#BookReview The Sentence Is Death by Anthony Horowitz

Another book down from my 2018 NetGalley backlist, only another nine to go!

Title: The Sentence Is Death by Anthony Horowitz

Date Published: 1st November 2018

Publisher: Cornerstone Digital

Genre: Mystery/Thriller

Description:

“You shouldn’t be here. It’s too late…”

These, heard over the phone, were the last recorded words of successful celebrity-divorce lawyer. Richard Pryce, found bludgeoned to death in his bachelor pad with a bottle of wine – a 1982 Chateau Lafite worth £3,000, to be precise.

Odd, considering he didn’t drink. Why this bottle? And why those words? And why was a three-digit number painted on the wall by the killer? And, most importantly, which of the man’s many, many enemies did the deed?

Baffled, the police are forced to bring in Private Investigator Daniel Hawthorne and his sidekick, the author Anthony, who’s really getting rather good at this murder investigation business.

But as Hawthorne takes on the case with characteristic relish, it becomes clear that he, too, has secrets to hide. As our reluctant narrator becomes ever more embroiled in the case, he realises that these secrets must be exposed – even at the risk of death…

Review:

I received a copy of The Sentence Is Death from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

So I read the first in this series The Word Is Murder and was intrigued enough to get the second The Sentence Is Death over on NetGalley, but it’s taken me three years to actually get around to reading it (oops).

If you don’t know this series, the author, Anthony Horowitz himself, plays Watson to his fictional detective Daniel Hawthorne, chronicling their adventures as they try to solve murders. The murder in question for this novel is successful divorce lawyer Richard Pryce, who was bludgeoned to death with an expensive bottle of wine.

I remember when I read the first book I was a little confused about the author putting himself in the book, at the time I’d never really come across this but now I’ve seen it done a few times this sort of thing no longer bothers me.

On the surface the story is a bit like a cozy mystery, as the murder is more like a puzzle and there’s not too much violence, but there is a fair bit of swearing with a smattering of unlikeable characters to give it a more gritty feel.

There were parts of the novel I really enjoyed, like the glimpse into the life of a TV writer as it shows some parts of Anthony Horowitz working on his show Foyle’s War. Also, the introduction of copper DI Cara Grunshaw, who made Hawthorne seem not as bad in comparison and added an extra dimension to the story. 

Unfortunately, while the author tried to throw a few twists in there, I figured out whodunnit well before the end. I was also hoping that Hawthorne would change his ways a bit, I still found him unlikeable most of the time.

Overall, The Sentence Is Death is a solid mystery with a cast of very memorable, (not always in a good way), characters.

About the author:

Anthony Horowitz, OBE is ranked alongside Enid Blyton and Mark A. Cooper as “The most original and best spy-kids authors of the century.” (New York Times). Anthony has been writing since the age of eight, and professionally since the age of twenty. In addition to the highly successful Alex Rider books, he is also the writer and creator of award winning detective series Foyle’s War, and more recently event drama Collision, among his other television works he has written episodes for Poirot, Murder in Mind, Midsomer Murders and Murder Most Horrid. Anthony became patron to East Anglia Children’s Hospices in 2009.

On 19 January 2011, the estate of Arthur Conan Doyle announced that Horowitz was to be the writer of a new Sherlock Holmes novel, the first such effort to receive an official endorsement from them and to be entitled the House of Silk.

#BlogTour #Review Unseen Evil by Liz Mistry @BOTBSPublicity @LizMistryAuthor

Title: Unseen Evil by Liz Mistry

Date Published: 2nd September 2019

Genre: Police Procedural

Description:

New Release from best-selling author Liz Mistry is number 6 in her D.I. Gus McGuire series.

Social Media can be the death of you …

The Snapchat
A twisted killer comes to the attention of DI Gus McGuire and his team when a teenager receives a Snapchat image of his murdered friend.

The Killer
As the killer becomes bolder, using social media to publicise the murders, Gus fears there may be more than one murderer targeting young people.

The Stalker
Meanwhile, Gus comes under threat from a stalker who is not afraid to get up close and personal.

Can Gus protect his loved ones and catch the killer before another Snap is received?

BLOG TOUR (5) (3)

Review:

I really enjoy Liz Mistry’s Gus McGuire books so when Sarah at Books On The Bright Side Publicity offered me a spot on the blog tour I jumped at the chance.

Another tough case for Gus McGuire and his team, with a tech savvy killer who uses social media to broadcast the kills of their teenage victims and a stalker that is getting a little too personal for Gus’ liking.

Unseen Evil is gritty and hard hitting police procedural that really gets to grips with modern policing in an era where everything is broadcast on social media for anyone to see.

What makes Liz’s books so compelling is the fact the characters seem so real. The teenagers sound and act like real teenagers. All of her characters are realistically flawed. I do have to say I have a soft spot for Gus, even though he can be a bit selfish bugger sometimes.

I will say I sort of guessed who the mastermind behind the crimes was fairly early on but it didn’t spoil my enjoyment of the novel at all.

Unseen Evil is such a binge worthy novel that once I picked it up I just didn’t want to put it down! I’m eagerly awaiting the next in this series.

Author Bio:

Born in Scotland, Made in Bradford sums up Liz Mistry’s life. Over thirty years ago she moved from a small village in West Lothian to Yorkshire to get her teaching degree. Once here, Liz fell in love with three things; curries, the rich cultural diversity of the city … and her Indian husbandLiz+Mistry_upscaled_image_x4 (not necessarily in this order). Now thirty years, three children, two cats (Winky and Scumpy) and a huge extended family later, Liz uses her experiences of living and working in the inner city to flavour her writing. Her gritty crime fiction police procedural novels set in Bradford embrace the city she describes as ‘Warm, Rich and Fearless’ whilst exploring the darkness that lurks beneath.

Struggling with severe clinical depression and anxiety for a large number of years, Liz often includes mental health themes in her writing. She credits the MA in Creative Writing she took at Leeds Trinity University with helping her find a way of using her writing to navigate her ongoing mental health struggles. Being a debut novelist in her fifties was something Liz had only dreamed of and she counts herself lucky, whilst pinching herself regularly to make sure it’s all real. One of the nicest things about being a published author is chatting with and responding to readers’ feedback and Liz regularly does events at local libraries, universities, literature festivals and open mics. She also teaches creative writing too. Now, having nearly completed a PhD in Creative Writing focussing on ‘the absence of the teen voice in adult crime fiction’ and ‘why expansive narratives matter’, Liz is chock full of ideas to continue writing.

In her spare time, Liz loves pub quizzes (although she admits to being rubbish at them), dancing (she does a mean jig to Proud Mary – her opinion, not ratified by her family), visiting the varied Yorkshire landscape, with Robin Hoods Bay being one of her favourite coastal destinations, listening to music, reading and blogging about all things crime fiction on her blog, The Crime Warp.

Social Media links

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LizMistrybooks/ @LizMistrybooks

Twitter: https://twitter.com/LizMistryAuthor @LizMistryAuthor

Website : https://www.lizmistry.com/

#BlogTour #Review Retriever of Souls by Lorraine Mace @rararesources @lomace @AccentPress

Retriever of Souls

Title: Retriever of Souls by Lorraine Mace

Publisher: Accent Press

Date Published: 13th December 2018

Genre: Police Procedural/Noir

Description:

Brought up believing that sex is the devil’s work, a killer only finds release once he has saved his victim’s souls. Abiding by his vision, he marks them as his. A gift to guide his chosen ones on the rightful path to redemption.

Detective Inspector Paolo Sterling is out to stop him, but Paolo has problems of his own. Hunting down the killer as the death toll rises, the lines soon blur between Paolo’s personal and professional lives.

You Can Buy Your Copy Here:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Retriever-Souls-positively-compelling-Sterling-ebook/dp/B07HJ83F6N

US – https://www.amazon.com/Retriever-Souls-positively-compelling-Sterling-ebook/dp/B07HJ83F6N

Review:

This is the first book to feature DI Paolo Sterling and DS Dave Johnson. I think I’ve found my new favourite crime series! Retriever of Souls is gritty, gruesome and sometimes a little disturbing but I just didn’t want to put it down.

Women are showing up, brutally beaten until they are unrecognisable, dumped like rubbish.

Paolo Sterling is a such a compelling and realistic character, even when he was being a grumpy sod, I couldn’t help but like him. He got quite a complicated life outside the police, he’s still in love with his ex wife and can’t move on, even though he’s had a few offers. Paolo’s daughter Katy features quite heavily in the book, who I enjoyed as a character, despite being quite stubborn and refusing to listen to what anyone says.

His partner Dave Johnson on the other hand, annoyed me a little bit with his macho bravado and the occasional sexist comment. His does go on a bit of journey through the book and started to grow on me by the end.

I did sort of guess who the killer was around the half way mark but there were plenty of red herrings and misdirection that had me doubting myself. I also was fascinated by the little insights we got into the deranged killer’s mind and how he justifies killing in his sick mind.

I’d recommend Retriever of Souls to anyone who likes a gritty and grisly police procedural with lifelike and compelling characters. I can’t to get stuck into the next book Children in Chains.

Retriever of Souls Full Tour Banner

About The Author:

When not working on her D.I. Sterling Series, Lorraine Mace is engaged in many writing-related activities. She is a columnist for both Writing Magazine and Writers’ Forum and is head judgeRetriever of Souls - Lorraine Mace for Writers’ Forum monthly fiction competitions. A tutor for Writers Bureau, she also runs her own private critique and author mentoring service.

She is co-author, with Maureen Vincent-Northam, of THE WRITER’S ABC CHECKLIST (Accent Press). Other books include children’s novel VLAD THE INHALER – HERO IN THE MAKING, and NOTES FROM THE MARGIN, a compilation of her Writing Magazine humour column.

Social Media Links –

Website: www.lorrainemace.com

Blog: http://thewritersabcchecklist.blogspot.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/lomace

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/lorraine.mace.52