Blog Tour: Dead Inside by Noelle Holten~Ellen’s Review

Hi everyone,

Today, Ellen is taking part in the blog tour for Dead Inside by Noelle Holten and I’ll be sharing her review with you all in a little bit!

About the author:

Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and a regular reviewer on the Two Crime Writers and a Microphone podcast. Noelle worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of cases including those involving serious domestic abuse. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, author-stalking and sharing the booklove via her blog. 
Dead Inside is her debut novel with Killer Reads/Harper Collins UK and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.



Twitter: (@nholten40)

Goodreads Author Page:


Instagram: @crimebookjunkie

About the book:

‘Kept me hooked … excellent pace and a very satisfying ending’ Angela Marsons

‘An excellent read’ Martina Cole

‘A brilliant debut – gritty, dark and chilling. Noelle Holten knows her stuff’ Mel Sherratt

A dark and gripping debut crime novel – the first in a stunning new series – from a huge new talent.

The killer is just getting started…

When three wife beaters are themselves found beaten to death, DC Maggie Jamieson knows she is facing her toughest case yet.

The police suspect that Probation Officer Lucy Sherwood – who is connected to all three victims – is hiding a dark secret. Then a fourth domestic abuser is brutally murdered.

And he is Lucy’s husband.

Now the police are running out of time, but can Maggie really believe her friend Lucy is a cold-blooded killer?

Out now from Killer Reads, you can order your copy by clicking the link below:

Dead Inside by Noelle Holten

Ellen’s Review:

Dead Inside is the debut novel from renowned book blogger Noelle Holten and I have to admit I was a little scared to agree to reading and reviewing it as I have known Noelle for quite a few years now and seen her move from the probation service into publishing and then to writing a novel as well. This lady is living the dream! What if I hated her book!?!

There was no need for concern, Dead Inside is certainly an impressive debut, Noelle’s knowledge and personal experience shines through and you can’t help but be pulled into the world of DC Maggie Jamieson. No punches are pulled in this story, it is gritty, realistic and really gives you an appreciation of what domestic abuse victims are put through and how not every case is black and white.

You are also given an insight into the abuser and while I was glad that they met a grisly end I couldn’t help but feel a little sorry for some of them; violence begets violence after all. I’m in no way excusing this behaviour just saying that this book gives you a fuller picture of the development of a person’s behaviours and actions.

As this is the first in a series we are introduced to a large cast of characters which I initially struggled with but soon settled in to. It was interesting to get a behind the scenes look into how a multi-disciplinary team works in this situation and I enjoyed the interaction between the different groups of staff involved.

I really felt for Lucy Sherwood, a probation officer who deals with domestic abuse daily, not only at work as she is a victim at home. Her husband Patrick is possibly one of the most vile characters I have encountered! You really get an insight into how manipulative these people can be and how hard it is to escape that situation. But has Lucy resorted to being a vigilante…Maggie Jamieson certainly begins to suspect as much as men are being murdered and the only link appears to be her! When Patrick is brutally murdered there is even more suspicion, is Lucy capable of such grisly acts?

An enjoyable read and I have already pre-ordered the next in the series!

Check out the blog tour:


Blood Mist by Mark Roberts


About the book:

Every night a family dies… Every day she tries to save them…

While a blizzard rages through the streets of Liverpool, a family are slaughtered in their beds. Their mutilated bodies are dragged onto the landing to form a strange pattern. None of the neighbours hears a sound.

DCI Eve Clay is at a loss. Who would risk capture to arrange their victims so precisely? Somewhere in her mind, a long-buried memory flickers. But this is no time for hunches. She must find the killers before they strike again.

Click HERE to order your copy!

My thoughts:

I have had Blood Mist on my Kindle for TWO YEARS!!!! So when I was choosing some books for my January TBR, it made sense to add this one to the list and I’m really glad I did because this book was another brilliant read for me.

In Blood Mist, we meet DCI Eve Clay as she is tasked with investigating the brutal murder of a family in their home. The bodies are then positioned in a strange pattern, with marks on the walls as well. Add to this the fact that nobody heard a thing, and there’s no evidence leads, so Clay needs to solve this one before the killers strike again.

Blood Mist is actually quite creepy to be honest. It made me uneasy more than once for various reasons, but you’ll have to read the book to find out why because I’m not telling! Sufficed to say there’s a lot going on under the surface with this one!

DCI Clay is a great character. She has her own issues from the past, and these are brought up again in the course of the investigation. I really liked her tenacity, and she’s a very empathetic character. Nobody wants to see a slain family, but she goes above and beyond in her quest to find out what happened.

Blood Mist went in a direction that I wasn’t expecting at all, and I liked that because it sets it apart from the usual tropes. I was gripped from beginning to end, and I will most definitely be reading the next 3 books in the series ASAP.

Highly recommended!


The Black Ice by Michael Connelly

The Black Ice.jpg

About the book:

When a body is found in a hotel room, reporters are soon all over the case: it appears to be a missing LAPD narcotics detective, apparently gone to the bad. The rumours were that he had been selling a new drug called Black Ice that had been infiltrating Los Angeles from the Mexican cartel.

The LAPD are quick to declare the death a suicide, but Harry Bosch is not so sure. There are odd mysteries and unexplained details from the crime scene which just don’t add up. Fighting an attraction to the detective’s widow, Bosch starts his own maverick investigation, which soon leads him over the borders and into a dangerous world of shifting identities, police politics and deadly corruption . . .

Click HERE to get yourself a copy!

About the author:


A former police reporter for the Los Angeles Times, Michael Connelly is the internationally bestselling author of the Harry Bosch series, and several other bestsellers including the highly acclaimed legal thriller, The Lincoln Lawyer. The TV series – Bosch – is one of the most watched original series on Amazon Prime and is now in its third season. He has been President of the Mystery Writers of America, and his books have been translated into thirty-nine languages and have won awards all over the world, including the Edgar and Anthony Awards. He spends his time in California and Florida.

To find out more, visit Michael’s website or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.


My thoughts:

Last year I decided I was going to re-read the Harry Bosch series in order (at my own pace), and The Black Ice is the second one from my list. I haven’t read them all, but any I had read I thoroughly enjoyed so figured why not go back to the start!

The Black Ice is another tightly plotted gem. It has a great story, introduces some great characters and it kept my attention from the very beginning. A body is found in a LA motel room, and it transpires it’s a missing LAPD Narcotics Detective. Rumours were rife that he had crossed over to the dark side, and death was quickly declare a suicide. But Harry has other ideas about it.

Things don’t add up for Harry. Unanswered questions about the crime scene, about the cop before he died and the people he was keeping company with lead Harry off on his own investigation. Harry ends up going across the border, but he finds far more than he bargained for while he is assessing the situation.

Corruption, drugs and police politics are all called into play in The Black Ice. The investigation takes many twists and turns for Harry, but he is determined in his quest for the truth of what happened to the LAPD Detective. Even when Harry finds himself in danger, he doesn’t give up.

I love this series, and the re-reading in order is definitely the best decision. Early Harry is so great to read about. He is without a doubt one of my favourite characters in fiction, EVER. Michael Connelly is such a brilliant writer too. His years as a police reporter are clearly evident in his writing. He captures subtle things that less experienced authors might miss. Characterisation is spot-on too. I can’t praise these books enough!

Highly recommended!

Books Review

Dead Gone by Luca Veste 

About the book:

The young girl you have found isn’t the first experiment I’ve carried out. She won’t be the last.

A tense, unpredictable crime debut that will not only have you gripped, but will chill you to the bone. Perfect for fans of Stuart MacBride and Mark Billingham.

A serial killer is stalking the streets of Liverpool, gruesomely murdering victims as part of a series of infamous, unethical and deadly psychological experiments.

When it becomes apparent that each victim has ties to the City of Liverpool University, DI David Murphy and DS Laura Rossi realise they’re chasing a killer unlike any they’ve hunted before – one who doesn’t just want his victims’ bodies, but wants their minds too.

Buy the book: 

Dead Gone by Luca Veste

About the author:

Luca Veste is a writer of Italian and Liverpudlian heritage, married with two young daughters, and one of nine children. He studied psychology and criminology at university in Liverpool. He is the author of the Murphy and Rossi series, which includes DEAD GONE, THE DYING PLACE, BLOODSTREAM, and THEN SHE WAS GONE.

Part psychological thriller, part police procedural, his books follow the detective pairing of DI David Murphy and DS Laura Rossi. The novels are set in Liverpool, bringing the city to life in a dark and terrifying manner…with just a splash of Scouse humour.



My thoughts:

Ok. So, in doing up this post, I’ve learned two things. A) I’ve had Dead Gone on my kindle since 2014!!!!!! and b) I have been seriously missing out on what looks to be a really solid crime series!

Dead Gone is the first in the Liverpool-based Murphy and Rossi series. It follows their investigation into a psychopathic serial killer who seems to be targeting people who have ties to the City of Liverpool University.

I have to say, I was gripped early on thanks to Luca Veste’s writing style. There’s something there that just hooks the reader and keeps them turning the pages and I was no exception.

I loved the characterisation too. Murphy sounds like an absolute giant of a man, but he’s been through a lot, so there a level of vulnerability there that makes him very endearing. He’s not your typical male lead that you read so often in books, and I really likes him as a character. Rossi also seems like the perfect equaliser for him. A strong woman and capable of picking up even the subtlest of nuances in her partners demeanour. 

I’m not going to go into the plot. As per. I thought I had it all figured out, more than once. And I was wrong. Prove me wrong and you have a reader for life! The serial-killer/ antagonist in Dead Gone is twisted. The experiments they carry out are dark, and creepy and oddly compelling in their reasoning. 

All in all, a belter of a start with Dead Gone. This one was on my personal TBR hence it took me so long to read it. I have the others though, and I won’t be waiting years to get to them, that’s for certain!

Safe to say you have a new fan Mr. Veste. 

Highly recommended! 

Blog Tour Books Review

*Blog Tour* I Know Your Secret by Graham Smith

*My thanks to Graham and Noelle for my review copy*

About the book:

Set in modern day Cumbria, I Know Your Secret is a police thriller in which a priest is found crucified to the stone floor of his church. Fearing more attacks on the clergy, DI John Campbell and his team of misfits race to find the killer before he strikes again.

Meanwhile, DI Harry Evans, spends his days attending the trial of his wife’s rapist and his nights interfering in the investigation.

Can they catch the killer before he strikes again?

About the author:



Graham Smith is married with a young son. A time served joiner he has built bridges, houses, dug drains and slated roofs to make ends meet. Since Christmas 2000 he has been manager of a busy hotel and wedding venue near Gretna Green, Scotland.


An avid fan of crime fiction since being given one of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five books at the age of eight, he has also been a regular reviewer and interviewer for the well-respected website since 2009


He is the author of four books featuring DI harry Evans and the Cumbrian Major Crimes Team.


Matching the Evidence


Snatched from Home


Lines of Enquiry


I Know Your Secret – Out October 2016






My thoughts:

Having read and enjoyed Matching The Evidence (review –> Matching The Evidence by Graham Smith Blog Tour) I was intrigued to see how the characters would be in a fully developed story as opposed to a novella and I wasn’t disappointed.

I Know Your Secret opens with the murder of a priest, and it’s up to Campbell and his team to find the killer before they can commit any more! What ensues actually goes in directions I wasn’t expecting at all, and it kept me turning the pages.

Alongside this, DI Harry Evans is attending the trial of his wife’s rapist, and it is in these chapters that the novel gains strength. Harrowing evidence, coupled with a very emotional Harry make the story a gripping read.The author has done a great job in portraying Harry’s inner turmoil, while making sure his haughty bravado and tough exterior are what others see. However, there are a couple of times that the chink in his armour is glimpsed by those around him and its sad to see.

As if that isn’t enough, there’s also some rather intriguing blackmail going on within the book. What it escalates into was completely unexpected as well, but it was a really interesting aside to the murders and everything else that was going on.

I thoroughly enjoyed I Know Your Secret. It’s a tense and engaging read with a real sense of humanity and camaraderie at its core. The Major Crimes team, with or without DI Harry Evans present, make for a great cast of characters and I really liked catching up with them in this book. Highly recommended!

Make sure to keep up with the blog tour: