#BlogTour #Review #TheRingmaster by Vanda Symon @vandasymon @OrendaBooks #SamShephard #RandomThingsTours

Title: The Ringmaster by Vanda Symon

Publisher: Orenda Books

Date Published: 25th April 2019

Genre: Police procedural

Description:

Marginalised by previous antics, Sam Shephard, is on the bottom rung of detective training in Dunedin, and her boss makes sure she knows it. She gets involved in her first homicide investigation, when a university student is murdered in the Botanic Gardens, and Sam soon discovers this is not an isolated incident. There is a chilling prospect of a predator loose in Dunedin, and a very strong possibility that the deaths are linked to a visiting circus…

Determined to find out who’s running the show, and to prove herself, Sam throws herself into an investigation that can have only one ending…

Rich with atmosphere, humour and a dark, shocking plot, The Ringmaster marks the return of passionate, headstrong police officer, Sam Shephard, in the next instalment of Vanda Symon’s bestselling series.

Review:

After reading the first in this series, Overkill (you can read my review here), I jumped at the chance to read this one. Even though it is the second in the series it can quite easily be read as a stand-alone without feeling that you’ve missed too much.

The Ringmaster is a solid police procedural set in New Zealand, which like the first novel is really conveyed well, with it’s unusual plants and wildlife, I almost felt like I was there while reading this book!

The character of Sam really makes this novel. She’s so life like and likeable, with a sharp wit and plenty of sarcasm, you kind of wish that you actually knew her. She really struggles in this book, going from the small town of Mataura where she was the sole police officer to the relatively big city of Dunedin. Her boss seemed to have it out for her, making her do menial and pointless jobs when she wants to be out there solving the case.

If that wasn’t tough enough, the investigation centres around the circus, a tight community who don’t trust outsiders which Sam has to try and gain their trust and uncover their secrets.

I have to be honest, I kind of pegged who the killer was quite early on and didn’t have quite as many shocks and surprises as the first one but it was still an engaging read.

I’d recommend The Ringmaster to anyone who loves realistic characters and settings that will entertaining you from beginning to end. I’m looking forward to book three!

The Ringmaster blog poster 2019 (1)

About The Author:

Vanda Symon is a crime writer, TV presenter and radio host from Dunedin, New Zealand, andvanda_jacket_br (1) the chair of the Otago Southland branch of the New Zealand Society of Authors.

The Sam Shephard series has climbed to number one on the New Zealand bestseller list, and also been shortlisted for the Ngaio Marsh Award for best crime novel. She currently lives in Dunedin, with her husband and two sons.

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#CoverReveal Sketch by Didi Oviatt @Didi_Oviatt @RRBookTours1 #CreativiaPub

Hello lovelies! Today I have fantastic cover reveal with an exclusive excerpt from the new book by Didi Oviatt but first a little about the book:

Title: Sketch by Didi Oviatt

Expected Publication Date: June 2019

Genre: YA Thriller/ Psychological Thriller

Publisher: Creativia

Description:

When the body of the local girl, Misty Crawl, is found dismembered in an underground bunker, the town is thrown into a whirlwind of panic and speculation. Times aren’t exactly smooth sailing with a depression in full swing. The spaced out community of farmers pull together as one, trying to uncover the guilty party.

Thrown smack in the middle of such chaos, is a group of teens. They’re known troublemakers, but have good hearts. Although they’re innocent, the local law enforcers believe otherwise, and the true killer is lurking far too close for comfort. Will the four be able to uncover the truth before one of them pays the price for Misty’s death? Or will the brutal killer strike again, attacking the heart of the four?

*Sketch is a young adult psychological thriller. It’s a quick easy read, appropriate and gripping for mid-teens and up, with no sexual content and some bloody gore. Parent’s be advised.

Excerpt:

As soon as Steven’s dad, Robert Smith, pulls down the road, they look mischievously at one another and then take off in a sprint down the steps into his basement. Steven’s always wanted to know what’s locked away down here. His father told him years ago that it was just a room full of old newspapers. But, Steven’s always known there has to be more to this dingy looking door all locked away. It doesn’t take Chloe long to pick the lock. She’s getting better and faster at it with every lock she opens. The door creaks as it swings open, and there it is.

Holy shit,” gasps John.

This is the best day of my life,” says Michael.

Look at the dust on all this stuff. I’ll bet this door hasn’t been open in years! No one will even notice if we take it!” adds Chloe.

Steven whispers in fear, “I don’t know guys, my dad will kill me if he finds out.”

No he won’t, Red, I can take him,” jokes Michael.

Staring back at them from the wall to wall metal storage shelves are two small crossbows and an open chest of arrows. Along with old war paint, hatchets, a couple machetes, rope, and one box of newspapers setting on the floor.

What the hell was my dad doing with this stuff?” Steven asks, more to himself than the others.

Steven’s dad isn’t an adventuress man, and aside from the yearly deer and occasional bear he shoots, he doesn’t even like to get out and do much.

The bears are getting out of control around here,” and, “we gotta’ have meat to survive,” is his logic for hunting.

He doesn’t enjoy hunting as a sport like the majority of other men and even women in town. It’s more of a chore for him. Which is only one step away from insanity, in Steven’s point of view. Hunting is Steven’s favorite thing to do with his dad, aside from throwing a football.

Who cares why he has this stuff!?” John says, always the planner of the group. “Let’s just take it now and hurry, in case he forgot something and has to come back home. We don’t want to get caught carrying it all out of your house.”

They grab as much as they can lift and head straight for the woods. Distracted by all the cool things, they don’t even bother to glance at the newspapers in the box on the floor.

Pre- Order http://mybook.to/sketch

Sounds good doesn’t it? And here without further ado is the fabulous cover:

Sketch cover

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Didi Oviatt is an intuitive soul. She’s a wife and mother first, with one son and one daughter. Her thirst to write was developed at an early age, and she never looked back. Didi's Pic

After digging down deep and getting in touch with her literary self, she’s writing mystery/thrillers like Sketch, Search For Maylee, Aggravated Momentum, Justice for Belle, and New Age Lamians. Along with a six- piece short story collection called the Time Wasters. She’s also collaborated with Kim Knight in an ongoing interactive short story anthology The Suspenseful Collection.

When Didi doesn’t have her nose buried in a book, she can be found enjoying a laid back outdoorsy life. Time spent sleeping under the stars, hiking, fishing, and ATVing the back roads of beautiful mountain trails, sun-bathing in the desert heat, along with watching the relaxing dance of a campfire plays an important part of her day-to-day lifestyle.

Didi can be found on her Website/Blog, Goodreads, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and most importantly AMAZON

#Review #Taken by Tony Parsons @TonyParsonsUK

Title: #Taken by Tony Parsons

Publisher: Conerstone

Date Published: 1st March 2019

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

#taken in the night

They thought they were kidnapping the mistress of one of London’s most powerful gangsters. But they’ve taken the wrong woman. And crossed the wrong detective.

#taken underground

Detective Max Wolfe’s hunt for the missing woman takes him from New Scotland Yard’s legendary Black Museum to the glittering mansions of career criminals, from sleazy strip joints to secret sex dungeons – and to unspeakably dark deeds committed decades ago.

#taken to the limit

It’s a world of family secrets, sexual jealousy, and a lust for revenge – which might also become Wolfe’s grave…

Review:

So when I got approved for this on NetGalley, I kind of dropped everything I else I was reading to start this because I absolutely LOVE this series. I can’t recommend it enough if you enjoy a thrilling police procedural. The first review on my blog was actually The Hanging Club back in 2017, which I have since deleted because it was awful, I hope I do a better job on this review!

This is the sixth in the series but I would highly recommend that you’ve read at least the previous book Girl On Fire, as there are minor spoilers for it in this one.

A beautiful young mother, Jessica Lyle, is abducted in broad daylight. Was it a case of mistaken identity or something more sinister?

Max and his boss DCI Whitestone are still hurting from their last case when they get the call that Jessica has been abducted. To make matters worse her father is an ex copper and is making it even harder for them.

If a high profile kidnapping wasn’t enough Max, his ex wife is back in his life, trying to get to know their daughter Scout who she abandoned to start a new family when she was four. Personally I would have told the woman to get lost and if she wanted to see her daughter, she should see a solicitor but under all that gruff exterior Max is so sentimental and keeps thinking things will turn out different.

Whenever I read these books, I always wonder why this hasn’t been made into a TV show??? I would definitely watch it.

Taken is non stop action from beginning to end with plenty of shocks and surprises that will have you saying to yourself ‘just one more chapter’. I actually devoured it in two sessions, I just didn’t want to put it down!

I have to be honest, while the ending ties up any loose ends, it did feel a little too neat and tidy. I know I moan a lot about unanswered questions after I’ve read a novel but I know real life is not quite that cut and dry, so occasionally I don’t mind if a few things slip by the wayside.

Overall Taken is a thrilling and gritty police procedural that will have you hooked from that very first chapter.

About The Author:

Tony Parsons left school at sixteen and his first job in journalism was at the New Musical Express. His first journalism after leaving the NME was when he was embedded with the Vice Squad at 27 Savile Row, West End Central. The roots of the DC Max Wolfe series started here.

Since then he has become an award-winning journalist and bestselling novelist whose books have been translated into more than forty languages. The Murder Bag, the first novel in the DC Max Wolfe series, went to number one on first publication in the UK. All of the DC Max Wolfe novels have been Sunday Times top five bestsellers.

Tony lives in London with his wife, his daughter and their dog, Stan.

My Top 20 Books of 2018 #TopReads2018 #Blogger #BookBlogger

Happy New Year’s Eve!  So that was my first full year of blogging over! I’m still over the moon that I managed to read 163 books this year. It’s been tough to compile this list and I left out so many fantastic books. If you click the links it will take you to my reviews!

So with out further ado, my top twenty books of this year are (in no particular order):

The Fake Date.

The Fake Date

Edna’s Death Cafe

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The Girl In The Gallery

The Girl in the Gallery Cover

Fatal Promise

fatal promise

Raving About Rhys

Raving about Rhys HIGH RES (1)

The Millionaire’s Wife

millionaires

In Her Shadow

in her shadow

The Innocent Wife

Innocent Wife PB Cover Image

Dead Bad

DEAD BAD

Thirteen

thirteen

The Fear

the fear

Fire On The Fens

Boathouse

The Siren And The Specter

The Siren and The Specter Cover

Before I Trust You

Brighton Palace Pier at dawn

Her Last Move

Her Last Move cover

Go Home Afton

Book Cover

The Enigma

The enigma final cover 2

The Life And Death of Eleanor Parker

The-Death-and-Life-of-Eleanor-Parker-Kindle

Three Things About Elsie

IMG_1202

And No Birds Shall Sing.

Final cover ANBSS

And that’s it from me this year, I’ll be back tomorrow with my new year’s resolutions!

#Review Whistle In The Dark by Emma Healey

Hello everyone and welcome to my last review of the year!

Title: Whistle in the Dark by Emma Healey

Publisher: Penguin

Date Published: 3rd May 2018

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Description:

In the award-winning Elizabeth is Missing debut novelist Emma Healey explored grandmother Maud’s attempt to solve a70-year-old mystery as she succumbed to dementia.

Now, in her dazzling follow-up Whistle in the Dark, we meet Jen, mother to 15-year-old Lana – who has just been found after going missing for four desperate days. Lana can’t talk about the missing days. As her daughter’s life falls apart, Jen turns detective to discover what happened . . .

How do you rescue someone who has already been found?

Jen’s fifteen-year-old daughter goes missing for four agonizing days. When Lana is found, unharmed, in the middle of the desolate countryside, everyone thinks the worst is over. But Lana refuses to tell anyone what happened, and the police think the case is closed. The once-happy, loving family returns to London, where things start to fall apart. Lana begins acting strangely: refusing to go to school, and sleeping with the light on.


With her daughter increasingly becoming a stranger, Jen is sure the answer lies in those four missing days. But will Lana ever reveal what happened?

Review:

So I absolutely adored Elizabeth Is Missing by Emma Healey so I was so excited when I heard about her new book and unfortunately it’s taken me this long to get round to reading it!

Whistle In The Dark opens with Jen’s suicidal fifteen year old daughter Lana being found after being missing for four days. Lana refuses point blank to tell her what happened to her saying she doesn’t remember. This sets Jen’s overactive imagination into overdrive, until she follows her daughters footsteps and finds out what really happened to her.

The book pulled me in with the dream like style of writing and the added mystery about where had Lana been. Had she been abducted or something else? Why won’t she tell anyone what happened to her? I was imagining all sorts I can tell you!

The characters are very realistic, especially Lana who reminded me so much of my moody teenage son. I have to be honest though pretty much all the story is told from Jen’s point of view, while she has this child-like overactive imagination, she is also pretty neurotic which grated on my nerves a little bit.

I will say this it does show a quite unflinching view of depression which I appreciated and also showed it from the parents perspective, the feeling of hopelessness and inadequacy that someone who’s child is suffering might feel.

Unfortunately I felt like it missed the mark slightly, mainly because I was expecting a little bit more mystery and intrigue and it kind of just morphed into a family drama (that’s why I marked this as women’sfiction rather than mystery/thriller). In all honesty the only reason I got to the end was to find out what happened to Lana which I found disappointing.

I’d recommend Whistle in the dark to anyone who enjoys realistic characters mixed with family dramas.

About The Author:

Emma Healey wrote her first short story when she was four, told her teachers she was going to be a writer when she was eight, but had learnt better by twelve and had decided on being a litigator (inspired entirely by the film Clueless). It took another ten years before she came back to writing. She grew up in London where she went to art college and completed her first degree in bookbinding. She then worked for two libraries, two bookshops, two art galleries and two universities, and was busily pursuing a career in the art world before writing overtook everything. She moved to Norwich in 2010 to study for the MA in Creative Writing at UEA and never moved back again.

#Review In Her Shadow by Mark Edwards @mredwards

Merry Christmas Eve everyone! I hope you have a lovely Christmas and get everything you wanted 😘

Title: In Her Shadow by Mark Edwards

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Date Published: 4th October 2018

Genre: Psychological Thriller

Description:

Isabel’s life seemed perfect. Successful business, beautiful house, adoring husband. And then she was dead.

For four years Jessica has never doubted that her sister Isabel’s death was an accident. But when Jessica’s young daughter seems to know long-forgotten details about her aunt’s past, Jessica can’t shake the feeling that there’s a more sinister truth behind the tragedy.

As Jessica unearths disturbing revelations about her sister, and about the people she loved and trusted most, it becomes clear Isabel’s life was less than perfect and that Jessica’s might also be at risk.

Did someone murder Isabel? Are they now after Jessica and her family? The key seems to lie in the hands of a child. Can Isabel reveal the truth from beyond the grave, or is the answer closer to home?

In Her Shadow is a gripping tale of family secrets, lies and obsession from the two million copy bestselling author Mark Edwards.

Review:

So this is my first Mark Edwards book and after I finished I really wondered why I hadn’t picked up any of his books sooner!

It’s been four years since Jessica’s sister fell from the balcony of her house. She never once doubted that it was accident until her four year old daughter Olivia starts saying things about Isabel she shouldn’t know. She claims she’s talking to her Auntie Izzy and she wants to tell her something, a terrible secret.

Jessica is torn, should she believe her daughter is talking to Isabel from beyond the grave or is there something more sinister going on…

Wow, what a book! For those who read this blog on a regular basis you may know that I love anything remotely ghostly and adding the psychological thriller aspect, well, I just couldn’t put it down!

I really enjoyed that the story was told from Jessica’s perspective in the present and also Isabel’s from four years previously. The back and forth between the timelines really created some good tension throughout the book.

I do like when an author takes a character that seems so ordinary and puts them in an extraordinary situation. Jessica is a highly strung mum, still grieving for her sister, who gave up a high flying career for her kids, cheeky ten year old Felix and little Olivia.

Olivia was super creepy at times and I think the author got her voice almost perfect, although it is a long time since my son was four, I feel like there could have been a few more babyish/made up words that would have just added a bit more authenticity.

Overall In Her Shadow is a fast paced, twist packed, suspenseful read that you won’t want to put down!

About The Author (taken from Amazon):

I write psychological thrillers in which scary things happen to ordinary people.

I love hearing from readers and always respond. I can be contacted in the following ways:
Email: mark@markedwardsauthor.com
Twitter @mredwards
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/markedwardsbooks

You can download a free box set of ‘Short Sharp Shockers’ by visiting http://www.markedwardsauthor.com/free

I have sold over 2 million books since my first solo novel, The Magpies, was published in 2013. Since then I have topped the bestseller lists several times. My other novels are Because She Loves Me, Follow You Home, What You Wish For, The Devil’s Work, The Lucky Ones and The Retreat. I have also published A Murder of Magpies (a short sequel to The Magpies) and six books co-authored with Louise Voss.

I live in the West Midlands, England, with my wife, our three children, two cats and a golden retriever.

#BlogTour #Review The Deal by SC Cunningham @SCCunningham8 @rararesources

Title: The Deal by SC Cunningham

Date Published: 4th July 2017

Genre: Urban Fantasy, Paranormal.

Description:

A Paranormal Thriller for those who dare to believe that there is something else out there…

At the age of four, Amy was taken…She survived.

A week later, another little girl was taken…She didn’t.

Angry that a bad man has gotten away with murder, feisty young Amy Fox makes a deal with God. When she dies, if she’s been a good girl, would God let her sit on a cloud for a while, invisible, to get bad people who slip through his fingers?

Her deal and God long forgotten, career girl Amy mysteriously dies. Her lifeless body is found beneath a London underground commuter train.

She awakens in the afterlife to discover an international network of like-minded souls who’ve all made the same deal. A sophisticated MI5-esque justice machine sits in the skies, protecting, righting wrongs, tracking criminals, and working within strict rules of play…all against time.

Each country’s Unit shares intelligence, surveillance, and resources to deactivate dangerous situations. The only evidence they leave behind during their earthly visits is a small white feather sashaying to the ground.

In a chaotic world, powerful adversaries try to close her Unit down. A complex SAS vigilante has been assigned to work as her partner, but with his jealous violent ex-girlfriend on her heels and with her own vendetta to settle, Amy has never worked so hard in her entire earthly life. She has to wonder if making a deal with God was a mistake.

The Deal - Ebook

You can buy you copy here:

USA: https://www.amazon.com/Deal-Fallen-Angel-Book-ebook/dp/B071JVY7NC/

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Deal-Fallen-Angel-Book-ebook/dp/B071JVY7NC/
 

Review:

Amy Fox is abducted when she four years old, she makes a deal with God that when she dies she help get the baddies that the police can’t. When she dies at only thirty-two the deal comes into effect and she becomes a Fallen, working with Jack, a mysterious hunk to protect the ‘Erthfolk’ below them.

I have to be honest this is the first time I have read this genre before and wow, this was a lot darker book than I was expecting! Amy and her team deal with the worst of the worst, murderers, paedophiles and rapists to name a few. I want to warn everyone before they jump into this book that there is scenes of child abuse and rape which I found, even as a hardened crime fiction fan, hard to read.

If you put that aside, I really liked Amy. She headstrong, rebellious and a little damaged after her childhood trauma and the chemistry between her and Jack was fantastic. Another one of my favourite characters was Pyke, a computer hacker, and a bit of a sweetheart who’s mission in his afterlife was to punish drug dealing scum.

There was also some tremendous villains that I guarantee will turn your stomach.

I found the whole concept of the story immensely interesting. I would love to think that there was some supernatural police force out there dishing out karma to bullies and bad guys and watching over the most vulnerable in our society.

I did feel that it could have been edited a bit more, especially some of the dialogue. One that sticks out is in the first chapters where Amy is having a conversation with her friend Sal and it went on a little too long, going over the same things. I also felt that story could have ended a bit earlier, as I think that it would have lead nicely into a second book but that of course is just my opinion.

Overall a good start a series and I’m looking forward to see what happens next.

Rating: 3/5

About S C Cunningham:

Author of The Penance List, Unfinished Business and The Deal, Siobhan C Cunningham (S C Cunningham) creates Paranormal Romance and Psychological Crime Thrillers with a skilled mix The Deal - Siobhan C Cunninghamof fuelled tension, dark humour, and pulsating sex scenes. Having worked in the industries she writes about, her novels offer a fresh level of sincerity and authority, rare in fiction.

Abducted as a child, she survived; and every night for months afterwards, she prayed to God, asking for a deal. This personal journey sparked the fuse behind the intriguing and riveting fictional world she portrays in The Deal, the first in The Fallen Angel series. Twenty years later Cunningham crossed paths with a violent serial attacker, sowing the seed for her mind-bending thriller, The David Trilogy; The Penance List, Unfinished Business, For My Sins.

An ex-model, British born of Irish roots, she married a rock musician and has worked in the exciting worlds of music, film, sports, celebrity management and as a Crime Investigator for the British Police (Wanted & Absconder Unit, Major Crime Team, Intelligence Analyst, Investigations Hub).

Her first novel, The Penance List has been adapted to film screenplay.

She is the proud mother to contemporary Artist Scarlett Raven and owned by three dogs.

Social Media Links –

Website – http://www.sccunningham.com/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/SCCunningham8

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pg/sccunningham8/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/siobhancunningham8/

LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/sccunningham/

Google+ – https://plus.google.com/+SCCunninghamAuthor

Amazon Author Page – https://www.amazon.com/S-C-Cunningham/e/B002L3ZC2U/

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