Black Reed Bay (Detective Casey Wray 1) by Rod Reynolds @Rod_WR @OrendaBooks #BookReview

Title: Black Reed Bay (Detective Casey Wray 1) by Rod Reynolds

Date Published: 28th May 2021

Publisher: Orenda Books

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

When a young woman vanishes from an exclusive oceanfront community in the middle of the night, Detective Casey Wray’s takes on a case that leads her in chilling, unexpected directions … A twisty, breath-taking police procedural. First in a heart-pounding new series.

Don’t trust ANYONE…

When a young woman makes a distressing middle-of-the-night call to 911, apparently running for her life in a quiet, exclusive beachside neighbourhood, miles from her home, everything suggests a domestic incident.

Except no one has seen her since, and something doesn’t sit right with the officers at Hampstead County PD. With multiple suspects and witnesses throwing up startling inconsistencies, and interference from the top threatening the integrity of the investigation, lead detective Casey Wray is thrust into an increasingly puzzling case that looks like it’s going to have only one ending…

And then the first body appears…

For fans of Susie Steiner, Peter Swanson, M J Arlidge, James Lee Burke and Tana French.

Review:

I want to thank the TBC reviewer group and Orenda books for providing me with a copy of Black Reed Bay in exchange for an honest review.

Rod Reynolds has been on my radar for a while now, but this is actually the first book I’ve read by him, but it certainly won’t be the last!

A young woman makes a 911 call and seems to vanish. The people of the wealthy neighbourhood that she went missing from claim to have no clue where she went or why she was so distressed. Casey Wray is put on the case and is the only person intent on finding her. Then a body turns up and Casey realises there’s something more sinister going on than she first thought.

Black Reed Bay was one of those books that really kept me on my toes throughout, with plenty of twists and shocks along the way. 

I loved Rod Reynolds’ writing style. Descriptive and evocative without bogging you down with too much detail. Added to that, a cleverly concocted mystery and realistic characters, making it a really entertaining read.

Casey Wray is a fantastic character that I really rooted for. An older officer, she’s worked hard to become a detective and still at times struggles with it all. It’s her sheer determination and need for justice that seems to drive her on. 

Black Reed Bay is a tense and atmospheric police procedural that kept me gripped throughout. I will be eagerly awaiting the next in the series.

About The Author:

Rod Reynolds is the author of five novels, including the Charlie Yates series, the standalone Blood Red City and the forthcoming Black Reed Bay.

His 2015 debut, The Dark Inside, was longlisted for the CWA New Blood Dagger, and was followed by Black Night Falling (2016) and Cold Desert Sky (2018); the Guardian have called the books ‘Pitch-perfect American noir.’ A lifelong Londoner, in 2020 Orenda Books published his first novel set in his hometown, Blood Red City, which was a Summer 2020 pick in the FT. In 2021, he again turns to the US, this time to present-day Long Island, with Black Reed Bay.

Rod previously worked in advertising as a media buyer, and holds an MA in Novel Writing from City University London. Rod lives with his wife and children and spends most of his time trying to keep up with them.

Contact him:

http://www.rodreynolds.com

twitter: @Rod_WR

facebook: @RodReynoldsBooks

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

#Ouija by Zoé-Lee O’Farrell @zooloo2008 @QuestionPress #QMPHorror #QuestionMarkPress #ZooloosBookTours #BookReview

Title: Ouija by Zoé-Lee O’Farrell

Publication Date: 30th August 2021 

Publisher: Question Mark Press

Genre: YA Horror

Description:

The only thing for certain is the deaths were no accident.

Rayner High School, once a prestigious school, stands in ruins after such a terrible event.

A year later, a group of friends return to the abandoned school and their nightmare begins.

Something wants to get out and won’t take NO for an answer…

Ouija is Book 2 in a new series brought to you by Question Mark Horror. For fans of Point Horror, Christopher Pike & Nicholas Pine.

Pre-order your copy here:

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0997CPK3J/

Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/Ouija-Zo%C3%A9-Lee-OFarrell-ebook/dp/B0997CPK3J

Review:

I want to thank Zoé at Zooloos Book Tours for inviting me on his tour and for providing me with a copy of her debut novel Ouija in exchange for an honest review.

This is the second in the QMP young adult horror series, but you don’t have to worry, each story is self-contained and can be read in any order you feel like.

I absolutely love stories that have spirits or evil entities in them, so Ouija, I knew as soon as I read the description, it was going to be right up my street.

Ouija is Zoé-Lee O’Farrell’s debut novel and what a debut it is!

The story follows six friends who decide to go to an abandoned school, the scene of a tragedy a year earlier, to hold a seance with a Ouija board. It’s clear from the outset that there is something wrong in the school, but this doesn’t stop them. During the seance something goes wrong and they summon something they really shouldn’t have. Something that’s determined to see them dead.

Ouija was such an enjoyable ride of a story, packed with plenty of creepy goings on, tension and plenty of teen angst along the way.

Like the previous novel in the series, there’s that air of nostalgia for me, because it really reminded me of the Point Horror books I grew up reading back in the nineties. 

I felt there were a few things that weren’t quite explained fully, but that didn’t spoil my enjoyment of the novel overall. 

Ouija is a short and spooky read that had me gripped from start to finish.

About The Author:

Zoé O’Farrell grew up in Watford but left the town life to live by the sea down at the White Cliffs of Dover.

She spends her days working with numbers before escaping in the evening to the world of words and movies. Her go-to relaxation is watching a scary movie or reading a terrifying book!

She is a book blogger and tour organiser just to keep her extra busy. When she is not reading or writing, you can usually find her watching Watford FC or at a gig. Failing that she can be found rolling her eyes at her husband as he acts the same age as her spitfire of a Mini-Me whilst separating her two cats.

Ouija is her debut novel.

Follow her at:
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/zoelee.anthony

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/zooloo2008

Website : https://zooloosbookdiary.co.uk/

#CampDeath by Jim Ody #QMPHorror #QuestionMarkPress #ZooloosBookTours #BookReview @Jim_Ody_Author @QuestionPress @zooloo2008

Title: Camp Death by Jim Ody

Publication Date: 30th August 2021

Publisher: Question Mark Press

Genre: YA Horror

Description:

The place had a gruesome past that nobody wanted to talk about…

Camp Deathe is now a great place to spend the summer. Ritchie soon finds a group of outsiders like himself. Teenagers who ignore the organised activities, and bunk off in the old abandoned cabins deep in the woods. The cabins that have a history.

The campfire monster stories were meant to just scare them. Nobody expected them to come true. Then one of the teenagers disappears in the middle of the night.

Something is watching them. It hides in the woods and hunts at night.

Ritchie will have to uncover the secrets of the camp and understand his own problems in order to survive.

Camp Death is Book 1 in a new series brought to you by Question Mark Horror. For fans of Point Horror, Christopher Pike & Nicholas Pine.

Pre Order Links :  

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Camp-Death-Question-Mark-Horror-ebook/dp/B0999JVT1F

Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/Camp-Death-Question-Mark-Horror-ebook/dp/B0999JVT1F

Review:

I want to thank Zoé at Zooloos Book Tours for inviting me on his tour and for providing me with a copy of Camp Death in exchange for an honest review.

I’ve read and enjoyed a couple of Jim Ody’s books now, so I was definitely interested when I found out that he’d written a point horror type novel, I loved those when I was younger!

The story follows Ritchie, a troubled teen, who is forced to go on to a summer camp by his parents. From the off there’s something not right about the place, rumours of deaths and disappearances are rife. Ritchie is talked into going to the old abandoned part of the camp, but he finds out too late what a mistake that was.

Camp Death really grabbed me from that first chapter, with a pulse pounding start along with a sprinkling of intrigue in there too.

Ritchie is a realistic and well-drawn character, full of teen angst and hormones. Not always likeable, but then again, what sixteen-year-old is? I say that as the mother of a sixteen-year-old myself. 

Even though it was set in the present day, the book had a bit of an eighties/nineties vibe to it, which I really enjoyed. 

As always with Jim’s books, there’s a bit of mystery wrapped up in the horror making sure you don’t see the full picture until the very end.

I would say the pace wasn’t quite as snappy as Jim’s usual books, but that was just a minor issue.

Camp Death is a quick and creepy read that made me feel nostalgic while I was reading it.

About The Author:

Jim writes dark psychological/thrillers, Horror and YA books that have endings you won’t see coming, and favours stories packed with wit. He has written over a dozen novels and many more short-stories spanning many genres. 

Jim has a very strange sense of humour and is often considered a little odd.  When not writing he will be found playing the drums, watching football and eating chocolate. He lives with his long-suffering wife, three beautiful children and two indignant cats in Swindon, Wiltshire UK.

Follow him at:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/JimOdyAuthor

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Jim_Ody_Author

Amazon : https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jim-Ody/e/B019A6AMSY/

#HalfPastTomorrow by Chris McGeorge @crmcgeorge @orionbooks @Tr4cyF3nt0n #BookReview

Title: Half Past Tomorrow by Chris McGeorge

Date Published: 5th August 2021

Publisher: Orion Publishing

Genre: Thriller

Description:

Shirley Steadman, a 70 year old living in a small town in the North East of England, loves her volunteer work at the local hospital radio. She likes giving back to the community, and even more so, she likes getting out of the house. Haunted by the presence of her son, a reluctant Royal Navy officer who was lost at sea, and still in the shadow of her long dead abusive husband, she doesn’t like being alone much.

One day, at the radio station, she is playing around with the equipment and finds a frequency that was never there before. It is a pirate radio station, and as she listens as the presenter starts reading the news. But there is one problem – the news being reported is tomorrows. Shirley first thinks it is a mere misunderstanding – a wrong date. But she watches as everything reported comes true. At first, Shirley is in awe of the station, and happily tunes in to hear the news.

But then the presenter starts reporting murders – murders that happen just the way they were reported.

And Shirley is the only one who can stop them. 

Review:

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

I’ve not read any books by this author before but when I saw it was about a radio station that reports about murders before they happen I was like, yes, I need to read that! 

The story centres around Shirley who, while volunteering at the local hospital radio station, comes across Mallet AM, a pirate radio station that reports tomorrow’s news. At first, the incidents that are reported were simple accidents, but it slowly becomes more sinister and reports a murder. Shirley can’t leave it alone and sets out to stop the murder from happening.

I love an older main character, especially in a mystery, and I thought Shirley was wonderfully done. She’s headstrong, determined, and won’t let even her frail health stop her from getting to the bottom of the mystery. She also carries pain and guilt around from her past, making her you root for her even more.

I also loved the hospital radio setting, as it gave me a bit of nostalgia for the days when I used to listen to the radio myself.  

There were some good shocks and surprises along the way, but for me, the story was a little slow burn. That’s not a bad thing, but I was just expecting some more chills and thrills.

Half Past Tomorrow is a solid thriller with memorable characters and an original and intriguing storyline.

About The Author:

Chris McGeorge studied MA Creative Writing (Crime/Thriller) at City University London where he wrote his first novel as his thesis. His interests are broad – spanning film, books, theatre and video games. He is a member of the Northern Crime Syndicate, a supergroup of writers from Northern England. He lives in County Durham with his partner and many, many animals.

Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid #BookReview #MiniReview

Title: Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Date Published: 7th March 2019

Publisher: Hutchinson

Genre: Historical/literary fiction

Description:

Everybody knows Daisy Jones and the Six.

From the moment Daisy walked barefoot on to the stage at the Whisky, she and the band were a sensation. Their sound defined an era. Their albums were on every turntable. They sold out arenas from coast to coast.

This is the story of their incredible rise: the desire, the rivalry – and the music.

Then, on 12 July 1979, Daisy Jones and the Six split up.

Nobody knew why. Until now…

Review:

I have seen some fantastic reviews for Daisy Jones & the Six since it’s release, so when I spotted it in the library I thought I’d give it a go even though it’s not my usual genre.

What I loved about the book was it was written as if it was a real documentary about a seventies rock band. While I was reading it, it almost convinced me they were, in fact, a real band.

I know little about seventies music or the whole scene (bit before my time) but Taylor Jenkins Reid created this hedonistic atmosphere of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ rock that I found entirely believable. 

Honestly, would I say I liked any of the characters? Not really, but there was just something about them that fascinated me and made me want to read on and see what happened.

A little trigger warning/spoiler here, this book contains themes of drug and alcohol abuse, along with abortion, which the author handles sensitively, but it was realistic too, which at times was a little uncomfortable to read. 

Daisy Jones & The Six is an original and captivating read that I honestly thought about for days after finishing it.

About The Author:

Taylor Jenkins Reid is the New York Times bestselling author of Daisy Jones & The Six and The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, as well as One True Loves, Maybe in Another Life, After I Do, and Forever, Interrupted. Her newest novel, Malibu Rising, is out now. She lives in Los Angeles.

You can follow her on Instagram @tjenkinsreid

The Beresford by Will Carver @OrendaBooks @will_carver #BookReview

Title: The Beresford by Will Carver

Date Published: 22nd May 2021

Publisher: Orenda Books

Genre: Thriller/Horror

Description:

Just outside the city – any city, every city – is a grand, spacious but affordable apartment building called The Beresford.

There’s a routine at The Beresford.

For Mrs May, every day’s the same: a cup of cold, black coffee in the morning, pruning roses, checking on her tenants, wine, prayer and an afternoon nap. She never leaves the building.

Abe Schwartz also lives at The Beresford. His housemate, Sythe, no longer does. Because Abe just killed him. 

In exactly sixty seconds, Blair Conroy will ring the doorbell to her new home and Abe will answer the door. They will become friends. Perhaps lovers. 

And, when the time comes for one of them to die, as is always the case at The Beresford, there will be sixty seconds to move the body before the next unknowing soul arrives at the door.

Because nothing changes at The Beresford, until the doorbell rings…

Eerie, dark, superbly twisted and majestically plotted, The Beresford is the stunning standalone thriller from one of crime fiction’s most exciting names.

Review:

I want to thank Orenda books and THE Book Club Reviewer Group for providing me with a copy of The Beresford in exchange for an honest review.

I’ve read a couple of books by Will Carver now and I’ve always come to expect the unexpected while reading his novels and The Beresford is no different.

The Beresford is written in Will Carver’s signature style, dark, a little gruesome, underlined by a cynical tone and sharp wit. 

I love the fact that the characters seem so ordinary and lifelike, like you’d know someone who’s similar or you could imagine passing one of them in the street but each one is compelling in their own way.

The Beresford is almost like a character in itself even though it’s only a building. It’s owned and run by the elderly Mrs May. It’s an old and imposing building but the rent is cheap so there’s always a line of willing people to rent a flat there, even though the turnover rate of renters there is incredibly high.

While there is an air of mystery, (I mean why do the residents keep murdering each other???), I’d say this is more out-and-out horror than Will Carver’s usual horror/mystery novels. I’d still recommend it if you loved his previous books.

The Beresford is Gothic, creepy and more than a little unsettling yet still keeps you glued to those pages. 

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 eleven, 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, and lives in Reading with his two children. Will’s latest title published by Orenda Books, The Beresford is out in July 2021. His previous title Hinton Hollow Death Trip was longlisted for the Not the Booker Prize, while Nothing Important Happened Today was longlisted for the Theakston’s Old Peculier Crime Novel of the Year. Good Samaritans was book of the year in Guardian, Telegraph and Daily Express, and hit number one on the ebook charts. 

#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

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