4*, blog tours, book review, psychological thriller

#BlogTour #BookReview The Old You by Louise Voss. @LouiseVoss1 @OrendaBooks #TheOldYou #backablogger

FINAL Old You blog poster 2018 copy.jpg

My Review:

The Old You by Louise Voss is a great read. Right from the start I was hooked and wanted to know what was going to happen. At first everything seemed perfectly normal, but of course, things aren’t always as they appear and this is certainly true in this case.

Lynn is blissfully happy with her life, she loves her husband Ed and she has a new job that she really likes. But when Ed receives an upsetting diagnosis, things suddenly change.

With the help of chapters showing what happened in the past, we realise that things really aren’t as they seem and that Lynn is hiding a huge secret. Who do we believe? Is Ed as innocent as he seems?

This is a twisted read that will have the reader thinking one thing but really not sure whether that is what’s going on or not. I worked a lot of it out well before it was officially revealed but that didn’t matter, and although the whole thing is slightly implausible, it still makes for a great, twisty read.

Thank you to the publisher, Orenda Books, for a copy of The Old You by Louise Voss. I was under no obligation to review the book and all thoughts are my own.

Blurb:

Nail-bitingly modern domestic noir
A tense, Hitchcockian psychological thriller
Louise Voss returns with her darkest, most chilling, novel yet…

Lynn Naismith gave up the job she loved when she married Ed, the love of her life, but it was worth it for the happy years they enjoyed together. Now, ten years on, Ed has been diagnosed with early-onset dementia, and things start to happen; things more sinister than missing keys and lost words. As some memories are forgotten, others, long buried, begin to surface… and Lynn’s perfect world begins to crumble.
But is it Ed s mind playing tricks, or hers…?

About The Author:

LOUISE VOSSOver her eighteen-year writing career, Louise Voss has had eleven
novels published – five solo and six co-written with Mark Edwards: a
combination of psychological thrillers, police procedurals and
contemporary fiction – and sold over 350,000 books. Louise has an
MA (Dist) in Creative Writing and also works as a literary consultant
and mentor for writers at http://www.thewritingcoach.co.uk. She lives in
South-West London and is a proud member of two female crime-
writing collectives, The Slice Girls and Killer Women.

The Old You by Louise Voss is out now and available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

4.5*, blog tours, book review, psychological thriller

#BlogTour #BookReview Game Players by Anita Waller. @anitamayw @Bloodhoundbook #GamePlayers #bookblogger

B L O G B L I T Z

I’m really excited to be one of the bloggers kicking off the blog tour for Game Players by Anita Waller. Regular readers will know how much I like the author and this book has to be one of her best.

My Review:

I really like Anita Waller, when I read 34 Days I absolutely loved it and have been a fan of the author ever since, and she’s definitely got a place in my top author’s list.

There was a lot that I loved about Game Players, it grabbed me right from the start and I loved the ‘gang of six’, a group of children who find themselves caught up in a world that they don’t belong. They make a decision, all agreeing by vote, but are totally unaware of the fatal consequences of that vote.

As a reader I couldn’t help but root for the gang, and also feel slightly envious of them as I’d of loved to have friends like that when I was growing up! I loved how Waller made each child an individual, but together they were such a team and a real force to be reckoned with.

The book is told from various points of view and I have to say that I enjoyed reading all of them which is unusual as often there’s at least one that you don’t enjoy reading about so much. The police officer who knew that something was going on but had no idea what. The criminal with a conscience. The imperfect parent trying to do their best. They all added to the story and made it a compelling read that I just didn’t want to put down.

Game Players was one of those books that I desperately wanted to keep reading to find out what was going to happen, but when I did I was really sad that it was over and that I would have to leave that gang of six behind.

Thanks for a great read Anita Waller! When is the next one out??

Thank you to Bloodhound Books for a copy of Game Players by Anita Waller, I was under no obligation to review the book and all thoughts are my own.

Blurb:

GAME PLAYERSWhen a gang of six children playing in their den in the woods spot a man burying drugs nearby, it marks the beginning of the end of their childhoods

Unsure what to do, the children dig up the drugs and take them away. But when the dealer, who they watched bury the stash, shows up dead, the youngsters are thrown into turmoil.

Scared of what might happen, the children tell the police about the body they have discovered.

Meanwhile, a group of gangsters start searching for their missing drugs.

Soon the children and their families become the target of the vicious criminals who will stop at nothing to retrieve their narcotics…

About the Author:

anitawallerAnita Waller was born in Sheffield, South Yorkshire in 1946. She married Dave in 1967 and they have three adult children.

She began writing when she was around 8 years of age, writing ‘compositions’ at junior school that became books with chapters.

In 1995 she sent Beautiful to a publisher and as they reached the contract stage the publisher went into liquidation. As a result, the book was consigned to the attic in dejected disgust but in 2013 it was dragged out again for an enforced complete re-type. The original was written on an Amstrad 8256 and the only thing that remained was one hard copy.

Anita is not a typist and it was painfully reworked over two years, submitted to Bloodhound Books who, within three days of reading it, offered her a contract. 31 August 2015 saw its release into the wide world.

Following the outstanding success of Beautiful, she began a sequel on 27 December 2015, finishing it on 19 March 2016. The new novel, Angel, was launched on 7 May 2016.

34 Days followed, with its launch in October 2016. This was a huge success, particularly in the United States. While this, her third book in the psychological thriller genre, was flying out in all directions, she began work on her fourth book.

Winterscroft was a change in genre. It is a supernatural tale, set in Castleton, Derbyshire, and its release date was February 2017.

While she was writing Winterscroft, it became very clear from reading reviews that a sequel to 34 days was needed, and she began work on that. Bloodhound Books launched Strategy, on 10 August 2017.

Her next book, launched February 2018 and entitled Captor, is a psychological thriller, set exclusively in Sheffield. It was an instant success, both in the UK and the US.

The along came Game Players… once more set in Sheffield, the story involves a group of six children who have each other’s backs to a remarkable extent. The darker, criminal side of Sheffield is explored, and the book launch is 18 May 2018.

In her life away from the computer in the corner of her kitchen, she is a Sheffield Wednesday supporter with blue blood in her veins! The club was particularly helpful during the writing of 34 Days, as a couple of matches feature in the novel, along with Ross Wallace. Information was needed, and they provided it.

Her genre is murder – necessary murder.

Links:

Amazon page:   https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref =nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias %3Daps&field-keywords=anita+ waller

Facebook page:  @anitawaller2015

Website:  www.anitamayw.wixsite.com/anit awaller

Twitter:   @anitamayw

Game Players by Anita Waller is out today and is available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

4*, blog tours, book review, psychological thriller

#BlogTour #BookReview The Fear by C.L. Taylor. @callytaylor @AvonBooksUK @Sabah_K #TheFear

The Fear - Blog Tour Banner - Part 3

My Review:

I immediately wanted to read The Fear by C.L. Taylor. Who could resist the cover for a start? But I was also attracted by the author.

I really enjoyed reading The Fear, the storyline sucked me right in and I desperately wanted to know what was going to happen and how Lou was going to stop Mike from ruining another teenagers life.

Although at times slightly unbelievable, the book was definitely a thrilling read. The author had captured how grooming takes place and I couldn’t help but think of my daughter at times when reading and how on earth I could protect her from something so determined and manipulative. The book also gives a good demonstration of how child abuse can impact the child’s life for many years to come.

Some other reviews talk about how things are mentioned in the book that didn’t exist in the year the book was set. Normally I have a radar for such things but I can honestly say that I don’t remember picking up on that at all, and the only explanation that I have for that is that I was so engrossed in the story that it passed me by.

The Fear is a clever book with plenty of twists and turns, while not always easy to read due to the subject matter it was still a great read and one that I’d highly recommend.

Thanks for Avon Books for a copy of The Fear by C.L. Taylor, I was under no obligation to review the book and all thoughts are my own.

Blurb:

thefear

The million copy Sunday Times bestseller returns with a taut, compelling psychological thriller that will have you glued to the edge of your seat.

Sometimes your first love won’t let you go…

 Lou Wandsworth is used to being headline news as, aged fourteen, she ran away to France with her 31-year-old teacher, Mike Hughes.

 Now 32, Lou’s life is in tatters – and she resolves to return home to confront Mike for the damage he has caused. But she soon finds that Mike is unchanged, and is focussing his attention on 13-year-old Chloe Meadows.

 Determined to make sure that history doesn’t repeat itself, Lou decides to take matters into her own hands. But Mike is a predator of the worst kind, and as she tries to bring him to justice, it’s clear that Lou could once again become his prey…

 About the author:

C.L. Taylor lives in Bristol with her partner and son. She started writing fiction in 2005 and her short stories have won several awards and have been published by a variety of literary and women’s magazines.

 In 2014, The Bookseller named C.L. Taylor as one of the year’s Bestselling Adult Fiction Debut Authors for The AccidentThe Lie and The Missing were Sunday Times top 10 bestsellers in paperback, and both books hit the #1 spot on the Kindle bestseller list. She has sold 1 million books to date.

The Fear by C.L. Taylor is out now and is available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

3.5*, blog blast, blog tours, book review, debut author, psychological thriller

#BlogBlitz The Choice by Jake Cross @JakeCrossAuthor @Bookouture

The Choice - Blog Tour

My Review:

I enjoyed The Choice by Jake Cross, it’s a fast-paced read with lots happening, but in order to enjoy this book I think that you really need to just go with the book and not think about how realistic something is (or isn’t).

If you were driving along a road when it is dark and there are no houses or other cars around and suddenly in front of your car was a woman, you slam on the brakes and she begs you to help her, would you help? That’s what Karl is faced with at the start of this book, it is clear that the woman is terrified and so he decides to help her. But it soon becomes clear that people are after the woman and Karl knows that they have seen his van. The woman, Liz, insists that Karl is at risk, that the men she is running from will find him but he dismisses it. She also refuses to go to the police, something that Karl goes along with.

It soon becomes clear that Karl and his pregnant wife are in danger and Karl teams up with Liz to try and survive. This is when things get a little bit far-fetched, but if you ignore that then you’ll enjoy the ride!

Thank you to Bookouture for a copy of The Choice by Jake Cross, I was under no obligation to review the book and all thoughts are my own.

Blurb:

The-Choice-Kindle‘You’ve got to help me,’ she pleads.
On a wet road in the black of night, Karl Seabury is driving home to his pregnant wife. Suddenly, caught in his headlights in the middle of the road is a woman shaking with fright.

The woman says her name is Liz Smith, that her home was attacked, and that she was the only one to escape.

In a split-second decision, Karl decides to help her to safety. But Liz is hiding a dark secret and now his good deed has put his family in terrible danger…

An absolutely unputdownable thriller, with twist after twist after twist, that will leave you breathless. Perfect for fans of Robert Dugoni, John Marrs and Harlan Coben.

About The Author:

davJake has been making stuff up from a real early age. His parents never believed his silly lies when he was young, so he still has no idea why he thought he could invent a decent story as an adult. But he kept trying, and here we are. THE CHOICE is his first novel, the first of three thrillers to be published by Bookouture, and he hopes you like it. If you don’t, he at least hopes you don’t ask for a refund.

 

The Choice by Jake Cross is out today and available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

4*, blog blast, blog tours, book review, psychological thriller

#BlogTour Captor by Anita Waller @anitamayw @Bloodhoundbook

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My Review:

I like Anita Waller, she writes good books that have lots of twists and turns and keeps you hooked. She has a real skill when it comes to creating characters that feel really real and relatable.

Liz is struggling to adjust with her return to work after maternity leave, she misses her son and hates leaving him but she is comforted to know that he is in capable hands, but when she finishes work and goes to collect her son she finds her worst nightmare.

There are many levels to this story and it is told predominantly from Liz’s point of view, but also from other key characters that help to build the tension and tell the story.

I love how Waller is able to make a story with real heart, we know the reason why the crimes are being committed and often can relate and understand why. Less so in Captor than her other books but that’s ok.

My one gripe about Captor is that I never really felt that Liz’s son was ever really at risk which was a shame as it meant that there was less tension than there could have been, although whether I was right in that assumption I’m not going to say.

Overall Captor is an enjoyable read, Waller has definitely done it again and proves herself to be one of the best storytellers in the genre of murder, necessary murder, as she likes to say.

Thank you to Bloodhound books for a copy of Captor by Anita Waller, I was under no obligation to review the book and all thoughts are my own.

Blurb:

CAPTOR 4

Liz Chambers is a devoted mother who works for a successful law firm. She has two children, a husband and a blossoming career. But behind closed doors, Liz is harbouring a secret that could destroy her life.
Then the unthinkable happens, and in a frenzied attack her young son is snatched from the home of the nanny charged with looking after him.
As Liz’s life unfolds, it becomes clear that someone is out for revenge.
Desperate to get her baby boy back, Liz must work out who is responsible for his kidnap, and why.
But as the body count begins to mount, Liz’s concern grows for the safety of her child.
Who has taken her baby?
And why is Captor so determined on revenge?

 

About The Author:

 

anitawallerAnita Waller was born in Sheffield, South Yorkshire in 1946. She married Dave in 1967 and they have three adult children.

She began writing when she was around 8 years of age, writing ‘compositions’ at junior school that became books with chapters.

In 1995 she sent Beautiful to a publisher and as they reached the contract stage the publisher went into liquidation.

As a result, the book was consigned to the attic in dejected disgust but in 2013 it was dragged out again for an enforced complete re-type. The original was written on an Amstrad 8256 and the only thing that remained was one hard copy.

Anita is not a typist and it was painfully reworked over two years, submitted to Bloodhound Books who, within three days of reading it, offered her a contract. 31 August 2015 saw its release into the wide world.

Following the outstanding success of Beautiful, she began a sequel on 27 December 2015, finishing it on 19 March 2016. The new novel, Angel, was launched on 7 May 2016.

34 Days followed, with its launch in October 2016. This was a huge success, particularly in the United States. While this, her third book in the psychological thriller genre, was flying out in all directions, she began work on her fourth book.

Winterscroft was a change in genre. It is a supernatural tale, set in Castleton, Derbyshire, and its release date was February 2017.

While she was writing Winterscroft, it became very clear from reading reviews that a sequel to 34 days was needed, and she began work on that. Bloodhound Books launched Strategy, on 10 August, 2017.

So where next? Her new book, launching February 2018 and titled Captor, is a psychological thriller.

In her life away from the computer in the corner of her kitchen, she is a Sheffield Wednesday supporter with blue blood in her veins! The club was particularly helpful during the writing of 34 Days, as a couple of matches feature in the novel, along with Ross Wallace. Information was needed and they provided it.

Her genre is murder – necessary murder.

Links:

Anita Waller’s Amazon UK page

Anita Waller’s Amazon US page

Facebook page

Author website

Twitter

Captor by Anita Waller is out now and available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

I have also reviewed 34 DaysStrategy and Winterscroft by Anita Waller.

5*, book review, debut author, psychological thriller

#BookReview The Chalk Man by CJ Tudor @cjtudor @MichaelJBooks

 

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The Chalk Man by CJ Tudor

 

My Review:

Ok, so this review could be very, very short. Basically, all that I will say in it can be summed up in these few words ‘It is bloody brilliant and you should read it.’

If you’d like to know a little bit more about the book then keep reading, no spoilers obviously, but if not then you get the gist and that is all that you need to know.

I’d heard a lot about The Chalk Man by CJ Tudor and was desperate to read it, I just couldn’t wait until publication day so I totally abused my position as a book blogger and begged the publisher to let me read it earlier. Luckily for me, they were very obliging. I was so excited when it landed on my Kindle that I started to read it straight away and once I started I struggled to stop. It was just so so good I couldn’t put it down! Forget the washing/cleaning/cooking/shopping/kids/pets/work/tv/sleep/anything, it won’t get done until you finish reading this book. I’m a slow reader and I read it in two days, sleep didn’t matter, I just had to keep reading.

That this book is a debut is incredibly impressive, the writing is solid and the plot is twisted and well written, the characters are believable and realistic. It’s pretty much as close to a perfect book as you can get.

Blurb:

In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence. They spend their days biking around their sleepy little English village and looking for any taste of excitement they can get. The chalk men are their secret code; little chalk stick figures they leave for each other as messages only they can understand. But then a mysterious chalk man leads them right to a dismembered body, and nothing will ever be the same.

In 2016, Eddie is fully grown, and thinks he’s put his past behind him. But then he gets a letter in the mail, containing a single chalk stick figure. When it turns out his other friends got the same messages, they think it could be a prank… until one of them turns up dead. That’s when Eddie realizes that saving himself means finally figuring out what really happened all those years ago.

Expertly alternating between flashbacks and the present day, The Chalk Man is the very best kind of suspense novel, one where every character is wonderfully fleshed out and compelling, where every mystery has a satisfying payoff, and where the twists will shock even the savviest reader.

About The Author:

20374489_158877098004329_719442257321190286_nC. J. Tudor was born in Salisbury and grew up in Nottingham, where she still lives with her partner and young daughter.

She left school at sixteen and has had a variety of jobs over the years, including trainee reporter, radio scriptwriter, shop assistant, ad agency copywriter and voiceover.

In the early nineties, she fell into a job as a television presenter for a show on Channel 4 called Moviewatch. Although a terrible presenter, she got to interview acting legends such as Sigourney Weaver, Michael Douglas, Emma Thompson and Robin Williams. She also annoyed Tim Robbins by asking a question about Susan Sarandon’s breasts and was extremely flattered when Robert Downey Junior showed her his chest.

While writing the Chalk Man she ran a dog-walking business, walking over twenty dogs a week as well as looking after her little girl.

She’s been writing since she was a child but only knuckled down to it properly in her thirties. Her English teacher once told her that if she ‘did not become Prime Minister or a best-selling author’ he would be ‘very disappointed.’

The Chalk Man was inspired by a tub of chalks a friend bought for her daughter’s second birthday. One afternoon they drew chalk figures all over the driveway. Later that night she opened the back door to be confronted by weird stick men everywhere. In the dark, they looked incredibly sinister. She called to her partner: ‘These chalk men look really creepy in the dark . . .’

She is never knowingly over-dressed. She has never owned a handbag and the last time she wore heels (twelve years ago) she broke a tooth.

She loves The Killers, Foo Fighters and Frank Turner. Her favourite venue is Rock City.

Her favourite films are Ghostbusters and The Lost Boys. Her favourite authors are Stephen King, Michael Marshall and Harlan Coben.

She is SO glad she was a teenager in the eighties.

She firmly believes that there are no finer meals than takeaway pizza and champagne, or chips with curry sauce after a night out.

Everyone calls her Caz.

The Chalk Man by CJ Tudor is released on 11th January 2018 and is available from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

4*, book review, psychological thriller

#BookReview The Child Finder by @ReneDenfield @orionbooks @ifonlyread #amreading

 

 

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The Child Finder by Rene Denfield.

 

My Review:

I was immediately attracted to the blurb of The Child Finder by Rene Denfield. The thought of someone whose job was to track missing children was interesting and something that I really wanted to read.

Naomi Cottle is an unusual character, I didn’t find her particularly likeable but she was certainly interesting and her backstory was intriguing. Although the story focuses on Madison, a young child who went missing three years ago in an isolated wood while looking for a Christmas Tree with her parents, we also find out about some of the children that Naomi has found previously which helps to add depth to the story and also a sense of urgency. And we hear from Madison herself, finding out where she has been for three years and how she has managed to survive.

The concept is great and I did enjoy reading it, but I didn’t think that it was particularly well written. This didn’t spoil the read for me though and it was a real journey in many ways as while tracking Madison, Naomi is forced to confront her past as it brings up some of her own childhood that she has blocked out and feels scared to remember, but also aware that it is something that she needs to do in order to stop running from her past.

I really don’t want to give too much away, but this is a great read that I really enjoyed. If you like psychological thrillers then this is a book for you.

Blurb:

Naomi Cottle finds missing children. When the police have given up their search and an investigation stalls, families call her. She possesses a rare, intuitive sense, born out of her own harrowing experience that allows her to succeed when others have failed.

Young Madison Culver has been missing for three years. She vanished on a family trip to the mountainous forests of Oregon, where they’d gone to cut down a tree for Christmas. Soon after she disappeared, blizzards swept the region and the authorities presumed she died from exposure.

But Naomi knows that Madison isn’t dead. Can she find the child – and also find out why this particular case is stirring the shadows of her own memories? Could her future be bound to this girl in a way she doesn’t understand?

About The Author:

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Rene Denfield is the bestselling author of THE ENCHANTED and THE CHILD FINDER. Her lyrical fiction has won numerous awards including the prestigious French Prix, an ALA Medal for Excellence and an IMPAC listing. In addition to writing, Rene works as a licensed investigator. She has worked hundreds of cases, including missing persons, and was the Chief Investigator at the public defender’s office. The child of a difficult history herself, Rene has dedicated her life to helping others. She has been a foster-adoptive parent for 20 years, and is the happy mother to three children she adopted from foster care.

The Child Finder by Rene Denfield is out in the UK on 11th January 2018 and is available to pre-order from Amazon UK. Or you can order the hardback from Amazon US now.