOR SERIES

1….-.The Beekeeper

2….-.The Perfect Murder

3….-.The Backpacker

Review:

With all things being equal, the simplest explanation tends to be the right one.” ~ William of Ockham.

From the outset, there seems to be nothing simple about Smith’s latest case! The novel opens with the death of Jimmy Fisher, the up and coming goal keeper of York City football team by a sniper.

Smith quickly finds the gunman’s hideout complete with the weapon, a standard issue rifle from the Russian army. But as he is about to investigate, the case is taken away from him by the shadowy SOCA (the serious crimes agency). More deaths of football players follow but at every turn the SOCA agents block his investigation. What are they trying to hide? Smith will stop at nothing to find out.

Nothing like a bit of DS Smith to get you out of a reading slump! This is the fourth in the Smith series, while I suppose it can be read as a stand alone, I would suggest to read a few of the previous books (You can read my review of the previous book Ladybird here) just because you may miss some of the recurring story lines from the other novels.

Smith certainly has a rollercoaster of a ride in this novel! His investigation is blocked at every turn. He doesn’t know who to trust. Then a he gets a blast from the past and the death of a close friend sends him on a downward spiral.

My only complaint, this is of course just my opinion, was the fact Smith suddenly takes up smoking, out of the blue which bugged me slightly. It’s a filthy habit and I hope he quits in the next book.

Occam’s Razor is a real thrill ride of a novel that honestly you cannot predict what will happen next.

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.SG Author photo (4)

After Ann 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 available now.

Links:

Website: www.stewartgiles.com

Twitter: @stewartgiles

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

#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 #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

BLOG TOUR banner - Ladybird

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

You can join the Stewart Giles readers club by completing this form:

stewart giles reader club

https://mailchi.mp/a64f6de4c541/sgreadersclub

#BookReview Lost Innocence by M.A Comley @Melcom1

Title: Lost Innocence (DI Sally Parker #5) by M.A Comley

Publication Date: 15th September 2018

Genre: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural

Description:

A chance encount

Leads to devastating consequences.

The statistics for missing children are staggering and emotionally hard to deal with even for the hardest of detectives.

DI Sally Parker and her cold case team need to have their wits about them when two very different cases land on her desk.

Can she solve the mystery of where the bodies are buried?

Past experience tells her that cold cases have a tendency to unearth surprising secrets.

The emotions of the families involved are raw during the course of the investigations but nothing can prepare them for the surprising outcome each case delivers.

Can Sally solve the cases before a distraught family member of one of the victims is laid to rest?

Review:

The story follows DI Sally Parker as she digs into two cases, one a serial killer who refuses to give up the locations of his young female victims and the other is a skeleton of a young boy found buried underneath a garden shed.

I was lucky enough to win an arc copy of Lost Innocence via Facebook. Shamefully this is actually the first M.A Comley book I have read but it won’t be the last! This is the fifth book in the DI Sally Parker series and while I did feel I missed a bit of the character’s story, the author did give a bit of background, so I can safely say it can be read as a stand alone.

Lost Innocence covers the heart breaking subject of child deaths/disappearances and bullying, showing what sort of emotional toil it takes on families and the police who have to investigate such horrific crimes.

I liked Sally Parker, she’s hard working, determined but has trouble leaving her work at the office. She was also a victim of abuse from her ex husband which makes her fight even harder for the victims of crimes. Jack Blackman, her partner, did irk me a bit, second guessing her orders and generally being a bit of a pain but it came from a good place and he genuinely seems to care about Sally (in a non romantic way of course!).

My only complaint is I didn’t really get much of a sense of the setting, which I think is Norfolk (don’t quote me on that one!), an area I’m not familiar with so I would have like learned a bit more about it.

Overall Lost Innocence may be a short book but it packs a hell of an emotional punch and I’d recommend it to fans of Faith Martin.

Rating: 3.5/5

About The Author:

New York Times, USA Today, Amazon Top 20 bestselling author, iBooks top 5 bestselling and #2 bestselling author on Barnes and Noble. Over one million copies sold world wide. I am a British author who moved to France in 2002, and that’s when I turned my hobby into a career.

When I’m not writing crime novels I’m either reading them or going on long walks with my rescue Labrador, Dex.

I hope you enjoy reading my books, especially the Justice series, Cruel Justice, Impeding Justice, Final Justice, Foul Justice, Guaranteed Justice, Ultimate Justice, Virtual Justice, Hostile Justice, Tortured Justice, Rough Justice, Dubious Justice, Calculated Justice, Twisted Justice, Prime Justice, Heroic Justice. There are several novellas and short stories in the series too.

My other successful series are: The DI Sally Parker thriller series, which includes WRONG PLACE, NO HIDING PLACE and COLD CASE

The DI Kayli Bright Trilogy – The Missing Children, Killer on the Run and Hidden Agenda.

The Hero series, TORN APART, END RESULT, IN PLAIN SIGHT and DOUBLE JEOPARDY(published by Bloodhound Books)

I have three books in the Intention series, Sole Intention, Grave Intention and Devious Intention.

I’ve also written a couple of standalone novels – EVIL IN DISGUISE and FOREVER WATCHING YOU.

As well as co-authoring The Caller with Tara Lyons.

And Clever Deception, Tragic Deception and Sinful Deception co-authored by fellow NY Times bestselling author Linda S Prather.

If you’d like to keep up to date with new releases you can find me on Facebook by following this link http://smarturl.it/sps7jh or sign up for my newsletter http://www.hyperurl.co/su1xnt

If you fancy a lighter read, why not try one of my romances: A Time to Heal, and A Time for Change–Based on a TRUE story. I also have a selection of short stories and novelettes available which I know you’ll enjoy.

You can find out more about me at the following blogs.

http://melcomley.blogspot.com

http://melcomleyromances.blogspot.com