*Blog Tour* Chaos by Patricia Cornwell 

Hi everyone,

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Chaos, the new novel by Patricia Cornwell and I’m able to share the prologue with you guys today. More of that further down! The usual bookish stuff needs to be said first!😉

About Chaos:

On a hot late summer evening in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Dr. Kay Scarpetta and her investigative partner Pete Marino respond to a call about a dead bicyclist near the Kennedy School of Government. It appears that a young woman has been attacked with almost super human force.

Even before Scarpetta’s headquarters, the Cambridge Forensic Center, has been officially notified about the case, Marino and Scarpetta’s FBI agent husband Benton Wesley receive suspicious calls, allegedly from someone at Interpol. But it makes no sense. Why would the elite international police agency know about the case or be interested? With breathtaking speed it becomes apparently that an onslaught of interference and harassment might be the work of an anonymous cyberbully named Tailend Charlie, who has been sending cryptic communications to Scarpetta for over a week.

Stunningly, even her brilliant tech savvy niece Lucy can’t trace whoever it is or how this person could have access to intimate information few outside the family would have.

When a second death hundreds of miles south, shocking Scarpetta to her core, it becomes apparent she and those close her are confronted with something far bigger and more dangerous than they’d ever imagined. Then analysis of a mysterious residue recovered from a wound is identified as a material that doesn’t exist on earth.



About the author:

Patricia Cornwell has sold over 100 million books and had 29 New York Times bestsellers, including Dust, The Bone Bed, Red Mist and Portrait of a Killer: Jack the Ripper- Case Closed. Postmortem is the only novel to win five major crime awards in a single year and Cruel and Unusual won Britain’s prestigious Gold Dagger Award for the best crime novel. Fox 2000 have bought the rights to Kay Scarpetta to be developed for the big screen. When not writing from her Boston home, she is tirelessly researching cutting edge forensics to include in her work. Currently researching drone technology as well as continuing her work in ballistics, explosives and firearms, Cornwell has also been learning about advanced trauma for the emergency responder through simulation technology, working with the Special Weapons and Tactics (S.W.A.T) department, training on the VirFa Firearms Training Simulators as well as Scuba Diving in Bermuda.





BEYOND  THE  BRICK  WALL  bordering Harvard Yard, four tall

chimneys and  a  gray  slate roof  with  white-painted  dormers peek

through the branches of hardwood trees.

The Georgian building is a welcome sight no more than fifteen minutes ahead as the crow flies. But walking wasn’t smart. I was foolish to refuse a ride. Even in the shade it feels like an oven. The atmosphere is stagnant, nothing stirring in the hot humid air.

Were it not for the distant sounds of traffic, the infrequent pedestrian, the vapor trails overhead, I might believe I’m the only human left on a post-apocalyptic earth. I’ve never seen the Harvard campus this deserted except maybe during a bomb scare. But then I’ve also not been witness to such extreme weather in this part of the world, and blizzards and arctic blasts don’t count.

New Englanders are used to that but not temperatures edging past a hundred degrees Fahrenheit. The sun is molten in a bone-scrubbed sky that the heat has bleached the blue out of as I’ve heard it described. The greenhouse effect. Global warming. God’s punishment. The Devil’s in his workshop. Mercury in retrograde. El Niño. The end times.

These are some of the explanations for one of the worst heat waves in Massachusetts’s history. Business at my headquarters, the Cambridge Forensic Center, has gone through the roof, and that’s the paradox of what I do. When things are bad they’re normal. When they’re worse they’re good. It’s a gift and a curse that I have job security in this imperfect world, and as I take a shortcut through the center of the campus in the stifling heat, I tweak the talk I’m going to give at the Kennedy School of Government tomorrow night.

Cleverness, a play on words, provocative stories that are real, and maybe my sister Dorothy isn’t the hopeless tool I’ve always believed. She says that I have to be entertaining if I’m to get an auditorium full of jaded Ivy League intellectuals and policy makers to listen. Maybe they’ll even walk around in my shoes for once if I share the dark side, the underbelly, the scary basement no one wants to enter or acknowledge.

As long as I’m not expected to repeat insensitive jokes, certainly not the ones I constantly hear from the cops, rather dreadful slogans that end up on T-shirts and coffee cups. I’m not going to say our day begins when yours ends even if it’s true. Although I suppose it’s all right to quip that the more dire the straits the more necessary I am. Catastrophes are my calling. Dreadful news gets me out of bed. Tragedy is my bread and butter, and the cycle of life and death remains unbroken no matter our IQ.

This is how my sister thinks I should explain myself to hundreds of influential students, faculty, politicos and global leaders tomorrow night. In my opinion I shouldn’t need to explain myself at all. But apparently I do, Dorothy said over the phone last night while our elderly mother was ranting loudly in the background to her thieving South American housekeeper, whose name—no kidding—is Honesty. Apparently Honesty is stealing vast amounts of jewelry and cash again, hiding Mom’s pills, eating her food and rearranging her furniture in the hope she’ll trip and break a hip.

Honesty the housekeeper isn’t doing any such thing and never did or would, and sometimes having a nearly photographic memory isn’t to my advantage. I recall last night’s telephonic drama, including the parts in Spanish, hearing every word of it in my head. I can replay Dorothy’s rapid-fire self-assured voice advising me all the while about how not to lose an audience since clearly I will if left to my own devices. She told me:

Walk right up to the podium and scan the crowd with a deadpan face, and say: “Welcome. I’m Doctor Kay Scarpetta. I take patients without appointments and still make house calls. Wouldn’t you just die to have my hands all over you? Because it can be arranged.” And then you wink.

Who could resist? That’s what you should tell them, Kay! Something funny, sexy and non-PC. And they’re eating out of your hand. For once in your life you need to listen to your little sis very carefully. I didn’t get where I am by not knowing a thing or two about publicity and marketing.

And one of the biggest problems with deadbeat jobs, no pun intended, like working in funeral homes and morgues,  is  nobody  knows  the  first thing about how to promote or sell anything because why bother? Well to be fair, funeral homes are better at it than where you work. It’s not like it’s part of your job description to make a dead person look presentable or care if the casket is pretty. So you have all of the disadvantages of the funeral business but nothing to sell and nobody to say thank you.

THROUGHOUT MY CAREER AS a forensic pathologist my younger only sibling has managed to equate what I do with being a mortuary scientist or simply someone who deals with messes no one else wants to touch.

Somehow it’s the logical conclusion to my taking care of our dying father when I was a child. I became the go-to person when something was painful or disgusting and needed tending to or cleaning up. If an animal got run over or a bird flew into a window or our father had an- other nosebleed, my sister would run screaming to me. She still does if she needs something, and she never takes into account convenience or timing.

But at this juncture in life my attitude is the two of us aren’t getting any younger. I’ve decided to make a real effort to keep an open mind even if my sister might be the most selfish human being I’ve ever known. But she’s bright and talented, and I’m no saint either. I admit I’ve been stubborn about acknowledging her value, and that’s not fair.

Because it’s possible she really might know what she’s doing when she mandates that I should speak less like a legal brief or a lab report and more like a pundit or a poet. I need to turn up the volume, the brightness and the color, and I’ve been keeping that in mind as I polish my opening remarks, including cues such as underlines for emphasis and pauses for laughter.

I take a sip from a bottle of water that’s hot enough to brew tea. I nudge my dark glasses up as they continue to slip down my sweaty nose. The sun is a relentless blacksmith hammering in twilight’s fiery forge. Even my hair is hot as my low-heeled tan leather pumps click- click on bricks, my destination now about ten minutes out. Mentally I go through my talk:

Good evening Harvard faculty, students, fellow physicians, scientists and other distinguished guests.

As I scan the crowd tonight I see Pulitzer and Nobel Prize winners, mathematicians and astrophysicists who are also writers, painters and musicians.

Such a remarkable collection of the best and the brightest, and we are extremely honored to have the governor here, and the attorney general, and several senators and congressmen in addition to members of the media, and business leaders. I see my good friend and former mentor General John Briggs hiding in the back, slinking low in his seat, cringing over the thought of my being up here. [Pause for laughter]

For those of you who don’t know, he’s the chief of the Armed Forces Medical Examiner System, the AFMES. In other words, General Briggs would be the forensic surgeon general of the United States were there such a position. And in a little while he’s going to join me during the Q&A part of the program to discuss the Columbia space shuttle disaster of 2003.

We’re going to share what we’ve learned from materials science and aeromedicine, and also from the recoveries and examinations of the seven astronauts’ remains that were scattered over a fifty-some-mile scene in Texas . . .

I HAVE TO GIVE Dorothy credit.

She’s dramatic and colorful, and I’m somewhat  touched  that she’s flying in for the lecture even if I have no idea why. She says she wouldn’t miss tomorrow night but I don’t believe her. My sister’s not been to Cambridge in the eight years I’ve headed the CFC. My mother hasn’t either, but she doesn’t like to travel and won’t anymore. I don’t know Dorothy’s excuse.

Only that she’s never been interested until now, and it’s a shame she had to choose tonight of all nights to fly to Boston. The first Wednesday of the month, barring an emergency, my husband Benton and I meet for dinner at the Harvard Faculty Club, where I’m not a member. He is and not because of his FBI status. That won’t get you any special favors at Harvard, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and other Ivy League institutions in the area.

But as a consulting forensic psychologist at the Harvard-affiliated McLean Hospital in nearby Belmont, my FBI criminal-intelligence-

analyst husband can avail himself of the most marvelous libraries, museums, and scholars in the world anytime he wants. He can help himself to the Faculty Club to his heart’s content.

We can even reserve a guest room upstairs, and we have on more than one occasion been given enough whiskey or wine during dinner. But that’s not going to happen with Dorothy flying in, and I really shouldn’t have said yes when she asked me to pick her up later tonight and drop her off at her daughter Lucy’s house, which will get Benton and me home after midnight.

I don’t know why Dorothy asked me specifically unless it’s her way of making sure we get to spend a little alone time together. When I said yes I’d come and Benton would be with me, her response was “I’m sure. Well it doesn’t matter.” But when she said that I realized it does matter. She has something she wants to discuss with me privately, and even if we don’t get the chance tonight, we have time.

My sister left her return flight open-ended, and I can’t help but think how wonderful it would be if it turned out I’d always been wrong about her. Maybe her real reason for venturing north to New England is she feels the same way I do. Maybe she at long last wants to be friends.

How amazing if we become a united front when coping with our aging mother, with Lucy and her partner Janet, and with their ad- opted nine-year-old son Desi. And also their newest addition Tesla, a rescue bulldog puppy who’s staying with Benton and me in Cam- bridge for a while. Someone has to train her, and our greyhound Sock is getting old and likes the company.

Make sure to keep up with the blog tour:


Dead is Best by Jo Perry


*Many thanks to Chris at Fahrenheit Press for my review copy*

About the book:

Charlie and Rose are back in their much anticipated new adventure.

Charlie’s step daughter lies dying on a beach. She needs help. Some serious help. But how did she get there and what can on earth can a dead guy and his dead dog do?

Plenty as it turns out.

As Charlie & Rose ride to the rescue in their own unique way it soon becomes clear that the body on the beach was only the beginning….

Dead is Best is published by Fahrenheit Press. Click HERE to get your copy!

About the author:

Jo Perry earned a Ph.D. in English, taught college literature and writing, produced and wrote episodic television,
and has published articles,  book reviews, and poetry.

She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, novelist Thomas Perry.

They have two adult children. Their three cats and two dogs are rescues.


My thoughts:

I’ve had this on my kindle for too long, and I couldn’t leave it any longer. I broke my TBR rules to squeeze this beauty in and I wasn’t disappointed. Charlie and Rose are the coolest, deadest crime fighting duo on the block. And Dead is Best is proof of just how great they are.

Preceding each chapter is a quote about Death, and I absolutely love it because it’s morbid but brilliant at the same time. Death is different for everyone, but Jo Perry has written yet another book that gives death the finger. Charlie and Rose might be dead, but they are super cool with it.

In Dead is Best, Charlie and Rose are confronted with his stepdaughter, who is alive… isn’t she?

Caught up with bad kids, and a bank rolled lifestyle, Cali is in trouble. Big trouble. The kind that you end up dead because of. Someone gets an attack of conscience though, and Cali is brought back from the brink. But that’s not the end. Because that would be to easy right? Goddamn right!

What follows is yet another harrowing journey through both life (Cali) and the afterlife (Charlie and Rose) and it was one which I wasn’t prepared for. Something about the #DeadDog book make me get a little emotional. They touch on some tough subjects, even though they are dealt with really well, they can be a little sad to read.

I cannot recommend these books highly enough. If you haven’t read them, you really should. Different, brilliant and all round awesome, this series just gets better and better. I can’t wait for book three!!!

As Fahrenheit are prone to say, “just read the damn books” 📚

Previous Jo Perry posts:

Dead Is Better by Jo Perry

**Exclusive Author Interview- Jo Perry**

*Blog Tour* Her Last Breath by J. A. Schneider


Hi everyone,

Today I’m delighted to be a part of the blog tour for Joyce Schneider’s latest novel, Her Last Breath. Due to my TBR, which I’m almost certain multiplies by itself, I haven’t had a chance to read Joyce’s books , YET!!! But I will get to them eventually!

Anyway, I have a great guest post for you all today that Joyce has kindly written for my stop on the blog tour. You can catch it further down the page!

About the book:

A chilling psychological thriller about a woman caught between two men…
Mari Gill wakes to horror in a strange apartment next to a murdered man, and can’t remember the night before. Accused of murder, she feels torn between her husband, a successful defense attorney, and a mysterious, kind man who wants to help. Can she trust either of them – or even her friends? Detective Kerri Blasco battles her police bosses believing Mari is innocent…but is she?
Click the link below to get your copy:
About the author:
J.A. (Joyce Anne) Schneider is a former staffer at Newsweek Magazine, a wife, mom, and reading addict. She loves thrillers…which may seem odd, since she was once a major in French Literature – wonderful but sometimes heavy stuff. Now, for years, she has become increasingly fascinated with medicine, forensic science, and police procedure. Decades of being married to a physician who loves explaining medical concepts and reliving his experiences means there’ll often be medical angles even in “regular” thrillers that she writes. She lives with her family in Connecticut, USA.

Struggling with the Plot Writing Her Last Breath, by J.A. Schneider


Her Last Breath feels like the most ambitious book I’ve written.
Fear Dreams, though equally scary, focused more on Liddy Barron, the sensitive artist fearing insanity, with NYPD Detective Kerri Blasco running second as the story progresses and she tries to unravel what really haunts Liddy. And my Embryo medical thrillers were pretty straightforward crime thrillers. Also, in Fear Dreams there were twists, but the biggest OMG twist came at the end. 
Her Last Breath, on the other hand, starts with a double bang – Mari Gill waking to horror in a strange apartment next to a murdered man, and Kerri Blasco arriving right away as one of the responding detectives. That double-thrills structure of Mari struggling and Kerri investigating continues throughout the book, sharing space with lots of misdirection on my part, making the reader believe one thing before turning the story on its head.
It was incredibly hard. When I started to write Her Last Breath I had no idea how complex it would become or how, halfway through, I would be plunged into hair-tearing despair, wondering over and over that dreaded thought: WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
Often, I was stuck, really stuck. Then came to me the most unexpected method for dealing with plotter’s block.
I just let Kerri…think. I showed her thinking, and that helped me push the stressing gray cells. Kerri is a highly intuitive character whose mind is always analyzing, questioning, battling too-easy solutions that other cops latch onto. On days of feeling overwhelmed by the sticky morass of characters and plot threads, what helped me to keep going was just…leaving it to Kerri, who has to be, I guess, my stubborn subconscious. It helped to show her furiously going back over facts, staring again at fingerprints sent by the lab to her laptop, re-reading witness statements with fresh, skeptical eyes. Despite being a crack shot and a terrific cop in the general sense, Kerri’s mind is more along the lines of, well, Sherlock Holmes in the sense that she sees what others don’t, makes connections that others reject. Poirot and his “little gray cells” come to mind, too; also, Patrick Jane in the TV series, The Mentalist, who does his best work just…thinking! Lying flat on his back on a couch at PD headquarters. Cops at Kerri’s station admire, sometimes begrudgingly, her gift for reading people and the language of a crime scene. Sometimes they kid her, tell her she’s psychic. “Noo,” she protests. “This just doesn’t feel right, go deeper!” (Did I mention that she also has a sense of humor?)
Where did this character come from!? I feel a little bit like Geppetto after creating Pinocchio, amazed to see him come to life in full, determined Technicolor and start running around, thinking and doing things on his own.
It’s an interesting idea. Create a character who helps you think? I never planned this, it just happened. Kerri Blasco started out as just one of the detectives in my Embryo medical thrillers, but she grew. Kept pulling me, helped the big gaps in my subconscious mind to kick in, work it all out while I slept, even. Obviously, she is my subconscious, but anything that helps is a relief, right?
This is still the story that most exhausted me, but I’m also excited to continue with my next Kerri Blasco thriller. I’ve decided that I love Kerri, I think I’ll keep her.
She even keeps me away from the Internet.

Huge thanks to Joyce for joining me on the blog today!

You can keep up with the blog tour by checking out the tour poster:



*Blog Tour* Gone Astray by Michelle Davies

Hi everyone,

Today is my stop on the blog tour for Gone Astray by Michelle Davies, which is newly released in paperback. I was lucky enough to get a signed Goldsboro Books hardback, and this was the perfect opportunity to read it! I’ll be sharing my review today, as well as having a brilliant guest post from Michelle Davies as well.

About the book:

When a Lesley Kinnock buys a lottery ticket on a whim, it changes her life more than she could have imagined . . . 

Lesley and her husband Mack are the sudden winners of a £15 million EuroMillions jackpot. They move with their 15-year-old daughter Rosie to an exclusive gated estate in Buckinghamshire, leaving behind their ordinary lives – and friends – as they are catapulted into wealth beyond their wildest dreams. 

But it soon turns into their darkest nightmare when, one beautiful spring afternoon, Lesley returns to their house to find it empty: their daughter Rosie is gone. 

DC Maggie Neville is assigned to be Family Liaison Officer to Lesley and Mack, supporting them while quietly trying to investigate the family. And she has a crisis threatening her own life – a secret from the past that could shatter everything she’s worked so hard to build.

As Lesley and Maggie desperately try to find Rosie, their fates hurtle together on a collision course that threatens to end in tragedy . . . 

Money can’t buy you happiness.
The truth could hurt more than a lie.
One moment really can change your life forever.


Gone Astray by Michelle Davies


About the author:

Michelle Davies has been writing for magazines for twenty years, including on the production desk at Elle, and as Features Editor of Heat. Her last staff position before going freelance was Editor-at-Large at Grazia magazine and she currently writes for a number of women’s magazines and newspaper supplements. Michelle has previously reviewed crime fiction for the Sunday Express’s Books section.

Michelle lives in London with her partner and daughter and juggles writing crime fiction with her freelance journalism and motherhood. Gone Astray is her first novel.


My thoughts:

I had my copy of Gone Astray kept up high on my shelves, as its a signed first edition, so I hadn’t gotten around to reading it until now. I hadn’t re-read the blurb before reading it either, as I didn’t want to go in with any knowledge of the story. This served me well as I was well and truly hooked immediately.

Gone Astray is a promising debut from Michelle Davies. It is a tightly plotted novel with many different strands woven together.Once I started reading, I didn’t want to put it down as I was so engrossed in the story.

Given the fact that it opens with the disappearance of the Kinnock’s daughter, the reader is instantly thrown into a missing persons investigation. With DC Maggie Neville acting as Family Liaison Officer to the family, the story gains traction as Neville has her own past issues threatening to come out during the course of the book.

I won’t go into specifics, but what I will say is that Michelle Davies has written a very confident debut. A crime thriller, with some very interesting threads running through the novel. I really hope this isn’t the last we see of DC Neville, she has the potential to be a superstar main character! Highly recommended!


The pros and cons of using a fictional setting


One of the lengthiest debates I had with myself when I sat down to write Gone Astray was over its setting. Often the advice to authors is write about what you know, but I didn’t think a crime novel set in High Wycombe, the town in south Buckinghamshire where I grew up, would resonate with readers.

Don’t misunderstand me, it’s a perfectly nice town, famous for its chair-making prowess (Ercol, the bentwood furniture brand currently enjoying a resurgence with hipsters, was founded there), being home to the original Fuzzy Felt factory and for spawning James Corden. But could it be as memorable as Rebus’s Edinburgh, Morse’s Oxford or Roy Grace’s Brighton? I decided not.

So I set about creating a fictional town called Mansell that, while similar to High Wycombe in many ways, is actually an amalgamation of every mid-sized town in the south of England that I’ve driven through on my way to somewhere else. Towns that, without signposts telling you otherwise, could be one and the same, each resplendent with a generic high street full of charity shops and pound stores, an industrial estate skirting its perimeter and a huge shopping centre consuming its heart. Towns both uniformly similar and reassuringly familiar, and where any kind of crime can happen.

In some ways it would’ve been less work if I’d chosen a town that existed – famous landmarks do give novels a strong sense of place that I had to create from scratch. But I took reassurance from the fact that Ruth Rendell created a fictional town for her Wexford series to great success. In fact, so well drawn was Kingsmarkham that a New York Times feature published in 1990 to mark Shakes Hands Forever being televised in the US demanded to know its exact location in England. Those American tourists must’ve been so disappointed to find out it didn’t exist!

I’ve also saved myself time spent answering complaints that I’ve put a roundabout in the wrong place, or incorrectly named a street, which can happen when you write about real places. As Mansell’s architect I decide what goes where. It’s like building my own town from Lego – or even Fuzzy Felt!


Thank you for hosting me on my first ever blog tour and for supporting Gone Astray. I hope you enjoy the book!

*My absolute pleasure Michelle!🙂

Here’s the blog tour info:


Weekly Wrap Up October 23rd

Hey everyone,

So it’s Sunday again! Least favourite day of the week here as it’s back to normality again tomorrow! How and ever, it’s also time for my weekly wrap up post. This week, I’ve managed to get 5 books read so far. I say so far because I’m racing to the end of two more books and there’s still 5 hours left of the evening as I type this up at 7pm 😉

I’ve read 139 books so far this year, and all going well, it will be 141 by the time I get into bed tonight! 🙏🏻

What I’ve read this week:

Deep Down Dead by Steph Broadribb

Dead is Best by Jo Perry

Crash Land by Doug Johnstone

Before It’s Too Late by Jane Isaac

Love You to Death by Caroline Mitchell


It’s been a relatively busy week on here too as I’ve been on 3 blog tours and Ellen also kicked it off this week with her review for PsychoAnalysis on Tuesday:


*Blog Tour* PsychoAnalysis by V. R. Stone


Following on from that, I was on the blog tour for AJ Waines and her latest book, Inside The Whispers. Click the link below for a Q&A and review:

*Blog Tour* Inside The Whispers by A. J. Waines


Next up I had the pleasure of having Rebecca Bradley join me with an excellent guest post on sexism in the police, well worth a read:

Rebecca Bradley Guest Post


Today, I also got to share my review for Lisa Hall’s Tell Me No Lies, and she also took the time to answer some questions:

*Blog Tour* Tell Me No Lies by Lisa Hall

Here’s what’s coming up on the blog (in order 😉) next week:

Blog tour: Gone Astray by Michelle Davies


Blog Tour: Her Last Breath by Joyce Schneider


Review: Dead is Best by Jo Perry


Blog Tour: Chaos by Patricia Cornwell


Blog Tour: The Girls Next Door by Mel Sherratt



So, that’s been my week on here! How has your week been? Any books I need to know about?? 😏 Do let me know in the comments! (My October TBR is low 😂😂😂)



*Blog Tour* Tell Me No Lies by Lisa Hall


*Many thanks to Lisa Hall and HQ Stories for my review copy*

Today I’m delighted to have not only a review, but a Q&A with lovely Lisa🙂

About the book:

Don’t. Trust. Anyone.

It was supposed to be a fresh start.

A chance to forget the past and embrace the future.

But can you ever really start again?

Or does the past follow you wherever you go…

You can purchase a copy by clicking the link below:

Tell Me No Lies by Lisa Hall

About the author:

Lisa loves words, reading and everything there is to love about books. She has dreamed of being a writer since she was a little girl – either that or a librarian – and after years of talking about it, was finally brave enough to put pen to paper (and let people actually read it). Lisa lives in a small village in Kent, surrounded by her towering TBR pile, a rather large brood of children, dogs, chickens and ponies and her long-suffering husband. She is also rather partial to eating cheese and drinking wine.

Readers can follow Lisa on Twitter @LisaHallAuthor

My thoughts:

I read and LOVED Between You And Me by Lisa Hall earlier this year. I was blown away by it to be honest! I was super excited to get an early review copy of Tell Me No Lies to read, and I know I was a little apprehensive that it may not live up to BYAM. I needn’t have worried because Tell Me No Lies was absolutely brilliant!

Psychological thrillers are the BIG thing this year. There has been a glut of them and I read so many, that unless there is something special in there, they all blur into one when I try to remember anything about them. Lisa’s books have the something special and then some!

Tell Me No Lies starts out innocuously enough, but just as with a spider web and a fly, the reader gets pulled in and cannot escape the inevitable. I devoured this book, I didn’t want to put it down. At times I had to remind myself to relax as my body was knotted with tension at some parts of the book.

When I finished, both angry and breathless in equal measure, I had to message Lisa with a shouty emoji message!!! I just couldn’t comprehend what I had read! In the best way possible obviously! I won’t go into the plot, especially seeing as how the blurb is quite ambiguous, but I will say it’s absolutely an excellent book!

Tell Me No Lies has most of what I look for in a psychological thriller. A great cast of characters, a fast-paced plot, tension and frustration in equal measure! I loved it, really LOVED it. I cannot recommend it highly enough!

Q&A with Lisa Hall…..


Bookish ones first:


Can you tell me a little about your journey to publication?


It was super quick! I submitted the first three chapters of my manuscript at the end of September, and two weeks later received a phone call from my now editor, asking me to send her the rest of the book. A week later, she contacted me to offer me a two-book deal!


What made you choose to write a psychological thriller?


I didn’t set out to write a psychological thriller – it just turned out that way. I always thought if I wrote a book it would be more of a chick-lit/women’s fiction novel, so I was quite surprised when things went the way they did.


How would you describe Tell Me No Lies to readers who have yet to pick it up?


I’d like to say it’s a gripping read, and hopefully those who have read it will agree! It’s a story that looks at how well we know the people we let into our lives – I tend to take people at face value, and I wanted to look at what would happen if a character let someone into her life who perhaps wasn’t the person she thought they were.


What’s your most favourite thing about being an author?


There are so many good things about being an author! Meeting readers and getting to spend my day making things up feature pretty highly.


What’s your least favourite thing about being an author?


It’s always hard to receive negative reviews – that’s probably my least favourite thing. I found them really upsetting at first, but now I just don’t bother to read them!


Where do you see your writing career 5 years from now?


I’m happy where I am right now, so hopefully I’ll still be doing this – I’ve got a brilliant team behind me at HQ, and I’ve got a ton of ideas. I’ll keep writing all the time people want to keep reading me!


What’s next for you?


I’ve just submitted book three to my editor, so I’m waiting on edits and working on a little secret project while I’m waiting, plus I’m starting to research book four. Then there are the characters dancing around in my head, begging to be put into book five….


Less bookish questions:


Can you tell me your all-time favourite book, or if you have to, your top 5?


Gone with the Wind is my all-time favourite book, and I’ve re-read it a million times. It’s like a reading version of comfort food for me – the ultimate love-story, but with a fantastically feisty heroine.


Have there been any books you’ve read that you wish you had written?


Tall Oaks by Chris Whitaker. It’s a brilliant, brilliant novel, with a perfect sense of location and some amazing characters, all woven together with secrets and lies. If you haven’t read it yet, you really should.  


When you’re not writing, how do you spend your time?


Reading, mostly! I don’t get a lot of spare time, as I have lots of children and lots of animals, so any spare time I do get I like to chill out with a good book.


Have you any hobbies that aren’t book-related?


I don’t have time for hobbies! As I still work part-time for our family business, by the time I’ve squeezed my writing time in and fed my children I’m ready for bed!


What’s your favourite holiday destination?


New York, hands down. We went for the first time this year and I just fell in love with the whole place.


Favourite food?


I’m a fiend for the cheese. Any cheese.


Favourite drink?


I’m a big tea drinker, but I won’t say no to a glass of wine!


Huge thanks to Lisa for answering my random questions, and writing all-round AWESOME books!!!🙂

Rebecca Bradley Guest Post

Hi everyone,

Today I’m delighted to have the lovely Rebecca Bradley joining me on the blog today. Rebecca has written an excellent guest post on Sexism in Modern Policing which I get to share with you guys!

Rebecca has recently published a novella, Three Weeks Dead, which is a prequel for the DI Hannah Robbins series and you can get your copy by clicking HERE.

And click HERE to have  look at Rebecca Bradley’s Amazon page and her books!

About the book:

How far would you go if someone took your wife?

Especially, if you buried her a week ago.

When Jason Wells is faced with this scenario, he is confronted with the prospect of committing a crime that will have far-reaching consequences.

Can young DC Sally Poynter get through to him before he crosses that line, or does a desperate husband prove to be the case she won’t ever forget?


About Rebecca Bradley:

Rebecca Bradley is a retired police detective and lives in Nottinghamshire with her family and her two cockapoo’s Alfie and Lola, who keep her company while she writes. Rebecca needs to drink copious amounts of tea to function throughout the day and if she could, she would survive on a diet of tea and cake while committing murder on a regular basis, in her writing of course.

Sign up to the newsletter, on the blog at rebeccabradleycrime.com, for exclusive content and giveaways.


And without further ado, I’ll hand you over to Rebecca…

Sexism in Modern Day Policing


Firstly, I want to thank Kate for having me on the blog today, especially after a bit of a mix up with dates thanks to a hastily arranged medical procedure throwing  me off kilter, making me forget to write this! So, thank you for still having me Kate.


I’m a medically retired police detective, having served for 16 years before retirement. I worked 8 years in uniform and 8 years as a plain clothes detective in a specialist unit.


I asked Kate if she’d be interested in this topic because in Three Weeks Dead, the novella I’ve just released, my DC, Sally Poynter, starts her first shifts on the Major Crimes Unit and faces a misogynistic colleague. It got me to wondering what the perception was of sexism in modern day policing – would my story of it be believed?


So, with that in mind, I thought I’d write a blog piece. A behind the scenes look, if you will, because there have been plenty of news articles on the topic over the years. Only in August of this year, ex-Chief Constable of Northumbria, Sue Sim stated that there was a ‘sexist, money-grabbing, boys’ club culture’ within her own force. This is a 2016 news article not 1980s sentiment as you might imagine. Examples in the press tend to be the extremes, though. The big cases that involve outlandish statements or large sums of monies when women sue forces for sexism. I wanted to give a personal view, a personal working experience.


This is that.


I joined the police in 1999. My tutor was a long-serving male officer and a nicer officer/man, you couldn’t wish to meet. I was incredibly lucky to be sent out onto the streets with him as my guide. With (we’ll call him Derek) Derek, I got to hear about how life in the police was in the ‘old days’. He used to love to tell me the tales about how women officers never even used to be allowed into the main station, they had their own shed to work from which was set up in the car park. Can you believe that, they had a shed to work from? And their work was to look after the women and children. If you look at it from that point of view, then women in the police service has moved on considerably.


As a probationary constable, I was treated as part of the team, right from my first day. But, there was one officer, who, when we went out together, said to me once, and I’ve never forgotten it – ‘If someone does a runner, I’ll give you my hat to hold while I run after them.’


Well, I’m not a shy retiring flower. I gave him some earache and as soon as we were back in the station I made sure everyone else knew so they could give him earache. It wasn’t malicious, not on his part or on mine. We ribbed him about the stupidity of his comment and that was how I dealt with it. I was lucky to work with a great group of people.


I was also very lucky to be told during a discussion one evening that one of the guys would rather go into a fight (pub fight or some other similar public disorder incident) with me than some of the other male choices he had. My early years were positive and I didn’t see – other than one stupid, but not malicious male – misogyny.


But, that’s it, isn’t it? Does sexism have to be malicious to cause harm to its subject? Or does the hapless, speak-before-they-think, male, still fall into this category? I don’t think hat-holder meant to offend, he was a lovely guy in every other way, but I do think he considered himself the better option to go off during the chase.


Other than the early incidents (there may have been a couple with hat-holder), I never saw my career being hampered or held up because of my gender. My health was doing enough of that for me in later years!


What I did notice though, was how female officers of rank were talked about. How they dressed, wore their hair and even how they smelled were perfectly acceptable discussion points. In fact, these were practically all that were mentioned rather than work issues. Women in such a strong work environment are fighting to be seen on an equal footing. Don’t let it fool you that we have female Chief Constables and females of higher ranks so women must be winning the fight for equality within the walls of policing, because these women have worked hard to get where they are, but I’m betting you, someone, somewhere, below them, is discussing what they’re wearing (if in plain clothes) how they’re styling their hair and how they smell – women wear perfume, get over it.


No, I didn’t find myself up against sexism, but had my health allowed me to progress the promotion ladder, I most certainly would have been discussed in terms of all the above when out of earshot, rather than what it was we were working on.


This is not acceptable and policing has a long way to go to have women on a real equal footing. There is still education to be done amongst the lower ranks about women and their progression. I adored the job, but it doesn’t mean I’m blind to its flaws.


Within the police there are a couple of associations, the Black Police Association, and Women’s Police Association to name a couple. What I regularly heard from white males, was why wasn’t there a white male association. Many just don’t understand the difficulties facing women (or black/minority ethnic officers), they see that women are now progressing, but they don’t notice the underlying problems that are still there. That women officers might need the support of fellow women officers. That if there wasn’t an issue in the first place the associations wouldn’t have existed. According to Gov.uk 2015 only 30% of the police service is made up of women and of those only 21% are Chief Inspector or above.


While some women may have broken through the glass ceiling in policing and made it all the way to Chief Constable level, the way in which they are perceived by their peers and subordinates, is another issue entirely.


Women in policing – there is a long way to go. There is still work to do. And it’s work that everyone, women included need to be a part of. There is sexism in the police service, but it’s not always as overt as you’d expect it to be. Now it needs to be brought out from the shadows and all officers just do the job and love it, regardless of the gender they are or the gender of those they work with, below or above.

Huge thanks to Rebecca for taking the time to come up with such an interesting guest post! I thoroughly enjoyed reading that, and getting a glimpse into her time working in the police.

I was lucky enough to be a part of Rebecca’s previous blog tour too, and you can click the link below to have a look at another great post!

Rebecca Bradley *Guest Post*