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.

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 ๐Ÿ™‚ 

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 Yearโ€™s Day, a wealthy family is found slaughtered inside their exclusive gated community in north London, their youngest child stolen away.
The murder weapon โ€“ a gun for stunning cattle before they are butchered โ€“ leads Detective Max Wolfe to a dusty corner of Scotland Yardโ€™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 โ€“ 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 โ€“ or finds his way to his own front door โ€ฆ
Even the happiest of families have black, twisted secrets that someone is ready to kill forโ€ฆ
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 ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ“–

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 readย 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 isnโ€™t the first, he has no choice but to ask for Nicolaโ€™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 ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ“–

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! ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ“–

I Am Death by Chris Carter

  
I Am Death is the 7th instalment in Carter’s Robert Hunter series. Hunter is an LAPD detective specialising in ultraviolent crimes, along with his partner, Carlos Garcia. 

I’ve read all the books in the series, and to say I was eagerly anticipating the release of this book is an understatement. So much so that I had a reminder in my phone for release day to make sure I didn’t forget to buy it. ๐Ÿ™‚

I had been reading a Sophie Hannah book, and to be honest I couldn’t get to the end of it quick enough so that I could get stuck into I Am Death.

I tried not to read any reviews of this before I read it, so that I didn’t know what to expect. I had read the description from Goodreads but that was it, and it revealed NOTHING!!!! ๐Ÿ™‚ See below; 

“AN EVIL MIND was Chris Carters’s most acclaimed novel to date, described by the Daily mail as: ‘A chilling, compulsive portrait of a psychopath, and proves that Carter is now in the Jeffrey Deaver class.’ It spent three weeks in the Sunday Times top ten and received brillant reviews and sales.

This terrifying new standalone thriller reunites Hunter and Garcia in their most explosive case to date.”

A young woman is found on a patch of grass with her body laid out in what is essentially a pentagram shape, which begs the question, is it a ritualistic murder? As the investigation begins, Hunter and Garcia receive notes from the killer, who signs off as “I Am Death” and leads the detectives to believe he is not done killing.

As the body count begins to rise, Carter amps up the gruesome violence with each one, leaving the reader wondering, ‘can it get much worse?’. It can. Some of the injuries inflicted on the victims defy belief, and if you’re squeamish it can make for uncomfortable reading.

The investigation calls in help from LAPD Missing Persons unit, along with Hunters friend from the FBI, Kennedy, who was also present in An Evil Mind. All these people serve to try and solve the crimes as well as locate the sociopath committing them. 

At the beginning, I thought I knew who the killer was, I was almost 100% sure. I was also 100% wrong. I literally sped through the last 20% of this book (I had bought it on Kindle) convinced that I knew what was coming, but I was so so wrong. 

As usual, Chris Carter has delivered another brilliant Robert Hunter book, full of gory crimes, extreme twists, and a completely (in my opinion) unexpected ending.

I gave this book 5 stars on Goodreads. I’m already waiting for the next book ๐Ÿ˜‰ 

Happy reading! ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ“–

The Crooked House By Christobel Kent

  

Read this after I Let You Go and I was soooooo disappointed. Maybe my expectations were too high, whatever it is I didnt really enjoy this at all.

Set 13 years after a girls family is massacred, it picks up in her present day life. Alison, she used to be Esme, has carried on her life after she moved away. 

Alison’s partner was invited to a wedding in Saltleigh, the place she left as a child, so they both return to attend. Surprise surprise, it goes downhill (irritatingly slowly!!!) from there. 

The community is full of secrets, nobody wants to share what they know. Alison is in danger, and races to find out the truth of what happened to her family many years ago. 

I really didn’t enjoy this book, it’s not often I do it, but I only gave it a 1 star review on Goodreads. I expected so much better!!

I Let You Go by Claire Mackintosh

  
I loved this book. Really, really, *really* loved this book. One of a handful of books on my Goodreads with 5 stars.

Set in the aftermath of a hit and run, it follows Jenna as she moves away to start a new life on the Welsh coast. 

The DI charged with solving the case is determined to get to the bottom of it and he risks losing more than just the killer while investigating the tragedy. 

I cannot go into the plot without giving anything away, and I don’t want to, I made sure to avoid reviews etc before I read this, and I was so glad. I literally had my jaw drop at one stage.

I cannot recommend this book highly enough. Definitely one of my top reads of the year so far!