Monstrous Souls by Rebecca Kelly – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

Over a decade ago, Heidi was the victim of a brutal attack that left her hospitalised, her younger sister missing, and her best friend dead. But Heidi doesn’t remember any of that. She’s lived her life since then with little memory of her friends and family and no recollection of the crime.

Now, it’s all starting to come back.

As Heidi begins retracing the events that lead to the assault, she is forced to confront the pain and guilt she’s long kept buried. But Heidi isn’t the only one digging up the past, and the closer she gets to remembering the truth, the more danger she’s in.

When the truth is worse than fiction, is the past worth reliving?

An addictive thriller about a case gone cold and the dangers lurking on our doorsteps, Monstrous Souls will have you gripped to the very end.

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. I always enjoy a dual time frame novel and this book is one of the better ones. Most of the narrative is from Heidi, the young woman who was attacked in 2001 which resulted in memory loss and how she handles dealing with the snippets that she has started to remember fifteen years later. And there is also Denise, a police officer who has involved in the initial investigation and the only person who can help Heidi find her answers.

Some of this book is quite difficult to read, especially in 2001. The way Nina had to deal with what was happening to her and how a cry for help resulted in further tragedy. The guilt Heidi feels as more memories resurface. The anger and frustration felt by the police when faced with a historic crime that looks like it could involve one of their own.

What the author does so well is show how the crimes committed affect the different individuals concerned, both at the time they were committed and in the future. How the fear of retribution made many stay silent. It is extremely convincing. 

It’s hard to be believe that this is a debut novel, it is very well written with little hint of who could or couldn’t be trusted. 

Cut To The Bone by Roz Watkins – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

A beautiful young social-media star goes missing.

But who took her?

When controversial internet celebrity Violet Armstrong vanishes in the middle of a scorching Peak District summer, the case sparks a media frenzy.

The clock is ticking for DI Meg Dalton and her team to find Violet before online threats explode into real-life violence. And then the blood and hair of a young woman are found in an empty pig trough at the local abattoir…

The more Meg finds out about this unnerving case, the more she becomes convinced that something very, very bad has happened to Violet. With temperatures rising and the press demanding answers, the case is about to take a terrifying turn…

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. Even though this is book three in the series it is the first I have read. Before I even got 50 pages in I was kicking myself for not reading the earlier books. I loved the writing, the setting and the characters. I want to know more about all of this police team in Derbyshire. 

If you read a lot of crime fiction like I do you probably struggle to find something original and I was pleased that everything about this book was. The investigation was one that I had never read anything similar to before, and even though Meg has some personal problems they were also different. Concerning parents rather than failed relationships. I enjoyed her relationship with her friend Hannah and her devotion to her cat Hamlet ( great name for a cat). And even though I would like to visit Ladybower reservoir I will go out of my way to avoid anywhere that looks like Gritton. 

It is quite a gory read at times, not just with the crimes that are committed but also the everyday procedures at the abattoir. I will certainly be looking more closely at the meat products I buy in the future.

You Don’t Know Me by Sara Foster – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

Lizzie Burdett was eighteen when she vanished. Noah Carruso has never forgotten her: she was his first crush; his unrequited love. She was also his brother’s girlfriend.

Tom Carruso hasn’t been home in over a decade. He left soon after Lizzie disappeared, under a darkening cloud of suspicion. Now he’s coming home for the inquest into Lizzie’s death, intent on telling his side of the story for the first time.

As the inquest looms, Noah meets Alice Pryce while on holiday in Thailand. They fall in love fast and hard, but Noah can’t bear to tell Alice his deepest fears. And Alice is equally stricken, for she carries a terrible secret of her own.

He’s guarding a dark secret, but so is she.

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. It is a while since I read a book that I would describe as ‘romantic suspense’ and I found it quite refreshing. Noah and Alice probably expected their holiday romance to fizzle out when Noah had to return to Sydney but with Alice being forced to return home shortly after and both needing each other for moral support their relationship grew stronger.

Both had suffered life changing events when they were younger and when what happened was revealed I enjoyed the novel a lot more. Especially with Noah, I had no idea what had happened to Lizzie and was completely wrong in my suspicions. I also liked the description of his relationship with his older brother Tom and the way he put up with his parent’s demands with the way he lived his life. Especially when it concerned the family business. He obviously had a lot of patience.

Alice’s story was less of a surprise but I loved her spirit and strength. She managed to be a support to her father, Noah and was able to put what happened to her behind her. Like many she was a stronger person than she imagined herself to be.

Reading the last third of this book I didn’t want to put it down, I had a lot of sympathy for Noah, having to stand up in court, stand up to his bullying brother and be honest with his parents. A perfect novel to read during lockdown.

Safe by S. K Barnett – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

YOUR CHILD IS MISSING.

She was only six years old when she disappeared. Posters went up, the police investigated.

But no one could find her.

Now, twelve years later, she’s home.

And knocking at your door.

You’re so happy to see her. But soon you start to wonder why she can’t answer your questions.

Where has she been? How did she find her way home?

And who is she?

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. You often see reports on the news of kidnap victims found and reunited with their families years later. I always wonder how it works out, how they get used to being a family again and if it means a happy ending for all concerned. I sincerely hope that none of those families experience anything like the family in this book did.

Mainly told by the viewpoint of Jenny, but also Ben, her brother and Jake, her father you could see how Jenny’s reappearance affected them all. I thought  I knew which way the storyline would go but it didn’t take me long to discover that there was a lot to this novel, that would hint at something a lot more sinister. And nothing that occurred at the beginning of the book would prepare me for what was revealed the further I read. 

Jenny was a character who I liked more as I got to know her. Independent, inquisitive, determined and loyal. I appreciated her friendship with Tabs, whose family life couldn’t have been more different. This friendship added some relief to the rest of the storyline which was at times a little unsettling.

I don’t know if I have read other books by this author with him writing under a pseudonym, but I would like to in the future. 

Love Until It Hurts by Fiona Blakemore – Review.

About The Book

Can love hurt more than it can heal?
The answer lies in the hospital mortuary.
Dr. Ruth Cooper has a new job. A fresh start.
Yet something is missing.
When her confidence is rocked by two serious complaints, widower Dominic Peterson provides a sympathetic ear.
But, as their relationship develops, Dominic’s four-year-old daughter Bella becomes increasingly unwell.
Can Ruth save Bella, and salvage her reputation?
Or will her past come back to haunt her?

A twisty tale of domestic noir. A psychological thriller that will keep you in suspense until the end.

My Review

With thanks to the author for the copy received. Love Until It Hurts is a medical thriller, a type of book that I always enjoy. Sometimes I don’t understand all the terminology used in this type of fiction and this book was no exception. However, anything I needed to know desperately was easily found via google. And instead of overpowering the storyline it added to it. I found it worked perfectly, a young doctor desperate to do her best but was under pressure and did make mistakes.

The way the medical profession was described was one of the parts of this book that worked so well. I have never really given a thought to what goes on behind the scenes in a surgery. I’m always aware of how much pressure they work under, especially now, but had never thought about how the doctors have to fit it all in. And how easily it can all go wrong. 

But the main thread, the way Ruth’s private life fell apart after a brief period of happiness was the part that I enjoyed the most. With the three way narrative shared between Ruth, Dominic and Bella I could see the manipulation. Bella’s story, in particular, and the way she revealed more about her life was chilling to read.

Love Until It Hurts is an original and extremely clever novel that I have no hesitation in recommending.