Recent Reads Rapid Reviews

Hi everyone,

Another batch of mini-reviews for you all again today. I didn’t realise just how many of these I had to do until I wrote out the books that need reviewing, so there will be a good few more of these posts, haha!

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

Daughter of Smoke and Bone: The Sunday Times Bestseller. Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy Book 1

In general, Karou has managed to keep her two lives in balance.

On the one hand, she’s a seventeen-year-old art student in Prague; on the other, errand-girl to a monstrous creature who is the closest thing she has to family.

Raised half in our world, half in ‘Elsewhere’, she has never understood Brimstone’s dark work – buying teeth from hunters and murderers – nor how she came into his keeping. She is a secret even to herself.

Now the doors to Elsewhere are closing, and Karou must choose between the safety of her human life and the dangers of a war-ravaged world that may hold the answers she has always sought.

I had been meaning to read Daughter of Smoke and Bone for years, so I finally picked it up during the summer to read. My husband had actually read it before me and kept telling me I should read it as I would enjoy it, and he wasn’t wrong. I loved Karou, and the story was really interesting. I couldn’t put it down once i started reading, and I was eager to find out what was going to happen. We had been to Prague this year too, so the location was easy to keep up with as it was familiar. A really great start to a series and definitely recommend it if you enjoy fantasy!

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera

History Is All You Left Me: A Zoella Book Club 2017 novel

You’re still alive in alternate universes, Theo, but I live in the real world where this morning you’re having an open casket funeral. I know you’re out there, listening. And you should know I’m really pissed because you swore you would never die and yet here we are. It hurts even more because this isn’t the first promise you’ve broken.

Griffin has lost his first love in a drowning accident. Theo was his best friend, his ex-boyfriend and the one he believed he would end up with. Now, reeling from grief and worsening OCD, Griffin turns to an unexpected person for help. Theo’s new boyfriend. But as their relationship becomes increasingly complicated, dangerous truths begin to surface. Griffin must make a choice: confront the past, or miss out on the future…

I have seen Adam Silvera’s name a lot this year, so when I saw History in my local library I figured I would give it a go. I actually think I read the whole book in one day. It was one of those kinds of books where you just have to keep reading. While I had some issues with the main character and his actions at times, I still found myself compelled to keep reading to see how it would all go. I enjoyed this one, as it was a departure from my usual reads.

History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera

About A Girl by Lindsey Kelk

About a Girl (Tess Brookes Series, Book 1)

Tess Brookes has always been a Girl with a Plan. But when the Plan goes belly up, she’s forced to reconsider.

After accidently answering her flatmate Vanessa’s phone, she decides that since being Tess isn’t going so well, she might try being Vanessa. With nothing left to lose, she accepts Vanessa’s photography assignment to Hawaii – she used to be an amateur snapper, how hard can it be? Right?

But Tess is soon in big trouble. And the gorgeous journalist on the shoot with her, who is making it very clear he’d like to get into her pants, is an egotistical monster. Far from home and in someone else’s shoes, Tess must decide whether to fight on through, or ‘fess up and run…

I haven’t read a book like this in years. When I say like this, I mean the light-hearted, girly kind of books. They are not something I would usually pick up, but that is exactly why I went for it this time. It is fun and it kept me turning the pages. Escapism is what I was after, and I found it with this one. A perfect holiday read!

About A Girl by Lindsey Kelk

Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

Days of Blood and Starlight: The Sunday Times Bestseller. Daughter of Smoke and Bone Trilogy Book 2

Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a new way of living – one without massacres and torn throats and bonfires of the fallen, without revenants or bastard armies or children ripped from their mothers’ arms to take their turn in the killing and dying.

Once, the lovers lay entwined in the moon’s secret temple and dreamed of a world that was a like a jewel-box without a jewel – a paradise waiting for them to find it and fill it with their happiness.

This was not that world.

Back to the second book in the series, and while it didn’t capture my imagination as much as the first one, I was still hooked and invested in the characters. Taylor’s world-building is really good, and it is easy to get pulled into the story. An enjoyable second installment, but it definitely left me wanting more!

Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

 

Until next time, happy reading 🙂

Recent Reads Rapid Reviews

Hey everyone,

I’m back with the next batch of super speedy reviews, and I’m still catching up so I think these four books were read back in June. It feels like AAAAAGES ago!

Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian

Ash Princess

Theodosia was six when her country was invaded and her mother, the Queen of Flame and Fury, was murdered before her eyes. Ten years later, Theo has learned to survive under the relentless abuse of the Kaiser and his court as the ridiculed Ash Princess.

When the Kaiser forces her to execute her last hope of rescue, Theo can’t ignore her feelings and memories any longer. She vows revenge, throwing herself into a plot to seduce and murder the Kaiser’s warrior son with the help of a group of magically gifted and volatile rebels. But Theo doesn’t expect to develop feelings for the Prinz.

Forced to make impossible choices and unable to trust even those who are on her side, Theo will have to decide how far she’s willing to go to save her people and how much of herself she’s willing to sacrifice to become Queen.

I really enjoyed Ash Princess. I borrowed it from the library as I had seen it pop up on BorrowBox a couple of times so figured I’d give it a go and I’m glad I did. It’s got strong characters, an interesting and twisty plot and I found it really engaging. It’s a YA fantasy book, and it kind of reminds me of Leigh Bardugo and Sarah J. Maas’s books, so of course I was hooked early on. Definitely recommended if you enjoy these authors!

Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian

Golden Son by Pierce Brown

Golden Son

‘I’m still playing games. This is just the deadliest yet.

Darrow is a rebel forged by tragedy. For years he and his fellow Reds worked the mines, toiling to make the surface of Mars inhabitable. They were, they believed, mankind’s last hope. Until Darrow discovered that it was all a lie, and that the Red were nothing more than unwitting slaves to an elitist ruling class, the Golds, who had been living on Mars in luxury for generations.

In RED RISING, Darrow infiltrated Gold society, to fight in secret for a better future for his people. Now fully embedded amongst the Gold ruling class, Darrow continues his dangerous work to bring them down from within. It’s a journey that will take him further than he’s ever been before – but is Darrow truly willing to pay the price that rebellion demands?

I’ll be the first to admit I didn’t love Red Rising. It was only ok for me, but boy oh boy did Golden Son redeem that! I was sucked back into Darrow’s world, and I was absolutely blindsided with how things went in this one. There is so much going on, lots to take in, but I was absorbed in this one compared to Red Rising. I loved Golden Son, and I am dying to read Morning Star to find out what happens next. Highly recommended if you’ve not read it already!

Golden Son by Pierce Brown

Blood Lines by Angela Marsons

BL

How do you catch a killer who leaves no trace?

A victim killed with a single, precise stab to the heart appears at first glance to be a robbery gone wrong. A caring, upstanding social worker lost to a senseless act of violence. But for Detective Kim Stone, something doesn’t add up.

When a local drug addict is found murdered with an identical wound, Kim knows instinctively that she is dealing with the same killer. But with nothing to link the two victims except the cold, calculated nature of their death, this could be her most difficult case yet.

Desperate to catch the twisted individual, Kim’s focus on the case is threatened when she receives a chilling letter from Dr Alex Thorne, the sociopath who Kim put behind bars. And this time, Alex is determined to hit where it hurts most, bringing Kim face-to-face with the woman responsible for the death of Kim’s little brother – her own mother.

As the body count increases, Kim and her team unravel a web of dark secrets, bringing them closer to the killer. But one of their own could be in mortal danger. Only this time, Kim might not be strong enough to save them…

Angela kindly sent me a copy of Blood Lines as I was playing catch up with the DI Kim Stone books so I was eager to read it! Not only does it bring back one of my fave baddies, Dr. Alex Thorne, but it’s chock full of tense moments! So much so that I actually had to put this book down for a couple of weeks before I could finish it. It was absolutely brilliant though, and I’m looking forward to reading the next books in the series!

Blood Lines by Angela Marsons

Percy Jackson and The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan

PJ3

Half Boy. Half God. ALL Hero.
It’s not every day you find yourself in combat with a half-lion, half-human.
But when you’re the son of a Greek God, it happens. And now my friend Annabeth is missing, a Goddess is in chains and only five half-blood heroes can join the quest to defeat the doomsday monster.
Oh and guess what. The Oracle has predicted that not all of us will survive . . .

Another rip-roaring read here. This series is just so much fun that it’s impossible not to enjoy them while reading. I love Percy and this book was no exception. Witty, fast-paced and with plenty of monsters to fight, the Titan’s Curse was another brilliant read. Super fun for children and adults alike!

Percy Jackson and The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan

So that’s it for now. I’ll have another one of these posts up soon as I’m still working my way through the backlog of books to be reviewed! The joys of taking a break 😂

Until next time, happy reading 📚

Recent Reads Rapid Reviews

Hey everyone,

Since I decided to take a bit of a break from reading and reviewing back in June (read why HERE), I hadn’t really envisioned that I would read enough to post any reviews. BUT since then I have actually managed to read almost 40 books! Not many were crime/thriller as that is what I’m trying to avoid for the time being, but I’m going to be splitting the reviews into quite a few of these posts, so do keep an eye out for them over the coming weeks!

Vogue.jpg

The Vogue Factor is her candid account of life at the heart of the fashion industry, from photo shoots and celebrity interviews to the ugly truth behind the glamour – infighting, back-stabbing and the dangerous pursuit of beauty.

This is the behind-the-scenes story of an illustrious career in fashion, from receptionist to the editor’s chair. It’s a life of dazzling parties, outrageous fashion and exotic travel that most people can only dream of.
But behind the glossy photos is a hidden world of chaos and pressure, where girls as young as twelve starve themselves to fit into a sample size.

Kirstie Clements’ eye-opening account of life in fashion’s fast lane has hit headlines all over the globe. Both a celebration and a critique of this extraordinary industry, The Vogue Factor is this season’s must-have.

I have had this on my kindle since 2013. I just never got around to it and I was looking for a light read so I figured I would give it a go. I really enjoyed it. I’m not in any way fashionable, but I do love fashion documentaries and magazines. The Devil Wears Prada is a favourite film of mine too, so this book was right up my street. It is a really good glimpse into early Vogue Australia and how it all works, but it also shows the darker side of the industry as mentioned above. Far flung locations, parties, glitz and glamour made this a really fun read, and got me back into reading Vogue again!

If you want to check it out, click the link below to order your copy:

The Vogue Factor by Kirstie Clements

PJ1.jpg

Half boy. Half God. ALL Hero.


Look, I didn’t want to be a half-blood. I never asked to be the son of a Greek God.


I
 was just a normal kid, going to school, playing basketball, skateboarding. The usual. Until I accidentally vaporized my maths teacher. Now I spend my time battling monsters and generally trying to stay alive.
This is the one where Zeus, God of the Sky, thinks I’ve stolen his lightning bolt – and making Zeus angry is a very bad idea.

Percy Jackson and The Lightning Thief is book one in the series, and it was yet another book left languishing on my kindle for far too long. I needed something light, but fun, that would keep me reading without making me think too much and keep the anxiety at bay. This book was EXACTLY what I needed. YA adventure at its finest, with a great cast of characters and lots of perilous quests along the way, I couldn’t put it down. I love the movie, but the book is definitely better. Highly recommend this one, my eldest even went and bought himself a copy after I said how good it was 🙂

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

PJ2.jpg

You can’t tell by looking at me that my dad is Poseidon, God of the Sea. It’s not easy being a half-blood these days. You mortals can’t even see the monsters we have to fight all the time. So when a game of dodgeball turned into a death match against an ugly gang of cannibal giants, I couldn’t exactly ask my gym teacher for help.

And that was just for starters. This is the one where Camp Half Blood is under attack, and unless I get my hands on the Golden Fleece, the whole camp will be invaded by monsters. Big ones.

Can Percy survive the treacherous Sea of Monsters and restore order to Half-Blood Hill?

I devoured the first book, so it goes without saying that I moved straight on to the next book in the series. Introducing some new characters with this one, I found it even more action-packed than the first one, but just as fun. Its hard not to feel sorry for Percy with all he gets dragged into, but that is the joy of being a demigod I guess. I sound like a broken record, but these books are FUN!

Percy Jackson and the Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

Confessions 1.jpg

Alexis Wyndham is the other type of Queen B—the Queen B*tch.

After years of being the subject of ridicule, she revels in her ability to make the in-crowd cower via the exposés on her blog, The Eastline Spy. Now that she’s carved out her place in the high school hierarchy, she uses her position to help the unpopular kids walking the hallways.

Saving a freshman from bullies? Check.
Swapping insults with the head cheerleader? Check.
Falling for the star quarterback? So not a part of her plan.

But when Brett offers to help her solve the mystery of who’s posting X-rated videos from the girls’ locker room, she’ll have to swallow her pride and learn to see past the high school stereotypes she’s never questioned—until now.

I downloaded this on a whim as it was (and possibly still is) free on Kindle and it sounded like the kind of easy teenage drama-y kind of read that wouldn’t require much thought. Confessions of a Queen B* reminded me a lot of Gossip Girl, and the whole idea of a blog that exposes peoples private lives for peers to see. Books like this make think high school in America would be an interesting place to see because there always seems to be a hierarchy, but then again I’m sure the same can be said of schools the world over. Confessions of a Queen B* is an easy read, a little on the predictable side, but I sTill enjoyed it, and will most probably read the next two in the series at some point when I get time.

Confessions of a Queen B* (The Queen B* Book 1) by Crista McHugh


 

Until the next one, happy reading… 🙂

 

Recent Reads~Rapid Reviews

Hi everyone,

So, I’m back with another Recent Reads Rapid Reviews post. I’ve not posted many reviews lately, even though there has been plenty of other bits and pieces on here. It made sense to carry on with this feature as it’s the only way I can get some mini-reviews done for what I’ve been reading lately.

Fault Lines by Doug Johnstone

DJ

A little lie … a seismic secret … and the cracks are beginning to show…

In a reimagined contemporary Edinburgh, where a tectonic fault has opened up to produce a new volcano in the Firth of Forth, and where tremors are an everyday occurrence, volcanologist Surtsey makes a shocking discovery.
On a clandestine trip to new volcanic island The Inch, to meet Tom, her lover and her boss, she finds his lifeless body, and makes the fatal decision to keep their affair, and her discovery, a secret. Desperate to know how he died, but also terrified she’ll be exposed, Surtsey’s life quickly spirals into a nightmare when someone makes contact – someone who claims to know what she’s done…

I love anything to do with volcanoes, and if you add in murder, I am sold. I picked this one up after a run of not so good books, and I ended up reading pretty much the whole thing in one day. Doug Johnstone has a great writing style and Fault Lines is no different. It is a cleverly re-imagined crime thriller, but nature takes centre stage due to the fact there is a volcano in Scotland. I really enjoyed the escapism with Fault Lines. I had suspicions early on, but that in no way took away from my enjoyment of the book. It is a really good read packed with plenty of intrigue and secrets. Recommended for sure!

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

RPO

**A world at stake. A quest for the ultimate prize. Are you ready?**

In the year 2045, reality is an ugly place. The only time Wade Watts really feels alive is when he’s jacked into the OASIS, a vast virtual world where most of humanity spends their days.

When the eccentric creator of the OASIS dies, he leaves behind a series of fiendish puzzles, based on his obsession with the pop culture of decades past. Whoever is first to solve them will inherit his vast fortune – and control of the OASIS itself.

Then Wade cracks the first clue. Suddenly he’s beset by rivals who’ll kill to take this prize. The race is on – and the only way to survive is to win.

Why oh why did I leave this languishing on my kindle for so long?! Even my husband, who doesn’t read that much, read it before me! I picked this up when I was in need of something different, and boy did it sing to my 80’s, geek-loving heart. John Hughes references, music I love and gaming references, what wasn’t there to love with this book?! I was hooked immediately, and I read it at every available opportunity. There wasn’t a thing I didn’t enjoy with Ready Player One. As soon as I had finished it, I wanted to go back and read it again, and that rarely happens to me with books! Highly recommended!

Trunk Music by Michael Connelly

TM

Harry Bosch is back at the LAPD in Homicide after disciplinary leave. But his first case proves to be one of the most difficult.

In the wooded hills overlooking the Hollywood Bowl, he opens the trunk of a white Rolls-Royce and finds a corpse. It looks like a simple case of Trunk Music – the execution style of the Mafia where the victim is shot in his own vehicle – but the victim is LA movie producer Tony Aliso, and the mob weren’t the only ones after him.

Bosch finds himself up against the FBI – and back in the arms of a beautiful ex-felon. It’s starting to look like Harry’s first case back in Homicide is in danger of being his last . . .

Continuing my re-read of the Harry Bosch series and Trunk Music was another great read. I am really enjoying this series, more so now that I am reading it in the correct order. The thing that stands out in these books is Connelly’s ability to create characters that are so well-written that you can’t help but become immersed in their stories. Trunk Music is a prime example of this. Bringing back an earlier character works really well here, and it really adds to the tension of the book as a whole. I can’t recommend these books highly enough!

Jar of Hearts by Jennifer Hillier

JH

Five years ago, Geo’s first love was revealed as a terrifying serial killer.

But he escaped custody and went on the run.

Now, bodies have started turning up, killed in exactly the same way as before.

The message is clear: he’s making his way to her, one murder at a time…

Last but not least, Jar of Hearts. This was a really gripping book for so many reasons. Clever plotting, emotive scenes and great writing made this an interesting read. I loved Geo as a character, and I really felt for her in some parts of the book. This is a book for lovers of the serial killer thriller genre, because that is exactly what it is. There is a lot going on in Jar of Hearts, but it all weaves together beautifully. Highly recommended if you want a fast-paced thriller!

And that’s it for now. I have more reviews to do, some for blog tours, and some Netgalley reads as well. I will be raving about To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo and Furyborn by Claire Legrand sooooooooooon 🙂

Recent Reads~Rapid Reviews

Hey guys,

I’m back with the second set of reviews for this feature, so here’s the next four books 🙂

The Truth Will Out by Brian Cleary

bc

The novel is set in Ireland. The friendship of Jamie, Shane and Mary Kate is tested to the limit after Mary Kate is brutally raped and lies in a coma. The evidence against Jamie is overwhelming and is compounded by the fact he maintains he cannot recall what happened that night. However, the one secret that Jamie has never disclosed can prove his innocence.

The Truth Will Out is an Irish psychological thriller that focuses on the aftermath of an attack on a young woman. The narrative jumps between characters and also between past and preset. This gives the reader an insight into what led to the events in the book. I didn’t love this one, but it has an interesting plot with a few surprises thrown in.

Bring Me Back by BA Paris

ba

The Disappearance
Twelve years ago Finn’s girlfriend disappeared.

The Suspicion
He told the police the truth about that night.
Just not quite the whole truth.

The Fear
Now Finn has moved on.
But his past won’t stay buried…

I loved this authors debut so I was looking forward to reading this one. I also have her second book to read, but I skipped to this one instead. I really wanted to love this one, but sadly it fell a bit flat for me. The premise is really good, and there is plenty in there to keep you turning the pages but it just didn’t blow me away like Behind Closed Doors did when I read it! I’ve seen rave reviews for it, so maybe I just read it at the wrong time!

The Nowhere Child by Christian White

cw

‘Her name is Sammy Went. This photo was taken on her second birthday. Three days later she was gone.’

On a break between teaching photography classes, Kim Leamy is approached by a stranger investigating the disappearance of a little girl from her Kentucky home twenty-eight years earlier. He believes she is that girl.

At first Kim brushes it off, but when she scratches the surface of her family background in Australia, questions arise that aren’t easily answered. To find the truth, she must travel to Sammy’s home of Manson, Kentucky, and into a dark past. As the mystery unravels and the town’s secrets are revealed, this superb novel builds towards a tense, terrifying, and entirely unexpected climax.

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.

 

Coldmaker by Daniel A. Cohen

dac

Eight hundred years ago, the Jadans angered the Crier. In punishment, the Crier took their Cold away, condemning them to a life of enslavement in a world bathed in heat.

Or so the tale goes.

During the day, as the Sun blazes over his head, Micah leads the life of any Jadan slave, running errands through the city of Paphos at the mercy of the petty Nobles and ruthless taskmasters.

But after the evening bells have tolled and all other Jadans sleep, Micah escapes into the night in search of scraps and broken objects, which once back inside his barracks he tinkers into treasures.

However, when a mysterious masked Jadan publicly threatens Noble authority, a wave of rebellion ripples through the city.

With Paphos plunged into turmoil, Micah’s secret is at risk of being exposed. And another, which has been waiting hundreds of years to be found, is also on the verge of discovery…

The secret of Cold.

I really liked Coldmaker. It has a really cool (no pun intended!) premise, a great cast of characters and it is a really captivating read. It was exactly what I had hoped it would be, and I genuinely can’t wait for the next book (I really hope there is one!!!) to see where the author takes the reader! If you like fantasy, and YA then definitely add Coldmaker to your list!

 

So that’s what I’ve been reading lately! I have a few blog tour reviews coming up, and I’ll also be reviewing Ready Player One, Obscura and Skin Deep soon so make sure to look out for those! 🙂

Recent Reads~Rapid Reviews

Hi everyone,

I’m back with some more rapid reviews. Life has been pretty busy for me lately, and I’m behind on some reviews, so I figured it was time to bring this feature back 🙂

Grab a cuppa, and check out what I’ve been reading in recent months!

Blood Test by Jonathan Kellerman

jk

Doctors believe that they can successfully treat five-year-old cancer patient, Woody Swope. But Woody’s parents, members of a cult called ‘The Touchers’, are not only refusing the treatment, they’re also threatening to remove him from the hospital.

Psychologist Alex Delaware, is called in to talk the parents round. But before he can, the Swopes are gone and so is Woody. All that remains is a savagely ransacked and bloodied motel room, their teenage daughter, Nona, and an increasingly sinister case to solve.

I have decided to start this series from the beginning, because I have the majority of the books on my TBR so I picked this one up recently. I enjoyed Blood Test, it was quite character driven, and it raised a lot of questions in terms of morals and so on. Tough to read at times, it was engaging and interesting. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series.

Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

jv

For thirty years, Area X has remained mysterious and remote behind its intangible border – an environmental disaster zone, though to all appearances an abundant wilderness.

The Southern Reach, a secretive government agency, has sent eleven expeditions to investigate Area X. One has ended in mass suicide, another in a hail of gunfire, the eleventh in a fatal cancer epidemic.

Now four women embark on the twelfth expedition into the unknown.

I received a copy of this recently, and I was looking for a short read so I picked it up a few weeks ago. I genuinely have no idea what I read though. It was such an odd read. Promised to be scary, it fell a little flat on that for me. Yes, there were rimes when I was a bit apprehensive to turn the page, but it’s more the power of suggestion than actual shock factor. This is now a movie on Netflix, but I don’t think I could watch it. That’s when I would get scared. Its a quick read, but it’s an unusual one.

Our Kind of Cruelty by Araminta Hall

ah

Mike and Verity have a special game. The Crave.

They play it to prove what they already know: that Verity loves Mike. That she needs Mike.

Even though she’s marrying another man.

Now Mike knows that the stakes of their private game are rising.

This time, someone has to die…

Billed as one of 2018’s psych thrillers, this book was high on my want list so I was delighted to get a Netgalley copy. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but once I started reading I was uncomfortable almost immediately. I find books about relationships and control tough to read, and that’s exactly what this is. Character-driven, and written from the male perspective, it definitely delves into the psyche to show why he acts how he does. But my god I found it hard to read. I can see the appeal, and it is well written, but the uncomfortable feeling stayed with me long after finishing it.

The Liar’s Girl by Catherine Ryan Howard

crh

Dublin’s notorious Canal Killer, Will Hurley, is ten years into his life sentence when the body of a young woman is fished out of the Grand Canal. Though detectives suspect they are dealing with a copycat, they turn to Will for help. He claims he has the information the police need, but will only give it to one person – the girl he was dating when he committed his horrific crimes.

Alison Smith has spent the last decade abroad, putting her shattered life in Ireland far behind her. But when she gets a request from Dublin imploring her to help prevent another senseless murder, she is pulled back to face the past – and the man – she’s worked so hard to forget.

I loved Catherine’s first book, Distress Signals, so I was thrilled to get a review copy of this one. While it’s a clever and well-written psychological (and crime) thriller, it didn’t pack as much of a punch for me as her first. I loved the idea, and I enjoyed how the story played out. I had suspicions early on, and they proved to be true, but it didn’t deter from my enjoyment of the book. I don’t tend to read much Irish crime fiction, but it’s clear to me that Catherine Ryan Howard is definitely becoming synonymous with it because she has a great writing voice! Looking forward to see what comes next!


So there we go! That’s the first of two Recent Reads post I’ve done, with the next one being posted early next week!

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

Recent Reads ~ Rapid Reviews

Hi everyone,

So I’m back with another Recent Reads Rapid Reviews post. I’ve been crap at reviewing lately so I’m about twenty-odd reviews behind. It made sense to bring back this feature as it’s the only way I can get some mini-reviews done for what I’ve been reading lately.

If you follow me on Twitter or Facebook, you’ll know that my lovely uncle passed away recently after a brief illness, so the blog and reviewing has been the furthest thing from my mind. I’ve been reading as a way to keep my mind off the sadness and grief, so I have quite a few of these to do. Plus some from late last year, so I’ll be posting a few Recent Reads, Rapid Reviews posts in the coming week or two, so bear with me 🙂

Mira

Seven years ago the Atargatis set off on a voyage to the Mariana Trench to film a mockumentary, bringing to life ancient sea creatures of legend.

It was lost at sea with all hands. Some have called it a tragedy; others have called it a hoax.

Now, a new crew has been assembled to investigate. And they’ll discover that whatever is down there is definitely no joke . . .

I really enjoyed Into The Drowning Deep. Its not something I would have picked up myself (Thanks to Nazia @ Orbit) but it was a fun read. If cannibalistic mermaids is your thing, then you’ll love this one. I found myself glued to this book, possibly in a car-crash sense of the word in that you know no good can come of being deep underwater with these creatures and its only a matter of time before people start disappearing! Escapism abound in this one, it definitely kept me reading!

empress

It’s a new day in the Empire. Tyrus has ascended to the throne with Nemesis by his side and now they can find a new way forward – one where they don’t have to hide or scheme or kill.

But having power isn’t the same thing as keeping it, and change isn’t always welcome. The ruling class has held control over planets and systems for centuries and they are not going to give up their power willingly, especially not to a teenage Emperor and Nemesis, who they consider nothing more than a creature and certainly not worthy of being Empress.

Nemesis knows she will protect Tyrus at any cost; he is the love of her life and they are partners in this new beginning. But she also knows she can’t protect him by being the killing machine she once was. Instead she will have to prove the humanity that she’s found inside herself to the whole Empire – or she and Tyrus may lose more than just the throne… they might lose their lives.

*Read The Diabolic before you read The Empress!

This is a great follow up to the events of The Diabolic. I had been eager to read this one and I wasn’t disappointed. Full of action, some seriously shady characters, and more twists that I was expecting, it kept me reading compulsively. It is YA, but with the corruption and politics, it could easily be general fantasy. Highly readable, but just make sure you read book 1 first so you’re not lost!

jo spain

Late one night a man walks into the luxurious home of disgraced banker Harry McNamara and his wife Julie. The man launches an unspeakably brutal attack on Harry as a horror-struck Julie watches, frozen by fear. It looks like Harry’s many sins – corruption, greed, betrayal – have finally caught up with him.

An hour later the intruder, JP Carney, hands himself in, confessing to the assault. The police have a victim, a suspect in custody and an eye-witness account, but Julie remains troubled.

Has Carney’s surrender really been driven by a guilty conscience or is this confession the first calculated move in a deadly game?

I read The Confession fairly quickly. Its an Irish psychological thriller with a highly divisive set of characters. I found myself compelled to read the book at every opportunity, and its definitely an interesting read. It covers some of the financial history that we have lived through as well which you’ll appreciate (maybe wrong choice of word, but you know what I mean!) if you’re Irish like me!

David Mark

The police think Crystal Heathers isn’t missing.

The trainee detective assigned to the case isn’t so sure.

McAvoy thinks someone was being held at the derelict building where they just found a body pinned to the wall…and that all the signs point to it being a little girl.

But why would anyone not report a kidnapping?

And how far would someone go to get revenge?

The case will test McAvoy to breaking point – as the crimes of the present lead him to a final violent confrontation with an enemy from his own past.

My first meeting with DS McAvoy and it will definitely not be my last. I raced through this one, eager to see what was going to happen and where the author would take us. I wasn’t prepared for just how invested I would get in the characters fates. Excellent plot, great characters, what’s not to love! I will definitely be reading the previous books in the series, as well as recommending David Mark to anyone who will listen!

morrie

Maybe it was a grandparent, or a teacher or a colleague. Someone older, patient and wise, who understood you when you were young and searching, and gave you sound advice to help you make your way through it. For Mitch Albom, that person was Morrie Schwartz, his college professor from nearly twenty years ago.

Maybe, like Mitch, you lost track of this mentor as you made your way, and the insights faded. Wouldn’t you like to see that person again, ask the bigger questions that still haunt you? Mitch Albom had that second chance. He rediscovered Morrie in the last months of the older man’s life. Knowing he was dying of ALS – or motor neurone disease – Mitch visited Morrie in his study every Tuesday, just as they used to back in college. Their rekindled relationship turned into one final ‘class’: lessons in how to live.

This was a spur of the moment ‘I want to read a book from my personal TBR’ decision, and Morrie has been on there for long enough. I find it hard to read books that are like this, and I’m pretty sure if I had read it in the past couple of weeks I would have been an emotional wreck, but not this time. Yes its a sad story, knowing the ending is inevitable, but it didn’t really do much for me emotionally. It was a bittersweet book, short but with plenty of little life lessons. It’s only the second Mitch Albom book I’ve read, but if I had to choose, The Five People You Meet in Heaven was more resonant. Still though, I liked reading about Morrie!

 

Ok, I think I’ll stop there, because I still have another 8 books to go and I do’t want to overload the post, haha!

Hopefully there is something in here you might read! 🙂

See you again soon with another Recent Reads Rapid Reviews post!

Happy reading!