Dead Eyed by Matt Brolly

I’ve had Dead Eyed on my Netgalley TBR for a while now and some blogger friends of mine, Noelle over at Crimebookjunkie Book Blog and Joseph at Relax and Read Book Reviews had reviewed it so my interest was piqued!

By pure coincidence, Matt emailed me a couple of weeks ago asking would I like to read and review Dead Eyed. Of course my answer was yes, happy that I had a copy of it on my kindle!
Goodreads description:

DCI Michael Lambert thought he’d closed his last case…

Yet when he’s passed a file detailing a particularly gruesome murder, Michael knows that this is no ordinary killer at work.
The removal of the victim’s eyes and the Latin inscription carved into the chest is the chilling calling-card of the ‘soul jacker’: a cold-blooded murderer who struck close to Michael once before, twenty-five years ago.
Now the long-buried case is being re-opened, and Michael is determined to use his inside knowledge to finally bring the killer to justice. But as the body count rises, Michael realises that his own links to the victims could mean that he is next on the killer’s list…

There are so many crime books out there now that it can be difficult to separate them from each other. Not the case with Dead Eyed. With a serial killer called Souljacker, you know it’s going to be good! And this is a debut! I honestly couldn’t believe that this book was a debut, it seems so accomplished that I would have expected it to be well into a series at least!

Souljacker goes around killing people, taking their eyes out, and carving a Latin phrase into their bodies. Insane, but chillingly good as a killer.

Lambert is great as a character, he has his weaknesses and demons in his past, but he’s just so easy to like as a protagonist. Sarah May proves to be a strong female character in Dead Eyed too, adept and intelligent. Together they work the case simultaneously, leading to interesting developments in the investigation.

I don’t like going to far into plots as I think it takes away from the readers experience if they know too much. Sufficed to say, Dead Eyed is an astonishing debut novel. Matt Brolly’s writing style is clear, concise and vivid. The action is relentless, there are so many twists and “I know who”  moments (I was wrong, consistently, by the way!!!) that all add up to it being a brilliant storyline, with excellent characterisation, and a truly deranged sociopathic killer.

Holy Island by LJ Ross

Thanks to Maxine at Booklover Catlady and LJ Ross for my copy of Holy Island to review.

I hadn’t heard of this book before I read it, but I won’t forget it in a hurry!

Holy Island does not begin gently, it starts with the murder of Lucy Matheison and the discovery of her body at the Lindisfarne Priory.

Amazon describes it as follows-

Detective Chief Inspector Ryan retreats to Holy Island seeking sanctuary when he is forced to take sabbatical leave from his duties as a homicide detective. A few days before Christmas, his peace is shattered and he is thrust back into the murky world of murder when a young woman is found dead amongst the ancient ruins of the nearby Priory.
When former local girl Dr Anna Taylor arrives back on the island as a police consultant, old memories swim to the surface making her confront her difficult past. She and Ryan struggle to work together to hunt a killer who hides in plain sight, while pagan ritual and small-town politics muddy the waters of their investigation. 

This description doesn’t do it proper justice!

Holy Island is an excellent book, well plotted with very little of the predictable crime formulae to be found! More than once I thought I had sussed the killer, and every time I was wrong!!! The killings are described brutally, the locations are described beautifully! It’s the perfect juxtaposition!

DCI Ryan is a great character, flawed in his own way, with demons in his past. It was very easy to be rooting for him all through the book. Dr. Taylor is also a strong character, doesn’t suffer fools and very intelligent. Predictably, they begin a relationship, but it blends into the whole story. There are twists and turns aplenty, but I have to say, the ending was my favourite part. It ends with a genuine shocker!! Which makes me want to read book 2 Sycamore Gap as soon as possible!!! Well played Miss Ross! 😉

I gave Holy Island 4 stars on Goodreads! I would highly recommend this book! It was absolutely brilliant!

Happy reading! 😊📖

The Second Captive by Maggie James


Massive thanks to Maxine at Booklover Catlady and Maggie James for my copy of this book!
Having not read any books by this author before I didn’t really know what to expect but I was pleasantly ( if you can write that about a psychological thriller!!!!) surprised by this book!

The Second Captive follows Beth, an eighteen year old girl who is abducted and held by a man for two years. She subsequently escapes! This book goes between present day and the events of the two years she was held captive.

Written in alternative views from Beth, her captor and her mother, we get the different thoughts from each. I found this style of writing really good for this book as you get into the minds of the victim and her captor as well as the emotional turmoil her mother and family faced as well.

We know that Beth escapes, so that’s not really a spoiler. The reader learns that Beth will have to attempt to adjust back into normal life, away from the rules, control and punishment she had grown to accept from Dominic, her captor. You would think that the story would finish dramatically with her escape and subsequent return home.

It doesn’t.

Maggie James has done a great job of enhancing the story in the aftermath of Beth’s return. We learn more from her mother, Ursula, and we also gain emotional insight into Dominic’s state of mind once Beth has left him. Stockholm syndrome is the psychological term for what Beth has experienced and the way it is portrayed in the book is interesting.

There were many questions left unanswered for me when I finished this book, but all in all I enjoyed it! I gave it a solid 3 stars on Goodreads.

My thanks again to Maxine and Maggie James!

Happy reading! 😊📖

How do you shelve your books?!

Right, I’m scrolling through Facebook, as I do when the kids go to bed, and I come across this link.
The Smartest Way To Organise Your Bookshelves

I think to myself, ‘ooooooh, has someone come up with a really cool new idea/arrangement?!’. Short answer……. NO.
This link has actually left me in a state of confusion. If you’re a book lover, reader, keeper, hoarder, connoisseur, whatever, chances are you have book shelves. Or at least a place to keep them. So do you organise them? Maybe you had loads of time and could arrange them alphabetically, or maybe even by colour if Pineterest is anything to be believed. If you do, then I am jealous! 🙂

Anyway, this article’s wonderful and inspired way to organise your books is, wait for it………

READ shelved together and UNREAD shelved together!!!!! *insert shocked face here*

Can I ask one question?

WHO DOESN’T DO THIS?!?!?!?!?!?!

I can’t compute how you could choose a book to read, read it, and then put it back in the same place.

If you follow me over on Facebook at Bibliophile Book Club then you’ll know that a while ago, I rearranged my bookshelves at home. I put all the books I’ve read onto one set of shelves, and all of my TBR books onto their own set of shelves.*
*I have always kept my TBR books separate to my read books just in case you think this was a new thing! I just didn’t have the space before I moved everything around!

Here’s my “read” shelves~


And here’s my TBR shelves~


I’m sorry if I sound mad!!! I’m just finding it odd to know that people don’t separate their read from unread!

So, let me ask you this, how do you shelve yours?! 

Do you give up on books?

Right, I’m 26% of the way through The Pact by Jodi Picoult and I am so bored that I just want to give up! I do not give up on books….

I’m currently in a FB discussion with Sarah over at Bytheletterbookreviews about this book and whether or not to give up on it! Come say hello! 🙂

I find it hard to admit defeat when it comes to a book I don’t like, there aren’t many I’ve given up on. Off the top of my head, I can only remember three that I couldn’t finish in recent times. One of these is a book that people RAVE about!!!

Room by Emma Donoghue 

Dave Grohl’s autobiography 

Ha’penny Chance (I’m so terrible I can’t even remember the author, sorry!!!) 

Which leads me to my question, do you or have you ever given up on a book? If so, what was/were they?! 

99 Percent Kill by Doug Richardson


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

About the author (via Doug’s website):

Doug Richardson was born in Arcadia, California. The son of a career politician, Doug grew up outside Sacramento and inside the state Capitol. He used to talk his way into then-Governor Ronald Reagan’s office, just to get a handful of jellybeans. Doug left Northern California for Los Angeles to attend the University of Southern California’s School of Cinema. For as long as he could remember, Doug had wanted to be a movie director. But in pursuing his goal he discovered how movies are really made: in the writing.
After finishing college, Doug signed a two-year contract with Warner Brothers. In 1989 he garnered national attention when his spec screenplay was the first in Hollywood to sell for a million dollars. Doug’s first feature film, the sequel to Die Hard, Die Harder, was produced in 1990. He has since written and produced feature films including the box office smash Bad Boys and, most recently, Hostage. To date, Doug’s features have grossed over 800 million dollars worldwide. In 1997, Doug’s debut novel, Dark Horse, was published by Avon/Morrow in hardcover, followed two years later by his follow up, True Believers. His third book, The Safety Expert, and his latest, Blood Money, are self-published. Doug continues to write and develop for feature films and television. He lives in Southern California with his wife, two children and four mutts.

Before I start, can I just say in all honesty, Die Harder, Hostage and Bad Boys are some of my all time favourite and will watch anytime movies, so I was more than a bit excited to read a book by Doug!

99 Percent Kill is a fast paced, thrilling book with twists and turns aplenty. Goodreads describes the book as follows:

99 Percent Kill follows Lucky Dey, an on-again/off-again Los Angeles County Sheriff’s detective who is both willful and acerbic to a dangerous fault. While in a holding pattern for official reinstatement, Lucky accepts a one-time gig to track down the missing teenage daughter of a Midwestern software millionaire. The novel is the first in a series, but also lives as a stand-alone thriller, winding its way through an L.A. landscape where the lights are bright, but the edges can be dark, perilously frayed, and populated with mix of human predators, amusing losers, and ambitious fringe dwellers.”

I really enjoyed 99 Percent Kill. The book follows Lucky who, waiting in limbo to hear about his job, takes on a one time assignment to find a missing girl. The girl has run away to LA, and hasn’t been heard from since so the pressure is on to find her. Lucky meets her father and together they navigate the sometimes dark and seedy side of LA in their quest to find the girl, Karrie.

There is plenty of action in the book, but without giving anything away, you need to read this book!!! 99 Percent Kill reads like a movie at times, and I found myself willing the characters on in their respective situations! It is such an easy read, however, due to time restraints I didn’t get to read it as often as I liked, I would have been done quicker if I could have just had a block of time!

Anyway, I gave 99 Percent Kill 4 stars on Goodreads! I thoroughly enjoyed it and I would highly recommend it! Also, Doug, if you get a chance to read this review, THAT ENDING!!!!!!!! :-O

Also, thanks to Doug, his book was number 50 in my Goodreads Challenge so I’m all done! 🙂

Happy reading! 😊📖

The Killing of Mummy’s Boy by Joan Ellis

Thanks to Maxine at Booklover Catlady for my copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The Killing of Mummy’s Boy is the second book by Joan Ellis that I have read. Having read the blurb I have to say I was a little intrigued. I didn’t know what to expect. Goodreads describes it as follows:

When a woman meets a stranger on a train, she discovers they have one thing in common: murder.

Ben has slit a man’s throat and Sandra’s son, Carl is on a Witness Protection Programme after his evidence convicts local thug, Lee Elliott of murder. Fearing reprisals from the family, Sandra flees London for the Isle of Wight.
On the train, she reports her lost Oyster card, giving out her details over the phone. Ben overhears. Now, the murderer knows where she lives. Returning home to find an Oyster card on the mat, she assumes he has been there ahead of her.
It is the first in a series of unnerving events. Suspecting him of stalking her, she alerts the police. As no crime has been committed, they can’t help.
When her son leaves the safety of the Witness Protection Programme and moves back to London with his pregnant girlfriend, Sandra turns to drink. And to Ben.
Repelled by his past but excited by his body, she is in his thrall.
When Carl, girlfriend in tow, runs back to Mummy following a threatening message from Lee Elliott’s brother, Gaz, secrets and lies are unleashed and all hell breaks loose.

I have to be honest, I found this book quite difficult to get into, and about 50% of the way through I really questioned whether or not it would improve. Sufficed to say, once things start happening, the tension in the book ramps up. I won’t go into spoilers, but towards the end, there’s a genuine shocker if a plot twist, which in all honesty, I didn’t see coming! Once the big reveal happened though, the action really began. The last 20% of the book was where it got really good! I found myself flying through it to see what happens!

I thought the main characters were a bit difficult to like, Sandra especially, which made me lack empathy for certain situations in the book. Ben is your typical macho man, very crude and brutish, but I enjoyed his character towards the end of the book.

I gave this book 3 stars on Goodreads, it was by no means terrible, but not my usual read so I found it a bit difficult to get into!

Happy reading 😊📖