Blog Tour~Red Snow by Will Dean~Ellen’s Review

Hi everyone,

Today is Ellen’s turn on the blog tour for Red Snow by Will Dean and I’ll be sharing her review with you all a little further down!

About the author:

WILL DEAN grew up in the East Midlands, living in nine different villages before the age of eighteen. After studying at the LSE and working in London, he settled in rural Sweden with his wife. He built a wooden house in a boggy forest clearing at the centre of a vast elk forest, and it’s from this base that he compulsively reads and writes.

About the book:

TWO BODIES

One suicide. One cold-blooded murder. Are they connected? And who’s really pulling the strings in the small Swedish town of Gavrik?

TWO COINS

Black Grimberg liquorice coins cover the murdered man’s eyes. The hashtag #Ferryman starts to trend as local people stock up on ammunition.

TWO WEEKS

Tuva Moodyson, deaf reporter at the local paper, has a fortnight to investigate the deaths before she starts her new job in the south. A blizzard moves in. Residents, already terrified, feel increasingly cut-off. Tuva must go deep inside the Grimberg factory to stop the killer before she leaves town for good. But who’s to say the Ferryman will let her go?

Click the link below to order your copy:

https://amzn.to/2Hn4Bve

Ellen’s Review:

I read Dark Pines in December 2017 and as soon as I’d finished I was desperate to read more about Tuva Moodyson – I loved her character so much (along with the numerous shady people that also inhabited the small Swedish town of Gavrik)! I was delighted to get hold of the next in the series Red Snow. Some familiar characters are back (the Troll Sisters for example) and we are introduced to a few new intriguing ones as well. This could be read as a standalone but I would recommend that you read Dark Pines first to get a grasp on Tuva’s world.

I couldn’t wait to return to Gavrik although I’m pretty certain I would NOT survive the freezing conditions! After the Medusa Murders investigation and the death of her mother, Tuva has managed to escape the happenings of the previous months and bagged a journalist position in the bigger town of Malmo in the South. However…the suicide of Gustav Grimberg (head of the liquorice factory which is Gavrik’s main source of employment)  followed by a gruesome murder happen in quick succession and Tuva is determined to investigate the case before her departure. She is also asked by local ghost-writer David Holmqvist to help him write his book on the history of the Grimbergs. The Grimbergs have a little bit of a checkered past and Tuva is intrigued by the remaining members of the family who keep themselves to themselves and guard their secrets well. Anna-Britta (widow), daughter Karin and grandmother Cecilia slowly open up to Tuva which only leads to more questions and danger for the inhabitants of the factory, its staff and Tuva herself!

I was fascinated with the liquorice factory; I work in Pontefract the home of UK liquorice and Pomfrey cakes. The details of the factory were fabulous, Will is such a visual writer and I was right there with Tuva – the sounds of the workers tapping their liquorice coins, the smells from the canteen and feeling the growing fear over who The Ferryman’s next victim would be. Small town paranoia is hard at work in Red Snow and I had no idea who the perpetrator was.

Tuva is one of my favourite protagonists EVER – so sardonic but likeable, I’d love to have a night out with her but doubt I could keep up with her rum drinking but could take her out to our local liquorice festival. It was lovely to get to know her more and see a softer side to her nature, I really hope that love blossoms soon and she gets a bit of a break in the next book!

Five stars from me; Will Dean writes my favourite kind of Nordic Nwaaaaar and I cannot wait for Tuva 3. Go Team Tuva!

Check out the blog tour:

Recent Reads~Rapid Reviews

Hi guys,

So, I’m 44 (yes, FORTY-FOUR!!!!) reviews behind. Which sucks. But, I am adamant that I will get through them and this is once again, the ONLY way I can play catch up! These are all books I read towards the end of 2018 and I feel terrible that I haven’t gotten around to doing this until now, but hey, better late than never, right? 🙂

Murder on the Orient Express (Poirot)

I will hold my hand up and say until last year, I had never read an Agatha Christie novel. I rectified that by buddy reading Murder with some lovely twitter folk and I really enjoyed it. It is definitely a cosy crime novel, and it was exactly what I needed to read. So much so, that I’m now reading another AC novel, And Then There Were None and enjoying it just as much.

Do You Dream of Terra-Two?

Very much a character-driven book, Do You Dream of Terra-Two is one for fans of Becky Chambers. It’s got a really good premise, and I enjoyed the journey that the characters take the reader on.

Ink and Bone (The Great Library Book 1)

I’m a sucker for anything that uses books/libraries as a selling point. Ink and Bone is a promising opening for the Great Library series. Good world-building, intriguing characters and plenty of action. It took me a while to get into, but I would happily continue on with the series!

Trust No One: I Am Pilgrim meets Orphan X in this explosive thriller. You won't be able to put it down

This one was on my Netgalley shelf for far too long so I picked it up late last year. It reminds me of the Jason Bourne movies, it reads quite cinematic in that sense. Its a good thriller, with a lot to keep the reader turning the pages. Read this if you enjoyed I Am Pilgrim!

Empress of all Seasons

I am deep into my YA fantasy phase at the moment, and this one was top of my want list last year. I was lucky enough to get a Netgalley copy so I dove right in. Epic world-building, some seriously good characters and beautiful imagery in this one!

Zero Hour: Omnibus Edition

Zero Hour is a tense and emotive book. It is short, but packs a proper punch. It will leave you thinking about it long after finishing it. If you like Hugh Howey you will love Zero Hour!

The Masked City (The Invisible Library series Book 2)

I’m really enjoying this series. I found The Masked City to be hard going at the star though. There was a lot going on, and I couldn’t follow it initially, but once I figured it out I couldn’t put it down. I love the characters in this series, and I can’t wait to read the next ones!

Rosewater: Winner of the Nommo Award for Best Novel (The Wormwood Trilogy Book 1)

Rosewater is one of the more different books I’ve read lately. Speculative, graphic and immersive, it is an intriguing read. I thought it was a bit confusing at times as it jumps around a bit, but it was the premise that kept me reading!

The Lion Tamer Who Lost

An absolutely beautiful book. Emotive, beautifully-written and with a truly captivating story, this is a book with real heart. I can’t do it justice with my words, but I would highly recommend picking it up.

The Last Namsara: Iskari Book One

Another stellar YA fantasy series. I loved The Last Namsara. It is stunningly immersive, characters that will have you rooting for them from the start, and DRAGONS! Super fun read.

The Caged Queen: Iskari Book Two

I read this one before Namsara (I obviously went and bought Namsara as soon as I had finished this one!!!) and I was hooked. It was such an engaging read, and it had enough tie backs to the first book that it made the reader question a few things, but it didn’t give everything away. Loved it!

Disaster Inc by Caimh McDonnell~Ellen’s Review

Hi guys,

Ellen has a review for you all today of Disaster Inc by Caimh McDonnell and I’ll be sharing it with you a little further down!

About the author:

Caimh McDonnell is an award-winning stand-up comedian, author and writer of televisual treats. Born in Limerick and raised in Dublin, he has taken the hop across the water and now calls Manchester his home.

He is a man who wears many hats. As well as being an author, he is an award-winning writer for TV, a stand-up comedian and ‘the voice’ of London Irish rugby club. His debut novel, A Man with One of Those Faces, which was nominated for a CAP Award in 2017, is the first book of the Dublin Trilogy series. The sequel and prequel, The Day That Never Come and Angels in the Moonlight, were published in 2017. The books are fast-paced crime thrillers set in Caimh’s hometown of Dublin and they are laced with distinctly Irish acerbic wit.

Caimh’s TV writing credits include The Sarah Millican Television Programme,A League of Their OwnMock the Week and Have I Got News for You. He also works as a children’s TV writer and was BAFTA nominated for the animated series ‘Pet Squad’ which he created.

During his time on the British stand-up circuit, Caimh has firmly established himself as the white-haired Irishman whose name nobody can pronounce. He has brought the funny worldwide, doing stand-up tours of the Far East, the Middle East and Near East (Norwich).

Follow Caimh’s witterings on @Caimh

Facebook:  @CaimhMcD

About the book:

He’s a good man having a bad day with the worst hangover. 

All Bunny McGarry wants is a spot of breakfast and a decent cup of tea. So imagine how annoyed he gets when two masked men attempt to rob the New York diner he is in? Unfortunately, dealing with that problem just leads to a whole lot more. One of the diner’s other customers isn’t who she appears to be, and the odds aren’t great that she is going to live to see another breakfast. 

So just how much trouble is she in? 

Well, you know how they’re always telling us to pay attention to our pensions?   Some ex-employees of the US government are really taking that advice to heart by using their mayhem-creating abilities to maximise their investments. When one of their fund managers has a momentary crisis of conscience and confesses all to a woman he hardly knows, they will stop at nothing to deal with the problem.  Amy Daniels is in big trouble and the only thing keeping her alive is a man who is supposed to already be dead.

Disaster Inc is the first book in a new series featuring Bunny McGarry, beloved by those who enjoyed the critically-acclaimed Dublin Trilogy of books. It melds high-octane action with a distinctly Irish acerbic wit. 

Click the link below to order your copy:

https://amzn.to/2SVnCGq

Ellen’s Review:

Now we all know I love Bunny McGarry and he’s back with a bang (and an EPIC hangover) in Disaster Inc! Bunny is in New York, no mean feat as according to official records he’s dead, and looking for the love of his life Simone Delamere. We catch up with Bunny in a diner where all he wants is breakfast and a cup of tea in the hope of recovering from aforesaid hangover, what he ends up with is being in the middle of a robbery gone wrong, the ensuing brawl and a damsel in distress!

Amy is the lady in need of help; a dominatrix just trying to fund her way to a law degree but thanks to the loose lips of a client dealing in some dodgy insider information she is being framed for a crime she didn’t commit. Bunny to the rescue! Of course it’s never going to be straight forward, this is Bunny McGarry we’re dealing with. Crazy comedic capers commence (try saying that after a few pints of Guinness and a few whisky chasers)and it wouldn’t be a Caimh McDonnell book without the bonkers characters and antics we’ve come to know and love.

Disaster Inc is book five featuring Bunny and can be read as a standalone but I highly recommend that you read the four books in The Dublin Trilogy first. I know..one’s a prequel sssshhhhh just roll with it. So go make yourself a lovely cup of tea and settle down with this cracking book! Qll the stars and LOLs for Disaster Inc and bring on book six!

Blog Tour~Changeling (Six Stories #3) by Matt Wesolowski

Hi everyone,

So, today is my stop on the blog tour for Changeling by Matt Wesolowski and I’ll be re-sharing my review with you just a little further down this post!

About the author:

Matt Wesolowski.jpeg

Matt Wesolowski is an author from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne in the UK. He is
an English tutor for young people in care. Matt started his writing career in
horror, and his short horror fiction has been published in numerous UK- an
US-based anthologies such as Midnight Movie Creature, Selfies from the End
of the World, Cold Iron and many more. His novella, The Black Land, a horror
story set on the Northumberland coast, was published in 2013. Matt was a
winner of the Pitch Perfect competition at Bloody Scotland Crime Writing
Festival in 2015. His debut thriller, Six Stories, was an Amazon bestseller in the
USA, Canada, the UK and Australia, and a WH Smith Fresh Talent pick, and TV
rights were sold to a major Hollywood studio. A prequel, Hydra, was published
in 2018 and became an international bestseller.

About the book:

Changeling.jpg

On Christmas Eve in 1988, seven-year-old Alfie Marsden vanished
in the dark Wentshire Forest Pass, when his father, Sorrel, stopped
the car to investigate a mysterious knocking sound. No trace of
the child, nor his remains, have ever been found. Alfie Marsden
was declared officially dead in 1995.
Elusive online journalist, Scott King, whose ‘Six Stories’ podcasts
have become an internet sensation, investigates the disappearance,
interviewing six witnesses, including Sorrel and his ex-partner, to try to find out what really happened
that fateful night. Journeying through the trees of the Wentshire Forest – a place synonymous with
strange sightings, and tales of hidden folk who dwell there, he talks to a company that tried and failed
to build a development in the forest, and a psychic who claims to know what happened to the little
boy…

Published by Orenda Books, click the link below to order your copy:

Changeling (Six Stories #3) by Matt Wesolowski

Review:

We’re beneath different trees this series, but our feet are sounding against the same darkness and once again we’re facing our fears head-on.

If ever a quote summed up the experience of reading Matt Wesolowski’s books, this chiller from Changeling is perfect.

I had been dying to read Changeling ever since I saw the beautiful cover on Twitter a few months back, and let’s face it, being a superfan means I have literally NO PATIENCE when it comes to waiting for these things. So huge thanks to both Karen and Matt for letting me read an early copy.

Reader, it does not disappoint.

In Changeling, Scott King is back investigating again. This time it is the disappearance of Alfie Marsden from his father’s car in the Wentshire Forest Pass on Christmas Eve 1988. Alfie disappeared without a trace and was officially declared dead seven years and three months after he disappeared. Scott sets out with his usual investigative zeal in search of answers.

I read Changeling over the course of today, making notes as I went, which I never do. And even with these notes, I still feel like I can’t do this book the justice it deserves.

Changeling is by far, my most favourite of the Six Stories books, and I love them all, I mean I REALLY love them. So just know I am not saying that lightly. Changeling got under my skin in a way the others didn’t.

The tension and sense of menace is there from the outset. It builds steadily, rolling like waves in a storm, until it crashes around your consciousness and leaves you almost breathless. Hidden and implied horror help to make Changeling a thoroughly bracing read, leaving the reader more than a little unsettled in its wake.

Much like the Changeling in old folklore, this book itself goes through a metamorphosis. But the author does this slowly, almost imperceptibly, and it creeps up on you gradually that what you are reading is a little different to what you started reading.

What you need to know is this;

Changeling is an intense, dark and utterly absorbing book. The pages crackle with tension, the characters have real depth and the writing is truly stunning.

Matt Wesolowski has to be one of the most imaginiative and talented young writers out there at the moment. His ability to make his writing current in terms of style, while still managing to write the perfect kind of crime/horror/psychological thriller mash-up, astounds me more with every book of his I read.

Highly, highly recommended.

Always.

Previous Matt-related posts:

Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski

*Blog Tour* Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski

~COVER REVEAL~ Hydra by Matt Wesolowski

Hydra by Matt Wesolowski

Check out the blog tour:

December 2018 Book Haul

Hi guys,

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas! I’m back today with my first post of 2019, and its my December Book Haul 🙂

I said on my last book haul that I was 35 reviews behind, well now I’m in the mid-forties so I’m going to try to get some posts done this week to get rid of the backlog! We’ll see how that goes… 😂

Anyway, for any of you who don’t know, this is where I list the books that have made Bibliophile Book Club their new home in the previous month. The books are usually bought books, ARC’s sent from publishers, Netgalley review books and just basically any books I get go on here.

Here’s what I got in December:

  1. The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin
  2. Our Bloody Pearl by D. N. Bryn
  3. Gone by Dawn by Tom Wood
  4. Beautiful Bad by Annie Ward
  5. The Princess Bride by William Goldman
  6. Twelve Angels Weeping by Dave Rudden
  7. Heroes by Stephen Fry
  8. Splintered Son by Michael Cobley
  9. Call Me Star Girl by Louise Beech
  10. The Island by Ragnar Jónasson
  11. Master of Sorrows by Justin Call
  12. Murder For Christmas by Francis Duncan
  13. Gone by Midnight by Candice Fox
  14. The Binding by Bridget Collins
  15. Six of Crows Collectors Edition by Leigh Bardugo
  16. Only Connect by Victoria Coren
  17. Whiskey in a Teacup by Reese Witherspoon
  18. The Doctor’s Proposal by Eve Gaddy
  19. Dig Two Graves by Keith Nixon
  20. A Kiss For Christmas by Melody Grace
  21. Christmas With The Sherriff by Victoria James
  22. The Emperor’s Edge Collection by Lindsay Buroker
  23. Circe by Madeline Miller
  24. Eragon by Christopher Paolini
  25. 55 by James Delargy
  26. One More Lie by Amy Lloyd
  27. The Gutter Prayer by Gareth Hanrahan
  28. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
  29. Eldest by Christopher Paolini
  30. The President is Missing by James Patterson and Bill Clinton
  31. The Jack Reacher Experiment 1-7 by Jude Hardin
  32. Dead Man’s Gift by Simon Kernick
  33. The Wolf and the Whale by Jordanna Max Brodsky

And that’s it! 🙂

My laptop is misbehaving today, so I actually have no photos for this post!

Have you read any of these?! Would you? Do let me know in the comments!

Until next time, happy reading!

My Favourite Books of 2018…

Hi everyone,

I’m sure you’ve all seen plenty of these posts in recent weeks, but I figure I may as well add my own favourites post to the list!

2018 has been a funny old year for me in terms of reading. In June I started experiencing anxiety and panic (more on that here), which meant I had to drastically change my reading and blogging habits in order to find something that worked for me. This involved changing up my genres, so while most of my previous Top Reads posts are predominantly crime/thriller books, this one has some non-crime 🙂

I found it hard to try to pick my favourite reads of the year this year if I’m honest. Not because I didn’t have a year of great books, moreso because I had a year of dodgy headspace and it changed my perspective a little. In saying that, I am pretty happy with my choices. The books on this list are books that I still think about and recommend on a regular basis, or books I get all shouty about on Twitter 🙂

As always, these are books that were my favourites, but reading is so subjective, so I wouldn’t expect anyone to agree with all of my picks. I’m also popping in a couple of books that are not out yet as 2019 recommendations, and an eBook that will be released in paperback in 2019 too. Hopefully you’ll discover a book here that you may not have heard about and decide to read!

So, without further ado, here are the books that I loved in 2018….

Don’t Make A Sound by David Jackson

Don't Make A Sound

You guys! YOU GUYS!!! THIS BOOK!!!! It definitely nearly broke me. I have such a grá (love in Irish in case you want to know!) for Nathan Cody. I never want to stop reading when I pick up any of David’s Cody series, and Don’t Make A Sound was no exception.

But I had to put it down… to catch my breath, because THINGS HAPPEN! And I wasn’t prepared for how it made me feel!!! I picked the book up again after a few deep breaths, but I was super tense until I turned those last pages.

What a bloody thrill ride!!!

There is no doubt that David Jackson is an awesome writer, but he is also a master manipulator after this one (Love you really, Dave!) because it really messed with my head, heart and emotions. I am NOT complaining though, because this knack that Dave has means that his books will keep me gripped from start to finish.

EVERY. DAMN. TIME.

Don’t Make A Sound, for me, is the best book in the series so far.  Without a shadow of a doubt. The plot is pitch perfect. The atmosphere is dark and nervy. The characters are so well-drawn (goodies and baddies) that the reader becomes immersed almost immediately and that denouement, perfection.

I can’t praise Dave or his books highly enough. Firmly on my favourites list for life, this series just keeps getting better and better.

Raw, dark and with an emotional gut-punch, Don’t Make A Sound is one thriller you DO NOT want to miss.

Highly recommended.

Always.

Don’t Make A Sound by David Jackson

Previous reviews for the series:

A Tapping at my Door by David Jackson

Hope To Die by David Jackson

The Darkness by Ragnar Jónasson

The Darkness

Regular readers of my blog will know that I am a huge fan of Ragnar Jónasson’s writing, so when I heard we were finally going to meet Hulda Hermansdottir in The Darkness, I jumped at the chance to read it, and I was definitely not disappointed.

Hulda is a Detective in the Reykjavik Police, and at sixty-four, is almost ready to retire. When she takes on the last case of her career, Hulda finds out that all is not what it seems. The case, a cold case, involved a young woman seeking asylum from Russia, who was found murdered on an isolated beach in Vatnsleysuströnd. Hulda thinks that if she can solve this one last case, she’ll go out on a high as she finishes her career, but life is never really that easy.

The Darkness is another fine example of Ragnar Jónasson’s ability to transfer the chilling Icelandic landscape into a character in the book. Unforgiving, dark and more than a little unsettling, I found myself thinking it sounds like a very harsh place to live. But I could easily conjure up the images he created.

Speaking of character, I really enjoyed reading about Hulda. It seems she is a little misunderstood by her colleagues, but when you get a glimpse into her thought processes you see she is lovely, just a bit standoffish. Her gruff demeanour does little to endear her to many of the people around her, but I warmed to her immediately.

By the end of the book, I genuinely didn’t want to have to turn that last page, so I’m really glad this is only the beginning. Or the end, because the books are going in reverse order.

To sum up, for me, The Darkness was a haunting portrait of the Icelandic landscape, with brilliantly drawn characters and a thoroughly chilling plot. It takes the reader on an unexpected journey, and I loved every minute of it.

Highly recommended, as always!

The Darkness by Ragnar Jónasson

To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

To Kill a Kingdom

Buy the damn book.

Can I just leave it at that?! Because I can’t seem to find the words to describe how much I enjoyed To Kill A Kingdom…

I’ve been switching genres lately because I find I get sick of the same kind of stuff if I read a load of similar books, so when I saw To Kill A Kingdom on my kindle I figured I would give it a go. It is a YA fantasy with sirens, mermaids and pirates. It sounded like it would be a fun read, and its safe to say it was that and more!

To Kill A Kingdom kept me company on a flight to Prague recently. I spent the entire plane journey reading it, and found myself over halfway through by the time we landed, I just couldn’t stop reading.

Princess Lira is a siren. She collects the hearts of princes by ripping them from their chests. When Lira has to kill one of her own, her sea queen mother punishes her by making her into something that her kind hate. A human. Enter Prince Elian. A siren hunter, heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world. Lira must kill Prince Elian in order to be returned to the sea. And there begins the real story.

I don’t want to go into too much detail. Partly because I don’t want to spoil the story for you guys, but also because I’m still struggling to find all of the good words to explain how much I loved this book.

To Kill A Kingdom hooked me from the beginning. It has a great cast of characters, way more action than I was expecting, and Alexandra Christo has created a truly wonderful world for this book. I loved the story, how it all played out, how beautifully drawn the book is as a whole.

Captivating, magical and haunting, To Kill A Kingdom is definitely one of my favourite books that I’ve read recently. So much so, that I am actively looking for books that even come marginally close to this engaging gem, so if you know of any, shout at me in the comments!

Also, I raved about it so much that my husband (who isn’t actually a big reader) read it and he really liked it too! 🙂

I’ll end this review the same way I started it…

Buy the damn book!

🙂 🙂 🙂

To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

Furyborn by Claire Legrand

Furyborn

I’m months out from reading Furyborn and I’m STILL having trouble trying to formulate a review decent enough to convey just how much I loved this book. It has got everything I look for in a book. Strong main characters, a truly epic story line and excellent world-building. Once I picked it up, I knew I was on to a winner, and I could not stop reading!

Rielle and Eliana are two of the best female characters I’ve read in a fantasy book this year, and I found myself thoroughly invested in their fates throughout the course of the book. I am still thinking about them and its been two months since I read Furyborn!

I am reminded of the addictiveness of Sarah J. Maas’s Court books when I think of Furyborn. It evoked much the same feelings as I had when I picked those up, and its safe to say that I NEED MORE from Claire Legrand. More Eliana, more Rielle, more Corien, who reminds me of both Rhysand AND the Darkling (Leigh Bardugo’s creation).

I don’t know what else to say. No amount of raving can convey how I actually feel about this book. It left me breathless. Gasping for more. Bereft when I finished it. Lots of feelings, basically!

I absolutely loved Furyborn. Right from the beginning I knew it was going to be a great read. Excellent characterisation, clever magical-type aspects, great world building, I just loved it all. The power struggles, the action, the dual timeline narrative, it all worked really well for me. A perfect foundation for a trilogy. It left me with questions, and wanting more to read, but that’s the beauty of the first book in a series. I can’t wait for the next!

Highly recommended!

Furyborn by Claire Legrand

Aftershock by Adam Hamdy

Aftershock

If you follow my blog, you’ll know I’ve read and loved the previous books in the trilogy (review links are left below) so I had been eagerly awaiting Aftershock since I finished Freefall last summer. Which feels like a lifetime ago! So you can imagine my delight to find a copy waiting for me after I got home from Harrogate. I literally turned the last page of Aftershock a half hour ago, and I am shook, in the best possible way of course.

I’m mindful of the fact that I don’t want to go into too much detail in this review, so I will try to keep it relatively short because if I start rambling about the book, I probably won’t stop too easily!

Aftershock starts with a bang, and I swear the pace doesn’t let up for the entirety of the 500+ pages. If you’ve read the first two books, you’ll recognise Adam Hamdy’s innate talent for writing extremely cinematic thrillers, and this one is no exception!

We are back with the usual suspects, Wallace, Ash, Bailey as they try to deal with the fallout from the events that took place in Freefall. Each is trying to battle their own demons, and the internal guilt/struggles they are experiencing make for tough and emotive reading at times. The journeys that each one goes on, and the arc of their respective characters is so well plotted, and I found myself really rooting for them at various points in the book.

The Foundation has claimed so much of these people’s lives, and in Aftershock they try to claw back something for themselves. Destruction and force are The Foundation’s weapons of choice, but murder seems to be the order of the day and its up to Wallace, Ash and the rest to try to finally put a stop to this wide-reaching organisation.

I swear the tension and pacing in these books is designed to get your adrenaline pumping, but not in a bad way. I kept my reading of this one to daylight hours, but even then I was on tenterhooks while the action was unfolding. Lets not even mention the bits that made me tearful!!!

Aftershock is a pitch perfect ending to what has been one of the best action series I have ever had the pleasure of reading. Cleverly plotted, excellent characters and a truly terrifying reality made Aftershock a truly gripping read. 

If you like your thrillers with real heart, then I highly recommend you pick up Aftershock, and its equally impressive predecessors.

You will not be disappointed.

All the stars for this one!

Previous reviews:

Pendulum by Adam Hamdy

Run by Adam Hamdy

Freefall (Pendulum Trilogy #2) by Adam Hamdy

 

Skin Deep by Liz Nugent

Skin Deep

I love a bookish baddie. You know the kind. Self-centered, narcissistic, just hateful in general. Well, yet again, Liz Nugent has created a truly terrible fictional human being in Cordelia Russell. Right from the beginning of Skin Deep I found myself disliking her as a character.

But. And there is definitely a but. When we are taken through Cordelia’s early life, the reader learns why she is the way she is. No excuse, I know, but it is a very insightful and eye-opening character development that left me wondering how many more layers Liz Nugent could possibly add to her character.

Skin Deep is a masterful exploration of character and circumstance. It is graphic, raw and unashamedly honest in its portrayal of the lengths to which someone will go to get what they need from others. Selfishness and greed are front and centre in this book, and as we learn more about Cordelia, it is difficult to not have some very real and often angry feelings towards her.

I had been eagerly awaiting this book, and it was most definitely worth the wait. A savage look at the depravity of the human condition, the lengths to which people will go for their own gain, it is a triumph.

Highly recommended!

Skin Deep by Liz Nugent

The Caged Queen by Kristen Ciccarelli

The Caged Queen

The Caged Queen is one of the books I read during my hiatus from reviewing, so I don’t have an actual review to share for this one. What I will say is that I LOVED it. It’s the second book in the Iskari series, book one being The Last Namsara, and even though I hadn’t read the first book  I became completely immersed in it. So much so that I immediately went and bought The Last Namsara so I could read it.

Superb characters, a great plot and excellent world-building made this one a firm favourite. If you like fantasy, dragons and Young Adult fiction then I would highly recommend adding The Caged Queen to your TBR.

The Caged Queen by Kristen Ciccarelli

 

Next up, a book that is already available on Kindle, it will be released in paperback in January 2019. To be fair, Matt has featured on all of my Top Reads posts since he released Six Stories, so a list isn’t a list without my fave goth 🙂

And I’m going to get real here, nestled in the list, this book is the one.

My favorite.

It was one of my most anticipated books, and it didn’t disappoint, so it’s only right that it’s my top read…

 

Changeling by Matt Wesolowski

Changeling

We’re beneath different trees this series, but our feet are sounding against the same darkness and once again we’re facing our fears head-on.

If ever a quote summed up the experience of reading Matt Wesolowski’s books, this chiller from Changeling is perfect.

I had been dying to read Changeling ever since I saw the beautiful cover on Twitter a few months back, and let’s face it, being a superfan means I have literally NO PATIENCE when it comes to waiting for these things. So huge thanks to both Karen and Matt for letting me read an early copy.

Reader, it does not disappoint.

In Changeling, Scott King is back investigating again. This time it is the disappearance of Alfie Marsden from his father’s car in the Wentshire Forest Pass on Christmas Eve 1988. Alfie disappeared without a trace and was officially declared dead seven years and three months after he disappeared. Scott sets out with his usual investigative zeal in search of answers.

I read Changeling over the course of today, making notes as I went, which I never do. And even with these notes, I still feel like I can’t do this book the justice it deserves.

Changeling is by far, my most favourite of the Six Stories books, and I love them all, I mean I REALLY love them. So just know I am not saying that lightly. Changeling got under my skin in a way the others didn’t.

The tension and sense of menace is there from the outset. It builds steadily, rolling like waves in a storm, until it crashes around your consciousness and leaves you almost breathless. Hidden and implied horror help to make Changeling a thoroughly bracing read, leaving the reader more than a little unsettled in its wake.

Much like the Changeling in old folklore, this book itself goes through a metamorphosis. But the author does this slowly, almost imperceptibly, and it creeps up on you gradually that what you are reading is a little different to what you started reading.

I PROMISE I will do a more in-depth review, but for now, know this;

Changeling is an intense, dark and utterly absorbing book. The pages crackle with tension, the characters have real depth and the writing is truly stunning.

Matt Wesolowski has to be one of the most imaginiative and talented young writers out there at the moment. His ability to make his writing current in terms of style, while still managing to write the perfect kind of crime/horror/psychological thriller mash-up, astounds me more with every book of his I read.

Highly, highly recommended.

Always.

Previous Matt-related posts:

Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski

*Blog Tour* Six Stories by Matt Wesolowski

~COVER REVEAL~ Hydra by Matt Wesolowski

Hydra by Matt Wesolowski

 

Another 2019 release coming up next, I managed to read this one way back in February:

 

The Nowhere Child by Christian White

 

The Nowhere Child is simply unputdownable. I absolutely devoured this exquisitely written thriller in a couple of sittings. This is the kind of book that makes me want to shout about it from the rooftops.

It all started with the disappearance of 2-year-old Sammy Went in the 90’s. Gone without a trace, Sammy has never been found. Fast forward twenty eight years to where we meet Kim Leamy, who is approached by a man investigating little Sammy’s disappearance all those years ago. This meeting leaves Kim with enough questions to make her travel to Sammy’s hometown of Manson, Kentucky in the United States.

What follows is by far one of the best stories I’ve had the pleasure of reading in a long time. Packed with tension that winds its way towards an unexpected conclusion, The Nowhere Child is a triumph. A riveting tale of secrets and lies, and the lengths to which people will go to keep them hidden. Thoroughly engaging, you won’t be able to put it down until the bitter end.

The Nowhere Child by Christian White

 

And last, but by no meas least, a 2019 YA release that I may have been shouting about a little on Twitter…

 

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

A Curse So Dark and Lonely

This book had been languishing on my kindle for a while so I picked it up a month or two ago to read and I ended up absolutely loving it. It is billed as a retelling of Beauty and the Beast and I AM HERE FOR THAT! It was such a great read. I loved the characters, the whole idea, the premise, everything! I love anything to do with BATB so this book was everything for me. I can’t wait to get myself a hardcover for my shelves because I plan on reading it again in 2019. Can’t recommend it highly enough!

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

 

And that’s it. Just like that,  I’m done.

 

Have you read any of my 2018 faves? Would you? Do let me know in the comments!

Thanks for taking the time to read this post, and my blog over the past year!

Until 2019, happy reading!

Kate x

Blog Blast~ The Storm Girl’s Secret by Ceri Lowe~ Ellen’s Review

Hi guys,

Ellen is taking part in the blog blast for The Storm Girl’s Secret by Ceri Lowe today, and I’ll be sharing her review with you all a little further down!

About the author:

When Ceri isn’t writing, she’s a self-employed project management consultant specialising in financial services. She lives with her partner in Bristol, England and has various obsessions including all things Spanish, travelling and, of course, writing.

Social Media Links:

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/cerilowepetrask

Website: http://www.cerialowe.com/

About the book:

An addictive and jaw-dropping dystopian story, perfect for fans of Bella Forrest, The Hunger Games and Divergent. Discover a world torn apart by storms under the grip of an evil organisation, and one girl who discovers a secret that will change everything…

The existence of 15-year-old Alice Davenport is Paradigm Industries’ biggest secret.

Decades ago, after fierce storms ravaged the earth, Alice was one of the first to help establish Paradigm Industries’ new world order: in which no one can leave the Barricades, and every trace of the past was destroyed. The whole Community believes she died an Industry hero.

But Alice refused to live under Paradigm’s cruel laws.

Alice was punished.

And Alice is alive.

Sentenced to permanent cryonic sleep in the Catacombs, Alice has been frozen for years… until now. With the Industry wanting her dead, Alice is on the run – helped by Carter Warren, Industry loyalist turned secret rebel. But as they make their escape, they uncover a shocking secret.

Paradigm Industries have devastating plans for the future, which threaten to tear the world apart. Those living outside the Barricades will be permanently destroyed. With Alice and Carter the only hope for humanity, can they find the strength to finally defeat the Industry?

The Storm Girl’s Secret is the thrilling conclusion to the Paradigm trilogy. Discover Alice’s heart-pounding story today.

Buy Link: http://geni.us/B07K8XCST7Publication

Ellen’s Review:

The Storm Girl’s Secret is the final instalment in the Paradigm Trilogy by Ceri A Lowe and I recommend that you read the first two books in the series. There is a lot of character/plot building that has happened so it’s vital that you’re up to speed with everything that has gone before.

At the end of book two (The Girl in the Storm) there was the jaw dropping reveal that Alice Davenport was alive and well having been frozen for the last eighty years. The story line I alluded to in my last review is now happening – Carter and Alice are in the same timeline! And what a story; this epic conclusion to the trilogy was definitely worth the wait.

The action is non-stop as the teenagers battle to overthrow Alice’s tyrannical step daughter Elizabet who is intent on destroying everything and everyone outside the barricades. There are shocks and revelations along the way and I was left reeling by the shocking events.

So if you’re looking for the perfect YA dystopian series look no further – The Paradigm Trilogy is exactly what you need!


Check out the other blogs taking part: