Inborn By Thomas Enger – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

When the high school in the small Norwegian village of Fredheim becomes a murder scene, the finger is soon pointed at seventeen-year-old Even. As the investigation closes in, social media is ablaze with accusations, rumours and even threats, and Even finds himself the subject of an online trial as well as being in the dock … for murder?

Even pores over his memories of the months leading up to the crime, and it becomes clear that more than one villager was acting suspiciously … and secrets are simmering beneath the calm surface of this close-knit community.

As events from the past play tag with the present, he’s forced to question everything he thought he knew. Was the death of his father in a car crash a decade earlier really accidental? Has his relationship stirred up something that someone is prepared to kill to protect?

It seems that there may be no one that Even can trust. But can we trust him? A taut, moving and chilling thriller, Inborn examines the very nature of evil, and asks the questions: How well do we really know our families? How well do we know ourselves?

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. Having enjoyed Thomas Enger’s series of books featuring Henning Juul I was looking forward to reading this standalone YA/ adult fiction  novel. My feeling was that it was more adult fiction than YA. 

Even, the lead character is only one of the voices. There is also his mother Suzanne, who is to put it mildly, not much support to him or anybody else, and a police officer Yngve. Yngve was a character who I adored. I loved his approach to the investigation, how he tried to support Even whilst wondering if he was responsible for the murders that had taken place. But most of all I loved his conversations with his recently deceased wife Åse.

Because it is YA there is less detail than usual about the killings but it’s believable. The small town community that is stunned by the deaths, the suspicion regarding Even, the gossip and abuse on social media and the self imposed isolation caused by computer gaming. 

There are many twists, I didn’t have a clue whether Even was guilty or innocent. I couldn’t even work out if he was the accused or a witness in the court scenes. Or if he wasn’t guilty, who was?

It is a completely different novel to the ones that are from the Henning Juul series but it is just as good. 




Beton Rouge by Simone Buchholz – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

On a warm September morning, an unconscious man is found in a cage at the entrance to the offices of one of Germany’s biggest magazines. He’s soon identified as a manager of the company, and he’s been tortured. Three days later, another manager appears in a similar way.

Chastity Riley and her new colleague Ivo Stepanovic are tasked with uncovering the truth behind the attacks, an investigation that goes far beyond the revenge they first suspect … to the dubious past shared by both victims. Travelling to the south of Germany, they step into the hothouse world of boarding schools, where secrets are currency, and monsters are bred … monsters who will stop at nothing to protect themselves.

A smart, dark, probing thriller, full of all the hard-boiled poetry and acerbic wit of the very best noir, Beton Rouge is both a classic whodunit and a scintillating expose of society, by one of the most exciting names in crime fiction.

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. I enjoyed my first meeting with Chastity Riley last year in the novel Blue Night so was looking forward to catching up with her again. I was happy to see that she hadn’t changed a bit. She is as cynical as ever.

There are two cases, the first a cyclist killed by a hit and run is a bit gory despite its brevity. Chastity is only there because she was walking by whilst the investigation was being carried out. The second concerned businessmen who had been stripped, tortured and locked in a cage outside the business that they run. They didn’t seem to have many who were sympathetic to their plight. And when you knew more about them I do tend to have the same opinion. 

But the novel isn’t really about the crimes, it’s more about Chastity. Which is ok with me because she is such a likeable and refreshing character. She drinks too much, smokes too much and falls in love with the wrong people. She wears her heart on her sleeve. She also cares about her friends, worries about what they are going through, and she is willing to see things that others will disregard. 

The writing is beautiful and having experienced listening to her read from the previous book at an event last year I could hear her read this. It feels real, these characters aren’t whiter than white. They have problems, they feel lonely, they sometimes  do things that they shouldn’t do. 

I hope more of this series will be translated. It’s one that I could happily read back to back.


I’ll Find You by Liz Lawler – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

Emily Jacobs, a nurse, is in hospital for a minor operation. When she wakes in the night, woozy with anaesthetic, she sees the doctor frantically trying to resuscitate the woman in the bed next to her. In the morning, she is told that she must have had a nightmare. The bed has been empty all along . . .

When Emily returns to work she discovers a bracelet that she believes belonged to the missing woman. Soon, she becomes convinced that her colleagues at the hospital are hiding a terrible secret. 
What if she’s wrong? What if her own troubled past has affected her more than she knows?

But what if she’s right? 

What else could they be capable of?

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the book which I read via the Pigeonhole App. This is the first book that I have read by Liz Lawler and also the first medical thriller that have read for a long time. I have to say that if I had read this book before the operation I had a couple of years ago I would have cancelled it! Whilst this thriller is medical it is easy to understand. Even if you are like me and don’t know all the terminology it doesn’t read like a text book.

Emily is an excellent nurse whose life has been turned upside down by the disappearance of her younger sister. After leaving her high pressure job at the local hospitals starts working at the much quieter private hospital. When she has a procedure at the same hospital she witnesses something that she is told didn’t happen. But Emily isn’t prepared to accept what she is being told.

Emily was a difficult person to warm too. I wasn’t entirely sure if I trusted her at first. But when I got to know her more and see her isolation I had more sympathy and liking for her. Her parents were horrible with her, especially her mother and she also had a stilted relationship with her new colleagues who didn’t really come across as approachable or that caring.

It is definitely a strange novel, there was more than one victim in the novel and I had a lot of sympathy for many characters. The final reveal though was certainly one I didn’t expect. and it left me a little disturbed.

This was a great novel to read via pigeonhole, each stave ended on a cliffhanger when I couldn’t wait to read more the following day. If I read it as a conventional book I would have read it over a couple of days, instead it took ten.


Stalker by Lars Kepler – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

CLOSE THE CURTAINS
A film arrives at Stockholm’s National Crime Investigation Department showing a woman in her own home, plainly unaware she is being watched. The police don’t take it seriously … until she is found murdered.

LOCK THE DOOR
When the next video arrives, Detective Margot Silverman frantically attempts to identify the victim. But it’s already too late. Because at the time the video was sent, the killer was already inside their house…

BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE
Soon Stockholm is in the grip of terror. Who will the Stalker target next?

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. Stalker is the first book I have read by Lars Kepler although I do have an earlier book from the series. I wish I had read at least that one, then I would have understood these characters much more. It took me a while to appreciate Joona. It was his character I wish I’d known more about. What he was like before his family were torn apart by danger and  threats. I liked him, I wanted him to succeed and be proven right. I didn’t want him to feel let down by somebody who was a friend.

I do read a lot of Scandinavian crime fiction but this one made all of them look like cozy crime. It’s one of the goriest that I have read and some of the worst sides of society are convincingly shown. It was chilling getting to know the victims just before they were attacked and it felt personal. It’s also one, that when I finished I felt drained. Mainly because when  the killer was revealed, quite a way before the end, and I saw how insane they were I felt more tense than I have felt in a long time from reading fiction.

I’m uncertain as to how many of the other characters have appeared before or how many will be in the next book. There are many who I would like to meet again. It is quite a long book, the longest I’ve read for a while and it did take me a while to get into it. I’m glad I persevered, this is yet another series I plan to catch up on.

Gallowstree Lane by Kate London – Blog Tour Review.

About The Book

Please don’t let me diePlease don’t

When a teenage boy steps out of the shadows of Gallowstree Lane and asks a passer-by for help, it’s already too late. His life is bleeding out on the London street. 

The murder threatens to derail Operation Perseus, a cover police investigation into the Eardsley Bluds, an organised criminal network. Detective Kieran Shaw can’t and won’t allow that to happen. But fifteen-year-old Ryan has other ideas. He’s witnessed the death of his best friend, and now he wants someone to pay…

As loyalties collide, a chain of events is triggered that threatens everyone with a connection to Gallowstree Lane. 

My Review

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received. Gallowstree Lane is the third book in the series, I haven’t read the previous two and apart from curiosity on my part I had no problem following the storyline.

I think the main reason was because whilst the recurring characters who are the police do feature much of the novel concerns Ryan, a young teen who is a drug runner for a local gang. It was Ryan’s story that captivated me but also upset me. At the start of the novel when he witnesses his co runner and best friend die after being attacked by a member of a rival gang he is distraught. He still feels loyal to the gang leader, Shakiel, but also for the first time feels guilt and fear.

His isn’t the only sad story. There is also Lexi, a drug addicted prostitute whose life is far from what she imagined it being. And Loretta, Ryan’s mother, who can see her son’s life being destroyed by the same thing that took her husband. All three you see far too often on the news.

I liked following the two police investigations. Both of them wanting the same results for different reasons. And both struggling to accept that one may be more important than the other. This part of the novel was more detailed than many others I have read. It was easy to follow, and I found it interesting and informative without being overpowering.

I hope to read the previous books soon, Lizzie especially is a character I want to know more about.