#BlogTour Snow Light by Danielle Zinn @DanielleZinn4 @darkstrokedark @BOTBSPublicity

Hello lovelies! Today I’m resharing my review for Snow Light by Danielle Zinn as part of its re-release blog tour organised by Sarah Hardy at Books On The Bright Side Publicity. First a little about the book:

Title: Snow Light by Danielle Zinn

 Date Published: 1st June 2020

Publisher: Darkstroke Books

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

When Detective Inspector Nathaniel Thomas encounters a man attacking a young woman in a local park, the DI is unable to save her. Out of guilt, Thomas quits his job at Homicide Headquarters and relocates to the tiny village of Crottendorf, where he regains control of himself and begins to enjoy life again.

However, a year later, all the guilt and shame of the park incident re-emerges when a local hermit, Ethan Wright, is murdered with an unusual weapon and left on display in the centre of the village.

For Thomas, the situation gets worse when Detective Sergeant Ann Collins, a colleague from his past, appears to help with the case. But things become complicated when the victim’s identity is put into question.

Who is the victim? And why was he murdered?

Whilst Thomas and Collins find themselves trying to solve the unusual case, they may have more in common than they could have ever imagined. 

Review:

DI Nathaniel Thomas comes across a murder in progress but is unable to stop. He quits his job and moves to the small village of Turtleville in the Ore Mountains. His quiet life is thrown into chaos when Ethan Wright, the local oddball and hermit is murdered and placed on public display. But Ethan Wright is not who everyone thinks he is. With the help of DS Ann Collins, he must find out who Wright really is and catch the killer.

The opening to this book was fantastic, you’re thrown right into the action, when we relive DI Thomas’s memory of him comes across a murder in progress. It skips to a year later with Thomas being called out to another crime scene, this time in a sleepy little village.

I loved the setting up in the snowy mountains, which was so realistic it made me shiver at times. I’m just glad I don’t live there myself, I don’t think I could live with all that snow!

I liked the character of DI Thomas. You really feel his guilt and pain throughout the book as this murder brings up a lot of his unresolved issues. There is also an extra complication because he is acting guardian/surrogate dad to his friends’ 11-year-old daughter Sky, who is full of sassiness and is constantly trying to break the rules (She reminds me of a cheekier version of my son). His partner DS Ann Collins was not overly likeable, she’s quite blunt and moody (which makes a change it’s usual the men who are the taciturn ones), but she was a fascinating character and played off DI Thomas well.

It is fairly slow to start off but there were a few twists I did not see coming once the story got nearer the end, which made me not want to put it down until I finished it.

My only issue was it was quite a complicated story line and I got a little bit lost in the middle with who was who and who were the suspects.

A great debut novel and is the perfect wintry read for crime fans.

About The Author:

Danielle holds a BA (Hons) degree in Business and Management from New College Durham/UK and has settled down in Leipzig/Germany, where she works as a Financial Controller at an IT Consultancy.

Born and raised in a small village in the Ore Mountains/Germany Danielle was introduced to the world of English literature and writing from an early age on through her mother – an English teacher.

Her passion for sports, especially skiing and fencing, stems from her father’s side. Danielle draws her inspiration for writing from long walks in the country with her partner as well as circumnavigating the globe and visiting friends scattered all over the world.

Mix everything together and you get “Snow Light”, a detective mystery combining a stunning wintry setting in the Ore Mountains with unique traditions, some sporty action and lots of suspense.

Find Danielle Zinn on:

Twitter: @DanielleZinn4             https://twitter.com/daniellezinn4 

Facebook: Danielle.zinn.7           https://www.facebook.com/danielle.zinn.7

#ThePatienceofaDeadMan by Michael Clark @MikeClarkBooks @damppebbles #damppebblesblogtours

Title: The patience of a dead man by Michael Clark

Date Published: 22nd April 2019

Genre: Horror/Ghost Story

Description:

He just spent everything on a house in disrepair, but he didn’t know someone was waiting inside.

Tim Russell just put his last dollar on a handyman’s dream; a quaint but dilapidated farmhouse in New Hampshire. Newly single after a messy divorce, his plan is to live in the house as he restores it for resale. To his horror, as soon as the papers are signed and his work starts, ghosts begin to appear. A bone-white little boy. A woman covered in flies. Tim can’t afford to leave and lose it all, so he turns to his real estate agent Holly Burns to help him decide whether he has any shot at solving his haunted problem. Can they solve the mystery before he loses his investment…or maybe his life?

You can buy your copy here:

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Patience-Dead-Man-Michael-Clark-ebook/dp/B07QRVFPN9/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=the+patience+of+a+dead+man&qid=1579081754&sr=8-1

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Patience-Dead-Man-Michael-Clark-ebook/dp/B07QRVFPN9/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=the+patience+of+a+dead+man&qid=1579082040&sr=8-1

Amazon CA: https://www.amazon.ca/Patience-Dead-Man-Michael-Clark/dp/173379042X

Audible: https://www.audible.co.uk/pd/The-Patience-of-a-Dead-Man-Audiobook/B07YNXY9X6

The Patience of a Dead Man banner V3

Review:

I want to thank Emma at Damppebbles blog tours for inviting me on this tour and providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

The patience of a dead man was a fantastically spooky and enthralling read! It has the right balance of scary and creepy with that air of mystery too.

I love a haunted house story and I really enjoyed reading Micheal Clark’s different slant on the old horror trope. 

The majority of the story is set in 1971 and we follow Tim who after a messy divorce that leaves him almost broke, he decides to buy a fixer-upper to try and make some money. From the very beginning there’s something not right about the property and the strange happenings grow ever more dangerous. He asks Holly, the estate agent who sold him the property to help him solve the mystery and before his investment goes down the drain.

The other parts of the story are told through journal extracts and spooky visions (I can’t say too much about these in case I give away spoilers!) and were expertly weaved throughout the story.

There were a few sudden changes of POV during the chapters which threw me off a little and I would have liked there to be a few more seventies references as parts of the story are meant to be set in the 1970’s but of course they’re just minor things. 

While it does wrap up most of the story in this book, it does leave it open for a sequel which I personally can’t wait to read!

The patience of a dead man is a spine tingling ghost story that will both spook and entertain you in equal measure.

About the author:

Michael Clark was raised in New Hampshire and lived in the house The Patience of a MikeClark-55-smallDead Man is based on. The bats of the barn really circled the rafters all day and there actually was a man-made grove hidden in the forest. He now lives in Massachusetts with his wife Josi and his dog Bubba.

The Patience of a Dead Man is his first novel. Dead Woman Scorned is his second. More to come.

Social Media:

Twitter: https://twitter.com/mikeclarkbooks

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

Website: https://www.michaelclarkbooks.com/

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

BookBub: https://www.bookbub.com/profile/michael-clark-62905d29-5149-46e1-bfa9-ae954e0949d7

#BookReview The Waiting Rooms by Eve Smith @evecsmith @OrendaBooks

Title: The Waiting Rooms by Eve Smith

Date Published: 9th April 2020

Publisher: Orenda Books

Genre: Thriller

Description:

Decades of spiralling drug resistance have unleashed a global antibiotic crisis. Ordinary infections are untreatable: a scratch from a pet can kill. A sacrifice is required to keep the majority safe: no one over seventy is allowed new antibiotics. The elderly are sent to hospitals nicknamed ‘The Waiting Rooms.’ Hospitals where no one ever gets well.

Twenty years after the crisis takes hold, Kate begins a search for her birth mother, armed only with her name and her age. As Kate unearths disturbing facts about her mother’s past, she puts her family in danger and risks losing everything.

Because Kate is not the only secret that her birth mother is hiding. Someone else is looking for her, too.

Sweeping from an all-too-real modern world to a pre-crisis South Africa, The Waiting Rooms is epic in scope, richly populated with unforgettable characters, and a tense, haunting vision of a future that is only a few mutations away.

Review:

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

The Waiting Rooms is a captivating, if slightly scary, read.

So I decided what better book to read during a pandemic is a book about a pandemic! As it happens this novel turned out to be so much more than that, the pandemic sort of fades into the background and it becomes more of a tale of love and loss.

Eve Smith has created a believable world not too far off from our own world, where the overuse of antibiotics had led to disease or injury, once easily treated, has become deadly. Over seventies are denied medication or treatment, they have the option to either end their lives or suffer their illness until the end. They are sent to ‘waiting rooms’ if they’re lucky they end up in a top notch nursing home, the less lucky ones end rotting away in flats.

The main story revolves around three women. Kate who’s adoptive mother has just died leading her to look for her birth mother. Lily, who is just coming up for her seventieth birthday and is afraid that someone from her past is coming back to haunt her. Then there’s Mary whose POV starts before the crisis and goes to the root of what happened.  Each character is really fleshed out and flawed, you almost think that they’re real.

The parts that were set in Africa were amazing and descriptive, I could almost picture myself there while I was reading.

If I’m going to nitpick here, certain aspects of the story were a little predictable but of course that’s just my opinion.

The Waiting room has realistic characters and an evocative story line that makes it an almost hypnotising read.

About The Author:

Eve Smith’s debut novel The Waiting Rooms was shortlisted for the Bridport Prize Firsteve c smith Novel Award. Eve writes speculative fiction, mainly about the things that scare her. She attributes her love of all things dark and dystopian to a childhood watching Tales of the Unexpected and black-and-white Edgar Allen Poe double bills.

Eve’s flash fiction has been shortlisted for the Bath Flash Fiction Award and highly commended for The Brighton Prize. In this world of questionable facts, stats and news, she believes storytelling is more important than ever to engage people in real life issues.

Eve’s previous job as COO of an environmental charity took her to research projects across Asia, Africa and the Americas, and she has an ongoing passion for wild creatures, wild science and far-flung places. A Modern Languages graduate from Oxford, she returned to Oxfordshire fifteen years ago to set up home with her husband.

When she’s not writing, she’s racing across fields after her dog, attempting to organise herself and her family or off exploring somewhere new.

Follow Eve: @evecsmith & www.evesmithauthor.com

Instagram: evesmithauthor

#BookReview The Memory Wood by Sam Lloyd @samlloydwrites @TransworldBooks @ThomasssHill #TheMemoryWood

Title: The Memory Wood by Sam Lloyd

Publisher: Transworld

Publication Date: 20th February

Genre: Thriller

Description:

The must-read novel of 2020. Chilling, moving and unputdownable, The Memory Wood is a thriller like no other.

*************

Elijah has lived in the Memory Wood for as long as he can remember. It’s the only home he’s ever known.

Elissa has only just arrived. And she’ll do everything she can to escape.

When Elijah stumbles across thirteen-year-old Elissa, in the woods where her abductor is hiding her, he refuses to alert the police. Because in his twelve years, Elijah has never had a proper friend. And he doesn’t want Elissa to leave.

Not only that, Elijah knows how this can end. After all, Elissa isn’t the first girl he’s found inside the Memory Wood.

As her abductor’s behaviour grows more erratic, Elissa realises that outwitting strange, lonely Elijah is her only hope of survival. Their cat-and-mouse game of deception and betrayal will determine both their fates, and whether either of them will ever leave the Memory Wood . . 

Review:

I want thank Thomas Hill at Transworld books for sending me an arc copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  

And the award for first book hangover of the year goes to…you guessed it The Memory Wood.

What can I say about this book??? It was such an atmospheric read, with the right blend of creepiness and intrigue that gave it an almost fairytale like quality. In fact when I started reading it, I felt like I’d fallen into some sort of dark twisty fairy story.

The story is told from three different perspectives, Elijah, Elissa and Mairead, each one of them giving a different dimension to the story. Elijah is a troubled twelve year old boy who’s hiding a terrible secret. Elissa is a smart, mature (sometimes she seems a little too mature), thirteen year old. Mairead is the detective in charge of investigating Elissa’s disappearance but has a lot of personal problems that threat to interfere with the case.

I can’t say too much more in case of spoilers but I will say it was a fabulously twisty read.

The only real issue I had was I felt there were a couple of inconsistencies or things that were just kind of smoothed over, which slightly bugged me. 

The Memory Wood is a definite must read for anyone who loves a psychological thriller. I will definitely be on the lookout for more from this author.

About The Author:

Sam Lloyd grew up in Hampshire, making up stories and building secret hideaways in his local woods. These days he lives in Surrey with his wife, three young sons and a dog that likes to howl. He enjoys craft beer, strong coffee and (rarely) a little silence. The Memory Wood is his debut thriller.

#BlogTour #Review Are You Watching by Vincent Ralph @VincentRalph1 @PenguinUKBooks @annecater #AreYouWatchingMagpieMan

Title: Are You Watching by Vincent Ralph

Date Published: 19th December 2019

Publisher: Penguin

Genre: YA Mystery

Description:

Ten years ago, Jess’s mother was murdered by the Magpie Man.

She was the first of his victims but not the last.

Now Jess is the star of a YouTube reality series and she’s using it to catch the killer once and for all.

The whole world is watching her every move.

And so is the Magpie Man.

Are You Watching BT Poster

Review:

When Jess was seven her mum was killed by a killer dubbed The Magpie Man. Ten years later he still hasn’t been caught, killing every nine months. She’s determined for justice, so she joins a YouTube reality series that will follow her around one day every week.

She wants to provoke a reaction, get him out of the shadows but is she ready to face him? 

What a fantastic debut Are You Watching is! 

I absolutely devoured Are You Watching. It combines two of my favourite genres, mystery and young adult, to make an absolutely sensational story. There’s the sort of young adult contemporary aspect where we have a damaged character who goes on an emotional journey of self discovery, then we have the mystery which was both intriguing and nail biting to satisfy a crime addict like myself.   

I warmed to Jess from the start. Yes, she was a little selfish and reckless but losing her mum at a young age in such a violent way is bound to have a bad effect on someone. I also appreciated that the author showed the ripple effect of how a crime can affect someone, especially if they’ve had no sort of justice. 

A nice surprise for me was I had no idea who the Magpie Man was until it was revealed which is a hard thing to do to an avid crime reader like myself!

Are You Watching is utterly compelling and addictive, I just couldn’t get enough! I can’t wait to read more from this author.

About The Author:

Vincent Ralph has been writing in one form or another since his teens and always Vincent Ralph Author picdreamed of being a novelist. He owes his love of books to his mother, who encouraged his imagination from an early age and made sure there were new stories to read.

Vincent has lived in London, Cornwall and Chester but he now lives in his home county of Kent with his wife, son and two cats.

#BookSpotlight Men of the Year by Colleen McMillan @btwnthelinespub @RRBookTours1 #indiepub #romance #Promo #Excerpt

Welcome to the blog tour for Men of the Year by Colleen McMillan! Read on for an exclusive excerpt from Colleen’s debut novel!

MofY digital cover

Title: Men of the Year by Colleen McMillan 

Publication Date: 8th October 2019

Genre: Women’s Fiction/ Romantic Comedy

Publisher: Willow River Press

Description:

Cassie doesn’t want your pity. She doesn’t want your sympathy. And she certainly doesn’t want to date you.

When perpetually single Cassie McTiernan agrees to her friends’ online dating scheme, she thinks she’ll go on maybe two dates then bail before things get uncomfortable. She’s turning 30; might as well give it a shot, right? Little does she know that they’ve devised a contract, binding her to date one man per month for one year. Sure, if she finds Mr. Right she doesn’t have to complete their challenge. How hard could dating be?

Jumping through an increasingly long list of hoops, Cassie realizes that she might have to endure the entire tortuous year with twelve strange men beside her. What could go wrong? Why does her first date need two cell phones? And is the man who broke her heart years before lurking behind that shadowy bush?

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/48391661-men-of-the-year

Purchase on Amazon: 

https://www.amazon.com/Men-Year-Colleen-McMillan-ebook/dp/B07YNG4W6N/ref=sr_1_1?crid=L6ANEWK5SM9A&keywords=man+of+the+year+colleen+mcmillan&qid=1571163865&sprefix=men+of+the+year%2Caps%2C183&sr=8-1

Excerpt:

“We have a proposition for you,” says Alicia, suddenly in let’s-make-a-deal mode.  Her tone fits a power suit more than her jeans and sequined top.

“More of a bet, you guys said it was a bet,” says Keeley in a much more anxious voice than Alicia.  There better not be a male stripper waiting at my apartment building when I get home. Hopefully they didn’t shave my cat like last Fourth of July.

“You’re such an ass Keel,” says Lindsey, in no way helpful.  “She won’t win anything if she does it.”

“Oh, she’ll do it.  She’s curious already.”  Alicia’s grinning now too, but I feel my smile fading.  It’s like I’m in front of a court-marshal hearing.

“What did you do?”

“It’s really awesome!  I think it’s a really good idea!  Lindsey and Alicia thought of it.”

“Great, so what is it?”  The bar music changes to the Dropkick Murphys’ thudding beats, and I notice how many people are in the bar.  A public place. Somewhere I can’t lose it and scream at them. “What is it?”

They all talk at once, cutting each other off.

“Don’t be mad—”

“Who cares if she’s mad, she’s doing it—”

“It was a good idea, right?”

“Enough you guys!”  I pound the table with my mug, sloshing beer.  It spills on my hand and I reach for some napkins.  “Did you get me something stupid like a pony?”

“You wish,” says Alicia.

“It’s better than a fucking pony.”

“It’s a boyfriend!”  Keeley’s exclamation startles me.  She covers her lips with her fingers.  “Sort of…”

“Not very easy to wrap,” I say and cross my arms over my chest.  Please not a blow-up doll, please not a blow-up doll, not in front of all these people.

“It’s not the sort of thing Macy’s gift-wraps for you with a sprig of mint or whatever,” says Alicia as she waves her cocktail straw back and forth in a motion that suggests scolding one of her children.  “We got you something thoughtful this year. Something you actually need.”

“I need a new loofa,” I mumble.  And maybe some nice bath soaps.  Is it too much to ask for nice bath soaps?  Maybe honeysuckle-scented? 

“Stop bitching and listen,” says Lindsey.  “Alicia, Keeley, and I got together and really thought this through.  Step one: you need to stop moping about dating and just get on with it, or ‘get it on with it’ if you will, you’re not getting any younger or thinner.”

“Thanks a lot.”

She ignores me and goes on, “Step two: stop whining about your job and get a better one.”

“She means start writing again,” whispers Keeley, trying to sound supportive.

“So basically, what you got me is an inspirational rant from a divorcee whose sole purpose in life is to sleep with as many men as she can before her vagina falls off.”

“Ha ha.  Listen. We signed you up for an online dating service.”

“You did what?”

About the Author

Colleen may be a writer, but she’s also a dater. Many of the events in this novel happenedcolleen to her or someone she knows, both male and female. Who hasn’t felt the harsh slap of an unanswered email on Match.Harmony.Fishing.com? Who hasn’t narrowly avoided an oncoming mouth with its tongue sticking out and drool tendrils forming in the corners? She wrote this novel because her fellow online daters needed a voice, or at least a fun read to get them through the day after their online crush quit the website because he “found someone else.” She has been published in Iconoclast literary magazine as well as in her college literary journal, Prologue. She lives in Minnesota with her faithful cat, Duncan.

REASON FOR WRITING THIS PARTICULAR NOVEL

My love life is disastrous, mainly because it’s nonexistent. What dates I did go on in my twenties went well enough, or so I thought. After a long string of first dates with men who weren’t too keen on my opinions once we actually met in person, I wondered if my other friends were having the same issues. Hint: they were. This was before rampant “dick pics” emerged, and most online dating sites were pay only. I signed up for Plenty of Fish, a free matchmaker site my friend recommended, which was an even bigger school of sharks masquerading as tropical fish. I had a terrible relationship stemming from that site, which prompted me to finish the little novel I’d been working on for years.

-Colleen McMillan

Author Links:

Between the Lines Publishing: https://btwnthelines.com/

Blog Tour Schedule

January 6th

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

Viviana MacKade (Spotlight) https://viviana-mackade.blog/

The Magic of Wor(l)ds (Interview) http://themagicofworlds.wordpress.com

January 7th

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

Al-Alhambra Book Reviews (Review) https://alalhambrabookreviews.home.blog

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

January 8th

B is for Book Review (Interview) https://bforbookreview.wordpress.com

The Middle Years Journey (Review) https://themiddleyearsjourney.com/

I’m Into Books (Review) https://imintobooks.com

January 9th

My Bookish Bliss (Review) http://www.mybookishbliss.com

The Bookworm Drinketh (Review) http://thebookwormdrinketh.wordpress.com/

Crossroad Reviews (Spotlight) http://www.crossroadreviews.com

January 10th

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

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

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

Blog Tour Organised By: 

R&R Book Tours

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Link: http://rrbooktours.com

#BlogTour #BookReview What Falls Between The Cracks by Robert Scragg @robert_scragg @MorecambeVice #CrimeWritingFestival @BOTBSPublicity

Today is my stop on the Morecambe and Vice blog tour where I’m bringing you my review of What falls between the cracks by Robert Scragg:

robert scragg

Title: What Falls Between The Cracks (Porter & Styles 1) by Robert Scragg

Date Published: 19th April 2018

Publisher: Allison & Bushby

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

When a severed hand is found in an abandoned flat, Detective Jake Porter and his partner Nick Styles are able to DNA match the limb to the owner, Natasha Barclay, who has not been seen in decades. But why has no one been looking for her? It seems that Natasha’s family are the people who can least be trusted. Delving into the details behind her disappearance and discovering links to another investigation, a tragic family history begins to take on a darker twist. Hampered by a widespread fear of a local heavy, as well as internal politics and possible corruption within the force, Porter and Styles are digging for answers, but will what they find ever see the light of day?

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Review:

I want to thank Sarah at Books on The Bright Side Publicity for inviting me on this tour and the author for providing me with a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

The book opens with the discovery of a severed hand in a flat that looks like it’s been abandoned for years. Further investigation shows it belongs to a young woman called Natasha Barclay but she hasn’t been seen since 1983. Detectives Porter and Styles are assigned to this baffling case.

What Falls Between The Cracks is a cleverly crafted and well written police procedural. It’s Robert Scragg’s debut novel and the first in the Porter and Styles series.

The two detectives were a bit of chalk and cheese. Porter is a damaged character, still grieving for his wife and refusing point blank to face anything to do with her death, throwing himself into his work. Then there’s Styles, a bit of a joker and happily married. I really enjoyed the banter between Porter and Styles throughout the novel, gave a bit of relief in all the intensity of the case.

While I appreciate we get to know Porter and Styles outside of the job, I did feel like I got a little distracted from what should have been the main story, especially by the death of Porter’s wife. Also the pace was a little off for me, sometimes fast, other times it dragged a little.

What Falls Between The Cracks is an intriguing and intense police procedural that is a good start to this series.

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About The Author:

robert scragg authorRobert Scragg had a random mix of jobs before taking the dive into crime writing; he’s been a bookseller, pizza deliverer, Karate instructor and Football coach. He lives in Tyne & Wear, is a founding member of the North East Noir crime writers group and is currently writing the second Porter and Styles novel. For a full list of upcoming events and more info about Robert and his books, visit http://www.robertscragg.com

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The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E Harrow @AlixEHarrow @orbitbooks @Tr4cyF3nt0n #TenThousandDoors

Title: The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow

Publisher: Orbit

Date Published: 12th September 2019

Genre: Historical Fiction

Description:

EVERY STORY OPENS A DOOR

In a sprawling mansion filled with peculiar treasures, January Scaller is a curiosity herself. As the ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke, she feels little different from the artifacts that decorate the halls: carefully maintained, largely ignored and utterly out of place.

But her quiet existence is shattered when she stumbles across a strange book. A book that carries the scent of other worlds and tells a tale of secret doors, of love, adventure and danger. Each page reveals more impossible truths about the world, and January discovers a story increasingly entwined with her own.

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Review:

The Ten Thousand Doors of January is beautifully written historical novel, with an almost poetic feel to it.

January is a compelling character who finds it hard to fit in, which I think a lot of people can relate to. She has a bit of a wild, untameable, personality but on the other side of that she’s lonely and has a need to be accepted and loved.

I can really tell that the author has put so much research into this novel, it’s really underpinned with real historical events to give it that air of realism to the fantastical events through the novel.

What I would advise when reading is patience. It’s very much a slow burn, slow build novel that you have to immerse yourself in and not something you can rush through.

I’d recommend this to anyone who loves a nod to classical fiction and fairy tales.

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About The Author:

Alix E. Harrow is an ex-historian with lots of opinions and excessive library fines, currently livingclone tag: 4321375644802703302 in Kentucky with her husband and their semi-feral children. Her short fiction has been nominated for the Hugo, Nebula and Locus awards. The Ten Thousand Doors of January is her debut novel. Find her on Twitter at @AlixEHarrow.

#BlogTour #Review Dead Inside by Noelle Holten @nholten40 @BOTBSPublicity @KillerReads

Title: Dead Inside by Noelle Holten

Publisher: Killer Reads

Date Published: 31st May 2019

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

Kept me hooked … excellent pace and a very satisfying ending’ Angela Marsons

An excellent read’ Martina Cole

‘A brilliant debut – gritty, dark and chilling. Noelle Holten knows her stuff’ Mel Sherratt

A dark and gripping debut crime novel – the first in a stunning new series – from a huge new talent.

The killer is just getting started…

When three wife beaters are themselves found beaten to death, DC Maggie Jamieson knows she is facing her toughest case yet.

The police suspect that Probation Officer Lucy Sherwood – who is connected to all three victims – is hiding a dark secret. Then a fourth domestic abuser is brutally murdered.

And he is Lucy’s husband.

Now the police are running out of time, but can Maggie really believe her friend Lucy is a cold-blooded killer?

Review:

I want to thank Sarah at Books On The Bright Side Publicity for inviting me on this tour. I received a free arc of this book via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

So this is Noelle Holten debut novel, and wow, Dead Inside is some hard hitting stuff! A little warning before you read this book the main focus of the story is domestic abuse from the beatings to the more sinister psychological torment that victims endure but I felt it was handled with honesty and sensitivity.

I feel like this book is part police procedural, part psychological thriller, which are my two favourite genres. It is a multiple POV story, the main viewpoints are from DC Maggie Jamieson and probation officer Lucy.

Lucy is one of those characters who seems strong on the outside but on the inside she’s struggling. Her husband Patrick is abusive but she can’t bring herself to leave him. The irony of it is that she deals with men like him on a daily basis as part of her job as a probation officer.

Maggie has started a new job in the DAHU which stands for the domestic abuse and homicide unit it after being transferred. She’s dumped in at the deep end when a body shows up, tortured, that was on the police’s watch list as an abuser.

What I like is I feel there is room for Maggie’s character to grow and I look forward to getting to know her better as this series goes along.

My main issue was I felt the book was more focused on the domestic abuse aspect, which is admirable, I feel like it needs to be talked about and victims not stigmatised but as a woman it makes it no easier to read about other women suffering such horrible things.

Dead Inside is an insightful debut, that is faces some thorny issues head on and will send you on a rollercoaster of emotions throughout. The ending has left it open for a sequel which I’m looking forward to.

#DeadInside B L O G T O U R

About The Author:

Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at www.crimebookjunkie.co.uk. She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and a regularscreenshot-2018-12-03-at-13-14-311 reviewer on the Two Crime Writers and a Microphone podcast. Noelle worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of cases including those involving serious domestic abuse. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, author-stalking and sharing the booklove via her blog. 
Dead Inside is her debut novel with Killer Reads/Harper Collins UK and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.

Links:

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

Twitter: (@nholten40) https://twitter.com/nholten40

Goodreads Author Page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/18489795.Noelle_Holten

Blog: https://www.crimebookjunkie.co.uk

Instagram: @crimebookjunkie

#BlogTour #Review In The Silence by M.R. Mackenzie @Bloodhoundbook @landofwhimsy #DebutNovel

Title: In The Silence by M.R Mackenzie

Publisher: Bloodhound Books

Date Published: 10th September 2018

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

Anna hasn’t set foot in Glasgow for ten years. And for very good reasons…

Anna, a criminology lecturer, returns to Glasgow from Rome during the coldest winter in memory. While out with her best friend from school, Anna has a chance encounter with a former flame, Andrew. Tragedy strikes later that night when Anna discovers Andrew stabbed and dying on a blanket of snow.

Soon Anna finds herself at the centre of the investigation as the star witness for the police, and embarks on investigating the case herself. But Anna doesn’t realise the danger she is in and soon finds herself in trouble.

When another body shows up, who has links to the first victim, it appears that the motive may lie buried in the past.

As Anna gets closer to the truth, the killer starts closing in.

But can she solve the gruesome mystery before the killer strikes again?

Review:

Dr Anna Scavolini has lived in Rome for the last ten years but is drawn by home to Glasgow by her friend Zoe for her birthday. Unpleasant memories begin to surface, especially when she comes across her former crush Andrew Foley at Zoe’s birthday party.

After an awkward conversation, Andrew disappears until she finds him later bleeding in a local park. Anna is soon drawn into the police investigation as their only real witness, but she feels like she can’t trust the police.

Another victim turns up, someone she also went to school with. He gives her a strange message which leads to an incident in the past.

Anna doesn’t know who to trust and with her rapidly declining mental state, she’s putting herself in more danger than she knows.

So this is the author’s debut novel and wow what a way to start! It’s an intense and gripping read which kept me guessing until the ending with some very good red herrings.

I do enjoyed a story that a member of the public puts on their detective hat and digs into a mystery! (I think secretly a lot of us would like to do that ourselves.) Anna is not all that likeable, I feel she’s a little self absorbed and standoffish but when you find out her family history, the trauma she’s been through and her mental health issues, I warmed to her a little more.

The wintery setting of Glasgow and the use of the Scottish dialect added a little bit more authenticity to the story and although there were a few words I had to look up, I still really enjoyed reading it.

In The Silence deals with quite a lot of sensitive issues, including sexual assault and how the victims of such crimes are treated, mental health and toxic masculinity. I think the author deals with them well and in a delicate manner but at times I did feel like I was being preached to a little, because I have seen over the years how bad it is for victims of sexual assault and how horribly the court system treats them.

Also while I enjoyed the ending I did feel there was a few unanswered questions but that’s me just being a little fussy.

In The Silence is a powerful yet thoughtful mystery that raises a few moral questions along the way.

Rating: 4/5

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

Author Bio:

M. R. Mackenzie was born and lives in Glasgow, Scotland. He studied at Glasgow University M.+R.+Mackenzie+and has a PhD in Film Studies. In 2016, he contributed a chapter on the Italian giallo film to Cult Cinema: An Arrow Video Companion.

In addition to writing, he works as an independent Blu-ray/DVD producer and has overseen releases of films by a number of acclaimed directors, among them Dario Argento, Joe Dante and Seijun Suzuki.

When he’s not doing any of the above, he works in a library, which tests his sanity and keeps him in touch with the great unwashed.

In The Silence is his first novel.

Links:

Website: http://www.michaelmackenzie.scot

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/landofwhimsy/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/m.r.mackenzie/