The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die by Marnie Riches

Where do I start with this book?!

I loved this book so I’m finding it hard to reconcile the wonderment in my head with words on a page! I feel like I need to read a thesaurus to learn all the words that I could possibly need for this review! 🙂

First up, here’s someone else’s words, publishing house Harper Collins, describing the book:

“HE’S WATCHING HER. SHE DOESN’T KNOW IT…YET

When a bomb explodes at the University of Amsterdam, aspiring criminologist Georgina McKenzie is asked by the police to help flush out the killer.
But the bomb is part of a much bigger, more sinister plot that will have the entire city quaking in fear.
And the killer has a very special part for George to play…

A thrilling race against time with a heroine you’ll be rooting for, this book will keep you up all night!

WINNER OF THE 2015 DEAD GOOD READER AWARD FOR MOST EXOTIC LOCATION”

The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die is the first in a series following Georgina McKenzie based in Amsterdam. George is a Cambridge University student on an exchange in the city. When a bomb explodes at her university she can’t help but get involved, dragging her friend Ad along with her.

After George meets Inspector Van den Bergen, he enlists her help as she writes a blog and he thinks it’s a good way to reach the suspects. Soon they realise that the bomb was a person, in George’s class. When another bomb goes off and the bomb is another student the race to find the perpetrator begins.

I don’t want to go too much further in the plot here as there was an OMG moment for me just over halfway through and I don’t want to spoil that for anyone. I was actually annoyed at myself that I didn’t put the pieces together before it happened!!!! Then again, that’s ha,f the fun, working backwards to see what you may have missed!

I downloaded The Girl Who Wouldn’t Die when it came out as so many fellow book bloggers had been talking about it and I’m so glad I did! I’ve also got book 2 on my kindle, The Girl Who Broke The Rules aaaaaaand I’ve totally preordered book 3, The Girl Who Walked In The Shadows!

I gave this book 5 stars on Goodreads, and I still can’t find the right words to explain how much I enjoyed this book! 🙂 Just go and get in and decide for yourself! 😉

Happy reading! 😊📖

Guilt by Joan Ellis

  

I was given a copy of this book by Maxine over at Booklover Catlady in exchange for an honest review.

Joan Ellis is not a name I have ever heard of, so I didn’t know what to expect when I started reading Guilt. It’s a relatively short book. Less than 200 pages, so I read it today.

Guilt is about Susan, whose younger brother dies of an overdose while she’s watching him. She carries the guilt with her throughout childhood, and into adulthood. When she has a baby of her own, the guilt threatens to overtake everything in her life.

Goodreads describes the book as follows:

You died in April 1965, a month before your fifth birthday. You were probably dead long before Mum downed her third gin with Porky Rawlings.Seven year old Susan is alone with her younger brother when he dies of an overdose.

The Guilt informs the rest of her life.

When it threatens to destroy not only her but her relationship with her new baby,she must revisit the past to find the truth.

What she discovers is as horrifying as it is magical.

I have to be honest, I wasn’t blown away by Guilt. With the book being so short, the author still managed to get the complete story in. At times it felt a bit rushed, but it was still easy to read.

There are some things in the book that readers may find a bit hard to read, but then again, the vivid descriptions are what make a book sometimes. I can’t say i hated this book, but in my opinion, it wasn’t a great read. I found the subject matter and the way the author wrote Susan to be a bit, I can’t find the right word, awkward, forced maybe. Personal opinion though! I gave this book 2 stars on Goodreads.

Housebroken by The Behrg

  

I was given a copy of Housebroken to review by Maxine over at BookLover Catlady

I have no idea where to start with this book! I started it on Friday at lunchtime, and I finished it last night (Saturday) after spending the most part of the evening racing through it. I guess that’s a good sign. 

Goodreads describes Housebroken as follows:

“It was a kidnapping, but in all the wrong ways. No ransom, no demands; there was nothing they wanted–other than to observe.” 

When Blake Crochet and his family are taken hostage in their own home, they are forced to act out their everyday lives under the observance of two psychotic kidnappers. Each moment Blake must pit the decision to follow their captors’ rules against the potential catastrophe of a failed escape.
He soon learns that the consequences of both action and inaction are more terrifying than he imagined. As Blake’s life erodes beneath him, secrets come to light that threaten to destroy his family before their kidnappers have a chance.
Secrets carry consequences too.
As the motives behind the kidnapping are revealed, Blake must sacrifice everything to hold on to the ever-shifting definition of what his family has become. In his battle for survival, he will face the ultimate consequence: for to fight a devil, you may have to become one yourself.

I hadn’t heard of this book before I started it so I had no idea what the premise of the book was. Once I started reading it, it quickly became evident that it wasn’t your run of the mill kidnapping book. Imagine being housebound by two maniacs, just to be observed! 

Blake and his wife Jenna, along with their son Adam have recently moved into a beautiful mansion in LA, however, happiness hasn’t followed. There is obvious strain in the marriage, and this begins to become more evident as you get into the book. A stranger appears at their door, and their life is changed forever.

I don’t want to go into the plot, but the only way I can describe this book is that it’s one of the most brutal, screwed up books that I have read in a long time. There is violence (serious violence!!!), murder, torture, psychological abuse and so much more in Housebroken. For want of a better phrase, it’s an assault of the senses! 

12 hours after finishing it, and I’m still thinking about it! Housebroken is adrenaline pumping action mixed with the creepiest of psychological torture and then some! Don’t even get me started on the last 10% of the book! Most of that time was spent with my mouth open and going “huh?! What just happened!!!!”. I gave it three stars on Goodreads. Well worth a read if you want something different to the usual kidnapping story. 

The Slaughter Man by Tony Parsons

  

The Slaughter Man is the second instalment of the DC Max Wolfe series, the first being The Murder Bag. I read The Murder Bag when it came out and I really enjoyed it so I was excited when I heard there was a second book on its way! 

I made my husband pick a book for me to read on Wednesday night because I have so many I couldn’t pick one myself! This is what he picked! I figured I’d just read a few pages to get it started, turns out I read 105 pages in my first sitting, roughly over 1/4 of the book! I didn’t want to go to sleep but I didn’t want to be a zombie yesterday either 🙂 

I finished the book last night! I’m pretty sure that it took maybe 3-4 hours max to read this in between one kid at camp and the other napping! I raced through it when I got half a chance! 

The book is described on Goodreads as follows: 

A murdered family. A dying serial killer. A missing child. DC Max Wolfe hunts a pitiless killer through the streets of London. By the Sunday Times number one bestselling author of The Murder Bag.

On New Year’s Day, a wealthy family is found slaughtered inside their exclusive gated community in north London, their youngest child stolen away.
The murder weapon – a gun for stunning cattle before they are butchered – leads Detective Max Wolfe to a dusty corner of Scotland Yard’s Black Museum devoted to a killer who thirty years ago was known as the Slaughter Man.

But the Slaughter Man has done his time, and is now old and dying. Can he really be back in the game?
And was the murder of a happy family a mindless killing spree, a grotesque homage by a copycat killer – or a contract hit designed to frame a dying man?
All Max knows is that he needs to find the missing child and stop the killerbefore he destroys another innocent family – or finds his way to his own front door …
Even the happiest of families have black, twisted secrets that someone is ready to kill for…
This book is brutal, gory and full of gruesome little sidebars. Like what happens to a body after it dies. Full on details about putrefaction!!! Not for the faint hearted, very interesting though.

I found The Slaughter Man to be a super fast paced book. There was something happening every couple of pages. It was very easy to follow though. I really enjoyed it. It was twisty, some of which were unexpected, but overall a great read. I gave it 4 stars on Goodreads.

Happy reading 😊📖

Eden Burning Competition

I am delighted to have been asked by Matthew Smith (Urbane Publications) to take part in a competition where the winner will receive a copy of Eden Burning by Deirdre Quiery.


Not only that, the winner will receive a beautiful print by the author, also titled Eden Burning.

Eden Burning- the blurb:

Northern Ireland, 1972.

On the Crumlin Road, Belfast, the violent sectarian Troubles have forced Tom Martin to take drastic measures to protect his family. Across the divide William McManus pursues his own particular bloody code, murdering for a cause. Yet both men have underestimated the power of love and an individuals belief in right and wrong, a belief that will shake the lives of both families with a greater impact than any bomb blast.
This is a compelling, challenging story of conflict between and within families driven by religion, belief, loyalty and love. In a world deeply riven by division, how can any individual transcend the seemingly inevitable violence of their very existence?
To be in with a chance of winning, all you have to do is answer a simple question:

Where is Eden Burning set?

Answer in the comments below

The competition is open worldwide and will run from Friday August 21st to 11:59pm Monday August 31st.
The winner will be picked at random and their details will be passed on to Matthew Smith at Urbane Publications who will send out their prize.

Best of luck 🙂

The Devil Has Power by Valerie Keogh


I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.

I previously reviewed the first Nicola Connolly novel which you can read here, so I was looking forward to seeing what happened next.

When we meet Nicola, she has moved to Falmouth leaving all her troubles in Bath behind. Or so she thought.

DI Tom Hudson has also moved to Falmouth to start a nice quiet job there after the drama of the investigation in Bath. Neither knows about the others presence. Until they literally bump into each other.

The blurb from Goodreads:

After Bath, Nicola is planning a quieter life in Falmouth. She still needs to kill, of course, that isn’t going to change. Finding a measure of contentment in the stunning penthouse apartment she has rented, she figures out a way to stay in it, radically changing herself in the process. It involves killing someone, and getting married. But neither is a problem for Nicola. Everything falls into place for her until she bumps into Tom Hudson, newly promoted to detective inspector and now working in Falmouth. Nicola doesn’t want to become involved with the police again, Tom, still reeling from the events in Bath, doesn’t want her to either. But when a woman goes missing, and Tom is convinced she isn’t the first, he has no choice but to ask for Nicola’s help. Can they work together to solve yet another case?

Tom begins the investigation into the missing woman, and raises concerns when the pattern matches previous missing persons and wonders if there’s a killer at work. As the investigation starts moving, Tom remembers how Nicola was able to help in Bath and wonders if she could do the same here.

Nicola is still a killer, but, due to circumstances, isn’t working in a care home anymore so has to go to great her lengths to follow her needs. When Tom comes to her to ask for her help, does she really want to invite the psychic connection back so it can haunt her dreams again? And risk being uncovered?

I won’t go into more detail as I can’t without spoiling something! Sufficed to say the story really picks up (I stayed up reading this to the end last night so I could see what happened!!!) from here and when the end comes, you will not believe it! I was very surprised! Normally I can guess as to who the perpetrator is, but not with this one! I was genuinely incredulous toward the end of the book!

I enjoyed The Devil Has Power a bit more than Deadly Sleep if I’m honest. There was more background and it made it easier to follow!

I gave this 3 stars on Goodreads.

Thanks again to Valerie Keogh!

Happy reading 😊📖

Deadly Sleep by Valerie Keogh


I was given this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.

Deadly Sleep is the first in a serial killer series featuring Nicola Connolly. Nicola is a nurse working in care homes, but she has a secret. Nicola is also a killer. She kills 3 people unnoticed, every six months. When her six months are up, she moves to another area. Everything is going well, until Nicola moves to Bath. The blurb from Goodreads is as follows:

“Nicola Connolly is a nurse. She is also a serial killer. She kills neatly, three victims every six months, moving around the UK, hiding in plain sight. Everything goes according to plan until she moves to Bath. Because in Bath the police are hunting a serial killer who kills and tortures his victims. A psychic connection develops between the two killers, Nicola sees him and what he does to his victims in her nightmares.She is starting to lose control and she really can’t afford to do that. In an attempt to break the link, to have the other killer caught, Nicola goes to the police with what she knows. But can she help them without exposing herself? A serial killer and a burnt out policeman – can they really work together to stop him? And at what cost?”

Deadly Sleep begins with Nicola as a child, describing events that make her what she has become in present day. To be honest, I found the start of this book a bit hard to read at times. There were some moments that were very graphic, and gory, but they served to give you an idea as to why she is the way she is.

When we meet Nicola in Bath, she is working in a nursing home, still following through with her desire to kill. She is living sparsely, surviving off wine and pizza. Still unseen.

Parallel to this, we meet two members of the Police, DI Matt Foley and DS Tom Hudson who are hunting a suspected serial killer in Bath, who tortures and kills his victims.

Oddly, a psychic connection develops between the killer and Nicola. When Nicola sleeps, she can see the killer torturing and killing his victims, but doesn’t know who she is seeing. Nicola can’t go on with the dreams, so she decides to go to the police. But will they believe her?

I’ll be honest here, I found this bit to be a bit unbelievable. However, up until now, I wasn’t really enthusiastic about reading this. Once things started happening, my interest was piqued. The pace picked up pretty well, and there were a few incidents ( I don’t post spoilers!!!) that made me think ‘what the hell is going to be found?’.

While Deadly Sleep wasn’t the usual rip-roaring, action filled crime thriller, especially considering the psychic element, it is by no means lacking once the investigation picks up pace.

I quite enjoyed this book, and I gave it a solid 3 stars on Goodreads. The start of the book is where it fell down for me but once you get to see Nicola in Bath it really gets going!

Thanks again to Valerie Keogh for the book!

Happy reading! 😊📖