The Rumour by Lesley Kara – Review.

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About the Book

A casual comment.

There’s a killer among us.

That’s all it takes.

She stabbed little Robbie Harris.

To change a life –

She’s living under a new name.

For ever.

She’s reformed. So they say . . .

Joanna is going to regret the day she ever said a word.

My Review

It’s rare that I review a book when it is a few months away from being published, but for this book I was happy to do so. I imagine that this book will be very popular. It was just what I needed to read after having a slight book slump, it was a book that I needed to carry on reading.
Joanna is struggling to fit into her new life after living in London and in a bid to make life easier for her son she engages in gossip at the school gate. It does get them accepted by the ‘in crowd’ but it places them in danger.
Joanna was a character I liked instantly. I sympathised with her predicament, she regretted what she said and she did it without thinking about the consequences. That people who were innocent could be accused of terrible things and have their lives ruined.
It is one of those novels that makes you suspect everybody. I did guess (correctly) fairly early, but it didn’t stop me enjoying the novel. There is a threat from more than one person. It only has short chapters and was very quick to read. Most of it is told by Joanna’s point of view but there are also glimpses of Sally and you see how she is coping with possible exposure.
The topic could be a difficult one. A child killer who herself was a child and who has been released whilst still young and the victim’s family seeing them lead a normal life. But the author shows both sides, that the killer has far from a normal life. Despite this it was difficult to warm to Sally though, even when you heard her side of the story and knew what her upbringing had been like and at times I did have sympathy.
There were many characters I liked, there were some sad lives and the author shows different ways of acceptance and coping. These will have to remain nameless because if you read this book you will suspect them just like I did.
A brilliant debut novel that I couldn’t put down and which had an ending that made my jaw drop. I’m sure it will do well.

With thanks to Alison Barrow for the signed proof and for the inviting me to the publicity launch at Theakston Crime.

I Know A Secret by Tess Gerritsen – Blog Tour Review.

 

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About the Book

I have a secret.
And someone wants to make sure I never tell . . .

In a house decorated with horror movie posters, a young woman’s body is found. She lies on her bed, two bloodied objects clutched in her palm. Detective Jane Rizzoli and Forensic Pathologist Maura Isles are called to the murder scene, but even faced with this gruesome sight they are unable to identify the immediate cause of death.

Their investigation leads them to a high-profile murder case that was seemingly solved years before. But when another body is found in horrific circumstances, the link between the two victims is clear. Was the wrong person sent to prison? Is the real killer out there right now, picking off new targets?

One woman knows the killer is coming for her next. She’s the only one who can help Rizzoli and Isles catch him.

But she has a secret that she has to keep . . .

My Review

I haven’t read all the Rizzoli and Isles series and every time I do, I tell myself that I need to catch up. The books that I have read I’ve enjoyed a lot and I Know A Secret is a welcome return to a fascinating series. The novel starts with an unnamed female narrator at the funeral of a young woman who has been killed in a house fire. She doesn’t seem to be there to mourn, more to observe.
When Maura receives a telephone call from Jane whilst she is visiting her mother in hospital she is relieved to have an excuse to leave. But the relief is short lived when she is faced with the grim sight that has sickened many of the team. It is the first in a series of murders that frustrates them all, horrifically staged but with no obvious cause of death.
All the victims appear to be unlinked but Rizzoli and Isles gradually uncover secrets from the past. There are some very unpleasant characters in the novel who try to stop them and with one of the characters I feel that there could be more to come in the future. The murders are fascinating, creepy and had me looking at more deeply on the internet. They are nothing like I have read before.
The scene setting and characterisation in the book is brilliant. I could see the squalor in the film studio and the passion that the team had to get their film into production. I could see the family life and the unhappiness in Jane’s family and I could feel the tension and distrust between Maura and her mother.
Whilst I have enjoyed watching the TV series based on Rizzoli and Isles the books are much more entertaining and informative. Rizzoli is a much deeper character with stronger ties to her mother and is less tolerant of her father and brother. Isles is more of a loner, has a strange relationship with her deeply unsettling natural mother and an on/off relationship with a man who she shouldn’t have a relationship with. If you have watched the series but never read any of the books, they could be read as standalone novels but I would recommend that you start at the beginning. There are many differences between the books and the TV series.

With thanks to the publisher for the copy received via Netgalley.

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Dead Woman Walking by Sharon Bolton – Blog Tour Review.

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About the Book

Just before dawn in the hills near the Scottish border, a man murders a young woman. At the same time, a hot-air balloon crashes out of the sky. There’s just one survivor.

She’s seen the killer’s face – but he’s also seen hers. And he won’t rest until he’s eliminated the only witness to his crime.

Alone, scared, trusting no one, she’s running to where she feels safe – but it could be the most dangerous place of all . . .

My Review

I had been looking forward to reading Dead Woman Walking since reading the opening chapter via a link from the author. I had an anxious few weeks to think about what would happen before I was lucky enough to receive a proof copy and the opportunity to participate in the blog tour.
The first few chapters detailing the events surrounding the hot-air balloon crash have put me off for life. They were very convincing, and I don’t like to think about which of the passengers I would have had a similar reaction to.
Once I had started reading it was hard to stop. The just one more chapter rule didn’t apply, some of them were very short so I dropped everything and just read constantly. Dropping all the other books that I was reading at the same time.
The narrative was mainly in the present day but it did jump back occasionally to reveal events from Jessica and Isobel’s childhood. These parts gave hints to why Isobel ended up in the convent and why Jessica became a police officer. There are also a few flashbacks concerning Ajax, the police officer involved in the investigation into the hot-air balloon.
I loved the storyline concerning the convent, the cleverly named peafowl and the existence that all the Nuns had. I had never considered that a Nun might have had a family of her own and a connection to the outside world and I had never thought that Nuns might watch TV or have an interest in solving crime. They were all the most likeable characters in the novel.
It’s difficult to say anything about the plot without spoilers so I would just say if you like a novel that tackles a subject that is mentioned often in the news and has plenty of twists then you will love this book. A great follow up to Daisy in Chains.
With thanks to the publisher for the copy received.

To buy the book at amazon or Waterstones

Other stops on the blog tour

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