The Vanishing Season by Joanna Schaffhausen

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About the book:

Fourteen years ago, teenager Ellery Hathaway was victim number seventeen in the grisly murder spree of serial killer Francis Michael Coben. She was the only one who lived.
Now Coben is safely behind bars, and Ellery has a new identity in a sleepy town where bike theft makes the newspapers. But each July for the last three years, locals have been disappearing. Then Ellery receives strange messages hinting that the culprit knows exactly what happened to her all those years ago. When she tries to raise the alarm, no one will listen, and terrified she may be next, Ellery must turn to the one person who might believe her story…

The Vanishing Season by Joanna Schaffhausen

My thoughts:

I read the majority of The Vanishing Season in one day because once I got pulled in to the story I had to keep going to see what was going to happen!

Ellie Hathaway is living under a new identity after surviving a killer when he was younger. Said killer is now behind bars, but Ellie has been getting strange messages, and now people are disappearing from the town she lives in. Nobody will believe her when she tries to tell them, so she takes matters into her own hands and calls in the FBI.

What follows is quite a tense read, packed with plenty of shady characters and a really interesting story. I was thoroughly engaged with this one and I was eager to see if my suspicions were correct or not. The Vanishing Season is definitely a fast-paced and clever crime thriller.

Recommended for sure!

The Echo Killing by Christi Daugherty

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About the book:

MURDER SHOCKS PEACEFUL NEIGHBOURHOOD

A woman in her thirties. Found naked and stabbed on the kitchen floor. Discovered by her twelve-year-old daughter after school.

As top Savannah crime reporter Harper McClain stares at the horrific scene before her, one thought screams through her mind. This murder is identical to another murder she has witnessed. Her mother’s murder…

For fifteen years, Harper has been torn apart by the knowledge that her mother’s killer is walking free. And now, it seems he’s struck again. There are no fingerprints. No footprints. No DNA. Yet still, Harper is determined to discover the truth once and for all.

But that search will come at a cost…and it could be one she isn’t ready to pay.

The Echo Killing by Christi Daugherty

My thoughts:

Set in Savannah, Georgia, we meet crime reporter Harper McClain. When a murder is committed, echoing a 15-year-old cold case, McClain takes it upon herself to try to find the perpetrator. The kicker here is that it was McClain’s mother killed 15 years ago, and the fact that the killer was never caught makes her think they are back.

Harper becomes like a dog with a bone, exhausting all of her police contacts trying to learn all she can about the current murder, while also delving into her mother’s case. Harper doesn’t realise just how dangerous this will turn out to be.

I enjoyed The Echo Killing. It is definitely a solid start to the series, but it left me with a lot of questions by the end. That’s not necessarily a bad thing though, as it has made me eager to read the next Harper McClain book.

The Echo Killing is a good thriller. Pacy and tense, it kept me reading. I loved the location, and McClain is a great character.

Recommended for sure!

 

Blog Blitz-Past Echoes by Graham Smith Ellen’s Review

Hi everyone,

Today Ellen is taking part in the blog tour for Past Echoes, the latest in the Jake Boulder series, by Graham Smith. I’ll be sharing her review with you all for this one a little further down, but first, the all-important bookish information!

About the author:

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Graham Smith is a time served joiner who 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.

He is an internationally best-selling Kindle author and has four books featuring DI Harry Evans and the Cumbrian Major Crimes Team, and two novels, featuring Utah doorman, Jake Boulder.

2018 will be a busy year for Graham as he has the third Jake Boulder being published and a Harry Evans novel and novella.

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 Crimesquad.com since 2009

Graham is the founder of Crime and Publishment, a weekend of crime-writing classes which includes the chance for attendees to pitch their novels to agents and publishers. Since the first weekend in 2013, eight attendees have gone on to sign publishing contracts.

Links:

About the book:

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Jake Boulder is back and he’s tasked with tracking down a man due to inherit a small fortune. Not only that, he must also reveal the secret which forced a young woman to flee New York some forty years ago. The evidence he needs is hidden in a safety deposit box and while Boulder has the key, the only clue he has for box’s location is a series of numbers etched onto the key and a mysterious list of names.

Boulder has his work cut out since he must also locate his estranged father, Cameron MacDonald, so that Cameron can donate bone marrow to Boulder’s half-brother John.

In a game of cat and mouse, he must solve the case and find the two men without alerting those who control New York’s underworld.

Can Boulder survive against both the mafia and a professional hitman, in what is his toughest case yet?

Ellen’s review:

I’m a fully paid up member of the Jake Boulder fan club so was delighted to have the opportunity to read and review the third novel in this series. In Past Echoes Jake is tasked with solving a mystery that Ms Rosenberg (the brash but likeable journalist from the previous books) has left for him to solve and to find his estranged father Cameron to “persuade” him to be a donor for his half-brother John.

The tagline for this novel could easily be “This time it’s personal” because as events snowball Jake is taken on a heart breaking journey. A journey which results in some of the bloodiest fights we have witnessed in the previous books. The events in Past Echoes change Jake Boulder into a different man and I definitely wouldn’t want to be on the wrong side of him!

As with Watching The Bodies and The Kindred Killers we are given a little bit more of an insight into Jake’s past and can see how these events have shaped him. In being introduced to his father Cameron I could definitely recognise similar traits in Jake but thankfully the tough love of his mother seems to have rounded off the harsher edges of this likeness.

Featuring political corruption, the New York underworld, family drama and a chilling hitman called The Mortician, Past Echoes is the most nerve-racking book that I have read in a long time.  I’m interested to see what is next from Jake Boulder and if he can ever get over the life changing events he has been put through. Graham Smith has a talent for writing characters that are so personable and I do wonder if my emotions can handle much more! A fantastic addition to the Jake Boulder series; five stars from me.

Grist Mill Road by Christopher J. Yates

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About the book:

The year is 1982, the setting an Edenic hamlet some 90 miles north of New York City. There, among the craggy rock cliffs and glacial ponds of timeworn mountains, three friends—Patrick, Matthew and Hannah— are bound together by a single, terrible, and seemingly senseless crime. Twenty six years later, in New York City, living lives their younger selves could never have predicted, the three meet again–with even more devastating results.

Click HERE to order your copy!

My thoughts:

Grist Mill Road was a book I had liked the look of on Netgalley so I was delighted to be approved to read it. It wasn’t what I was expecting, but I really enjoyed the change of pace with this one.

The book jumps back and forward in time between Patrick, Matthew and Hannah and recounts a terrible event in 1982 versus how they are living their respective lives twenty six years later.

Character is key with this one. Each character has their own stuff going on, and I liked how the author managed to give the reader little bits of information on each throughout the book without actually giving away too much. The three characters are well-developed too, and they all have their own unique voices. Their pasts are intricately linked, and the author does a great job of tying it all together.

This is less of a whodunnit and more of a whydunnit. The reader learns early on what happened, and then gets all sides of the story as the book progresses. It takes a bit of time to get there though, but ultimately, the journey is well worth it.

Grist Mill Road is more thoughtful than your usual crime thrillers. It’s not as punchy, and it focuses on character development more than the actual crime itself. I really enjoyed the story, not least because it was a welcome change of pace from the norm for me.

Recommended for sure!

 

The Black Ice by Michael Connelly

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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:

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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.

http://www.michaelconnelly.com

@Connellybooks

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!

~Blog Tour Review~ Don’t Tell A Soul by DK Hood

Hi guys,

Today I’m one of two stops kicking off the blog tour for Don’t Tell A Soul by DK Hood and I’ll be sharing my review with you all. First though, here’s the all-important bookish information 🙂

About the author:

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Born in London, D.K. traveled extensively before settling in sunny Australia. Her interest in the development of forensic science to solve crime goes back many years. She is an avid reader of crime, mystery and thrillers. Writing in this genre has been an exciting adventure for her but nothing could top the thrill of receiving a proposal for her first submission,  ‘Don’t Tell a Soul’ from commissioning editor Helen Jenner at Bookouture. D.K. looks forward to sharing her spine tingling stories with you.

 

Author Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dkhoodauthor/

Twitter: www.twitter.com/DKHood_Author

Website: www.dkhood.com

 

About the book:

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The floor was stone cold on her bare skin. Her heart pounded in her chest. ‘Not a soul knows where I am,’ she thought as she took in the darkness around her. And then she heard his footsteps…

When a body is found stuffed into a barrel at a garbage dump, covered in long red cuts, Detective Jenna Alton and her new deputy, David Kane, rush to the scene.

Nothing ever happens in the small American town of Black Rock Falls, so Jenna believes the victim must be one of two recent missing persons, and she fears for the life of the other.

Both were strangers to the town, but there’s nothing else to link them. Jenna knows someone must have seen something, but no one’s talking; how well does she really know the people around her?

Then a disturbing clue makes Jenna suspect a connection with other disappearances in the town’s history. Just when she begins asking the right questions, she realises she’s being followed. Is she next on the killer’s list?

In a race against time, Jenna and David must unlock the dark secret at the heart of the town, before it’s too late… 

A completely addictive detective thriller that will have you guessing right to the end. Perfect for readers of Robert Dugoni, Karin Slaughter and Rachel Abbott.

Buy links:

UK http://amzn.to/2wESpf4
US http://amzn.to/2vgQtva

 

My thoughts:

I love a good serial killer thriller, especially ones based in the USA, so it was an easy yes to taking part in the blog tour for Don’t Tell A Soul by DK Hood. It sounded like something right up my street and I was not disappointed!

When a body is discovered in a barrel at a waste disposal site in Black Rock Falls, it’s up to Detective Jenna Alton and her new Deputy, David Kane to find out who it is and what happened. This is a small town, where nothing ever happens, but there are a couple of missing persons cases and Alton is afraid that the victim may be one of the missing so she begins an investigation that will threaten everyone’s safety around her.

Gah! I’m writing this review eager to tell you EVERYTHING about this book, but I can’t, because SPOILERS!!!!

So lets discuss characters instead for a bit. Jenna Alton is a strong female lead in this book, she takes no prisoners and takes s*** from NO-ONE! I loved her no-nonsense attitude and how she carries herself. Everyone has a past, and Jenna is no different but hers is one she has hidden away from the rest of the world. Enter Deputy David Kane….

Kane is such a great character. Full of machismo, but ultimately a very caring and honest man, he leaves the reader in no doubt that he is a very determined and interesting character. Alton and Kane meet in a great scenario (not going to say more!!!!) and their relationship starts off on an uneven keel for sure. As a pair, these two work so well together. They have each other’s backs, but are respectful of their differing methodologies and approaches to crimes/suspects. I really liked their inner monologues throughout the course of the book!

That plot though!!! It is detail-heavy, there are lots of extra stuff in there that creates the scenes and sets up the characters really well. So much so, that you will question everyone’s motives in the course of reading the book. I had inklings as to the whodunnit bits, but the author created such a wider picture that my theories were disproved more than once. I did get some bits right, but the ultimate reveal wasn’t what I was expecting. In a good way of course!

DK Hood, I need more Kane and Alton in my life, ASAP please 🙂 I am a huge fan of these two, and thanks to the author’s skill at not disclosing every minute detail, I am hankering for the next book and for answers!!!! Read it, and you’ll want to know what I want to know!

Don’t Tell A Soul is an absorbing, clever and dark book. Delving into small-town America and creating a sinister snapshot of life in a sleepy Montana town, it is compulsive and moreish. You need to keep reading, gleaning more information, putting it together in your head. And then the author will add in a tiny detail to make you go OMG! How did I miss that?!

Bravo, Ms. Hood. Bring on book 2.

Highly recommended!

 

Follow the blog tour:

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~Blog Tour Ellen’s Review~ The Kindred Killers by Graham Smith @GrahamSmith1972 @Bloodhoundbook

Hi everyone,

Today is Ellen’s turn to take part in the blog tour for The Kindred Killers, and I’ll be sharing her review with you in a bit, but here’s the all-important bookish information first!

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About the book:

Jake Boulder’s help is requested by his best friend, Alfonse, when his cousin is crucified and burned alive along with his wife and children. As Boulder tries to track the heinous killer, a young woman is abducted. Soon her body is discovered and Boulder realises both murders have something unusual in common.

With virtually no leads for Boulder to follow, he strives to find a way to get a clue as to the killer’s identity. But is he hunting for one killer or more?

After a young couple are snatched in the middle of the night the case takes a brutal turn. When the FBI are invited to help with the case, Boulder finds himself warned off the investigation. When gruesome, and incendiary, footage from a mobile phone is sent to all the major US News outlets and the pressure to find those responsible for the crimes mounts. But with the authorities against him can Boulder catch the killer before it’s too late?

Get your copy HERE!

About the author:

A time served joiner Graham 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 Crimesquad.com since 2009

He is the author of four books featuring DI Harry Evans and the Cumbrian Major Crimes Team and now two books in the crime series featuring Utah doorman, Jake Boulder.

Links:

https://www.facebook.com/grahamnsmithauthor/?fref=ts

https://www.grahamsmithauthor.com/

https://twitter.com/GrahamSmith1972?lang=en-gb

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Graham-Smith/e/B006FTIBBU/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1491159376&sr=8-1

Ellen’s Review:

Watching the Bodies was one of my top reads of 2017 so I jumped at the chance to review the next in this new series from Graham Smith! It was fantastic to get reacquainted with Jake Boulder and his particular brand of law enforcement.

Jake is really pushed to the limits this time when he is involved in a spate of what appear to be hate crimes in his hometown. The first of these are close to home as the victims are relatives of Alfonse; Jake’s friend and sometime business partner. Now I’m a pretty hard-core reader when it comes to gruesome deaths and torture but even my stomach of steel rolled at some of the murder methods described. It was a difficult read in places but only highlighted what is sadly occurring in the world right now to some extent and I think we all need a dose of reality with our fiction to keep it current.

 

In The Kindred Killers we get a little more understanding of how Jake is made up thanks to his psychologist Dr Edwards; I loved their relationship and how Dr Edwards traded his insight on the case with Jake in return for answers on his personal issues. It was also nice to see Jake finally (possibly,maybe!?) settling down with someone, much to the chagrin of book bloggers around the world who hold him dear as their fictional love interest!

 

Although this is the second in the series it could be read as a standalone but why deny yourself the joy of Jake!? Five shiny stars from me and I look forward to the next!

Make sure to catch up with the blog tour:

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