Title: Game Players by Anita Waller
Publisher: Bloodhound Books
Date Published: 18th May 2018
When a gang of six children playing in their den in the woods spot a man burying drugs nearby, it marks the beginning of the end of their childhoods.
Unsure what to do, the children dig up the drugs and take them away. But when the dealer, who they watched bury the stash, shows up dead, the youngsters are thrown into turmoil.
Scared of what might happen, the children tell the police about the body they have discovered.
Meanwhile, a group of gangsters start searching for their missing drugs.
Soon the children and their families become the target of the vicious criminals who will stop at nothing to retrieve their narcotics…
Mark, Dominic, Freya, Ella, Daryl and Sammy call themselves The Gang of Six, they meet up in the woods every day and play in their den. One day they spot local drug dealer Vinnie Walmsley bury some drugs. They can’t leave the drugs where they are so they dig them up. Unfortunately for them the people who Vinnie was minding the drugs for want them back and will stop at nothing for them to be returned.
So this is the second book I’ve read by Anita Waller this year, you can read my review of her other novel, Captor, here.
This book has lots of gasp out loud moments and plenty that will make you a little weepy too (it did for me anyway). A thing that I’ve noticed from her last book and as well in this one, Anita Waller really makes you care about what happens to her characters, not an easy feat I might add!
I wish I had a set of friends as good as these six when I was younger, their friendship is just so lovely! Out of the children I liked Freya, who’s nickname was feral Freya because of her fearless attitude and Daryl the sensible one who really matures as the book goes along and becomes a leader rather than a follower.
This just personal preference mind you and nothing personal to the author, I’m becoming a little tired of the latest fad for children being the main characters in Mystery/Thrillers. It’s super hard to get the voices right which unfortunately, to me anyway, they sound a bit more like teenagers than the eleven and nine they’re supposed to be.
Also I feel there was a lack of character description and the story seemed to run out of steam by the end, I was kind of hoping for a twist or something which didn’t come.
Overall this is more of a tale of friendship than mystery but a must for fans of Anita Waller.
About The Author:
Anita Waller was born in Sheffield, South Yorkshire in 1946. She married Dave in 1967 and they have three adult children.
She began writing when she was around 8 years of age, writing ‘compositions’ at junior school that became books with chapters.
In 1995 she sent Beautiful to a publisher and as they reached the contract stage the publisher went into liquidation. As a result, the book was consigned to the attic in dejected disgust but in 2013 it was dragged out again for an enforced complete re-type. The original was written on an Amstrad 8256 and the only thing that remained was one hard copy.
Anita is not a typist and it was painfully reworked over two years, submitted to Bloodhound Books who, within three days of reading it, offered her a contract. 31 August 2015 saw its release into the wide world.
Following the outstanding success of Beautiful, she began a sequel on 27 December 2015, finishing it on 19 March 2016. The new novel, Angel, was launched on 7 May 2016.
34 Days followed, with its launch in October 2016. This was a huge success, particularly in the United States. While this, her third book in the psychological thriller genre, was flying out in all directions, she began work on her fourth book.
Winterscroft was a change in genre. It is a supernatural tale, set in Castleton, Derbyshire, and its release date was February 2017.
While she was writing Winterscroft, it became very clear from reading reviews that a sequel to 34 days was needed, and she began work on that. Bloodhound Books launched Strategy, on 10 August 2017.
Her next book, launched February 2018 and entitled Captor, is a psychological thriller, set exclusively in Sheffield. It was an instant success, both in the UK and the US.
The along came Game Players… once more set in Sheffield, the story involves a group of six children who have each other’s backs to a remarkable extent. The darker, criminal side of Sheffield is explored, and the book launch is 18 May 2018.
In her life away from the computer in the corner of her kitchen, she is a Sheffield Wednesday supporter with blue blood in her veins! The club was particularly helpful during the writing of 34 Days, as a couple of matches feature in the novel, along with Ross Wallace. Information was needed, and they provided it.
Her genre is murder – necessary murder.
Facebook page: @anitawaller2015